Living the crazy life that God has given me!

relationships

Silver Lining to LIFE

25 Year Anniversary

When you get to a certain mile stone in life you should take the time to reflect on how you got there.  The reason that I believe that is important is because wouldn’t it be great to share that information with those that are coming after you.  Especially as parents and to be honest in this day an age as a father we need to show more young men on how to lead the way in married life.  So here are a few things that I have learned over 25 years of marriage. (This is the short list)

  1. Keep a long list of ways that you can make her feel special and loved.
  2. Keep a short list of the fights that you have and the things that are said.
  3. Make time for talking about her day not matter what she does in life.
  4. Find older men that can talk to you about what they have done to be a healthy husband and father.
  5. Have a group of men that you can have the tough conversations with about marriage and parenting. (Your wife will not always understand you. DUH!)
  6. Always find time to get away for at least 24 hours without the rest of your family.  Couples need to take time for themselves, your relationship needs to matter or your family will not get your best.
  7. Celebrate the things that show your wife and your family that they matter. (Anniversary’s and Birthdays are the easy ways, get creative.)
  8. Make sure that you take the time to date your mate.  (If there was more courting in marriage there would be fewer marriages in court.)
  9. Pray daily for the ways that God can continue to grow and unite you as a couple.
  10. Start back at one . . .

If you have an idea of one thing that you think is important to remember for a long lasting marriage please feel to make a comment and share.  The more that we learn from each other and the more we share the better we become as men.


Tips for playing “Pokemon Go”

pokemon goOk so I have to say that I am not a fan of Pokemon Go. But it is making people crazy and I am not going to lie, I love the idea of this game for parents and their kids.  So I was thinking that we should list some very simple tips for playing Pokemon Go with your kids:

  1. Make sure that you are dressed for the adventure. If you are going to be outside a ton then make sure you are dressed for where you live.  Also make sure that you have something to drink while you are out and about.  Who knows this might be something that you can assign to one of the kids to handle.  Give them some ownership for the adventure. But ultimately wear good shoes, don’t want those dogs to get tired.
  2. Don’t worry about catching duplicate Pokémon. Whenever you snag a new Pokémon, you may notice you will also earn candy and stardust. Both items will help level up your characters to make them stronger. With enough candy, you can also evolve your Pokémon into something bigger and more powerful. Any duplicates you transfer to the professor net more candy. So those extra Pidgeys will come in handy.
  3. Eggs are a good way to snag more Pokémon. When you visit a Poké Stop, you can earn Balls to capture more creatures or Eggs. Players can stick an Egg in an incubator and birth their own Pokémon. All you need to do is once the Egg is inside the incubator, you must walk to complete the process. Now being dressed for the adventure will be worth it.
  4. Have your phone charger ready always.  You sure don’t want the phone to die while you are on the adventure do you?  So play with the kids and let them know that with out the phone the adventure stops.  So make it fun for how you get the phone on the charger and off when you go hunting.
  5. The way you toss the Poké Ball is important. When you capture a Pokémon, you flick the Poké Ball from the lower end of the screen toward the Pokémon to catch it. The better the toss, the more experience points you earn. You can even toss a curveball to catch them with flair. A green circle expands and shrinks when you hold down on the Poké Ball before the toss. The wider the circle, the greater the odds of making a catch.
  6. Beware of your surroundings. One thing that I have already seen is people wandering around without an awareness of what is going on around them.  So a good idea would be to have some one as your safety guard through the whole adventure.  In fact this also might be a good time to talk with your kids about being aware of people around them when they are walking to and from school, or playing with friends, or walking to practice.  Make this a teachable moment about safety.

I think it is important to know that the family that plays together stays together.  I also think that a family that attends a church together has a stronger bond then they will ever know.  If you want to know more about a church in Aurora, CO then just click here and find a place for you and your family. Don’t let the adventure stop when you are not playing Pokemon Go!


