“I Was Wrong, I’m Sorry, and I Love You” – Reconciliation.

This post is a little premature – but it’s been nearly a year since i’ve come out to the internet; however, it was a year ago this week when I knew that my life was about to change drastically. I had spent countless hours fighting with every part of myself and even more so with God on who I was.  I had my ups and my downs like every other person has. I reminded myself that I’m to finish the race that leads to eternal life with Christ. Somehow, this only left me feeling empty. I felt sick with failure for letting my flesh run my life. I felt like there was no winning. I felt that I could never be righteous in Gods eyes. I felt completely and utterly defeated. I knew that the only option was to make a conscious decision to separate myself from Christ and his teachings.

First things first – separating myself from Christ was no walk in the park. The empty loneliness changed. I now felt a true emptiness. That feeling that something was about to go completely wrong. Things began slowly to look up though. I started to make new friends who supported not only me – but anything that was going to make me happy… and happy I became. I was meeting all sorts of new people who only told me how, “proud for me” they were and how, “excited for my new life” they were for me. I was overwhelmed with support from the amazing people that have been there for me from the beginning and now for these new people cheering me on as I venture towards the unknown. All of this new found love and support filled my heart. Times were/are still hard and will continue to be, but I’m BEYOND thankful for the people who have lavished love on me.

this is the hard part. For some reason I’ve listened to an excessive amount of Derek Webb over the last year. Don’t get me wrong – I love his music and I definitely listened to it a lot in the past too… but for a man who just recently came out as gay and essentially said “I believe in God and all – but i’m just not bout it anymore” it’s kinda weird. You can look at my music history on my phone and it’s probably 30% Rap / 15% Dashboard Confessionals / 15% Musicals / and 60% Derek Webb. There’s just something about the truth and blunt honesty in his music that I guess I can relate to. He takes what the Gospel is and puts it in word form. Not to knock all the other christian artist out there but this guy speaks truth from the heart. He’s defeated/revived. He’s struggling/comforted. He’s faced with falsehoods/calls them out as they are. His latest album that is titled “I was wrong, I’m sorry, and I love you” has resinated so hard with me. Although I can’t necessarily apply it to my life as he would or maybe the way that it was intended to be applied – I can put it’s truths to my life.

“I have misled you
I have misread you
I’ve cared too much and not enough in the same breath
You’ve been my hope, my stretch of rope in life and death”

 

(If you haven’t heard this song yet – here it is)

Basically what i’m getting at (and not directly because i’ve been all over the place in this post) is that in this incredibly trying and growing year of continued ups and downs I’ve gotten no closer to figuring out what life is. I’ve learned SO much about the LGBT community and have grown to love them (with the help of many people – especially my AMAZING friend Amelia who has a very similar background to me and works for the Equality House and http://www.plantingpeace.com). I’m by no means saying i’m not gay anymore or not saying that it doesn’t feel right anymore – because i’m definitely super pumped to find an amazing guy sometime in the future. What i’m saying now is that there has to be a reconciliation between Christ and myself (and all of those who seek him out in the LGBT community). I’m not sure where I’m at on this and I’m not sure how it’s going to go – but one thing I know is that I stood in the front yard of a rainbow house last night and prayed for the LGBT people in Russia, and I was by no means alone – there were others there. People who believe with all of their heart that THEY ARE CHRIST’ AND HE IS THEIRS. These are people with genuine hearts. People I know and love.

I don’t know what the status of my salvation is but I do know that when I sing:

“It seems too easy to call you “Savior”,
Not close enough to call you “God”
So as I sit and think of words I can mention
to show my devotion

I want to fall in love with you”

I mean it.

Sorry for the all-over-the-place-ness but just searching, ya know.

Feed back and support is more than welcome. I know i’m not alone in searching right now – so any directions can help.

– Christian

 

PS – for those of you that have never heard of/seen “Prayers for Bobby” – you should. Here’s the whole movie on youtube. It’s worth the hour and a half.

 

 

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Honest Truth

“It has never been, and never will be easy work. But the road that is built in hope is more pleasant to the traveler than the road built in despair, even though they both lead to the same destination.”

