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Saturday, June 30, 2018
You Are a Warrior @ 10:59 AM

"Do not speak badly of yourself, for the warrior that is inside you hears your words and is lessened by them.  You are strong and you are brave.  There is a nobility of spirit within you.  Let it Grow."

We are raised to be fiercely independent and headstrong, yet as we grow those who taught us don't always approve of the decisions we make.  How then can we be satisfied with who we are when we are told we aren't who we are supposed to be?

We must ignore these voices, no matter how difficult it may be.  We must be satisfied with our decisions and not question ourselves.  You are who you are meant to be and no one can change that.  Having confidence in yourself takes bravery and it's hard.  But be brave and take heart for you were not created to live a life of fear.

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Thursday, November 3, 2016
Fernweh @ 9:58 AM

"Then something woke up inside him, & he wished to go and see the great mountains, & hear the pine-trees & the waterfalls, & explore the caves, & wear a sword instead of a walking-stick."

I have spent the last month living out of a suitcase.  Although on a business trip, my need to explore new environments has been more than satiated.  The places I have seen were not on my list of places I wanted to go, but I enjoyed them nonetheless.  The beauty and wonder of Pennsylvania has captured my heart and drawn forth a creativity that had since been staunched.

As I write on this dreary and cold fall day I can not help but admire the scenery around me.  The history of this state as well as the landscape has put an awe and a thankfulness in me.  I have seen the tourist attractions of Philadelphia,have explored the backwoods and hidden museums of the mountains.  I have encountered all kinds of wildlife, but I find the most beauty in the stillness of the landscape.  When all sound but the wind and rustling of the leaves remain.  The great expanse of fields and trees fill my vision, I am but a ranger traveling through the woods onto my next adventure.

  In my spare time I sit in a warm coffee shop with a steaming cup and a book of a realm forgotten.  Why does the north always instill such marvel in me?  Is it because home is too green, flat and lacking seasons?  Could it be the history and secrets of the forests here that hold such sway over me?  I could travel the world forever if I had my loved ones with me.  As I return south in a few days time, I will drink up the cold weather and colors of the north. I will attempt to bring home the creativity and wonder this journey has brought me.

"Roads go ever ever on,
Under cloud and under star.
Yet feet that wandering have gone
Turn at last to home afar.
Eyes that fire and sword have seen,
And horror in the halls of stone
Look at last on meadows green,
And trees and hills they long have known"

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Saturday, September 3, 2016
Say Something @ 6:54 PM

"Sometimes words are nullified by saying too much."

Reconciliation.  1. The restoration of friendly relations.  2.  The action of making one view or belief compatible with another.  Reconciliation is an attempt to restore a relationship whether the person who was hurt or did the hurting desires to do so.  But when does the idea of reconciliation go out the window?  When something is broken how many times do you glue it back together before you can't anymore?  When is the appropriate time to discard the item or buy a new one?  When is it time to be happy again?  We can only reconcile so many times before it's time to mourn the relationship and move on.  How many times can compromises be made in an attempt to resolve things?  There is no definitive answer to these questions and every situation is different.

When did I start to loose myself?  I felt as if I was drowning for a while and that your hand pulled me out.  But at the same time we jumped into a new ship that began to sink.  That hand was no longer there to pull me from the water but to drag me down into it.  I traded one group of problems for another and didn't even realize it.  I have become someone I don't recognize and I can't stand to look at myself any longer.  Aren't relationships supposed to bring out the best in people?

I watched my friend, diagnosed with stage four cancer, die.  I watched how her husband treated her and cared for her in her last days.  I watched as this couple handled the finite reality of their marriage with grace and love.  I watched as this now widowed father of two continued to speak highly of and mourn his wife.  We are not promised perfect days, we are promised strife and adversity.  How you react to the situation is what truly matters.  Will you handle them with passivity, anger, harsh words, or will you handle them with love, building one another up, and action?

How in the most mundane of situations like life can we be so downright mean?  Why does something like a health issue or emergency grasp at our attention and cause us to care?  Shouldn't there be a constant passion?  Shouldn't there be a constant pursuit?  When does one sided love say to complacency, "Goodbye?"

"There is beauty in walking away."

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Sunday, July 12, 2015
Riptide @ 8:00 PM

If you could have any superpower what would you choose?

