Why Do We Struggle With Love?

Family, friends, God, Jesus, Life, love

I’m going to be honest outright and admit that this subject is one I struggle with. I have such a desire to love others, but I still have moments where my heart loses out to my mind. But what is love? Sorry not sorry if that song gets stuck in your head.

Love can mean so many different things depending on who you ask. It can come with the simplest explanation, or become mystified with an abstract definition.

My definition of love is simple. It is one of the standard definitions – an intense feeling of deep affection. What is affection? A feeling of caring and fondness. Basically, I care about you on a personal and deep level. I prioritize your happiness and joy.

But why do we have to overcomplicate something that should be foundational to society? As a Jesus follower we have been given the best example. It is literally spelled out for us.

Seems pretty simple. Jesus told this to His followers shortly before the betrayal that would lead to His death. He knew what was about to happen, and yet He still walked into it openly with a heart filled with unconditional love.

So… it should be pretty easy to love someone else when they accidentally say the wrong thing that hurts your feelings.

And it should be pretty easy to forgive others for their past mishaps, understanding that people change and they shouldn’t be judged on their past.

And it should be easy to simply shrug off the things that others have done to you, or the way they treat you. That even if they make you feel so low on a daily basis you should still love them unconditionally. Right?!

Alright, alright. Put down the pitchforks and stop practicing for your dramatic solo as you pull others into your negative feelings for others.

I get it. It’s complicated!

But why do we struggle with this? In theory, by loving others we should be shaping and molding the world to fit the perfect image of how we want it to be. Imagine it with me. A place where there were no violence. A place where you could let your children out to play without fear. A place where no one has any internal struggles with their own self-image because others are constantly raising them up with praise.

It’s beautiful.

So why do we not embrace that and work towards that? Why do we have to get annoyed that someone is doing something selfishly? Or why do we have to judge others for doing things that they know are hurting others?

It’s complicated!

And it’s complicated because we make it complicated. We have assigned a stigma to the word and given it definitive connotations as a societal norm that people think can only mean one thing. It is either “over-used” (not possible), or it is used only on rare occasions.

Or we live in fear that others will perceive it as something else.


Do you naturally tell your friends that you love them? Or is there a little bit of awkwardness when you say it, or at least when you say it around certain people? Can you outright tell someone “I love you” or do you have to cut corners with things like “love you” or “love ya” or even lumping them in with a group of people? Or taking the pressure off yourself by saying “we all love you” and not making it personal?

Let’s all be honest for a minute. We all do it. My hand is raised high. Guilty! Confession and all!

But why?! Do you know how incredibly impactful it is to tell someone you love them? Three simple words is all it takes to actually change someone’s day from bad to good. In three words you can make someone feel so incredibly valued.

I… love… you. That’s it. Is it cheapening it by saying it any other way? Maybe not. But as a receiver I can tell you it means more to me personally being said so simply.


So why don’t we do it more often? Well, for one, when was the last time you walked up to a coworker and told them you loved them? Or walked up to your married friend and said it to them? When was the last time you said it to a relative who has never said it to you?

It’s a whole lot of things from intimidating, scary, awkward, uncomfortable or just plain weird.

It’s fear of people’s perception. Its worry that others will misconstrue your intentions. It’s also being unsure of other people’s boundaries.

And also I think a lot of people don’t know HOW to love another person. I mean, we aren’t exactly raised to be this way. But we can be better.

So I try to live this out in my own life, or at least I have been these last 6 months as I begin to live my life as a follower of Christ.

There are people in my life who have severely hurt me in the past, and there are others who have hurt those that are closest to me. Those wounds are difficult to heal, but I am trying to love them unconditionally.

And I actively tell those who I do love that I love them. Straight up, point blank, to their face, or written in ink and saved forever (unless they decide to burn them). Why? Because it’s important to me for others to know how I feel about them.

Romance does not get to steal this word and hoard it for itself. Love goes way beyond that. Love is appropriate for the way it is intended, NOT the way it is perceived. If I tell someone I love them and another person takes it in a way that it is not meant, that’s on them. I know what is in my heart, the person receiving it usually knows what is in my heart, and my God definitely knows what is in my heart.


Someone very dear to me recently gave me one of the greatest compliments I have ever received – “you’re always looking for ways to express your love.”

And in those few, simple words I instantly received confirmation that the changes I have been making in my life were real and that my actions were finally matching my desires. It was a moment that made me realize that, yeah, I can be a disciple.

And it’s all because of love.

I let more and more of it out everyday as it brings me so much joy to bring happiness to others. But I still keep a lot of it held back out of fear. I make sure to tell my wife several times a day. I try to tell my friends and family as often as I can, but I can assure you a lot of times it will be the worried, condensed version I mentioned above. I’m fearful of loving others too much that it scares them off. No joke. Even those I am closest with I will tell them “I love you” and then a few days later make comment that I hope I’m not being too much.

Stupid, right? It’s more that it’s a shame that we have to hide it.

And I think that is what we struggle with with love. It’s not the act of loving another, or the desire to love others unconditionally, it’s expressing that love.

So, I’m hear to tell you that if you are family or friends that have access to my blog, I LOVE YOU! Actually, I probably love you a whole lot more than you think and more than I ever tell you. For some that’s saying a lot.

