Archive for category Relationships

Why Be A Bible Thumper When God Is Active Today

I was thinking the other night about my daughter, and how I could reflect that God is relevant today in everyday life.  When I was growing up, hell, into my 20s, I didn’t read the bible and most of the described events in there, that I have heard from various sources surrounding me, were very hard to relate to today, to the struggles we deal with just trying to survive in this society, bent on rich people getting richer on the backs of the poor most of all, and then the middle class.  Today I can see some major similarities, some relevancy that I have never seen before, but that was only due to the insightful people I have been exposed to, and the research I have done.  I will do my best not to get off on a rant about legal tender, and the hording of it, using government as a tool so that those with it get to keep more of it than those without.  Regardless of what I see today that I didn’t when I was younger, how can I relate to my daughter how God fits into:

  • Being different than everyone around you.
  • How to make friends.
  • Where to find the right people to surround yourself with.
  • How to get a job in a tough market with an inadequate skill set and education.
  • How to find the right person to spend your life with.
  • Then, how to actually spend your life with a person you live with for the rest of your life.
  • How to tell when it is time to leave, a job, an abusive situation, a community.
  • How to find a way to stay when things are tough, and why.
  • What kind of car to buy and why.
  • A reason to live.
  • How to deal with debt, and what it really is.
  • How people work, their motivations, and how it makes everything in society predictable and sad.
  • How to keep on going when you know how broken society is.
  • How to deal with difficult people.
  • How to actually forgive someone.
  • Why to forgive someone.
  • What is love.

LOL, as if I could list all the things.  But the list goes on and on, and every human needs to learn how to live, and every one of these elements fits in, and God fits into every one of these elements.  I have heard from people this sad misunderstanding where they say “God doesn’t really fit in to taking care of my family, making ends meet” extremely paraphrased of course, but the idea is clear, they could not fathom how God fit into everything it takes to live today.  Like finances, you can bible thump a lot of verses out about that, and not that they are worthless, but the societal gap, the lack of understanding of how things were then and how things are now, and how they were very similar, really kills the application of the bible to today.  Subject after subject, you will fail to relate, so much lost in translation, and not just in translation of language, but translation of the situations that were in play then, and the same damn thing happening in one form or another today.  David was right, there is truly nothing new under the sun, but starting out in your understanding and if you are lucky, study, none of it hits home.

As a father, I can’t help but revisit how it was when I was young.  I still don’t know how I can help a young person see and believe that it is real.  As a young boy, I was a hard case, one even today I would not know how to crack.  Sometimes I wonder if the best thing we can do is raise them as close to how you want them to be, and pray.  However, I worry about being just another “Christian” family that makes a little atheist because we paint and live such a hypocritical life, oh Lord, let us not live a hypocritical life.  I believe that all atheists are in one form or another the fault of God believing people being terrible in the name of God, or while living under His name as “Christians”, okay I am getting off topic.

So, to summarize, I have come to the conclusion that the bible is good, but only after seeking God with all your heart and having Him guide you through it, otherwise it can be used as a tool of evil, just remember, even Satan used it for evil, and still does.  Spiritual things are spiritually discerned.  I think something that may help relate to a young person who God is, and what He wants for us, is to write down the statistically anomalous events in our lives where God clearly pulled some strings.  Not to discourage described events from the bible, but without described events from a little more recent time, it will be very hard to relate.  One day I want my little girl to recall a story of where we had no food and no money, and the very day we prayed, out of nowhere people were cleaning out their pantries, and started to show up with boxes of food, and I want her to pray, and see what happens.  I know my Friend, He will not disappoint a humble prayer, from a pure honest heart, who seeks Him, with all of their strength.  Or I want her to look back, when she finds herself in a hard place with work, to recall daddy telling about how he just could not make it, there was no way to get out of debt, and prayed, and within a month was being paid nearly 3 times as much in a new job.

Heh, “doesn’t really fit into life”, that is really missing the mark.  The wife I have, the home I have, the car I have, the child I have, the health I have, the fact that I am alive here today, only because of God.  I have experienced how He really does fit into life, in every way.  Its not simple, its not easy, it takes work in prayer, study, choice, belief, and action.  You can’t con God, He is a *person, and I wouldn’t expect Him to respond to someone being a shit saying “prove you exist” (I did that once, didn’t work), but He will respond to someone who humbly believes in Him and calls on Him, asking some of the simplest of life’s questions.  Many would say to that “how convenient”, and I would say “yup, deal with it, it is His choice, what would you do if for thousands of years you have interacted with your creation, and then a generation decides to discount a portion of written history for all kinds of reasons, and someone who still believes asked for help, and one who doesn’t believe asks for you to prove yourself again, who would you rather respond to?”.  I can’t presume to speak for God, but I can say it seems fair at this point in history to let people believe what they want to believe, and respond to those who believe and call on Him.  From my perspective, God has nothing to prove, at least not to me or mankind, He has done so quite enough in history.

I am so glad God is in charge of all that.  I am not equipped for His job.  The story is never quite as simple as I put it, I classically, at least part of me, wishes it were.  Frankly I took the long way around, as I put it, I had to hit some walls before I even thought to ask God about any of those line items.  Terrible relationships, before I finally asked Him to take care of that, but I was fine being single, ether way was ok at that point. I ended up going to bars to find friends and such, and I found that doesn’t always end well, and dare I say, from my experience, it has a high statistical probability that it is not going to end well.  So I asked where I can find a good woman.

My next blogs will tell those stories, and how God responded.

