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It is finally night. I hear crickets outside the window. PEACE! Today was loud…VERY LOUD! But in the noise I heard His voice. I went to play hoops @ 5:45 this morning. On my way i had United in my CD player. I am an XM guy so listening to a cd feels SO oldskool to me!I listened to this song probably 20 times today:
I see the king of gloryComing down the clouds with fire
The whole earth shakes, the whole earth shakes
I see his love and mercy Washing over all our sin
The people sing, the people sing
Hosanna, hosanna Hosanna in the highest
I see a generation Rising up to take the place
With selfless faith, with selfless faith
I see a new reviva lStaring as we pray and seek
We’re on our knees, we’re on our knees
Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like you have loved me
Break my heart for what is yoursEverything I am for your kingdom’s cause
As I walk from earth into eternity
OKAY! that song jacked me. Selfless faith. What a concept. It is not about me. It is not about you. It is not about them…its about HIM. Make it about him and the rest will work out. Open my eyes to things unseen. Show me how to love like you have loved me. Break my heart for what breaks yours. THATS WHAT I MUST HAVE. That sums up what I have been saying in my blogs since Sunday. That is what my post from yesterday was about….i want to feel what God feels. I can not settle for a few hours of God time…I need him continually and if it hurts or stretches me, or makes you uncomfortable about me, well we will all be okay.
God is moving and I want to be where he is at…doing what he is doing. During the national prayer breakfast Bono repeated a story that was told to him by “a very wise man”: So often we pray that God will bless what we are doing. If you want God’s blessing go to where he is already moving, get involved with the things God is doing, they are already blessed. God cares about the hurting, the lost, the widows, the poor. I have a new compassion for these things as I get older and take less of the attention to myself and put more of it on HIM. I want to feel how God feels.
Today I was walking with a friend and a younger boy came by. He was awkward. He had a back pack on. He was insecure, I could see in his face that he was a little shook that this big guy and me where in his path. His glasses where not on straight. His shirt was balled up under the strap of his bag. I put my hand on his shoulder and said…”whats up homey”…he stammered for a minute and said: “hi”. Then darted off into the lunch room. As we walked away I said..man I feel for that poor kid. I have been praying for him all day. Tomorrow I hope to run into him again…God cares about him and wants to see him live full of confidence and not ashamed, scared or insecure. I know how that boy feels, and if ever given the chance again…I am going to tell him all about the destiny God has for his life.
So as you can see, my mind is floating tonight. I hope this blog made sense. If not..there is always tomorrows.
In closing, the Kanye West album leaked today. IT IS HOT!
I am reading a great book, Velvet Elvis. My friend, Trent, got me hooked on it the other day. I am early in this book but I got wrecked today by this concept: God is so infinite. He has no beginning and no end. We are finite creatures. We can not even comprehend his name, let alone his true nature. Our problem is we try to figure out the plans of God in our finite way. How crazy is that? How in the world would we figure out an infinite God when we can not even figure out our finite self. Thus the need for faith. Faith, hope, love…God cares about you. He loves you. He loves you where you are. So after learning this today, I started to pray that God would give me an infinite love for people like he has. I want to love people different. Not even 4 hours later I was talking with a GREAT young man who is going through some stuff. A lot of the stuff he is going through is not his fault and should have never happened to him. He is hurting and I hurt for him. As he sat talking to me telling me about all that is going on my heart broke for him. Not just because he was hurting but because I believe God has a huge plan for his life and all that God is allowing him to go through is preparation for his next level. love infinitely….
p.s. Mat Kearney is on Leno tonight.
I got a new drug. I have been broken and I am addicted to the hurt of brokenness. I hate how it feels but I love what it reveals. Im addicted to hurt. I am addicted to tears. I am addicted to that sick feeling. I never want to lose it. In that place you feel God. you feel what He feels. You see things different. God opens your eyes to what he sees. I am addicted to hurt because I can not be “me” anymore. I am addicted to hurt to be grounded in what I need. See here is the deal to really uproot things and see change you have to go through stuff. If you go through stuff, you will see you are small and HE is big. So when you embrace that fact you stay grounded in the fact that when you are not hurting, you may be rebuilding your pride.
in closing i feel i need to clear the air a little bit. if you are a regular to this little blog you understand that I have been growing over the past few weeks. I have been embracing some stuff. I am not sinning. I am not dealing with a bunch of crazy crap…I am just a regular cat who is walking it out. I appreciate the concern, the prayers, or whatever. If you know me you probably know whats up. if you dont know me, stay tuned…we are in for the ride of our lives. I am not jacked up by a bunch of things. Im not doing stuff I should not be doing. My battles lie within. They are mine and you can just watch them unfold. If you have an issue with me…come ask me. I am learning to be VERY real and because of that I will tell you what you should know about me. Im here. Holla!
