Monday, December 29, 2008


I am in a state of flux right now.

This has nothing to do with this blog, though could definitely be a minor insignificant portion of my emotional complex right now.

I am changing, more and more awake and alive each day. But I've had some serious setbacks so far this Christmas break. I think that because I was in such a vibrant spiritual state of growth come end of november and beginning of december, ol' Lucifer got pissed off and decided to try to distract me and attack me. He definitely succeeded, and I had a major flesh vs. spirit breakdown. Praise be to the Lord for redeeming me from that though. He was pursuing me so hard...I finally gave in to Him and realized how dumb I was to even be using my fleshly sin-ridden mind for anything. He proved how he uses all things for my good when my sin, though detrimental to me, caused post-failure situations that brought lots of life and a lot of my inward change and thought. I learned things about myself I hadn't previously known, and I'm getting to know myself quite a bit better. I'm really a cool person, I'm finding, but more pervasive is that I'm very weak. Which is good, because the weaker I am, the more Christ's power and strength are used through me. The dilemma has changed slightly though, because now, though free of sin, I have lost a sense of intimacy and self-discipline with the Lord. I'm battling subconcsious feelings of apathy or selfishness. While a few weeks ago I'd be living in constant intimacy and worship with God, now I'm fighting to even remember God throughout the day.

So here I am - in the balance. Things have potential to change dramatically for the good in my life. But also I am prone to wasting time and losing that potential. So what can I do to make use of the rest of my time? I think firstly I need to practically spend time reading my bible. I've been out of rhythm for a while now. I need to establish a solid routine and spend lots more time with Him every day. That is the most important aspect of my life, and simply investing more time in it is the easiest way I know how to know Jesus better.

Sometimes I just wish He'd come back.

I want Him to just come back to earth now, the long awaited day when the sky opens and the clouds are rolled back. I amazing would it be? But that's not at all why I want him to come back. I want him to come back to bring restoration to this world, to make everything as it should be, and so that I could finally see the actual eradication of sin and death forever. I'm tired of striving and dealing with life stuff that is so involving and so girls, and my future, and my dreams. Jesus coming back would relieve me of any of that preoccupation or worry. And I could finally be DONE.

Right now I don't know...I just don't. I've been confused in life many times the past 2 months, now is no exception. I am having my heart pulled so one way, yet sometimes in another. I just don't know how someone can be so...right? Yet sometimes I turn from that beloved towards another, but only for a small amount of time before I'm wrested from it and pulled back. I worry that I could make a wrong decision and ruin what or who God has for me, yet I also want do go forward so strongly. I know though, that right now I can't. I cannot be involved in a relationship yet, and I don't want to. Though I long to have it, right now I need to be working towards fulfilling my dreams, working on my music and building the church. A relationship with a girl would be time, and that's how it's meant to be. I honestly can't wait. But right now, I don't think that's what God has for me. But as I type this, I also see things lined up so perfectly...and it makes me wonder just the opposite. Could I possibly be in relationship with someone and not be hindered from my dreams? I don't know. And BECAUSE I don't know, I have to wait on the Lord. I want to make this right. If it's what it's supposed to be that is. And to make it right, that requires patience. Yet also some determination at some go for the gold, so to speak. I don't have that at this moment. But there will come a time...

I'll just continue seeking the Lord in this. And you can see the results. Or feel them...depending on who you are.

It'll be good though.

Monday, December 22, 2008

What is hope? Where is righteousness? Where is strength? I sure don't see any right now.

Monday, December 1, 2008


James 4

Submit Yourselves to God
What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don't they come from your desires that battle within you? You want something but don't get it. You kill and covet, but you cannot have what you want. You quarrel and fight. You do not have, because you do not ask God. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

This passage came alive to me when I was reading at school today. The idea that 'the sole reason we have quarrels and fights with one another is that we want something but don't get' it is both groundbreaking and simple.

It's crazy to get to the roots of life, the very foundational theological and philosophical truths and ideas that make life life, and to see how everything works and why it works the way it does. I wrote the other day about how simple it is to have Joy in all circumstances and to be free of sin - keep your eyes focused on Jesus. And today, I see that any personal issues we have are simply there because we have needs that aren't being met by God. And not because He is depriving us of something we need, but because we aren't ASKING for and therefore RECIEVING the satisfaction for our needs.

What causes fights and quarrels among you? You want something but don't get it.

It's so true! We humans are way too focused on ourselves and meeting our selfish fleshly desires that we don't see the outstretched, open hand in front of us. And, on an even more embarrassing level, the people of God's church are so fixed on getting what they want, be it spiritual, emotional, or physical, thinking that spiritual rituals or good deeds will suffice, that we are blind to the God we claim to serve! I can't believe how embarrassed Christ must be of His bride when he sees us fighting amongst each other, quarreling over eternally trivial trivialities, missing the whole point of His sacrifice.

All we must do is focus on Jesus - see who He is and therefore who WE are, and then ask Him to satisfy our needs. I promise, He'll do it every time, as long as we're asking Him to give us more of Himself. Once we begin to actually ASK God to fulfill our battling desires, we'll lose a lot of church members' drama and win a lot of skeptics' hearts.