 

-Marion Zimmer Bradley

A few days ago a friend sent me this quote. I’ve thought about it. A lot. I’m not sure what it’s supposed to mean, and i’m also not sure what I think about it – but I do know that hope is always greater than despair. 

I don’t know how often you live in despair – but I know I am in a constant state of doubting anything and everything. Sometimes I can be the biggest Debbie Downer, “Guys i’m the worst” “I can’t do anything right” “I’m sorry i’m such a horrible friend” “I suck at life”… I know these are things everyone says – but I’m fairly certain I actually mean it when I say it. 

About 3 months ago I decided I wanted to not only be more honest with myself (because we as know we lie to ourselves more than we lie to anyone else) but with the people around me. If you now me at all you know i’m overly dramatic and mostly say a bunch of emotional things that I mean. I wanted to stop that and really get down to the honest truth – I am ratchet as hell.  I’m a horrible horrible at a lot of things in life – especially friendships. That’s changing though – and the reason is I have hope. 

The people in my life give me hope. They encourage me, care for me, and bless me far beyond what I deserve. I don’t take well to “tough love” but I know when my friends give it to me – it’s because its what I need. I need people who are going to tell me to shut up and appreciate what I have. I’ve got it all. 

I recently built a new friendship with an unexpected person. It’s a funny story leading up to how we met and started our bonding but more importantly this guy became my first real gay friend and quickly became a person I could talk to when none of my other friends could relate to my struggles and heartaches. He was a rock to hold onto when the waters got to be too much. This guy had a lot on his plate as it were and I couldn’t believe he wanted to invest in me as much as he did – but I’m glad he did. He gave me hope. After a few months of our friendship I felt that I needed to be completely honest with him. So I was… and the story behind the honesty isn’t as important as the reaction. I hurt him. Badly. At this point I don’t see redemption in our friendship, but that’s something I’ll have to live with because of the truth.

this is where “The Honest Truth” comes in; What is the truth worth? In this case I lost the only person I didn’t have to be anything about myself with. I could say whatever I wanted and he wouldn’t be offended or weirded out, or grossed out, and most of all wouldn’t think less of me. Someone who was there for me and yet barely knew me. Don’t get me wrong – i’m definitely not discrediting the rest of my friends, but for obvious reasons he understood and no one else does. Now he hates me. Or at least is so hurt by me that he can’t even talk to me or look at me. Was the truth worth it? Is the truth always the right thing?

I’m at a loss and the last couple weeks have been some of the hardest weeks of my life, but the beauty of it is – I am loved, cared for, and showered in hope daily by the people in my life. For that, I am grateful.

Also – I went to Texas 2 weeks ago and spent time with this guy – who is definitely one of the best friends a person could ask for.Image

 

 

-Christian

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“The world was good. The world is fallen. The world will be Redeemed.”

He makes all things new- and I can’t be more thankful for that.

Friends, it has been far too long since I last updated you about my life and what’s going on in it. Forgive me.

To start off I want to thank all of you reading this- because without you, I would be just another normal and boring person, but no, you make me more. I appreciate that sooo much.

The last 7 months (yikes! That’s a serious blogging sabbatical.) have yielded some of the most discouraging times? All the while giving me some of the most encouraging and most needed times of my life. Have I lost you yet? I’m not the easiest person to follow- nevertheless bare with me dear friends!

Since leaving you with my last post about the crazy amounts of weddings I’ve been in; I’ve added a few more to it. Amazing right? Ha. I’ve also learned a ton about friendships, finally decided on a life path, and most importantly had my biggest challenge with faith yet. I mean, a lot more than that happened but really my life is boring and I just instagram every semi-cool thing I do. It’s really sad actually. Haha.

Guys, I have the coolest friends ever. Ever. EVER. I would put them up against any crew… team pup n’ suds, the Jamaican bobsledding team, and even the Mighty Ducks (of Minn). Yea they’re that rad. My friends have been there for me so much through all these overly dramatic and emotion filled months (I don’t think y’all get how lame I am ha). Here are a few pictures of cool people. If you’re not in these- chances are it’s because i’m dumb and not as good of a friend as you.

