Philippians 1:6 – the next chapter

I want to take a few minutes to update you all on my journey…

God is truly doing a good work in me and in my life! A few things have happened so, here’s a list:

  • My divorce is final.
  • I am a full student working towards a Master’s Degree in Education from Simpson University
  • I am giving 30 days notice on my apartment this Saturday (2/15) and I am giving my two-weeks notice at work the following Wednesday (2/20)
  • I will be moving out of my apartment on my way to Redding, CA on Saturday, March 15th!

So, that’s the big news in my life. I will be living with my folks for the rest of the spring and then will look for a place of my own in early summer. This will be a good time for me to get acclimated to the new town, get school work done, get plugged in at a local church, find work, etc…

I know I am going to miss my son terribly much… but we are already planning when Bug will be able to come to visit this summer! I am hoping to be able to take him to Disneyland at some point over the summer!!!

So, with all this change and upheaval going on, I have a couple of requests to ask of you, my wonderful readers:

  • Pray:
    • that Bug and I will stay close and he will know how much his Daddy loves him
    • that I will find work (with benefits… I won’t survive without health coverage)
    • that Ron and Carolyn and I won’t all drive each other nuts living in the same house
    • that I will rely solely on God for my strength
  • Write:
    • comments on my blog
    • emails
    • anything else you can think of so I don’t feel alone

Also, I want to get a tattoo to commemorate this time of change, growth, rebirth in my life… the end of one chapter and the beginning of the next one… the trouble is, I don’t have any really good ideas. I would love any suggestions you all might have!

So, that’s it for today, dear friends. I look forward to your comments!

SDG,
Matty

Philippians 1:6 – Continues Still

so… that initial “break up” happened at Christmas time in 2004 ( i think). I was becoming more and more miserable and She was acting like nothing was wrong. It must be said, when our son was born, She devoted herself to being his mom…. She just seemed to have forgotten She was also my wife. In the 2+ years that elapsed between our initial “break-up” and our split this last spring (May 2007), our son slept in our bed, in my spot, more than I did.

So… one particularly miserable night when I was wide awake on the couch (insomnia was a side-effect of the bi-polar disorder… or maybe a side-effect of the meds…) I pulled up myspace.. I was probably the last person under 35 in the world to not have a myspace, so I decided to create one. (myspace.com/matty040275, btw) After initially creating my page, I started searching for people. I searched people I had known at Westmont and at SCA and at Heritage Christian. and I FOUND SOME!!! It was truly amazing, to reconnect with people who had been gone from me for so long.

I was feeling so lost and alone and bitter so, I decided to really go all out on my page. I listed myself as an Atheist and joined several online groups dealing with Rationalism and Atheism. I loaded my page with sex jokes and pro-legalization propaganda.

Then Mario emailed me. Mario graduated from SCA a few years ahead of me, before my family moved to AZ. But he had found my page and had seen that I, too, had graduated SCA. Mario is co-founder (along with Bobby Brewer and Stephen Baldwin) of The BreakThrough Ministry (www.globalbtm.org). When he read that I was an atheist, he emailed me and started giving me no end of grief over it… he challenged my faith (or lack thereof) from the very beginning and he has never let up. Today, I count him as an amazing friend, a brother in the LORD, and part of my spiritual ancestry.

Another person who was good to find, was a girl I dated briefly at SCA (i know, Andi, that doesn’t really narrow it down) who I will call “Kim” because, to my knowledge, I never dated anyone named “Kim”… by this I mean, I can use “Kim” and not have it refer to an actual person from my past. -ed. note

Kim had been in some bad relationships and had been married. She has two kids and, when I hooked up with her again, she was in yet another bad relationship. As is so often the case, two people in bad situations see, in each other, the way out, and we soon were talking on the phone/email/IM 3 and 4 hours a night… Did we fall in love? Dunno… we thought we did. We spent some time together; I traveled to where she lived a couple of times and we continued to talk on the phone. It was Kim who really started me to realize a) I had to get out of my marriage and b) I missed my GOD and my relationship to HIM through JESUS… Kim and I “dated” until late this summer when we decided it was better to just be friends. She has since pulled away and I really don’t know what’s happening with her right now. All in all, though, it was a great experience and it taught me a lot about what Love can be and should be, and will be again!

Philippians 1:6 – Continued Some More

We began to embrace Wicca and Paganism sometime around early 2000-2001. She had been very bitter at the real and perceived injustices done to women by the church. She always felt the sole purpose of Christianity was to allow men to lord over women and children; to tell them what to do and to keep them down. So called, “Traditional” or “Earth-Centered” religions celebrate the sacred feminine. So that was the direction we went. We had a shrine/alter in our home and we studied all kinds of books on Wicca and Paganism.

