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Aug 27

12 Ways To Encourage A Child (Ages 0-118)

Posted on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 in Relational

quantitative-58283_640Angry teens.
Parents in pain.
Explosive children.
Perplexed neighbors.

What can we do?

Every child I’ve met wants to be affirmed that they are lovable, capable and worthwhile.

We can start there.

12 Ways To Encourage A Child (Ages 0-118)

“You Are Lovable!”: Give attention to their character.
– Who they are has greater value than what they achieve.
– Accept mistakes; show grace.
– Bad decisions, poor choices and mistakes can be great teachers.
– Offer unconditional love. Trust can be conditional, love cannot.

“You Are Capable!”

Aug 26

Broken Mirrors

Posted on Tuesday, August 26, 2014 in Emotional, Relational, Social, Values

broken-mirror-1128615-mShouting.
Crash.
Slam.

He could hear the yelling from the neighbors’ house every night.

Shouts of anger.
Shouts of pain.
Shouts of passion.
He wondered,
“Was there any gain?”

The Cost of Turmoil

Teens, families, friendships and all kinds of relationships suffer because of the lack of peaceful conflict resolution skills. Conflicts arise, those involved feel hurt, disappointed, afraid or frustrated, and it quickly turns into anger. Anger often erupts in retaliation or brutal honesty. Alienation increases, relationships are broken, and scars are formed.

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.

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.

Jun 20

Stop

Posted on Friday, June 20, 2014 in Emotional, Intellectual, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

sign-stop-95477_640Our Story

It’s heartbreaking to see people in pain. It’s perplexing to hear of loved ones who hurt one another.

Most people try to help not hurt. Most people look for solutions not problems, but  too often the solutions slam one another.

“Good people” gossip.
“Kind-hearted” people talk behind backs.
“Loving” people SCREAM angrily!

Foolish, hurtful solutions to initiate change.

And so, each of us must give an account to God for what we do…Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God.” 1

Jun 15

The Red Sea Rules 10 God-Given Strategies for Difficult Times By Robert J. Morgan

Posted on Sunday, June 15, 2014 in Reviews, Spiritual, Values

_240_360_Book.1203.coverI had been interested in reading The Red Sea Rules by Robert J. Morgan for quite some time. Subtitled, “10 God-Given Strategies for Difficult Times” I was looking for helpful help.

The author suggests, “take a deep breath and recall this deeper secret of the Christian life: when you are in a difficult place, realize that the Lord either placed you there or allowed you to be there, for reasons perhaps known for now only to Himself. The same God who led you in will lead you out.”

Jun 14

God Is Just Not Fair by Jennifer Rothschild

Posted on Saturday, June 14, 2014 in Reviews, Spiritual

God is Just coverWhen I read the title to Jennifer Rothschild’s recent release, God Is Just Not Fair, I was excited to read it.

Shortly into her book I read: “If you feel weighed down and burdened, look to Jesus and his cross — focus on the generous love it represents. When you’re really hurting, think about what you really deserved and thank him for what you got instead. You got grace; you got peace; and you got unconditional love that will carry you through any sorrow. And both you and I got the best gift of all — fairest Lord Jesus.”

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 19

5 Gold Medal Good Ideas

Posted on Wednesday, February 19, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Sports, TreeHouse, Values

mens-ski-halfpipe-1392760999349-master495Yesterday I sat in a chair and cheered.

I sat watching the Olympics. I cheered the Olympic skiers working the half-pipe. They were defying gravity, defying discouragement and defying their previous failures.

Yesterday I also sat with several friends. I cheered them on. These friends are working through pain. Like the skiers they were defying gravity, defying discouragement and defying their previous failures.

The skiers were surrounded by fans.
My friends were surrounded by friends.

Circumstances are different but the skiers and my friends have some things in common.
They can fall.
They can fail.
They’ve done it before.

Feb 14

Beauty: See it. Believe it. Say it. Stand by it.

Posted on Friday, February 14, 2014 in Emotional, How To, Music, Relational, Social, Spiritual, Values

snow_heartIn this the final slice in a series of posts reflecting on the songs of Bruno Mars we’re examining the virtues of his perspective in his song “Just the Way You Are.”

If you need to catch up a bit:
1. Bruno, What’s On Your Mind?
2. Ruins and Regrets
3. 5 Suggestions 4 Living With A Broken Heart
4. Bonding In The Backseat, Breakup In The Bedroom

Just the Way You Are

On Just The Way You Are Bruno Mars wants the object of his affection to know that he thinks she’s beautiful. I don’t think I’ve met a woman who didn’t want to be thought of as beautiful by her loved ones.