Patience: Second Sunday of Advent

I am like the weather when it comes to patience. Sometimes I feel I can be the most steadfast, even-keeled person in chaotic situations and in the next moment I can give in to a panic or disruption to my timing and scream the end of the world.

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Patience is interesting.

And it’s a choice.

When I would do projects with my kids when they were little, I would need to choose patience in letting the project take longer in order let them try, maybe fail, or just do it slower.

I confess look back and realize I could have done better with that because I was too caught up in getting it done.

I actually ache over the lost experience of watching them figure things out. I can’t go back and just be with them. But I can definitely learn from those experiences.

So how does patience fit for our Second Sunday of Advent?

Israel was told a Prince of Peace was coming. An Everlasting Counselor. The King of all Kings! The promised one, Messiah!

Generations would come and go and still they waited and looked forward to the day.

I’m curious sometimes the Jews as individuals and families handled it. We don’t really know.

What we do know is God kept his promise and the Promised one came in Jesus the Christ.

I like this verse from Romans how it speaks to patience.

“But if we look forward to something we don’t yet have, we must wait patiently and confidently.” Romans 8:25 (NLT)

Patience and confidence.

If we believe what we say we believe, that God is for us, with us, and the good work He started in us He will bring to completion, then patience becomes less about being tolerant (remember it’s a good work).

First, it actually helps us not miss the beautiful moment we are in moments where we need patience.

Second, there is a restful peace and trust available to us when we take confidence in God being at work even while wait.

I know for me in my past, present, and future there are situations I need to live in patience.

During this second week of Advent, go ahead and write down a couple things that you want to choose patience in.

Parenting?
Job future?
Unsettled relationship?
Something you to rush the outcome and you need to let it be?

Share what you wrote down with your family. There is strength in your house in each other. This week, it’s wait and see with confidence.

God is good!

Peder

Be Present Where You’re Present

Hey friends!

It’s been awhile.

But here’s a little look inseide my life during my camp counselor days.

Join me on the stage at Ingham Bible Camp where I learned to play guitar:

(Here’s the YouTube link if you need it)

Stop for a second and take a look around you.

What’s God doing? How can you give Him thanks for what’s going on?

If you want to share it with me, I’d love to see your response in the comments or on Facebook.

He could be putting into motion something you’ll still see the fruit of 20 years from now!

God is good!
Peder

He Is A Man!

Sounds like a phrase you would say to a guy who turned his pickup into a monster truck. Maybe a guy who took down a big buck hunting with only a spoon. Maybe some dude who just looks like he is chiseled out of granite and makes all the ladies melt when he walks by.

That’s not the man I’m talking about.

I’m talking about my oldest son Taylor.

Riley, Daniel, Jonah, Taylor, Jadon. 10 years in the making!

Riley, Daniel, Jonah, Taylor, Jadon. Ten years in the making!

Ten years ago myself and some other dads starting to talk about a book we had read called the Raising of a Modern Day Knight and about what it means to be a godly man. More discussions turned into moment of either talk about it or do something.

Praise God for my brothers in Christ because they are men who say “Let’s do something!”

We started to develop and implement what we would call Knights Weekend. We would gather as fathers and sons at a cabin or retreat area to play like guys (capture the flag, paintball, air soft, football, gaga ball, shooting, karate or go tubing or fishing); eat like guys (burgers, steaks, hot dogs, s’mores); and learn what it means to grow and be a godly man.

10 yeras ago they looked different

Ten years ago they looked different

We used principles from Raising of a Modern Day Knight and another book called Teknon the Champion Warrior.

The boys would be given training, be prayed for, be encouraged, be held accountable, be affirmed, and be challenged by the dads. They would do service projects, lead worship, Bible studies, and share their journeys with the younger brothers coming behind them.

At age 8, each boy was started with ceremonial dubbing as a paige—being called into the journey to pursue God and what being a man of God would be for him.

This sword was our symbol of Knighthood

This sword was our symbol of Knighthood

In the midst they would reach a goal and be affirmed a squire—a new responsibility to go deeper, be held to higher accountability, and be challenged in the heart even more.

