So who am I? That’s a fair question. Let me see if I can give you a fair and accurate snapshot of “the guy behind the microphone”. In this article I will tell you something about my personal life, and then I’ll delve into my doctrinal beliefs.
Who Is Steve Webb?
First of all, I am a believer in, and follower of, Jesus of Nazareth. The Son of God. The second person of the Trinity. The God/Man who was crucified, and was resurrected on the third day. The Word made flesh. The only begotten Son of God the Father. I believe that He is wholly human and wholly divine. That He is the only means by which a person can be reconciled to the Father, or find forgiveness of sin. My goal, as you listen to the shows in the Lifespring! Family of Podcasts, is to introduce you to Him in such a way as to cause you to desire to know Him (if you don’t already have a relationship with Him), or remind you of some important aspects of His nature (if you do know him).
Next I think it is important to say that I am probably a lot like you. What I mean by that is that I am making my way through this life a day at a time. I sometimes struggle to pay the bills. I find myself having to juggle priorities…family, work, spiritual growth…the list goes on. Sometimes I feel like I’m really in tune with God, and that the best thing about life is feeling really close to Him. Other times I seem to be in the desert, crying out, “Do you hear me, God?”.
I’ve had times in my life where I really failed as a Christian. Miserably. Shamefully. To my complete and utter embarrassment. I have felt certain that God could never use me again because I have blown it so badly. But one of the most amazing parts of God is that He is a God of forgiveness. When we change direction, when we are done with our rebellion and sin, when we come to the place where we want nothing at all to do with it, and only want to be with Him and feel His presence in our life again, He is happy to welcome us back with open arms.
I have felt His loving embrace many times when I ran back to Him after turning away. I want you to know that love and joy and peace.
Next, I am the husband of the Lovely Lady LeeAnn. We have been married since New Year’s Eve, 1989. We have two sons together, Steven and Timothy. I am also the very proud dad of Matthew, my son from my first marriage. LeeAnn loves him, too, and is just as proud of him as Dad is. Matthew is married to the lovely Mareena, and are the parents of my first and only (to this date) grandchild.
LeeAnn and I operate a mom-and-pop business together, which I started in 1988.
We attend church in Riverside, California. The name of the church is LifeSpring. LeeAnn has been attending there since she was a youngster. I began attending when I was dating her. The church affiliated with the Assemblies of God, however I am not a member of the church. (More about that later.)
Speaking of church, I guess now is a good time to tell you about my religious background.
I was raised in a “good” family, albeit not a “religious” one. Along to way, I heard about Jesus and who He was supposed to be, but it wasn’t until I was a teenager that I came to accept Him as my Savior. A good friend had invited me to go to church with him, and after attending his church for several months I began to understand that I needed to make a conscious decision to make Him a part of my life, to ask Him to forgive me of my sins and to be my Savior. So, at the age of sixteen I became a Christian.
That little church in Rowland Heights, California, was part of the Southern Baptist denomination, and for several years I believed that in order to be “right” you had to be Baptist. That’s normal, isn’t it? It’s a human characteristic to have the attitude that “my group is better than your group.”
I began to realize that you could actually be a Christian and not a Baptist not long after I married my first wife and we moved to Mammoth Lakes, California. There were no Baptist churches there at the time, so we went to a “Community Church”, not knowing quite what to expect. What we found was a group of people who were…normal! They had the same desire to know and learn and grow, and the Jesus that they talked about was the same one I knew. Wow, my Christian “family” began to expand at this point.
This is where I first began teaching. I got to know the pastor pretty well and he asked if I would teach a class for new believers. I felt unqualified, but hesitatingly agreed to take the class on. I found that I enjoyed teaching and that in preparing to teach, the teacher learns more than his students. (Since then, I have taught Sunday School or led Bible Studies at virtually every age level in several different churches.)
Fast forward about six years. I began working in a Christian bookstore in southern California, where I eventually became General Manager of two locations. During my years with the company I developed friendships with people of nearly every denomination imaginable. Certainly, there were differences in what we believed, but those differences were in peripheral matters. The core issues (which I will talk about a little later) were common ground. If we agreed on those issues, it didn’t matter to me what your denomination was…we were family…part of the Church…the Body of Christ.
I’ve mentioned that there have been times of failure in my life as a Christian. This is where I must bring up the worst failure of my life.
After I left the bookstore business, my first wife and I divorced after twelve years of marriage. Yes, we were both Christians. Yes, we had a child. Yes, we went to counseling. No, Christians are not supposed to get divorces. No, I never thought it would happen to me. And while it takes two to make a marriage and it takes two to give up on a marriage, I take full responsibility for the breakup. It was my selfishness and my pride and my fault.
