Hanging Up The Hat

I like hats.

I wear a lot of hats. Some I wear to pretend I’m someone else. Some I wear when I do particular things or when I go particular places. There are different hats for different circumstances and different hats for different seasons.

I wear a lot of hats… figuratively as well as literally. By that I mean that I fill many roles for many different people. I am a son, a brother, a husband, a father, a friend, a neighbor, a pastor, a mentor, a board member. Occasionally I’m an actor and sometimes I’m a teacher and at times I’m a counselor.

I wear a lot of hats.

About 16 years ago I put on a new hat. I became a Band Dad when my oldest son signed up for band. When you connect that occasion with the fact that I was a band director for seven years before I started pastoring, you see that it was a significant thing to put on that new hat.

Tonight I will go to my last concert as a public school band dad.

It’s weird, I tell you.

I have been to at least a couple of public school band concerts every year since 2002. I’ve been to SO MANY marching contests and football games and band booster meetings. And the fundraisers—Oh my WORD the fundraisers…

I’ve traveled many miles, met many friends, and made SO MANY great memories through band. I’ve grilled more chicken breasts and quesadillas than I can count.

I’ve watched three of my kids find their spouses just like I found mine – in band.

I’ve seen two of my kids go on to earn some serious scholarship money through band.

It’s been such a huge part of our lives. And it’s not entirely over. We still have a few of our expanded brood significantly involved in band into the future. But my public school band dad days are coming to a close.

I’m hanging up that hat.

It’s a season that is coming to a close. And, with it’s passing, a new one begins. I don’t know all of the hows and whys and whens and wheres, but I know that there are great things ahead. I know that there are concerts yet to come that I can choose to attend as a pastor and friend cheering on the kids that he is so proud to support. And there are so many other ways to grow and learn and experience.

It’s hard to hang up this hat.

I like hats.

I wear a lot of hats.

As I hang up an old one rich with memories, I trust the next one I pick up will bring as much joy as the last.

To all of my band family, thanks for helping me enjoy this hat.

The Mess of Sin

There are some questions that are hard to answer. But one I have heard a number of times is this:  if God is so good and we are so evil, why would he come here?

I believe the long and short of it is that He came here to show us grace.

In this message, we look at the account of the Samaritan Woman at the Well.

[Take a moment and read this text – John 4.1-42]

I hope you’ll take the time to give this message a listen.

See Him.

Believe Him.

Know Him.

Ch-ch-ch-changes…

There was a time when the word “change” made me reach into my pocket. Now it makes me hold on to my hat.

I’ve written about the craziness of the season of family life that we are in. Today is another one of those days of change amidst a season of change.

Our world-changers are returning today from almost a year spent in Honduras. That’s exciting…and difficult. But God is continuing to grow them and teach them and use them for His glory.

My one and only SweetPea is about to move from undergrad to grad school. It’s exciting, except for the loading stuff in a trailer and hauling it around part. But I’m dad and it’s what I do.

My Army man is in the process of being transformed from a boy to a soldier in one of the most intense seasons of change he will likely ever experience. All I can do is pray hard and write letters…both of which I am diligently doing.

I’ve had another anniversary and another birthday this month. I’ve been wrestling with the richness and majesty of our great salvation in my current theology class. I am in the process of being stretched in my ministry life in ways that I have never yet experienced.

Change is the one absolute constant condition in life right now. Continue reading Ch-ch-ch-changes…