I remember the first time I met Cody. His brother Travis introduced us and I immediately saw something special in him. He was like this lump of coal that was ready to be transformed into a diamond. He was very shy and I remember when I first started hanging out with him I remembered being annoyed because he didn’t talk much. Over the years we’ve grown so close that he, without even realizing it, had become like Prozac or Wellbutrin to me. Spending time with Cody is therapeutic time. He’s married now so I’ve had to start actually taking Prozac and Wellbutrin because I don’t get to see him as much as I would like. I’m like a parent whose child has grown up and started a job and a life of their own. I’m proud of him, but I miss him and the times when we use to sing while he played the guitar. Or when I would come home from work and he’d be lying on my couch watching TV.
Jonathan was just the opposite. From the moment we met we clicked. His personality is just like mine. We like cars and good food and martial arts movies. We have similar taste in clothes and when we are together we can have a good time having a deep conversation or just laughing at joke after joke after joke. Over the years I’ve got to watch him grow and make mistakes and extremely smart decisions.
It was in April of 1998 that I became a Denton Bible Hangar Leader. Close to 400 High School students and around 40 of us leaders and we had something extremely special – we had each other and the one thing that united all of us – God. For six years this group of kids was my life. I was in college and I didn’t take Wednesday night classes because that would mean I would miss “Heirborne”. Heirborne was the time when all of the students would come to the Hangar for church service. There would be great music and skits. Sometimes there was volleyball or barnswinging after. Upstairs there was a Slush Puppy machine. We would go on ski trips and to concerts. Sundays were packed with 2 church services and then Bible Study. It was an insanely busy time, but it was the best time of my life.
During that time I got to meet some of the best young men and women who are still my friends today. Cody, Dumas, Nathan, Josh, and Josh are my brothers, my friends and my teachers. Over the years I have been grateful and humbled to get to be part of their lives.
Cody and Dumas and Nathan are all married now. Nathan has a little boy on the way. They’ve grown up to be these amazing young men that I am very proud of. Josh and Josh are doing great as well, not married yet, but they are both still so young they have plenty of time for that.
When I graduated from High School we all talked about a 10 year reunion, but in reality who cares about High School reunions? What did you really accomplish in High School? For me my ten year reunion would be now, 10 years after I started to do something with my life that really mattered. 10 years of pouring into some young men and watching them do well. That is something I can always be proud of.
And Cody if you are reading this… Happy Birthday. I love you. Thanks for so many good times. I hope to have many more.