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In this episode, you’ll discover… 

  • The “Will Gap” reason to why you’re not winning at home and work (and why discipline is the antidote to it) (2:32) 
  • The 2 ambition ditches faith-based people fall into that sabotages their impact and relationship with God (3:19) 
  • Are you “cheating” on your wife with work? Here’s how to overcome your workaholism addiction (5:28) 
  • How too much work success transform you and your wife into business partners (and how to rediscover your love after you drift apart) (7:36)
  • The weird way trying to help the world cripples your family life (12:37) 
  • How a job demotion helps your family become closer (even if it means you’ll make less money) (23:14) 

If you’d like to reach out to Tim, you can email him at tim.senff@crossroads.net

Are you crushing it at work but struggling at home? If you want to learn how to win at home, then go to https://CoryMCarlson.com and download your free copy of “10 Ways To Win At Home.”

If you're looking for a resource to help you with these times when your work is now in your home, check out my book Win At Home First on Amazon. Forbes Magazine rated it one of 7 books everyone on your team should read

Read Full Transcript

Welcome to the win at home first podcast. I'm your host, Cory Carlson. This podcast is where we talk about how successful business leaders win, not only at work, but also at home. On this podcast, we will go behind the scenes with great leaders to hear stories of how they win. Thank you for listening and on to today's episode.

(00:26): Hello, this episode, Tim Seneff who you will learn more about in a minute is packed full of wisdom to how he talks about ambition and his battled workaholism and how he has worked, overcome it, and how we can all learn from him on that. He talks about the power of connection in your home and how that could be a great KPI to see how you're doing in your marriage, in your parenting, as well as everyone else you're doing life with. You also tells an incredible story about how they adopted their fourth child and even gets a little emotional. It's an awesome episode. I took tons of notes. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did on to today's episode. Hello, this is Corey. You are listening to win home first podcast today. Yeah, I'm joined by Tim Seneff, who is

(01:17): A pastor of crossroads church where I attend, but I mean, he's got so many more things going on than just being a pastor. And so I've always loved learning from him from the standpoint that he has helped start a school that is still functioning. So he's an entrepreneur at heart when early stages of his involvement at crossroads, he was part of the go missions trips. So he's got all kinds of international and entrepreneurial experience. So it's just been fun to learn from him. So having the chance to invite him on this podcast, hear from him. He's married has four kids and is just a community leader. So it is fun to have you on the podcast, Tim,

(01:58): Good to be with you. Corey, looking forward to this, Tim, what is that key trait to win at home? And when at work, man, I would say key trait to win. Whether it's home or work is to is to want it. It's just simply to say, this is what I'm going to do. And I'm going to have ambition to make it happen. I know a lot of people who, for example, say they want to win at home, but quite honestly, I don't think actually put the effort behind it. They say they want to, but they don't put the intentionality around it. So I think you got to have this ambition to really align whatever you're doing around what you say you want. And if you're not willing to put the time in, change your calendar, start new habits, challenge yourself to build new relationships are gonna help you win at home or work. It's just not gonna happen. So I think you've got to have the will to want it. And I think most all of us, it's not a skill gap. It's not a knowledge gap. It's a will gap. We're not willing to put in the hard work. It's just a, it's a discipline thing. I love

(03:08): The simplicity of that answer wanted. That's great. You also threw in another word ambition, which has you know, some, some ugly sides to it. How do you balance ambition when you're going after a few things that I know you want? You know, you want to be a good father of four. You want to the crossroads Mason. And so how are you balancing that ambition with the wants of success?

(03:36): So for me, I think there's kind of two ditches of ambition as a person of faith. There's obviously the ditch of I'm all about ambition and it's about making a name for myself. It's about me trying to put myself on a pedestal and say, Hey, let's make sure all of the lights in this theater are pointed toward me because I'm the man that, that kind of selfish ambition about self, the other ditch say that's on the right side. The left side of the ditch is no ambition. Well, you know, as a person of faith, oh, I can't do that. You know, God says, be selfless and God says, put others first. And so I'm just going to have no ambition. I'm just gonna think life is just a lazy river and I'm floating down in some inner tube and I'm just letting the current take me where I want.