And, unless you politely ask me otherwise, I’m going to continue to tell you. To your face, in our texts, in my letters, etc. I hope it brings you comfort, love, joy and happiness. That feeling you get when someone special gives you a hug. I may not mean much to this world, but I hope I mean something to your world.


What you do with this blog is on you. As for me, I’m going to continue seeking new ways to share my love. 🥰


Dear God,

Thank You for filling me with so much love from You that I want to share it with others. I want to cast a light on this world where darkness seems to often try and invade. I want to touch the lives of so many people, spreading joy and love to others that they want to share it as well.

To know that others have had moments of happiness and had a smile brought to their faces by my words or actions will allow me to one day pass from this world as a fulfilled Christ follower.

Today I pray that You help others in finding the courage to express their feelings in a safe and comfortable way. Please give them the peace to go out and share their love with others.

I pray that the awkwardness for “I love you” outside of the family goes away.

I pray that You continue to look after those who need Your warmth and love. I pray for those who turn their backs to You and that they will one day see that, despite that, You always stay with them.

Please continue to protect and heal those who need You. For those fighting battles physically, emotionally and mentally. Please let them feel Your presence so that they may have peace in their lives.

Amen


You are beautiful and I love you so very much!

Kyle

Self Realization And Fighting Back

Family, God, Life, love, pain, Prayer

Today will be a short post, but one that I need to document so I have it to come back to when/if these feelings return.

I recently had some much needed conversations with a few pretty great people in my life. And in opening up about things that I didn’t know I was still keeping in, I realized that I can be a major hypocrite. I’ve learned that my words can be extremely powerful tools when used correctly. I’m really good at making others feel good. I can find the words that they need to hear pretty quickly.

But, I’ve noticed, I am terrible at taking my own advice.

I’ve been telling a loved one recently not to hide her joy from the world, regardless of other’s perceptions.

Helloooooo! Do you not listen to yourself when you speak, Kyle?

So I’ve made a decision…

I’m no longer going to turn my back and run from the fear. I am going to stand my ground and I am going to fight my fear head on. I have a lot of joy to give to this world, and I’m going to give it!

So I am going to be joining the children’s ministry at church once all of this craziness subsides. I can make a difference in these kids’ lives and help guide them to be fellow Jesus followers. And they bring so much happiness to my life, why would I want to run from that?

And I am going to go out of my way to compliment others whenever I can. I know where the intentions in my heart lie, and I know for a fact that having others speak positively of and to you is such an amazing feeling. We need more love in this world. I may be one small grain of sand, but last I checked a mustard seed could move a mountain.

And I am taking back the word beautiful.

We need to use this word more often and remind others of what it really means. It should be taken as a compliment and bring happiness to who it is shared with. When the world can often be an ugly place, it is a blessing to be reminded that you stand out against that and have so much value.

And I’m going to be mending relationships with some of those I have pushed away. I have a lot of love to give this world, and the people who saw the worst side of me deserve to see me at my best.

I have a lot of opportunities coming up for me over the next year. Instead of questioning if I could or should be taking them on, I am going to take them for what they are – blessings. I will use the opportunities to do so much good for as many people as I can.

I was given a second chance for a reason, and I am not going to waste it. I couldn’t have told you 18 months ago that life would have played out the way it has. I believe God is guiding me to do something greater in this world, even if that only begins here locally.

I am giving myself, fully, to God. I am letting go of the fear. Jesus loved unconditionally and faced His fears. If He were living my life, I know He would do as much good for the world while He could.

And that’s enough for me. I will no longer be a hypocrite. I will not hide my joy from this world any longer.

…if anything matters then everything matters. Because you are important, everything you do is important. Every time you forgive, the universe changes; every time you reach out and touch a heart or a life, the world changes; with every kindness and service, seen or unseen, my purposes are accomplished and nothing will be the same again.

William P. Young – The Shack

Dear God,

I finally get it. I do not know what it is exactly that I am supposed to be doing with this life, but I know that I will be doing it for You. I give myself to You, and will follow Your guidance.

I will make a difference in this world, not for myself but for You, in Your name. When I die, if I have no money to my name but have touched others hearts I will have lived a successful life. If no one remembers my name when I am gone, but even one person has a better relationship with You I will have lived a successful life. If when I am gone I have lived a life for You, and used your blessings and gifts to bring love and joy to others lives, then I will have lived a successful life.

Here I am, Lord, fully surrendered to Your love. I am ready to serve You and to serve others. I am above no one, and will love everyone unconditionally, for that is Your will. It’s time for me to no longer squander the blessings You have bestowed upon me. I will no longer hide behind fear.

I know there will be struggles along the way, so I ask that You please continue to protect me through them.

This evening I pray that you please lift the burdens that my loved ones are carrying. Please gently caress their heads as they sleep tonight and remove some of the heaviness on their hearts. Please wrap them with a warm embrace that I wish I could give them but am unable to. Let them feel Your love and mine through Your presence.

Please speak to those who are in immense pain and uncertainty during these trying times. I beg You to please hold tightly to those who are ready to meet You sooner than they are meant to. There is so much good that they can bring to this world, and although they may find it unbearable right now, I hope You will provide them clarity. Let the love and support that their loved ones have given them seep into their hearts and fill the void that has been created. They need You so much right now, especially when others cannot be there for them. They are such beautiful people that have a voice that needs to be heard. Please let Your words flow through them for many, many blessed years.

