No one talks about the son who stayed at home

I sat and talked with a friend the other day. We were talking about life, faith, and stories. As I shared about another friend of mine who has majorly turned his life around, he said “Joel, I’ve grown up my whole life in church, I’ve never partied, I never even touched alcohol until I was 21, I never did drugs, I’m not married, so I’ve never had sex, I’ve never majorly screwed up. I’ve always done exactly what the church has taught me to do. And I feel like that’s not good enough. Like I don’t have a story to tell.”

He paused for a moment and drew a breath as his eyes moistened. Then, with his voice quivering, continued,

“I hear people talk about all these people who are turning their life around, who used to be really bad, and everyone celebrates them. But here I am, and no one even mentions how well I’ve done at keeping all the things that Jesus commands and the church tells us. I feel like I’m not good enough, that I don’t have a story to tell, that I have nothing to say that is worth listening to.” Continue reading

United We Stand?

So many times, we christians are our own worst enemy. We judge, argue, call names, ostracize, alienate, and belittle others, over little things in the name of Jesus. But that is so wrong. Continue reading

Faith

In our world, especially the Christian world, we throw around this term “faith” a lot. You see it everywhere. Phrases like “just have faith”, “put your faith in Jesus”, or “it’s a matter of faith”…

But what is faith? Continue reading

Loyalty & Bravery

‎”You can trust us to stick to you through thick and thin–to the bitter end. And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours–closer than you yourself keep it. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are your friends, Frodo. Anyway: there it is. We know most of what Gandalf has told you. We know a good deal about the ring. We are terribly afraid–but we are coming with you; or following you like hounds.” ~ Meriadoc Brandybuck

I know I’ve talked about this before, but I forgot about this quote from the book series, The Lord of the Rings. I read it the other day, and it reminded me that loyalty and bravery go hand in hand. Continue reading

The Edge of Your Comfort Zone

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone”

I don’t really like discomfort. I don’t think anyone does.

Some of us find comfort in different things, so things that are uncomfortable for me, are very comfortable for others.

But life is boring when you are comfortable.

Think about it. If you sit in a big, comfy, chair all day, every day, what happens to you? You get fat. You become lethargic. Apathetic. You stop living. You die early.

Getting up and running or doing something physical isn’t comfortable. But it is so necessary for life.

The same is true of us mentally and spiritually. If we never get up and do something to exercise our brains, our spirit, our souls, then we become comfortable, and eventually we get spiritually fat, lethargic, apathetic, and lifeless.

Your life begins at the edge of your comfort zone. You need to get out beyond what you want to do, what you feel comfortable with.

Take a risk.

Do something dangerous.

Be wild.

Be crazy.

It’s the crazy ones who push to the edge of their comfort zone, and beyond, that will change the world.

The Death of Death

I love this video. This is the best video describing what the story of the cross and what it means for us. Sometimes we get so caught up in the religious symbol, and it becomes so common place for us, that we forget what the symbol originally was, and what it really means…

Hymns

This is an older post of mine, but a topic I’ve been thinking about for a while and rather than rehash it out again, I figured it would be better to just bring this post back to the forefront of my blog…

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Can I just say I love hymns? The style is older, but I love the words, so many of them have some of the best words for worship songs, but we don’t realize it because we get so focused on the fact that it is a hymn, and maybe it says thou and thee, but when you really stop to look at what is really being said, so many times they are so amazing, take “Be Thou My Vision” for instance, read and/or listen to the lyrics and really think about what it says… Continue reading

I Need a Good Cry… And a Solution

I don’t know how many of you know this, but I guess I need to take some time and be transparent about all of this stuff going on in my life, because trying to not get stressed about it, or not letting the stress show is getting tiring. So very tiring… (sorry if this post is more whining than normal, but I need to get this out) Continue reading

Commitment

Who know what a kamikaze pilot is?

A kamikaze pilot was a member of the Japanese air force, and his job was to take a bunch of bombs, fly to military bases, drop all his bombs, then crash himself into the base, doing more damage, but losing his life in the process.

Kamikaze pilots are only useful if they are committed to their mission. Leaders are the same way. You cannot have involvement without commitment and be effective. It goes with the territory. Continue reading

Birthday’s and Days off…

Hey gang…

So, yesterday was my birthday, and I took the day off so I could spend some time with friends and some time relaxing. And it was wonderful. I’m not big on my birthday, I mean, it’s not like I did anything that day, I just kinda popped out, so I usually make my birthday about others (specifically, my mom, she’s the one who carried me, gave birth to me, and had to deal with my shenanigans growing up…) Continue reading