Archive for October, 2011

Perceived vs. Actual…

So, I had a brief dialogue with Logan earlier today about the hierarchy of leadership in our home. I had this little talk with him after he decided to not accept my decision on when he could have a piece of gum – after I finished lunch vs. now. I had him come stand in front of me and we had this calm little chat that went like this:

“Logan, who is the Daddy?”

“You are.”

“And who is the son?”


“And who is the boss?”

“Mmm… Mommy.”

“Ah…hmm…I see. Well go ask Mommy when you can have a piece of gum…”

And…backfire! I guess I’ll do some research and write another post on the authority of the father in the home. In the meantime, cancel your plans for tonight and go see Courageous at a movie theater near you. Excellent, impactful movie!

“The hard is what makes it great.”

I love great movies and I quote them all the time around the house with my family. Penny gave up being annoyed by it a long time ago and frequently throws her own quotes out there, so we laugh together, banter back and forth to see who drops the character first or how far we can take the scene.

I never thought I would throw out a quote from A League of Their Own, but it just happened spontaneously the other day. The story is about a women’s baseball league created during WWII to be a substitute sports program while most of the men were away at war. It’s a great line from a quick dialog between Jimmy Dugan (Tom Hanks), the reluctant coach of the Peaches, and Dottie Hinson (Geena Davis), the reluctant star of the team, as Dottie’s husband returns home and she decides to leave the game. Read it or watch it below…

Jimmy Dugan: Taking a little day trip?
Dottie Hinson: No, Bob and I are driving home. To Oregon.
Jimmy Dugan: [long pause] You know, I really thought you were a ballplayer.
Dottie Hinson: Well, you were wrong.
Jimmy Dugan: Was I?
Dottie Hinson: Yeah. It is only a game, Jimmy. It’s only a game, and, and, I don’t need this. I have Bob; I don’t need this. At all.
Jimmy Dugan: I, I gave away five years at the end my career to drink. Five years. And now there isn’t anything I wouldn’t give to get back any one day of it.
Dottie Hinson: Well, we’re different.
Jimmy Dugan: This is [insert poultry expletive]…Dottie, if you want to go back to Oregon and make a hundred babies, great, I’m in no position to tell anyone how to live. But sneaking out like this, quitting, you’ll regret it for the rest of your life. Baseball is what gets inside you. It’s what lights you up, you can’t deny that.
Dottie Hinson: It just got too hard.
Jimmy Dugan: It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard… is what makes it great.

Last week, Penny and I were both frustrated at how hard things are around here sometimes and it just came out of my mouth – “The hard is what makes it great!” Things have been hard around here, for a variety of reasons that I am a bit embarrassed to mention. I’m embarrassed to say what we consider to be “hard.” Because when I look around the world in comparison, our difficulties seem so trivial and small. (See the note at the bottom).

Yes, our kids are nuts sometimes, but they are healthy and loving and I wouldn’t change them one bit. Yes, school is a circus some days, but we are so fortunate to have the privilege of teaching our own children and have them here with us most of the time. Yes, money is tight, but God is providing for our every need.

It’s one of those paradoxical statements made by a calloused character in a movie, but it really rings true. We are reaching for, and achieving in many ways, specific levels of excellence, character and impact in our family, business and friendships. And there are times when we are indeed reminded that, put another way, “If it was easy, everybody would do it.” I am convinced that the “hard” parts are proof that let us know that what we are attempting is worthwhile. I hope anyway…

And there was something so hard one time, that only one Man could do it for the rest of mankind. And just when it seemed everything had gone wrong – it was great.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.”   – Hebrews 12:1-3, NIV

So when things are hard all around us, let’s remember that the Tomb is empty. Let us not grow weary. Let us not lose heart. The real hard part has been done for us, so let us run with perseverance the race that God has laid out for us and we, too, will be great…one day.


Note:  I never intended for this post to be a plug of any kind, but all this brain boggling thought has made me consider those that have it really hard in life, more often and more severely (like staying alive from day-to-day) than we do. If you are inclined to help some of those folks out, consider the ministry work that Mustard Seed International is doing in Southeast Asia, India and South Sudan. 100% of funds donated go directly to people in need at their mission sites, schools, clinics and orphanages. And, if you can’t help out financially, remember that 100% of your prayers go directly to the Father to intercede on their behalf. Tell them that I sent you… Thanks.

Steve Jobs : 1955-2011

Steve, thanks for changing our world. You will truly be missed.