Carrying to much?

refrig and dolly

So yesterday as I was heading to the airport with my wife and daughter to fly out to an event that I was going to speak at something caught my eye.  We were sitting at an intersection that we always go through about three to four times a day and there was a man on the corner with a refrigerator.  That’s right a refrigerator all by himself on a dolly.  Then as we pulled up the light changed and he painstakingly hauled the refrigerator across the street to the other side, but when he got to the corner it got stuck.  So he worked and worked the refrigerator up on the corner as all of the cars in the turn lane waited and honked.  Then once he got it up on the corner sidewalk he paused caught his breath and then hauled the refrigerator down the street to some unknown destination.

As I watched this happen I was thinking first, how I could get out and help this guy with out getting run over and with out being late for my flight. Then the second thing that came to mind was why is there no one to help this guy to move this refrigerator? Why is he carrying so much of a load all on his own?  I thought that it was really interesting to see this since this last weekend at Elevation we talked about the need and call for community. We talked about “Relationships lead to community and community fuels maturity.”

It made me think about all the people that are involved in faith communities (churches) that are carrying to much on their own.  Whether it because of their own choice of not being involved in community by choosing to be that person who just shows up and never gets to know any one.  Or that they are involved in a faith community (church) that doesn’t make relationships a priority.  It burdened my heart to think about how we have so many people that say they are following Jesus but have made a choice to forget about the “One Another’s”.  Through out the New Testament there many “One Another’s” and there is one that I thought of when it came to the man on the corner with the refrigerator.

Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. Galatians 6:2 (NLT)

When did we start to think that we need to handle things all on our own?  When did it become ok to know of the struggle someone is having and to do nothing?  It is my prayer that today you will notice the family member or friend that is carrying to much, like the refrigerator and get involved.  Who do you know that you can help carry the refrigerator down the street today? Don’t miss out on sharing in the burden.


Look in the parking lot?

So this weekend I had someone invite me to come and see a car that was in our parking lot.  We walked out the front door and the person pointed out the car in the parking lot. My first thought was ok nice car but that is not the make or model that I get all fired up about, I let them know that I am a mustang kind of guy.  But then the person drew my attention to the license plate that was on the car.  There I saw what had got the attention of the individual.

Car in the lot

This is the actual license plate that was on the car. This is not fabricated or changed in any way to make this an interesting picture.  For those of you that don’t know we are a church that is in the great state of Colorado where I am a native.  A place where it is currently to legally purchase marijuana.  Now I don’t intend for this to be a place where we argue about what should be or not be legal.  We live in a state where it is legal and I have to live in that reality as a leader.  So the person that pointed out the license plate then asked me this question, “What should we do about this?”

My answer to this question was simple, “Make sure they have a great parking spot and they have a good time.” With that answer I saw a look of confusion for a minute.  But then I went on to explain what I meant.  My answer and my prayer was that this person felt comfortable enough to come and be a  part of our church so I wanted us to live out, “It’s ok to not be ok, but God doesn’t want you to stay that way.” I wanted the person that came in this car to understand that they can come here and be cared for and encouraged in their faith journey.  Then I wanted the person to know that pointed out the license plate that God is going to be the one that is going to change a life.  So we should be excited that this person was with us and hearing about the radical grace of Jesus.

We were not going to run them off because of their license plate because just down the row was another car that I knew the owner was dealing with porn, I knew that there was another car on the next row where the owner was dealing with mental illness, and I knew that there was another car on the other end of the lot that was in legal trouble.  The only thing different about this car was that their license plate was letting us know what was going on in their life.  So we were going to simply pray for this person, pray that Jesus was going to impress upon their heart about a relationship with Him, pray that this person would experience life change because of who he is and not because we pointed out their license plate.  So my encouragement to you is to look in the parking lot, look and see not the license plates but who are the people that are there to be cared for and reached with the radical grace of Jesus?  Who knows maybe you need to start with your car.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Baptism Celebration

Baptism is a celebration and it is amazing.

Baptism is a celebration and it is amazing.

So yesterday at Elevation we had a baptism celebration at Elevation.  It is one of the things that we do that amazes me that I get to be a part of.  As a church family and team over the last four and a half years we have celebrated 194 people getting baptized.  The baptisms are amazing as we see husbands, wives, moms, dads, brothers, sisters, and friends baptize the people that they know have taken the step of saying yes to a relationship with Jesus.  There is nothing more amazing then watching a little boys face as he looks up at his dad after he comes out of the water.  I get emotional when I see a spouse that is getting the chance to baptize the person that they are staying with for the rest of their life and eternity.

