How Our View of God Changed
Episode 81 is a solid 55 minutes of pure goodness.
How Our View of God Changed
Episode 81 is a solid 55 minutes of pure goodness.
Aired On
Apr 5, 2022
55 minutes
Try Dwell

Conversation Two. “I grew up thinking that God was a distant judge and if I was good enough He would give me what I want.” We talk about our faith story with Jesus and the church in the second conversation in the conversations series. We are trying to model how to build a deep meaningful relationship with those you do life with.


Resource – True Face: Beyond the Mask.
Verse – John 1:14.
Verse – John 17:3.
Verse – Revelation 1:8.


Take a Listen to Other Episodes in this Series.


Josh – Hello hello hello we’re just too normal with you try to live this jesus life. My name’s Josh.

Andrew – Hey I’m Andrew and we are this jesus life podcast Josh how you doing man we ah we’ve seen yes I feel amazing. Yes.

Josh – Proud. Yes I’m doing right for this being our fifteenth take I feel fantastic. At this point I’m awake.

Andrew – Yeah, we needed that warm up time of 4 5 10 15 takes to get ready for this It’s gonna be huge people. It’s gonna be huge. It’s conversations part 2 but before we get there Josh what’s the best part about avocado toast which I know you just enjoyed what. Best about it.

Josh – Who that’s good question so I like to think that I’d eat manly avocado toast and not just your typical avocado toast because I’m a man. Ah but I do sourdough bread and has to be sourdough bread I’ve tried other breads Sourdo is the way to go.

Andrew – Can ah.

Andrew – It’s how do yep Yep, you got a mash on the toast agreed agreed.

Josh – And then avocado fresh avocado. You just throw it on there and then I mash it up a little bit on the toast. So it’s not like chunks of avocado then it’s a little bit of pepper across the top Sometimes if I want more avocado flavor put a little bit of Salt depends on my mood and then secret sauce.

Andrew – Yep yep.

Josh – Five five sauce which is like a green chili sauce goes on top of that and then I fry up some eggs and I do overea I want that runny yoke but sometimes I’m not paying attention in the yoke cooks but most time runny yoke is the way to go. It’s just mashes all together. Ah yeah, and then.

Andrew – Awful. Nice Yep, right? right? great.

Josh – I have like some seasoning stuff that I put on my my eggs to make them super tasty and the other trick is I make an extra piece of toast. So when I eat my 2 other pieces and the stuff that falls off I have something for it to go on. It’s pretty tasty.

Andrew – Yes, ah genius see that that is the secret sauce man that’s the secret sauce you you’re like I know there’s gonna be stuff coming off I’m gonna not eat it in the moment and I’m gonna have a third piece of avocado toast. That’s how you start your day people. That’s how you start your day. Yemen.

Josh – It’s a good day. The downside for today was I went downstairs to make myself some avocado toast and realized I had no 5 ah 5 eggs or sourdough bread which at that point I was just going to eat an avocado.

Andrew – Right.

Andrew – Yeah, ah right, right? Nice right? right.

Josh – So thankfully I live extremely close to a king supers which is our local grocery store. The Kroger Brand grocery store. Ah, and I picked up some groceries and $70 later because you can’t go in a grocery store for less than fifty bucks these days I got my my so I was a little bit late getting to the podcast.

Andrew – Rate.

Josh – I thought I was gonna make a thugs and time it just right usually takes me like 12 minutes to make me some avocado toast took me a little bit longer and then yeah I was late and then we had audio problems over and over and over again.

Andrew – Um, yeah.

Andrew – Like yeah, many many times but we’re here things seem to be working Josh has avocado toast eggs and 5 sauce which I don’t know what that is but it sounds delicious.

Josh – Yeah I can hear you this time.

Andrew – And yeah, man, the only the only change I would make to what you describe 2 changes I always do a little bit of salt because I think it brings out all the flavor of that avocado you want to treat it. You know how it needs to be treated. It is a delicious avocado. You know so don’t ah don’t skimp Josh you got to bring out a little salt. Ah, then I love the egg yolk too. But I always like my go to egg cooking style is a single flip so fried egg but like 1 flip so you get a little cooked on both sides. Um, so you still get that yolkiness in the middle but you know gotta. Gotta get a little cook on each side I used to be all about the overeasy I sure I’m sure I will be again at some point but these days and given no well wait. You’re right? You’re right.

Josh – you know what you what you’re describing is Overeay Andrew yeah, over easy is you flip the egg over but the oak is still easy so you do like overeay. You’re a big fan of that.

Andrew – You’re right? Okay, all right I made a blender. Yeah I do like overeazy single flip fried over easy. You’re right I was thinking sunny side up when I was describing that and you’re right? Yeah right? right? yeah.

Josh – And I like no I can’t do that I can’t do the sunny side up because like the the liquidiness of the egg grosses me out and I like the crispy like I like the egg to be a little bit extra fried. So like it’s got a little bit brown on both sides.

Andrew – Little bit too much. Yeah, yes, hundred percent dude where a spot on. The only thing I you know change about what you said is always out of the pinch assault but hey we can negotiate on that. Well yeah, yeah, who.

Josh – You You would also change though. You’d want you want home eggs Homemade x.

Andrew – Home eggs are my preference. Um, but that’s just because I have chickens which they’re doing pretty well and finally it’s not snowing here so they are pumped about spring Our chickens are noticeably no no.

Josh – Have you lost anymore I feel like we haven’t had ah an egg or a chicken update in a while.

