• Tamra Andress

Prodigals Come Home with Josh Kingry

Today you guys are going to see the relate-ability that not only does Josh bring to the conversation in The F.I.T. in Faith community, but to who we call the prodigal. Sometimes people can feel even that “prodigal” is too churchy, religious. But truly, what he means is the one who feels lost or stagnant.

The conversation we had just really lent itself beautifully to the heart of the Father, so that you, too, can experience what it's like to live in a space of trust, live in a space of forgiveness, live in a space of prompting and just saying yes to God. I love that Josh Kingry has displayed that so beautifully in his life.

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About Josh:

Originally from the Midwest, Josh met the Lord in a Red Rocks service, started volunteering, and joined a Life Group. In that Life Group he met his wife Caroline, who also serves on Red Rocks Church's Kids Rock Staff. Josh joined the Red Rocks Staff in 2013 and together, he and Caroline have two beautiful children, Kellen and Cora with a third on the way. They have a passion for seeing prodigals come home and love being a part of the Red Rocks family!

Where to Find Josh:

Show Notes: Prodigals Come Home with Josh Kingry

So often, uh, you can start to get in a rhythm and I will be honest in the fact that I've gotten into rhythm with a fit faith podcast. I mean, y'all were dropping five episodes a week now. It's so crazy. And I'm so grateful. There's some extra goodies in there of biz tip directive from yours. Truly. So all of these incredible conversations that I get to have with humans across the globe and today's human that I get to showcase to you, it didn't actually even feel worthy to be on this show.

And immediately my response was there is purpose and God is positioning you. And the prompting that I had to ask him to be here was simply off of hearing him speak one day at a church in a city that I don't belong to at a church. I don't belong to. And I just knew that there was a connection and I got to unpack what that connection was during this show live.

And you guys are going to see the relate-ability that not only does Josh bring to the conversation into the Fitbit community, but to the community at large, for what we like to call easily and understand as the prodigal, but sometimes people can feel even that is too churchy, religious. Truly, what he means is the one who is seeking the one who feels lost or stagnant and that's who he was.

And the two I was, so the conversation just really lent itself beautifully to the heart of the father so that you too can experience what it's like to live in a space of trust, live in a space of forgiveness, live in a space of prompting and just saying yes to God. And so I love that Josh Kingery has displayed that so beautifully in his life.

And he's a pastor at. It's church. I highly encourage you to follow them on social media specifically on YouTube. Their worship team is incredible. Josh is incredible. Their lead pastor is incredible. His wife, Caroline, incredible, just incredible human and humanity. That's being cultivated in a city that's far from me, which brings such hope and peace to what God is doing across the nation and in all of the nations.

And so I hope you tune in and enjoy the pace and the rhythm of this podcast, which might feel a little different than others. It felt like home. So thank you, Josh. For that.

Welcome to the fit and faith podcast. It is an acronym representing founders, innovators, and trailblazers who are looking to live a life wholly, fully, authentically, and truly fit a space for us to connect on the raw real stories of mind, body, and soul alignment of entrepreneurs in kingdom life. I'm your host, Tamra and dress.

And this podcast, isn't like the cookie cutter interview experience. I've been coined the entrepreneurial rabbi. And so we do go there unscripted, no matter how far wide, deep or high there is. My desire is to see people rise from the inside, out, into their greatest calling, by sharing their truest stories.

And tips as a purpose activator and brand builder. I believe our successes and failures are derived from who and whose we are not what we do, but strategy and vision are equally as important to the mission. So let's cut to the chase together and get fit in faith. Welcome. Welcome to the bitten faith podcast.

Josh, I'm so grateful to have you here to. Thanks for having me. This is super cool. It's going to be great. We're going to dive into all the juicy details of your life and he has no idea what the questions are going to be. So this makes it that much more fun. Wonderful. Well, I am so grateful. It's so cool because you guys don't know the backstory of how I bring a lot of people onto these shows.

And I want to give you some details because Josh and I are not even officially, I would say. Instagram friends, but that's about it. We have had the pleasure of meeting in person because I went out to Colorado, uh, with my family and we wanted to go to church and we knew that there would be something in the vicinity of where we were.

We were in the red rocks area and my husband had been following the worship team at this particular church for about a year now. To two years prior to us even stepping foot in this space. And he follows all the underground, like, like all the people who are just getting started and then he watches them blow up.

He's followed like Travis green before he was on anywhere. He's followed different leaders who are now a part of elevation worship before they were all. And so it's just, it's w he loves music and he loves just looking for the YouTube channel that only has like 8,000 views. But they're not quite 8 million views be along the ride and see what God sees in them already.

And so we were grateful that he recognized that the church was literally down the road from our hotel, brought us into the church that, uh, Josh actually pastors. And it was an amazing message that he shared that morning. And we got to connect with him and as well. I just led me and prompt me to say, I want to know more and I'm excited to see what God is doing in your life and through your ministry and through the church.

And so let's, let's go all the places and find out all the things. Yeah. Well, I will just say two real quick, man. I remember that day specifically, my wife and I, we both left church that day, talking about you and your husband were just like, gosh, Refreshing. And like, obviously just like, uh, I don't know, the conversation was natural and easy and you guys were just fun to be around.

And so we just felt refreshed by you being there that day. So, and then of course I was being dunked at a dunk tank, so that was, yeah. Oh yeah. We forgot about that part. My son was the only one with us. My daughter, my sweet daughter was not with us. And so we were taking just a, a time with him as he was coming home from Mexico.

And Josh was in the dunk tank. Was it a family day? No, it was your birthday. Roberta, you heard things that they got a dunk tank for your birthday. I'm not sure if those parallel, please don't mind me a, but a dunk tank on my birthday, but my son was being my son and fully rambunctious and he was going pound for pound.

