In no particular order, the top ten things I love about Dennis:
He's honest and authentic. He says what he means and means what he says.
His sense of humor. We laugh alot.
He loves, honors and respects his wife. Their relationship works because they work at it.
He's got an incredible work ethic. That whole "if the entire church was doing what I'm doing, how would we be doing?" thing - - Dennis is my benchmark. Sometimes I've felt like I've had enough and I'm done...I look at him and I start again.
He's not afraid to make the tough call. Even when it's difficult or unpopular, he'll still make the right decision for the right reasons.
He is capable of having a conversation chock-full of discussion and debate without demonizing you if you disagree with him. He leans right, I lean left and yet we respectfully learn from one another.
He's my favorite conservative.
He's an involved, supportive and loving dad. Trout day rocks!
He's dark, and open about it. So many of us feel like we need to be all sunshine and smiles all the time. He's not. No pedestals to be found around here... DeMotivators-R-Us, boss man :)
Over the years, I have seen him deal with incredibly difficult situations with strength, courage and grace. He never gives up doing good.
He's a great role model of what it looks like to walk with Christ.
I don't know why, but several weeks ago Google Maps changed the directions to my house. It was severely messed up.
Rather than connecting us to McKinley Woods Road via Old Kerry Grove, they redrew the map to connect us to Hansel Road...which, by the way, would have been a brilliant move when our neighborhood was planned out, but our planners, well, I'll leave it alone.
Overall, I've been really pleased with Google Maps, far more than the others out there. This was a huge frustration. Our house is kind of hard to get to with a good map. With a messed up map, it's impossible.
I contacted Google. That's right, I talked to the Mother Ship! Here's the shocking part...she talked back!
They replied within 24 hours, admitted their mistake, said I was right and fixed it.
I am still stunned. Responsive customer service from a faceless corporation?
If more American companies (and government) acted this way, we would not be in the mess we are in.
I have been privileged to journey along side Lorraine now for a number of years. I knew her prior to her Rock Run days. I remember the Palm Sunday we sat in the worship center and she said to me, "I'm in!" She may not feel this way, but her growth has always been on an upward track. She's taken on challenges that scared her into full dependence on Christ.
On a personal side, she picks me up time and time again. She sees clearly the good God is doing at Rock Run. She's got eyes that are focused outward and upward. She helps me to get my eyes back to the right place when they are down cast or navel-gazing.
Don't get the impression she is just some sap that drank the koolaid and follows blindly. There are areas that we disagree vigorously. I know we have both had times that we thought, "I never thought I could be friends with a person who thinks like this or believes that!" But grace covers our differences and Christ binds us together.
Lorraine is a home grown Rock Run leader. I love that. She was not a person who got all her church leadership experience somewhere else and we got the benefit of the import. She's a clear example of what a person can become when they work the program and are open to the Spirit's life-changing leading.
One area we find commonality is our love for demotivators...the anti-corporate inspirational posters. Earlier this week she handed me a gift. When I got home, I opened it and smiled. It is a framed demotivator. The message is one of my leadership themes. You'll find it to the right.
I'm 45 for a moment (as the song says). As I evaluate my life, what matters and what doesn't...as I sort through my dreams and think about what important, here's what I know for sure...I would rather spend the rest of my days doing God's work along side five wholehearted Lorraines than a church of 10,000 who've bought into the, "What's in it for me" mentality of American Christianity and are satisfied with five dollars worth of God.
Yesterday when I got home from church Kim handed me a gift. Friends from church gave it to her to give to me when I got home. When I opened it, here's what I found.
This thing is just too cool. It's like the kid's books...you press a button to get a sound when you hit a certain spot in the story. For this one, the page number of the book corresponds with the sound the bird makes.
Gotta admit, this turned into an afternoon and evening of fun! I kept finding birds I have seen before, then hit the button to find out what they sound like.
It was just incredibly thoughtful and really personal. Don't you love it when a friend does something that is not only sacrificial, but it is personal. The gifts says, "I know who you are and thought you would enjoy this."
Thanks again...I appreciate the gift and you so much.
There are parts of living in America in 2008 that I will never get over.
I recently placed an order with my friends at Apple.
It originated in a placed named Shenzhen, China.
Because of the advent of package tracking, I watched this thing travel the world.
It left Shenzhen at 2:37 a.m. on Friday. It made its way through Hong Kong, Anchorage, Memphis and Kankakee.
The package was sitting at more door this morning at 9:43 a.m.
I blows me away to think that a few days ago this was in the hands of a woman or man making a living in China. Think of the cultures it touched...Chinese, Eskimos, Southerners and Kankakeeans...all in a couple days.
She acts, sings, plays instruments, is brilliant and is a great student. She's easy to talk to, incredibly transparent, has a soft heart...but most of all to me, is a great, selfless, supportive friend to my little girl.
Amy was so great in her role in the musical and could have played any role. I appreciated so much the love and support she showed to Shellie though what was at times a very trying season.
As always Amy, you were and are awesome!
BTW...it is my understanding in an earlier life she was Cinderella playing opposite Jonathon Seaman as the prince.
That would have been a site to behold! Any pictures Lor??