Tag Archives: Family

Can You Hear the Cries of the Fatherless?

20 Jan

My heart has always been for kids. Not so much as a kid, but after I had my own it was over.

Growing up in a divorced setting myself, I always took special care to make sure they knew mine were loved. It doesn’t take a whole lot of effort but you have to be intentional about it.

Mainly all they wanna know is that you’re interested. Kids internalize just about everything. If you don’t spend time investing emotional capital into their young lives they’ll find it elsewhere.

Somebody will pick up on that and end up becoming their primary source of information. It needs to be you bud.

I know maybe nobody showed you how, or worse yet raised you to believe that men don’t think about such things . . . not to over analyze, but you’ve got a solemn obligation to them and to society to be there.

Our culture is slowly veering out of control because fathers and their kids aren’t connecting anymore. Manhood is almost viewed as adolescent behavior, something our culture needs to grow out of. But true manhood is what holds it all together.

Roll up your sleeves and get busy man will ya? 👊😯

What is manhood?

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Unrealistic Expectations

6 Jan

Thirty years..thirty years of tunnel vision, busting my tail trying to prove myself, believing in other people’s pipe dreams, carrying their vision, being taken advantage of . . . hoping that someday it would all pay off. What did I get in return? Zilch, nada, nothing but dust, dirt, headaches, hernias, arthritis, the list goes on and on.

I got paid a good wage but for some reason my dreams never materialized.

I was raised to, “Stick with what you know” to, “Become an expert in your field.” That’s all well and good but I’ve been trying to do it all in my own strength instead of trusting God with my future.

These past couple of years have been quite revealing. I’ve learned a lot about myself and I’ve finally figured out that my struggles haven’t been with my level of expertise or not meeting the, “right people.” I’ve been heading in the wrong direction. The more I smash the throttle the faster my wheels spin but I just wasn’t going anywhere because I was chasing the wind, dragging around a dead dog on a leash.

I had my own vision of what my career should look like by now. I figured the more detailed it was in my mind, the better the outcome would be, but wood floors were just meant to carry me to this point . . . not all the way home.

I know lots of older guys that are still struggling in the industry. I’m just glad I was able to let go, I’m finally gaining traction.

Sometimes believing in God is the easy part. Believing in his plan for our lives is often much harder. That requires trust in him. Not just in his existence but in his ways, his word, and his promises. That can seem like such a tall order for us when life is spinning. But part of being a Christian is committing our lives to following him, wherever that may lead us. When we trust that He will guide us safely along life’s path, we can walk confidently all the way home.

Read more here

The Great Flat Earth Deception

1 Jan

About a year ago, a former business associate began looking into the flat earth theory. At first it was innocent, just a guy digging around on YouTube for information, but it’s morphed into a dangerous delusion. He’s a Seventh Day Adventist, I can work with that in terms of the Christian faith and non-essentials. I’m all about some unity when appropriate, but something started to shift in his thinking.

I felt constrained to speak up but I knew it would cause an issue so I just kept my mouth shut. He’d already lost all of his friends (literally like, don’t call me anymore), and besides who was I to critique his personal choices? This is America after all (and I was on his payroll). However, he started quoting the book of Enoch as gospel and twisting scripture around to align with his new illumination.

Then came the, “videos.” He spent $1000.00 on camera equipment and became obsessed with close up images of stars and time lapsed photography of the sky. It wasn’t long before he completely lost his grip on reality. He now considers himself a prophet sent by God to spread the message to unbelievers. He holds the earth as not only being flat, but that it’s a never ending plane. 😶 The only thing stopping us from venturing out further is a giant ice wall that surrounds the continents, heavily guarded by the military.

His life was beginning to unravel, and it was affecting business. He’d, “evangelize” to anyone; our suppliers, fellow contractors, builders, even his customers! I started praying . . . hard.

In less than two weeks God provided the best job I’ve ever had with an awesome boss, great pay, year round work, lots of room for advancement . . . a phenomenal opportunity. I told him it would have to be part time for now, that I’d like to give my old boss some notice, he agreed.

SO, for the past couple of weeks I’ve been keeping him updated. He knows I’m working somewhere else but I haven’t it told him that I’m moving on yet. He says he’ll let me know when something cracks. I figured this would be my opportunity to clear some things up so I texted him last night after he sent me yet another one of his daily videos.