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

(Those pictures are HUGE and I have no clue how to do otherwise- so deal? sorry. haha)

The next big thing in my life is that… wait for it… wait for it… okay… will be attending here…

Image

starting in September. Yep, I’m finally moving to the big ol’ city of Chicago like I’ve wanted to for several years now. This is the most terrifying thing I have ever done, but HEY! why not? I plan to pursue a career in the always changing and growing hair industry. Keep up with me and someday you’ll see my name- I’m gonna do great (no vanity here…. ha)! I’ve loved hair for quite a while now and I finally decided to commit to it and invest my life in it. I’m so excited and privileged to attend this amazing school, in this amazing city, with amazing fashion. Do you get that it’s amazing? Good.

This part is the hardest for me. Just like any struggle with the Lord- it’s not easy, but I always end up humbled.

About 6 months ago I started to slip into the world even more than what was the “usual.” I accepted that I wasn’t perfect and the since I wasn’t perfect there was no use in trying. Besides- serving God holds me back from everything fun and enjoyable in life. Right? I’m so glad that this is not true and that God is the fun and enjoyment in life. More than that he is the fulfillment. I continued in this mindset and even more heart-set for a couple months before going through an extremely hard and and unexpected time in February where I gave up. I literally gave up. I wanted nothing to do with Jesus, God, and ESPECIALLY no Christians. I had SO much hate in my heart. I burned with anger and I was probably the least appealing person to be friends with. I lived and breathed bitterness. I turned to anything besides Jesus for confirmation. I turned to every aspect of the world and found nothing. God worked on me. A lot. He placed many friends in my life. They overwhelmed me with love and for that I am so thankful. It was about a week after Easter that I kinda broke one night. I laid in bed and sang, “He is the Christ, son of the living God.” over and over again. I couldn’t stop. For the next week all I could do was thank God that He continually “proved me wrong.” This comes from a song that has set heavy on my heart for years now. I’m continually reminded that God has a plan, a passion, a Love for me like no other. This set so heavy that I actually felt so compelled to remind myself daily- for the rest of my life that God will always care and be right.

Prove Me Wrong

Caedmon’s Call

Sometimes I fear Maybe I’m not chosen
You’ve hardened my heart like Pharaoh
That would explain why life is so hard for me

And I am sad Esau hated
Crying against what’s fated
Saying father, please, is there any left for me

Cast out my doubts, please prove me wrong
‘Cause these demons can be so headstrong
Make my walls fall, please prove me wrong
‘Cause this resentment’s been building
Burn them up with your fire so strong
If you can before I bail, please prove me wrong

I fear maybe this is all just a game
Our friends and our families all play too
Harness the young and give some comfort to the old

Cast out my doubts, please prove me wrong
‘Cause these demons can be so headstrong
Make my walls fall, please prove me wrong
‘Cause this resentment’s been building
Burn them up with your fire so strong
If you can before I bail, please prove me wrong

Don’t let my doubts prove true
Draw me close and hold me near to you

Cast out my doubts, please prove me wrong
‘Cause these demons can be so headstrong
Make my walls fall, please prove me wrong
‘Cause this resentment’s been building
Burn them up with your fire so strong
If you can before I bail, please prove me wrong
Keep me still until the day you

Image

With all that said- I’m thankful for a loving God, loving friends, and loving family.

Christian!

Posted in Life | 3 Comments

Beauty, Bible College, & Frolf: Simple Joys

Instead of the usual, “Inspiration Fridays” found on many blogs (like this one http://www.rufflesandramblings.com -it’s worth your time), I decided that inspiration is something I need at the beginning of the week opposed to the end. So to kick this week off I’m going to spend my early evening tomorrow and most likely my Wednesday morning Frisbee golfing- alone. No big deal right? Anyways, Frisbee golf and fall go hand in hand- that’s it. No debate.

Don’t you just want to play now?

All the girls at work went to a “conference” the last weekend. You see, we work for a beauty company called Aveda and the awesome part about Aveda is that it is such a ‘green’ company. They are as organic as they come and they not only are great, but they are amazing products for each individual functions. I personally enjoy the Control Force, Mens Grooming Clay, and the occasional use of the Hand Cream. The girls went to the Pow Pow- congress, in Mpls, MN which was AMAZING from all the pictures and all their stories. If you’ve never used Aveda you should check it out. It’s steep in price but totally worth it!