Then in a final ceremony, when the boy is deemed ready by the other knights (dads), he’s is invited to manhood, signs a resolution in the witness of dads, and declared so by his dad to be a man, and then giving a blessing.

The following verse is the key:

“When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways.”
1 Corinthians 13:11

On July 7th, Taylor took this step and made this commitment. Ten years in the making and now a new process has started. It is a road that will not be perfect but it’s a road that he is now called to AND on!

Why did we do this? Why the investment? Why these defining ceremonies?

Coming of age ceremonies are part of the history of most cultures. Some are over the top painful, death defying, or physically demanding.

We prayed and studied about this process and came to realize there is very little in our culture that points to what a man is supposed to be.

Still it’s crucial for a boy to know when he has crossed over.

The Bible is very clear about what that character is supposed to look like. Like the scripture says, “When I became a man.”

Taylor signs his resolution

Taylor signs his resolution

It’s not at a certain age like a driver license or being able to vote. It’s about who you are and becoming not matter what the age.

We each wanted our sons to understand what the standards, principles, values, actions, and most of all heart look like in manhood.

I didn’t want Taylor or my sons who follow behind him to be poorly equipped in this world.

Taylor commits to Godly Manhood

Taylor commits to Godly Manhood

He chose it. He is still going to need to choose it.

I’m proud of him. He is a young man. A Knight.

God is good all the time,
Peder

P.S. If you have questions about what we did over the 10 years, email me at peder[at]pedereide.com.

Celebrating Compassion Sunday and Releasing Children from Poverty

It’s Compassion Sunday which means churches all across the world are celebrating how children are being rescued in Jesus’ name.

Look at how St. John’s Lutheran in Buffalo, MN, has decorated their church.


(Technology not playing nice? Watch it on YouTube)

Photos of Compassion children, their sponsoring families, and letters sent back and forth makes the whole thing seem more personal.

It’s not a child on the other side of the world and a family here.

It’s a family spread across the world.

They belong together.

This Compassion Sunday, let’s stop poverty for children one child at a time.

When you put it all in a frame, it does’t seem so foreign.

Sponsor a child.

For the first time or maybe add another little boy or little girl to your family.

If you sponsor a child through that link, let me know and I’ll send you a free CD as a thank you gift.

Blessings friend,

Peder

When You’re Preparing to Send Your Kid Off To College

For the first time in our lives, Sherri and I are taking our children on college visits.

It’s a fun, exciting, intimidating, and interesting experience that marks a new season of life. It’s unknown territory.

It’s not necessarily that we don’t know what to expect when it comes to college campuses, dorm rooms, and community. We do. Although, I don’t remember having Starbucks on my campus. That sure would have been nice.

It’s the stuff of the heart I wasn’t expecting.

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Of course there are all the common perspectives like: “This is their time to enter into their own adventure,” “Now they spread their wings,” or “This is when they really learn about who they are.”

I get those statements.

The part I wasn’t expecting was how I find myself watching to see if he is really ready. I mean REALLY ready.

Is he asking all the right questions?

Does he really get what it means to be on his own?

Did I prepare him correctly and give him the skill and information to handle any situation?

The worse part is when something shows up in front of me and the voice in my head says I may not have covered that possibility in his training and now he might fall off the edge of the earth if I don’t get him into “shape for life.”

Honestly, I’m not good at letting go and allowing my kids to fail. I know it’s important to not be a helicopter parent, and I’m not. But I also don’t want to miss any situation where my children might get hurt or scared.

No parent wants their children to get hurt or scared but the college thing has brought out a new possibility of “danger.”

What if he needs me, and I’m a thousand miles away?

There will be people and resources he will have access to for help or guidance for sure, BUT they’re not me. I’m his dad. I know him. I get him. They can’t do what I can do…

Taylor Carroll

Yes, I know this is normal but it doesn’t mean I like it.

Scripture says to “train them up in the way they should go and they will not depart from it.”

I find myself questioning me, not the training.

Did I do my job?

My thoughts… I screwed up so much. I should have done this better. I want one more time or another chance to retrain him in this area so he doesn’t have to be unprepared.

