Thursday, December 24, 2009


As many of you know, I spend my fair share of time in airports. I am in an airport at least 4 times a year and at least 2 of those times, I have plenty of time to sit back and watch people. Well, yesterday I was once again in the airport; however, it was not for my flight, but rather I was there to meet my sister who was flying into Houston from Charlotte.

As I was waiting for her plane to land and for her to get to baggage claim, I saw lots of people milling around, some seemed uneasy, others seemed excited and still others seemed forlorn. I realized that the airport can be one of the most exciting/happy places to be-family and friends waiting to see you and hug you. Reconnecting of loved ones that have been estranged for years-or even the reunion of a couple who have only been a few days apart. There was one couple who were clearly in love and couldn't wait to see each other-if they had been capable, I think they would have dropped their bags and run into each others' arms.

However, it can also be an unbelievably lonely and depressing place. A person may have a transfer flight, but it may not leave for a few hours and so they must wait in this foreign airport with people they don't know and seeing other people meet up. Or they may not even someone to meet them at the airport-they simply fly in get a taxi and go home.

Parts of me feels like there may be a connection between airports and stages in our lives. Sometimes, we are arriving and we come to a new place, but there are people we know who can show us around and help us get acquainted. Sometimes, we arrive and there is no one-we have to start from the beginning, but we hail that taxi and get ready to face the unknown. Sometimes, we depart and have to leave everyone behind-recognizing that even though we are apart, we don't have to forget each other. Sometimes, we depart happy to see the end of that 'city' of life and ready to see what the next 'airport' life has in store for us.

I am thankful that I have friends with whom I can laugh and joke and share mundane text conversations, which help to break the monotony.

Later, gator


Monday, December 21, 2009

"And who knows, starting a new journey may not be so hard..."

As difficult as this may be for some of you to believe, there is quite a lot going through my mind at this moment in time. My initial plan when thinking about what to blog about was to discuss the issue of minorities and divisional issues (partially brought on by an episode of Glee, but also because of The Amazing Race); however, I just finished watching the movie, The Ultimate Gift, and was completely broken down by it. If you haven't seen it, you need to go out and watch it. (I know I say that about a lot of movies, but this one ripped me to pieces-I'm not even really sure why)

I really want to make a difference in this world and impact it positively. I don't have money, I don't have power, I don't have influence. I guess I have some esteem, I would venture to say that some people respect my opinion and value my input. But in the grand scheme, how much good can I actually do? And how good is it, if I have the desire to do it? Is it cheapened because I WANT to make a difference? I don't know. I guess something like making an impact is a journey-not a simple event.

Sometimes, I worry that everything that I do will count for nothing. That all of what I've done will blow up in my face and any good I was trying to do, will only result in a far worse situation. Perhaps, this is why I am so difficult to be around.

No matter how much I may want to, I cannot see the impact I am making now-good or bad. I may never see the results of seeds that I plant or lives that I affect (a fact which bothers me to no end), but I can't let that discourage me. It isn't about what I see happening, but rather that I take the time to be there for people. To live for Christ and to live as an example for Him. In a sense, I am reminded of a song from the movie Prince of Egypt, in which Jethro tells Moses that he must look at his life "through Heaven's eyes"; I may not be able to measure my efforts, but I have to remember that God is (hopefully) finding value and making use of the things I do.

I don't do enough.

I am thankful that I am healthy and have not had to spend a holiday in a hospital bed.

Later, gator


Thursday, December 17, 2009

The Tow Trucks of Life

So, as most of you know, I am spending my Christmas break in The Woodlands, Texas; it is a small suburb just north of Houston. Anyway, here in The Woodlands, whenever there is an accident of any kind, swarms of tow trucks appear to try and tow the vehicles from the scene. Well, as you might expect not every one of those tow trucks will be able to accomplish the job.

Well, today my mother and I were wandering around town, finishing up some last minute Christmas shopping (I am almost done!)and just outside of the wal-mart just down the road from our neighborhood, there was a slight fender-bender (maybe a little more than slight, but one of the cars suffered almost no damage at all). However, the cars involved in the accident were nearly impossible to see, not because of rubber-neckers or anything like that. Rather, the street was almost filled with tow trucks-there were at least 10 tow trucks all trying to tow the cars.

Well, as I sit here blogging about this frequent occurrence, I can't help but be reminded of life. Oftentimes, I feel that we try to fix problems after they have happened. We wait until we are sick or injured to address the issue. Rather than take preventive measures (such as stretching before exercising or eating healthy foods), we wait until we pull a muscle or get the flu. Much like the tow trucks, we try to shove as many remedies down the problem's throat and hope that one of them works and is able to fix the immediate problem-although the unseen impacts can be lasting and far more damaging.

