Posted on Friday, March 6, 2015 in Uncategorized
I took a left turn into an unfamiliar parking lot. I pulled into an open parking spot. With some uncertainty I stepped out of our car.
I walked around the landscaped wall. Turning right I entered what appeared to be the backyard with a very well designed wood deck positioned to my left. Seeing a door into the building I turned the corner.
Smiling in front of me was fourteen year old AnnMarie. (Pictured on the left next to Rachel)
AnnMarie walked directly up to me and asked, “Hi! Who the @#$% are you?” That was my introduction to TreeHouse.
Posted on Wednesday, March 26, 2014 in Uncategorized
We all make decisions; some wise, some not. Each new decision we make cuts a path through the unknown. As we continue to choose similar choices the path to repeated decisions becomes easier. A difficult fresh-cut path now becomes a leisurely stroll through familiar territory.
Eventually once we continue walking the same path over and over and it becomes well-worn path, a road and eventually a four-lane highway with speedy travel to the same destination.
All that sounds fine, unless our path is destructive.
Posted on Thursday, February 27, 2014 in Uncategorized
When 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.
Posted on Friday, January 24, 2014 in Uncategorized
If you asked me if I struggled with anxiety, most days I would say “no.” If you asked me if I was listening to myself enough to know, I’d probably shrug my shoulders. Usually self-reflection takes a back-seat to busyness.
The Burden & Blessing of Busyness
On Wednesday TreeHouse (my employer) committed a day to “fasting and prayer.” My busyness was set aside. 1
My tendency to be a busyness-burdened workaholic comes from a mashup of my strengths and my fears. According to “Strengths Finder” my strengths (#2-5) include Activator, Learner, Ideation, and Achiever. I like to learn, think through what I’ve learned and put what I’m learning to use, but the fear of rejection cries out “You’re stupid and lazy”; it’s subtle, but it’s relentless.
Posted on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 in Uncategorized
“Desire is not merely a simple wish; it is a deep seated craving; an intense longing … it’s so important that one might say, almost, that desire is an absolute essential of prayer.” 1
Desire precedes prayer, accompanies it, and is followed by it. Desire goes before prayer, and by it, it’s created and intensified.
Prayer is the expression of desire.
Prayer comes out into the open.
Desire is silent.
Prayer is heard; desire, unheard.
Prayer – listening to, learning from and expressing our longings to God – is throughout the Scriptures.
Posted on Friday, January 3, 2014 in Uncategorized
Amy and I were college students the first time I met her parents, Ron and Rose. Like almost all guys I was nervous meeting “her parents.” Through our conversations and over dinner with Amy’s brother Bryan I found that they were like Amy: friendly and kind, they love to laugh and they cared deeply about God.
That was 1985.
A couple years later on June 13 those same two parents gave us their blessing as Amy were married.
So, when Ron and Rose wanted to renew their wedding vows on their fiftieth (50th!) anniversary I was blessed to be invited to officiate their ceremony.
Posted on Friday, November 8, 2013 in Uncategorized
Clear shot at an eight-point buck, missed.
Perfect moment for a first kiss, interrupted.
Business plan, rejected.
Cleaned the house, not good enough.
Sincere proposal, denied.
Studied hard, failed.
Doctor’s report, bad news.
Ran your best race, lost.
Life is filled with disappointments.
Life is filled with happiness-crushing hassles.
But that’s not the end of the story.
Despite our circumstances and doubts Happiness IS possible … for all of us.
Sometimes, the pursuit of happiness involves a change of mind, a new perspective, a reversal of direction. Sometimes it’s a mind-altering mysteries like, “great pain can become great possibilities and you can “pray your pain out.”
Posted on Thursday, November 7, 2013 in Uncategorized
We’re all looking for happiness, and despite our doubts Happiness IS possible … for all of us.
Sometimes, the pursuit of happiness involves a change of mind, a new perspective, a reversal of direction. Sometimes it’s a mind-altering mystery like, “Great pain can become great possibilities.”
Pray Your Pain Out
There are many reasons I have chosen to follow Jesus Christ, but one of the nearest and dearest reasons is that despite my sins, shortcomings, and slanderous rants God has not blown me up with a bolt of lightning. Not that God ever threatened to do so, but you know sometimes I just think I deserved it.
Posted on Wednesday, November 6, 2013 in Uncategorized
We’re all looking for happiness. Fortunately, as I explained Monday, Happiness IS possible for all of us.
Sometimes, we discussed yesterday, the pursuit of happiness involves a change of mind, a new perspective, a reversal of direction.
The life of a man named Joseph was certainly challenging. He was someone whose life, heart and soul was challenged at every turn.
Great Pain Can Become Great Possibilities
Joseph, the eleventh of twelve brothers, was disliked by his older brothers. He lacked tact. He lacked humility. Despite his flaws, as God has done many times, God uses the unlikely to do the extraordinary.
Posted on Thursday, August 8, 2013 in Uncategorized
As you begin reading today, give Evanescence’s song “What You Want” a listen.
I asked some friends at TreeHouse, “What line stands out? Why that one?”
My friends Erin, Gabe, and Kelly liked:
Do what you, what you want
If you have a dream for better
Erin and Gabe agreed, “I like doing what I want.” Kelly added, “If you want to do something, don’t let people hold you back from doing something good.”
Stand and face the unknown (got to remember who you really are)