Morning by Morning (5/31/20)

Today I am holding back my typical gratitude post. I feel grieved watching communities hurt and my passive complicit ness. Gratitude for small things is good, even a necessity of good life.

But so is the well being of my neighbors, especially in the face of systemic problems generations deep for those in black and brown communities. I must live differently, and may my gratitudes reflect my work towards and the reality a good life for each and every person of color, vulnerable, and marginalized around me.

I cry out to God. And I confess my own failings.

Morning by Morning (5/30/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz and I’s relaxing morning.
  2. The sunflowers that Ryan planted and watered with me. Their blossoms are beautiful!
  3. The way Scripture speaks to the cries and demands for justice and righteousness, especially Jeremiah, Isaiah, shorter prophets.
  4. My uncle Mike Moore, whose sports love and passion is second to his love for his family and extended family. He loves very deeply and I appreciate him all the time! Happy birthday Mike!
  5. Frank Placencia, one of best doctors around. I just sit amazed and humbled by the way he serves and leads with humility and a deep well of wisdom. Happy birthday Frank!
  6. Tim Hughes, a friend from Bering who friendship and conversation have blessed me in this last year. Happy birthday Tim!
  7. Finding bread flour in the store!
  8. The shade of our trees.
  9. Water, and especially cold water when I’m outside on a summer day.

Morning by Morning (5/28/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. This painting in our CICU hallway that has caught my attention these last couple weeks.
  2. Collaborating on a presentation with Diane Murrell, Sarah Stoney, and Vanessa Battista for MDA. It’s humbling to work with these wise and wonderful women.
  3. Catching up with Carleigh Greenly, one of my favorite people! It is encouraging and mean full during this time to see the people that have made impacts on us and renew the connection.
  4. Iman, one of the CICU RN’s who has always been a good friend and witty and appreciative of my support of families. I appreciate her quite a bit!
  5. Those who are working for families with food insecurity across the globe, in Texas, and in Houston. Such critical work.
  6. Pam Fosters chaplain leadership at Cook Childrens.
  7. Those wise minds working on developing our skill of spiritual assessment as chaplains.
  8. A warm lunch when I feel cold inside the hospital.

Morning by Morning (5/27/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Lessons with Ryan on grace and forgiveness and connecting it with our nightly prayers.
  2. Watching Ryan and his ride out the pandemic buddy Alex play in the backyard with water balloons and laugh so heartily.
  3. Amanda Ruth, a physician whose voice, compassion, and sharp wit make her a fantastic doctor and faithful person.
  4. Patton Oswalts comedy, which Liz and I got to enjoy last night on Netflix.
  5. Worship music done by parts virtually, which is life giving to hear these days.
  6. Alvina Odu, a friend whose joy shines through just about everything!
  7. The sunshine that peeks out after a major thunderstorm line passes here in Houston. It’s a good moment.

Morning by Morning (5/25/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. A family. Our family.
  2. Those fallen soldiers who have served and sacrificed immensely much for us. My gratitude for them compels me to honor them by standing up and voicing that we should always strive for less fallen soldiers, less places for them to fall, and more ways to appreciate their service when their future brothers and sisters return home.
  3. Stephen Lucas, for being one of the best best friends one could ask for. He is good good good. Happy belated birthday friend!
  4. Martha Haun, one of sweet friends from Southwest Central who has a giant heart and enduring faith.
  5. All the GST Friday basketball I got to play in Abilene. Those days of playing with my good friends and playing hard after studying hard were so awesome. Also loved that most Friday nights after ball turned into awesome Wingstop!
  6. Grey Stansell, and learning and playing Bridge with him. Lovely good man who was always great at noting my progress as a minister and person.
  7. Ginny and Nedra Smith, and their faithful presence at Bering and faithful service at CCSC!

