On my mind? vol. 1 books, punk, ghosts.


What’s on my mind? The question we get asked everytime we open our Facebook app. Over the next while I am going to just that. My thoughts, no big theological claims or discipleship statements.

A while back I was getting so frustrated with the majority of what I was reading. How to have revival in a few easy steps, become the best leader in a month or how to plant a church with ease as long as you follow special steps and formulas… I became so frustrated with books telling me how to be like someone else that I started to become a giant ball of stress. I took a break from the majority of my church type reading and was introduced to the world of fiction. (Thanks Amberley) It had become the greatest stress relief and rejuvenator of wanting to read I could have experienced. So now I am juggling The Book Thief, Dirty Glory (Greig) and Water to Wine (Zahnd). It’s not all fiction but it’s a great medication to life. Also teaching myself how to paint has been glorious and much better than tv binges to escape.

The  topic of just being yourself needs to be talked about. We love trying to learn from others and fall into the trap of trying to be like our new heroes. I tried for way to many years to tow the party line and push down my ideas and tastes in life to fit  a youth pastor / planting pastor persona. I would blare my popular christianity approved tunes in my office but then when climbing into my truck on the way home would slip into some sweet No Use for a Name or Rancid. It felt like some sort of secret that would end my career if a youth parent or fellow pastor discovered it.  I would cringe through the latest offering from the Christian movie folk and wonder when a Christian comedian would say something actually funny. I could go on for hours on this topic, but talking about things I like is more productive and more fun.

So why did I feel like I needed to spend so much emotional energy fitting the portrait of someone else’s life? Maybe fear of losing chances of promotion. Maybe fear of not being seen as spiritual enough. I am sure there is a deep answer somewhere, if you know the answer… keep it to yourself. Recently I was speaking at a church that was not familiar with me or had even seen a picture of me. I was standing at the back of the room during the worship and a man asked me if I needed someone to sit with. I responded politely and continued to enjoy the worship time. I thought to myself, they are so polite here! After I finished speaking and chatting with folk I was walking to the door and the same man came over to apologize to me. I was really confused as to what was happening. He was apologizing because he thought I looked rough and was off the street. To me I dressed in what was comfortable to me, instead of blending into the culture of the church and possibly even the region I was in. If I was trying to blend in this awkward conversation wouldn’t happened. But by trying to blend in, I would be denying who God created me to be. I suppose to this man, who God created me to be looks like a criminal of some sort 🙂 For the record a t shirt and black jeans doesn’t look very tough in most settings.

So what’s on my mind. At 37 years old I feel like I am finally finding a beautiful balance of who I am through my experiences and interests in life and how to bring that to Jesus so he can use it. He really likes me the way I am. Jesus doesn’t want me to be someone else. That would just be a false version of something better. It is so freeing to know I can still enjoy a good punk show and walk with the Holy Spirit every minute of it. I can go on a ghost tour in Scotland while Jesus is showing me where he is in each room (that actually happened). By being honest with Jesus about who I am and what I am feeling I found that my prayer life has become so real. I am enjoying each interaction more than the next. I am wanting to know more about my creator from a place of enjoyment and curiosity instead of just being part of my job. These are some amazing things that have happened in my heart since walking into this wonderful season of church planting!

Being me has been so freeing, being you could change your life!


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