 These styles are so fun and the make-up is gorgeous. I so wish I could have been there!

The thing I’m most excited for right now is Thursday evening- that’s when we head off for the Emmaus 70 year reunion for the weekend. Emmaus and I have a love/hate relationship, but overall I am so thankful for the school and for all the people I’ve been privileged enough to become friends with.

Also- I’m pumped for volleyball on the new gym.

these people are super rad!

also– I hope this guy shows up. I want to know what I will look like in 30 years. Just sayin.

Cheers,

Christian

Posted in Life | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

My 27 Tuxes/dress shirts(?).

I can’t lie- Weddings are the definition of bittersweet to me. I can’t help but be overwhelmed by the love in the air. It truly is one of the most amazing feelings to me when my friends get married. On the flip side of that though, I’m not so gently reminded that I’m not married. Granted I am young- just a mere 21, but it doesn’t really help that my friends are all married. With the wedding of my longest running best friend under way this upcoming weekend, I am constantly reminded of all the amazing weddings I have either been a part of, to, or in some cases, missed (sadness floods my heart at the thought of missing weddings). Here are a few of my favorite couples and their amazing weddings!

Whitney and Jared are a pretty amazing couple who I thoroughly enjoy every minute spent with them. It’s kind of sad that when these two tied the knot in Dec. of 2009 we weren’t near as good of friends as we are now. Matter of a fact- I legitimately thought Jared was repulsed by me. I was wrong though. Thankfully.

Justin & Kristi are such a fun couple to be around- especially if you want to play some serious volleyball. Justin and I lived across the hall from each other my freshman year of college, we played soccer together, and later on I was privileged to serve as an usher in the fantastic Minnesotan wedding!

Regan & Esther are two of my favorite people. Hands down. These two have carried me through so much. Not to mention Regan is my favorite roommate. Ever (closely followed by his sister, her significant other, and their love child). I was happy to be an usher, DJ, and Emcee for this great September wedding.

Adam & Abby also hold a dear part in my being. These two are the definition of, ‘MFEO’ and although they are (creepily) 8 years apart, you can’t help but love them. Not to mention they had THE MOST AMAZING WEDDING. No debates. Seriously. Once again it was a blast and an honor to be an usher for great friends.

This is one of the weddings I unfortunately had to miss, due to being stranded in the wilderness for the majority of the summer. Anna and Kevin are precious. These two not only are each others Ricky and Lucy, but they are that with the voices of a god and goddess (not that I’m into mythology by any means). Knowing both of them and having scrolled through their pictures multiple times I’m heartbroken that I missed the wedding of these amazing people!

Josh and Hannah are 21 & 20. That’s it.

…Just kidding- these kids are amazing, hip people (s… hahahaha) that are a lot of fun to be around. Hannah and I worked together at World Cup (coffee shop) and we definitely made the best of our time. Hannah is one of the funniest people to be around and especially work with. I wish so much of the best to this fine couple!

#RobandErin are some super rad people who together will most likely make a child who will end up as the winning-est Jeopardy contestant of all time. You think I’m joking- but I’m not. Rob became one of my best friends over a period of time in college (I may have forced him into a friendship, but it worked out in the end). You should get to know this couple, they’re great, and really creative:

http://noscontramundum.wordpress.com/

http://barrypendragon.blogspot.com/ (Erin’s NaNoWrMo)

Taylor and Bekah, as you guessed, are also two people that just make me love life. These two also push me to love Christ and want a loving relationship with Him and everyone around me. This couple has huge hearts that are clearly shown in their everyday lives and I can’t thank them enough for their friendships. I was so happy to serve as a groomsmen for two of my best friends!

This brings me to my final wedding in the near future (to my knowledge anyway):

Nate & Kendra are a wonderful couple. They have been dating for two years  now and are going to be getting hitched this Saturday the 8th of October. I’m really happy for these two. I’m especially happy for Nate, since he’s been my best friend for years now (even though I seem to always be mad or frustrated with him, I do love him. I promise). I’m happy he’s found a girl that’s going to treat him just right!

Wulp, here I am, an hour later- and still single. I’m holding onto hope, and I thank my friends for encouraging me with their amazing relationships!