(04:21): I think there's somewhere in the middle between selfish ambition and no ambition. I would call it godly ambition. It's saying, God, I want to use the gifts you've given me. I want to get after it and make something happen, but I don't want it to be about myself. I want it to be about other people. I want it to be about you God. And so I've gone through a, I'd say a journey of my own ambition because I will probably get into that at some point. But I've definitely struggled with, I haven't, I don't know that I've struggled a lot with the no ambition ditch. I've struggled a lot with the selfish ambition ditch and it's, it's played out in a lot of workaholism and some other things. What did they

(05:02): Unhealthy selfish ambition looked like in your life and what were you going after? How much time do we have man? I mean, so for a lot of my life, I have struggled with performance with defining myself by my accolades and my resume or my achievements. And it was something that, that took a while for me to recognize. And then kind of going back to the earlier question, you asked me if, you know, you want to win at home or when it worked. I think I recognized those things, but I didn't make a plan and really have the, have the will to want to change. My wife would say, you know, Mary, she's amazing. She'd say like, Tim, I feel like you're cheating on me with the church and she'd sing. I think it's Neville brothers secret lovers. They'd say secret lovers. Mary would, whenever she'd see me on my phone, she's like that. She started singing that song. It goes on to say what you are trying to try and hard to hide the way you feel.

(06:01): She's like you're here, but you're not really here you are. You've got a secret lover of, of work. And what I recognized was, man, I, I, I totally struggled with an addiction to workaholism with what other people thought of me and the selfish ambition of trying to make a name for myself. And it was not good, Corey. I mean, it had some, I, I joke about it some now, and by the way, it's not like, oh, dead and gone slayed that beast. Totally. I do feel like I have to a degree, but there's still some vestiges that I deal with. But, but that's something I've been working on. Gosh, it's probably been a 25 plus year journey for me. Did you hit Allie? I mean, it was cute

(06:46): When she was singing songs and it was all fun, but was there an actual now where it wasn't cute anymore and there were no singing. So

(06:55): There was actually, yeah. So we've been married 24 years and I'd say the first part of our marriage was really good. We'll do marriage counseling with couples and they say, first years of marriage harm, we settled for us. It wasn't a, because marriage is pretty fun, but because we, we faked it the whole time. Like we thought we were just supposed to always say it was fun and you weren't able to acknowledge that things weren't fun. And so we were playing the role of perfect married couple for awhile until my wife recognized, wait a second, like this is, this doesn't develop intimacy. If we pretend that everything's great all the time when it's not. So let me tell you Tim things, aren't always great. And you ask was there, was there a time of valley for me? Yeah, it was the time when seven years ago, eight years ago when we had had, we have four kids now at the time we had three, they had been all little.

(07:51): I had been working a bunch. We had both decided equally my wife, Mary and I, that she would stay home. And she had just felt left in the dust that she had been. She had been trying to win at home. I'd clearly just been trying to win at work. And she came to me and she said, Tim, listen, because of what I read the Bible to say, just so you know about marriage. I'm not going to leave you, but I don't like you. Our marriage is not in a good place and you need to understand, I just need to be really clear. I'm unhappy in our marriage. And if we continue in this place, we're going to devolve into business partners, family as the business, but not husband, wife, not the relationship God has created for us. And I think at that, that was the moment Corey, where I said, oh man, I've, I've tried to build my whole life on trying to win and succeed. And I'm losing the most important relationship in life. And she cause she's the one giving me the S this assessment. So I would say, I would say that was the low point for sure. Holly and I,

