Donny's Ramblings

Month 2 Ends: How's Donny Doing?


September 25th was the day I surrendered my life to God, which makes today my 2 month “anniversary”. So how is Donny doing? Quite simply, I’m growing stronger each day.

A scripture comes to mind:

Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.

That pretty much describes these past few months in a nutshell. My dad used to encourage me to memorize scripture, and this was one of them. This verse comes from Proverbs 22. I remember Proverbs very well, because the book of Proverbs was part of a Bible study our family used to do at the dinner table after each evening meal. My dad would have us remain at the table after we’d finished eating, he’d open his Bible to Proverbs, and we’d go through it a few verses each day. I hated it. But guess what? Those studies are coming back to me now.

When I memorized scripture I did so because I wanted to win! I wasn’t really interested in the Bible, as I always associated It with Church and Church did not interest me, but I was interested in beating everyone else at anything academic, which included Bible Quizzes. Applying scripture to my life, however, was not something I ever did. I’d never had a real “Jesus experience”.

Now I cannot make that claim. Jesus and I have been taking lots of trips together. We drive down Interstate 5 chatting like old friends. He shows up while I’m at work to make sure I’m doing okay. He shows up in my inbox in the form of encouraging emails from blog readers. The two of us discuss scripture and he explains some of the things I’ve been confused about in the past. We talk a lot about how much he loves people, and on rare occasions he has me deliver a message to someone.

I’m amazed! The things I learned growing up all of a sudden make sense to me. I haven’t done so yet, but I need to thank my dad.

Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.

That scripture has taken on new meaning for me. It seems King Solomon knew what he was talking about. At age 32, I don’t consider myself to be “old”, but I can tell you that not long ago I never imagined I’d be serving God like this at any point in my life. In my mind, the future held porn production for the rest of my days. I enjoyed the financial freedom it afforded. I enjoyed the ability to do whatever I wished. I saw myself doing it for life because I was addicted to money and porn allowed me to make a lot of it, effortlessly.

It seems that’s not what God had in mind.

On September 25th a miracle occurred: he healed my mind. I no longer care about money and possessions. When I look back at some of the things that seemed important to me just a few short months ago, they seem so silly now. My entire perspective on life has changed. I have this hunger inside to learn more about God, to understand him better, and to love other people.

A few days ago I talked to my dad on the phone. In part of our conversation we talked a bit about the creditors that have begun calling. I let him know that I’d most likely be losing my cars and may be riding a bus or bumming rides from others in the near future. My dad was amazed at how calm I was at that thought: it doesn’t bother me at all. For years he’s had a son with a super-sized ego, proud of my monetary accomplishments and at the “things” I own. Now he’s witnessing a son that is focused on what is actually important in life: God, Relationships, People, Love. He was amazed. He tried to keep from chuckling with happiness but I heard it in his voice. That warmed me inside.

Not everything is happy-happy-joy-joy. There is a lot of sadness at the loss of an incredible 6 year relationship with Belinda. I love her so deeply, and wish our futures followed the same path. At this point, however, they do not. I push that thought out of my mind, because focusing on it would bring me to tears.

I also have a constant battle of another sort: this blog. Sharing my thoughts and experiences is quite therapeutic and I feel writing here is something I am supposed to do, but I often spend way too much time forming strategies to increase blog traffic (traffic = visitors). When I owned porn sites, traffic was the most important key to making money. I’d spend several hours per day tracking statistics, seeing what worked and what didn’t, trying to figure out how to better optimize my pages for search engines, figuring out what ads resulted in the most clicks to my sites. All of those things are challenges I very much enjoyed, and sometimes I start to do the same things with this blog. Last night was one of those times. I spent the evening going in detail through my statistics logs, seeing who is linking to me, how many visitors they’ve sent, what search engine terms have been used to find me. Etc. Etc. I got so wrapped up in it that I dreamed about stats and traffic all last night.

I awoke early this morning to realize what a waste of time it is to worry about new sources of traffic to this blog. That time would be better spent picking up the Bible or reading one of Donald Miller’s books or simply relaxing and unwinding from a long day at work.