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The First Shall Be Last, and The Last Shall Be First

The first one to run to the parent when they come home to tell on the other, they are counted as right, regardless of the truth of their story, or rightness of their perspectives. The first one to tell the teacher about something is counted as right, regardless of the truth of what they say, as they may weave untruth, or have heavy biases to suit themselves. Many would perceive he gay community as flamboyant, loud, lisping, and always outgoing, this is not the case, not for all, but how can someone perceive a group of people but by what they hear and see, and they only hear and see the ones that are loud and visible. When in a position of perceived authority, quite often the only people who will come and talk to you are the ones who are having a problem, and so all you hear is the one side, a people already clearly biased to something being perceived as an issue. Are you going to take that as a nice even balanced approach, or should you not logically seek out an exact same number of people not complaining or “concerned” and talk to them about the issue?

We need to know our selves better than this, otherwise we will end up being tools of what ever comes our way, and when the only thing that comes our way is those who already see something as a problem, despite it being a problem or not, what then? When dealing with people, imperfect people, there will be some of each person that is imperfect and broken, and there will be some of that person that is good, and we better see that, because we will be accountable to our reactions and how we handle the situation. We have the power to condemn a person who is seeking the light, and to turn them to darkness by how we respond, we better not forget that! Or we can have hope, and beat things out with God, and He will let us see things as they are, despite the only vocal ones being biased to one direction, because who comes to authority to complain but those with a complaint, while all the others who see good things happening do not speak up, because as the kingdom of this world goes, who goes to the authorities but those seeking power over, and have a complaint.

We need to never forget the example of Jesus Christ, what did He say to Pilate? What did that mean? Who did He say was the Good Shepherd? Who did He say our teacher was? Who girded Himself and washed our feet? His Kingdom is not of this world, it is not like this world, people do not come to an authority figure in His Kingdom so the the authority can control or force about a change or an action overwhelming the will of another.  We are not to be like them, that have perceived authority, and lord it over others.

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Oh Paul, So Stuck In Your Ways

I have been working through the daunting task of reading the writings of Paul.  He was used to spread the gospel to so many, and so far, but I have to say, that he should have set himself aside and his deeply engrained ways aside so he could simple preach Christ and Christ alone.  If he were just to echo all that Jesus said and did, if only.  But he does not, in fact for some reason in his writings he is often speaking things in direct contrast to what God said in Genesis, where God said “it is not good for man to be alone”, and indirectly, “Go forth and multiply”.

Specifically I am reading through 1 Corintians 7, and there is much said that I can not get on board with.  I understand that there is much that can be inferred into writings that is not there in the first place, but I can not help but get the feeling that there is a measure of arrogance as Paul speaks of marriage.  In 1 Corinthians 7:1 he starts by saying “Now concerning the things of which you wrote to me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman”.  Now maybe I am reading it wrong, maybe Paul is saying that they wrote to him saying it is good for a man not to touch a woman, and then he was addressing that, but without the quotes, it is left looking like Paul is saying this to them in response to the letter Paul received.  But here comes the touch of arrogance that starts weaving in; 1 Corinthians 7:5-9:

Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.  But I say this as a concession, not as a commandment.  For I wish that all men were even as I myself. But each one has his own gift from God, one in this manner and another in that.

But I say to the unmarried and to the widows: It is good for them if they remain even as I am;  but if they cannot exercise self-control, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

I see parts of this as completely reasonable, and who am I to say that being able to be alone without issue is not a gift from God, but to say that it is only the lack of self-control that is a reason for a man and a woman to be married, that is not truth, as God himself said “it is not good for man to be alone” and then He created Eve for Adam as a helpmate.  Now people joke that in the garden, perhaps it was because Adam was looking at the animals a little funny (read, burning with passion), that God decided to create Eve, but that is not what is said.  I believe there are many reasons that it is good for a man to be married to a woman.  Just as God said, a helpmate, yes, I can absolutely say that my wife is the biggest human helper I know in my life.  She takes care of so many things, and with us working together so much more can be accomplished, yes, even so much more can be accomplished for God.

I was accepting of being alone for the rest of my life, but God knew better.  He knew I needed someone, even though it was not apparent yet.  I had not gotten seriously sick before, been without work before, bought a house before, or had a child before.  God knew what He had in store for me, and he knew I could not do it alone, and so He chose the perfect match for me, a self proclaimed freak, an oddball, so unique I could not relate with others.  I think differently, I act differently, I relate to people differently, and I see things differently than the majority of people I have met in this world.  He found a beautiful woman who would stand by me and support me no matter what.

I guess my main point is, people are not perfect, no matter if they have writings in the bible or not.  Paul was far from perfect, in fact, I have referred to him as a pompous ass at times, and other things.  He is human, God touched his life, but he is still him.  He has to fight against who he was brought up to be, and God used him and his strengths for much good, but it did not mean he did not have a bunch of worldly funk still attached to him that he has to fight against to keep God’s word and heart flowing without being over colored by him, a legalistic, hard, emotional guy.  This is a powerful lesson for all of us as we walk with God.  Never think anyone is perfect, except for God and Jesus Christ.  I am not saying to not trust anyone, but I am saying never get to the point where you treat everything that a person says as 100% perfect, unless you are talking directly to God or Jesus.  You must weigh what you hear, with the character of Christ, you must know Jesus that well, the heart of God.  If you don’t, then you risk being tossed by the waves, no matter who is making the waves.

The concept that the bible is infallible, is in itself a powerful deceptive tool.  It was written by men, God is reflected in there, but so are the ways of men, and written on the pages of the bible are the historical accounts of the horrible concessions God had to make, when there were only bad concessions open.  God’s plan was not genocide, murder, theft and death.  It was to make a place for a people who were to be a light on a hill, showing God’s love to the world and teaching people, ushering them into God’s way of living, the way He created His people to live, and ushering them into the knowledge of who God is, and how He wants the best for every one of His children on the face of the planet, the entire human race.

