Morning by Morning (4/30/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The chance to wake up lazily in a comfy bed.
  2. My afternoon of laughter and encouragement with Erin Krasowski aa we prepped for PCN. She has such a deep heart for others, a great joy in all she does, a courageous openness, and a creativity that is unmatched. She’s great to spend time with and the perfect companion this week for In N Out!!
  3. Renewing relationships with Bob Flory, Kathleen Ennis Durstine, Mark Brown, Kate Gerne, Ryan Campbell, Jennifer Prechter, Lavender Kelley, Brent Fairchild, Lindsay Bona, Anthony Britten Campbell, and Stacey Jutila. These PCN folks are friends of highest esteem, let alone colleagues that I admire.
  4. The book, A Rabbit Listens, that opened our Advisory Council meeting as a reflection last night. It was so moving and stirring to hear read.
  5. Making space in silence and quieting the mind so that God can speak and I can see myself honestly.
  6. The power of trust in relationships.
  7. Being caught up with podcasts!!
  8. Sharing my joy of Liz with my friends.
  9. My FaceTime calls with Ryan that keep me connected and let me see and talk to. Y little man.

Morning by Morning (4/27/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz caregiving skills when I am sick or under the weather. She’s so kind and generous!
  2. Derek and Amy Fleury. They are such good good people whose appreciation for life, love for their son, and thoughtfulness about life are such a joy to be around.
  3. Kolter Elementary. It’s going to be Ryan’s school in August and their staff and teachers are so welcoming, hospitable, and passionate for my sons growth and learning. I look forward to working with them come August.
  4. Beautiful sashimi!! (Sea bream Pictured)
  5. 9 days away from the hospital. It is a blessing to have time away to be with great people.
  6. Disc golf in beautiful sunny weather.
  7. The joy and hospitality of my family in helping with the hospitality bags for our conference. They are so fun!

Morning by Morning (4/25/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Gods gift of a family at the hospital I’ve known for 3 years, who have twins that have battled cancer. These parents have become like friends to me, and they have my whole heart for the ways in which they have taught me that parenting is about honesty, endurance, being in the present, and loving each other.
  2. My colleagues who cover the pager for the many tasks I have had over the last couple months. I don’t enjoy going in late or leaving early, but I have had to to get some important and necessary things done for Ryan or home. What a blessing to have understanding people to work with!
  3. Peace and Ken for opening their home and being so hospitable! (Good food and good coffee!)
  4. Small group conversation. I enjoy learning what’s going on in others worlds and knowing what is challenging them and what is moving them.
  5. The wonderful Japanese people I met with, are with, taught English to, and learned from during my 7 weeks in Japan in 2002. They were a gift to me as a young man just into college, as they taught hospitality, openness, kindness, and joy, and also exposed me to some amazing foods!
  6. Snuggling with Ryan in the mornings.
  7. Being a part of the joy of a couples wedding. It’s amazing every time!
  8. The pictured disc golf basket with Easter flair. Just because it is warms my heart!!!

Morning by Morning (4/23/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The power of prayer, which can be healing, but rather the power of prayer to be seen and heard in front of a God who is present, full of love, and speaking within.
  2. The many good and fun Easter gifts Ryan received, including Peppa Pig and Pete the Cat books, candy, bubbles, and his car track. Ryan has enjoyed reading and playing and eating through Easter.
  3. My colleague Pam Krinock and her heart for sharing the load, her desire to always make sure I am okay, and her many talents as a chaplain that I must learn from.
  4. The continuing courage of Ryan to get in the water and want to learn to swim. But I also appreciate that I partially get to be part of teaching and encouraging him. That part of parenthood, watching a child learn on one hand, and being a teacher of those things on the other, is quite a joy.
  5. A chill Monday with Ryan and then a chill evening with Liz.
  6. The constant reminders to detach from my phone and engage with Ryan, with Liz, with others. I find my attachment to be difficult to kick, but I am trying every day and getting slowly better thanks to those who remind me.

Morning by Morning (4/22/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Sharing Easter service at a Catholic Church and Southwest Central CofC. It was quite an honor to share celebration in support of Liz and vice versa.
  2. Loving families at the hospital by leading the Easter service at TCH. The three families I met touched me with their faith in the face of fearful lonely times. I am grateful that God is alive, and that his light shines even in dark places.
  3. The amazing weather of the weekend.
  4. The many workers who provide produce for our meals and food. As I picked strawberries this weekend, I thought about the nameless workers who pick and wash and prepare fruit and vegetables from the fields as a service, not a pleasure. Thank you for this invaluable service to our world!
  5. Having so many good strawberries around.
  1. Ryans Easter egg hunts and all the smiles it brought us.
  2. The courage of apologizing, as I was teaching Ryan yesterday. Saying sorry and giving forgiveness are two sides of a difficult coin, but so worth it.

