Mobile Minutes: Poetic Confessions


Poetic confessions,
Screaming from the resonating chambers of my heart.
Medicated soul strings,
Covering hopeless, lifeless eyes.

Calling for a savior,
Reaching for reality’s escape.
Falling into eternity,
Losing a grasp in humanity’s case.

Hear Your child,
God of Adam.
Hold his bleeding life,
Save him from his sinful lies.

Reject my desires,
Hold fast to Your plan.
Break me, glorious Spirit,
Deny the ability of pouring eyes.

Shake away the tears of temptation,
Shatter my sense of loss.
Refuse the inplicable hope of death,
Restore my weary faith.

Please Father,
Reach me in these trialing times!
Cling to my tattered body,
Cleanse my damaged, distorted life.

Mobile Minutes: 93% Cacao


Ehhh…
I’m currently listening to a pastor compare the Kansas City Royals to the royalty of Christ.
*sigh*
Sorry, just feels like a gimmick. Non-intentional I’m sure, but my evil college theology roots are brewing this morning. I’m obviously not that creative, hence why I’m rather bitter about the strange comparison.
That and the fact that I truly despise how our culture revolves around athletics and not other identity of a culture.
I’m obviously lacking patience due to my lack of coffee. I can see the comparison, I understand the points, but I must be becoming old and weathered because it just seems cliche (having half the church body demonstrating their allegiance by wearing “vintage” Royals also is…well…meh).
Perhaps I just woke up on the wrong side of the bed because I’m overwhelmingly lacking the enjoyment, the sweetness of life. I’m merely dealing with internal bitters that seem to have filtered into the blood stream (why does no one ever refer to a ‘soul stream’).

Life is hard, marriage takes work, and patience is always lacking. Runs don’t move as smoothly, and the fridge tends to be empty (or worse, requiring actual cooking).

image

Le...meh

People wear me out, and cyberspace is inviting. I could get lost in zero’s and one’s and be at peace. However, as tempting as that utopia seems, I still know it isn’t where my life should exist, and no, I don’t always enjoy acknowledging that truth.

Today, I’m merely like dark chocolate. The 93% dark chocolate, there is nothing sweet, it’s just bitter, but in some ways dealing with that bitterness can equal added health benefits.

I acknowledge my lack of patience, bitterness, and overall anger today (no breakfast aids to that). I’m not in a good mood, and it is hard to handle. It requires so much humility, so much embarrassment in order to flush the system. In the end it’ll take a nice long run tonight to cool off and wear down.

-D-

XXXI: Church Persona


I tend not to think of life in years as I do lifetimes. Currently, I’m on my third lifetime. I was watching some videos over at IAMSECOND, and one of the speakers brought up the point of not really understanding God’s grace until you release your church persona. It wasn’t until I heard that, that it really clicked with me.

In 2009 I was the model American Christian; I went to church, I knew scripture, I could maintain theological debates, I was in the right place. Two years following I gave up on the church image and walked away, hence the beginning of FilingThePapers.

Similar to the open road this has become my sanctuary, my reminder that God exists, that God is love, and that God cares about my repulsive, sinful soul. The rest of the world laughs at my mistakes, I personally tear myself down daily, but I can still wake up knowing God loves me for the flawed person I am. Continue reading

Mobile Minutes: Battles & Wars


The battle may be the lost, but the war isn’t over…
-Some Famous Guy & My High School Social Studies Teacher-

Today was a troublesome day, there are hints of events today that have mirrored events from three years ago. There has been a battle going on, and today I’m facing the reality that the battle is lost.

I can’t go into the details at the moment due to legal reasoning, but after a long, peaceful conversation with Darco, and meditating on what God wants us to do, we’ve made some sad, hard choices in the past twenty four hours. I’m a firm believer that it’s for the best of everyone, and that we will grow from it, but immediate injuries, while they do eventually heal, are hard to handle. Currently I’m struggling to handle that reality.

To keep life fresh, Darco and I have embarked on a new journey of the sorts [more on a later date] while cleaning up the final mess of the past year. Sadly, regrettably, much like the divorce; enemies have been made and the true character of individuals has been shown. The temptation is to gossip, create chaos, and attempt to ruin the reputation of a few, but that doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do.

