Dec 31, 2012

2012 Year in Review

Well, it's been a long time since I have posted on this blog. Most of the last 2 months have been spent working on either the growing ministry responsibilities or finishing up my Doctor of Ministry project proposal.  I hope to turn the proposal in to New Orleans Seminary in the next few weeks.

I wanted to at least put on a year end blog about 2012.  Overall, it was a very good year.  On the family front, Alison and I celebrated 15 years of marriage on November 1, 2012.  Time has flown by.  I am so blessed that my beautiful red-haired girl said "yes" to me.  15 years and 4 kids later, marriage is getting better every day.  This year has had financial struggles just like everyone else.  Alison has worked more this year and took a second job doing hospice care.  My sons Nathan and John David both played baseball in the Spring.  Nathan and Drew both played football in the fall.  So, most of our year was spent shuttling to practices and attending games.  We loved it though.

Our family did a lot of travelling this summer.  We attended the Southern Baptist Convention together in New Orleans in June.  We also went as a family on our church mission trip to Spartanburg, South Carolina.  We took a family vacation to Panama City Beach with my in-laws in July and had an awesome time.  In addition to these, Alison and I had two trips to celebrate our anniversary year.  In April, we took a cruise with our friends Bill and Ginger Young.  It was a first for all of us to be on a cruise.  We ate a lot and enjoyed the views from the boat.  We also shopped in Cozumel and got a massage on the beach.  In August, Alison and I went to Boston for 4 days to watch a couple of Red Sox games and tour the city.  We really enjoyed Boston even though the Red Sox were pitiful.

In the ministry world, we added two new staff members at SSBC.  James Hollis joined our staff in January as Minister of Youth and Discipleship.  Allen Tidmore joined the staff in June as Worship Pastor.  I am blessed to work with a young but talented staff.  We saw a lot of new people start coming to church in 2012.  We also lost several of our senior saints this year.  It was a tough year with a lot of funerals.

On a national level, we saw some incredible things in 2012.  One of the things that stood out was the rash of violence in places such as Aurora, Colorado and Newtown, Connecticut.  Our country saw a contentious and historic election.  We saw a terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi that killed our ambassador and rising tensions in many countries.  We saw a man skydive from 24 miles above the earth.  We saw Hurricane Sandy wreak havoc on New York and New Jersey.  The economy continued to affect many as prices keep going up and disposable income keeps going down.

One of my most reflective things to observe at year's end is the people who passed this year.  One of the most significant to me was Chuck Colson.  He influenced my christian walk in profound ways.  He was one of the most important voices for the church.
Some of the most notable stars that passed this year were Andy Griffith, Larry Hagman, Dick Clark, Whitney Houston, Michael Clarke Duncan, Sheman Hemsley (Mr. Jefferson), Ernest Borgnine, Richard Dawson, George Lindsey (Goober on Andy Griffith), Mike Wallace (60 Minutes), Jack Klugman, and Davy Jones (the Monkees).  Other notable people who died were General Norman Schwarzkopf, former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork, motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, Mr. Food Art Ginsburg, politicians Arlin Specter, Daniel Inoye, and George McGovern, Steve Sabol of NFL Films, astronaut Neil Armstrong, writer Steven Covey, singer Barry Gibb, Rodney King, and singer Donna Summer.

Some great movies came out this year.  I loved the conclusion to the Batman series with "The Dark Knight Rises".  I also loved "The Avengers"!  Other good movies that came out were Les Miserables and The Hobbit.  I didn't see "The Hunger Games, but heard it was good.  Mercifully, the last Twilight movie finally came out.

I'm looking forward to 2013 being another good year.  I am hoping to finish my doctoral work this year.  Also praying for God to open up opportunities for gospel ministry for myself and my church this year.  I have lots of books to read.  I'm hoping my Bulldogs start the year right with a Gator Bowl win. I hope 2013 is a great year of growth for you with the Lord Jesus Christ.