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Jul 16

Predictable

Posted on Wednesday, July 16, 2014 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

Note: This is part 3 of the series, By The Numbers. Catch up if you need to:
1. Paint By Numbers.
2. By The Numbers.

photoIt’s 2:38 A.M.

Few people who know me well would be surprised that I’m awake. Almost everyone would be surprised that it’s 2:38 A.M. and I just woke up.

Huh?

I’m a night owl, but last night I had to go to bed early for a 4:15 A.M. wake up.

Predictably I didn’t need an alarm. Predictably, I didn’t want to startle Amy awake at 4:15 A.M. Predictably, I woke up early enough not to need an alarm.

Jul 4

Mid-Year Freedom Message

Posted on Friday, July 4, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Spiritual, Values

fireworks1375076Today is Independence Day.

Could This Be Your Independence Day?

Excursus: This day is special for another reason, it’s Amy & Phil Hatcher’s wedding anniversary.  Congrats you two!

Independence is on my mind.

Independence for youIndependence for me.

True independence

True independence.  As my friend Jenny Dwyer said, is “Nothing missing.  Nothing broken.”

My prayers are for you who, like me, need some more independence from our baggage:

- My friends who are trapped in their time-wasters.

- My friends who are caught in the trap of coping by cutting.

Jul 3

Mid-Year Freedom Methods

Posted on Thursday, July 3, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

power_of_love_3Freedom is on my mind. In my opinion, freedom is one of our highest values.

And yet, true freedom includes understanding that we do not have the ultimate say, the ultimate choice or the supreme will.

“Responsibility means obligation, and obligation must mean a curtailing of freedom.” 1

Motives

“Humans love freedom like fish love water. They pretty much have to have it. Now, of course, what humans also love is having decent, clean, productive, emotionally rewarding lives. And that (curse that Adam and Eve!) means work. And work (curse that Adam and Eve!) means responsibility.” 

Jul 2

Mid-Year Freedom Minute

Posted on Wednesday, July 2, 2014 in Beyond Whatever Promos, Spiritual, Values

snow-69830_640Freedom is on my mind. In my opinion, freedom is one of our highest values.

It’s intriguing to think about our Creator-God’s first plan: “I have one rule. Enjoy your freedom, but do things my way.” Which  included, “Don’t eat fruit from that tree.” 1

The first people-problem: People chose their own way.

God’s second plan: You want life your way? My way was easy. You’re way is harder ever-after.

In order to make the harder ever-after easier God gave people ten rules to make life easier.

1.  I am God. I am the authority. Avoid confusion, you are not God.

Jul 1

Mid-Year Freedom Memory

Posted on Tuesday, July 1, 2014 in Values

AS41I was seven years old the summer I read my first comic book.

It was a hot, sunny day as I sat on the concrete porch of my parents’ house. For the first time I opened a used and somewhat worn copy of a comic book. It was Amazing Spider-Man issue 41.

Not knowing the story, the cover picturing a giant man in a rhinoceros costume charging out of the cover fascinated me.

Opponents

Aleksei-somebody (Sytsevich) was a Russian criminal who underwent treatments to transform him into a man with superhuman strength bonded to a huge, intimidating, rhino costume.

Jun 3

Chosen For A Reason

Posted on Tuesday, June 3, 2014 in Relational

photo(2)I’m sitting in my car on a beautiful morning. No, I’m not writing and driving.

The sun is bright. The sky is cloud-free. The temperature is perfect. The breeze is a pleasant cool whisper.

I’m listening to music and thinking.

I’m thinking about what it’s like to be awarded and rewarded; the joy of being chosen.

Chosen on Merit

I’m thinking about what it must have been like to be among the minimized and marginalized and then surprise! You’re chosen and prized.

Last week our friend Bill was chosen. He was recognized. He was rewarded and awarded.

Apr 30

Protect Yourself from Blind Spots

Posted on Wednesday, April 30, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

heart-beachLast night I was reading a book called, “Avoiding the Greener Grass Syndrome.”  Not because I had any inclinations to have an affair – I don’t – but because there is “grass” and I don’t want to ever think that it’s “greener.” So reading about how her marriage is overcoming her affair and “How to Grow Affair-Proof Hedges Around Your Marriage” appeals to me.

“Blind Spots” led to her affair. “Blind Spots” led to the breakdown of their marriage.

We all have blind spots in our life; misguided thinking, bad decisions and the like. Often times other people can see our blind spots but we either ignore, deny, or dismiss them.

Apr 29

More April Fools

Posted on Tuesday, April 29, 2014 in Education, How To, Relational, Spiritual, TreeHouse, Values

flame3We all have blind spots in our life; misguided thinking, bad decisions and the like. Often times other people can see our blind spots but we either ignore, deny, or dismiss them.

On the other hand, sometimes we look at and assess others and assume what we see are their blind spots. Sometimes it’s us who can’t see clearly when we judge the lives.

Here are three people some would calls fools that I admire for their courage.

Three “Fools” I Admire

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.

Mar 30

How High Will You Climb? by John Maxwell

Posted on Sunday, March 30, 2014 in How To, Reviews, Values

Book.1162.cover“Christ gives us a perfect example to follow. His high standard was not given to frustrate us but to reveal areas in our lives that need improvement. Whenever I study Philippians 2:3–8, I am reminded of the healthy attitude qualities that Jesus possessed.”

He was selfless, secure and submissive, and author John Maxwell challenges us to assess and examine our attitude and the impact of our attitude. Subtitled, “Determine Your Success By Cultivating the Right Attitude” this book challenges readers to become more insightful and incisive leaders.