I was convinced that my days of serving God were over. I thought, “How could He use me when I had failed so miserably? Everyone will know that I am not perfect. All my credibility is gone. How can I tell people that Jesus is the answer when I wasn’t able to hold my own marriage together? What a hypocrite I am.” I stopped going to church because that’s where I felt most like a hypocrite.
What brought me back to church was LeeAnn. While we dated, she asked me to visit her church, at the time called Calvary Temple. I must admit that I went just to be with her as much as any religious reason. At this time, I was still very much feeling a failure as a Christian, and still feeling like I had no business being in church. But over the weeks, something marvelous began to happen.
As I sat in the pew, surrounded by believers who were worshiping God during the singing portion of the service, and as I listened to the Word being preached, I began to say to God, “Lord, if this is real, I want it. If you will have me back, please make it real in my life again.” That was the beginning of the healing that had to take place in my heart. From the time I prayed that prayer, God restored my faith and brought joy back into my heart. I experienced a forgiveness and a love that is nearly impossible to describe.
This took place in 1988. I was accepted with open arms not only by God, but by the entire church family at LeeAnn’s church. As a matter of fact, after I had been attending regularly for about a year, the pastor, Mel Bennett, asked me to take over teaching the adult Sunday School class that he had taught for several years. I told him that I was really pleased and honored that he would ask me to do this, but that I had a few differences with the Assembly of God doctrines. I told him that because of those differences I would not be joining the church. In my opinion, when a person joins a church, he is saying that he agrees with the teachings of that church.
Pastor Bennett said that he understood, and that he even admired my stance. He said that he wouldn’t want me to join just to fit in. And he said that as long as I didn’t use the class as a platform to stir up dissension on the issues that I disagreed with, he would still like me to teach. We have so very many things we do agree on (the core issues) that the other areas (peripheral issues) shouldn’t be a problem.
So I taught that class for several years, then went on to become the Director of Christian Education for a time.
Then, the “Technology Bug” bit me. I persuaded the church to buy some computers for the sound booth and a projector. One computer to record the sermons with, instead of the cassette recorder, and the other computer for PowerPoint presentations of the sermon notes, etc.
I’ve been the tech guy at church now since about 1999.
Then, in September of 2004, I heard Leo Laporte interview some guy on his radio show here in southern California. The guy was Adam Curry, who had been on MTV during the 80s, and he was talking about this cool new technology called podcasting. Sort of like radio, but on the internet, and people could have new shows automatically downloaded to their computers and then automatically transferred to their iPods. Well, one of the jobs that I’ve had was in radio, so my ears perked up a little hearing about this. Actually, what was happening was that God was planting a seed in my heart.
Something else that happened that September was this. In one of my private times of prayer with God, I was thanking Him for His goodness to me. For His love and forgiveness and mercy. I asked Him what more I could do for Him. I was already doing the tech stuff at church. Included with that was creating graphics for the sermons, announcement slides, logos, and things like that. I told God that I would do whatever He wanted me to do. God spoke to my heart that morning in a very clear way. It was not an audible voice, but what He said to me was as clear and distinct as anything I have ever heard with my ears. He said, “Proclaim my Name.” I said, “What do you mean, Lord?” He repeated, “Proclaim my name.”
I pondered that message for several days. I actually thought that God wanted me to do something with the graphics I was creating for the church. I didn’t know what exactly, so I would just sit at my computer and work on creating art that glorified God. Nothing really “clicked”, however.
Okay, so those two events were in September of 2004.
In October, I took my youngest boy on a camping trip with the Cub Scouts in Joshua Tree National Park. It’s in the southern California desert. One night, God woke me up in my tent at 2:30 a.m. I know it was God because I am the type that does not wake up in the middle of the night. As soon as I awoke, He began to fill my mind with ideas for a Christian podcast.
At that time, podcasting was brand new. There were only about 800 podcasts listed on the only existing podcast directory, ipodder.org. And there were only about five or six “religious” podcasts. The three or four Christian podcasts were repurposed church sermons.
The idea that God put into my head that early morning was that He wanted me to do a podcast that people who were not Christians could listen to and hear about God and His love in a non church way, without all the Christian buzz words. He reminded me that the printing press was the first mass medium, and the Gutenberg Bible was the first thing published with it. He told me that He wanted to be a part of this new medium called podcasting.
So that’s how the Lifespring! podcast was born. On November 13, 2004 I uploaded the very first episode, which I recorded using Calvary Temple’s equipment. Pastor Bennett very graciously allowed me to use the equipment there until I finally was able to buy some equipment and record at home.
In 2005 Craig Patchett, founder of The GodCast Network and I were called “Pioneering Podcasters” by PodcastingNews.com, and Rob Walch and Mur Lafferty included me in their book Tricks of the Podcasting Masters.
