A Little Bit About Me...

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I have many hats that I wear. I am a husband and father. I am pastor/teacher at my church. I am part of a team working on a large project at work. I am a friend. I am a budding visionary. I am a writer, an actor, and a director. I am an artist. I am a student of the Bible. I have a brain that comes up with some pretty crazy and interesting ideas, and I have a personality to match. I try to treat all people how I would like to be treated. I strive to be steadfast, immovable in my faith. I seek after the TRUTH, and I believe that it can be found, not just 'from my perspective', but for all people.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 ends.... 2012 begins!

2011.... The end, the last day of another year.  They seem to be stacking up faster as I get older.  I look and I have a marriage to the best woman in the world, I have three incredible children that teach me about myself every day.  I have some incredible friends that have become “incredible” this year.  I have some relationships that have been a struggle but have made progress. 

I have had a few changes at work, and have had the chance to establish a positive example of character.  I have been able to make relationships with people I never would have expected, and love all the things I am getting to look into.
At church we are still working at building Infuzion, and pouring into those young people.  It is a challenge and is so amazing to see.  I love each one of them for who they are and they too also have taught me about me, and I thank each one of them.

This year has had its ups and downs.  It has had successes and opportunities to try for success again.  Such is life... Life in general and the life of a Christian are not meant to be easy but challenging.  Jesus never said that if you become a Christian that your life would be easy.  He said it would be abundant life... life to be lived... to be experienced.
So what have I learned this year?  Take the time to plan before acting, but don’t let the planning be so bogged down that you never get to act.  Spend time with your kids because they will teach you so much about yourself, and there is a lot that they can learn from time with their parents.  Speaking quietly can get better results than yelling.  Don’t be afraid to love people... to hug them... to hear their struggles and be there for them.  And cherish each special moment you have with them as you never know when that will be the last time you are with a loved one.  Keep reading the Bible.  No matter how many times you read it you will always learn more the next time around.  Pray... daily... hourly... minutely.... as often as you have a need or something to be thankful for.  Faith can move mountains, but it takes a step to put the faith into action.  Fear and faith are opposites.

For 2012... Love deeply.  Give of yourself.  Give like you are giving to God.  Keep moving forward, and keep yourself aligned to the cross.  Point others there and let God do what he wants with them, not what you want with them.

I love you all and can’t wait to see what God has for us in 2012!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Just some thoughts.... Mumsie

It is when faced with death that we truly figure out who we are sometimes. I know that right now as I hear the news about my grandmother, Mumsie, that I really feel compelled to live life to the fullest… to the deepest. I am told that she is in her last days. How long that is, is up to God. His breath brought her into the world, and with her last breath she will leave this world. She lived her faith out, and passed it to her kids.

As we approach Christmas day I do find it difficult that it looks like it will be this time of year where she passes, but again, she is in God’s hands.

We found out about another death in the people we know, and mentioned it to the kids. I guess it was sort of a way for us to see how to explain things to the boys. Logan, the fine Star Wars fan that he is, asked if the person’s body disappeared. Trying to explain the concepts of the eternal to the mind of a curious 6 year old will prove difficult.

This year, more than most I find myself trapped in the Ghosts of Christmas past. Going to see my grandparents was always so much fun. They always had a huge tree in the house… often pine. There was the little crèche under the tree. We would gather around the big table. As we got bigger the table did too… with spouses and children. I can remember the distinct sound of my grandfather’s footsteps coming down the stairs, and how he had to duck every time. There is the sound of his laugh that still makes an impression on me…. And the sound of his sneeze from too much pepper. Playing with my cousins while someone used the electric turkey knife, and the smell of it all as they put it on the table.

There is part of me that longs for those days, when life was simpler, when all I had to do was open gifts, eat and have fun. But now, as life does, it moves on. It moves towards a fixed point where each of us must pass into eternity.

I intend to enjoy the journey, to go after God with all that I can, even though there are times of stress, times of hardship, times of disappointment and times of grief. Mixed in there is love, and family. Friendships and hugs. There are experiences and wonder. The life that is travelled will have its ups and downs. Jesus promised us life more abundantly. He never said it would be easy.

As each season of my life concludes I wish more and more that I could keep hold of them, but I also know that there is more there to experience and see. I have my own wife and kids. They have their grandparents and uncles and aunts. Each day my kids do something to bring a smile to my face. Each day they see something that they have never thought of before. Each day a new thought forms…. A new question. Each day I discover how much I know, and how much I don’t know.  I am also learning how innocence is powerful.

Life is wondrous. I hope that I have my health well into my eighties so I can tell my one “when I was boy” stories, so I can call the young people “whipper-snappers” and so I can see how the world changes, and try to change it for the better.

So what have I learned from my grandmother?  Stay true to your marriage.  Have a song for everything.  Stand up for what is right.  Always have cookies baked and ready for guests.  Have people over for dinner to build relationships.  Dance.  Cheer for your sports teams.  Laugh.  There are few problems that a cup of tea can't work out.