The bible says ask and you shall receive. I am living proof. Over the course of the past week I have been being stretched on relationships and authenticity. I have posted some things that I have learned and said repeatedly I want to know more, learn more, be stretched. Yesterday these two subjects collided like never before in my life. Imagine what happens when you are driving down the interstate and you hit a love bug. That is what happened to me yesterday.
The relationship portion was the lead in to the authenticity aspect. I friend of mine called me on the phone and said he needed to speak with me. I met him and he sat me down and said some amazing hard things to me. He called me out on so many levels. He challenged me on so many issues in my life. He even went as far as to tell me about issues I have dealt with for YEARS that most people have NO clue about. God had to tell him about the stuff he spoke to me about because there is no other way he could have had a clue about some of the things we talked about. In addition to being amazingly hard on me, he was also very encouraging. He told me what God had told him about my future. About what God has planned for my life and about where my “Destiny Road” leads. Destiny Road will be another post for sure (thanks KiKi).
The authenticity portion of this post comes in my response. I had to choose sitting there getting kicked in the teeth if I was going to allow myself to be real and deal with these issues or if I was going to embrace the mask that would have been a MUCH easier way out. I do not write this to boast of my authentic ways. I am striving to find authenticity every day. The truth is I am a skeptical, cynical, prideful, hypocritical person who is just trying to figure it all out. I write this to encourage you to be real even when it hurts. I explained to my friend where in our conversation he was nailing me. I accepted his wisdom and guidance on some issues. I incorporated change in my life. In addition allowed myself to start confronting some things in my life that are holding me back from achieving all God has for me. Now in the oxymoron of all oxymoron’s I don’t feel it is appropriate to lay out all these issues on the freaking internet. Im just not ready to be THAT real. Thats just not how I roll. I have spoke with some people and have started the process of recovery for myself. I am blessed with some great relationship and some great people who are willing to work to help me achieve all God has for my life.
Be real. Be honest. Don’t buy into the norm. Don’t allow yourself to be manipulated. Sometimes life is going to hurt. Sometimes you will encounter emotions you have never felt, and it will suck, but it is for your betterment. Be brave. There is a road that will take you to places you could never travel on your own. The toll to travel this road is not cheap but the ride will change your life.
1. that is the longest title i have ever had.so this past week i have really felt like i have taken a crash course on life, relationships, and how your supposed to do and not do some things. I am living a great life. I mean really. I have had some rough things go down over the past few months, but I am on a different level of living right now. Life is fun. Im discovering things again. Creativity is coming back….its a good time to be alive. So in all this talk of maximizing life and embracing relationship and all the stuff that I have been talking about this week, I had a moment today. I was at a birthday party and i started to talk to a friend. I have never had a deep conversation with this person, just the normal stuff you say in passing. But today we ended up at a table with 5 and 6 year olds running all around us and we started to talk. My friend is the grandfather of the birthday boy. He has lived an amazing life. He has so many experiences and wisdom and stories. So he started to tell me. As I am sitting there listening to him it dawned on me…this can make your life richer. Push in. Embrace it. Don’t just talk about depth and all the stuff you have been talking about, maximize this moment and dig in. So I started. I was asking questions, pushing farther in, and I learned some great things.Life is full of nuggets. People want a great life, but they want it to happen rapidly and in giant strokes. The truth is, greatness like anything else, usually develops slow, is built little by little, and is a process. The funny thing is you may work on a great life for 10 years and then on day realize…my life is great while all the people around you are like, this guy got her over night…not knowing you have invested years! So I feel I got 2 great nuggets out of this conversation, not to mention the more important process of becoming better friends with someone:
- My friend was about to go into major surgery and he asked god that if God would spare his life through the surgery he would devote his life to loving kids until his time came to go to heaven.
- “I don’t really talk about my life very much. I would rather just let people see who I am , not have them hear me tell them who I am.” YIKES! How deep is that. My friend has done some really cool things in life. He has seen success. but his humility was amazing!
Wisdom comes in unique packages. You may not find it in 3 piece suits or leadership books. Wisdom my come from people you see everyday and don’t know their stories or you have not taken the time to learn about. I learned a lot today, and it was awesome. I look forward to the next chance I will have to learn even more.