Every opportunity that he get, he would, he would throw the ball or just run up and dunk. And I kept being like that mom voice, right. Get over here, like stuff it right now that's enough. You've done enough. And he's like, why? And Gary's like, it's fine. He's fine. He's having fun. And I'm like, I don't think so.

So it was awesome. It was funny and you are such a trooper. And so when he got out and like, we need to now apologize. So it led to a great conversation and I'm glad that we were able to do that. So tell me, because I know that there's a whole backstory to how you even got into being at red rocks church and ha, and how that has actually has unfolded your marriage, your family, life, everything.

Yeah. I mean, uh, yeah, I, I like to tell people that I'm a recovering frat boy, uh, Uh, I went to the university of Iowa. Whenever the hot guys are playing football on TV. I tend to relapse a little bit, but I come back, uh, I talked to my counselor and I come back to normal. But, uh, yeah, so I grew up, um, I don't know if you want the long or the short, I'll just kind of give you the great, I come from a Christian home, uh, led by my mother.

Uh, we would regroup Lutheran. And so man church was. And so, and, uh, I knew, I remember when I got, um, confirmed in the Lutheran slash I like to say a Lutheran is like Catholic light. Okay. I didn't realize this. Okay. Yeah. So, so, you know, none of the hail Mary's or the confession booth, but some of the same stuff.

And so, um, we, we, we got confirmed to my mom said, well, it's going to church is your choice. And I said, well, getting up early on Sundays as a team, Horrible. So I will stop going. Um, graduated from high school, got into the university of Iowa. It is not known for many things, but it is a top 10 like party school.

It's because there's something else to do. And well, that's what you would say anyway, right? Yeah. Right. I went to a similar school here and there was like 70% female, 30% guys. So that was also a whole like charade that people just love. James Madison university. Yeah. It's same thing. There is like 60, 40, and 60% of the people were from the suburbs of Chicago.

It's only like three and a half hours away from the university of Iowa. So I was just a small town kid and they're big city kids anyway. So I knew I was going to join a fraternity. I knew it before I even went. I was like, I'm going to do this. I moved around a lot, growing up. This seems like a good way to make friends.

So all the things you want about paying for them, um, I still talk to two of them. So I was going to ask that net. Yeah, I, uh, you know, it was a huge fraternity. Um, one of the biggest on campus and I did it, I did that thing exactly how you would imagine, um, exactly how you've seen in movies. Um, I was, you know, drinking six, seven nights a week because they made it accessible and possible and easy, cheap, and, um, and, uh, hanging out and just hanging out with girls and doing all this stuff.

Right. I did that. Um, for five years, cause uh, I went to college, not having a clue and that's a horrible time and place and waste of money to prove your clue. Uh, and so I graduated in 2009 and it was really hard to get employment at that time. Um, and when, when I graduated moving back home, wasn't that cool.

Now it's like move home safe. It's the way to go smarter. They're getting, they're like less ashamed about it. Like, no, no, no. I'm saving tons of money. It's way better than what you did. I didn't have that as an option. It really wasn't. I remember shamefully going home for like a couple of months and then moving in with my now husband, Gary very quickly, which I would be totally anti for my daughter to do.

And my. We're just like, sure. If that's what you want to do, he seems like a good enough guy. Yeah. Yeah. That's kinda it. And so I got a, I got a job at JP Morgan chase in Chicago. Um, one of the bailouts got me a job. And so a lot of people, you know, I don't know, depending on. Um, how old they are, but, you know, 2009 was rough.

Um, 2008 was the worst and we were starting to come out of it in 2009. So, uh, I started doing finance as a 24 year old, trying to tell people with tons of money in the game while they're losing all of it, what to do with their money. It was a perfect sedan.

Here's my money. Oh, it was so dumb. Mean the thing about Iowa is that no one graduates and stays there, you know, Living in Iowa city. Isn't cool. After you graduate college. So they kind of go everywhere. And I had plenty of fraternity brothers that were living in Chicago and it was like the same stuff and I was starting to get tired of it.

Um, I had to get up and go to work. Not someone actually cared if I showed up, whereas in college it didn't really matter. And, uh, had to go to work and, and I just felt, I started to feel like, man, maybe there's something to that church thing that my. And brought me to, and so I did the really smart thing living in the city of Chicago.

I Googled church got immediately overwhelmed and gave up because thousands of churches I need where you even like even drawn to do anything Lutheran at that point? No, not at all. So I didn't even know what I was looking for. I love the other thing. And what's, non-denominational sounds like a cold, I'm not knocking churches.

Don't even put that in the title of their. Grace chapel, why don't you, you know what that is or what? That could be it. So I just knew I didn't love what I grew up with. Um, not that it is not that it isn't for somebody, it just wasn't for me. And so it was really hard and here I am, uh, you know, living in, gosh, what I know now is at the time it would have been great if I had stumbled upon like Willow or something, you know, which I know is kind of going through it or has gone through in the last couple of years.

But at the time, you know, 20 years. Let's say 10 years ago it would have been, you know, a great, but I didn't. And so I just kind of give up, um, and I had a fraternity brother whose dad owned a small business and was expanding to Colorado. And he had asked me if, if, if I thought I would want to go and do that.

And it was like, I'm 24. I don't know anything about your line of work. You want me to manage two states? I think I'm qualified. Like a great idea. Let's go. I can do that. And, um, I think w. That being that naive really got me was really what I needed to get to Colorado. But I can remember specifically knowing that I needed to go, um, I had gotten into kind of some mountain climbing in college.

