Tag Archives: guest post

Guest post slumber party- Dating Talk

Today, you’ll find me at Mary Kathryn‘s place, Beauty for Ashes. I’m guest posting as part of her blogiversary party all month long. MK is a single girl, so I thought I would give her a weird dating story for the occasion.

To all the men I've liked before

I’ve dated some quirky guys (and to tell you the truth, they’ve dated AT LEAST one quirky girl…). There was the one who constantly warned me I was going to get fat, the one who turned out to be gay, the one who joined the military and didn’t tell me…. but the quirk of the guy I describe in this guest post might take the cake.

So, join me over there, for this, Say My Name, a blog post about dating, getting a call, and disaster.

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Advice against the advice

Today, I inch toward infamy, er, famosity, no, dang, I don’t know where I rank on the famous scale, but I am busting out of the format I’ve created here on Messiah Mom to guest post for my good buddy, Knox McCoy.

A few weeks ago, he wrote a piece about the wealth of knowledge in Men’s Health Magazine, and I thought it was ridiculously funny and well-researched, so, of course, I thought, I can write one better. 😉

That led to this: Let Me Call You Prince Kissy Face, a blog post about copper lipstick, Sesame Street, cuddle grenades and worst of all – pet names for your partner.

Why haven’t you clicked on the link yet? Are you afraid Cosmo will tell you that you’re doing life all wrong? it probably will, but I still think you have cool potential.

Our Gifts, His Glory

The internet is a funny animal. It allows you to “meet” people you wouldn’t normally know and be friends with them without ever having hugged them or shared a coffee or heard their voice. One of my best “friends in the box,” as I call them, is Katie McNemar.

This girl is THE AWESOME, and she’s embarking on the great American Christian Adventure, by listening to God’s call to return to her home state and wait for further instructions. I’m in a perpetual state of admiration for this girl, whose blog you can read here and whom you may follow on Twitter here. You should, of course, leave comments here for the beautiful KatieMc.

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We have different gifts, according to the grace given to us. -Romans 12:6 NIV

When I was younger, and before I knew Jesus, the gifts I had to give to the world were superficial, empty, and sparse.  I knew deep inside that I had a purpose.  I didn’t understand it at all, but I knew that I was born for something big.  Knowing that, but not knowing how to make it happen made me feel overwhelmed and unqualified at every turn.  Every time I looked at myself I couldn’t imagine that anything great could be done through me.  I didn’t even know how to answer a simple question like, “What kind of books/music/sports do you like?” I was an empty vessel, floating through the stormy seas of life without a Captain and without direction.

My life didn’t change drastically the day I got saved.  It took me another 3 or so years until I was really ready to give it all to Jesus and follow Him wherever He led.  The beginning of our journey was a little rocky, because I had a hard time identifying and feeling confident in using the gifts that God had given me.  Ever since I could hold a pencil I loved to write, but I stopped trying at some point because I didn’t think I was good enough.  It was so hard for me to start writing again; especially when I was writing about God.  I didn’t feel qualified to write about Jesus at all.  But I did it.  And shockingly enough to me, people read what I had to say and liked it.  Even through the fear, God gave me a peace to keep on going.

I’ll never forget when my Pastor gave me the opportunity to speak in front of the whole church one day.  I couldn’t understand why he would have ever been foolish enough to give me a microphone.  That day was a turning point for me.  I realized that the thoughts I had about myself were totally wrong.  I felt alive with that microphone in my hand.  I didn’t feel scared.  I loved speaking in front of people. It felt…right.  The same started happening with my writing.  The more I used the gifts that God gave me, the more confident I felt in them and the more effective I was. 

Eventually I started opening the first and second services at my church, having a book club at my apartment, and helping my brother and sister-in-law with the middle/high school ministry.  The opportunity I was given to use my gifts, allowed me to see the authority I had as a child of God.  Someone just had to give me the chance to do it even if I wasn’t perfect or if I messed up.

