Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Faithful, Outside-the-Box Side of Grow Barefoot

This week I’m excited to introduce you to the final member of the Grow Barefoot Board of Directors. However, he isn’t a stranger to this blog or this ministry. Jimmy Woodall was the first Grow Barefoot guest blogger with his article Husbands, Love Your Wives. He also wrote a series covering his recent trip to Africa.
You may think he only does these things due to his close connection to me. He is, after all, my husband. I promise you, though; he does these things out of a heart’s desire to serve God. He is first and foremost a man of God.
Of his decision to become a Christian, Jimmy wrote the following…
I grew up in a Christian home; as far back as I can remember I always went to church. But that didn't matter. What mattered was that when I was five I memorized John 3:16. “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son [Jesus] that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” I believed in God and I believed in Jesus. I wanted to make Jesus the Lord of my life. So at that young age, I repented of my sins and accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior.
During junior high and high school, I started applying more of my faith in Christ. I continued to grow in Him until my senior year. As I headed off to college, I realized I was also headed away from my Christian family. Now that I was going to be on my own I had to make my Christian walk mine. I had to make the effort to apply what I had learned and do what God called me to do. Since then, Jesus continues to direct my life in so many ways.
Jimmy’s years since college have focused greatly on His service to God. God calls all believers to serve Him in some way. Jimmy wrote the following of His call…
I have always felt God calling me to service and missions. In college, I served as a leader in the Baptist Student Union. We traveled to churches around the region leading worship and presenting the gospel through music and drama. After college, I served as the Youth Ministry Leader for our church for ten years. During that time I had a great time leading the youth in discipleship and various mission trips around the USA. Currently, I serve as the Missions Deacon at church; I lead our mission’s team to involve our church body in the lives of our missionaries and to oversee the missionaries we support.
Jimmy’s heart for missions and his life experiences make him a perfect fit for this new aspect of Grow Barefoot’s ministry. However, his involvement with Grow Barefoot actually goes back to the beginning…
My wife finished writing her first book, Seven Roles, One Woman, about three years ago. We were trying to learn the publishing industry and marketing. We couldn't find the right avenue because all the norms were too limiting. My wife’s vision for the future didn’t focus exclusively on the message of one book and it especially didn’t focus on herself. God led her to the establishment of Grow Barefoot. I have been guilty by association ever since. At that time, Grow Barefoot was exclusively a teaching ministry helping believers to live free and pursue holiness while they lay aside the excuses that hold them back. As the Lord has brought in more opportunities and more ideas we have followed Him to where we believe He wants this ministry to grow.
Despite Jimmy’s early involvement as “guilt by association,” he is excited to step in to the ministry more wholeheartedly as we expand in a new direction. He describes his new work with Grow Barefoot as follows…
I will be leading the new missions connection side of the ministry. We want to develop a website for missionaries and churches or believers to connect. Similar to a mission’s version of Craig’s List, this site will help connect churches with available resources to missionaries with specific needs. A large part of this ministry will also be building relationships with churches and missionaries to more effectively bring the two together.

Jimmy brings a unique and diverse skill set to this new volunteer position. From an architectural degree to the hands on experience of building his own home, Jimmy has a wide array of experience with construction, electrical, architecture, and engineering. For several years he has worked in sales and project management within the construction industry. The lessons learned there will help him to work on teams to bring ideas together and then direct others to the goal. Finally, Jimmy has an incredible ability to see solutions to issues that most would consider to be “outside the box.”
Spiritually, Jimmy’s gifts are faith and service. He believes that if we step out in faith that God will guide our every move and action. He guides us to obtain His will and His glory no matter how messed up we are or how many errors we make along the journey.
"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."

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