Would You Rather Live a Successful Life, or a Beautiful One?

In 1874 this painting, Boulevard des Capucines, by Claude Monet was exhibited at a show in Paris. It actually lives here at the Nelson in Kansas City. I spend a lot of time sitting in front of this painting. I love it, but the initial response to it was not good. One critic called it [Read More…]

Is Creativity a Habit?: 8 Habits of Highly Creative People

There’s an interesting article up at Fast Company by a writer named Stephanie Vozza. She typically writes in the productivity slash organizer vein, so Vozza brings that sensibility to bear on the concept of creativity. The article caught my eye because I’m prepping a sermon series dealing with art and beauty. I’ve been reading Hans Urs von Balthasar’s [Read More…]

10 Great Words You Should Know and Use – Fall 2015

“Please, don’t torture me with cliches. If you’re going to try to intimidate me, have the courtesy to go away for a while, acquire a better education, improve your vocabulary, and come back with some fresh metaphors.” ― Dean Koontz One doesn’t have a good vocabulary; one maintains a good vocabulary. Words come into use, [Read More…]

Another Act of Madness: Gunman Told Christians “You’re Going to See God In Just About One Second”

It was another act of attention seeking madness in this gun-crazed, violence-obsessed society of ours… and there’s no making sense of it. I resonate with the comments of President Obama yesterday – I feel numb; like a fog has come over my mind. But, I refuse to let this become normal. The shooting hits home, because [Read More…]

Subterranean: Why the Future of the Church is Rootedness

I’m happy to be participating in an ad hoc blog tour for a new book written by a new friend of mine named Dan White. The book is called Subterranean. My assignment was to engage with Chapter Two… so here goes:   Subterranean Ch. 2: Excessive Personality Dan begins with a recollection of his third [Read More…]

My iPhone Has Magic Powers: Monday Morning Confessional

I confess that a few weeks ago I was leaving work at the end of the day, and as I was backing out of my parking space I got an alert on my iPhone. It said, “You are twelve minutes from home.” I had never received a message of this kind before. My first thought was, who is [Read More…]

A Priest Walks Into a Bar: Why the Pope’s Visit was Good for Congress & Your Friday Funny All Wrapped Up in One

Why are there so many jokes about a priest walking into a bar? Why was it so powerful when Pope Francis addressed a joint session of Congress? Same reason. The premise of the priest-in-a-bar joke is that someone holy has walked into an unholy place. Bars–or so the jokes suppose–are places where people say and do questionable things they [Read More…]

4 Mistakes Leaders Make While Trying to Avoid Vulnerability

“The hardest lesson I’ve had to learn as a leader is this: If I am not vulnerable, I am not leading.” Shrink, p.44   “We must lead from a position of vulnerability. Most people think that leadership is the exercise of power, but it is not. Leadership that has been informed and transformed by Christ [Read More…]

Rich Mullins Died On This Day in 1997: Remembering His Thoughts About the World

When I listen to Rich Mullins’ music (and I still listen), he makes me want to go camping. It’s weird, I know, but it always seems like I could more easily imagine the world he imagined if I could just get off the grid for awhile. And I want to imagine the world that he [Read More…]

What Did the Native American Elder Say to the Moon? A Little Friday Funny

This comes from the Indian Country Today Media Network, where they are also fans of the Friday Funny. When NASA was preparing for the Apollo project, they did some astronaut training on a Navajo Indian reservation. One day, a Navajo elder and his son were herding sheep and came across the space crew. The old man, [Read More…]