Run on E

Enough

Done

Complete

Finished 

Full

(I wish that would have made a sweet acronym). I talk about full life a lot. More than most other words. I’ve had a few conversations lately about full life. They go like this. 

Friend:”I messed up man”

Me:”I forgive you”

F:”no man, I failed”

Me:”I forgive you”

F:”thanks but I feel empty, lonely, and I have all these desires that keep being un met. I don’t believe God is good”

Me:”me too most days”

I am not sure we understand the idea of full life. Or fullness of life. Jesus says full life is in him.  He says if we seek first his kingdom we will have all things. Both of which I do not believe. 

I hated watching tv shows that kept you in suspense. “Tune in next week” or, “when we come back from comercial…” It’s amazingly aggravating. I’ll use the word hate.  I hate it.  The waiting is painful, but it is a part of the show. Isn’t it?

When I dream of full life I dream about nothing broken and nothing missing.  It’s the definition of shalom.  It’s a cool Hebrew word.  I feel smart talking about it.  But it’s beautiful.  Nothing broken. Nothing missing.  Nothing. 

I have a lie I believe how full life means perfect or without pain.  And I think this is what screws up my mind.  I’ve had a lot of experiences in my life that leave me empty. They suck, but could these feelings be part of life?  Can they be beautiful?  You can’t leave a feeling like emptiness or lonely out of the definition of full life, can you?  I believe Jesus meant that. Full life encompasses all and we can’t leave anything out.  Nothing missing. 

Full life: love, grace, peace, justice, mercy, beauty, food, laughter, adventure, friends, family, and…..

Pain, suffering, lessons, obedience, patience, quiet, loss, grieving, trials, hurt, tears. 

It is all in the fullness.  We can’t live hoping full life is only good. We don’t get to choose what we feel, but we do get to choose how we react.  Can we rely on Jesus to comfort, and show us where they fit in the realm of fullness? How can we take a step towards full life today?  We do not need to run away from pain, but give pain it’s place in the shalom of life. 

Can we draw close enough to Jesus in order to weather these storms?  Can we give hard emotions and emptiness their place in full life?  We don’t have to like it, or run from it, but take it and see where it falls in life as a whole? 

May we be complete today, lacking nothing. Even if it means having emptiness?  May we strive for shalom and accept all of life. 

Love 

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My turn?

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I feel like a fraud. 

Not many ideas I have are mine. 

I was called wise last night, and I didn’t like it. I am not the wise one, either my mentor taught me, or I found it in a book. These troughts are usually spurred on by an outside entity.  Maybe a book I am reading, maybe a conversation, maybe a podcast, but they are hardly my own.

“When will it be my turn?”

I have used this sentence more than I can imagine.  “When is it my turn”, to swing on the swing, drive the car,  pick the restaurant, get the girl, buy a house….  It is endless.  It is almost a grass is greener type of wonder.  I said it a lot growing up.  Impatience is genetic.  We want what we want, and we want it now. 

Im not sure what your “turn” is, or what you are hoping and waiting for, but I have some thoughts.  I don’t know if they are mine, or I got them in a book, but I am writing them now. 

Hope is good, waiting in hope is best, pure hope is hard to find.  I am not talking about your personal hopes a dreams, but more of a pure hope.  I think we all know if we are hoping for the right thing or not.  We know by what it does in our heads.  If it takes your time, your space, your thoughts, your worries, your anxiety, it is probably impure, and hopeless.  Is what you hope for going to bring you fullness? 

I keep putting my hope and trust in hopes that will leave me empty.  I do not think they are bad to hope for, but I do believe they will crush me at some point.  Hoping for a relationship is like asking “When is my turn”.  It is good, but it can’t be all I want.  It can’t consume me.  It is as if we are caught up in the destination and reject the journey.  And so I have been sitting, and trying to capture pure hope.   

Most of the reasons I want a relationship are purely selfish.  When I take a serious look at my life and what I hope for, it turns out to be selfish.  Selfish reasons are not all that bad, but they do not bring fullness of life.  They usually lead to death.  Death of my happiness, death of the present, and death of my trust and focus on Christ. 

