Utila

My time in Utila, Honduras with Rio Coco Beans Cafe

Mind Militia #2

“Nick, when you’re 40 you will regret what you’re doing. You are going to wish you went and made something of yourself, save money and own things. You could have a career. You could have done something with your life! Not just being a volunteer.”

For those of you who do not know what I do. I volunteer at a non-profit coffee shop that gives a some of its profits to help educate children in Nicaragua who otherwise would not receive a quality education. I do not receive a salary. I live off of the support of friends and family who believe in the mission I am working for. However after this statement from a customer, my world is wrecked. I have decided to give up my philosophy on life. This customer was completely correct and I can’t believe I couldn’t see it before.

I have to make something of myself. I need to go back to school, I need to get a degree in something that matters and I need to find a high paying job in the United States and start saving. I have to do this if I want to make something of myself. In the process I will search hard to find a good intelligent attractive woman to be my wife so that when I produce offspring they may also be intelligent and become important individuals. I need to invest in stocks and IRA’s so I can make enough money to send all my children to school so they, just like me, will become successful and make something of themselves. I have already wasted 10 years of my life serving and serving and serving when I should have been working and working and working to advance my income, my stature, and my seed. So its time for a change of pace.

“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Matthew 6:24

“For the love of money is at the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.” 1 Timothy 6:10

“Surely the fate of human beings is like that of the animals; the same fate awaits them both: As one dies, so dies the other. All have the same breath; humans have no advantage over animals. Everything is meaningless.” Ecclesiastes 3:19

“Say a couple have scores of children and live a long, long life but never enjoy themselves—even though they end up with a big funeral! I’d say that a stillborn baby gets the better deal. It gets its start in a mist and ends up in the dark—unnamed. It sees nothing and knows nothing, but is better off by far than anyone living.” Ecclesiastes 6:3

“Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be.” Matthew 6:21

When I heard this statement written in the beginning from this customer I believe I laughed. Im not sure if it was out loud or just an, “in my head chuckle” which happens often. It still catches me of guard that the majority of the world believes I’m crazy. But it is not me who is the crazy one. At the end of all things. When this world vanishes, with its flaky ever changing philosophies. When death finally retires because its work is done. Nothing will remain. No money. No status. No things. Not even a great amount of children will bring you purpose. The only thing that will matter, and the only thing that should matter now is: Are you a follower of Christ and are you submitted to God’s will.

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” Mark 8:34-39

Categories: Theology, Utila | Leave a comment

Mind Militia #1

“Every great fiction movie,

Every great fiction book,

Every great fiction story,

have one thing in common.

A battle between good and evil. But what is good and evil that makes us so irrationally angry, sad, or ecstatic? Every human has evolved to a level far more advanced than their ancestors. Due to the unwavering and unmistakable natural selection which by itself has brought about the epitome of greatness found in homo sapiens we no are no longer held captive by animal morality. This is why we must make advances to embrace morality for what it really is. The advancement of the human species. During the latest process of evolution, emotionalism was coupled with morality for the purpose of a continuation of the progression of the human species. If human logic would have found the unimportance of moralities true origins (basically not from a transcendent being) humanity would have abandoned morality altogether and reverted back to beast mentality. However, evolution has once again succeeded. It used morality to bring us to where we are today. Morality exists only to prolong and advance the human race. Let us abandon our strong held emotional moral beliefs and look towards the advancement of humanity. Now that we understand this foundational truth of morality we can move forward, set aside our differences, and become (most likely) one of the greatest species in the universe. Set aside all morality that is illogical for our advancement. Hold strong to all morality that truly promotes progression. Not letting our vague and pointless emotions determine our actions which should be found solely in our own evolutionary advancement. No we don’t need to murder anyone or commit genocide. Just leave the poor alone. Let their lack of intelligence be their end. Let the weak mourn and do not comfort them. Let their lack of strength be their ruin. The religious will soon die out as their beliefs become so illogical that any connection to religious statutes leaves them jobless, poor, and starving. That kind of unevolved mistake will soon perish. So, what is good and evil that makes us so irrationally angry, sad, or ecstatic? It is our own progression towards Godhood. Embrace your salvation” -Fallen man

Sometimes I like to play Devil’s advocate in my mind. Most of what I have written above I have heard out of the mouths of real people. The last bit is what the progression of such logic should bring a human to understand. Due to our culture, expansion on this logic to its fullest degree will not be realized due to its overwhelming immoral and sadistic conclusion. It’s a conclusion that Hitler understood. However, It would be much to intolerant for this time period. Ironically, to ignore this conclusion is to be stuck in the world of which modern man claims to be escaping. “Absolutes founded by God.” Richard Dawkins can make snide comments about abortion, which is completely justified by his evolutionary worldview, but be forced to apologize by todays culture, a culture that accepts and practices Dawkins exact worldview. This has brought me to my own conclusion. That humans are become stupider and stupider. Demanding tolerance, practicing intolerance. Espousing philosophies, ignoring their conclusions. We live in a world ruled by emotional, illogical, confused, and intolerant people that demand importance and purpose. Today we are looking at the most unevolved man to ever exist. A man constantly becoming stupider as time moves further and further from the days of perfection. The mind of fallen man is a sick, destructive, degenerative and dangerous place. The mind of God is a redemptive, restoring, regenerating and safe place. The mind of God is Truth. The mind of God can easily be found. Just take a trip to a bookstore or check the drawer in-between the two beds of a holiday inn.