Please continue looking after those who are fighting this pandemic. It is not Your doing, but please let people know You are by their side through it all.

Please protect everyone, but especially those who are on the front lines of fighting this. They are putting their own lives on the line, and often potentially giving up their families, to be there for others. Your love is so evident in them.

Amen

As a reminder, you are beautiful. I love you!

With all my love!

Kyle

Addressing The Past To Cleanse My Heart And Bring Myself Closer To Jesus (Part Two)

anger, Family, Forgiveness, God, Jesus, Life, love, pain

I’ve got to be honest with you… after I shared my first post in this series last week I immediately had doubts. Fear of judgement overcame me pretty quickly. Why share these parts of my past that no longer reflect who I am?

This is part of my healing process. This is me learning to love myself. I have had so little self worth in the past that I didn’t feel I deserved to be a part of this world.

I thought writing this post would be easier than it actually is, wrongly assuming that many of these things I had already forgiven others and myself for. But the more I write and think about it, the more I realize that this is still a major part of my life that needs to get resolved. Because if it’s not, it’s going to eat away at all the progress I have made.

This week’s topic is about anger. Now, as you’re reading this you will find that a lot of my anger starts with moments of pain. Instead of communicating in the past when things bothered me I would keep everything bottled up and not address them. Do you know what happens when you don’t let things out? They multiply and get ugly very quickly. And eventually everything explodes, sometimes when you least expect it.

And it causes a whole lot of destruction in the process.

And that’s where a lot of my current anger still rests. In the fact that I was a tornado that ripped through a lot of people’s lives with no regard to the damage I was causing along the way.


For most of my life I have tried to be a good person and do the right things. I would avoid situations, places and people that could lead to bad decisions. I tried to be very cognizant about the friends I chose, especially in high school and college. But I have always had a serious sense of paranoia that despite all the good I was doing I could be accused of doing something that I didn’t do.

Do you know how difficult it is to live a life trying to ensure that everything is so perfect that you could never be blamed for something? It’s exhausting. Constantly trying to think 5 steps ahead of everyone else, playing what-if scenarios in your mind over and over again.

And do you know what is absolutely gut-wrenching? Doing everything right and still having your worst fears come true.


Now, I’m not a perfect person. In fact, I’ve done a lot of wrong in my life. I’ve cursed. I’ve stolen. I’ve lied. I’ve lusted. I’ve hurt a lot of people emotionally.

But there’s also a lot I’ve never done. I’ve never physically harmed someone. I’ve never cheated on anyone. I don’t even spank my children (we will get to that below). I try to make sure that the good I do outweighs the bad that sometimes comes from me.

But sometimes, it’s really hard to do good things when you live in a constant state of fear because of, often, the insecurities of others. And the feelings start as sadness and grow into anger.

So let’s get into this, shall we? Let’s talk about how words, and more specifically false accusations, can destroy a person.


I absolutely love being around children. And, for whatever reason, kids seem to love me. I can come down to their level and speak to them in a way that they can relate to. I can be silly and playful and act their age, not my own. Tea parties, dress up, sword fights, hide and seek, writing make believe stories, drawing pictures, painting your nails. These are some of the best things to do in life, period. It’s one of the reasons I was really good at my job when I did photography. Moms would call me the “Baby Whisperer” because of the way I could calm kids and make them happy. A child’s laugh and smile are truly just two of the greatest gifts to the world.

And I never had to think about the way I interacted with kids for the longest time until someone one day mentioned that I made them uncomfortable by the way I apparently looked at their children. And it absolutely destroyed my heart and ruined a part of my life. So now, anytime I am around people, because of one person, I am always fully aware of my behavior around everyone, not just children. I am always trying to make sure that I can never be in a position where someone can say something that is not true to who I am as a person.

Do you know how exhausting that is? I would love to be in a career where I could help children all day. In fact, if I could do things all over again I would 100% be a pediatric doctor. I often, still, think about going back to school for that, even at 32 and with 3 degrees already.

I’ve had people tell me how great I am with kids and how much they see that kids love being around me. And it’s always a great thing to hear. But it’s also very sad that I have to live in fear that someone, someday could manipulate a situation just to destroy my life. And it makes me extremely angry. Why? Because in this world we live in, the accusations don’t even have to be true to ruin someone’s life.

I just want to do good, but I can’t because of other people. My wife asked me how long it would be before I volunteered to help with the children’s ministry at church. Would I love to do that? Absolutely. But I live in fear of others words. I’m starting to let my guard down a lot more around family. It just makes my heart so full whenever the girls get so excited to see me, even if I just facetime them.


I also try to be very cautious about the way I discipline my children. I do not spank my children, but I also do not judge anyone who chooses to discipline in that way. To be fair, my kids probably deserve a good spanking every once in awhile for their behavior, just not from me. Again, because people wanted to throw words around without thinking of the consequences that would come from them, I will never discipline my children in that way. So instead, my next best option for discipline comes from empty threats of grounding and yelling. And, at times in the past, a lot of yelling.