But then you get to hear the stories of how and why they said yes to a relationship with Jesus. You get to hear about the struggle, the mess, and many times the hurt that lead them to realize their need for Jesus.  But then you also get to hear the stories of how families lead in the area of faith, about how students knew that it was what the knew they needed to do, and amazing stories of a life of faith and growth.  No story is ever the same and no baptism is every the same because of what is happening in that persons life.

What I am excited to think about though is the stories that I have yet to hear.  I am excited about the faces, the families, and the friends that we get to take pictures of baptizing those that are making their life with Jesus public. Who knows maybe you are one of the stories that we are going to get to share.


Confession I am a Romantic!

george-marks-romantic-man-kissing-woman-s-hand

I am going to admit something that I know can really enable me to catch a lot of heat from some of the guys that I hang out around. (MMA Fighters)  But I am going to take this moment and use you for a little therapy.  Ready, here we go.

I am a romantic.

I am the one in our marriage that is planning the romantic events.  I am the one that is trying figure out how we can have really special moments. I am not sharing anything that my wife wouldn’t be willing to say isn’t true.  In fact when we were first married it used to really drive me crazy.  I mean I think that someone that knew Michelle and I really well bought her one of those books about being romantic. (True story) She has really changed since then, just saying. But I have always wanted to make things special.

So I want to share a few things with some guys out there that are not so romantic:

  • Think of her and not you. (A back rub can be just that.)
  • Find out what she calls romantic. (That means asking questions and then remembering, if you can’t remember then download, Evernote.)
  • Romantic does not mean expensive, it does mean personal. (Plan things that mean something to you both as a couple, took my wife to eat at the place where I proposed to her. Wrote love notes to her and placed them in her car while she was at work.)
  • Romantic means that she can show what you have done off to other women. (Ladies will probably deny this, maybe. But they want to be able to brag to the other ladies around them about what you do.)
  • Romantic means that you are setting the standard in your home. (If you are a dad of daughters then you are making it tough on the guys your daughters will date.  If you are a dad of sons then you are setting the standard for what they will do.)
  • Make sure that you are totally focused on her and nothing else. (There is a time for couple dates, pick a place to eat with out ESPN, and remember that you don’t have to tweet about it.)

If you want to share in the comment section other ways that you can be romantic that would be awesome. I just ask that you keep them PG at least. (haha)


Quit Trying to Please Her!

Please Her

I am sure that there are many women that ultimately read this and think, “What?” Well let me explain what I mean please, before you come gunning for me.

One of the things that I have realized as a husband is that I am always trying to please my wife.  It is one of the things that I have always tried to do ever since we were married over 20 years ago.  But I have to be honest it is really, really, hard.  She is emotional.  She can be moody.  She confuses me.  She cries. Sometimes I have learned that a good cry is just needed. (Never heard men ever say this.) She loves. She cares. She is a great mom. She is an amazing friend.  All these things can and will happen with in one day. (I am exaggerating)

I am a man and I am trying to please a woman.  It is something that can absolutely drive you out of your mind.

So I “Quit trying to please her!”

What I did instead was try to please Jesus when it came to her.  It may sound like something for people who are not followers of Jesus as weird.  Heck for some people that say they are followers of Jesus this may sound weird.  But for me I realized that I am never going to be exactly what she wants or do exactly what she wants.  So if I am trying to be the follower of Jesus that he is leading me to be then I am going to please her in ways that I would never be able to accomplish on my own.

You see if I love her unconditionally with the radical grace of Jesus it has was less to do with her and more with Him.  The idea came to me when I read these verses from the bible:

Ephesians 5:25 & 26 25 “For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her 26 to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.”

So that means for me the goal is to seek to please Jesus and that ultimately will give me the opportunity to please her.  But if I am trying to do it the other way around then I am going to be constantly frustrated and trying to hit a moving (Crying) target.

What are ways that you can seek to follow Jesus that will lead you to be a better husband?  If you are not a follower of Jesus then what are some principals that you may know are from the bible that can help you please your gal?