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Aug 12

Captivated by Hope

Posted on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI have a friend learning to overcome her addiction. She’s at Hazelden looking for hope and skills. Last month Robin Williams was doing the same thing.

Sadly, yesterday the news spread that he’d given up his search.

Hope-less

Without hope
…parents give up
…the tempted give in
…spouses give up
…students drop out
…employers lessen expectations
…lovers give in
…lonely people lower standards
…people give up.

Too often people
…feel all alone
…feel unheard
…feel disconnected
…feel hopeless

In my experience people feel hope-less far more often than they need to.

May 21

Life’s NOT fair. What are they doing about it?

Posted on Wednesday, May 21, 2014 in Education, Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

CryingIt was Easter Sunday. It’s was probably a gorgeous sunny day.

Picture it.

Sunshine and sun dresses. Pretty hats and ironed clothes. Easter Sunday brings out the people who might have set church aside for a time. It’s a time to celebrate. It’s a time to remember the greatest event in human history. It’s a time for spiritual renewal and remembrance. Families reunite. Friends renew friendships. Songs fill their mouths. Joy fills their hearts. Smiles fill the air. Souls sail.

Unless…

May 20

Life’s NOT fair. What are you going to do about it?

Posted on Tuesday, May 20, 2014 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

depression-20195_640Angi, in response to Legacy Measuring Stick commented, “What is your legacy measuring stick? and “What’s a next step for you to make progress?” Not a clue…”

In case you missed it, I replied:

Isaiah and his listeners had a similar concern.
That’s why God taught them:
Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you;
therefore he will rise up to show you compassion.
For the Lord is a God of justice.
Blessed are all who wait for him!

So, each of us should live present in the moment.
While we pray, listen and wait.
Give it time.
It will become more evident.

May 2

An Instrument Of Peace

Posted on Friday, May 2, 2014 in Music, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

photo(1)Last night The Tenors enjoyed time with both TreeHouse teens and TreeHouse supporters. During the time with the teens they shared some stories, took some questions, and listened to teens. They also offered two suggestions.

“Listen…compassionately to others;” it’s what helps the band to overcome the tensions that arise spending 300 days a year together on the road.

Their second piece of advice echoed their own story of rising from obscurity in Canada to become international favorites: “Find something you’re passionate about and put your heart into it (even when others doubt you).”

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.”

Mar 5

Listen Before Speaking

Posted on Wednesday, March 5, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

Sucking toads“Sometimes I just wanna choke somebody,” he said.

Exasperated with his friend, he was beside himself. “Why does he do such stupid things?” he asked no one. “What’s he thinking?” he continued.

I imagine the friends of this young man may have thought the same thing.

Somethings just don’t seem to make sense but all we wanna hear is something that does make sense. Unfortunately, too often we’re not really listening.

Listening Before Speaking

Mar 4

Listen For Their Cries

Posted on Tuesday, March 4, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

alone-61043_640Yesterday I introduced you to the woman who cried alone.

She wept alone.
She didn’t choose to be alone.
She simply was alone.

The grocery store was full of alone people. Most did not choose to be alone. Some did.

Some were not alone; they were with family, friends, co-workers and colleagues.
They were with people in person.
And “with” people on their phones.

But that woman cried alone.
Until people stopped being alone.
And they started being together.

Together, No Longer Alone

Mar 3

She Wept Alone

Posted on Monday, March 3, 2014 in Beyond Whatever Promos, Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

sad-eyes-966603-mShe wept alone.

She cried.
Quietly.
Her cries muffled.
Muffled, but not muted.
Restricted, but not restrained.

She Wept Alone

There between the snack crackers and the cookies, she wept.

I heard her.
She heard her.
And, she heard her too.

A guy looked back and walked on.
Another woman peered over her shoulder. She barely hesitated.

Countless people in the grocery aisles, on their phones, passed by – without a glance – as she wept. Maybe they couldn’t hear? Maybe they couldn’t stop? Maybe they couldn’t care!

She Wept, Alone

Jan 28

Frigid Temps Gracious Hearts

Posted on Tuesday, January 28, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

1392583_car_tracks_in_snowTwo stories.
Car related.

My friend Lois posted on Facebook, “we slid off the road, over a curb, and got stuck in a snowbank on a sidewalk.”

Here’s the “Good stuff…passengers fine, car fine.” That’s real good news.

With health and safety not an issue Lois continued with what she called “awesome stuff.”

Frigid Temps Gracious Hearts

Once they assessed their circumstances they called their neighbor with a “monster truck.” These are the days everyone wished they knew a neighbor with a monster truck.

Better yet, Monster-truck Neighbor has a good heart. He said he’d “be right over.”

Jan 27

Frigid Temps Frozen Hearts

Posted on Monday, January 27, 2014 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Values

frozen_heart_by_ttojA tank of gas
A charged battery
Approaching the car
With a silent plea

A capable driver
Determined as could be
Key in the ignition
Cranked one-two-three

A pause to regather
A second attempt
A hope and a prayer
Discouragement tempt

Barely a flicker
Not even a purr
The car didn’t start
A frozen heart.

Frozen Heart

I have TWO hearts!
One warmed by love.
One frozen in the freezer.

Too often the frozen heart has been more obvious.
I’m so busy caring about my wants, I forget to care about their needs.