Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Hope Amidst the Pain.

Tonight my heart is deeply saddened. My heart is broken. I type this as I weep and mourn. I need hope, I need an anchor, I need Jesus right now. 
I know that this post will come off as controversial to some, but I think it's an important topic to stand up for. I'm being open as to what I have experienced and my convictions.  As I read through scripture I see Jesus holding fast to truth, and never compromising what the Father taught Him was right.

My heart breaks for the abortion vote that was taken today in Albuquerque. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the vote, it was a proposed vote to ban abortions that occur after 20 week (5 months) mark. At this point a baby is approximately 10 inches long, from head to heel (size of a banana). The child has 2 arms, 2 legs, a beating heart, 10 fingers, 10 toes, 2 eyes, a nose, a mouth, and showing some signs of hair. It is now clearly a boy or girl, and he/she is starting to swallow, kick, move, and hiccup. Today, the people of Albuquerque voted to allow these children to continue being lawfully murdered.

I sit here almost speechless, feeling helpless, not knowing what needs to be done for these children who can't voice their own hurt, pain, and suffering. I want to be a voice for the voiceless, but I don't know how. Now, I'm sure some of you are thinking:
-What's the big deal? It's just a vote.
-You're a male, this doesn't pertain to you at all! You have no say in this issue! 
-Why do you even care? It's the woman's choice in the end!
-(insert various other questions)

I care because this is a child. Having worked in the youth ministry field for almost 4 years now, I understand that every single person, specifically kid, is made with immeasurable intrinsic value and worth. Nobody is a "mistake". While you are correct in the fact that I cannot birth a child or make the 'choice' to keep it or kill it, I can be a voice for the voiceless. My heart mourns knowing that there are hundreds of kids I will never get to meet because they were aborted. My heart mourns knowing that there are kids God planned for me to interact with right now, that I have never met because they were aborted. I speak up because there is such a disconnect between the fact that people get life in prison when they murder someone who is already born, but if this same person was still in the womb, we get financial aid and a doctor to help us commit the murder with a celebration that follows.  
Today the people of ABQ showed that 'choice' is more important than life.
I've probably heard a dozen people today say this, "You can't tell me what to do with my body," and guess what?! I TOTALLY AGREE! I cannot tell you what to do with your body, BUT if that same logic applies, then why are you making the decisions for another human being? That baby should have rights as well, because it's clearly a living human. There is no disputing the fact that this is a living, breathing, and beautiful young child. I've also heard people say, "Well, what if the baby is showing signs of brain damage, down syndrome, disease, is going to be a burden to take care of, etc. might as well put it out of it's misery now, right?" to which I respond,
1) Half the time the doctors tell people that so that they clear themselves of any legal action if something is wrong with the baby when born.
2) That is 100% a speculation, we cannot know for certain if something is wrong with the baby, until the baby is born.
3) If we abort all the babies with supposed down syndrome, disease, or being a future burden, etc., then shouldn't we also kill all of the people that are currently living with down syndrome, disease, or need help to live (senior home citizens) etc.? According to that logic, they are also burdens and are living in misery...

I think we can all agree that this is ABSOLUTELY LUDICROUS! We would never even think of killing a special needs child who we know, simply because they have something different about them. In fact, we all know a special needs child who has touched our hearts in more ways than almost anyone else has. This kids are special,  tender, loving, and full of life.

When all is said and done, there is only one true Hope in all of this. His name is Jesus! Although I mourn, weep, and quite frankly get angry about this vote and it's implications, I trust that God will somehow and someway use this for His Glory. We need to turn to Jesus, who provides us with a safe haven in times of need. Jesus allows us to influence, encourage, and love people! Through all the hurt, disappointment, tears, and sorrow, we are called to love our neighbors. We need Jesus just as much as anyone else. So lets lead with love and prayer, hoping and trusting that God alone will change hearts while using us as His vessels.

Find rest in Jesus even during the hard times, because Jesus is our only Hope. "We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure." Hebrews 6:19

In Christ,

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Life Lately.....

It has been a HOT MINUTE since I last posted on this shindig and as you can see, I have become "hip" on the new lingo. Well besides that, I am basically going to just give you a brief update on everything that has happened since mid June. Here we go.

