In order to start exercising the writing muscle a bit, I asked my Facebook friends for suggestions for top-5 lists.  You know, prompts to get the brain going.  The tenth one is from my friend Big Nate, who asked for…

Top Five Things I Anticipate As I Get Older

  1. Continuing education course in being a student of my wife.

When I look back at the girl I married and how she’s gone through different stages and grown through each one…well, each time it was pretty cool to see who she became.  She was pretty fun to be with in early marriage when we really were poor (and all kinds of thrifty). She was amazing to watch as a mom and exhibited grace and strength through the toddler stage.  She found an artistic and creative drive (as well as business acumen to monetize it) and made people very happy as a photographer.  She has been so very cool as our kids launched and I see all kinds of cool sides of her as we are in a more “enjoy them” station than a guiding one and I’m seeing all sorts of sides to her now.  I’m really looking forward to seeing how she evolves in the future.  Not even kidding.

2.  Seeing my girls step into who they’re supposed to be.

It’s kind of the same as with Tracy, but different in one particular way:  I walk through it with Tracy.  The girls have really made parenting them pretty easy overall, and easy to be proud of who they are.  The steps they took to get to where they are were peculiar (Kid1’s softball/athlete stage led to almost the polar opposite stage of art, and Kid2’s ballerina stage & aftermath) as we walked alongside them. But it’ll be cool to see how they grow and develop over time without very much (if any) input or guidance in that regard.  It’s weird knowing that’s not an arena we’re needed or wanted much in…which is the way it should be, but still.

3.  Seeing what God is going to do with me.

I’m starting work on my doctorate with a pretty clear direction and interests that will be challenging but really boil down to how churches can better make disciples.  The role I’m in now is part of that process, which is pretty cool, too.  It’ll be fun for me to see if/how getting that degree does anything different with my job…Frankly, I can’t see that, but it might add being an adjunct professor alongside what I’m doing (how funny would that be? I’m looking at you, DTS) now.  And, of course, once I can’t physically handle the demands of what I do now in 15 or 20 years, it might be cool to retire to a professorship somewhere. But first-things first: I’m actually looking forward to the academic rigor.

4.  Writing stuff.

At some point I’m going to have to stop talking about writing books and actually writing them.  Or at least articles. Or maybe just uber blogging. But I really do enjoy writing and really should do more of it.  It’ll be interesting to see what direction that takes alongside my studies.

5. Cessation of yard work.

My dad started me off when I was 9 years old mowing, edging and such.  I’ve done it in-season pretty much 35 weekends a year since then.  I’ve never liked it (even though I like the way it looks when it’s done) and there have been times I’ve loathed & dreaded it. There’s something in my bones that refuses to pay someone for what I can do myself…so either Tracy and I downsize to a place that doesn’t require it or if not, I physically can’t do it without people worrying about a coronary for me. But either way I’m looking forward to that grand & glorious day.