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Talking To People

Meet with them where they are at, walk with them, or ask if they would like to walk with you.  If they don’t want to walk, ask if it would be ok if you were to sit with them, etc.  The worst that could happen is they say no, or say yes and not mean it, or resent it.  Be open and honest.  Have a goal, but don’t think you can convince or coerce them into thinking or believing anything.  Be willing to share perspectives, but meet them where they are at in their minds and hearts.  Do your best to not override their perspectives, but search them out, find out why they think that way or believe what they do, and ask if you can present a different perspective, but not too aggressively.  Harmless or innocent as doves, but wise as serpents, which I believe also includes patience.

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Beautiful Day, Beautiful Wife!

Sunny Day View From Office

This is the view from my office on a sunny day.

Yesterday was a wonderful day (2011-06-20)!  Kathy and I have been going through some hard transitions, hard choices, a lot of work, and a lot of stress, so we needed a day to play.  It started out being one of those rare sunny days, blue sky, warm wind, just beautiful.  Anyone who knows Seattle knows how rare those are.  Right now we live in Shoreline, a beautiful neighborhood with trees, near a beach, in the view of the sound, and lots of well kept yards.  From our living room area we see a full flower bed, in full bloom.  God had really blessed us with a beautiful place to live!  I do hope we can stick around for a while.

 

 

When Kathy made it home, we decided it would be best for us to get the hell out of the house!  We decided to head down to the Edmonds waterfront, the first place we started to really get to know each other, and also the place I proposed to her, well also I believe we went down there for a while on our wedding day, after our wedding if I remember correctly.  So we have some history there.

 

Kathy at Edmonds Waterfront

Kathy at Edmonds Waterfront

I brought my camera, the trusty little Cannon PowerShort SD600, which has served me well these many years.  It still surprises me how good of a camera it is, with very clear shots, minimal grain, and a decent resolution.  Eventually I do want to upgrade my camera, to something more than a point and shoot.  A full on digital SLR (maybe a Nikon D3100) is what I am looking forward to getting, and we are slowly saving money so I can pick one out eventually.  It will have a dual purpose.  Since Kathy is going to be starting to do freelance soon, she will need a good photography source, and I can be that source, as long as I have a high enough quality camera.  I have also wanted a chance to take some more professional shots, and many of the features I am needing for that are not possible with this point and shoot camera.  I would like to be able to even sell some photos if possible.

My Beautiful Wife Kathy

My beautiful wife, Kathy.

We picked a perfect time to head down, the lighting was wonderful and it was warm enough I could run around in just a t-shirt and sweats.  We ended up roaming from the ferry dock all the way up to the dog park at the other end.  I was stuck on the idea of checking out all the beautiful plants that were in bloom and I wanted to hang around until sunset.  Eventually we got tired of wandering around, and it was getting close to when the sun would duck behind the clouds above the mountains, so we just sat down near the water, talking, and watching the fish jump.  I was having a lot of fun with the lighting from the sunset, and pulled a few really neat shots off with my beautiful wife as my subject.

 

Nice Reflection Shot off of Kathy's Glasses

A nice reflection shot off of Kathy's glasses.

Today is not quite as nice, but nice enough to leave the windows open, which is a very nice change.  Baby (our cat) is going insane wanting out every door and window she sees, and constantly whining while I am trying to work.  I am looking forward to more fun in the sun this summer, maybe even some vacation time.  With the future so unknown, and unpredictable right now, it is not really something we can plan for like many people do, but God will provide, yes, even for our enjoyment.  We will see what happens, life is good, and God is great!

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Just Keep in Touch

Current mood:sad

daddy I lost you, I need you so, just for you now, just keep in touch”  Words from a song I heard, by a person who could not even put his own voice to the words, he synthesized them.

Over the many years of our lives, we are hurt, but sometimes we don’t have enough background to even know what hurts and what doesn’t.  Some of the deepest hurts may just make your head caulk to the side at the time, because you know something is wrong, but you can’t really put together what it is all about.  then 10 or so years later, you are listening to a song, and it says something, something that touches you, and your body tenses up, and you resist the feeling, but you know that something is there.  Those words just touched on a sore spot, a wound from the past that can not heal without the realization that it is there.  Once you know something is going on, you can do something about it.  Touching where we are wounded causes us pain, and we burst into tears, shaking, uncontrolled, or we fight it, and resist feeling anything and become cold and hard like a rock, unhealing.  I had to ask God for help to figure out what was going on, to let me feel, if something is there, I want to heal, I want to realize the truth about what hurt me so I can act, so I can change it, and heal.  I want to be a whole person, not like a house that is full of many rooms, with their doors blocked off and boarded up, afraid to face what happened behind them.  If you live like that, each blocked off room also blocks off some of who you are, some of your feeling, some of your function, more of what makes you alive.  Room by room, I want to heal, so I can be a full whole person, who is fully alive.

I miss my Dad, I miss him really bad.  It is as if I had lost him, or maybe never had him in the first place.  I see him from time to time, but it is like there is a wall there, I know there is one on my part, but perhaps he has one put up himself.  We are not actually connecting… Well sometimes, perhaps on a deeper level then many people connect with their fathers.  But I still feel that we are both wounded and afraid of the deeper relationship that we both long for with each other.  He is afraid, so am I.  I can not say what he is afraid of, but I can say what I am afraid of.  I am afraid that on a deeper level, he does not really love me, unless there is something in it to benefit him.  I am afraid of a conditional love.  No one said one’s fears have to be based in truth, I can say that they often are not.  I might go as far as saying that anywhere there is a fear involved, you will find a lie that you believe as a truth.

