Bringing you the best in independent LGBTQ writing on life & faith

Finding the Balance – Michael Overman

FindingTheBalance

Compelled

Posted by on Jun 10, 2014 in Finding the Balance, Get Real | 0 comments

Compelled

It’s been three years since it happened, and I can still remember it as if it were yesterday… Last Friday, I had the chance to sit down with a friend of a friend who is currently interviewing people for a soon-to-be-released nonprofit film called Compelling Love. Going into the interview, I only briefly watched the Kickstarter video and glanced at the Facebook page. A few emails were exchanged, times were arranged, and the next thing you know, I’m sitting in a surprisingly comfortable chair in a suite at the Drake hotel in which I could only...

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Me and Papa: Thinking About God’s Feminine Side

Posted by on May 22, 2014 in Featured, Finding the Balance, God-Walk | 0 comments

Me and Papa: Thinking About God’s Feminine Side

Sometimes I refer to God as Papa, and if you’ve ever read William Paul Young’s The Shack then you already know what image this title brings to mind for me… I remember the first time I was chastised for not being “manly enough.” My grandma worked at a church-run daycare center in Covington, Kentucky, just across the river from Cincinnati, Ohio. Another man from her church worked there as well. Let’s call him Brian (I do so because he and I are still friends… I don’t write this with any anger or...

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From Ashes, Pure Delight

Posted by on Mar 8, 2014 in Featured, Finding the Balance, Get Real | 0 comments

From Ashes, Pure Delight

There’s something amazing about spending time with the people we love… Psalm 149 1   Praise the Lord! Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of the faithful. 2   Let Israel be glad in its Maker; let the children of Zion rejoice in their King. 3   Let them praise his name with dancing, making melody to him with tambourine and lyre. 4   For the Lord takes pleasure in his people; he adorns the humble with victory. 5   Let the faithful exult in glory; let them sing for joy on their couches. 6   Let the high praises of God be in...

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Culling Brokenness

Posted by on Jan 4, 2014 in Featured, Finding the Balance, Get Real | 0 comments

Culling Brokenness

We are all broken and wounded in this world. Some choose to grow strong at the broken places — Harold J. Duarte-Bernhardt   Blake (my therapist) has said a number of times that I have a tendency to go to a “dark place.” His concern has always been my going there and staying for too long. Sometimes I think he’s right. However, sometimes, we have to go to those dark places within us in order to learn what has taken place, to take notice of all the messages we’ve been told, and to cull the messy, deceitful, harmful ones, leaving the good,...

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The Messiest Present

Posted by on Dec 24, 2013 in Featured, Finding the Balance, God-Walk | 0 comments

The Messiest Present

The incarnation is the complete refutation of every human system and institution that claims to control, possess, and distribute God. Whatever any church or religious leader may claim in regard to their particular access to God or control over your experience of God, the incarnation is the last word: God loves the world — Michael Spencer, Mere Churchianity Tomorrow, Advent will have ended and Christmas will have arrived. I’ve spent the past three months working in the retail world while finishing seminary, and let me be clear: it has once...

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Grieving Straightness

Posted by on Sep 23, 2013 in Featured, Finding the Balance, Get Real | 0 comments

Grieving Straightness

For many, coming out is liberating… But it’s not always this way. Some people are outed. Some are found out. Some are forced to come out ahead of schedule. Some never come out at all, spending their lives living out the fantasy of what it would mean to be someone else, something else. When people ask me about my coming out story, I very often start with a little laugh, followed by “It’s complicated.” And that’s because it is. Far more complicated than I would have ever imagined or wished for myself. I wish I could have simply said, “Mom. Dad....

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Know and Be Known

Posted by on Aug 16, 2013 in Featured, Finding the Balance, Get Real | 0 comments

Know and Be Known

“It is strange to be known so universally and yet to be so lonely – Albert Einstein It’s official. I’m finished with my first unit of CPE (clinical pastoral education… basically, chaplaincy). I spent 11 weeks at Rush University Medical Center on the near west side of Chicago working on the neuroscience floor in the hospitals newest building, the Tower. 40 hours a week with a 24 (read: 28) hour on-call shift every 7-10 days. We had group time 3-4 mornings a week in which we presented verbatims (recalled encounters/conversations with patients...

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Depression … and Life

Posted by on Mar 25, 2013 in Featured, Finding the Balance, Get Real | 4 comments

Depression … and Life

Sometimes it just gets the better of you. Sometimes it’s debilitating, crippling. Other days it’s bearable, doable. Some days you’re able to go through your normal routine. Other times you have to drop what you’re doing, run to the nearest bathroom, closet, or dark corner, crouch down, breathe, and cry. Sometimes you clench your fists and grit your teeth. Sometimes you just sit. You stop. You quit. Today was one of those days where I just had to deal. I spent the morning with a close girlfriend. I said some mean things because I’d felt hurt,...

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Breath…

Posted by on Mar 12, 2013 in Featured, Finding the Balance, God-Walk | 0 comments

Breath…

Breath. It’s something most of us take for granted. In. Out. In. Out. The average human breathes between 18,000 and 30,000 times a day. Yet we don’t notice is most of the time. Air enters us. Air leaves us. It sustains us, and only when it’s absent do we notice just how necessary it is for sustaining life. My class on pneumatology (the study of the Holy Spirit) this semester has me reading The Spirit of Life by Jürgen Moltmann. According to this most poignant author, the Spirit in a sense is God’s breath—God breathing into creation, into us....

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The Necessity of Change …

Posted by on Feb 27, 2013 in Church Chat, Featured, Finding the Balance, Shepherd To Shepherd | 1 comment

The  Necessity of Change …

Since entering seminary, my classmates and I have changed. Our views of self, God, Scripture, and the world in which we live are no longer the same as they were before. Additionally, that world, the one in which we live and are called to do ministry, is not the same. It too has changed, and in some respects, drastically so. Even if history is destined to repeat itself, for many of us, we were not present that last time the world looked as it does now. For us, it has changed, and its change has necessitated our change. Given the prevalence and...

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