Our lives matter!!! Life is amazing; it shouldn’t have happened. The reality of the existence of the world and our planet’s ability to sustain life is not best explained by chance. There is an intelligent cause to this world we see. The order and perfection all the way down to the smallest organism is amazing! Yes, there are things that don’t function. They fail. But that doesn’t take away from the amazing complexity and order we do see.

In my life, for a long time, I failed to be in awe of what God had made.

I grew up Catholic, and church was just what you did. I went to private school till 8th grade. Then I went to a public high school, where parties and everything that goes along with them is the norm. So I tried to fit in. I started to slowly turn away from God and turn to friends and partying, because believing in God just didn’t seem reasonable.

I got confirmed, went to retreats & Steubenville conferences, and would have “encounters” with God. But they wouldn’t last. Surfing, rocking out, and partying was all I wanted to do. It was the thrill and fun of it. It seemed God was a fairytale your parents use to make you be “good”.

Yet I questioned reality as a teen. Really, what was I here for? I didn’t have to exist. Was there anything but parties and who was hooking up with whom? I would run away from those questions quickly, and try and distract myself with the busyness of life.

Then, after I graduated high school, I got caught by the cops with drugs. When I was put into the back of that cop car, I knew something had to change. I didn’t want that life. It was leaving me more and more empty, but I definitely didn’t want God.

Shortly after, I got invited to another Steubenville youth conference. At that conference, I had a moment in prayer where I really felt God and his personal love for me. And everything changed. I started to read about God, pray, go to mass, serve the poor. I made mistakes, but went back to confession and received the ocean of Gods mercy. I began to study science, philosophy and theology, and began to realize that faith isn’t something blind. (There are literally some of the most brilliant minds to ever live that believed in God.) I discovered the wealth of knowledge in the Catholic Church and saw that the Truth resided in the history. Through all the mistakes people of faith made, it still persisted. I read the lives of the Saints and the crazy miracles that changed lives!

There are many more things that God has done for me in my lifetime, but this entry is a good start on that story. If you are looking for God, don’t be afraid to ask Him to show up in situations you think are impossible. Don’t be afraid to make an honest prayer. No matter what you’ve done, Mercy is real!