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Jonathan Can’t Come Out To Play

Current mood:busy

Ok, it has been forever since I have last blogged, but I need to write something.  Life has been continuing day after day.  I am still heading my small group at the church, and attending another.  I knew I needed the weekends so I moved my small group meeting to Tuesdays.  I have realized that without structure or any sort of plan for the small group, I loose my confidence.  I need to have a general direction and spend some time working in that direction myself before I feel comfortable asking people to come to the group, that should be a given, but somehow after the material Larry provided ran out, I have become lost.  I have fleeting moments of inspiration, but only fleeting.  I am recognizing that I do not put time with God high enough on my priority list.  Part of me knows that spending time with God is a major blessing, He will help me find my center, my inspiration, my direction, and guide me through anything I go through, but there is another part of me that seems to be pulling in the other direction, the resistance, that same feeling one might get when approached with vacuuming or doing the dishes.  I will call that resistance the flesh, the worldly part of me that tries to hold me back from doing what is best, from doing things the way they were designed to be done.  I am slowly having my mind and heart changed, as I realize that I really want to spend that time with God.  But it is so different than the way the rest of the world works, everything else seems to have very clear and direct results, so I find myself doing all of these other things before I finally get around to spending time with God.  Day by day I feel the void growing as I let that time slip away.  The verse “Abide in me and I will abide in you” keeps echoing through my head, and I know it is true, why is there any resistance?  Maybe my motivation is wrong.  My mind is cloudy, I can’t seem to figure this out.  Maybe spending time with him will give me what I need to figure this out…. Sounds like a good idea to me, He has always helped me in the past.

Part of my problem these days is that I do not give myself enough down time, or alone time.  Back in the day, I had not even recognized the need for down time or alone time, because other than work, that is all I had, sitting around watching TV, or reading once every few years.  I had nothing going on.  It is taking me a long time to recognize and admit that these are valid needs, now I need to find a way to bring a little bit of it back.  This is a scary proposition though, something has to be cut back, and then your mind equates that to devaluing that thing, or person, or situation.  For example, maybe less time with Kathy, or cut a group meeting out, or maybe some of my responsibilities at the church…  I suppose I just need to evaluate where I am spending the most time.

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Jonathan’s Thoughts on Ephesians

Current mood:refreshed

I am slowly working my way from the beginning of the bible to the end of the bible, and I just finished Ephesians today.  Here are some thoughts that came to mind when reading Ephesians 5 this morning:

Come to understand these ideas of your own heart guided by the Holy Spirit to see that they are good, and so that you do them out of love for God, not simply out of obedience of the rules for the rule’s sake.  Rules and guides passed on from one person to another are but empty without the understanding that the Holy Spirit gives, and just as children grow to become adults, and realize the wisdom behind the rules they were taught, we too must grow in Christ, and gain the understanding, to build our foundation on Him, with his guidance.  Each one of us, if seeking God with all our heart, mind, body, soul, and strength, will find God, and his good will, and we will be guided to do what is good and right in His eyes.  We need but ask, and we shall receive.

I must say I liked Ephesians, it was well written.  There is a lot to be said for being given time alone to think and spend time with God, even if it is in prison.

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Life is Simply Complex

Current mood:anxious

First I would like to say, love is so much more than just a choice, so so much more!  It is a feeling, it is an action, it is loyalty, it is based in truth, it is working through problems with a life long determination, never giving up.  Love is so many things, and for me it is a way of life.  Though I am not perfect, and in some ways, I am a hypocrite because I am not perfect.  But I do love, and I will spend my entire life growing in love, working toward showing agape love.  I pray that God strip me of my selfishness, my arrogance, my comparisons, and my feelings of superiority, because those have no place in a life of love.  I am not perfect, nor will I ever be.  I do however plan to always learn and grow, so that I might gain footing every day.  As the world and its values push back, with God, I have faith that I can grow.

Now that I got that out of the way, which was something that has been bothering me ever since I posted my first blog touching on what love is, I feel much better.  As I move forward in my relationship with Kathy, I am learning many new things, seeing myself in many new lights, and seeing how truly human I am.  I am weak at times, I am an empty shell of a man at other times.  As I move forward in love, my flaws seem to have bright spotlight on them, and now I can see so many things that I need to work through in order to grow.  Day after day, I am reminded of how Kathy will love me no matter what I approach her with.  I am filled with confidence in who God made her to be, and how through God, nothing is impossible to resolve.  It is not always easy, but what truly good things in life are easy.

I feel like I have finally woken up after 7 years of… I don’t know what, and for the last year or 2 I have been back and growing.  Not to say my 7 years in Walla Walla were a waste, they were not, I have made many friends, and seen how the world values things.  I have lived on my own, and I have lived with people.  I have been through so many different situations, I have seen the worst in people, and then I have been able to understand it.  I have been given the gift of forgiveness and have been able to let go of so many hurts in my past, not forgetting them, but they no longer have power over me and my actions and feelings today.  Enough of this tangent, I am here now, so now what?

Now what?  It is a little late for me to be asking myself that now isn’t it…  I am moving forward.  But still I feel the need to ask myself that question on a day to day basis.  In this life there are so many things to do, so many choices, which one do I make, and what steps do I want to take to get there.  What do I want?  I want a life of love, life foundation in God, and to make people laugh.  I also want to develop the talents God has gifted me with, like art, and to explore my love for music by actually learning a musical skill.  I want to build strong friendships with the people around me, and to treat everyone with a love that resembles the love God has for us.

My to do list is growing, and time is passing by, but not without me jumping on and doing as much as I can in the time I am given, and with the ability I have been gifted with.  Maybe I should start by doing the paperwork on my desk, and clearing all of that off.

