Spud Duffey firstname.lastname@example.org
Shepherd of Vision and Leadership
I am a Colorado native but spent most of my youth growing up in Mesa, Arizona. When I was five, I began my adventure with God at a summer program at my church. I pretty much had what many may call a "Brady Bunch" family life: amazing parents and a best friend for a brother! My life changed drastically when I entered high school and chose to see what life was like ignoring God. This led me to a life that could be best described as a lie. My life became saturated with drugs, alcohol and running from the God who loved me.
God interceded through a series of events, from when I got arrested at sixteen to attending a church summer camp where the Holy Spirit convicted my heart and mind again. He began to breakdown the stubborn walls that I had built preventing me from having a close relationship with him. This was a dramatic turning point in my life, and I began the process of surrendering my life to loving my Savior and living for him.
God continued to transform my life throughout high school. Playing football, soccer, running track, and being very involved at youth group are some of the vehicles that God used to change my life. After high school I began to pursue my dream of becoming a history professor through attending Arizona State University. I also started volunteering at my church in the high school ministry to help kids stay connected to God and NOT make the same bad decisions I did. In my second year at ASU after a prayer meeting at church, the Holy Spirit stepped in with another challenge! It was clear as day: God wanted me to change directions and pursue being a pastor! So that's what I did. I took an internship at my church in the high school ministry, and within the next year I began to help with a church plant in Chandler, Arizona. Before long, God changed my direction again! He made it clear that he wanted me to further my education to become a more effective pastor. I finished my Bachelor of Arts in History at ASU and moved to Colorado to attend Denver Seminary and work on my master's degree.
"Life is an adventure," became one of my mottos. I believe that God desires us to realize the adventure he is placing before us. But like any good adventure, there are amazing highs, lows, uncertainty, tragedy and redemption. After working on my master's for three years, I met the woman who would become my wife, Sara. God has used her to radically change my life! She has not only shown me how to love others with the heart of Christ, but also how to give, show and live in forgiveness. God added to our adventure with our daughter Bella! He has used the process of parenting and learning how to love little a little girl to soften my heart to be like his. I am so blessed to be a daddy.
After nine years working in the same church community and fourteen years of ministry, God called us to another phase of our adventure: to leave our comfort zone and start the process of planting a church. To be honest, this was one of the last things I ever "wanted" to pursue! I enjoy being the team player that supports; I'm not a big fan of living in the limelight. So the thought of taking this step was pretty uncomfortable for me. But after two years of dragging my feet, five people approached me within forty-eight hours suggesting that we plant a church. After hours of prayer and seeking counsel, God made my next step clear. I knew that not choosing to move forward in this calling would be disobedience.
The process of planting Two Rivers Church has been nothing short of a great adventure. What has God done? Everything I needed. I have grown deeper in my intimacy with God – through suffering, loss, joy, pain, fun, excitement and surrender. I love where God has me in this adventure. It's hard and tiresome, but the adventure continues to get better! Church planting with brothers and sisters in Christ who are united in the pursuit of discovering how to be healthy, gospel-centered followers of Christ is right where God wants me!