Snow That Traps and Beckons

I still remember sitting in that YMCA conference room last March, my third day of training for this new job and just my fourth day living in Asheville. I stared out the giant bay windows, mesmerized by flaky snow drifting downward from a vast gray expanse. This city I’d only ever known for summer camps and tanktops now threw me a new, wintry contrast. Last year’s snowfall only produced a thin dusting, and it wouldn’t snow the rest of the year. Wouldn’t […]

Goodbye, Charlotte

On March 9, 2015, I concluded a 9-month road trip around the continent with a relocation from southern California to Charlotte, North Carolina. “Why Charlotte?” many people asked, including several Charlotte residents. “It wasn’t my favorite city,” I told plenty. If I wanted to start over in a “favorite city,” I’d be donning a year-round beanie in Seattle or consuming never-ending flows of beer and bratwurst in Milwaukee. As for Charlotte, it was the people. The church. The house. The close proximity to parents, […]

The Life I Could Have Lived

10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 HAPPY NEW YEAR! Cheers fill the brisk 39-degree square, a woman with a microphone starts singing “Auld Lang Syne,” dancing ensues, and fireworks shoot over the historic Gettysburg Hotel. 2015 has fallen into oblivion, and I’m wondering how my life got here. ~ ~ ~ Before setting out on this #wintrywanderland road trip to the North, I debated returning to Gettysburg — the city that was far and away my biggest […]

#RunningTo FAQ

Throughout my crazy #RunningTo road trip, I’ve been connecting with so many incredible people. The reaction and reception, both online and off, have been fueling me forward. I’m honestly thrilled that so many of y’all are thrilled. After living on the road for over a month now, a few commonly asked questions have arisen. So, I thought I’d take this opportunity to address some of your concerns for future reference. Yes, there’s a question about my beard. Among several others. 1. Where are you staying while you’re #RunningTo? […]

Why I’m Sad and Why I Might Run Away

I don’t often “vent” on this blog. I usually reserve such emotional outpourings for my journal. Or if I’m feeling courageous enough, with a trusted individual or two. To all who have personally suffered amid the snotty sniffling presence of a Tom-meltdown, I vigorously apologize. In these two-plus years of blogging, I’ve often considered the “point” of my blog. Is it to be funny? Am I that quirky writer guy? Or am I here to be super emo? Am I […]

“Struggle Central” Excerpt #2: Alone at Church

Once again, it’s time for a special Struggle Central edition of Struggle Sunday! I’ve already posted one excerpt from my first book, and posted below is another! It’s the second sneak peak for Struggle Central: Quarter-Life Confessions of a Messed Up Christian, with at least one or two more reveals in the Struggle Sundays to come. Today’s excerpt takes me back those college years and the ensuing months beyond academia’s gates — such a fun time of striving for belonging wherever I could find […]

Milwaukee Paradise

Several months ago I reentered Milwaukee a year removed from the most life-changing summer of my life. Midway through the summer I blogged about that heavy drive into the city; here now is the continuation of that tale, recounting my 24 hours back in sweet Milwaukee. After parking on all too familiar Logan Street I stumbled from my car and walked around the Lutheran church that served as my team’s housing site last summer. Perhaps the most eerie stroll I’ve […]

Tears from Ezra: “It’s Just Not the Same”

I’ve been on a bit of soul-searching journey since relocating from Georgia to southern California over a year ago. Within that soul-searching journey resides countless sub-journeys, including a church-searching one. I’ve not felt truly at home in a church since 1999. So it’s been a while. You would think after twelve years I’d just give up on this whole churchy pursuit; somehow God’s given me the strength to keep searching. I’m currently in the midst of posting recaps of my […]