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Jonathan’s Time off and Christmas Ramblings

Current mood:happy

Today I am sitting here, on the first day of the week I am taking off work, and I am thinking.  I am thinking about all kinds of things, so many things.  One of them is the upcoming trip I am taking with Kathy over to meet her parents in Idaho.  I wonder what her parents will think of me.  Well, what ever the case, I will love them, thats just who I am.  I am looking forward to spending this time with Kathy and her family, seeing the dynamics of her with her family.  This is going to be fun.  I should probably start to pack and get ready for the trip.

Oh yeah, I suppose this is blog worthy, I am no longer single.  Kathy has been my best friend this year for some time, and I excited to have been given the chance to get to know her.  She is a wonderful woman, and I am blessed to be able to spend time with her.  While I was new and still getting to know people in the church (Edmonds Adventist Church), I was starting to work in the back on the computer during the services, and Kathy was there helping me every step of the way.  She has a strong and growing relationship with God, which is so wonderful to see and be a part of.  I have been looking for someone who puts God as number one in their lives because I believe that with God being the center of your life, everything else just seems to fall into place.  Being that no one is perfect, I believe it is so very important that we have God in our lives, and seek to continue to grow and mature with Him, and He will continually work with us to overcome our shortcomings and help us learn the hard lessons in life that we need to learn.  I can not put into words how much God has made a difference in my life, so now I recognize how cool it is to see that in the life of someone else.

Another thing that has been on my mind this morning is my computer.  It is more and more sounding like a Hoover vacuum cleaner.  There are some fans that are showing their age by making all kinds of strange whining noises.  I opened the computer this morning to check things out and I pulled the graphics card out and the CPU fan, hoping I could find some replacements at a local computer store, but no luck.  While I was in there, I noticed something that no one really wants to see, I have 2 capacitors that have pushed fluid out the top.  I have seen this on servers before, and they still worked for years after that, but it is disconcerting to see that on my prized motherboard.  So now I am faced with a possible forced upgrade soon.  I have mixed feelings about that.  I mean, “YAY” for a faster newer computer, but darn the fact that it costs money.  God will provide what ever I need, he always has, and always will.

I have started actually trying to give gifts this Christmas.  I would love to get gifts for everyone I knew, but I am doing what I can, and keeping my eyes and ears open for some real needs, and giving where I can.  Even if it is just for a few select people, where I have seen a need, that is cool.  But one thing that I have found out is that, wrapping presents is hell!  By the time I get done with a box, I stand back and see just a mass of paper and tape.  It took me something like an hour for just 2 boxes.  I am forced to grapple with the idea that I just blow at wrapping gifts.  Yet somehow it was fun… strange.

There are so many other things for me mull over today, so I can figure out what I can fit in.  Like changing the oil in the Jeep, installing the subwoofer in the Jeep, working on the Christmas letter, working on the cruse control buttons, finish up with church computer and lights notes, play with Ableton Live, setup a business website on grendeltech.com, work on resume, finish some books, and a letter to my grandmother.  Now I can add another task of keeping my eyes out for a good new computer to replace my old Hoover.  Oh, and I need to send a note to my bible study group to let them know I will be gone this weekend, that’s fairly important.  I know there are plenty of other things that I need to do, but one thing at a time, no worries here.  It is so nice to know and be able to rest in the fact that God has all of the truly important issues worked out already, and he is working in my life so that it may be used for good.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas time!  Travel safe, and have fun!  You are all in my prayers.  God bless.

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Jonathan’s Guided Direction

Current mood:contemplative

Is love a choice?  If its not, should it be?.. Shouldn’t it be?  If love is something that you just “fall into”, like a hole, something hidden that if you run across it, you will fall into it, then what does that mean?  Doesn’t that mean that you are letting your subconscious make your choices for you, some values or beliefs that have been ingrained in you as you were growing up.  And what does that mean for your relationships?  Say you keep on finding yourself attracted to people who abuse you, or use you, or any number of other things that are not good or right for your life.  Doesn’t that mean you damn well better take a hold of yourself, and figure that stuff out before you wake up one day, look back on your life and see failed relationship after relationship in your past, and realize that they were all the same person.  Maybe it is time to sit down and evaluate my inner beliefs, or what ever is inside directing me to the people I “fall for”, and make sure that everything is sound, make sure that my beliefs are based upon truth, and not some BS that I picked up somewhere when I was growing up.  If love is something that you just stumble and fall into, wouldn’t that mean you could just as simply fall out of love?  How scary is that for someone who is looking at marriage?

We are humans, we make choices.  We are not, or should not be, just debris being tossed about in a sea of other people or circumstances in this world.  We need to take the time to figure things out, so that we learn and grow, especially our core beliefs.  I don’t plan on being just a ball getting tossed about by what ever waves come my way, what would that make me?  Screw that, I am going to strive to grow, to find the direction I want to go, and with God’s help, I am going to plow through the waves of this life, like a ship with its sails set high.  With God as my guide and teacher, I will not be lost in the sea of this world or its values.

These days, I choose to love, but it is never a bad idea to take a moment and examine yourself from time to time, just to make sure you have not unknowingly fallen into some rut.  Living a life with your eyes wide open takes constant effort.

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Bits of stuff, unworthy of their own blog

Here are a few things that did not quite make it to becoming a blog, but I wanted to toss this stuff up here all the same.  Some are conversations, others are just things I jotted down.  None of it seemed special enough to put up into its own blog.

Sometime after July 29th, when I went to the Daft Punk concert:
Yes, the concert was a blessing, that’s right, being able to go to the Daft Punk concert was blessing from God, He knows how to take care of me.  The only thing that comes to mind is that God is the DJ, mixing together all of the sound samples and notes of my life, and I got to say, I love the music!  He is taking everyone and using them in his mix.

