Welcome to Ryley Writes, a collection of thoughts, stories, and work from deep in the heart of Texas.

High-Five Friday: Behold

You need a little bit of insanity to do great things. — Henry Rollins

What I'm working on:

First things first: the missions publication I've been staring at on a computer screen since September is now officially REAL. We got our first shipment of them this week, and the rest are being mailed to our church members as we speak. It was so gratifying holding the product of so much work in my hands, and I'm proud of the way it turned out. (I even got a shoutout on Omar's blog, which is like the closest I will ever get to being a B-list celebrity, so I am QUITE pleased.)

After writing all the stories for this piece (and going through hundreds of photos of the faces those stories are about), I am blown. Away. At the impact Kingsland has here in the Houston area and all around the world. A lot of churches talk the talk; very few walk it out. This church and the people that comprise it give until it hurts, and they give in such a way that a long-lasting difference is made. They're not just throwing money and material goods at the poor or Bibles at the unchurched. They're seeking to create sustainable options for people, to positively influence broken cultures, and to nurture Gospel truth and understanding. And I am honored to be just a tiny, tiny part of it by creating something that hopefully draws attention to that. (KBC friends — let me know when you get your copy! Non-KBC friends — let me know if you want one!)

After that, it was on to all the Christmas things. I've gotten to dip my toes into all sorts of projects this past week — from incredible photo and art installations, to compiling photos to project onto the church walls, to getting to learn bits and pieces more of the printing and production process, to speaking to 200ish elementary schoolers about missions emphasis month (terrifying, thanks for asking!), to pricing merchandise for Kingsland's annual Shop With a Purpose event. It's involved a lot of foam board and command strips and Adobe and brainpower, but it's all getting done! And it's Christmas, so c'mon. It's kind of fun.

Randoms for your weekend:

  • Snowboarder Mark McMorris broke his femur in a gut-wrenching competition crash earlier this year, and he documented his recovery in a four-episode series called "The Process." Watch them here: one, two, three, four.
  • While we're all in the shredding mood, Danny Davis released Peace Park 2016 recently, and it is of course wonderful, because Danny Davis.
  • Oh hey people doing what I want to do with my life (just sub in a lot of writing).
  • Have you guys heard of UpWork? A friend just told me about it, and I made a freelancer profile. I'll let you know if it leads to anything, but figured it was worth a shot!

The Stack: Fall '16

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