The Saint of Heart

Daily Prompt: “In 300 years, if you were to named the patron saint of X, what would you like X to be? Places, activities, object – all are fair game.”

I would have to say that I would like to be deemed the Patron Saint of Heart. I would want to be remembered as that guy who never gave up, on himself or anyone. That guy who let his heart lead him through life in everything that he did. That man touched nearly everyone’s life that he came across because he had a big heart. He would reach out to people, help anyone that he could. That one dude that stood apart from everyone else because he was good, he was nice, and he could put a smile on anyone’s face. I want a large amount of people to stand in front of everyone at my funeral and tell the crowd how I affected their life, how I helped them. To me, that is a legacy.

The Art of Being “Weird”

Many times I hear others call me weird, strange, or different. Even when they don’t say it out loud I can definitely read it on their faces. The raced eyebrow, the awkward smile, their eagerness to end the conversation. People don’t generally talk to me as often as they do others, unless they need help with something. To most, I’m just that strange kid who is different than everyone else, and the one to shy away from– AND I LOVE IT!

Being different, or “weird” as some might say, is one of my favorite qualities of myself and other people. To me the word “weird” means that I’m my own person. It means that I live my own life the way I want to without the input of everyone else. I’m not following their lifestyles but writing my own. I am being me, and having fun doing it. I’m going through life without worrying what other people think about me. In other words I’m LIVING! This doesn’t make me popular by any means, but it does put the right people in my life. Those who are truly friends with me are those who accept my awkwardness for me. They embrace who I am and love me for me.

So go ahead, call me weird, different, or strange. It doesn’t phase me in the slightest; in fact I’ll take it as a compliment. I was created to be me, not you. Go ahead and live like everyone else, and I’LL LIVE LIKE ME.

My Side of Your Story

Everyday people are judged incorrectly before they even have a chance to defend themselves. The reason for that is something called a stereotype, and they are strongly apparent in our world today, at least in the US. Stereotypes have destroyed the thoughts, decisions, and judgments of people.

Yesterday, while listening to the morning radio like I do everyday, the woman on the show asked three men what woman misunderstand about a man’s life. Two out of three of these men responded with, “that we aren’t after one thing,” that one thing meaning sex. The woman quickly responded with, “because you are.” This is the stereotype made about me that bugs me the most, “that all guys are the same and want sex.” I am deemed a sex-seeking pig just because I was born a male. At the beginning of my girlfriends and I’s relationship I asked her if she thought this way and she said that she doesn’t think it’s the only thing guys want but it’s high on our “priority list”. Now two years into our relationship I remain a virgin and I’m pretty sure that I’ve changed her mind on that. I do realize that some men are like that, but not all men are. Just like some woman are that way and some woman aren’t. Men have morals too, I know SHOCKING RIGHT!

Another way I am stereotyped is the fact that I’m a Christian makes me judgmental. I do agree that many Christians are judgmental, which really bugs me, but not all of us are. In fact we are taught not to judge others. I don’t flee when I see someone of a different color than me, and I don’t avoid a homosexual man because “they might hit on me.” I let people prove themselves to me first before I make a thought, and even if a thought comes before hand I push it to the side until they have had the chance to prove their point. This is what a Christian should do, even if the person has differing beliefs than you.

One final example of how I am stereotyped is because I am a teenager. Since I am a teenager I don’t know what I’m talking about because of the lack of experience I have in life. My only response to that is to read my blog and decide for yourself if I am wise enough for you. Also since I am a teenager I am automatically a rebel. I am seventeen so that means I’ve had sex, smoked, drank, been high, and hate my parents or any other adult force out there. Well I am a full-time sober virgin who doesn’t even have interest in going to a party, respects and loves all four of his parents, and listen to what I am told; I don’t even swear. I look at teenagers who are do make that stereotype true and am disgusted. Again we aren’t all like that. Give us a chance and we will show you.

These are only three stereotypes that I fall under but I’m sure there are more. Please stop stereotyping people, get to know someone before you make a judgment and they will surprise you. Also never let anyone stereotype you. Don’t let anyone determine who you are; Be the author of your own story.

Why I Support Gay Rights

Leviticus 18:22- “Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as womankind: it [is] abomination.”

As a Christian we are taught that homosexuality is a sin and that it is wrong. I do agree that it is a sin and that it is wrong; but all sins are wrong. So in a way I do support gay rights.

The way I support it is different than you may think though. I don’t agree with homosexuality in any way, but I don’t find it suitable that I should have the power to tell someone else they can’t marry the person they love; no matter how unnatural it is to me. I extremely agree that everyone should have equal rights in any place of the world, and have the same opportunities as anyone else does. This just seems right to me. As a Christian I have battled over this decision with myself but I feel like I am making the right choice.