Wed Aug 08 08:36:42 2007, just chatting with someone:
[13:08] Jonathan: I don’t get it, why am I attracted to crazy?
[13:09] Jonathan: NM, I got it…
[13:11] Jonathan: I love extremes, blistering heat, dripping humidity, blasting wind, ground-shaking thunder, blinding lightning.  Maybe I now am at the point where I realize, that stuff is cool, but that is not what I need to look for in a woman….
[13:29] Matt: it is the challenge
[13:30] Matt: or possibly, you like to fix things
[13:30] Jonathan: that could be too
[13:31] Jonathan: I like to help people, it has been my resolve since childhood, and maybe I see they need help, and I want to help, I always do
[13:32] Matt: yeah, i did the same thing with girlfriends…. get the crazies and try to help them then realize it was too much
[13:32] Matt: the problem with women is that if you attempt to fix them they wont stay fixed
[13:32] Matt: probably the same with men, but i never dated any
[13:33] Jonathan: yeah, they have to do it themselves, to what ever extent is possible
[13:33] Matt: word
[13:39] Jonathan: God’s teaching me tons of stuff, its cool
[13:40] Matt: how do you know?
[13:41] Jonathan: action and reaction, to the point of no chance of coincidence

This was just me “thinking out loud” in an email today:

My perspective is a little down cast the last day or so, but I know it is just temporary, and it will clear up.

I think God has some more teaching to do, and I have some more lessons to learn.  One of the things I am dealing with is the feeling you get when you are ripped off by a mechanic.  I hardly ever get to the point where I am filled with contempt for someone, but I think that situation really hit a sore spot, that spot where you finally get to the point where you get enough trust together, hold it out only to have it smacked out of your hands and fall to the ground shattering into a million pieces.  Maybe I am over sensitive, maybe I should have known better, or maybe I didn’t handle it right.  At what point do I take the situation into my own hands and get the mechanic to do what I paid them to do.  For all I know, they may not have had any deception in mind, maybe they really thought what they told me was the real cause of the problem.  Maybe I am just seeing it wrong.  But one thing I know, I am not built to hate, I am not meant to hold contempt for someone, and I think that is what is bothering me so much, this foreign feeling that should not be there, it is being rejected.  I think that is it, with God so strong in my life, those feelings are like poison, and my entire being is rejecting it.

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Obi-Wan, You Are My Only Hope!

Current mood:annoyed

I am back in Everett, I have been here since the beginning of this year.  I have met up with old friends, many of them.  Things change, I change, a little bit here and there, over the years it adds up, maybe I am a different person.  I still love and care for people, I still love to have fun, I love to do new things, meet new people.  My values have been strengthened, my direction chosen, I now know what I want, and I know what I do not want.  And ok, maybe I grew up a little tiny bit, but not too much.  I suppose there is one very big thing that has changed, I now have a strong faith in God.  I know that may sound strange to some, it sounds great to others, and there are some that would be scared, or even angry.  Before you take that and think that I no longer do this, or I no longer eat that, try asking me first, because it might surprise you.  Let’s just say I don’t value all of these rules that man made up.  I guess what I am getting at is that in this world that some say is overpopulated, in this city of nearly 100,000, I feel a bit alone.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not crying myself a river, I am just a little annoyed.  Where is everyone?

Well, I have grown tired of humoring my ex-girlfriend’s alternate personality, even though it is a bit amusing.  I am going to get some reading done, I am half way through the bible, and have all but the first chapter of “Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire” to read.

Lord, you are my only hope,
everything else washes away as the sand with the waves.
The things of this world come and go like the pulsing tide.
Lord, let me be content with what you have given me,
nothing matters more than you.

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My Name is Jonathan!

Current mood:blank

Have you ever met someone who has a chip on their shoulder?  Someone who you can only assume has been really hurt in the past, and still has not pulled themselves together and dealt with it?  It can be hard to talk to them sometimes, ok, allot of the time.

It is strange how a normal conversation can turn on you.  Simply saying that you know how to get to some place can some how turn into an insult to the person you are talking to.  Some how that can mean that you are saying they are stupid, or that you are trying to make them feel stupid.  You are thinking to yourself, What? huh? I am saying what? trying to make you feel…. umm did I miss something?  So you take a few steps back, and explain that you did not mean in any way to say that they were stupid, or to make them feel stupid.  I guess at this point it is too late.  If they don’t really know you, that is one thing, but if they have this chip on their shoulder from their past, and that drives them to feel negative about all guys, then you are in trouble, and should duck out right then, there is no saving yourself.  Everything you say is going to get the “uh huh” or “sure you did” types of response because all of a sudden any credibility you had went out the window as she flipped the switch in her head that turned you from being Jonathan, into you are now every guy, with no credibility, everything you say is a lie, and you are an asshole.  In essence, to her you are now a collective of bullshit that she has experienced with other guys in the past, and she will treat you with equal disdain.

All of this caught me off guard, I was not expecting it, nor have I had any military training that could possibly prepare me for this attack which soon turned personal.  I now believe that I should have quickly ducked out after my apology.  Now, know this, I am human, and after something like that, I was still being patient, and trying to be as understanding as possible.  But then it got personal.  After I tried to simply exit the conversation after a quick apology, saying I had some things to do, things got interesting.  She pulled me back saying she was on the phone, and followed it up with insult.  She said “Boys can be dense sometimes”, that followed by turning it into a full on stereotype “all guys are”.  Ok, you did get that I said I am human, well as a human, that really hacked off any patience I was having with her.  Needless to say, I should have gotten out right after the insults started flying.  The rest was short, not too pleasant, I am going to leave it at that.

