If We Know How to End Poverty, Why Has Poverty Not Ended?

It’s said that 45 million US citizens suffer from abject poverty; ”13.1 million children in the US are food insecure.” This is not even including the estimated 11.3 million undocumented individuals currently residing in the U.S."We spend so much time making our living that we never have time to live our lives."Anyone who has ever struggled simply to meet their basic needs knows how crushing the anxiety caused by this type of poverty can be; it's misery; soul-crushing, energy-sucking mi … [Read more...]

A Brief Note on People Who Deliberately Try to Bring You Down

The other day I was meeting with a friend and we were just chatting about how it seems as if everyone we come across is exhausted or pretending to not be exhausted. And, by “exhausted” what I really mean is depleted. Being one of these people that feel depleted to the point of exhaustion, my m.o. is to find a solution. Part of what's so exhausting these days is the constant dodging of never ending negativity; seemingly, it’s coming from each and every single way; there’s no escape. Playing bas … [Read more...]

Heroin Addictions And Why I’m Still Not Married…

“As we all know-or should know-we can’t aim straight for happiness; rather, happiness is an accompaniment to engaging in valuable projects and developing meaningful connections with others.”There’s a guy in Philadelphia who dresses up as Hulk Hogan; full out costume; doesn’t cut any corners; yellow mustache, bandana, and even an authentic WWF Championship belt. The first time I saw him, he came barreling through Starbucks front doors, pausing, and then slowly raising his belt in the air … [Read more...]

The Cost of Joy: “But We Rejoice in Our Sufferings…”

Joy is not the absence of pain; it’s the presence of meaning and intimacy [regardless of pain or sufferings presence]. Suffering, far too many times, I think, is the result of inaction; that is, doing nothing in face of pain or unexpected hardships.  It’s when we can’t find or don’t have a reason to push forward that we tend to give up and allow hardship to win. Taking this on from a different perspective: Joy is a constant choice in which we repeatedly make, day in and day out until it becomes … [Read more...]

“But We Rejoice in Our Sufferings…”

Just keepin' it real, but, the past two years, life has just completely and utterly beat shit out of me. It was like being trapped underneath a seemingly never ending set of waves; one bad thing after another; feeling a sense of panic from the uncertainty that you’re going to make it. But, in the same way you don’t try and stop the waves from coming, it’s fruitless to exert your energy on any attempts at stopping this series of unfortunate events; while it’s even more foolish to become angry dur … [Read more...]

Failing Forward: A Lesson Learned From Repeatedly Learning Nothing

This morning I felt as if I was Tom Hanks character from the Cast Away the morning after being rescued. Obviously, I haven’t been stranded on a remote island bordering dementia while using a bloodstained volleyball for emotional connection. But, I did have the "norovirus" (a.k.a. the stomach flu). Which is basically the same thing. Either way, I’ve noticed a trend, a sort of pattern in my life, if you will, in the last 3-5 years or so. Around the same time Spring is swinging around the corner … [Read more...]

The Weirdest Christian Belief I Still Stand By: Heaven is For Real

So, here’s the thing, as much as my theology over the course of the past few years has changed, I still believe in "eternal life." I know, it’s weird. I can already sense the eyes rolling into the back of my progressive friend’s heads. But, hear me out, then, you may fully judge... The type of eternal life I’m speaking of is more so immortality than it is our elusive and over popularized American evangelical understanding of heaven; you know, the heaven in which exists somewhere in the sky. Wha … [Read more...]

Who Would Jesus Bomb: Is Violence Ever a Means to Effective Justice?

Who Would Jesus Bomb?I’m rarely on Facebook these days, but, recently, I hopped on and did something I rarely if ever do (on my personal feed): I engaged. Irked by a random post, I reacted, I engaged, and then, I reposted. Honestly, it wasn’t anything bad, and, it felt like a healthy engagement. In short, I reacted to a post from a guy I went to high school with; he was feeling joy over the inflicted violence towards a very vocal white supremacist.Know this: I'm just as enraged by … [Read more...]

Identity: Who You Are Is Not Defined By What They Say

I don't know about you, but, I struggle with insecurity. Like, crippling amounts of deeply embedded insecurity. My insecurity, it's this false belief in that I'm one of the very few that which struggles with feelings of embarrassment, insecurity, loneliness, and/or any other self-destructive behavior there is; all while oscillating in and out of various sets of emotions.I think they call this, "The Human Condition." What makes this so incredibly confusing is my simultaneous desire of want … [Read more...]

What the Truman Show Says About Inner Religious Freedom

In the movie The Truman Show, the director of Truman's show, is asked "Why do you think that Truman has never come close to discovering the true nature of his world until now?" Christof responds by saying, "[It's because] we accept the reality of the world with which we’re presented. It's that simple.” In short, Truman, he's settled. If you're familiar with this movie, you know it's basic premise is built around a man (Truman) who was adopted by a corporation, placed into an artificial world, a … [Read more...]