A recent ad campaign by a popular pizza giant claims there are 34 million different pizza combinations offered by the company, though one user on a popular forum site actually claimed that there are closer to 43 billion different combinations (most of which would be terrible).

The other night, my youngest son and I found ourselves home alone. My wife had to leave for an important choir rehearsal for an upcoming event, taking our nursing infant as a necessary accomplice. I thought to myself, “What could we do to upgrade this average night at home to extraordinary?”

I remembered back to the pizza crust, sauce, mozzarella cheese, and pepperoni my wife and I had purchased from the grocery store.

My son’s entire face changed when I asked for his help with the preparation of the pizza. With each pepperoni added, something was becoming all too clear to me: my son is inevitably and quite quickly on his way to manhood despite my objections. Like it or not, he is going to continue to be uniquely individual among millions of others.

I began to think as I watched him intricately place each pepperoni on the pizza, I am helping to shape him into the man I want him to become. A God-fearing, hard-working, family-focused man.

Just like these intentional moments are helping to shape him, I too am being constantly shaped by my Heavenly Father. I am the dough being evermore formed into the image of the Son, which is and always was the Father’s perfect plan for his people. (Romans 8:29)

Coty Dunaway

My name is Coty Dunaway. I am a bi-vocational youth and music pastor. I have 4 kids and an awesome wife! Doing my best to intentionally serve the Lord with gladness.