If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith.  If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully.- Romans 12:6-8

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We need to be more willing to let loose of our control and give people the opportunity to use their gifts.  I am sure that the first few times I had to get up in front of the whole church, my voice was shaky and I probably said a few silly things, but I never would have been able to get better if someone wouldn’t have believed in me and let me keep trying.  We need to be good stewards of the gifts that God has given us, and we also need to be willing to let other people step out into the unknown and use their gifts.  The world needs us to use our gifts with a bold confidence that can only come from the Holy Spirit.  The closer we are with the Spirit, the more easily we are able to use our gifts.  If you are unsure of what gifts God had given you, all you have to do is ask Him.  He is faithful to show you and grow you in them.  After all, our gifts are all for His glory. 

There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit.  There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord.  There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men. -1 Cor 12: 4-6

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What are your Spiritual gifts?  How did you know what your gifts were?

If you have a few minutes, and are curious, this gifts survey might be enlightening: http://www.churchgrowth.org/cgi-cg/gifts.cgi?intro=1

Single Man vs. The Sitcom Man

If you haven’t had the pleasure of happening on Jason Vana’s fun, funny and fundamentally challenging blog, you’re losing out. I’ve only recently had the pleasure of knowing Jason, but you’ll find he’s the world’s youngest grandpa, has a passion for college ministry, missions and all things Czech. You should read his stuff while munching on kolaches. If you’re on Twitter, give him a follow. You will not regret this.

Ladies, he’s single. He cooks. He sews. He cleans. He knows the difference between there and their and they’re (and now, while I’m still singing “Matchmaker, Matchmaker,” I’ll turn it over to his guest post!)

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As a single man in my 30’s, I have a natural born nemesis.

It’s not the nagging thought that I will be single the rest of my life, or the growing piles of dirty laundry around my laundry basket (though I’m pretty sure I was created to HATE doing laundry), or even the occasional missing button or ripped seam on my clothes (I did master the sewing machine after all).

No, my nemesis is a lot worse than any of that. He likes to sneak into your homes, woo you with his funny ways, and convince you to think less of me.

He is none other than the Sitcom Man.

Sure, guys like Tim Taylor (Home Improvement), Ray Barone (Everyone Loves Raymond), Charlie and Alan Harper (Two and a Half Men), Barney Stinson (How I Met Your Mother) and countless other male sitcom characters make us laugh. They bring joy and humor into our night time line-up. They might even help us forget about some of the stress going on in our lives.

But don’t be fooled! They are up to something more devious than just making you laugh…

They are out to make every man look like a helpless idiot.

Think about it. Each show is roughly the same: idiot husband does something idiotic, tries to hide it from his nanny of a wife who eventually finds out and confronts him, and ends with him having to apologize and promising to do better. Or the eternal bachelor spends night after night after night seducing women, treating them like objects, and never learning his lesson.

These men are helpless, don’t know how to be open and vulnerable, are always doing the stupidest things, and would probably be a dirty, starving, ungroomed hobo if it weren’t for their wife.

And while that might make for a great sitcom, the worst part is…

That’s how a lot of people see the male gender.

We’re helpless.
We don’t know how to take care of ourselves.
And if we don’t have a woman in our lives, we’re nothing but gross slobs playing video games all day in clothes that haven’t been washed in months.

I have an uphill battle to fight.

‘Cause you see, not all men are helpless idiots.

I like to think that I’m a pretty good, independent kind of guy. I know how to take care of myself. I know how to cook a real meal (and not just microwave dinners). I know how to do laundry. I know how to keep a fairly clean house. I’m motivated, hard working, treat the ladies with honor and respect, don’t need to be told to take the garbage out, or do the dishes or mow the lawn. I try to be generous, caring, loving. I share my thoughts,  when I have them (yes ladies, it’s actually possible for us guys to be thinking about nothing), and feelings with others and like to think I’m fairly intelligent.

My momma didn’t raise a fool.

