Todd Hiestand

Todd Hiestand

My wife and I parent four boys, six goats, two dogs, two chickens (update: the chickens have been eaten by coyotes) and we live very close to, but not actually in, Portland, OR. I help nonprofits navigate storytelling, fundraising and technology at 343 Consulting.

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Recent Writings

Pastors and All. The. Drama. Or, Why Pastoral Care Must Be Communal

I wrote a bit yesterday about how I have discovered that I don’t love the church just because I was a pastor. That said, the last few months of not being a pastor, has brought some areas of great relief. Let’s be honest, pastoring is not easy and I’m actively trying to pay attention to how I can support […]

I am Not a Pastor and I Still Love the Church

So, for the first time in 18 years I have spent significant time not being a pastor, studying to be a pastor or hoping to one day be a pastor. Actually, let’s analyze the numbers and see how accurate this is: 3: The number of years I spent in high school youth group wanting to be […]

We’re Moving to Portland, OR

For the last 14 years that we have been married my wife and I have been living in the Philadelphia area. If you count the 4 years at college, we’ve been here for 18 years. For 13 years we have been serving at The Well, our church here in Philly and its with a lot […]

Evangelism: Moving Beyond the Sex Talk

Now that we have a ten-year old boy in our house – and three more of his brothers coming after him – we’ve begun thinking about how to talk with our kids about sex, girls, puberty, etc. You know, the fun stuff of parenthood. One of our friends who has raised fairly-well adjusted adult boys […]

Daring Greatly at BarCamp Philly

I’m revisiting Brene Brown’s book Daring Greatly for a short talk I’m doing at Barcamp Philly tomorrow morning. I’m calling the session “Vulnerability Practice“. I’m going to  give a brief overview of the book and share my own story of my journey in to daring to live a more vulnerable life. Then I’m going to […]

My Prayer for the Church

My prayer for the church is that we would be a communities of people who understand the grace and peace of the only one who can truly give grace and bring peace. And that as we receive that grace, peace and the hope and salvation that comes with it, we would proclaim it boldly to […]

When God Gives You a Push

“Sometimes God calls you into new things, sometimes God pushes you into new things..” This was my dad’s response to me as I shared with him some of the questions I was asking related to my vocational and occupational life. It became clear that this was one of those instances where God was pushing, and […]

Confession of Sin: cynicism boiled over with slander, criticism, prayerlessness, and pessimism.

From our gathering this morning at The Well:   Father, you tell us in your Word that whatever does not proceed from faith is sin. We confess that we have frequently relaxed our faith. We have allowed ourselves to become cynical, and our cynicism has boiled over with slander, criticism, prayerlessness, and pessimism. How easily […]

The Problem of Western Cultural views of how to lead and organize

Yep.. Western cultural views of how best to organize and lead (the majority paradigm in use in the world) are contrary to what life teaches. Western practices attempt to dominate life; we want life to comply with human needs rather than working as partners. This disregard for life’s dynamics is alarmingly evident in today’s organizations. […]

A Genuine Question about Teams and Committees in Churches

We’ve been forming some excellent teams at The Well, it’s been beautiful to see them flourish and work. At the same time, I always hear about how “bad” committees are in churches.  I’ve never really been part of one, but apparently there is something annoying about them. So, if teams are good and committees are […]