Andrew – No dude, they’re doing great. We’ve we’ve been at 13 strong for like probably a year or close to a year you know we went from 17 down to 13 in pretty quick order. Um, and then we’ve just held steady like 2 of them are paranoid and they live.

Josh – Um, how long are they good for.

Andrew – They live about 7 years or 8 years actually yeah Yeah so they have a pretty good lifespan. So if you keep a chicken alive I think one chicken can produce something like 2000 eggs over the course of its lifetime which is insane when you think about it especially because you get.

Josh – Oh that’s longer I thought.

Andrew – Chickens for like a dollar when they’re chicks. You know so it works out. It’s a lot of eggs. But yeah, man, life’s good. Everything’s blooming here in Pennsylvania um, and as you know Josh I just got back from my first ever family camper trip.

Josh – Um, yeah.

Josh – Yeah, yeah. I was gonna say can you can you tell us about your your first Youtube family camping outing and how it went and I already know the story of how it went so if it was a Youtube video great start to your Youtube channel plenty of drama.

Andrew – Yes.

Andrew – Ah, tude if we did a ah it would have been it. It would have been a great start. So let me just say we left on Sunday and conditions were not perfect, but we decided like hey we booked this. We’re going and we’re going to see you know does our camper stay dry in the rain. Ah because we knew there was going to be a decent amount of rain on Sunday. So anyway, dude let me just say we were pulling up to the campite like everybody had cleared out except a few different people who were camping. And basically it was like we I made the fatal comment of as we pulled up like hey at least the rain stopped you know so it’s like cold and wet. But it’s not raining well as soon as I park the camper and get out it starts like heavy duty raining like no joke and this is this is a popout. Pop up camper remember so it’s not like just stop and step in it’s like 20 minutes to set it up if things are going well so I get this thing all set up on the outside I pop it up on the inside. And I’m feeling really good about it because it probably was like 20 minutes I had a few small things go wrong? Um, but I but I had done some test popping at home you know and I’m like wow like this is gonna work out like I’m gonna ask. My wife Jana to just pull the car forward and and then unload the girls and we’re good dude. Um she gets back at the car to pull the car forward like I asked. First thing she was doing you know in the camper setup and. I don’t know if the hitch bumped the the front of the camper when she pulled forward or if it was leaned against the car or what but dude I’m kidding you know Jenna pulled forward a foot or 2 and suddenly the whole popup camper. Like the wheel snapped off the bottom of the ah of the tongue where you like the lift on the tongue. The wheel snapped off of that the 2 stabbilizer jacks in the front bent and the whole hipper shifted forward like a foot. And landed on the the broken hub of the tongue. Ah and and the bent jacks and just like I just like had to laugh to myself and then have like a oh crap moment all at once like what just happened you know.

Josh – I I’m just picturing Janet in the car and she’s probably like looking in the room of your mirror to see you and she’s like do I pull forward now. She’s probably already nervous and the first thing it happens is the trailer just disappears the whole front end just disappears in inner rear of mirror. Okay.

Andrew – Um, so anyway, Janice steps out.

Andrew – Here’s the funniest part Janenna stepped out of the car having no idea anything wrong had happened because the girls were being all loud and she steps out and she’s she makes a comment like hey it looks pretty good.

Josh – Oh even better.

Andrew – And then she sees my face and is like what happened and I point to the wheel that snapped off and the way the french camper had fallen forward and her face like went pale. You know like oh crap like what just happened so dude like. 1 takeaway is that I think Jane will never again, pull forward if I ask her to win the campers off. She’s gonna be like no you do that now that’s always your job just to clarify was not her fault would have happened to me too. But it is hilarious. That.

Josh – Nope Yeah, not gonna happen.

Andrew – The 1 thing I asked her to do like caused total disaster. Ah but no man thankfully by the grace of god this guy Glenn had parked next to us and like he happened to be out and about in the rain doing a few things to like cook or do whatever. Um. And he came over and he brought he had an extra Jack he brought it over it was way better than the one I had notes to self I’ll put a better extra jack in the car for the next camping trip. Um, but he came over. Got it jacked up I learned a big lesson about how to properly use Stabilizer jacks and how to improperly do that so won’t make that mistake again. Um, and then on the whole we actually had a really good time overall, um, even though it was like raining. Leading cold all of that. There’s 1 tiny drip in my camper that happens but it is like even with pouring rain. It’s like 1 drip per couple minutes. You know it’s really small. So all that to say dude. I’m stoked for for ah round 2 of camping and I think once I get the stabilizer jacks replaced which is gonna be an easy thing to do. Um I’m gonna put it in the back toward close to our fire pit and I think we’re gonna do a ah like a one night surprise family camp out back there just to just to redeem. You know what just happened and then we have a bunch of other trips planned later in the spring and Summer so anyway dude learned a lot had a good time and the the girls had never been camping you know last time we were camping was grand tetons ah is that.

Josh – And now used to.

Andrew – Montana Wyoming grand Tetown’s national park and Jana was like super pregnant with Katherine at the time it was like a month before Katherine was born. We went camping. So anyway man it felt felt really good to get out again and excited to have it. You know it’ll be fun. Ah, be fun.

Josh – Yeah, now you’re gonna have those people out there Andrew that don’t consider ah rv camping camping and especially in your case since your mattresses were also heated. So.

Andrew – Effort.

Andrew – Yes.

Josh – You might want to come up. Maybe maybe a different like likelamping. Maybe you are clamping more than camping. Um.

