The Christian Campus Virus

We were talking about it last night. There’s a pervasive virus that sweeps across Christian campuses, and I think it’s tied in greatly with the Gen-Y mindset along with this overt dedication to being principled. I’ve explained it once, and here it is again:

…I want a girl who loves silly, offbeat humor, that’d really think it was cute if I did whacked-out romantic stuff. Like write an LFO song dedicated to her (telephone poles, Dinty Moore beef stew / I’m glad I found a girl like you). I want a happy love. I think about it, and the loves I’ve had have been things like superficial, overly deep and probing, and just plain depressing. Not really fun, not really enjoyable. It’s always felt like work to make a relationship. And for the longest time I guess… well, I don’t know what I thought, but I’m tired of what I did think. I’m tired of not being off the cuff, jumping around, just BEING FUN. You don’t get too much of that at Grove City, in my experience. You ask a girl out, and either she’s freaked out because she thinks you want to get married, or thinks you want to get married and is all over that, when hey, you just wanted coffee and a smile or two. And I’m almost sure there’s guys like that too. Either way, it sucks that a guy and a girl can’t get together to enjoy themselves without finding a free weekend to get married in the chapel.

Almost 2 years it’s the same thing. You can’t take a girl out for coffee without having a game plan for years. You can’t just be sweet and kind without having to drop back and punt things you’re uncomfortable with. If I want to make you dinner, I do it because I’m having fun. I want five dates to figure out the next five dates, not to marry you. The time will come for the purpose and for the seriousness, but relax and enjoy life for even the smallest moment without extra pretense.

I’m just frustrated by it. All of my relationships on this campus sans one ended on that note – that there was an inability to commit to something that had no need to be committed to yet.

We’ll see what happens in the next semester, but as for me, I’m going to just throw it all up into the air and let God just direct the path – as seriously or not as He wants.


Life is funny. You get twisted and bent and created and recreated and destroyed promptly afterwards. You learn and forget, relearn and remember to forget again. You fight God so that he’ll give you his job when you don’t really want it, but you keep telling yourself you’re bigger and better and faster than what He’s doing. And you take it over. Ambling along. And then you realize you only took over what you were given anyway. The best laid plans of mice and men, after all.


You Are 28 Years Old


Under 12: You are a kid at heart. You still have an optimistic life view – and you look at the world with awe.

13-19: You are a teenager at heart. You question authority and are still trying to find your place in this world.

20-29: You are a twentysomething at heart. You feel excited about what’s to come… love, work, and new experiences.

30-39: You are a thirtysomething at heart. You’ve had a taste of success and true love, but you want more!

40+: You are a mature adult. You’ve been through most of the ups and downs of life already. Now you get to sit back and relax.

What will you do with the dream?

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of captivity. But one hundred years later, we must face the tragic fact that the Negro is still not free.

One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land.

So we have come here today to dramatize an appalling condition. In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir.

This note was a promise that all men would be guaranteed the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check which has come back marked “insufficient funds.” But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation.

So we have come to cash this check — a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to open the doors of opportunity to all of God’s children. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment and to underestimate the determination of the Negro. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights.

The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges. But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. we must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny and their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone. And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be satisfied?” we can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair. I say to you today, my friends, that in spite of the difficulties and frustrations of the moment, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.” I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slaveowners will be able to sit down together at a table of brotherhood. I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a desert state, sweltering with the heat of injustice and oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice. I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day the state of Alabama, whose governor’s lips are presently dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, will be transformed into a situation where little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls and walk together as sisters and brothers. I have a dream today. I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together. This is our hope. This is the faith with which I return to the South. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, “My country, ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring.” And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania! Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado! Let freedom ring from the curvaceous peaks of California! But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia! Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee! Let freedom ring from every hill and every molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

When we let freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

Thank you, Dr. King.

Questions I’ve asked myself in the last 24 hours and answer I already wrote…

What do you do when you don’t beleive the Bible as truth?
Why do all guys have this innate desire to fix things, even when we can’t?
Why is it that my life constantly refelcts John Mayer lyrics?
Why do I want so bad to be in control? Why can’t I give that to God?

So I’ve thought all of this, and was looking back at some of my old entries. I found this one I wrote this summer, and it’s the same story in my life – give up. Stop trying and give it to God.

…So here’s the rub: God wants me to give everything over to Him to lighten my burdens, and yet I enjoy having those unneeded burdens because I’m impatient and want what I want when I want and under my own control. And then on top of that, Satan takes advantage of my weaknesses, exploits them and I begin to start to pity myself, get angry at people who don’t deserve it, and just become a major jerk all in the name of what I want.