(09:09): As you mentioned, being the business partners, our term is roommates where we had to use that numerous years ago in our relationship. But for us, it's a, it's a safe word we can now use where we feel. We're starting to go down that path. We say roommates, it means, Hey, let's kinda, let's get back together here. We're, we're, we're drifting. And so that's been a safe word for us because we too, I experienced a little bit, you know, you did, you mentioned, you've not obviously slayed the ambition giant yet, but you've gotten better. How do you handle ambition now? Because you know, you are pastor

(09:49): Part of a leadership team of the fastest growing church in the country. I mean, there are demands on you all the time. Plus just being a pastor, everyone always wants to talk to you. You're, you're an email or tax for those that are lucky enough to have your number of, I need a prayer. I need to talk. And so how has I mean, how do you handle that ambition

(10:11): Side of things now? Well, I think a lot of that is you got to talk about it with other people. I need to recognize this is a temptation for me. And so anyone listened to this, he struggled with insert, whatever. We can find an addiction to a chemical substance alcohol. How do you see growth from that? You got to tell other people and you got to acknowledge her. I got a problem. So can you all kind of know my story can y'all hold me accountable? Can I just, I need to measure the situations I'm in. So for me, I, I feel like, you know, that there's a passage in the Bible. It's from Philippians two, verse three, it says, do nothing from selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility, count others better than yourselves. I have to always say, all right, is this going to be selfish ambition or vain conceit?

(11:05): This is about Tim, or is this about other people? And, you know, Hey, I need to make use of the gifts God's given me again. I don't think I should be a shrinking violet and fall into that other no ambition ditch, but I think it's just Wang. Who's this about, I love this quote. Humility is not thinking less of yourself. Humility is thinking of yourself less. And so I don't need to constantly berate myself and say, I'm such an awful person. I just need to think, Hey, how can I think of other people? How can I put their needs ahead of mine? So that's, I think how it answered that question. I like that. I

(11:45): Want to take it one more layer deep, because even when you think about, okay, it's about other people, I'm going to serve other people. Before I did the coaching, I was president of sales for a national organization. So I had, you know, 30 sales guys that reported to me and they could reach out at any time in one vein, I could say,

(12:08): Well, I'm just responding to them. I'm helping them out. It's about them. And I could see you having to do the same thing as a, as a pastor. And, and just in your leadership role where people are always reaching out to you. So even in that idea of, Hey, it's about other people, you still have to have this thought of, I got to put boundaries. I have to kind of know

(12:31): When to stop and when not to just go out there and helping other people. Yep. Yep. As my wife married would always say, how can I challenge your work when you're going? I was for example, leading our outreach work overseas. And she was saying, gosh, I'm saying, can you please be home more stop spending so much time rescuing girls from forced prostitution in India and stop kids who are struggling with HIV aids in Africa. I mean, what a terrible person do I feel like is what she'd say. But, you know, I feel like the person that I said yes to first beyond, of course, God for me is my wife. And then next are my kids. And so it's easy for me to want to go, try to attack some problem or solve some issue with other people are attended needs for people in the church. But I think practically, I just have to say marrying, the kids are going to be first.

(13:27): And then I have to make some decisions around that, around what that looks like. So for example, I'm going to reduce some of the travel I do. I'm going to not have my phone at the dinner table. You put things in place. Hey, I know that driving carpool is important. So I'm going to do that these three mornings a week or whatever it is, you know, I'm going to, I'm going to drive the kids at eight in the morning to school, whatever it is. I think you got to, I think you've got to put those things in place. It's so interesting.

