Monday, August 17, 2015

Sometimes You Get A Bad Hop

For those of you who played baseball or softball, or have children that do, you know the reality of the bad hop. It's inevitable. The bad hop can make a Major League shortstop look like a 5 year old playing t-ball.

Picture this scenario: You're 10 years old and you've decided that you're ready to play baseball. This is a big step for you because you're not 100% confident in your ability and you don't know if you'll be "successful" but you're feeling brave and ready to take that step...and while it is a risk to put yourself out there like that, the pay off COULD be worth it.

So now, you're in line and watching as each of the kids in front of you take a ground ball and throw it back to coach. You can do this.

It's your turn.

Here it comes.

You've got it lined up. You're doing all the things that Coach Daddy taught you to do. Glove in front. Drop your rear end. Throwing hand ready to cover as you scoop.

Then it happens...

The ball hits a rock (or something). Leaps over your glove. And plants itself firmly in the corner of your eye.

How many of you have had the "stitches" before?
The only thing that makes this scenario worse than it seems upon first read is that it was Coach Daddy who was hitting the ground balls. was me. Just let me know where I need to pick up my Father of the Year trophy.

I immediately called him in so I could check it out (and to give him an opportunity to dry his eyes and save face in front of his teammates). As he neared me and removed his hand I could already see how red it was and yes, the dreaded "stitches". We grabbed some ice out of someones water jug and had him sit and ice for a little while.

Now, as Coach Daddy, I knew what a risk he had take by even coming out to practice. I knew that he was not super confident going into it. I knew that he had his doubts about whether or not this was really "for him". I also knew that his baseball to the eye could potentially be a career ending injury for my first born.

As we transitioned to the next set of drills I see him emerge from the dugout. I was throwing soft toss to a group in the outfield. He came and stood next to the fence for a while and watched. I asked him, "Do you want to take some swings?" Then it happened, he said, "I guess".

If you've never met Jacob, you need to know, he's a GREAT kid. He's smart, funny, incredibly creative and artist, he loves to read, and he loves learning. He's inquisitive and strong willed (which can be challenging at times but is a characteristic that I'm really glad he has...this is the parental paradox). There is so much about him that makes me so proud every single day. But that moment...those two words. I'm not sure I've even been more proud of him.

Please understand, this has nothing to do with baseball.

This is about resilience.

This is about getting back up.

This is about being willing to take risk. And when it doesn't go the way you hoped, not throwing in the towel.

This is a life skill. One that some seem born with and others never seem to develop. It's also one that some may not be given the opportunity to develop.

Among other things, I am an educator. This is the time of year where we are helping all of our teachers get ready for a new school year. This is the time of year where everyone has that sense of "I've got a clean slate". New opportunities to impact lives and make a difference.

I want teachers to ask themselves, not just at the beginning of the school year but every single day before every single lesson or every single encounter with a student. "Do my kids feel safe to take risks in my classroom?" "Am I creating an atmosphere of bravery?"

Those are truly important questions. But, it doesn't stop there. How do we respond when they pull together all the bravery they can find inside themselves, they take that risk...and it doesn't go well?

What happens when they get a bad hop? Because, remember, you can do everything exactly right in your approach and preparation. Bad hops are no respecter of men (or women).

This is where teachers change the world. Teachers believe in students until they have the ability to believe in themselves. I am so grateful to those who have help Jacob develop this most important life skill.

The rest of the story: After Jacob finished taking soft toss in the outfield, we went in to the infield and he took about 15 ground balls at second base after practice. He is now officially signed up to play baseball and he's really excited to be joining his brother's team. He'll be in a Vipers uniform wearing #18 (because Mitch Moreland is his favorite player) this fall.

Oh, also, he's kind of hoping his "battle damage" (as he calls it) is still there on the first day of school. He may be fishing for sympathy from some of those 5th grade girls. #LadiesMan

Make The Next Play,
+Zach Snow

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


This is a cross post from my brother, Kris. A reflection of his time in the DR. It really sums up the feels I always leave with. I would ask you to simply pray about how you can be a part of what the Lord is doing in the DR. 


