I have learned a lot in my years of ministry. One thing I learned very early in my ministerial career was that if I wanted to succeed at having a long-term, fruitful ministry, then I had to make my family my first priority in the Lord.
If a married man cannot be a good husband and father in his home, he can never be a good leader in the church. Because I want that principle to be more than just a pithy saying in my life, I try to view all my ministerial activities through the lenses of my family life. If you want to know who I am as a minister, you have to know who I am as a family man first.
In 2004, I was somehow fortunate enough to marry Erin, the most incredible woman I have ever known. She is truly an amazing wife and mother, and she serves as my constant source of strength, comfort, and humility. I mean that. She has a way of humbling me like no other. Ever since I convinced her to join her life with mine, she has served alongside me in my ministry as an ever-present supporter of all the Lord has called me to and as a steady filter of all that was not of the Lord. And trust me when I say, I need that filter far more than I would ever want to admit! She is the love of my life (cue the Michael W. Smith song) and will always be my favorite person in all the world.
In 2008, the Lord graced us with Reagan, our first child. She is my little princess: a combo-package bundle of great joy and intense mischief. Thankfully, she hasn’t yet figured out just how dorky and embarrassing her daddy really is. She still loves snuggling her daddy in the couch over a good book or dancing with daddy to one of her favorite princess songs.
In 2009, we were graced with our second child, Evan. If Reagan is daddy’s little girl, then Evan is every bit a momma’s boy. Luckily, he inherited his mom’s good looks. Even as a toddler, he was quite the little ham with the ladies. Despite his affection toward his mom, he was fortunate enough to inherit his daddy’s affinity for super heroes. He has quite the likable personality, even when he’s being bossed around by his big sister.
One of the greatest joys of my life is walking through the door each day to the joyful sound of my family welcoming me home.
These three people make up my dearest community: my family. They are my joy in this life, and they mean to world to me. They serve as a great motivator and a wonderful encouragement to me. And they represent the context in which and through which I want to do ministry.