Thursday, February 19, 2009

Valentine's Day

Last weekend was a busy one for our family. Saturday was my birthday so we celebrated that & Valentine's Day together (it happens every year). My sister's family came to visit for the 1st time & got to see what life is like for us in LA. In the midst of all that we had a "Dinner & A Movie" night at church on Valentine's day. We had about 140 people attend & had a great night together eating, fellowshiping, & watching a movie. It was a good outreach event for our church.

Cade had his 1st Valentine's Day, but he didn't seem to notice it being any different than any other day. He did get his 1st Valentine in the mail from Erin's parents. Below is a 3-picture progression of his response. He also got a singing bear that he's not so sure about, he just looks at it funny as the ears wiggle.

I discovered this year a few more people who share the same birthday as me. Two other young men in our church are cupid babies like me. One of them was at the dinner & movie so his wife & Erin ordered a cake so everyone could celebrate. It was the biggest birthday party I've ever had (even though it wasn't really a party for me). My mom came to town on Monday & stayed a couple of days. She brought Cade's valentine gift & he will enjoy the new clothes & blow up toy real soon. (Sorry no pics mom, but we took them w/ your camera).

Monday, February 9, 2009

Entering His World

When was the last time you completely put yourself aside & entered another person's world?

Friday night I was home w/ Cade while Erin has a ladies party at the church. I had been w/ him all days as I was off & Erin was substitute teaching. That evening after dinner I decided I was completely devoting myself to Cade. I turned off the TV. I didn't pick up my book. I didn't do dishes, laundry, or anything else. I entered Cade's world. He played, stared off into space, drooled, laughed, babbled, drooled some more, kicked me like 100 times. I watched his facial expressions, tried to figure out what he was thinking or saying. I paid attention to nothing else but him. I did my best to determine what he wanted. I changed him, fed him, & then put him to bed.

After all this I began to think about my day. All day long, though I was taking care of him, I was doing the things I needed to do or wanted to do & brought Cade along w/ me. He sat in the high chair while I did dishes & ate lunch. He played on his activity mat alone while I put up laundry. I realized though I was w/ him all day I was forcing him mostly to surrender to my agenda rather than trying to understand his. The most meaningful part of my day was the time devoted completely to him.

Our marriages would be better if we intentionally devoted time completely to our spouses. No distractions. No implementing our own agendas or leading the conversations.

Our parenting would be better if we intentionally devoted time completely to our children. No distractions. No dragging them around & forcing them to meet the demands of our agenda but rather submitting to their agenda.

Most importantly, our spiritual lives would be revolutionized if we devoted time each day competely to Jesus. No distractions. No trying to fit Jesus into our plans or agendas. Not trying to get him to meet our demands, but rather discovering his desires for us & going along w/ it.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Super Sunday & Sad Monday

We had a great time in worship yesterday as a church. We were down a bit as far as attendance numbers, but the spirit was high. God's presence was truly among us as I believe God began to lift some heavy burdens off the hearts of many who surrendered to Him. We're still experiencing a great number of visitors & hopefully we can get 'em back & keep them. We also had about 40 women register for the new women's discipleship study on Esther by Beth Moore. We're spending a lot of time planning & implementing change that hopefully will bring growth.

Last night we has Super Bowl parties all over town in various locations. More people participated than usually attend a typical Sunday night worship service...hmmm...funny how that usually happens. It was great times fellowshiping together, eating together, & building relationships. The only non-Super thing about yesterday was the Steelers won. Everyone in the media wanted them to & I guess the officials did too b/c for some reason they didn't review the last fumble. If it was ruled incomplete & the penalty on the Steelers was inforced it would have been one more play from the 29. (But hey, that's not really all that important)

Today is sad Monday because we took Cade to the babysitter for the 1st time. Erin has began substitute teaching & will be all week long. She really wants to be home w/ him full-time but she is teaching a few days here & there to help w/ the family finances. It also gets her out of the house. I can only imagine how sad it will be once he trots off to school for the 1st time. He will be 5 months old on Wednesday. Parenting is great. Pastoring is great. All because God is great!

Have a great Monday.