Friday, 07 July 2017 14:51

Brad Armagost Executive Vice President, ServisFirst Bank

Written by  Staff
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RRJ:  Growing up, you attended church with your grandparents and mom and were baptized at age 12.  Was this when you realized your need for Jesus’ offer of salvation? 


Brad:  No, my baptism felt very ceremonial, like it was a graduation event for taking the baptism class at church.  It wasn’t until Young Life camp at Windy Gap, North Carolina that I realized Jesus could truly change my life.  I realized that His path to eternal life was a better choice, my peer group was healthier, and just the experience of His grace was indescribable.


RRJ:  You mentioned that you were a child of divorce.  How has that affected you and your wife’s relationship and how has it helped you in raising your children? 


Brad:  From the moment Grace Ann and I married, we both came into the marriage with an attitude of “divorce is not an option”.  We took our vows very seriously and knew this was a life-long commitment.  We show love and affection openly towards each other in front of our kids.  We try to have a sense of humor and forgive and forget.  If you can’t forgive in relationships, there is no long term hope.  Keeping score and being vindictive is exhausting.



RRJ:  You mentioned that your childhood church experienced a split.  In what ways did this feel like a divorce and how did you deal with it? 


Brad:  Yes, there was a parental divorce followed by a church divorce.  I’m not sure how I dealt with it.  I was very young, but it is amazing how much I remember about both events.  I guess I dealt with it by pouring myself into my friends, playing music and athletics.  My friends were very important to me.  I spent a lot of time at friends’ houses and a lot of time in my room playing guitar.  Football at Robert E. Lee High School from 1983-1985 was very important to me.  The circle of friends I had in the sport was epic; black and white friends that I would fight for...brothers.  Sports is one of the most unifying activities for the world.  It truly brings people together, no matter what color or creed.  I also experienced the same thing following high school in U.S. Army basic training, and the following seven years in the Army Reserves.



RRJ:  In what ways are you able to shine your light for Christ at your work place? 


Brad:  I find that to be harder than I thought.  It’s easy for your faith to show with other believers at work, but most people at work (over the years) seem to be more focused on work and climbing the mountain of success than bothering to develop deep relationships.  I will say this, anytime I share a meal with someone (a colleague or a client) I look for the opportunity to pray before we eat.  I have never felt a bad vibe for saying a prayer.  I know God can use it for His glory.



RRJ:  What do you feel is the most important thing in sharing your faith with others, especially non-believers? 


Brad:  How God’s promises can transform your life.  When you have a personal relationship with Him (prayer) and learn to trust in Him, it can be the greatest stress reliever.  



RRJ:  What would you say is the meaning of life?


Brad:  Many people are completely stumped by this question and their own answers can be very troubling to themselves.  As Christians it is a very easy answer - “To Glorify Jesus”.  We all have talents, gifts and time… let’s use them to glorify Him.



RRJ: God gives us all gifts/talents.  One of the talents He’s given you is music.  How have you used that gift for His glory? 


Brad:  I started playing when I was 14 years old.  I played in bands in high school and in college...even recorded a little music.  But I had no idea it would lead to playing in church; a way to glorify Jesus.  After my wife and I joined Saint James United Methodist Church in 1999 a friend and client of mine, NeNe Baker, stayed after me for a couple of years to play guitar at church.  At first, I wasn’t interested because contemporary music at church was still in its infancy and the music did not resonate with me (only the traditional hymns).  But her persistence paid off and I am so grateful.  Today’s contemporary worship songs are incredible!  The lyrics, melodies, rhythms and song structures rival anything ever written in music, in my opinion.  It is a strong genre.  I have had the privilege of playing in church, at festivals, prayer events, funerals, weddings and even on an incredible mission trip to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2007 (see YouTube “SJ Life Band” or link  https://youtube/a9DlVU9TEho).  We played area church worship services, and the pinnacle event was a youth music festival playing in front of about 25,000 Brazilian teenagers.  I still get goose bumps thinking about it.



RRJ:  What advice do you have for living consistently for God? 


Brad:  Join a church, and then join a small group.  We were not made to be loners.  You will find strength is a small group and people who love you and want to support you.  Then find a place to serve in church.  Figure out what your gifts are and how they fit into the church structure.  The power of community with God’s people is amazing.  The Church is the bride of Christ and the hope of the world.  So choose to be a part of hope.



Brad Armagost is married to Grace Ann and they have two sons, Cole (14) and Chandler (17). The family lives in Montgomery.



Last modified on Friday, 07 July 2017 15:05
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