Monday, May 9, 2011


I have so much to be thankful for. Thinking back over the last couple of days:

1. Thankful for my mom who is a woman of great faith. She made sure all of us kids got a foundation in church. She worked hard all of her life - working all day, coming home to cook supper and then clean-up. She rarely got to sit down and relax around the house. I love my mom and she is still such an inspiration to me.
2. Thankful for my wife who is such an amazing mom to my daughters. Cecelia is a unique person and she is a perfect match for me. She knows what is going on ion our daughter's lives all the time. She is very honest and straightforward with them, and she is passionately protective of our girls. I see a huge amount of respect from them for her because they know she loves them and would die for them. At the same time, they know she might just snap and go all "Madea" on them when they do wrong. I love my wife and I'm thankful for her abilities as a mom.
3. Thankful for my daughters. It is such an incredible thing to watch them grow up and see them serving the Lord. I love seeing them use their gifts and talents to honor God. Each one of them is very unique and special. They are truly gifts from God and they bring so much joy into my life.
4. Thankful for the encouragers at church. God has brought some special ladies into our church that are so encouraging. They are always saying kind things and lifting people up.
5. Thankful for my church family. I say this a lot, but God has really brought together a special group of people at Magna View. Each week I am amazed at how God is working through our congregation. As the pastor, I get the "backstage pass" into people's lives that others don't get. It is amazing to see God working in our family of faith.
6. This is probably too far down on the list, but I'm thankful for a God of grace and honesty. I love getting to be myself with God. I don't have to put on a front and pretend like all spiritual when I'm not. God knows my heart and there is no need to pretend with Him. This has also given me the desire to be myself before others as well. All  my life I've often been guilty of trying to put on a good front for people, trying to please them and make people think I was better than I really was. I still fall into the trap sometimes, but I feel like I'm getting more comfortable at being myself around others (even church folks).
7. This one will sound weird - trials. A part of me wants everything to go smoothly in my life all the time. I'm guilty of wanting the "easy" path, and I used to get really frustrated and even depressed when things didn't go according to plan, or when I found myself in difficult situations. I still struggle with my attitude, but I've come to realize how much God has grown through the trials and difficulties I have gone through. Yes, I would wish that I didn't have to go through any more of them, and yes, I'll get a little frustrated and discouraged from time to time. But I'm getting a little better at letting God have His way with me through the difficult times and trusting more in Him.

Lot's to be thankful for.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day

    Happy Mother's Day! I was thankful to have my mom with me in worship today. Mom is 85 years and is remarkably sharp. She doesn't move around very well, and she doesn't hear very well anymore, but she always seems to be in good spirits. Mom is a woman of great faith. She was diligent to take us kids to church when I was growing up. She was the nursery director at Sharon Baptist church in Knoxville for a number of year. And she faithfully sang in the choir. Though I didn't always enjoy having to go to church as a kid, I look back on those times with fond memories now.
     I'm very thankful for my mom. I pray for her daily, and I seek to draw from her example, that I might be an example of faith to my kids as well. I hope all moms have an enjoyable and special Mother's Day today.