Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Who Am I?

Last Night we were asked a few questions. I thought a lot of them, and here are my answers. Maybe you can ask yourselves the same ones.
Who Am I?
I am a thief in the day
And a refugee by night
I am an endless sandbar
That goes beyond sight
I am a biased council
Fighting the whole of man
I am a poet of ages past
Dreaming in the sand
Who do I think I am?
I feel like a beggar in a foreign place
With no desire to look upon their face
I want more but look at less
I find no comfort in my dress
I am a man on his way to who knows where
I am an ambulance full of care
I am a rock cast into my own whirlpool
I am for you a stubborn fool
Who do people think I am (in my eyes)?
I wander the circus full of paint
A red nose and a white face
People come to see me for a price
But is it really me they see?
I am sometimes even a saint
I am a runner with no pace
Am I a pie that has one slice?
There is so much more to me
Who does God say I am?
I am a tornado on a paradise
A cheating heart but a faithful body
Sprinting out into the night
I break hearts and destroy temples
But I am beautiful beyond comprehension
My eyes are like the stars
And my smile resembles the sea
After all I’ve done you still love me

Monday, September 22, 2008


I’ve been trying to think of material to give all of you viewers the past couple of days, but my mind has blanked. Everything I want to write dissipates with every new thought that enters my head. That’s a lot! My mind either is empty or running in hyper mode. One thing I think that is holding me back from writing is the fact that nothing too exciting is happening. That’s not bad, trust me. Sometimes a lull in activities is a necessary tool to help one grow. I think it can sometimes display comfort and stability. For me this rings true; I am really familiarizing myself with my surroundings and absorbing. I am growing used to the ships life, which so far is good. I am becoming me to all of these people here, and becoming more confident in who I am. Someone tells me a lot that I am a decent writer, which makes me feel good. I am growing close to a few people, and starting relationships to loads of people. People actually know my name know; pretty crazy huh. I am officially a deck hand in training. We don’t seem to do a whole lot of important things until we set sail.
One thing that sucks, but seems to be normal, is the heartbreak of sailing. Nobody knows when it’s going to happen or even really where is next. The main rumor going around is now Belfast by January or so. Whatever, I guess I have to get used to Koge since we will be here forever. Everybody here has been through this for a while, so I feel bad complaining as I have been here for a very short time. I hope we leave port, but it’s all in God’s hands!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Address (for now)

Ryan Coon
MV Logos Hope
c/o Baltic Kaj 1
4600 Koge (the o has a backward slash through it)

Send me things if you desire, I appreciate all of them.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What A Day!

Today was a great day. We had our last day of Pre-Ship Training, which is amazing. The whole of PST was sitting around learning. I am ready to endeavor in some physical labor. The last session was good, as we were told to write goals and missions statements. A few of mine are to grow in God every day, to love people with all of my heart, to retain the knowledge and experiences I gain here to bring them home, and to seize the day. I was excited when I heard for sure that I was on deck department, and the guy who I think would bother me the most wasn’t. Although that sounds kind of mean, it’s true. He was so sure he’d be on the deck too; I almost felt bad for him. Anyways, next we had solitude time with God. We could do whatever we wanted. A lot of people chose to sleep or clean, but not me.
This is when my day was really made great. I decided to go explore Koge a little more all by myself. I walked away from the hope and had a lot to discuss with God. That I did. I walked one way toward where I thought the beach was just talking to God about my struggles and triumphs, and relishing on who I want to be in my future. Then I ran into a fellow Hoper who told me I was going the wrong way. I turned around to walk back toward the real beach. On the way I prayed my face off. I prayed for me, my family, my friends, Cornerstone Church, Michigan, the USA, Logos Hope, OM (who is really struggling with funds at the moment), and went back through. I got everything off of my chest; EVERYTHING! When I finally sat down I felt so relieved and at peace. I sat on a bench by the beach listening to some good music and reading my bible. I read through the last three letters of the gospel. Then, I rested. I delighted in where God has sent me and what He will do in me. I felt so comfortable. I knew that God had his arms wrapped around me with a giant hug. Then I slept for a few minutes.
After that I went back, and got an Ethernet cable so that I could use my laptop to get online. Then sat around online waiting for dinner to get prepared. I ate, and it was good; odd, but good. It was sort of like lasagna made with alfredo sauce and vegetables in it. After dinner, I put my laundry in the cans to be washed, and then I went to our last service as a PST. The speaker was good, but has a voice that put me right to sleep. The Russian girl next to me woke me up and told me to stay up, I tried and failed. I did wake up in time for worship, which was amazing. It was one of those worships where you feel comfortably uncomfortable. All of the hairs on my body were standing in worship. The ducts in my eyes were ready and willing to burst if called upon. My body felt weak, but my spirit has never felt stronger. I focused upon the cross, and saw sweet salvation. What a feeling!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Struggle of an Epic Proportion