We're all in this together.

Sunday, November 30, 2008


I think that my personality is drawn towards isolation.

But not in that I am antisocial...I just always find my focus very narrow and very strong. It's why I'm easily distracted from God, easily occupied with something or someone or some idea. My focus is pretty difficult to grab, but when it is successfully arrested, I cannot clear my head.

This song has been circulating my head recently:

"Turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in his wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim in the light of his glory and grace."

It seems that if I am merely to affix my thoughts, my attentions, my concentration on ONE THING, then all my problems will go away. It's true, but it isn't easy. I love that God doesn't ask us to fight in the unending war against sin and our flesh. My earthly mindset usually defaults to that warring mentality, that all of life is one huge struggle in which I'm merely a boat at sea, afloat only from one wave to the next while in between I drown in self pity or in self consumption. Or I'm just salt in the snow, just melted and left behind all alone in the road. Either way, I'm constantly losing, and if I can just read my bible more or pray longer or not screw up, I'll win. But that mentality is wrong, it's no better than sheol. An open grave. A dead end.

The most arduous aspect of my life is that I can't seem to remember God's truths for long enough to apply them. It's like I get to the situation where I need to remember what's true most, and I collapse and just start thinking of myself's all sin.

When I can remember God's truths though....I really do win.
Honestly, I'm always winning. But I just don't see it that way for the majority of the time. I shouldn't have to be struggling against my flesh - Jesus ripped it all off of me when He took my punishment. I just have to remember that Jesus already won for me. I guess that's the whole idea of focus - always keeping in mind the truth that Jesus won. And I live in freedom and victory.

It's good to know all of that when I go into times of doubt or depression. Because I can very easily swing into a state of emotional relapse as long as the right factors are placed together...someone or something outside of myself does something I wasn't planning on. I get put in a position of check-mate. Good thing my Father can swipe the board.

So what am I to do? Just try to think about Jesus more? Maybe. Perhaps I need to worship and acknowledge him in every little thing I do. Worship him by how I type. Praise him by how I walk down the stairs. Rejoice in Him as I brush my teeth. Exalt him as I drink my water. Think about him while I watch a movie and glorify Him through my abilities. It's time for surrender.

Jesus, I turn my gaze and I FIX IT on you, Lord. You are now all I see, every move I make is for you, and only in you can I make it. I breathe because of you, I breathe for you. Let me just take ten minutes and look at your face. Jesus. Jesus. Jesus.

How beautiful is the King perfect peace, summed up by a love so perfect and flawless and impervious that He would be just as happy without me or earth or a milky way galaxy. He needs no one, yet chooses - out of his unmeasurable, unfathomable goodness - to extend the Love contained in the trinity to us. Now Love is in me. Now I can live for You.

Monday, November 24, 2008


You know sometimes I don't understand why people always say they want to leave so badly.

Everyone's always saying "I can't wait to get out of abilene, I hate this place, or I just can't wait to leave."

I think people, myself included, tend to get caught up in the mindset that once we leave, we're gonna be completely new people.

Because the people who say how much they can't wait to leave are also many times the ones who go on and on about how they want to make a difference, how they love people, and they want to reach people and see great things happen. It appears they think that by leaving they'll be new people that are unashamed of the gospel, un-apathetic, ready to see great change in their new environment. Do they seriously think that a change of location is equal to a change of heart?

Here's my thing: I want change, now - just like everyone else! But I don't want to say that and then go on and on about how I want to leave this city behind in the dust. I believe that as a bible believing lover of Jesus, my heart is compelled towards the place I am, here and now. I must be active in my home! In abilene. My heart is for God to do the amazing things He's doing at IHOP, and Hillsong, and Bill Johnson's church HERE. There's nothing wrong with going to some of these places for seasons to be equipped, experienced, and filled. But when the reason we're leaving our HOME is because we simply want those experiences for ourselves, we have become selfish, apathetic, cold, uncaring christians who are willing to disregard home for faraway experiences in comfort of that being the "accepted thing.". Laziness is the key word here - we are too lazy to bring IHOP and Hillsong to home...because, let's admit, it's far easier to go and have those experiences in their current natural environment than it is to fight for changing the atmosphere of our home and our surroundings. We can't leave these cities behind by copping out and jumping in on a powerful christian bandwagon faraway. Those bandwagons, like IHOP, started out as people doing the hard things to make change in their environment and circumstances, and the end results are obvious. Now they're so powerful that they're sweeping christians in along with them! I think it's about damn time Abilene had a bandwagon!

Sunday, November 23, 2008


it's saturday night!

and today was a very interesting, bad, awesome day! I did.....nothing, the entire afternoon, until me and blake longboarded for a long time. Then I did nothing for another hour before going to the saltzgabers' to eat/play risk. And that was obviously a freaking party. but the first half was so uneventful....I really REALLY think I need some self discipline, and fast. I mean, I don't need to fast (or maybe i do?). quickly is a better word. I should have (and needed to) read my bible earlier today but just didn't get around to it. procrastination and distraction. but no more.