Andrew – Maybe we were maybe we were but you know what dude I used to be 1 of those people by the way because I love backpacking I love tent camping like I went backpack bow hunting for elk in Colorado for like. Ten days or some crazy amount of time like I’m I’m all about that. But when you have 2 tiny children if you want to go camping you better better have a camper or a good system with a huge tent to make it enjoyable so you know it’s like.

Josh – Yep.

Andrew – Trade off one day we’ll go backpacking again one day I want to take the family backpacking where a long ways from that being enjoyable so we have heated mattresses and a pop up camper in the in the inbet betweenen time. That’s for sure. So.

Josh – Yeah, my favorite type of camping is can I pull my truck there and if I can pull my truck there I’m fine I I knew of back camp bat back pack camping like it was a thing but I didn’t know nor normal people did it until I moved to Colorado.

Andrew – Yes.

Andrew – Back camping dude. Ah, it’s the best with everything on your back all your food your water filter.

Josh – And you’re like what do you mean? you hiked for miles to your campsite that sounds miserable like how how are you? How are you gonna drag your air mattress with you for that far like no thank you.

Andrew – Ah, dude I’m just proud of you for going camping and loving it. You know it’s not a thing you used to do in the early days of me knowing you in Colorado now you’re like yeah I love camping and you know what I I pick. You are not ah Tom from parks and rec if you’ve seen that episode people. You know where Tom Buys everything from qvc that’s right, right? but he has like a http://slushymakercoffeemakertvplaystation.

Josh – But I’m not against being Tom from parks and rack like I’m not not against having a tv in the 10 I’m open to the idea that’s right inflatable couch.

Andrew – And then he like drains. Ron’s car battery because he’s using all the power and yeah, then they’re trouble but that was a good episode. Yeah Ben but dude since we’ve done like I don’t know 15 twenty takes of this already you and I have about a half hour left before we got a bounce.

Josh – That’s a good episode. Nice.

Andrew – So can you set us up and and launch us into conversation part 2 part 2 part 2

Josh – Yeah, so we we are excuse me I just got a bubble of coffee in my throat. Um, that sounds gross but it’s what happened? Um, we’re in the middle of a series. We’re calling conversations and essentially the idea behind this is. There’s just 10 conversations. To grow in relationship with somebody else and this comes from trueface. It’s an organization. We’ll link it in the show notes if you go to this use and you can purchase the the little deal. It’s super cheap, but it’s just an opportunity to one it frames kind of the conversation around a video. Um, a super quick video and then there’s a handful of questions that’s asked and then there’s some you know deeper stuff if you want to get into it. Um, but essentially the goal of it is just to get to know somebody on a deeper level to become fully known by somebody else so you can do this with spouses. You can do this with friends. You can do this, you know to some extent you know with maybe older children.

Andrew – Right? right.

Josh – Have some life experience because some of the questions won’t apply but like people so desperately want to be in relationship with with and with another piece but to be fully known by somebody else or by a group of people. Um, but we oftentimes don’t know how to do it and oftentimes feels.

Andrew – Yeah.

Josh – Like a massive hurdle that we have to overcome to get to those places because it takes a lot of trust it takes a lot of vulnerability and this is a great process of 10 conversations that progressively get deeper and deeper as you go along? Um, but don’t ever feel overwhelming like you never maybe you will at some point I don’t know but. And there’s that vulnerability hangover you’ve probably experienced like maybe you shared something that was extremely personal to you with somebody else and then you walk away from that conversation and you’re like oh my goodness. What have I done? Um, it’s that like exposed feeling that’s a normal feeling that’s not like you’re 100 % on the right path if you’re feeling those things.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Andrew – Who.

Josh – In terms of building relationship trust and vulnerability have to be there and this is just and we’re just trying to model this for you. So there’s some some ground rules to these conversations. We break one of them every week because well this is a public podcast and anyone can download it. Um, so we’re trying to be as honest as we possibly can to these questions without.

Andrew – That’s right.

Josh – Exposing other people’s stuff that’s kind of how I’m viewing this like I don’t want to share a story that may cause harm to somebody else that hasn’t given you permission to share the story even though it’s a story about my life and about me it may affect other people or maybe paint them in a bad light and I don’t want to do that. So there’s some things that we do filter ourselves.

Andrew – Yeah.

Andrew – Right.

Josh – I wouldn’t recommend that in a 1 a 1 conversation if you’re doing this conversation with with a friend you want to go deep. You want to share those stories you want to become fully known but in a far sake. So yeah and the other tools rules is no I don’t know exactly how they were it but no fixing and no preaching. So we’re not here to fix each other. Yeah on that.

Andrew – Yeah.

Andrew – Ah.

Josh – As much as I want to tell Andrew you know the 10 things that it’s wrong about him that he should he should look at and evaluate I’m going to keep my mouth shut and just let Andrew be Andrew and share his answers. No matter what they may be. This isn’t a place to to correct with truth either. Um in these conversations.

Andrew – Ah, right, right? right? right.

Andrew – Right.

Josh – Oftentimes when you do that you shut them down if you don’t have relational collateral like you be, you should be very careful and when you when you speak truth to people because you know if you you sever relationship in the midst of that. Um, you have no voice anymore like sorry so that’s that’s kind of it.

Andrew – Right? right.

Josh – First question or the first week conversation. We’re gonna kind of finish up the last couple of questions but those questions actually filter right into the second conversation. So we’re just going to call this conversation number 2 and let’s let’s dig into it Andrew do you want to go first.

