• On Family Life

    So You Think You’re Kind?

    It’s a wonder I ever got married. Actually, what’s more amazing is that I married a wonderful woman who checked every single box I had when I was younger. (As a shameless plug, you should do yourself a favor and check out her blog here.) It’s truly an act of God’s grace that she wanted to marry me, because I’ve been a jerk for half my life. Some of those who know me are nodding right now. “Yep. You were. Indubitably.” I’m still growing and learning how not to be a jerk, but thankfully, when I was in college I mellowed quite a bit. I shed the zeal and intensity,…

  • On Family Life

    Wait for it…

    As a father, a husband, an employee, a brother, an uncle, etc. I am called to greater likeness of Jesus. How do I get there, and how do I take those I love along with me? How do I grow more patient? How do I exercise that muscle? How do I till the soil of my heart? How do I… Here’s the answer. Wait for it…

  • On Family Life

    How Not to Be Afraid

    You’ve probably heard me say that I like storms. If you haven’t heard me say that, we probably just met. I like storms. The sound of rain. How the clouds open up and the deluge moves toward me. From the time I was little I liked to watch storms from our carport. I would sit outside the front door and smell the storm. I would watch as it moved across the cornfields and listen as the rain began pounding all around me. It was immersive and beautiful. If I was safe at home, game over! Of course, this is predicated on being safe and sound. It’s a little more disconcerting to be in a…

  • On Family Life

    3 Simple Lessons to Be More Joyful

    I can be pretty deadpan (or ugly deadpan for that matter). In fact, I’m so subtle with my humor sometimes that I have learned to quickly let people know I’m joking. When I do, I destroy the power my joke had, but I hopefully keep my audience from being angry with me or thinking less of me. I suppose it’s worth the cost of a joke to ensure tranquility. But I digress. My deadpan manner isn’t just my sense of humor. Since high school I’ve often said I default to an emotional midpoint, somewhere between a peaceful dispassion and a melancholy ambivalence. Some situations simply don’t warrant a passionate response.…

  • On Family Life

    All You Need for Your Family to Thrive

    My Amazing Idea When I was four years old I had an amazing idea. My mom had bought lemons at the grocery store. As she made fresh-squeezed lemonade, she tossed the rinds and seeds off to the side. I knew that when we planted seeds a new plant grew of the same kind of fruit or vegetable that we got the seeds from. (Although I never understood where one gets banana seeds. But I digress.) So my amazing idea was to take the seeds that my mom was throwing out and plant them. That way our family would have fresh lemons and not have to buy them at the store.…

  • On Family Life

    The 2 Simple Rules for the Fruitful Family

    I’m a terrible gardener. If you garden, I just don’t understand you. You’re probably a well-balanced person full of self-discipline and good old-fashioned gumption. You look at a patch of dirt and see what beautiful plants could be growing there. I look at it and think about how much work it would take. Ain’t nobody got time for that. My wife and I have tried gardening. We head into each spring with grand plans of a vegetable garden teeming with cucumbers, beans, tomatoes, pumpkins, watermelons, and bell peppers. This was the first spring in our new house, so we picked out a plot, tilled, and planted all the vegetables we…