About Ross Hickling
Shield Your Faith was founded to encourage Christians and non-Christians to understand the great reasons for faith in Jesus Christ.
ABOUT ROSS HICKLING
I became a Christian in 1973, after seeing the difference that a relationship with Jesus Christ made in the life of my father, Harley Hickling, who had made a fresh commitment to Jesus Christ at that time. Seeing a need in his life, he went forward one evening at a church in Honolulu, Hawaii in 1973. Upon seeing my father go forward and make a profession of faith, I also asked Jesus to be the Lord of my life in the same general time frame as my father. After doing this, I remember that even at the age of ten, I knew things would be different. In these very early years, I saw an immediate difference in my life as I became a better student and stopped fighting with other boys my age; I also stopped disrupting the classes that I was in. Ever since this early conversion, my testimony is one of God's provision in every facet of my life. He has been my Shepherd in guiding me every step along the way. He has been my Comforter in times of testing and trial as well. I believe that God provided a wonderful wife and family as well as gainful employment for many years. So, since my early conversion to Jesus Christ until the present day, He has been to me Jehovah-Jireh, "My Provider," in every way. I believe that this provision continued throughout my law enforcement career even as I performed many high risk duties. As I type these words, I can look back and see God's protection and blessing on my law enforcement career.
In regards to the most prominent influences in my life, I have to say that my father and Hazel Sasser were tremendous influences in the formative stages of my teen and early adults years. Dad, being employed by the "Freedom Council," (now defunct), would bring home books from scholars/authors who were writing on Christian engagement in society. It was at this time that I was exposed to a lot of Christian literature to include the complete works of Francis Schaeffer, many writings from C.S. Lewis, books written by Josh McDowell, and the works of many others. Through the years, there is no doubt that my father had the most profound influence on me as I saw a devotion to God evidenced not only by his practice of the spiritual disciplines (prayer and BIble reading), but also in how he dealt with several difficult circumstances that plagued him throughout his life. He has always had a simple trust in God along with a desire to pass this faith in God on to his children. After dinner, it was dad's practice to read to the family from various authors which I always enjoyed and benefitted from.
In addition to my father, another prominent influence in my life came from Hazel Sasser, a music ministry mentor who constantly poured into my life as I teamed with her in music/evangelism ministry. In Hazel, I saw a leader who would push us all (the members of our ministry team) out of our comfort zones in order to engage people in their need as we toured and sang/gave testimony of God’s influence in our lives. She heavily influenced me until the 1990s when she succumbed to multiple sclerosis. Along with my father and Hazel, others that have had a big impact on me are my in-laws, Peggy and Leroy Jones. They have been instrumental in my interest and activity in short-term missions trips. Even though my trips have been curtailed in recent years because of my on-going education, their encouragement in this area has been invaluable to me in becoming increasingly active in helping others in ministry.Leroy retired from the United Methodist church but continues in evangelism ministry with his wife and partner in ministry, Peggy. In deploying with Peggy and Leroy, I have learned a lot about engaging people from other cultures on the missions field through their tutelage.
Eventually, there came a time in the mid-point of my career when I began to consider what I wanted to do after employment with the U.S. Marshals Service. It was clear to me that I should begin preparation to work towards becoming engaged in full-time ministry. It was then that I began to work towards the educational requirements needed for ministry. After applying and being accepted at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, I began working towards a B.S. in Religion there. At every opportunity in my theological studies, I wrote apologetically themed papers as I interacted with skeptical as well as Christian apologetic literature. As I began my Master of Religion program at Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, I continued with the emphasis on Christian Apologetics as I fulfilled the requirements for this program. As I neared completion of the degree requirements for this program, I felt that I had built a good theological foundation upon which I could place an emphasis in apologetics. It was my desire to help others strengthen their ability to defend their faith from attack.
I began my specialized Christian Apologetics related curriculum at Southern Evangelical Seminary in Matthews, NC and then transferred shortly thereafter to Biola University where I completed the Master of Arts in Christian Apologetics program in 2014. In the years at Biola, I received a well rounded education in the various topics within Christian Apologetics from an accomplished cadre of professors who are noted in their fields of specialization. As I began to study the arguments of prominent atheists, I soon discovered that the reasoning that they used to criticize the New Testament was not based upon good evidence. This was apparent to me because of my experience as an investigator who had worked for years with evidence in the field, who had teamed with prosecutors to charge scores of criminal defendants by applying good principles of evidence, and who had observed many criminal trials and other legal proceedings on both the state and federal level. In contrast to this, SYF research reveals that several well-known skeptical claims against the Gospel narratives are not well supported by the evidence.
Because of my background in law enforcement investigation combined with my specialized seminary training, I feel that I am in a great position to aid Christians in defending their faith against the attacks of skeptics and showing the great reasons for faith in Jesus Christ. There are many Christians who have had an experience with Jesus Christ but sometimes question their faith after they hear claims from skeptics that shake their faith. I want to encourage these Christians and I also want to present this proof to those who do not believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God who lives today.
Click here to download Ross Hickling's Curricula Vitae
A LOOK BACK
Graduated with a Master of Arts in Apologetics (with Highest Honors) from Biola University, La Mirada, California. Launched "Shield Your Faith with Ross Hickling," a full-time ministry focused on helping Christians understand the great reasons there are for faith in Jesus.
Retired from U.S. Marshals Service where I worked in many roles (see Curriculum Vitae).
Graduated with a Master of Arts in Religion (with High Distinction) from Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary, Lynchburg, Virginia.
With then U.S. Marshal for the E/VA, the honorable John Hackman (now retired) at the U.S. Attorney Awards ceremony
(see Curriculum Vitae).
Serving in Manhattan, New York just after the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center.
Worked on a four-month fugitive operation in Richmond Virginia. Fugitive investigations was a strong emphasis in my career
(see Curriculum Vitae).
Served on seven international missions trips (5 to Ecuador, 1 to Costa Rica, and 1 to Ghana, W. Africa) where I worked as part of a team in constructing buildings, giving testimony, and singing.
Married my beautiful wife Andrea. We celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary this year (2014).