I guess the point I am trying to make is that sometimes, we need to take preventive measures in order to stop far worse problems from occurring. This is made even more clear to me through an e-mail I received from one of my fellow Div School students who poke of two more 18 year-olds who were involved in high crime and how important it is to stem the tide and prevent these events from happening, rather than try to find a solution after the fact.

Once again, it points to a conversation I have had with a friend of mine, about my focus being on discipling and working with youth. My goal is definitely more on the spiritual walk of the youth, rather than their initial dedication.

I don't know, just something I thought about while watching those superfluous tow trucks.

I am thankful for my family.

Later, gator


Saturday, December 12, 2009

"Don't you get it, man? We're all losers"

Hey guys, in case you were wondering the title of this blog is indeed a quote. It is from the TV show Glee, the pilot episode to be precise. At this point, the star quarterback is faced with a choice-quit the Glee club and restore the natural social order by being a jock, or break the norm and "lower" himself to another social circle.

I use the term lower because that is what popular American society wants you to believe; however, it is not what I believe nor is it what Finn or the creators of Glee think. And for that I applaud them. There are lots of shows that break the stereotypes (Big Bang Theory, Chuck, etc.), so how is Glee different? I don't know that it is; I just find it refreshing to know that there is a show that says it is ok to do what makes you happy and not do something just to fit in. Granted, I have only seen the first episode, but I think that this show is going to be a really good one.

I went to see the Zoar boys play in their first basketball game today. They played well and were very sportsmanlike-I was impressed. They lost, but I don't think that any of them let it get them down. I think they enjoyed the game and had fun playing-and isn't that what matters anyway? When I lose that focus, sports in general become frustrating and troublesome and honestly I'd rather not play.

What's my challenge for today, I hear you ask? Read a good book. By a good book, I mean one that you will enjoy.

I am thankful for people who are willing to stand up for what they believe, even if it makes them unpopular.

Later, gator


Thursday, December 10, 2009

Do you ever just look back and think, "How did I get here?" That's kind of where I am now; so much has happened this semester, I can't really take it in. Meagan and I were talking yesterday and saying how neither of us could believe it was exam week. Where did the time go?

Don't get me wrong, I have done quite a lot this semester, but for some reason, it just doesn't feel like it should be this time of year. Maybe it's the weather, I don't know.

Last night, I played basketball again. We lost. Again. It is was still a good time, though; although I wish my body wasn't in so much pain. At point I dived through the air to get a ball and landed on my left leg, particularly my knee and it hurts today.

Challenge: volunteer somewhere over the Christmas holiday.

I am thankful for opportunities that God has given me.

Later, gator


Saturday, December 5, 2009

You've Got a Friend in Me

So I lied. I didn't post anything yesterday, like I said I would. I'm sorry, I was not feeling well last night and I was exhausted from being up until 3 the night before. So I apologize; I hope you guys can forgive me.

Anywho, so today a friend of mine let me borrow the book, "The Weight of Glory" by C.S. Lewis, specifically to read one of his sermons called 'The Inner Ring'. Now I know why my friend asked me to read this sermon, we had been having a conversation that sort of tied into this topic at lunch that day and he got really excited about my reading this section.

Basically, it is about how each society has secret groups, inner rings if you will, and every person within that society attempts to penetrate those groups and become a member. C.S. Lewis goes on to say that there is nothing wrong with these types of groups, sometimes things have to be kept secret; however, the uncontrollable desire to be included in these groups, as well as the groups flaunting of their exclusivity are bad.

So reading this has given me a lot to think about, particularly this quote from Lewis, "Of all passions, the passion for the Inner Ring is the most skillful in making a man who is not yet a very bad man do very bad things." Wow. That pretty much says it all for me; it has made me realize how much my desire to 'fit in' has driven much of what I do. Now, I can't say that I have ever done anything really bad (most of you know that I lead a very boring childhood/adolescence)(but then who I am to say what is a 'big thing' and what is not) but I have certainly made decisions that I wish I hadn't or that I could possibly take back. I need to stop seeking man's approval-Gal. 1:10 "For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ." (NASB) That is one of my life verses, and I have once again let it slip through my memory and focus on my desires instead of Christ's calling. The truth is I spend far too much time worried about being 'best friends' with people than I do living like Christ, and that truth is heavy. I don't want to deal with it, I want to ignore it and pretend that everything will be ok if I can just find that 'best friend' who I can turn to for every problem. And maybe I can find that best friend; maybe I can find it in Jesus.

It all seems to go back to that conversation that Brittany and I had after the Verge. Where do I seek acceptance? I cannot serve two masters; I can't try to please both man and God. So I guess it is time to stop trying. Even if all my friends desert me (not that they would), I still have Jesus. Sounds pretty trite, but I don't care-make fun of me all you want, I need to stop letting popularity dictate who I am.

