Giving Thanks

It was a wonderful Thanksgiving Day!

Our apartment was full of family devouring all kinds of delectable foods. We sat back rubbing full bellies, wishing we had room for more.

But most satisfying of all are the hearts filled with love and happiness.

Of all the things I have to be thankful for, family is the most precious.

-Trevor

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Signs of Life

Setting up the old camper and pitching the tent.

Large trees providing a canopy from the summer sun.

Leaves rustling in the breeze.

Songs sung by countless birds.

Airborne beauty provided by fluttering butterflies.

The aroma of cooking bacon and sausage.

Roasted marshmallows over a smoky campfire.

Cool humid nights.

The insistent song of the cicada.

The sleepy swing of the hammock.

The joyful exploration of a toddling grandchild.

Hot coffee on a dewy morning.

Fruit pies baked over hot coals.

Swatting mosquitoes.

Raccoons venturing to investigate for tasty morsels.

Avoiding poison ivy.

Fishing.

Exploring.

Listening to The Beegees and ABBA.

Quiet.

No agenda.

Disconnect.

Reconnect.

Getting away. Awesome.

Camping with the family. Priceless.

-Trevor

iRemain

A husband who gives all he has to show his loving wife just how much he loves, cherishes, and respects her.

A man who works tirelessly to learn more, embrace new challenges, take on the imperfect in order to be given the chance at higher positions for the good of those who depend on him.

A guy who believes in God and believes that He loves him. But, sometimes he feels like he is the black sheep of the family that no one wants to talk about, unless it is to simply point out all negative things.

A man who, in spite of his portrayed confidence, keeps deeply hidden a nearly overwhelming sense of self-doubt.

A guy who breathes and sees behind this mask known as “Trevor.”

A person who in some ways is much more transparent than ever before, and more secluded than ever in other ways.

A guy who is intelligent, funny, personable, caring, selfless, and determined.

And yet…

Sorrow swallows my memories

Loneliness devours my peace

Depression taints my dreams

Hopelessness envelopes my passions

Countless flaws seemingly outnumber attributes

Still, I will…

Love

Live

Give

Dream

In the cocoon, in my own way, in His time…

I remain.

-Trevor

Fried Chicken Happiness

I love to cook for my family.

I’m really not much of a cook…I have two specialties – fried chicken and chili. Well, maybe three – I will occasionally make a mean meatloaf. I’m sure in the grand scheme of things, they aren’t that great, but the family seems to really enjoy them.

So, tonight it was fried chicken, fried potatoes, and corn for the eldest daughter’s birthday.

Fried chicken satisfies my belly.

I’m sitting here typing this out listening to the joyful sounds of my happy family.

That’s what fried chicken happiness is all about – family fun.

My family satisfies my heart.

It really could be just about anything…anything that brings us all together to show each other our love.

I love them each with all my heart.

Family.

That’s what makes my life worth living.

-Trevor

Weekending

I’m waking up this morning in the beautiful Ozarks. The sun is shining brightly around a smattering of fog hugging the lake and the hillsides. The birds are happily singing their springtime tunes. The foliage is just beginning to put on the slightest tinge of green.

It is so quiet (except for the fishing boats I hear speeding along the lake to get to the favored honey hole). It is so peaceful. All seems to be in harmony.

I’ve been sitting here thinking about my life…my marriage…my family…my work…my faith.

I’m blessed.

Weekending takes one away from the normal humdrum, routine, and stresses of life. It helps the mind release. It helps the body relax. It restores. It rejuvenates. It reharmonizes. Or…it can, if we let it.

It will, if I let it

I know what matters. Most importantly, I know who matters.

I still believe there is hope for a beautiful life to be discovered within the cocoon.

So I choose to indulge in all the positive around me, and let the negative die the death of neglect.

The coffee’s not bad, either.

-Trevor

Legacy

“It’s never too late to start doing what is right.”
Charles Swindoll

I’ve been thinking a lot about legacy the last few days. With the death of my wife’s grandmother and being reminded of her loving and Godly life, I’ve been transported back to memories of other Godly people in my life and the impact they have left on my life…their legacy. Those lives were marked by the uncanny ability to sense the will of God in how to live their lives and an ability to fearlessly live it out in different locales and situations. A seemingly unshakable faith in their Heavenly Father to always know best and ability to always provide for the basics of life. Grandparents and parents have directly and powerfully shaped me.

Although there have been bright spots in my life where I “had it together” more than others, in general I’ve been somewhat of a poor steward of that faith and legacy. In fact, one could say that I’ve blown it.

But, it’s never too late to start doing what is right.

I’ve reached the half-century mark. I keep telling my wife that I’m going to live to the age of 100. So, I truly hope that the last half of my life will be more legacy-building than the first half. My legacy will include three main components:

* Faith – the last couple of years, my faith has been in a deconstruction/reconstruction process. I’ve told people that I’ve “thrown out the bath water but kept the Baby (Jesus).” My faith now contains some basic essentials about which I won’t compromise, and only a few things that are important to my personal faith journey but not necessarily essential to my faith in Christ. That means that I’m much more fearless in my conversations with others about life and how faith plays a part in one’s life, a fearless confidence in Christ and His life in me, and a life that embraces more hope on a daily basis than I have experienced in the previous years of my life. I want my legacy to be one that will be remembered as one which engaged and walked with other people on their journey of faith…exploring and discovering together the power of Christ.

* Family – if you read much of my blog you know the devastation that my actions introduced into the fabric of my family. My family is the most precious series of relationships I have on this earth. It is also the most precarious…and if I’m not careful, it can be eternally destroyed. I am determined that my legacy will be a fully faithful and more engaged, happy, and supportive husband, father, and grandpa than ever before.

* Ministry – since I’m not only a PK (preacher’s kid) but also a minister with 20+ years of experience in local church ministry, I know how to “do church”…and how to do it well. But, that’s not really what I want my legacy to be. I want it to be transformative. I want it to be the sojourning of souls on an exploration and discovery of faith and community. My life experiences, as partially displayed in the words of this blog, provide a unique door through which some powerful ministry can take place. I want my legacy to be to lead the church into a more loving stance to the LGBTQ community and “by all means save some.”

It’s never too late to start doing what is right.

Doing it.

-Trevor

Space

I love my family.

I love being with my family.

I love celebrating the holidays with my family.

The last two days have been wall-to-wall family gatherings.

Today….its real quiet and a little lonely.

But, it’s also a little nice.

-Trevor