Archive for June, 2009

My beautiful bride of 11 years and I celebrated our anniversary this weekend. I can’t believe that much time has passed. All jokes aside, she deserves a medal for being married to me. I barely put up with me! She is the mother of two incredible young men. She tells everyone her home is filled with boys with the older being the most disruptive and unmanageable. I am so grateful for her. I don’t tell her often enough what she means to me. Proverbs 31:10-12 says, ” A wife of noble character who can find? She is worth far more than rubies. Her husband has full confidence in her and lacks nothing of value. She brings him good, not harm, all the days of her life.” Nothing could be more true of my wife, my friend. She was born 9 months after me. She often tells me God brought her into the world because He knew I would need her. She’s absolutely right. As a matter of fact, the guys from Newsong knew it as well when they penned the lyrics to their song “When God made you He must have been thinking about me”. Then chorus goes like this:

I wonder what God was thinking
When He created you
I wonder if He knew everything I would need
Because He made all my dreams come true
When God made you
He must have been thinking about me.

How true that is, my love, my best friend. I cannot begin to express what you mean to me. All I can say is that you save me every day. And every day I love you more. Happy Anniversary, Sweetheart. I love you.

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I had a great day of blessings yesterday. I had the opportunity to join my 8 year old for his first 18 hole round of golf. He did outstanding…and drove the cart quite well I may add. Shhhhhh. Don’t tell anybody that he drove the cart. And I got to see my youngest tackle the big water slide at our subdivision’s pool, thus conquering his fear of the “Big Slide”.
On Tuesday my little guy, 35 pounds of 5 year old grit and just completing his 4 week and some change “no swim” sentence due to a broken elbow (of which he broke being the dare devil he is) wanted so much to go down the water slide but was a bit afraid of it. He said it was “too big”. Of course, being the child psychologist I am, I tried to show him that the slide was not too big but that it was made of small segments. He didn’t quite fall for it. We went to the top and I did all I could to convince him that he should not let fear keep him from doing something he really wanted to do. Boy does that have implication and undertones all over the board…another time…another blog. I digress.
I spent the better part of 30 minutes pumping him up in the hopes of motivating him to go down the slide. I asked him, “Do you think God is bigger than that slide?” “Yes,” he answered. “And don’t you believe that if you ask Him to help you not be afraid, He will help you?”, I asked. “Yes”, he answered. “Then why don’t you go down the slide? You will love it!” I said like a coach trying to motivate his player. “Because I just don’t want to,” he replied. I accepted the fact that I will have to live with that. He will go down when he is ready. I knew it had to be his decision.
As I stated earlier, I had the opportunity to share in my oldest’s first 18 hole round of golf on Wednesday. On our way home, I got the message from my wife that my youngest was “ready to go down the slide and keep going down as long as we were at the pool.” No way was I missing this. We got to the pool and he jumped right in as usual. I reminded him that he was going to go down the slide. “Oh yeah,” he said as if it was a trivial thing that just slipped his mind, He jumped out of the water, put on his goggles, and headed up the many stairs to the top of the tower and the water slide. He waited his turn patiently and when it was his turn, he jumped right in to the rushing water and rode down like he had done it a hundred times. A few times into his multiple trips down the slide, he realized that he would go faster if he laid on his back. Well he did and there were a few times I thought he was headed over the side as his little body was tossed down the slide. Every trip down all you could see was a flash of white teeth and blonde hair. It was awesome. After a few more trips down, he headed over to the other section of the pool and played water football with the rest of the boys. It was just another day at the pool. Maybe for him, not for me.
Fear is a powerful thing. If we allow it to rule, it can keep us from experiencing some of the greatest blessings God has in store for us. And fear is not reserved for only the young. We know this. Nothing new and earth shattering here. But what I think so many of us often miss, me included, is that we never really overcome fear. Fear is there, always. Not knowing what’s on the other side of the door keeps us from opening it. But more importantly, the action associated with our attempt to get past something that scares us is not the true “overcoming” of the fear. Simply opening the door is not overcoming the fear of what may be behind the door. It is the act of “deciding to accept” what happens, regardless of the outcome of the action, that is the “overcoming” of fear. What happens if we don’t like what’s behind the door? If we are like most, we’d spend too much time complaining about actually opening the door rather than accepting that what is behind the door is what was supposed to be and that there was a clear and distinct reason for it. We simply need to look and listen for what that reason was. As believers grow in their faith, God’s “winks”(the incidents and occurrences unbelievers call coincidences but we know better) become more and more recognizable. That is when it gets fun.
God has a plan for our lives. All of us. While we are not necessarily brought into the loop on what that plan may be, as followers of Christ Jesus we have to have faith that His plan for our lives is perfect. And that whatever happens we accept it because it is His will. Romans 8:28 tells us that “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” I accept the results and what’s behind the door. I can hear Monty Hall now, “Let’s see what’s behind door #3!” Oh boy. I just dated myself.

Happy Father’s Day, dads. As we enjoy our day of…whatever it is that we guys enjoy (for me, I have the Red Sox playing the Braves and flipping between that and the US Open – it’s over 100 degrees outside), let’s not forget about the war that rages on for our lives and the lives of our families. Satan will do all he can to neutralize men and separate them from their wives and from their children. Either physically or emotionally, if he can cause the separation, he will have accomplished his goal. And with men and dads neutralized and out of the picture, the family is completely vulenrable to attack. Today, men around the country, and in many parts of the world, will have a memory of growing up and of their father. How do you remember your father? Those of you who are dads, how do you want your kids to remember you? Remember, we are only responsible for ourselves. We also cannot change the past. However, we have the power to impact the future.
Be the man God has called you to be. Be the dad your kids and family need. Take point and lead your family. Don’t think you have what it takes to lead your family? Things too far gone to recover? I beg to differ. God doesn’t make mistakes and He hasn’t changed the man model since Adam. So apparently He did it right the first time.
I am praying for all dads and men. We are in this war together, men. And we will prevail. Know how I know? I read the last chapter in the Book. Check out Revelation when you get the chance.
Thanks, Dads. All of you. God bless you. Keep it real!

