The Little Moments That Shape A Life

March 21st, 2015 § 2 comments § permalink

I had a dream last night that encapsulated a few little moments that shaped my life.  Awkward, embarrassing moments… and disconcerting ones.  Here are a few examples of some true stories from my past:

A Moment of Extreme Hypocrisy

After becoming a believer during my sixth grade year and spending a Summer with my uncle learning about my newfound faith, I came back to school my 7th grade year ready to share my faith with my friends.  Overall, I did a decent job of embracing my new lifestyle and I, generally, had more hope and joy in my life than I did previously.  But I was still a punk kid.  Without any cash.  And I was thirsty.

After spending a number of minutes sharing the Gospel with my classmates at the lunch table, I was extremely thirsty.  Not having any money and being too proud to admit it, I  walked through the lunch line, grabbed a chocolate milk, and walked right out toward the table I was sitting at.  I was busted.  A male teacher in a loud voice called after me: “You had better be paying for that!”  I quickly feigned a lack of a quarter and every intent to borrow one.  After a friend coughed up the requisite coin, I walked back and paid for my milk before making the walk of shame back to my table.   » Read the rest of this entry «

Five Things Christians Should Stop Saying

May 14th, 2014 § 0 comments § permalink

I’m not sure any commentary is needed.  I agree.  Click below and let me know if you do too.

5 Things Christians Should Stop Saying

Debating Others

February 26th, 2014 § 1 comment § permalink

I’ve come to the conclusion that one should never debate another unless there is a sincere care/love for the other person. Debating almost never changes hearts or minds. But a civil, factual debate with sincere love and care for the other creates mutual respect and a chance at agreement.

Wisdom is knowing when to shut up, when to debate, and when to fight.

There is no honor, however, in having to fight because you were too foolish to shut up or engage with caring when you had the chance.

A Look Back At Personal Posts

June 27th, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

A look back at personal posts can be a healthy way to see where you’ve been and where you are.  I sometimes get a little insight in to where I’m going which can, at times, be both encouraging and scary.

I was telling someone earlier this week about me and my story and this person asked if I had ever written any of this stuff down.  Some.  A little.  Here are some links to posts I’ve written before that sum up my little life:

About Me – Who the heck am I?

The Path of The Fatherless – a little about my childhood.

The Great Anger – the most defining time in my life.

Loving Your Enemy – Something I’m working on.  Enemies aren’t the hardest to love…”frenemies” are.

Christians In Politics – an old post outlining my thoughts on people of faith in the public policy arena.

There are others on this blog and elsewhere on the interwebs.  I hope my experiences in my relatively young life resonate with you in some way.  I don’t post as much as I used to but I am an open book.  You can drop me a line on my “About Me” page any time or leave a comment.  I’d love to hear from you!

Senator Rozenboom’s Senate Speech This Week

February 22nd, 2013 § 0 comments § permalink

Senator Rozenboom delivered a great speech on the floor of the Senate this week about their adopted son, life, adoption, policy priorities, and hope!  You can click here to see the whole thing!  This is how the pro-life message is to be spread.  Compassionately and lovingly.  Well done, Senator!

Haters Gonna Hate

November 17th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

My son informed me that a child at school hears stories at home from their parent(s) about how I’m a compromiser, I’m weak, and that I’m not good at my job. This child, according to Kyle, doesn’t quite know what to think about all that. I told my son to smile back and shower this (truly great) kid with love.  The fact that I adore this kid makes it all the more notable for me.

Not sure if I’m annoyed at the whole thing, feel pity for the parent, or am amused that someone thinks I’m important enough to talk about but not talk to.

Telling slander to your kid knowing it might spread through the class and get back to that parent through their own child is less-than-classy, though.  I was surprised as my wife and I try VERY hard teach our kids to respect and care about others and believe the best (like the Scriptures tell us to) until we find out otherwise.

It was one of those parenting moments where I felt like it was more important that my son know it’s not always important to defend yourself.  It’s not the first time I’ve been attacked.  When I was appointed to the State Board of Education, a hateful blogger lied about me and tried to paint me in a negative light.  What really made my eyes roll, however, was that this blogger than tried to connect with me on LinkedIn a week or two later.  I declined.  The lesson I learned with that blogger, however, is that I made the right choice to ignore it.  If I had defended myself, or fought back, I would not have changed him and he would have had additional readers to his blog that I had sent.  I didn’t want to give him the satisfaction of additional traffic.  Does that prove I’m weak or point to the fact that I might be trying to stay above board? » Read the rest of this entry «

How Then Should We Advocate?

November 12th, 2012 § 1 comment § permalink

The 2012 Election is behind us.  Now the question remains:  whether as an active citizen or a professional activist, how then should we advocate for the things we care about after any election result?  I’ve written about much of this before but wanted to get some additional thoughts off my chest for my own benefit if nothing else.

First, what is advocacy and activism?  Issue advocacy and activism can include writing a letter to your legislator, showing up for an event at the Capitol, running for office, posting political opinions on Facebook or Twitter, lobbying, writing letters to the editor, walking in parades for candidates, or discussing politics at a friend’s house over dinner.

