Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Pilgrimage of Engagement

Most of you may know by now that I became engaged on July 7th. I began dating Karla back in February, and it wasn't before long that I knew...I wanted to marry this woman. A few weeks before, we had already began attending an Adult Bible Fellowship class on the topic "Love and Respect" by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs. I had already given her the hint that I wanted to marry her (and I pretty much knew what her answer would be), so we thought this class would be a good start for her and I. And I know I haven't stopped learning since, both educational and experiential.

We both had and still have the desire for our relationship to be grounded on the principles of God, and that He above all else to is glorified with what we think, do, and say with each other. Dr. Eggerichs's DVD series was only a beginning--our pastor Bill Fowler recommended to us Sacred Marriage: What If God Designed Marriage to Make Us Holy More Than to Make Us Happy by Gary Thomas. If the title alone doesn't make you go, "Oh wow...", then I don't know what will.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Sacrificial Love at it's Zenith

Love. A small, four letter word that countless individuals throughout history have tried to grasp. Many scoff at the sound of it. Ask someone what they believe "love" is, and you'll hear things like "when you really really really like someone" or "that pie-in-the-sky feeling that's unattainable." Some have been smothered with love, while others hate the concept of that kind of affection.

What is it about love that one group of people would sacrifice almost anything for it, and the others would sacrifice anything to make sure it keeps its distance? Why is it that we use the same word to describe our affection for "beer & hot wings" with a spouse, family member, or God? Does it demean the word and make it common rather than special?

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Anguish of the Soul

A weary soul within, a long face on the surface,
the world promises life, happiness, and bliss.
Eat, drink, be merry, are the commands it gives,
the promised paradise resides on an untouchable hill.
I fall in traps of believing so many lies,
my soul becomes burdened and it's hard to disguise.
God, my God, I have fallen short of your glory,
I've disobeyed, stumbled, questioned, and worried.
I thought to myself, "God, how could you withhold?"
When all along, I was digging my own hole.
Good things you have for those who walk upright,
yet I've transgressed and committed evil in your sight.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Burning the Quran Will Never Win Souls

By Massoud Hossani, AFP/Getty Images
If you haven't heard from various new sources, a couple of soldiers burned some copies of Islam's holy book, the Quran, in Afghanistan and it has sparked an enormous outrage. Not only has this provoked slingshots and stones, but gunfire that has killed two of our own American soldiers. I haven't heard any public statement as to why the soldiers burned them in the first place, but if I could take a guess, it would be in lieu of hatred of the Islamic faith (if wrong, then I stand corrected). But even if my hypothesis is wrong about this incident, the burning of someone else's religious book because of spite isn't a foreign concept--and it happens across the board with all faiths. The Bible, The Quran, The Tanakh, The Bhagavad Gita, and many more have been torched. Allow me to share some thoughts about why I would never think to burn a holy book and how, as Christians, we can share the exclusivity of Jesus Christ and steer clear of this kind of activity.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Yo T-rav, What's New?

I'm glad you asked.

It's February 22, 2012. My last update about life was in November, and some notable things have happened;  I'll work back from December and give you 3 things worthy of mentioning and praise.

Starting off with a big praise! Back in December, my parents and I rode up to VA Beach to visit my brother, Christian, who, being obedient to the Lord's command, was baptized along with his wife. Leading up to this weekend, my brother and I had some great conversations that started with discussing denominations, and from there the meaning of baptism, saving faith, Christian perseverance, and, of course, the Gospel. I was quite to glad to talk with him about all these things, because we had never really done so in the past. Turns out that the Lord had really been doing a work in his heart. Some things had started clicking, like how the Gospel is what brings us to Christ and what carries us all the way home--not our own works. Soon, he and my new sister-in-law began visiting churches in their area, and had finally found one that they would attend on a consistent basis. They began meeting with the leadership at the church, and soon after the leadership evaluated their true, saving faith, a public display of obedience would soon occur--baptism. They invited my parents and I to come be witnesses to the occasion, and I was very glad to be there. Words cannot express how great it is to see my oldest brother pursuing the Lord, and in turn now desiring to be a godly husband and father. What a great God we serve!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Take My Hand, Father

Far be it from me that I would ever denounce the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the substitutionary atonement whereby he was punished in my place for my sin and I'm set free. But when difficulties arise, I find myself questioning certain aspects of God's character, namely: faithfulness, goodness, knowledge, etc. I know God exists, His paths are beyond tracing out, and He has redeemed me from my old ways & has granted me new birth in Christ. But as a child feels sad when his dad doesn't buy him something he wants, so I, at times, don't think God is being the type of Father that He jolly should. I become concerned with many "why" and "why not" questions, and these bring shadows over the light of God's Word. They fracture my prayer life, where I become fatalistic and vacate private devotions because I allow circumstances to distort things and say to myself, "Things will just happen anyway and no prayer of mine could ever thwart the providence of God." Oh, how false these thoughts.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Life Update

Well hello!

It's been since September that I've written a post; figured it was about time I get the gears grinding. Much has happened since, so I'll try and cram it all into a readable, not-too-lengthy-post.

I got the opportunity to fly out to Seattle to see my friends Matt and Mary for 5 days. This trip did wonders for me; not only did I get to see some dear friends, but it was a much needed change of scenery and escape from work. Matt had been begging me to come see him, and I looked up round trip airfare on Expedia...$314.00 after taxes; I bought the tickets before I even asked for the days off from work (but I bought them back in July, so they had plenty of notice). Seattle was a breath of fresh air, literally and metaphorically. The local coffee shops were great; I enjoyed locally-grown food; I struck up conversations with random Seattlites on the buses; I vlogged each day (check 'em out on Facebook). The fellowship with Matt and Mary uplifted my spirit, so much that I did not want to return home that Sunday. Savannah is my current abode, but Seattle has won a few of my affections.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Melanchony Heart

Melancholy heart, in much distress
for the latter days lack much rest.
In addition is the want of things
out of reach, absent from the scene.

My inner being laments this want,
many solutions found in this manhunt.
Yet none have aided my soul
and made this dreary man whole.

I have tucked away the optimistic shades
while I wear these pessimistic frames I made.
I long to give away this heart of mine
yet I'm reluctant at the exact same time.

The longing to be loved, to hold someone close,
is marred by my heart being a trampled-on rose.
What was once delicate has been treated as dirt,
the universe inside me is filled with unspeakable hurt.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Days Go By

Waiting, watching, keeping alert
for something drastic to surface.
Getting caught in everyday routine,
different outcomes but same events.
Change is needed to rid this trap,
feeling free yet contained in this town.
Days arrive, and days go by,
nothing seems to be new under the sun.
What happened yesterday will occur today,
and tomorrow shall yield similar results.
Where's the contentment in all this,
true comfort as a foundation?
Lies in my God who reign this world,
who dictates my life and lights my path.
Even when that path is engulfed with fog,
in faith I reach up and He leads me on.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


The foundations shook and made the structure fall, turns out what we had was not solid at all.
You came to my doorstep with a strange glare, had me feeling worried as I fixed my stare.
Then four unexpecting words came from your mouth that made my world come crashing down.
Never have I been as traumatized before, I just lost someone I adamantly adored.
Now you're completely out of the picture for good, I've proceeded forward as a grown man should.
I'll not give harsh words nor make a dramatic scene, because you've only hurt yourself by losing me.
I'm clueless as to what is in store for you next, but I want no part or even a context.
The last poem I wrote was strictly for you, and this recent poem...is strictly for you too.
Getting over this has taken some time, but in the words of Lou Rawls...you'll never find another love like mine.
Goodbye forever.