(13:53): How, if we're not careful the out mission, what we're doing outward facing to the community, to our jobs, if we're not careful, it can damage that family mission, what we're doing inside and the great commission and Jesus in his out too, is go and make disciples. And so often we're focused on out there and not in our own home. Totally. And so it's so helpful as you say that

(14:24): Just an allure it's, it's, it's an allure. And I think a lot of it's identity, you know, I feel like I can get strokes from other people and it's harder to see wins in parenting. It's harder to see wins and marriage versus, you know, if you're crushing, if you're in sales, a sales goal for us, and it's easier to see wins and work, and we should be, we should be making wins in work. But you know, we, we need to keep first things first. So that's why I love, I love your, when at home first, that's sticky to remember. That's where, that's where you got to win at home. First, w you talk

(15:03): About wins at work KPIs as key performance indicators and dashboards showing everywhere we're winning. What are things that you used, you know, KPIs, if you will, for home for you and Mary and your marriage for you and your four kids, do you have some call it metrics that help you know, that you are trending in the right direction? Well, I don't have as good as data-based ones. Here's what I'd say. We think in our family, by the way, this is going to sound pretty soft. I think most of us listeners, we think kind of the key KPI in our marriage and with our kids is this word, connection. I believe the whole goal of parenting is so that when your kids get old enough to decide whether they want to spend time with me or not, they actually like me and Mary enough that they choose to spend time with us. They like us enough. That's beyond of course, helping them to know who they are and who God is and how God loves them, those kinds of things. So I think connection is key. So I'm great. If our kids are doing something dumb, as long as they're telling me about it, as long as they're not lying to me, as long as they're not just wanting to go retreat to their room, get on Instagram and zone out for hours and not want to talk to me about it. And I went to talk to Mary about it. So I think the KPI is it's connection. It's saying we're going to be in deep relationship, the connection.

(16:37): And even though I know what you mean, it sounds soft. I know exactly. We all know what that means. When we are connected with our spouse, we just have that good feeling. When you walk in the room, versus when we're not connecting, you walk in and you're like, oh crap. I don't know what to talk about. I'm frustrated. So I think that connection has a lot of power. How have you found best to recalibrate in your family when connection's off? What's kind of been your go-to to reestablish that connection. Yeah.

(17:08): So I think so we've tried to do some things that, you know, I mentioned earlier, we, we do our best to try to have a meal together every day. Dinner is what it typically is. Especially weeknights. It's hard when kids are running to the different sports or their activities, but we try to get dinner in. We try to have dinner, no phones at dinner. I'll tell you what we do is we, we try to be the house where our kids bring their friends. So, and we found the formula for that. The success formula is really simple. Just a bunch of junk food we found it's really, it's really simple. Cory. People are like, oh man, you got like, oh, you got, you know, mountain Dew, voltage. The boys are like, do you don't want to come over there? And they've got a bunch of Cheeto puffs and they've got Oreos and it's, by the way, it's Southern healthy.

(17:56): Mary's probably embarrassed. I'm sharing this right now. But it's a, that's what we found to be a thing that, Hey, we want to have kids over and just to have some, have some fun stuff. And then there's different things. Like, you know, my girls they're teenagers 17, 19, right now they're connect with their friends via texts. I'll just text them a bunch. I'll comment on their Instagram stuff. Cause they love their friends. Seeing that their dad cares about them. It's just like, Hey, I'm thinking about you. Hey, you looked really pretty this morning. Hey, how's this gone with a babysitting job? Hey, how's this going with this sporting thing? Our son for example, got a 13 year old son. He's so into sports. So it's just find that common ground. And so we talk sports all the time. I'll pull up me ESPN app at night and he loves me to rub his back.