And so Colorado is like a bonus. Um, that felt like the answer to prayer. I was like, oh, well, here we go. I'm going to go do this thing. And, um, and so I remember sitting under like an overpass getting ready to get on the highway. And I remember specifically that moment of just feeling like I have. I just have to go.

It's different. It's a way I needed some, I need something different. This is like too much of the same. I just need to go. And my mom of course, was like, well, this small business that they have benefits, what is the job security? They're like, I don't know the questions you never asked or thought to ask.

Cause we weren't taught that and life skills or I don't know, but it's going to go so. So, and we got to Colorado. And then, like I said, because of the university of Iowa, people span out all over the place. I knew a buddy here and I got in touch with him and we'd started hanging out. It was still the same old, same old on one of our nights out.

I was just like, I think I'm good. I think I need to go back to church. What I'm doing, isn't really, for me anymore. I'm kind of getting sick of it. I want something different. That seems to be like the place that people go. Figure something out. Right. And he was like, yeah, I kind of been thinking of going back to church too.

He grew up Catholic and he's like, I have these friends they've been telling about this church called red rocks church. And I am a huge Dave Matthews fan and, um, was in college. And I was like, oh my gosh, a church at red rocks, amphitheater. Like Dave doesn't even play there. Like I would love that would be even if it's lame auto, check it out.

Yeah. So rad. You've just got to go and be there. Fun fact, Dave Matthews grew up in Charlottesville, Virginia, right near where we are. And so my sister went to college right there at university of Virginia and would go to all the dive bars before he was also famous or also he came back. So it's such a cool, cool thing.

He's an amazing artist. My husband also. Yeah. It's have a very similar musical influence. We do. Yeah. I mean, I just, I hadn't even heard of him until college. I just fell in love with him. So on live a couple of times it was like, this is so amazing music there. So anyway, we can talk about that. Some people don't like it.

I don't really care. I think it's great. But, um, so yeah, so he mentioned so, and he's like, Hey, and they have a service at 5:00 PM on Sundays. No, this is the frat boy, and there's still no excuse for why we can't get to church. So the first day we went was the weekend after the 4th of July in 2010, which was the last time 4th of July was on a Sunday.

It was in 2010 before this day. And or before this year. And so we went and we showed up and it was at this old theme park built by Disneyland, like back in the seventies called heritage square at this point. Now it's not the seventies, it's rundown it's, it's like carnival rides and there's like toy shops, wooden toys that like thriller movie or it's terrible.

And I'm like, where are we? I can't tell him how about this actually think I'm in a cult. Uh, so we walked to the back and, um, just the flood of people coming in. And I sat in the back left section of this like barn of this old inventory warehouse for a backpack company. And I got saved that moment. Um, and that's true.

Uh, like as soon as I moved here, basically, and I had that moment and, um, for me, I just kept coming to church. Um, that's all I knew to do. I didn't know what the next steps were. I wasn't churchy. Um, so I just like, well, I'll just keep showing up and see what happens. And none of my behavior changed right away, um, at all.

Um, but, but I just kept feeling more of a pull towards that and less of a pull towards everything else. You know what I mean? A hundred percent, a hundred percent now, what do you feel? Cause you say like, I got saved in that moment and like we're now in a relationship with God, so we understand what that.

And I, I wouldn't say we're in religion because that's not the type of relationship that we have or the understanding of spirituality that we have. Thank God. Um, unlike our, our box experience when we were younger. And so I want to unpack that for somebody who might be in the seeking understanding, like, what does that actually mean?

What does that experience feel like? Look like, tastes like with, with him in that salvation moment for me. It was a moment. Uh, someone asked, I was talking about this with someone recently, so it's good. Cause I finally, I finally been putting words to it to quantify it, you know, other than just the feeling and the feeling is like, there's something happening there, but it's not like this.

For some people, it is like an overwhelming emotion. I'm not the most emotional person. I just noticed that something was happening. I was like, oh, something's going on here? And then in the salvation moment for me, I had just never felt more known in my entire life. Like I was sitting in that room and the preacher didn't know I was going to be there.

And what he was speaking about was literally like, God was talking to me in my situation in that moment. And I can remember the graphics on the. I remember everything about it. And he was, his message was a lot about like, what's next. And I had just moved to Colorado. I actually went back and listened to it recently.

I was like,

I have, you know, um, but he had no idea I was going to be there. And so for me, this was, um, this was a moment of just feeling very known, still, not totally sure what's happening. Um, but I felt like. There's this presence of something knows me and knows what I need, and this is what it is. I just need to keep coming to this, um, and learning more about it.

And, and I'm a very, like, I'm a thinker, I'm more of a thinker than a feeler, unless it has to do with anger.

And so I, it was just a weird, and I'm very introspective. And so it was just a moment where I felt something was different. And I felt very, very known. I mean, how would you like how, what, what would, as you're saying that, like, it literally brings me chills because that was like my first encounter with Jesus himself.

And it was one of those I could see him. I could, I can close my eyes and see exactly where I was standing in my living room. Exactly what he looked like. And he actually grabbed my chin from looking down and like weeping to. To his face, which was just like this radiant light with, with rainbows, which is a part of my brand.

And he literally said you were fully seen, you were fully known and I still love you. And so congruency and that known newness, because I feel like I lived a very similar college experience to you, early childhood experience. Very well. Same years almost. I graduated in oh eight. And so, um, I just, for a little bit longer than you, cause I didn't get saved until I was 29.

Um, was living this life of, does anybody see. And, and yet I was very like the hostess, right? I was the event planner. I was at all the parties. I had two children at this point. My husband, like people saw me all the time. I was known by my community pretty well, but I never. I felt like I could even look in the mirror myself and feel like I see you.

