Honestly, it’s been rough time since I’ve moved back home after graduation, in terms of emotionally and spiritually. I have a solid gig coaching baseball but besides those few hours a day things are ehhh. Past few days just have been having difficult time dealing with my future and worrying way to much and struggling to believe that the Lord will provide for me. On the job front there’s a possibility of getting a paid internship in Toledo which I have been praying for and hope I get it. Then I applied to some other position in Tampa just cause I want to eventually leave Ohio. I talked with guy from Toledo and he’s not sure if position will be a Grad. Assistant spot or internship…I’m not going back to school so I really hope it’s an internship. Just if it isn’t then I’m going to continue to search for jobs and it sucks man it has been rough on me and just having hard time trusting in the Lord to provide like I know He will be from my viewpoint it’s hard.
Then on top of jobs just truthfully I have no solid community around me…I haven’t had solid spiritual conversation since I visited BG few weeks ago and before that not since I left school in December. I have very few people that I can talk to about that stuff and I don’t see them a whole lot. Community is so important and being in this place I can tell not having it is so tough and it gives the enemy an easier route to get to you since there aren’t people around to help with problems and stuff. Loneliness has crept into my life and has made me wonder will I ever get married will I ever find solid friends again and things like that. I’ve been listening to a spontaneous set by Jenn Johnson called More Than Enough and they are just words I need to hear and remind myself that God is more than enough. It’s tough and I just feel lost with things. I thought I got out of this wilderness that I feel I’m in but ever since leaving BG I haven’t been experiencing God like I was before and I feel distant from Him for some reason. I’m in my word, praying, seeking Him out, and just not feeling His presence in my life currently…and it stinks.
On top of that I have to remember that in few months I have to start paying the man back for going to college. My parents are so high on making money and all those things and I’m not like that. So I consistently get lectured about that stuff and makes me feel worse and puts me in a bigger hole. Got a dagger the other day about when I was going to do YWAM, they emailed me to remind me about important deadlines so I had to email them back saying I’m not going. Just curiosity of wondering what would have happened if I went to Australia, but I have to look at it from another view point of what will God do here and where will He send me here. Man I just want the Lord to use me where ever and to provide for me. I want to trust Him even it’s tough at times. Peace and Love ya’ll.
I feel like I’ve been in this season of waiting for a while now and it recently has been a little more frustrating than usual. I have a bunch of time on my hands because I currently have a job in which I coach baseball for like 3 hours a day from either 2:30-5:30 or 6-8:30, so I have a ton of time to think about a lot of things going on and not going on in my life. Sometimes those thoughts make me worry, stressed, and just give me some bad vibes. When I was going to do YWAM things where going solid since I had a picture of what I was going to do but since things have changed it’s a little more uncertain. The word of staying here that I received has been something I try to remember because there are still good works to be done here for however long I’m going to be here for. But I just want things to pick up because I feel like my life’s boring and I want some adventure or something like that to happen. I was in prayer this morning and really felt the Lord just reminding me to enjoy the ride and enjoy this season of waiting. I mean it is weird in my mind to enjoy a season where not much is going on but thinking about it, I’m not sure when I’ll have this much time to myself again and be able to be this relaxed so enjoying it kind of makes sense knowing that in this time I’m being prepared for this next season. On top of that my job of coaching is a blast I mean I love those few hours a day I get to hang out with high schoolers and help them become better ball players. It’s been awesome to get to know them and for me to give them advice and what have you. As I was reflecting on enjoying the ride I remember back at a conference I went to in Indianapolis one of the speakers spoke about enjoying the journey. Went way back in my journal and found verses Psalm 46:10 and Psalm 37:7 that she referenced about being still before the Lord and waiting patiently knowing He is God and He will provide. Other things that stuck out to me that I’m reading over that are so good is being courageous in uncertainty, believing in the process, and being apart of God’s story, just show up. Hmmm eating those up, decreeing this over myself to find peace in enjoying the ride is something I know will have an effect on how I’m viewing this time of chilling at home and just doing me. Hopefully, something will pop up and things will get rollin but until then just going to do my thing and remember what Jimmy Buffett said,” I’ve got a license, a license to chill.”
