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I’m Not Who I Think I Am…

I have this embarrassing problem that I need to share. It's not halitosis, bromhidrosis or even osmosis (that last one doesn't really make sense but I was running out of "osis" words). My problem is that I tend to think that I'm something I'm not. In other words, I'm prone to pride. For example, I tend to think I'm smarter, kinder, more spiritual and funnier than I actually am [EdiTOR's note: that last example is the toughest one for me to personally believe.] It seems that I … [Read more...]

The Crippling Power of Pride

I had a conversation yesterday with a colleague from work that continues to linger with me. During our small talk, the conversation turned to the topic of our children respectively. He happens to have a 20-something son who teaches English to executives in Japan. His son also works part-time at a Japanese university where he teaches English. When I asked if his son spoke Japanese the father replied, "...not very well..." He went on to say that when his son goes to the doctor's office … [Read more...]

When Your Child has Cancer…

Our sweet Sarah was just six when she was diagnosed with Stage IV Neuroblastoma.  Our family's world was shaken.  Our foundations were rocked.  Our grief was incalculable. Life and Death in a Song One day shortly after Sarah's diagnosis, I was running some errands and listening to the radio when a song called Untitled Hymn started playing. It beautifully described all the different chapters we go through in life and finished up with a verse about the end of life. It closed with the … [Read more...]

Theology is no Substitute for Waiting Under an Oak

I have an eight-year-old son now. He’s skinny, like I was. He’s (mostly) gentle, a rule follower, and he prefers playing with Legos by himself in his bedroom and please stay out unless you are offering food. Check, check and check – just like I used to be. Practicing the Ritual of Waiting I remember late on Saturday afternoons, when I was his age, I would hear my dad shouting out of the farmhouse. His voice moved like a ripple. I scrambled toward the house as fast as I could, … [Read more...]

No More Mr. Nice Guy

One of the reasons I love being married is that I don't have to play the dating game anymore. I won. However, there was a time when I thought I would die alone and wrinkly. As a rehabilitated "nice guy" I'm here to offer some hope for anyone stuck in the dating morass. Nice Guy Syndrome First, some quick background. I grew up with military parents, strict discipline, attended church and was raised to be chivalrous. You know, holding doors, pulling out chairs and all that - a modern … [Read more...]

Nothing Makes Me Feel More Like an Idiot than Parenting

My kids are weird.  Having my husband and I for parents really leaves them with no other option. Odd is hard-wired in their DNA. If you follow me on Twitter you've seen some of the stuff they say because I can't keep it to myself.  The world has to know.  Like: Daughter: "What's a catheter?" I explain... "OH NO!  I am never asking you anything again!" or Me: "Son, you're putting your pants on backwards." Him: "Don't judge me." Matter-of-Fact Belligerence Probably my … [Read more...]

10 Tips to Dating over 30

I’ve been at this a few years. I’ve tried online dating and dating friends of friends. I’ve tried dating people I’ve known for years and people I’ve just met. I’ve learned a lot from the experience, including that just because he says he’ll call doesn’t mean he will (Yes, I realize perhaps that should have been obvious). So here are some of my insights in case they help any of you who find yourselves dating during the years when some cultures relegate you permanently to … [Read more...]

Loving Your Loved Ones Correctly

Sometimes, I find it hard it to love loved ones. Not because I don’t actually love them, but because I do not love them correctly. I say “I love you”, but I do not display it in my actions! Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always … [Read more...]

Adoption – Learning to Say YES!!!

When, Grace, our fourth child came along, I was certain we were done having kids. Who wouldn’t be? Four is a full house. While I saw full bedrooms, a full minivan, and an empty pantry, my wife saw room for one more. The word “adoption” would occasionally get thrown around our conversations. To me it was an important topic. One that all of us should be actively involved in. I felt my role was to “actively” watch everyone else do all of the work. I still remember the first … [Read more...]

Love – Finding a Definition That Works

Our culture is obsessed with the idea of love. Films, music, art, and even Virginia bumper stickers are saturated with the word “love.” But there is a problem: most of us cannot define love. We know that a feeling is involved. Ron Burgundy claims it is like, “skyrockets in flight!” Many can identify examples of love, but definitions rarely get passed, “you know, it’s love!” I recently celebrated my third anniversary to a far more amazing wife then a guy like me could … [Read more...]