Friday, July 27, 2012


Peniel, for I have seen God face to face and yet my life has been delivered...

 In the darkest place of the night where dark thoughts come at the best of times, I sat in the middle of the meadow staring across the ford where I had sent my family and all my belongings. I sat alone in the thoughts that had gripped my life for as long as I can remember. The gentle gurgle of the stream, and the soft sound of the wind brought a soothing overtone to my tormented heart.

How long had I been away from home? How long since I had last seen my brother? How long until I am found and killed?

"Where are you!" I screamed to the heavens. "Where are you! I know you can hear me! How long must I cry to you? How long must this last? Please, save me..."

I heard a soft whisper in the still of the night. A brush of wind, and a soft foot step. I turned  and saw the dark silhouette in the distance. Like a fire overcoming a dry long the pain a felt over the years came boiling to the surface, transforming itself into rage. I marched towards the figure.

"What do you want?" I asked angrily. "Who are you?"

The closer I came the faster I walked, the more determined I stepped until before I knew it I began charging towards him, he almost had me in the middle until I grabbed him and threw him to the ground, and we fought.  He came up to punch my face but I grabbed his fist and punched him instead. For hours we fought and fought, but it felt like minutes. I fought no man. It was my failures, my pain, those I have hurt, those who hurt me. The life I wanted so bad to leave behind but always kept finding me in the end.

I had him pinned to the ground my hands around his neck strangling him, not caring whether he lived or died. I felt hand move down on my hip and the bone slip out of place. I screamed in pain losing myself for a moment. He almost got away but I managed to move my frail swiftly enough to grab him again and did my best to hold him down.

"Let me go!" He yelled. "Let me go! It's dawn, please!"

"No!, not until you bless me!"

We stopped our struggle but I still held him down.

"What is your name?" He asked.

"Jacob. I am a liar! A deceiver! My life is pain to all who know me." The painful realization of the words brought a bitter flow of tears to my eyes.

"Jacob, Jacob no longer. Your name is Israel. You have fought with God, and have come through."

My face and my mind were numb. The torment of my life immediately melted away from my mind and heart, and I found myself staring into the face of something that was more than I could ever hope to comprehend.

"Who are you?" I asked.

I call this place Peniel, for I have seen God face to face and yet my life has been delivered. As I stare across this meadow and relive that night I smile with joy I felt at the pain that was caused all for this one moment, where I would come face to face with the God of my father, and He would bless my life forever.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

The Lives of Others

My first post in a long time, please be kind.

I really didn't want to talk to anyone. I didn't want to see anyone, face anyone, be around anyone. I came inside, punched in, dropped my drinks off in the fridge and went straight back outside. After a few minutes everyone else came outside for their before work cigarettes, and I went straight back in. After 8 hours of work I loosened up slightly but my mind and heart were still conquered by feelings of anger and bitterness. A shard of hope tried squeezing its way in, but I promptly shoved it back out wanting to hold on to these dark feelings. I had been wronged, and hurt, I deserved to have peoples sympathy. And then the following morning came. Signing on to facebook one of the first stories to catch my eye was a former classmate who had a newborn child with health issues. Shortly following yet another classmate asking for prayer. I hadn't spoke with this person in who knows how long, but I thought why not, I messaged this person to ask what was going on in order to have a more effective prayer. Working third shift I didn't get the responding message till later in the afternoon, but what I did see put me in shock. What a fool I have been.

All day yesterday I felt a hand squeezing me. squeezing out everything that has brought me joy, and peace in life and I was begging for sympathy from people, because I honestly believed I, more than anyone else, deserved it. And here were these two people facing situations far worse than my own. One situation I have never faced and I hope to never face in the future. Another that I have faced and I don't want to have to again.

How often are we placing this idol of selfish pride in front of our eyes and blinding ourselves to the hurts and needs of others? When I was praying for these two people and their families today I felt like I was a little child throwing a toddlers temper tantrum the day before. I for one hope I am never blinded to others hurts and pains again. I hope that I have not tarnished my reputation so much by foolish decisions and behavior that people won't take me seriously.

I want to end by apologizing. I am sorry to any that I have hurt, and ignored because of my own selfish desires.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

White Witch

At the risk of being called a nerd, I will be taking a break from the modern dysfunctional family to bring something that has been on my heart these last couple of days. Several days ago, for the first time in my life I started reading the children's classic, The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. I know, I know, it took me long enough. Many, if not all of you, I'm sure are familiar with the story of four kids finding themselves in a completely different world after trying to hide in a wardrobe. There are obvious parallels between Aslan and Jesus, as well as The White Witch and evil in general. But more lately I began viewing the witch slightly different. Still evil? Yes. But rather than just looking at her as a human embodiment of evil I looked closer and found a very much more specific interpretation.