And so I pray. 

Center my thoughts. 

Regain a balance. 

Balance

That might be the key. 

Key to life, key to happiness, key to love and life. 

Balance. 

Are your prayers centered on pure hope?  Or, are you wanting your “Turn” in life?  Or can we try to want what gives us fullness of life?  I want to be more patient.  I want to be full of trust, and hope.  Pure hope.  Hope in Jesus.  I want to dwell on who He is, what He did, and who He calls me to be.  I want my mind to be at peace with all of the directions my flesh pulls it.  Can I be someone who can have human desires, give those desires there place in my life, balance it out, and still be grounded and full of life? 

Maybe soon I will have thoughts, and wisdom that is my own.  Maybe soon I will understand what pure hope is?  Maybe soon I will have patience?  Maybe soon I will hear Jesus asking, “When is it my turn?”?  I believe he keeps asking every day.  Every hour.  “Trevor, When is it going to be my turn to be enough for you? Will you let me be enough for you today?” 

Ok, I will try today.  Not sure about tomorrow, but today, I will try. 

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Spiritual Braggart

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I sit in my office

Perplexed

A little nervous

Anxious maybe

The strange part is how I don’t know why

I do not have a test or a conversation coming

I don’t have hurt feelings, or a lingering text

So, I sit and type

I have realized something about myself that is hard to admit.  I also do not want to become a blogger that just destroys himself over and over again online.  I am no martyr, or even close.  I am just a guy.  I live a pretty good life.  Actually I live a great life.  All of my problems are first world.  Every once and a while I can’t afford groceries, but I have a college degree and plenty of people who love me.  But, I still realized something. 

I’ve realized this many times before, but before these last few months I would brush it aside.  I would say, “not today Lord”.  This realization has to do with intimacy.  Not with humans, and not sexual.  Just intimacy with Jesus.  Here is what I know. 

I find myself wanting to boast.  I want to share what Jesus has been doing in my life, and all the ways I have been being used, or serving.  I catch myself wanting to proclaim it from the roof tops.  I catch myself mid sentence.  I start talking, shrug it off, and I keep it.  This is a good thing.  I have been learning how to filter my personal desire for reciprocated love for sacrificial intimacy.  I know you may not understand that last sentence, but I will try to explain it further. 

We have moments in life that are meant for us.  Not anyone else, but us.  And by us I mean you and Jesus.  They are supposed to be intimate.  They are not to be shared.  I do not believe we are to go around and express all the ways we trust, serve, give, and bless.  All though I may be seen as a teacher, or a mentor, some of life is not meant to be shared.  Can we do this?  Do we understand?  Do I get it? 

Most of the time I only want to share so others can see how great I am.  My honest side shares this, but my dishonest side wants to justify it.  We loose intimacy with Christ when we boast.  We loose intimacy and trust with each other when we share every detail of our conversations and lives with others.  I want pure intimacy, and to have that, I believe, there are things meant for you and Jesus alone.  Maybe I am not doing a good job of explaining.  Maybe I am still trying to understand this idea?  But when I have caught myself, sacrificial intimacy in its purest form gives light to full life, and I find my flesh desires being diminished. 

I’m sure I will be on this struggle bus for my whole life, but why not try? 

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Times Up

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I am a “when guy”

Not so much a “what if guy”, but a “when guy”

Maybe you’re like me. 

I can’t seem to let truth guide me, or reality set in.

I grew up on Saturday morning cartoons, and comedy central.  My nannies all had stand up hours, and special powers.  I turned them off when I wanted, and I watched them when I needed.  I am not saying my parents weren’t around, I am saying I trusted the television more than their words.  My mom usually worked late, and from the moment school was out until my mom came home, I was free.  We didn’t have cell phones, we didn’t have easy access accountability, and I seem to remember almost burning the house down a few times.  Literally.  I studied television, I studied the art of storytelling, and I studied ways to be fake.  For a few years of my life I thought I would become a stand up comic.