I know you because I was like wearing all these masks. And so that, that seeing and knowing, and then the ultimate and I still love you. And I think that's ultimately where I was in this season of life is like, can I even love my. Do I even love myself. Do I even know who myself is? Because I've been people-pleasing my whole life.

And to know that I was still seen in that moment and still loved drew me into the biggest love life that I ever had. And that's when I, my love life, life with him, and then also a new love life and intimacy with my, my family, specifically, my husband and my. Definitely. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. I love that.

Yeah. This just how I felt. That's funny. I should've graduated in oh eight. You're right. You should. Yeah. Yeah. So, so you're in this space and I love the part that you shared right after that, because it was similar to me, is that. Not a ton change. Now, my life drastically changed very quickly. Um, but I still was feeling that sense of who am I.

I was still having anxiety attacks. I was still trying to figure out my footing. Like it wasn't like the, the yellow brick road was finally laid out, but I had that sense of security of that known. That I was still in the desire to seek more. What does that mean and how do I grasp hold of that sensation and that salvation again?

Yeah, yeah, totally. Yeah. And it, for me, it was just, I had to keep going, um, you know, and, um, just kind of hearing more and learning more because I grew up, you know, like you mentioned, uh, with religion as opposed to relationship, um, very much check the box off, do these things. And so what was being presented was very good.

Um, not something I was familiar with at all. I mean, in college, I opened my Bible a couple of times. Um, when I was going through something that was awful or I prayed a couple of times if I wanted to go out and not study and still pass a test. Yes, of course. Of course. Let me get home safely when I'm drinking and driving, right.

Like, yeah. That was the extent of my relationship. And also none of those prayers were answered. Well, that's not true in the past. I just did not get a great grade. Uh, so, so yeah, so, you know, I kept going, the buddy, I went with eventually kind of, kind of, it kind of filtered out for him. Um, but I kept growing and then, and then, um, a lot started to change a lot, started to change.

You know, you mentioned big life change. I think like literally within a couple of months I was there. I was going through some things. I took my dad to rehab. I flew home and took him to rehab for alcohol. And so a lot of these things were happening and I was, I was, I was learning how and trying to navigate them through this, uh, better person, really of, you know, how, how, how does the, the, the frat boy handle this versus how does the, you know, the, the Christian, the, the Christ follower handle this.

And so, uh, there's just a lot of stuff that was being challenged in me that maybe in the past, I wouldn't have felt challenged by. And now I was feeling this challenging and honestly, it was like, I wanted to go, you know, once again, I wanted to go towards, towards, towards the Lord on this and not towards the other stuff and going towards the other stuff got harder and harder to do, um, whether or not it was because I was a new Christian and I felt guilty about it either way.

Yeah. I mean, I think there's that conviction piece that comes to life and, uh, and that's a good thing. That's a holy spirit, I think so. I think so. I really do. And so, um, I decided that. For me, all of my, all of the rest of my story is God prompting and me just saying yes. Um, and so I, I, you know, was feeling prompted to go to our church, had a young adults ministry college in 20 somethings.

I'm 24 years old at this time. And, uh, I'm like, okay, well, I've been to smaller church groups back in the day growing up, and they're all weird and they're in some creepy basement. And I know I. They use words. I don't understand. And I don't know if I want to go to this. And so there's always this theme of me and the Lord of the thing I know I'm supposed to do.

That's very obvious to me and me being hesitant and, uh, uh, I can get to that in a second. Cause I just got a big revelation about that a couple months ago. Um, so, so I decided to go finally and, you know, I met someone that was in my wedding there. The same theme. I just kept going to that. And it was, it was different.

They weren't making it like this, this, this, this place with words that you had to figure out like a whole new language. It wasn't like a whole new language. They spoke kind of in the way I needed to hear it in the language I understood. And like they weren't using all these religious terms. And then when they did it with.

And so, um, I kept going and then, and then the prompting for life group, this was the one that bothered me the most. I was like, I am not doing that. I will not do that. I'm not going to get in a group full of these perfect Christian people. And tell him about me being gross and like, they're going to want to hear about my testimony and they're gonna, they're gonna be, you know, looking at me like, oh my God, no, it's not crazy.

It's. It's stupid. And so I'm like, I'm not doing it. And I purposely did not go to the life group launch night. Cause I was so rebellious about this. I was like, I'm not going to do it. And you can't make me do it. But like legitimately that's what he was saying. He was like, you need to do. This is the next step.

You need to take this step. And I would flat out refused. And then a couple of days later being whether it's guilt or whatever I say, okay, I'll join the group. So, and I think this isn't really, even just this point right here, you guys, I want you to take note. That's like, it's not an audible thing and it's not that it's never an audible experience, but it's a prompting.

It's an intuition. It's a gut feeling. It's an instinct. It's a something as circling in your mind. That is not. I thought that it, it, you want to own it as your thought, but you're jecting. And as your thought, and then there's the counterbalance of like the devil and the angel on your shoulder. Right. It's actually very accurate.

And so I think a lot of people are always like, well, how did you know what led you to that, like, to that experience? And so I just wanted to clarify for people listening, that it's all of those things and more, and it's going to be different for you. It's going to be exactly what you need in order to push you into that next door.

So keep going. So you can decide. Yeah. Well, and to your point too, that's like, I mean, people have different spots with that. It's like a feeling like they should maybe go to church, but I don't know. They might judge me or feeling like I should open up to. About this thing and maybe, you know, so there's a lot, but that, that prompting to your point is so big.

