The Rev. Carl F. Hunter, a native of Trenton, New Jersey, has literally been in the pulpit and trenches for over 20 years organizing communities and facilitating personal training for the state of New Jersey.
Currently, Rev. Hunter lives in Austin, Texas, where he became a Hogg Peer Policy Fellow working in the Texas Legislature for RecoveryPeople, a peer- and family-led recovery-based nonprofit that supports people in recovery from substance abuse and related mental health issues.
When did you know that God was calling you to be a messenger of the gospel?
If I am truthful about it, I am still trying to figure that one out. I feel that others knew that I was called long before I did. More importantly, even when I did hear the call, it was under duress that I accepted the call. I needed a Jonah type of experience for me to say “I will go, send me …”
How important is it to have a personal relationship with God?
I believe it is of utmost importance. As I pen this response concerning the importance of my personal relationship with God, I am happy and overjoyed to say that I am in the process of having an ever-evolving personal relationship with a God I cannot understand. To me, this is a good thing because how can the finite even attempt to boast that he or she can grasp the fullness of an infinite God. It is in that space of my finiteness that the unlimited possibilities of a God who has no limitations can be manifested in my life.
What three habits help you maintain your success, sanity, and peace of mind?
The first habit that is part of my daily routine, remember where God has brought me from.
The second habit that is part of my daily routine, to do what I need to do to maintain my recovery. I am a person in recovery from substance use disorder. Remaining abstinent and in the process of recovery makes everything else in my life possible.
The third habit that helps me maintain my peace of mind is being of service to others. I believe that if you bless others you will be blessed.
Why is it important for people to attend Bible study and Sunday school?
Second Timothy 2:15 (KJV) says: “To study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” It’s not enough to just show up to church on Sunday morning and expect to develop one’s personal relationship with God. As in any relationship, one must put in the work and spend quality time. There are books on God, but they are all secondary sources. The Bible (basic instructions before leaving earth) is our primary source. God is revealed to us through scripture. Thus, I believe it is essential in developing one’s personal relationship with God. I believe that Sunday school is supplemental to Bible study in the life of a congregation.