Now, I never read the book until now, but I remember being a little kid and watching the BBC miniseries as often as possible, and when Walden Media finnally gave the story a big screen shot, LOTR was all finished, and it was the next logical place to go for nerdy obssesivness. Anyway, ever since I can remember I have felt this deep deep connection with the charater named Edmund. Personality-wise we were pretty much the same. He is the third of four children, as I was for most of my life growing up before highschool. He teased his younger sister all the time, as I did mine. Anyway, as the story goes Edmund falls into Narnia while following after his younger sister. The White Witch then spots him, makes him warm up to her and then promises him things that she cannot and has no intention to deliver. As the story goes on the book describes that Edmund knew in his hear the witch was evil, and yet did everything in his power to defend her and do her will.

How often does that happen? How often are we seduced, and taken by some mighty unseen force that eventually has us under its power. Let me back track a moment. When Edmund first meets the witch, he's dealing with alot. He has left his parents. In the positional order which he was born, I can affirm the fact that it is not easy being the third of four. Two people are above you telling you what to do, The youngest is the one that gets the attention, and the best way to get noticed is to be a pain in everyone's butt. This of course always ends in getting in trouble, but in this endless vicious cycle the bottom line is, being in or around the middle is miserable. You feel underappreciated at the least, and unloved at most. When he meets the White Witch she promises him everything he could ever want in life. She promises him to first, be a prince that she can love and give everything too, and second, that one day he will become king and rule over Narnia. Bad Situation.

We see it all over, and it's usually the cause bad marriages, and stressed relationships. We don't get what we want, then something comes along and promises us something they can never give us. For many a man it usually has to do with porn. It could also be a drug addiction, alcohol addiction, anything that demands our lives. All these things though, porn, drugs, alcohol, etc. have two things in common: 1. They promise to fulfill our lives. That deep empty hole we keep trying to feel, they promise us they will fill it, and that they will give us everything we could every want, and 2. They consistently, without fail, destroy our lives. But they're no happy with a quick kill, they slowly work their way into our souls until we become bound to them and they slowly destroy our lives. They are our White Witch's. They come with promises of hope fulfilled, and desires meant. But the story doesn't end there..

Edmund promises the witch to return with his brother and sisters, when he returns without them though, things go horribly wrong. Edmund realises he is no longer in the witch's good graces, he was only a pawn, a horrible blow to an already troubled middle child. Not only was he only a pawn, but he is now a slave to her demands, he is forced on pain of being turned to stone to follow and serve, that which wants his family dead. Oh snap. Didn't see that one coming. One person under God is bad for satan, two is a major threat, but a family? To not only have two people under God, but to have those two raise up even more for the cause of Christ? Satan hates your family. Let me repeat that so you can get the gravity of my words, Satan HATES your family. Sin is from the bowels of hell, and encouraged by satan. Addiction to anything but Jesus, is sin. By being addicted to something, you are saying, "This is my saviour, this is what I love, and what loves me in return, I don't care if it is destroying my family, it loves me." By submitting yourself to something, anything other than God, you become a slave to that which wants your family dead.

I love heroic endings, and The Lion, the witch, and the Wardrobe has, by far one of my favorites. It doesn't come across quite as well in the movie as it does in the book, but here it is: Edmund destroys the source of the witch's power. While all these mighty and coragous warriors are facing the white witch head on, Edmund knows the source of her power, and knows her evil, and rather than facing her head on he destroys her wand, nearly losing his own life. If we could all be so brave, and Edmund was only a boy. What does it take for us to overcome? I am no better than anyone else who may or may not be reading this. I have my white witch to destroy and overcome, and it has taken me many many years now, and caused much heart break, but the bottom line is it comes down to one fact: God gave us a freedom of choice, and in Christ we are promised in His word to be MORE than conquerers. When we realize and acknowledge that promise in Christ, and we accept and recieve that promise, then we have the strength. So next time you sit down, and the computer is in front of you, or a bottle, or needle or whatever, ask yourself: "Do I really want this? Is this worth losing my family over? Is this worth a slow and painful self destruction? Is this more important to me than what God has for me?"