As we board an early flight this morning here in Santo Domingo, I have so many different thoughts. It's a bittersweet departure, as I really miss my family but feel I am leaving new family. I'm reminded of a few truths that grant clarity and freedom from these opposing thoughts. 

The heavens proclaim his righteousness, and all the peoples see his glory.  - Psalm 97:6

The most amazing truth that's been revealed to me during my time working with the beautiful Haitians of SA was the Glory displayed to all people. On Sunday, our team had the opportunity to worship in a small batay church. Pastor B reminded us that the Church of Jesus is not separated by land, sea or language. As we sang and cried out to the Lord, our differences didn't matter. We gathered together to proclaim his righteousness and Jesus' name was glorified. This community that was displayed during that time was a shadow of the day coming when every tribe and tongue will stand declaring the Glory of the Lamb. 

After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, - Revelation 7:9

The second truth washing through my mind is our new established partnership in the gospel. For a few years I have listened to my brother, Zach, share of two amazing people living a life worthy of the Gospel. You see, Julio and Mercy don't view their lives as radical, but obedient to the call placed on all who follow Jesus. They simply love people, seek justice and share hope with all they encounter. They open their home to all who will come and partner with them in the work Christ has placed in their path. The love and patience they showed our team was so special. Their desire for the people of the Dominican impacted me greatly. I found myself praising the Lord as I listened to Mercy describe the culture of the island. Her passion was so evident that the Spirit used it to grow and stretch me in ways I could have never imagined. Julio shared big gospel centered dreams of stopping injustice facing the people. They shared the beautiful story that the Lord is leading them through and invited us to partner. Partnership! This is the truth that allows me to leave my new friends. Our call as followers of Christ is to lock arms and partner with other believers. The Church is so large and reaching it can't be separated by land or sea. Our partnership with our new friends is permanent. Will you join in this partnership? Will you pray for these dear people? Will you send teams to serve alongside them? Will you be obedient and go?

I thank my God in all my remembrance of you,always in every prayer of mine for you all making my prayer with joy, because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now. - Philippians 1:3-5

This trip has left me forever changed. The obedience of two precious people has sanctified and humbled me. I thank my God in all my remembrance of them, praising the Spirit for the work He is doing in their lives. I commit to locking arms with them and "holding the rope" as they dive deeper into their journey. 


Friday, June 19, 2015

Day 3 - Santa Alicia part 2

The truth is that I structure my life in such a way that I spend very little time doing things that are am not ultimately confident in my ability to do. What I mean is that I fill up my days doing things I'm very comfortable with. They are the things that partially make me who I am.

One of the things I love most about coming to the DR is how often I find myself in the middle of something that makes me completely uncomfortable. At times it's trying to communicate with someone who does not speak the same language as I do. Other times it's setting out to accomplish something I've never done before. Today was a perfect microcosm of that struggle.

We returned to Santa Alicia today to continue the work on the new church building. I spent a lot of time shoveling concrete and pushing a wheel barrow. I've never mixed concrete before, at least not in the sheer amount that we mixed it today. We mixed up two different piles of concrete today. One included 8 bags of cement mix and the other included 13 bags of mix (each bag of mix was 95 lbs). This was a BIG pile of cement. It was very intimidating trying to get this stuff transformed into something that could be used in the floor of this church. There was one guy out there with us who really seemed to know what he was doing and how he wanted it done...however, he could not tell us what he wanted us to do and HOW he wanted it done. So we watch and mimicked the best we could. When we were not doing it the right way, we were gently corrected (by someone coming and taking our shovel or pick ax away from us). I'm not sure how that guy was able to be so patient with us while he was working but he deserves a medal for it.

