Hey, Jonas here…
So, ‘about me’, huh? Well, let’s see…
I’m a poet and an essayist who blogs about things. My subject matter is... Me. And my life. I’m also the dad of a little girl, a working househusband to a lovely lady, and a midlife seminarian pursuing an Masters in Divinity.
I’ve been sharing musings and missives online for a long time now and have publicly logged 1400+ posts at the time of writing this here page. What started off as a creative outlet grew into an obsession and then a vocation. Eventually, my little blog grew into the top single-author publication on Medium.com.
Just some housekeeping before I get carried away…
You can find the full archive of my posts between the spring of 2014 and April of 2019 in the old archive here.
In April of 2019, I focused my work towards personal essays and poems (mostly the latter). You can find all new work at my Medium publication, Common Words. All posts there are behind Medium’s paywall. It’s not a bad deal for $5/month to become a member of Medium, thus unlocking everything on Medium and helping support writers like me. But if you want my stuff for cheaper or free, there are a couple of ways to do that…
The first way is by subscribing to my weekly Sunday morning digest here which includes a short personal note and links to the posts from earlier in the week that give you access for free (it’s just that you won’t have access to all the other goodies that Patrons do - see below).
The second way, if you want to support my work while gaining access to various perks, etc. is to join my Patreon community. At any level of membership from $2+ per month, you’ll get my poems in their entirety in your inbox every day. Plus, depending on your level of patronage, you’ll get exclusive early access to a LOT of other goodies over there including videos, workshops and courses, print publications of my work, meetups, discounts, and more. Learn more here.
Okay, where was I? Oh, right… I was talking about myself and the sharing of one’s self online…
It’s been interesting. When I look back to things I wrote even a few weeks ago (let alone a few years ago), I cringe. But then, it’s also been one of the most enlivening things I’ve ever done. It’s connected me to tens of thousands of others and has laid the tracks for my vocation. I kinda don’t know how not to do it now, so I can’t see myself stopping anytime soon.
The random stuff…
Now for the fun, irrelevant stuff…
First and foremost, if I’m going to be giving myself labels here, I may as well start with the obvious. I register as an INFP and a 9w8 on the enneagram, so I’m the most passive-aggressive and emotionally conflicted person I know.
I’m also a glutton for comfort. I blame it on my Danish roots, but I can be classified as a hyggespreader (one who spreads hygge). Count me in for flannels, strong coffee (not the newfangled stuff that tastes like raisin and orange peel tea - I’d rather drink Folgers than that nonsense), open fires (anywhere on the spectrum from candle to bonfire will do), shoulder seasons (spring and fall), newgrass music (Chris Thile, Bella Fleck, Aoife O’Donovan, Sarah Jarosz, etc.), mountain lakes, tasteful architecture, cabin porn, well-written books, good poetry and short stories, natural lighting, paper notebooks, German beer, slow hikes, funny stories, and deep (but not too heavy) conversations.
My wife and I live with our perfectly-behaved daughter, Rory, and our impeccably-trained terrier mutt, Dagny (okay, maybe I’m embellishing), in an apartment in Chicago where we drink too much coffee and try to save the world from our home office.
About the whole ‘Christian’ thing…
We should probably talk about this. Yes, I am a Christian (more on the specifics of this in a minute), but I’m not here to make you one:)
Faith plays a big role in my life. I’m currently attending seminary full-time (at age 40, wish me luck) in order to someday become an ELCA Lutheran pastor. That being said, I wouldn’t exactly call myself a ‘Christianity writer’. More so, I’m a writer who just so happens to identify as a Christian and is going to school to become a pastor someday.
Content found here isn’t (and will never be) some form of ‘virtual church’ (an oxymoron, in my opinion). Rather, it’s my public journal and scrapbook of sorts that will follow me around even if I someday end up driving a garbage truck for a living (it’s something I’ve wanted to do since I was a kid, so please don’t feel sorry for me if it happens).
For transparency sake, I want to add one thing… Because describing myself as a ‘Christian’ is kind of like describing what I drive as a ‘car’. Just as there are many types of cars, there are also many types of Christians (over 40,000 denominations in the US alone). So, to narrow my proverbial make and model of the Christian faith down, I’ll give you a super short gist:
I’m a Lutheran catholic (small ‘c’) and classify myself as a progressive traditionalist. I’m both spiritual/mystical AND religious/theological. I fully affirm gay marriage and LGBTQ+ clergy. I believe in evolution, climate change, and am a big fan of the scientific method. I’d love to see more women and people with darker shades of skin in clerical leadership roles. That being said, I prefer old hymns and traditional liturgy to modern church warehouses and rock n’ roll praise music.
I’m also a student and teacher of contemplative spirituality - particularly Christian mysticism. Without a mystical/contemplative foundation, I don’t know how anyone can swim in the waters of the paradoxical mindbogglery that is the Jesus tradition. Centering prayer is my go-to practice and though I’m horrible and inconsistent at it, it’s my way of attempting to consciously commune with the ground of my being.
Disclaimers & Thanks
Please know that everything I share could very well be complete rubbish and is merely my way of seeing it at the moment I click ‘publish’. I am not a trained and monitored authority, merely a rogue layman with a platform and a strong opinion.
I post daily-ish (at least, more-daily-than-not) and have been doing it for almost four years. So, yes, there are definitely contradictions and discrepancies in my work.
Anyhow, I’ll stop now. You’re here and I think that’s awesome. I hope you enjoy your time here. If you care to follow my work more closely, jump on my email list below.