My threats are empty because I don’t want to be perceived as a mean parent. Granted, yelling at my kids isn’t a whole lot better, but it’s just been the one thing that I haven’t been able to control when I get angry. When I say I yell at my kids, I don’t mean that I scream at them. More times than not, it’s just enough to get their attention, or be heard over their own yelling. You know, the “dad voice”.

But I have been angry that, again, I was falsely accused of doing something I have never done and would never do.


So let’s continue this trend of false accusations and the anger that comes along with them…

My trust for others, and my lack of friendship, stems from a fairly devastating accusation that ended an extremely close friendship.

I’ve been very honest with the fact that when I love, I love deeply. And I will give so much of myself, even with a friendship, for people I truly care about. I am that person that will show up at 3:00 in the morning. Or the one that will leave work in the middle of the day to come and give you a shoulder to cry on. I will be the person that will drive around town for hours in search of a hard to find item. I am the person that will give the shirt off my back, even though I am so uncomfortable with my own body.

I will ask for forgiveness for my lack of humbleness later, but when given the opportunity I can be a pretty incredible friend.

And I have a way of making people feel good. Like, really good. As in, if you’re having a really crappy day, I can more than likely tell you the things you need to hear to be in a much better place. I am an extremely kind person, especially out in public. Sometimes to the point where it annoys my wife (I will wait, for long periods of time, instead of interrupting someone out in public). I always tip on everything, because I always assume that if service wasn’t great then this person clearly must be fighting a battle I know nothing about.

But sometimes my kindness can be taken the wrong way. Sometimes people believe I have ulterior motives.

Let’s get one thing out of the way first. Fact, I do know how to flirt. But I can assure you, more times than not if you think I am flirting, I’m probably just being nice. Or just being playful. Even my wife sometimes thinks I flirt out in public.

But honestly, I genuinely just try to be a good person and make other people feel good. Do you know how sad it makes me that because of the world we are in I can’t tell people when they look nice? Or that I like their clothes? Or can’t mention it when they get a new perfume or cologne that smells good? Do you know how angry it makes me that I can’t compliment others? Do you know how frustrating it is that I can’t use the word “beautiful” to others other than my wife and kids? It’s stupid, because it is a word that should instantly bring a smile to someone’s face, but because people think there has to be some other connotation to the word I can’t tell them.

Anyways, apparently my kindness and willingness to be there for close friends was taken by others as more than just being a really good friend. People so wrongly assume that the opposite sex just can’t be friends with one another without there being something more.

And that particular situation just absolutely destroyed me. Sadness, depression and ultimately anger. Because all I ever wanted was to just have a really good friend. Someone that I could be there for and they could be there for me. But people had to ruin it by not seeing things for what they truly were.


And then more accusations of me being in situations that I’ve never even been in. Those ones ares the hardest to swallow because you hear one story and then it just keeps changing to outlandish claims that you eventually just get overwhelmed by. But the anger comes when people you thought you could trust start to believe them. And then completely pull out of your life as if something actually happened. And, again, the accusations are worse when they come from people that you thought you could trust.


That’s enough of the false accusations I’ve had to deal with. Let’s discuss other things that are still consuming me with anger…

How about thinking someone who was supposed to be a mentor to you for 6 years ends up not being who you thought they were and were actually using you all that time? Yeah, that would be from a previous work superior. Thankfully I had an amazing person come into my life and in less than 6 months fixed a lot of the damage that I didn’t even realize at first was caused. She eventually moved on, but I am blessed to still keep in touch with her to this day (and who may be reading this now).

Or how about your accomplishments being belittled to the point where your own siblings and uncle tell you that what you’ve done doesn’t even matter? This lead me to a point where I actually had a breaking point where I almost physically hurt one of my brothers. And if it weren’t for my dad being where he was in that instant and intervening, things could have gotten really bad. Not that other people’s opinions should matter, but when you have sacrificed so much to be where you are and other people treat it like it’s nothing, it really hurts.

Or losing all relationship with your siblings. That one hurts a lot and eventually lead to anger because I felt like I wasn’t good enough to be a part of their group. I remember early in my twenties the relationship I had with all of my siblings was great. We would hang out together all the time. They would spend the night and we would stay up until early into the morning playing games together. Or we would go to the movies. Or just play catch at my parent’s house. But now do you know when I hear from any of them? Aside from one who lives on the other side of the country, only when they need something. And I’ve been told it’s because they think I believe I am better than them, but all I truly want is to help them be better people. I have offered so many times to help them, and do you know how many times they’ve taken me up on it? Once. One time, ever, and they didn’t even actually do anything with it. I can be hard on them, but it’s only because I see the potential that they don’t see within themselves.

Another thing that really angers me? Is being punished for doing well in life. That we are held to a different standard than everyone else in the family because we are responsible. The fact that things will be taken from us to give to someone else who truly is not deserving. And I’m angry about the fact that my wife has to have such terrible memories about our wedding because she is the “other daughter”. I’m angry that she had to be continually slapped in the face last year at her own sister’s wedding and constantly reminded for months that her wedding wasn’t as important. I’m angry at all the work that I had to pay for last year from family that did the same thing for free to everyone else. It bothers me that something that was given to everyone else isn’t being offered to us just because I have a good job. It hurts to be treated worse for doing better. I’m angry at the fact that almost all of our family lives less than 10 minutes from our house but very rarely ever makes an effort to see us, but will drive over 2.5 hours multiple times a month to see other people. I’m angry at the fact that my wife was basically broken from being in a toxic work environment for so many years that she chose to walk away from flexibility with her children to be in a place where she was respected.