When our son was born, I was NOT prepared…. and I failed… miserably…. I neglected him, didn’t spend much time with him, I wasn’t working for a while…. mostly I layed on the couch and watched TV. She was very upset with me, and rightly so…. On the verge of losing our house to foreclosure, we finally sold it and moved to Las Vegas to be near to Her parents. It seemed to me the right decision at the time and our little family began to put itself back together. I worked as a temp and then was hired on to a full-time job. She decided She wanted to pursue Her Master’s Degree at UNLV and so she did. During this time, I broached the subject of divorce… we weren’t getting along well, we had no money…. I “moved out” by sleeping on the couch and never being home. After about 6-8 weeks, I decided I was being selfish and asked Her for another chance. She agreed and life continued…. Kinda… I was briefly hospitalized due to a suicide “attempt” and eventually diagnosed bi-polar Type II. Medications followed… lots of them…

Philippians 1:6 – Continued

At Scottsdale Christian, each day was begun with prayer and Bible class. I had good Christian friends and we all did what we could to encourage one another. But, we were all just kids. I don’t remember what church I attended while I was in High School. That is to say, my family went to PV Evangelical Free (now Shiloh Community Church) but, I don’t really remember anything about it. It didn’t make much of an impression, you might say. My life was filled with school and girls and girls and girls (those of you who know me/knew me will be either nodding and laughing, or shaking your head and judging me all over again)

After High School, I attended Westmont College, a non-denominational, Christian, Liberal Arts college in So. California. Westmont was great, but not so great for my faith or walk with Christ. Up on “the hill” we were insulated from everything going on and, as underclassmen are not allowed to have cars, on the hill we stayed. One Baptist church sent a bus up to campus every Sunday and I attended there for a brief stint… even singing in the choir. But, I was exposed to many more “liberal” ideas and people at Westmont. Let me say this right now and be perfectly clear, Liberal does not equal evil or non-Christian or even wrong; it’s merely a way of describing a person’s worldview.

While at Westmont, my faith lagged… faltered… fell… It was the “faith of my fathers” and not my own and so, I didn’t own it. I met Her while on England Semester and we fell in love. By the time the semester was over, we had pretty much decided we were going to get married. She had one more year @ Westmont.

We were married in April of 1998 in Phoenix. From the beginning, it wasn’t what I expected out of marriage. This isn’t a post about my failed marriage, so I won’t go into detail. Suffice to say, She wanted nothing to do with GOD or Church and, not being strong enough, I willingly went marching, hand-in-hand, 180 degrees from God, straight into the waiting arms of DEATH. And, I don’t blame Her. I blame life… no… I blame myself… sometimes…..

Philippians 1:6

(So… here it is… I will most likely be writing this in sections… a little bit at a time, because I never have very much time at one time…)

“being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it” – Phil 1:6

This verse has become so important to me. Because, GOD began a good work in me when I was a very small child and, regardless of my desires and my plans and my banal stupidity, GOD is nothing if not faithful to HIS word.

I was born into and raised in a wonderful, loving, Christian home. My parents did everything they could to model CHRIST and CHRISTlike behavior. We attended church regularly (too regularly?) and I was always active in Sunday School, Youth Group, VBS and those types of things. I prayed. I memorized Scriptures. In 2nd grade, I began attending Heritage Christian School in Indianapolis, IN. Each and everyday brought prayer and biblical teaching. I attended conferences. I both attended and led bible studies. After a brief foray into public school in 8th, 9th and 10th grades, I graduated from Scottsdale Christian Academy in 1993.

Happy Monday!

Good day to all my faithful… and my deepest and most sincere apologies for neglecting my blogging responsibilities.

My dear friend, Andi, over at kungfuchicken has chided me a little to remind me of my promised “Testimony” post.  This is proving to be a much harder undertaking than I initially anticipated.  A stretch of my literary muscles, so to speak.   I am up to the challenge… just looking for the time! (yes, i did NEED to sit on the couch and watch football yesterday!)

My mom is coming to visit this weekend… I have resigned myself to the fact she is coming to see “Fish” and not me… oh, well…  Pictures of the blessed events to follow early next week… see if we can’t spice this blog up a little…

Still playing around with layout and themes… I would appreciate any and all comments (+, -, N)… most recently, I have switched the “About” page to be something you click to, not the main page when you first view the blog…

SDG,
Matty

What a weekend

Happy Monday Morning!  (yeah right!)

I had a really strange weekend.  Relationships changing… Hanging out with my son, but he decided he wanted to go back to his mom’s house early, which was hard… My heart was lifted when, upon arriving back at his apartment, he hugged the dog before he hugged his mom!  I can’t fault a boy for wanting to see his dog over his dad

A significant relationship in my life changed this weekend.   A wonderful girl who I thought was going to be my girlfriend and maybe someday wife, is not.  We have decided we will be very good friends…

and that’s ok… I’m really sad… but I’m really ok with it at the same time…

Another significant relationship is changing as well… the most important relationship I could ever have… My relationship with my God…  with the Saviour of my Soul… I am learning how to trust Him and lean on Him and be at comfort and peace in His arms… and it’s amazing…

I really need to get to work on my “Testimony” post… it’s going to be a long one, and very therapeutic, I think… check back and check it out… Hopefully I’ll have it posted in the next 24 hours or so…

SDG,

Matty the Stranger