“When” guided all my thoughts, dreams, and aspirations.  Everything circled around the idea of “When”. 

It begins to breed false hope.  It is a great idol maker, and it will keep you from living life now.  “When” I get enough money then I will give it away…  “When” I get running shoes I will start running… “When” I get a car I will have freedom… “When” I get a relationship I will be complete… “When” I get a better body they will like me…

“When” keeps us from living. 

I seem to focus on results, not the journey.  I want results, but I don’t want the pain, suffering, or growth along the way.  I want to be fit but I don’t want the lactic acid build up.  I want to own a home, but I don’t want to pay for it.  I wan’t a relationship but I don’t want the work (Like having long conversations about nothing…).  It is as if I like the idea of all these things, but I am not willing to do anything for them.  I just keep waiting for “When” it all happens. 

Jesus had disciples who kept waiting for their “when” moments.  “When” you show us miracles we will follow you.  They were waiting for mountain top glory, but still hesitant to walk with Him in the valley.  Many left when He was crushed.  Most couldn’t stay up to pray.  And, so do I.  I’ve been thinking about His disciples and what they were called to do.  They were charged with telling people about Jesus.  Nothing more, nothing less.  They don’t seem to be concerned with much of the circumstances that concern us.  They lived together, they ate together, they prayed together, and they went out, day in and day out telling of what Jesus did and is continuing to do.  And they were content.  They started to understand how “when” is “now”.

I want to stop pretending.  I want to fully trust, today.  Not half hearted trust, but giving away control and not waiting until tomorrow.  Can we begin to be more generous now?  Can we begin to pray honestly today?  (Not pray what we think we want God or others to hear come out of our mouths).  I am not sure what you may be waiting for, or what your “When” is, but take note.  “When” stops us from living today.  We get caught up in ideas.  “When” I have this or that then my life will finally happen.  All of those are lies.  Life happens right now.  Do not let life pass by.  Go today. 

Begin to take back your thoughts.  Begin to love extravagantly.  Do not hesitate on moments that can take your breath away.  Encourage someone, write someone a letter, make a phone call, ask for forgiveness, confess your sin, and try to follow Jesus today.  Try to give him control.  Try to believe.  Let the “when” stop, and the “now” begin. 

What do you think?

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Some call it hypocrisy. I call it fear.

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My life seems to have revolving themes.
These themes circle, wait for me to get on, and continue around if I miss the opportunity. The themes include the same ideas, the same consciousness, and the same flow.  These themes seem to include similar tones, mixed with different emotions, and it all waits for me to catch it.  At times I feel as if there is a cosmic joke playing out.  The universe keeps waiting for me to see how I am wearing my shirt inside out.  But like a stubborn male, I don’t normally listen.  I do not believe the ideas, concerns, or emotions.  I stay confused in my head, and the results are worry, stress, anxiety, fear, and… Unsaid words. 

How do I handle this?  How should I do it?  What should I say to them? There has to be someone better for the job?  For the most part I do not really know.  I am blind myself.  But I still give advice, and ironically it is usually what I need to hear.  I can sit and give advice, and while listening to what I am saying, I don’t do it. 

Some call it hypocrisy.  I call it fear. 

I’ve caught one of these illusive themes.  I fear rejection.  I want people to like me.  To know me, and to say good things about me.  I fear uncomfortable situations.  I run from uncomfortable conversations, and uncomfortable people.  I get nervous going to meet with my mentor, or my best friends.  (Not because they will reject me, but I can put on a show)  I know they are going to ask me hard questions.  I also realize I know how to answer there questions.  I know how to fake it.  I know how to seem interested or smart.  I know how to react.  I know how to put on a good front.  So, there in lies my reality. 

I am driven by fear 

fear of rejection

fear of humiliation

but most of all

(as hard as this is to say)

I fear myself. 

