An Unbelieving World

“The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today is Christians: who acknowledge Jesus with their lips, walk out the door, and deny Him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.” -Brennan Manning

This may be totally anecdotal but most of the people I’ve encountered who have sworn off the faith have done so because of what they have seen from us. No, we’re not called to be perfect and even if we were we still would fall short. But sometimes we’re not even trying. Maybe even a lot of times. 

We are called not to perfection but to radiate the light. If we want to secure an atheist in their faith we simply need to show them the darkness.

Process Video

How I draw a sketch!

I spend a little time talking about my process for making the sketches you see here. I should have said so in the video but I use the 12.9 iPad Pro with Apple Pencil and Procreate almost exclusively! 

If you’re into art process; check it out and let me know how I can improve! What else do you want to know!?

I don’t know what happened but I made a video and I instantly started using language like “shout out” and “your boy.” It’s possible I watch too much YouTube. I read somewhere that if you’re not embarrassed by your first video then you waited too long to post it. I guess I’m good because there is so much I want to change in this video!

Hat tip to @rachelizabethmcginley for requesting this video – it’s of an image I created of her!

Reach Out

“What does love have to do with it? EVERYTHING.” – Pastor @jadavisii

I had to pleasure to create this sketch for Pastor Davis over at the @verve.pomona for his one year anniversary! I don’t know a lot about being a pastor but by observing a lot of them out in the wild; it seems like a difficult career with little pay, a lot of scrutiny, and a difficult work-life balance. I feel like we should take more time to say “thanks” and let them know we appreciate them. I now know TWO people over the Verve Pomona community and they both seem like super awesome people!

And this was a GREAT sermon. The message was on point AND he quoted Tina Turner and had a basketball illustration. 🙌

Advice for the Rich

“Anybody who is rich and successful and they’re trying to measure up – just surrender. Give your heart to Christ and let Jesus mold you because that stuff can be here today and gone tomorrow.” @brianheadwelchspeaking at @crsrdschurch

I don’t mind revealing that back in the 90’s I was a pretty big Korn fan. Not because of the lyrics per se, I was really just there for the guitars. I have more than one memory of aimlessly driving around Las Vegas as a teenager with a big gulp in hand (no cupholders) and that album blasting so loud that it was breaking the speakers of my parents old ’82 Volvo.

Fast forward to modern times; my family and I are driving through Kentucky and stop at Chick-fil-a (naturally) for lunch and notice a very large modern building that we discover is Crossroads Church. We don’t have time to check it out but I follow them on instagram because, if you’re new here, I draw sermons and stuff.

This weekend these two worlds smashed together with Brian Welch of Korn spoke with the head pastor at Crossroads and was very open about his life of excess, of meth addiction, and of giving his life to Christ and an industry where I can only imagine it’s super unpopular to do so. It’s a story of redemption, of tearing down everything he thought was important and building it back up on the strength of Christ. 

This quote was so good though – you can hear it in his voice when he says “that stuff can be here today and gone tomorrow” that he’s lived through it and come out the other side.

I appreciated his transparency and openness. I’m really interested to read his books but I have a real problem with buying books and never reading them! Am I the only one!?

Anyway, thanks to Brian and Crossroads – it’s an uplifting interview for sure!

Make Good Tables

“The Church’s approach to an intelligent carpenter is usually confined to exhorting him not to be drunk and disorderly in his leisure hours, and to come to church on Sundays. What the Church should be telling him is this: that the very first demand that his religion makes upon him is that he should make good tables. Church by all means, and decent forms of amusement, certainly—but what use is all that if in the very center of his life and occupation he is insulting God with bad carpentry? No crooked table legs or ill-fitting drawers ever came out of the carpenter’s shop at Nazareth. Nor, if they did, could anyone believe that they were made by the same hand that made Heaven and earth.” 

