Rising to a Smile: Ms. Nelson Part 2

I realize now that Ms. Nelson didn’t just love her students. It wasn’t simply her care and attention that made her memorable to us. She seemed to have an ability to challenge us that made us do things we didn’t know we could do. I loved every afternoon when she read to us. We were sweaty, mussy, distracted and tired after the mid day recess. She knew we wouldn’t respond to demands during that part of the day, she lead us to sit, to rest and to relax while she read “Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing” and “Where the Sidewalk Ends” to our eager ears. Continue reading

Dads with Dented Fenders

I was at Kroger getting gas when a silver mini-van pulled up at the pump next to me. Before I saw the driver, I saw the dent. It looked like it had been hit pretty good, and then, to save some money, had been banged out to a useable shape. It was probably like that for a while because rust had started to color the cracks and give it a crinkled look. Were it an old dresser, or an antique dining room buffet we would have called it “distressed” and made it a feature in our home. But when it’s a mini-van, we only wish we could trade it in, and try our best to be thankful that we have a reliable vehicle, no matter what it looks like. Continue reading

What I’m Chasing in 2015

This hasn’t been our best year. Really. Financially, emotionally, relationally, a whole pile of “not our finest” moments. Yet… I’m convinced that years like 2014 are essential. They are the interruptions that make us better, they are not defining years, but they spur us on to better things and I’m grateful for my less than stellar year. Continue reading

A Lamp Unto My Feet

With a dozen fresh cinnamon rolls in hand, we piled out of the car to deliver them to expecting friends. The lights on their house made it very clear how to get to their front door and the side walk stretched welcoming from the driveway where each of my boys were gearing up to run to the destination. Boys are not known for careful steps, and Ivan was first one out. I was still closing my car door when I heard him scream. Aron was first to his side and even our friends heard his cries and came out to comfort. A small step hidden by the shadow of well trimmed greenery in the front of the house had caught his foot and his knee took the brunt of all of Ivan. Scraped and bleeding he was slow to comfort and as I handed the rolls off and leaned down to kiss his tears, daddy came from the other side, scooped up the whole boy, and carried him inside. Continue reading

What Am I Exalting?

 

The wicked strut about on every side
When vileness is exalted among the sons of men. Psalm 12:8 NASB

When I read that verse Thursday morning, the first thought I had was of conflicts we are hearing about around the world. I don’t care what your opinion is on the conflict; wickedness struts about ON EVERY SIDE.

It’s just ugly. Continue reading

My Everything

I see so many quotes, articles, messages, letters, all sorts of beautiful words to say how important someone is to someone else.

I understand it’s important to communicate these things. I understand how heartfelt and sincere everyone is.

I can’t join in though. I just can’t. Continue reading