I get angry at the way that my oldest daughter constantly lies to us, even about the dumbest things. I have anger about the way my youngest children treat each other, knowing that if they just chose to love one another unconditionally that they would be so much happier.

I am angry for the fact that I almost lost my wife last year because I was stupid and thought I wanted things I definitely did not want. And that I hurt her by saying some pretty damaging things. And the fact that she lost a lot of trust in me because of it, sometimes still having unseen consequences.

I get angry at the fact that I let myself get so unhealthy that I was unable to even do anything active with my own children. And I still struggle with my body to this day. Do you know how frustrating it is to be so uncomfortable with yourself that you will avoid swimming, even around family, because I still see myself as 60 pounds heavier than I am.

And I get angry at the fact that I willingly chose to turn my back to God and think that I was in control of my own life.


As you can tell, I’ve got a lot of anger I still need to free myself from. I’m hoping that giving myself to Jesus entirely will remove this from my heart.

Dear God,

I realize I still struggle greatly with feelings of sadness and anger. I pray that You will guide me in seeking the forgiveness that I truly need to free myself from this pain.

Please help me in forgiving those who have stolen parts of me that I struggle with finding again.

All I want to do is bring joy to this world. I want to bring happiness to others. I want those around me to be filled with smiles and laughter.

I want to be the best husband, the best father, the best son, the best brother, the best friend, the best caretaker, etc. that I can be.

I know You have already forgiven me for all the wrong I have done. I hope You can help me with the pain and anger that I am trying work through.

I ask that You please continue to be patient with me.

Please forgive me for turning my back on You so many times, allowing myself to be consumed with all of this pain.

Amen

I love you all, with all my heart.

You are beautiful.

Kyle

Happy Birthday! Now Go Out And Do Good!

Birthday, Family, Good, Jesus, Life, love

Today is officially my birthday and for the first time in a very long time it will be a joyous day. March 4th can no longer be a sad day, even if the world is falling apart around me because I now get to share this day with an incredibly special person! So, happy birthday beautiful girl! You are so very loved!

I loooove Winnie the Pooh… 🤷‍♂️

A weird thing happened over the last 10 days that hasn’t happened in a very long time… I haven’t had any feelings of insecurity or sadness. I have been filled with so much happiness and love in my life that it has started to spill over into the way I go about my days.

I’ve been reminded lately that the gifts I have been given are not mine. They are a blessing that I was given to share with the world, and to help others when I am able (and to sacrifice when I am unable).

Right now, at the point I am in with my life, the best thing I have found that I am able to do is to bring joy and happiness to others.

That’s crazy, right? Me, a person who has just so recently felt like they had no purpose in this world, now feels like they can make a difference in other people’s lives?


So how have I been doing this? Simple…

Do Good. If you don’t want to listen to me, take it from the brilliant Mr. Feeny:

That’s it!

Simple enough, right? If you go into a situation with a positive, helping attitude, it just makes all the difference. Headed into a tough situation? Do something to make it better. Talking to someone that has a negative disposition? Point out their positives.

There is positive in every single situation. Focus on those and multiply them. Bring them to the forefront of a conversation.

Be the person that others want to be around. That people will feel comfortable around and know that you will bring a smile to their face.

I will warn you, however, that we unfortunately live in a very harsh world. People are always skeptical of kindness. They believe there has to be an ulterior motive.

To that, I will remind you of the “Anyway” prayer attributed to Mother Teresa (originally written by Kent M. Smith):

So do it anyways. If you are doing things out of the pure nature, kindness and love of your heart, who cares what others think? Now, of course, be respectful of other people’s feelings and levels of comfort. But try to bring as much joy and love as you possibly can to this beautiful world we live in.


Stop living each day as if tomorrow is promised.

Tell your loved ones you love them.

Give people your time. It’s a rare and precious thing.

Make others feel welcomed.

If you have gifts, share them with others.

Build others up so they can go far in life.

Compliment people you do and do not know. Let someone know they are beautiful. Or that you like their clothing style. Or their haircut is nice. Or that they just made you smile.

Bring love, joy and happiness to everyone around you!


Can you imagine a world where we are all supporting one another and helping others achieve happiness and success? What a beautiful thing that would be!

I have been hurt in the past, but I don’t wish poorly of any of them in any capacity. I thank God for the learning opportunities and pray that he will watch over their lives.


Do Good. Live this every single day and watch how the world changes around you. You stop noticing the harshness and see wonder instead.

Let’s make today a great day.! I don’t need anything special for my birthday, but knowing that people are going out of their way to brighten others’ lives simply because I reminded them will bring a smile to my face.

So, I will get this “Do Good” movement started…

I love you. Yes, YOU! The person reading this. You are an absolutely beautiful soul! If knowing that brings a smile to your face then I am so glad to be able to share this life with you!

Today will be a day filled with love, joy and happiness!


Dear God.

Today I want to quickly thank You for blessing me with another year and for being patient as I found my way back to You.

Now that I’m out of the way, today I pray that You bless the lives of so many people! Give them comfort, and joy, and love and happiness. Let them feel Your presence!