Incredibly I find myself in the same position while trying to figure out what to think of my now ex-wife. In the end it just came down to the choice of forgiving and moving on, or stewing in anger for years to come. While not easy [or always perfect], the first choice helped out life greatly, looking back. Knowing that spurns me to make the same choice again. Just to forgive and move on. Why should a Christian fight a Christian? What’s the point? Aside from driving people away from God? I say this with humility, and not even with an ounce of pride [if any was left], I’m fine with turning the other cheek.

I’ll tell you why…

Because while I find problems, sorrow, grief, and other problems on a daily basis; I know two absolute truths:
-God still loves me, and hasn’t given up on me.
-I have a beautiful wife waiting for me when I get home.

That second reason [which correlates to the first] is enough inspiration to walk away from any fight. The world is a scary place, and people are mean to each other, but knowing that there is one person on this earth that wants to see your face, that once to hold your hand, and wants to walk through the purifying fires of life, that’s enough for me to tune out the rest of the world.

I guess when it’s all said and done; deeds are finished and papers are signed; I’m facing a moment where I’ve lost a battle, but when I see my wife’s face in the evening…

…I’ve already won the war.

-D-

XO: Vengeance


Alright, time for you to get ‘the list’ out. Yes, the list that no Christian ever possesses; the list of severity of a sin based on what the sin is. You know what I’m talking about.

Tonight, for sake of honesty, I’m getting mine out. My hidden list that completely goes against the concept of what Christianity teaches. Why? Because I’m one very messed up human who has some serious grudge issues.

My number one sin; the top of the top is…

REVENGE

Why? Because I’m full of it. This burning, lustful desire to ensure that none of the people that have turned their backs on me gets to vanish without knowing exactly who I am, and that they were completely wrong on who I was. It also reaches out to those who have hurt me, damaged trust, used me, or just plain left me to rot.

It’s incredible the unique description of this list; it includes at least three ‘men of God’ [preachers], and all sorts of other individuals. Is this list wrong? YES! INSANELY YES! However, painfully, it’s a burden that I bare, and a curse that I live with.

The horrible reality is that they’re all right.

I didn’t rise above. I didn’t become someone great. I didn’t become the humanitarian, and I failed a ‘missionary’. I’m a ruined, tainted Christian due to a Baptist-style divorce, and I’ve now successfully watched two church bodies lose pastors for absolutely insane, selfish reasons. I feel like again, I’ve completely failed my wife, and that I can’t even stand to look at myself in the mirror…I’ve gained that much weight. I wake up in the morning and I find myself apologizing in the shower. Telling God I’m sorry for being a mistake, I’m sorry for damaging so many plans, and tarnishing His kingdom. I can’t even express in words how much, as of late, I honestly feel like a failure.

My outlet is reverting back to stupid mindsets of uncontrollable anger, frustration, and sorrow. A student today said that I sound like I’m a loner, and unfortunately I couldn’t agree more. Most importantly I feel terrible for Darco, I have this undying fear that I’ve caused so much regret for her. That I’m never happy and it destroys her; even though it has nothing to do with her.

The harsh reality is that I can’t make anyone happy, I can’t do anything right, and I’m a joke of a Christian.

Sounds pretty pitiful right?

That’s because it is.

I would be a liar if I told you life was perfect, easy, and full of happiness. It’s hard, it’s dark, and it’s full of disappointment. Much of this is brought upon myself, and I have no excuse. I accept these realities, and openly choose not to pin anyone else for them.

I don’t understand God’s plan, I have no idea what to do, and I’m in a 24/7 state of confusion. These are all truths. I’m not asking for a miracle, I’m not praying for a ‘bright light’. I’m merely asking for peace for me and mine, and constant persuasion to hold onto hope. It feels like I’m slipping, that anger that I’ve worked on monitoring for years is flaring back up, and I don’t want my plague to affect anyone else.

I know God is here, I understand that He loves and forgives, but I also understand when anyone makes the statement starting with:

But God could never use someone like me…

-D-

Mobile Minutes: Towel Throwing


My shirts don’t fit.
I look like garbage.
I’m a has been, wanna be educator.
I’m barely a business owner.
I don’t sleep.
My neck chronically hurts.
I argue.
I’m bitter.
I feel worthless.

