Day #47 – Been Here

August 13th

I have been here before,

Climbing was never new,

Neither was trying to find You,

Rose early,

Was Monday,

Was day after Sunday,

Crashes were the past,

Were the out last,

Vegas was just the day,

Was just the way,

Tired was really the only way,

A burn,

And the earn,

Where are you standing now?

Are you on fire, again?

Cause I had to send the message,

And ask for the massage,

When I return,

Are you gonna be there?

There, waiting for me?

I have been here before,

Here waiting for the explore,

The adventure,

The last long you call

All night long..

I know you,

I know you have been here too.

 

 

 

Favorite Movie Of The Summer: Review For Wish I Was Here

It would be important for me to mention the content rule in watching films. There is always a chance in searching for great works of film and music that one may have to filter through superfluous darkness that sometimes does have something to do with corruption and enable the storyline to be more believable. However, I am more under the assumption that Hollywood requires a certain amount of swear words, violence and sex to be infused into the film. This can make things difficult for the Christian. It would be sound doctrine for lovers of Jesus and aspire to live pure and Holy lives. But I am also under the impression that fallen people who seek to impact the world with their stories through the lens of film can include not needed darkness yet compile brilliance in reflecting God. The Diablo Cody film Paradise(which I review back in November) tells very striking points about life, God and the pain and confusion that conservative Christians can go through. However, I don’t think it would ever be deemed a Christian film.

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Writers: Zack Braff and Adam Braff

Director: Zack Braff

Stars: Zack Braff, Josh Gad, Kate Hudson, Joey King, Mandy Patinkin and Pierce Gagnon

Basic Overview:

In light of the opening paragraph I have to say that there was some displeasing moments in this film including heavy cussing and otherwise some sketchy sexual content but filtering through that there is very subtle yet bold strokes of genius in this movie. I have to make the same content advisory for Garden State(now 10 years old) and its ability to convey the post adolescent struggle of trying to be a man and trying to be a grown up. In fact, in the book Generation Me Jean Twenge actually outlines Garden State as a premiere example of what young adults can drift themselves into post high school. Garden State showed hopes of a young man that was not willing to live the rest of his life numb to hard stuff and numb to the pain. Rather, life is about facing what is hard and embracing all that it has for you. Natalie Portman’s character embodied this and also directly said it in the film toward the end. Life is..(and the world fills in the blank)..whatever you want it to be.

Why I loved it so much..

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Wish I Was Here now follows Aiden now  decade later struggling in his marriage and with his kids and still mourning the loss of his mother. Aiden is full of distance. He is not present. Hence, the title, Wish I Was Here. Aiden is not making it as an actor and the swear jar keeps adding the money because of his many cuss words he uses around his young kids. However, the pain of his distance is most felt with his complicated relationship with his dying dad. Gabe(Aiden’s dad) has cancer and is on the deathbed and could go at any minute. The opening monologue reflects on Aiden’s childhood ambition to play superhero. He pretty much says, ” I used to imagine saving the world..to those people out there..but maybe we are just the regular people, the ones who get saved!”

Aidan is trying to get his also at a distance brother Noah to come and join in helping their dad live his last moments. Mandy Patinkin as Saul, however, is so good and so disturbing all at the same time. Its clear to me that one of the clearest story lines of my generation revolves around man and his father and all that goes along with that. So many stories center on some form of ‘quiet desperation’ with dad and how a man really will be messed up his whole life if his dad was a total jerk and didn’t care. Aiden, however, seeks to find here by being there for his dad. Noah seeks to face the pain too even though he admits that he is scared and that losing his mother was the hardest thing he had ever been through and he didn’t want to go through that again.

Aidan makes his other indelible statement to his brother, saying, ” now we are actually called upon to do something that requires some actual bravery!” And Sarah(Kate Hudson) tells the dad that this moment will shape your sons for the rest of their lives..it will shape who they are as men.

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I cried a lot during this film. And its nothing I need to hide that I never had the best relationship with my dad, but one thing is for sure you only get one shot at this life. Every man gets once. Every man gets one shot and if he is lucky maybe you don’t die young and God lets you live even longer. I have to embrace hard things and hard people. Not because I am so much softer then the world around me, but because I am just as hard. I wish I was here all the time. All of me gets all the good and the bad that comes with being alive on this earth at this time in history.