At the end of June, I was blessed with the opportunity to speak for a week, to a group of about 50 high school kiddos at Sonlight Christian Camp. (Insert shameless sonlight plug here). All of you who know me, know how much of an impact Sonlight Camp has had on my life and my walk with Christ. God truly did more than I ever could have asked for, imagined, or prayed for. Now-a-days, kids aren't exposed to true community on a regular basis. Kids today aren't exposed to what love is (Jesus), they don't life in safe community, and they sure as heck don't get poured into like they do at camp. So many times we heard kids say, "I don't want to go back to the real world" or something along those lines, and to be honest all we could think was "That is not the real world". Camp is the real world. Camp is a place were kids get to leave their masks at the door, and a place for them to come in and honestly deal with the crap that is going on in their lives. They NEVER get to show that side of their lives outside camp, for fear of being labeled weird or whatever it is now, when in all reality every single one of us is in that place of brokenness and in need of Godly counsel. I got to have talks with kids about walking out their faith practically when they left camp, to listening in on small group discussion, to praying with graduated seniors who I have watched grow up since they were freshman in high school. All of it, completely blew me away. God answers prayers. Since the beginning of February, when I was asked to speak, my prayer for the week was Ephesians 3:20-21 which says, "Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations for ever and ever! Amen." God faithfully answered that prayer, by working in the hearts and lives of kids at camp in more  ways than I ever could have imagined. Basically, camp rocked my world and brought a refreshing taste of what God calls us to as believers.

Since then, I have got to spend some time with my family, whether it was fly-fishing in Northern New Mexico or simply sitting down with them for a meal while they were in ABQ. How grateful I am for their provision and love.

Another huge blessing that I found about recently was the opportunity of being brought onto Younglife student staff. Since February, I've felt the Lord leading me to this place, and throughout all the times of doubt, frustration, and prayer, God proved Himself faithful once again! You might be asking yourself what this means? Let me explain. Basically, I now will lead the other leaders at the Eldorado High School Club. The coolest thing about this though, is that God set the example of what it means to lead! It doesn't mean that I delegate everything to everyone else, and just sit back and relax. In fact, it's exactly the opposite of that. I'm called to serve my fellow leaders and to make sure they are getting encouraged and such, as weird as it might sound, I am absolutely stoked and blessed to serve my brothers and sisters in Christ. Along with this i will still get to spend time pouring into my high school dudes and getting to disciple some of them along the way. Along with the new position comes new responsibilities financially as well. I am currently in the process of fundraising my salary, so I would humbly ask you to pray about supporting me in this and partnering with me in the Gospel, to help spread the good news of Christ to kids at Eldorado High School. If the Lord leads, and you do want to help, please email me at and we'll work out something. Either way, I would ask you to partner with me in praying for Eldorado High School this year, and for guidance in my new walk of leadership/servant hood! So....YA, you could say I'm absolutely stoked about the whole deal. If you or anyone else is interested in possibly leading along side us at Eldorado Younglife, you can also email me at the email above!

So yeah, that's my life in a nutshell the past month or so.
I encourage each of you to continue walking in true love! Love that flows from the Holy Spirit, and that is comprised of grace and truth. You might be the only glimpse of Jesus that someone gets today, so don't pass up that opportunity.

Be blessed. Stay strong through trials. Live with Joy!

Your brother in Christ,


Sunday, June 16, 2013

Food for Thought....

The following excerpt was written by radio host Paul Harvey, on April 3, 1965. Paul wrote this to say what he would do if he was in satan's shoes. Think about how true these things have become and spend some time realizing that our nation is saying "yes" to satan, and "no" to God, more and more each and everyday. 