A keg of gunpowder, me, and a person to fan the flames (though I don’t think she meant to), does not make a good night.  Being me, it kept me up most of the night bothering me.  I just have to write it down to get it out of my head, and to maybe make sense of it.  Some times you just have to let it go, because you can not always make sense out of everything.

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Too Little, Too Late?

Current mood:lonely

I have so much to learn, but I am learning so much.  I am grateful for my friends for helping me realize so many things that, in my mind, I kept touching on, but did not yet fully understand.

Not giving people their space, their time, can push them away from you.  Some people are different than others, and the amount of space they need can differ.  Also after certain situations, more space can be needed than before.  To sum it up in a few words that mean so little unless you really understand it in the first place, you could say “don’t push it”.

I think I have always came on a little strong, and I am sure that even though I may not have noticed it for what it was, it has caused me many relationship problems in the past, even with friends.  Those that have known me for a long time, I think have known this and accepted it as just an unusual personality type.

There are many other things that I have learned, that I will not mention here, at least yet.  There are so many things that are easy to put into words, but into practice, it may be a challenge.  I am up for the challenge.  For those that I have pushed away, I apologize.  Balance is hard to put into practice.

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Jonathan’s Lingering Inner Strength

Current mood:pleased

Ok, I did not mean to leave things on a sort of bad note.  Later that night on Monday, I was good, not great, but good.  Sleep helped, talking helped, and so did writing and eating.  Tuesday was a wonderful day, and today is going great too.

As for the situation, things are going as I believe they should.  She does not speak too much about how she feels, and well I have been thinking about that.  How could she really say anything about that, she does not really know me yet….

Feelings make you do some stupid things, especially when you have not had to deal with them for a while.  Something I noticed today is that I am impatient, I hate waiting for things.  My mind flys, computers have a hard time keeping up with what I am trying to do at work.  I am so use to having control over things, everything works by my rules, my time, and my time is not going at any slow pace.  Now take away most of that control as feelings kick in, introduce a new set of rules I am not familiar with, and then mix that all up with a change of pace, because getting to know someone takes time…  I am getting a handle on things though.  I am stepping back and looking at things, though it is very hard to do some times.

I have also realized something I have known, or would have known if I were to have really thought about it.  Stop over analyzing things.  Relationships are not meant to be poked and prodded at so much, there is a time and place for everything, addressing every little thing even before it happens just does not help.  Saying everything that is on your mind is not always the best thing either.  Ok, well what do I know….., so much, yet so little.

All I really know is that tomorrow is another day, great things come from bad situations, learning by mistake will stick with you better than any other way, some of the greatest things in life come from doing things you don’t want to do, things that are hard.  Life is good, all of it, what ever happens, the good, the bad, it is all such an adventure, blazing your path in life…

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Tired…..

Current mood:drained

Stress takes its tole.  It is amazing how much it will hurt you just seeing and feeling someone you care about be uncomfortable with/around you because of a stupid decision you made.  Some times I think I am too sensitive, and the first thing that comes to mind is the movie Bedazzled, where one wish was to be sensitive, and he turned into a raging pussy….  Though I did my best to undo the mistake I made, I fear the damage is done.  Not that I am going to give up or anything, thats not my way.  I will however continue as friends, which I knew I should have done anyway.  How can you really find out if the person is right for you, if you don’t get to know them.  Every mistake, every bad decision, in one way or another results in good, I believe that, even thought it is hard to sometimes.  I have learned another little piece of information that I will not forget.  Anyway, I am tired, and sort of down, so I think I am going to sleep on it.

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Jonathan’s Complete Lack of Understanding

Current mood:contemplative

I have had some relationships with some messed up people in the past, a chronic liar, and another that would just not talk about the other relationships she was having with other people at the same time, testing the waters as she put it.  Both cheated on me, with several guys, both lied about everything surrounding the situation.  After all that fun shit, I have trust issues that I need to work out one way or another.

Here is a weird twist to the whole situation, call it coincidence or what ever you want, because I am not sure myself.  Starting with the bad relationship before the last bad one.  She was the one “testing the waters” with guy after guy, sometimes more than one guy in the in the same week (boy do I know how to pick them).  Things would be going fine, there would be no hint of anything strange going on.  She would be doing the same old thing, going out and visiting friends, I would meet some of them from time to time, nothing seemed out of place.  I mean it is normal for people to have friends and hang out with them, right?  Ok, well here comes the weird part, after a few weeks of things seeming normal enough, I started getting this horrible feeling which I can not really put into words, well actually I think I did, right when it was happening I think I wrote it down in a notebook because I did not know what else to do.  The feeling was sort of like betrayal mixed with sadness and some other extremely intense bad feelings.  But after a few days of that, I started putting things together, and I knew exactly what was happening, she had just started sleeping around, just one week after she told me that she wanted to “take the relationship to a new level”, well I never in a million years would have guessed that she meant sleeping around with some other guys.  A new level of what?, a new level of shitty relationships?  Well thanks for that, live and learn.  Anyway, I told several people exactly what was happening, as in exactly what she was doing, then confronted her and told her what she was doing, and told her that it would have been nice to hear it from her, so that I could at least start moving on with my life.  She admitted and confirmed everything I had came up with.

The next one is having to do with my last bad relationship.  I will not go into too much detail on this one.  I can say that my emotional tie with her was much stronger than the almost relationship I had before.  This seems to make things worse when I experience that evil feeling that something is wrong.  We are a ways into the relationship, when she decides to go visit some of her friends.  She was gone for some time, and then all of a sudden I get that horrible feeling again, it was really bad, I did not sleep for 2 days, I tossed and turned, doing what I could to get the feeling out of my head.  I talked to several people about that one, and I knew that she cheated on me, and that everything she told me after that point while she was gone, was a lie.  After everything was said and done, she told me exactly what happened.  It turns out that she had hooked up with the first person she had ever slept with and had sex with him the exact same times I got that horrible feeling.

