Experience

My greatest desire is for you to have an intimate experience

with our LORD and Savior.

Our faith journey is not a museum,

with red tape and security cameras

and people with badges keeping a scornful eye.

It is paint and easel, it is a cheering crowd

It is Play-dough and a full sprint

It is sweat and blood mixed with the Holy Spirit.

Our God is a living God!

Time for us to live like it.

Absolution

What a wonderful word!

The idea of our past mistakes being forgiven absolutely.

Are there still consequences for our actions? You bet.

But now we are not stuck in the past,

having instead been given a new way truth and life in which we can walk,

a future of promise.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the LORD,

“plans to prosper you and not to harm you.

Plans to give you hope and a future.”

-Jeremiah 29:11

Picnic

The sun shines upon our windshield as we drive down the Blue Ridge, blaring 106.9 as we drive ’round bikers and sight seers toward the top of Grandfather Mountain.

Finally, we get there and we pull over and park. We pull the picnic stuff out of the back, the basket and the food and the sparkling water and the blankets. We take the short hike up through the trees, waving to other hikers, families and couples and elderly people with dogs.

We reach the top. We go out to the edge and look out. People are taking selfies. We stretch out our blanket and set up shop. We talk about the day, of work and worries, of small celebrations. We eat every last morsel and drink every drop, then we pack up and go home.

The view is just as lovely going down. It’s not about the journey or even the destination, but the time together. You gotta redeem the time while you can, cuz it’s fleeting. That’s for sure.

In the meantime, we’re happy just being us.

End of Book 3 + Special Announcement

Well friends,

We’ve made it to the end of book 3. This one especially important to me. I’ve tried to go bigger and better every time I’ve done one of these. What began as a flippant scribbling on a blog wall when I first came to North Carolina has blossomed first into a small poetry book, followed by a second poetry book with matching audio. Now, thanks your continued encouragement, I’ve decided to really go for the gusto. I’ve submitted my book for legit publishing. Ever since I was in high school, working on my first literary tome, I’ve dreamed of getting published through a major press. Now, years later, I’m going at it again, and I think it stands a really good chance.

I’ve definitely learned a lot over the years. Most of all: do what you all and don’t quit. And even more so than that, give it all to God, because He loves you and He is a good Father, more than capable of directing our steps to greener pastures.

I’m so excited to see where this next step in the journey leads.

Blessings to you all,

Aaron

What Am I to You?

Read: Mark 8:27-30

So Jesus is walking down the road one day. He stops, turns to His disciples, and says, “who do you say I am? Some people say this, some people say that, and some people say something else; but, you, what do you think?” Peter gives a stellar response, worthy of any top Sunday school or Bible class. Then, Jesus, satisfied, turns and keeps walking.

Another day, Jesus TELLS the disciples who He is and what is going to happen to Him and Peter will have nothing to do with it. Jesus rebukes Peter and, again, keeps walking.

I love that, as we walk farther along with Jesus, He will continually check in, always asking who we think He is. Or better yet, He will ask why we are even here. The options are many. Sometimes our responses are stellar. Sometimes they are still brewing, works in process. Sometimes, they aren’t simpatico, don’t quite vibe, with Jesus’ will and person.

This is a personal journey. Jesus does not ask us to delegate our response to a friend or family member or religious leader. He asks us individually (also corporately, if applied to a singular body), who we think He is and why we are here? He listens. Then He discusses. He cares about the response. For Him, there is a right and wrong answer, but He wants to know where we stand first.

So, who is Jesus to you? Why are you at His side? Be honest. No points for brown nosing. He wants you as you are. He can work with us from there.