The ever changing me


I wish I could say I have “found myself” being that I turn 30 in five days, however, it would not be a true statement. What I can say is that many things have found me and I’ve either accepted those things as “part” of me, or unconsciously integrated them into my person. I’ve done many “this is who I am” or “what makes me” posts in the past (i.e. The Boy PoemA post about meand another) and yet I find myself cringing when I read them, because, I’ve changed… and that’s OK. Today I’m much more aware of the social status of the world – and the insane and crazy differences from place to place, and sometimes within the same place. These extremes have forced me to examine what I do and why, and in response I’ve changed.

I’ve never been angry or upset by what some would call “the reason our country/world is falling apart” such as government, sexuality, illegal immigration, drugs, etc. Sure I’ve had my moments of being concerned, and following the crowd (mistake number one) and “doing my part” (i.e. voting for the “right” candidates). Yet, you might say I’ve become disenfranchised by those methods, they are too disconnected and non-relational, and haven’t produced much change, instead all it has amounted to is a veil of security that is not really there.

I use to find myself on the “conservative” side of things, in some of the most traditional ways… but really as I have explored and experienced things around the world I have found that American Conservatism is mostly about “keeping things the way they are” – and American Liberalism is about “making everything equal” – both of which are extremes that just are not realistic. Although I probably more closely align myself with liberals on social issues (except abortion) and conservatives on financial/economic issues (except for funding of basic health care, education, and transportation for all), I really don’t like to put myself in either camp, because there’s an automatic exclusion or inclusion of many things which are far more important and complex than “this or them” arguments.

So, today I would probably think of myself as a socially aware, promoter of sustainable ideas, a social technologist, avoider of black and white ideas, peace bringer, lover of people not ideas, and most of all, husband, father and all of this comes of following and worshiping Jesus.

I spike… easily.


I started writing this post back in November, ’11 – yeah I’m that far behind… if there really is a way to “fall behind” with blog posts… At one point I had 57 “draft” entries. 2011 was a year which might be summed up as simply “thick”, no matter where I turned something was changing, just changed, or proposing a change and with it I had my own things to deal with and balance with a family in tow. It seemed hardships of all kinds were around me and us, although we didn’t have any direct hits this year, we’ve been licking our wounds for a while and have some relational business to continue working on, otherwise though, circumstantially we’re good.

However, through all of this I would have fairly dramatic spouts of frustration and anger, usually over environmental things, like cleanliness, organization, scheduling, etc. and boy did I show my wife how I can spike off the charts when I’m running on empty. Thank God we have some tools in our tool belt to handle it, and for me to cool down in a much more healthy way than years past. Still though I would often find myself stuck, unable to push past…

But it was just that, “pushing past” which was causing me to get stuck, rather than stepping back and analyzing the cause, I just wanted to get “to the other side” and move on… yeah, I know, it doesn’t work real well… but in the moment it’s hard to think like that. On one particular enlightening evening, as we were talking with our pastors Alexis had to bring something up from weeks before which I thought we “pushed past” – well I had, she hadn’t and I hadn’t let her safely express that.

The ability to stop, step back, and recognize what’s going on, who/what the real issue is (remember, our fight is not against flesh and blood) and see from another perspective is a huge asset, nonetheless I still find it hard to enter in to that mindset at the right time. Thankfully Alexis is a wonderfully patient bride, who cares deeply about our marriage and me.  So I write this entry months and months after the fact, realizing my silly spikes are not really all that silly, just an indicator of something beyond me.

This is why a life filled with grace and mercy is so important, as God pours His love on us in so many ways, we are able to learn, and be an even greater light to our spouses, families, and friends. However, most of important of all, we find God in us, working through us, and can do nothing else but reciprocate Him to those around us.

The big awkward silence….


I’m not a fan of the awkward silence, at least not among “structured” time, meetings, conference calls, coffee to have a “discussion”, etc. Also when I’m the one “hosting” a get together I’m even more annoyed by awkward silences, my wife on the other hand has no problem with them (weirdo!). For me, it’s a lack of relationship that causes these in social gatherings, because among good friends, a “silent pause” is rare, but when it happens among friends it’s OK, because normally it isn’t awkward, rather it is a thoughtful silence.

