From the Ashes by Reverend Devin DeBry

As I look back on my past, I realize how stupid youth makes you. The man I am is completely different from that boy who challenged everyone around him. The tools I fought and trained with have become so much heavier than when I first picked them up. And I know why. They still hold every ounce of rage I had in me. And that’s a burden I no longer have the strength to bear. My heart is lighter, my soul happier. I know that it isn’t rage that makes some one stronger now. I know that hatred doesn’t make you fiercer. All my training, all the experiences born from that hatred and rage have left me blessed, and I know that I am lucky for it. I could have been consumed by my own darkness, and I wasn’t. I stand reborn. I stand whole. For the first time that I can remember, I am at peace. I have bled all negativity that bound me to the past behind. I have broken those chains. For the first time I am realizing my true strength. And it is not one born from muscle, but of heart. I’ve always thought the path I walked was that of the warrior, and lived like a monster. Now I know I am on the path of the protector, the guardian. My abilities were never meant to create more conflict, but to shelter those I hold dear from it. It saddens, and shames me to know that I had to lose some of my loved ones to come to this realization. I regret my stupidity, but I have learned from it. And that makes me grateful. I understand who I am, and who I need to be with so much clarity, that I can only laugh at the foolish child I once was, crude, brash, and arrogant. Those are just some of the nicer things I excelled at then, and I send a heartfelt apology to those that suffered because of this. But that apology is all I can offer in terms of words, I’ve always been one to believe that actions have always spoken louder than words, and I always will. That’s why I wont say sorry anymore, I’ll show it. Everyday that I draw breath will be my apology. “No longer shall I be bound by the darkness in my heart, for I have cleansed it with the purity of love.” I am able to smile again, truly smile. Something I thought I would always have to fake, and it gladdens me to know I did not lose the ability to be joyous. I know there are some out there who feel I don’t have a right to this happiness, and that is their right. But I will not allow anyone to tie my soul in the chains that held it again. The peace I’ve found has empowered me. It has made me stronger, better. My soul flies free, and I wish only to let it soar. And protect everyone, so they may soar when I have been long forgotten. I am becoming the shield for those in my life. No matter how small the bond between us, I will protect everyone for everyone is linked, and everyone is worth protecting. I may not know all the faces, or names of my family, and I don’t need to. For the love I have in my heart encompasses all, and that is the only motivation I need. Strength, hatred, rage. They can only take you so far. But love, and the desire to protect those precious to you, that can take you anywhere. It makes you stronger than anything. Because when your back’s against the wall, and losing means everyone you care about is going to suffer, well that pushes you into a truly remarkable place. You become unstoppable. Not because you want to be the biggest, but because your heart wont let you fail. Not when it means losing everyone you hold close.

Fogs of Time by Reverend Devin DeBry

“Forever in the fog of your mind, never to be truly found again. So quick to disperse what helped shape you. Look through the doubt and pain, to see the light of your heart. Time will tell where you stand after you abolish the darkness that blocks your heart, and leaves you blind. Burn away the unnecessary, and stand reborn.”

Reverend Devin DeBry is our youngest UCM minister.  Devin holds an Associate in Theology from UCM and was ordained in 2008 at the UCM Centennial Celebration. You may reach Devin with questions or comments at http://d_debry@yahoo.com

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