Tag Archives: God

Like a Modern Man

13 Nov

The video above is exactly want I want to do after graduation: wake up, pull up my wool socks and hipster sweater, and go explore an isolated Icelandic paradise. The kid above is living the life I want to lead.

Into the Wild has ruined me – and every collegiate male, to be quite honest – in the sense that all I want to do is reconnect/connect for the first time ever with nature. Living in a suburb of Houston, and going off to school near Austin, I have never really had the chance to establish a relationship with the beauty of God’s creation. The only connections I have ever really made are with Apple products and shortcut routes to the Galleria.

For as long as I can remember my goals in life have been centered around moving to New York City, the complete antithesis of nature. I have wanted to be surrounded by mountains of steel and iron. I’ve wanted to hear the siren sound of subway cars instead of the whisper of a brook.  I have yearned for the call of booming ringtones instead of the call of the wild. But, as college graduation is merely a month away, I can’t help feeling that my inner Grizzly Adams is chanting to be released.

They say that what every man wants to do in life is to prove himself as a man. For me I feel like in order to do that I have to take a page from Alexander Supertramp’s diary and abandon all the materialistic things of this world and set forth on a journey into the aforementioned wild. I would avoid the berries of course.

(see ya later, society)

I am smart, though. I know that this is not really an option in today’s day and age. We can’t all lead the simplistic life that Bon Iver coos about. I can’t remember the last time that I went over an hour without looking at my iPhone, or using some sort of modern technology to alleviate the treacherous pain of my hard life (total sarcasm btw). But, still, is this a possibility? Has the modern man abandoned all hope of ever being able to return back to the wild? Has evolution moved so far ahead that there is no chance of ever turning back? Will the story of Mr. Supertramp simply be regarded as a fantastical film in the Walmart DVD bin, or will it be remembered as a historical hiccup in the evolution of the modern man? Maybe I’ve been listening to too much Fleet Foxes and Bon Iver, and this debate is only relevant in my head. Whatever the case, I’ll have to settle for envisioning myself vicariously through this little Iceland resident. Texas is far from the wild, unless you count H-E-B on a Sunday evening.

What are your thoughts, internet. Am I simply crazy for dreaming this way, or are there desires that you feel have become irrelevant in society now? I’d love to hear from you. And, again, remember to never eat the berries!

The Chosen One

11 Sep

There are instances in my life where I know that God truly wants me to be happy. There are instances in my life where I realize that Twitter truly is the wave of the future in social media. There are instances where the two meet and create something beautiful.

I had the extreme privilege honor excitement enthusiasm I’M GONNA SCREAM NOW BECAUSE I GET TO DO THIS pleasure of getting to write a guest/fan piece for Dark Horse Comics blog about the upcoming Buffy Season 9 series – hitting stands September 14th. I’ve been a huge fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer for years and after responding to a tweet by @DarkHorseComics asking for someone to write a post for their blog to get fans ampted for the new season, I knew I wanted this more than I wanted Anya and Xander to work out.

Here is the link to the post on Dark Horse’s blog site, or if you’re lazy and one click is one click too many, here is the post on my own blog.

To say that Buffy the Vampire Slayer has been a constant in my life would be an understatement. To say that Buffy the Vampire Slayer has been my guide book of what to do and not to do would be staking the truth square in the heart.

I truly discovered the town of Sunnydale in 2006 during my sophomore year of high school when I had casually bought the first season on DVD. I remember catching various flashes of random episodes when a babysitter my parents hired would come and sit for me. Parts of the show had stuck in my mind, eventually making me want to actually watch a full episode. I still get irked whenever Drusilla uses her fingernail to slit Kendra’s throat. It’s amazing how something you see when you are 7 years old can still give you the skivvies at 21.

After finishing the entire run of the series in less than a year (I sadly missed out on watching the show when it aired on the WB), I loved it so much that I wanted to go through the whole journey again. I decided then that each year I would watch the season that coincided with my own age. I watched season 3 during my senior year of high school at age 18. Season 5 I watched my sophomore year of college at age 20, and so on. It always seemed that no matter what situation was going on in Buffy, I could relate to it on every level. Feeling invisible certain days, wondering what my purpose was in life, always feeling like the Zeppo in my group of friends (Xander and I shared a special relationship), no matter what, Buffy was there to help guide me through adolescence. I continued this journey until my freshmen year of college when I found a group of friends that would voluntarily sit down and watch the series from the very beginning. Up until this point I had given up on convincing friends to watch the series—my failed attempt at explaining the metaphor and significance of Angel losing his soul after one true moment of happiness had humiliated me enough to not want to open up again.

