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MY STORY

I was a youth pastor for 10 years.

Then, I walked away.

Why? Because I was angry, bitter, burnt-out and disappointed. Faith had dwindled to a business meeting in my heart, and I felt my soul was slowly dying.  Unfortunately, I don’t think my story is all that unique.

Now I spend my time writing, hoping to tell stories that give people permission to fully live. I believe we’ve each been uniquely created for extraordinary things – each of us, in our own ways, made to make much of God and His kingdom. I hope that, somehow, my small attempts at giving context to that kingdom inspire large dreams within your heart.

Thank you for reading. It really means quite a lot to me.

- Jake

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Three  years ago – burnt by the religious crowd, burned out on the church scene, and uninspired by the boredom of it all – I walked away from my life as a youth pastor.  It was an incredibly hard decision that was all too obvious:  faith had become a way of making a living rather than a way of being alive.

And so, I walked away.  With no job on the horizon and a lot of bitterness hidden in my wounded heart, I too desperately wanted to prove myself.

That meant that I took the easy way out.  I soon found a job that paid me a lot of money, doing work that was uncreative and disinteresting.  Each night, I wrestled with the defeat of my dreams.  Many nights, I cried at the thought of falling into line.  I had traded one imprisoning situation for another.  The only real difference was that I was better paid.  And, that thought bothered me.

As my dream lay dying, the pain and disappointment began building up a mantra that began beating, faintly, in my heart:  Do not settle.  Be bold.  And, be ever urgent.

I’ve not been created to settle.  Nor have you.  We’ve been created for something; to live out the beauty of our art, love, and stories.  We’ve been made to be bold; to stand in the face of adversity and overwhelming odds and defiantly walk forward.  We’ve been created to be urgent; not hurried or rushed, but purposed in the living out of our lives and our potential.

I believe that God wants these things for us much more than he wants to admire our steeples and listen to our sermons.  Grace is too beautiful and too powerful to be doled out like some kind of a door prize or paycheck.  It must be lived, breathed in, and experienced.

That’s what I hope my life somehow inspires as I’m learning how to be bold and be urgent.  My hope is that, somehow, my words inspire people to believe that better stories are possible when we are bold enough and urgent enough to live them out.

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