My mom is amazing and one of the strongest people that I know. I look up to her so much and I only want to honor her. She worked very hard to provide for us and gave everything that she could, in every way that she could. She truly sacrificed and loved me and my sisters. She is amazing. My mom deserves nothing but respect and honor and I do not thank God nearly enough for her (In fact, I could thank our Heavenly Father a lot more for everyone). One of the things that I remember is growing up with a frugal perspective on money. No usage of money was ever made flippantly. Honestly, this is probably to credit for some character development on my part. This is, of course, a more mature and seasoned perspective on my rearing years. What I noticed as a child, however, was the financial gap between me (a little self-centered, huh) and some other kids. I am thankful that I never went to bed cold or hungry. I always had a home to live in and a mom who loves me. I never had to worry about my safety or not feeling unconditionally loved. I may have grown up with less money than I would have preferred; but one thing that I thankfully cannot deny, however, is that I grew up as a nobleman when compared to many standards across our globe. God is good. This less self-centered, more thankful point of view is more of a recent realization and one that was not much living in my elementary aged self. I remember one particular day saying, “I do not need a dad, I will be fully sufficient for mySELF!” If being a CHRISTian is a follower of Christ, then is a SELFian a follower of self? Moot point. What is for sure, though, is that day the idol of SELF was established amongst many other gods (lowercase “g”) in my life. I heard that those who go to college and get good grades are far more likely to be financially well off. This was my idea of heaven and over the years my self image and self worth (which is inherent and inalienable because we were created in God’s image) was very tightly bound to how much money I could make, the security I could get for myself and my prideful intellect (which is nothing much to brag about). I am not saying that going to school, working hard and honoring the gift of intellect that God gave us is inherently wrong in any way; but I have found these things to be severely lacking in taking God’s everlasting and ancient place in my life. These wonderful things (education, money & smarts) cannot answer for me who I am and why I am valuable. I tried desperately to exalt them to the place where only God can sufficiently sit in my personal life and reality. I believe that only God can answer where I came from, who am I, am I intrinsically valuable & what is my eternal destiny and only He is in control and not me and that is a tremendous weight off of my being that I believe I was never meant to try to carry. My hope is that I will be able to in a worthy manner communicate in this blog how Jesus, through a very personal relationship with Himself, has lovingly torn down wall after wall stone by stone that I built up so that I could have life in Him and have it abundantly.