Please protect my loved ones who have been under constant attack lately. Please allow them to stay focused and continue fighting to spread Your good word. Their hearts are aching and I pray that You will grant them peace and comfort.

I pray for the continued health, happiness and safety of others.

Today starts a new year of life and I am so excited to spend this year building my relationship with You!

Amen

With all of my love!

Kyle

What’s In A Name? A Reminder of Where I Came From And Where I Want To Go

Community, Dinner, Family, God, Jesus, Life, love, Neighbor, religion

When I created this blog over 4 years ago I was in a place in my life where the only thing I wanted was solitude for my immediate family of 5. This blog was created to be about OUR little infinity. I had shut the rest of the world out and was focused on my wants. My needs.

But I’ve come to realize that “our” is a relative term. It does not have to be about my wife and I, or a family of 5. And I’m so glad that it is not that way! I am so grateful that I am no longer the person that I once was.

I’ve thought about going through the process of changing the blog name. I know the steps that need to be made to switch the domain name, how to change the authors, etc. But I don’t want to any longer. As I have mentioned in a post on my Facebook, my past is what has brought me to be where I am and the person I have become. And I want to embrace my past, the pain and all.


Let’s break this out and over-analyze, shall we?

Table For Five. Today, this means I am setting a hard limit on the number of people I let into my life. I am closing myself off from the world, putting up walls and telling others that if you don’t belong in my small group, you’ll never get to know me. The only people allowed to sit at my table are my wife and children.

That’s not who I want to be! Not anymore. Not ever again! As I’ve mentioned before, we are planning on moving before year end. One of the biggest reasons that I now want to move is because I do not physically have the space in my own home to be able to have people over. I want my new home to be a safe haven for others. I want it to be a second home to my loved ones. I want it to be open to my neighbors. I can promise you now that other people will have keys to my home. Where you don’t have to knock to enter. Where you will always be welcomed.

I want to be surrounded by loved ones every day. I want to share meals all the time.


One of my absolute favorite things that I get the privilege of doing is having dinner with my best friends and their family once a week. Every week, aside from times of sickness, we prioritize sitting down and breaking bread together.

And my favorite thing about it is that when we all sit down together there is not a division in families. If you ever watch us together, we do not separate. The adults do not sit apart from the children, spouses do not pair off and stay right by one another. We come together as one. And my heart is so full being able to speak to every single one of them individually as if we have known each other our entire lives.

And it’s something I want to be surrounded by. I want to just give so much love. I want to have plans every night of being with loved ones. I want to build relationships. I want to share the love of Jesus.

I don’t want a table for five. I want a table for fifty.


I am this new person now and all I want to do is just give my love to others. And it’s such a weird feeling to me because just a few months ago I was so closed off to the world. But now my eyes, and my heart, have been opened.

Love creates such beautiful transformations.


Our Little Infinity.

How naive I was to believe that my life, and the life my family had, was from my own doing. That I had a right to claim it as my own. To take possession of “our” little infinity.

Our little infinity is so much greater than I could have ever imagined. To have the love of God, to be a follower of Jesus. To be given eternal life. Oh how it just opens the doors to so much beauty and joy.

We have a life that has been blessed upon us, and we get the honor of sharing this with others. “Our” grows from five to a community of so many.

Our little infinity now means the life I get to share with my community for the time I am alive. And what an amazing thing that is.

I am brimming with love. And compassion. And joy. And happiness. Oh, my heart has never felt this way before and I never want it to change.


I’m eager to make this transition into our new home and begin sharing my life with those around me. Please fill my life with love. Let us share a meal together. Let’s go for a walk. Let’s cry together. Let’s pray together! Let’s just be together, with love in our hearts. It doesn’t have to be a special occasion.

And for those who already welcome me into their homes, you are a big reason why I strive to be a better person. I hope these meetings happen often as it is easily one of my favorite moments each week and something I look forward to.

My family of five is no longer. It has grown and I am so blessed.


“Dear God,

Oh how You have made Your presence known in my life! I see You all around me. I stop and notice the amazing things You have done in this world that we take for granted on a daily basis.

I recognize Your blessings and I cherish them!

My heart has been opened because You worked through others to bring me back to You. I see You in their eyes. I hear You in their voice. I feel You in their hugs.

Today I want to thank You for everything in my life. I know You are not responsible for the bad, but know You never left my side through them. You allowed me to try to do things on my own, and were always there to catch me when I fell. And You have forgiven me through them all.

How loving You are. That You would sacrifice so much to allow me be here, as significant and small as I have felt in the past.

I pray that You allow me to share my love with all those who are willing to accept it. I want to bring love and happiness to others lives, as You have done for me.

I pray to be blessed with a table for so many! That I can serve others and give them a place to rest their feet and their hearts. To give others a second home and a place to feel safe and loved.

I thank You again, as I will likely do every day, for bringing loved ones to my life. Those who make me be a better person. Who make me feel so incredibly welcomed.

I pray that You continue to be there for those who are in pain this evening, and that You may grant them peace and serenity.

I thank You for everything You have blessed my life with. You have given me so much and I am eager to give back in any way I can.

Thank You for opening my eyes and my heart.

Amen.