*Photo credits to…

Justin and Kristi: Sean MacDonald http://www.macdonaldblog.com

Adam & Abby, Anna & Kevin, and Rob & Erin: Graeme Pitman  http://blog.pitmanphotography.com

Posted in Life, Marriage | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Native Americans (kinda) With Kansans Souls.

…Okay so Johnny’s not Native American by any means- but Kara is, and as much as these two DON’T wont to believe it…

they were made to inhabit the Midwest. More specifically, Topeka, or actually where ever I am.

I spend tons of time with these two- like honestly probably 4 or 5 days a week. It’s actually sad how much I’m like their child cousin or relative of sorts. Regardless, I love them and I thoroughly enjoy all my time with them.

Our evenings consist of:

-Fixing my car.

-Spotify.

-Dancing to old school R&B/hip-hop/Rap on spotify.

-Being mean to Johnny as he tries to sleep.

-make dinner.

-Make desert.

-Have some drinks.

-(probably the most important) eat Old Chicago.

We also do other things like go to concerts, play volleyball, and have lots of good chats!

Kara really enjoys cooking- and she’s good at it too, so I get the privilege of eating loads of amazing food. Sometimes she’s in a bad mood, and Johnny and I make the food- it’s still good, but it’s no Kara.

Last night Johnny and I made what we named, The Flying Monkey, which is the name of a new coffee bar that (probably) Kara and I are going to be working at. We both have interviews and I’m in the last round, and surely she’ll make it through- she’s KARA! Anyways- the Flying Monkey (Cupcakes) that Johnny and I are made with the same coffee and Beer that is featured at this new coffee bar, so we’re hoping it catches on. These cupcakes have your normal ‘Spiced’ cupcake seasonings, such as, cinnamon, nutmeg, and molasses(ha?). There are a few things that make these cupcakes delicious though- Orange zest, a good amount of salt, and mostly importantly- The Java Porter from Blind Tiger Brewery (made with PT’s coffee).

*Side note: If you’ve never had blind tiger beer- you now have a reason to come visit us. ASAP. We’ll hook you up and show you the way…*

these cupcakes looked amazing and most of all tasted amazing. If you want the recipe just let me know. I’d be happy to share it!

When it’s all finished It’s suggested that you either indulge with a stout beer or fresh coffee- so we went with some (french pressed) southern pecan from the spice merchant in Wichita.

Cheers!

Christian

Posted in Food, Life | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Midwestyle

As most of you know (assuming that we’re remotely close at all), I’m a pretty fashionable guy- or at least i’d like to think so (please don’t rain on my parade).  I’m ‘up’ with the style, music, and just the all around feel of the day.

I tend to learn a lot from blogs, magazines like GQ, and just watching everyday people walk down the streets- except not in Topeka, because we suck when it comes to fashion “Hello, American FREAKING Eagle.BLEH! One of the biggest influences in my everyday dress wear is from a blog called, Themidwestyle.com. This blog is made up of three twentysomething year old guys from right here in the heart of America, KC! These three guys broke the curse of fashionless midwest life.

Jeff, Cameron, and Seth have put together a good fantastic blog simply devoted to helping us midwestern guys out a little with our oh-so-lacking style. These guys have some crazy awesome mix-n-match’s that blow my mind. While, yes, some outfits are a wee bit over the top, for the most part they’re pretty amazing.

here are a few of my favorites:

Not going to lie, this is exactly the look I would die for (figuratively, of course.)

…see, there’s just one little, tiny, itty-bitty problem with most of this- I’m not a twig like this guys. How often do you see a bigger guy rock something like this? Rarely. Don’t get me wrong; bigger guys can pull of a different kind of, ‘hipster-esque’ look, but not necessarily this one. It’s rather unfortunate, really.

My friend Johnny has has this hipster thing down (Shout out to Kara). Oh how I wish I was thin. Maybe someday?

This is me: DOING MY BEST! 

Oh, Lord, help me. Please make me gorgeous, with good style, and thin. Amen.

Anyone’s welcome to hook me up with some clothes. seriously- I’m broke.

Cheers!

Christian

Posted in Life | Tagged , , , | 5 Comments