Monday, May 31, 2010

Home Sweet Home

After looking at apartment after apartment, they all start to blend together. Some are dirty. Some are creepy. Some feel safe and others don't.

Some are great.
And those are the ones we can't afford.

I called and spoke with a complex to price an apartment. They had no availability for what I was looking for, but I decided to go take a look anyway.

But I don't think it was really a decision I made, more so it was God's divine intervention.

You see, just as I entered the leasing office, a young couple was wrapping up the paperwork to upgrade their unit. They had been in theirs for years, loved the place, but felt like a change, so they upgraded, leaving their unit.

For us.

I just happened to arrive the very minute, literally, that the kind of place I was looking for (amenities, cost, everything) opened.

The leaser told me that the particular model I leased goes very quickly, and seldom even makes it to advertisement.

Yay! I have a home now!
Thank God!

*Next step: find a job!

Rancho Bernardo


On Saturday, I visited Oceanside with Dan, Susan, Alice, and Nathan. It was beautiful! Dan, Nathan, and myself slowly made our way out on the jetty, sitting down on the rocks and enjoying the warm sun and cool ocean spray. Then we drove down to the nearby pier, watching surfers, sailboats, and fisherman. It was a wonderful day. I'm trying to adjust to the idea that all these great places and fun things to do are all within a half-hour's drive. That's definitely not something I'm used to. Its going to be awesome when Kimberly and I are here together!

Monday, May 24, 2010

¡Gracias Mi Hermana!

So far, this trip has been great, but I discourage easily. With the weight of job and home searching, so many unanswered questions, and the settling-in of reality, I've felt a little . . . heavy. I'm so blessed, yes. I haven't forgotten one bit. But my flesh craves security. Today I opened my e-mail and was blessed with this great verse, thanks to a sister in Christ that Kimberly and I have been fortunate enough to get to know over the last several months. ¡Gracias mi hermana! Ephesians 3:16-21 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen!

Thursday, May 20, 2010


I miss Kimmy.

I'm Here!

We have arrived to our final destination! Escondido is just as beautiful as I rememebered it. I'll be spending the next few days getting settled into my temporary residence and familiarizing myself to the area with Pink's help. Then it'll be time to hit the ground running, searching for job leads and prospective homes for Kimberly and I.

The trip out here was great and I can't wait until I have an internet connection to share the pictures. Its amazing! I think we traveled through nearly every variation of weather and geographic landscape, all within just 4 days!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

God Is Good!

He really is. In fact, he's awesome. Somehow, we've managed to coast 16 miles with nearly no gas in the tank before barely putt-putting into the station just in time. Utah is absolutely gorgeous, but the hundreds of miles between convenience stations is, well, inconvenient. And this is in poor combination with how the constant climbing elevations quickly burn the gas.


But, God is truly good. He saw us through. And this land He has created is a breath-taking reminder of His magnificence.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

(insert laughter here)

Look at this picture closely. It doesn't come close to capturing the hilarity of this hotel room we've been forced to rent due to poor weather conditions and no vacancies in other nearby hotels.

We've made it to Colorado, and so far the trip has been great. Although this room we're staying in for the night is less than favorable, all we can really do is laugh and thank God that at least the beds are comfy and the sheets appear to be clean.

The plains of Kansas were beautiful and I look forward to seeing the Rockies tomorrow, then the deserts of Nevada. Hopefully I'll come across free wi-fi soon to post some pics.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Farewells, Fieldtrip, & Photos

By 5:15pm, Pink and I should be all packed up in my car and heading out towards Escondido, California. Pink is bringing along his dog, Miley, to leave in Kansas with family. Then we’ll move on to Las Vegas for a day of recreation before completing our journey to Escondido.

After several days in California, Pink will be flying back to Indiana to his family, and I’ll remain in Escondido to search for a job and an apartment. I’ve been blessed with an opportunity to continue working for CSI Ministries out of the office for a short time, so I’m taking advantage it; searching for a job and home on-site while introducing CSI to new churches and developing promotional media for ministries in Jamaica and Belize.

I am placing my faith in God that He will provide, that His divine timing and masterful plan will be the ultimate determinant throughout this trip and the entire ministry endeavor.

I’m not really sure when I’m coming back from this trip, what it will entail, or what the outcome will be, but I know that God is in control.