First off, if you sent me money to support me I am going to send it back to you, I appreciated your willingness to support me in this endeavor. After plenty of time in prayer I have decided that I am not going to Australia. Umm so like when I got accepted I was super stoked but truthfully something didn’t feel right. I began to pray about it and ask the Lord to give me direction with this decision and help me figure out what my play was. As I began to pray into it I just kept getting this feeling like I wasn’t suppose to be going. But I kept ignoring it because I wanted to get out of the states and out of my house. I’ve been in a dry season lately and have been asking God to let me know about this decision. Last week at church I heard this word which I thought was for someone else but after thinking about it more I realized that this word was for me.It basically was that He has me right where He wants me and that this “sending out” I guess, is being put on hold for now. I won’t get into to much detail but felt the Lord wanted me to stay at home and fix somethings that are going on here before anything else. Yeah I’m a little bummed but hey I know I’m already apart of the greatest adventure of all-time! I have faith that God will provide here at home and that He has something incredible for me here and beyond. Yeah it’s been an interesting few weeks to say the least. I just know I don’t want to live an ordinary life, do what brings me joy, and do what glorifies God.
Divinely interrupted…this is what comes to mind right now. In the world’s eyes people think that a recent college graduate like myself should be getting a job and starting my career. But with things that have been occurring in my life over the past year or so I haven’t felt called to get right into those things. I’ve been praying for the Lord to just speak to me about what my immediate future may look like. As I began applying for jobs in my major I realized that at this moment I don’t feel like I should be doing that. I felt a call to sacrifice some of my time and give it to the Lord and let Him move within me to love every nation and every tongue. The Lord has divinely interrupted me at this point in my life to separate myself from what the usual thing would be as a typical college graduate. I had a prophetic word given to me back in October (I believe) about stepping outside of the box that people want to put me in and stepping outside of the norm of what people believe I should be doing with my life. And like having freedom and boldness and courage in being different from what the norm is in this “American Dream” concept that we have become so accustomed to.
Anyway to my main point, I applied for a DTS (Discipleship Training School) with YWAM (Youth With a Mission) in Byron Bay, Australia. I knew that this was going to be crazy and was going to test me in a bunch of ways since it is crazy and not many people may understand why I choose to apply for it and things of that nature. Cause there is so much going to be on my plate with paying loans back, finding a career, and all that jazz. But I trusted the Lord in this decision that I came with to apply for YWAM. So the dope news is I got accepted for the DTS! Praise the Lord right! But I know this is going to be quite a journey, I need to raise $600 in 2 weeks to hold my spot then on top of that raise even more support for the rest of the time. Raising support is weird and I know this process is going to be a roller coaster but I need to just keep my faith in the Lord to provide financially and really in all ways so that this journey is just seamless and isn’t too difficult. I feel like I’ll need to be like Joel Embiid (NBA reference) and trust the process haha know that it’s going to be challenging but I know the Lord has something awesome in store for me down in Australia and that He’ll get me there. I know crazy stories about God providing financially for people so I know I shouldn’t worry about that. Just super stoked to see what God has in store for me in Australia and just keep praying that everything will fall in order and that He’ll provide for me to get there. If your reading this and want to support me financially in my journey please contact me via Facebook or email (email@example.com) I would really appreciate it! I could also use the prayers so if you can’t partner with me financially, obviously would love prayer partners as well! And if you know anyone that would be willing to partner with me please share it with them too! Thanks, peace and love.
