Put Them First

March 31, 2009 by  
Filed under Fatherhood

It’s really easy to get busy with lots of things in life and, consequently, push our wives and children to the back burner.  I want to challenge you to guard against this.  If you’re not a husband or father yet, you can apply this to the important people in your life currently, but keep it in mind for your future – that’s when it really counts.  How can a guy who’s so busy with work, taking care of the house and vehicles and working on other projects manage to put his wife and kids first?  Simple – It’s a choice.

With everything in life, you have to choose.  Don’t just talk, act.  Don’t just wish, make it fact.  It’s rewarding to know that my children know me, love me and learn from me – daily.  In my life, here’s what I do to guard against pushing them out of the first spot:

I take every opportunity to be with them.  This might mean feeding them, changing their diapers and/or putting them to bed at night.  Whatever it is, I make an honest effort, daily, to do it.  [As often as possible, I do the “extra” or “other” stuff when they are napping or asleep.]

I make myself present to them… that means that I’m interacting with them, reading to them, playing with them, holding them, kissing and hugging them, etc.  This involves shutting the TV off and being actually present.  This doesn’t mean simply being in the same area as they are.

I take every opportunity to be with my wife.  If it can be with her and the kids at the same time, that’s what I prefer, but obviously, alone time is crucial.  A strong marriage, between faithful, committed spouses, is a perfect example to children and one that can’t be replaced.  It’s crucial to spend the alone time together to work on the foundational relationship within the family unit.

It’s easy to talk a big game.  It’s Truly Manly to back it up with your actions.

Man up!

It Depends on How You Look At It

March 30, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

2002 Chevrolet Avalanche Z-71My wife and I woke up this morning to our truck missing.  It was parked on the curb, locked.  Apparently, someone thought they wanted/needed it more than we do. 

I knew immediately, as Catherine came in from the driveway (preparing to leave for work this morning) and asked, “Dave, where did you park the Avalanche last night?”, that it was gone.  I got up to look out the front windows, knowing that my looking wasn’t going to bring it back.  I kissed her, told her it would be alright and she headed to work.  I calmly called the local PD and reported it stolen.  The officer was great and kept the conversation positive by saying “We have a 65% recovery rate, so don’t lose hope.”  I could have chosen to look at it much differently than I did.

It depends on how you look at it…

On the one hand, someone had the audacity to violate my property.  They found my possession more important for them to possess.  They put a scare in the families who, at one time, felt safe in our private cul de sac.  They caused me to question the security of my home and whether or not I should go out and purchase car alarms for each of my vehicles.  It caused me lots of paperwork and hassle.  They stole not only my vehicle but $4K worth of my stuff that was inside of it.  How dare they.

On the other hand, I’m probably going to get a newer, nicer vehicle.  I’ll most likely get all my possessions replaced and my family will move on and be stronger because we made a choice to look at the bright side.  Through adversity comes unity within a family unit.

This sort of incident can eat away at a person.  A person can let it consume them and let the emotions that come along with it form their attitude.  I’m choosing to respond differently.  I know that God will provide for us and that this happened for a reason.  Good can come from this and I’m positive that it will.  What good would it do me to complain?  What good would becoming angry or frustrated bring me?  Obviously, in this situation, what’s done is done.  If the police find it and it’s not damaged, great.  If it’s gone forever, then God is protecting my family from something.

When something like this happens to you or to someone close to you, set an example of how to react.  Staying even-keeled and consistent with your emotions will be a strong witness.  Remain strong in God the Father and know that He wants good for you.  Be strong.

Man up!

The Priesthood isn't Weird

March 28, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

I think that sometimes people (both Catholic and non-Catholic alike) see the priesthood as something “weird” – a life of not only celibacy but loneliness and separation.  I think it’s also seen as weird because it’s different (and radical) from what a so-called normal life is.  It’s quite the opposite.  Guess what… priests are men; men who heard a call from our Lord and followed it.  They want to serve our Lord.  His will, not theirs.  Being in my line of work, I’ve met many many priests.  Overall, I’d say that most of them are just ordinary men.  They like sports, good food, drinking a beer or two and hanging out. 

If you’ve never seen this video, please check it out.  It is a shortened version of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops DVD called “Fishers of Men”.  It’s a cool video…


Man up!

All or None

March 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Faith

Christ requires that we are all or none.  There’s no middle ground when you are a follower of Christ – a Christian.  I recently heard it put like this… if life was a game of Texas Hold’em, Christ would ask us to go “all in” – that’s the only bet allowed.  Why is it so hard for some people to “go all in”?  Why is it so hard to let go of control and simply let God?  I’ve been blessed, in regards to this situation, to have a trusting disposition.  I rely fully on and I know, wholeheartedly, that He will provide all that I need and more.

Trust is a huge piece that goes into following Christ.  And trust, although seemingly insignificant at times, plays a vital role in pushing all our chips into the center of the table.  The Catechism tells us that Adam, the first man, lost trust in God his creator, thus, the first sin.  What sort of trust level do you have in God your creator?

I know that some things are uncertain and some things are scary, but relying on God to get you through them is a vital part in following Him.  We’re given amazing examples in Scripture of men who trusted – namely, Abraham.  His level of trust, obedience and faith is incredible.  Read his story in the Scripture and you’ll see what I mean.  When it comes down to it, he chose trust over everything else and God rewarded him for it.

Man up!

I'm Watching You Dad

March 26, 2009 by  
Filed under Fatherhood

I thought that this video went well as a “part 2” to my last post. 


Man up!

All Eyes On Me

March 25, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

All eyes on me… and you… 

I know Dennis Rodman said “I never asked to be a role model”, but he’s in the spot light.  And you – although probably not in the spot light – probably never asked to be a role model either.  Guess what?  You are a role model.  You’re a role model whether you want to be or not.  Whether you are at home (with siblings, parents, spouse, children or friends) or at work, or at Church or in public… all eyes are on you.  Maybe you didn’t ask, but it’s the fact of the matter.

So why does this matter?  So what if everyone is watching me?  It matters because all of those eyes are connected to brains that are forming impressions about you.  And you don’t only represent yourself, you represent all men, everywhere.  If you are a father, you represent fatherhood.  If you are a Catholic, you represent Catholicism.  If you’re doing a great job of setting a great example, then great!  Keep up the good work!  If, however, you are setting a poor example, then you are making my job much more difficult.  If women look at you and think that the behavior you live out is what a man is, shame on you.  If children look at you and think that the behavior you live out is what a man is, how dare you.  If non-believers look at you and think that the behavior you live out is what a Christian (man) is, may God have mercy on you.

You might not ask for it, but all eyes are on you.  You can make this seemingly gigantic task have an incredible outcome if you live as a TrueMan should.  How does a man live as a TrueMan?  First and foremost, he is virtuous.  This includes being faithful to God and being loving.  After these two vital virtues, he respects others, honors his wife and children and is hard working.  I could continue on for pages.  Summed up, a  TrueMan is a virtuous man.

Man up!

Things You Don't Say to Your Wife

March 23, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

I thought I’d take it funny today.  Make sure you heed these words.  Tim Hawkins… clean, funny comedian.  Check him out HERE.


Man up!

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