Christian Living

14 Years of Mutual Submission in Marriage

On June 21st, 1997 Kristen walked down the aisle escorted by her dad then her uncle Fred led us in an exchange of vows.

Here we are, 14 years later, still standing next together on life’s amazing journey. This past 12 months have been especially dear to us as we experienced two of life’s great (and unexpected) joys together. First, in July 2010 we ministered side-by-side in Haiti for a week. Second, we walked together through the anticipation, birth, and first 4 months of having Jackson.

In 14 years Kristen and I have largely not experienced the bumps and bruises so many of our friends have. We’ve had it pretty easy by comparison. We are thankful as we recognize that without an over-abundance of God’s grace it wouldn’t be possible.

We are far from perfect people. And my flaws must grate on Kristen much more than hers grate on me.

The secret to success for us

Mutual love for, respect for, and submission to one another.

That’s right my fellow conservative friends. I said it. Our marriage is built on an equal footing of love, respect, and submission to one another, as to the Lord.

Many times in the last 14 years I have submitted to my wife out of respect and love for her. (And, by proxy, Jesus.) In 14 years of marriage I can’t think of a time when I stood in front of her and said, “I don’t care what you think, we are doing it this way. You must submit to me because I’m your husband.

And I hope our relationship never breaks down, at its core, to the point where I’d think it was OK to do that.

In the lead-up to our engagement Kristen and I challenged one another to memorize chapters of the New Testament. I know its cheesy, but for us it was fun, competitive, and become meaningful. (Plus, an easy way to be together alone and keep our hands off of one another!)

One of the chapters we memorized was Ephesians 5.

It kind of started as a joke. After all, we were Bible College students surrounded by people who loved to use this section of Paul’s letter to Ephesian Christians as a weapon. And it was totally stereotypical that a madly in love couple would memorize a passage of Scripture about marriage. At least it wasn’t Song of Solomon, right?

Like many ancient things misunderstood throughout time, as we got to know this passage of Scripture we realized that while at the surface level it felt antiquated and entrenched with man-power-dogma, as we embedded the words on our heart we came to realize the passage is much the opposite. It really has become the basis of our marriage.

Read Ephesians 5 for yourself. Actually, take 10 minutes and read it 3 different times in 3 different translations.

You don’t need a commentary to understand what Paul was saying.

As you get familiar with Paul’s language and read it in context you will see that this isn’t a repressive thing at all. As Kristen and I memorized this passage we fell in love with it.

Most importantly, we learned that it had nothing at all to do with blind submission for a woman to a man. Why? Because that’s not how Jesus expects us to submit to Him. Like a loving groom, He asks us to offer our hand to Him willfully. And willfully, lovingly, he gave Himself to His bride wholly and completely, even unto death. It’s a beautiful mystery.

The kicker for the whole passage, and why we crack up that people get hung up on it, is that in verse 32 Paul says, I’m not even really talking about marriage here people– this whole passage is an illustration for the church’s relationship to Jesus! And in verse 33 he adds, “Oh yeah, but a man should love his wife and a woman should respect her husband.

Back to the practicality of mutual submission

In our every day life does Kristen submit to my authority over her as her husband? Only to the extent that I submit to hers. The point of that passage wasn’t blind submission for a wife to her husband. It was mutual, willful, and willing submission to Christ for all of God’s people. We get along because we chose to get along as brother and sister in Christ.

Blind submission is not an act of love as it is an act of obedience. I expect my kids to submit to my authority and to do what we ask them to do because we are their parents and we actually do know what is best for them. But I also know that to lean into the Shema I must win their hearts… which requires more than a relationship built on obedience, right?

To expect that of Kristen would be disrespectful to her, our relationship, and her relationship with the Lord.

Instead, we walk together in mutual, eyes-wide-open submission, love, and respect to one another as we submit arms-wide-open to Jesus.

We’ve agreed with our very lives to put our relationship as #2 with Jesus at our only #1. As we submit to His will for our lives, we act in concert with one another out of love & respect for one another. And, not to sound trite, we’ve found our relationship with one another pretty simple because we’ve kept one another in the proper place all of these years.

What do we think about people who take the perspective that the man is the head and everyone else submits to his authority?
We think they are wrong. And we have 14 years of proof that our way works just fine.

Twelve Years

Kristen and Adam at CabrilloJune 21st, 1997 Kristen and I met at the altar of Trinity Evangelical Free Church in South Bend, Indiana and exchanged vows.

And they said it wouldn’t last…

Twelve years of laughter and love. Twelve years of adventure. Twelve years of exploring the planet. Twelve years of figuring it out as we go. Twelve years of her putting up with my jokes.

