Happy birthday, D!…..

Today is my son’s birthday. Unfortunately, he is at Boy Scout camp. It is his first time away from me or my wife for that long and it is his first time away from us on his birthday. Last year he celebrated his birthday at camp as well, but I was there with him. However, now that he is a Boy Scout he needs to begin to spread his wings away from me and my wife and this is one of those first steps. It was a hard decision, especially seeing as he didn’t want to go to camp at all. However, as his dad I made a “tough love” decision to make him go. It was something he needed to do, not only for his Scouting efforts, but for his young man growth path that he needs to be on.

D, I love you more than you will ever know. My job as your father is to love you for your own good, not mine. If I do my job correctly you will not need me. You will not look back and you will have the skills to persevere, flourish and prosper for all the days you live. You will serve our God and you will be bold in the way you live your life.

“For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” — Genesis 2:24

I will pour into you the skills my dad shared with me. I will impart the painful lessons I learned minus the pain. I will continue the faith legacy that was begun many generations ago passing on the faith of Christ and teaching the ways of our Lord God.

“Fix these words of mine in your hearts and minds; tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Teach them to your children, talking about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.” — Deuteronomy 11:18-19

And while I love you dearly and would do anything to protect you, the world is not like that. Therefore, I need you to grow to be able to protect yourself. I need you to be tough because quite often others aren’t and you might be called to protect the weak…. or to fight them (remember, bullies are weak, not strong).

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” — Edmund Burke

I need you to grow into a man of character whose heart is after God’s, whose commitment is to your wife and whose sacrifice is to your family. It will not be easy and you will quite likely be assailed by society, culture and others. However, do not let anyone snuff out the light that is in you. God gave you unique skills and talents to use for His glory. It is your job to put those to use, not for you but for Him. You were wonderfully made and can do anything when aligned with God, petitioned in prayer and powered by the Holy Spirit.

I am proud of you — who you are, the path you have taken, the young man you are developing into, the people you have served, and the road you have in front of you. You are in my prayers daily, as is your future wife, your children and their children. Be prepared and soak up the journey.

Happy birthday and I love you!!!!!

…..Dad

A sign from God…..#125

“Start where you are,
Use what you have,
Do what you can.”

The sign above is a good one for disciples. We don’t need to wait until __________ . Fill in the blank with any excuse — until I grow up, until I have time, until I have money, until I am retired, until my kids grow up.

So get out there and love God and love your neighbor. What are you waiting for?

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Great quote…..

My oldest daughter is interning for the summer at my favorite local Christian radio station. One of her first assignments was to photograph the WJIE Louisville Bats Day at the Ballpark and Concert. This is a super annual event where the radio station puts on a concert at the Bats baseball game (the Louisville Bats are our local AAA minor league farm team for the Cincinnati Reds) and all the attendees get to watch the baseball game afterwards. It is always an enjoyable event and this year’s act was Big Daddy Weave. We enjoyed their music last year at the annual WJIE Sweetheart Dinner (which I blogged about here).

During the concert, lead singer Mike Weaver said something very impactful that really hit me.

“The love of Jesus is bigger than any mess we make”

Amen!

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Welcome summer 2012!…..

Today at 12:07pm Eastern time, summer will have officially arrived in Kentucky. There are a few unofficial starting milestones — the opening of our pool, the arrival of hot weather, and the Memorial Day holiday. However, today is the summer solstice and summer is now here for a while.

And while Spring is my favorite season, Summer is a very close second and I embrace the season of shorts, fireworks, picnics, swimming, gardening, popsicles, sunscreen and outdoor fun. I can’t wait to soak it all up with my family.

……Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!…..

47 years ago today my Mom and Dad committed to each other and to God to be married for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health til death do us part.

I am so blessed that my folks have weathered good times and bad, mountaintops and valleys to provide me and my sister with a model for marriage and commitment. And the apples don’t fall far from the trees. My sister just celebrated 20 years and I am still plugging away with my better half.

How refreshing it is especially in today’s culture to have strong, solid marriages that are decades old with the perspective of being buried next to one another as each one is reunited in heaven.

This is how God defined marriage and intended it to be for families, children and generations.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Beautiful Kentucky sunset…..

This evening after getting home from work and having dinner with the family, I surprised my son with a special treat that he could bring with him to Boy Scout camp next week — venison jerkey. However, it was not made yet. So I pulled out a couple of cuts from the freezer and began the preparation process. Unfortunately, after I had sliced all the meat up nice and thin, I discovered that I did not have any of the ingredients for my super secret marinade that he loves so much. So it was off to the store in town we went. And because we have become accustomed to combining trips, I also grabbed the mower gas cans to fill up (at $3.16 no less — woohoo!) as well as an item I needed to return to Lowes.

So my son and I proceeded on our rounds: bank ATM, grocery aisle, automotive aisle, Lowes return desk, plumbing aisle, and pool supplies aisle. Now D was starting to run low on patience after the return at Lowes so my plumbing and pool supplies aisle received the response of a deep sigh and “Do we have to?” from him even though items from those aisles were on my list. So when we walked out of Lowes and I stated that we still needed to get mower gas, his response was one of exhaustion (which I thought was kind of funny).