From then on, Buffy became our way of bonding. The show helped open up conversations that would not be the typical of a I’m-a-freshmen-desperately-seeking-friends-and-a-sense-of-normality-in-my-life conversation that all freshmen have to go through. What Joss and Co. got so correct with the entire series is that, yes, high school is hell, but college is just as terrifying. Life never fully settles down into a warm, cozy, fuzzy blanket of safe. Your first day of college you may have your arm broken by the leader of a vampire gang, but by the end of the year, you may have channeled the spirit of the First Slayer to succeed in saving the world. Again.

Now that I am in the midst of my senior year of college I don’t have to be sad that once I finish season 7 my journey will be over. I now have the awesomeness that is the Season 8 comics. What I’ve loved about Season 8 so far is that the scope of “Sunnydale and the Scoobies” has grown by a factor of, like, a thousand and ten percent. The writers aren’t strapped into the confines of a 44-minute format with a strict budget. I mean, hello— Buffy flew, Buffy traveled to the future, Dawn blew up to the size of a Holiday Inn, Warren walked the earth with no skin, Buffy and Angel got it on so hard that they ripped holes in the universe, and Buffy is scaling the Golden Gate bridge on the new Season 9 cover! This is all possible because of the magic that lies in the medium of comics. And speaking of magic, Season 8 has also changed the entire world of Buffy, as we Whedonites know it. There is no more magic! I repeat, NO MORE MAGIC! Buffy the Vampire Slayer without magic is like Star Wars dismissing light sabers in a battle.

Stripping Buffy’s world of what it knows is going to be an interesting plot device going into Season 9. Just like life, things you know are stripped away; it’s how you deal with what comes next that really matters. And if I know Buffy and her gang, they will make it through. That has always been the underlining message of Buffy the Vampire Slayer – no matter what hell you go through, you will make it better and stronger than you were before.

Buffy Summers is growing up and so should the stories. I’m growing up and so should my stories. This girl has been with me through the key areas of my life and with the continuation of her life in Season 9, she will be for a long time to come.

Even brighter than the moon, moon, moon

6 Aug

Sanctification is a slow process, if it were easy it wouldn’t be worth it. A wise Aggie, currently abroad, skyped me that little nugget of advice this evening. That little Aggie is extremely nail-on-the-head correct.

At this point in my life, a 21-year-old college senior, my relationship with God shouldn’t be at its peak. I’m still beginning in this world and my relationship with God is too. It’s easier to preach this than to actually cement it in my brain. At this point in my life I feel like my relationship with God should look and feel like the 3:20 mark of this video.

Yeah, there’s no sparks shooting out of my chest right now. Yet, I feel like there should be!

My entire life I have played the game of comparison. I have always compared myself to other people: physically, emotionally, logically. When I hear about people who travel to Africa, or Guatemala, or, well, Christians really like Africa and shake with emotion at the mere mention of it – Africa, I get really paranoid. Why isn’t God calling me to go abroad? Why aren’t I running around the streets of Budapest spewing fireworks out of my chest while singing out the gospel to others? Why aren’t I making a difference? WHY AREN’T YOU USING ME GOD?!

In the farthest reaches of my mind I know that God has something planned for me. I know that God wants me to be happy and that He knows I want Him to use me for all His glory, no matter what that is. THAT is why this summer the game of comparison has suddenly ceased and desisted out of my mind. I wouldn’t say my current state of emotion is happy or sad, but rather it is that of content. It’s a great feeling to have actually, almost like tiny sparks are weakly igniting inside waiting to go boom, boom, boom.

So while I am not in Africa or making some grand gesture to physically show the strength of my relationship with God, I know that all is well in my relationship with Him.

Prayer for the future

13 Jun

First, Lord: Give me laughter. May the nasally-Jokeresque-cackle constantly be produced by my svelte throat.