Me: Be careful with how you’re using scripture bro, truth is holy..not to be trifled with.

James 3:1 Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness.

The vast majority of historians and scholars don’t even believe that Enoch wrote the, “Book of Enoch” for instance.

If you’re gonna, teach” you have to exegete and have a thorough understanding of the hermeneutics around the verses. You can’t just apply it willy nilly to what you’re talking about. In other words we need to bend our understanding around the scriptures not bend the scriptures around our understanding.

His Response: Mind your own business. If you don’t agree with it don’t fukin watch it

Your mind is indoctrinated by mans foolishness which makes you a fool as well.decieved by the devil.just think if im wrong well I would be in deep shitright.but the thing is that you are which makes you the one that is in trouble with the lord….denying his true creation.and believing the lies of science..even dareing.to even QUESTION my fukin intelligence and my discerning powers..how dare your foolish ass message me these things on my phone regarding my life and my beliefs. You bitchI am a profit of god.a messenger to this world.id be fukin careful what comes out of yo fukin mouthIf i were youGods word doesn’t teach a heliocentric model of earth.he hints that it’s flat with a sun and moon under a FIRMAMENT so if you deny me.u deny the lord

God is Faithful

26 Dec

Just an update . . . that new job I started last week, what an opportunity! I had a gut feeling it was gonna work out, but talk about pressure. I was right up against the wall!

For the past few years I’ve been dealing with severe chronic pain. Due to the nature of my particular field of expertise, unbeknownst to me, I’d developed arthritis in my hip. I thought it was more of a muscular issue than a skeletal one. I figured that stuff didn’t happen until you were in your sixties.

Initially it was more of a dull ache than anything else, but one day it got to the point where I couldn’t work anymore, I could hardly walk without a cane.

I was cleaning up the yard at my place of employment when out of nowhere it felt like someone stabbed me in the leg. The pain was unbelievable! The next day I went in for x-rays and discovered the underlying problem.

It was devastating.

I was recently divorced, I had no insurance benefits and now that the issue was exposed it was a, “pre-existing condition.” I didn’t know what to do. I hadn’t even earned enough points to receive disability benefits, because for years I’d been trying to get various businesses off the ground so my wife could stay home (I’m an entrepreneur at heart). Over time I went through my savings just to survive, until I was flat broke.

Things looked bleak, that’s actually when I began writing Boundless Devotion.

I went to a pain clinic and got some relief but as it is with many of these kinds of situations, I became dependent on the medicine. I suppose that’s just a fancy way of saying addicted.

I was now trapped in a piercing enigma. It was all I could do just to trust God, read the Bible and hope for a positive outcome.

Eventually I was able to lay down the meds (thank God) and began a physical therapy regiment I’d found on YouTube of all places lol. Not long after a friend of mine offered me a partnership deal of sorts in his business (I mentioned it last week) but it just never worked itself out practically speaking.

Now finally, after almost three years, the Lord has shown Himself to be that friend that, “sticks closer than a brother.”

I was always a lover of God and souls. His word truly has been, “a lamp unto my feet” since the kids were little, but I’ve had my share of battles with the flesh and to be honest, was in need of some serious spiritual intervention. The problem is, my ego has a tendency to hold me captive at times.

I see all this as God’s discipline, He’s been using it to draw me closer to Himself. As a result of His faithfulness and His excellent craftsmanship I’m now entering a new phase in my life.

Oh, and the ex and I are talking again. 😉

I know a lot of you have been praying for me lately, thank you.

Psalm 51:6 Behold, you delight in truth in the inward being, and you teach me wisdom in the secret heart. 7 Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. 8 Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones that you have broken rejoice. 9 Hide your face from my sins, and blot out all my iniquities. 10 Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.

“Country”

13 Dec

A few years ago after my divorce, I bought a piece of property by a lake in Beech Grove, Tennessee. It was out there . . . almost what they call, “primitive.” It took almost an hour for me to get to work, but it was mine. The plan was to build a pile of money, we had a bunch of work coming, but somebody outbid my boss and we lost the account.

It was the middle of winter, and it was cold . . . in more ways than one. The peace and quiet was great, but I was alone out there, more alone than I’d ever been in my entire life. I learned a lot about myself during that time.

It was just an old shack I planned on fixing up. There wasn’t any power or running water and without income, I was in a constant state of desperation. I was trusting God but I remember countless times, crying out to Him, trying to understand why He’d put me there. It was a truly humbling experience.

