I told myself I was going to write. So I made myself a tumblr a couple years ago (along with a couple of my closest friends) and used it to air frustrations and write short prose, reblog the occassional tasteful photograph and convince myself it wasn’t pretentious. Of course now it’s the furthest thing from pretentious because what started out as my writing place gradually dissolved into a collection of funny pictures/gifs, comic book art, and Kanye West.
Which is admittedly a pretty accurate snapshot of me.
But I want to get back to writing. Not even necessarily to keep myself in practice, or to stay sharp or anything like that, but because it’s a good discipline.
I need to write to center myself.
I need to read to center myself.
I’ve never been one for New Years Resolutions which is exactly what every person says immediately before sharing their New Years Resolution and reassuring you that this is the exception and not the rule. So allow me to say that this blog isn’t a New Years Resolution, but just a resolution. I want to get back on the horse and allow myself to refocus on the things that really matter.
So hi. I’m Kevin Bain, a sophomore Youth and Family Ministry major at Abilene Christian University.
I love comic books, I love rap music, I love Milano cookies, and I love God.
The title I’ve decided to give this blog is based on a passage from Donald Miller’s A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. He talks about our lives as stories and how we should relate to one another as Christians and maybe more importantly, just as people. But he says that we’re all a tree, but we overlook the fact that life, God’s plan and purpose for us all, is a story about a forest.
And I think that meaning is two-fold because part of it is very humbling: don’t get too caught up in a story about a tree because a tree can only contribute so much on its own. But at the same time, a forest can only exist with a lot of trees. So don’t sell yourself short, but understand that there is so, so much more out there than just yourself.
For the past couple years I’ve participated in this thing called NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month. It’s a rush for imaginative young authors like myself with lofty dreams of book deals and movie adaptations, but my favorite thing about it is one of the taglines of the whole program:
The world needs your novel.
I’ve been trying to work more on my humility lately because I’ve allowed my definitions of self-deprecation/denial and humility to intersect for far too long. And I think that tagline has helped me with that immensely.
One last snippet to share. I’m in a rap band called No Pun Intended with one of my best friends in the world, Nathan Berry. I always have to pause and brag on Nathan when I bring this up because the kid is a friggin’ prodigy. If it’s got strings, he can play it and I’m blessed to have him as a bandmate and even more as a friend. Anyway our first album was called KILLER ROBOTS KILL!!! and was honestly pretty awful (I mean, it doesn’t even show up on google). But the robot became our sort of mascot and I had this idea that I could make a robot helmet out of this box I found in my photography classroom senior year of high school, and wear it at live shows and that would be pretty neat. So I took the box home, put it in a corner for a year. Then I remembered it and went out to Hobby Lobby, bought all the supplies I’d need to craft this bad boy. Sat on it for another few weeks before starting to spray paint it. Then I realized the paint would rub off and it was this whole thing, and I let it sit until now. This thing’s been collecting dust in my bedroom for the better part of 2 years.
But I finally finished it. I went out and got the lacquer I needed and spent a night finishing it up. And let me tell you, I am more proud of few things than my handmade robot helmet that I can barely wear for more than a minute because it reeks of super glue and I can actually hear my brain cells screaming as they die off every time I inhale.
But I finished it.
And so I guess that’s the sort of resolve I want to see from myself here.
The world needs my stories.
And I think it needs yours, too.
Because we’re all trees, but if we’re going to live into our story, we have to share with one another
and start looking like a forest.