I am afraid to get to know myself.  I do not want to see who I really am.  I do not want to get to know inward Trevor.  I am afraid of what I will find.  I am afraid of who I will see.  I am afraid of not liking myself.  I’m afraid I will have to tell people the truth.  I am afraid some will reject me.  I am afraid life will not go the way I want it.  I am afraid my desires are not God’s desires. 

I was with some friends trying a new way to pray.  We sat, as if we were in the presence of God himself, and we just sat(no requests).  It was silent, we read some verses about who God is, and I was reminded.  It hit me like a brick against my head.  Tears started to develop, but thats as far as they went.  I heard something say “you are distracted”.  My fears, my desires, my lusts, my, me, I get directly in the way of Jesus.  I get in the way of being with him.  I distract myself with my own made up fears, lies I listen to, and I do not trust.  Mostly because I am usually more smart than God.  I am stronger than He is.  I know what is best for me and my life.  I know how to handle myself.   

Jesus says Do not be afraid

He says I am with you always

He will never leave us

Jesus is for us

He will never forsake us

We are Sons and Daughters

We are more than conquerors

These are truth

So I will begin to like my inward self.  I will begin to trust Jesus more.  I will get on and rely on these ideas and themes God keeps shouting at me.  I can do it today.  I can pray today.  I can put good voices in my head today.  I don’t know about tomorrow, but as for today, I will.  There is nothing as great as trusting Jesus, today.  He is good today.  He is enough today.  I can be honest and real today. 

Will you?

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My insides

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I have a few Yoda type people in my life.  Not sure if you do too?  Mine is even Yoda sized….  Not really, but the way He guides me, builds me, and rebukes me makes me better every time we meet. 

He said I need to live more in the grey. 

I was pretty sure I already live in the grey. 

He is usually right, and like Yoda, I don’t know what he means.  Lately I have been afraid and alone.  Maybe you are not like me, but I have been going through a book which makes me want to curl up and die.  In a good way.  But it has been revealing my struggles I don’t realize are struggles. 

I am afraid people will see me for who I really am.  I am wounded, a monster at times, and I am selfishly ruled by fear.  I do not trust people to see past my mistakes, or  to see any goodness through my exterior false facades.  I do not believe people will like me unless I make them laugh, or smile.  I don’t believe half of the population will like me because of my body.  I find flaws in them before they can find flaws in me.  I pick them apart before they can do it to me.  I do this to girls so when they stop having feelings for me I can tell myself all the bad parts of them that I didn’t like anyways.  I make sure I find every flaw, defect, and pet peeve I don’t like so I can have an excuse not to like them.  It is the first thing I do when I come to almost any person.  I do this excessively.  I do not let people be people first.  I find all that is wrong with them, assess it all, make up my mind about them and why they do certain things or act in particular ways.  And it then begins to be hard to get a different outlook.  I do not see them as people, but I see them as a means.  A means for me to feel good about myself.  A means to make me feel good or pleasure.  These are my black and white areas.  This is what I believe my mentor meant.  I believe he want’s me to live more in the grey of life.  I want to stop putting people into categories, or classifying them a certain way.  I am currently working on all these areas.  These are all thoughts I am trying to stop and rebuke.  I want, and I need to serve all people, regardless, love them, regardless, bless them, weather they will ever return the favor.  Risk bigger Trevor.  Risk being hurt.  Risk feeling loss.  Risk feeling pain, it will only make you what you want to become.

I’ve recently lost a bit of weight.  Mostly by anxiety and caffein, but still.  I have been hitting this area of my life really hard.  Running a ton, hiking, eating right ish, and trying.  My mentor asked why I don’t try as hard in other areas of my life as my physical body.  And well…  I am not sure.  Paul tells us to work out our salvation with fear and trembling.  Why is it so hard to pursuit God?  Why is it so difficult to believe and to Trust?  Why am I not able to hand over, give away, pray, and believe?  I don’t know.  But I want to try. 

This thought just happend while writing this:

Trevor, don’t stop typing because you just saw someone looking at you and now your mind is wondering about what you believe they were thinking.  It has no meaning if they think I am good at typing, or if they know about what I do for a living or not.  So what if I have something on my face, or how I am not matching…  I need to be content in being myself.

