Tuesday, April 2, 2013

100th Entry!!! A Look Back...

I’ve made it to 100 entries!  Wow.  Crazy.  My first milestone.
This is not a pretty blog like many of my friend's work.  But - it’s a blog.  A journal of sorts.  When I began writing it, I was married.  I went through the painful process of divorce - and now am on the other side of it all.  It’s really interesting (on a personal note) to look back into the past.  I remember where I was and what I was doing when I wrote most of these.  Of course, a few I don’t remember writing at all.  Those are pretty cool too.  But - wow - strange...

I compiled a list of my favorites.  These were hard to choose, but I made an attempt.  I started out with 10, but kept finding little nuggets - so I’d add a few here an there.  I could have added more, but I held off.  There are 15 total in the first batch - and 7 in the honorable mentions.  I like more than that for sure, but these are a good batch for my first 100.  

I was considering adding a few that were less than good (downright awful! - haha) - but didn’t want to waste your - or my - time.  I tried to stay away from really recent ones too, but a few made the cut.  If they weren’t so recent - I would have probably added a few more.  

Anyway - if ya got time on your hands - maybe you’re bored - maybe you’re curious - click on the title of a blog - That’s a link to each individual entry.  I also included some other blogs that I read at the very bottom.

Now off to write the next 100! (well - after a little break - of course - and re-imagining it all over again.  ha!)

Hope all is well!  


Good News to All - I originally wrote this for a Young Life Newsletter and got a pretty good response.  In fact, someone said that I should write more often.  That’s actually why I started this blog - from that encouragement.  100 entries later - I still think this is one of the best ones I’ve written.  Short and to the point.  Seize the Day - was my first actual “blog” entry.  I was learning how to do navigate blogger - all that - and the topic was fitting.  I was “seizing the day” by writing.  Gosh - and such good memories of those days!  This is more of a personal favorite because of all that.  First blog - and great memories...

Fan Mail - One night, I randomly got a long message from someone I didn’t remember on Facebook.  I was shocked.  Completely shocked.  This is that email and my response.  Looking back - it’s HILARIOUS!! bahahaha.

Caught in the Act - Occasionally, I’ll read a story from the scriptures that I’ve read a million times - and something jumps out at me that I’d never seen before.  Often, it’s a controversial idea that contradicts a popular view of God that I’ve heard from the pulpit - and it’s right there - within the scriptures.  When I see it - I think, “how have I never seen this before???”  I usually laugh.  It happens quite often actually.  Here’s one of those - I love this one...

Christian Values - I hate the term “Christian Values.”  It has such awful connotations.  Christian “ethics” often lead people in the wrong direction, it’s frustrating.  So - I decided to write a play on words with this one - more about valuing others verses behavioral modification.  I don’t really know why - but I really like this one too.  God’s Judgment is another play on words that’s a pretty good... For What It’s Worth is another one that’s along those same lines...

Sucker Punch - I wrote this blog after I realized that my divorce was eminent.  I wrote it as a reminder to me - that someone actually cares.  I also wrote it as a reminder that life goes on.  I didn’t directly talk about my divorce in the blog, but the last line is how I was feeling.  And - yeah - this was that moment of knowing - the final nail in the coffin.  Sucker Punch... The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly was another one of those difficult days - but it came out so hopeful.  So good!  I had edited it a super long time ago, but it didn’t publish - for whatever reason - so it’s my most recent blog.  However, I wrote it over a year ago - two months before I signed for my divorce.  ouch.  I think I wrote this when I found out my I was going to sign the papers...

Sin Riddle - Someone inferred that I was going to hell because I thought the idea of “substitution” was a bit simplistic and misleading.  I felt condemned and unaccepted.  I’m going to hell?  Gosh - and I’m even considered an “insider” - I’m in the faith community!  Wow.  How must “outsiders” feel?  Helped me remember that feeling.  Christian arrogance is ugly.  I didn’t want to write this poem.  I resisted - but it came out anyway.  It’s my my response to those hurtful and condemning words.  If you get all the references within it - it’s about the harshest critique I could give the state of our institutional church.  It’s pretty harsh, but I’m goin‘ to hell anyway - so why not?  haha.  Not Knowing Any Different - is another poem I love that I wrote about ten years ago about a homeless shelter - it’s always convicting when I read it...

 F’ing Earthquake - I’ve written quite a few memory blogs.  This is one of the crazier ones.  Well - gosh - that’s not totally true - I’ve definitely had some crazy stories on par with this one.  But, still - it was far from normal.  One sweet memory that I didn’t include was staying in San Luis Obispo after everything had settled, and calling my dad at his work - a radio station.  Chuck, Bil, and I were interviewed live on the radio station back home about this crazy experience that we’d lived through.  We didn’t include the story that I share in this blog - but the overall experience was quite memorable - on multiple levels.  A Bad Moment of Profanity - is another fun memory that was pretty unbelievable.

