My Family

Michael, My Son

20 July 2008

When my wife was pregnant with our second child, Michael, I wondered how in the world I could love this kid as much as my first child. I guess at the time I did not understand that love is bottomless. I did not have to divide the love I had, I got to multiply it!

When Michael was born, he taught me about God and His love for us. It is endless and we do not have to do anything to get it. He gives it to us simply because we are His!

Michael is one cool kid. He is hardly anything like me. He loves to entertain and be the center of attention. He loves to make people laugh. He really likes to sing and does it often. He can spend hours alone but loves being with people too. He is smart and picks up on things unbelievably fast. He is very loving and affectionate. He cares about others and prays for them every night.

It amazes me how much I have learned from my children and from being a Dad. I thank God for Michael Mashburn.

The Power of God

2 March 2008

“Help Melissa get better and get out of the hospital soon.”

Prayer by 9 year old Stephen Mashburn

Stephen started saying this very soon after Melissa McCoy’s accident. This was a time when we were not even sure of her survival. We also “knew” that if she did survive, she was going to spend months and months in hospitals recovering and rehabbing.

I am a practical person. In this instance, I was not going to pray for something I “knew” was not going to happen. There was no way she was getting out of the hospital soon. No one believed it possible. However, Stephen prayed it.

One night as I was sitting with him while he was praying this, I considered telling him he might not want to pray that. I would tell him that there was really no way that was going to happen so you might just focus on the getting better part. Thank God I did not tell him that and let him continue to pray that she get out of the hospital soon.

After a huge car crash involving a head injury, after her very life was teetering on the edge, Melissa was released from the hospital less than 2 months after the wreck. In my opinion, she got “out of the hospital soon.”

To Stephen, God is GOD. He can do anything. I needed to be reminded of that. How often I limit what I believe God will do. Thank you for your faith, Stephen, you have helped your Dad remember how mighty our God is.

Checking Out

19 November 2006

When I get home from a day of work, all I want to do is plop down in front of the TV and vegetate. I have been using my brain all day, so now I just want to stop and do something that requires nothing of me. Sounds logical and perfectly justifiable, right?

Well, my problem with this is I have two young sons. This time in their lives is some of the most important time I will ever get to spend with them. It has really hit me recently that I have precious little time with my kids to pass on my values and convictions and to lead them to Jesus. Am I going to give up this time to watch TV?

Another problem with this is that if I want these boys to be like me, is this what I want them to be doing? Do I want them to come home and check out?

I am not saying that TV is all wrong, but I am saying I need to more closely regulate my usage. I am also not saying that this time will be spent in long discussions, but as I have learned, time together is time to rub off on each other. Teaching moments can come up all the time. I need to take advantage of those.

So, it is time I leave the TV off and spend more time with my sons. I know I will not be perfect at this, but I am going try my best.

My Wife…

13 August 2006

On August 9th, 1991, I married my best friend.

Over the past 15 years I have learned more and more what an incredible woman Vicky is. Here are a few of the many things Vicky is.

She is loving, caring, and compassionate.
She is strong and gentle.
She is fun and funny.
She supports me and my children in all that we do.
She is creative, smart and beautiful.
Her word is like stone. She will do what she says she will do.
She is honest and worthy of trust.
She is hard working.
She creates an excellent home for her family
She is a great wife and mother.

There are no words to express the love I have for this woman. There is no one in this world I would have rather partnered my life with. Vicky, thanks for choosing me and I am looking forward to the next 15 years.

I love you.

Stephen, My Son

23 April 2006

My oldest son, Stephen, celebrated his 8th birthday last week. Thinking back to when God blessed us with him, I remember realizing that there was NOTHING in my life that was not affected by his birth. Every part of my life, every decision I make, Stephen has weighed in.

The birth of Stephen also taught me some things about God. For example, God’s unconditional love for me. When Stephen was born, I did not love him because he was a great person or because he had anything to offer me. I did not even love him because he loved me. I love him simply because he is mine. No matter what Stephen does, no matter how he treats me or others, no matter if he loves me or not, I will always love him simply because he is mine. Same goes with God for us. No matter how we act, how we treat Him, or even if we love Him or not, He will always love us because we are His.

Stephen is a great kid. He has given me so many other reasons to love him. He is kind, he loves to serve others, he smiles often, he is willing to sacrifice for others, he is thoughtful in his prayers, he is helpful, makes friends easily, he is forgiving, loving and affectionate.

That is a list of things I want to be. Stephen, you make me a better person and I love you very much.

Making Friends

13 November 2005

My oldest son Stephen is seven and he can make a friend in just minutes. When we decided to move to Amarillo, I knew he would have no trouble making new friends at school and church. After meeting someone, in no time at all, he is playing, laughing and talking with his new friend. It’s amazing.

I, on the other hand, struggle a whole lot with this. I am naturally an introvert. I worry with simple things like what impression I am making and what to talk about. Sometimes I am so focused on what I am going to say next that I forget a person’s name right after they tell me.

My natural reaction to this is to run away from it. If I avoid people, then I avoid this discomfort. Course, the problem with this is avoiding people leads to loneliness. I have tried to cure my loneliness with my family, and while it does help, I realize deep down that I need more. I need friends.

So now we know our problem and the problem it causes. I wish I had some easy fix for us introverts, but I don’t. All I can say is pray and allow God to stretch you beyond your comfort zone. I am pretty sure the reward will be worth the price.