Yes I now have my own website. With this pioneering and pretentious step, I have accomplished two things: one, I no longer have to deal with childish Tumblr, and two, I can now begin to promote my own brand of opinions for eventual world takeover. In my lifetime, I’ve had a total of five blogs. The progression went like this: Pochacco journal–>Xanga–>Blogspot–>Mission Year–>Tumblr. My blog progression was trending upward until Tumblr, which I immediately regretted. I shame myself for making such a poor decision.

To make up for it, this blog! Each prior blog has represented a certain stage in life, and I hope that this blog now captures the angst and existential wanderings of my twentysomethings the way only a public blog can. I invite you into my angst.

The past six months have seen change upon change upon change. Since the first day of preschool, when I locked myself in the car and spit at my mother, it has been painfully evident that I am not good at life transitions. Nonetheless, I step forward. Not because the road ahead is clear and victorious, but because I told myself that I’d keep walking, and life has this way of not waiting around for me to muster up the kind of confidence that people write and preach about. So I stumble along, as many of us do, trusting that each successive step lands on solid ground. It’s been 23 years—so far, so good. God is faithful. As the poet says, “Every step, an arrival.”

Today I drove Donald to the airport. He is moving to Hong Kong. Aside from the transition from Alex Smith to Colin Kaepernick, this is easily one of the biggest changes in my life since I’ve been back from Chicago. I am excited for him, but it’s also sad.

Inevitably, change comes with both excitement and mourning, often without our permission. I am starting to realize that joy and suffering really aren’t that different, and that in order for new possibilities and opportunities to open up, other things usually must die. Maybe that’s why all the folks I met in Chicago–the “poor” and “needy” of this world–know joy more deeply than I ever will. “I should have been dead, but God made a way out of no way!” is not a theological assertion, but the song of someone who, as Joshua Bennett says, “has looked death in the face and come away dancing.”

And maybe it’s a bad omen to talk about death in the first post of your new blog, but really, death and brokenness are starting to scare me less and less these days. Not because they’re less and less real—quite the contrary actually—but because I am not afraid to run my hands over my own wounds or to appreciate the shape of my scars. And I think we would do well to imitate the Christ who held out his own wounds for others to touch, unafraid of his own broken flesh, his glorified wounds the greatest proof that there is redemption in this world. I hope my writing points to this truth.

So here it is. I start this blog off with… death! The death of my Tumblr! Honestly, thanks for reading. Folks like you keep me writing, despite all the contradictions I experience with a pen in my hand (or fingers on a keyboard). Hopefully, I’ll put a post up every week, but yeah that’s probably not gonna happen. Until next time, I’ll be praying the prayer we said every week at New Landmark Missionary Baptist: “Lord God, thank you for another day that wasn’t promised. Some folks didn’t wake up today, but you saw it fit to get us out of bed and you put breath in our lungs.” Thank you God, that through all the changes and transitions, we’re still here, stumbling along, but safe. Every step, an arrival.