g(O)dd Topics: Your Calling, The Past & Moving Forward | Ep 44

Calling

We’ve done g(O)dd topics before. Usually we do them when one of us can’t coordinate a Google hangout. When that happens, the other one will record a shorter video and talk about something that has been on their heart or mind. This week we’re doing it a little different. Instead of one of us recording a short video, we both did. Then we just slapped them together. Neither one of us knew what the other was going to talk about, but I think both topics flowed well with each other.

Your Calling

In the first half of the episode Bruce talks about what we, as Christians, are called to and shares some bad news he received about the counseling program he’s enrolled in. And even though his plans won’t go the way he had hoped, it was how he understands our calling that God used to reassure him.

Often times we put a lot so much pressure on figuring out our “calling” that we never realize our ability to answer the call God has already given us. Our calling is far more simple than we want to believe it is. Bruce shares his thoughts on our universal call.

Nostalgia and Pressing Forward

In the second half of the episode, Thomas talks about reminiscing about the past. He talks about how sometimes we can get hung up on our past and miss the thing we get to be a part of now. Instead, we should only look to the past to remember. Then, as Paul instructs in Philippians 3:13-14, we leave what is behind and press on toward the mark. Remembering the past is good, it reminds us of where we came from. But, pressing on toward Christlikeness lets us reside in “the now.”

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photo: Flickr/Free for Commercial Use

Pursuing Relationships for Community | Ep 43

This episode’s content was a little jumbled in our approach. If you couldn’t tell, sometimes we’re not prepared with a topic. Although we don’t do it often, there are times we get on to record and just wing it to see where the conversation goes. This time it took us to talking about the importance of pursuing relationships for the sake of community.

But First, Marriage Relationships

In pre-show we did talk about the fact that we both knew a number of people, both Christian and not, who are currently in various stages of marital harmony, some having pretty serious distress. Whether there is anything helpful in that or not, we included it because it does have to do with relationships and we both believe that community is one of the best places to walk through those difficulties. In fact, we’ve seen first hand the role community can play in healing and creating wholeness in marriages.

Pursuing Relationships

The main topic had to do with the fact that Thomas wasn’t putting in the effort to pursue meaningful relationships. His wife actually had to tell him to begin pursuing meaningful friendships. I’m not sure what she’s doing, but my take on it is that I’m all the friend he needs. Her argument is worth considering. Check it out…

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A Royal Priesthood | Ep 42

Priesthood

In this episode we’re talking about how all Christians are actually made to be part of a real priesthood. We had a friend share a story about how she took on the duties of a pastor for a family member who was passing away. She talked about how she prayed for that family member and with other members, anointed him with oil, led and issued communion and just generally cared for the hearts of her other family members. All that while a person she loved was dying. And she’s not a pastor. Well, she isn’t a vocational one, who is paid to do that stuff.

Your Priesthood

In Eph 4:11 we’re told that God gave certain gifts to the church so that we might be trained to do the work of the ministry and build up the body of Christ. Those gifts are Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Shepherd, and Teacher. It is in these gifts that we are taught and brought into the fullness of our priesthood.

Many Christians are content with allowing a small number of people, typically in church leadership, assumes these roles. In doing so they never have to be responsible for actually making disciples. But, if we take Jesus’ commission to go be witnesses and make disciples, we cannot ignore our role as priest.

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Photo: Flikr/Don McCullough

Growing Up Christian & Leaving Church | Ep 41

Church

In this episode there really isn’t a lot to write for notes. Really Thomas and Bruce spent the episode telling their stories. They shared how they became Christians and what that looked like through their childhoods and into adulthood. Then they let that conversation lead into why they are both working toward leaving institutional church.

Church

We haven’t kept it a secret that we’re working toward leaving traditional church. Right now Thomas is a little farther along, but we’re both moving forward. Probably the best way to wrap this up is to just get to the stories. Enjoy.

What’s Your Church Story

We would love to hear your stories. How did you become Christian? Are you still? Are you going to Church? If not, why? You can share in the comments or contact us and share privately.

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Photo: Flickr/Quinn Bombrowski

Should the Church Build Leaders? | Ep 40

Church Leaders

In this week’s episode, like a chocolate vanilla swirl ice cream cone, Bruce and Thomas are back and together in the same place. In the last couple weeks the podcast has seen their wives show up to review The Shack and an interview with James Roberson, 516 Project, about the upcoming 8 Days of Hope event in Lafayette, LA. In this episode we discuss church leaders, or more specifically, their infatuation with developing and building leaders.

Leaders versus Disciples

When Jesus gave us the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20) He instructed us to make disciples. Somehow the western church has turned that into a leadership development calling. What if we focused on making disciples instead and in doing so, we created disciple makers. By the very definition of “making disciples who make disciples”, we are making leaders. What if we focused on disciple making? What would change?

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photo: unsplash/David Eragusa

(G)odd People: Rebuilding Hope with James Roberson | Ep 39

hope

In this episode we welcome 516 Project – Construction Ministry founder, James Roberson. James started 516 Project out of a desire to be the light and hope of Jesus to those who feel overwhelmed or defeated by the darkness of their circumstances. James and his team shines that light by “helping homeowners in need of home repairs who are unable to afford or who have physical barrier to completing the repairs on their own.” We love that and wanted to share him and his heart with you.

8 Days of Hope

This was the main reason for James coming on the show.

Eight Days of Hope is a Christian, non-profit organization that is both evangelical and non-denominational. They also exist to show the love and hope of Jesus Christ by serving people in need. James shared that 8DH meets needs in two ways, immediately after a disaster hits (rapid response: by providing shelter and needed relief, and in the later rebuilding process (Disaster Recovery: after it seems like the world has forgotten about it).