So much of stories and films are about human survival and sometimes the hardest things we have to do usually involve those closest to us. Either saying goodbye to someone you kind of want dead and you kind of want gone, yet you know the love you have for them will not fade, even when they are gone. Learning to love yourself and loving your broken dad. Which for most of us is the situation in which we were raised in these are all things that make for excellent stories and for whatever reason Zack Braff makes this whole couple of sentences work. Aidan says, “we are finally called upon to do something great we spend our whole lives wanting to do something great and now requires some actual bravery..and he says to Noah and you go and hide..(Aidan then)  says the only problem with hiding in a fish bowl is that everyone can see you!”

I also like that Aidan quotes T.S. Elliot and the Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock..Aidan says ( from the poem) .“Time yet for you and time for me!”

Come out of hiding and face the inner man in you that maybe didn’t get dealt the best situation with maybe not so healthy parents and live life. Don’t wish you were here, simply just be here. See this film! The for certain highlight of the summer in terms of going to the theater and seeing a movie. Heavenly Father is also a very well crafted song to add to this soundtrack that Bon Iver specifically wrote in response after he saw the film all the way through.

In Need

I am scandal,
Its burns like a candle,
I am the dirt under the
Sheep’s skin,
I am yes to dark,
I am yes to corrupt,
I am the interruption
When you are caving in—
I am the pulpit, I am the
Culprit, its gay, its gone,
Its men given over for
Much to long—its wrong,
It burns, it earns its way
Around me—I am sincere,
And I hear, I show up week
After week, yet I do not live
Changed, I do not actually change—
I still choose corruption,
I choose the parts like all
The other frat boys around me—
I choose the breasts and the buts
And the curves and that’s all I see—
I do not see a person,
For perversion has taken a hold
Of me, I am hyprocrite,
I am with the microphone yet
I have no home in God,
I have no direction in Him,
I have nowhere to run,
I have no home,
I am all I need,
And that is why I can’t
Succeed, I came to the
West for gold, now
I am getting old—
I don’t know if I will
Make it, but I know I
Want to live desperate—
Summer is passing,
The ones in the past
Had you in my mind,
Had me all wrapped up tight,
Like a Samsonite, I had
You real tight and packed
Away for me—
I now have let you go,
Bangs down and shadows all
Around, bags under your eyes,
With different strokes you paint
A new future for yourself,
Now I am alone,
Now I am still longing,
Now I buy more new clothes
To look put together,
Yet I have stains,
I have dirt,
I have flirted with
Disaster, I am given over—
I don’t want good, or God,
Of anything of the rod to
Guide me—I am addiction,
In need of non fiction,
I am in need of You

Skates And Darkness

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(Me, Mike, Reid and Benji(and Mark-the other Kneeon Tiger)

For the past two months we have been playing inline hockey on Thursday nights. All four of us(Team Kneeon Tiger) have only played one other time together. Tonight was our second time. Hockey brings up so many thoughts of joy and gratitude. I played ice hockey for six years straight from 10-16 and back in 2008 I got back into it in Kansas City. Here I am in 2014 still playing. We got to pray for this guy named Mo tonight. Its amazing to be a light in a dark place. Here’s a reflection on it. I am honoring my mom as well who is the ultimate evangelistic example. She uses her job daily to preach the Gospel. Also dedicated to my dad for all those wonderful years of playing.

The skates make me,
Have made me,
Continue to make me,
Grace saves me, continues
To save me, death buries me,
Stays with me, this body carries
About your fragrance, carries about
You, all good things drift past me,
Drift away, I can’t taste anything but
You, I skate it off, this world on wheels,
This world on heels, she skips through
The galley, she daily does rally, the Gospel
On her feet, the Gospel to greet, the clean
And the neat and the dark things that you
Love to chase and pursue, I tie the skates,
And tie them tight, I am grateful that I can
See light at night, that the shadow no longer
Lives around me, these eyes shine bright,
And light up with Holy, light up with True,
Light up with you—I see what won’t get
Me there, so I daily bear it, that thing called
Death, called a battle, called all that can rattle,
All that can make me a man—Christ alone,
I do stand in, skates and you, they guide me
Daily, for what I love you live in it, you stay
In it, disciple of the nations, the nations to
Teach, the nations to reach, just these skates
Is what I have now, for the dark is louder now,
Taking up more space then I can only imagine,
But one thing is true, the Gospel on heels, she
Taught it well—preached it on the airplane,
Left it on the jetway, where the world runs
From pain, there is the glorious terrain of
The world out there, that clicks and persists,
That lives on the freeway, that lives stuck
In traffic, that blasts that thing called
Distraction, called endless satisfaction,
Called lonely nights lying next to one’s
That don’t have it in them—to give love,
To give mercy, to give them what is
Called thirsty—hunger and poverty,
That is the diagnosis, for in it the world
Will see the joy that is unseen