A clean sheet lies in front of me. Just a sheet of paper. Not even that, it’s a screen, yet for some reason I have a hard time telling it all that’s on my heart. I can only tell God and myself all that’s on my mind. I feel like I have a lot to offer, but it’s all in the basement. I’m scared. I’m scared of being vulnerable, I’m scared of judgment on me, and I’m deathly afraid of rejection. I’m sure that this dang screen will not judge me, but why can’t I tell it my problems. I get red faced and nervous. Where did my trust in people go? I can’t really relate it to a single event; more like a chain of events in my life, most of which were minuscule. I go back to being betrayed in my subconscious every time I want to express my feelings. I’m not just this sarcastic and shallow guy. Really computer I promise that I’m not. I try to be deep. I try to open up, but why express feelings I try not to feel. I think my apathy is almost corrosive. When did I stop caring on the outside yet care more and more on the inside? I have something to offer to people, don’t I? I know I do, but I hold it down. I hold it down for fear of being disappointed again. We all have our disappointments, so why do I take them so hard?
The real core of this problem is in my confidence. Although at times I may seem somewhat sure of myself, I’m not. Flat out insecure. Where does this feeling of belittlement come from? I read constantly how beautiful and amazing I am from the only one that actually matters. Why does that mean so little right now? Although he is God, I am still me. I still struggle with the problems I have my whole life. I struggle with jealousy, I struggle with all the things men struggle with, and I even have my wrestling matches with pride. Why pride? I am insecure, where does this feeling of deep pride come from? My biggest problem lies in jealousy at times. I see people walking around with an aura of confidence and humility and I just wish I could have that. The fact is that I probably won’t. It has been engraved in my mind that I am not good enough. The funny thing is that all my life I have been told how handsome I was, or how athletic I am, or how smart I am, or how compassionate I am. Why don’t I see these things? Although I do see them in flashes, when somebody better comes around, I get really self conscious. I think that it is all pride. I wish I was the best, but somebody is always better, and if not they are training to be better. Man what a cycle. Even as I write this I struggle with idea of publishing it. I am incredibly vulnerable actually, and I realize this the more I think about it. I think everybody is vulnerable, but I fail to register this in the ol’ noggin. I could be better; better looking, more athletic, smarter, skinnier, faster, and funnier. But I’m not, that’s just a fact. Sure, some of those things I could work on, but would that make me feel better? Probably not. I wish I could tell myself that I am good enough through him and really feel it deep down in my belly. I have my moments, but not enough. Again, not spiritual enough. One day I will be perfect, for He tells me so. I can’t wait.
Believe it or not, I am really enjoying my time here. I am building friendships, but I think the standard of my homely friends is really hard to match. They are amazing, I couldn’t have better. I hope that one day we share the same intimate love with Christ, and I pray for it every day. Even if we don’t, they are my best friends, and they mean the world to me. I think this standard has kind of created a small wall for me into entering new friendships that I struggle with at the moment. I only write this down right now because I have nowhere comfortable to turn, and I realize you may not judge as harshly as others. Please don’t judge me by these entries alone, they are just my struggles. The life of a 21 year old going on a journey with his savior was never meant to be easy, and I didn’t expect it to be.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Where To?

I find myself coming back
To the dry well
Back to the desert
Forty years seems like a lifetime
One year seems like a breath
I get thirsty and drink
But forget my water
I drink from the earth
I drink the sand
The sand in this desert
It runs dry as bones
Maybe it is bones
The bones of those defeated
But not I
Beaten and bruised I wander on
My path narrows and straightens
What lies next is hard to see
All I see is in front of me
Sometimes I can’t even make that out
My eyes are weary
My legs scream for rest
My brain is empty
I’m too tired fight
But too tired to sleep
So on I wander
Hoping the next step is the end
The end of the desert
The beginning of something beautiful
Beyond description
A mountain and a waterfall
Appear from nowhere
It’s all within sight
Why can’t I get there?
Are my feet stuck?
My pace quickens and slows
I can’t decide if the mountain is closer
If it’s better to turn around
Go back to the desert and sleep
Maybe tomorrow
That’s what I have said for so long
But tomorrow has come many times
Yet I find myself timid
Maybe today I’ll be bold
I’ll walk to the mountain
I’ll be carried up it when I get there
I can’t wait for the grass
The feeling of sand is so superficial
Superficial and comfortable
The rock seems so troublesome
Why perch on a rock when there is sand
I look back again and again
Always too timid to move foreword
And too afraid to sprint back
But a sudden urge to sprint comes
I fight it all of the time
This time it is different
It calls to me from in front not behind
The mountain screams at me
Should I ignore it?
I rarely feel this tug
But this is no tug
It is a shove
The sand grips my feet
It grabs my heart
It hold is so strong
But its roots are shallow
I think it is time to move
I look back on my steps
I count them
They are numerous
But they go in circles
I have been running in circles
More like ovals
At times toward the mountain
At times toward the sand
Why can’t I decide?
What has gripped my heart with such force?
What will I give in to?
It’s too late
I’ve started to move onward
Toward the mountain
The well
The shade
I can’t wait to rest
But a long journey awaits me
I can’t turn back
I won’t turn back
But like before I glance at the familiar home
I hope to be disgusted
I hope to fall in shame
But I don’t
I feel a certain fear
The fear that grabs your stomach
But I have already started to move
No turning back now
Not for a while
I have started moving and aim not to stop
Sure at times ill stop and maybe look back
I may even pace back a little
But I must remain strong
I find my water
Now to move on
Move past the sand
Onto something better
Something solid
My stomach knots
My skin screams with pain
My ancestors stand in the way
My future leaps for joy
Whom then should I please
Let the dead bury the dead
Let the living love the living
I move onward
All around I am slowed
But I hurry
I rush to the mountain with a great fatigue
A great hunger
None will stop me
One will hold me
Oh to be in the river
It is what I dream of
It is why I came to this damned place
This cursed desert
All this sand
It is so comfortable
Just one look
One look back
I turn my head and see the desert home
So superficial
So comfortable
So ugly
Time to move on
I must remain ever vigilant
Remain straight
I will go home
Home to the mountain someday
To be tucked away safely
Once and for all time