Their next major project takes place in Lafayette, LA from June 4 – June 11, 2017. On their website, 8DH explained the situation in Lafayette by saying, “This area has experienced devastating damage. 140,000 homes were damaged in the state in August (2016) as over 20 inches of rain fell in a short period of time causing over $15 Billion dollars of damage!” So they’re going to make a difference and bring hope.

Please consider praying, volunteering or donating to this cause as we will be serving from June 4th through the 11th.

For information, go here: 8 Days of Hope – Lafayette

Volunteer, go here: Volunteer

Donate, go here: Donate

516 Project – Construction Ministry

James’ ministry is aa Christian, non-profit organization based in Fredericksburg, VA. James has a desire to show the love of Jesus Christ by serving people in need. They routinely have projects and work-days and are always in need of resources and people who want to serve others.

There next big work day is May 20, 2017.

For information, go here: 516 Project

Volunteer, go here: Volunteer Registration

Donate, go here: Donations

Request assistance, go here: Request Assistance

Please rate us on iTunes and share with your friends.

Follow James and 516 Project at the following links:

Facebook Page: 516 Project- Construction Ministry

Instagram: @the516Project

Twitter: @the516Project

(G)odd Wives: Review of The Shack | EP 38

With all the controversy surrounding Wm. Paul Young’s book and movie, The Shack, we thought it’d be a great idea to give our take on it. But better than our take on it is our wives’ take on it. So, in this episode we welcome back our wives!

Creative License

One of the biggest arguments against this book/movie is the creative liberty that the author took with the book. Specifically, the fact that he portrayed God as a black woman named “Papa”. While it is true that Young took, what appears to be, significant liberty, by getting hung up on it you miss the very real heart of God that he’s trying to communicate. And that will be the premise that Sarah and Angy take for reviewing it.

Links

The Shack Movie

The Shack Book

Wm Paul Young

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Potluck: Not The Shack, Seminary, Serving in Church, & Adoption | Ep 37

Potluck

Potlucks are Fun

It’s been awhile since Thomas and Bruce have been able to do an episode together, but they’re back. Technical difficulties put them out for a couple months, but they’re mostly fixed now. In this episode we did not talk about The Shack, mostly because our wives will next week, but also because we don’t like controversy. Just kidding, we like controversy. Instead, we used this episode to catch up on the last couple months, sort of a potluck of topics.

Seminary, Serving & Adoption

Okay, we did talk about The Shack a little, but not enough to ruin Sarah and Angy’s episode. Mostly we focused on sharing what God has been doing in our lives over the last couple months. Some of that stuff is pretty big stuff; kids being healed, adoption considerations, serving in our local church, and Thomas being part of the “system” by going to seminary.

People not to Follow

We also mentioned a number of people that we follow, but don’t recommend you following. Here’s a short list: (CAUTION: If you click the links, they’ll probably mess you up.)

Any Gungor (Michael, David: The Brilliance, Lisa)

Jeff Vanderstelt: Saturate

Francis Chan

Podcasts Mentioned

Bad Christian

Pastor with No Answers

We’d love to hear what’s been going on with you! Let us know in the comments.

photo: Flikr/Luke Jones

#TBT: Nudity in Movies & Service Based Devotion to God

For episode 5 we invite our first guest co-host, long time friend Curtis Marshall, onto the show. He shared what God has been doing through his upcoming separation from the military and what, for him, serving God looks like right now.

Our first topic starts by asking the question, “Is it okay for Christians to watch movies or television shows with nudity?” Lots of Christians say they have no issue watching shows like Game of Thrones because the nudity isn’t an issue for them, but should it be?

The second topic is something that Thomas has been talking with a lot of Christians about lately. During multiple conversations, people have told Thomas that they’re starting to realize that they are serving in certain areas of the church out of a felt obligation rather than out of being compelled by an active relationship with God. Does “faith without works is dead” obligate us to serve, or is there something deeper than that?

g(O)dd Couple: Starting New – Dating and Remarriage After Divorce | Ep 36

Remarriage

The last few “couple’s episodes” we did, had a lot of great feedback. One of the things that a number of people asked us to talk about was dating and remarriage after divorce. So we are…

We came up with a few points to remember:

1. Figure Out You.

This is you taking the time to deal with your feelings, resolving your hurt and finding the you that you are or want to be. This is a great time for realizing important things about yourself or to reinvent yourself.

2. Know Who You Want.

After you discover yourself, take time to figure out what you want in a partner. This is a great opportunity to wrestle with really deep questions and desires about what a healthy relationship looks like and what you expect from and in a healthy relationship. This is a perfect time to make a list of those expectations (and it’s okay to be picky).

3. Give Your List Grace.

After you make a list, go back over it and be realistic about what you put on there. Then, have grace for it. You might get lucky and find someone who meets the whole list. But, likely you won’t. But that shouldn’t be a game changer. If there are one or two items they don’t meet, decide how important those items are.

4. Be Intentional with Your Time.

When you do start dating, be intentional with how you spend your time. Specifically, if early in the relationship it becomes evident that it isn’t something you want, it’s okay to end it. But, if it becomes obvious you’re moving toward a long-term relationship, or marriage, be intentional about learning each other and investing in that relationship.

5. Remember that Remarriage is Going to be Hard.

No matter how well you do that other stuff, getting married (or remarried) changes the whole dynamic. You are going to bring in baggage and it is likely going to be difficult. If you go in understanding that, you’re more likely to stay and fight. This is not you having a dreadful view of marriage, but is instead accepting the reality that relationships take actual work and that you are both likely bringing baggage to the party.

In the end, we want others to be encouraged and know that building a healthy, God-honoring marriage is possible, even after divorce.