Kristen McLane is a patient woman. I’m kind of hoping she puts up with my antics at least another 12 years.

family Travel

Unplugged in San Fransisco


It’s been a long time since Kristen and I have snuck away for a little break. In fact, I’m pretty sure that this is our first night away from the kids since our trip to Washington aboard the Catalyst. I guess technically we were here in San Diego without kids for 3-4 days last year… but selling a business and quitting your job is hardly a romantic getaway.

All that to say, Friday morning Kristen and I are flying of to San Fransisco for a quick trip. We’re taking the kids to school then heading to the airport. Some friends from work were kind enough to watch the kids… and I’m sure they will have a blast. But for the next 30 hours or so Kristen and I will be goofy tourists. We are staying at a swanky hotel, eating at fancy restaurants, riding trolley’s, finding the super curvy road, gawking at the locals… and taking enough pictures to make a bus full of Japanese tourists gasp.

We’ll be back Saturday night. Until then, I bid yea adeiu.


Beyond the Zoo: Feedback wanted

As I’ve been mentioning, Kristen and I are working on a new website. We’ve settled on a launch date of January 1st… which puts us deep into preparations.

To be honest, today was the first time we really sat down to map out the plan for this site. Up until now it’s just been something we talked about every once in a while. Now it is really, really happening! It’s going to be fun! And it’ll probably be a great excuse for us to check out a billion new places in San Diego.

Long story short, this is the design I created based on our meeting today. I’d really like to hear some constructive criticism. How could we make it better?

hmm... thoughts Web/Tech Weblogs

A Few Ways to Connect with Me

Maybe you’re ready to take this relationship to the next level? Let’s say you come to Adam McLane’s site every day. And you’re thinking to yourself… “Adam, I dig what you have to say. What are some ways you can check out what else I do online?” Here are a few ways I suggest you do that.

#1 Subscribe to my RSS feed. This will make sure you get every post delivered to your RSS reader, iGoogle homepage, or even by email.

#2 Subscribe to the YS Podcast. You’ll see my pretty face each week on the weekly show that I host. Sure, it isn’t much… but it’s just enough Adam McLane to not feel like a total stalker. Don’t use iTunes? Subscribe via YouTube.

#3 Join my delicious network. Now we’re getting serious. (Rounding 2nd base!) Each day I bookmark all sorts of things. Blog posts, news stories, adolescent research studies, new websites, and all manner of web goodness. Like the links in the YS newsletters? This is like the full monty of that.

#4 Check out my shared items on Google Reader. These are blogs that I read on a daily basis and posts that I think are worth sharing. In other words, let me filter through the lame stuff for you.

#5 Follow me on Twitter. If you’re curious what I’m up to 10-20 times per day, I post to this micro-blogging site in 140 characters or less.

#6 Be my friend on Facebook. You won’t find me on Myspace anymore. I haven’t deleted my account, but I never ever go there. You will find me a lot on Facebook. Me likey Facebook.

#7 Of course you can get to know Kristen too. It’s like getting to know our family 360 degrees. Kristen blogs a lot about family life, recipes, contests, and kids books.

#8 Check out some of our new projects. Kristen and I have started some projects under the umbrella of McLane Creative. Our first project is a collaborative site giving real-world reviews of things to do in San Diego, called Beyond the Zoo.

#9 Meet me in person. I know, that’s not a Web 2.0 way to get to know me. (What is wrong with me?) But it’s completely practical. If you’re ever in the San Diego area I’d love to get together for a cup of coffee and meet face-to-face. Drop me an email.

family Photo San Diego Living

Saturday Pictures

HT to Dave and Kristen for their presence.

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Happy Birthday Kristen

Happy Birthday Kristen

Today is Kristen’s birthday. Make sure you head over to her blog to leave something fun for her. 

Kristen and I have now been going out for about 13 years. (Maybe we should get married?)  It’s crazy to think of all the fun things we’ve done. Doing life with your best friend just makes life so much more fun. 

To celebrate Kristen’s favorite thing in the world (traveling) here’s a list of the states we’ve traveled to together.