Like I said, I have my own white witch to overcome, not long ago I felt completely hopeless about it. I honeslty believed I couldn't win. But now that I've seen what I've seen in this story, now that I know Christ has made  me more than I conquerer I know I can overcome. It's important to note that the darkness wont survive in the light, I can't stress the importance of confessing your issues to others and having them hold you accountable, the darkness will hate it, because it will die. Recently I went to a group called Celebrate Recovery, and though they didn't address my particular problem I felt a strengthening in my spirit as I sat in a circle of believers, confessed my problems and had these men that knew very little about supporting me and giving me hope by something as small as someone rubbing my shoulder, and others saying "It'll be ok, we'll be keeping you in a prayers." Maybe I stuttered THE WHITE WITCH MUST BE DESTROYED, otherwise it will destroy you.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Families are so 30 years ago

I haven't done an actual post on my thoughts or opinions or anything in a very long time. Why? Because I felt weird and repetitive. However I got arrested with an absolutely insane idea this morning. Absolutely ludicrous. A string of thoughts led me to one single thought, and at the risk of...well whatever it is I'm risking, I'm sharing about it. What was that thought? You ask yourself....wait for it....Family is dead. BOOM!!! Mind bomb. Marriage and family find their roots deep inside God. In early early days where evil abounded there was no talk of family. People were into human sacrifice and self indulgance. In the beginning GOD, not Allah, not Buddah, not Ba'al, but GOD created man. He then created woman so that these to people could have union together, and share in each others triumphs and failures. God then BLESSED, not cursed, them with a seed in order to populate and cover the earth.
Family is no longer really taken seriously anymore. The divorce rate is at over 50%, abortion is not only accepted in some circles, but actually fought for. How many of the marriages remaining in tact are actually worth their weight? The politicians we entrust to run our country can't keep their own families together. How many poloticians do we see every year getting caught in some kind of scandal with another woman. It's ridiculous. Why does disaster and destruction run so rampant in American homes? Because people just don't care anymore. Our culture thrives on looking out for number one. Men have an obssesion with being in control, thriving in their jobs, moving ahead, and doing whatever it takes to get a leg up ahead of the next guy, (I'm not speaking for woman, because I'm not one). Even men in the christian community are obssesed with thriving and getting ahead, they justify by saying it's Gods will for them to prosper above all other people, it's His will for their bank accounts to be  full, and make a bunch of money.
Does God want us to prosper? Yes, but if our marriage is dissolving, are kids are withdrawn, and the family is either standing on its last leg or no legs at all, WE ARE NOT PROSPERING!!! God chose us to further His kingdom, and be a ministry to those around us. Neglecting our kids, ignoring our wives, and putting work second to our family IS NOT being a ministry. Are we, as men, to provide for our families? Absolutly, but raising them in Gods word, praying with them, and nurturing their everlasting souls is FAR more important then green paper that, in the end, will amount to ABSOLUTLY NOTHING!!! We always have the temporary on the mind, what can we do to solve this problem and get it over? God however has our eternity in mind. God doesn't care about putting a band-aid on and forgetting something, he cares about what will happen in the rest of your eternal life. In the great movie Gladiator it was put like this, "What we do in life echoes in eternity."
Work is not the only factor in destroying families and marriages, but it is what I believe to one of two big components. I'm leaving it at this today, but number 2? I am coming after you!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011


It came to my attention that recent installments of my current project were considered offensive, and vulgar. I am sincerely sorry for anything I have written and posted that was offensive to readers. I started writting a story I was doing well with, I became proud of myself and no longer cared what anyone else thought of it. I used excuses like "realisitic", I defended it in my mind telling myself it was to target a non-christian audience. The problem is, what good is my witness when my witness is no different from the world. As a result, I've deleted my last two installments, feeling as though they were the most offensive, and I will be re-writting them. Same basic story, only told for a much broader audience, and a lot less offensive. Again my deepest apologies to anyone who has read and was offended, as well as my church and family both of whom I very poorly represented. I am very sorry.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Saint-Prologue Pt. 3