I am thankful for my memory. Today, we visited a nursing home and sang Christmas carols to some of the residents with Alzheimer's. On one point, it was awesome to see them singing along with us. But on another point, it was so poignant to realize that some of them cannot even remember their own name.

Later, gator


Friday, December 4, 2009

Too early in the morning

Ok, so it has been a while since I posted, but it is far too late/early to post anything now beyond this note:

I will post tomorrow.

Later, gator


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

My 20th Post

Hey, well guys I hit a mile stone I didn't think I would, I have maintained this blog for 20 posts-a huge accomplishment for me! I know, that's lame, but sometimes you gotta take what you can get, right?

So tonight was the Christmas verge and it was probably my favorite verge of the semester-not because it was Christmas themed, because honestly, there wasn't that much Christmas involved in it. But I really enjoyed the more peaceful atmosphere and the fact that we sang some of my favorite hymns-it was really good. Well, afterword, I sat down and began to reflect, as I almost always do after the Verge and one of my friends came and sat beside me and we talked about random things for a while, discussing the songs of the verge and the scarf she was wearing.

However, at one point she turned to me and asked, "From where do you seek acceptance?" I thought for sure I had misheard her, this question was coming from out of nowhere and was penetrating to some deep stuff in my life. I asked, "What did you say?" She replied, "From what do you seek to get acceptance, or rather from whom?"

Ok, this was crazy! This had been on my mind for a really long time and there was NO WAY that she knew that. How was it that she so nonchalantly asked this question? So, I asked (before answering), "What made you ask that question?" She turned to me, smiled and said, "I don't know, it just kind of popped into my head." Ok, God I get it.

Ok, so I was going to go into a little depth and talk about some stuff, but honestly I don't feel comfortable just pouring that stuff out all over the internet. So, if you want to hear about what's going on in my life, ask me. Whether it be person-to-person or for those who read my blog from greater distances than just one building to another, send me a facebook message or call me. Or just be in prayer for me. Honestly, it doesn't matter whether or not you care to know about my crazy life-I would just really appreciate your prayers.

Earlier today I was helping to set up for the Christmas verge and we were hanging lights on some of the doors. Well, we had tape, but no scissors. One of the other guys there had a pocket knife in his pocket. I was in charge of cutting the tape to help hang up the lights. Here's how the conversation went down:

Me: Hey, Brad, can you hand me your pocketknife?
B: (distracted while trying to hang up lights) Just tear the tape.
Me: (trying, in vain, to rip the tape)That isn't really working that well.
B: Well, just bite it.
Me: Ok...(bites into the tape and it rips apart-leaving a little bit behind in my mouth) well, that worked and I get a special treat! Tape in my mouth!
Mindy: Haha...gross!
Rebekah: Ewww! Saliva is one of the worst things in the world!
(Talk of this nature goes on for a little while...)
R: Now I have David slobber all over me! Your DNA is all over my hands.
Me: You should feel honored. Not many people can boast about such a blessing.

A funny story, yeah? But also a little life lesson tucked away in there. How often do we go through life picking up little pieces of people and carrying them with us throughout the day, week, semester, whatever. It is funny to think about Rebekah going through the day with my DNA all over her hands (although, I was informed later in the evening that she scrubbed really hard to ensure she got all traces of me off), but I can't help but think about how often I take on the problems of concerns of other people and let them absorb into my person. Becoming, essentially, a part of who I am.

But there again, I also see that it is important that we be able to draw a distinction and much like Rebekah be able to clean ourselves of those things and start fresh, giving the concerns over to God and trusting Him to handle it. I mean if I walk around all the time with someone else's "DNA" all over me, how will people know who I am?

My challenge for today? Love. Demonstrate, in some palpable fashion, genuine love for someone in your life. Write them a letter; give them a call; take time to just sit and be with them. Be willing to love someone for who they are and for who they are in God's sight.

I am thankful for my friend, Amy Stickler, who has, on two separate occasions today, brought a smile to my face. Thank you, Amy.

Later, gator


First day of December

Hey. No elaborate introduction this time. I am not in a good place right now, so my humor level is at about 0.

Do you ever just have really bad nights and get into a funk. Well, that's my story tonight. I can't even really link it to anything-I am just doing great. So this is my blog for tonight.

No challenge tonight. I am thankful for the time I get to build and develop friendships, short though it may be.

Later, gator


Monday, November 30, 2009

Last day of November

Hello again, my faithful readers! Happy last day of November; I hope it has treated you well, but even more so, I hop you are ready for the beauty that is the month of December.

So today was a pretty good day overall. I woke up early so I could go to the 8:30 service, as opposed to the 11:00, that way Meagan and I would have more time to write the papers that we had due tomorrow. Well, the early service was good, we were actually in the sanctuary, as opposed to the gym, and we sang more traditional hymns, which I really like and which you don't really see that much in contemporary settings.

