oh, titles, who reads them anyways?

I remember about a year, maybe two, ago that my pastor got up on the square, wooden stage. Figuring that it would be another good sermon that I would remember for a week or two, then forget, I didn't really pay attention.
Until he played a video.
This video to be exact. It messed with my head. It still messes with my head. Is Guitar Hero really that important? What is it that makes our private selfishness unleash itself? I just can't figure it out.
A few nights ago, the lead singer from Tenth Ave. North (I love their music) posted "I've decided that consumerism poses a far worse threat to the American church than witchcraft."
Is this true? That same day our pastor showed that video, he told us that the same amount of money that Americans as a whole spend on Christmas would be enough to take care of all of the water problems in the world.
That completely freaked me out. I'm blessed, more then I know it. But, have I really missed that I could be doing more? When I begin thinking about this, I want to start something bigger, that would help people. Then, I start thinking about how much work that would actually be, and how I'm still a teen...I don't want to be another number though, I want to help people.
This is most likely a lot of mumbo jumbo thrown together, but it's my thoughts in some way.
I'm getting up at 2:30am to go shopping (it's a tradition) but I promise not to fight over any guitar hero sets :)
~Believer in PRTC

Part 2 is here :)

Sorry 'bout the delay! Was rather busy lately, but I'm good now. Enjoy!
Read the first part here.

“I’m not the same anymore.” I wanted to warn him he was getting in over his head.

“Neither am I.”

I stared at him. “Of course not, you idiot, but you still have God, you still have this.” My hand motioned to the church.

“You don’t?”

“Well, no. Duh. I’ve messed up to much. I can never come back.” It sounded sappy and unconvincing.

“Do you want to?”

I didn’t see that coming. I just stared at him. He rose one eyebrow and shared a questioning look.

“Would you like to at least look inside?” Kindly, he asked. “To see how it’s changed since you’ve been here?”

I can do this. I nodded.

We both got out and met at the front of my slug bug where I stood frozen on the sidewalk. Staring, I remembered all of the life changing moments I had here. The times at youth retreats where I worshiped God. The moments where I had made friends, and laughed. At least there weren’t any people walking out that I remembered. He placed his hand on the small of my back and nudged me to move. We walked up the stairs and to the beautiful entryway.

Wow, this has changed a lot.

The crimson red that used to paint the walls was replaced with a deep, majestic purple. There was a small coffee bar on the right, and a little courtyard with chairs and tables in front of it.

He led me into the auditorium that I had seen every Sunday, until recently, since I was little. The soft, blue chairs all in rows from the front to the back lined the large room. Then, of course, there was the same pulpit that there was when I was younger standing at the front and center of the stage, with guitars, a keyboard, and a drum set in the background. Movement at the front of the stage caught my eye.

“Pastor George…” The whisper unexpectedly came out of my mouth.

Mac heard me and followed my gaze. “Hey Pastor George, want me to lock up today?”

“Yeah, sure! That’ll be gre- “Pastor George stared at us for a second, then tilted his head and squinted.

“Elle?” He questioned. “Is that you?” Excitement over flew the question.

I nodded, silently, feeling guilty for not keeping in contact with the guy for so long.

The aged preacher practically sprinted down the center isle and enveloped me in a bear hug.

“It’s so great to see you Elle! I’ve been praying for you for so long, I knew God was going to bring you by here sooner or later!”

Mac was practically choking while trying to hold in his laugh after seeing my surprised face.

“Here Elle,” He handed me his contact card, “lets catch up sometime soon.” With that he winked at me, murmured something to Mac and walked out of the door.

“Still, years later and he still gives me that gigantic hug. You would have thought that I might have outgrown it.” I told him.

“Never.” He walked forward up the isle, leaving me to observe.

“I’m enjoying your sympathy.” I told him as he picked up an acoustic guitar and sat on the stairs leading to the stage. He looked at me and patted the spot next to him.

“Please don’t make me do this.” I told him.

“I’m not going to make you do anything. I just would like you to sit by me.” He showed that easy-going smile.

I shook my head, denying his request.

“Soot yourself.”

He started strumming on the guitar and quietly singing while I was looking around.

Everything looked about the same. The color, chairs, pulpit, and cross.

That cross.

I stared at the icon standing at the front of the church. I hated that stupid thing. I felt so much shame, so much guilt. I wanted to feel free like I did when I was a teen. Feel loved from the people who went here. I wasn’t even sure I could be loved again. Genuinely loved, that is. I looked up at Mac. He had his eyes closed, still playing the instrument, but looking like he was at peace. I couldn’t make out his words, but wanted to hear what was keeping him so focused.

“Will you sing louder?” I could see that he was slightly embarrassed when he noticed that I was looking at him.

“Nope, you have to come sit up here, I guess.” Reasoning was always his strength. He continued playing, completely enveloped in his worship.

I wandered up there, but stopped at the bottom of the stage.

