May 2016 Louisiana Trip

May 2016 Louisiana Trip

We had a great whirlwind trip to Louisiana from May 6th through May 16th. It was great being able to spend Mother’s Day with my Mom in Patterson, Louisiana and it was great to see family and friends. Even though it was a ten day trip, it was over way too quick, and I didn’t get to see everyone I had hoped to, but it was long overdue.

With a full tank of gas and a full cup of coffee, we headed out down I-20 and reviewed our plans during the first part of the trip, stopping for lunch at Cracker Barrel – one of our roadtrip traditions. As we drove through Shreveport, we talked about and prayed for our Crossroads Associate Pastor, Calvin Fuchess and his wife and family. We are so excited they are at Crossroads!

We stopped for our first night in Arcadia, Louisiana where we have two new high school graduates. We didn’t have time on this trip to stay for the graduation, but wanted to acknowledge them for the fine young adults they are becoming! Thank you Gerald and Tammy Pepper for the hospitality and late night catch-up conversation!

On day two, May 7, 2016 we got a late start, but once we said our good-byes we headed south. The very air seems to change once you hit Acadiana. We stopped at Prejeans in Lafayette for our first Cajun food of the trip. I’ve eaten at Prejeans before and it was awesome; but, I must say that I was a little disappointed this time around. Great atmosphere, but the food quality was just so-so and the service was lacking, but I was thankful for the food and the atmosphere. Once we left Prejeans we continued down to Patterson, where I got a great big Momma Hug! That hug made the whole drive worth while!

Day three, May 8, 2016. Mother’s Day! Went to church with my Mom and sister at Bayou Vista Baptist Church and they had a really nice service titled The Genetics of Godliness. On our way to church, Kim and I stopped and said hello to a childhood friend and made plans for a longer visit, since she was at work. After church, everyone went to my brother’s house for a crawfish boil and then he and I went and played with his drone in Morgan City along the Atchafalaya River. Thanks again, brother!

Day four, May 9, 2016. My 45th birthday! Had a relaxing day while my mother and my wife ran around making arrangements. My mom made a delicious stuffed roast, my childhood favorite, and a real German chocolate cake. My brother and sister and their families came over for dinner and cake to celebrate with me, my birthday, our trip, and my recovery. Kim and I shared our calling to Moldova and some of our future goals, plans, and dreams.

Day five, May 10, 2016. We spent the morning picking up some fresh local raw honey from Jake Perez and then chasing a battery for my wife’s watch, ended up buying us each a Fossil automatic watch at Brown’s Jewelers in Morgan City, and then we stopped in at Rouses Supermarket, where we were very impressed with the variety and selection of organic foods available, I guess we were hungry because we bought way too many groceries and not enough Beazell’s Cajun Seasoning!

Instead of doing a full separate post, I decided to append the original May 2016 Louisiana Trip post….so, here is the rest of the story! I have left out some of the details that I had in the first part, but I think I got the bases covered!

Day 6 – May 11, 2016

Relaxing at Mom’s

Day 7 – May 12, 2016, Hunter Wells’s Graduation and Graduation Party in Berwick, Louisiana.

Day 8 – May 13, 2016

Visited graveyard in Belle Rose, Louisiana and travel to Kamie StPierre’s house in St. Amant, Louisiana. If anyone is looking for a custom house in the area, check out Generation 4 Home Builders!

Day 9 – May 14, 2016

Kole Guerin’s Graduation Party

Day 10 – May 15, 2016

Church at The Church in St Amant, Louisiana

Day 11 – May 16, 2016

Traveling home, stopped and wandered around in Natchitoches, Louisiana and decided complete the drive home to Duncanville, Texas.

One step closer to Moldova

One step closer to Moldova

Several years ago, I bought a small half-acre lot in a subdivision that had been planned, but never realized. I had hopes and dreams of building a small off-grid mancave on the property, somewhere to just get away and yet still close enough to run home for lunch or whatever.

I’ve enjoyed my little piece of the earth. It was overgrown and underutilized, it called to me. I’ve created raised beds, planted olives, cherries, almonds, blackberries, blueberries, etc.

