And the Survey Says….

Recently I was surfing through Facebook and the Fast Money portion of Family Feud came across my thread. I decided to watch it for some unknown reason. One of the questions in particular caught my attention. That question was: “a survey of one hundred people, how many true friends would you say you have?” The first contestant said 3 which was #2 on the list with 21 people. The second contestant said 2, which was # 1 with 22 people. At first, I found it a little sad and almost alarming that nearly 50% of the people think they only have 2 or 3 true friends. Then, I thought to myself, how many do I have? Continue reading “And the Survey Says….”

A First Grade Lesson

The holiday season, a time to be thankful, a time to count blessings, a time to be with family and friends and a time to prepare ourselves for the birth of Jesus. For whatever reason this year I have had a harder time preparing my heart for all that is about to happen this year. Maybe it is all that negative that is all over the television set. Maybe it is just the stress that sometimes comes as the Dad of 4 active boys.

I have done a lot of reflecting about the holidays lately and I think part of my struggle is wanting to make the holidays for my boys something I never really experienced. Holidays as a kid were not important. I don’t really remember celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas was usually just Christmas Eve at my Grandma Norman’s house eating Pizza Hut and drinking punch (although I do love the punch and we make it every year now). Gifts were sparse, family time was nonexistent and church was a complete unknown. The term Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas were just words. Continue reading “A First Grade Lesson”

A New Beginning-Again…and Again…and….

“The Lord has eyes for the just and ears for their cry.”       Psalms 34:16

A lot of posts of have been going around the social media scene lately about mental health and illness.  I will not focus on stats, I will not focus on anyone else, I will focus on me and my path and how it has brought me on a roller coaster path that I hope in the end will bring me closer to my family and my God.

I have depression….. I hate labels, but it is what it is.  It is a burden that I have been given in this Earthly life, and I will do my best to carry it with pride.  Labels hurt, especially one like depression where there may never be outward signs of illness like there are for things like cancer.  It is not a one-size-fits all diagnosis and telling someone to “think happy thoughts” will not make them do so.  People cannot just get over it.  And, as I have told my wife, if you do not have it, you cannot understand it. Continue reading “A New Beginning-Again…and Again…and….”

What Should I Have Been?

I have always been blessed to surround myself with people smarter than me (yes there is a joke in there somewhere).  This has become more evident the more I feel like I have struggled with my faith life and the more I try to find ways to get back on the right track.   In the past couple weeks, I have had the opportunity to listen and comprehend from some men and children that I greatly admire.
What is the meaning/purpose of life?   If you were to ask a dozen years ago or so, I would have answered much different than I might now.  Now I focus on my four boys and wife and getting them to Heaven and if God has enough pity, maybe I can be lucky enough to get there at some point as well.  However, there is that often stressful thing called “life on Earth” that can be consuming and get you off that purpose-filled track.   It can also lead to amazing conversations and prayer that start to shed a light on what your purpose is on earth.

Continue reading “What Should I Have Been?”

Quiet as a Church Mouse?

“But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”  Matthew 19:14

 

Quiet as a church mouse?  Ha… I say this almost weekly to the boys.  In a recent article in the bulletin, our Pastor, Fr. Pat Sullivan responded to an email he had received on children at the parish and if it was wrong to stay at home in fear of our children disturbing everyone.  This is a situation in which I have thought about on many occasions.  As a family of 6, my wife and I have 4 very sweet and active boys under the age of 9, we find ourselves leaving the pew quite often, every week.  Sometimes it is necessary as they are extremely loud, but other times I leave with them because of the fear of what might happen.  I have never been one to worry about the “distractions” of other children at mass, but I fear my children distracting others and getting the “look” from a fellow parishioner.

As Fr. Pat said, “To that point, the problem is theirs to pray through, not yours.”  Wow.  That was so reassuring. Continue reading “Quiet as a Church Mouse?”

Struggles and Blessings on my Life as a Dad

“Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up with the training and instruction of the Lord.”  Ephesians 6:4. 

Being a father is the most amazing gift of my life.  Being a father is the biggest challenge in my life.  Attempting to be a father who brings his children up in the faith, following the 10 Commandments, loving the Lord with all their soul and being, as well as loving their neighbor as their self is tough, and it is even tougher in this little piece of Johnson County.  Yes, I know this is a challenge everywhere.  However, trying to teach your children that loving God and others and putting others first should be their top goal while so many of their friends (by product of their parents) are focused on self gratifying and personal possessions is amazingly hard.  Continue reading “Struggles and Blessings on my Life as a Dad”