Monday, February 22, 2010

A Few Thoughts on 33 Years at Focus

I first saw Dr. James Dobson in a little Baptist Church at Mammoth Lakes, California. Our church was on a ski retreat to Mammoth Mountain and in search of service on a Sunday night. I think we kind of overwhelmed the little church. Also in attendance that night was Dr. Dobson. I didn't know who he was, but the young mom's in our group sure did. It was 1978 and his first books were taking off like rockets. The women thought he was a rock star. I may not have known him then, but that would soon change.
I was working at KBRT, the first all music Christian station in LA at the time and we had a music director named Mike Trout who would become co-host on Focus with Jim Dobson.

Later, when I had moved to Colorado and owned some Christian radio stations in the Springs, Focus on the Family rocked the front range by moving their whole organization to Colorado Springs. It was terrific. They were one of most professional broadcast ministries in the country and it was a treat to work with them and watch the ministry explode to 1500 employees and a gorgeous campus across from the Air Force Academy. Almost all of my employees worked part time at Focus and it was a great relationship. Not to mention the fact that I was raising a young family and Dr. Dobson was the unofficial 'grandfather' we did not have. Plus he never fell asleep on the couch after dinner.

Seriously, I have the greatest respect for what Focus has meant to this country and the world. I believe that Focus picked up the ball on social issues where the church had often dropped it. Abortion in particular, was a hot-button topic, and Jim Dobson was relentlessly, publicly and aggressively pro-life. Something I cannot say for the bulk of the Protestant church.
He has taken his shots, certainly from the left, but sadly, also enduring 'friendly fire,' from the brethren. I can honestly say I have carried Focus on my stations since 1982, and listened to thousands of broadcasts, and yet I have taken issue with the content very few times. But I have laughed, cried and been inspired many times.

In 2004, when Calvary of Albuquerque was in transition, (shall we say) Dr. Dobson's son, Ryan, came and spoke at our Easter Sunrise service, it was good to hang out with him.
And now, this week Dr. Dobson is doing his farewell tour on Focus, I suggest you listen, it is broadcast history, on 3,000 plus station, Dr. Dobson is stepping away from the Focus microphone, melancholy moments:
I called Ryan today, and he is starting a new daily radio program with his dad. Excellent.

Ironically, this weekend I am going to Nashville to receive an award for KNKT as Focus' Radio Station of the Year. The President of Focus presents the award at a private dinner. But for the first time in 33 years, it won't be Dr. Dobson handing it out, it will be Jim Daly. I am honored and looking forward to meeing Jim. But just a little, I wish it were the good Doctor.

As I write this, I received an email from Ryan and I'll be meeting him in Nashville. It's a new day.
Family Talk with Dr. James Dobson

Sunday, February 21, 2010


In 1945, the US Government needed a place to test the first atomic bomb. They looked for a location where the explosion of a nuclear device would neither be noticed, nor do much damage to the topography. They chose New Mexico. Which speaks volumes. The first A-Bomb went off on July 16, 1945 near White Sands. The test must have been successful because seventeen days later: Hiroshima.

Before this weekend I had never been to the Cloudcroft area of New Mexico. All that changed when I was invited to speak at a retreat at Aspendale. Who knew this is a pistachio capitol. This is the largest pistachio in the world. Nice.
Nice cabin we were given in to stay at. Snow over my Sorrel's and a roaring fire. No complaints, but didn't see any elk either.
If I were a carnivore, I would have stopped here. But no.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Mush you huskies!

Montana dogsled! from Levi Lusko on Vimeo.

The last time Levi & Greg were 'playing' in the snow in Montana, their frolicking on snowmobiles resulted in a broken femur for my son. So, dogsledding is a safer plan.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tale of Two Daddy - Daughter Dates

Yesterday both Levi & I had dates with our daughters. I took Heidi out for Indian food, then we planned to make stuff at Art Attack!, but they were closed, so we ended up hanging out at Satelitte Coffee.
Levi on the other hand, took Alivia dog sledding in Montana with Greg Laurie and his son. Much safer than the last time they played in the snow, when Levi broke his femur snowmobiling.
For this daddy-daughter date, Advantage Levi.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Strange Ground Hogs Day

I am not sure of the significance of this, but Chico the monkey in Belize sent me a text saying, 'There would be 6 more weeks of summer in the Carribbean. Followed by summer.' He is mocking me, and he is not that smart, he misspelled Caribbean, again. If your opposable thumbs are such a big deal, learn to text, Bonzo.
Wait till he sees my Ipad when I am down there this summer.