Andrew – Um, yep, yeah man. Yeah I can go first. So the only thing to add to Josh is like we did. We did start last week by going through what are some of your best memories ah of your childhood some of the worst we both answered that then what have been some of the highs and lows of your adulthood. We went through that. So if you missed it go back and check that out. Our first question. Today is a short question that could be really short or long in the answer. So. It’s just this how has your faith journey with god played out man I was thinking about this Josh because I knew we were going to have this conversation and like I think. If I looked at my I don’t know how many acts there would be in the play of my relationship with god you know if it were like presented as a play or something I don’t know why I thought of this maybe because our girls love Hamilton and we listen to that soundtrack too often. So I thought of it as like how has it played out. Act 1 act 2 act 3 act 4 you know um I could I could look at my relationship with god in like 3 acts I guess um so far in my life. You know act one would probably be like growing up into late teenage years. Um, where it was like going to church being a part of the church like believing in god um, having a lot of head knowledge and sometimes heart knowledge and interactions with god um, but also really trying to like run my own direction which I’ve talked about that before. In my Testimony I think of of trying to like live for myself and be like all things to all people but not in the biblical sense like trying to almost have different different lives of like there’s the church Andrew this is not church Andrew you know they’re not necessarily the same. Person. Um, and they’re not after the same goals. Um, so that would probably be like act one and and that went up till I was like 19 neteen actually 18 um, but my my freshman Year Of College act 2 started when. Like right going ah like close to Christmas break starting had this moment where I like I was so frustrated me and because I was looking around as projecting. You know if you if you want to use the psychological term for it I was projecting onto everybody else that was at the christian college I was at Indiana Wesleyan

Andrew – Looking around and thinking like how are like these people got to be faking it. You know like everybody who’s acting so joy filleded and all this stuff and like they got to be faking it because I was faking it and I’m like getting all frustrated by it and man I basically had a moment where I gave god a. Ultimatum essentially of like god I want to either live 100 % for you as best I can or or not act like I’m going to you know like and and after being all mad and like frustrated at that I ended up just going to sleep that night and I woke up the next morning. Not with having this crazy moment but with having this like I’m pretty stubborn and having the stubbornness of just like I’m gonna do my best to live for god I’m gonna try to live this this life honoring god you know and and doing my best to kind of walk in the way that Jesus did. And that that would probably be the start of act 2 in my life in my relationship with the lord like from that like at college got to meet Jana and I married her. You know after school dated for a long time and that’s been like the most incredible. Relationship. You know that’s led to all kinds of adventures like moving to Colorado and meeting you having kids like doing all kinds of crazy stuff having chickens. Um, but yeah, man act 2 is I would say is like you know like taking it seriously and trying to really. Live it out as best I can and then act 3 it would probably come around the time like ah probably would start around the time when like I knew my daughter Katherine was coming Janna was pregnant. And we were deciding some really big things like we’re like no, we’re going to move away from Colorado and raise family near family and that was really hard because we loved Colorado we had you and so many other great friends. Together like really cool sense of community. Awesome place, a place that we really loved. Um, but it felt like that seeing season was coming to a close in in many ways. Um, and I don’t know man I guess act 3 with with god would probably be. Like where I’ve just felt like god has been taking me down these paths of like okay for the next year or 3 or somewhere in between I’m going to teach you a huge lesson you know where like that’s where the year of the chicken came from.

Andrew – Ah, right now is still the year of focus which has been more than a year as the year of the chicken was your focus is just like what is my focus that I’m gonna filter things through my focus is relationship with god being a good husband and being a good father like those are my top 3 you know and that excludes a lot but I’m trying to live that way. Um, so yeah, man I would say act 3 has been like going through these big moments of like I say moments these big lessons that could last a long time and and that’s where I am now. Who knows this might be the next like 50 years of my life I might be in my final act I don’t know, but but if I look at the themes of like my relationship with god since it kind of started I think at age like 7 if I remember right? like that’s that’s how I’d classify it man. Um, so sorry long answer to the first question but um, but be curious I don’t know if you have any follow up questions. But how is your faith journey with god played out. Yeah.

Josh – That’s great. Yeah, ah, some more similar story. Um, and I know we kind of briefly touched on piece of this last week and there’s so many things that play into the faith the journey you know different experiences that you have whether you would label them faith related or not they they play a role. Um, in forming who you are and that plays a role in in your faith journey. But I’ll try to limit a lot of those things and just focus on the faith part of it all. So I grew up in a Christian home I remember kind of my first church experience I remember in a elementary school class. Um I want to say we are meeting in a school was the church that we’re going to, um, it might even been the school that I attended I don’t remember um but I remember the Sunday school teacher. It was a Sunday school kind of environment. The Sunday school teacher explaining tithing and blessing.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Josh – Um, and she’s like you know I gave a turkey away. It was like right on Thanksgiving I gave a turkey away and god gave me 2 turkeys which is bad theology. But um I can see how she was trying to get there. Um, but that’s like my first that’s like the first church experience that um, other than like. Were really little I do remember like some of the catholic masses that we are part of for Christmas or whatnot. But um, that was my first like evangelical protestant church experience that I could remember and then I I we stayed involved in the church we were there every week kind of thing we moved to South Dakota going into my.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Josh – Seventh grade year I went to a sleep boy camp for the week with our church and um, ended up giving my life to Jesus because the preacher terrified me and I was homesick. So but I remember praying the prayer kind of thing in my bed by myself.

Andrew – Yeah, love. Yeah.

Josh – Told my my cabin leader the next morning but that was kind of it and you know going into seventh grade. How much can you fully understand about this whole thing about Jesus but I think I understood what I could understand so I would say in in my theological circles that salvation was secured at that point but I didn’t fully understand it and didn’t didn’t really mean anything.

Andrew – Great.