I know what I would have chosen long ago: I would choose the ability to breathe underwater. I grew up as a water baby; summers would be spent at the local neighborhood pool or at the beach.  I felt at home in the water.  My brothers and I would stay in the water until our fingers were pruned and we had no energy left.  Some of my favorite memories as a child were at these two locations.  One of my favorite games to play was imagining I was a mermaid.

Mermaids have always fascinated me; maybe it was watching too much of the Little Mermaid when I was younger.  They had so many abilities: breathing underwater, swimming through the water with ease, diving to great depths without being affected, communicating with sea creatures, having the vast ocean to make friends or get lost in, and the ability to breathe out of water as well.  Whether it was my brothers, friends, or other children I met I would find anyone and everyone I could to agree to play my game with me.    I would like to think that other little girls that age also played the same game when they went swimming.  To this day Mermaids do fascinate me but I have come to discover why I craved this life under the sea so much.

I deal with severe anxiety and depression; there are days where I can barely get out of bed let alone function normally.  When my anxiety gets the better of me my chest gets tight, I feel panicked, and scared; it is all I can do to drag myself to my dark closet and sit there.  The silliest part of it is that the smallest most insignificant things can trigger it; an awkward moment in a conversation, just thinking about my finances or something that has not and more than likely will never happen.  I hyperventilate and I feel as if the entire world is crashing down around me.  Finally with coughs and tears it slowly subsides, a total of maybe two to five minutes; but for me it feels like an eternity.

This feeling of drowning, whether slowly in my depression or quickly with my anxiety, is the worst feeling in the world.  I isolate myself, I lash out at others and get angry with myself.  To have the ability to breathe in both water and on land is something I covet because at times I can't even have one.  I take each day one at a time, so please be patient with me.  Please don't be upset with me if I cancel plans last minute, if I don't wish you a happy birthday, or if I don't call regularly.  I am trying really hard to adapt to this whole living on land thing.  Perhaps I am more of a mermaid than I thought I was.

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Monday, June 22, 2015
Songs of Innocence @ 8:05 PM

So many things change as we grow.  As a child you come barreling out of the house into your yard which is as large as a football field. The fort you build in the vacant lot next door is your only source of refuge as a ragtag group of survivors is lost in the jungle. The Christmas lights hanging on your ceiling above your bed dance like stars; you open the window to the warm summer air and let Peter Pan take you to Neverland.  Before you know it you are living on your own and it's time to pack your trunk of "childish things."  You solemnly tuck your wand next to your vial of pixie dust.  Lovingly you caress the cloak the elves gave you and cast one last broken glance at the magic that surrounded your life.

You stand at the shore of a lake the night as black as pitch.  The lake before you reflects the dark that seems to go on for eternity and suddenly you are falling.  Drowning in every mistake, every responsibility, every lonely night.  Just when it seems it wont end you land softly, embraced by the pine needles that break your fall.  Slowly one by one stars begin to fade into view as the sweet smell of evergreens and pumpkin fill your senses.  Then a brush of a hand slowly sliding into your own and you are no longer alone.

He smiles warmly and hands you an old key.  As tears fall down your face you can barely manage to thank him before you start running.  Your feet make no sound as you pound through the forest as quickly as possible.  Your breath catches as soft moonlight falls into the clearing, illuminating the old trunk.  Slowly you step forward, eyes fixated on what you truly thought you had lost.

The chest is dusty and much worn from the years; you slide the key home with a click.  With trembling hands you lift the lid with a creak and cast your gaze upon all your 'happy thoughts.'  Every item, untouched by time, lay just where you left them.  Everything seems much smaller but just as magical as the first day you possessed it.  A smile spreads across your face and one final tear slides down your cheek as you close the chest and lock it.

The man takes your hand and walks with you silently into the forest.  You know you will be back to take your treasures out and share them with the stranger.  Because of him you hold the key and there will always be magic.

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Sunday, January 8, 2012
Future Starts Slow @ 4:42 PM

When I got back from Port St. Lucie the summer of 2010 things had changed and I knew it was time for me to move out of my parents' house. I had had my taste of freedom and I had to go for it. :P Although I have greatly enjoyed my time being on my own I do often find myself over at their place pretty often. I'm a major family person; I love spending time with them. I love having their insight and advice on even the tiniest problem. That's why this next step I'm about to take is going to be the hardest one yet.