Mercy Lens

I am taking it in
Through your mercy lens
Weakness fails me,
City life crowds me,
Hotel living it seems
Broken American dreams
On the carpet of the
Famous I wanted to walk,

Clicking the pics
Picking up their cigarettes,
Taking in their smoke,
Inhaling their lifestyle,
Making it worthwhile,
Filming stayed with me
When teenager outgrew me,

Now their lights seem like
Dark, Man of Steel steals
Me away but only for truth
To stay, unsatisfied is
Their color red that lines
Them dead, golden trophies
They accept,

Broke the world stays,
Future haunts me,
Cause this present fails
Me, it can’t stay this
Broken forever, and it
Seems a movie to me,
But no one can capture
Holy, can film purity,
Heaven only stays in titles,

Mercy lens has me in,
My life of poverty is the
Party I attend, for love
Does apprehend and take
A hold of me, let my
Golden dreams have silver
In them when the flame
Comes, revealed to the mercy
Lens it will only have me
And my love to stand,

Save the Hollywood in me,
Let the movie roll mercy,
Fade to black, my credits roll,
Recede like a scroll, its
You Me and mercy!

The Forecast

Its good to be writing some new stuff. I have been posting older reflections(some with weird, obscure formats–sorry about that) but it is because this blog just passed 100 subscriptions just the other day. I say this to say that, I want the new people to enjoy older reflections that have been long gone.

This is a fresh poem written today. I am just taking in everything that I heard this past week at the Onething conference. A whole post dedicated to that will happen. I am still processing but the storm will come in life. Life will be hard; difficult; full of disappointments(as some would say); and full of plenty of time to choose what to believe in. I am holding on to the fact that it will be hard until I die, but my choices will affect as Mike Bickle recently said, ‘the depth of my choice affects the depth of my experience in God.”(not word for word).

So, here’s my reflection..

Weatherman tell me the forecast
Do I have what will last?
Inside is where we should live
But outside the world does hide
Behind that, storms they are
Forming, winds they are coming,
Ears they are humming and
Deafening the voice that speaks
And calms the storm—disaster, once
Was my master and ruled me daily,
Steady was far from me, faithful and
Fruitful did drift away—my dreams
Kept me going, for so little was spoken
Over me—where could this life please
Be, the forecast is dark, dreary, deadly,
Not lively—cloud and loud hang over
Me for the future is full of conflict, full
Of scandal, full of a candle in need to
Stay burning—I ask if I can truly win,
When the world seems to be drowning
In sin, Noah save me from the flood,
From the pain that life brings, from
The things called suffering and
Resistance—forecast me a safe
Life with a good wife and a good
Thing and kids to add to my last
Name—bring me now, all these
Things—but truth be told, the
Weather is cold, a lie, a shadow
To come—for light and love shine
Through the seasons and the many
Reasons for my dedication—clouds
No more stay over me because I have
Given all of me—to this cause, to this
Flame, to this love that takes my name—
And one I know not of waits for me,
Waits for all who see the storm,
See the clouds, rejoice in rain,
Rejoice in the pain—press through
He says this new year, make it clear
Where you stand—that bad weather
Won’t change your stand—stay steady
When you feel uncertain, stay steady
When he pulls back the curtain—for
The one storm I can’t escape will
Come down from the sky miles
High and convert the earth from
Storm to clear, from pain to gain
From a life of suffering to seeing
His face—and that truly is what
Makes me wait—for weather, I ask
Come and stay, through it all, I
Stand—waiting!

Realize

When did you realize
I missed your sunrise
And came my demise
My downfall was wanting
You at all

I’ve painted this town your
Favorite color to shower you
With red with dead sounds
And leaps around this drama
For the season has changed
And love is not tame,
A safe man I don’t want
To be, a man do I have to
Be,

Would the world notice
My onus to you, my world
To shatter and thoughts to
Scatter, you are my disaster
My beat faster, my alabaster
Only one can have that and
Deserve that, but now tame
Is not sane or part of the game

Loving is a realization that
It can all be shaken in a
Moment so love like its the
Last moment you ever would
Have