A fair warning before I end this post this evening, I am making an effort to express my feelings every chance I get. We are not promised tomorrow, and if today happened to be my last I don’t want anyone to ever question how I felt about them. So, I will tell you I love you. Often. Because love is such a beautiful thing, and just being told that you are loved, in my experience, just makes everything so perfect. And hugs are one of my new favorite things. Not little ones, though. Long, full embraces are the best. ☺️

So, with that said, I love you! If you are reading this post it is because you are someone I care about and wanted to be a part of my life.

Kyle

P.s. since I am letting more people in to my blog, please don’t forget to “follow” down below. Just put in your email address and verify it and you will get emails anytime I post!

The Value of Time

Family, Life, religion

For those of you who don’t know, I have been back in school part time, year round, for the last 5 years completing my third degree. I am officially, finally, in my last semester. As of today I have finished the 5th week of classes and have 87 days left until commencement!

This semester is the hardest yet. Not because of the source material, or the workload, but because I am wanting to give 100% of myself to this new path I am on, and yet I have this massive chapter that still has to come to an end.

It’s a reminder to me that sometimes in life, we have to be patient. While we really want to get to the end and cross that finish line, the journey there is often just as important. Sometimes, we just don’t get a choice.

The work, school, home, personal life balancing act this semester has been difficult. I’m only gone one night this semester for a class, and the other two classes are online. That one night, though, interferes with activities that I would rather commit myself to.

I’m not short on time. If you look at our Google Calendar you would think I was lying, but there is plenty of time to give to the things that matter most. Time is something I’ve been forced to be pretty good at divvying up. And I keep my schedule very flexible.

This semester comes with classes on Thursdays, gymnastics and guitar lessons on Wednesdays, month end closing every Friday on a 4-4-5 schedule. Exams thrown in there every once in awhile, too. It’s a lot, yes, but when the priorities come up, nothing else matters. I will always, always, always have time for my loved ones. And I will prioritize it.

Time is something that we often take for granted, though. It comes and goes so quickly that we don’t even pay attention to it. But it’s something that is so important. So I’ve made a point to not only prioritize MY time lately, but also prioritize others as well. While I would love to give all of my time to those that make me the happiest, I’ve realized that you have to set limits to ensure they have their time as well. We all have routines in our lives, and it is so important to keep to a set schedule and to respect others and their lives.

It’s respect. And I have a lot of respect for my loved ones. So it’s something I’m prioritizing. People give up their precious time to be there for me. I promise you, the first time I get a phone call at 2:30 in the morning, or in the middle of the work day, I will be there faster than you can imagine.

But this semester is making me long for a new routine. This year comes with a lot of change in all of our lives, and I’m so anxious to get through most of it and just be at the end result. Graduating, buying a new house, oldest starting high school (😪), etc. and I can’t wait until everything has settled and a new schedule is in place.

I am happiest when I am with my loved ones. And I can not wait for this semester to be over so I have more time to dedicate to the priorities in my life. Yes, the finished degree will be great and worth all the hard work, but having the freedom to do more, and to give more, is what I’m so excited about. I want to be able give more of my time to Jesus and live his words. To have more time to pray, and to read the Bible. To write. To spend time with my growing family. To be a bigger part of the community.

I know it is coming. I just have to be patient. In the mean time, I will keep recognizing my blessings and living a life with intentionality and priority. Especially when it comes to the relationships in my life.

Dear God.

Thank You for the love that You continue to show me on a daily basis. For the words that speak directly to my heart when I need them most. For my loved ones who will tell me the words I need to hear on a bad day. For the embraces that bring joy and happiness to my life.

I pray that You please look after my children and give them the kindness and patience to love one another unconditionally.

I pray that You look after my loved ones and keep them safe. Bring joy to their lives and let them see Your love in their days.

I pray that You continue to be by my wife’s side as she navigates all the changes in her life, including giving herself to You.

Please give me the wisdom to be a better husband, father and friend. I want to give all of myself to them, and ask nothing in return. I know I have asked a lot of all of them lately, but I pray they all know that I am so incredibly grateful for all they do. Please allow them to see the love I have for them, not only in my words, but through my actions.

Please continue to be there for all those who are in suffering today. Please look after those who have been carrying heavy hearts lately.

Lord, I beg of You to please give me the strength to carry these burdens for them. It breaks my heart to see sadness in the lives of others, and I pray I can take their pain for myself.

Please forgive me for my sins. For allowing fear and doubts to cloud my judgement. For being a failing husband by reacting instead of listening. For being a failing friend for unloading my emotions on others and not asking how they are doing themselves. I pray that others come before me. That my shoulder will be wet from their tears. For the warmth to warm others’ hearts when we hug as theirs do for mine. I pray that You guide me to be the BEST version of myself for all others, not for my benefit, but for theirs.

Lord, I pray that the needs of my family and friends are met long before my own.

I pray for more good days, but also thank You for the blessing of every day, even the ones I feel are bad. They allow me to seek You more and to learn and grow my faith.

I thank You for loving me even when I feel unlovable.

Amen

I promise to be better for all of you. And I will ALWAYS have time for others.

With so much LOVE!

