Zest for Life… a tribute to my mom on her birthday!

Motherhood is oft celebrated, bemoaned and otherwise dramatically described, an essential part of any life… the very beginning of every story.

For some… it’s the journey in between that becomes so remarkable, the memories of life and family that creates an “EPIC” tapestry for all to see. Those of us who do take a moment to slow down and consider… to stop and look a bit deeper, you will note the amazing tapestry of a mothers life! You will see the remarkable thread design…a marvel of intricate detail, the sweeping beauty contained in it’s lines and a grace in which such a life is displayed.

Mimi and her family! Circa 2010

Mimi and her family! Circa 2010

For those few fortunate enough to know and be raised by such a great lady, the larger tale becomes interwoven with our own.

A blessing that cannot be counted…as the threads of a mothers life blend and wind their way through our own, reaching out to spark us with life and warm love and in my case… signature Chardonnay. ūüôā

The significance though is this… as most lives wind down at the end of their story, my mom’s has been ramping up! Instead of slowing down and getting stiff and sore at the entire miserable world of modern technology and accelerated living, my mom ‘jumps-right-in’ smiling as she fires off another text or Facebook post to one of her seven grand-kids!

Mimi and Colleen - Canada 2010

Mimi !


The joy her life radiates is supernatural. Seriously. 

My mom never met a stranger, loves any and all who wander by or through her life and is always doing ‘something’ to help someone! The witness of her life is staggering… I’ve tried to just figure up all of the men, women and children (that I know of ) she has invested a piece of herself into and it’s beyond my calculation. Thousands of people are significantly ‘better’ for having known “Mimi”!

She has demonstrated to me… and countless others what it means to love Jesus and live for Christ, and I do mean LIVE !

This isn’t a church lady in a pew. My mom wears leather pants and African animal print blouses, colors her hair blonde, loves bling and has an iPhone 6. She goes out with the girls and serves in church, takes care of her husband and family and then serves a home cooked meal to a shut-in. She loves Monday Night Football, Peyton Manning and Brie. Mom shares fashion tips with her granddaughters and cherishes the life-long memories made with her husband of over fifty years, she is a true lady, a loyal friend and a confidant to be trusted!

She seems to be getting younger every year…. how could that be ? It’s a remarkable thing to observe…¬†The book of Isaiah in the bible ( chapter 40) ¬†tells us the secret to her youthful vigor.

28 Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
    his understanding is unsearchable.
29 He gives power to the faint,
    and to him who has no might he increases strength.
30 Even youths shall faint and be weary,
    and young men shall fall exhausted;
31 but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength;
    they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
¬†¬†¬†¬†they shall walk and not faint.” (ESV)¬†

If you ever met my mom you would know this is only a small fraction of the truth of her life, but it’s my simple tribute to celebrate how amazing she really is !

Happy Birthday Mimi, I LOVE you and all you are becoming – you’re a legitimate legend in your own time and an amazing lady ūüôā

If you readers get a chance, take a minute to wish her a special happy birthday Р!

Peace out,

“Buford Earl” ¬†aka Pastor B.


Motherhood in 3G

Happy Mothers day everyone!

I need to make a small disclaimer, I still live with my mom. YEP, I’m 43 and still live at home. This is not a “failure to launch” kind of scene, with a rowdy Terry Bradshaw pushing me to go and find a life… not exactly. Failure_to_Launch

My mom lives with my family and has a rather comfortable space she shares with an old man, (which she says she found at the police station) and together they live in our lower level basement. We have a unique home, full of people. My wife and I have 4 kids and the previously mentioned two old people who live downstairs. If your counting that’s eight (8) people and one slightly terrified dog, all under one roof. Fortunately we have been blessed with a large home, six bedrooms,¬† five baths and two full kitchens with lots of space to roam and a limitless supply of dark chocolate and Chardonnay.

That’s not what this blog is about. It’s fun, but not the point. The point is… My mom lives with us and it’s Mothers Day weekend and it’s time to focus on her and all she puts up with, or maybe we need to focus on my wife, who is a mom and she has to deal with me, my parents, four kids and a dog. Either way, we need to focus !

Motherhood. We’re supposed to be celebrating Motherhood in 3G, that’s my cutesy reminder that moms and their work are never complete. In fact their amazing influence seems to spread outward to each generation it touches. From their own direct children to grandchildren to the children of friends to the neighbors and even to the kids of the friends of the neighbors. Etc. You get the idea… a mom is always being a mom, no matter what. A mothers love draws family, friends and strangers alike.

My mom’s smile and love is¬† like a warm soothing hug and a perfectly timed pep-talk on a really bad day. She’s mothered more people than I can count, hundreds…thousands of people have been “loved” by my Mom. Seriously, she is never – ever afraid to share her love with anyone who needs it. She’s that kind of mom. beaver-and-mom-in-the-kitchen-385x270

My family is deeply dependent on mom. She hosts a weekly dinner every Sunday at 6pm sharp. We all gather around her old people table in the basement and she cooks and cleans and serves us as a family. We share about our upcoming week together and laugh and cry and enjoy life together! It’s magical and it’s wonderful and it’s all because my mom is being exactly what God created her to be. So THANK YOU MOM! We can take that amazing and most precious stuff of life for granted if we’re not careful.

