Wednesday, November 30, 2011


This week has been an unmitigated, frustrating, disheartening, unfortunate disaster for me, and yet, as I write this, I am plagued by my own self-doubt. Does anyone really care?

I am forced to answer yes. So I push on.

Loss of independence in the form of vehicular transportation in a sudden and violent manner. Loss of comfort in almost every way. Loss of control of my own emotions. Loss of ability to roll with what's going on, and seemingly loss of anyone actually listening as I trudge on, because I'm too stubborn to give up. Or do people listen and I just don't understand that in my state of mind?

I am forced to answer yes. Onward.

To come to the point before this gets too tedious, despite my faith crisis, I feel as though God is trying to get my attention. In fact this was pointed out to me by one of my good friends recently. About what, I have no idea. What I am supposed to do next, I have some vague intuition, sparked by dissatisfaction, rage, anger, frustration, and desire for change - all emotions that make people uncomfortable.

Because I have to always be doing well. I have to never have difficulty in this life, or I'm not spiritual enough, I'm not following their feel-good god well enough. It's funny that I haven't read the book that they claim to follow in over 4 years and I still remember the promise that in this reality I will have trouble.

In fact, I find myself welcoming more trouble. I become lazy and complacent far too easily, and my ego is far too large. Not that I ever take it from people when they attack me directly, in fact the more that happens the more stubborn I become. Even if they are right and I admit it openly, I'm still being stubborn. Because what I am supposed to do is battle them to the end, fight the good fight over pointless accusations instead of becoming better.

Perhaps that is the point of why I like trouble: every time something happens that really gets my attention, it's always an opportunity to do better. Or maybe I just enjoy hearing the derision I always expect from others. Perhaps I always expect to hear that I screwed up again, that I am the reason for all of the problems in the world and around me, and that I should be doing better, just so I can stare back in defiance.

Perhaps I enjoy a good fight, because I've been prescribed this uncritical, blind obedience based, saccharine lifestyle for so long that when I have problems and I'm pushed to the breaking point, I know that I'm alive. When someone looks at me like they hate my very existence or when they argue every point and call me an idiot, I know I'm saying something of substance. Because what a person argues with strikes a nerve, and when a nerve is struck, something true has just occurred.

I asked my God for more tonight. After having an awful day, after crying in the middle of my shift and coming home dissatisfied after another night of dealing with frustration, I asked for more. I'm tired of not being truly alive. So if a disaster is what it takes, bring it.


  1. Dan, I am grieved by your losses and your frustrations. I grieve with you over them and sympathizes, or even empathize, with your frustration at hose around you and your circumstance. This state which you describe is saddening indeed. I wish to share I have had a similar time and one of the things I am dealing with is yet again having to put off graduating TFC. It sucks!

    However, I wish to focus on you and impart some better encouragement than those that you feel have deserted you. i wish to come along side you like we see the Father come along side the Son in the garden as the Son stares at the cup of God's wrath and pleaded for another way and the father said, No and that Jesus himself must press onward. I wish to remind you that you are absolutely right we are not promised in the slightest the absence of suffering in this life, but what we are promised is the resource of the indescribable, infinite, and everlasting presence of God to comfort us through those circumstances when they come, not if they come, but when they will come. Usually, this comfort is to come through the body of Christ. Yet in your case this seems not to be attractive or even possible. So, then I would exhort you to open God's Word for the first time in four years and start with the psalms, like psalm 42. In this psalm the psalmist yearns for God and his solace and does not find it immediately, but rest in the hope that no matter how long "his tears are his food" that he will eventual return to community and fellowship with God and his people. God is with you. He never leaves us. However, as Rob Bell writes in his book Love Wins we may not recognize Jesus in every situation, but that does not mean he is not there. Jesus is in your life restoring, reconciling, maybe more accurately resurrecting your life and you are still in the part of resurrection that is the death or dying part of your cycle of resurrection. I am not totally sure (whoever can be really about anything).

    Stay weak and humble wrapped up in His loving arms because Dan no matter who in this life deserts you, forsakes you, and betrays you. Jesus never does. You may feel he is distant from you, but I would like to humbly and lovingly submit to you that that is due to a lack of awareness on your part and not a true lack of his presence. I say that not to diminish any of the loneliness and isolation that you may be feeling at all! However strong those feelings in you, or even I, we are meant to pursue after him and his presence like great lovers yearn for the others embrace. He has shown his love for us in enduring death on the cross for us in our place and drinking the whole of the cup of God's Wrath upon himself. Now, is our time to respond to his great act of love toward us and seek after him despite how we may feel about him. Why? Because love my dear friend is deeper than a feeling and can only be truly expressed in action of total commitment and pursuit of the one who is the object of our love forsaking all other things and clear away the unnecessary things.

    I love you my friend and I will pray for you in this very difficult and lonely time in your life. I hope that are still a few that are close to you who you may meet with and wrap their arms around you in love and comfort you in your sadness and loss. I will pray for you whole heartily as you go through this dark night of the soul, only because I cannot necessarily be there with you in person. Dan I think that from your perspective that I may seem to be just an acquaintance that may have been slightly (or more than just slightly) annoying, but to me you were someone who has had and hopefully will continue to have a large impact on my thinking and life. Be encouraged and know that I and probably people more than you think care for you, understand where you are at and who will be praying for you are already and I hope that today you may feel their presence and the presence of their prayers more than the lack of actual people beside you today.

    Your brother in Christ,
    Nate Tuck

  2. I care. What happened? Call me. Seriously. You're one of the few people on the planet I seriously give a fuck about. Call me.

    "In fact, I find myself welcoming more trouble. I become lazy and complacent far too easily, and my ego is far too large."

    Fact: You're a fighter. Fact: You require dissonance, conflict and disillusionment in your life because you want to tear it to bits and heal the wounds that bind. Fact: You're not doing either of those things where you are right now.

    Neither I am, nor are many people... But that's not the point.

    Someone asked me what I do the other day. I said nothing. I was in sales but that fell through so, nothing. I am void of worth. Then he asked me what I /want/ to be doing. I came alive. More alive than I've felt in months. I was talking philosophy, politics, socio-economics, philology, the works! IT. WAS. AWESOME. I'm not saying "Here's the solution to your porblam! Kthxbi." I'm just saying I feel you. I get it. I hate it too. Damn the bastards that inhibit.

    Hit some nerves, why don't ya? What most people think of as disaster is simply a retirement of the petty. Take it on, brother.

    Regarding the Creator:

    He loves us and is open to us and supports us. Aside from that, I just don't know.

    Maybe I'll know more when you call me. ;P

  3. Dan ~

    I ran across your blog serendipitously tonight and will come back soon to read more. Just thought I'd leave a "hello" before leaving.