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!

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,

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

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.


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.


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.


Am I Trying Too Hard?

Raising children is definitely a joy, challenge, adventure, ride, climb, decent, sequence of failures, victories, and moments wanting to hit the reset button. Yes, it is not for the faint of heart.

I like to go 110 miles an hour at some things. My approach to music, sports, worship, marriage, and family is like that sometimes. This image is kinda a sneak peak at my inner self in certain moments.


The thing is, when it comes to parenting, I approach with a high standard and high expectation. Not that every child has to be the best in the world at grades, music, sports, making their bed, playing cards. But things like honor, respect, truth, effort, grace, being loving, making something better are not blown off.

I’ve think lately though I have gotten out of hand. It’s like I nit-pick everything to the point where it’s all I’m focused on. As you can guess, my five children aren’t really wanting a whole lot to do with Dad or they’re asking if I suffered some type of head trauma.

Maybe I’m trying too hard…

I’m committed to be the best dad I can and I take the verse training them up in the way they should go to the deepest part of my heart. Yet you can water a garden too much or sand a piece of wood to get it smooth and before you know it there is no more wood left or at the very least it gets warped! (I don’t want to warp my kids :))

The other day I got an email from one of Taylor’s teachers, a new faculty member to his school. Here’s piece of what it said:

Taylor is doing really well! He is always attentive, eager to answer questions. He helps others and is doing well academically. I’m really proud of him. He is a joy to have in class. I can truly see the light of Christ in him, shining forth. From what I’ve seen, he has a positive influence on his classmates too. Thank you for all you’ve done in raising him to be a fine young man.

I’m embarrassed to say I hadn’t noticed lately. That note says everything that I’m hoping for in my crew.

If the Father God removed grace from His eyes I’m sure He would turn out like me lately: missing it. Yet He continues to remind us how proud He is of us and that we are His prized creation.

Maybe it’s time to take a moment and stop trying. Rather, I need to enjoy the fruit of the Holy Spirit moving in my family. I wonder if trying so hard comes from my own fear and trying to prevent the next fall or failure. If I continue to do that, I’m gonna miss seeing the garden grow and change.

If I miss that, it’s not worth the effort.

God is good all the time,


The Writing The Song “Nothing More Nothing Less Nothing Else”

The next blogs are going to be in response to an invitation to ask how I wrote certain songs. What inspired them, where they came from, and little back story.

For me, song ideas come from anywhere. Books, sermons, my own devotional time, movies, advertisements, personal experience, almost anywhere.

The song “Nothing More Nothing Less Nothing Else” from the CD Rescue is one of my favorites. Here’s why:

When my oldest son Taylor was about 11, I did a read aloud with him called Teknon, The Champion Warrior. It’s a kids science fiction story centered on a father and son as the son comes into young manhood.

The father is a brilliant scientist and soldier/warrior who gathers fellow warriors to go and take on the evil villain who has stolen the Logos (which is a symbol for God’s Truth and Word in the story). The son is asked to come a long as test of his character and to see if he is ready to enter into manhood. Taylor and now my son Ethan both love it!

In the book, the warriors would pray to God on their adventure and they would end each pray with “Your will be done, nothing more nothing less nothing else.”

It really struck me. As a follower of Jesus, am I really ok with whatever God wants to do with me as long brings Him glory and like we pray “Thy Kingdom come Thy Will be done”? There is more to that than just trying to say the right words.

In the midst of writing the song with my friend and producer Paul Marino, I was captivated by something Pastor Bill Bohline said in Sunday morning message at our home church, Hosanna! He was telling about a conversation he had with a man named Peter Erickson from our church. Peter was sick with cancer, and Bill had asked him how he was doing. Peter’s response hit me deeply. He said, “Bill, if I die or if I live, either way I win. Either God has a plan for me here on earth or I get to be with Jesus in heaven. There is no bad outcome!”

That’s how I want to live. I don’t but I desire it and seek it. After church I went home into my basement and started to pound out the bridge from the very phrase Peter had said to Pastor Bill.

I hope you are blessed by the tune and, as always, I hope you pass this blog along to others who might find it encouraging. It’s a blessing to what we do here.

You can order or download the Rescue CD at Click here to listen to a sample.

That’s my story of writing “Nothing More Nothing Less Nothing Else.” Now it’s your turn to tell your story about hearing it. Leave it in the comments section for me to read.

God is good all the time.


If to live is Christ and to die is gain, then teach me how to die.
If to follow You means to follow through and leave this world behind,
then let Your kingdom come. Let Your will be done.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want with me.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want. (Do what You want)
If to live by faith is to run the race, then teach me how to run.
If to count the cost, to take up my cross, glorifies Your Son,
then let Your kingdom come. Let Your will be done.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want with me.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want. Do what You want.
If I die, if I live, either way, I win.
For I know where I stand: If it’s You, I’m in.
If I die, if I live, either way, I win.
For I know where I stand: If it’s You, I’m in.
I’m in.
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want with me
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Do what You want with me
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Nothing more nothing less nothing else
Nothing more nothing less nothing else


Inseide the Songs

A few nights ago I sat in the kitchen with my oldest son Taylor talking about the music industry. He said “Dad, you been doing this full-time for over 16 years.” We talked about how many CDs we’ve made and especially all the songs we have written. It was a cool conversation. It also gave me an idea…

So many times I have been asked, as most songwriters are: When you write songs, does the music come first or the words?, How do you come up with the lyrics?, Who is your inspiration?, How do you know when a songs is good?, etc.

I’ve decided to answer some of those questions (and more) here on my blog. For the weeks ahead, I’ll blog about songs I have written and what was the process in writing them.

The amazing studio players on the Rescue Project

What songs have you always wanted to know about how and why we wrote them? 

Songs from Rescue, Taste and See, Perfect Surprise, and even older albums are all fair game.

I might answer you via a written blog or maybe a vlog. We will give out free ringtones and even some free full song downloads.

Pick any song you would like to know about, leave a request in the comments section, and I will bring a little behind the curtain thought as we go “inseide” the songs.

I look forward to hearing which songs you’ve always been curious about.

Grace and peace,