Andrew – M.

Josh – Like it didn’t change who I was it didn’t change the way I was living this life. It wasn’t until going into my senior of high school that that god called me away from some things in my life. Um, and called me, you know towards full-time ministry that I probably started to take my relationship with Jesus seriously um, and.

Andrew – Um.

Andrew – Yeah, um.

Josh – You know I I quit hockey at that point a you know full bore preached my first sermon at of Lord’s supper which probably went miss is really bad for everyone that had to listen to it I probably repeated myself over and over and over again. But um.

Andrew – Boom.

Josh – Is what it is I still repeat myself. It’s a tactic that I use now. But then I just didn’t know anybody I have no other words to give you um and then ah yeah, came maybe do it and enough you’ll be fine with it. But um, there’s um.

Andrew – Ah, preaching scary and hard. Let me just say yeah.

Josh – But I ended up you know in paid Ministry pretty quick after high school leading a junior high ministry at the same time you know went through my like crisis of Faith. You know I was at a ah public college and taking your world world religions classes and um. Ah, took a intro to the old testament survey and an intro to the new testament survey a new testament survey was taught by a methodist pastor that just destroyed any sense that you may have that the bible has any legitimacy now.

Andrew – Wow Wow. Um, right.

Josh – I wish I knew what I knew today because I would ah I be able to fend the positions but at the time. Yeah I’m nineteen years old don’t know any better and you’re like whoa and you know you know what he’s saying like wait a second this is opposite of what ever been taught and what I’ve been taught wrong or is what he’s saying like is he just making making crap up.

Andrew – Okay, right.

Josh – Um, one of the arguments that he used try to remember it must have been for the flood. Um, it must have been the flood but there’s there’s there’s multiple ancient religions that talk about the flood.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Andrew – That have floods. Yeah.

Josh – Um, yeah, and and wrote about it before moses before you know Moses ever. You know, put all that that story down from God and he said you know look at what the bible so has stolen like it was just it was a forkla or what’s the word when some things like ah.

Andrew – Forfeit or counterfeit I don’t know folklore folk lo Yeah yeah, yeah, yeah.

Josh – No like no like a story like and forklo there you go I can’t even say it after you say it the fork. Um, but so yeah and that’s his argument and then you know you’re like whoa. That’s that’s a big deal sitting in the moment and then you realize. Or it just proves that it happened and other people noticed and wrote it down. Um like those are things you just didn’t think about when you’re 19 years old and don’t know any better so I started to go through this crisis of faith of like wait like maybe there’s maybe I am wrong and started to dig into these things and really start to understand them and you know I was I was lucky enough to come out of that.

Andrew – Right? Yeah yeah.

Josh – You know with a stronger faith than who Jesus is and what Jesus had done. Um, you know I know that’s not the case for everybody um in environments like that and at this point like I’m still pretty like I have I have a group of friends around me but we didn’t have those types of conversations. So I didn’t necessarily have someone to bounce those things off of or I felt safe to do that.

Andrew – And.

Josh – So in in a lot of ways I went through the experience by myself which is a horrible horrible idea when you’re walking through those things but um, came out of that and and got to this place with with the church that you know I grew up in a pretty traditional church. You know it was.

Andrew – Great. Yeah.

Josh – Had its you know veins of legalism that kind of snuck through it wasn’t blatant but it was there to the point that I had to deal with that Those kind of theological views later on and I was a pretty black and white from theology and had no problem telling you you were wrong.

Andrew – In.

Josh – Which is not proper approach to those conversations. Um, but went through that and got to this place of like is is this all the church is like we show up here Sunday we show up here Wednesday and this is the church like there’s there’s got to be more to this so I started to dig into that and start reading through.

Andrew – Break.

Josh – Just early church stories and reading through you know the gospels and and the epistles and coming to this Inc Conclusions of note like there’s more. There’s more to church than all this and I remember teaching a series in the junior high called churches. It should be and we kind of walk through each of those things and walk through the book of acts. And I decided to leave my church because of it I’m just like yeah there’s there’s more to this. It’s time for me to go and you know looking back at it now it was this realization that um, like my entire life was surrounded by the church bubble.

Andrew – Wow wow.

Andrew – Better.

Josh – Like the only people I interacted with was professed Christians I didn’t have any Non-christian friends I didn’t interact with non-christians at all like I went to church and I hung out with church people and I went to church events like my entire life was surrounded around that. Um so God called me away and and started this journey.

Andrew – Um, yeah.

Josh – But should be I gotta know whatever act we use Andrews there’s another act. Whatever the number would be and I started this this journey of what does it really mean to love god and love people when people don’t when people are so different than you so I ended up working for Apple for a little while which you know.

Andrew – Um.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Josh – Apple does a lot of great things. Ah Apple is also pretty liberal in its views and progressive in its methodology about the human side of things so you’re working with a ton of people that have very different worldviews than you do and learning how to build relationships and and be friends with people that.

Andrew – Then.

Josh – Um, don’t look at life the same way that you look at life and it was a huge learning experience for me. Um, and you know really started to get into the world piece of like what what does it mean to to follow Jesus at a place like this and just do a lot of work on my heart. Um during that season and then you know you skip ahead for a while. And I get to the next act which probably started like three years ago four years ago maybe even further long than that like there was buddings of it but real changes start happening until then and really starting to understand what it what Jesus meant.

Andrew – Yeah.

Josh – Um, when he talks about the greatest commandments to love God and love people like what is that what is that practically look like and how do you actually foster relationship with God a relationship with with people like I’m a firm believer that Christians should be relational experts. There should be nobody else on this plan and that does relationship better than us.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Andrew – Um, and yeah, yeah.

