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FIND MY FAMILY

November 24, 2009 2 comments

The promo says it all: From the creators of Extreme Makeover Home Edition.

Translation: Grab the box of tissues and get ready for a cry fest.

I know I’m a sucker for sappy shows, but good grief, they sure don’t make it easy on us see-how-many-tears-you-can-hold-in-the-bottom-rim-of-your-eyes-before-one-sneaks-out guys. I sat down with Haven last night to catch a sneak peak of Find My Family, and it was Game Over for me 5 minutes into the episode.

They had me right where they wanted me as a mom tearfully retold the story of handing her newborn across the desk to the adoption agency some 30 years ago, as the couple talked about the sadness they’ve since felt each year on the birthday of their daughter they had to give up, as the 29-year old daughter shared how her adoptive mother and she prayed each night for the lady who gave her up, as the daughter sees pictures of her biological parents for the first time, and as the parents see pictures of their biological daughter and grandson for the first time. And all that was comedy compared to the grand finale, which had the parents walking up a hill to the “family tree” and embracing their daughter for the first time since she was born.

As I watched the parents–parents who had longed for the day when they could begin a relationship with their daughter–as I watched these parents make their way along the narrow path up the hill, I couldn’t help but imagine God making that same journey. He, too, had children who bore His image. He, too, lost the closeness to these children that He once cherished. He, too, desired more than anything to see these relationships restored. He, too, for years pursued His offspring. And He, too, in his search of his children, was lead to a dead tree atop a lonely hill.

And, much like the daughter, it was there I first embraced my Father. It was there I met my Savior who was willing to trudge the hill in search of me. It was there the One who formed me, found me.

It was there I found my Family.

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BALANCING WORK AND FAMILY

October 13, 2009 4 comments

I was asked recently how I go about balancing work and family. Fair question…especially considering my profession. Preachers are notorious for paying attention to everyone but their wife and kids.

over-work

So, what are some things I try to do to avoid sacrificing my family on the altar of my ministry? Here are a few things that seem to work pretty well most of the time.

  1. Thursday is date day or date night for Heather and me. Either we send the kids to the babysitter for the day or we get a babysitter for the evening.
  2. On Saturday I don’t start reviewing my sermons before 8pm, and I try not to think and stress about them before 8pm, either (although Heather can generally tell how far along I am for Sunday by the mood I’m in on Saturday). I’m working on that. I think it’s getting better, but you might ought to ask her.
  3. Now that we have a new addition to our family, I don’t want Haven to feel like she has half her old daddy. So Monday afternoon is going to be Haven and daddy time. I’ll pick her up from preschool, take her to lunch, let her sit in the big chair in my office, and let her tag along for whatever visits I make that day. I think she’ll like it. I know I will.
  4. Sunday is tough no matter what, but I try to go to class with Heather, go with Heather to pick up Haven from class (and soon Pierce, too), and sit with the family until it’s time to preach.
  5. On the days I go into the office (M/T/W/F), I try to be home around 5pm.
  6. Vacation Sundays are to be used for vacations only…not extra speaking engagements. Vacations are great opportunities to bond and build memories as a family. They’re pretty much sacred in our house.

These are a few of the things I try to do to balance work and family.

What are some things that help you balance the two? I’d love to hear your strategies.

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