Sam Lavender grew up in Georgia in a Christian home. He prayed to receive Christ as his Savior at The Baptist Tabernacle in Thomaston, Georgia at the age of five. At the age of fifteen he attended a Christian camp called The Wilds and decided to take his personal devotions more seriously. As a result, he felt burdened to preach. A couple of years later he felt burdened for full-time evangelism. After graduating from Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC with a BA in Bible Sam entered evangelism while working at his Christian high school, Gilead Christian Academy in Macon, Georgia.
During this time Pastor Sam started traveling for a summer ministry called Baptist Youth Mission in Sinclair, Wyoming. During his fourth summer of travel Sam met his wife, Hilary, at Higher Ground Baptist Bible Camp in Sterling, Alaska.
Hilary grew up in Florida in a Christian home. She was saved at the age of eleven and gave her life to Christ as a teenager. While at Bob Jones University Hilary served at Higher Ground Baptist Bible camp in Alaska for two summers. She met Sam while serving as camp cook. They were married in 2008 following Hilary's graduation.
Pastor Sam has served as staff evangelist, youth pastor, Christian school teacher, outreach director, interim pastor, senior pastor, and church planter. He is currently working on an M.A. in Bible from Maranatha Baptist Seminary. The Lavenders have five children: Carson, Brooklyn, Madelyn, Emma, and Cameron.