Failing Forward

by Funhog Family on September 23, 2011

Sleeping - A Contact Sport

Driving across the great state of Texas with our day drawing to a close and the outside air temperature at 105 degrees, we made the executive decision to stay in a hotel. I found one that was very reasonably priced and had a clean room, though the room was a bit small. When we stay in a hotel the two youngest sleep in pack-n-play cribs, two of the girls share a queen bed, Jodi and I share a queen bed, and then one girl gets to sleep on a blow-up mattress on the floor. The room was so small that we had to put the pack-n-play cribs beside one another and the mattress on the floor was crammed between two double beds. No one wanted to sleep on the floor so the three girls decided to all sleep together on one of the double beds. I knew this probably meant I was asking for an opportunity to test my ability to sacrifice for my family. In the middle of the night my opportunity came as one of the girls rolled on top of another one and the whimpering began. Jodi asked me to take care of the rising chaos. As I tried to quiet the loudest child she just got louder and louder. This was my moment to shine and put into practice everything I have learned throughout our trip, to be the knight in shining armor who saves the day with my quiet, loving demeanor. Unfortunately, I chose a different road and failed miserably. I lost my cool as Jodi suggested I should take our child to the car to calm down, in order to allow the rest of the kids a chance at sleeping. I spoke harshly and threw a pillow as I grabbed our precious child. Walking to the car I noticed how unsafe our hotel environment was with several guys drinking and smoking in the shadows around the hotel, which only increased my agitation. In the car the fruits of the spirit were not to be found as our child wailed. It took me a while before I finally broke down and cried out loud to the Lord to forgive me for my sin. As I humbled myself before the Lord I talked with our child about how I am under God’s authority, just like my children are under mine. Only when she saw her father’s broken and contrite heart was she able to humble herself and apologize to me. It was a great reminder to me just how far I have to go. We started this trip based on the verse, Malachi 4:5-6, “See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.” It was not until my heart was turned back to my child, that the heart of my child could turn to me. We finished restoring our relationship the next morning with lots of kisses and tickling. One of the great things about this journey we are on is that I get numerous opportunities to choose the right path. Two nights later another child awoke around 4:30 in the morning and was not able to go back to sleep. Through God’s grace I was able to love and play with him. We even made a game out of cleaning up the van, where we could be as loud as we pleased. Lord, please continue to humble me daily and allow me to continually fail forward, so that I may always be usable for your service and your glory.


Uncle Ron and Ant Micki Stafford September 24, 2011 at 11:18 am

Brian and Jodi:

I have so enjoyed your all’s blog and especially the fact that you all are living for GOD!!! I know they will rise up and call you blessed as Proverbs 31 says. I love you all and I can’t wait until the next journey starts.

Our family is so proud of you all!!

Ant Micki and Uncle Ron

Funhog Family September 25, 2011 at 3:47 pm

Thank you Aunt Micki and Uncle Ron. Our journey has been a humbling one, but we are finding that God is only able to use us after we are broken. Our heart is to see God moving and then join Him there. Through this trip, He has given us the desire of our heart.

Sheri September 24, 2011 at 7:37 pm

Wow! You inspire me…you are a great DAD! And Jodi is a great MOM! May God continue to pour His blessings on you as you head home! We can’t wait for ya’ll to come back for a visit!

Funhog Family September 25, 2011 at 3:41 pm

Hi Sheri,
Do you remember Paul Harvey and how he use to say on the radio, “…and the rest of the story”. Jodi did not know anything about what went on in the van that night until she read this blog posting. After she read this post, Jodi told me that she knew I was upset that night and started praying as soon as we left to go to the van. She prayed the entire hour we were gone and her prayer was that God would humble me by any means necessary. Praise the Lord that God heard the prayer of my amazing wife!

We are so looking forward to our next visit with your family. God met us there as we enjoyed fellowship and fun at your home.

debra newman October 3, 2011 at 7:45 pm

ok i said seven kids i know five ,i was thinking seven in the family and did not correct it before i sent it

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