And so I will continue to fight against my natural-born nemesis. When he tries to convince you that all men are slobs, I’ll show you my well kept house. When he tries to make you believe that we are all womanizers, I’ll show you a man who respects women. When he tries to show you that men are helpless, idiotic, selfish and only think with their little head, I’ll show you a man who doesn’t need a woman to take care of him like a mother, but a man who wants a woman to share his life with.

Sitcom Man…you are going down!

Who’s your favorite Sitcom Man and what image does he portray of men?

I’m winning, suckas!

Two months ago, I played in a little game we call the Super Bowl on Bryan Allain’s site. Maybe you’ve heard of it? I didn’t really suit up and barrel down the diamond, pushing the center and guards out of the way to score a goooooooaaaaaaaalllllllllllllllll.  I know a green team played a yellow team, and I think the green team won.

I won because that’s what I do. I’m a winner at winning.

Want to know what I won? I won the right to guest post on his blog today. In that post, I reveal three tips to ensure that you’re WINNING. As if that weren’t enough, I also reveal a deep and terrible secret I’ve been keeping since THE 4th GRADE!

You should go to Bryan’s Site immediately, read my invaluable advice, leave a comment and know that because you’ve read my words and followed my directions, you are, by extension, slightly smarter. For real, click here.

The Weight of Expectation

In my quest to look cooler by virtue of association, I’m bringing you a guest post from the coolest kid I know: Tony Alicea. When I was bummed because I felt like I was talking to myself over here at MessiahMom, Tony encouraged me. That’s Tony, an encourager. He’s got a great site, Expect the Exceptional. I want you to visit, www.tonyjalicea.com and would love for you to encourage the heck out of him here in the comments. If you don’t have time to devour his online body of work, read his testimony, here and follow him on Twitter, here.

One of my favorite movies of all time is 500 Days of Summer. It’s the story of a boy who meets a girl who he thinks is the woman of his dreams. The film documents the 500 days of their relationship in a unique style, by skipping backwards and forward through the days. Many people I’ve asked say that they don’t like the movie because you do not get the ending you expect between the two main characters. However, you are warned by the narrator at the very beginning of the movie when he says, “This is not a love story.”

One of the most poignant scenes is one where after they had been broken up for awhile, he reaches out to her and she invites him to a party at her house. The film goes into a split-scene as the events unfold. One one side we see the expectation in his mind of how the night would play out. On the other side we see the reality of the situation. It’s pretty heart wrenching. Call me a glutton for punishment, but I think I love it so much because I can completely relate to what he is feeling.

It helped me realize how we create a huge burden when we set expectations in relationships. Many times we do it unwillingly and in the process, never communicate those expectations to the other person. When they do not live up to our expectation, we are left with one of the most damaging emotions in a relationship:disappointment.

This has happened to me countless times, not just in romantic relationships, but also in my relationship with the Lord. I think to myself, “God, you say you are good so I’m expecting you to work out this situation in my life in this way.” When that doesn’t happen, I become disappointed and even disillusioned with the goodness of God.

Expectation is like giving someone a backpack of bricks that they never asked to carry. Expectations are almost always selfish and self-seeking. There is no hope in expectations. Expectations are demands.

“we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us” Romans 5:3-5

 

Hope does not put us to shame. Another translation says hope does not disappoint. This is a completely different mindset, which I call “Expectancy”. Expectancy doesn’t expect perfection or that everything will work out exactly as planned. Expectancy is a hopeful optimism. Expectancy is trust. Expectancy is faith.

 
A friend of mine came up with this acrostic for hope. H.oly O.ptimism P.roducing E.xpectancy. I love that!

 
I want to live a life of expectancy where I believe that things will work out for the best. I want to live with birds-eye perspective where I can see the forest, not the trees. I don’t want to put any heavy burdens on any of my relationships.

500 Days of Summer ends with beautiful redemption. Even though it wasn’t the ending that was expected, I believe it was better than he could have imagined. If we persevere, I believe God will bring us not the ending we expect but the ending that is immeasurably more than we ask or imagine.


Regardless of what you’ve been through in past seasons of life and relationships, if you live with expectancy…Autumn will come.