Showing posts from November, 2011

Towdah (continued)

So it's really no surprise that my attempt to create a blog entry every day leading up to Thanksgiving didn't work out.  With three boys, two of which are under 2, a wife with serious gallbladder issues, a broken fridge, plus this whole pastor-gig I have going on, priorities have necessitated that the blog be put off.

But tonight I really want to express for the electronic written record the joy in my heart.  Tonight was Community Group night, and a small group of friends from our church fellowship gathered in our home for conversational Bible study, food, and just doing life together.  Tonight we laughed... a lot.

"Doing life together" is about so many things, and I feel like sometimes we make it just about getting through a Bible study or going through the motions of rote prayers... or being there for one another in the hard times.  All of which are important, and definitely a part of the connectivity we should have as "brothers and sisters." But I wonder…

Towday #7

Today, I'm thankful for my brother, Aaron.  Just two years separate us, so as one would imagine, we were pretty much at odds for a big part of our childhood & teen years.  We had our differences and spats... and even the occasional fight... none of which were my fault by the way (come on, you know better than that, right?).  At the same time, we were still pretty close growing up.

Now that we're adults (stop smirking, we're both in our 40s now), we are closer than ever.  Even though we don't live close enough to see each other often, we are definitely involved in each others' lives.  Aaron is a great brother and a great friend.  His generosity and care for others inspires me.  Plus, he is an awesome uncle to my three boys!  Aaron is super talented musically, too!  If you need a singer/preacher tag team... or a couple of bouncers... let us know!

One of the things I am most looking forward to during this year's celebration of Towdah is spending time with my b…

Towdah #6

Day six of my towdah (thanksgiving) is dedicated to my parents.

I'm thankful to be one of the unique ones, whose parents have remained together.  In my childhood, my parents taught me to love life.  In my teens, my parents taught me about grace.  In my twenties, they showed me (and Shelly) that parents have enough love to include their kid's spouse.  In my thirties, I learned from them that their love for me extends to my kids.  Now, in my forties, my parents are showing me what growing old together is supposed to look like.

My mom has always been a voice of support, and my dad has always been a source of wisdom.  A lot of people say they have the best parents in the world.  The truth is, I probably actually do.

I love you, Mom & Dad.  And I thank God that you are my parents!

Towdah #5

My #5 towdah (thanksgiving) is our 3rd son, Nile.

Nile is just 3 months old, so about all he's got to offer is his big blue eyes and an amazing smile.  Like father, like son... and son... and son.  Hahaa!

Again, the question Shelly and I get all the time is, "Planned or surprise?"  This time was most definitely a surprise!  I mean, we hadn't even gotten over the shock that after 13 years we actually had a second child, then SURPRISE!  We're having ANOTHER!

Something I say a lot whole I'm holding Nile and talking to him is, "We've been waiting for you.  What took you so long to get here anyway?"  I am so thankful for this beautiful little guy (who is actually rather long) and the surprising added joy that he brings!  Thank You, God, for blessing me with three amazing boys!

Towdah #4

Thirteen years after Christian, our first born, came... Jericho!

People always ask if Jericho was a surprise or was he planned.  The answer is... YES!  Oh, he was planned.  About 3 years after C-man was born, we decided we wanted to have another baby.  But by the time Jericho came along, Shelly & I had pretty much resigned ourselves that we were only having one child. SURPRISE!

I am very thankful for Jericho!  It seems like it took forever for him to get here (13 years anyway), but now that he is here, I'm can't remember life without him.  Today, J-dawg is just 17 months old, but he is definitely a "mini-me."  It's kinda scary to have one this little who looks and acts so much like me.  He loves to play ball and he loves to have books read to him.  He is obsessed with being outside, and he loves dance around to boomin' beats. 

My son makes me smile... a lot.  Today, as I reflect on towdah, my heart is full of gratitude for this precious gift that is our s…

Towdah #3

Our first son, Christian, was born 14 years ago.  So hard to believe that he is 14. 

What a neat kid.  His sense of humor is so quirky; he's a bit shy, but really loud and talkative at the same time; he's typically sloppy, but likes things to be just a certain way... in so many ways he is just like Shelly, and in so many ways he is exactly like me.  C-man is great with younger kids (which has come in really handy over the past two years). 

All of these things about my first born son, and so many more, are awesome.  But, I am most thankful for him because he is... him.  I will never forget the moment he was born (I got to deliver him!).  I guess boys aren't supposed to be called "beautiful," but he took my breath away.  What an amazing day!

He's growing up so fast, and I don't want to miss a minute.  I'm so thankful that Christian is my son, just because he is.

Towdah #2

Giving thanks Day #2.

Opposites attract is not just a cliche - this is my marriage reality.  Shelly & I and I celebrated 21 years together this year, and we're more in love every day.  Ok, ok... the point of this blog entry is NOT to get you to gag at the syrupy-sweetness that is how I feel about my bride... but I have a black-belt in romance, what can I say?

Although she is the exact opposite of me, Shelly is my best friend.  She has stood by my side through thick and thin (and we've been through some VERY thick situations as well as some VERY thin times)!  She is the most unselfish person I know (see, exact opposite) and is super smart (again, opposite).  Shelly is an awesome mommy to our kids, and is absolutely smokin' hot! She even stood by me when I was a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle.

I am so thankful that she agreed to take a chance on me when she said, "yes." 

Shelly, thanks for rocking my world... today.  I love you!

Towdah #1

I'm going to attempt to write a blog entry every day until Thanksgiving about something specific I am thankful for (and I'll be honest up front, it's going to be a challenge to blog every day).  To begin with an explanation, "towdah" is the Hebrew word which translates as "thanksgiving," and literally means "to extend the hand."  It may be kind of dorky to bring this up every year during the American holiday of Thanksgiving, but towdah is one of my absolute favorite Hebrew words.  I'm sure you have many yourself. ;}

Towdah #1: Yeshua ha'Messiah (Jesus the Christ). More than a concept, religious leader, or historical figure, Yeshua has transformed my life.  And He continues to do so.  I am thankful for the Cross.  I am thankful for the Resurrection.  I am thankful for life in abundance!  By abundance, I don't mean I have a lot of stuff... although I do (so do you), but I refer to the type of life I am experiencing, not the amount of…