(18:45): And maybe I'm a softie, but I'm like, all right, if you're going to talk to me, I'll rub your back every single night. And he's like with lotion, dad, I'm like, well, you're talking about man. It was rubbing my back with a lotion, but I'll rub his back and we'll talk sports. And then that's usually kind of the gateway into some deeper, deeper things. So I'm just trying to find what, what, what the common things are with the kids and just trying to get on their level and get in their world. And I think they have to feel like we never tell our kids never would ever say one is our favorite, but we want each of them to feel like we're not, I'm not going to tell anybody, but I think I'm dad's favorite. And we want them to feel like we have this unique, special relationship with them the same way

(19:28): With Mary. I think I'm mom's favorite. So those are, those are a couple of thoughts. Thank you very much for listening to today's episode. I hope you're are it so far before we go back to the rest of this episode, I want to share with you my book when at home first, some of you have read it. So thank you very much for others of you. You have not. And I encourage if you're looking for a resource to help you with these times of your work is now in your home and your home is now in your work and what this looks like. This book is being helpful to many leaders like you whores magazine said it was one of seven books. Everyone on your team should read in the book is broken up into four different sections to help you versus about you. Understand who you are. The second is marriage in ideas and tips to help with your marriage. Third is parenting and then last is work. So these four different sections to help you recalibrate during this time and to help move forward. So if you are needing additional resource, I encourage you to check out my book went home first. It is available on Amazon as well as audible and so on to the rest of the episode. Thank you very much.

(20:41): I mentioned in the intro, you brought it up a little bit as well, that you were involved in international for awhile with crossroads doing the go trips. That's kind of when I first definitely took notice of you, cause you were involved in all these and then you transitioned into being a community. Pastor, was that your own doing? Was that following what you felt was God's

(21:01): Calling for you? It's a good question. It might be even helpful for me even to take one step back from that and I can share some of my career path journey. I think everyone listening to this, we're always thinking, gosh, how can I make the best use of the gifts I've been given? How can I be a steward of the gifts I've been given professionally? So professionally I say business and English and college graduated, went into business. I worked for consulting firms, work for Accenture, traveled around a bunch and enjoyed that. But I'll tell you what I realized was I think we all have different areas of gifting. I think one of mine is relationship building communication, intentionality around some things. I didn't feel like the work I was doing was able to, I think, make use of that as well. And so it was a huge step for me to leave the business world to go into a ministry role.

(21:58): A lot of that was frankly, I think one of the biggest challenges for me was I was really nervous about what that meant financially for our family. Like, oh my gosh, what's going to happen here. And so that was a big, big change. But like you said, when I made that change came into ministry, did international trips and local poverty antipoverty work, et cetera. You know, the shift it's, it's funny. This is not, I'm not playing the hometown crowd here based on the title of your podcast when home first, but really the reason I made the shift, it was, it was really for our family because I had traveled so much overseas away from my family. And it was honestly, the travel was one of the hardest things in our marriage because I'd be gone for a couple of weeks at a time on these trips.

(22:47): They're mission trips. And it wouldn't just be time when I was gone, then it'd be the lead up to it. It'd be the debrief afterwards and my jet lag and all this stuff. And then Mary felt like, all right, I've just gotten independent this last time. And I don't need you and understandably that. And so we just said, you know what? We want to do something. We feel like we can be together around the road as much. And we can be a bit more of a, a family on mission. Like, Hey, let's all be part of, of this thing. So the transition was hard. It was hard. I'll tell you it was something that I chose. I wanted. And it was an org chart demotion because my then peer became my boss. I was running all the ministries across with this person who is running all of the sites or the campuses and me choosing to go out of that role into the role I did was, was an art org chart demotion. But Tanya, what man, there there's some, there's some major fruit I'm seeing in my relationship with my kids and our marriage because of that, because we've just, my job is now more manageable for our family and they feel like they can be a part of it more versus that. Dad's just gone all the time. I want to talk about two of those transitions because I can relate

(24:04): To pieces of them. And I know listeners can, when you went from a center to the crossroads international job, It was a, I assume a significant reduction in pay. Yep. Plus leaving corporate climbing the ladder, having the title, going into ministry. How long did that process take? I mean, did you feel God was talking to you for a year, two years? What, what did that whole transition

(24:32): Look like? It was all in about an afternoon. No, it was not at all. It was, it was a long transition for me. And I think some people really can do it for me. It was a long time. Here's what I'd say. It was a conversation. Our marriage first, we were newly married and I needed to know where Mary was with it because yeah, I took a 50% pay cut, which is not inconsequential. I will say I wasn't making a ton of money then because I was still in my twenties. So it's different than someone making a decision in their forties or fifties type of thing. So I needed to make sure Mary was where she was supportive and she was totally supportive. She was on board. What, what I realized was a lot of the reason I was pursuing the career I had been at the time with Accenture was because I thought that's what my parents wanted.

