Hi, my name's Joel and I'm starting a blog.

In an effort to be on the cutting edge of technology and culture, I've decided to start... a blog... in the year 2021.

Ok so maybe it's not the most ground-breaking idea, but honestly my intention is not to be trendy or timely. I'm not going to solve the world's myriad of problems with this blog and I'm not attempting to build a brand or make a few bucks. Truthfully, I'm starting this blog out of necessity. I need a way to process some of the changes, both personally and in the world, that seem to be happening so rapidly as of late.

Even before the arrival of a global pandemic, national social and economic crises, and the most polarizing election of my lifetime, 2020 was set to be a year of major changes for me and my family. This time last year I was transitioning out of a job in full-time church ministry, and into a brand new career in video production. My wife and I decided to launch our own business, so we had zero assurances and zero safety net. It was (and still is) the riskiest decision we've made in our 10 years of marriage, and that's saying a lot. But it proved to be the right decision, and it's difficult to imagine the last 12 months unfolding any other way.

But it wasn't just 2020 that was life-altering for me. In 2017 our son Coehn was born, followed 15 (extremely short) months later by his little sister Ember. I can think of nothing else that has so thoroughly impacted my perspective on life than having kids. Suddenly every decision I make not only impacts me, or my adult wife, but now two precious, innocent lives that exist with complete dependency on me.

Ultimately, the last several years have been simultaneously the most challenging and the most rewarding of my life. They have brought me the inexplicable joy of holding both of my children seconds after taking their first breaths. They have also brought me the crippling anxiety, isolation, and loneliness of a global pandemic. There have been times when I've felt close to God and assured of his will for me, and there have also been times where I've questioned if He even exists. I've had to cling to faith and trust, while also having to let go of some certainty and pride.

And so I'm starting a blog. A place where I can get some thoughts out of my head and into the world, and maybe (hopefully) even stir up some genuine conversation. I don't have an agenda, or a niche or a target audience. I don't have a marketing plan or a click funnel campaign to sell anyone. I just have some thoughts in my head that need processing, and this seems to be a way for me to do that. I expect to be addressing a wide range of topics, from theology to politics, parenting, history, justice, science, faith, psychology, music and more. I don't claim to be an expert in any of these fields, but I'm genuinely interested in all of them and I love learning and exploring ideas from a multitude of perspectives.

So if you're interested in any of those topics, or just curious what's been rolling around in my mind recently, feel free to follow along the journey. I plan to post regularly, and would genuinely love feedback or conversations to follow any future posts. Thanks and happy 2021!

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