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Apr 16

You Are Always …

Posted on Wednesday, April 16, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

DollarAs my friend Mandy reminded us yesterday, like a dollar that’s seen better days, you’re value never changes.

Though this dollar has been folded and crumpled up, stomped down, torn off and snotted-on, it’s still just as valuable; it’s a dollar.

Even though you may have been unplanned, felt unwanted, been abused or discarded, felt unprotected or abandoned, misrepresented or misunderstood, you’re still just as valuable; you’re a unique, irreplaceable, invaluable, never-gonna-be-repeated human being.

No one could ever offer your unique perspective, you’re unique history, your unique combination of gifts and talents; you are absolutely irreplaceable.

Apr 9

Pray for Punka

Posted on Wednesday, April 9, 2014 in Emotional, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

ShannonMysilentscream is here for you most days. Today #mysilentscream is for YOU to help me.

Today my daughter leaves for the Philippines. By the time many of you read this Shannon will be half a planet away.  I’m blessed, thrilled and a little jealous of her. I’m also Shannon’s (“Punka’s”) anxious, unsettled, and already-lonely-for-her dad.

If you’re a praying person please pray for Shannon, her colleagues and her parents who were both just teary-eyed in the living room.

I’ll let Shannon explain more via her supportshannon.com website.

Hello my name is Shannon Volltrauer.

Apr 1

NOT AN April Fool Story!

Posted on Tuesday, April 1, 2014 in Emotional, Relational, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

800px-Thamnophis_sirtalis_(Common_Garter_Snake)_I told this story a couple years ago, but I’d like to tell it again. If you get one of the eyewitnesses to tell it it’s even better told in person. That said, this is NOT an April Fools story!

For almost thirty years TreeHouse trips have been wonderful times to great fun and building relationships. We listen and talk. We challenge our thinking, and inspire one another to new ways of living.

On one autumn trip we also saw the inexplicable.

Mar 26

Her Journey, Our Journey

Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

We all make decisions; some wise, some not. Each new decision we make cuts a path through the unknown.  As we continue to choose similar choices the path to repeated decisions becomes easier. A difficult fresh-cut path now becomes a leisurely stroll through familiar territory.

Eventually once we continue walking the same path over and over and it becomes well-worn path, a road and eventually a four-lane highway with speedy travel to the same destination.

All that sounds fine, unless our path is destructive.

Mar 13

Wrestling

Posted on Thursday, March 13, 2014 in Relational, TreeHouse

012_12When I was just beginning to move from loner to leader I read these words:

Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.” 1

They have helped me to remember not to choose as selfishly as I am inclined to be.

I attached the picture on purpose. Bad pictures remind us to laugh at ourselves and not take ourselves too seriously.

I’m thinking a lot about my role as a leader.

Mar 12

24 and Counting

Posted on Wednesday, March 12, 2014 in Emotional, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

24-Logo.svgI opened my phone this morning to a text: “Happy anniversary, Scott! 24 and counting…!”

I smiled.

“24″ is my favorite television show. 55 days until the new series premieres! My wife Amy and I joined my son Josh and his girlfriend Anna who are watching Season 3 of “24″ last week.

Again I was reminded how much I love that show! 1

It’s a drama filled with intrigue and suspense, humor and irony, teamwork and solo adventures, nobility and honor, heroes and humility, risks and rewards all in the pursuit of security and freedom.

Mar 6

Listening is NOT a waste of time!

Posted on Thursday, March 6, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

listen file9991303336088Last night I sat with a group of men, young and old; a forty-year spread among them. Teens, college students and, as I like to call them, “grownups” sat together.

I told them the story of “my crossroad.” I then asked them, “When was a time when things didn’t work out the way wanted them to?”

After a moment, one brave guy replied, “When I went to college. It was much different than high school. All my friends were gone.” Another guy listened, and added, “My first day as a teacher I almost threw up. Literally I almost threw up. I was so anxious.”

Feb 28

Death Came Calling

Posted on Friday, February 28, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

A-Tombstone.svgTomorrow is third anniversary of my second lease on life.

Tuesday March 1, 2011 I had a near-death experience.

While driving home – surprise – death came calling.

Death Came Calling

I was sitting at the intersection talking to my friend Jesse waiting to turn at the light. The green arrow lit up.

Time to go.

I started to turn left and stopped for no apparent reason.

My foot slowly rose off the gas pedal, for no apparent reason.

Suddenly…ZOOOOM!!!

Feb 27

My Crossroad

Posted on Thursday, February 27, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Intellectual, Relational, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

AWhen I am teaching people how to teach the Bible I have had a consistent message: “Pray, pray, pray, and, while maintaining healthy boundaries, teach what God is teaching you.

When you have the choice, teach what God has taught you recently or is teaching you now. It’s fresh.

Since you are teaching what you are learning it will come from you to your audience from the perspective of a learner.

This is important to me because I have fallen into the trap of feeling like I needed to appear to be “the expert” more than I’d like to admit.

Feb 20

Score!

Posted on Thursday, February 20, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Sports, TreeHouse, Values

photo 1Yesterday I was playing goalie.

The score was tied.
A minute to play.

The broomball was free on the right side.

I checked my angles. I checked my distance from the goal. I felt confident I was close enough to make a play.

I raced up to the ball.

Vivian (pictured in the back row, second from the left), our best goal scorer was near their goal crease. I knew if I got to the ball and made a good pass, that Vivian could win the game for us.