Forecasts are unpredictable. You know this, but I’m not just talking about the weather. Life has a way of throwing us certain curve balls. We set our sights on the future, only for things to go another way completely. I certainly don’t mean to trivialize anything because sometimes life’s twists are pretty dark and heavy. Other times, they are minor annoyances and disappointments. In both instances, one thing remains the same: I can’t control it.Read More
Well, here we sit at the end of another year—another decade! For many, tomorrow is all about opportunity. Resolutions. Goals. Fixes. Betterment. While the beginning of another year serves as a great moment to reflect and to resolve, the stats don’t lie. Look, I hate to burst your bubble, but research shows that in just two weeks from now, thirty percent of us will have abandoned our resolutions already. Another study indicates by the end of 2020, just eight percent of us will have achieved our goals. From my own personal experience, that seems about right.Read More
Has the opening line of Joy to the World, ever bothered you, too? “The Lord is come”? I’ve heard it sung incorrectly and have even recently seen it posted incorrectly online as, “The Lord has come.” That almost feels better, doesn’t it? But, that’s not what Watts wrote. He wrote, “The Lord is come.” And, while the grammar admittedly has always bothered me, it’s because Watts was not describing a past event such as the birth of Jesus. Rather, he was looking forward to the future event of Christ’s return.Read More
What am I waiting for this Christmas? Honestly? For it to be over. I know how that sounds, but it seriously seems that every year I can’t wait for Christmas to happen. But, then, I suddenly find myself longing for it to just be… done. And, I know that Christmas is meant to be this season of peace, but I don’t get it, man, because, at the end, I just feel exhausted. I don’t know if I would say that Christmas is peaceful. Chaotic, maybe?Read More
Like most kids, my three girls have always enjoyed hide and seek. Even my youngest has fun with a classic game of peek-a-boo. If you have ever played hide and seek with a child, you know they aren’t exactly the greatest at the game, but you have to pretend like they are. Like, even if they manage to actually be hiding behind something and not just standing in the middle of the room, they’re never quiet about it. Even when they manage to actually hide themselves, they talk in full volume and giggle uncontrollably. You can’t just go, “Yeah, you’re there. I see you,” right? You have to walk around the room and pretend like you have no idea where they are. But, there is another seeking that is done without any feigned interest.Read More
We survived 40 hours together in the van across 11 different states, which is no small feat with three kiddos five and under. That time together in close proximity affords you a few opportunities and lessons. For example, it doesn’t matter if your toddler just used the rest stop; she’s going to need to go potty as soon as you hit the highway again. Also, when your child says her stomach hurts, you should probably immediately listen to her and find a stop or you’re going to be cleaning vomit out of your vehicle with water bottles and wet wipes. Sitting in the driver’s seat for extended periods of time, I discovered for myself the physical toll of stiffness and tightness that would not have been exacted even ten years ago. Then, there are the joys of listening to and watching three little ones interact with one another through contagious laughter. There are those cherished quiet moments where everyone has fallen asleep and, though you need to keep your eyes on the road ahead, you cannot help but watch them through the rear-view mirror.
And, all of it is quite enjoyable—yes, even the potty stops and the vomit and the stiffness—because we’re on vacation, and we’re together.
But, then, something shifts.Read More
You are like a cedar of Lebanon, and like a cedar of Lebanon, you are not meant to live your life as a potted plant. You are meant to be firmly planted and rooted deeply in the landscape to which God has called you. Unfortunately, the church is full of potted plants, limited in their growth and survival because they refuse to plant themselves in that landscape. We have become too comfortable in our containers. Pastors are observing that those who once attended church each week are now attending just a few times a month. Those who attended once a month are now content with a few times each year. Studies are revealing that fewer people feel guilty about missing church or even feel compelled to gather with other Christians at all or seem to even miss being in the church when they cannot attend.Read More
My dad has helped and enabled me to be things I could not become on my own. Since we’ve spent quite a bit of time together in the garage working on various projects, I have come to learn some valuable lessons in those moments. I call them garage thoughts. Charles Kettering, who was an inventor and businessman, once said, “Every father should remember that one day his son will follow his example instead of his advice.” Yes, my dad has given me a fair share of advice, but he has also given me a tremendous example to follow. These garage thoughts aren’t just words he has shared; they are practical lessons he has lived.Read More
It seems that no matter how often Abby and I have told the girls they can’t get out of the tub and run, they insist on trying. This time, Lydia inevitably slipped on the linoleum and hit her cheek on the corner of her step stool. It wasn’t a major injury, but it was enough that it warranted Urgent Care. With Abby at work, I made the necessary phone calls to get my dad over to the house and to let Abby know what was going on. Then, off we went, bloodied and bruised, ice packs and towels in hand.Read More
I don’t know what challenges you’re up against today, but we’re all familiar with the impossible. We know what it’s like to be at what feels like a dead end with no way out. We know how it feels to be grasping in the dark. We understand the feelings of helplessness and desperation. But, glory be to God that we serve an infinitely faithful, powerful, and able God. We serve a God who is able to make a way where there was not one. We serve a God who brings light to dark places. We serve a God who is our anchor through the storm and our hope that surpasses understanding. We serve the God of the impossible! So, what’s something seemingly impossible you are praying and trusting God for right in this moment? Whatever that may be: we just need Him, and with Him all things are possible.Read More