More of God is what I really wish to pursue. On mornings when I do so before going into work, my attitude is great for the entire day. Have you ever found yourself reading or listening to motivational materials? If that type of thing is up your alley, let me recommend another one for you: the Bible. I never would have thought a few scriptures and the commentary of others on such scriptures could be so motivating, but it really sets up my day very well. I’d recommend that you read a few verses and then open up a Bible Commentary to get some perspective on what was meant. Do that, and scriptures come alive.

Above all, I enjoy people. I appreciate everyone I speak with. Look at someone else as one of God’s kids and all of a sudden they become a lot more appealing and fun to be around.

God, I thank you for the grace you give to us. Even more than that I thank you for your never-ending love. I thank you for the new found freedom I’ve been experiencing and I would like to dedicate my life to helping others find this same freedom.

My heart hurts that some of your children misconstrue the purpose for which you sent us here, and I ask that you allow me to help change that in any way I can. I realize that is a huge task and, while I could never do it alone, with your help I can at least give it a shot.

I’d also like to thank you for the opportunities you give us to learn about love. My son is the best thing that has ever happened to me. Through our love for each other I also get an bit of an insight on your love for all of us, your own children. That makes me appreciate everyone around me, even complete strangers, so much more. I know if someone hated my son I could not allow myself to be around them, and liking them would definitely not be an option. With that in mind, I can no longer feel hatred towards anyone, because I love you and they’re your children, even if in my mind some of them could use a good paddling. I needed one of those myself, but you chose to just let your love correct me instead.

I’ve got to get ready for work now, but I’ll stay in touch throughout the day and let you know how things are going. I’ll try to show someone else your love through my actions, because that’s what you’ve asked me to do.

Oh, and thank you also for Pastor Bill Giovannetti. He gives pretty good advice, and he says I’m a Paul. I really like imagining myself as a Paul. It gives me something to reach for…

13 thoughts on “Month 2 Ends: How's Donny Doing?

  1. Donny,You have cast your cares and placed your trust in God. He will ensure that your needs are met. I realize that you understand this. I speak it here as an encouragement.- David

  2. I appreciate the time you put into your blog so that we can see what is going on in your life.

  3. Hi Donny,Thanks for putting your heart out there. It’s encouraging. Don’t give up on this new journey. Bill

  4. God bless you Donny! I am continuing to rejoice in the miracle. Yeah, I’m crying again!Saw Caden on Thanksgiving. What a neat little guy he is, I don’t blame you for being proud of him!

  5. I am thankful for who you are today donny.

  6. Reading the last part of your post, I suddenly wondered what browser God is using… ;)Great post.

  7. Dear Donny,I just discovered your site. Much respect to you – many people are not so courageous as you. Exposing yourself like this is humiliating, but always remember that humility is a virtue. Remember satan’s sin… pride. Humility is what we need. Anyway I will be reading along, exploring, and praying for you, God bless you man.-dicitencello

  8. Hey Donny, Sorry about Belinda. I actually had the same situation once and it sucked just as hard. So, I’ll be praying for you on that.

  9. Hey, Donny. Congrats on your revelation about needing more time with God and reading His holy Word. I’d suggest starting with Ecclesiates if you want to tackle a shorter book that goes right along with your recent discovery about getting more time with Him and how meaningless man’s strategies can be. I pray that that God keeps you close to Him and whispers words of life and love in your ear…that you discover new things about Him that blow you away!Ciao,Tracy

  10. i find reading your blog entries are a lot like reading a good book. parts move me, other parts make me think, and still others i disagree with. but for having read them, i grow. thanks for that. sometime i’d enjoy conversation over coffee. im on the east coast, so that might be a long ways off. nonetheless, keep blogging if it is a place where you’re growing, because we are growing with you.brad

  11. For some of us, we began our relationship so long ago, we allow our selves to forget how radically God can change a life. For 15 years I’ve been a relatively good little christian boy. Though I still struggle daily, it’s a different struggle now. Somedays I forget what a staunch Evangelical Atheist I was.Thank you for letting me see the power and the glory anew through your eyes. It is awe inspiring.

  12. Hey Donny…your thoughts on this post inspire me. Keep sharing you journey as God gives you prompting.

  13. Donny,As a former member of Bill G’s church in Chicago, I know how much God uses him in His children’s lives. Praise God!

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