I remember a time about 10 years ago where I invited a whole bunch of friends over to my apartment, but didn’t really have a plan, we just wanted to hang out… but once we got there we had nothing to do, and didn’t even have much of a conversation, except “now what?” – boy did I hate that. We went from one awkward silence to another, until finally we all left to do something – wow… what a host I was back then.

I’m more comfortable these days, and don’t always have to “do something” – and usually I can start a conversation rather easily, even with people I don’t know all that well. Still though, I find myself, even in business situations where I think to myself “I wish I would’ve said this, or that” – but I don’t have that “oh my God I was so awkward” feeling about it anymore.

Thanks for reading a random thought about life, until next time. Happy Friday!

Marriage, what does it mean?


So what is “marriage”? Actually the question I really am asking, is “is marriage something for the Church AND the rest of the world, OR is it something for just the Church?”  Basically my point (if you don’t want to read further) is that for people who are “outside” the Church (belonging to Jesus the Christ as their Lord) can not possibly be held to our values, we should treat them with the same basic values that any human deserves, love, respect, and equality among all. I know, this sounds almost heretical, but seriously, can we really even expect someone who does not call Jesus their Lord to understand the blessing? NO, of course not. Therefore instead of fighting over values which are almost impossible to understand, none the less live, when not belonging to Christ, we need to focus on evangelism, discipleship, and worship of our Lord – and then we’ll see people’s values dramatically change.  Now read the rest if you wish…

With the same-sex marriage issue hot underway, I have a harder and harder time with our institutionalized version of marriage. We’ve taken (one of many things) a biblical principal and turned it into a law for the land.  While this is most likely the most ancient of traditions, and therefore seeped in emotions and dogma, is it really necessary for the government to be involved?  Why must marriage be law?

To take this thought further, I wonder how much stronger the Church would be if marriage had remained only within the Church and the government simply provided the benefits of “marriage” (tax breaks) to registered households, since essentially this is what the marriage “benefit” essentially is (I’m in no way a tax expert, however). Forget legalized unions, marriages, etc… leave those titles up to us to decide.  Let us be married before our God.

There’s a lot of issues which could arise from this, one being the idea that “marriage” is only for Christians… and that’s not what this blog entry is about, and not sure how we would walk that out, I fear it would simply become another thing for Christians to demand that “marriage” be trademarked or some crazy idea like that.

All of this to say, if people who do not have Jesus as their Lord, want to be together and have a ceremony of some type, leave it to them to do, and leave both the state and Church out of it.  As Christians we ought not busy ourselves with “fighting” the culture, for our fight is not against flesh and blood, it’s spiritual – so let’s focus on winning souls and living as Jesus, who did not come to judge (as we do many times) but rather came to convict (point out, guide away, lead towards the light) us of sin.

In this way the Christian marriage would be unique, mean something more, and most of all, a truly different covenant defined by biblical standards, not governmental, cultural, or traditional definitions.  I understand this doesn’t “solve” all the “problems”, but it’s at least a direction which firstly allows “us” (Christians) to walk the high road in humility, Secondly, it’s a graceful step out of the argument and allow the Christian marriage to be what we believe it to be – a covenant between a man and a woman to love, cherish, and support one another for our rest of our lives; all other unions can remain whatever they want to define them as, and we can befriend, and show that love is stronger than human will.  God is much bigger than definitions of marriage, his love lives loud when we focus on walking with him instead of “proving” and “legalizing” “his” ways to the rest of the world.

As I’ve grown closer in my walk, I’ve come to realize “our” (I can hardly say I’m a part of “them” but can’t exactly divorce myself, since the body of Christ is ONE) methods need to change, and we have all heard it, if there is not love then there is no reason to claim Jesus as lord.  This means we live by the spirit, in love towards everyone, and turn the other cheek when others mock or take offense, but we don’t bite back, and we don’t argue back – we walk the high road, and allow people to make their choices, we can’t make it for them (forcing “our” laws and viewpoints) – we can pray, we can talk, and for those that want to hear and see we can be a witness to Christ’s glory.