No more excuses, I am giving my all,I take up my cross and I answer the call, I pick up my feet and I march to Your song, I’m never looking back, whoa, I’m never looking back, whoa
Love how music can express feelings and be so relatable, this song Bet That by Ezzy recently has been a jam that has been relating to me the chorus says, “Everything is changing Everything is switching around Things are rearranging People acting different now But I bet it’s for the better”. I’ve been so used to doing school for the last 16 years and now that it’s over I’m like well…what’s next. I don’t know what’s next I have idea’s but that’s it, anyway being home waiting to see what’s next for me has been rough. Not just cause I miss BG but the adjustment of living with my parents, not having a schedule really, having limited community, and just uncertainty of what is next for me. It feels just weird to be here and like limiting I guess may be the term I’m looking for. I sense this pressure and heaviness in the atmosphere at home and I just feel weird, like I know I shouldn’t but feel like I’m wearing a mask around certain people. I’m trying to just be me and continue doing my thing even though it’s been hard, so yeah hopefully I can take the mask off completely while I’m here (and anywhere really) for however long that is.
I’ve started reading this book that my friend Heidi gave me by Brad Lomenick called The Catalyst Leader. I’m only a few chapters in and it’s already really good. Something that the book brought up in the 1st chapter was finding your calling. Since I’m still really trying to figure out what I’m going to do now and well the rest of my life, this topic really started hitting home for me. I have given some thought about my calling previously but haven’t given it a whole lot of thought. Before graduating I had the mission field and mind set of the campus and those around me. Now like I can go anywhere, do anything, and since I really don’t know what I want to do, thinking about my calling seems like it will be helpful in figuring out some sort of direction or an idea. The book kind of defines calling in a really solid way I feel, “calling is not necessarily about a title, position, or certain career, but more of a vision and purpose for your life that spans all the seasons of your vocation.” I just love that, I know I feel pressured to find a job, pay back loans, and things of that nature. I know I can limit myself in those fears, the book did this study and they put this quote summarizing some of their findings which totally rings true in my mind, “more than one in three Christians feel a God-nudge inside of them to do something else with their lives, but haven’t found the nerve to pull the trigger.” It then talks about us having fears that hold us back from truly trusting God in the plan He has for us. I know I do this and I try not to let the fear of this world control me because I shouldn’t fear anything but God. If I’m not trusting Him then the relationship I have with Him is going to be affected big time.
I guess the biggest take away I have been thinking about the past few days is exactly what I was talking about my calling. Seeking God’s will in my life just begins with figuring out what keeps me awake, what makes me cry, what wakes me up, what are my passions and gifts, and what am I energized by. Digging into those things will give me a vision of possibilities that I can shape into finding out what I would ENJOY doing and actually being able to have God use me in those places cause He gave me those passions and gifts to glorify Him in those places. Like already I have been analyzing my passions and like helping the youth is something that I enjoy and like I kind of recently started to have this dream of owning a baseball academy to help kids grow in their talents as a ball player but also have that be a mission field to impact those kids lives with Jesus at the same time. I know there are going to be hard conversations in this journey but if I find happiness in taking whatever path no one can bring me down.
“If you are confident in what God has called you to do, you will not be distracted by someone intimidating you”- Bill Johnson
Against all odds, against all odds I will be graduating from BGSU next week. My oh my have things flown by from when I was just a young blood freshman back in 2013. Feels like just yesterday I was moving into Centennial Hall here at BGSU. Now I’ll be moving out of the Arubbah House which has held so many great memories. Who would have thought how much I would have grown here and learned the things I have here. I mean I thought I had a lot of it down back in the day. I mean I could make my bed, do laundry, clean up after myself, and swipe into the Oaks. But I learned quickly that there where things I had no idea about and things I needed to know to grow as a man. I never would have thought when I first got here that I would be saying I was going to be extremely sad to leave this place. For Pete’s peppers this place is soooo cold in the winter, the wind has no chill and makes things way worse, there is literally nothing around here, and no beach near by. Luckily, I have been able to find some amazing friends and mentors that have helped my time in BG be such a blast and so impactful!
