Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Reviewing Byron and Robin Yawn's What Every Woman Wishes Her Father Had Told Her

As the father of two daughters, I thought Byron and Robin Yawn's book, What Every Woman Wishes Her Father Had Told Her, should be something I read. It was definitely a good purchase. The book is filled with Scripture, real-life stories, humor (you might laugh out loud a few times), and practical advice on how to be a Godly father that draws his daughter (s) to Christ. The Harvest House published book is less than 200 pages and consists of the following 12 chapters.

  1. A Man Gladly Wrapped Around a Finger
  2. Life - You're Not Crazy
  3. Love - Find This Man (Lt. Todd Weaver's Letter to His Infant Daughter)
  4. Purity - There is no Such Thing as Casual Sex (Adoniram Judson's Letter to His Future Father-in-Law)
  5. Biblical Womanhood - It's More Ridiculous Than You Think (Adoniram Judson's Letter Regarding Marriage to Ann Hasseltine)
  6. A Spiritual Leader - Be Careful What You Ask For (The Seven Stages of the Married Cold)
  7. Marriage - Complex Problems Start from Simple Failures (Husband's Communication Safety Guide)
  8. Freedom - Never Fear Answering the Door (The Good Wife's Guide)
  9. Beauty - You Are Beautiful (Safe)
  10. Husbands - Seriously, You Cannot Change Him (Application for Permission to Date My Daughter)
  11. Strength - You Cannot Do All Things in Christ (Rules for Dating My Daughter)
  12. Grace - You Must Love Christ More to Love Him as You Should

I like how you get two Christian perspectives throughout the book - one from a reformed pastor endorsed by John MacArthur and the other, a pastor's wife and mother of two daughters and a son. It's a book written specifically for dads; however, I know the book has been a blessing to moms and daughters as well. If you desire to communicate more effectively with your daughter (s) and be someone she/they can trust, I highly recommend What Every Woman Wishes Her Father Told Her.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Reviewing John Murray's The Atonement

Although The Atonement is only 34 pages and can be read in less than an hour, it's not light reading. Written by the Scottish-born Reformed theologian, John Murray, The Atonement covers important theological topics such us justification, predestination, propitiation, reconciliation, and redemption. These are topics I used to teach to international 6th grade students in China; however, if you're unfamiliar with these terms, I wouldn't recommend starting with Murray's book. Murray taught at Princeton Seminary and helped found Westminster Theological Seminary before going Home to be with the Lord in 1975. His language is not from 2017, and it's of an academic nature. Murray defines the atonement as "the term that has come to be widely used to denote the substitutionary work of Christ which culminated in the sacrifice of Calvary." If that excites you, I recommend dropping 99 cents for the Kindle edition or four bucks for the booklet. The Atonement is divided into five short chapters and contains a preface, conclusion, a bibliography containing several works from the 1800s, a short biography of John Murray, and a description of Chapel Library Resources, the book publisher.

Reviewing Ryan Haack's Different is Awesome!

In case you didn't know, my son Josiah Lee was born with only his right hand. Because of that, I'm often looking for resources for people with limb differences. Megan purchased this 30+ page book, Different is Awesome!, so we could read it to Josiah Lee and show him that there are others like him who don't have two hands. The book is written for children ages four to eight years old and contains fun and colorful artwork from cartoonist Wes Molebash.

The story of Different is Awesome! takes place in an elementary classroom. A little boy named Joey brings his older brother Ryan to show and tell. The story is actually a real life experience of the author's. It emphasizes how everyone has challenges in life, but having one hand doesn't mean you won't be able to accomplish much - life's tasks might just need to be done differently. The students ask Ryan various questions like if he can tie his shoes, ride a bicycle, and play baseball. Joey notices that each person that asks his brother a question is a little different. He has classmates of different sizes, skin color, and facial features. The story concludes with author Ryan Haack stating that being different is awesome.

If you have a young child with a limb difference or know of a child with a limb difference, I highly recommend getting them this book. If definitely would make a great addition to a children's library. You can learn more about this Jim Abbott endorsed book at http://www.livingonehanded.com/differentisawesome/.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Happy Birthday to my Father-in-Law

Today marks my father-in-law's 72nd birthday. I first met Fred more than two decades ago when I was a new teacher at Frankfort Middle School, home of the Hot Dogs. I was a 6th grade geography teacher, and he taught math. We didn't have much of a relationship back then, but a few years later Fred asked me if I would be interested in meeting his oldest daughter. The rest is history.

I'm not exactly sure what Fred saw in me back in the day, but I will never be able to thank him enough for all that he has done for me. Fred is a man of few words, but he has spoken volumes into my life. He is undeniably a man of God that I desire to emulate. Below are just a few of his traits that display our King of Kings and have made a profound impact on me and countless other people.

1. Patient - I get impatient when driving, when things break, and when my children don't follow my instructions, but this isn't what I see from Fred. Fred has been given an increasing faith in God's timing, power, and love. Various trials in Fred's life have helped develop this Christlike patience, and I so look forward to seeing Fred being rewarded in the end.

2. Faithful - Fred is faithful to his family, friends, and fellowship. You won't find a single person that would say Fred hasn't devoted himself to helping his family, being a good neighbor, and serving in a local body of believers. If the Lord allows me to live as long as Fred, I would be honored if people said I was half as reliable, steadfast, and loyal as him.

3. Gentle - Sometimes I forget that toughness isn't one of the fruits of the Spirit - not Fred. Fred is not one to boast, desire revenge, or be impolite. He's humble and understands that God's ways and thoughts far exceed our own. Fred accepts God's righteous judgment on people and circumstances, and he overflows with the fruit of gentleness.

4. Servant's Heart - Fred serves our Heavenly Father by doing His will and not his own. I desire to have this mature spirituality and leadership ability that Fred possesses. I certainly know that Fred isn't perfect; however, it's quite evident that Fred gives himself to others in order to bring God glory. He has the power of the Spirit and is always pointing me to Jesus.

Happy Birthday, Fred. I'm so thankful you are my father-in-law. May the Lord bless you and keep you. May He make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you. May He lift up His countenance upon you and give you peace.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

My Six Most Popular Facebook Pictures From 2016

Below are my most popular Facebook (via Instagram) pictures taken during 2016. Five of them include a little guy named Josiah Lee, and three of them were taken at birthday celebrations. All of them include smiles. Enjoy.

After living in China for a few years (19 for Megan & 13 for me), we moved back to Indiana - this time with three kids.

I ran into one of my former sixth graders at my birthday celebration at the Frankfort Great China Buffet. He grew.

Our last visit to the Great Wall of China (near Beijing)

Megan took this fun birthday pic when Josiah Lee turned the big five.

Rosalie turned 14 this summer, & Grandma Downs made a special birthday cheesecake that was super yummy!

There were many tears during the season, but Josiah Lee enjoyed being a Red Shark this day.