The path of least resistence


Something I observe multiple times throughout my week is that people fall into two camps, either they are “go getters” or “resisters” and in most cases, people attempt to take the “path of least resistance”.  In nearly every job or role I’ve been placed in I’ve seen this phenomenon, and I’m guilty of it as well… “what’s the easiest,  fastest, and most ‘avoidant’ way of getting X done?” and man it irks me.  It seems to be an especially strong disease throughout my generation.

This is even stronger when it comes to relational dynamics, I see it so many times, people going to all kinds of lengths to avoid a possible “conflict” or “situation” – in my mind though, this kind of avoidance makes waters down our relationships, and actually breaks down the desire for strong friendships and family that we actually want.  It certainly takes guts to overcome our cultural boundaries, and most of the time takes courage since most of us have not been shown how to healthily confront awkward (or simply saying no) situations.

A lot of the time when I’m faced with the decision to resist or “go get it” I have to ask myself, what is the pro-relationship path I could take? What will build up the relationship? What decision might tear it down, or leave it flat? As a person who looks to Jesus for direction, I usually can’t choose to skim past a relation-building choice… (of course if it’s unhealthy and not safe, then that’s another ball-game which actually might be just as challenging to make the choice to step away from a relationship). Often times I find myself wanting to avoid talking to someone because it’s harder than just making my own choice to “skim on by with what’s acceptable” – however, I’m not so sure this is how Jesus goes about ministering to us, and I want to reflect this. I want to go above just the “satisfactory” and I want to be a servant, even when it’s not exactly pleasant for me.

Not being cool


Well, hello, knock, knock… anybody there?

Yeah, it’s been since October since I posted anything of any substance… except for automatic “weekly summaries” of my twitter feed…  Trust me this is not a ghost, it’s really me.  Recently I’ve been doing a lot of reading, researching, and in return being stuck. I just don’t want to be “cool” and fall into the same noise.  I want my words to mean something (even if only to myself), and at the same time I don’t want to write just to “be something”. This whole paradoxical position I’ve placed myself into is rather… sticky and narcissistic… So, I’ll just start writing, and see what happens, because it doesn’t matter, if it’s “not being cool” then it’s not about anything, right?

My motivation for writing anything always needs to line up with my desire to encourage, engage, and have people think about their lives, see Christianity in a different way, and most of all at least ask questions about walking with God.  Although I meander down different idealistic topics, transportation, land use, education, health-care, and other topics which are typically not highlighted in Christian circles, my most basic idea is to engage the Church culture in thinking about our communities, otherwise, I believe, we can easily become irrelevant to the people around us.

Granted I live in a mostly white, suburban, evangelical, bubble, I keep trying to push the envelope and be some kind of social-church-community-livability-avangelist to the suburban-white-evangelical church-going circle I find myself in.  If God wasn’t so clear in having Alexis and I be where we are, trust us, we would be in an urban, multi-cultural, and very different circle.  In some ways, this blog entry feels like a “coming out” post… which has some fears attached, but since I know this is a two way discussion, and not the “end all” judge me post, I’m ok with it.  I try to not jump to conclusions, nor try to judge people based on one facebook/twitter status update, blog entry, or quote… so I ask the same of my readers…

Congrats, if you read this far… then, well, maybe we have a chance at understanding more about the world we live in, and “not be cool”, together!

Gone stale…


I’ve let this Blog go stale… my bad. Honestly this is because I think too much about the (possible) reactions of others. It’s a catch 22, because I want interaction but I don’t want to be misunderstood or labled. A lot of assumptions are made when people read things…. or may just the large chunk of people who like to over-react (without gathering facts or at least attempting to have some kind of compassion for fellow humanity) on comments all over the web.

So my stale-ness is due to fear of being rejected…. ok I’ve admitted that… when will this beast just go away. It wont I need to allow it to be slain, and there’s only one person I know who can slain beasts like that.

More will come… soon!



I like to have a review of my values from time to time. Many times values and priorities can be a little hard to separate yet I’ll just go with the flow and figure out the priorities later.

This is not an exhaustive list, rather this is more of a evaluation if certain spoken or desired values that I would like to make priority and be more intentional about.

Life with God: Currently I’m enjoying a good continuous conversation with God but I’m not including him in every aspect.