(25:20): I thought that's what others wanted of me. And so therefore I thought that's what I wanted with me. And so I realized, oh man, I'm actually not loving this. And by the way, I believe God has created all of us to be great at something. And I felt like at Accenture, I mean, maybe you can ask my former managers, I feel like I was okay. I was like pretty good. I think I'm great. And I think I made to be great at something and it's time to be great at something. And I think it's going to be with people, helping people understand who God is and language they can understand. And I think I want to do it with, you know, in the church world. And so I did that and I'll tell you though, it was super scary, but I'll tell you it was not clean and perfect.

(26:01): I thought my whole life, I was like, oh, I have been climbing the corporate ladder. It's time to get off the corporate ladder. What I didn't realize until many years into working for a church ministry was I hadn't gotten off the corporate ladder. I had simply moved the ladder off the corporate wall and put on the ministry wall. And then I just started working more hours for less money as dysfunctional way as I was before. Or pardon me more so. And I was like, this is stupid. And I just realized my whole life, I viewed life as a scoreboard and I want to win. And so before it was all right, the scoreboard is how can I make the most money? How can I have the prettiest wife, the house, car, life, job title. That's the scoreboard I'm going to win? Well, then what I realized was, oh, maybe I'm thinking the scoreboard is like, how can I be most meaningful?

(26:54): How can I be most impactful? But it was still about me. It was, it was still a selfish ambition thing. Going back to our original question, Corey. And I think what I I've been coming to realize more and more recently is the scoreboard is just about other people. It's not about myself. It's not what other people think it is about helping people and making an impact, but it's not so that I look good and I'm cool to take a step down a ministry ladder if you will. If I feel like I can use my gifts better, I can invest in my family more and I can probably get, just grow more as a person. It can be more of my sweet spot. So this workaholism thing has been a thing that I've been, I've been working on a lot and it's just around identity it's around. Where am I going to find my identity? Right. When

(27:43): You, and I've talked before, you've got a ton of God's stories in your life. And I think just because you've been open-handed, you're just like, God, what do you have for me? Where can, where can we go? Where can I go? You know, kind of put me in coach. I think one of the neat stories

(27:56): Is, is of your son, Noah and, and how that has just taken place and developed you. And I'd love to just hear a little bit about that. Cause that was a God story that you went after. Yeah. So this is a pretty wild story, by the way, I think it relates to when you were asking me about my jump from corporate to ministry, and then my jump from leading our international work and some other roles I was leading to take kind of an org chart, demotion to lead the campus on leading a Bible passage. It's impacted me a lot. It's from the book of Hebrews 11, verse eight. And it says by faith, Abraham actually, pardon me? Let me pause here. This guy, Abraham father, the Jewish nation, kind of the father of faith. He history he's living in modern day. Iraq doesn't know God is, and God called and says, Hey, Abraham, I want you to come over here to what's now modern day Israel.

(28:56): And I'm going to build the nation of Israel, the Jewish faith. I'm going to build them through you. And he gets up and goes, and by the way, when he does that, he doesn't have any children, which meant in the ancient world, no heritage, no legacy. And he had been praying for what he didn't even know God at the time, but had been hoping for a child. So that's the backstory to this passage, Hebrews 11 eight. It says by faith, Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went. Even though he didn't know where he was going. That's my favorite part. Even though he didn't know where he was going by faith, Abraham, when called to go to this new place that had no idea where he was going. He got up, he obeyed. And even though he didn't know where he was going and you know what happened to Abraham, then God blessed Abraham, God blessed Abraham with a son named Isaac.