OWL CITY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

I'm Done.

I've gotta do it nike style.

God, here as I sit upstairs, I know you're looking at me with so much affection and jealousy. I've been thinking about our relationship...and I realize things are getting serious. The thing is, I know you have so much awesome stuff planned out for me, but I do so many things that keep me from even seeing the amazing plans you have. I'm not gonna hinder myself from getting to You any more. I'm ready to give you everything. God, I know that what you have for me is infinitely better and more satisfying than anything else in creation or anything I can seek. I'm gonna seek you.

I think that God's got some floodgates right over my head, and I want him to dump Himself out on me...but it won't happen until the day I choose Him over myself. And that day is today. God you can have anything. It's all yours if you want it.

Why is surrender such a hard concept to get inside my head? Why are we humans so inherently stubborn and thick-skinned? Is that sin? I think that's probably it. How else could we be so supernaturally stubborn? Every day there's a new way to surrender myself to Him. In other words, I'm constantly finding new parts of my character or my life that aren't His. I'm keeping them for myself instead of giving Him control.

Jesus, please change me from who I've been lately. Cause I've been here far too long. I'm not sure, but I don't think I miss that life. But I know that I'm nothing without you.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I don't know what or why I'm writing right now...I have my thinking music playlist open and it's bringing back all sorts of memories. So I'm in a rather nostalgic mood. So I write.
I've come a long way since 2 years ago. I'm listening to shadowfeet by brooke fraser and it carries the imprint of last christmas, which in turn reminds me of my mom going through cancer. That was a bit of a difficult time in life. This song was my christmas gift to my mom during that period of time. I wanted her to have music that would uplift her and, after listening to it a lot at the time, would imprint the feelings she had during that time in her mind. She could go back and listen to this cd and think of how Great our God is for bringing her through the fire. And as I listen to all this music from 1, 2, even 3 years ago, it completely opens my eyes to remember how far God has brought me...

To the one who is perfecting me...
To the one who brought me through so many difficult times in life...
To the perfect One:

I give all of my praise.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Well, Chris is apparently confused as to the meaning of the title of this blog so I'll attempt to explain it simply. I LOVE songs that tell a story, especially something that I can relate to. I mean, I live for moments where I stumble upon the perfect song that completely parallels what I'm going through in life, something that speaks to me, and very much like a friend, comforts me. I think that jamie tworkowski got it right when he compared a song to a friend..."Stories wait for endings, but songs are brave things bold enough to sing when all they know is darkness," and so when my life looks bleak or stuff isn't going well for me, I can not only place all hope in God, but I can use music as a tool to help pull out of the hole I'm in. Worship music is crucial to my life. There's nothing more freeing for me than to turn on some good Hillsong upstairs, turn on the tree, hit the lights, and just go crazy and dance and worship God - put my emphasis on Him and take it off myself and my stupid blown-out-of-proportion problems. So my song is my life...this blog is a way to redefine things in my life, read between the lines, and understand it better. This collection of my writings (or typings) is the story inside my song. But the song really isn't mine anyways...God's the composer, and the performer, i just have the privelage to sing along...

Monday, September 29, 2008


well here's a quick little of right now I'm not obeying God like I should be. He's called me to do some things this semester that I've been slacking off on a little bit...but He's still good and he's not exactly beating me down for it. I admit, I'm a bit confused right now as far as life goes, but hey, it happens, and I don't need to make a huge deal out of it. I know God has everything under control, and that really is all that matters. He is good, the end. I just need to keep walking in the spirit. start learning a lil self discipline. Cause if I want to see great things happen, I need to be prepared. I see a lot of things going on that God is doing or is wanting to do, but how in the world do I bring that stuff here to earth? I certainly can't do it when I'm wallowing around in worldly worship or idolatry. I need to get my head up where it's supposed to be - in heaven. not here. because the longer I start thinking from the ground's viewpoint, the less I can see, and the more mistakes I start making. I need to see what God sees.

I LOVE this:

"Open our eyes to see the things that make Your heart cry. To be the church that you would desire. A light to be seen. Break down our pride and all the things we've built up inside - our earthly crowns and all our desires we lay at your feet."

I need to wake up and cast down the idols I've made...because I'm realizing I definitely have some, and I haven't dealt with them yet. I am putting hopes and dreams in places other than Jesus...satisfaction in dead-end creation.

It does not work.
It does not work.
It does not work.
It does not work.
It does not work.
It does not work.
It does not work.

How many times do I have to write or read that before I believe it to be true in my heart? It's true. I know that Jesus is better than anything else in this world.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

My Bio for national merit:

Sometimes at night I look at the billions of stars merely to remind myself that I am small. My life has been a difficult journey, an arduous struggle to remember that in all I do, I am nothing. My high school years have done more than just shape me into the unique character I am, allow me the opportunities I have been given, or simply give me some fun experiences; they have reminded me that the blessed life I have been given is neither deserved by me nor owed to me. These years should not be wasted on me, either.