Anyway, after church I came back and made lunch-chicken! Then before I sat down to write my paper, I took a two-hour nap. Then at 3, right as I was about to start my paper I got a call from Tyler asking if I was going to the parade. I said no and he tried to convince me, but I think he felt bad when he thought about my having to write a paper and so just left it at that.

Well, I finished my paper, but not until after dinner-which, even by caf standards was pretty lacking. But the company was pretty good, the boys from suite g came and sat with me-a rare treat. Plus I was able to watch part of the christmas movie in which one of santa's daughters loses her memory. It had the Angel of Death, Andrew, from 'Touched by an Angel' and so part of me kept waiting for someone to die. Fortunately, no one did.

After dinner, my focus team met for the last time this semester and we had our white elephant gift exchange. I was pretty impressed with the gifts, I don't think any of them were lame or inadequate in comparison and so all in all it was a good christmas party. After that I went to the gym to help stave off the increase that is sure to happen with the holiday season.

Then I got to see Trey and that was pretty awesome, because he wasn't at dinner and I wasn't sure when I would get to see him. So yeah, Jehovah jireh. Then Derek and I went to cookout and watched an episode of '30 Rock'. Finally, I sat down to blog about my day.

So yeah this blog is kind of boring, but I guess I just wanted to fill you guys in on my day and I didn't really have anything else to say (my mind is kind of frayed from paper-writing). My challenge for today?-treat your body well this week. Get lots of sleep, drink plenty of liquids and eat smart. Exams are next week and we need to be in tip-top shape in order to make it through the week.

I am thankful that there is a gym facility that I can make use of for free.

Later, gator


Saturday, November 28, 2009

Organized Sports

Ok, so don't tell Meagan I am writing this right now, or she might croak a toad-you see my head is pounding and she told me to go to bed, but I had to really quickly blog a little bit.

So, I don't think organized sports are my thing. Don't get me wrong I love to play basketball or racquetball, whatever. But I have recently realized that I enjoy them in as much as I am just having fun and not getting too serious. Last night, I played some basketball with the Zoar youth again, but this time Tyler came and played as well. When he was guarding me, he was taking it a little too seriously and was pushing me around and 'legally' roughing me up. Well, I wasn't having so much fun and began to feel a lot better about my decision to not play basketball in high school. I like to play it, but I really couldn't care less whether I win or lose.

Then, tonight G-Dubb played Western Carolina in basketball. I was getting too caught up in the game and was getting frustrated at every blown call and missed shot. It was too much, I was allowing my emotions to run rampant because of some insignificant sports event. However, at half-time one of the Zoar youth showed up at the game and then it really woke me up to reality. Here I was a 23 year-old (24 in two weeks) getting worked up over nothing, plus I would be setting a bad example for Christian. So during the second half, I tried to tone it down and just enjoy the game. I guess in a way that was God reminding me to calm down and keep focus in my life-honestly, it didn't matter if Western beat us in basketball. I am called to be a Christian everyday and in every situation; I need to remember that every time I step out on the court or sit down in the bleachers. If people can't see Christ through me, I am doing something wrong.

So here it is, my challenge: live the rest of this week like the Christians we are called to be. Before you act/react take the time to consider your actions and to allow each moment to serve as an opportunity to be a witness for Christ.

I am thankful my ability to write papers well and to write them quickly. What about you?

Later, gator


Friday, November 27, 2009

I'll Be Home For Christmas

I think it is going to be another short one tonight because I am tired and need to get some sleep. So, I definitely planned to use today to write some papers-but it did not go according to plan. I guess it went really sour when I read the blog of a friend and got really depressed. Well, to try and get out of my funk, I ran outside. Unfortunately, it took a lot longer to break the funk and so I ended up spending 2.5 hours outside and even did some shopping in good ol' BS.

Well, once I got back I had little desire to write the papers and so I took a nap. After my nap I made dinner and by then it was 6 and so I got ready to play basketball with the boys from Zoar again tonight, and Tyler even came to play. After that I joined Meagan, Tyler, Abigaile and their mom to watch 'I'll Be Home for Christmas' with JTT. It was a good time overall and I am gonna spend tomorrow writing papers.

Tonight my challenge is simple: prayer. I would like you all (and myself, of course) to find one high school senior and pray for them throughout the rest of this academic year, especially for them as they prepare to go off to college. If you don't know a senior you could pray for, let me know and I'll find you one.

BTW, I am thankful today for opportunities that God has given me to get to know people, more specifically, the opportunity to get to know the Zoar Baptist Church youth group and to be able to hang out with them. What are you thankful for?