Ok, so say you believe what I have said, what would you make of it.  Is it coincidence?  Or is it some sort of connection I have with someone I have feelings for, where I feel what is going on in their head.  Maybe people who are said to “not have a conscience”, really do have a conscience, but they ignore it, but just because they ignore it, does not mean I can.  What ever the case, this bad feeling thing is real, and it seems to coincide with actual events, coincidence or not.

What ever the case, if it is some sort of a connection with a person I have feelings for, I in no way have enough experience with it to be able to tell exactly what is going on.  For example, maybe a different person would feel guilty for not giving someone a call when they said they would, and if I had strong feelings for that person, then I would feel that guilt, in a lesser but noticeable way similar to the incidents in the past.  Or maybe even a slight white lie, or just not saying the complete truth would make someone feel guilty if they were a really good person who does not normally do that.  I think I might understand then, maybe….

Ok, yeah, so I am a freak, with mental powers, or maybe just mental, what ever, I don’t control the world or the reality that binds us to it, so who am I to say.  Only God could really explain this crap, but in the meantime, I have to try and make sense of things, and writing about it, seems to help.

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Psycho Pussy?

Current mood:tired

I am thinking about moving, but I do not know where, or if that would even be the best thing, but then again, I think it would.  What my mind likes to do is try and branch out as many possibilities that could happen in the future, and the decisions that could lead to that possible future.  Like for example, say in an undetermined period of time, I were to develop a serious relationship with someone who lived a fair distance away from me, what would I do then?  Well knowing me as well as I do, I would do what ever it took to ensure the happiness of both people involved.  I started out wanting to move up to Everett, or that area at least, so that I can be around friends and family, I know so many people there, and that still is my reason, but then again, the grass is always greener on the other side (I have always hated that concept which is far too true to deny).  I also want to be around the right people, good people, perhaps better than I have been surrounding myself with over the last 2 years here.  I have found some good people over here, but they are sparse.

I am a strong person, with strong beliefs, and a passion for the things I love and the activities I love to do.  I have values that I will not compromise, and that is one of the things that I would like to think makes me a good person.  But am I wasting it all away just going day by day working, isn’t there something more for me?  I can answer that, yes there is, the real question is, where do I go, what do I do to get there.  And then, the biggest issue on my mind, who do I want to take with me, who do I want to do it with.  I would love to have someone along with me, perhaps my missing half would be a good description, someone that together we could help make sense of things.  Ok, enough of that, don’t want to sound like too much of a pussy, but I am sure anyone reading this gets my drift.

Needless to say, I have been thinking about a lot of things, more so the last 2 months than I have in a very very long time.  Things like that tend to happen when certain events happen in your life that waken dormant ideas, thoughts, and feelings, that you were sure you had locked away for good.  Great, now I sound like a psychopath.  A psycho pussy anyone?

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Venting Thoughts, A Good Woman

Current mood:contemplative

Ok, to be blunt like I am, I am looking for a good woman, fun, outgoing, and athletic (optional), but must be in good health.  I must say, someone like that is hard to find.  And when you do, things are not as they appear to be, and then everything falls apart.  I don’t really want to be alone for the rest of my life, but I will be by choice if I can not find someone that fits with me.  If I am with someone who I do not fit with, then it degrades their life as well as mine, and I can not do that to someone.  So the right one is a little hard to find.  I am sure you can related to “the right one is hard to find”, well at least if you are looking for the right one.  What sucks is that I am what no woman (or at least very few) thinks exists, most guys say they are like me, but are not.  Back in Cypress, I made the mistake of telling Jeremy about how I felt about Sunny, and how I would treat her.  Next thing I know, he is dating her, they are together, and my feelings, being unchanged, I continue to describe what I would do in every situation when it came to Sunny (nothing sexual or anything like that, it was pure love).  Anyways, in the end, I helped my best friend win over the heart of the girl I loved.  Not too smart now that I think about it, he ended up just throwing it all away over sexual related issues.  Starting at the end of that situation, though I am not sure I should really mention this to anyone, it took me over 10 years to come to the point where I was looking for another girlfriend.

I could never cheat on someone I am with, it is just not possible, it would be wrong, beyond anything I could express, but that is just me.  I not too long ago had a problem that presented itself with my last girlfriend.  I was too trusting (maybe), and too forgiving (true, but that does not sound good).  I ended up forgiving things I should not have, like a stolen car and money, cheating on me, and drugs.  I trusted the lies she told, and forgave the wrongs she had done to me.  To an extent, that is good (forgiveness and trust), but not in my situation, at least not to the extent I took them.  One month after all of the above mentioned situations came to play, I did end up saying, “I love you, I hope all of the best for you, but for my sake, I have to let you go”.  That was a good decision, I wanted to help her, but there are limits, or at least I came to the conclusion that in order for me to continue life in a positive way, I could not be with her any more.  I have learned from that experience, it will not happen again like it did then, but it has not broken me, I will still trust, love, and forgive, but with open eyes.  I did not put up walls after that, how could you actually get to know another person and develop a relationship when you have walls up, I prefer going in with my eyes open.  Besides, when you have those walls up, you will reject so many things that would turn out to be great parts of your life, I know this to be true.

Here I am, stuck in a small town, looking (maybe) for the right woman, or at least open to the possibility.  I am surrounded by mostly “normal guys” (assholes) and am stuck with being stereotyped as one of those “normal guys”, no matter what I say, because those assholes (many “normal guys”) say the same things just to get what they want out of what ever woman they are trying to get with.  There is not much else to say about that, other than it sucks, and I am hoping to somehow overcome this issue one way or another.

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