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?”
It’s been a crazy start to my last semester of college. Things are just hitting the fan and falling on me and just now have started to avoid the debris. I’ve just had so many thoughts and feelings going in so many different directions, to quote Kid Cudi, “You see I’m trapped in my mind and I know it’s crazy hey it’s not that bad at all”. Kind of how I’ve felt lately to summarize things up, like my thoughts are just in my head and they are causing all types of troubles. Like I’ve had a hard time talking to people about it so I really haven’t much. These thoughts of what’s next in my life once I graduate, like am I going to get hired? where am I going to go? who am I going to meet? what about my friends at school? How am I going to pay bills? Fear of loneliness and just things like that which the enemy is just attacking me with. It’s been too much man, life is just striking me out with 100 mph fastballs and wicked 12-6 curve balls. I’ve been letting these thoughts take over and I haven’t been trying to fight off the pitches. I’m just going down looking. These things have been effecting literally everything about me since school started. I’ve had to skip a few days of classes because I just couldn’t focus on school I had to much running through my mind. Emotionally and spiritually I have been drained and am at 0. Things just continued to fill on and on and I couldn’t get away from them. I’ve been trying my best to just escape to my own personal oasis if you will. In my case due to my introvertedness that means getting away from everyone and jamming out or diving into the Word or nature.
I’ve had some spiritual older brothers pray for me and it’s been helping a lot I totally feel the Lord moving again in me and breaking those chains of those thoughts that I have been having. I’m taking a prayer class in Toledo (its dope) and we started talking about strongholds in our lives. Like I needed to hear about this so badly yo, like how to break those and stuff like that. So I’ve been putting those into practice by praying scripture over myself, declaring truths about myself, and just reminding myself that I am loved and I am God’s beloved. Things have been totally on the upswing for me, over the past week or two. Doing my thing even if that means skipping class to go to my chill zone. Most recently I was at this church in Toledo and was going up for healing of my back, but left with a lot more than that ha. These two people started praying for my back then felt a need to pray for my heart to be healed and on top of that one of them had a prophetic word for me which really resonated with me about preparing for my future. I still don’t feel like me but working my way back into it for sure.
This summer Spiritually was really challenging and tested me a whole lot more than I thought I was going to be. My internship really took a lot of my time and it made me the most stressed I’ve been in years. If you know me I’m very laid back and it takes a lot for me to be stressed, but my internship this summer just really got me on the daily. I was in a lull and felt stuck in it for a large portion of the summer. I wanted to go on a trip the whole summer, just by myself to escape everyone else and just do my thing. Unfortunately, my large road trip to Key West, Florida didn’t work out so I settled on taking a train ride last minute to Chicago to visit some friends. While I was there I was able to get some solid quiet time to just relax and unwind. Since then I’ve wanted to start making time about once every other week to be in nature or just some cool areas to take some pictures, pray, and read. Here are some pictures and thoughts I’ve had.
Just a reoccurring verse that I keep going back to lately has been Psalm 86. So much goodness and glory in it, like I just want to BURN for the Lord, ya know like we’ve been released from all the shackles of sin and troubles that we have in our lives. Because of His steadfast love toward us we get to journey with Him and receive such joy that can’t be described! At times it can be so difficult to just not be focused on Him and let our flesh take over and going to this verse just reminds me of why I should go to Him and burn for Him and live a sold out Christian life.
Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy. 2 Preserve my life, for I am godly; save your servant, who trusts in you—you are my God. 3 Be gracious to me, O Lord, for to you do I cry all the day. 4 Gladden the soul of your servant, for to you, O Lord, do I lift up my soul. 5 For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you. 6 Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; listen to my plea for grace. 7 In the day of my trouble I call upon you, for you answer me.
8 There is none like you among the gods, O Lord, nor are there any works like yours. 9 All the nations you have made shall come and worship before you, O Lord, and shall glorify your name. 10 For you are great and do wondrous things; you alone are God. 11 Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. 12 I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever. 13 For great is your steadfast love toward me; you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.
14 O God, insolent men have risen up against me; a band of ruthless men seeks my life, and they do not set you before them. 15 But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. 16 Turn to me and be gracious to me; give your strength to your servant, and save the son of your maidservant. 17 Show me a sign of your favor, that those who hate me may see and be put to shame because you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.