Thursday, September 29, 2011

Would I Be Willing?

"So the called them in and ordered them not to preach or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered them, 'Whether it's right in the sight of God for us to listen to you rather than to God, you decide; for we are unable to stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.' After threatening them further, the released them." Acts 4:18-21a (HCSB)

"After they called in the apostles and had them flogged, they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus and released them. Then they went out from the presence of the Sanhedrin, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to be dishonored on behalf of the Name." Acts 5:40-41 (HCSB)
These passages were part of what I read the other night. Since I read these I can't seem to get out of my head the question, "How would I react in the same situation?"

In the first passage Peter and John are teaching and the government tells them to stop. Not only do they not plan to stop, they actually tell them "we don't really care what you say, we can't stop teaching about what we've seen." (Bussell paraphrase) I just can't help but think that even if I planned to keep doing what I was doing, I probably would blatantly tell the government that I wasn't going to stop doing what they told me to stop doing.

That brings us to the second passage. So, we have Peter and John doing what they told the Sadducees they were going to do: they kept teaching about Jesus. After being arrested they were flogged. Now, this would be tough to swallow. I've never been flogged, but I am sure I wouldn't be a fan if it happened to me. Then, not only were they flogged, they were excited about the fact that they were able to be flogged in the name of Jesus. What an awesome attitude! Probably one that I should keep in mind more often. Not necessarily about being flogged, but about teaching about Jesus in every situation. Even if it's tough, an uncomfortable situation, or any other excuse I can come up with. Because these guys did it in direct opposition to what they were told to do. And were flogged for it. And were excited. Wow!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Guys Weekend

This weekend, Allison and several of her friends went to Birmingham to attend the (dot)Mom conference. She said it was a great conference and she and her friends plan to attend again next year. She was gone from early Friday morning until Sunday afternoon, so Cooper and I had the weekend to hang out, eat, watch football, and play.

Friday night we went to the Ensworth High School football game. This was Cooper's first high school football game and he had a great time. We ate dinner and ice cream from a food truck. Saturday after we went for a run I was making lunch. Cooper came into the kitchen and said, "Dad, is the football game from last night on TV?" I told him no and asked why. He said "Well, is there any football game on TV that we can watch?" Yes son, yes there is. So we watch Oklahoma State play Texas A&M on TV while we played with Playdough. After watching part of the game we left and went ot the playground to play for a while and then on to the grocery store.

Sunday morning we got up and had doughnuts for breakfast. On Saturday night while we were getting ready for bed I told Cooper, "Tomorrow we are going to get up, go to church, and then come home to eat lunch." Before I could continue to lay out the day's plan he stopped me and said, "You mean we are going to get up, eat doughnuts, and then go to church. Right?"

Overall we had a great weekend together. He really seems to enjoy when he gets to spend time alone with both me and Allison. I hope that continues to be that way for a long time.

One more thing he said to me on Sunday as we were driving home from church. "Dad, do you think we can go watch another football game next weekend while mommy's out of town." I think he may be catching the fever!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Mission (Almost) Accomplished

 I know I don't say it enough (especially not on here), but I am so proud of my wife. Three hundred and fifty-one days ago she started a goal that many of us start at the beginning of any given (or every) year. And for a lot of us we get stumped or stuck some where along the way. Usually, for me, it's somewhere in Deuteronomy. That's right. Many people have a goal to read the Bible through in one year. We start and we get through Genesis. We get through Exodus. We make it into Leviticus and something starts to happen. Other things start creeping in and encroaching on our time. And by the time we get to Numbers we're behind. And if we make it to Deuteronomy we've found our self so far behind we call it quits.

This post is not to talk about getting stumped. It's to talk about how proud I am of Allison for forging ahead. With nine days to go, she has six days of reading left. There have been times that she got behind, but she has made sure she caught back up and she will complete her goal of reading the Bible through in a year sometime in the next week or so. I am so proud of her. Not that I ever had any doubt that she would complete a goal that she set for herself. I'm proud of you, Smalls. Great job!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

The Big Monkey

As a CPA, I am required to get 40 hours of continuing professional education. I feel this is sort of excessive, but I still must have the hours. Today I had CPE for the entire afternoon. I have heard this particular speaker on several occasions. He's the Director for Municipal Audit for the State of Tennessee and fairly entertaining so it wasn't as bad as it could've been. In a lot of these sessions I don't feel that there is much that pertains to my specific job. Today was different and I took away something I will not only use in my job at LifeWay. but at home as a husband and a dad.