Knowing my place and seeing things from God’s perspective are crucial to me. In the context of God’s plan, any talent or ability I have can only be credited to the grace of my creator. This causes me to put others before myself and to realize I am, in fact, only a small piece of the puzzle. Playing guitar unaccompanied is satisfying, but when complimented by the other instruments in my church’s praise band, I can both shine in my niche and provide the opportunity for others to excel in theirs. Likewise, my optimistic attitude and contagious joy don’t do much good when I’m alone but are a greater boon when I am teaching and “loving on” the elementary school kids at the after-school program of my church.

Undecided on a college major, or even a college choice, I continue to pray and weigh my options. I have been entrusted with wisdom and knowledge for a reason. With these blessings come great responsibilities, and I want a career that can channel every gift and talent I have so that I may serve others to my greatest extent. My passion for social justice leads me to want to do mission work during my college career or after. Furthermore, I want to attend a Christian leadership college in order to learn how to better serve the church.

Even so, my life is not centered about achievements or accomplishments as much as it is character. I am a man of my word. I live by the standard of absolute integrity in everything, from the biggest decision to the smallest detail. I strive to respect, love, and tolerate everyone unconditionally, knowing that I am undeserving of the unconditional love given to me. I am not insecure, but am confident in who I am, and though I value relaxation, I put an emphasis on hard work in all I do, making the most of what I’m given. Time is of utmost value to me, and when I have completed my life I want to have spent it wisely. I desire to leave a legacy of love and humility by taking responsibility in helping others while remembering that in the big picture I am nothing. As Helen Keller said, “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.” Just as there are billions of stars in the night sky, my light shines in the darkness as one of the billion. And I believe I can make this world just a little bit brighter.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The Power and Wisdom in Prayer

Recently God has imbued me with some fresh revelation on prayer. It has been over the course of a couple weeks, and hasn't been more than random realizations or thoughts at different times. All that being said, I'm just trying to firstly remember everything I've learned, and then simply organize it here. Hopefully I will eventually finish this blog...

I wonder what the world would look like if the bible were true.

Matthew 17:20
"He said to them, Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith like a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, Move from here to there, and it will move, and nothing will be impossible for you." (context)

Now, don't get me wrong, I believe the bible is 100% complete and true and faultless, but follow me for a second:
How many times have we prayed or heard someone pray for something radical to happen? How often have we heard prayers like "please save so-and-so's life", "please let me become such-and-such", even "please let me marry her".
Yet how many times have we seen such things happen?
If Jesus wasn't lying, then that means if we even have the smallest amount of faith, anything can happen.
But this isn't the case...that stuff doesn't happen that often. Because if it did, it means that all kinds of people would not have died, and everyone would have their dreams come true, and quite honestly a lot of mountains would be in different locations right now.

Do you see what I'm saying?

Take that verse literally. "If you have faith like the grain of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, move from here to there, and it will move." I'm pretty sure that the grain of a mustard seed is one of the smallest if not THE smallest seed in all of creation. And it's metaphorically representing our faith. So that means that you can have little to almost NO faith, yet if you do believe, you can pretty much make anything happen.

So, either the bible isn't 100% true, or we have absolutely no faith in the power prayer has.

I believe the latter is true. I know that sometimes I can pray with some authority and faith, but a lot of the rest of the time, I'm simply petitioning God, hoping He'll do something but not really believing anything WILL happen. Now, don't get me wrong, there's a place for "prayer and supplication, and making our requests made known to God", but I feel like if that's all we're doing, we aren't getting much done but airing our grievances and wishing upon a star.

When it comes to really interceding for things, praying for revival and change, praying for healing, or for some kind of huge God-movement, we need the power of prayer. We can wish for it to happen as much as we want...but until we put some faith into it, and believe not only that something CAN happen but that something WILL happen, I don't think much will happen.

I remember when God first revealed all of this to me (I think it was at church, or slam or something, and it hit me in a matter of seconds), I thought...well if I simply believe, there's all kinds of possibilities! I could pray for God to turn me into a chicken, or move the rocky mountains to abilene, or, in all seriousness, for God to make his presence physically known in the room with fire from the sky and wind from nowhere. And I do believe that that stuff could happen, even though right now I'm not feeling very authoritative or that i have the faith for that crazy stuff...but that brought me to the great balancing revelation:

Authoritative prayer ALWAYS starts with wisdom.

Realizing the power that is held in prayer...and that old testament miracles CAN happen...brings both great faith and encouragement as well as reverance, fear, and respect. Because an understanding of the power inside of us shows us that we CAN'T abuse it. And that it can cause a lot of harm. For example, let's say we're in a prayer meeting and nonchristians are there. I could pray for God to send his physical fire, glory, and presence down from heaven, but, let's say that in that moment God gives me the discernment not to ask for that. I don't necessarily understand at the time, but if I had prayed that, maybe it would have freaked the nonchristians out and they would have never believed or come back to a church. Or maybe it would have been too amazing and it would have physically blinded all of us. I just don't know. I can't shoot out prayers like a shotgun once I realize the far-reaching effects intercession has. I have to first ask God to give me wisdom I need, and then pray in the spirit - making sure my prayers and intercessions align with God's will. Great power comes with great responsibility.

so thats all I can spit out for right now...I'll add thoughts over time. give me yours and I can maybe come to a better more rounded view of how to use prayer. Let's believe though.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


It's easy to focus on the problem and push God to the back of our mind as our last resort for help.

