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Jan 30

Need a Jump-Start? Let Go Of Judgments

Posted on Thursday, January 30, 2014 in Uncategorized

boy13777990034qk36It’s freezing cold in Minnesota this week. Many cars lay dead needing a jump-start.

Many of us need a jump-start in our cold heart.  My suggestion: Let go of judgments.

“One of the best changes I’ve made to help me be happier,” wrote Leo Babauta, “is learning to see judging other people as a red flag.” Yesterday we highlighted Leo’s insightful post Letting Go of Judging People.

I know I’m imperfect, I’m flawed. I’m a sinner. I have no right to judge anyone, but I still judge others far too often.

Oct 18

6 Reasons To Check Your Tongue

Posted on Friday, October 18, 2013 in Uncategorized

sign-donotcrushWe’ve all done it.
We’ve lashed out.
Defended ourselves.
Attacked the other.
We justified our choices.
We felt our self-pity.

That might have “worked” in the past.
There is another way.
The time is now to model a new strategy.

The Truth

You’ve been hurt. You’ve left the wounds. You’ve felt the hurtful words and you’ve thrown the verbal jabs and painful punches.

It’s counter-cultural, but I’d really like to encourage you to take to heart the value of humility.

Oct 17

Honest But Hurtful

Posted on Thursday, October 17, 2013 in Uncategorized

freeimage-2675170-webJustified By Anger

“You gotta be yourself…”
“I was like…”
“But then that b**** said…”

“She talks too much!
“I woulda told that hoe…”
“But that stupid b**** said…”

“Hey, I’m just being REAL…”
“I’ve gotta be able to say how I feel. I don’t care, I’m stand up.”

I know you’ve heard it.
Have you thought it?
Maybe you said it.

Justified By Self-Pity

Can’t relate to any of those? How about the awkward moment when you realize you’re wrong in an argument, but you keep arguing anyway. Or your daydreaming your way through those perfect conversations where finally everyone agrees the other person was at fault.

Jan 9

Our Dream for TreeHouse Support Groups

Posted on Wednesday, January 9, 2013 in Uncategorized

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 Uncategorized

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.

Apr 2

Self-Doubt Sunday

Posted on Monday, April 2, 2012 in Uncategorized

I was invited to speak to a group of parents about parenting skills. I have learned a great deal about the joys and sorrows of helpful and unhelpful parenting as I have listened to thousands of people. Josh and Shannon are great kids to parent, but we too have had our good days and our bad days.

Armed with the wisdom and examples of many people and the stories of our family I feel confident teaching others what I am learning about parenting.

Not this time.

I’ve edited and re-edited four times. I’ve felt unusually nervous. I strive for excellence, but was getting a little silly.

Jan 26


Posted on Thursday, January 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

“Excuse me, is that your nose or did a bus park on your face?”

Charlie Bales has an unusually large nose and is an easy target for Insults and putdowns. 1

Confronted by an adversary who calls him “Big Nose” Bales diminishes the power of the insult by creating twenty insults of his own, including:

Personal: Well, here we are, just the three of us.
Punctual: All right…your nose was on time but YOU were fifteen minutes late.
Humorous: Laugh & the world laughs with you. Sneeze, and it’s goodbye, Seattle!
Scientific: Say, does that thing there influence the tides?
Aromatic: It must wonderful to wake up in the morning and smell the coffee…in Brazil. 2

Nov 23

Cut Resentment Cultivate Freedom

Posted on Wednesday, November 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

Jesus was a the temple one day and a crowd of people gathered. Jesus sat down and began to teach them.  As he was speaking, in the middle of his lesson, a group of religious people rushed up to Jesus dragging along a woman who had been cheating and was caught having sex with him.

Ahem, let me repeat that CAUGHT IN THE ACT of adultery.  

Two things stand out here for me.  One, the incredible shame and humiliation of being interrupted, caught, captured, paraded and “posterized” as an adulterer.  Second, if she was “caught”, where’s the guy she was with?!?