Morning by Morning (5/22/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. That feeling of a breeze on a warm humid day.
  2. Having access to masks at work and at home and knowing it is a blessing.
  3. Craig Pymento, whose friendship has been so welcome and meaningful to me during the last couple years. I am grateful for his kindness, his sarcasm and humor, and his pursuit of learning even as a skilled physician.
  4. Kriti Puri, and her gentle talks and skillful communication with families. She’s good!
  5. Justin Elhoff, a Heart Center physician I have loved working with. I appreciate his laid back but focused nature, and his love for providing good care.
  6. The leaders, therapists, psychologists and others working hard for mothers managing post partum mental health. I’m grateful for their advocacy and shining light on a vulnerable group.
  7. Comforting Ryan when he needs it.
  8. The privilege of being healthy and working.

Morning by Morning (5/21/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Having a full time job.
  2. Liz’s love of adventure. I do appreciate our love for “having an adventure!”
  3. Ashley Parrott-Murray, one of the worlds best nurses and further a great PICU nurse. She leads with a genuinely understanding heart and an abiding compassion and empathy that are unmatched. I always love walking into the PICU and working with her.
  4. Christi Tran, whose excitement and positivity are always so full of hospitality when I see her. And I appreciate the way she cares for her patients with attention to detail and consistency and heart.
  5. Our old Mexico mission trips as Arlington CofC Youth Group. Those challenged me to not see just the need of others, but to look to learn from them and see their strength and capability as Gods people, rather than us being the rescuers.
  6. Staring into the face of a sleeping baby in the ICU today. Mesmerizing to see his face in detail and hear each tiny breath.
  7. These Egyptian star cluster flowers in our backyard. Gorgeous.
  8. The hospitality of our honeymoon destination as they work with us on rescheduling.

Morning by Morning (5/20/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. The sights, smells, and sounds of the beach. Yesterday we got to be there in Surfside again and it just is an amazing stirring place to be. The pic is not Surfside, but a picture that captures my fascination with the beach.
  2. Cambry and Heathers new baby girl Hollis, who comes with welcome and joy surrounding her near and far!
  3. Tamara Thompson, whose perseverance, deeply gentle love, and groundedness already made her a great chaplain and caregiver, but now has graduated with her Masters!! So so happy for her!
  4. Nick Cunningham, a teenager I supported many years ago through his high school time and after the loss of his father. He was super smart, very perceptive, and someone whose presence I really appreciated.
  5. Sara Fudge, whose gifts and encouragements meant so much to Liz during the Secret Sister exchanges. I love seeing Liz feeling that belonging and love at Bering.
  6. The miracles of transplants, and especially the heart and bone marrow ones that I have walked alongside recently. I think the science and research undergirding all of it is just stunning.
  7. The well being of my friends in Michigan and Illinois who are experiencing major floods.

Morning by Morning (5/18/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz making it to the end of her semester!!!!
  2. Nearing the end of Ryans school, which will open up our schedules and release us for some other day activities.
  3. Ryans best friend Alex, who has been his quarantine hang out buddy. They are so cute together.
  4. Allison McDaniel, one of my CICU nurse friends, whose gentleness, optimism, and personable nature make her so welcoming to others and families at TCH.
  5. Sean Palmer’s wise and genuine honesty, and the way he lives fully into his life as a husband, father, and pastor. And I just love his humor!
  6. The book I Contain Multitudes, which for me has my brain widening to the wonders of the microbial world, and this book had come to my attention early in January. Pretty neat read.
  7. Bonnie and Dick Darroh’s sweet cards just about every holiday. I treasure this lovely couple so much.

Morning by Morning (5/17/20)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Liz. It’s Stepmothers Day, and she has stepped into a challenging role and pursued a deep relationship with Ryan, opened herself to growing, recreating routines, and providing love to a child who continues to open himself to her. It’s beautiful!
  2. My parents getting closer and closer to being here in Houston with us! Come on July!
  3. Nathan Fox-Helser, his fun loving and laid back personality, and his music making. It’s been awesome to watch his career from afar.
  4. Jen Lin, and her friendship during my time at Pepperdine. She was a faith filled woman of God and a great student of others. Blessings Jen!
  5. Our Yums box that arrived yesterday. The little snack box comes every month and has neat snacks from a different country each time. We are enjoying exploring Filipino snacks!
  6. My Grandmas potato soup. My family still talks about it and making it when we need comfort food.
  7. The Psalms or Ascent, which we at Bering are grounding ourselves in as reflections of our current experience. The Psalms speak to us even now.