Bandaids don’t fix bullet holes; or why we’re holding onto decades of pain

I sometimes like to picture Taylor Swift as a screamo singer from 2003. She likely had her Myspace Top 8 filled with bands or other teenaged girls with overexposed profile pictures. Her favorite song started playing right when the page loaded and there were probably all sorts of bells and whistles added because, you know, Myspace. What made me start picturing this was her newest single, “Bad Blood.” The bridge of the song sounds like it should’ve been originally sang by Senses Fail or Finch. It says: Bandaids don’t fix bullet holes You say sorry just for show You live like that, you live with ghosts After the she premiered the video for “Bad Blood” at the Billboard Music Awards, that first line stuck in my head: Bandaids don’t fix bullet holes.
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3 simple ways to be a generation no one can forget

Last week I took a risk that was scary: I pitched an article to Relevant Magazine. If you’re reading this blog, there’s a good chance you’ve read Relevant. If you haven’t, Relevant is a Christian magazine that looks to marry the church, the arts, and modern culture. Either way – Relevant is a huge deal to my generation. Getting a spot on their website would be gigantic for me. In researching Relevant to make my pitch, I watched a video from their founder about how and why Relevant was starting. In the video, he had a quote that stuck out to me. He said: When you see something that isn’t how it should be, you can do two things. You can either criticize it or be part of the solution. For years I’ve written about this idea of “changing the world.” For many of you, it’s an idea that is…
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Top five posts of 2014

It’s Friday. We’re two days into this whole 2015 thing. You’re still confused and writing 2014 on anything that requires a date. If you’re at work, you likely have no desire to do actual work. If you’re at home, you’re probably pretty bored and semi-ready to go back to work. Since I’m such a giver, and also a very big proponent of procrastination, I put together two lists for your reading pleasure. The first is the top five posts of 2014 on This Isn’t High School according to views. The second is my top five favorite posts of 2014 that didn’t make the top five most read posts. You now have ten posts you can read to kill time and enjoy.
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I need your help

One of my goals for 2015 is to take This Isn’t High School to the next level. It’s what led to the design change and some of the other things you’ll see in the coming weeks. To help with that, I’m currently in a writing course taught by Jeff Goins called Tribe Writers. The first section of the course is all about finding your “voice” as a writer. To help me with this, I need your help. You, the reader, can tell me a lot more about my “voice” than I can. I’ve included a short five question survey below that I would love to have your feedback on. It’s completely anonymous so feel free to be as honest as possible. I’m a big boy. I can take it.
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Two words that can change the world; or why you should eat a burrito for lunch

There are two things we all know not to talk about in public: politics and religion. A couple weeks ago I did both. Nicole and I were out to eat lunch one day and somehow got on the topic of the rapture. Totally random, I know. So there we are, talking about Jesus coming back while eating burritos and queso. As we’re going back and forth, I realized pretty quickly that our opinion on the subject as different. We questioned each other, genuinely interested in what the other believed, and went about eating the burritos. A little while later we started talking about what’s been happening recently in politics. Again, we disagreed. And we kept talking and asking questions while genuinely listening to each other. We didn’t agree. We didn’t get mad. We didn’t raise our voices. We talked, asked questions, and agreed to disagree. On the drive home from…
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On Southern Christianity; or why country music needs to stop singing about going to church

I sometimes have this horrible feeling that 17-year-old Jonathan would punch 27-year-old Jonathan in the face if they ever met. Sure, there are a ton of different reasons for that, but most of all, it’s because I like to listen to country music now. Don’t get me wrong, the 17-year-old pop punk loving, corporate hating, closet rebel is still alive and present, but now that kid also appreciates southern twang and the town he grew up in. Country music tells stories better than any other genre. It walks you through life, gives you something to relate to, and plays with your emotions. It makes you want to dance, cry, or ride down back roads with the windows down and nowhere to go. (Side note: I’m pretty sure that last bit is the theme of 12 songs on country radio right now.) More than any other genre, country music feels like…
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An open letter to anyone who’s ever seen a raunchy picture on the internet

Dear People of the Internet, I write to you today because of an increasing epidemic on social media. Let me first explain the situation: Yesterday I was sitting at the vet scrolling through Facebook as I waited on the vet to come in the room. There in my newsfeed, I saw a picture. It was two pretty girls in their 20s standing together. They were a little dolled up but nothing too fancy. By all accounts, it was a nice picture. I continued scrolling and saw a picture from the same pretty 20-something. This picture was much different than the first. This one was a selfie with her Upper Lady Parts (ULP) almost fully exposed and pushed up to her chin. Same girl in both pictures. The normal picture had 10 likes. The ULP picture had 56. They were posted within minutes of each other.
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What the All About That Bass chick reminded me about dating, relationships, and sex.

I’m just going to come right out with it: I have a slight musical obsession with Meghan Trainor. You may only know her from the All About That Bass song. I was introduced to her through a different song called “Title.” I was sitting at my desk with a random playlist going on Spotify when I heard the line, “Baby, don’t call me your friend. If I hear that word again you might never get a chance to see me naked in your bed” sang over the happiest ukelele based song I’d ever heard in my life. And there was rhythmic clapping. Color me intrigued. I restarted the song and played it through. Then I went and found her four song EP and listened to the whole thing. Multiple times. Here was a pop singer sampling 60’s songs, having key changes in the middle of a song, writing clever lyrics,…
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What a post about a gay son’s journey me about the internet

On Sunday night, I was laying in bed debating whether or not I wanted to write a post about the guy who spoke in church that morning. I’d gone back and forth all day on what to write, when to write, and if I should write. Since I couldn’t sleep, I figured I might as well try. After all, maybe it’d wear me out and I could sleep after. I opened Evernote, started typing on my phone, and posted the blog. Then my world exploded.
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What a post about a gay Bible professor and holiness taught me about the internet

On Sunday night, I was laying in bed debating whether or not I wanted to write a post about the guy who spoke in church that morning. I’d gone back and forth all day on what to write, when to write, and if I should write. Since I couldn’t sleep, I figured I might as well try. After all, maybe it’d wear me out and I could sleep after. I opened Evernote, started typing on my phone, and posted the blog. Then my world exploded.
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