And that right there bothers me the most – because I’m the one ultimately responsible for this, and yet I do nothing to solve it. No one can make you feel inferior without your consent, and I’ve given people a contract to humiliate. God is teaching me so much right now – learning to give up everything to Him, the knowledge that strength is power under control, the knowledge that God does have that perfect person out there for me but I need to trust in Him who’s perfect first, and that for too long I’ve had my priorities mixed up and am in desperate need of a change there.

So I begin to leave it here right now. My worries and frustrations, I give to God. My weakness is strength and God’s made perfect through it, and it’s His. I’ll give Him my relationships, because He ultimately will be the one to guide and direct them properly. And after the forging by fire is over, I’ll be able to come back to this point and realize what God’s blessed me with and how much stronger I’ve become as a result.

I leave them again. God, take my will away. Take my contol away, and for what it’s worth, take what I am and use it.

Looking back…

I was reading back at some of my old journal entries (I like to do that because I can see who I was, how my writing style has changed, and how I was kind of a tool back in the day :P)

Anyway, I found this entry, and it basically is a thesis to the journal. It’s also a snapshot of history, because I thought at this point in my life I’d be on my way to engagement and student teaching.

The job I work at gives me a lot of time to think. All I do is either make sinks or paint and sweep. It’s an easy living when it comes right down to it. I work mindlessly and make 11.50/hr at it. There’s some complaints about all of it (understandably, I mean, I think we all have the right to question the establishments), but that’s another entry. I thought today about the fact that here I am, 19 years old, and I’m growing up. It’s scary (and exciting of course) to realize that shortly I’m going to be thinking about marriage and settling down to have a family of my own. I mean, I have faith in God and what He has in store for me, but wow. Life is right there… before I know it I’m going to be teaching. Three years seems like it would be this great expanse of time, but in actuality it’s just a dot in my lifeline. My life just exploded in nine months. I watched myself go from someone who was just living about 60% of what I could achieve to one who realizes that I have undiscovered potential just waiting to be tapped. I never had to try hard in High School; things just happened. I had a lot of friends like that. But then pow – I was hit with a big ‘ol learning curve… the likes of which I’d never seen. And it made me think about a lot of other stuff on the side, too. Like, am I who I really want to be? Am I giving everything I have? Am I going to be the guy that I want that future wife of mine to marry? It’s this kind of stuff that still keeps me waking up in the morning… keeps me reading my Bible… keeps me trying. It’s weird what painting for 6 hours will do to you. Gets you all self-reflective.

mmmm good song

I’ve been reintroduced to Jamie Cullum by Natalie, and he’s been heavy in my rotation. I heard this song today, and it made me smile. I’m always a sucker for the “I’m going to be patient and know that if I’m doing the right things, the right girl will be there smiliing at the end”. I’m not typically good at that, but if there’s something I’ve learned in the last few years of college is that boldness mixed with patience is the best way to go. My personal favorite (and the one certainly most applicable to my life) is the one I bolded.

Walking down to the waters edge, where I have been before
If I don’t find my love sometime, I’m walking out that door
Some may come and some may go, but no-one seems to be
The person I’ve been searching for, the one who’s meant for me

Biddin’ my time, trying to find the heart that’s lonely
Looking for her, my love, my one and only
Maybe I’ll dream, tonight about the girl, who’ll be coming my way
So I’ll take this chance and celebrate the day
When I’m making my way through an open door
I got some love and so much more
And I’m ready, to make someone mine
Making my way through an open door
I got some love and so much more
And I’ll find her
’cause it’s about time

Tried to hard and it feels just like you’re running on thin air
Why does love happen by surprise, if you don’t really care
The past is gone; the flames are out from fires that have burned
New ideals and different thoughts from lessons I have learnt

Biddin’ my time, trying to find the heart that’s lonely
Looking for her, my love, my one and only
Maybe I’ll dream, tonight about the girl, who’ll be coming my way
So I take this chance and celebrate the day
When I’m making my way through an open door
I got some love and so much more
And I’m ready, to make someone mine
Making my way through an open door
I got some love and so much more
And I’ll find her
’cause it’s about time

Got the feeling this could take a pretty long while, to find that smile
I’ll put my faith in another piece of good advice, well I tried that twice
Waiting for a little something more, to inspire, take me higher

And I’m ready to make someone mine
I’m making my way through an open door
I got some love and so much more
And I’ll find her
’cause it’s about time
it’s about time
it’s about time
it’s about time

I’m halfway done with my essay which is due Thursday. I’m going to Adam’s for some homecookin’ and some relaxation. Then Thursday will come around and I’ll turn in that sucka and life can begin to settle down. I look forward to enjoying regular school and seeing what’s in store. I’m just excited for the possibilites.