So I emailed the person in charge was like, are there any groups still open? I missed the, I had you there. And she said, yeah, there were two groups opens. I emailed the two groups and one of them was like, yeah, come on and join it. And, um, so I joined that group January of 20. Uh, 11. So I had been saved for like six months and, uh, me and my faith really took off there.

I really felt like, um, I really felt like a lot of, um, discernment over scripture supernaturally. Cause I hadn't really read the Bible that much, but I really felt like, oh, I know who God is. And I know who he isn't like just from, just from engaging with people in there and like hearing different things.

I'm like, wow. I dunno, that's not really what I'm feeling, you know, and having good, healthy, not argumentative, but just healthy conversations about what's going on. And I did eventually have to tell my story in the group. And there was so much grace in all this and, and, uh, you know, that was one of the ways in which I experienced grace the first time tangibly.

Now the life group. Uh, well, I joined a life group with no intention of, of pursuing a relationship. It was really, really seriously, very selfish. It was about me and me growing in my faith, and this is the next step. And so, uh, I was in that group until like April and then in April, I think, early April, the live group leader, she went on a missions trip.

Uh, for two weeks. And she actually just told me this, uh, this past year, which is really good. Cause if she would've told me this beforehand, I would've been a little scared, but she prayed fervently for two weeks at this guy in her life group would finally notice her and that prayer worked. Oh my God. He came back from that trip and I can tell you, like, I just looked at her and I was like, There you are.

How, and so we, uh, started dating she's now my wife. And, uh, so I, you know, Listen, you don't necessarily go to church to find your spouse, but it's

wrong to pray for that guy? No, it is not works amazing. My sister-in-law tells me all the time. She was so annoyed. My wife's name's Caroline, Caroline, just looking through Facebook photos and I'm like, great. That makes me so happy. That's so awesome. Cause that's like truly real life, right? Like a lot of people like, oh, we met in church.

That's so great. It was like, actually I stopped him and I prayed over him for a while and it worked. I manifested him as my husband, so, so awesome. But at the same time, there was the God prompting on your side that pushed you into. Experience that, you know, if you had not listened to knows what would have come to fruition.

And so it takes both the people and to say yes, and to lean into those emotions, even though how drastically different they might be at the time, or what season or background she has. Right. It's it could be drastically different than yours. Like I struggle with that. Did she not want to, did she want to, yeah.

Why was she, and so, um, yeah, so, so we, so I got baptized that June. I was baptized as a baby, but I just feel like I wanted, I wanted to make a profession of faith similar to me. And I share this with our church. Whenever we do baptism, it was a similar spiritual moment for me as my salvation, as far as like the heaviness.

And for those of us watching, it's like, oh, that person has went in and out, but it there's a L there's, there's something very spiritual happening there. Um, and so, yeah, my wife would tell you, she want me to share this. Uh, she's only seen me nervous twice. And the first time was when I asked her to, to, to, to what did you even call it?

Yeah, to be official Facebook officials and she's talked to on Facebook, basically, Caroline, I'm just totally throw you under the bus. Oh my gosh. I was so nervous. I was like hugging a pillow, trying to do it, and I just, I've never been nervous like that ever about talking to him, but I'd never had a Christian relationship.

I was going to say you, you had the alcohol as a suppressant to your actual emotions and feelings, and that gave you liquid courage. Unlike. Experience where you're like, I actually have to feel, and I actually feel something and now I have to speak, how am I going to do that collectively? Yeah. And it was, I was very nervous.

It was that moment. And then when I proposed to her, but mostly cause I didn't want to drop the rain, we were rock climbing and that would have been more that's amazing. Yeah. So anyway, fast forward we got married. Um, while we're in the middle of the, of the planning process, I just been, I decided I was just done with my job.

Um, I was like, um, I don't, I don't think this is for me. Funny enough. Um, as we're talking, you know, right after I graduated, I, I finally figured out what I wanted to do. I was like, I want to help people. They gonna go be a firefighter. So I walked down to the firefighting office, literally after graduation.

It's like, what does it take to do this? Like what? You gotta go back to school. And I was like, yeah, not doing that. I'm done. No thanks. Um, but I knew I had this feeling like I just wanted to be of use, to be by one, to help people. And what I was doing was wasn't helping people. And so, um, I was miserable in my work.

I was starting to look for new jobs. I was like, well, if I'm going to hate what I do, I should make more money doing it. That'll make me happier and gotten told no for the first time ever applying for jobs for multiple. And, um, finally I just threw my hands up with the Lord and I was just like, God, you know what?

I don't care what it is. I just want to help people. I don't care what the pay is. Um, um, I'm open to it. I'll figure it out. I just want to do it. And two weeks later I got a job with youth for Christ. The national headquarters is here in Colorado and, um, I'd been volunteering. Are you for Christ ministry up north for a couple of years, but it was an admin job.

Like I was recreating word documents, but I was working for God and that was good. Um, and as I, as, as an, and I took that pay cut after she said, yes, that's also a testimony. So, uh, I decided maybe the youth thing was, I got really, I got along with the youth kids I'd been working with in the ministry volunteering, and we were nothing alike.

They were skateboarding kids. I was a jock from frat boy. We were nothing alike, but I just loved the idea. Someone who looks like someone who would always be their enemy at school, being on their side and being a, I love that there was something about that that was really powerful to me. Um, and, and just wanting them to know, like, not everybody is that way.

And, um, so, so I liked that. So I thought to myself, well, gosh, I should probably like volunteer at the youth at my church. If I'm going to do, I'm going to volunteer. I, you know, just be around different types of kids that make me more. So summer of 2012, I started volunteering at youth and it was perfect. I mean, there were so many youth kids that are getting ready to graduate that wanted my experience in college.

