Christian Writers

a new perspective…

Silence and Chaosmany people seem to tackle the first of the year with this notion that everything is somehow going to be different but I can’ t help but wonder what different looked like at the end of the year. what percentage of these people with their new year’s resolutions and big prompts to change, are really changing?

i’m not sure how to approach this year. i don’t really believe in new year’s resolutions but i believe in changing your tactic or even your perspective to attain new results. it doesn’t have to be a long list that needs to be accomplished in three-hundred and sixty-five days but simply a shift in thought. going forward with this journey called life it is my desire to be more aggressive in my decision-making. i’m methodical and i like to think about details and look at an issue all angles but in the past this process often snow balled into an abyss of procrastination that has often gotten me into trouble.

if we could cut all the crap for a moment.

i don’t know what i want out of the future. i know that i don’t want to continue waking up and thinking about what i should be doing with my life. i don’t want to wonder if i’ve missed out on something by not making the right decisions or chasing the right opportunities. i know that i don’t want to judge people based upon their looks, personal characteristics or ideas. it is my desire to love without condition, to be more Christ-like with every move of my finger but it seems like i’m always falling short. if i can be honest for a moment sometimes i feel like Christians have it the hardest and i know it’s a lie but that’s how i feel.  all i want to do is serve my God and yet, here are all the stumbling blocks positioned in the perfect places for me to fall.

why can’t we say no to sin easier than it says yes to us? why won’t God simply take away my desire to do wrong in my heart and in my mind? why can’t i just simply live to love Him and love people without all of the in-between?

sometimes i feel as though after all the scriptures and all the sermons and all the words, i still feel lost in my faith and for me that’s a scary feeling. after all, we as men are the stewards, right? leading the flock and sheltering the lost? but what am i to do when i’m the one who feels lost, when i’m the one who needs the shelter? maybe i should simply say i want to grow deeper in my faith and with that will come all the answers to all the other questions or maybe i’m back here in two-thousand sixteen telling you about another year without a new perspective.

what does the “new year” mean to you?
what changes are you making?

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turning thirty…

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I believe that somewhere in the past I was a birthday person, but I’m not very much of a birthday person anymore. I’m not sure if that is something that comes with ‘age’ or maybe its the realization of that you actually only have one ‘day of birth’ and the dates following that are only a reminder of your existence, or something like that. I thought that thirty would feel like some huge milestone. Like, I would be thirty and I’d be able to look back over all my accomplishments while sipping an over-priced latte and say, “all is well”. But that’s not how it turned out.

I’m thirty and I have a list of things to show for my twenties. The years that apart of me feels like I let go to waste waiting for my dreams to come to me as opposed to chasing them. I don’t intend on letting my thirties fall prey to the same condition. I’ll be more intent with the way I spend my time. I already know that my relationship with God is at the top of the list of things that need to be worked on. I haven’t been praying nearly like I should, it’s almost safe to say, I haven’t been praying. God hasn’t been at my center and I’ve been feeling off-balance because of it. I find myself listening to mainstream radio, becoming convicted by the lyric content  and turning on some CCM (Contemporary Christian Music). I find myself telling people I’ll pray for them and I never get around to officially praying for them so I’ll say a quick something in the car on my way to work. I pick up the Bible with the intent of reading but I set it down in another location and begin doing something else of less importance. It almost sounds like complacency but I’m not completely sure what the root of the problem is but I know that it starts with me.

But this post can’t feel completely doom and gloom because some beautiful things have come out of my twenties and I’d be remiss not to mention them. I was still trying to figure out who I was and where I wanted to go in life when I moved to Sevierville, TN to attend culinary school. I was young and ambitious and I knew that I needed to leave Oak Ridge if anything would ever happen for me. I loved living alone and having my own space to explore the details of who I am and what I wanted to be. I made some great friends along the way and I lost some friends along the way. Some people became estranged and that can feel a little overwhelming when I think about it but I try not to think about it.

I met my beautiful wife in my twenties and we’ll just leave the whole fighting cancer thing out for now. But she’s on of the best things that ever happened to me and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t feel as though I deserve her. I left Sevierville and moved to Knoxville and then moved to Nashville, which I would say is the best thing I’ve ever done. I love Nashville and I love that it’s a city that breathes and inspires creatives of all types. I’m not sure what it is I want still? I’m not sure if I should sit down and make a list of pros and cons or if I should just keep doing what I’m doing until that moment of clairvoyance takes place.

All I think I know is that I want my thirties to be better than my twenties. I want to love people more and I want to be fearless in seeking friendships. I want to have meaningful connections with people beyond good mornings and hellos. I want to find people who will be invested in knowing me the way that I want to know them. I want to find a church home and begin to plan for our future as parents and productive members of our community. We bought a home this year and I want our neighbors to know us and I want them to know Christ if they don’t already. I want to begin leaving a carbon footprint that’s worthy of taking credit for. I desire to be more organized in my thoughts and not feel so overwhelmed when I have multiple tasks. I want to live with less stress and I don’t want to dispute mundane details. I want to take advantage of beautiful weather and go for walks and hikes and explore the beauty of living in Tennessee. I want to live with the intention that I’ll leave a mark of positivity on every one that I come in contact with–a mark that will leave them wanting more out of life as well.

I’m looking forward to my thirties and it is my prayer that God will bless me with the health and ambition to accomplish all these things. And during the process, I’ll continue to strengthen my relationship with Him. Be blessed and have a happy Sunday.