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Mar 5

Secrets Hidden Away

Posted on Tuesday, March 5, 2013 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, TreeHouse, Values

SecretsSecrets, we all have them.
Secrets, we all guard them.
Secrets, we all fear their exposure.

This sweet song by Josh Groban describes one person’s challenge to help another feel safe enough to share those secrets.

Josh GrobanHidden Away

“Over mountains and sky blue seas
On great circles will you watch for me?
The sweetest feeling I’ve got inside
I just can’t wait to get lost in your eyes
And all these words that you meant to say
Held in silence day after day
Words of kindness that our poor hearts crave
Please don’t keep them hidden away

Jan 9

Our Dream for TreeHouse Support Groups

Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2013 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

While it’s true that love can happen anywhere, there are standards and expectations that provide an environment in which a healthy community grows.

As I wrote yesterday, “every week as I sit in our TreeHouse support groups I am in awe. Teens find hope amid their hurt, faith amid their fears, and love despite their pangs of loneliness…I wish everyone had a community like that.”

I Wish We Did Too

As my friend Hudson pointed out tonight, the following list is a wish list — Imagine If… — based on hopes and dreams. While some of them are possible, and others are measurable, there are on the list that are almost fantasies; but, still we reach and stretch for more.

Jan 8

Love Can Happen Anywhere

Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2013 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

Every week as I sit in our TreeHouse support groups I am in awe. Teens find hope amid their hurt, faith amid their fears, and love despite their pangs of loneliness.

I wish everyone had a community like that.

As I tell the teens all the time, this level of communication, this kind of intimacy and this freedom to be flawed or successful without judgement can happen anywhere, at anytime when people have the same vision and similar communication skills.

Love can happen anywhere.

It’s a choice.

Dec 19

Real Friends Fight Dishonesty

Posted on Wednesday, December 19, 2012 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

Do you relate like you value honesty?

I guess it’s true what they say, you can’t trust anyone
Because no matter how much someone can mean to you
There isn’t anyone that you can find in life who hasn’t lied
Whether once or many times, it doesn’t matter
We all do it and we are all to blame
No one is perfect but is anyone really innocent?
We are people and we find ways to have our fun
Some are sick and twisted and get what they want
And some are just trying to be happy
And it’s true, we don’t think ahead… 1

Dec 18

Friendships Need Honesty

Posted on Tuesday, December 18, 2012 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

Since 1990 I’ve worked at TreeHouse. TreeHouse is a faith based, non-profit organization offering hope and guidance to hurting teens, alumni, and parents during difficult times.

TreeHouse is a safe place to be real about the pain in their lives that is causing them to think and act out in destructive ways. TreeHouse is a place to have fun, meet friends, discover faith, overcome pain, serve others, and be empowered to succeed.

TreeHouse alumni often tell me that they wish that they had relationships as adults like the ones that they had at TreeHouse.

Jul 27

7 Reasons To Avoid Giving Advice

Posted on Friday, July 27, 2012 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Values

In my fourth in a series on helping our child, lover or friend open up today we’re examining our tendency to give advice.

Maybe it’s just my problem,

Maybe I’m the only one reading these words who thinks “I know” better, who knows “what’s going on”, who can “see more clearly” than anyone else can, and who realized “what this is going to lead to”, but, probably not.

Dec 30

New Year New Thinking

Posted on Friday, December 30, 2011 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Values

It happened again!  
Someone was standing near me talking and I thought they were talking to me.
I responded to his question.
I heard him say, “No, someone thinks I’m talking to him.”
He was on his cell phone.

Thoughtless Thinking

Some people will say anything on their cell phone while standing in line at a store.

When will she wake up?!?
I can’t believe what a &^%& he is!
I’ve had enough.  I give up.
She’s such a &*^*&!

It seems every week I overhear someone complaining about “it happening again.”

Oct 12

Shame Solution – Healthy Role Models

Posted on Wednesday, October 12, 2011 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

Healthy role models break the cycle of shame. 

They emotionally and spiritually empower healthy communities.

How can you recognize a safe, healthy church, synagogue, workplace or family?

Here are ten attributes of healthy communities:

Feel empathy
Exude warmth
Demonstrate genuineness
Are emotionally stable
Are caring & supportive
Promote and practice honesty
Have appropriate expectations
Maintain respectful boundaries
Persevere through inevitable relationship challenges
And, love one another

May 31

Embrace Preparedness Not Worry

Posted on Tuesday, May 31, 2011 in Emotional, How To, Spiritual

I believe in planning ahead. I hate when I worry.

As much and as thoroughly as we may prepare there will always be some unforeseen wave coming.

Here are some truths from Jesus Christ I am trying to embrace.

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear.

Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?

Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?

Apr 14

Some Fools Can Be Trained, Like Me

Posted on Thursday, April 14, 2011 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

When I was a young man my friends Steve Schesvold, Dave Murphy and David Villringer would tease me for my recklessness.

One morning at the conclusion of a Grace Community Church pancake breakfast I needed to dispose of my paper plate.  Being “blessed” with both laziness and misguided self-confidence I threw away my plate. Unfortunately, I attempted to throw away my crumb-filled, syrup-laden plate from across the room, over tables, around other people and into the trash can.

I failed.

I cannot recall all the specifics, but I know I missed the can and hit an innocent bystander with my less that aerodynamic plate.