I am a BIG u2 fan. I made Jackie watch the vertigo tour with me and then proceeded to tell her all about the first time I heard U2, the first song (mysterious ways), how I was captivated. Now I am a massive fan. It probably has something to do with my age. It seems like my generation has a unique tie to the band.
Today I was listening to iTunes and somewhere between Bubbly (for like the 5th time today: Colbie Caillat) and You Make Me Better (Fabolous) U2 came on. I have heard this song about a zillion times…but it was like the first time. I started to ponder, what is it that I have been looking for that I still have not found? This is kind of a vulnerable blog for me so please bare with me, I am insecure right now! (haha) I realized there is more than one thing I have yet to find.
The first thing I need to find, more wisdom. I have a lot going on in my life. I need wisdom to be able to come out of this season how He would have me come out as opposed to how I would want to come out. In addition, I really feel some amazing depth coming to some relationships and I want to be able to give into these relationships (current and new). There is nothing worse in the world than a one sided relationship. So how do you attain wisdom. Well, go read Proverbs…it will give you all the directions you need. Maybe that can be a post for later.
Second. I need more peace in my life. I hate drama. A lot of times my drama is self imposed so I need to move more gracefully through situations. Peace is an amazing thing. Peace creates an atmosphere for growth and nurturing. Peace is a place where people run. Peace is a soundless noise, a place of refuge. I want to exude peace.
Grace. I need it. I desire it. I want to learn to have more of it for others. I want to feel for people the way God feels for them, not the way man does. The ironic thing is, I need more Grace than I could ever give. Grace and mercy are on heavy rotation over my life, from friends, family, and God…I hope to be able to return the favor.
Humility. Tonight Jackie told me about a line from “Final Quest” that has wrecked her and it is wrecking me. The weak translation is that the higher God places you in authority, the farther your fall will seem if you do not take hold of any pride in your life. EVERYONE deals with pride. The choice is if you remove it from the root or choose to ignore its existence which ultimately is choosing to fail at a later date. I want humility in my life. TRUE humility, not a false version that is cute for others but really is just a window front for my insecurity and manipulation.
Love. I want to love more. I want to be a better friend. I want to be someone who can be counted on. I want to love without restriction and fear of rejection. I want to figure out how to love the people I don’t like, not just the people who like me.
Finally, I want to be real. God has taught me SO much this week. So much about myself, about others, about situations, and all of it circles around the central theme of being REAL! Real is hard. It hurts. It takes authenticity. I want to be real with people. I dont want to hide behind masks and facades. I want to be real and for God to be real in me. I pray if God had the grace to use David like he did, maybe he could still take me in.
So thank you bono. Thank you for the introspection. Thank you for sining this song over my life for the thousandth time but allowing it to feel like the first. The action point for this blog is ask yourself…what is it that you still have not been able to find that you are looking for?
Life is short. The more and more I live the more I realize that life is a vapor. I love life. The best part of life is relationships. Relationships are the heartbeat of life. I am blessed to have great relationships.
This morning I was talking with some friends about some really deep stuff and Keisha (who has an awesome blog of her own) said: “Sometimes I tend to be a little bit vain.” At that moment. I said…wait, stop. That was awesome. Write that down. That is your blog for today. We all stopped. We laughed. We took a sentence out of the air, captured it, framed it, and formed a memory out of it. We will never forget the day we sat at that table and the 4 of us broke out laughing in the middle of really deep thoughts over that sentence.
How important it is to capture the moments in your life. Great things don’t always let you know they are coming, they just appear. When your not looking for your chances in your world to maximize the moments and make memories you are not living life to the fullness it was created to be lived. I have said before I have a bunch of great friends and family. It is in these relationships that I find all the moments that create the scrapbook of life that we will all look back on one day and say…wow, those are the best memories we could have.
What moments have you allowed to slip away and not make into memories? Tomorrow is today…go make some memories, even if you have to make them out of nothing! This thought makes me very emotional. Thanks for reading my blog. Thanks for being my friends. Thanks for the moments. Thanks for the memories. Here is to a lifetime more even if we never are able to see each other again, we still have that time…that morning…that look…that smell…that sound, and I am thankful for all of them…and YOU. Be Great.
I read a lot. A lot of what I read is related to what is cool, what helps people communicate, to relevance in culture, society, life. So today it hit me in mid conversation. Relevance has ZERO to do with cool. So often people associate “cool” with “relevant”. Allow me to explain my theory.Relevant will usually be cool. Cool can be far from relevant. I listen to a lot of music…A LOT! Some of the stuff that is REALLY cool, is not very relevant to the rest of my office, let alone the rest of the world. It is cool but not relevant.
