Ninety Nine

I think baseball is a wonderful sport, and that it’s human nature for us as parents to root for our kids.

It’s great to encourage them to be the very best they can be, but there’s a danger in being the parent of a child who plays sports.

A time comes when it goes beyond the fun, and enters a dark place that I’m guessing many of you can relate to.

That happened to me this weekend, and I realized my mind was in a really bad spot — it wasn’t about the innocence of the game anymore.

There’s not enough runs that can be scored. The catches aren’t good enough. The hits aren’t far enough. They aren’t playing to their potential.

The way you view the game isn’t through the eyes of your child at that point, but through the eyes of a vicious animal trying to catch its prey.

Then something realigns the way you see things very quickly.

It’s summer, and the temperature is rising. The sun is out, and the hours continue to go by. It’s hot. Painfully hot. Game after game they play.

Within a few minutes, one of your son’s teammates gets sick. And he cannot open his eyes. And he cannot stand on his own two feet.

911 is called, and the ambulance arrives.

I watch as they wheel him off the field on a stretcher, and it’s at that moment I realize my love for the game fails to compare to the love I have for number Ninety Nine and his family.

We pray for them on our way home, and are comforted when we hear later that evening he’ll be ok.

This is about me and how I need to constantly check the way I prioritize things around me — to remind myself of the things that matter in life.

And of the things that really don’t.

Be the Change

Yesterday was a really cool day for me, as Sarah McLachlan replied to a question that I asked her on a Twitter chat she was hosting.

I thanked her for the reply, and also dropped a link to something that I hoped she would take the time to read.

It’s tragic when I think of all of the people who have helped me, or who I’ve learned from, that I’ve failed to share the impact they’ve had on my life.

While I honestly don’t think she has the time to read what I wrote, I wanted to make the effort anyway. It made me feel good to reach out.

In her reply, Sarah mentioned her favorite quote was:

Be the change you want to see in the world.

It turns out there is no reliable documentary evidence for who originally said it, but it’s supposedly a derivative of words Mahatma Gandhi once spoke.

Regardless of its origin, I find a tremendous amount of truth within those words. They are encouraging, and challenging, in the same breath.

When you see something that you don’t like, or that needs to be fixed …

Be the change.

Don’t sit around waiting for somebody else to do the work that you want to see. It’s possible you might be waiting a very long time, if not forever.

When I created Unfiltered, I did so because I wanted to take action.

Unfiltered was never about me — it was about authenticity, and that is something that affects each and every one of us.

It was my way of fixing a problem that I think exists within a lot of us.

So I’ve decided to take matters into my own hands.

I want to lead by example, and to be the change.

Mountain Tops

You see me on social media, and you see me write about my past. But what you don’t see or hear me talk about is my love for God.

There’s really no good explanation for that, other than I’ve been denying Him in public because I have a fear of being judged.

By you.

And it’s unwarranted, because I’ve had many people who aren’t believers continue to show support for me. No matter what I write about.

So if you’re looking for me, try behind the rock. Or under the stairs. Because that’s where I’ve been hiding.

One of the reasons I’ve chosen to remove comments here on my personal blog is to alleviate any source of judgement that can be placed upon me.

You see, I haven’t been strong with my beliefs, and that is something I’m desperately trying to change.

Because I’m not ashamed. And I don’t want you to think I am.

I’ve lived through some really tough times, and I’ve made some really poor decisions. But I’ve also been forgiven infinitely, and am loved beyond my ability to comprehend.

And that’s something I want to scream from mountain tops.