Kyle

Communication – Learning to Speak Up and Speak Out

Family, Life, religion

I’ve been told throughout my life that I have a way with words. That I can transform them into emotions with elegance and heart. But I’ve just recently come to realize that I can only do this through written communication. When it comes to speaking out loud I can come off as a babbling fool.

So I’ve been trying to figure out why it comes so naturally to me to be able to share my thoughts and feelings when I’m writing, but struggle with forming a cohesive sentence when talking with someone face-to-face. And what I’ve come up with is when I write I am able to process my thoughts before they come out.

I’m literally able to filter the dumb thoughts or comments before speaking.

But I started to question what that means. Am I being more truthful when I stop and think before speaking, or when I just let things come out as my mind is still processing? In my heart I believe the filtered message is what is my honest thoughts, because when I speak poorly of others I feel ashamed and sad.

I’m not in a place yet where I have surrendered my life to God and can speak to others with no judgement. I know this is a place that I want to get to, but for now I’m still working on letting go of the past. I know there are steps that I need to take to get there, but I’m working on them one day at a time, a relatively new concept to this hardcore planner.

I need to put God back into my life as my top priority. Before I can fix my communication with others, I have to be able to speak to Him. Prayer is something that I do, but not with confidence. I know there is no “wrong way” to talk to God, but every time I do I feel like I am messing it up. How can I speak to others when I can’t even speak to the One who I know never judges me?

So I’m challenging myself to pray more often. And to pray out loud. And to find my outer voice and build the confidence I need to speak to others.

I, ashamedly, struggle with communication with my wife. I have always believed that I needed to be this strong, masculine person in her life who always had everything figured out and was always there to hold the family together. So I would bury my emotions. Deep down. And in doing so I pushed down the guidance that He was giving me. I pushed Him away and allowed the sin to fill the void. And you know which emotions seem to never be able to be pushed aside? Anger. And fear. And negativity.

But I don’t have it all figured out. I’m not SUPPOSED to have it all figured out. I’m supposed to share my feelings with others and I’m supposed to let God work through them and to help me process the things I can’t do on my own.

I’m not meant to be the strong, masculine person. I carry a lot of emotion. A lot of deep emotion. But I’m starting to learn that I need to let that part of me out. Because it’s who I truly am.

I need to cry more. And I need to cry to others more. I need to let those I love know I love them. I, just today, told my two best friends (hey guys, yeah I’m using all the words now) that I loved them and how much they mean to me. Did I just come to this realization? No, it happened awhile ago. But I was so fearful of running them off or being too intrusive in their lives that I never shared that with them. How ridiculous is that?

And do you know what happened? They told me they loved me back. And do you know what that does to a person?

Why today? Well, for one I listened to a service that one of them gave at their local church, and it was profoundly impactful. Guess what it talked about? Yeah, loving one another. Coincidence? I’m quickly learning that that word is one of evil. There are no coincidences. And two I’m learning that not speaking openly and telling people the things I am feeling is hiding a piece of myself.

I talked in my last post about how I can no longer communicate with people in my life, including my family. Do I want this relationship where I can’t speak to them? Absolutely not. Is it a permanent thing? Absolutely not. Once I clear my heart for good, I want to rebuild my relationships with all those in my life that I have hurt or that I struggle to speak with. But I need to be in a place where I am speaking with LOVE. I don’t want to live in the past anymore. I want people to know me, the new me, as a person of love, who walks a strong path with the Lord. Who does not speak ill of others and loves them unconditionally. And I know that day is not far away.

And I need to get to a place where I can speak to my wife the same way that I speak to my closest friends. It is so easy for me to share with them so much of my life and my story (and I do share, a lot). But I know I’m not being judged by them. And I know they have no reason to doubt the things I’m saying. And I know I don’t have to be a certain type of person for them.

I need to do the same with my wife. I need to let her in and share my emotions. Cry to her, and with her. Pray with her. Give her back a piece of myself that I pulled away from her so long ago because I was fearful of being judged by her and falling short of an expectation I put on myself, not one she put on me.

I know, I’m an idiot, right?

Wrong. I was stupid for so long but I am not the person I used to be. If you thought you knew me 6 months, 1 year, or several years ago, come and get to know me again. I’m not the person I was before and I’m never going back there again.

My wife and I spoke for hours this morning. And it felt so good to be vulnerable to her and to admit to her that I know I’ve gone about things wrong in the past but I want them to be different moving forward.

I am moving forward with LOVE in my heart. And I will be open about it.

I am working on building my communication with God and my wife. Once I get there I will be ready to start a NEW chapter with those I had to walk away from.

And I will continue to be open and share my life with those who are choosing to walk beside me on this path I am on. My community is growing; and it is truly such a blessing.

Dear God,

I know I have sinned and I know I will sin in the future as I am human. But I also know that Your Son died for my sins so that I can be forgiven. I ask that You walk with me as I clear my heart of the anger, judgement and fear and fill that void with love instead. I want to love ALL others, as You have done for me.

I pray that You please watch over all those in my life, especially those going through personal troubles. Let them find guidance and love through You.

I thank You, Lord, for being patient as I found my way back to You. And I thank You for bringing people into my life who taught me that it is okay to love again.

I pray to one day soon be washed away of my sins again, of my own doing this time, and walk anew on a path with a loving heart surrendered to You.

Please continue to look after my family and those I love and bring peace to their lives.

Amen

Kyle