He called himself Rampage. He went from a scrawny 12 year old kid with braces and glasses to a 28 year old mass of bulk and testosterone. He had an average height, only with the body of The Incredible Hulk. His high school football teammates used to call him “The Black Terror” for two reasons. The first was, of course, he was black. The second was his tendency to make other football teams urinate in their uniforms when they caught sight of him.
Those days were long gone though. He had such promise, such potential. And here he was waking up in the morning in a one room shack located in the south end of Purgatory. His home was a literal one room house. His bed and a night stand sat on one side of the room. On the other side was a couch facing a television on a makeshift stand. Sitting between the two was a washer/dryer set up, and across from that, a stove, a refrigerator, and the front door. An outhouse and shower stall were out back. Thankfully he was a few miles out of town, and no other houses were within any seeing distance.
He got up from his bed taking clean underwear and a clean towel and went out back to clean and relieve himself. When he got back a thin man with dark hair was waiting on the couch for him. He looked up at him and smiled.
“How are things Bear?” The man asked, calling him by his real name, which felt uncomfortable after so many nick names.
“Not so bad.” Bear replied, his voice deep and resonant. “How about you Jim?”
“Ok.” He replied dismissively. “We lost track of you last night. I wanted to make sure you were ok.”
“Yeah, fine.” Bear said, slightly irritated.
Bear looked at him knowing full well what he was going to ask.
“Where were you last night Bear?”
Bear, still in his boxers, walked to a nearby hamper and pulled out a pair of Dockers and a white T-shirt. As he pulled them on he answered thoughtfully.
“Let me think. I went to the bar…got hammered…took advantage of a couple good looking college girls, and….oh yeah I ripped off some guys arms.”
“C’mon Bear.”
“Look, I just went to the bar and watched the basketball game alright? I didn’t cause any trouble, I-”
“Your anklet is gone and you lost your escorts. Purposely I might add.”
Bear got a gallon of milk from the fridge and slammed it onto the stove.
“Give me break! Please! I’ve been living in this hole for over a year now. I got no table to eat on. You wont even let me get a decent butter knife. I ain’t caused any trouble. Is it to much to ask to get just a couple hours alone.”
“I don’t blame you, but I still have a job to do. You see the paper this morning?”
“No.” Bear said pouring himself a bowl of Golden Grahams.
Jim tossed a paper down on the stove. A large headline read “O’DELL HEIR MISSING!” It was associated with a photo of the 26 year old O’Dell with reddish-brown hair and freckles. Jim spoke up again.
“He was last seen two nights ago.”
Jim just stared him down.
“Don’t look at me, I didn’t get off your record two nights ago, it was last night, remember?”
“I only said he was last seen two nights ago.”
Bear muttered something under his breath.
“What can you tell me?”
Bear glared at Jim. It wasn’t the first time he was asked for help, which made it all the more difficult.
“I can tell you at least one thing,” Bear said. “He wasn’t last seen two nights ago, that’s guaranteed.”
“How’s that?”
“It says right there in the article he was spotted at The Lake. Nobody just goes to The Lake and disappears. Especially at midnight when over half the city’s there.”
“There’s more not printed there. There was a major ruckus at The Hole. Nobody would confess whether or not they saw Johnny leave but…”
“So where are you standing?”
“The O’Dell fortune is a big one. Everything from advanced military weaponry to simple home security handguns. Not to mention the billions of dollars locked away in a vault somewhere.”
“Foul play?”
Jim shrugged “It’s a lot to gain for anyone who was close enough to Johnny to gain it. A pretty simple, lure Johnny here, try to cause confusion and nab him when nobody’s looking.”
Bear took a deep breath, folded his arms and leaned against the stove.
“You seem like you got it all figured out.” He said. “What do you need me for?”
“It’s just not sitting right with me. I was hoping for another perspective.”
Bear thought. “Best I got?”
Jim nodded.
Bear thought some more. “Go the opposite direction you’re in.”
“What do you mean?”
“You said the cause of the ruckus was somebody else. What if Johnny was the cause? That’s if he was even at The Hole that night.”
Jim gave a shocked look “What do you mean started it? Why would he start it?”
Bear shrugged “Just a theory. That’s all. I gotta get going. You mind?”
Jim shook his head. “Just do me a favor, and stay within our boundaries tonight.”
Bear took a baseball cap from his nightstand and grimaced. “Yeah. Right.”
“I mean it. New law and order around here. They’re giving me an awfully hard time about you.”
“Well we wouldn’t want you to lose everything you love now do we?”
Bear turned and went out the door. The old screen door slammed shut behind him. He had nothing more than a cheap Huffy for transportation. He looked at his rusty old bike, and back at Jim’s BMW and shook his head. Some things just weren’t right and that was one of them. Jim was good man and could almost be a friend if he wasn’t Bears acting “babysitter”. Bear got on his bike, which looked unnaturally small compared to his bulk, and rode off toward the city council building where he would fulfill his janitorial duties for the next twelve hours.
Jim looked around at Bears small house. He truly felt a pang of pity and sadness for the man. It should not have worked out like this for him. But as always people were looking for fame, and attention. It was just too bad a good man like Bear became a victim of it all. Jim looked around and thought about everything. About Bears former majesty as Rampage. About the missing O’Dell heir. And finally, about this ever increasing government power. Purgatory was unlike any other city in the world. They were their own people. Their own government. Their own universe. And this new governor was pushing a tight envelope. Many were angry, few would revolt. If things got pushed to far, which is where they were heading, maybe even Jim would not be able to stand with the council. Jim was devoted to his government, yes. But some things were worth fighting for, and if push came to shove, Jim would show the world everything they hoped was never real.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Prologue pt. 2

