Father’s Day

(I meant to get this up yesterday, but the activity of the day got the better of me)

Today was truly lovely. That’s a little hard to believe considering the unreasonable hour that I rolled out of bed. But it’s true. I think the first real symptom that cued me I was in for a great day was when I abandoned my post for a few minutes at church to run up and say good morning to my wife in our Sunday School class. As I glanced through the door she was engaged in conversation, and grinning from ear to ear. Many of you have met Brandy, but you may not realize the impact she has when she’s really smiling. She becomes truly radiant and you just can’t help but feel good when you see a smile like that.

The next big indicator that things were going well was when I was violently mobbed by three small children who, regardless of their level of awareness that it was Father’s Day, just had to give me a hug. The truly lucky thing was that they were all my kids!

Then, as we drove up toward my parents house for a Father’s Day BBQ, Brandy pulled up a stop light and just had to give me a Father’s Day present. I thought a stoplight was sort of a strange place for this, until I saw the gift. It was the new Nichole Nordeman CD. I have to stop for a minute and plug Nichole a bit. Not only is she a local Colorado Springs girl, and a veteran of the Fine Arts Center — I actually heard her sing for the first time while auditioning for Guys and Dolls — but she writes some of the most spiritually challenging music I have ever heard. Her music regularly tackles the struggles we face as Christians, and I often find myself wrestling more than listening, and I love that!

The BBQ was lovely, and as ever I got to sit back and watch my Dad in admiration as he gave himself to his grandkids completely without reservation. Someday I hope to be half the father he continues to be. Brandy turned up with more presents including a bunch of hand made shirts. Mine is pictured below, and yes, those are my kids actual hands … their feet are on the back.

Dad Shirt

As Brandy put faith to bed for the night, I got to spend some time playing games with Britt and Isaac and then I got to have a nice quiet evening with my wife. All in all, it’s tough to beat a life like I’ve been given. Sometimes in the tumult and stress of the work day I lose sight of how much God has blessed me. Father’s Day was a great reminder!

Add in a phone call from a fellow who has been a good friend since I was 6, and an overwhelming number of people stop me to say not only they were aware of our trip, but that they would be praying for our impact and success! With a base of prayer support like that underneath us, we can’t help but succeed!

God bless you all. I hope you had a wonderful Father’s Day as did I.

In the good ole summer time….

It’s been a big couple of days here. Isaac headed off to camp yesterday and will be gone through Friday. It will be his first time really being away from home for any length of time, and he was very excited as we saw him off.
Isaac rides the zip-line
Britt took off today for an overnight with her friend who lives up the street and Tim is packing up to head back to Hawaii tomorrow. Vanessa and the rest of the Tim Coxes are about to head off to visit the extended family in Louisianna and then will be joining him in Hawaii. All things considered, there are Coxes headed in all directions.

I spent much of the day hammering out our own travel plans. Reviewing the details I had and seeking the answers to those I didn’t. (If you’re interested, the latest revision of our schedule is here). We’re excited. Tomorrow night we’ll be addressing the short term missions committee at church seeking some financial assistance for our trip. If you think of it, please say a prayer for us around 6 pm MST.

The Adventures of Transpacific Tim

Many of you have been following the saga of my brother Tim and his strange tropical ailment, so I wanted to take a few minutes and catch you up on his current status.

Tim is home again briefly to celebrate his son’s graduation from high school, and to help the family pack up and get moving toward Hawaii. God has moved powerfully, and their house sold within a few days of housing opening up for them in Hawaii. Tim is in good spirits and health. He is still dependant on a cane, but he is able to walk short distances without it, and in many ways seems as though nothing ever happened to him.

The proud family and the graduate

Please continue to keep he and his family in your prayers, but know they are powerful and effective. Your prayers are working! Thanks, and God bless you!

Economic decline in Germany

The Telegraph has produced an article about the decline of the German economy. (Hat tip: Powerline) Once again this is a post which has been languishing on my desk for a long time. I want to appeal to our readers again to consider the importance of Europe as a mission field. The article talks at some length about the decline of the German economy in comparison to it’s EU bretheren, but I think the conclusion is the most concise and important look at the issue:

Its once generous welfare state now looks completely unaffordable and Germany is now suffering a brain drain of scientists.

A people with a reputation as the hardest-working in Europe have come to hate work and unemployment has reached a higher level than at any other time since the Second World War.

What we see here is the failure of secular humanism. We’re each born with a unique need to relate to God, one which can only be fulfilled by relating to God. For all of history since the fall we have struggled to fill that need in a myriad of other ways: sex, drugs, gluttony, power… but nothing has ever worked. Just as the writer of ecclesiastes discovered so long ago:

What does man gain from all his labor at which he toils under the sun? —Ecclesiastes 1:3

The writer tells us it is all meaningless. It certainly appears that the German is drawing the same conclusion. Now is the moment to aquaint them with Christ. He is meaningful! He can fill the void which is destroying them.

What does this mean for you? Think about the great commission. We are, each one of us, called to participate in the spread of the Gospel. Maybe you’re called to go, or maybe you’re called to be a prayer warrior. Maybe God want’s you to partner with a ministry financially. I would encourage you — no matter what — to pray. Pray that God will show you his plan for your life. Pray that God will light a fire of envangelism in Europe. Pray for Creative Works, and reaching the people of Europe through art and media. If you’re looking for a way to get involved, we’d love to hear from you.

A Triumph of Faith

Can you guess what present Faith liked best?

It seems it’s only been a few days since I was writing about Brittany’s birthday and now Faith’s birthday has come and gone without my managing to get a post up. There is nothing like a house full of preschoolers to sap away your desire to get things done. 🙂

Faith’s birthday began with a fair amount of excitment. She marched into Sunday School class and shouted: “It’s my birthday!” Arms flung wide, grinning from ear to ear, with all the joy and exuberance that only a four year old can muster.

After Church, we had a party for Faith at the house with various friends from her preschool class plus all of the requisite cousins, grandparents, Aunts and such. They made princess crowns (or prince crowns as the case may be), played musical chairs, and pin the tale on the donkey. There were of course mountains of presents — far too many, they reach a point of numbness at this age — and a cake (which came out much better than Brittany’s) with a pink and purple VW Beetle — or as Faith would say, a yellow “Herbie” on it.

All in all, it is another reminder that time is flying by (although four is not so jolting a reminder as twelve, thank goodness!).

Happy Birthday Faith!