Christians are taught to do as Jesus did, for example the phrase, “what would Jesus do?” Let’s look at an example of what Jesus did.

John 8:1-11 “Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives,  but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.

‘Teacher,’ they said to Jesus, ‘this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?’

They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, ‘All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!’Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.

When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, ‘Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?’

‘No, Lord,’ she said.

And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I. Go and sin no more.'”

The Bible tells us that even though this woman who committed adultery, which was one of the worst sins to commit back in the day, we shouldn’t take matters into our own hands and judge her. I feel like this is the same for homosexuality. Although we don’t agree with what they are doing, and don’t feel that it is right, it is between them and God, not us. We as Christians should not judge them for their beliefs because we are no better than them. Everyone sins, and the Bible says that all sins are the same in Gods eyes. So for those of you who are lying to your parents while complaining about the gay couple next door, you’re no better than the ones you complain about. Let God handle his children, he knows what he is doing, you do not.

To Those who Fear a Distant Love

I used to think that a long distance relationship would never work out, and that those who tried were only hurting themselves. I used to wonder how a love could flourish if you couldn’t see or interact with the one you love in person. Perhaps this is true for many relationships that try to go long distance, but now I know that it can be done; it just takes work.

I know this now because my girlfriend of nearly two years is more than likely moving to Texas this Summer for our Senior year. I know I am young so most of you probably will say that I know nothing about love but I’d say I do. Within our two year experience my girlfriend and I have laughed together, cried together, upset each other, played together. We’ve had great times as well as not so great times. We’ve fought for, cared for, and been there for each other. I feel as if the two years we’ve been together gives me the right to say that I know what love is.

Anyways, like I said she’s moving. I am well aware that maintaining a long-distance relationship will be harder than it is when she is here with me. I know that I’ll miss her, and wish I could see her again one last time, then one last time after that, then again, and again. I realize that at first I will cry, maybe daily, but eventually I will get used to the idea. I will be willing to wait for her to come back to me once the school year is over to plan the rest of our lives together (yes we’re that kind of couple). So for her, I can wait. And I will wait because I’ve experienced what my life is like with her in it, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

So now I know how a long distance relationship can work. You must be willing to push through it, and love the other person entirely. You’ll need to know that without a doubt your partner is who you want across from you at the alter, and buried next to you when that time comes. Those of you who are afraid of losing your girl, or your boy, because they will be temporary away from you, just know that you can do it. With effort that same love will still be between the both of you and when they return to your waiting arms, that same love will be stronger. It will be stronger because you know what it is to live without each other and you’ll never want to experience it again.

Grades Have Lost Their Importance

My best friend and I rival each other in many ways, mostly in education; From GPA to class ranking, to academic awards. He wins nearly every time. I am happy for my best friend, and I am proud of him, but I do get jealous. And here’s why.

My best friend and I are very similar. We both come from divorced families, his being more recent than mine, with two younger brothers, and we both are 4.0 students. We both maintain jobs, sports, chores, and spend time with girlfriends after school throughout the week. We have similar morals, mine being somewhat different due to my religious background, and we are both first year National Honor Society members at our school.

At school is where we differentiate, mostly. Although we both maintain a 4.0, the highest GPA you can obtain at my high school, my friend is looked at as smarter, and better than me by the students and staff at our school. In our Spanish class, which is the only class we have together this year, anytime someone needs help translating a phrase they turn instantly to him. I am more than willing to help, even in my Algebra II class this year I took the time I was given to do my homework to help the girl who sat next to me understand how to do our homework. I chose to do the homework at home, despite the busy schedule I have anyways. While I’ve heard my best friend get frustrated when people get the answers wrong or don’t understand because of how “easy” it is; even though I catch him with his notes out during multiple tests. Our principal and guidance counselor look at him as if he were a saint, even though I take my work to a higher level than he does. For example in Spanish class our teacher has been assigning us to write poems, and letters to ourselves. Within my letters and poems I have tried to write them as if I were writing an essay for English. While the last line of his poem would translate to, “this is a poem for Spanish class.”

In Spanish we are also assigned many group projects, and of course we partner together since we are best friends. These projects mostly include skits. Our project usually works like this. I write the rough draft while he sits on the computer behind me talking and joking with other people in the class. Then I take the rough draft home over the weekend and finish writing it, send it to the teacher for revision via E-mail, then type the final after the revisions have been done. Then we both bring in props on the day we present the skit. Our class, and the teacher always love our skits because I make them funny and enjoyable to watch, even when they can’t understand everything we are saying. The teacher tells us how great we did and we get over 100% on it almost every time, while the students talk to my best friend about how much they liked it. You can see where my jealousy may lie.