I've done that a lot recently, but God has showed me a better way, through the imperfect man Mike Guglielmucci. He said that when we can learn to magnify and worship God, and choose what we magnify (when it would be easy to focus on the problem), and just lift him higher, bigger, stronger, more powerful (because that's what He is), we can see God for who he really is. it takes us to a place of clarity and peace. And we can focus on God. Focus is such a difficult skill to grasp, but I'm getting better every day.

Let's learn to put our attentions and affections solely on God. He's all I want anymore, really.

Saturday, September 6, 2008


So here I am, sitting upstairs as usual on a night like this, wanting to punch a baby. I'm an idolater, I'm judgemental, I'm a hypocrite, I'm weak, I'm poor, I'm capricious and stubborn, I'm insecure, I'm fearful........

no longer.

But the fucking sin keeps coming back into my life, and I am SICK of what it does to me and what it makes me do. I passionately LOATHE sin. God took me from point A and moved me up in altitude to point B, and Satan is somewhere in the middle contending for my soul to revert back to the ground, where it used to be. But I'm not gonna have one bit of that. Earlier today I kind of realized that I hate hanging out with some of my friends, and worse, I realized that a couple of people I've been hanging out with I don't really even like. It's crazy how God is (or maybe he's just using satan to) drawing me more towards friends from school that don't really love Jesus and away from the ones that sometimes do. Because He's teaching me a lot of compassion. I see the good in people. I see the potential of my dead friends, and I see what they COULD be. And you have no idea how badly I want them to get heart is really breaking apart over their blindness. it's killing me. That's so good though, now that I think about it. God is going to be doing huge things soon at my school and at my church. It's just funny how it all plays out.
Because today I woke up at 11:30 In Albany Texas, my hand dangling behind the bed clutching the headphones to an mp3 player I vaguely remember holding on to the night before, my heart feeling like it was somewhere else. I remember listening to music on the way home and kind of falling into a trance as I watched an airplane flying high in the sky, just wishing I could get away, feeling the arms of so many angels and true siblings lifting me up into the sky...towards heaven. You see, I had the worst day ever. I was with a lot of people I was frustrated with and they were all doing things that frustrated me. I did not want to be around a single one of them. I prayed several times that God would help me get over my inhibitions...but it was still so hard. The whole morning I spent in agony, wasting my time with them, waiting for them, judging them. I saw through every facade they put up and I could see so clearly what they were all trying to do by staying the night there in albany. Well most of it boiled down to one person, but I don't really want to talk about that, because it would be very wrong of me to. I'm not posting this on facebook because none of this part of my heart should be an advertised thing, but I still want the right people to have access to it so that when their trail crosses this marker it may lead them astray the path they're sleepwalking down. Now, as a sidenote, a lot of this crap can be chalked up to simply being around a group of people too long and too late. But because of the few that I'm thinking about, that's not the majority portion of my angst. The majority of my frustration is that when a girl likes a guy or a guy likes a girl, and they start devoting more than 1% of their attention to that, God gets screwed over. And no one wants to live for Jesus anymore, outside of the conveniences of their facilitated religious games or occasional holy spirit sprees. None of what I'm saying is absolute, but from what I see, it is true across the board around half the time. Of course, every time and every person it is different. But with the people I was was just what I thought it was. A lot of impressing, a lot of veiled intentions. A load of crap, if you ask me.
When is someone gonna be real, be transparent, and live their whole life for Jesus? It hasn't happened enough...
It was so good though, when I finally escaped to be able to hit drums and get away, even if only for a little while. And it was even better to be able to escape completely and worship Jesus in my car, repenting of my hard heart and judgemental thoughts. I just want to throw all this off me and RUN.
It all came back later that night though, when I ended up hanging out with everyone again. And the breaking point for me tonight was the fact that they wanted to watch a movie. A MOVIE. I have watched movies FAR too many recently. And all I see movies as right now are breeding grounds for flirtation. A complete waste of time! There was no way I was gonna stick around and endure through that...the valley of the shadow of the waste. Why doesn't anyone want to do things that are worthwhile anymore? Like....for example....being christians? You know, feeding the hungry, telling people about jesus, healing the sick. Oh, I forgot. movies.

I'm glad I left. God has blessed me through this hard as that is to grasp. I just know that I am sick of satan tripping me up and bringing me down over and over again. God must be doing something big in my life for me to be getting attacked this one knows the depth to which I've suffered the past week. Nor do they know the joy it has been. so paradoxial. but so true. I'm not perfect, God is, he's making me perfect, he has huge plans for me this semester, satan doesn't like it, it hurts, but i like it a lot. Jesus is lord. The end. I'm done focusing on this. Jesus is coming back...I can't wait.

