Monday, April 18, 2011


Well, the last few posts here have been filled with nothing but whine and vinegar, eh?  Let change that right now.

I am blessed and thankful for many things.  Let's name as many as I can...  My wife and step-son.  Even if the lawn didn't get cut today.  I have dandelions and that's ok.  Even Stephen, the kid living in my basement, yes and am thankful for you.  I can afford health insurance and I can pay for the drugs I need to get over this cold.  I can look back on pictures of our last vacation and be filled with the love my entire family has for us.  I haven't seen some of my best friends for months; but I know they feel the loss and miss me as much as I do for them.  I have a job that I like, am good at and well paid for.  I've only gained 2 pounds in 2 years, according to the doctor's scale.  I put my all in everything I do.  I am pretty sure I am respected; I'll say that I know I am by the people that matter.  I like my smile.  My dreams lately have been enjoyable.  I kept my Lent promise, except for that one time and I really didn't like it, so I think I'll be keeping my Lent promise for life.  I  think God can understand a relapse if it leads to better decisions.  I can listen to music any time I want.  Whatever mood I am in, there is something on my iPod for that.  I'm blessed that I have can have a convenient way to keep my music with me.  I am looking forward to stage managing "Bat Boy" in July.  I have not fathered any children unexpectedly.  I think AND I feel.  I speak softly, but carry a big stick, that I have never needed to use.  Pretty sure I have conquered depression.  I have my moments, but the funks don't stick like they used to.  I can twist my tongue upside down.  I can wear a pair of jeans for several days without a second thought.  OK, the cats - Jack, Hannah, Misfit and BK.  I am thankful for Josh, Erin, Ryan and Allison, Patrick, Jeff, Rikki, Madeline, Sarah, and Deanna more than they probably will ever realize.  HA! I am thankful that I can be a guy and be friends with girls without it getting all weird.  I can sympathize, empathize and listen to both sides and form my own opinion.  I am an Uncle. 3x a godfather.  I am blessed with Riley and Lily, Katy, Tony, Alex, Lisa and Nick - even Marianne and Joe.  They probably don't realize that I am blessed because of them, but I am.  Hooboy, am I thankful I have a sense of humor.  I am also thankful that God has one, too.  I am thankful that my ex-girlfriends are my ex-girlfriends and I am happy to have taken something away from each relationship.  Yes, even that one, especially that one.  The times I can say "I told you so."  I am thankful my parents wouldn't let me watch pro wrestling when I was a kid. And I'm thankful I was able to sneak peeks early in the morning before they woke up.  I enjoy art in all its many forms (well, maybe not abstract paintings).  I am thankful for Liz Phair and Ryan Adams. I got life, brother. I got laughs, sister. I got freedom, mother. I got good times, man. I gots me my Swagger. Most importantly, I like who I am.  If you can say that, you've got a good thing going, kid. 


Here's the definition of Commitment:
1. the act of committing.
2.  the state of being committed.
3.  the act of committing, pledging, or engaging oneself.
4.  a pledge or promise; obligation: We have made a commitment to pay our bills on time.
5.  engagement; involvement: They have a sincere commitment to religion.
6.  perpetration or commission, as of a crime.
7.  consignment, as to prison.
8.  confinement to a mental institution or hospital: The psychiatrist recommended commitment.
9.  an order, as by a court or judge, confining a person to a mental institution or hospital.
10.  Law - a written order of a court directing that someone be confined in prison; mittimus.
11.  Parliamentary Procedure - the act of referring or entrusting to a committee for consideration.
12.  Stock Exchange - a.  an agreement to buy or sell securities.  b.  a sale or purchase of securities.

Ok, should I be committed for thinking that when you make a commitment you should be committed to finishing out said commitment for commitments sake?

I should probably be committed for typing that sentence...

Maybe I was raised differently.  Or maybe people no longer care about honoring their commitments.  It's a big thing for me if I break a commitment.  I, or someone very close to me, has to pretty much be dead for me not to follow through on a commitment.  And, even then, I'm probably finishing it up and dropping things off on the way to the funeral...

So, what is it?  Is it me?  Do I expect too much of people?  The worst part is that I'm starting to expect disappointment when someone commits doing something now.  That's the worst part; losing faith in people...

On a completely separate note, I was informed today that I might have to go to Las Vegas on company time in late July.  And, I won't be disappointed if I don't get to go because they didn't make that commitment to me.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Take This Cup...

Gonna get a little Jesus-y with this one.  Hope that's ok...

Without going into details that I do not want all over the world wide web at this time, I am feeling tremendously overwhelmed with all that is being asked of me.  Between work, home, friendships, theater and a host of other things I am not going to detail right now, I am very much struggling with the idea that I am going to make it to the other side of the tunnel.  In fact, last night I literally fell to my knees and begged God for some help... begged for him to take some of these things away from me...

For some reason, whenever I ask God to "take these things away from me," you know, telling him that I don't think I can handle everything He is asking me to handle, I always think of Jesus Christ: Superstar.  Specifically, Jesus's song "Gesthemane."

Lyrics:  I only want to say,  If there is a way,  Take this cup away from me...

This song is Jesus' prayer to God before the events leading to his crucifixion.  In the hours before he was arrested, he had such doubts and he makes no bones about how difficult it is to finish the job God called him to do.  The Bible account in Matthew 26 says in verse 39:   " Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, 'My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.'" Jesus had such doubts, too.  Our cups runneth over?

In the middle of prayer, on my knees, full of pain to the point of tears burning my eyes, this song and story pops into my head.  I start praying for God to take this cup away from me because I cannot handle its poison.  And, I laugh.

I laugh at myself because in that moment I realize how trivial my problems are.  My bullshit is nothing compared to what JC went through so that we can receive God's grace.  Funny, how in my moment of absolute weakness, I can find a glimmer of hope through laughter.

And it is then that I begin to thank God for reminding me what is important and that He does not throw anything my way that I cannot handle.  I thank God for humbling me.  And I continue thinking about the song:
God thy will is hard
But you hold every card
I will drink your cup of poison
Nail me to your cross and break me
Bleed me beat me kill me take me now -
Before I change my mind.
This is the challenge God gives me - Take these things on.  He needs me to and knows that I can do it.  Therefore, I can accomplish all that He asks of me.  His faith in me gives me strength.  And, even in my weakest moments, He reminds me of his love and grace.  I will take this on because You have asked me to.  I am not sure what the results will be, but I know He will keep me safe.