Yet I can’t stop time and I can’t redo much of anything.

Panicking won’t help.

If a son saw his dad in a panic, that will go the wrong direction. Can you imagine if we thought God was in a panic? Not good.

The well-known Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart. Lean not on your own understanding. Acknowledge the Lord in all of your ways and He will make your path straight.”

My wife, Sherri, reminds me trust is about rest not necessarily letting go.

Meaning to trust is to rest yourself in God’s presence, sovereignty, and grace for you and your child.

I’m not good at this.

Is God for my son Taylor? Yes.
Does God know my heart for Taylor and his success? Yes.
Does God have dominion over Taylor and his life at college or whatever he chooses? Yes.
Can I rest in that? Yes.

Am I resting right now? Not really…

Visiting Carroll

So at this point I will try to rest more in the Holy Spirit’s work in Taylor and less about my own fears about what I did and didn’t do.

It’s hard to rest but we all need it for one thing or another…

Trust = Rest

Next question: How much does that school cost? Ugh…

Do you have any advice for us parents sending our oldest off to college this fall?

God is good all the time.

Peder

Saying Goodbye Without Letting Go

Kinda of a deep title that might make you think this about a relationship, passing of a loved one, or a season of life.

Nope. It’s about a TV.

This week, I said goodbye to this television.

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It still works. It’s not HD obviously. It has no inputs other than a cable input. That’s it. It’s a big screen, the color is a bit untrue, and I think I was on my 5th remote. Yes it did have a remote. So what’s the big deal?

It’s the first TV I ever personally owned. When I got my first apartment living on my own, my dad took me to get me gift to celebrate my first job and apartment. It was this tv.

I’ve hung on to this thing and up until a few years ago was still using it in some regards. I hate throwing things away. It’s not because of the item itself. It’s because of what it represents and all the memories that go with it.

With this TV, my dad is no longer with us and I get worried I’ll forget about that small moment with him. I can still hear his voice with his favorite line that said, “If we have to spend a little extra to get what you want, then let’s spend it.” I don’t want to forget that stuff.

The truth is I won’t. How do I know that? I just told you what I remembered. I won’t always think about it but in God’s beautiful creation of the brain it’s in there somewhere. And when I see any old TV or my kids suggest we get a widescreen HD as big as the side of the house, I get to tell them again about my amazing first TV. Kids love to hear the phrase, “When I was a kid…”

It was and still is a great first TV :)

Do you have something you’re afraid of parting with because of sentimental value? Tell me about it in the comments.

God is good all the time.

Peder

This Christmas and the Weather-1st Sunday of Advent

There is a joke in Minnesota (and I’m sure other places too) about the weather: If you want to know what the weather is like, look out the window every ten minutes because it could change that fast.

It never seems predicable, and it’s never like last year. :)

There are a number of things in life like that. Relationships are not always the same, sporting events are not predictable all the time, the economy changes, and so on.

For some this can be hard because we like to know the future or at least be able to plan ahead.

Maybe it’s control. Maybe it’s fear. Maybe it helps us feel like we can trust something more when we know how it’s going to turn out.

Over the next four Sundays of Advent, I want to put before us the goal of focusing on this Christmas.

This Christmas is about saying to the Lord,

“What do You want me to know about You this Christmas? How can I be different by the end of the Advent season?”

I believe if we go into the Christmas season expecting it to be like last year or what not, we will either be disappointed or distracted and not see what God has for us.

Don’t misunderstand me, God’s promises DO NOT CHANGE. :) Those are very predicable, trustworthy, and God is in control.

The true experience of Advent is when we come to the manger and say “O Come Emmanuel and do what You want with me.”

How do we put handles on that? It’s like this picture on the side of the Blessing Cup we bring to our Taste Worship events.

The Blessing Cup

When you look at the two lower case letter i’s, can you see the cross?

Yes? Now it’s really what you’re going to see. When you look for it you will find it.

This Christmas, you will find the joy, hope, love, and peace that comes from the One who has come this Christmas.

You just gotta look for it!

Be willing to let it look different than last year.