By Paul Harvey:
If I were satan....
-I would gain control of the most powerful nation in the world;
-I would delude their minds into thinking that they had come from man's
effort, instead of God's blessings;
-I would promote an attitude of loving things and using people, instead of
the other way around;
-I would dupe entire states into relying on gambling for their state revenue;
-I would convince people that character is not an issue when it comes to
-I would make it legal to take the life of unborn babies;
-I would make it socially acceptable to take one's own life, and invent
machines to make it convenient;
-I would cheapen human life as much as possible so that life of animals are
valued more than human beings;
-I would take God out of the schools, where even the mention of His name was
grounds for a lawsuit;
-I would come up with drugs that sedate the mind and target the young, and I
would get sports heroes to advertise them;
-I would get control of the media, so that every night I could pollute the
minds of every family member for my agenda;
-I would attack then family, the backbone of any nation. I would make
divorce acceptable and easy, even fashionable. If the family crumbles, so
does the nation;
-I would compel people to express their most depraved fantasies on canvas and
movies screens, and I would call it art;
-I would convince the world that people are born homosexuals, and that their
lifestyles should be accepted and marveled;
-I would convince the people that right and wrong are determined by a few who
call themselves authorities and refer to their agendas as politically
-I would persuade people that the church is irrelevant and out of date, the
Bible is for the naive:
-I would dull the minds of Christians, and make them believe that prayer is
not important, and that faithfulness and obedience are optional;


Pray for our country. As you can see, we need it now more than ever. 


Tuesday, May 7, 2013

A Bestfriend & His Fight Against Suicide.

First of all, let me just say that I am so proud of my roommate Zach Parks for sharing his story BOLDLY and BRAVELY so that other people may find comfort in their struggles. I can truly say that ever since 3rd grade when He and I played little league baseball together, he has been a best friend. Throughout the past 3 years I've had the blessing of rooming with him, and getting to be there for him in the hardest of times. It's been amazing to see how the Lord has been his rock the past 3 years as he has really embraced this battle. I'm so proud of him for being courageous enough to share his story. 

This is the story of the fight one of my roommates has undertaken the past few years. I pray and hope that this helps somebody who is struggling with the same issues. Please share this with anyone and everyone who thinks they are alone in the fight against depression, anxiety, and suicide.
 Please read his story with an open mind and respectful heart. He is a brave soul for baring his heart.