There are so many problems with the philosophies of man that if I were not found by Christ I would try to believe nothing. Not nothing like you think. Nothing is always something. A person who believes in nothing truly believes in something because they cannot fathom nothing. Their nothing is not nothing but something. Their nothing may be to disbelieve all religions, atheism, which is the belief in disbelief. Their nothing may be to believe it is impossible to truly know the answer, agnosticism, which is the belief of “idk.” Their nothing may be to believe in confusion. This is a new one to me that I just recently stumbled upon. That once an answer to existence is determined to be correct you stop living, therefore confusion is mandatory for existence. This may be the strangest of the nothing philosophies I have heard so far. I tell you right now that it is impossible to believe in nothing. Why? We have never experienced nothing because we are something that lives somewhere created by someone.

I hope by reading I have helped you somehow in your search of existence. I can tell you without doubt that Jesus is the only answer to the most important questions ever asked. Jesus is the way, the truth and the light.

Categories: Theology, Utila | Leave a comment

July 9th 2014

This is my 4th week of volunteering for Rio Coco in Utila, Honduras. Next week I will be heading to Vero Beach, Florida. So far, in the 23 years of my life, I have never had plans change as drastically as they have this year. Right now I am supposed to be in West Virginia hiking to Maine on the Appalachian Trail raising money for AmberFund Scholarships. One of my greatest passions is hiking, enjoying the beauty of creation, and today as I sit on the back porch of my current residence I am overwhelmed by the view. A vast body of water of which I live right next to. I have had the joy of snorkeling, swimming and paddle boarding on the clear waters of the Caribbean for nearly 4 weeks now. During which I have had plenty of time to ponder. During the months of March, April and May I felt as if my life was on hold. My knee was ruining one of my greatest dreams. A dream that I had been thinking about everyday for almost 2 years. I am not a person who gives up and for one of the few times in my life I felt as if I had been beaten. I was injured and was put on the bench until further notice. X-rays showed nothing wrong with my knee. My MRI showed nothing wrong with my knee but lo and behold when I hiked 3-4 miles with ascents and descents the pain started and to continue forward was a battle I knew I couldn’t face, especially for 5 months on the Appalachian Trail. So my starting date of April 15th passed by. With no clue where to go from there I applied to 5 ministry jobs. 4 of which I got called back for interviews and 1 of which I was offered. I applied out of a feeling of lack of purpose. Once I realized that a ministry job in the states could be a reality I prayed for direction. To my dismay I felt sick to my stomach about taking any of these jobs. There was no peace. 1 month later I found myself still in Vero Beach, Florida. While hardly making any money I began volunteering at a “Humanic” Coffee Shop. Rio Coco Beans. The first I had heard of Rio Coco had bean an early morning in college over 2 years ago. I woke up to the smell of my roommate making coffee. He offered me a cup. I noticed the words, “Rio Coco” on the bag of coffee beans, drank the coffee, and went to class. Who would have thought that just 2 years later I would be overseas volunteering for that very coffee shop.

This has been a tough few months for me. However, since my time here I have realized a few things.

1. Purpose is not found in a well paying comfortable job.  Yes, logically I know this is the truth. That purpose is found solely through Jesus Christ. I’ve known this for quite a while. However truly applying it to ones life is a different ball game. Knowing its completely safe to jump off a bridge with a bungee chord attached to you versus actually jumping off that bridge with the chord is much different. Intellectually understanding that purpose comes only from Jesus is one thing but Mentally applying it to your life is another. It requires you step off that bridge. Which can be terrifying.

2. I am not as flexible as I would like to believe. I grew up in a church with the Acronyms COP which stand for Cathedral of Praise. All of those heavily involved knew they stood for something else, “Change Of Plans.” I’ve always assumed that I am very flexible because of the practice of change I received from my home church. I was wrong. I learned how to be flexible with things that aren’t of high personal importance. Such as changes in music, messages, chair arrangement, meeting times, etc.  These things were never truly changes in my plans but changes to a group of peoples plans. When my personal plans of hiking the entire Appalachian Trail went out the window it was very difficult for me to cope. No one could really tell but inside of me was a overwhelming theme of, “unsureness” which threw my mind into chaos.

3. Sometimes what I want is not what God has for me. Some of the greatest advice I received was from one of my worship pastors back home. When I didn’t know what God wanted me to do with my life I went to him and asked for his advice. I told him I had prayed and prayed and prayed but had not received an answer. He said to me, “Nick, what do you want to do? Because when you are close to God, his desires become your desires.” I took that advice a little to far. Staying close to God and reaching for my desires while rarely asking him for direction. I still think this is great advice however I would add that sometimes it is the wrong advice. Sometimes what God has for you is not what you want for you. God knows me better than I know myself and I wonder that if I would have truly sought God on the decision to hike the Appalachian Trail in one go if I would have had a peace about it. Asking for God’s direction, staying close in a relationship with him and chasing healthy desires both mine and his are all vitally important.

As for now, I have 1 week left here in Utila. There are so many people here that I connect with. These people are backpackers. They come from all over the world. New Zealand, Australia, France, Israel, Chile, Argentina, United States, Canada, England, and many other places. Their stories are riveting and sometimes shocking. Many of these stories I am trying to grab on film to show the world. I have 9 days left and would like at least 3-5 more interviews. So if you are reading this pray that God intervenes and brings to me people willing to share their stories so I can share them with you.

 

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