I am afraid.  My life is controlled by fear.  I do not want you to see my real self.  Not my ability to play some character I believe I should be playing.  I don’t need to be anything other than who I am.  I don’t need to be funny.  I don’t need to be beautiful or the most attractive person.  I will never be.  I will and can only be me.  I can only be who God has created me to be right now.  I can’t be what I believe other people will like, adore, love, laugh with, but I know this takes time.  Most days I like putting on the “act”.  I like believing in the fantasy of the faces I have been promoting for years.  I have grown to love that person.  I do not love the person I am on the outside.  I am a scared male who plays a strong spiritual man on TV.  I am scared to let people into my inner life.  Scared to show people my flaws.  Scared to let people love me and show me how to love.  I am scared to have the wrong answer.  Scared people will see I don’t have it all together. 

Maybe you can help.  Maybe we can all try this.  Can I believe differently?  Can I see myself differently?  Can I change and let someone get close to me?  I guess I can at least give it a shot.  Not everything has to go the way I plan or see fit.

So, I will try to put some grey on.  No one sees the world the way I see it.  Maybe I can stop putting words in other peoples mouths.  Maybe I can be real and authentic.  Maybe people will like me regardless.  Maybe people will love me with or without a nice body.  (Still going for the V to the D look tho)!

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Hind sight


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I just found an old journal.  It is really crazy reading an old journal.  I’ve seen this thing in my room for years.  I thought it was empty and I just moved it around from open spot to open spot.  A simple dust collector.  But then I opened it…

We forget simple days, beautiful sunsets, and some of the hard days.  Or, at least I do. 

Journal entry: 2009

(Day of solitude number 2)

“Started out today walking through this huge tunnel.  You could see the other side, but the light was small.  It was about the size of a house door.  As I kept walking towards the light I noticed pools of water.  You could easily take a wrong step and be waist deep into ice cold water.  The path was slim and kept getting smaller as it twisted and turned.  The tunnel started getting more cold towards the middle, and the light started to fade away.  You could not see as easily as you could in the beginning.  The pools of water were getting deeper.  I began to notice how the light would shine on the pools of water, but not the path.  It was illuminating the danger, and nothing else.  Every so often it would be so dark I couldn’t see anything. I held my hand up to my face but it wasn’t visible.  My walk turned into a shuffle, and my mind started to race.  Are there bats? Will I die?  Can I survive?  What if I die? Who will find me? Do I have enough food, or water?  Who will speak at my funeral?  I kept shuffling along, my right foot would wander, hit a puddle or two, but when I focused on the light I was able to keep going.  The light kept me going.  I put my head down, focused on what the light revealed and it became more and more bright towards the end.  I realized how important focus and trust is.  When I didn’t trust the light I fell in the water.  When I slowed down, refocused on what the light was revealing, I stayed on the right path.”

It is crazy what you can learn, and so easily forget.  Not sure what this may mean for you today, but I hope we can stay focused.  Look back on your life.  Look back on what you thought would bring you life, and what is truly bringing you life today.  What is our focus on?  Are we focused on pain, hurt, or circumstances? 

I put my foot in my mouth all the time.  I wish I could stop.  A friend of mine came to me to tell me how I make them feel.  It isn’t always good.  And sometimes I make them feel like less of a human, or how they are not smart, and do not have good ideas.  I come off as a know it all, or how my way is the only way.  I had no idea this was still part of who I was.  The beautiful part is how they revealed it all to me.  It was gentle.  It was positive, and I needed to hear it.  I want to stop being this person.  It is a small version of my old self.  It’s a version I want to cut off and throw into the fire.  But my friend lit up my darkness.  It was a form of Love.  I was able to see the puddle I was in.  I was able to stand up and try and get on the path again. 

Look back, see where you have been, find some old journals, and maybe we can understand how faithful God is.  Maybe there is hope in Jesus.  Maybe there is forgiveness in His grace.  Maybe we can see how we have grown, and how Jesus does care about our lives?

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