Jesus Rocked The Jukebox…and somethin’ rocked the road I was walkin’

Holy Roller…Coaster, Batman!!

So this past week has been a wicked coaster ride.  It has been full of emotions that I have not felt either in a long time, have not wanted to feel in a long time, or have never felt before.  All of these things are, of course, both good and bad.

Let me back up a bit by saying that, before I posted Tuesday’s blog, I was going to post a blog about “staying the same” or “don’t change,” or whatever nifty title I could come up with that was going to reflect the steps in my life that I had taken, and the song that’s playing above (if you indeed pressed play) to the soundtrack of every step I’m taking in this journey.  Instead, a found a boulder in my path that I needed to work my way around, and a song stuck in my head that I whistled away while I worked until I could get my thoughts together for this Sunday’s testimony. So…what I wanted to tell you about was what I felt about people always wanting to feel like they wanted to be different than who or what they were. 

I can attest to this burden because I’m so incredibly guilty of it.  I’ve never been happy with myself, outside or inside…but I’m learning to be, trying desperately to become happy with who I am.  So God made me a female, I’ve never been happy about it…I’m not sure if it was nature or nurture that made it this way, but I will say this, I’ve never like dresses, never liked being a girl, and I’ve always thought I should have been a man, based both on physical attributes and most personality traits.  Because of those things, I was picked on all my life, getting called names because I was always a tomboy and always stronger than, even just regular, tomboyish girls.  My entire school career was hell based on masculinity alone, because I don’t think I’m a bad looking person and I look exactly the same now as I did then, except much thinner now.  Now, aside from looking masculine, I’ve always felt more masculine, which has always left me wanting to change my life completely to become a man.  In fact, I had started doing this in a small way, by simply changing my name to my self-picked (sorta) new masculine name…online that is, for all my peers to see.  But that’s a huge step.  That kind of stuff gets back to people who get’s back to people…ya know what I’m sayin’??

Well, on my plane ride home from re-salvation, “Stay The Same” came on my playlist, I listened, I decided it was true.  I will never have the money to ever get my chesticles taken off, and besides, I’m going to need them one day…I might want to try to have a child again one day, after all.  I have a working uterus, I AM a female…there is NO way around it, God did not screw this one up.  I am the personality that He gave me and for whatever reason I am who I am, I’ll be who I am.  I may not like it, I may have to learn to get used to it.  It may be one of those sacrifices, I don’t know yet…we’ll have to wait and see, but it is what it is, therefore, I changed my name back…and only one person noticed (aside from the dozens who noticed when I changed it the first time…what the heck?).  Thank you God for making me…at all.  I pray to learn to deal with the outside because, for the most part, on the inside, I think I’m a pretty cool person, so thank you off-setting that for me…amen.

So then things started getting rough around here.  It was like the music from my party was starting to bother the devil so he started getting riled up.  My heart was already in a sorrowful place, feeling a sense of sadness for the loss of Ryan Dunn, but then he started coming after me with my own weapons, that which I am supposed to use as strength to fight him off.  I posted “Love Says No”  not just for myself but mostly for others, to offer a beam of hope to those I love and anyone else out there who might have read it.  A tiny glimpse of hope at a moment when the shit is hitting the fan and you’re feeling like you’re being dragged down, even though at the moment, I wasn’t.  It wasn’t long after, however, that song came back around and was there for me, to carry me through the week.

When I vowed to not listen to the band HIM whilst trying to “find myself”, I strayed from the “finding myself” playlist and “And Love Said No” had found me, seems funny to me, that in one way or another, I still get carried safely through my rough times by Him or HIM. 

But after love said no, I realized just how much of a change in my life there had been.  While I still manage to screw up, big time even, my feelings with regards to my actions and reactions, even minor thoughts, all have much deeper meaning to them now.  I can’t even accidentally say “g-d dam—-t” without almost crying because of feeling guilty, and when I’ve done something even worse than that, I feel like I can’t even look up to the heavens, as if I can’t bear, as a child, to look up in shame to my Father.  You see, before, I felt as though, while I knew it was wrong to take the Lord’s name in vain, somehow I wouldn’t take too much heat for it because by the time anyone really taught me it was bad, it was already a habit of mine.  Like, it’s just the way I am and God made me this way so He’s okay with it….wrong, I’m not okay with settling for that.  I feel bad when I do things that I feel would offend Him, and that’s never happened to me before.  I’ve wanted a relationship with God in the past, I’ve looked for Him in the past…I used to sing this song at the top of my lungs in the basement when I got the soundtrack after the movie “Leap Of Faith” came out because I connect just that much with these words. 

And finally, after all these years of searching, reading, listening, hoping, flailing, and singing…there’s a change in my life.  Thank you, God.

I was running some errands with my wife when that song came on, she and I had already been talking about everything that was going on throughout the week and talking about faith.  I had started crying in the middle of the song but sang along softly towards the end.  The song ended before we reached our destination and the very next one that came on was “Set Me in Motion!” 

Yes!  The very first one I heard on my playlist as I started this journey.  So in case you didn’t see the first blog, or just might be a little too lazy to go look for it, here it is again.  Plus, since it’s my video, and I love sharing my work…of course I’ll put it up again.

