The 2014 Highlights That Facebook Overlooked

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A few weeks ago I saw my “Year In Review” from Facebook, and thought I should let you know what my life was really like in 2014.

Here’s the unfiltered  less filtered (foster care requires filtering) version of my year in review:

To give you a clear picture of how 2014 started, I have to take you back to December 2013. In December Kim and I learned we were miraculously pregnant. It really was a miracle, we were using birth control and had no intentions of making a baby. Obviously, God had different plans. At eight weeks we were able to see the fluttering heart beat. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. We knew from the beginning that there was something special about this baby.

In January 2014, while going to a routine check up, the doctors couldn’t find the heartbeat that was once there.

We lost our baby.

In the weeks that followed, we cried, we prayed and we trusted that it was all part of God’s plan…the pain was still there, and the suffering was real, but [inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=”@FillUpLS”]going through this suffering increased our longing for Jesus to come back and make all the sadness and pain go away forever.[/inlinetweet]

In February, Kim and I both shared publicly how we were handling having the miscarriage.

Read Kim’s blog here.
Read my blog here.

In March while I was playing at Verge Conference (check out my drum cam video of the song “Love Shines”)

 we got a call from our foster agency when we weren’t even on the call list, AND during an agency wide placement hold. They told us about about a “Sweet Little Girl” who needed to be placed immediately. She ended up being our 2nd foster placement.

Click here to read about this sweet little girl.

In May I reunited (filled in) with my old band The Rocketboys to play at Suburbia Music Festival! It was incredible. A part from getting some great hang time with the Rocketboys, I met Echosmith before I knew anything about them…and now I hear “The Cool Kids” song on the radio ALL the time. I also got to see and hang with one of my all time favorite bands – Third Eye Blind!

“Sweet Little Girl” was able to come to this festival with Kim as well, and she loved it!

After loving on “Sweet Little Girl” for a few months, she was able to return to her family. It was a difficult time for a while. We tried to prepare Caleb as best as we could, but he still had a difficult time understanding why she left.

During the summer I picked up several extra drumming gigs since Aaron was on a three month sabbatical. One of those extra gigs was a band called Waterloo Revival out of Austin, TX. These guys are incredible, and George Birge and Cody Cooper and 2 of the hardest working musicians I’ve ever met. These guys have a drive and a passion for songwriting and entertaining that is unmatched in the modern country music scene. That drive to succeed recently landed them a record deal with Big Machine Records, also known as the label that Taylor Swift is on.

I loved playing with them, but couldn’t make the commitment they were looking for in a band member.

Here is a clip from a T.V. show we did before they moved to Nashville –
We play a song starting at around 20 minutes.

Even better than that clip – Listen to their first single “Hit The Road” – 

Kangaroo and me

In August I traveled to Australia with The Aaron Ivey Band. This was one of the coolest things I’ve ever been a part of.
We were asked to lead worship at the A29 Church Planting Conference, and along with it we played 3 other one night events that Matt Chandler spoke at.

We played in Brisbane, Sydney, and Melbourne.

I came back so excited to get back to my job – creating resources to help equip worship leaders Kyle Lent in Brisbaneall over the world. Before we left, I had gotten several emails from people asking for permission to translate some of the blogs and songs that we have posted on and, and of course I always let them, but it never crossed my mind how much of an impact a simple blog post or a song could actually have.

We were able to attend 2 churches in Australia that had been using our resources and were asking for more. Instead of associateing them with an email address, I got to see their face, Getting ready for Austin Stone Worship in Brisbanelearn their names, and have a real connection. I think I have taken for grated my job, because sometimes it feels like just that…a job, but the fact of the matter is that God is using these resources and songs to shape worship ALL OVER THE WORLD. I see God moving in powerful ways through the resources that my team so “easily” creates…and it makes me realize we can do more, and we need to do more.

We are not just creating resources to help people be better at leading worship or specific songs….[inlinetweet prefix=”” tweeter=”” suffix=”@FillUpLS”]by God’s grace we are helping Christians become worshippers of Jesus.[/inlinetweet]

All Hat No Cadillac - Austin Country Cover BandAlso in August, the country band that I started with a few friends had our first show at the Rattle Inn in Austin. This might be one of the greatest country cover band’s you’ll ever hear. We play all your favorite country hits from the 90’s. We are called All Hat No Cadillac. The band consists of myself, Marcus Dawes, Wes Ardis, Jimmie Ingram, and Micah Vasquez. Come to our next show!

In September, two weeks after I got back from Australia, we got the call for “Little Dude”.
Little dude was in the NICU for the first 5 months of his life, fighting for his life every single day. The doctors told us there were a few nights they stayed up all night with him wondering if he would make it. Well, he did make it, and he has already overcome so much in the past 9 months that he has been alive. He was discharged from the NICU straight into our care.

Our life has been filled with doctor visits, physical therapy visits, and the normal CPS and family visits for the past 4 months. It has been one heck of a ride, but the ever present smile on little dude’s face makes it all worth it. He is a fighter, and some day he will change the world with that smile.

In November Kim and I celebrated 6 years of marriage. Marrying Kim was the best decision I have ever made.

In December we found out that we made an anniversary baby! Woo Hoo!

Having a pregnant wife who is very sick, a 3 year old, and a 10 month old foster baby is extremely difficult. 2015 may be the year I lose my sanity…but let’s hope not!


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