When in Need, God Provides

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God will always provide for his people!

He isn’t going to buy us each a Mercedes-Benz, and if I’m feeling lonely, he may not introduce me to my soul mate. He may not even give us what we think we need, but that is only because he knows what we need more than we do. He has promised to always give us what we need.

This morning, I was in a funk. It started yesterday morning and continued all day yesterday. I was feeling overwhelmed, like life was just too heavy to handle for some reason. I woke up this morning and was feeling anxious that my outlook hadn’t changed. I was even feeling a bit shaken and depressed.

I didn’t want to do anything except sleep, but I had been planning to go surfing today since last week so I went.

Ask anyone in Huntington Beach, the waves were as good as they get!

The sky was bright and sunny. The air was warm with little breeze. Nature was at its finest. Shortly after I paddled out, four big pelicans glided above the swell right in front of me; close enough that I could have splashed them with water! I also saw a flock of seagulls bobbing on the water in the distance. I caught my first wave and rode it almost the whole way to shore. The waves were big yet mellow. It was like a dream! They were so easy to catch and ride, and the ride was long and smooth. Usually this great of conditions means overcrowded water, but I was able to catch almost any wave I wanted. After several super fun rides, I rode into shore. Just before the wave ended, I watched a small sand shark swim under my board. I am still stoked about it!

Right before I got into the water, I was feeling like crap. Then, right after I caught my first wave, I realized God was providing. I thank Him for that.

Thank God for the Struggle

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Hey don’t forget to love the struggles of life too.

I used to live my life trying, hoping every day would be perfect. That put extra pressure on holidays and other special days. I would hope with every part of myself that I would have a day without a headache, mosquito bites, paper cuts, any kind of struggle.

Those days when I did get a headache or itches from mosquito bites, I would be miserable.

Then, I went through one of the hardest parts of my life. I was miserable and struggling for a little over a year.

When I came out of that period, I had grown so much that I realized that the horrible struggle was completely worth it!

Now, I see a day with a headache or a day when I’m exhausted as a challenge. I see a challenge that I can overcome, and that I will feel wonderful about overcoming! If I get a headache, I see how normally I can live my life with that obstacle. Then I see how strong I am, and I feel like a champ.

Those irritating things don’t even have a chance to make my day miserable anymore!

Thank God for the challenge. Offer him your suffering. Every day will be better!

The Connection Between Eve and Mary

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Dear EWTN, please add your prayer guides to your iPhone app!

I was using EWTN’s Rosary guide on Sunday. I was going through the Glorious Mysteries, and when I got to the Coronation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, I read about Christ being the new Adam and Mary being the new Eve.

After taking a minute to add it up in my head I noticed some interesting connections between Eve and Mary.

Eve gave Adam the forbidden fruit, thus putting man into sin; while Mary brought Jesus into life, thus freeing man from sin. Eve came from Adam, while Mary birthed the new Adam.

What do you think? It’s kind of interesting right! Are there any other connections?

Find Your Direction & Achieve Your Goals! (Tip #1)

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So you’ve found your purpose. You know what you want to do with the next part of your life. You’re ready to move forward. But moving forward is scary. You may be encountering stress and anxiety. You need direction.

Finding your direction can be difficult. Even if you have a map and compass, you have to know where you’re at and how to use the map and compass.

As someone who has found his way, and is still finding his way, I’ve decided to share some tips, some tools that I use as a compass and map in life. Hopefully, you’ll share your life experiences as well, and we can all help one another, as brother’s in Christ, to move in the right direction.

First things first, Jesus Christ is the North Star for finding your way. If you’re following Jesus Christ and working to imitate Him, you’re not lost. In fact, all you truly need is to follow Christ.

However, we have all these other silly things in life like careers and relationships. With some help from above and a bit of direction, we can successfully navigate those things too! In fact, we can do it with very little stress and anxiety.

Today’s Pointer: Write down a list of things you absolutely must do on a daily basis to get where you need to be. Pray that God will guide you in writing your list. Once you have the list (make sure you keep it simple!), complete every item every day. Then – this is important – understand that if you’re completing every item on the list, you’re kicking butt! If you stick to your plan, reward yourself by relaxing and letting go of your worries. By sticking to the plan, you’re giving it your best, so you’ve got nothing to worry about.

I’m looking for work right now, so here’s my list:

  1. Apply to one job in the music industry
  2. Apply to one job in the communications industry
  3. Say the Rosary
  4. Complete 30 seconds of a song
  5. Check Craigslist and newspaper classifieds
  6. Don’t buy anything unnecessary

If you’re looking to repair a relationship, your list might look like this:

  1. Smile at the person three times
  2. Read one chapter of Dale Carnegie’s How to Win Friends & Influence People
  3. Find one thing I am thankful to have the person for
  4. Pray for the person

What goals are you working toward? What items have you put on your list? We want to know your good ideas. We can all help each other out!

How Could You Tell You Became an Adult?

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In our modern American culture, we lack a unified ritual into adulthood. In many modern Latin American cultures, girls become women at their Quinceanera, 15th birthday. In some culture, a ritual of pain is involved. In America, nothing. In one of my favorite movies, Lars and the Real Girl, the main character asks his adult brother how to know you’ve become a man. The brother couldn’t give him a direct answer because there isn’t a rite into adulthood in our culture.

Although we don’t have set rituals, we all have experiences in which we know we’ve grown, and most adults can come fairly close to pinpointing a moment or two in which they became adults.

I feel I’ve grown tremendously in the past couple years. I want to share some of my experiences, and I want you to share some of yours so we can compare. I’m thinking we can find some kind of thread that binds our experiences. I’m not sure what that thread is – maybe it’s finding love, maybe it’s understanding something. I don’t know so I’m hoping you’ll help me find out.

I recognized major growth in myself during my last year of my undergraduate studies. For the first time in my life, I read all assigned readings, and my mind expanded tremendously. That was the first time I really was aware I was growing.

In the couple years since then, I’ve had tons of opportunity for growth. I’ve had major life changes and challenges. I’ve overcome a lot, and lots of things have lead to my becoming an adult, but one specific moment really stands out as being a pivot point for my coming of age.

It was a few months ago. I can’t even remember what sparked the thought. I guess it was an epiphany. I realized that my parents were growing. I realized they were becoming better people year by year.

I mark that epiphany as my becoming an adult because I could finally see that others grow and change. That understanding made it easier for me to forgive, love and hope. So much easier that I label it as the moment I became an adult.

Countless songs, books and films have been made about growing up in our culture. A small chain of events and realizations caused singer Mark Hoppus of Blink 182 to sing, “Well, I guess this is growing up,” in their song, Dammit.

Is there a moment or chain of events that you claim as your rite of passage in adulthood? Did you participate in some sort of ritual, or was it just a chance happening? If you haven’t yet passed into adulthood – or you’re not sure – what do you think it is to be an adult? Let us know so we can learn from your unique perspective!