****THIS IS NOT THE ORIGINAL VIDEO FOR THIS BLOG, ALTHOUGH IT IS THE SONG INTENDED.  THIS IS **NOT MY VIDEO******

We brought it back to the beginning, and I felt like God was telling me something.  Not only was he trying to tell me something about getting things back on track, but also that in order to progress, sometimes you have to take a few steps backwards. 

At this time in my life, in my journey rather, I almost feel like a small child.  Like I’ve just been given the greatest gift of all time and I want to play with it as much as possible…but I don’t have all the time in the world to play with it.  But I also don’t know everything about it because there are TONS of directions and I’m a slow reader and it’s hard for me to understand things sometimes.  And sometimes when others want to talk about it I get scared and want to hide it, because I’m protective of what little I do know of it right now. 

I sometimes wonder if, when I stepped out into the aisle of that church that day, God took part of me away and put it in storage and brought back a child to start over with, to teach things over to, to guide properly….there are things I once knew that I’ve forgotten that I can’t explain, except to explain, as my wife did, that in order to truly have a relationship with Him, I must truly be able to pray to him, not recite.  Now, I have been having problems with my memory lately, but…hmmm, I don’t know, this one is just a weeeeeeeee bit suspicious….

So I guess in order for me to continue this journey, I must return to the starting point, go back three spaces, do whatever it is I must do….but it will be interesting a second time around…I’ll have to keep my contacts clear…as if I were seeing through the eyes of innocence.  After all, church is soon, I have not yet received my message for the week or the lesson, I don’t know what’s in store…

Lord, thank you for the blessings of the week, those that we can see and those we can not.  Please be with all of us and all those who need your guidance in times of need, and please watch over us and our family and friends in our health and travels as we journey enthusiastically into a new week of spirituality, partake in opportunities to do your good works, and keep our own households safe, loved, and provided for.  In your most holy and precious name, I pray to you, Lord…Amen.


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Love Says “No”

In light of the fact that I know I’m going through struggles right now, and people I love are going through struggles right now, and people that I don’t really know, but that I know of, are going through struggles right now…I feel this song is appropriate…plus it’s come up all week on my playlist.  I’ve always liked this song and it took on a whole new meaning for me a year and a half ago after our kids started, literally, dragging me out of the darkness.  And for those of you who don’t know the band HIM, please don’t judge their style, or anything about them at first sight or first lyric, or anything.  They are amazing…and while all of their song do not sound like this, some are darker…they are not satanic, so don’t get skeered. 

Recently, one of the Jackass crew, Ryan Dunn, was involved in a fatal car accident that claimed his life and the life of another.  I don’t know all the details behind it, although I’ve heard a few things about alcohol.  Frankly, I don’t give a rats behind about the details.  I care that he’s dead.  That in an instant, his life was taken, terribly taken…and I pray that he and his friend didn’t suffer.  I saw a picture of the car they were driving, nothing about it looked like a car.  My heart aches more for his family and friends, I guess, especially his friends, like Bam Margera, Brandon Novak, WeeMan, Steve-O, Johnny Knoxville…all those guys that came together and made something together that was just so crazy to watch but, I, along with a lot of people, loved to just watch.  I didn’t know him, I didn’t know anything about him, or any of these guys except what I saw on t.v….but I knew that they loved each other…so my heart aches for them.

We all have times, days, moments, phases, that drag us down into pits of despair that make us feel like we’ll never see the light of day, the light of happiness, the light of God again.  It may be brought on by anything, maybe from the earliest times because that’s just how things went as we grew up…shit was just hard to deal with and we kept sinking into an emotional sea of hell.  Maybe something happened that rocked our world and sent us into an emotional tailspin.  Maybe we had an argument with someone and it put us in a place we didn’t want to be and made us question everything about our hearts, the foundation of ourselves, and our faith…who knows.  At any rate…we all go through tragedy, we all go through hell, we all spend time in darkness…for some of us the darkness is darker than for others, but that doesn’t make that shade any less harder to deal with.

Darkness surrounds us and it’s always there waiting for us, to engulf the very blessed soul that we are and chew us up.  I know this, I’ve been there.  I have a youtube channel with videos I made that outlines my very existence in the depths of darkness for a very long time.  I plead to all those who are crawling through darkness, looking for any speck of light to keep crawling, keep looking, and know that the light is there, and you will find it, and there is a reason for you to crawl out of that pit and that, no matter how hopeless and terrible things may seem right now, it will get better in time….even though it may take a long ass time. 

I’ve been through hell in my life and I’ve crawled through many levels of darkness to a point that I honestly believed that’s where I was supposed to live out my years.  My only son died two months before I was to begin a life with him.  My best friend died on my bathroom floor, and despite my efforts, along with my wife’s, to perform CPR, and even the paramedics, there was nothing bringing him back.  I was the only one around when my grandma died, and I held her hand and looked into her eyes as I watched her, not so peacefully, pass through to the other side as the only thing I could think to do was pray the Lord’s prayer.  There has been many things in my life that have sucked royally…and I have begged for my own death just to relieve me of my own pain…but I would not do it on my own.  God, and the Love of those around me…always said no.

“Lord, please place your arms around us all, as we seek comfort, consolation, guidance and strength through our tears and trials.  In your most Holy and Precious name I pray to you, Lord.  Amen.”