How the Hollywood Sign Made God More Real to Me

The Hollywood sign never seemed more real. I’ve lived in southern California for over three years now, and I’ve seen those illustrious blocky white letters on countless treks into Los Angeles. I’ve shown off “Lady Hollywood” to visiting friends and family as if it were my firstborn child, lounging on the side of a mountain beneath that giant antenna friend of hers. And yet the Hollywood sign always seemed so far away. So untouchable and two-dimensional. Until this past Thanksgiving, […]

My Storyline Conference Lessons: Suffering is Good

Last week, I blogged about my impressions from my recent trek to Nashville for the Storyline conference. Storyline is an organization run by Donald Miller and friends; its sole purpose, to help people of all shapes and sizes and ages find their subplots in God’s story. Moving beyond those first impressions, I learned a thing or two. Here’s the second of this two-part Storyline recap! Storyline Conference Lesson #1: Clear is Good A good story is a clear story. If I […]

“National Coming Out Day” Thoughts

Today is National Coming Out Day. It would have been easy to let this day escape my attention, blogging or otherwise. Alas, I cannot let this day pass without some attention paid it from my unique perspective. It’s been a landmark year of “coming out” on many levels, but this post starts nearly seven years ago with the pivotal night I came out to my very first person — myself. For nearly 20 years, I’d write in my journal cloaked expressions […]

Hope That Fades

Sometimes, somewhere along the way, you unknowingly develop nonsensical habits. You pop a mint every time you enter your vehicle, you tie and re-tie your shoes before walking out the door, you floss after every meal and snack and bowl of pudding. For me, among myriad other bizarre ways to operate in this life, I write words on myself. I take a pen — blue, black, red, purple, ball-point, Sharpie, what have you — and I physically inscribe words onto […]

tell me this one thing

tonight, i am fighting. all my life i have been fighting. fighting as one fighting as One; fighting in sorrow fighting in shadows, fighting in and out of fear fighting in tears for years and years. so much fighting and fighting, unceasing, it never flees. it drains it dries it drives me w i l d . and yet. oh, this thought, this fight — it fills it fuels it frees. fills fuels frees me. indicts my incompetence restores my relevance. finding […]

The Exodus Altar

This past weekend, I went hiking with two friends. We hit the dust at 7am, venturing to the coast of Laguna Beach, the Pacific Ocean bashfully greeting us beneath swirling molasses of white fog. It actually wasn’t my first time hitting those hilly coastal trails. Two months prior, I hiked at this very location with 15 other guys. 15 courageous inspiring men who mean the world to me though I hardly even “knew” most of them, really. I met many […]

Foster Youth Camp: Where Struggle Finds Joy

July 14, 2013 — Costa Mesa, California I close the door behind me, desperate for the quiet that only four beige walls and a toilet-throne can provide. My foster youth camp is over, over already, and I’m being forced to attend an hour-long debriefing with all the other counselors. I’m exhausted. Staying here in this church office building with the kids now returned “home” — if that’s the word you can even use — is the last thing I want […]

My Last Exodus Conference: Lessons Learned

This is the second in an epiK three-part blogging series on my four-year return to the Exodus Conference. For the first part of this series, “Impressions,” click here. For the third part, “Onward,” transport yourself to the future. And then tell me how you did that cuz I wanna go too. When you attend an Exodus Conference (which, just for clarification from here on out, you won’t since Exodus is shutting down – but roll with me), you learn a thing or […]