So here is an Advent question for you and your family to ask each other at a meal together:

“What would you like God to do in your heart and life this Advent season?”

Everyone answers and everyone listens. :)

I’d love to hear some of the answers in the comments section below.

Blessings, my friends,

Peder

November and Children

It’s amazing that it is November 2014. I really enjoy November.

It’s Thanksgiving. For the Eide family that means getting together with extended family for lots of fun food and football.

It’s the start of basketball season for most teams.

It’s also when we start thinking towards Advent and Christmas.

There might be some snow which means snowmobiles and snow blowers…ok not as fun but still very pretty when it comes. :)

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Makenzie, Teshome, and me

One thing about November that is close to the heart of Eide family is that it is National Adoption Month. It’s a month to pay extra attention to needs of orphans and the power of adoption.

As most of you know our Makenzie is adopted from Korea and our son Teshome is from Ethiopia. I never have enough passion to express what an amazing gift and privilege it is from the Lord to have them in our family!

When I write about these subjects, the comment I get is something like “We are not an adoptive family so this is a bit irrelevant to me.”

I get that.

But I believe I speak for our family and for a lot of other families when I say that orphan care and adoption is a team effort.

Even more so it is a need that still warrants more attention. It can easily fly under the radar because adoption seems like a parent thing or that orphan’s thing or foster care is for those amazing people who have a heart for that.

Would you be willing to hear me when I say caring for children in need is a believer in Jesus thing?

James says it’s true religion when we take care of those who can’t help themselves.

“Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” James 1:27 (NLT)

Why does Jesus talk so much about taking care of orphans, widows, the sick, imprisoned, disabled, and so on?

I think because He knew in our fallen world it would be a huge issue and because those people are His sons and daughters.

Yet it’s easy to forget.

Me and one of our sponsored children Ziana in Uganda

Me and one of our sponsored children, Ziana in Uganda

Can we do something this month to fight for the children in poverty, orphans, families in adoption, and families willing to be foster care families?

Being blunt my friends, if you say you love Jesus, then this challenge involves you and your love for your Savior. Scripture is clear. It’s not a duty; it’s an act of being a follower.

So for this month here are some ideas for you, my friends, to engage in the lives of children in need this November.

1. Find a family you know in your community that is adopting or has adopted and ask what they need. Don’t assume what they will say. Every family is unique. They will appreciate it more than you could imagine. Believe me: it will be a blessing.

2. Find an agency that deals with adoption/foster care and call them/email them and ask what needs can be met. It’s not just about money. It would be awareness, Facebook posts, clothes, volunteers, etc.

3. Sponsor a child in a third world country with Compassion International. You have heard me say a hundred times but it works and once you engage in it, your life will be more filled for it and a child in need can meet Jesus in a real way through your sponsorship.

There are 30 days in this month to do something. Please don’t say “I’ll do it later.”

When Jesus said when we reach out to the least that that is Him, He meant it for real.

You might be amazed how God uses your willingness to help a child to actually draw you closer to Jesus Himself.

Let’s make a significant impact this November.

Thanks for reading.

God is good all the time,

Peder

Being A Parent Is Hard Sometimes…

Being a parent is hard some days…

It’s not a negative thing; it’s just hard some days.  I never realized how much emotion can be spent on a daily basis just thinking about what each child might be experiencing in their world.

It’s kind of like traveling the border of one country to another. As I go from one child (country) to another we are suppose to speak the same language but the different nuances of each country are enough to feel foreign.

Each country is in a completely different state of development. Some are at peace; some are in conflict either internally or with a another country (sibling). Each country has a different vision for itself. They are beautiful visions for the most part.

Eide nations out to breakfast (a first day of school tradition)

Eide nations out to breakfast (a first day of school tradition)

Some countries are not growing like they could; some think that just because they said they are ready that that is enough to be ready. (Oh the frontal lobe of some countries :))

Then of course are the moments where I forget how old a country is and I treat them all the same which makes “the whole world” a bit more crazy and I might be creating an environment for a hostile coup!

As head of these United Nations (dad), it just seems impossible for world peace!

Yet the cost of giving up is way too great compared to the cost of emotion and heart that drives parental diplomacy for the greater good of each country.

