Howdy. I'm Matt Todd. My wife and I have four kids and a dog,. I'm passionate about orphan care. I'm a die-hard fan of the Evansville Aces, the Indiana Hoosiers, and Star Wars. I'm trying to live life by the Todd family motto: "It behooves us to live!"

Then God kicked me in the teeth

Face Kick

It’s not anything I ever plan, but September seems like it has turned into a month of reflection for me. Fresh off the heels of our anniversary and the celebration of Aiden’s birthday, I guess I’m already in a sentimental mood when September hits. For some reason, there are a lot of events that happened in September that have had a significant impact on the story of my life. Some of the events have been amazing, like the day we officially became a family of five.

Others?

Not so much.

And it’s my reflection on this last event that happened two years ago this weekend that forced me to look in the mirror. And I’m not sure I liked what I saw. I thought I had moved past this event. I thought I was not longer harboring any resentment or hard feelings. I might have been wrong about that.

You see, our church is kicking off a new small groups initiative. The main point? Circles are better than rows. I knew that saying. it was the main point of one of the final sermons I preached in Muncie. So while I was excited about this new direction our church is taking and I wholeheartedly agree with the statement that circles are better than rows, I found myself dwelling a bit on the events that led up to my firing. It stirred up some sediment in my soul that I thought had already been settled.

I don’t think this was by accident. Because it fully prepared me for the message I heard Sunday morning. It was almost as if the entire weekend was planned just for me:

Let it go.

And that’s when God kicked me in the teeth. That’s when God opened my eyes and made me realize that I was still nursing some kind of bitterness way down deep inside me. That’s when I knew that I hadn’t gotten past things that I thought I had gotten past. I thought I was fine. I thought I had moved past it. This past weekend showed me that there was still some part of my that was desperately trying to hold on to some part of a grudge.

surrender lettering tattoo

So I get it now, God.  I give up whatever rights I think I might have had to harbor those hard feelings that were buried deep in the depths of my heart. I might not think it’s fair. And that’s OK. Because forgiveness isn’t fair. I surrender. It’s time to turn the page and leave the past where it belongs – in the past. There’s too much living to do today to be dwelling on things in the past that I cannot change.

I’ve let it go.

And hopefully, I won’t pick it back up.

Things Observed Along the Way

When the rug was pulled out from under our family a little more than 6 months ago, my biggest worry was how this was going to impact the kids. It didn’t rattle my faith in God. It didn’t really shake my trust in the Church. I’ve dealt with much greater crises of faith and I was confident we were going to land on our feet. Don’t get me wrong. There was a lot of hurt and we felt betrayed. But I knew (and continue to know) that God is bigger than all of that. He has moved mountains time and time again. And this? This has been a tiny molehill. He continues to write our story and it’s my prayer that He will shine brightly through every letter used to tell that story. Continue reading Things Observed Along the Way

Next Chapter…

Vintage Typewriter
Free Stock Photo courtesy of picxclicx.com

This past Sunday after the service, I was informed that I had preached my final sermon at the church. I guess I should say it wasn’t because of any ‘moral failure’ or anything like that. If you really want to know more, email me (mattdantodd at gmail dot com) and we can talk about it. I’m not going to give out very many details, though. I hope that doesn’t disappoint you.

If it does…well…I guess that’s too bad. 😉

For those of you who already know this and have reached out to us, I want to thank you again for your kindness, your concern, and most importantly – your prayers. God is good and as I have continued to preach over the last four years, His light shines brightest when our world is darkest.

I’m excited to discover the next chapter that He writes with the Life in the Fishbowl family!