The interesting thing is, it pertained as much (maybe more) to my job as a parent, husband, and overall leader of our family as it does to my job as a financial analyst. He called it his Big Monkey Theory. He said he could explain it in four words: Monkey See, Monkey Do. As it pertains to business, including my job, he was referring to "tone at the top." I loved this. I truly believe in this concept and have seen this modeled at my job from my boss on a daily basis. I think, however, this is very important for me as a parent. We guys,as parents and husbands, have to set the tone for our family. Frankly, I don't think guys do a very good job at this, generally. Men, God has given the opportunity to lead our families so we have to do a better job of doing this. It is time for us to step up and lead our families as God intended for us to lead them.

I can tell you that I will remember the Big Monkey Theory. I just hope that I can be the best "Big Monkey" for my family that I can be.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thursday is for Cooperisms

For sometime now Cooper has been a big fan of convertibles and jeeps. Our friend Derrick has a jeep he's working on and Cooper thinks it's great. A few weeks ago Cooper said "hey dad, you think someday we can get a jeep." My response was "I don't know. Why don't you ask mom when we get home!" As you can imagine, Cooper asked his mom if we could get a jeep as soon as we got home. Since then, evertime we see a jeep he points it out. Lately even Allison has gotten in the act and points out jeeps to Cooper if he doesn't see it first.

Tonight on our way to church a white jeep with the top off was in front of us on Franklin Rd. This was our conversation:

Allison: Coop, look at what's in front of us.
Cooper: Jeep! And it's a Predators Jeep (it had a Predators cover on the spare tire). Dad, can we get a Predators jeep when we get one?
Me: Nah, I don't think we should get a Predators Jeep.
Cooper: Okay. I love that we're getting a jeep.

Allison and I cracked up! We gone from "can we get a jeep," to "I love that we're getting a jeep." Maybe if he keeps this up his mom will give in and let us get one!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

When Mom's Away

There are very few days when both Allison and I aren't home in the evening for dinner and Cooper's bed time routine. Our evenings usually consist of Allison cooking while Cooper and I play outside or find something to do inside. Some days we ask Cooper to play by himself as she prepares dinner and I try to get things going for the next day. There are, however, some occasions where one of us has to be away during this time. Tonight was one of those occasions.

As we were sitting at the kitchen table playing with Playdough, Cooper asked if we could go to the place that has Mango sorbet. He was either referring to Jeni's Spendid Ice Creams or Glazee. When I asked was he talking about Jeni's he said "yeah, can we go to Jeni's?" I told him no that it was too far away for a week night trip, so he asked if we could go to Menchie's instead. As a compromise we went to a new place near our house. It is the newest middle Tennessee location (I think) of Sweet CeCe's. The ice cream was good and Cooper was happy.

Whenever one of us are gone for the evening, or even and extended period of time, we try to do fun things with Cooper one-on-one. Just recently we were talking about each of us taking a trip with him individually. Hopefully these are the times and memories that he will cherish and keep with him. And hopefully Allison  and I will do a good job at creating an abundance of those memories.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Latest Installment

As has become regular here on Thursdays, here is the latest installment of "Cooperisms."

Last week we went to Lexington to visit friends. Just as you get into Lexignton there is a castle that sits on the left side of the road. Apparently it has burned several times, but it has been restored since we moved back to Tennessee and now is used for parties, weddings, etc. As we drove past it Cooper saw it and asked who lived there. We told him we didn't know, but someone may live there since the lights were on. His response:

"Why would a person like us live in a castle on earth?"

Allison and I cracked up. I think what he was asking was "why on earth would people like us (read: non-kings or queens) live in a castle." He cracks us up almost every day.