Truthfully, as many of you know (sorry Mom and Dad) I haven’t put my academics at the highest level of my concerns here at school. Coming to school I said I was going to focus on school a lot more than I did in high school, but that mind set didn’t last that long. In fairness I had my best year of school ever my 1st semester here. To summarize things a bit with a quote from the rapper Asher Roth, “I can’t tell you what I learned from school, but I could tell you a story or two.” Okay well honestly, I have learned some things from school but most of the things I will take away from BG has been the things I have experienced/learned outside of the classroom. Yeah sure I should have done better in class but when it’s beautiful outside and the sun is beating down you know I’m skipping class to go work on my tan haha. I remember times my friends would rag on me and what not but I’d always tell them the order of the things I find important here, 1. Jesus things 2. Working out/physical activity 3. hanging out with friends 4. Surf Club 5. School. I’ve passed all my classes so that’s all that matters lol. I’ve been extremely blessed with mentors I have met here who have helped me out in school and out of school. I have gained valuable information and knowledge from their successes and failures that they have shared which have helped me through situations and just life overall.
Coming to school I was excited to be independent from my parents and just be in college and have a great time. I didn’t know what to except, I was new in my faith as a Christian and was seeking to find out more about this whole thing. All my friends back home I pretty much met playing sports throughout the years and I had a lot in common with them and now I was in this weird Christian culture I had no clue about. I was playing the game RISK, which I had no idea about and know love, with people that I would not have hung out with back in high school. Honestly, most of the people I was hanging with and associating with I never would have hung with before. So glad that I kept coming around and got to know all these amazing people that I love so much. People where just so honest with me about getting to know me and understanding what I was all about. Just like being real with one another and honest with one another has made my friendships here mean so much and it’s going to be so hard to not be around them. I won’t forget the spontaneous adventures, weird adventures, parties I’ve been to/thrown, and other memories that I’ve made here. And like I started a surf club in Ohio…legendary…yes…should I have a statue of myself on campus or to show the little school spirit I have a falcon riding a surf board… probably. Then have something dope engraved in it ahhh s/o to all the surf club homies, ya’ll are gnarly as frick would love to hang ten with you guys anytime anyplace! Anyway those memories have made Bowling Green, Toledo, and Perrysburg (never forget Parker Coffee) grow on me so much. Northwest Ohio is a lot cooler than you realize and when you have nothing to do and go exploring for cool places and things to do you’ll find them here.
My faith has grown tremendously since I started coming to college. A friend of mine always brings up this time my freshman year where I sprained my ankle playing basketball and a few of my friends wanted to pray for healing and I was freaked out. Like now I’m that person to go to people wanting to pray healing over them ha! Through my experiences in Cru, going to the Dominican Republic with AIA, spontaneous Monday nights of United, every Tuesday at Ember in Toledo, and church at Brookside and occasionally City Light has made my faith grow so much and build this fire inside to just see the world changed by Jesus Christ. On a side note, I’d like to retire from the Brookside softball team. It has been a blast playing with and getting to know all of those men. We’ve had some good times…as always win loose booze haha. My mindset on just how I view life and my values has changed and now like sure I am looking at jobs in my major (sport management) but more I pray into it and what my heart truly wants, the more I realize I want to do work for His Kingdom. Sure I can do that anywhere I am but I feel like I want to do something radical that will change a lot of people’s lives and show them that inner peace, joy, love, and laughter that I get from knowing Jesus.
Welp as I head back to the Cleveland area I’d just like to say to everyone that I’ve met in BG and during my college years that you are amazing and have made a big impact on my life. You may not know it, but you have and I’m so grateful for everyone in BG. I know it’s going to be hard to leave all ya’ll, I hope don’t to cry when I’m leaving (I could because of the coldness though) because this place will always have a place in my heart and on my right thigh haha (free tattoo story). As for what’s next for me, I have 2 things on my mind. The 1st is I am waiting to hear back from an athletic communication job in Florida, the other is going to Australia with Youth With a Mission (YWAM) for 6 months starting in September. I know the road will be rocky but because of my experience here and my trust in the Lord to provide I know I will be okay. Maybe one day I’ll return to bask in the glory (obviously not when it’s winter) that is Bowling Green, Ohio…Peace and love…Coops out!