If you are a Christ-follower and looking to contribute to a political organization or considering getting involved in any way, here are the top five things you must keep in mind in order to be a good advocate:
» Read the rest of this entry «

The Big Election Day Decision

November 4th, 2012 § 0 comments § permalink

Vote PedroThe big election day decision everyone has to make is whether to vote for Mitt Romney or Barack Obama or write-in or vote for a candidate with zero chance of winning.  Although I sympathaze with Evangelicals who do not want to support Mitt Romney, I believe I’m called to make wise decisions and be the best steward of the influence and resources God has given me.  I don’t believe a general election vote equates to an endorsement.  I don’t believe general elections are the appropriate vehicles for protesting our failure to get an adequate candidate on the ballot.

That being said, I am prayerful that whoever wins the election has a real meeting with God.  God made good men Kings in the days of Israel.  He anointed David, Asa, Hezekiah, and others who honored their King to rule over Israel.  He put up godly Judges like Debra and others to rule over Israel.  Good leaders can make a HUGE difference.

God also, however, placed in leadership evil men.  Saul was half-hearted.  Manasseh was an evil King.  Ahab was “more evil than all kings before him.”  Read through first and second Kings, Chronicles, etc. for the sometimes nasty details.

I respect men and women who, in their own consciences and within their own understanding of the Scriptures, can’t vote for Romney or Obama.  Don’t let anyone tell you, however, who to vote for.  Pray.  Show Up.  Vote.  Trust God with a clear conscience.  He was sovereign when he anointed good and evil men.  He’s sovereign this week as we vote.  He’ll be sovereign for eternity.  The Curse we live under makes men governing themselves futile.  It’s supposed to be that way.  It’s supposed to point us to our Creator King!

The biggest threat to the Church as it relates to public policy and politics is that some believers get so emotionally caught up in the political game that it becomes an idol.  They begin to think that politics holds answers.  They begin to believe that we are responsible for the outcome of elections and the direction the culture goes.  We are called to do two things: love God and love our neighbor.  I believe it is very difficult to love our neighbor if we lead them to believe that their party affiliation, voting record, or candidate preference is more important than the pursuit of their Creator.

I am not a fatalist in that I believe God will honor our participation as we vote with Him on our hearts.  I’m not saying we shouldn’t be active and using our gifts in the public square doing public service in any number of capacities.  I’m saying we need to keep this whole election in perspective.

Vote.  Love God.  Love your neighbor.  He takes care of the rest and will show us how government is supposed to work soon enough.

The Path Of The Fatherless

October 29th, 2012 § 2 comments § permalink

(This post has been adapted from a former iteration of this website and various other websites that reposted it in March of 2010.  Posted here in October of 2012 and edited June 27, 2013)

I grew up fatherless. I saw my dad a few times growing up. I knew his name and whereabouts. I spent about two weeks with him in 1992-ish and he was always very kind to me when we saw each other. I got cards most birthdays and most every Christmas. But he wasn’t a part of my life, was never married to my mother, and we lived many states away from each other most of my childhood. It wasn’t until I was 17 that I began to get to know my dad and to develop a friendship with him. We are a testimony to genetics and I’m proud to be his son.

My mother was young and I was a surprise. I never wondered if she loved me but I also knew she struggled in many ways raising a son herself.

The Long Road Graphic / Fatherless

The path of the fatherless can be confusing and long…

The path of fatherlessness was a long and painful road shrouded in insecurity for me.  It is a path so far off the one God meant for families that I didn’t know I was even on it until I had my own kids. As I’ve been reflecting on my role in my own kids’ lives, it’s proven to be extremely painful for me as I look back on my childhood. So I figured I’d write a bit about it:

I look at my son and my daughter now and I see young souls that need a type of protection their mom couldn’t provide in spite of her commitment and good maternal instincts. They need a structure and authority I alone can provide. They need a dad they respect to hold them with grace when they expect nothing more than justice. These are things my kids can only get from me. For all the beauty and wisdom that is their mother, she provides a separate set of skills and wisdom I can’t offer them. God designed the nuclear family to raise healthy children.

What potential in me was lost not having a father and being exposed to men who were perfect losers? What struggles would have been overcome earlier in life or avoided altogether? What could my father and I have learned from each other? How much less am I equipped to be a father and husband having not had many positive male role models for most of my elementary and Jr. High years? How much relational heartache and how many unhealthy situations as a kid would have been avoided? How did the fear and insecurity that plagued my childhood affect me today? » Read the rest of this entry «

The Great Anger

October 28th, 2012 § 7 comments § permalink

The following post has been adapted from its original posting on a previous iteration of this website, a Facebook note, and other places it was reposted.  I’m reposting it to both keep my thoughts for posterity and in the hopes that it may be encouraging to someone who can, unfortunately, relate.  This post was originally written in December of 2008)

I’ve never really written much about this subject outside of a few handwritten journal entries but my heart is heavy with the subject and I grieve for those experiencing similar or worse situations as I type this. May they feel God in what will be their darkest hours.

There are many things I don’t remember about the day my daughter was born and died. But the things I do remember are burned into my memory.

Rebekah Leigh was born December 10, 2000. My wife was in labor the evening before but didn’t know it and we were busy hosting our annual Christmas Party at our house and having a blast with friends and family. Overnight, however, her water broke and we headed to the hospital thinking that the baby was just a month early.

The doctors seemed concerned because she was breech and “a little early” but assured us that she was plenty mature enough to be born, may need some support for a few days, but would be fine. She wasn’t coming out naturally, however, and they needed to do an emergency cesarean to make sure there would be minimal stress on the baby. We were scared but excited. This was our first child and she was on her way out! » Read the rest of this entry «