Josh – And that we do conflict extremely well that we love extremely? Well, we show Grace extremely well that we dig into relationship extremely well and build healthy healthy environments around us both with humans humanity and and and with god right? like our role in this um faith journey with Jesus. Is is to foster relationship with Jesus and do what he says and I think oftentimes we just we don’t know how to foster relationship with Jesus and we’ve said I’ve said this on the podcast. We’ve said this on the podcast and we’ll say it a thousand times probably but relationships relationship like you build relationship. With god the same way you build relationship with with ah another person. Um relationships relationship. Um, and we dig into these things. Um for the sake of of those relationships and man the depth of trust the depth of peace. The depth of safety.

Andrew – Um, yeah, yep.

Josh – That you start to feel um inside of these places you’re like man I could take on the world like there’s nothing the world can throw at me that’s going to change my faith and hope um in my future because of who Christ is and what Christ has done and that’s where we’re trying to get people to and and trying to love people to it. So it’s those.

Andrew – Um, um.

Andrew – Do.

Josh – Similar to Andrew it’s these faith journey. You know maybe plateaus like you’re climbing up this thing or maybe like ah fake. Um, what do they call that a false peak where you’re getting this place. You guy I finally the arrive and you’re like oh another false summit. Oh there’s another. There’s another peak decline.

Andrew – Um, yeah, yeah, fall summit. Yeah yeah, yeah, um, yeah.

Josh – And sometimes it feels like a simple walk and other times it feels like a big climb but it’s just Jesus you know like us and making us more holy like him in terms of how we love people and love him. But yeah.

Andrew – Um, yeah, yeah, man, that’s awesome. Thanks for thanks for sharing that and I know we probably could both talk about that for a long time like there’s there’s so much there and knowing a lot of your story. In advance of this like I know how much you you jumped through? Um, but man I was going to ask just one 1 question ah on on that last like the act you’re in now. Um how how long have you been there man when did. I know when did you leave the kind of full time ministry position from the last church where where we met because I know you left that and stepped into a different job. Ah, and then you know we’re dreaming and working on launching Hill City but yeah how long have you been in the season man like 4 years 5 years

Josh – Ah, this specific season due to two and a half years of leaving my last church and and get to this place now. But in terms of like the spiritual side of this like god started to do a fair amount of work probably like.

Andrew – Okay, well I’m good. Yeah yeah, that’s so crazy. Yeah, right? Yes, okay, that’s what.

Josh – For starting like four years ago ish on that things started to play out in this way like planning a church has always been on my mind since I was in my early 20 s so that’s not new, but.

Andrew – And I ask because I feel like yeah yeah, yeah, no I I just felt like this season I knew you you left that church roughly three years ago but you know you and I for the last like couple years you were there. Um. We’re meeting like pretty much every week doing accountability getting to know each other on on a much deeper level as friends over that time and and pouring into one another and I felt like right around that same time was maybe when that shift started not not saying i.

Josh – Um.

Andrew – Played any part of it just I noticed it you know and it’s like it’s kind of cool to look back and think about like Wow that was like the winds changed or his season changed or new act started or whatever language you want to use but it’s kind of cool man. It is cool to see you know when things shift I Guess so.

Josh – Yeah, it’s yeah anytime anytime we have an opportunity to like God is so faithful to us and in in the small ways and the big ways and oftentimes we’re just so focused on the problems of life. We’re so focused on.

Andrew – Yeah man.

Andrew – Yeah.

Josh – You know, specific things or the busyness that’s going on that we miss just the faithfulness that God shows to to those that love him like God gives good gifts to those who love him like and we’d think it like tangible like physical gifts like we’re looking for that big paycheck coming in or.

Andrew – Um.

Josh – Um, you know a random car being giving to us I’m not saying God doesn’t do those things. Um, but those things actually aren’t as helpful um to the the character things that God gives you um through Journeys right? like where he starts to shift your heart and how you view people or how you view such situations or how you view him and gives you a.

Andrew – Yeah.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Josh – Depth of relationship that you didn’t have before like there’s there’s character pieces that he’s working on it in who you are and and like behavior comes second to character and I think when Christians get into trouble is when we switch those that we change our behavior and we think our character’s going to fall suit. But then we get exhausted and tired because.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah I.

Josh – We’re trying to maintain something that just isn’t in our natural position to maintain. But when when god does the work from the character perspective man maintaining those behavior things or some like oftentimes you don’t even think about it’s just who you are now and and we get those flipfl flo like let Jesus lead that process and that’s probably the biggest thing I’ve from a.

Andrew – So true. Yeah yeah.

Josh – From that sanctification process standpoint that I’ve learned over the last few years is let’s easily that process and do what Jesus says in the moment it may feel stupid. It may feel simple simple and you have no idea the impact. Um, what a little bit of time and perspective to be able to evaluate where you’re at now compared to where you were but then.

Andrew – Um, yeah. 100% man hundred percent

Josh – The next question Andrew um I think we could probably skip the next one because I think the next one’s where where would you say you are in your journey right now I think we both answered that unless you have something to add to it for your journey. We can kind of move on to the next one but the next question is is this and I think this could.

Andrew – Um, right right? no.

Josh – This could be interesting so over your course of your religious experience. What is the primary descriptor of how you have viewed God we’ll see a judge a vending machine theoretical safety Net Bodyguard ah earthly planet you know parent God Whatever the heck that means.

Andrew – Oh.

