Joel A Bidderman

/Joel A Bidderman

About Joel A Bidderman

Joel Bidderman is a husband, father, worship pastor, musician, spiritual director, and non-profit worker. He enjoys reading, coffee, sociology, and creatively living in the Kingdom of God.

Solitude and Sabbath

Your Sabbath, Lord, this keeps us by Your will, not ours. And it is fit Our only choice should be to die Into that rest, or out of it Wendell Berry Lately, I have been noticing an increased need to engage in solitude. My personality type (type 9 on the Enneagram) gets to a point in the week where (as I tell my kids) my battery is empty and I have to recharge. Ignoring this need produces unpleasant results. And the thing is rest is something that we see God not only do in the creation story (Genesis 2:1-3), but He also placed it as a priority for Israel in [...]

By |2018-10-06T21:48:10+00:00October 6th, 2018|Practices, Solitude, Silence, & Stillness|0 Comments

Being People of Mercy and Compassion [Audio]

"God's love is what we are created for and living lives of compassion are what He invites us to." From my sermon Everyone Gets To Play: Being People of Mercy and Compassion What does it look like to live lives of mercy and compassion? Recently, I shared the following message at my home worship community, during which I looked at: what compassion is, how mercy and compassion is at the heart of God, His invitation to us to us, and how we can cultivate it in our lives.   Reference: Buechner, F. (1994). Wishful thinking: A seekers ABC. London: Mowbray. McNeill, D. P., Morrison, D. A., & Nouwen, H. [...]

By |2018-09-28T15:32:41+00:00September 28th, 2018|Audio, Missional Living|0 Comments

Solitude is a Place

"Silence and solitude [is] the medicine for curing, among other things, deep distraction." - Chris Hall Lately, I've been rethinking and praying about what solitude looks like for me. As an introvert, I love (and thrive in) quiet. It re-energizes me. It fills the tank. However, I've found over the years (especially now) that it must be more and more intentional, and I believe that rings true regardless of temperament. Factors that change the landscape of our ability to find solitude range from where we live (i.e. living in the city, in a dorm, etc.) to having kids, as well as having networks of relationships, and yes, even technology effects [...]

Be Filled with the Helper

Much of what I aim to cultivate in this space is focused on the inward journey, however, really, the heart behind Simply on Mission is the outward journey: sharing the love and grace of God in a way that overflows from a place of true identity. In other words, it looks like compassion, mercy, forgiveness, and grace in our relationships and how we engage the world (i.e. being close to the brokenhearted, remembering the poor, standing with the oppressed and downtrodden, etc.). The thing is: we are used to doing. Especially in our western culture, we measure our worth by our literal or metaphorical resumés, and when we do that, we often [...]

By |2018-05-14T06:54:52+00:00May 12th, 2018|Missional Living|0 Comments

A House That Points to Home

This month our family relocated to a new house. The previous rental where we had been at is being sold, and while we like that place, we had to begin searching for a new locale to lay our heads. We began praying, and we began looking, and something just right opened up in a way that we knew it wasn't us or luck. One of the great joys of praying and listening for the Lord's voice, is that the Lord speaks. Sometimes it's through circumstances in such a way that you sense a wink and a smile coming from the One whom you've been speaking to. This transition has brought [...]

By |2018-04-22T22:45:25+00:00April 22nd, 2018|Missional Living|0 Comments

Still, Like a Tree

"...in an age of acceleration, nothing can be more exhilarating than going slow. And in an age of distraction, nothing is so luxurious as paying attention. And in an age of constant movement, nothing is so urgent as sitting still." (Pico Iyer) As I've been pursuing the practice of stillness, I have read a book called The Art of Stillness by Pico Iyer, a travel writer. Throughout the book he makes keen observations about stillness, and in a wonderful Ted Talk that he presented, he said, "The trip, in other words, gave me some amazing sights, but it's only sitting still that allows me to turn those into lasting insights" Here, [...]

Stillness

"Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth." Psalm 46:10 “Let us be silent, that we may hear the whisper of God.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson A rhythm of grace (a life-giving spiritual practice) for me has been the practice of stillness: being still; stopping; resting. It's interesting how counter-intuitive it seems to our culture right now, doesn't it? Being someone who grew up in a generation that spanned a progression from analog to digital, I remember when life moved 25-45 mph, telephones were attached to the wall, photos were shared by waiting for the film [...]

By |2018-01-15T18:13:57+00:00December 30th, 2017|Practices, Solitude, Silence, & Stillness, Terms|1 Comment

Active Prayer: a powerful little practice

A practice that I was introduced to years ago, that I have been revisiting lately, has been a prayer practice called "Active Prayer," or another way that I've heard it referred to has been called "Breath Prayer." It’s pretty simple: an active or breath prayer is a 6-12 word prayer that you pray throughout the day (usually inside yourself), and is short enough that you can pray it in the length of a breath. The active prayer is a way that many throughout history have put the following scriptures into practice: "I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall always be in my mouth." - Psalm 34:1 [...]

By |2018-01-15T18:14:06+00:00November 9th, 2017|Practices, Prayers & Blessings|0 Comments

Following the Relaxed Rabbi: simplifying the heart

Bill Gaultiere, founder of Soul Shepherding, Inc. and mentee of Dallas Willard, shared a story on his website of an interaction that he had with Dallas. In Dallas' office at USC, Dallas asked him the question, "If you had one word to describe Jesus, what would it be?" There of course are so many words that come to mind to describe Jesus, and after a good length of silence in which Bill was able to contemplate, he asked Dallas what his one word would be. Dallas' answer: "relaxed." Relaxed. It has been a powerful paradigm shift for me as I've been grasping the picture of Jesus as the most relaxed person [...]

By |2018-01-15T18:14:15+00:00September 12th, 2017|Missional Living, Simplicity|0 Comments