-Dorothy L. Sayers

I know personally I sometimes make being a Christian very difficult – mainly because I make it difficult. I love being reminded of simpler expectations like this one. Nobody wants to listen to your story because you go to church on Sundays. But to shine the the light of Jesus in your work…phew, that’s something unique. To exude hope instead of cynicism, to encourage instead of demean, to be honest and forthright instead of engaging in politics and gatekeeping – all of these will display the love of Christ way more than just being “a good boy and good girl.”

Incidentally; there’s one class of people that I find over and over again exemplify just this, no matter what field I find them in. Hardest working people I’ve ever encountered.

Farmers.

Pen Test!

I’m a creature of habit. When it comes @procreate I use the studio pen every single time; it’s perfect. BUT I’ve been watching a lot of @nolanium videos and he uses the dry brush and man does it look good. I don’t know if I’m switching brushes yet but I like the line it creates. And it doesn’t put my lack of pressure control on display like the studio pen does! 😅

So Much More: The Heart of Gratitude

So Much More – Conversations and Commitments

It was another packed message on Sunday at Thomas Road Baptist Church! I always check the sermon notes before the message starts to see what I’m getting into (Thomas Road is the only church I’ve found that publishes their notes ahead of time which is MUCH APPRECIATED) and looking at these notes I found myself wondering “how is Pastor Jonathan going to cover all of this in just 30 minutes?” He did, it was insightful and challenging, and he said my new favorite quote “God doesn’t want to just hear from you when you’re thanking him for a hot dog!” Definitely a triumph in word selection because if he would have said “meal” or “sandwich” I don’t think it would have stuck but choosing to say hot dog made the statement ridiculous and poignant at the same time. I was blessed by this sermon and hope you are too! Don’t be surprised if you see the hot dog quote illustrated later this week…🤷‍♂️🌭

So Much More – A Walk in the World

Charles Billingsley preached at Thomas Road Baptist Church on Sunday and brought the 🔥! The sermon was great, loaded with exposition and motivation. This is the first in a series of spiritual disciplines that will be preached about over the next month. Sermons like this can be difficult for me because I start writing down every single sentence. Having to trim and decide what to actually post is a real struggle; It’s all so good!

I’m really looking forward to the rest of this series!

Atomic Habits by James Clear

This book…man, it’s packed full of realistic habit changing fuel that you can apply to your life today. Seriously. It’s almost a reference manual in that there are so many good ideas and tactics that are explained in a simple and clear manner. Here are some of the most salient points that stuck out to me:

Scale down your habits

I’ve heard James mention this on quite a few podcasts but when building a habit it’s important to break it down into the smallest repeatable element to instill the habit. From a Christian perspective; if you’re trying to read your Bible everyday don’t set up a habit like “I’m going to read my Bible every day for 30 MINUTES.” It’s way too big. Make it super tiny so that executing the habit is almost effortless. Just read a page, or a paragraph, or even a sentence. Just make it tiny enough that you won’t fail to do it. Then track it.

Systems not Goals

I loved this point so much because as we’re told many times over to set goals (SMART,BHAG, and other such goals-type acronyms come to mind) if we fail to design the systems to accomplish those goals we are taking a shot in the dark. As James writes; “Winners and Losers have the same goals.” Design your systems to achieve your goals!

Your Habits are your Identity

This one is deep. It’s one of those phrases that appears obvious but when you really look at it; we don’t really believe it on some level. When someone states “I want to be X” our response should be “Are you doing X?” I concede that this falls down a little bit when someone says “I want to perform brain surgery!” But for every person who has ever said that they want to be a writer, or a dancer, or an artist (ahem) they just need to write, dance, and make art. You ARE what you DO. If someone wants to be a better Christian, are they doing the things that a “better Christian” would do?

To summarize, this book is one of the better ones I’ve read on habit change. The tactics that James lays out here are actionable and something that anyone could start doing immediately. Whether we are aware of it or not, habits are a major part of our functioning life; understanding why we do them and learning how to manipulate them can aid us in doing whatever it is we set out to do. Buy this book, don’t wait for a discount, it’ll be the best twenty bucks that you’ll spend today. Thanks James!