Later, gator


Blindsided By Basketball

Ok, so today started out pretty uneventful, yeah? I woke up at about 10:30, ran around campus for a little bit and then came back and took a shower in preparation for eating thanksgiving at the Barrs'. Which, by the way, was amazing! I am about to heat some of the leftovers that they gave me and I can't wait (even if it is 2 in the morning).

However, before I left, I invited a bunch of the guys from the Zoar Baptist Church youth group to play some basketball on campus. I wasn't sure if they accept the offer, but then I kind of forgot how much they love basketball. Long story short-they came over and we played a full court game, a half-court game, and a bunch of games of knockout. Needless to say, I definitely got my workout for the day and I had a whole lot of fun, too.

After the games, Charlie and I planned to see the movie The Blind Side and invited the guys to come as well, they all came along and can I just say how awesome that movie was?!? I had heard it was good from some of my other friends, but I didn't think it was going to be as good as it was. Now some of you will probably disagree, but I really liked the movie. Yeah, at times it was kind of feel good-sappy, but I was really impressed with the movie as a whole and loved the overall feel that it had. Plus, I spent a little bit of time wondering how I would handle each situation and what kind of counseling I could use to help the situation.

My challenge for today, for you readers as well as myself, is to find someone in your community in whom you can invest some time and energy. It doesn't matter who, or if anyone else knows that you are doing it. But you cannot imagine the impact that one person taking the time to be there can have on a person. So get out there and be there for someone who needs someone to whom they can turn. (Is it just me or do a lot of my challenges seem to follow along the same theme?)

Later, gator


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What are you thankful for?

For all of my international readers, who may not be familiar with American customs/holidays, tomorrow is Thanksgiving. A wonderful holiday in which families come together to celebrate the origins of our nation, say one thing they are thankful for(usually involving the food they are about to eat), eat turkey, and pass out while watching football/Christmas movies/inexplicably lame holiday specials or whatever.

So here is a brief history lesson: 'pilgrims' from Europe travel to the 'New World' (aka USA) and experience hard times during the later months in the year. Some Native Americans decide to help these somewhat naive travelers and share their food with them. And so the first thanksgiving. It is a celebration of food; now don't get me wrong, I am a big fan of turkey, etc., but I think we get so caught up in all of that and we forget to take time and genuinely reflect on our gratitude.

This thanksgiving has been interesting in that regard; my friend Meagan decided that we should take the time every day to say something that we are thankful for. We started this about two weeks ago and so I have listed at least 10 things that I was thankful for and it's not even officially thanksgiving yet! Now granted, some of those those were really specific to things going on in my life at the time, but isn't that the point anyway? That we should be always thankful for the things in our lives and to learn to live in appreciation for what we do have.

As I said before, I love Leave it to Beaver; well, I was watching an episode today and it was about Wally's birthday. (For those who don't know, Wally is Beaver's older brother). In it, Beaver was supposed to spend his $6.95 and get Wally a present, a camera that had a flashbulb-so you could take pictures at night. However, once he got to the store, his friend convinced him to buy a bow and arrow set for himself instead and to get Wally a cheap gift. Well, to make a long story short, Beaver eventually felt guilty for buying himself a gift and not his brother. However, Wally didn't let it phase him; he explained to Beaver that he had done a similar thing when he was younger and their mom had told him to buy flour and he bought chocolate syrup instead. Wally still loved Beaver just as much and didn't care that he hadn't gotten him a cool gift-you better believe Beaver was thankful that his brother was so cool about it all. Why did I tell you that whole story? I'm not sure, at first I thought it was relevant and then the more I talked about, the more I realized that it wasn't. But, I did like the fact that Wally was so understanding with his little brother and I guess I wanted to share that with you guys.....oh well, I hope you enjoyed it anyway.

Ok, so here is my challenge for this post: demonstrate your gratitude. Take time each day from now until the new year (hopefully, even beyond that) and tell God or tell a friend something you are thankful for that day. It need not always be something monumental, but just be open and honest with what you are grateful for. I hope you and your families have a wonderful thanksgiving!

Later, gator


Saint Boniface

So, I recently visited Belmont Abbey with some of my classmates and whilst I was there I was encouraged by one classmate in particular to do some study on Saint Boniface. I told her I would and that I might even blog about what I learned; so here it is:

While he is the patron saint of Germany, he was actually born in Devon, England. Also, he got involved in the church against his father's wishes(something I see recurring in a great deal of renowned religious figures' lives). One story that I found to be particularly intriguing (partly because it dealt with Thor and I am a HUGE fan of Marvel comics and Thor is a character in those comics....anyway.....)was one in which he planned to chop down a tree that had been dedicated to Thor. He called upon Thor to strike him down with lightning; however, when he started chopping the tree down and nothing happened, all the people there converted to Christianity. Finally, the last piece of info I would like to include involves the day that is dedicated to his feast: Saint Boniface's feast day is celebrated on June 5 in the Roman Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church, and the Anglican Communion and on December 19 in the Eastern Orthodox Church.