Monday, September 8, 2008

Homesick… Not Really, Just Footballsick

September 7, 2008

I miss football. Today is opening day for the NFL, and that’s probably going to be on my mind all day. The previous few years today has been one of my favorite days. I would go to church all excited and get home and sprint to the T.V. and watch all of the pregame shows on Fox and CBS. I’d run through my fantasy team to make sure I have it all how I want it. Now I don’t even know who is playing on my team anymore because I can’t rally check it here. I am sadder that I can’t watch the Lions, who are getting a really exciting offense. I guess that at least I can’t really be disappointed most Sundays this year. That’s about the only good thing about not watching football.
Aside from that little ramble, I am doing very well. I started to open up to my PST team (PST means Pre-Ship Training). I have been more talkative every day and am starting to be me around these people. Although this is good, I find myself in a familiar position; I just can’t open up on a deep level. I feel like I am going to be judged every time I want to open up. I have had this problem for a long time, just ask a certain ex of mine, and I feel like I need to overcome it. I don’t want shallow relationships, but without opening up I know that is all I can have. I would love to listen to people’s problems and past, but when it comes to me telling them of mine I get nervous and shy. It’s quite odd.
My brain is fried. I think that they crammed enough new information in it to last for a while. We have basic safety training right now, which is training to know how to be safe on the ship, and it is the most boring thing I’ve done in years. I find myself always tired and looking for sleep in the classes. It reminds me of High School again, where I couldn’t stay awake if I wanted to. Basically I’m mentally exhausted and just waiting to get to the ship. A deep physical exhaustion is way better, because I find myself not wanting to think with a mental tiredness. I’d rather sit and think any day than just zone out all of the time. I can’t wait to get t the ship.
The food here sucks (well most of the time). I tried liver for the first time, and almost puked. Lunch is always some nasty form of meat, and dinner is usually decent. All of the trainers tell me that I will love this ships cooking compared to this stuff. Another reason to get there. I am enjoying my PST though the people here are mostly genuine. There is one particular person that I think I could have problems with in the future. He is just incredibly overbearing. His personality is opposite of mine and he just won’t stop talking to anybody to listen for a second. He is always trying to show himself better than people around girls. Whenever people talk about guys being jerks or stereotypical he has to make it a point that he isn’t like that. He even took the microphone at a meeting we had for SP (I’ll explain that in a second) that he is not the typical guy. That’s just silly.
Well, SP is something called social policy. This is the rules to how you relate to women, particularly if you have interest in a relationship with one. The rules here are that you can’t date the first year of your commitment but after that your free game, kind of. You have to go to an officer and request them to get SP with a person of the opposite sex then they proceed to ask a female advisor and find out if they like you back. THEN the advisors contact the families and see if it is ok of you to date, and if all goes well, you have yourself a girlfriend. No wonder people who date here get married so much, after going through all of that together. The whole process is pretty intimidating.
I just wanted to remind all of you guy how happy I am to be here and how glad I am to have your support and prayers. Prayers make my world revolve. I hope I can touch a few of you guys back home with my stories to make you fall in love with the Amazing God we have. I am reminded every day how huge his grace is. You can never use it up. He truly is a well that will never run dry, and I have to tell myself that all of the time. Sometimes I feel like I am not worthy to be here, but then I remember all of the broken people God called into his glory. All of the tax collectors, prostitutes, murderers, and thieves he loved with all his heart. I even would venture to say that it is easier for the broken to love Him, as the grace seems even more real. I also remember that I don’t love him like I should, and I try to improve that day by day. I know I have screwed up in the past but that just makes his love more real. The reality is that I am forgiven and that we have a Big God.