I’ve experimented with solar power, wind power, rainwater collection, different farming and composting techniques – all those weird messy things your wife really doesn’t want you doing in the yard or to your house! My little mancave property has given me opportunities to chop down trees, dig holes, gather “stuff”, park a boat, build a tiny-house from scraps, and more – all at my own pace and whim.

It’s also exposed me to the ugly facts about our society. How quickly people will steal a chained and locked trailer, or will help themselves to your garden. I’ve had lessons on security, lessons on patience, and lessons on forgiveness, to name just a few.

When I had a heart-attack in November of 2015, I knew that my affair with my little mancave property would end, but being the eternal optimist, I knew that the land was paid for, and the taxes were minimal. Even though I knew I wouldn’t be able to continue to work out at my little mancave – it just wasn’t practical to be out alone working in the Texas heat, I dreaded the thought of selling it. It represented a lot of time and sweat equity. It represented my work and efforts, it was my own messy reflection of me, and it was mine!

While I was recovering from the surgery, I had a lot of time to sit and think, to reflect back on my life and both the things I had gotten right … and wrong. I thought about the people I had helped, and the people I had hurt. I felt good about the people I had helped the nice things I had done for and to people, but I felt terrible about the pain I had caused. I know that I have been forgiven for my past sins, and I’ve even dealt with my own unforgiveness. I don’t deserve it, but I welcome God’s grace in my life.

After accepting that Kim and I would be going to Moldova, I felt a tugging at my heartstrings, it was time to let the mancave property go. At first, I really didn’t want to. I wanted to keep it, it was mine! But the more I prayed about it, the stronger I felt the need to let it go, now, not later. So I obeyed and we listed the property for sale.

Within twenty-four hours of listing the property, we had an offer and many, many calls of interest! It took a week or so to strike a deal and we closed today, and that chapter is now finished and we will be able to sow the proceeds to the efforts in Moldova.

John and Adriana Lungu

John and Adriana Lungu

You ever meet someone and just know that God has put them in your life? For me, John and Adriana Lungu are just those sorts of people. They are the kind of people that you just feel when you are around them.

John and Adriana have a heart for people, and they have a calling on their life that is truly evidence of God’s supernatural workings in the modern world. They have been called to Moldova to share God’s agape love with the Moldovan people, without question, without regret – with open hearts and simple yet refined and dignified faith.

John has a background in electronics and Adriana is a mechanical engineer, so their education and skill sets have put them in a place where they could have a very comfortable life here in the U.S., but they set that aside – because they dare to be doers, not just followers. They inspire me.

Through Journey to Hope they are working to combat human trafficking by bringing awareness to the most vulnerable segment of Moldovan society, the orphans, the young, and the disadvantaged in both the cities and rural areas. God is putting together a team to help with the work at hand, but it is a huge task with few workers and few resources.

In addition to this job (a huge undertaking in and of itself!) they will be planting churches in several cities, establishing a university outreach, leading small groups, and more. You can find out more about the work they are doing at

Doing what they are doing, they will be exposed to the ugly, the messy, and unsavory side of people. That can have a real effect not only on them, but also on their marriage and their children. Please join me in praying for John and Adriana Lungu and their family, that God will provide the strength, fortitude, grace, and provision that they need, and that they may touch the hearts and lives of the Moldovan people.

Book Review -Six Battles Every Man Must Win

Six Battles Every Man Must Win … and the Ancient Secrets You’ll Need to Succeed by Bill Perkins.

This was a great book! That’s the short answer and yes, I would definitely recommend it. My wife picked this book up for me and I scanned the back cover, and just kind of put it aside as a book I’ll “check out” at some point. I was talking to a friend about how difficult it was to foster quality relationships with other men who follow Christ, and he mentioned this book and I remembered that I had it, so I went off to dig it up – and found that my wife had put it on the corner of my desk. When I asked her why she said that it had been sitting around for a while and she didn’t know if I’d read it, but it I had she’d like to pass it on. I told her I was just looking for this book, and had not yet read it, but its time had come.

I cracked it open and began to read and found the writing style to be relaxing, relevant, and real. It’s written for the average guy and flows really well. It took me about a week to get halfway through – it’s broken up in a way that makes it good reading when you don’t have too much time to dedicate at once – yet it raises thoughts that last long after the book has been set aside.