Just thought of something…

I was watching the Daily Show because I’m incapable of falling asleep, and I thought of something. This whole tsunami thing is snapping people into action – the outpouring of money and help is amazing. But it’s also disappointing. Why aren’t we showing this love and dedication to the world on the whole all the time? It seems so easy these days to throw a few bucks at something that seems like the cause du jour, but when it comes to loving the guy who’s having a bad day, or the girl who needs to be held because she’s crying, it seems so below us, no?

Balancing the lesser parts of me

When I try to be inflective, and try to learn more about what makes me tick, I’ve come to find that one of the toughest parts of my life is balancing confidence with humility and self-deprication. I want as much as possible to be someone who exudes confidence – who at least looks like and at most does have his stuff together. For one, it keeps me strong – it keeps me thinking “alright, I’ve got what I need to have in control there – I can keep going”, and for two, I want to be the person that people come to for their strength. I love feeling like a pillar of support for those who need it. And it’s that feeling that I have it together that keeps me feeling like I can provide that.

Then something happens on the way. I fail. I don’t keep things together – someone I know needs something I can’t provide it. Then I start feeling that confidence chip away, because I’ve found I’m my worst critic. I find things in myself that aren’t really all there, but it’s so easy in my own thoughts to be accusatory. Or I’ll think someone else has thought something, when it’s just my perceptions. And the self-deprication starts in earnest.

Failure happens. And that’s okay. Failure is just success once removed. But when I start thinking of it in terms of its own situation as opposed to the overall consequences, and its effects, it’s easy to get my mind blocked.

Humility is the wild card that keeps the two balanced, however. Because humility is the realization that while I’m not perfect and can’t do everything right, I’ve been blessed with a personal relationship with the One who is always right. He can form what I can’t do and fit it to his perfect plan.

I only wish that I would just follow what He says is right first instead of having to learn the hard way.

hey all

I’m relaxing here at the end of another wonderful day of classes here. I’m really liking this intercession schtick. I get up at a half decent time, eat breakfast, watch the news, shower, and get ready. I spend time with friends and everything, but mostly I read. And it’s not bad. Class is fantastic, though. 4 hours of listening to Dr. Potter and discussing books and what they mean. There are two different types of English profs – those who ask you how you feel, and those who tell you how to feel. Dr. Potter is in the former category, but he also has this fabulous didactic quality to him and an ability to phrase himself profoundly. I find myself more intrigued by his inflections and verbiage than by the analysis he provides. I’m in there with some great people too: Andy Lucas, Chris Schwartz, Russel, Natalie, and Dave – so I certainly don’t feel alone at all.

I made dinner tonight. That was a lot of fun. I’m finding such great contentment in doing simple things with people I really enjoy spending time with – and to me, that’s a fantastic way to live (for once, I’ve kept a New Year’s Resolution longer than the time it took to figure what it is).

Also, in a moment of pure self-indulgence, I bought myself a Pino Cotton towel – extra large. So if any of you see me tomorrow morning with a certain twinkle in my eye and looking especially dry and content, you shall know why.

Tomorrow is wrapping up Paradise Lost and reviewing paper proposals. I have to study for my midterm on Friday and read the first part of Pilgrim’s Progress. This weekend will comprise of making food, cleaning the apartment for Erik’s return, and wonderful things with certain folks. Also, did I say writing an essay? Whoop whoop.

Goodnight, fair morrow, pnl.

mmmmmm good song time…

In honor of 2005, I’m putting up a song that, although isn’t the cleanest one ever, sums up a lot of my goals for next year. Hey, stuff happens, it’s alright, just keep living because really, the crap you’re putting on yourself isn’t all that worth it.

It just happend 
So what? 
But they're all laughing 
What's up? 

Why the tears have no fear 
We are here for you 
But I know how you feel, I know how you feel 
When no-one cares 

If you feel just like I feel, PUSH PEOPLE 
Baby, everything is plastic, nothing is real, PUSH PEOPLE 
Fuck your lover makes not steal, PUSH PEOPLE 
We just dance and no big deal, PUSH PEOPLE 
He just let the bullshit pass, PUSH PEOPLE 
So we just skateboard your ass, PUSH PEOPLE 
Got my bones, my wheels, PUSH PEOPLE 
We just dance and no big deal, PUSH PEOPLE 

Break out [x11]

All you can be is just you cause 
You're real not the plasic time. 
But reality sets and 
You're stuck in this plastic life. 

Why the tears 
We are here for you 
But I know how you feel, I know how you feel 
When nothing cares. 


Break out [x11]

Shit happens, hey, just blow it off, whooo, 
Man, don't it make you feel rage, rage, yeah 
Shit happens, u-uh, just blow it off, whooo, 
Man, don't it make you feel rage ,rage ,yeah 
Just aslong we got the same thing in our vains, 
You and I ,we are both the same 
I bail you out and show you what you see 
'bout love, N*E*R*D, peace