At the end of our work day we had moved about 2,000 lbs of concrete and while we did not get the job done completely it was so neat to see the church continuing to come together. I'm so grateful that the Lord has provided this church to these sweet people. And incredible humbled to be a small part of the process.
(The team with Pastor Bona and Bernardo)

Oh, I also had the opportunity to reconnect with my little friend Ariel. Cannot believe how big he is getting. It always blesses my heart so much when he says that he remembers my face (whether he really does or not, I'm not concerned with).

Better Than I Deserve,

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Day 2 - Santa Alicia

So much fun being able to reconnect with the people of Santa Alicia today.

We spent our morning shoveling and carrying concrete, and crushing rocks at the new church building that the people of Santa Alicia are building. The work was really hard, hot work but it brings me so much joy working along side my Haitian friends.

It's truly exciting to think about the impact this new building can have. We were able to pray over the space asking God to make it a place of hope for the people of Santa Alicia and the surrounding area.

We "tamped" down the rock floor and finished up the concrete work on the pulpit/stage area of the church this morning. We will return early tomorrow to do the floor in the sanctuary. It has also been a real joy working with the group from the Branch Community Church. Great folks with BIG hearts for the Gospel.

I ask that you would join us in praying for the church in  Santa Alicia that Christ would use it and Pastor Bona and Pastor Bernardo in incredible ways.


Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Day 1 - Away we go...well kinda

Really excited about getting to travel back to the DR and serving alongside my brother and some very kind folks from his church. 

First lesson: traveling internationally...especially with a group...especially when you're flying American Airlines...will be a problem. 

When we boarded our plane in Dallas there was a constant, high pitched, ringing. As we sat there for TWO HOURS (yes with the constant, high pitched ringing the entire time) it became clear that we would not make our connection in Miami. We anticipated the possibility of a delayed flight but we were thinking it may have something to do with "Bill"...not a faulty PA system. 

So here we sit in Miami. Hoping to catch a standby on the 6:56 flight but booked on the 9:40. 

The best part has been the incredible positive attitudes of the people I'm traveling with. Not one person has complained even one time. Positive, upbeat, adventurous people. 

It's going to be a great week. 
Stay tuned. 


Tuesday, March 17, 2015


This is the view from my favorite hammock in the DR.
Dear Friends and Family,

In Matthew 28, Jesus commands us to “GO and make disciples of all nations.” The Lord has given my family and I many opportunities to be obedient to this call. In June, I have the honor and privilege to return to the Dominican Republic, along with a team of 12 others.  We will be partnering again with my friends Julio and Mercy (local missionaries), who serve the poorest of the poor in and near Santo Domingo. They are school teachers who have surrendered to the call of gospel-centered living.  Most of their work is with the Haitian immigrants who live on small sugar cane farms, called batays. Most of them struggle daily for clean water and their next meal.  

Our team will be flying from Dallas to Santo Domingo, DR on June 17th and returning June 23rd. This will allow us a week to serve the local church in Santo Domingo. During the week, we anticipate serving in several ways.  We will be caring for special needs children at orphanages and helping equip local churches to share the gospel. We will stay in the home of Julio and Mercy and get firsthand experience of the culture. I’m humbled to get this opportunity to share in Christ’s work in the Dominican Republic.

I am inviting you to partner in this journey. How can you partner?

  • One of the sweet kiddos in Santa Alicia.
    Partner through prayer. Commit to pray while we serve in the Dominican Republic. You can subscribe to and follow this blog for daily updates on our experiences throughout the trip.   
  • Partner through financial support. The estimated cost for the trip is about $1460, which is due in two parts ($700 due by May 1st, $760 due by May 17th). Your donation can be made tax deductible by sending it to The Branch Community Church, P.O. Box 307 Bullard TX, 75757. Please designate the gift: Snow DR Mission Fund

I would love to sit down and talk with you more about what the Lord is doing in our family and this trip. So, if you have any questions, please call or email me. Thank you for taking the time to read about the opportunity I have coming soon and for prayerfully considering your involvement in my support team.

Charis Dia Pistis,