With so much left unknown, I’ve spent the past few days making farewells. The experience has been an emotional roller coaster, but one I wouldn’t change. I remain continually amazed by the great people God has placed in my life!

Here are some pics from the last several days. Enjoy!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Psalm 139:13-14

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Thursday, May 13, 2010


"...the Lord knows those who are His..." - 2 Timothy 2:19

Years ago, the great Methodist preacher, Charles Allen, was asked by a wealthy Texas oilman who he believed was our greatest President. Dr. Allen said, "That's easy. LBJ." The man's face turned red with anger. He said, "Dr. Allen, how in the world can you say that lying, scheming scoundrel was our greatest President?" He replied, "Well, one day I was standing in the lobby of a hotel and LBJ came through. He shouted to me, 'Dr. Allen, you keeping those Methodists straight?' The reason I feel he was the greatest President is because he is the only one who knew my name." When important people know our name it makes us feel good. But when they call us by name in front of a crowd, we really feel special. Good news. The most important person who ever lived knows your name. His name is Jesus. He knows everything about you and He loves you, anyway. When you get to know him as Savior and Lord, He'll make you feel important and significant - even more than the President calling you by name.

*Borrowed from HERE

I read things like this and catch myself before completing the thought, "How hokey!" Something about these kinds of sentiments, those of the 'feel good' type, just trigger that response in me. But, as I say, I catch myself before completing the thought, because after a moment or two of processing, I'm reminded of my own deep-seeded desperation to . . . well, feel good.

Spiritual warfare has wreaked havoc within me for as long as I can remember, and the enemy only seems to up the ante (which, after a quick Google search, I just learned is a term deriving from old gambling lingo. Who knew!?). I've always struggled to recognize my place in life and to feel as though I do have some significance, but at times, this struggle becomes almost unbearable.

And such a time is now.

Actually, since around October, the battle has been overall intense, with a spike of the above mentioned unbearable here and there.

I am nothing, no one. I am inadequate and insignificant. Unskilled, untalented, un-gifted, unlovable, unusable.

Purposeless. I have no function. I make no contribution.

I am worthless.

These are the thoughts running through my head, and I can't make them stop. In fact, trying to ignore these thoughts has completely exhausted me. I have a hard time even just wanting them to stop right now. It seems easier to just wallow in self-pity and hatred.

And from behind these lenses I'm perceiving the world through, everything is dark. I've somehow lost control of my own focus, because all my eyes will see is what supports these thoughts and feelings of my meaninglessness.

I attempt to rationalize with myself, I try to address my own illogical thinking, but then it becomes unclear what logical really is.


This word resounds within me.

And so, it is clarity that I long for.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

¡Bendiciones, Angéla!

Yesterday, Kimberly and I were invited to Angie's house for dinner. Angie is the accounts manager at CSI Ministries, and getting to know her has been a blessing. I think if you were to listen to her heart with a stethoscope, you'd probably hear it beat to a Latin rhythm. God has ignited Angie with a passion for Mexico and border cities. She has done ministry work in several locations including Juarez, where people have been scarred and oppressed with a history of femicide, corrupt government, and the ruthless drug cartel. At 23 years old, Angie's youthful joy and excitement, paired with her unique real-world experiences, make for a refreshing mixture. Kimberly and I are confident that God has equipped Angie to do great things, and we hope to have the opportunity to partner with her in ministry somehow one day.
¡Bendiciones, Angéla!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Imitating Christ's Humility

If you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any fellowship with the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and purpose. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Phillipians 2:1-4

Monday, May 10, 2010


Dear Forecast, I would really like to have a bonfire this weekend. Although the low nightly temperature you predict isn't super awesome for such an event, I do appreciate the fact that you are not calling for thunderstorms. So, I'm asking you, Forecast, please, please be accurate. Thanks! -Nate

I Just Wouldn't Be a Good Blogger/Son if I Didn't Have a "Mother's Day" Post

Today I celebrated Mother's Day with my mom. We ate at King's Buffet, then hit the Cardinal Greenway for a nice, 5 mile walk. My mom is great. She is empathetic, caring, considerate, supportive, encouraging. Very loving. That one word just seems to describe her the best; loving. Happy Mother's Day, Mom!

Friday, May 7, 2010

John 7:37-38

On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him."

¡Adiós Pesces!