Truth - I sat and listened to the sales pitch of an alter call at a Christian Conference and barely had the self control to not leave (let alone throw things).  The talk was awful - and painted a picture of a very conditional love - and the speaker tied God to that idea.  But worse.  A young and innocent kid was sitting behind me and stood up wanting to receive an invitation to follow Jesus.  A person in their group told the kid “Sit down!  You shouldn’t stand up unless your actually serious about all this!”  It was such an angry and mean voice - it caught me off guard.  It was also a great picture of God’s love!  haha.  umm...no.  I didn’t write about that incident, but I did write a little about that awful talk.  Truth was the result.

What a Miss! - This one’s quite recent, but is intriguing to me.  It’s so interesting when I say one thing, people conclude something completely different.  Many people jump to conclusions.  This is definitely a topic that’s been swimming around in my head a lot lately.  On top of that - after a particular conclusion is made, then a person can get put into a category - a stereotype - of people.  It’s really fascinating.  I recently wrote about gay marriage - very tongue and cheek (no pun intended - haha) and suddenly everyone and their mom were making conclusions about what kind of christian I am - all of that.  Some messaged me privately for fear of showing support.  haha.  Some had some serious questions or concerns.  Soooooo interesting.  I think people like to put other people into nice categories so they believe they can understand them - or can dismiss them if need be.  I could go on with this idea - but - yeah - it’s where my mind been swimming lately.  Very intriguing!

Perfection Problem - Sometimes I share my struggles about the writing process.  When I began writing this blog - I was too critical about everything I wrote, and this led me to not finish anything.  Or worse - I didn’t write at all.  With this blog, I forced myself to write.  I just put my thoughts out there - good, bad, or ugly.  Even recently - I forced myself to write daily - for Lent.  Talk about difficult!  After you read this entry - you’ll see how truly difficult that would be for me.  But, it’s gotten easier.  And I’m slowly progressing.  Slowly.  But - there’s progress.  Well - I hope, anyway.

Honorable Mentions

Take the Money or I’ll Blow Your F’ing Head Off - and Abandoning Father are a bit about the same thing.  They’re about the frustration of Christian Dogma - the type that’s often sold from the pulpit or in “evangelism”.  These only get honorable mentions because they’re both a bit too long (it’s difficult to condense these ideas) and they’re a bit argumentative.  I know that Christianity isn’t an argument - but I hear such wacky crap from the pulpit that I want to throw chairs sometimes.  These are also “inside the faith community” disagreements.  I truly believe God is bigger and greater than our opinions - so there’s hope for all of us.  Many people within the faith community would disagree with me about these ideas.  Actually - most people would!  haha.  And many would think I was walking a road towards hell.  But - I want truth, not dogma.  God is greater than the marketing sales pitch He’s become in many Christian circles.  I’m trying not to attack people - but ideas.  Bad ideas.  But people that hold onto bad ideas often get offended.  Then - I get judged to eternal burning in hell.  Amazing how loving Christians can be, don’t you think?  haha.

I often write about death too.  This is a tough subject.  But - there’s hope in the midst of tragedy - at least in my experience.  Here’s a few of my thoughts...  


Lastly - some shout outs:

Donald Miller  -  I wouldn’t have started blogging had it not been for Donald Miller.  His ideas are not always perfect - but he has some gems for sure.  The book - “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years” is one of my all time favorites - and introduced me to Bob Goff who wrote “Love Does” - another favorite.  I don’t know Donald Miller - but I have a picture with him from a conference, and act like we’re best friends.  haha 

Here’s some friends that have blogs too - always like to give a shout out:

Austin Thomas - The first time I met Austin was on my Christmas Tree Lot adventure - that I actually write about in one of my earlier memory blogs.  I haven’t written that part of the story yet - but it’s coming...

Trevor Ganz - I should have met Trevor a long time ago - but the timing wasn’t right because I moved.  We met years later working in Young Life together.  Good thoughts from him - he just doesn't write enough... haha

Heidi Redmond - I met Heidi when I worked at Sizzler - and she was this tiny little girl in a high chair.  And I’d tell her and her family riddles in between cleaning up tables.  She rocks...  Her brother is a really good friend of mine and is featured in  Super Hero Names - as well as many other future blogs.

Dane Johnson - I met Dane forever ago too.  He’s an awesome musician and is in a great band called The Music Room.  You can find links on his page.  His sister and I used to sing songs way back in the day - another lifetime ago.  I envy his traveling adventures...  

Kyle Bryant - Oh - wow - I have some of my biggest laughs with Kyle.  And he truly exemplifies living life to the fullest - Seizing the Day.  Watch his TED talk - it’ll get you off your butt and into living a better life!  Some of my sweetest memories are with Kyle.  I look forward to riding bikes with him soon!

****If you have a blog that I’m unaware of - link to it on the comment section.  I love adding new peeps to my list of morning reads!

1 comment:

  1. Jeremy!!! I just found your blog b/c Of what you wrote on donald miller's storyline this week. How fun to find it...read quite a few and enjoyed them...keep it up my friend and see you soon