  • Michigan (at the cottage, the UP, Traverse City, and all over!)
  • Wisconsin (The Dells and all of our wandering around when we were bored without kids and gas was $.89)
  • Illinois (Garden of the Gods and pretty much every place in and around Chicago)
  • Indiana (South Bend, trip to Grandma’s, and many good times in Mishawaka)
  • Ohio (Honeymoon at Kelley’s Island; Cedar Point, some other family trips)
  • Pennsylvania (Dave and Becky’s wedding!)
  • New Jersey (The family… not “the family” but just the family)
  • New York (ok, the airport counts, right? We need to do NYC sometime) 
  • Florida (Ah, Ft. Lauderdale was killer. Lets go to the Keys sometime)
  • Nebraska (The interview trip from hell in Central City)
  • Iowa (Nothing like meeting people who spent the morning in the swine barn’s waste pit, eh? Pass the mashed potatoes.)
  • Missouri (We navigated Kansas City successfully)
  • California (From Ft. Bragg to our awesome times in Santa Cruz to some sweating in the Valley. Next up, SoCal explorations!)
  • Washington (San Juan Islands… we need to do that again.)
  • Nevada (The escape from Horroville via the drive across the moon. Tahoe and of course Vegas)
Then we’ve also traveled to Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, and Canada together. Where will the next 13 years of dating take us? Your dreams are our dreams. I’ll go to Hawaii if you’ll go to Helsinki.
Maybe one day we’ll get that Bed & Breakfast?
Funny Stuff news item

What do you do with a dead moose?

dead moose in my yardLast night I got hooked on a Discovery Channel show called The Alaska Experiment. I found it fascinating that they could take a few people from all over the lower 48 and they would not only survive in the wild of Alaska, some of them did quite well. 

Then this morning Kristen sent me a link from an Anchorage paper, it’s hilarious. It helps answer the questions, “What do you do when a moose dies in your yard?” It turns out you can just list it on Craigslist

You could use it for dog food or stuff it and put it (in) your front yard, bear bait, whatever. If you live in the Lower 48, this might be your best opportunity to get a free Alaska moose. I don’t really care; I just want it out of my yard.

It turns out that about 50 people were willing to come and remove the dead yearling. My favorite response, “I want it. But I can only take a haunch. I got only a small knife and a bicycle.”

In the last two weeks, as people have learned we are moving to sunny San Diego, they’ve said things like “It’s going to be awesome to not have to deal with snow and wintery weather.” As the TV show proves… humans are very adaptable. We know that thriving in any situation, location, job, church, school, or sports team has 100% to do with our attitude and 0% to do with circumstances beyond our control. It doesn’t matter where we live… we will adapt to the culture and climate for the betterment of the kingdom.

Every location has positives and negatives. What are some of them for where you live?


My 10 Favorite Films

I got tagged on this one by Chris. I love movies and have eclectic taste so this ought to be a  good time. In no particular order here are my favorite 10 movies.

  1. The Godfather, part I – Shear brilliance. A real family film if you know what I mean. I’ve seen it about 15 times and catch something fantastic each time.
  2. The Godfather, part III – A lot of people don’t like this movie but I find it fantastic. It ties the first and third together masterfully.
  3. Hoosiers – Gene Hackman is an inspiration in this movie. This true story shapes a lot of who I am as an Indiana boy.
  4. Rudy – The best Notre Dame movie out there. It was filmed at a time when ND was on top. And the fact that a lot of the extras are people I went to high school with always helps.
  5. Tin Cup – “This is a defining moment. And the thing about defining moments is that you either define the moment or the moment defines you.” Maybe one of the best lines in a movie, ever.
  6. 50 First Dates – Adam Sandler finds the perfect balance of male and female romantic comedy. I laughed, I cried… and generally at thinks that would make you blush.
  7. Little Miss Sunshine – Two words: Super freak. It’s a tragedy that this movie didn’t win best picture in 2006… I’m still not over it.
  8. Juno – The scenes with Juno and her parents are amazing. When Juno and her dad talk about finding love… that is the kind of parent I want to be. (Less the pregnant daughter of course!)
  9. 12 Angry Men – The original of course. This is group dynamics 101. Anyone in ministry needs to watch it 20 times.
  10. Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby – This is not the most complete movie in the world. But it has some sound bytes that I catch myself quoting all the time. I prefer the baby Jesus personally.

The rules of the “game” are simple:
1. list your top ten favorite films (in no particular order).
2. if you’re tagged, you’ve got to post and tag 3-5 other people.
3. give a tag back (some link love) to the one who tagged you in your post
4. give a hat tip (HT) to Dan

I’m tagging…

Kristen (queen of the indie film)

Adam (because he’s moving and needs a mental break)

Ryan (because he needs a reminder to blog)

Autumn (cos she watches more movies than anyone I know)

Dennis (because “i’m teaching in Cuba this summer” is no excuse!)

Blog Highlight family Weblogs

3 Posts to Read at Kristen’s Blog

I’m a big fan of my wife’s blog. She is working hard to create a blog for mom’s like her. If you have never checked it out, here are 3 posts I think you need to read.

  1. God of this City
  2. Early Modern Ghetto
  3. When I am Bigger I Want to go to Hwiey