This morning I was tied with another guy for the distinction of being the first customer of the day at the Ocean Pines post office.  I thought it was nice to start the day off with such a special honor.

Published in: on February 12, 2009 at 10:28 am  Comments (2)  

Principles & Principals

This afternoon I was part of a pretty exciting meeting.  Several pastors and church leaders from our community met with the top education administrators in north Worcester County.  It started out great because lunch was provided, but then it got even better.  The churches’ agenda was simple: we wanted to find out how we can help and support our local public schools.

After Pastor Daryl McCready from SonRise Church and Pastor Gary Baer from Buckingham Presbyterian Church opened the meeting, one of the principals who was there observed that kids who are in church tend to be more successful in school than those who are not involved in a church.  So he said the best thing we can do is work to connect unchurched families to our churches–which, of course, is already foundational to our mission!

Several of the pastors commented afterward that they were surprised by the meeting.  The school administrators, rather than coming prepared with a long list of unfunded projects, had one simple request: Mentors.  One heartbreaking story after another was shared about kids who don’t have a caring adult in their lives.  I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room!  Rarely have I been to a meeting with so much passion, drive, and commitment to action.

I admire the way they were so focused on the one need which can have the greatest impact; and which, incidentally, the Church is most equipped to meet.

So now the church leaders will meet again to discuss practical ways we can plug our congregants and ourselves into the mentoring programs that the schools already have in place.  I’m so excited about the potential!  I’ve already talked with the principal of one of the elementary schools in our community, and we’ll be meeting soon to discuss how CrossWay can begin serving and partnering with them.

God is as much at work as He’s ever been!

Published in: on February 11, 2009 at 3:58 pm  Comments (4)  

A Girl After My Own Heart

I have a new favorite kid.

This week we’ve had a Scholastic Book Fair at the Training Station, and some of the parents have helped out by volunteering to run it in shifts.  This afternoon there was a little girl who’s barely four years old, and her mom was working the book fair.  As they were getting ready to close it up for the day, the girl said, “Mom?”

Her mom asked, “What?”

And the little girl answered, “I love books!”

I knew there was something special about that kid.

Published in: on February 5, 2009 at 2:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

Dad Wisdom

This morning I had breakfast at Panera Bread with a couple dads from the Training Station.  They’re twin brothers and have seven kids between them.  Very interesting guys!

Every time I see them around their kids, they have that whole dad thing going on.  Their kids are their pals, but also respect them as parental authority figures.  That’s a pretty cool trick to pull off!

I had a great time with them and learned a few things, too.  Some highlights:

  • Parenting is like a lot of other things: how much you put into it determines how much you get out of it.
  • When a second child comes along and requires more attention from the mom, it can be a good opportunity for the dad to build a bond with the first child.
  • Hit the bottle!  (Not that bottle.)  Otherwise, forget trying to get a babysitter for more than an hour and a half during the first two years.
  • Relax.  The dad instincts will kick in.
  • On delivery day, bring Kleenex.  Be prepared for a new level of emotion.  There will be crying involved.
  • With a girl, forget trying to be macho.  Accept the fact that I’ll have tea parties and practice cheers.  Just be sure there are no YouTubers with cell phones nearby.
  • She’ll be watching me.  Always.  Just be aware of what I’m teaching her through what I say and do.
  • Cherish every moment, because it’ll fly by!

Thanks Greg & Dennis for sharing your combined quarter century of experience!

Published in: on February 3, 2009 at 2:01 pm  Comments (7)  

First Finished Painting

Yesterday in our painting group I finished my first painting!  I’m not satisfied with it, but I could work on it forever and never be satisfied with it.  At some point you just have to say, “Enough!”  So here it is:

What I mostly worked on yesterday was the face.  It still doesn’t really look like Bobby Murcer, but at least it doesn’t look so much like a Neanderthal.  Here’s a closeup:

Now I don’t know what to do with the painting, ’cause I’ve never finished one before.  What’re you supposed to do with them once they’re done?

Published in: on February 2, 2009 at 12:36 pm  Comments (5)  

Funny Football Quote

“Football combines the two worst features of modern American life; it’s violence punctuated by committee meetings.”
– George F. Will

Published in: on February 2, 2009 at 10:35 am  Comments (2)  

Delivering the Goods

God wants us to share the good news as we do good deeds.  That’s delivering the goods, and that’s what we talked about yesterday at CrossWay Church as the fourth installment of the series Life On Loan.

The Christian life is a lot like show-and-tell.  You can tell people anything, but if you can show it to them then they know it’s real.  They can see it for themselves.  When we do the good deeds that God has planned for us, when we meet people at the intersections, when we respond to others as Jesus would, then people can see the good news of Jesus as well as hear it.

What is the good news?  Jesus loves us so much that He came for us.  He doesn’t leave us here to figure things out on our own.  We don’t have to figure out who God is.  We don’t have to try to be good enough for God.  That’s because God came to us.  His love for us is so all-encompassing that He came to earth to rescue us even though it meant Jesus dying on a cross.  You can read a real brief statement of the good news in John 3:16-17 .

Jesus teaches us to live out the good news in Matthew 5:13-16.  He teaches us how to help people not only hear about the good news, but to see it in action as well.  As Steve Sjogren has said: “It seems people don’t necessarily remember what they are told of God’s love, but they never forget what they have experienced of God’s love.”

Yet it’s not enough just to do good stuff.  People have to know why we do good deeds.  The reason we live the good news is because we’ve heard it and believed it, so now we want to share it with others.  Jesus instructs us to do this very thing in Mark 16:15.  We read in Romans 10:17 that hearing the good news is how we come to have faith.

Deliver the goods.  Tell the good news.  Live the good news.  Let God use you at the intersections to write someone else into His story!

Published in: on February 2, 2009 at 5:40 am  Leave a Comment  

Martial Arts Laura Marie

Last night I felt the baby kick for the first time!!!!

Published in: on February 1, 2009 at 11:06 am  Comments (5)