Excited to have Jeremy back on the blog today. The last time Jeremy guest posted he was awaiting the arrival of his baby girl. He is now a proud father and has gone through several life changes in the past few months. Today he shares his story of having to downsize in order to follow his dream and God’s calling.

I’ve found that our lives are shaped by many experiences.  We are made by events, like old relationships, sporting defeats, and scholastic achievements.  As in the stories we love, life is full of chapters that are good, bad, and ugly.  I’m sure that this is nothing new, but all chapters have a final page, no matter how great it is.

One chapter of my personal story is marked by a slow appreciation of books, developing over time in college.  It probably sounds a little campy, but the ideas I wrestled with in the books made me better.  Better as a student.  Better as a person.

Throughout the years, I accumulated a small collection of books, with those I’ve read and those I planned on reading.  But like all things in life, times change and we have to part with the things we held on to.

Recently, I received an offer to help plant a Christian ministry in the city of San Francisco.  This ministry opportunity will mean that I receive the incredible opportunity to help plant an organization that can help connect youth to the depths of the Christian faith, but with this move comes the tremendous downsizing from suburban Orange County to the tighter confines of an urban setting.  In preparation for the big move, we had to downsize, and with the downsizing came the thinning of my library.

Now before you begin laughing, you need to understand it was tough getting rid of those books.  Classes, memories, discussions, and epiphanies were connected with those old books.  I wanted to hold onto that collection, but practically we just couldn’t take them all with us.  So off my books went to the library and I went into a period of mourning for my lost tomes.

Moving made me think about all the lost connections I’ve had throughout the years, relationships ending and others changing.  

I’ve discovered that life is filled with exits and entrances, where stories intersect and others are transformed.  Wonderfully enough, it’s God’s story, the one that started so long ago, that helps weave fragmented tales into a larger narrative.  Our stories matter to the Author of life, even when they require sacrifices for something different.  Our stories matter to Him, even when they seem insignificant to us.

Chapters come and chapter go, but the people and ideas that have shaped you and I will continue on for years to come.  That’s how I got over my lost books and lost friendships, they have made me who I am, and for that I am thankful.  Who I am will only change again with the people I meet and the new books I read, even when they need to be donated to the library.

What sacrifices have you had to make lately?

7c9b81fd108ed6759a3bfc5517cb7068Jeremy is a twenty-something husband, father to a beautiful daughter, and  recent graduate student living the dream in the O.C. A soon to be transplant to  San Francisco, he will work as a youth mentor and help them think through big  questions of life. Christ-follower. Political junkie. History nerd. Book enthusiast.  Stand-up desk guy. Dark beer and robust coffee lover.

photo credit: Thomas Hawkcc