Marriage: The past 6 months have introduced a lot of fantastic things, feeling like we have a stronger friendship is one of the best pieces. I would like to see myself feeling more natural about it, but I guess having to think about it and be intentional has its benefits.

Church: This is probably the most lacking for me right now. While we are “there” on a very regular basis the community aspect of it seems harder and harder to live out due to people being so insanly busy that organic family-like community is hard to work out. We’ll be joining a small group soon and I have a lot of ideas and ideology that may be hard to not expect.

Humanity: Still very much stuck on living a life of compassion giving… our society culture do not cultivate the humananity focused and compassion I feel. God is people focused, why aren’t we?

More laters ….

Share your life more and gain so much more!


Acts 2:46 NLT

They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity.

Everytome I read this verse my heart grieves because deep down it seems so right and yet deeply troubling to actually live out. I long for it, both Alexis and I do, it’s exactly what we feel is the core to our mission in Poland. But the “how” is enormously bigger than us. Which it’s that very reason we contend for it.

Imagine life in constant connection with fellow believers, the support, the encouragement, the love. You might be thinking “yeah right, I can hardly stand an hour in church!” This might be true but let me provide some perspective.

You see, we’re not talking about living in a commune, we’re talking about living intentionally. Living near one another, meeting daily for mutual encouragement and teaching. That could be 2 people for coffee/tea or that could be 20 to pick up garbage around the neighborhood. It could be having a discussion about God on Facebook or it could be sharring our arts and talents with our surrounding community.

I think we have a hard time imagining such a life because we live in the world on a day to day basis and meet together once for an hour. So the majority of us are surrounded with world influences which drain us and bring us to our ends. Having our passion fanned by fellow believers each day, while different and probably at times difficult, at least will allow for God to move (assuming we are genuinely surrendered to Him). It’s kind of scary, yet who can be against us when he is for us?

Be intentional, love, give, live. Then we may be equipped to reach our world, energized, in love, and full of love that is beyond this world’s understanding.

Keep on knocking


Luke 11:5-8 [nlt]

5 Then, teaching them more about prayer, he used this story: “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, 6 ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit, and I have nothing for him to eat.’ 7 And suppose he calls out from his bedroom, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is locked for the night, and my family and I are all in bed. I can’t help you.’ 8 But I tell you this—though he won’t do it for friendship’s sake, if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence.

Wow… hello world, yes there is actually someone here today. I have no real idea what to write about, there is so much going on, so many things I could write about, yet, I guess I’m giving into “who really cares” at the moment. However, I know there are plenty who do care. I know that in our crazy lives we will easily assume “no one cares”. However, our God is bigger than that, he actually works through his people… did you know that!? Yup, it’s true, people can be used by God.

So, why is it so hard to believe, so hard to actually see? Because I think the enemy has so many of us right where he wants us… apathetic, fearful, and “not equipped”. I myself have been in this place so many times, and many times I’m completely unaware until something hits me in the head. Everyday I think about this kind of thing, the things that I observe about the Church, people, society… and so often it seems so big, so unchangeable. The truth is, outside of God using us, it is unchangeable.

So this little parable about the friend knocking… it’s in reference to prayer… is God the friend in the house? Kinda not the God I’ve been taught about… essentially a cranky old man who doesn’t want to help his friend at night? – I know in my heart this isn’t who God is, but sure seems like it at times… but I realize I’m looking at the wrong part of the story. The last line tells it all “he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence” not whatever you want but whatever you need. This is the key, God will give us whatever we need when we are persistent.

Being persistent is one of the hardest things for me to do, I feel like I’m either trying to sell something, I’m acting without faith, or I’m not where I should be. Jesus doesn’t end the story there…

Luke 11:9-12 [nlt]

9 “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.

11 “You fathers—if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? 12 Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! 13 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”

Father God, give me your wisdom, give me your eyes, give me your peace, and give me your love. May I continue to operate with you, and you alone. I want to be your disciple first, seek love in my marriage, and father my children in your ways. I know your plans are good, and I know your promises are true. May I bless you oh God, may I seek you in all things, fill my spirit with your will, and may I do what you do in Heaven, here on earth!