Many thanks to the Pfohl family for taking our fish, Kitty and Fido! When we were just dating in high school, I won Kitty at the Winchester fair as a game prize, and gave it to Kimberly. Eight years later, Kitty is eight inches long and still going strong! Fido is a relatively new addition to the family, joining us just about two or three years ago. Although we really enjoy having the fish, traveling across the country with them as we move to California doesn't sound pleasant. It was a blessing when Mindy told us her family would gladly take them! Last night, as we were leaving the Pfohl's house after dropping off the fish, it was the sweetest thing; little Abby came up to Kimberly and kindly said, "I'm very sorry you can't keep your fish." Thanks, again, Pfohls!

On Loop in My Head . . . For the Past Two Weeks Now

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Crap Will Always Be Crap

Marcus: Mr. Nathan, staff told me they called you on your cell phone and you told them to put me on assault watch.

Me: Yep. That’s true, Marcus. Can you tell me why I put you on assault watch?

Marcus: Staff said it was because of ‘assault with body fluids’ or something like that. But Mr. Nathan, I didn’t do anything!

Me: Assault with bodily fluids. You’re right, Marcus. That is why. I’m curious about how you’re going to explain to me that you ‘didn’t do anything.’

Marcus: Well, I plugged up the toilet in room 2 and all the kids are saying I made it smell like crap and now it won’t flush. Staff called to borrow a plunger from another cabin, but I got tired of waiting, and everyone just kept making fun of me because I made the room smell like crap.

Me: Okay, then what happened?

Marcus: Well, the trash can in our room was empty so I took out the bag and put my hand in it and used it like a glove to pull out the crap plugging the toilet.

Me: And then? (face straining to not show disgust or twisted humor)

Marcus: I turned the trash bag inside out, so the clean side was out, then I tied the bag up and threw it away.

Me: Marcus, I have incident reports saying you were swinging the bag around at your peers, instigating them. Let me read this to you, “… and then Marcus started flinging crap at me.”

Marcus: That’s not true! He’s lying because he doesn’t like me.

Me: Okay, Marcus. Listen, if you’re saying that your peers and all your staff are misleading me about this, I can place a request to review camera footage, but . . .

Marcus: Okay, Mr. Nathan (big sigh). I didn’t ‘fling crap’ like it says in that dumb, lying report that jerk wrote. I was just swinging the bag around.

Me: A bag of crap?

Marcus: But it was in a bag!

This is just one of those conversations I can't forget. So, what makes me blog about it suddenly, years after having it?

Well, I have to admit, from time to time, I do a bit of ‘crap flinging’ myself. You see, I might disguise it as a conviction to share the truth and to be honest, or as a distaste for an injustice that I feel must be confronted, when in reality I’m just angry or hurt and looking for a reason to fling crap; to get a little dig in and look all the more Christian while doing so.

Sometimes, certain things must be said; some things should be brought to light, but unless I’m doing or saying these things completely from a heart of love, a heart for Christ, then I’m not the person for the job. We can package crap anyway we want to. We can wrap it in paper and put a bow on top, we can fling it around in a garbage bag, or we can dish it out for what it really is, but crap will always be crap.

Lord God, help the mediation of my heart be pleasing to You. Humble me to serve You only, so that it is Your will I seek and not my own. Be my motivation in all I do.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Haircut Part II: After After

I am blessed. Not only is Kimberly a great wife, she's also an excellent stylist. Life all around me is starting to look different, so I thought, "Why shouldn't I look different, too?" Then Kimberly gave me the exact hairstyle that I wanted. But after a few hours, I began feeling more comfortable with my hair being gone and realized that my long fronts, although awesomely emo-riffic, were probably just a way to feel like I wasn't really cutting my hair short after all. And, well, that's just silly. So I decided I wanted to hack the long fronts off, too. At 12:17am! Kimberly was struggled down in bed with a book, but lovingly got up to cut my hair. Again. My last post features before and after pictures. This post features after and after after pictures. Thanks Kimberly! You rock!!!

I Got My Hair Did! Thanks, Kimmy!

I finally did it! After several months of going back and forth, I committed to lobbing all my hair off yesterday, and today it actually happened! I'll probably go a little shorter in a couple weeks, so I can look more like a respectable adult when I go out to Cali to look for jobs. But in the meantime, I'm gonna rock out this crazy 'do!