I have been slowly climbing out of the debt pit I threw myself into and I'm about halfway there. From there there are only a couple things I need to get in order- i.e. a car- and then I'm done. With that being said, after everything is paid off I plan to move to Miami. I know a lot of you will be upset with me and I am bummed that some of you just recently moved to Orlando :( But I know this is what I need to do. I have spent A LOT of time thinking about this and weighing the options. This isn't just a random urge, this has been mulled over for quite some time.

I won't be alone, I have friends and family there- a definite support system. But I know it wont be the same as Orlando. I have lived here all my life and have a huge network here, but it's time to move forward. I already have a couple potential jobs lined up and the living situation pretty much taken care of. I'm excited and nervous for this, but so very ready. I hope you guys will understand and support me in this decision. It probably wont be until this time next year if all goes accordingly, but I felt the need to give everyone a heads up.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Morning Tears @ 4:12 PM

My sophomore year of high school was the darkest period in my life; and one I will prayerfully never return to. Skipping church service, spending time with people I knew only cared about them, doing what felt right, rather than what was right. My relationship with my family became strained and our household was in constant turmoil due to my behavior. The fighting never seemed to end; my parents constantly nagging me about school and preparing for college. I was impulsive, impossible and selfish; until my parents forced me to go to Camp Orlando in the summer of 2007. I fought with everything I had; why would I want to spend a week with kids from a church I didn’t go to and a God I cared nothing about. But to my relief plenty of my classmates would be accompanying me as well.

Ignoring the messages and only there for my friends God got my attention in a major way. As Doug Pierce and the rest of his band members stepped on stage and began to sing, the lyrics hit me head on. Music has always been a major part of my life; it relates with us on an emotional level. To know that someone somewhere has felt the way you do in that moment gives you a bit of hope. God began to use the words of those songs and chip away at my hardened heart. By the end of camp I had broken down and made the commitment to rededicate my life to Christ and leave behind the childish side of me. Returning home to my family repentant and abashed we were able to start fresh.

As my senior year drew closer I felt convicted about my choice of major for college. Now that I was spending time in the word on a regular basis, I felt that my choice to go to school for veterinary medicine was a mistake and that God was calling me elsewhere. Terrified to tell my parents I continued to pray about it hoping that the Lord would reveal what alternative he would have me do. September 8, 2008- my eighteenth birthday and Student Life Orlando, I was spending time with Chad West in the tech booth of the Student Center of First Baptist Church of Orlando. As Chad began to show me a bit about what each board did and what his duties were I began to take interest rather than just mere curiosity. Introduce Simon Hunt. Simon was in charge of the students that were helping out with the event. Attending Wednesday night services on a regular basis I had seen him around, but not taken too much notice. At that moment a little over two years ago, never would I have seen myself where I am today.

Over the course of my senior year in high school Simon, guided me and taught me everything I needed to know about the technical world. We had plenty of times where we didn’t see eye to eye, but everything always worked out in the end. He provided me with opportunity after opportunity to build myself into a better technician and farther my opportunities. Finally I knew what my calling was- to allow people to worship together on a larger scale; now I just had to tell my parents. It was mortifying having to sit there and tell them I didn’t want to attend veterinary school after all of the time and research they had invested. Skeptical at first, my parents have now grown an appreciation for my passion for this ministry.

Camp Orlando of 2008- I went to camp as a technician for the first time and student for the last. The excitement of load-in and the extra privileges were almost too much to handle. When the band members- and now close friends- began to play, I felt such a sense of admiration as I was able to mix the band that God had used to break me. And a year later at Camp Orlando 2009 to share with them exactly how He had used them to push me in the direction I needed to go.

Over three years have passed since the first day I began my interest in audio engineering and I have been blessed beyond measure. God has placed so many people in my life that have pushed me towards the goal that he had for me. As this new season of my life begins I would like to take the time to individually thank each person that God used to direct me. Each of you cannot fathom how much the Lord used you to influence my life.

God has done such a work in my life and I know he will continue to do so- the story is in the journey.

“Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1

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the art of uncertainty.
i shall be telling this with a sigh
somewhere ages and ages hence:

two roads diverged in a wood, and i -
i took the one less traveled by,

and that has made all the difference.