Life is nothing if not an adventure, right?
I have felt like I have two sides of my world. The amazing folks who have followed this journey through the bush of Africa and back and are most familiar with me journaling here about my faith journey. And then there are my friends from this new season who are used to me chatting about creativity and business and entrepreneurship.
Despite my best efforts, I haven’t found solid ways to bring the two of y’all together. So this weekend I just decided to spruce some things up in this online space and hold cyber house party.
For my new friends from the world of creative entrepreneurship, you may not know I spent 20 years in Asia, Africa and urban America working in faith-based development work. Some would call it missions. By my only mission was to love people like I have been loved by God and serve them well. I was an ordained pastor for 10 of those years, mostly while I was in Africa. And occasionally I had to pull out my piece of paper to show I was legit for paperwork logistics, but that was about all I ever did with it.
I don’t believe spiritual authority comes from titles or paperwork, but rather from integrity, authenticity and real relationships.
Regardless of where you are in your journey or what you believe, I want you to know that you are welcome here and you are safe. I’m sure many of you have had experiences around church and Christianity that may have been anything but safe. I am not here to convince you, convert you or change you. And I certainly am not here to condemn you. I just want to put the tea kettle on, invite you to pull up a seat and I want to get to know you in the measure you’d like to be known.
If you hang out here long enough, you’ll find me talking about my faith journey, about healthy spirituality and recovering from spiritual abuse. About overcoming odds, healing from heartbreak and building community. You’ll also discover I’m a little bit of a word study nut who loves to dig into what the Bible was really saying back in the day it was penned. You will see me from time to time talking about topics and issues that come up in the cultural system of Christianity. Some of these may or may not be relevant directly to you, but you are always welcome to join the conversation.
For my friends who have been here longer, you probably have noticed some changes already. About these. When I lived in Africa, my primary purpose here was to encourage you and share the lessons we were learning there every day. Since returning back to America, every part of my life has had dramatic shifts.
I now operate my own creative studio where I work as a creative strategist, brand designer and business educator for creatives, entrepreneurs and nonprofits. And I design wedding stationery. I mentor nonprofit & faith-based leaders on both practical and spiritual levels. I’m working on developing and launching resources to help creatives and organizations be more effective practically. I’m also recovering from a traumatic brain injury and continue to deal with health complications from my time in Africa and a recent car crash in January.
My primary tribe is no longer limited to the institutional church. And I love, love, love that. Nothing makes me happier to get to know folks from all faiths and perspectives and cultures. I want to make sure I am sharing here in a way that opens doors for any who might want to read this part of my journey. Thus, I have made the decision to use the jargon that is peculiar to Christendom as sparingly as possible.
So that’s where this journey is at here. I am so grateful each of you are here. And I look forward to see where this adventure will lead. Know this: You matter. Your story matters. And you are wildly beyond-all-imagining, completely and totally loved.