Morning by Morning (9/12/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. My brother Josh, who celebrates his birthday today and I who I cherish as he continues growing into a young adult, father, and a husband. He has an oddly full moustache and a servant heart.  Love you bro! See his pic below!
  2. A chill morning.
  3. Another beautiful day!
  4. The old show Reading Rainbow that I heard randomly today.  That show was cool!

Morning by Morning (9/11/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Joshua Stewart, a friend from ACU and friend from Southwest Central whom I appreciate and love watching grow into his marriage and fatherhood.  He’s a very good man.
  2. The compassion of my mother in law Belinda who will always jump to action to love on Ryan and Aiden (and Elana and I) when they are sick.  She is great and so sweet to them both.  We are blessed to have someone so close who will take good care of our sick boys.
  3. Barbara Brown Taylors book, An Altar in the World, which has been a very moving read in challenging me to see the life I experience with different eyes.  What a fantastic book!
  4. Balloons. They’re fun. Ryan loves them.  I love them!

Morning by Morning (9/5/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Seeing all the TCH chaplains again this morning- it’s been two and a half weeks since we all have been in the same city!
  2. The great food I had yesterday at two different gatherings, including grilled sausage, cheeseburgers, potato salad, apple pie, and funfetti cake with simple icing! Yum! What a good day of good eats!
  3. Elana’s care for me this morning as I had a couple hours of feeling terrible and awful.  
  4. Ryan’s developing imagination through role plays!​ he’s so cute!

Morning by Morning (8/30/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Being home around family after a long week.
  2. Hearing Ryan’s invitation to play with him over and over, “Come on, daddy” 
  3. Seeing the glorious sun rising over Houston this morning!
  4. The relief brought by colleague chaplains at TCH yesterday that allowed me to go home.  Their navigation of waterlogged streets and leaving their families to help me is so appreciated. Thank you Pam and Naguib!
  5. The PICU nurses I served with who serve with humor and perspective in crisis.  I love getting to be a part of them.
  6. My father in law and his wife Ibi and the love and welcome they provide my family, especially as they rode out Harvey and needed a place real close for play.
  7. Living in Houston. It’s a great place that I call home, even with all this flooding chaos!

Surrounded by Family!

Today was my birthday, and of course, Hurricane Harvey had to join the party.  So I got called in to work for the day and stay through the storm, however long it will be. It’s not exactly my dream birthday.  I mean, work anxiety on Friday and staff worry and leaving the family behind.  Not exactly dreamy.

But two things happened that made the day great.

First, I didn’t get called in on Friday night so I got to hang out with Elana and Ryan and spend quality time with Ryan this morning. Elana was sweet. Ryan was active and playful and imaginative.  We played in the pooled water in the park.  I got to be surrounded by my family, even in the face of rain and thunder and cloudy skies.  I love my family.

Second, I got to work and walked into the PICU and got to be treated to 40 people wishing me happy birthday, one well wish and smile at a time.  Someone bought me pizza (thanks Jill!). Someone brought me a soda. The nurses were wonderful and appreciative and I was humbled by them.  I got to spend quality time with night shift staff and be treated to a cup of coffee, laughter, and collegiality and friendship. Even some families I know got into the act and made me feel wonderful. It felt like family, and I was surrounded by them. 

The joy of my immediate family and welcome and care of my PICU family made for a great birthday, full of encouragement and love.  

I might be at the hospital, sleeping on a cot, with the heavens pouring down rain, but it’s been a good birthday because I have been surrounded by my family. Love it!

Morning by Morning (8/24/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Jae Kim, a friend from Pepperdine who I always looked up to and admired for his vision, his wisdom, and his loyalty to his friends.  He moved up to Seattle and became quite the adventurer and I continue to marvel at his life continues to be shaped by his passions.
  2. My colleagues at the hospital who provided me with birthday pound cake and berries to go on top! I appreciate their support and joy!
  3. Elana’s flexibility, since I might be pulled to the hospital this weekend for the tropical storm and she’s willing to adjust and watch Ryan during the weekend if need be.
  4. The many kids who are ventilator or teach dependent and regardless of developmental levels, live courageously and reflect Gods beauty. I believe God speaks through them as much as anyone, and I am humbled to meet some of them.

Morning by Morning (8/12/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. A wonderful day with Ryan, including good toilet training, shopping and him pushing the cart, playing in the backyard, the pool, and building a cardboard airplane.  I love my time with him!
  2. Getting to hang out with DeAndre, Keyshon, and Taylor at the pool today. I marvel at their fun and resilience, but I am also very impressed and grateful with their gentle encouraging interaction with Ryan.
  3. Dinner with Elana and Carleigh and Levi! I can’t wait to officiate their wedding and I am so blessed to have gotten to know them outside of TCH!
  4. Japanese Sea Perch sushi.  Really really good!

Morning by Morning (8/8/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. My internship in 2005 at Lifeline Chaplaincy that has shaped much of my life since that time.  Virgil, Paul, Ann, Sarah, Rosa, Maya, Josh, and all the others made an impact that I cherish almost daily.
  2. The prayer warriors at our church that I love so much- Robert and Bernardine Barboza, Novie Booker, Ruth Noel, and Betty Grant to name a few. These are the people that I admire and who challenge me in my walk with Christ.
  3. Observing my parents be grandparents.  That’s an amazing gift that I just can’t ever put to words but is so beautiful and joyful to me.

Morning by Morning (8/7/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. A great weekend with a bunch of friends on the beach in Galveston, where we got to laugh a lot together, celebrate Ryan’s birthday, spend lots of time at the pool, spend quality time with Aiden and Ryan, watch Ryan brave waves at the beach, walk hand in hand with Elana along the sand, and enjoy the calming waters with good friends.
  2. A Sonic soda on the way home that helped with the post trip exhaustion.
  3. The Ciudad de Angeles orphanage in Cozumel who does the heroic work or caring for children who need support, and doing it well. I appreciate their work and their love of children and their love of God.  I appreciate our church friends who went to support them earlier this summer.
  4. The voices who encourage compassion towards those with mental health issues and challenge our behaviors and disregard for them.  This weekend reminded me of this with a couple of experiences I observed.

Morning by Morning (7/28/17)

My daily gratitude for:

  1. Carrie and her new baby girl Eleanor doing well.  I couldn’t be more relieved and happy for Adam and Carrie and this new stage of life! I can’t wait to see them around the Christmas time hopefully.
  2. The wonderful natural light in our house that helps me feel calm and warm and happy at home.
  3. Doing laundry and getting that cleaned and organized feeling!
  4. The comfort of our dogs with Ryan!