(29:49): And then the Jewish nation continues. I want to do a boring old Testament history lesson here. It's amazing. I've found that for me, it was taking a step out of corporate taking a step out of what was a comfortable ministry role to a different one. We just got to take steps. And as we take step one to two, you know, if we're in point a, we go to point B, he's not going to show us point Z. We've got to just be faithful with the one next step ahead of us. The one thing that we trusting that the other steps are going to reveal themselves, it's relevant to, sorry, I just kind of went off there. That's relevant to what you just talked about. About quarter of four child. We have four children. Our third, our oldest three are biological. Our youngest is adopted. We knew we were feeling called to adopt at some point in our life.

(30:37): It kind of frankly put it off. Or we tried to adopt from South Africa. We're doing a bunch of these go trips and didn't work. And so we said, all right, we're going to go after it. And we decided we were going to adopt domestically, adopted infants. So we are working through this agency and we get hooked up with this birth mother. Her name is Rachel and she's pregnant. And she w we go through the process and kind of, we get matched up. You know, we, we want to put ourselves in to say, Hey, we want to be the adoptive parents. She chooses us, but we never met her. This has all been digital and through a social worker. So we have a phone call. The social worker says, Hey, I can patch you guys in and you guys can meet. Now, I'll try to make this real brief.

(31:24): Our three older kids are named Hannah, Leah and Jeremiah, and I'm Caucasian. My wife's Caucasian. So our three biological kids are Caucasian. This biological son, we have, he, we knew it was going to be a child of color. And so my wife says, all right, listen, we've got stick with this naming convention because these names are all from the Bible. They all end in age. And this on this new son is, is going to have enough reason to wonder if he's really part of the family. So we need to come up with a name from the Bible, then the ends and age, and just be part of the naming convention. And it was funny. I was like, oh, wait, we do kind of a naming convention to be like, it had never actually even occurred to me. So we started thinking about there's all these different names.

(32:10): There's Isaiah and Micah, Jonah, and Josiah, but the knee, there's a million of them in the Bible, but the names we both Mary and I agreed. And we said, I think his name should be Noah. I think his name should be Noah. So that's the backstory. We go into this call with our son's birth mother. Again, she's pregnant at the time with them. And it's, you know, we've been matched up. It's like a first date of an arranged marriage like this. These things happen in, but you're wanting to make a good impression. And like, Hey, and so she had seen some information about our family. We'd sent her some pictures and whatnot. And so we're talking. And then the last other backstory is when infants are adopted. Typically the birth parent will name the child. And then when you're allowed to adopt them different by state.

(33:01): But in Florida, we were adopting him from 48 hours later. We then can change the name. And it's kind of an official, like your mind. Now I'm going to change the birth certificate. I'm naming you. You're a Senate. Well, so our son's birth mother, Rachel, she says, Hey, so listen, I know that you're going to change the birth, the name of this boy. I know it. But you know, I've, I've kind of thought about a name and I think I'm just going to name him something. And then you guys can name it. You guys want to hear the name and I'm thinking not really, because I'm just going to feel guilty about it once we change the name, but my wife pops up. Yeah, sure. We'd love to know the name. She says. Okay. All right. And I started kind of shaking my head and Rachel, this, this birth mother Adeline, she says, all right, I know you guys are going to change the name, but I just feel like his name should be Noah, Mary and I burst into tears.

(33:57): And you can tell Rachel, on the other line is kind of looking at the phone. Like, what is everything, okay? I told you, you could change the name. And we said, you know, and I get emotional just thinking about, we said, you just have no idea. Cause that's the exact name we're going to name them. We feel like God told us to name him, Noah as well. And she says, you gotta be kidding me. You're going to name him the same thing I want to name. You said. Yeah. And she said, I can't believe that because you know, Tim and Mary, I just saw that your kids' names all are from the Bible. And they all end in H and knowing that he's going to be adopted, I just felt like, you know, he's going to have enough reason not to be part of the family.

