She’s 15!

Our oldest daughter, Kiersten, turns 15 today! She is a joy and I am so proud of her!

I remember the day I found out I was going to be a father. It was a few days before Father’s Day 1998. I was coming back to my office from lunch and on my desk was a card. Not unusual, my wife gave me cards every now and then and as a youth pastor I would receive cards once in a while from others. I opened the card and it was a Father’s Day card from my wife. Inside she revealed that by that time the following year I would be a dad. I literally fell into my chair. We had planned on having children, but wanted to wait another year or two before starting. Let me just say that plans change and all the things we do to try to control such issues are not 100%.

The next 8 months were a whirlwind of activity and learning things I didn’t even know I needed to learn.

Then on Saturday, February 6, my wife and I were at a dinner at our church. As the keynote speaker was being introduced, Elena got up quickly and exited the room. Again, not unusual, she was more than 8 months pregnant. A moment later, June, the wife of one of the other pastors on staff, got my attention and told me to come there. It was time.

8 hours later, Kiersten was born. My world view, my perspective on life, my understanding of God, my knowledge of love all changed the moment I held that precious little girl with the full head of hair and chubby cheeks for the first time. She was amazing. The emotion was overwhelming and wonderful. Elena radiated even though she was exhausted.

For the past 15 years, we have grown up together.

Today, Kiersten is turning into a young woman. She is confident, intelligent, funny, and thoughtful. She loves God and gives herself in service to Him through our church. It was incredible watching her grow and experience missions first-hand a few months ago in Peru. Now she is leading the charge for our youth group to raise funds for missions.

I can’t wait to see what God has in store for her. I am excited about the possibilities of her future and know that she will do incredible things.

Kiersten, I love you! Happy Birthday!