Monday, January 2, 2012

Countdown to the Big 4-0!!

To My Kids... and anyone else who would like to waste a few minutes on me:)

40 years of experiences has brought me to this year. I will attempt to make a few lists for my kids to see what made dad who he is. Here is where we will start.

Some Accomplishments That Are Important to Me:

1. Married with two wonderful kids who are all a gift from God. I love you all!!

2. Masters degree from Covenant Theological Seminary: education is more than a piece of paper at graduation. It is a learning and maturing experience for life. It influences more than your career!

3. Bachelors degree from THE Auburn University: I almost dropped out after four years of school. Your granddad helped me see that I could never marry your mom unless I finished that degree.

4. Wrote and Sang a Song for Your Mom at Our Wedding: Driving one night from Atlanta to Birmingham (I kept that highway hot for about 6 months) I stopped along HWY 20 and wrote "Lord, Make Us One." God continues to answer that prayer!

5. Panama City Beach Ironman 2008: What a great day! Megan was born just a month before. Tyler and I drove to the beach and stayed at the "Condor" (condo) for about two weeks. It is one of my favorite memories with T. We ate alligator, completed a human maze (with Tyler stuffed in my fleece since it was cold), played on the beach, got bit by a thousand mosiquitos, performed my cousin's wedding ceremony, and I finished the Ironman tri in 12:09:45.

6. Learned to Provide Meat for My Family: O taught me how to hunt from the time I could walk and by the time I had graduated high school I had killed quail, squirrel, dove, pheasant, turkey, rabbit, deer, and other various critters. Bottom line hunting is a life skill that helped make me a man. It is one thing to be able to get a job and pay the grocery bill, and it is another entirely to know that you can go out and find your own food, kill it, and grill it up for the family.

7. Performed the National Anthem at the Savvis Center in St Louis, MO: I had set as a goal to sing the national anthem at a major sports stadium or arena. This is the most nervous I have ever been in my life. The guy who sang before me forgot the words to "God Bless America" and I had to help him finish. All the lights were out other than the bright spots on me at midfield. Maybe I'll show you the video some day.

8. Planted a Church, WayPoint: this has probably been the biggest challenge and learning experience of my life to this point. We made some great friends, many came to Christ, and many made significant life changing decisions through this endeavor. It renewed and in some ways established my trust in God's sovereignty because as the leader there are many who are encouraged and there are many who are offended as well. But it is my trust that God is over all even though I can really screw things up that makes things ok. All in all, I hope God used WayPoint as a checkpoint in people's spiritual journey while discerning their place in God's eternal plan; I know He did that in my life.

9. Became President of the Student Senate at SCCC: Before transferring to Auburn, I attended a junior college in St Charles, MO. I was very involved with student leadership and became president of the student senate (government). The big memory that I will always carry with me from that experience along with the lifelong friends is the opportunity to speak at the grand opening gala of the new campus along side college administration and public officials.

10. Ran My First Marathon on Thanksgiving Day 2000: This accomplishment has changed the way I view life as much as anything. Life is a marathon and not a sprint. It was difficult, and I questioned my sanity most of the last half. But in the end I decided to go back for more again and again. Maybe one day we can run one together.

There are other memories that might make a future list like the day I bought my first motorcycle and got a tattoo. But you'll have to wait until later for that. Cheers!