Gared Shaffer

My name is Gared Shaffer (34), I am married to my wife of seven years, Emily (36). We have four children: Emma (5), Adalyn (3 ½), Lily (2), and Wyatt (3 months).  I grew up in a Southern Baptist Church in Kansas.  In 2006 I went to Kansas State University for a Bachelors in Agricultural education.  During my freshman year of college, I was invited to a Bible study on campus organized by the Navigators ministry.  Through this I saw who Jesus was, the Savior, who I was, a sinner, and that I was called to follow Jesus.  God saved me the summer after my freshman year of college and from that point on had a desire to know God more and proclaim Him to be known around me.   After graduation in 2011 I joined The Navigators and was a missionary in the Middle East (Amman, Jordan) for a year.   I then returned to Kansas to obtain a Master’s of Science in Agronomy.   During this time I met Emily through friends, and we were married August 9, 2014.

Emily grew up in Valparaiso, Indiana. She came to faith at a young age and attended a Nazarene church where she was actively involved and was baptized at the age of 12.  After high school she attended Indiana Wesleyan University and obtained a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education. While teaching in the public schools in Houston, Texas, she met a missions organization and served with them for several years taking mission trips to Brazil and Tanzania.  She lived in Tanzania in 2013 where she taught English and worked alongside missionaries on the ground.  After we were married, Emily taught at a private Christian school in Kansas before our children were born.

After graduation in 2016, we moved to Aberdeen, South Dakota so I could work as an Agronomist for South Dakota State University Extension.  We are currently members of a Southern Baptist Church in Aberdeen, Sovereign Grace Baptist Church.  During my time in the Middle East, I saw a great need for godly men to disciple and pastor the church.  Since our current Church leadership saw my aspirations (1 Timothy 3:1) to become a Pastor/Elder in the church, they advised me to get a Masters of Divinity from Southern Seminary.  The last five years I have worked full-time as an Agronomist and part-time as a student while being a husband and father.  I have attended Southern Seminary online and will graduate this December.  We serve a Sovereign God who does all things for His glory, and my desire is that He is glorified through my pastoring Solid Rock Baptist Church.