Andrew – Yeah, dang man this is hard because like I was describing kind of like different acts. You know of of my life where I could say like what is your walk in with the lord or what.

Josh – Or something else. How was how was god.

Andrew – What is your relationship and with god like in the early the first act I would say definitely vending machine would be how I would describe god where it’s like I need this would you help with that. Can you give me this thing. Can you do this exact thing. Can you show up for me in this way in this moment like. Vending machine fits for sure like that would be the approach of like god is real but he’s there to to give me stuff what I need him to kind of um yeah man and then in the the second and third act like I don’t I don’t know that these. Um, fit so the the number 7 option is or something else and I feel like any analogy is going to fall short. But I’m going to say like wind ah wind would be my primary descriptor of how I viewed god and. not not of like random but like that god sometimes is is like calm and not as ah, blatantly active in my life like there’s seasons of like we’re just hanging out. Wind is calm. It’s not blowing like crazy outside but I know it’s here like I feel the breeze you know like it’s around but ah, but it’s not this forceful gale. Um, or tornado or something like that. But then there’s there’s been other moments in my life where god is like no dude like. I’m gonna blow hard enough until you notice what I’m trying to tell you um and of course I’m there and I’m powerful and I’m present and I can shift everything around you if I want to but but I kind of like the wind where most of the time god is pretty calm. And and patient in my life and and present. Um, but that I I don’t know that’s the best descriptor I can come up with is like like wind god would be able to do massive things or very small things but always present.

Josh – Thank you? yeah.

Andrew – And my life would be kind of hard describe him these days. What about you man because that’s that’s a hard question by the way.

Josh – Yeah, um, yeah, with with my upbringing and kind of how God was talked about and I think there’s a great thing for parents to realize like don’t use God as like dad like do use God in the perspective like wait till your father gets home and.

Andrew – Right. Pray rate right.

Josh – Horrible view of god but that’s the normal you know I think for a lot of Christian parents. That’s what they use you don’t want to disappoint god um, you’re like whoa like careful. But yeah god was ah a judge in a vending machine for me, growing up and even into my probably mid 20 S. Um, even like I wouldn’t have described him that way because I knew that would be wrong, but at the same time. That’s probably how I interacted with him. Um, you know I remember man being in the middle of hockey games and like letting in a crappy goal and just being like all right god.

Andrew – Um, yeah, right? yeah.

Josh – If you give me this win. You give me 10 extra saves. So you know my safe percentage can go up like I will I’ll be the best Christian in the entire world I will tell everybody about you I’ll stop sitting in all these different ways if you just get like that was in I’m not I’m not trying to poke fun. Um.

Andrew – Right? right in.

Josh – A lot of people view god that way. Um, it shows a maturity level in their relationship whether whether they’re a teenager or they’re in their sixty s that could still be viewing god in that way, it’s actually for those that are trying to help disciple people. It’s a deeper relationship with god. It’s actually a great indicator of where they’re at spiritually. But. And then the judge piece of like he’s always out to get you or like oh you’ve screwed up 1 too many times god’s done like he’s not He’s not bless you in this area. He’s taking these things away from me or whatever like those are definitely things that that I lived into and the other the other one on that. What’s not on here but would probably play in that same season is you know.

Andrew – Um, yeah.

Josh – I moved away from so my parents divorced I said she last week um, in first grade so we live primarily with my mom but we moved to South Dakota when I was in I think it was in fourth grade. So my dad stayed in California we were whatever thousands ah of feet away or feet thousands of feet.

Andrew – Yeah.

Josh – Thousands of miles away from each other or a thousand miles I don’t know how big the United States is um and and so much of of your view of god is the parental you know comes from your parental um relationships and you know my god my dad was distant like he was. You know we could. Collect call him anytime we wanted to but like we saw him you know only a handful of times a year you know in person face to face and I think there was ah there was a lot of of of those characteristics in that relationship that I applied to god that god sure you know from ah a head knowledge standpoint he was. Everpre he was all around but he he didn’t really interact with us that often. He was pretty distant and from you know, that’s ah and even from a relational standpoint. He was pretty distant. You know I grew up in a in a church that like god didn’t speak to us in that way. We weren’t taught that god speaks in in that way in relationship and. It was odd for those things to happen or not rare I should say for those things to happen and then you know shifting to today you know god is god is a ah person like here. It’s funny like I’ve always been pretty against Christian paraphernalia.

Andrew – Um, yeah, yeah.

Josh – For lack of better turn right? like Andrew and I grew up in the 90 s and early 2000 and like that was the rage of Christian Paraphernelia they have stolen every brand out there and christianized it so you could wear and feel cool. Um, life way.

Andrew – Ah, ah.

Josh – Berean bookstores like those are all the rages That’s like where you hit up all your Christian stuff and not of this world right? like all those things So like I’ve been I’ve always been pretty against that I hate that culture. Um I think it’s devastating to the church and devastating christianity that that culture ever existed and now we’re reaping the the.

Andrew – Totally. Um, yeah, yeah.

Josh – Results of that season. But in the church today. But um, recently like I want to buy a cross necklace. So I’ve been looking across necklaces and I’m like I’m not that guy but like it means and I’m like still in my head like wrestling with that idea.

Andrew – Um, yeah.

Andrew – Think.

Andrew – Um.

Josh – Um, because I don’t want it to be what people use it for but Jesus me like Jesus is a person to me and I want to not represent it but be reminded of it myself that you know he is active and he is working and you know I’m talking to on regular basis and I and I wear ah like I wear a bracelets that in the inside says disciple maker Matthew for.

Andrew – Um, that’s cool. Yeah.

