I can’t really explain how crazy my life has been over the past year. My mom has been in and out of the hospital a few times dealing with chronic illnesses. I’ve been going hard at the whole long distance thing with the man I love for over a year now. I’ve dealt with roommate drama because of people not “getting along.” I’ve been going non-stop for a year straight…no breaks. I didn’t really get a Christmas break—I was sick and my mom was sick. And now it’s March and I just found out over a week ago that my grandmother in Germany passed away. I’ve not been able to communicate easily with my parents. And to add all of this in, the roommate that’s been keeping me up all night for a month with panic attacks just got admitted into the psych ward. I can’t really explain all of this. I really can’t. Life just kind of sucks really bad right now.
one more week until I’ll get to see your giddy face.
There are so many things I could write but I can’t even form words to express the gratitude I have towards him.
This place is where I fell in love.
Hand drawn using Wacom Tablet + Photoshop
When I’m in the storm, You remain good to me.
I want to smell the ocean again.
I want to fall asleep watching “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
I want to sit at the cross and see the islands.
I want to drive up the coast and take pictures.
I want to share good food with you.
I want to just see you. In person.
Through an entirely random turn of events, I found myself last night sitting with two of my closest friends, a new friend, and this beautiful man.
I had no idea that i would find myself in this spot, late on a Friday night, but that is just how God moves.
The plan was to head to downtown PHX to a worship night called “Renew.” The concept is for churches all around the PHX area to connect once a month and meet for a time of worship, fellowship, and the Gospel message. However, only hours before, I found myself down in the homeless shelter community of PHX. A two block area that I didn’t even know existed.
I was simply there to hand out sandwiches, bags of snacks, water, and talk with the homeless. An overwhelming experience for a first timer, I was glad to have my friends by my side. But ultimately, it was just a night where I handed food to the homeless. I didn’t see any lives get changed, and I most definitely didn’t get to hand a single Bible to anyone.
As we were leaving, though, we met up with a friend, who was reaching through the fence to talk to a man named Dwayne. We all shook his hand, and I found out that he loved Jesus. He stood there clutching on of his only possessions—his Bible. One thing led to another, and Dwayne is telling us about how he wants a future, and to turn his life around.
The next thing we know, we are driving our friends pick-up-truck to the church with Dwayne sitting shotgun. We sang with him, and there he stood. A homeless man who had found a spiritual home. He was filled with the Holy Spirit—something you would have to see in his actions that night to fully grasp. He was a beautiful, joyful, hopeful soul.
We took him to get food afterward, and ended up at one of PHX’s top rated coffee shops. Our friend was able to figure out a situation where a church could take him in for the night, and we pray as he begins his recovery of addictions and seeks reconciliation.
The most amazing thing was to see just how a man who was once hopeless on the streets could in the next moment be sitting in pews with people of all sorts of walks of life, simply worshiping Jesus.
This is the beauty of G R A C E .
I’m back in Phoenix and he’s still by the ocean.
That goodbye was not without tears, but being able to spend my last day of 2013 in this place with this man was one of the best moments of my year.
I miss your head.
I’m going insane because of how happy I am.
Distance is something that can either conquer you, or be conquered. It just takes a little bit more adventure than we tend to be used to.
Maybe someday we can even live in the same town.
Everyone says God has a sense of humor. There have only been a few times in my life I actually have said it an meant it. Most of the time, I get so wrapped up in life and I just get bitter. I get cold. Because sometimes life just sucks.
The past four to five months have been difficult to say the least. I lack a solid community, I lack good friendships, and frankly I just felt alone. I thought that moving away would be this amazing experience that God would use me in; well it wasn’t quite what I expected. I had drama for the first time in my entire life—and I lived with it…literally. And I found myself churchless and overwhelmed by friendships that lasted a week.
I planned my entire past four months around being home for Christmas, because to me it was a time that I would find rest. Peace. Sleep. Drama-free environments.
Well I came home only to be spending my days visiting in the hospital. Watching my loved one suffer through a chronic illness that has no end, no pattern, no mercy, and ultimately no solution. The weight of it hit me when they said, “Maybe God’s plan for me in life is to suffer…”
And I’m sitting here trying to create solutions for frustrations and strained relationships, but I’m at a loss for words.
Life never stops going, and it never will stop hurting.
But Jesus is the only one who doesn’t change, who doesn’t let you down, who won’t frustrate you, and who most definitely will not stop loving you for mistakes made. And the crazy thing is that He came and He died…for me.
God, maybe you do have a sense of humor, because your son died for the freakish mess of my life. And that’s pretty ridiculous.
When you feel as though there is nothing worth living for.
When you are tired of sickness and disease.
When you are daily torn down with words and eyes.
You are reminded of what is worth living for:
e t e r n i t y.
I want to live. I don’t want bitterness. I want to have joy.
It has been a really hard few months. But I cannot end now, because I have hope in Jesus.
One of the best weekends yet.
Even though there is
Sickness & Pain
There is hope.
On this beautiful night, in Your beautiful light, I can see.
Now I am lost here with You.
Hold out my hands, open my heart.
Miss this kid & miss this place.