(disclaimer...sorry for the profanity...I was really really REALLY mad at satan when I wrote this, and I don't think I'll change it now, even though it may offend you or rub you the wrong way. I don't use that kind of language. but this is, i guess an exception. To change it would be to not be 100% real and honest and transparent. And it would not be true to myself and what I was going through. so, sorry, but the f-word hard as it is for me not to edit.)

Sunday, August 31, 2008


I don't usually title blogs by an adjective of my condition, it is usually a summary of what is being said. But right now...I'm getting the typical down-syndrome that I commonly fall into. I don't think I'm the only one...

Life confuses me. Or maybe it's God that confuses me. I just don't get why I feel like crap half the time for no reason. I had a great morning! I was with all my friends in church! Maybe it's deeper the fact that even though I was with all my friends, I wasn't quite 'with' all of them...and though I was in church worshiping God, it was more of a routine redundancy than praise. It just sucks when I get like this though...because what starts so innocently can become so much bigger than it should be, far too quickly. I came home, and because of this state that I'm in, soon became very rude towards my mom. And I couldn't resolve it. So it keeps getting worse. This is my life. And when it's like this it sucks.

But here's where I start listening to what I'm saying and realize that I'm making a big deal out of nothing. And the music in the background slowly chips away at my old rusty coat of used epidermis so I can be new again. It's pretty simple, but it is powerful.

I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back.
The cross before me, the world behind me. No turning back.

I'm so unworthy. But still God loves me.

Reading back over the first part of what I wrote, I can really attest to both the power of God and the power of Satan. Because what I literally am getting out of as I type is definitely some oppression from the devil...and God's power is shown strong through it, in that He just pulled me out of the hole easier than I thought possible. haha this is awesome! I know it is God, and it feels amazing!!! I can worship now!

I really want God. And not the emotions attached with it. I am gonna confess something I realized this morning...I'm seeking things God gives a lot more than God himself. A heck of a lot more, really. And I don't realize most of the time that those things (awesome experiences in worship, joy or maybe more happiness, aah...I could name a lot more but my mind is going blank) are just byproducts of seeking God. It's all a matter of keeping my eyes on Jesus. Even when He's blessing me with a lot of other stuff.

Maker of the universe, broken for the sins of the earth.
All because of Your love...because of your cross my debt is paid.
Because of your blood my sins are washed away. Now all of my life I freely give. Because of your love I live.

Think about the cross...a lot of people get saved because they know Jesus died for them and they want heaven. Not hell. It's pretty basic. But when that becomes the point of the salvation (or maybe rather remains the point of the salvation) then people will turn to other things because they got what they wanted. But if they are to focus their eyes on Jesus and really learn how awesome He is, then they would have a relationship with Him and they'd get what they really wanted. That's what I want. A whole lot of Jesus.

Now, after that little detour let me say what I was gonna say before all that came to me - that now that I'm in a spirit of Joy and worship and I'm right with God again, since he pulled me out of satan's trap, everything looks way different. I just saw a simple picture here on the internet of a girl amidst children in africa and I was blown away by the beauty that lay therein. How amazing is our God that when He is with us he can make everything beautiful. We truly are blind. And when we are worshiping Him, walking in the spirit, that's the ONLY time we can see clearly. That is truth. Absolute. Don't take it as it is, understand that it's the only way. The ONLY time we can see clearly in life is when we're walking in the spirit.

The fullness of your grace is here with me. The richness of your beauty is all I see. The brightness of your glory has arrived. In your presence God, I'm completely satisfied. For you, I sing, I dance, I rejoice in this divine romance. I lift my heart and my hands to show my love...

good stuff.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Hillsong United Conference Day 2

What an incredible day. It started with "Your Name High", led by Jad Gilles (who is an exceptional worship leader!), and a slightly different group of people on the worship team...including Matt Crocker and Dylan Thomas. It was an amazing morning worship service. I was pleasantly surprised at how long every worship set was. Like for the first morning, they played at least 5 or so songs, followed by some announcements and then more songs. Brian Houston then spoke about taking your talents, or simply things in this world, and using them for the Glory of God. He used the analogy of the donkey Jesus rode on into Jerusalem, saying how the owners thought they owned this young, unexperienced donkey (like music to the world) but when Jesus was placed onto the donkey, it became something with value, purpose, and significance. Brian was very pirate-ish and super energetic/jolly. FANTASTIC! When he finished we had a lot more worship before a half hour break. Then, Joel Houston spoke about social was very moving. I definitely felt the Lord tugging on my life to giving away more of my fincances...but all the specifics are tentative and I'll need to pray into it all. Then we had lunch break. I stayed in the auditorium to hear about Hillsong International Leadership College, which honestly sounds pretty promising and very appealing. It's only $4000 a year or less...

Next we ate chick-fil-a on site and moved on to the 2 workshop sessions.