It was kind of interesting learning a little something about someone I probably would never have otherwise investigated. So, thank you Amy, for that challenge. But, as is increasingly becoming the case in these blogs, I would to challenge all of you guys to research a historical person for the sheer fun of it and see what you learn about them. It doesn't have to be a Christian figure, but preferably it is a person who you don't really have a background knowledge from which to build.

Later, gator


Monday, November 23, 2009

So, I love Leave it to Beaver. I really do. It is a really amazing look into American culture and the family of the 1950's. Not to mention the fact that it still speaks wisdom to our lives in the 21st century. I don't know if any of you guys watch the show, but I recommend it if you get the chance.

I would write more, but my head is pounding...

Later, gator


Sunday, November 22, 2009


Well, hey! Fancy meeting you here. Would you mind if I sat and talked with you for a little while? It'll probably be me doing most of the that ok? Really? Ok, awesome!

So, I am reading through the book of Job, a really good read, and I suggest you pick it up if you get a chance. However, I would caution you, it is probably better if you are in a secure place spiritually, at the very least not in the pits of despair. I once tried to read Job while I was really upset....not good.

Anyway, so I just read chapters 8 and 9, in which Job's friend, Bildad, tells Job that if all of this stuff is happening to him, there must have been a reason-God rewards those who do good and punishes those who do evil. He encourages Job to implore God to show His compassion, for surely Job is upright and pure. He goes on to say that when we are in the will of God those who oppose us will be brought down and shamed, and their abode will no more be there.

This sounds familiar, right? It definitely does for me. Often when my friends are going through a hard time, I offer words of comfort (like those found in Romans 8:28). And while my speech may not sound exactly like Bildad's, there are definite similarities. He tells Job that God surely has his best interest in mind and so Job can take comfort in this thought; if Job turn completely to God's will, He will crush Job's enemies and remove the problems in his life. I can't tell you how many times I have told my friends that there has to be a reason for the trials they are enduring-not necessarily that they have somehow deserved them, but rather that God is seeking to teach them something through it. And that surely, God will work out for the best in the situation.

So everything's great now, right? We have assurance that God is working in our best interests. And yet, Job is not satisfied. He tells Bildad that there is no way to show God that he is pure and upright. No matter what he does, Job will always be filthy in God's sight. Job asks rhetorically, "Who can say to Him, 'What are You doing?'" in verse 12 of chapter 9. We as humans have no basis to judge God or to demand that He explain Himself to us. Job, seemingly in despair, says that if God removed His rod and the dread/terrifying aspect, then he would be able to speak to Him.

How do you respond to something like that? How do you reassure a friend, who is clearly hurting and cannot find hope? I don't know. I know-I bet some of you were expecting some profound answer, but I have none. Other than, just be there for that person. Listen to them. That is perhaps the most important thing you can do, allow them to speak and to get out their feelings and frustrations. As I said in an earlier post, there aren't enough people willing to listen. Therefore, take the time to just sit and be there for a friend! Sometimes, they don't need a profound answer; they just need to know that someone cares for them and is willing to be there with them.

If anyone has any suggestions/comments, they are welcome.

Later, gator


Friday, November 20, 2009

Almost-the song I am lstening to, while I type this.

Today was a good day. Some things that I have dreading happened-wait, what? I hear you ask. You mean to tell me, that it was a good day because things you were dreading actually happened? That sounds crazy. Doesn't it, though?

Anyway, there were necessary things that took place and they went perhaps better than I could have imagined-although, as they say, the proof of the pudding will be in the eating. So we will have to wait and see how things unfurl from here. But thanks and praise to God for working in that situation and providing an opportunity and means through which to accomplish those things.

Also, thanks to you guys for reading these inane musings-sometimes, it is nice just to know that people are listening...or in this case, reading. Some of you know that listening is one of my greatest talents and so when I find it in another person my respect for them increases exponentially. There are far too few listeners in this world and they are often overlooked because they spend most of their time listening rather than talking and making themselves the center of attention. So, my challenge for today for myself and you readers, is to seek out those listeners in your life and tell them thank you. Whether that be as simple as taking the time to find them and verbally thank them, or to write them a thank you note, or just give them a big hug. Also, encourage them in their listening, so they know that it is valuable and does make a difference.

I played racquetball with a friend who I have been trying to meet with for a while today-he is better than I was expecting, he beat me 10-8 one on one. I also got to meet two of his friends, who I hope I can continue to get to know as well.

Do you ever notice how it can be the simplest thing that blesses you so much? A simple facebook message can alter your view and bring a new perspective to a situation. Today, I am thankful for parents who are involved in their children's lives.

