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Today is my birthday. It is amazing how your perspective changes over the years. Early on in life, birthdays of course were about presents, presents, and hopefully… more presents. The success of a birthday was evaluated by the number of “things” you compiled throughout the course of the day. Now don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy presents. Gretchen & the girls just brought me in a brand new shirt for my birthday. I am thankful for that. But now I enjoy birthdays really for another reason. Birthdays always become this time in my life to reflect, contemplate, & observe my life. I love to look back at the last year and think through all God, me, and my community have walked through together. So with that in mind, I just want to express thanksgivings to God for this past year, which (if you are wondering) was my 30th year of life.

A beautiful wife – Her beauty is obvious to the eye, but when you get to know her, you understand how deeply her beauty truly lies.

Tori & Isabelle – What would life be without them? I don’t remember, nor do I want to. Each day is packed with much joy from my interactions with them.

A beautiful new girl – She is 11 ounces right now and still inside of Gretchen, but I already celebrate her life and the joy she is already bringing me.

The rest of my family – A dad & mom that always have loved me. Three sisters, two sisters-in-laws, five brother-in-laws, a billion nephews & nieces, a godly father & mother-in-law, & wonderful grandparents. I’m rich!

A community – There are many I share life with. For all of you, I’m blessed. Sunday nights at the Petersons are truly my most enjoyable three hours of the week.

OSU vs. MN – If you know me, you know of my love for the Football Bucks. It was a joy to watch them spank the Gophers in the Dome.

Road Trips – NYC, Columbus, Des Moines, Portland, PA, Waverly (MN) – Meeting new people & being reacquainted with others is always a joy.

I could go on and on and on. I’ll spare you of that. But just know I’m blessed. I’m rich. I’m humbled. I’m in love with Jesus. This 31st year of my life, I desire to be used of God now more then ever. I want to shake the foundations of the earth with the entire message of Jesus. I desire to be used of God to introduce many into His Kingdom. I want to be faithful! I want to love my wife and daughters! I want to be vulnerable in my community. I want to put others ahead of myself. I want to hear the voice of God and have the courage to obey. I want to live a life that echoes in eternity! “May it be so Jesus, my master and friend!”

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