Lifespring! was nominated for a People’s Choice podcast award in the “Religion/Inspirational” category the first year the awards were given, won the Podcast Peers award in the same category, the first year those awards debuted, and has been nominated again in 2007 for a People’s Choice podcast award.
I receive email from around the world, telling me how hearing the “Message of hope, love and Good News” on the show has blessed them. People are hearing about Jesus and being brought closer to Him. That, my friend, is what God wanted when He told me, “Proclaim my name.”
Voice Over Career
In 2008 I began getting requests from listeners to my podcasts who owned businesses, asking if I would voice radio commercials for them. I was honored that they would ask, and did in fact record for them. These requests confirmed a desire that had begun to grow in my heart…that of doing voiceovers as a career. I began a time of training and education with highly regarded voiceover professionals like Pat Fraley and MJ Lallo, and hung out my voiceover shingle.
God has been good. He has blessed me with a voice that people don’t seem to mind listening to, and I now do many radio and television commercials every week that run in markets from coast to coast here in the United States. In addition, I voice and produce podcasts for Fortune 1000 companies, I narrate corporate videos, and narrated an audio version of the Douay-Rheims Bible (the second time narrating the complete Bible).
I hope to do this for many years to come. If you care to learn more about this aspect of my life, you might like to check out my voiceover website.
What I Believe
Statement of Faith
The Bible is God’s infallible written Word with its 66 books of the Old and New Testaments. It is the only basis for what I believe about Him. I believe that it was uniquely, verbally and fully inspired by the Holy Spirit and that it was written without error (inerrant) in the original manuscripts. It is the supreme and final authority in all matters on which it speaks.
I accept those areas of doctrinal teaching on which, historically, there has been general agreement among all true Christians. I understand that there are differences on other, what I call peripheral doctrinal matters, but where there are differences of interpretation regarding these issues, provided that any interpretation is based upon the Bible alone, those differences will not become issues which separates us.
- There is one true God, eternally existing in three persons – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – each of whom possesses equally all the attributes of Deity and the characteristics of personality.
- Jesus Christ is God, the living Word, who became flesh through His miraculous conception by the Holy Spirit and His virgin birth. Hence, He is perfect Deity and true humanity united in one person forever.
- He lived a sinless life and voluntarily atoned for the sins of men by dying on the cross as their substitute, thus satisfying divine justice and accomplishing salvation for all who trust in Him alone.
- He rose from the dead in the same body, though glorified, in which He lived and died.
- He ascended bodily into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God the Father, where He, the only mediator between God and man, continually makes intercession for His own.
- Man was originally created in the image of God. He sinned by disobeying God; thus, he was alienated from his Creator. That historic fall brought all mankind under divine condemnation.
- Man’s nature is corrupted, and he is thus totally unable to please God. Every man is in need of regeneration and renewal by the Holy Spirit.
- The salvation of man is wholly a work of God’s free grace and is not the work, in whole or in part, of human works or goodness or religious ceremony. God imputes His righteousness to those who put their faith in Christ alone for their salvation, and thereby justified them in His sight.
- It is the privilege of all who are born again of the Spirit to be assured of their salvation from the very moment in which they trust Christ as their Savior. This assurance is not based upon any kind of human merit, but is produced by the witness of the Holy Spirit, who confirms in the believer the testimony of God in His written word.
- The Holy Spirit has come into the world to reveal and glorify Christ and to apply the saving work of Christ to men. He convicts and draws sinners to Christ, imparts new life to them, continually indwells them from the moment of spiritual birth and seals them until the day of redemption. His fullness, power and control are appropriated in the believer’s life by faith.
- Every believer is called to live so in the power of the indwelling Spirit that he will not fulfill the lust of the flesh but will bear fruit to the glory of God.
- Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, His Body, which is composed of all men, living and dead, who have been joined to Him through saving faith.
- God admonishes His people to assemble together regularly for worship, for participation in ordinances, for edification through the Scriptures and for mutual encouragement.
- At physical death the believer enters immediately into eternal, conscious fellowship with the Lord and awaits the resurrection of his body to everlasting glory and blessing.
- At physical death the unbeliever enters immediately into eternal, conscious separation from the Lord and awaits the resurrection of his body to everlasting judgment and condemnation.
- Jesus Christ will come again to the earth – personally, visibly and bodily – to consummate history and the eternal plan of God.
- The Lord Jesus Christ commanded all believers to proclaim the Gospel throughout the world and to disciple men of every nation. The fulfillment of that Great Commission requires that all worldly and personal ambitions be subordinated to a total commitment to “Him who loved us and gave Himself for us.”
UPDATED on December 17, 2011