And I had such an immediate connection with them to, to talk to them through that. What's that like, and all that. Um, I just really hit it off well with it right away. Um, and, and the guy who was speaking at our young adults ministry, the first night I went, was now in charge of our youth ministry. His name is Andrew and I was talking to him and he was, he was telling us in, um, I want to say, uh, I don't know, in the fall, at sometimes to fall of 2012, he was telling the whole youth volunteers, he's like, Hey, you know, our church, we had just gone.

Multi-site like a year earlier. And he's like, Hey, we've decided we want to do youth ministry at each location rather than one big youth ministry because kids can't drive. And so, and so he was like, so Eric is going to go launch that ministry. I'm going to need help here. If you're available, let me know.

And I kinda just went through and said, Hey, I make my own hours where I'm at. I can be here when I need to be in. I was like, we can get lunch, talked about it. He's like, let's get lunch. Um, I had no idea that he was fasting for a new hire, uh, for a youth ministry. And so we went to lunch and it went really well.

And he told me, he thought I should apply. And, uh, obviously in hindsight, I know now he had been fascinating for, um, the next guy and here we are, and I laughed at his face. I was like, I can't work for you. I think I should apply here. If I show you my resume, like I didn't go to seminary. I took me five years to graduate with a worthless college degree that I don't even use.

Uh, like I, like I have business experience and I've worked at a nonprofit for six months. I don't, what do you want me to. Like, are you going to talk to HR so that it doesn't just slide me in? No, there's one coming to these kinds of people. I'm like, there's no way I know how hiring does HR is going to throw this one away.

He's like, no, that'd be fine. Do it. And so the, the process kind of got moving along at the time you interviewed for a pastoral position with the five founders of the church at the same time, super loud. But I never pray it. I remember telling my wife and spending a lot of time in the prayer, actual prayer closet at youth for Christ.

And I was like, I just don't feel qualified for this. I'm living with a buddy of mine. Who's been doing youth ministry volunteering for eight years. This is his dream job. Like why me? I don't, I don't, I don't have any experience of this. Not to mention. He keeps throwing out how he's going to want me to do all this creative stuff.

And I can't even draw stick people. And she just kinda told me, she was like, well, it's not because of. There's nothing you've done that anyone would look at and go, you deserve to do this. So there's a, there's a bigger, there's a bigger hand at work there. And so I said yes to it, uh, started January 1st, 2013.

Um, and man, I mean, The equipping happened over time. I was in charge of all of our creative content and I had no experience beforehand. Um, and I got to launch a youth ministry on Lakewood when that became a thing. And then, um, became that first associate campus pastor at our church, which still to this day, no one knows what that means.

And now I'm the campus pastor at a, at a church I've been at for six years. And I just love it so much. Um, my wife gets to be there now. Um, she was doing, she does our kids' ministry at our church. She was doing at a different campus. And then I, I got really complaining for about two years and they, they brought her home.

They brought her over to Lakewood and, and, and so, um, the church red rocks, I'm super loyal to, um, I don't need it. I can walk away from it, but I'm so grateful for what it is and who it reaches and how it reaches people. I believe so much in the mission of that church. I am a direct product of that mission.

I'm the I'm, I'm a good example of why a Sunday night service works for someone who's in their early twenties who wants to party on Saturday. Um, I met my wife there. I have my, my beautiful children because I met my wife there. I have, I was saved there. Um, I just love that place. Um, I don't need it, um, but I'm really happy to be there and, uh, I'm thrilled about it and it's just been such a, it's been such a great, and my, when I go for a run, I just find myself really thankful.

And I think to like, man, I could be 35 and still doing it. I have fraternity brothers that are still doing the same stuff. And it's just kind of sad to me. It's just like this lost, it's a lost this, which isn't really a word. That that breaks my heart because there's so much more to enjoy even on this side of heaven, uh, the way that you enjoy your spouse, your kids, and you're still a human.

So you still don't always enjoy that. But when you do, when you do. It's it's it's, it's, it's a different kind of enjoyment in it. It comes from the Lord. And so I'm just so grateful to be where I am. And, uh, man, if someone who doesn't know anything about church, not even what to Google, I can. Yeah, I think it's for everybody.

I love that. I think there's, there's a, so many messages within it and I could go in a lot of different directions, quick commercial break. I know I hate these things too, but it's so critical that you grow your business for God's sake. And I mean, that pun intended with all the love in my heart to get you from a place of ideation to activation, stop dreaming, start doing stand up, start saying yes to the call that God has on your life.

We are going to be joining. Kentucky with none other than the beautiful rise and grind community with Glen Lundy, who will be co-hosting this incredible conference. This is the second annual. And he has taken me under his wing to be able to share the stage to motivate and inspire. And I cannot wait to see you there November 5th through the seventh.

If you want to come in for the VIP experience, with who doesn't want to come along for VIP, that's all access passes to the speakers and the artists, and you'll be able to die. In the private rooms with your own special bathrooms. So of course come one day, two day, three day passes available as well. And we can not wait as good.

And I say to hack your neck, see you there earlier, you wanted to meet a prompt you back to that message of a revelation that you had. So I want to hear about that. Um, we have a staff counselor and his name's Gary. He's amazing. He's also a good dear friend of mine. Um, I've had some stuff going on with, with my dad and some stuff like that.

And I don't, we don't really communicate and things like that. And so, um, we just needed to have a moment where he wanted to do an intensive with me. He's like, we need to go for eight hours. We're going to eat a lot of eating. Go running, go rock climbing. Yeah. So I'm an Enneagram one. I'm a perfectionist.