My Battle with Suicide
This past year many of us have had to deal with a suicide of someone we knew. The irreversible pain that it causes is simply devastating. I have decided to open up and tell my story dealing with depression/anxiety and nearly suicide. This story embarrasses me greatly, but I have decided to face it and tell the truth. I assume that this story will surprise most of you because I have hidden it very well. Most assume that I am a happy guy the majority of the time. My hope is that this story will bring a level of understanding to all of you and just maybe this could prevent another suicide. Many of you will disagree with me, but I hope that you will at least show respect.
The last 5 years I have battled anxiety and depression, with the last 3 years being incredibly difficult. I have on two occasions come close to ending my life and had it not been for the incredible support from family and friends, I would have. Now, here is the difficult part for me to understand. I have a good life and there is nothing in my past that would lead you to believe that I am depressed. I grew up in a very loving, middle class family; I have some of the best friends around; never have I had a substance abuse problem; and I never had trouble being social-Lord knows that. This, however, shouldn’t shock you. I guarantee all of you have a friend that is hiding depression/anxiety. It could be caused by a number of things, but it’s there.
My first year of college was the first time that my anxiety became difficult to conceal. There were days that I didn’t go to school because I was freaking out. That September, I became terrified to go to bed. I knew that there was a good chance that I would wake up in the middle of the night panicking. Most of those nights I would wake up sweating, nauseous, anxious, my heartbeat was a million beats per minute and I was convinced I was crazy. I felt so weak and for the first time in years I couldn’t help but cry.
I want you to notice something here, the anxiety hit before I attached a meaning to it. It wasn’t like I started worrying and than began to freak out over it; rather I freaked out and then found something to be worried about. I constantly worried about things that, honestly, were pretty ridiculous. I worried about my family and friends dying, I became convinced that I was going to die in a car accident (still am), I worried that nobody cared, and would even over analyze everything people said just to make sure that I wasn’t missing something. There were two fears that I had about exposing my panic attacks, 1) People would think that I was weak or 2) People would think that I was crazy.
This went on for months before I finally broke. Going on little rest and high stress wore me down quickly. I finally told my parents, but I refused to go to the doctor. I didn’t want to be thought of as crazy and I sure as hell didn’t need somebody to talk about my problems. What would I tell him, “Well my family is great, school is good, friends are good, and yeah still not using any drugs?” Seemed to me like it was an absolute waste of time. My parents soon forced me to see a counselor, one that was not very sympathetic. He basically said, “Yeah it’s probably a little anxiety, but that’s to be expected at college.” Now that is not what I needed to hear; I was already worried about being seen as weak and here was a professional telling me to suck it up.
After a few more months of struggling, I finally went to the doctor and got put on some medicine. The medicine stopped the panic attacks, but it still didn’t bring me back to normal. Though the anxiety persisted, I always found a way to hide it and keep pushing foreword.
It wasn’t until this year that I finally broke down again. Same anxiety attacks, but this time I felt an incredible depression. It was unbearable and I can’t even describe to you how painful it was. I was a prisoner in my own body and yet again felt like I was loosing my mind. Honestly, if I could have traded it for physical pain I would have. It got so bad that I lost all hope of ever being “normal.” The depression and anxiety never went away, but sometimes faded to the background. I was floored again and unable to be productive. One night, out of the blue I decided the only way out was death. It wasn’t that I wanted to hurt the people around me, but I just wanted the pain to stop. At this point I will lose most of you reading. You will think how selfish Zach must be, after all didn’t he know how much he would hurt his friends and family? The answer to that question is a yes and no. At that moment, I didn’t think of anything but stopping the pain. I was in sort of a haze, which is hard to describe. I don’t really remember the night very well, but I remember moving my car into the garage and deciding the next morning I was going to wait until everybody left and then start the engine. The next morning when I came to, my friends and family were there. Apparently, I had called my uncle and he had warned everybody. They took me to the doctor and I decided to get some serious help. I started seeing a psychiatrist and a psychologist, who worked on the medication and different coping methods.
Today, I am still fighting depression and anxiety. It has gotten much better though and I can go weeks without attacks from either. Then some weeks I get hit hard again and have to keep fighting. I still worry about what people think about me and I still sometimes think that I am crazy. Fight those thoughts though and get help.
Things I want you to take away
1)  Getting help is not weak, it’s responsible. I still wrestle with this problem, but remember if you need help then get it.
2)  Finding a counselor can be tough, but don’t stop looking until you find one that works.
3)  It will get better and never lose hope
4)  Lean on family and friends that you trust for a while.
5)  Depression and anxiety are usually a physical problem and so remember to get the medication you need. It’s no different than getting help for a broken leg.
6)  You are valuable and make sure that you just fight like crazy for that day.
7)  If your not suffering, make sure you are paying attention to your friends and making sure that they know you care.
I am not a counselor and I am not a psychologist. Nor, do I intend on taking their place. I will be here though if you ever need to talk. I will help you fight this because I know how tough it is. I also know that most people will not understand.
Let us create a community that overcomes the stigma of mental illness and suicide, so that we might be able to stop it before it occurs.
My email is Please don’t hesitate to write.

Monday, May 6, 2013

People of God.

Lately, it seems like I have had ZERO time to sit down and actually write about what I have been learning and what has been happening in my life. I wanna write just a short little something about what I've been learning, and there will definitely be more to come soon!

Have you ever thought about the change that Christ has truly made in your life.  Recently I have been noticing and thinking about the changes Christ has brought to be in my everyday walk. This includes everything from the way I talk, to the way I look at people, to the way I approach conversations, to the movies I watch and the music I listen to. It's so evident to me that when Christ changes the heart, the actions also change. Now don't get me wrong, I still have my own sin. I'm still tempted, I've said curse words, I have looked at images I shouldn't have, and have talked to people in ways that weren't loving. The amazing thing about Christ is that He still uses those things for His good. When we screw up He provides us ways to bring the glory back to Himself, whether that's through forgiveness of others, repentance, learning, or love.

As followers of Christ we are changed people, we are redeemed people, we are imperfect people made righteous through the blood of Christ. I came across this scripture recently and it really summed this all up for me. It says:

Let him lead me to the banquet hall, and let his banner over me be love.- Song of Solomon 2:4

 Let me first state that I know Song of Solomon is a book in which the writer is talking about intimate encounters of a husband and a wife, but it is also a love letter from God to His people. The overall theme of the book is nothing less than the perfect and unfailing love of Christ on His people. The God of love has put a banner over my entire life that is LOVE! Incredible.

