So I’ve sat here for a few minutes and stared at the computer screen trying to figure out what I’m going to write this blog about. I am trying to write more frequently, but right now I am not really sure about what. I could do another Christmas blog, I could write about my job because I haven’t done much of that, I could write about a lot of other things but right now I’m not really feeling it. Maybe I’ll talk about how I am listening to the reissue of Brand New’s album Your Favorite Weapon and how it is bringing back some awesome memories (“I’m gonna stay 18 forever….”), and also how it is crazy to think this spring will be my 10 year reunion for high school (still not sure that I even care to go though). I could talk about how my friend Joel is getting ready to have a kid and it seems like just yesterday that we were up to no good in the BOH or the Catholic Cruiser. But none of these things are really jumping out and saying “Yeah you should write about me!!!” Although there are some pretty epic Nick & Joel stories. So now you are getting to read about my thought process, I guess maybe I should apologize for that. Or maybe you’re thinking “Man this is like a backstage tour of how Nick writes his blog. This is sweet.” But I doubt you are thinking that haha. Or maybe at this point you are wondering did I really name my blog after a drink. And then there are those of you out there that already get why I named this blog that, and now the rest of you are even more confused haha. And you are probably hoping I will explain it in here somewhere for you. Sorry to disappoint, but I like to make people work to figure out some things. Google will probably make it really easy though. So when will I get to my point… I’m not really sure. I was hoping that by the time I had typed these now 353 words that I would have an idea. But I’ll keep plugging away and see what happens. At this point you are probably wondering why I didn’t just delete all this. Why did I chose to leave it in the blog? How on earth am I going to tie all this in? I’m not really sure (or at least I’m not for the time being).
Have you ever felt stuck? Ever felt like you are going nowhere? I sure have. I used to live there. I can remember feeling like my life was on pause. Daily I would pray to God and ask Him when I was going to see all the things He told me I would do. I would say, “I know You have called me for more than this, so why I am I here?” I was out of college for almost five and half years before I got a full time job. I spent about four of those years working in the restaurant industry. I was so frustrated I began to hate my jobs. I never woke up and looked forward to working. I also wasn’t married, and really didn’t see any chance of finding prospects in the near future. I watched friends get jobs, get married, move on in life. I wondered if I had missed something. Maybe I missed out on an opportunity God had given me. Or maybe I was missing what He was trying to tell me. My frustration started to turn into anger and resentment towards God. I started getting mad that my life was going nowhere. I knew there was so much potential inside of me that wasn’t being used. And I knew it would never be used waiting tables. But yet here I was still doing that. Maybe God was punishing me. Maybe there was something I wasn’t doing right. And then there were the people that told me that I just needed to be patient and it would all make sense one day. I was getting pretty tired of waiting for that one day.
A few years ago Pastor Sean asked me if ever regretted starting the internship at Charisma Church. Without having to think I told him that I didn’t regret it even a little bit. He asked me why. The answer to that was easy- because of all the incredible things I had the chance to do while I have been there. Going to Charisma was a life changing decision for me. I started going to Charisma in the fall of 2004. I’ve had the opportunity to work with the youth group since 2005 and am currently the director of that ministry. I’ve been able to do lots of One Life youth events all up and down the east coast, and even a few in other countries. I’ve been on five mission trips to three different countries (and plan on going on my sixth this summer) where I’ve seen so many lives changed. I’ve seen thousands of people give their lives to Jesus, be set free, be healed, and so much more. I have had the opportunity to be a cast member on a TV show, “TVOneLife”, that airs around the world. I’ve been baptized in the Holy Spirit. I’ve been able to play in a worship band and greatly improve my musical knowledge and skills. I’ve made lifelong friends that have been there through the good and the bad. There was no way I could possibly regret the decision to be a part of that internship. This paragraph just barely touches on all the things I could talk about.
So here I was waiting for my life to go somewhere. I was waiting for God to use me for what I had been called to do. Anyone who can put two and two together can see that obviously it was very foolish for me to feel that way. Some of you may even read that last paragraph and be slightly envious of the things I’ve been able to do the past seven years. How in the world could I feel like my life was going nowhere??? Looking back I would agree that it was really dumb for me to feel that way. But at the time that was how I felt. Why? Because things weren’t going my way. In my mind I had a plan of how God was going to make things work out. I had a plan of how my life was going to go and it was not heading that way. So what did I do? I did what a lot of people like to do; I blamed someone else. Somehow this was all God’s fault.
Proverbs 14:12 says, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.” There is a reason my life didn’t go the way I wanted it to. If it had it would have gone down in flames. But there was one thing through all of that I never did. I never stopped seeking God. Sure there was a period where my vision was cloudy, but I didn’t give up hope. And now that I am in a place where I feel like my life is going somewhere, I can look back and see exactly how all the things that happened in those years have helped get me to where I am today. I can see how I wouldn’t be where I am now if it was not for those things.
So maybe you are in that place where you feel stuck. If I could offer one piece of advise it would be this: if you are stuck, it is your own doing. I don’t believe that being stuck and being in God’s will can coexist. Each day has its purpose; don’t be so blind that you miss it. If your life feels like it is stuck and slowly dying you are on your own path. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. 6 In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Am I saying that you are going through what you are going through because God wants you to?? No, not at all. If we come up with our own plans and follow them, the Bible tells us it ends in death. We usually created the crap that is in our lives. But what I am saying is that if we trust in God and seek after Him, He will not lead us astray. He will not lead us off the path. He will not lead us to nowhere. If we put our lives in His hands we will not be stuck. Sometimes, when we just press on in spite of what we feel we will be able to see how all the pieces fit together. We can see how the beginning ties into the end.
Until next time…