The third or fourth time I picked it up to read a chapter or two, I just couldn’t seem to put it down! And finished the book in one sitting. After I was done, I had it on my desk and was telling my wife that I had finished it, but no I did not want to “pass it on” but I want to keep it instead.

The battles men face that are explored in this book include: Fighting for your identity, personal holiness, family, pain, friends and a strong faith.


Homeless Outreach in Dallas, Texas

Homeless Outreach in Dallas, Texas

Our home church is Crossroads of Life, in Duncanville, Texas. One of the church’s outreach programs is to the homeless in the Dallas area, since Duncanville is basically a southern suburb of Dallas. For the past 15 or 20 years, the church, through this outreach has provided weekly meals to the indigent persons of Dallas County as well as health and hygiene items, clothing, and etc.

This past Sunday, the church announced a need for spring clothing for the outreach. I talked to the person who is in charge of the outreach and where I could bring clothes and/or hygiene items to help with the outreach (It is time for some Spring Cleaning around here!) and he let me know that if we brought our stuff to the church office, located at 123 U.S. 67 Frontage Road, Duncanville, TX 75137 that the church would contact him to let him know it’s there and he would pick it up from the office.

Since it’s an ongoing outreach program, things are (of course) always needed. I asked him what kinds of items and he said that (other than clothes) they always have a shortage of toothbrushes, toothpaste (small travel size), disposable razors, shampoos, soap, etc.

Over the next couple of weeks, Kim and I will be putting some of these things together for the outreach program.

Since the items would be donated through the church, they would basically qualify as a tax deduction, so if you have a few things hanging around that you don’t need, instead of just throwing it out, get a tax deduction and help someone less fortunate!

Called Life on Facebook

Called Life on Facebook

Last night, Called Life, was born – on Facebook! I created the basic page layout and after a couple of introductory posts, I started sending out invites. So far I’ve invited over 1,000 people to ‘check it out’. I’ve been jotting down lots of ideas on my random thoughts about how I can get the word out, not only about what we are doing, but also for the overall Called Life blog. I also started using the #calledlife hashtag for those of you who are interested in that kind of thing. The url for the facebook page is if you want to like us there.

This is about as grass-roots as it gets, one guy sitting in front of his computer a little each day! I put together several posts today over on facebook, but just wanted to make a note of it, here, too. I’ll be putting together a post with some Moldova facts and etc. in the coming days, it’ll probably take some time to fully flesh it out, so keep an eye out for that.

Thanks for visiting!

What is Normal?

What is Normal?

My wife is finalizing her paper from her trip to the Solomon Islands, and she has made some phone calls, we will be going through the process to become ‘official’ Missionary Associates to Moldova. Well, technically, she will be the official missionary and I, her dear husband, will be the spouse.

While I have my good days, and my bad, I am for all intents and purposes a disabled veteran. The list of medical conditions is pretty long, but I believe that just like some of the examples we have in the Bible, God has used my physical suffering to not only build my testimony, but to provide me (us) freedom to answer His calling for our lives in a way that I could have never anticipated, expected, or planned for.

We have a lot of role reversals in our household, to some it would seem abnormal, but what is NORMAL, anyways? While she will be working on developing a curriculum for educating the youth of Moldova about human trafficking; I will be making sure she is well fed, has clean clothes, and basically ‘getting her back’. I’m good at that.

I have another week of cardiac rehab and have been cleared for travel, I have another month or two before my sternum fully heals from having had open heart surgery back in November. I continue to exercise and prepare myself physically, mentally, and spiritually for the road ahead while God continues to heal my body.

It’s funny how seeking the Word helps explain some things. I was looking up one specific verse and was shown instead 1 Peter 5:6-11 (ISR)

6 Humble yourselves, then, under the mighty hand of Elohim, so that He exalts you in due time, 7 casting all your worry upon Him, for He is concerned about you. 8 Be sober, watch, because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 9 Resist him, firm in the belief, knowing that the same hardships are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 10 And the Elohim of all favour, who called you to His everlasting esteem by Messiah Yeshua, after you have suffered a while, Himself perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the esteem and the might forever and ever. Amen.