After we filled up the gas cans and my wife’s truck I thought I’d pull one over on him and push my luck. I am known by my kids to surprise them or tell them we are going some place lame and then end up at ice cream or something. So this time, as we exited the gas station I started back across the parking lot. He immediately questioned why we weren’t going out the exit. I responded that I needed to drive by Autozone to price compare the oil we just purchased. You would have thought that I asked him to eat a field of brussell sprouts. He went into whine mode while deep inside I had to control my smile. You see, between Autozone and the gas station is a Wendy’s and I was treating to chocolate Frostys (yes, I know that plural form of Frosty is misspelled, but Frosty is a brand name so deal with it).

Even though I was going through the Wendy’s parking lot he continued whining and didn’t realize what was going on until we were in front of the drive thru speaker. He immediately saw his childly whining as completely inappropriate and broke into a sheepish, guilty grin knowing that his whining was lame and grateful that he was getting a treat. I proceeded to laugh and bask in the lesson that taught itself.

We proceeded home and stopped to take in the sunrise at my son’s request. Below is a photo I snapped. It was truly relaxing and beautiful and I am so glad I could share it with my son. It was a great way to end the day.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Vacation pix #2…..

As promised, here are more pictures from our trip down to Texas.


As we entered the Dallas-Ft. Worth metroplex (a good friend of mine calls it the “mess-troplex” which I can support), we swung by the house I grew up in as a kid. My oldest daughter called me a creeper as I parked the car across the street and rolled the window down snapping pictures with my iPhone.

I texted the picture to my sister who couldn’t identify it without first figuring out that we were in Texas. I would agree with her because so many things have changed. And while the house has changes, most of those changes have been in me and my perspective. The house may be a different color and the tree in the front yard has grown a bit, but my perspective from a child to adult is what has made it so that I could not identify this house any other day you put the picture in front of me. When I was 7 years old the front lawn was the size of a football field. The driveway was massive for riding my bike down. The front porch was big enough for all my childhood friends. The sidewalk went forever and ever. It is interesting how things can change in the world but most importantly how WE can change.


If you ever get to Ft Worth, make sure you stick around at 11am or 4pm when they drive a small herd of Texas longhorns right down the middle of the street at the stockyards. It is a total tourist trap but a lot of fun to see.


I love Texas bluebonnets but they come out in April and we were about 2 months too late for them. However, this Indian Blanket flower is just as pretty.


We stopped by Cowboy Stadium on our way from our friends in Glen Rose to Frisco. It would have been nice to go through the place and check it out. However, greedy bastard Jerry Jones charges $17.50 a person for the SELF guided tour. You mean I need to pay almost a hundred bucks for my family for us to lead OURSELVES around your egomaniac behemouth? No thank you, Jerry.

Although I guess it makes sense you are charging people because your team sure isn’t making you money by winning!

Thankfully, my character hero Tom Landry is memorialized outside the stadium by a 9 foot tall statue and plaque. My wife took my picture next to him and I snapped this photo of his plaque. Tom Landry was a TRUE Dallas Cowboy.


And finally, when we returned home, my baking sensation daughter K made my favorite cookie with a souvenir we bought in Ft. Worth. Yummy and nice to look at.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Happy birthday to my wife!…..

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.
— Proverbs 31:10-12

Happy birthday to my wonderful wife — my precious gift from God!

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Vacation pix #1…..

While visiting some great family friends last week during our vacation to Texas, they took us to a very nice downtown Ft. Worth park — the Water Gardens. This park is a collection of fountains and walkways that forms a “water garden”. Below are some pictures as well as a snapshot of one of the descriptive information signs that give some of the history of the place.

I have a special interest in water fountains and this place was very unique and wonderful. It allowed for exploration, playfulness, creativity, and opportunities for the kids to be free. The only downside is that, depending on the Texas heat, you might want to jump into the pools to cool off which is strictly prohibited.

If you make your way into or through Ft. Worth, I highly recommend stopping by to check the Water Gardens out.

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net

Missed sermon…..

While on vacation last week and because we were driving on Sunday, we missed the prior week’s church service and sermon message. However, I feel very blessed in two ways — #1 the sermons are typically spot on and hit home so frequently that I never want to miss any and #2 the sermons are always available after service online or by podcast.

So this morning I used my morning commute to catch up on the sermon I missed back on June 3. It was titled “The Trials of a King” and focused on the trainwreck that was King David’s personal life. And while David was a “man after God’s heart” and an Old Testament hero, there are also many lessons we can learn and apply to ourselves and our families to hopefully prevent the wandering and sin and all the consequences that brings into our lives.

One verse of Scripture that was highlighted in the message was in Proverbs.

“Better to live in a desert than with a quarrelsome and ill-tempered wife.” — Proverbs 21:19

That verse got me thinking about how blessed I am to be equally yoked to my wife who is a Proverbs 31 woman. Sometimes God blesses us with things we don’t have and I am so blessed to not have a wife like the one described in 21:19 and instead have one like it says in 31:10 – one of noble character worth far more than rubies. The sermon message also got me thinking on how I can continually feed my marriage and family so they grow into the strong bonds and foundation that God can use to further His kingdom.

If you get a chance, go check out that sermon — http://vidego-http.multicastmedia.com/mm/flvmedia/2878/A/c/t/Act3_wk5-audio-1013123.mp3

…..Dan at aslowerpace dot net