I previously stated that we are both busy. I don’t want to say that I am busier than he is due to me not knowing everything he does at home but by my perspective I am. We both maintain 4.0’s at our high school but I am also maintaining that 4.0 with my vocational school grades, college class grades, and normal high school grades. I maintain it even though I play baseball in the Spring, bowl in the Winter, work year round, attend church (every Sunday morning and night, and Wednesday night) volunteer with one of the two youth groups I go to, mow my grandparents lawn from Spring to Fall, do chores at home, and visit my girlfriend on Sundays. Throughout all of this I still get my work done. Many times I see my best friend rushing to finish his Spanish homework, or another classes homework, in our Spanish class.

I’ll let you judge on who you think deserves this but he is the top student in our class. He is praised for academics while I am simply ignored although I am at the same level as he is. We were both nominated by different teachers by for an academic leadership award and he won. I wouldn’t have even known about it if the teacher that nominated me hadn’t told me, my principal didn’t tell me nor my guidance counselor.

If you look away from school my awards include three back-to-back awards given to me by the leaders of my church camp for being most “Christ-like” and a JV leadership award given to my by my baseball coach last year.

Last night while I was thinking about what to write for this blog entry I decided that character is more important than grades. This is why grades have lost their importance to me.

To Those Who Hate Themselves:

Dear Friends,

Throughout my high school experienced I have noticed that depression and self-hatred strongly exists in the lives of teenagers, more than I ever would have thought. I have two friends that have attempted to commit suicide, two that have cut themselves, three that have wished they were dead, and probably others that I don’t even know about. When I see these people I never would have guessed that they hated themselves, or were upset; they are amazing people. So I may not have experienced this self-hatred myself, but I do know the effects it has on people, and that it happens.

I would like to start off by asking you to do something for me, and also yourself. I know talking about it is the last thing that you want to do but I have found with my friends that it has helped them greatly. Find someone you care about, and that cares about you. There is bound to be someone even if you think that there isn’t. Whether it be your parents, a close friend, or even a teacher, there is someone. Find someone you can trust and ask to talk to them privately. Tell them about your problems, and what you think about yourself; if you give them a chance they just might surprise you with some type of helpful advice.

Next you need to know that whatever is bothering you matters. I know a commonly said statement to sadness is, “it could be worse.” Although that may be right, it shouldn’t be said. If a problem is enough to make you upset then it is important, don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. I hate hearing people make fun of others because their problems are, “dumb” or “irrational.” It just makes matters worse.

Finally, and mostly, I want you to know that you aren’t alone. As I said in the intro, depression and self-hatred is occurs more often than you would think in our world. There are others out there that feel the same way you do. That you’re not good enough, that you’re too big, that you’re too weird, boring, ugly. That no one will ever love you so why should you love yourself. Well let me tell you that, that is a lie. We have a God who loves all of us. Who created us all the way he wanted, so to Him we are perfect. I know not everyone who reads this believes the same way I do so it’s not just God who loves us. Our parents, our friends, even our teachers. Even someone just walking down the same aisle of Walmart may look at you and wish they were you at the same time you wish you weren’t yourself. Even my baseball coach they other day pulled me aside and made sure that I knew that he loved me, and that he cared. Later that night he texted me to make sure that I knew he meant it. On the day of Prom he told us to be safe, and that if we did get in trouble to text him so he could drop everything and come get us to make sure we were alright. I cried after both of these examples. So even if you don’t know it someone loves and cares about you, someone wants to be you.

Know that you’re beautiful in you’re own way. I’ve never gotten much attention from anyone, because I’m different than everyone else, and I’m not that “good looking” by societies standards. Even though no one else thinks so, my girlfriend looks at me like I am a treasure. She looks at me like I am the greatest person in the world, and the most attractive guy she’s ever seen.I never thought anyone would ever look at me that way. There’s something beautiful about everyone. A quote that sticks with me ever since I heard the leg-less and arm-less man say it, he said, “If the world says your’e not good enough, get a second opinion.”

I ask you to put away the sharp edges you harm yourself with, throw away the pills, and say no to the alcohol. Push those self-harming and hatred thoughts from your mind because you deserve so much more than that. Let the teardrops on my keyboard prove to you that I care, that someone out there that cares about YOU.

Sincerely,

A stranger who cares.