Let the sound only be magnified by the amount of people that help to spread it. Have this booming uproar wear itself thin because of the never-ceasing echo it stirs.

Protect me, Lord, and guide me in the decisions I make after college. If my wish for one Skins night is granted, make sure I know my limits in alcohol guzzling, white boy dancing, lip locking, cocaine snorting, tricycle riding, bed jumping, glow stick shaking, sexy time making, mosh pit thrashing adolescence.

Lead me away from sin, Keystone beer, urban ghettos, Aéropostale tees, and Minnesota.

Keep my eyes ever on you. Let me not only see the beauty of this earth, but also the beauty of black women.

Let me count my blessings along with my calories every day. Give me the strength to resist the temptation of fast food, specifically McDonalds. The reminder that their chicken nuggets are made of crushed up bones, gizzards, and boullion cubes always in the forefront of my mind.

Lord, I ask that I read my Bible every evening. Not skimping on my time with you to watch the 16th re-run of The Real Housewives of Cornwall, Missouri or Top Chef: Infants.

Have me never hurt the ones I love most. Let them understand that whether it be a remark about their ever expanding waist size, or their ever retreating hair line or my running them over with my Chrysler PT Cruiser, it’s only because I truly care.

Give me a career that I want, Lord. A career I can be proud of. Allow me to strut into my high school reunion with the knowledge that the 2008 graduating class all know that I have buckets of money awaiting me in my Boeing 747, just waiting to be spent purchasing the entire cast of Entourage or the Eiffel Tower.

Finally, dear God, bring me love. The type of love that makes me want to jump out of a plane with no parachute. The type of love that I would endure a dual Fall Out Boy-Panic! At The Disco junior high cover band concert for. The type of love that brings me closer to You.

Oh, and the good knowledge to delete my Facebook once statuses like, “2nd colonoscopy this year, whudup!” begin to dominate.

Amen

Sprinting Towards The Savior

11 May

There are certain days, like today, where I am stuck at work while all of my friends are enjoying life outside of the compound that is the 3:45-6:00pm shift at Derrick Hall. I know, I know, who wants to read about a white boy complaining about how hard working a 2 hour shift is?

No one.

So I’m going to talk about something else instead.

Lately, I’ve been feeling a disconnection with God.

EEERRKK!!!

Yes, that loud screech you heard is the sound of my Saturn Vue smashing to a halt and swiftly turning about 180 in conversation. At the beginning of this semester my relationship with God was on the Hogwarts Express bound towards awesomeness. I had never felt so alive, so loved, and so happy in my life. The company I was keeping was only helping water and grow this watermelon sized lump of a feeling. However, in the last few days I’ve felt that the watermelon season is over, the train has screetched to a halt, the whick that held the fire in me has been extinguished between two fingers.

I hate to admit it, but I feel like God has left the building.

I know in my heart of hearts that this is not true. That this is one of those weeks that all Christians go through time and again. It sucks though. It truly, truly sucks. The thing I love about being a Christian and about being a part of God’s kingdom is that I always have someone with me. I am never alone. This week though, I have felt alone. I have been stuck in my head with only my negative thoughts. Again, it sucks. Today though, I decided to make a change. Right when I got off from my work shift I went for a jog. If you know me, you know I don’t jog. I can probably count on my right hand the number of times I have jogged this semester. Today though, I went jogging.

I needed to try and see if somewhere along that stretch of Post Road I could find God.

I did.

A little more than 5 paces into my run, I began to pray. The hardest prayer I’ve prayed in a long time. I asked God to give me the strength to help myself, to help others, to make this sinking feeling of loneliness go away. After that prayer (and chasing a chihauaua through a trailer park), it hit me. If God needs me to be in this depressive state to further his spirit in me, let me be in this depressive state.

With this realization, I sweatily went into this rundown graveyard that is near my apartment complex. I walked through the headstones and found a bench next to the Garcia’s plot. I sat down and began to thank God for letting me be able to feel the way I feel. I thanked him for letting me be sad, for letting me worry about others, for letting me be able to feel at all. If it weren’t for Him in my life, there would be no point in wanting to feel again.

This seems like an awkward place to leave things, but I don’t really know what else to say past all that.

A verse that has helped me some this week has been Psalm 37: 23-24

“The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand”