In Isaiah 64:8 we are described as clay in the hands of God. He is our potter constantly molding us and shaping us to be more like the image of Jesus. While God is the Potter in my life and has shaped and molded me and continues to do so he has brought many men and women in and out of my life to aid in my spiritual formation.
The first of these people helped to physically bring me into this world. My mother is the largest and most significant influence on my spiritual formation of all others. From before I was born she prayed over me in her womb and after I was born taught me much of what I know even to this day about prayer and tithing. She led me to Christ at the age of six. If I were to pick up the phone and ask her I know she has prayed for me even today. She helped to make Christ come alive in my life.
The second major influence on my spiritual formation is my good friend and who I consider my pastor, Darien Gabriel. He was my youth pastor from the time I was in 7th Grade all through High School. It was under his leadership and direction that I took leadership roles in worship. He taught me what it means to be a worshipper off stage. There was one night where he actually washed my feet along with some others in our youth group as a sign of servant leadership. I had the privilege to do a youth internship under his leadership during my college years and to this day he is my close friend and mentor. He was never afraid to let me fail in order to learn. He pushed me hard to live in the image of Christ, to walk in the dust of my Rabbi if you will. I am ever grateful for his help forming me spiritually in the areas of leadership.
Though I don't know where he is now or what he's up to, a youth intern named DJ Miles shaped much of what I know about corporate worship leading during my junior and senior year of high school.
The pastor I currently serve with in the PowerSource, Middle School ministry I'm apart of, Jeremy Rader, has taught me more about living a life of integrity by his example than most men I've known. Integrity flows through every part of his life.
My wife has taught me much about how to be less selfish. I grew up practically as an only child since my brother and sister were both out of the house and grown by the time I was around I was handed a bit of a silver spoon. She grew up with a brother and sister in house and is far more generous with her things than I am.
Finally the most recent and one of the largest spiritual influences on my life has been my current mentor Matt Wilkins. He invests so much in my life specifically to shape and mold me to be more like Christ. He challenges me with tough topics and exemplifies the type of man I want to be as interact with my wife and family.
There are many more men and women beyond these listed here that have helped in my spiritual formation processes. These are just a few that have really made specific deposits into me. They are such a blessing and I'm thankful that the Potter chose to bring each of them into my life for those times.