I have changed a lot since moving to California, going through 5 years of seminary, and learning to live on my own. It is expected that when one graduates from college and moves out on their own - into the world - further removed from their parents - they will make changes in their life.

The problem with me is that I've always been timid about these changes. I hate debating. So when it comes to expressing my views on theology, politics and other hot topics, I tend to shut down and simply not share my views and opinions because of my fear of being scrutinized, judged or looked down upon. It is easier to just remain somewhat vague in all those areas because then you don't offend anyone and everyone is happy. I also (surprisingly) really worry what other people think about me and how they perceive I am living my life. But these convictions and decisions I have come to aren't something I've decided on a whim and I need to realize that I am comfortable with where I am at and that's all that matters.

Because existing that way is no way to live. I want to be free to be myself. And in order to fully be myself I need to be free (and willing!) to speak my mind on the things I think and care about. I am just starting to get better at that - it'll take a while becuase my skin is still growing thicker. But I think I have great ideas, good opinions and a valuable voice. I've gotta realize that it's about time I stop hiding it from other people. They might not always like what I say - but the most important thing is that I be true to myself.

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