(34:38): And he needs to know he's part of your family. So of course, around two of crying and Susan were like, you're wanting the name of no for the exact same reasons. We want to name him. Noah, a million things happen from that time, including her inviting us down while she was still pregnant, we got to share with her how much God loves her. She recognized that God was drawing her back into relationship and using Noah to do so. And she said, I want to plant my flag in the ground. And right there in the Atlantic ocean, we got to baptize Rachel, while she was pregnant with our son right after she was, he was born. She invited us down for the birth. I was there by the way I was on the north end of the stadium and the delivery room. I was like, all right, I'm going to stay up in the north end.

(35:21): But right after the nurse cleaned them up and handed Noah to Rachel, she kissed him and hugged him. And then she hand them to us. And she said, no, meet your mom and dad. And we prayed for him there. And then when he was old enough to leave the hospital and Rachel was to all four of us, Mary and myself, Noah and Rachel, we went to the exact same spot in the Atlantic ocean, Florida, where she, we had been able to baptize her and we together dedicated notes to the word right there. And I'll tell you what, he's a special kid. He's six and a half right now. There's something special about him. He is loved. And I just tell you at quarry, God, there's no other time in my life. When I feel like God has met me, God has challenged me. God has encouraged me. Like, like our time with Noah, he man, we took a little step and he met us there and amazing. I enjoyed

(36:14): The story the first time he told me and you left out a lot of cool parts. That is an incredible story. And Tim, yeah, just well done and just skews. Yeah. Overall and just encouragement for all of us just to live bold and to go after what God has

(36:31): For us. Thanks man. Thanks. It's a big story, but we all have little micro-moments. I mean, frankly, it's the biggest by far of any of my life. So I'm going to throw some big splash out there, but it is a pretty cool story. I did a message one time on it. I call it, it got us a show off and just told the story. I said, God was just showing off like those planes show off move. But I think we got moments just to, just to trust and take a step. And you know, it's, it's kind of back to this ambition thing. Hey, I want to see God move. And I'm just going to try to have some, some godly ambition to see something happen. What are you hearing from God right now? That's a good one. It's a good question. You know, a couple of things.

(37:07): One, I think we recognize how much isolation came from COVID. And I think here in that people need relationships and I believe people need relationship, not just with each other, but with God, more than ever. COVID exposed that crack in the foundation more than ever. And so I'm hearing that number one, number two, just as a father I'm here in that time is precious. It's taken away. I've got one in college, one in high school, one in middle school, one in elementary school. Pray for me. It's insane. And just time is precious with my kids. And so I don't want to lose it. And so I'm trying to make the most of every opportunity, but you know, I think I blow that a lot, but that's what I'm hearing. That's good, Tim. Thank you so much for sharing your wisdom on the podcast today. What is the best way for listeners to get ahold of you?

(38:04): So feel free to email me if you'd like my email address is Tim dot Santa fe@crossroads.net. My last name is spelled very funny. It's by the way, it's German. It means mustard. You know, it goes with like a good German Orison, a Stein of beer. It's Tim dot S E and FF is in French fry. There's no, I cannot buy about please. Senf nff@crossroads.net.

(38:28): Tim, thank you so much for being on the podcast. So grateful to be here, man. I want to thank you for listening to my podcast. When at home first, I am so grateful to hear from listeners like you, that this content has been helpful. So now I would love for you to pay it forward. I want to get this message in the hands of more listeners. We need leaders to be winning both at home and at work, especially during this time. So please take a minute to share this episode with somebody you think would find value in it, as well as rate and subscribe as a thank you, please visit my website@coriumcarlson.com to download a free resource that people are finding value in. Thank you very much.

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