This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is being hosted by @AndyLeonard. Thanks Andy!
My response to the question, “What is your Why? Why do you do what you do?”
I am a Christian. And I am unashamed.
I am also not a perfect example of a Christian. I am broken and imperfect. I fail and struggle every day about my faith. I sin, again and again and fall short of the Glory of God. But I keep working on it. Infinite Grace and Love and Mercy beyond my understanding. In ways that are visible and invisible. And I am forgiven. Everyday.
The Christian faith is not a once and done kinda thing. Just like decisions every day have consequences and repercussions, so too does an investment in whatever one calls the Bank of Faith.
God, Family, Country.
My relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, is something real and that I believe in every second of my life. Above all else. Period. Does that make my life perfect and beautiful?
Far from it.
In fact, just the opposite.
If you have recently chosen to accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior or have in the past, it will suck to be you (!). You will NOT be flying underneath the radar of spiritual attack. Sadly in fact, you just became a visible beacon for attack. Well, that is not something people want today! “I want to believe what I want to in my own little personalized, safe, self-created echo chamber without consequences, or pain or suffering!”
If one wants to play it safe, just let your defenses down, go with the flow, don’t fight against the tide, just believe in whatever brands/* isms/truth worldviews, etc. and not rock the boat, then the choice about faith is simple:
Just let other forces in society push against the sails of your own ship. Surely they/groupthink knows what is best for you! If one has to do something, see what everybody else is doing first. Just give the people what they want and all will be great? Um, right?
I believe in lifting up those willing to help themselves. And to try to help those too who can’t help themselves. I have volunteered A LOT over the years. Unpaid. Unappreciated at times. Host meetings no one shows up at. But still putting your best face forward and doing it anyway not knowing what will become of it. Loss of time/money/effort and questioning if it is even worth it. And in hindsight, sometimes you get to see how you changed a life. That recently happened to me at our Denver SQL Server User Group meeting and it totally blew me away because it was completely unexpected.
Because I genuinely love people in the same boat as me. No matter what circle that happens to be (SQL, start-ups, VR, Unreal Engine, pick a tech), I want to see people succeed and do well. If that drags me along, then so be it.
I once heard Zig Ziglar once say, “You will get all you want in life, if you help enough other people get what they want.”
At this stage of my life, I have had to deal with a lot of death. Death of family, friends, co-workers, and acquaintances. Murder, suicide, cancer, car accidents, heart attack, overdose, surgery, old age- the list goes on. Processing the emotions and thoughts is unique in each case and no, I am not looking forward to dealing with other deaths but I know it is coming. And it will come again and again, even unto my own death, at some point I hope and pray sometime into the far future. There is still so much work I want to do for many years to come.
Because I don’t care about what people think about me (!). Sometimes I write hand-written notes and post them- some are even prayers on my part and I don’t know at times how they will be received. Will I offend somebody with my prayer for them? It is a risk I take and I do it anyway.
My faith is a integral part of me. I don’t proselytize at work but if someone starts a conversation about my faith I’ll talk to them. What you see is what you get. I don’t have a separate faith life apart from my work life. It is one and the same.
I know some people are going to drop me from social media like a lead balloon. I get it. It is expected. It breaks my heart to hear people in our SQL Family openly say stuff like, “I’m doing just fine without God”.
I have been told, that when I get to Heaven I will be surprised at the following: people who are there who I thought wouldn’t be there and those who are conspicuous by their absence- people who I thought would surely be there but who are not.
Going back to Death. I have zero qualms or cares at this point in my life about sharing my faith. I have seen TOO MANY people I love die without knowing Jesus.
BTW, SQL Saturday Denver has been hosted a couple of times in the past at my home church. Do you know how many brochures, conversions, etc. I pushed on the people attending SQL Saturday?
Zero. Big Fat Zero. Because I believe in living the best life I can by example and let the Holy Spirit do the rest. If you ask me about Jesus, I will tell you. And pray for you.
Money. Economic resources. If I ever become stupid rich, there is a ton of things I will do with my money. The cause of food, water, clothing, shelter here and abroad. So many people don’t know me that well. I believe God has blessed me with technical skills and creativity and imagination. I have a lot more to share for another time…
So part of My Why is to make money so I can give and spend it on things I believe in.
Because I am able, I can and I want to.