Andrew – Nice.

Josh – 19 to remind myself of the purpose of this life but um, like there’s there’s little things like that like I don’t want to go down those roads because I’m not I don’t want to portray myself in a way that creates behavior and other people that doesn’t actually help their relationship with Jesus.

Andrew – Yeah break.

Josh – But at the same time like it’s ah it’s like holding onto like ah a picture of of your parents or like a picture of a memory that means a lot to you or you know maybe somebody gave you something and it’s not anything significant what they gave you but the relationship matters a lot to you so that so it ends up being a significant item.

Andrew – You know.

Andrew – Right? right.

Josh – It’s like that piece of it of like yeah this is like this is Jesus like he’s I was talking to a friend yesterday and she’s been praying. She’s been calling god aba which essentially means you know father or daddy and I said you called you you called god Daddy. She’s like no no no I use I use the word op I was like I don’t know if I could I could call god daddy they would just feel weird then I was like no I would I would 100%. Do it for us being sarcastic with Jesus like I would I would absolutely call Jesus Daddy to be to be a punk. Um, but like that’s relationship.

Andrew – Can fit.

Andrew – Um, not for you not for you? Yeah right? right.

Josh – Like I’m not but being irreverent. Um, yeah, it’s just it’s but I was like and it was just a realization to me as as I was driving home from from that meeting where you’re just like holy crap like no Jesus it’s relationship like I would do the same thing with you know, most people I’m in relationship, especially people.

Andrew – Um, yeah, yeah.

Josh – That have authority over me I would I would interact with in that way just to just to lighten the mood and I was like holy crap. It’s relation like I’m just the same thing I do with humans I’m doing with god I haven’t called god Daddy recently. But um I wouldn’t put it past but so it’s that piece of like no it’s god is a.

Andrew – Who.

Andrew – Ah, yeah, yeah.

Josh – Actual being that interacts with you on a daily basis that loves you deeply that loves you so much. It doesn’t want you to stay where you’re at and if you foster relationship with Jesus and you do the things he asks you to do. It’s amazing. The the places that he’s going to take you in terms of not just action and behavior and like things to accomplish mission- wise but like just.

Andrew – Yeah.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Josh – Depth of character of who you are and you know I want to be yamen season where I want to be known by people of how well I love people and how well I love god like I want them to be like oh yeah, Josh man Josh love jesus at a level that I I don’t love Jesus as not as a like Josh is better than me. But as like an inspiration of like man.

Andrew – Yeah, yeah.

Andrew – Yeah.

Josh – If Josh can do it. Anyone can um and and be known known for that love for people. No.

Andrew – Anybody good. Yeah yeah, totally dude man that’s so good. Um, that is so good and Josh I hate to do this but because of time we should I need to jump. But I know that. When we record next we’re going to continue this this kind of conversation series will continue in conversation number 2 even though it’ll be. You know our third third discussion. but that’s okay um but yeah I’ll just say along that same sentiment Josh that you just had of like. We’re not trying to be perfect. We’re just trying to model like hey here’s a little bit of how to do it and here’s a few strategies that maybe you can borrow from that might be useful and effective in your life to to build deeper relationships with people and also to to build deeper relationship with god so if you’re listening. Thank you I hope this has been encouraging to you and Josh my final thought is just thanks for being open to do this even though we’re breaking that that second rule of keep it confidential. You know we’re putting it in the public. But thanks for being vulnerable and open to to do this man.

Josh – Yeah, that’s great and I’ll ah since we are I’ll let you go Andrew if you got to go but I’ll leave people with this since we are this jesus life podcast. We should probably give you a little bit of truth in the midst that though, there’s probably truth woven out our stories I’ll give you this this is John Seventeen three ah

Andrew – It’s awesome.

Andrew – That’s great.

Josh – Says this is and this is eternal life that they know you the only true god and Jesus Christ whom you have sent and will focus on on the fact that they know you um god can be known and you can be known by god. Deep relationship just like you would have with you know your closest of friends your your spouse. Um, or ah, a family relationship like you can be. You can fully know god and fully be known by him. Um, that is the beauty of what Jesus did on the cross. That’s what he gives us access to sure he forgave us for sin which is fantastic and awesome. And gives us access in this life to god and that we didn’t have before um and also secures our eternity but it’s the relationship of Jesus um that he has given us that is more beautiful than anything that salvation brings more beautiful and even the forgiveness of sin is the fact that we get to be known by god and get to know god. And relationship. So chase after those things foster relationship with Jesus we appreciate you guys we appreciate you guys listening hopefully these conversations are helpful I mean like we said at the beginning. Um, you can walk with people through these conversations as yourself. We’ll link ah to true face in our show notes at this um, we did play the dwell ad this week. But um, you can also go to this. Je’s life podcast forward slash or dot com slash dwell um to sign up for dwell. Um, we do receive a little bit of kickback when you do sign up for subscription with them but dwell is a passionate bible reading app to get you into god’s word. From people that care about scripture and care about foster relationship with Jesus so it’s not the the dead voice or the monotone voice that you typically hear from some of your your big translations out there. These are um, passionate people about who god is and what scripture is in our lives and read it in such a way that. Ah, let scripture come alive so we can kick off conversation between you and Jesus but check that out this julifepodcastdotcom forward Slash Dowell thanks for listening. We. Love you guys. We greatly appreciate that you take the time out each week sheriffs with your friends and family I know that’s what the blurb. It’s kicking off right now is about to say again, but you’ll hear it live kind of live from me right now we appreciate you guys share us out there. Thanks for listening this week