Becoming a Dad has Marked Me for Life

Becoming a Dad has Marked Me for Life

Happy Father’s Day indeed.

Ten years ago my life changed when Janie and I adopted Chase from Taiwan through The Home of God’s Love, and then again a year later when we adopted his baby brother Jackson.

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A Letter to Chase: On Your 10th Birthday


Happy 10th Birthday Chase!!!

For months you have been declaring, “I can’t wait to be a tween!” That statement was then followed by your mother and me sharing wide-eyed looks in shock that you were about to be in the double digits. How did this happen?


That being said, we could not be more proud of the man you are becoming, Chase. This year has been a defining year for as you have faced some very difficult transitions and you have come through them like a champ. I will never forget the night in March when we picked your mom up from the Columbus airport and went to dinner at Red Robin. We dropped the news on you and Jackson that we were moving to Pittsburgh. We pulled out Pirates hats and a Steelers jersey for you but you didn’t even want to look at them because you were sad about leaving your friends in Ohio.


One of my favorite moments this past year was our last night in our house in Zanesville. You and I had worked up a few worship songs including “10,000 Reasons” on our guitars and together we led our family in a worship time, thanking God for our awesome five years in that house. Then we all gave one word that summed up our experience there and wrote them inside your “fort under the basement stairs.”

One of the comic books I used to read as a kid was Daredevil “The Man Without Fear.” You just might be the real thing. You have gone from an average sized elementary school in Ohio to a very large school here in Pittsburgh. It’s huge. When we went to orientation and got the tour you just rolled with it and declared, “My new school is so nice. I love it!” Since they serve your favorite — General Tso’s chicken — for lunch, how could you not?!?

I am impressed with the leader you are, Chase. The other day while you and your brother were having breakfast I overheard Jackson tell you he was confused on a math problem that he was working on. You said, “Read it to me.” And then in a very adult way, you kindly helped him work through it. I am grateful because you two surpassed my math knowledge about two years ago. You are a phenomenal older brother and leader.


Now that you are ten, I am excited to start letting you experience more of the world. In a month from now you are joining me on a trip to Central America to visit some missionary families. It’s really important for you to see other cultures and see the work God is doing around His world. I believe He is shaping you to make a huge difference for His Kingdom on a global scale. So now that you have your new passport, let’s fill that bad boy with stamps!

Of course we will still make trips to our favorite vacation spot — Walt Disney World. That is if they will let you back in since the Pluto-punching incident of 2017. While we never condone violence of any kind, we do understand that Pluto was invading your personal space and you have never been a fan of meeting characters. That being said your punishment was one of my favorite parenting moments of all time. We made you take part in the Enchanted Tales with Belle at the Magic Kingdom, where you played the horse. You said you hated it but you also didn’t mind getting up close with a Disney princess.

You are such a cool, young man, Chase. I love your passion for the outdoors and fishing, your curiosity to try new things like hockey, and your determination and focus to complete the task at hand (most recently your Millennium Falcon Lego). Your first decade of life has been awesome and if you keep pursuing after God’s immeasurably more for your life the next ten is going to be even better!

I love you and I am immensely proud of you.



School Dazed

School Dazed

And so it begins…

With that grin you would think he had just been told he was going to Disney World. But no, the smile’s source is the combination of beginning his first year of Preschool and going decked out with his Darth Vader backpack (complete with his name embroidered on the front thank-you-very-much).

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