In our churches today we are striving for relevance, and we think that relevance is coolness. Relevance really has nothing to do with cool. Relevance has to do with data, outcome, change. If you are relevant to someone you are able to communicate to them. Speak their language, which may or may not be cool, and help them achieve change, a better life, something new. Billy Graham is FAR from cool, but he sure has been extremely relevant over the years. On top of that, a lot of what we think is cool, the world is laughing at us saying, “thanks guys, welcome to 4 years ago, maybe next time.”
Relevance is fluid. Relevance is unique. Relevance is time sensitive. I am not saying we should not watch culture, trends, life, etc and see what is going on. What I am saying is this: we have to start speaking the native tongue of our culture. Start changing peoples lives in an Emmaus way. Start pouring into relationships. Effect people at their core, not at there feeler. Feelings fade but your core is going wherever you go. The great communicators in life are relevant even if they are not very cool.
I had a great day yesterday. I got to hang with some friends, my kids had their first day of school with no incidents and I had a normal dinner @ home with my family, AWESOME! On top of all this, I had a GREAT conversation through out the day with some people including my super hot wife about how perfection is killing us.
Here is the problem. “Christian culture”, if there even is such a thing it should be torn apart but that is another post, is killing people with false expectations of perfect living. People are walking around carrying wounds, issues, burdens, scares, hurts, desires, sins, etc and are afraid to allow healing to happen. This epidemic does not go just for people in the congregation. Pastors, leaders, helpers, everyone. We set this bar for expectation then when we fail to reach that mysterious and unattainable goal, we hide our faults, we beat ourselves up, we think we are the only ones who screw crap up. This pressure is built around the pretense that we are all living these wonderful lives with nothing wrong. Then when no one is around, we are living in a hell we have created or are battling and trying to hide it. We look at leaders and think they don’t deal with anything, or the crap that we deal with, because they are leaders. we look at peers and think, they have this, that, the other, they must not go through this crap I am going through. We look at those who are attempting to attain our “status” (more bull) and we think they must be dealing with something worse than we are. We slip deeper and deeper into the hole. well guess what…TODAY is your day of emancipation. NO ONE IS PERFECT.
Even the people we put on a “higher level” are screwed up. People have issues. EVERYONE does. I was reading today Billy Graham is in the hospital. He is a great man of God, he has crap in his life too. He has to because the day he does not, is the day he is perfect, which then qualifies him for deity and disqualifies him from humanity. God created us to be humans. He created us knowing we would have faults. He created us to need him. If we are fault free, we have no need for a divine being or force to rule our life.
The frustration we feel is the pressure to live up to the goodness that others are pretending to be achieving. Once we understand this, we will not be as let down when they fail…and they will fail. Failure does not mean the end of the road.
That is problem number 2 with our fake culture. Because everyone is living behind a mask we expect everyone else to meet our masked levels of “goodness”. We can not accept people when they do not meet our expectations and help them to get better. Rather than pushing into their lives and helping them create a culture of success and winning we push them away and reinforce that they are not good enough to be in our little club of fake goodness.
WHAT ARE WE DOING? we need to be helping people. we need to be teaching people that their failure is the foundation for their success. We need to alert people that God’s plan for them is not thrown out the window because they said a committed a sin. God’s plan is bigger than our weak attempts at manipulating people with fake living. God’s plan is a plan of love. God’s plan is a plan of mercy and grace. God did not create you to live under the pressure of man, but to rule over the earth!
Today is a day to be free. Today is a day to find someone who really loves you and will put up with your mistakes. Today is a day to help someone else get better. Do not waste today. Today is the beginning. Choose today to stop matching your life against other people. Start looking to Christ as your benchmark. Understand you are going to fail. Accept Gods mercy and grace over your life and embrace his love for you. His love reaches farther than your sin can take you. Do not settle for an average life. Keep pushing to be a better person, a better friend, a better follower of Christ.
It starts with you. Choose today to pull yourself out of the rat race. If people are not going to love the “real” you, then you will never have a “real” relationship with them. Finally, understand that this does not write you a free pass to sin. There are consequences to sin. But you do have a free pass to live a free life in Christ! Go be better today!
One of my man crush victims, Ryan Seacrest, will be hosting the pre-game and halftime festivities during January’s superbowl! Now we can enjoy the commercials, the host, and the game (in that order). Congrats.BREWSTER…OUT. (where is brian dunkleman?)