#1 that I went to was songwriting, with Brooke Ligertwood (formerly Fraser :)) and Joel Timothy Houston - very helpful. And then I stayed for "building a healthy worship" team, during the second session, and it was awesome. I have a ton of respect for the United crew after that. Then, we waited FOREVER for the night service to start. They opened the doors about a half an hour late. When the service finally commenced, they began with The Time Has Come, as well as a lot of other songs before the message started. Awesome awesome worship. Crishan (new youth pastor of Hillsong) delivered an amazing message, which was composed of video and almost was crazy. But I didn't experience it. I freaking fell asleep towards the beginning and Josh didn't wake me up until the very end. The bright side was that I woke up to the first song of the night's worship - How He Loves. It was phenomenal. Annie, the girl singer with United, has an amazing voice, and that song just was SO powerful! From that song on, the night was a blur of dancing, joy, flailing, and WORSHIP. And it was FANTASTIC. My highlights were, 1. when Brooke Ligertwood was singing You'll Come, and on the bridge where it says "Chains be broken, lives be healed, eyes be opened, Christ is revealed" she just went off about how this was intercession and it was us releasing things in heaven, and we sang it for a LONG time, and Brooke just started jumping around and yelling at the top of her lungs...then everyone cut out but the drummer, Brandon, who just did a sort of drum solo as we sung that part over and over again, 2. immediately following that when Joel led Shout Unto God, and they completely ROCKED...and everyone was going nuts, jumping and spinning around and screaming like crazy. The presence of God. Eventually they sang "With Everything". It was awesome. But I was sad that the conference was over...until they started You Deserve again, and had many more fast paced worship songs to go crazy in worship in until Joel finally ended the conference by singing Solution. It was all amazing. And I'm excited to play on wednesday now. That whole conference, particularly that last night of worship where I just felt a connection with the band and everyone else in the room as the spirit of God fell on us, is going to be a night that I won't ever forget. It was some of the most intense and some of the most intimate worship I've ever experienced. Praise God!!! We got all 10 sessions of the conference on I'll be sharing those a lot I reckon. Especially with Rick and the other youth pastors..and then the songwriting and worship team ones with Brenton and JK. It was all really rich teaching. Hopefully I'll get a few pictures soon. And hopefully Josh will add his freaking videos to facebook...though he probably won't because he's lazy sometimes. But I'm believing God that he will! haha

Hillsong United Conference Night 1

I write this from our Hilton hotel in Houston. It's across the street from NASA and our 8th story window looks out over a big lake/ it's pretty sweet. There is just no wi-fi here, which is why I'm using a pen and not a keyboard to write this (until now!). We drove to Waco and Houston, picked up tickets at the will call...and heard Joel Houston and the band practicing "With Everything". It was one of those moments where we all just stood there for a while and really kind of realized that the guys are right there...and we're hearing them live. It got us all pretty excited too. We then checked into our hotel, then went back to Grace Community Church and waited inside for a while. The halls were packed full of people as we waited for the doors to open. When they did, we entered into the HUGE 10,000 seat auditorium and sat down. When I got up to walk around, I found myself sort of starstruck left and right. Dylan Thomas passed me as I walked by Leeland's reserved section where Leeland's brother sat, talking to a couple fans. In the lobby, Matt Crocker was selling merch. I was half surprised no one recognized him and tried to talk to him. But, expectations rose the longer we waited in the auditorium. I couldn't wait any longer. Finally the lights dimmed as a video began playing on the three screens...the lights completely blew everyone away. The whole backdrop was completely made up of individual LED lights (a program called soft LED) that made the most amazing looking patterns. The video spoke of the lost and the lonely and how we are all one in christ, ending with the huge i-heart heart onstage turning red, red lights at the base of the projector screens "pulsing" like a heartbeat, and the entire backdrop lighting up as veins pumping blood to the heart. It was an incredible display. This is when United came onstage and began playing You Deserve, which rocked my toms off, and would have rocked socks off too had I been wearing some. Jonathan Dougless went crazy, and words can't fully describe how amazing United was live. The lights only complemented the intense, powerful worship being exuded from the stage. More amazing was the fact that as soon as they started playing, the spirit immediately and totally convicted me of areas in my life where I've been running from God, or just been too tangled in sin to escape. Places I haven't seen before as well as areas I've been well aware of. And along with this came a perfect peace that replaced shame and guilt and allowed me to truly worship and experience God for the first time in at least a week. From then on the experience was purely God...getting to glorify Him with my favorite musicians through my favorite songs. When Phil Dooley, former youth pastor of United, spoke, he further confirmed God's freedom in my life. The message was about how Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead despite preconceptions, or inconveniences, or discomforts that other people had (he stinketh much!). We finished with more worship that was both free and joyful. I can't wait to see what happens from a whole day of this if only a single service has already raised me from the dead in more than one area of my life. I am a new person, and I want change. Big change, and big stages. That's my calling.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Hillsong's eve

I'm up too late right now, considering that I'm having to get up at 7ish in the morning to get in the car and drive to houston. But I'm perfectly fine with that.

