Justin Hiebert

Catalyzing Change

Living with a passion

Posted on 08 Apr 2014 in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Living with a passion

Come to my house.

Walk up the steps.

Get ready to enter the front door.

On the right hand side is a stone with our last name welcoming you.

And one big red letter N.

On Saturdays you will even find me decked out in a shirt or jersey and my favorite white Nebraska hat. I’ve also got pants, a banner, stickers, mugs, water glasses and a poster.

I even petitioned my wife rather earnestly to name our son, you guessed it: Ndamukong (which awesomely means ‘house of spears’).

Nebraska football fans celebrating a touchdown.

Nebraska football fans celebrating a touchdown. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

My point? If you hang around me for even a short period time you know my passion for all things Nebraska Cornhuskers. I’ve been to football and basketball games. I listen to games that get broadcasted on the radio, no matter what sport. I even told my daughter that they were God’s team (red for the blood white for the purity), and when we drove past Memorial Stadium I told her that Jesus lived there.

Starting to catch my devotion?

You could also check my Twitter feed, especially during big, pivotal games. Someone was actually referred to my blog by Googling phrases about the dismal coaching.

If you know me at all, you know my passion for Nebraska. It is a core part of who I am. Win or lose (though I greatly prefer winning) I am a Cornhusker through and through.

And then I have to wonder if people know that I feel even more passionately about Jesus?


One of the critiques I’ve heard about the missional church goes something like this, “You just want an excuse to drink beer with people. All you do is sit in your driveway, drink beer and never bring up Jesus.”

But here is, I think, an important point. If we could hang out and develop a deep friendship, and Jesus never comes up, the question would have to be asked: am I really that passionate about him?

Think about it. I wear my devotion for Nebraska on me in some fashion almost every single day. You can’t get away from it. Shouldn’t the same be true of Jesus?

And I don’t mean that I (or we as Christians) need to come off as Bible thumpers. This is something totally different. This is living passionately and feeling excited to share with people the amazing things that we have seen God do.

Want to talk the bad play calling? I can do that. Want me to critique the last games effort? Done.


I want to be the type of person that exudes a joy for all things Jesus.



Want to know what I think about Jesus? I can also do that.

Jesus, believe it or not, is even more central to how I define myself than the Cornhuskers are. I want to be the type of person that exudes a joy for all things Jesus. I want to have eyes to see where he is working in my neighborhood and join him. I want to be sensitive to where people are at and find ways to connect their story the the grand story that God is already telling.

I want others to be just as passionate about Jesus as I am about Nebraska.


The missional church seeks to reclaim the idea that we are the church wherever we are acting as Christ’s ambassadors




The missional church is about redefining our idea of church. While many times we say that the church is people and not an institution, we struggle to be the church outside of the four walls that we view as sacred.

The missional church seeks to reclaim the idea that we are the church wherever we are acting as Christ’s ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20). If that is having a party in my backyard with people while telling them about the unconditional love God has for them, I want them to know that. If it is watching football with people and using it as an opportunity to expose them to the grace of Jesus, I’m all about it. If it is providing a safe place for a hurting family to feel welcome, our door is open.

My passion for the Cornhuskers can’t go unnoticed. Neither should our passion for Jesus. We have a world out there that is desperately in need of good news and Jesus provides that. Sharing him should come naturally for us. If we struggle to share or relate that to people, how much do we really care?


Please leave comments below.

*This post originally appeared under the name Living Passion.

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Justin Hiebert

Leadership Catalyst - Entrepreneur - Coach at JSHiebert Leadership Coaching
I am a Business and Life Coach in both non-profit and for profit settings. I coach leaders, executives, and pastors in areas of vision, clarity, and values. In relationship coaching I focus on healthy and sustainable relationships, and in leadership development roles I catalyze change for individuals and groups to thrive. I also consult churches and organizations on how to train new leaders and create a healthy culture. In addition to that, I am an Anabaptist pastor in the Denver metro area. I specialize on topics that include: missional theology, discipleship, culture and the church in today’s society. I am married to my wonderful wife Elise and we have three kids. I grew up and now work in the United States Mennonite Brethren Church (USMB) and love the people and history of the Mennonite Brethren faith. I am a graduate of Tabor College with a dual degree in Youth Ministry and Christian Leadership, a graduate of Fresno Pacific Biblical Seminary with a Masters of Divinity, and a Doctoral Student and Bethel Seminary. I also teach college classes in areas of Bible, Communication, and Business.

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