Head Pastor: Matt Smith
Matt Smith was born in San Diego on February the eighth, 1979. He was a navy brat and grew up on Coronado Island. This bubble community, resembling La Jolla in many respects, was an idyllic place to grow up. Matt went through high school playing Water Polo, surfing and playing in a punk rock band, totally oblivious to God.
He went on to college at the University of California Santa Barbara and joined the crew team. He excelled and upon graduation moved promptly to the east coast to pursue a newfound dream of representing the United States at the 2004 Olympic games. At twenty-two years old Matt, still not a Christian, was the head coach of Brandeis University Crew Team and a full time Olympic hopeful. This caused him to regularly be in New York City where upon he met his wife Rebecca.
He met Rebecca, a student at Columbia University, at a bar near her school and it was love at first sight. After a few conversations it became apparent to Matt that Rebecca was a virgin and consequently a dreaded Christian (Matt had developed a general disdain for Christianity in college). He brightly decided, being uninterested in the virgin thing, that he would set out to disprove Christianity so that Rebecca would be compelled by the evolutionary urge to fornicate with him. God it seems had other plans. Matt, the motivated skeptic was confronted immediately with the watertight historicity of Christianity. One night Matt let himself be led to a church with Rebecca where it seemed he heard the actual Gospel for the first time, presented in an intellectual way that satisfied his skeptical nature. In his seat during the closing hymn he invited Jesus into his heart. Matt and Rebecca are now married with three beautiful little girls (looks like he got his way…God’s way).
A year and some change after this conversion Matt felt God gave him the idea to become a pastor. This seemed a silly idea to one enrolled in school to be a sports psychologist with a successful coaching record who was months away from possibly going to the Olympics. The idea however, did not go away and Matt quickly realized that nothing else he did would ever satisfy him. In fact upon reflection he knew that there was no way he could not be a Pastor if that’s what God truly wanted. When Matt returned to his beautiful bride to be, cold Chinese food in hand, he made his announcement. It turns out God had been turning Rebecca’s heart towards ministry as well and so the two left to return to California, and begin seminary training.
While at seminary Matt decided to take a youth pastor position at the First Baptist Church of Clairemont where he grew the youth group into a not so young youth group and eventually began an evening contemporary service called Barabbas Road. The intention was to be as blunt and biblical as possible and see what God does. What God did was to begin a new church in La Jolla California geared towards reaching the intellectual skeptics of the community.
Today Pastor Matt is proud to pastor a church
that is boldly challenging the false faith of the unbelieving world with the only Way, Truth, and Life. They are busy making disciple-making disciples through the personal investment of their lives. Make no mistake; they are praying to God, well aware that the next chapter of this story needs you.