This is all I can say:

Thank You, Lord, that I get to be the head of these beautiful, precious countries. Thank You God for allowing me to struggle in this and I pray it would teach me more about You so I can bring You to these unique countries. Jesus remind me when I’m tired, worn out, feeling defeated and like a failure that it’s worth the energy, that everything matters, and Your voice is only saying one thing to me: “Keep going for I am with you.” Holy Spirit, hear from heart thankfulness for what You have given me as a parent and let Your Kingdom come and Your will be done in each wonderful country in my care!

To think on other things other than God’s goodness makes it harder to parent.

Today, I don’t need it to be harder. I’ve got five amazing countries in my house of many nations.

Therefore I’ll keep going even if it’s hard today…

God is good all the time.

Peder

My Dad-A Father’s Day Thought

I was a momma’s boy growing up. I was pretty spoiled by my mom and everyone knew it. There were many reasons why, too many to go into here but the point is… I was spoiled by my mom and I was just fine with it.

I loved my dad. I respected him and was a bit in awe of him as a kid. He was a tremendous worker and man of accomplishment and community service. My dad served 35 years in the military including WW II and all of this was done with only a high school education. He attained the rank of full Colonel in the Air National Guard and worked for the Governor of Minnesota all while still farming on the evenings and weekends. He did all this to provide for his wife and four children on a farm just outside of Fargo, ND.

Father’s Day is so much about remembering for me. My memories of my dad are many and quite a variety. I remember things like:

– him leaving each morning at around 6:00 am with a coffee and an egg sandwich for his 40-mile drive to the Air Base in Fargo to go to work.

– getting to ride on the side of the tractor next to him as he worked a field and begging him to let me drive while we plowed the ground. He let me drive with a correcting hand ready to grab the wheel when I got off track.

– having me sit on his shoulders as I watched the Blue Angels at the Air Show at the base because I was too short see over every one else.

– playing chess in the dining room with him at night after baths and always wondering if I really did win or if he let me win while he smoked his pipe.

– his shopping with me for earrings for my mom at Christmas, and how he constantly guided me away from the real diamonds to some earring shaped like a fish.

– letting me help him hook up the camper to the car to go fishing in Canada every summer and the patience he showed as I always thought I got a bite from a fish every other second.

– standing in the cold and rain to watch me play football in high school and never complained about being there in the worst weather.

– waiting up for me if I was out late with friends to make sure I was ok (a well-deserved lecture also came if I was later than agreed upon)

– sitting with a program in the audience for every choir and band concert, musical, etc. I was ever in.

– taking me duck hunting before morning light and reminding me that shouting “here comes one!” doesn’t help the duck get closer.

– walking behind him as he walked behind the casket of his wife taken too soon in their life together, so broken and vulnerable and scared. I had never seen him like that.

– standing next to him dressed in tuxedos for a picture on the day I would marry the woman he would call a girl who is “strong” and “carries herself well.” He was right :)

There is a lot more that I would selfishly like to tell you but I want to show a favorite picture I have in my house. It’s a picture that was taken after my dad had returned from leading an Air Guard Competition Team winning a trophy called the William Tell Trophy. Mom had made the outfit I’m wearing because Mom thought we should look good when our father, who is an officer, returns home from a successful military trip. For me, the focus of this picture is what he is doing and what I am doing…

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I’m looking up at him, and he is smiling at me.

Isn’t that how God looks at us?

That’s what I want to remember more than anything.

That’s what I want my kids to remember about me.

I need to do so much better than I have been. I have made some good memories but I need to grasp the truth that it’s not too late make more. I’m still here. I’m still a dad. I’m not done yet. I can still make some pretty cool memories not just for my kids but my wife, my friends, and my neighbors.

My dad died on August 3rd, 1994. He was not perfect but I don’t care. That’s not what counts. What counts is……

I know I had his blessing.

I know I had his love even if rarely said.

I know he was pleased with me even though I almost burned the house down… (another story for another time :))

I pray my children know the same from me. I can still show them. I can do better. Maybe even capture it in a picture.

God is good all the time

Peder