Um, it it's like literally. I mean, I know you're a little bit of all of them. It's like it dominates everything. And so I have a harsh, inner voice, I believe in justice. And, um, I believe in perfection and I'm terrified of failure. Uh, and, and he, we, through some prompting and through some talking with him, he in 11 annually in a loving way, helped me realize that I've been saved now for 10 years.

11 years, and haven't trusted God with one minute of it. Not one minute, not actually trust him. And I think that's, that's a parent in, in my, my rebellion to push back and say no to things. But, um, you know, I was having, like, I was, I was angry a lot and I was so sick and tired of being angry at it. Just. And who isn't a little angry after 20, 19, 20, 20, you know?

Yeah, absolutely. That's a format message a thousand percent. And I can parallel specifically in your relationship with your dad and all of those things, I'm right there. Same root issue and everything. So, yeah, angry. And I was just so sick of being angry and I didn't want to be, and he was like, I think it's a control thing for you.

You've got to let go. You've got to hold it like this. He, he said, when I look at you, I see, I see Moses. And I see a Moses and he's to lay a staff down and, and just, and just let God move through you. And that was really hard for me to deal with. I cried, ugly, cried for awhile because I just felt like I lied to myself and to God for 11 years.

And, and, you know, he he's so good at what he does, because since I'm a father, he was like, well, put yourself in his shoes. You know, would you, do you want your kids to have to earn your trust? Do you, do you, do you want, do you want, when they don't trust you, do you want them to feel like a failure and I'm like then crying more?

And so, yeah, what's, what's interesting now where I am now is I have taken these steps and these moments, these moments of trust, but there hasn't been this like overwhelming. Walking in a presence of trust and, and that's what I'm working on now. And so, um, and, and, and that was just, it was weird, but I can look back and go, well, I trusted him to move to Colorado.

I trusted him to go to church. He's like, you trusted him in those moments, but you still took control for those moments or travel. Yeah. You try to take control of those moments because you don't really trust. And I'm like, oh, but yes, I do. I know all the scripture. I know what it says. And it's one thing to know it and the other thing to believe it.

And that's the difference I think for us with, if we were to talk through the difference between religion and a relationship with Christ is religion is knowing in relationship is feeling and walking in that. And so, anyway, it's, it's, it's, that's so good. So my curiosity, because I say this on all of my episodes of most.

Literally on the front of my brain and tongue is like wanting in all of the times that I spend with people specifically in the podcast is like this opportunity for conviction, like on what do you want to teach me? What do you want to teach the people who are listening? And this is the moment. This is the moment, right?

Wow. Like even holding Moses staff, right? Like I talk all the time about the driver's wheel and I'm really good at sharing with other people. Like, let him be the CEO of your business, let him be the driver. Right? Like you navigate, he'll show you where to go. And it's really hard to like, live prying your fingers off of all the things that you think.

You control and, and this is a daily surrender for me of, okay. I've got to trust you in this because otherwise I'll wake up and I will hit the ground running and I'd be like, I got my staff. I'm ready. Let's go. Whoa, whoa, whoa, hold up. First off. That's already been completed. You don't need to do that task.

How often do we think through that conversation? And also like, that's not what I want you to do. That's actually not on par with what the plan was and you're just going so fast. And so I think there's a speed conversation. I think there's a Lego control conversation. And the one thing that I want to ask you as you've kind of unpacked, what that means is like, how do you live in a surrendered state of trust consistently, rather than I'll trust you with this, but this one I'm going to take cold off.

Yeah, that's a really good question. Cause I asked my counselor right away. I was like, well, how do I do that? Because then I will follow them. You know,

I can, I can do the program. Just tell me what it is. Um, and he, you know, of course he says it takes time and he says, we have to meet more. I think for me, um, it is a little bit, some people hate the saying, but it is a little bit of this. It's a little bit fake it till you. A little bit. I know that's not like the best thing to hear or to say, but for me personally, if I find myself the trigger for me is if I feel myself getting angry, then I need to ask myself, what am I not trusting God with?

And then just telling myself I trust him. I trust him. I trust him. I trust him. It's just kind of gone and it just kinda let it go. Um, you know, I just, I, I want to run after people and I want to, I want, I want the church to grow and I want, I want the noise of all of the anger and chaos and frustration of the world to just be blinded by the lights so badly.

If, if our lead pastor Sean gives me something to run after he'd better put reins on me because I will run through every wall and door to do it. So I think, like I find myself getting, you know, the most frustrated with at work, which I'm sure a lot of people are in the same boat. Like, oh, I would do it this way.

Well, just because you maybe don't work at a church doesn't mean that God isn't using you where you are. And there isn't something very specific that he needs you to do. Only, only a handful of all of Israel was, was priests. So everybody has something to do. I say handful only one tribe, like less than 10%.

So, so like, you know, that that applies everywhere and it is it's, it's a two-way street too. It's not only is where's God gonna take you, but it's also, what is God doing? Well, he's trying to get you to trust him, you know, like, uh, so being frustrated at work, being frustrated with my kids and just letting them be kids it's just, and, and, and letting them just laugh.

If we're going on a walk, it's not about getting the walk done. It's about it. It's a time of exploration for them and letting them do their thing. And don't be, you know, don't get so frustrated with that. So it's a lot of, it's a lot of. Being cognizant of the moment. I think we've talked a lot about how there is a feeling for sure, but I think the head and the heart work really well together.

I think God designed it that way because he does tell us to take our thoughts captive and the. And a lot of our thoughts can come from emotion. And so I think there's a good balance there. So I think like my emotion flares up, and then I try to like remind myself here what my heart should be feeling.

