Category Archives: My Family


My grandmother passed away today.  God was very merciful to her.  She suffered from congestive heart failure and had 7 “episodes” over the last month and a half.  Today, she quietly went to be with her Lord.  A few weeks ago, we got to visit her and hear here testify about Jesus.  I was quietly recording with my iPhone.  Here’s the video:

Her godly legacy now extends to the fourth generation.  Faith.  Music.  She was a church organist for more years than have known on this earth.  In August of 2008, I got some video of her playing the piano.  She could barely see the piano but when she found the keys:

She was a southern belle, but if you watched the video you don’t need me to tell you that.  She loved her Lord and loved her family.  She will be missed but we are all resting knowing that tonight she is receiving the reward for her faith.




We snapped this picture early yesterday morning before the first service.  I love it because it shows the individual personalities of our children.  Take a look and see if you can figure them out.

Is Ellie (the baby) giving us a “thumbs up?”


Spring Break 2010//relationships

Man, what a great week it was.  There were many hours on the road, which was not good for Sonya’s back.  But while we were there, the time was sweet.  I think the things I value most are changing as I get older.  I used to measure each trip/vacation by the rides and the thrills.  Now I look forward to the relationships.  Here’s what meant the most to me last week:

  • Trips to Panera: not only because we don’t have one here in Gadsden, but because of time with Sonya and our friends.  Thanks for the time Annette.  Thank you for listening and sharing your heart.  Thank you Jonathan and Carrie, for giving your time and laughing and cutting up.  Thank you Tony and Maxine for watching the kids while I got away with my wife.  I needed that time with my best friend.

Sonya and Annette

    Me and Jonathan – please notice the matching sunglasses (just purchased at Ross)

    Sonya and Carrie – and Panera

    • Shooting the BB pistol with Brotey and Papa: Brotey’s first lessons in firearm safety.  He hit the Purex bottle many times.  He also pointed the gun at us several times but he’ll learn.
    • The Wednesday trip to Urgent Care with Victoria’s toe.

    • Thursday at the park: spinning the kids so fast on the merry-go-round that some parents got nervous while Sonya reconnected with an old friend.  Now our kids are good friends with her kids.  A great friendship now extending to the second generation.
    • Friday night, very tired, ready for bed, talking with my two oldest girls: I really just sat and listened.  They talked for about an hour and a half.  Oh my body wanted to fall asleep but I wanted to sit all night.  I can’t remember all of it, but what I do remember is that they talked to me.  Me.  I hope they always do that.
    • Family who will drive 30 minutes, 1 hour, or 2 hours to visit: thanks guys, it was great to see you all.
    • The final stop at Krispy Kreme for the Hot Donuts Now.

      Yeah, I’m getting all sappy.  Better hang up now.




      She had so many options.

      She is incredibly talented.

      She could be singing professionally – whatever the style.

      She could be teaching a successful music program somewhere.

      She has a well earned degree in music and a natural ability to lead young people.

      She is gorgeous

      I guarantee there were much more attractive suiters than me.

      She had so many options.


      But, God smiled on me.

      Behind God, she is the largest part of who I am today.

      She believes in me when I don’t.

      She is dedicated to our ministry beyond belief.

      No one knows what time she gets up on Sunday.

      How does she get all four (soon to be five) children to church on Sundays in time for Praise Team rehearsal?

      She spoils me.

      She is hot!

      She is a God seeker. I learn from her all the time.

      She loves the Lord.

       Brian and Sonya 1

      God smiled on our children.

      With all of those options…

      She is there to pick them up every afternoon.

      She is there to help with homework and sign all of the folders.

      She is there to fix afternoon snacks.

      She cooks dinner nearly every night. It is always good.

      She loves to stay up late the night before Valentine’s Day and decorate the house for them.

      She makes great buttermilk biscuits and chocolate chip pancakes – from scratch.

      She occupies the side of the bed our children go to in the middle of the night – there is a much more patient parent there.


      Do I realize how much she has given up to serve God with me?

      Will our children ever realize all that she has passed by to give her time to them?

      I don’t know. But I do know that she doesn’t do it for the recognition.  I know this limited post and my mediocre writing ability doesn’t do her justice.

      Proverbs 31 – that’s just the start. We are blessed.


      Thank you, God. For smiling on us. Thank you for inclining her heart toward me. I am truly blessed.


      one of my favorite pictures.  Taken with my Minolta Z6 in our bedroom with natural light.


      My girls are beautiful.


      Another year older and…

      16 tons and what do you get?  Anyway, yesterday was Sonya’s birthday.  I won’t say how old she is but I must let you know that she is older than me.  We celebrated with our good friends from Indianapolis – Jason, Kristi, Madison, and Mariah – and Cyndy, Steve, and Molly @ Red Robin.  There were good burgers and a terrific birthday song.  Enjoy!