Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Sweet 17

Today is my daughter's 17th birthday. I remember going to the hospital seventeen years ago around eight in the morning. Katie was two weeks late (an issue she is still trying to remedy today). Kim and I had been married for five years, and I had just graduated college. I was about to take my first pastoral job, and we were all excited about the new baby coming soon. But the time had come, no more waiting. As they gave Kim the epidural, I watched her fade into lala land. This was the only time I have ever seen my wife on drugs.

Everything started happening rather quickly about 12:00. And a little after 12:30, Katie Kathlynn Sizemore was crying on the seen. She was supposed to be a boy. My dad had four boys. But God had other plans for us. I had already raised my brothers. I knew about boys. What was I going to do with this sweet little girl. I called my mother to find her overjoyed with the news. Mom had never had a girl that she could dress up and go shopping, so Katie was doomed right from the start. Not only was she the first grandbaby but a granddaughter as well.

Some of my fondest memories are laying in the floor of her room playing with her toys as we pretended to be all kinds of things. When she was five, we had just moved to Borger and that is where she started school. We would go to her plays and eventually go to all her sporting events. We are the proud parents in the stands cheering for every shot or run she was in.

She's getting older now. We had our first serious talk about college, dreams, and life for my not so little girl. These are such exciting times and scary times. I want to let her go as I pull her close. (If your a parent you'll understand.) There are so many things I want to teach her; so many things she needs to know. Sometimes she calls me Dad and something she calls me Pops, but when she calls I am here, ready to love, ready to encourage, instruct, guide, or just listen. Katie deserves that. She's my daughter, my first born, my pain in the butt, and my pride and joy all wrapped up in one very special person.

Happy birthday Katie!
Love, Dad

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Tuesday Grind

With all the activity at the Center on Monday I wasn't in the office at all.  I normally use Monday's as my catch all day.  I try and get all the things out of my way that would take away from the ministry of loving and helping people. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't.  Needless to say, I had all of Monday's and Tuesday's junk to take care of.  Like for example, I install our new credit / debit card reader at the Church so that we can use debit cards for payments of workbooks and even tithe if someone so desires.  In the age in which we live very few people use checks or even checkbooks to keep their finances.  It's all done electronically.  I've gotten to the point that I use mint.com for all my finances and don't even need to balance my checkbook anymore.  Everything is done in real time or maybe a day behind.  We live in an amazing time. 

If you missed Sunday's message you can catch it online (click here).  I was explaining the gap and restoration process that is found in Genesis 1:1-2.  There have been many questions coming across my desk, which I love.  Anytime I can get people excited about studying God's Word, I'm a happy camper. For those of you that are in my D2 class tonight.  I will take some time and answer any and all questions you have on the subject (to the best of my abilities).  It does make for so interesting conversation.  This would be a great time for you to come and visit the Church as Genesis establishes all the truths in the Bible (shameless plug :). 

I had a wonder conversation with a pastor friend of mine in Central Ukraine.  Kim and I will be traveling over to teach and preach in a family camp, as well as, helping with an ESL class in a town close by.  I believe we will impact some lives while we are there. This trip is in August and it will be the first time Kim has been to Ukraine.  I'm so excited to introduce her to the friends that I have made in my travels over there.  I know that the ladies will love to meet her. 

God is opening up so many doors for the recovery ministry here in Borger.  I found out yesterday that we don't have to rezone the church building that was donated to us for phase 2 of our recovery ministry.  That means we will be able to use the building as soon as we take ownership of it.  Please continue to pray about the recovery ministry as this is a major leap of faith.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

North Dakota University Rocks

I can't believe it's the middle of March already.  I was looking at my blog activity and realized that I haven't posted since before Christmas.  Wow!!  Then I looked at the activity and noticed that many of you are visiting my blog.  Well, I'm not dead.  All is well in Borger.  God has been doing some amazing (I mean miraculous) things in the Church and with our new Recovery Center.

For those of you that don't know, last November we purchased a building and began to renovate it to become the first Recovery Center in Borger for Drug and Alcohol addition.  The whole town has been excited to see the progress of the center. Let me share one of the miracles that I am talking about.  A few months ago out of the blue, I received a call from a college student from North Dakota University.  He began to share with me opportunity for some 40 college students to come and work on the Recovery Center as a spring break project.  I was beside myself. He explained how they were taking a tour to "pay it forward" and was going to be passing through Borger.  He had called the Chamber of Commerce and asked if there were any worthy projects in Borger of which they could be a part.  The Chamber told them about the Center and gave them the Church's number and we began to make plans for them to come.

On Sunday (March 11th) a big tour bus rolls up to the Church and 40 eager college students exit the bus with smiles on their faces ready to work.  After sleeping on the floor in the basement of the Church they got up on Monday morning and took the Recovery Center by storm.  by 9:30 they had almost the entire center painted.  They then began to cut in all the walls and trim, as well as, clean up all the outside.  They cleaned dishes and installed appliances; all with love and care as if it were their own center. I was so proud of them.

By the time they left at 12:30, I felt as if I had gained some new friends and advocates for the work we are doing here in Borger.  They loaded up and headed for their next job and blessing in Roswell, New Mexico.  God speed and thank you North Dakota University.  May we learn from their example of what it means to give of ourselves for the betterment of others, and may we also "pay it forward."