Part 2 of my prologue for Saint. Someone asked me shortly after the first part if there would be a christian theme involved, so to answer, without giving to much away, yes, the entire story will be laced with christian themes. My three biggest influences being J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, and Charles Williams, not to mention being a follower of Christ myself, I must create everything I do to glorify God, and further his Kingdom, including lacing Christian themes into a story accessible to all audiences. That being said, one of my favorite quotes is: "It is always the darkest before the dawn." As is the case here. Things are going to be pretty bleak here at the beginnings of the story, but please keep in mind that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and things will eventually start to look up.

Johnny was woken up by a smack to the face. He sat in a wooden chair that reclined back. His legs tied tightly to the legs of the chair. His wrists tied behind his back, his chest also tied down to the chair. He could barely move his neck without any pain. Blood mixed with the sweat soaking his face. How could I be so stupid. He thought. He wasn’t a superhero. He couldn’t catch a bullet, or swing from buildings. He had so many dreams of being that one man. That one individual who would stop at nothing to see that the wicked were punished and the good received justice. It was all moot now though. Just a dream. A fantasy. Hell, it didn’t even work in real books, only comics.
Johnny fell into a hard depressive state, not even bothering to view his surroundings. He knew what was coming. Death. The room was dark. An abandoned garage used for much less reputable reasons. Three men formed a semi-circle around the chair. Johnny just laid with his head back and his eyes closed. The man in the middle stepped forward. He was small and spoke in a high voice Johnny knew all to well.
“I’m supposed to be dead now, right?”
Johnny just laid. His eyes open now, staring at the ceiling.
“I don’t think I have to tell how disrespectful you’ve been. Did you really think I’d just let you walk in and threaten me?”
“Just kill me.” Johnny’s voice barely broke above a whisper.
“I’m sorry I couldn’t hear you?”
“Just kill me and get it over with.”
“You think you deserve to die? After all this you’re just ready to give up and go to Hell?”
“At least I‘ll know when you‘re gone.”
The small man walked over to the head of the chair bending his head closer to Johnny.
“I doubt that. You may be in deep, but I’m beyond killing you.”
The man walked back to where here came from. Johnny heard a click and a small hiss. He looked up and saw the man to his right held a propane torch, its hungry blue
tongue licking the air. The other man came forward with a leather strap between his hands. The little man turned to leave.
Guttural screaming could be heard outside of the garage clearly as day. The garage was located in a rural area far outside of town. It was pitch black when Clarence walked outside. Waiting by the door was a large man over twice his size. Clarence turned and faced him. He looked up at him for a few seconds before throwing a hard punch straight into the mans left shoulder. The man grunted in pain. Clarence removed the heavy gold ring from his finger. The once white bandage on the bodyguards shoulder quickly turned to red as blood began to drip from beneath it.
“What I want to know,” said Clarence. “Is why he wasn’t dead before I was staring down two barrels!”
“I’m sorry Mr. Wetherby.”
“What are you sorry for. I’m the idiot that hired you.”
Without skipping a single beat Clarence removed a Colt Python from his inside jacket pocket raised his arm and shot the bodyguard. Twice in the chest, and a third smacked in his head spraying blood onto the wall behind him. One of the two from the garage stuck his head out from behind the door surveying the corpse on the ground by the door.
“What’s your name again?” Clarence asked
The other from the garage stepped out and spoke for him.
“He doesn’t speak much. We think he’s a mute. we just call him Demon cuz he’s so sick.”
Clarence surveyed him for a moment. Demon was large, no doubt of that. Nearly 7 feet in height. He was bald, his face completely scarred. Arms that looked like they could crush steel. Clarence noticed something off about him. It was set deep in the mans eyes. Something dark. Something evil. It was as if looking into his eyes was like staring into the soul of the depths of hell where murder and malice were games meant for recess.
“Congratulations Demon,” he said. “You’re my new head bodyguard. Now, is everything finished?”
Demon simply nodded with a glint of blood lust in his eyes. Clarence liked it.
“Good. Have some fun with him. Make sure he stays alive though, and dump him off somewhere. I don’t care where.”
Demon again nodded and went back into the garage with the other. The door shut and Clarence heard the screaming begin again.