What? Did you want some happy, warm fuzzy pep talk? The reality is, is that I deal with inner demons just like everyone else. I don’t blame God, I don’t blame, I take upon myself my failures…all of them.

Maybe that guy from Stackify was right. No one really cares, no matter how hard you work, no one cares. It’s never enough, and it never will be enough.

Confession time. I enjoy putting my demons in front of the public. I have this never ending concept that God punishes me. I screw up and just like a parent, I’m punished. Hearing people talk about a God who is so powerful that He doesn’t need you in order to be glorified leaves a horrible taste in my mouth. What I hear is a God who is all powerful, doesn’t need you, and my life reflects nothing but constant punishment. That’s it, nothing more. Don’t worry I know what scripture says, and I know what I’m taught, and I know what my soul screams as truth. That doesn’t block out the negativity, the fear of isolation, the temptation that I’m merely tolerated, not really wanted.

I work my tail off every single day, so that I can dream of one day hearing, “Well done my good and faithful servant”, but works mean nothing right? It’s obedience, it’s faith, it’s love. It’s the things that I beat myself daily in order to obtain only to realize each day is only a new struggle of trying to hold everything together…and failing.

It’s a catch 22; there’s nothing you can do to “earn” love, but at the same time even if I’m faithful, bold, and take the hits…I’ll still suffer on this earth.

Make sense?

Mean either.

I’d never turn my back on God, it would be foolish because I’ve witnessed Him do so much for so many. I’ve seen miracles all around and lives changed. I’ve accepted the impossible and prayed for the unknown. But deep down, if I’m being horribly, brutally honest; it feels like when God gets to me He doesn’t have anything left to give. Sure, that’s a foolish notion considering His grace and love is abundant and never ending, but that doesn’t mean I don’t “hear” otherwise.

Perhaps it’s a childhood complex, a repeatative fear that my father forgot that I existed.

Just as a final thought; anyone who comes at me with a deniable sense of righteousness is a fool. Anyone who denies these fears themselves ever crossing their own mind, I question if you’ve ever lived. You better believe I have anger issues. I yell at God, beg for forgiveness, and try to see His perspective for my life. I never understand, it’s God, I can’t understand. Sometimes that hurts more than anything else of spiritual wrought.

If this site was full of perfection, it wouldn’t be worth reading.

I’m not a plastic.

-D-

O: Blessed In Poverty


Before I start the story of my morning experience I want to make one thing very, very clear:

LePeep is the most overpriced, overrated breakfast joint that I’ve ever had the misfortune of dining at.

I had a meeting this morning at 7:30 AM CST an hour south of where I currently live, at the noted LePeep restaurant above. This was a large meeting, it was a business meeting, there was potential money on the table with the Kansas City Shock and I wanted to be sure I had everything perfect. Last night I had rehearsed, scheduled, printed, and outlined several key points of the meeting today. I wasn’t sure the overall direction of the meeting, but when moments like this come across, you always want to be ready. Right? Right.

I arrived at LePeep seven minutes ahead of time. Here’s what I knew about the individual I was meeting with:

  • Young
  • Business Owner
  • Involved in the startup community
  • Soccer fan
  • Ginger

Several things were in my favor from the get-go. Not once did I believe that this was going to be a walk in the park, but it appeared as if several key items were lining up. After the agonizing, stomach dropping seven minutes had passed in comes a young man driving a Tesla…yes…a Tesla. Quietly he parked, reversed, realigned, and parked again. He stepped out of the car in the standard Johnson County polo and plaid golf shorts [too much?], asked if I was indeed who I was and walked into the restaurant.

Red Flag #1: No smile.

Upon being seated we were giving coffee in a ridiculous fancy looking environment [recall that my ‘eat out breakfast’ joints have consisted of IHOP, McDonald’s, and on special occasions Shoney’s]. I took a look at the menu, couldn’t figure out half the garbage on the menu and politely ordered bacon and eggs.

While this was going on he was across the table, looking down, thinking, and then comes about the first question:

So, what is the Kansas City Shock?

Red Flag #2: This meeting had been booked for several weeks. I did my research on his business; he obviously did none on mine.

Somewhat calmly I went into the monologue of our program, #project813, and partnerships that are being established. I noted that we were not in Johnson County primarily, but wanted to focus on other areas of Kansas City. That’s when the first real pain set in:

I’m not going anywhere that far to watch soccer, sorry but that’s too far for me.