Later, gator


Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Though the sorrow may last for the night.....

So for all you avid followers of my blog, I am once again up late when I should already be in bed. But on the bright side, I am in a better place than I have been. So there's a plus.

Why am I in a better place? Because there are some truly amazing people in my life. So often, I get bogged down by all the negative stuff that is happening that I don't take time to focus on all of the awesome stuff that is also happening. So a big thank you goes out tonight to two people: one for reminding me that people genuinely care about me and want to just talk with me; the other for reminding me that there are still people in this world who are willing to give of themselves (and their paycheck) to help a friend in need.

Tomorrow is once again a new day and as a friend reminded me, Joy comes in the morning. So my challenge for myself and for you guys as well-live tomorrow with joy. Though the world may be against me, yet I have the Lord on my side and His love fills me to overflowing. I may not be happy, but I can certainly have joy.

Later, gator


Tuesday, November 17, 2009

In every life, a little rain must fall

Today was not a great day. Correction: the past few days have not been great. And why is that? Because I am a glutton for punishment. No matter how much I know it will hurt, I will continue to do stupid things like this all because I so strongly desire friendship.

It is nearly two in the morning and I am still awake. I should have been asleep long ago, I have class in six hours. But instead, here I am, awake and blogging about my life. Pretty pathetic, yeah?

Anyway, I had a presentation today on Dietrich Bonhoeffer's The Cost of Discipleship and it went well. When I picked that book I was expecting it to be challenging, but not to the extent that it was. Plus, after studying a little about Bonhoeffer's life, I realized that he actually lived life in the way that he describes in the book and he had a genuine heart for God.

I have an issue with a few of my friends, but as of yet have been too timid to mention it to them. I am not a confrontational person, I am a people-pleaser. However, tonight I was confronted about my lack of accountability for my brothers and now I am really conflicted. I feel that I should talk to them about it, but I know that if I do, our relationship will invariably change. Well, let's be honest-I don't know that it will change our relationship; in fact, it might be beneficial and help our relationship. But there again, I kind of doubt it.

I feel really sorry for myself right now and as I write this, I am becoming more and more repulsed by that. Who am I that I should be so self-absorbed that I allow bad days and situations to completely alter my attitude. I don't know.

Tomorrow is a new day and with it, comes new challenges. I pray that I will be able to face them with joy and peace.

Later, gator


Thursday, November 12, 2009

I wish I were a Jedi Knight

So, it has been a while since the last time I wrote something, but don't worry-I haven't forgotten about you. Life has just been kind of sporadic lately.

Anyway, I went to Zoar again tonight, had a great time. Those guys are pretty cool and FAR better than I am at basketball. We talked about of Life Map and how when people look at us, what do they see about us that talks about our Christian faith? Do they even know we are Christians just from how we act and what we do on a daily basis? It was a nice reminder that we are called to live for Christ everyday and to live in such a fashion that people recognize a difference in us.

So lately, I have been re-watching the Star Wars movies. Right now I am on episode 3 (having watched 1 and 2 earlier in the week) and I had forgotten how much I truly liked Star Wars. Jedi are so cool! Plus, there have been a few nuances that I have been observing this go-through; I am even enjoying the political aspect to it! There is so much going on in these stories, i don't understand how people can just dismiss them and consider them beneath them. Not only are there spiritual matters, but there are social statements and even just philosophical ideals being thrown around by these characters. Star Wars=pure awesome.

Any thoughts about Star Wars?

Later, gator


Sunday, November 8, 2009


Ok, so I know this phrase is thrown around a lot, but I have to say THAT WAS THE BEST FOCUS TRIP EVER! Ok, now that I've said that, let me explain.

The Zoar Baptist Church youth group is one of the coolest group I have had the pleasure of hanging out with. Not only that, but they are really respectful. Especially for teenagers, that was really impressive. Plus, the church is only like 10 minutes down the road, so we can visit them pretty much whenever we want.

Also, for those who were wondering, my sermon went well (totally a God-thing cause I had nothing to do with it). Like Corey said, I want to hang out with the group more. Hopefully, I'll get to go to their thing on Wednesday night and maybe play b-ball or maybe even a round of signs.

Later, gator


Friday, November 6, 2009

How soon until Christmas?

Well, hello Friday, when did you get here? This week has gone by so fast! That is probably due in part to the fact that I didn't want the weekend to get here and time often seems to flow the opposite of how you want it. How self-centered we really are.

I finished writing the outline of my sermon, and when I say outline, I mean outline. It is really short and I wonder how long it will be when I actually go through it. I don't know, I've never really been one to practice speeches, etc over and I will definitely go through it once and see how it goes from there.

