Sunday, June 17, 2007

An Open Letter To My Kids...

I wrote my three kids tonight. They are scattered all over the country right now. So I e-mailed them some father's day thoughts. I hope they don't mind, and I really don't know why I'm doing it, but I decided to make it an "open letter." That means I am sharing it with you ... the world. It's just that I'm so proud of them that I want everybody to know what amazing people they are.

So forgive me kids, if this should have been kept private. But I'm shouting it from the roof tops (blog tops...)

Dear Kids,

Ok, you are not really kids anymore. But compared to me ... you are kids. So I reserve the right to call you that. :)

I just wanted to thank you guys for making me probably the happiest dad on the planet. You all know it's been a crazy couple of years around our house. Usually not in a good way. But when it comes to my kids my heart is full of thanksgiving and praise. God somehow intervened in our little family and did the extraordinary.

Kelli, you are an excellent mother, wife, and "minister" to those who leave children in your care at church. You constantly amaze me. I often find myself watching you when every one else is watching Elle. Your maturity and wisdom stretch far beyond the norm. On top of all of that you always have time to love on your dad when he needs it. Being at your home today was pure joy ... not to mention fun. Thank you for being the daughter I would have designed had God asked me for blue prints! Sometimes I find us in the midst of a conversation and I suddenly realize that you are far wiser than anything you could possibly have learned from me. How did that happen? Only God.

Scott, when I look at you I often feel joy and sadness at the same time. The joy is because of the man you are, the way you are spending your life, the bride you are about to take, and because for some strange reason you still like just hanging out with me. That's pretty unusual and I am very honored. The sadness is simply because the guy that used to sleep 30 feet away now sleeps 300 miles away. But this is as it should be. I deeply believe it is God ordained. I miss you every day but I also know that all I have to do is hit #4 on speed dial and you are right there. (I'm sure I over use it but you never get mad at me for it.) Thank you for "getting it" when it comes to the exceptional circumstances of the last few years and for walking through so much of it with me. And I have to tell you, I simply cannot WAIT for our "Great Baseball Extravaganza" the week before your wedding! I feel like we should be taking our ball gloves and playing catch in the hotel parking lot. (Why not?!)

Chris, just hearing your voice on the phone from Centrifuge causes me to feel this amazing glow deep inside. I can remember watching you last year as you totally DOMINATED mega-relay. You are living out one of my dreams ... being a 'Fuge staffer. I have such a deep respect for the way that you teach, encourage and love those kids. I know that it is not easy when you are tired of everything from cafeteria food to the heat to an over dose of teen weirdness. I know that God has huge plans for you. You and I share something else in common. I hated school just as much as you do. But just as I got through it, you will to. You have to because God is calling you to something and He needs you to be educated in order to do it. I'm behind you, praying, caring and looking for ways to help you kick academic butt. By the way, I find myself sitting in your room sometimes missing the "COME ON!" that we've heard so many times. We are keeping your place ready for your return.

Ok, well that's all I wanted to say. Except for one thing. I love you guys more than I love life. More than I love my next breath. My life did not really begin until the three of you came along.

I am praying for you tonight and every night.