“Mac, I’m not, I- I shouldn’t be here. It’s not where I belong.” It forcefully came out.

“Why?” He stopped everything and turned his attention to me.

“I’ve messed up so much. I’ve done things I shouldn’t. I used to know right and wrong, but I always did the thing I hated the most. I regret so many of my actions. I-” I had made my way up the stairs and felt the lit-up cross mounted on the wall. Silently, I cried. I had never felt so taken advantage of in my life. So many people told me that they loved me, but none of them met it. None of them lasted. The place that had loved genuinely had lasted. Why had I been so stupid to leave?

“Haven’t we all?” I could hear him quietly walking up behind me.

“I-” Swallow. Mac will only help you. “ I can’t change this though. I’m trapped in a world I don’t want. People have hurt me. Someone has hurt me. He is hurting me.”

“What’s happened Elle?” His voice was stern, defensive.

“I was stupid.”

“Elle, what has this guy done to you?” He placed his hand on my shoulder, causing me to look at him. Tears streamed down my face. I had done so well at keeping everything a secret. I took my sleeves and pulled them up one at a time, revealing bruises of all sizes and colors.

“He hurts me. If I don’t do what I’m supposed to. I was stupid, and left a I had written to you letter out.”

“What did it say?“ His face was as hard as stone.

“I was trying to write you, to tell you that I was going to escape from him. It, it explained everything. He found it…” My voice trailed off as muffled sobs came out.

“No, no…you’re safe.” Mac wrapped his arms around me.

“Mac…” I tried to push, away. I can’t let him end up hurting himself. “I’m pregnant.”

“I will protect you.” He told me, adamant. He wouldn’t let me go. I could feel his tears on the back of my neck. I let myself feel loved for the first time in a long time. I finally wasn’t alone.


Two years had passed since that day. I could remember it like no other day in our lives. Mac and I were married standing in that same spot a little over a year later. The sweet spot of redemption had held a special place for us. We now have a beautiful son named Nathan, meaning gift of God. Our small family shared love like no other. Though, we had our problems when Nathan’s dad had tried to enter the picture again, Mac kept his promise. God kept His promise. The sweet redemption of Christ saved our beautiful dreams.

A Story, Part 1

She sat in her soft-yellow slug bug pounding the steering wheel. Tears came down her face as she watched the people file out from the church. All of them were so happy. She remembered being one of them, much to well. She hated the memories that were happiest here. Her childhood had lived and breathed here. Ever so slowly though, in her teen years, she started drifting away from the people who kept her there. After she graduated from high school, she attended the state university. There she had felt freedom like she never had before. She closed her eyes and rested her head against the steering wheel. There were so many things she regretted from her decisions. Now, she came to the only place where she had felt love and couldn’t even bring herself to go inside. All the shame and guilt held her in her seat. She wasn’t worthy of any type of love. She wondered what she was even doing here; it was a stupid idea to come.


“Elle? Is that you?”

Oh, please go away. I thought.

“Elle?” He knocked on the drivers-side window.

“Go away.” I said.

“Come on Elle, it’s me, Mac. Remember? I haven’t seen you in forever

The way he said it made him sound like he was pleading for some sign of my excitement. I looked up at him, still secluded in the safety of my car.

“What happened Elle?” He loudly demanded after seeing my face.

I put my finger to my mouth to hush him. I didn’t want anyone else to know I was a pathetic wimp who was crying in my car.

“Want to come inside and talk?” Now, more sincere he pointed to the church.

I shook my head. I couldn’t go into a place that reminded me of my failures. I watched him as he walked around to the passenger side of my car and tried to open it.

“Unlock the door, Elle.”

Fear flashed in my eyes.

“I promise, I won’t hurt you.” his eyes held compassion and questions.

Slowly, I reached my hand out and touched the unlock button. He opened the door and situated himself in the passenger seat. He looked at me and smiled.

“It’s been forever.”

I nodded.

“What happened Elle?”

“Nothing. Nothing at all.” Calm, cool, and collected.

“Come on Elle, we were best friends back in youth group. We used to tell each other everything. You can trust me…” He held his breath and hoped for something more.

Failure. Screw up. I shook my head, another wave of tears about to force themselves out. I pounded my steering wheel with my hands. My heart told me yes, my brain told me no.

“Elle, why did you come back? What has happened? Why are you so afraid? I want to help you.”

“You can’t help me Mac. I’ve messed up to much.” I whispered. I felt the cold touch of his hand on my tightly grasped fist.

“Nothing you can do or say will make me leave without helping you. I’m guessing that’s why you came here.” His hand covered mine and gently grasped it.
I looked at him. Sternly he kept eye contact with me and said, “I will not hurt you.”

I sighed. So many secrets that were held and watched so closely over the years were about to rush out as fast as Niagara Falls...
Did you guys like it? I'll write more in my next post!
Let me know what you think.
~Believer in PRTC