5 weeks of classes left! That is crazy, but I am so ready for the break-in fact, I could probably go for some Christmas music right about now. Man I am in a weird mood.

Anyway, pray for me this weekend-it is going to be long and draining.

Later, gator


Thursday, November 5, 2009

It is cold

Ok, so I am about to go to the gym, but I wanted to put something up for today just in case I don't get the chance to put anything up later.

I had dinner in the caf for the first time in a long time tonight and it was a lot of fun. It made me miss the times when I use to eat every meal in the caf, but also in a way it made me realize that this year is different. And I don't have to eat in the caf all the time and I still fill ok about it. I don't know if my message is getting across, but simply put-my sense of self is no longer dependent on my presence in the caf.

It's Thursday and that means 30 Rock and small group.......part of me is not looking forward to small group. This is a new feeling for me.....I don't know what to do with it. Hopefully, once things get started I will want to get involved in small group and enjoy the time with some of the greatest guys I know. Here's hoping.

Later, gator


Wednesday, November 4, 2009


So I didn't get around to posting again last night (I was too tired by the time I got back to my room), but that's ok-better late than never.

Anyway, I went to the Verge last night and it was......interesting. Don't get me wrong I think that the Verge is a great means of spiritual renewing, as well as a means to reach out to people who may not feel comfortable in a typical church setting. Here's my issue with it: the worship. I know that there are people who find it worshipful and a great means of connecting with God. But for some reason (perhaps, I'm showing my age here) that scream-o music is not how I worship. I spent the majority of the worship time trying to clear my ears from the ringing. However, I do not want to sound as though I am condemning this kind of music/worship-far from it. I know that there are many various means through which to worship (some people would probably be uncomfortable in my home church), so I am not speaking out against it.

However, I would like to see some more "traditional" (and I use that term loosely) songs thrown in there as well. I think the modern generation is so put out with the idea of liturgy and hymns, that they just abandon them all together. Some of my favorite worship songs are hymns (e.g. 'Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing', 'It is Well With My Soul', 'How Great Thou Art', etc.) and I by no means came from a traditional background.

Also, part of me feels as though a lot of the songs that are sung in contemporary settings are focused on us as the worshippers, rather than on God. For example, last night we sang the song 'How He Loves Us' and at the end of the second verse, the lyrics are "I don't have time to maintain these regrets, When I think about the way He loves us...." A great line about how God's love transcends any evil we can do. However, I think it important to note that is necessary for us to ask forgiveness and to turn from that way of life-it is not enough to just say I don't have time to care about it anymore, we must turn to Christ.

I don't know maybe I am just venting (which is probably the case), but I find it difficult to maintain an attitude of worship while I am constantly measuring everything that is being sung and how loud the music is, etc. Perhaps, my goal should be to get over that hurdle. Or maybe to come to the Verge for just the message and not the worship aspect......hmmm, any thoughts?

Later, gator


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

It's Tuesday!

That's right, faithful readers, it is Tuesday. Tuesday is an all around great day for me. Why? I hear you ask: simple-I am done with class for the week, Chick-fil-a, and the Verge. Plus sometimes, I hang out with friends after the Verge, so that is always pretty awesome in and of itself.

This is just a quick blurb because I wanted to say something before I took a shower and then head to chick-fil-a. Maybe I'll write more tonight after some other things happen, who knows?

Later, gator


Monday, November 2, 2009

Yet another attempt to write and journal my thoughts

Hello. I often feel when first getting acquainted it is important to get some of the less interesting formalities out of the way. So here goes: I am 23 years old, born (and raised) in Orlando, Florida on December 8th, 1985. I am a sagittarius and have no idea what that means or how it affects my life in the slightest. Any other questions? No? Good, let us begin.

So I am in graduate school, despite years of telling myself that I would never go to graduate school and that once I received my Bachelor's I was out of there. But, as is often the case, God had other plans. So I find myself in my second year in a 90-hour Divinity School program. Not only that, but I work as a Graduate Resident Director on campus for a guys' dorm, which houses about 100 guys. So life can be stressful at times, to say the least.

Well, anyway. I have heard that writing your thoughts can be therapeutic and relaxing and I could definitely use some relaxation. So once again I am chronicling my life so that I might find some rejuvenation and healing.

Ok. I am preaching for the first time ever this Sunday! I know, it sounds crazy, but I think I have at least developed a picture (fuzzy and obscure, though it may be) of what I am going to preach about. That sounds really weird-what I am going to preach about. Hmm, my mom always told me I should get involved in preaching, so did one of my undergraduate professors. Well, I guess this will be a measure for me to determine whether I should consider preaching vocationally or keep away from it. Prayers are always appreciated!

Ok, I think I am gonna stp for now, before I talk your ears off. Plus I should get some sleep or homework done-one of the two.

Later, gator