And so, I don't know, you know, just, I don't have like an exact answer cause I'm still figuring it out. This is like one month removed. But for me a little bit, it is, it is recognizing immediately, like I'm angry about this. Why am I angry? Oh, it's not my. It's not my way. And, and, but that doesn't mean it's not God's way.

And so there's a lot of myself to take a step aside, trusting people, I think helps. If you can learn to trust people. I think it helps you learn to trust God anyway. Yeah, no, I think that there's so much power to that. And as you were talking, especially at the very last point right there, um, the trusting people is forgiveness was a layer that I had to work through for a long time.

Um, that was ultimately rooted in forgiving myself. In parallel to forgiving the person or the situations or anything else. And I think trust is probably a very similar component to that as like, trust yourself, right? The trust him within you to be able to activate in those situations or the language that you're going to say, or the emotion that you're going to feel.

And then you'll be able to trust situations and the things like. Interior of the ice shelf right now that I sell. Right. And I think that there's a lot to it, and it's no different than understanding that prompting, like we were talking about in the beginning, it's like, what does that emotional experience look like?

What's happening in your head, what's happening in your heart, what's happening, your gut and your spirit. Um, and so I just, I think that my word for this year has been maturity and it's like understanding that maturity is not an age bracket. Maturity is not, uh, I know the scripture front to back like. You know, maturity is not even the season of the plant per se, because there is a cycle and there is a season.

And so, um, it's a pace and a process that I've had to really lean into. Um, and I think trust is, is surely one of the things that I needed to be better. So I love that you brought that to the surface. I mean, I've, I've, I've learned to trust him with big, massive things. Why can't I trust him with all the little things, you know, it's I know in myself, my counselor is perplexed.

I'm the only person. He asked, he asked all the time, would you be your own best friend? And I was like, no, immediately. And he was like, no one says that. You're like, I'm just being honest. I'm way too annoying. I know myself way too much my best friends. Oh, that's awesome. I think that the, the followup point that I want to make before we close out here is, is like, you really don't know.

And the, you send this about your children that I think is really beautiful and kind of parallels to everything that you've done to this point in life is that he component of exploration and. God has us on a walk, right? Like this is our walk. And if we allow ourselves to explore. Rather than to control or create finite pieces to that exploration.

I'm going to start at this hour, I'm going to finish at this hour. I'm going to go on this path. I'm going to end up here. I'm going to meet this person. And then I'm going to meet this person and then this is going to happen. But that's ultimately not what this is like. And so allowing ourselves in that.

Faith to explore on the pattern and the process and the day by day and not have like a, you should see my desk right now. Like the rigidity of everything the hour by hour, the minute by minute, all the notes that have been taking. But it's one of the reasons why it come to the. Experiences and these conversations fully present and with no notepad, because I just want to be fully present to that ability to be convicted.

And that's ultimately what exploration is about. I don't need to take all the notes or do all the things like God just wants us to be fully present with him. And if you trust them enough, you can walk on. Yeah, come on. Preach that. So good, Josh. It has been such a gift to get to know you more. And I love that when I initially asked you guys, he was like me, why me and I, I don't, I don't know why not you.

And I believe that a lot of times we are looking at opportunities, um, as an ability to do something. But the question that was prompted to me about last year actually was what, if you are the opportunity. And so just like, take that and lead into your next portion of your exploration and say that somebody is looking for you rather than you needing to go out and like fill the, fill the church or fill this.

Maybe there's another way to look at it, right. That stresses me out a little bit, not my identity and trust.

That's cool. That's good. Really good word. I appreciate that. You're so welcome so much for having me. I mean, this is so cool. I love. Tell my story. It's not, it's not the lowest like data, the dumbest thing ever, but I do think it's pretty relatable and, um, I'm just thrilled to be on this side of it and tell people about it.

So, absolutely. Absolutely. My pleasure. And so you guys can get to know Josh a bit more through red rocks, You can also follow him on Instagram. Is that, were you hanging? Yeah. I mean, I'm so bad at that stuff. Honestly, link is not here, so I'm going to have to add it to the notes, but regardless they can get in touch with you if they need you, because I do believe in the relate-ability of your story.

And I definitely believe in like that. The space is a place that people are really floundering. Um, they don't understand even where to go because it was never been taught and it's never been showcased. And we are the generation to unlock that for the generations to follow. Um, and I believe that we are having the ability in such a beautiful season of, of humanity for us to be able to unlock that in our children at a really early age.

Because I know you have a number three coming. I don't have any followers. So I respond to everybody even better. Talk to judge DMM. I want you to blow up his DHEA. And when you hear this, you guys, it was a blessing things again. And I hope that you guys all feel better. You guys, he has COVID and he's showing up in this experience, so great health health.

So your friend.

Hey, y'all it's me again. I hope in today's episode, you sends an ignite to an Ember within you, something mentally, physically, emotionally, or spiritually moving that creates and sustains a fire within your journey. Before you go, let solidify the flame. I'd love for you to take a step right now and declaring your takeaway by snapping a pick of the episode.

You tuned in to share your sparked moment and tag me at bitten faith underscore podcast. Or me personally at Tamra dot and dress on. Instead, I hope that I can keep you accountable and also share you with the greater community of the fit and fade podcast listeners. We're totally in this together community over competition is the motto, right?

I'd also be incredibly grateful if you took an extra second to leave a review on iTunes or your podcast listening app, I'd love to feature your thought in the next episode and give you and your passion project, a big shout out, you know, I'm a writer, so I love. And I can't wait to read what you have to say.

I'm ready to fuel the blame with you together. And until next time blessings over your joy, health, wealth, and wholeness tune in next time.

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