I think that I have an addiction to hillsong. I think that I am biased to certain bands and types of music due to my insane appreciation (i.e. love) of the music behind the songwriting of Joel Houston and Marty Sampson and Matt Crocker...and all the others. I mean, if you were to listen to the backing track (instrumentals, no singing) version of All of the Above, you would be blown away by the complexity and depth and creativity that goes into every part of every song. But thinking back to when I was just beginning to play guitar in a band and sort of shape my sound, I was heavily influenced by hillsong, much more than any other band, artist, group, whatever you want to call them. Michael Guy Chislett, a former guitarist of Hillsong, now guitarist of "The Academy Is..." is my biggest role model as far as tone and style of play goes. But even Joel Houston, though he doesn't play electric primarily, is a huge influence, and I admire his character; most of all his songwriting. So this weekend is gonna be a lot of Jesus...but also a lot of me being kinda starstruck. which I'm totally fine with :)

Anyhoo, since I know that this weekend is gonna be ridiculously amazing and life changing, I want to remember it all, and not forget a thing - which is why I'm planning on writing a bunch during it and after and before. I want to remember the whole experience and be able to kind of track God's movement in me. So expect a lot of new stuff here...not that there already hasn't been.

I am excited, but I know I'm not as excited as I should be. I don't think it's quite hit me yet...the whole thing. But I can't wait, and I'm expecting heaps from God...we'll just have to see what exactly happens!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Why I'm tired of people

Many people that I've talked to recently may be wondering why I have been telling them about how I'm sick of people...I think I just realized a piece of it, and it's so simple.

The first thing I wanna say though is what I have told people in the first place. Basically, I've been feelin kinda down for a while...and it's mainly because I'm a bit sick of people. I don't know exactly why, but the thing is, I'm sick of it. The problem is that everyone has really really selfish intentions for everything they do. I'm not immune, just to put a disclaimer out there. But I guess as soon as I started seeing more and more the intentions behind actions, I realize the depth of our fall. A large portion of my frustration is that I'm growing tired of my friends basing their actions (where they go, who they hang out with, what they do during an evening, who they talk to) on a certain person of the opposite sex. Again, I'm not innocent of this, but to see it for what it is is very eye opening. And one thing I saw in that tonight is that behaving in this manner subsequently, even subconciously sometimes, affects how one acts towards other friends. And it's all really fake.

Anyhow, the simple thing I realized tonight is that simply we are all insanely selfish. And it's a problem. But no one wants to confront others about their issues because of the fear that we're gonna be seen as intrusive or socially awkward. And so from this comes a nasty routine of bending one's wants and needs to a certain person, and even blurring the lines of friendship in order to get what one wants. And everyone has this problem, even the strongest of us.

What if we all became more transparent - what if we answered questions straight, without hiding anything, any intentions, any uncomfortable facts. And what if we were willing to ask really hard or awkward questions, and not water things down or shy away from what needs to be done?

God has really been teaching and showing me lately the benefits that lie with being single, or I guess He's rather been proving to me that what Paul says in 1 Corinthians 7 is true. Paul is right. There are a LOT of advantages to being unmarried (single) and not that many disadvantages (if you're not being tempted sexually). I think that having my attentions fully towards pleasing God, if they remain so, can be a HUGE advantage for this school year, particularly the first semester.

But man, are we selfish. So selfish. Think if we could change. What if we could be more like Christ?

Surely we can change.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Last days of summer

Well, today is Wednesday, August 20th, and I have only today and tomorrow until my summer days are over. Friday morning I leave to go to the hillsong conference (which I can't wait for!!!) and we'll get back sunday afternoon/evening. I have several things to get done by then, too, so I'm feeling semi stressed. I want to go to the business meeting tonight at beltway, get my hair cut, do student council stuff tomorrow morning, meet with Nathan Langlitz, work on a SLAM video Jacob Moore wants to do today, and finish working on the house; that's just some of the stuff I'm thinking of right now...

But there's more than that, also. I want to, in a way, let my life and my heart be purified before school starts. If my heart was a piece of pottery, I've been undergoing serious work for several months, but I've also taken time during those months to take matters into my own hands and basically shatter it on the ground....and then God has to pick it back up, and fix it, and work on it even more. That's where I feel I'm at right now. And change needs to happen. So I'm praying for God to simply place me on his potter's wheel and to keep molding me...I can't really ask for much else.

The main thing for me right now is making the most of these last days of freedom. I want to have some amazing JESUS memories before I start the next season...let's make that happen.

Hopefully I can have some time while we're in houston to sum up the two days of the hillsong conference, but that all depends on the amount of time I'll have to access a computer. But that's my plan anyways.

By the way, I just got Needtobreathe's debut album Daylight, and what can I say...I like it.

A clean slate...

Hello friends. Welcome to my blog.

I have 'blogged' extensively through facebook before now, and I thought about maybe posting my old stuff, but then I thought that this can be a sort of clean slate for me. I'll just start today on here. So this is real, this is me, this is new, and it's gonna be good. real good.