Then one day an old dog showed up out of the blue, he had battle scars all over him. I shared my meal and he decided to stick around.

After a little while I had to put out the fire so he eventually followed me inside. You could tell he didn’t quite know how to function as a house dog, but he was grateful to come in out of the cold.

Work picked up a little but it was nothing to brag about. In between jobs I had to drive down the mountain just to get internet service, hoping maybe to land different employment or a day labor gig here and there. He had free reign but he’d always be there in the morning to send me off and be waiting for me when I got home.

I called him country.

The time came that I had to make a decision to tough it out or change plans; I was down to my last hundred and twenty-two dollars, and needed a throttle cable for my truck. I would have stayed but I had no choice, and I couldn’t take him with me.

I felt awful, we’d both already been abandoned, now I was doing it to him again. But he was familiar with grief so I figured he’d be alright.

Once I got situated I went back up there and stayed the weekend. I called out to him every once in a while hoping he’d come around, but I think he found his way into somebody else’s heart.

Thank God for dogs.

An Explanation for Expletives

5 Dec

As I was raising my kids, I was really careful about what kind of media I allowed in the house. When they’re small you worry about such things, their little minds are being shaped. I was okay with violence; I honestly don’t see a problem, especially raising boys, but profanity was off limits. They’ll eventually hear it all on the bus as they head off to school, but setting standards in the home is a crucial component to raising healthy adults.

As they get older they’ll struggle with it once in a while like most of us, especially during times of stress. Personally I think it makes you sound ignorant, and scripture warns against it.

Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

But to deny its existence in every day life, especially in this sin soaked culture, would be silly.

People are craving authentic. When I wrote, Boundless Devotion, I included some expletives within the dialog. Being a believer for the past thirty years, I’m certain that will marginalize some, but ultimately it’s a story of redemption.

There’s a, “method to the madness.”

I also included some heavy crime material so you may not want your first grader to read it, but I left the descriptive to the imagination. The protagonist and all of his allies are all duty bound and honorable, hence the title.

Here’s a portion of a speech I included from General Patten:

Be seated.

Men, all this stuff you hear about America not wanting to fight, wanting to stay out of the war, is a lot of bullshit. Americans love to fight. All real Americans love the sting and clash of battle. When you were kids, you all admired the champion marble shooter, the fastest runner, the big-league ball players and the toughest boxers. Americans love a winner and will not tolerate a loser. Americans play to win all the time. That’s why Americans have never lost and will never lose a war. The very thought of losing is hateful to Americans. Battle is the most significant competition in which a man can indulge. It brings out all that is best . . . etc etc.

Again, I don’t want to offend your conscience if you’re a brother or sister in Christ, but it’s a military crime Thriller. There is nothing willy nilly about it I did tons of research. It’s just where the journey took me . . . it was inescapable.

Read a sample here

Legacy of Tears

30 Nov

Looking around at all the foulness in the media lately, I was thinking of writing a book about the wickedness of the human heart. I even came up with a cool title for it, “Depth of Depravity.” However the more I pondered on the idea, I honestly wouldn’t know where to begin.

When I examine my own heart, it’s enough to scare anybody. I think that’s the case for most of us, but the dynamics have changed. Our eyes have adjusted to the darkness. We accept things as normal that should make us feel ashamed as a country; we’ve forgotten how to blush.

Overall Americans used to be on the same page in terms of morality. We enjoyed a, “community ethic.” where everybody knew the difference between right and wrong. Those days are over, which makes reading people a lot more challenging, and dangerous.

Nobody’s perfect, but ask those who know me and they’ll tell you, I’m one of the good guys. What about the other team?

If we’re truly honest with ourselves . . . goodness.

They used to say twenty or so years ago, that at any given moment there were at least a hundred serial killers walking around, living among us. I wonder what those numbers would look like today?

I’ve made many poor choices in my life, decisions that still affect me in many respects all these years later. Growing up in the chaos I was forced to call, “home” certainly didn’t help (long story). Nevertheless I took ownership of those choices, a skill sorely lacking in American culture. As a result I enjoy my freedom, I have a good relationship with my children, I’m relatively healthy, I have a roof over my head . . . there are consequences for good behavior as well as bad.

But my God what are we handing down to these kids?!

Braille — Changed Hearts

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