I will start to write again now that school is out and that I'll hopefully have some more free time, but until then I want to challenge you to realize the incredible ways Christ has changed your heart and your daily life. They may be simple and seemingly unimportant things, but they are truly nothing short of a miracle.

Be blessed this week.
Til' next time,


Friday, March 29, 2013

It Is Finished.

I'm currently sitting in Starbucks getting my mind absolutely blown that the God of the universe loves me so much that 2000 years ago He sent His son, Jesus, to live the PERFECT, SINLESS, HOLY, RIGHTEOUS, and ABUNDANT life the world has ever seen. Not only did Jesus walk as a human daily, in skin exactly like ours; Not only did Jesus perform miracles, signs, and wonders; Not only did Jesus sit down with sinners and wash their feet. Jesus didn't stop there, because that was not His purpose. Jesus' purpose wasn't to come and live a "good" life on earth.
Jesus' purpose was to conquer sin by the shedding of His innocent and sinless blood upon the cross!
There has never been a greater sacrifice than this, and there never will be a greater sacrifice than this. "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." John 15:13. What an amazing picture of what we're called to as followers of Jesus! We're not called to riches, constant gifts, and a "good" life. Following Christ is characterized by love, sacrifice, obedience, making disciples, and service to others.
Jesus lived out this sacrifice for us. His sacrifice was completely sufficient, completely obedient, and completely voluntary.
That, my brothers and sisters, is the definition of love. Love was determined by God and for God 2000 years ago!
As Jesus Christ breathed His last breath here on earth, he muttered the 3 most profound worlds in all of human history.

"IT. IS. FINISHED." -John 19:30

Our sin no longer has victory over us because of the blood of the lamb. It no longer keeps us in chains, because Jesus bore our chains to break our chains. He set us free! Not only did He pay for the sins we have committed in the past, He paid for future sin. HE paid for ALL sin.

I encourage you to spend some time today reading through the accounts of the crucifixion in the gospels. Notice the incredible pain, suffering, mockery, and torment that Jesus took upon Himself. And lastly, know that He did this for YOU! He did this because He loves you! 

In Thankfulness and Love,


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Path of Love.

It is something that has been on my mind constantly lately. Why? Because of the way God is working in my life right now. Through trials, tribulations, failures, and accomplishments, I see the path that God is laying out before me. The path is beautiful, and full of so much Joy because of the people and things that are being used to shape who I am as a man of God.
I have been blessed with so many opportunities to learn about God and His heart lately, and through that I've been able to see God's desires for my life. God desires first and foremost for me to love. Plain and simple. To love those who culture has deemed "unworthy", to love my family, my girlfriend, my classmates, and my "enemies". I am personally commissioned by God, to love people. That is the greatest calling in the world! If you ask me, that in and of itself, makes for a pretty amazing path set before me.
BUT, God doesn't just stop there. God blesses the path of those who love him and are obedient to do the things that he has called us to do. Why? Because He is a loving God, who is full of mercy, grace, and compassion. Too many times have I been the one to turn my back on God, to say "Thanks, but no thanks", to think that I can live life by myself. As God runs after me to meet me where I am, my response to Him is usually similar to that of the son in Luke 15:21 did, "Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son."
Every single time I do that, He whispers to me "Son, come back and walk on the path I have mapped out for you!" He consistently places undeserved blessings in my life, and breaths the breath of life into my soul once again.
It so unreal to think that there has never been a second that God hasn't desired the best for my life, even when I haven't wanted it for myself. Take a moment to think about that! Through the times when we hate God and we think he is not with us, He wants the best for us. God's character is Love. Nothing that we do will change that, and that is a promise we can bank on no matter where we're at on the path of life.

So step back and look at the path God has you on right now. Incredibly, we're often to busy to even realize that, as children of God, we're all on very unique paths that lead to the same place. As followers of Christ, we're living on a path that leads to Christ himself. Although our situations and circumstances are different, our callings are all the same: Love God & Love people.

Go, and walk your path. Loving and cherishing every moment God has given you. 

In Christ,