Howdy folks. Today marks the oldest I’ve ever been and the youngest I’ll ever be. This July will be my sixth full year in the great city of Kansas City. After moving around with my family multiple times in the Midwest, I transitioned to Kansas City in 2013 to kick start my adult life; and it has been great. I graduated from a local community college in 2017 with a shiny new degree in graphic design. Shortly thereafter, I got my first grown-up job at a small marketing firm in Topeka, KS, working as a graphic designer, techy, and all around idea-guy.
Pivotal moments in my life include birth in 1993; rebirth in 2001, when Jesus Christ became my Savior, Lord, and Friend in a dark little bedroom in Ohio; being homeschooled for 12 years; two years of horse/Bible/slave-labor camp in North Dakota; staffing at Bible camps for about a half-dozen summers; moving to KC, attending the Galilee Program in 2015; graduating college in 2016; going to Galilee again as a mentor; getting my grown-up job; dating someone very special; and falling victim to a series of budget cuts, losing my job. That should pretty much get you up to speed.
There’s much I could share about each of those experiences, and much that fills in the gaps. All the big things and little things we call “life” get strung up together into a single story—one that can be painful to look back on, and hysterical to reminisce about. “Family” emerges as a frequent topic of tears and triumph. A history of abuse and divorce, struggles with anxiety and loneliness, and little victories in regular doses that reveal the starlight of heaven piercing through the darkness. All of these things get crisscrossed together to compose my story.
Aside from my moment of claiming Jesus Christ as my Lord, and the other experiences listed above, it’s hard for me to drill down on a specific event where I radically matured in my relationship with Jesus. With a steady diet of His Word, messages, conferences, camps, books, and classes, it’s easy to feel a sort of spiritual indigestion—a bloated feeling of all the things I should be doing, but feeling utterly incapable of achieving them. There have been so many prayers in dark rooms, so much anxiety about my “performance” as a disciple of Christ. But with glorious simplicity, there have been so many small ways that the Lord has responded to my fears and answered my questions. He’s shown me that He knows what I’m thinking with fearful accuracy, and He has a loving solution waiting for me. Over the years, I’m learning to bank on His mercies being new every morning, and that He is “a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.” (Zeph 3:17) I still don’t have all the answers, but I can trust in the One that does.
Today I am pressing on in life and work and ministry. My service for the Lord has consisted of, on average, a happy mix of responsibilities at my local church, and a growing list of ministries like this one where I serve technologically, artistically, and administratively. Websites that need building, events that need planning, and lawns that need mowing—far from glamorous work, but I am so grateful for every single opportunity to serve. To sum it all up, I am thrilled at where the Lord has brought me these last 25 years, and with new adventures constantly cropping up, I know He’s got a lot more in store for me.