When somebody asks you that question, how do you respond? Usually, I don’t have a problem answering that question. I meet literally thousands of people and speak to groups and crowds all the time. Today I was got off guard and my standard answer of “I’m Jeff Searcy” caused me to think about how I answer people.
This morning at the usual Tuesday Morning Bunch gathering at Cracker Barrel (make sure you check out the TMB section of the soon to be live Servant Warrior Ministries website www.servantwarriorministries.com or visit www.tuesdaymorningbunch.com in the very near future for more info) with some of my dear Christian brothers and fellow servant warriors, we had a first timer, someone a few of the guys already knew, join us. I was telling him a little about the group and the men’s ministry and he stopped me mid sentence and asked, “Wait a minute. Now who are you?” I was a little caught off guard and answered, my usual, “I’m Jeff Searcy.” I told him a little about my coming to the area, my family’s tour of churches, etc… But after I left breakfast and was headed to the office, I started thinking about my response and that he probably thought, “Jeff Searcy? Okay, so what. Again I ask…Who are you?” If I am honest with myself, I would admit that I may have thought the same in the same situation.
It made me start to think. What an arrogant response on my part. As if I’m somebody. I thought I should have responded, “I’m nobody, just someone heeding a call.” But God quickly spoke to my spirit and said “You are somebody. You are somebody to Me. You were fearfully and wonderfully made. And you are Mine. And that makes you important. But I also call you to be humble in spirit (ref. Matt 5:3).” For many of us, even long time Christians, this concept of seeming contradiction is a hard concept to wrap our head around. I pulled into the office parking lot and just sat. You know, God speaks in the gentle whispers (see I Kings 19:10-18. It’s awesome!). And it came to me. When someone asks me, “Who are you?”… My response should be, “I am a humble servant of the Almighty…with a vision.” Now, being that I am on the high strung side of passionate, my response should be, “I am a humble yet highly motivated servant of the Almighty…with a vision.” Either response accurately answers the question and hopefully sparks a couple of follow up questions like, “servant of the Almighty… what’s that?” Or, “What do you mean, vision?” Oh, it’s on now! That little opening is all a humble servant of the Almighty needs to share the Good News. I can’t wait to try it out. Until next time… Keep it real.

This is my first entry for Life Lessons and Observations. And, how fitting is it that the first is a life lesson for Dad, or an LMFD (Learning Moment for Dad).
Yesterday, Saturday, at 1200 noon I was out cutting my grass. Let me tell you, it was hot. Ridiculous Florida hot. I mean, it was a “No need to be this hot as it is complete overkill” hot. You get the jist. Nevertheless, I was cutting my grass. Now get the picture: my self propelled mower lost its self propulsion…and that thing is heavy. I had finished cutting my front yard and was working on the back. I literally was pushing with my eyes closed because I could not keep the sweat from pouring in my eyes. Just then, out of the screened porch walks my 5 year old son, my youngest. Beautiful curly blonde locks of hair flopping as all 35 pounds of him skipped towards me with a bottle of water in his hand. Now his mom was not home so my first thought was he wants me to open the water. I would love to say that when I saw him coming toward me I was thinking, “Oh, how happy I am that he wants me to do something for him.” My first thought was “I have to stop now, turn off the mower, open the water bottle, wonk wonk wonk.” It was more of a boo hoo for me.
He got to me, looked at me with those big blue eyes and handed me the bottle. I opened for him, smiled best I could, and handed it back to him. He looked square at me and with the matter of factness and purity of heart that only can come from a 5 year old and said, “I brought it out for you.” He then turned around and skipped away.
I immediately looked heavenward and thanked God for that teachable moment. I thanked God for not allowing me to miss the teachable moment He orchestrated for me. So often we, as parents, as dads, as folks who have been around the block, look for teachable moments. We look for the opportunity to share a nugget or two of wisdom as if we were the wise oracle imparting life altering wisdom to whoever happens to be on the receiving end. Often times we miss them, especially with our kids. The impact really comes when when you don’t miss one, especially when the person being taught is you.
I enjoyed the room temperature water more than I thought possible. Mostly because my little buddy, in the middle of the hundred things he does…all at once, mind you…thought of me out in the hot sun cutting grass, on his own mind you, and brought me some water. I would bet that he acted on the thought of bringing me out some water as soon as it entered his mind. He didn’t stop to think whether or not he had the time or even felt like doing something for someone else. He did it without hesitation. We could all take a lesson from this 35 pound, blue eyed, floppy blonde haired 5 year old with a servant’s heart.
By the way, a few minutes later he came skipping back out of the screen porch. I was in a different frame of mind this time around, but he still got me. I turned off the mower and said, “What can I do for you little buddy?” expecting him to need something. (Come on. Cut me some slack. I have two boys.) He looked up at me and asked, “Where is the water bottle?” I had placed it in my pocket when I finished it. I pulled it out of my pocket and said, “Right here.” He reached for it. I gave it to him. He said, again with the purest of heart, “I came out to get it to throw it away for you.” He took it and skipped away. Thank you Lord Jesus for his heart…his servant heart.
Posted by Jeff Searcy at 6:22 PM