Red Flag #3: Anyone that’s concerned on distance is already in question in my book.

I went on to inform him about how we’re financed, what we do in our field of work, and what we’re looking for. He, of course, started his conversation on his business [computer programming] and clients. He stopped and asked:

Do you know what a client is? I didn’t think so. I work in high tech, it’s a difficult field to understand for many.

Red Flag #4: Attempting to talk over me with the knowledge of binary habits, coding, and application development is going to do very little to impress me. Besides, I know what a client [and a host] is.

Within the first five minutes of this meeting I could see that he wasn’t interested in anything that I had to offer. Now, a quick background on him [vaguely], he started a startup tech company from the ground up. Struggled greatly to meet bills, payroll, etc…but eventually sold the company for $128 million at age 23. Turned around and started a new company, of which he complained that his old company won’t even give a glimpse at to work with. He begins to inform me of the $100,000 per month they loose in revenue while looking for clients and how our modest budget looks trivial to him. He asked about marketing and sponsorship, and I informed him of where we go in that direction with each company. It was through this conversation that he drops a bomb on me [pardon the quoted language]:

Sorry, but you’re a man on an island. No one is coming to help because no one gives a %#@^ about what you’re doing.

Red Flag #5: [See Quote Above]

At this point I’ve gnawed through my bacon, and got the eggs out of their greasy plate and onto my fork. This was becoming uncomfortable and I wanted out. What had become so evident, and was so sad, was that an individual with that much money simply didn’t have the time of day to even dream of what the future held. He was my age and had no imagination. I’m talking about monumental moves with #project813 with him, and he doesn’t care. It doesn’t fit his desires, it doesn’t work in his business model, it doesn’t transcribe to success in his world. Everything was about him. This isn’t me complaining, this is me stating that I bow to no one except God, and it wasn’t going to start this morning.

With the coffee gone and the plates cleaned, with a smirk he stated:

Well, since I can’t help you; I can at least grab your meal, right?

I didn’t hesitate.

While at the register he asked how we had been connected together, and I gave him the individual who knew us mutually. A person that couldn’t stop talking about this man standing next to me with words of gratitude and hope. He had worked for him in the past, but after the first company sold, he went a different direction. That’s when, from the business side, I heard the most painful thing of the morning:

Who’s that? I don’t recognize that name, mustn’t have been important.

Red Flag #6: If you do not take the time to learn the names and the people that you work with, or work for you, your ethics are in question.

By the time I had gotten back into the car I was shaking because I was so angry. Furious. I wasn’t mad at God, but I was so, so angry at what money can do to an individual. One of the most frustrating things in life has to be when stereotypes are proven true. Rich, youthful guy who attempts to trump the world with his knowledge on one topic and deems those in the shoes he was once in…dirty.

It took me about forty-five minutes to calm down while driving home. The downside of the meeting puts serious pressure on me within our organization, but the bigger picture was much more saddening. I drove back north, feeling very beaten, and stopped by to chat with Jim and MC about the results of today. The pain was seen in their eyes as well; two hard working, industrial oriented people who give everything to come home with so little, just witnessed what the power of wealth can do to an individual.

I know that I’ve complained several times about being broke, not sure about resources, and even trying to make payments day-by-day. Nothing along those lines has changed, but do you know what I saw today that was most fearful? Out of the greasy eggs, plaid shorts, and silent Tesla?

I saw the potential of what I could become if I was given that kind of wealth. I’ve told Darco before that one of the several reasons that I’ll probably never be financially successful is because God knows that I’ll abuse that gift. Power is a dangerous, dangerous object.

I don’t need LePeep to make my day start on a solid note; I’ll continue to enjoy my Taco John’s and random food trucks. I’ll consider the local sports bar’s wings at .49 after 9:00 PM CST with Darco as a great date. I’ll forever love my second story, three window apartment with a non-operational garbage disposal and broken dishwasher. My rusty truck of 278,000 miles will forever be my favorite, and I’m grateful that Darco’s dented, scratched Pontiac gets such great gas mileage.

I’ll go to bed frustrated, but grateful in the same. Because I know that God can do great things when I’m blessed with poverty.

As for the Kansas City Shock?

God’s got it, and that’s all I need to know.

-D-