Morning by Morning (4/20/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The beautiful weather of Friday and Saturday of this Easter weekend. Easter ought to feel like new beginning and grace, and for me, this sunny weather is a reflection on both of those.
  2. Sharing a relationship that is based upon lifelong partnership and commitment to hard work.
    Strawberry picking with Liz and Ryan, and having such beautiful strawberries to use all week long!
    Easter brunch with the Tucker’s, Watson’s, Sargents, Powell’s, Brent Spivey and others from Southwest Central. Ryan got to play with Nora and Cora and even got to play and plant in the Tucker garden! Lovely and full of grace!
    Michael and Laure Tucker, and their hospitality and welcome for all. They have many times opened their home, cooked amazing food, and shared their faith and thoughtfulness with me. I love them so much!
    A good fountain drink soda!
    Ryan’s deep belly laughter, and the joy it fills me with.
    Dates, because they just are good.

Morning by Morning (4/19/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryans Easter egg hunt at school! It’s so fun to see pictures of his bounty and know he had such a fun time!
  2. My CPE colleagues, and how they have had a hand in my development- Tom, Russell, and James M in particular.
  3. Seeing strength in parents at the hospital. They inspire me all the time, like the parents of S, J, and N, and the courageous laughter and tears they have shared throughout the hospitalizations and their pursuit of understanding the medical world that has helped them. Many parents show their strength by their willingness to show up and love all in. I love it!
  4. Longing for the PCN gathering in a week and change. This group of people means a lot to me, which is partly why I have found great joy serving on the Advisory Council. But this year I long for them because it is a crowd that is very good at sharing joy and sharing grief- it is quite easy to be fully myself amongst them.
  5. Our Spiritual Care Department supervisor, Mary T, for her leadership and understanding and clear compassion. She may be interim, but she is really appreciated.
  6. Sunshine that comes after the rain.

Morning by Morning (4/18/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryans haircut smirk!
  2. Holy Week, and the passion narrative I love all week long. It always brings a new and challenging perspective. This week it has been Jesus and the last supper with Judas that has been quite moving.
  3. My morning of play with Ryan, without any shows, for almost 2 hours. I was impressed that he made it all morning and seemed so content the whole time.
  4. Levi Greenly. I love his contagious joy and inclusiveness, but also appreciated the way he holds his friends with such esteem and loyalty. Happy birthday!!
  5. Brent Fairchild, one of my chaplain colleagues at Arkansas Children’s. His gentle faith and loving presence betray a great skill and passion as a chaplain. I love serving PCN with him! Happy birthday Brent!
  6. Watching clouds move fast across the sky. It’s so mesmerizing to me.
  7. Having a haircut so I don’t have to do a thing to my hair in the morning.

Morning by Morning (4/17/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The Trauma And Grief Center at Texas Childrens Hospital, and their amazing and broad work with children who are losing or have lost a parent or sibling, or helping kids after major incidents like Harvey. What a great group of folks!
  2. Our dogs, Bailey and Reba, and their presence and role in our family.
  3. Anytime Ryan wants to read.
  4. Another of Ryans swim classes tonight. The anticipation is helpful for Ryan through the day, but anticipation of learning to swim helps me immensely!
  5. Michelle, a Child Life in the EC who was so helpful and effective in her work with a family, advocating for what was right and needed, and being a great support to me too.
  6. Keeping my mind focused on the present moment!
  7. The joy Ryan brings to opening gifts, like he did his Easter gift from Maria and Paul Bryant, who gave great gifts! Ryans joy for opening and seeing is a beautiful thing to watch!

Morning by Morning (4/16/19)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Ryans fashion on Sunday!
  2. The week in California I’m going to have, including a short bit with family, and a bit with pediatric chaplains, but all in SoCal where I am always at home.
  3. Bryan Schackmann, and his exemplifying community through joy, humor, and the all in ness that he brings to everything he does. He was a support to me in Malibu, then in Abilene, and now from SoCal, and he has shown loyalty and inclusiveness the whole way.
  4. Adam Jacobs, who has been a good friend since high school although we did not go to the same school. His friendship has aged well, and I have appreciated that he has allowed me to continue being part of his circle. I have always appreciated his genuineness and willingness to give of himself to his friends.
  5. Jon Burdett, another friend in SoCal, who I continue to grow with. It’s been a pleasure to walk through life with him, and have him as a continual encourager. He too gives of himself, but in all he does, it always has his flair and life to it.
  6. My Florence experience from Pepperdine, which exposed me to the world and what could be had, and all the beauty around the world.
  7. The stretch of drive up PCH from Riverside to Malibu. That’s a beautiful drive and one I can’t wait for!