Dang…great song, Lindy is always killin it! For those of you who don’t know I low key have an obsession with Lindy’s worship songs ha. Anyway a bunch of my friends and I traveled to Niagara Falls last weekend because yolo (is that still a thing), along the way we stopped at Cornell University for this event that was being put on by the Circuit Riders (they are group from California, they are a branch of YWAM). They are a really awesome group (despite their overly hipster vibes) who just really are sold out for the Lord and want to see this nation turn back to God.
At this event the speaker was just brought the word hard and it really stirred me up, it gave me a case of the charismatic Amens and come ons lol. It brought up a lot of thoughts that I have been thinking about for a while now and once the speaker ended there was a time of reflection to just go to your face in front of the Lord. It was so needed for myself and many others, just going to Him and being like Lord I’m here and I’m ready to be sent. I started crying out to the Lord, reveal to me where you want me to go, I want to be sent to a place to impact people, just start showing me this Lord. It’s nuts man, I’m not the one to countdown the days and things of that nature but my graduation is less than 2 months away. People are like on me about oh so like what’s next, what are you going to do, where you going to go, you should stay here. I’m like yo I don’t even know, sure I’ve been applying for athletic communication positions and am waiting to hear back from them hoping I get one.
The more I think and pray about it, God just is showing me more of my heart for others and to see things change. A friend of mine sent me a text the other day and was like, “Hey the Cincinnati Reds are on campus today, you should stop by and network”. This obviously would be a great opportunity to do that but the more I’ve been looking at applications and visualizing working, my heart just doesn’t seem like it will be satisfied doing this work. Another crazy thing that I’ve noticed is this, yesterday was Game 1 of the World Series and the Cavs got their rings, literally one of the greatest days in Cleveland’s history. Growing up in Cleveland the struggles we have in sports is no secret, I love baseball, I love the Indians, I love Cleveland, I had opportunities to go downtown to be in that atmosphere which I would have loved, but Tuesday is Ember in Toledo. I have noticed I would rather go get my fill on Holy Spirit than really anything else. Like if you told me that a few years ago that I would rather have gone to some worship event than go to Cleveland for like the greatest day in Cleveland sports history I thought you would have been trippin on something funky. And like last night was awesome at Ember, a great word, great worship, awesome fellowship with some great people. And like I came home later than usual (S/O to I-75 construction) and still was able to watch the 8th and 9th innings and was totally cool that I didn’t see the whole game. Two of my homies Nate and Joel were unloading a bunch of knowledge to me and it was just sooo good and like now there’s even more stuff I have on my mind about the Lord and heaven I want to learn about.
If I am not able to secure a job by the time I graduate I’m going back home to The Land to live with my parents. Sure it’s not the ideal position but I’ve been praying just for peace in that and as usual the Lord provides. I’m totally alright with it right now, I figured out that I have an opportunity to volunteer with FCA at a few local high schools. Sure I’d have to get a random job but I’m cool with that knowing I can impact those people and also the high schoolers I potentially can impact too. Still though I am unsure of how long if I do get a job in athletic communications I will work in this field. I do enjoy the work but I just sense this calling for more and doing more with my life than just athletic comm. stuff. I’ve reached out to people with FCA, AIA, and the Circuit Riders to figure out what exactly it would look like going on mission with them. Right now I’m just asking the Lord to just reveal where He wants to send me after school, don’t let these future things bring me down, being strong in breaking the barrier of what people think I should do with my life, and to not let things slip on by while I still have some time left here at BG. Peace and love.
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”