For those of you 24/7/365 moms with youngsters crawling around, who can’t change another diaper or blow your 3 day dirty hair out of your eyes one more time without threatening to run through your living room window and straight to a mental ward… HANG ON! Help is coming ūüôā

Remember the strength, influence and wonderful grace you have been given in Christ and when that doesn’t work, gently hand your kids over to a mostly responsible individual (preferably a husband) that loves you…and bail from your world for a day! It’s officially time to hit the spa. Remember while you’re soaking in the suds and having a Mani-pedi, sipping on a deliciously refreshing fruity thingee… you are so irreplaceable!



AND IF YOUR REALLY NICE.. when you get as old as my mom, and treat your kids with some kindness maybe your kid will allow you to move in and he will take care of you as compassionately as I do her.¬† ūüôā¬†


Pastor Brad.

Celebrating “Mom”

Mom’s are amazing… seriously, AMAZING. They suffer endlessly with occasionally stubborn spouses, bi-polar-hormonal kids and the normal reality of caring for their dysfunctional families. Dishes, laundry, cooking, shopping, toilets, baby poop, dog poop, bird poop… lots of poop in the mom world. Add to that the weight of worry and angst about how the home looks, feels and smells and mom’s get a 360 degree 24/7/365 level of stress that men and kids will never full comprehend.

My mom has a vigorous, full and active life, she still works 20+ hours a week as an office manager at a media group,¬†works with¬†our church ladies in mentoring, counseling¬†and prayer, hosts a weekly lifegroup¬†in her home and manages to handle all of the book-work for our local church as well as coordinate our weekly and monthly volunteer events and activities¬†for over a hundred people. She helps get meals to the sick, pick up clothes from the dry cleaners, fix dinner on Mondays for her entire extended family and pick up kids stranded at school…¬† yesterday we celebrated her 72 birthday.

My Mom celebrating "LIFE" on her 72 birthday !

I’ve watched in amazement as she has gotten younger and younger each year. Filling with vitality and grace and beauty as she pours herself out for others…she relentlessly loves EVERYONE. She accepts everyone, cares for all like her own and surrounds each of us with a hug, and laugh and kiss. Her smile is constant, her joy overwhelming and her zest for color and life are legendary. She has not only survived motherhood, but has thrived in it. Capable of seemingly limitless amounts of giving and serving and hospitality. I’m not kidding when i say..she has never met a stranger in her life.

You might think she has lived a charmed life, isolated from the pain and tragedy of loss… but not so. Her childhood life story is not an easy one, her losses and tragedies are as deep and painful as anyones, surviving the¬†pain of many of her family, friends and loved ones passing. Married for over 50 years and the mother of two sons, and six grandkids, she has a healthy number of young one’s¬†to keep up with…so she has become prolific with Facebook, Skype and her recent Christmas present from dad…an¬†iPod Touch. She loves to listen to music and cook, clean and work her way through a day, humming and singing slightly off-key¬†to some elevator music channel with Celine Dion or Kenny G. She takes precise care of her husband…my dad, who has survived a quad by-pass heart surgery, two strokes and various health concerns as is common with a 74-year-old, all without loosing a step…

Point is this… she is ALIVE. Full of promise, full of encouragement, full of hope and full of excitement, laughing… ever learning, always eager to explore and never allows her fears to hold her back for long. She exudes joy… and the smiles she shares¬†with us, can overcome the worst of days. I’m so grateful for my mom…I’m beyond the read of mere words for describing her love and her faith and her hope for me, my family and our lives. She helped develop in me the love of the road, of adventure and of exploring… She is the one who encouraged me to roadtrip with Brian when life quit making sense, and to stick it out with my wife when our marriage hit the rocks. She encouraged me to explore the calling of ministry in my life… she never quit, on me, on herself or on God. It’s amazing how much a mom can change the world… she continues to¬†change mine, all the time.

Mimi's Family in Canada - June 2010

My encouragement to parents, to worn out mom’s¬†out there… keep trying, keep getting back up, keep lifting your head after fighting the feeling¬†that your really deep down, just a parenting disaster… I promise, things will¬†come into focus, life will re-set, and purpose will present itself to you in time. God has not set you up to fail, He isn’t using your life circumstances as an endless¬†test of your faith or fortitude, He is making something BEAUTIFUL in you. Something eternal, something tangible and effective and endless in its impact.

He is making Himself into you, allowing His glory to shine through and re-capture the beauty and grace and hope of life…one mother at a time. I’m encouraging you to take the time to today…

TODAY, take the time to Celebrate your Mom, or the mother in your life! They love chocolate, and ice-cream and candles and bubble bath crystals…¬† My mom’s facebook is http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000209615118#!/profile.php?id=1619877514¬†–¬†if you know her, or want to know her… stop by, tell her I said “Hi” ūüôā¬†… Tell her she’s AMAZING…

Happy B-Day Mom (Mimi) !

We love you…