August 10, 2018

With maxims like ‘what’s in it for me’, ‘I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine’, and ‘quid pro quo’, our society is becoming more and more transactional. Every relationship, whether working, platonic, or romantic, bears this mark. In serving others, we carefully calculate what we can ask in return. We take the deposit with an expectation of future withdrawal. Even in a world increasingly concerned with genuineness, we find nothing wrong with a mutually beneficial agreement. You like my… Read more

August 8, 2018

Any given day, there is a lot swirling inside of us. There are a few things that make us human; a handful of unavoidable realities we must interact with in order to live a sane life. Generally speaking, we can sort the two dominant arenas of human experience into two categories: thought and feeling. As we process experience and information, make arguments and take positions, these are the two primary functions of the human consciousness. But what is the relationship… Read more

August 6, 2018

From the time we are very young, we start wrestling with the idea of ownership. Toddlers start grabbing things in the toy isle and proclaiming them ‘Mine!’ Siblings squabble over sharing the specific gifts designated for them. Teens turn their rooms into fortresses of solitude and demand permission be granted before access is given. It starts the day we are born. We are looking to discover our place in this world. We are looking to take ownership of our lives…. Read more

August 3, 2018

As one of the three things we can control, choosing an attitude is a vital part of what makes us who we are. When we evaluate what is most important to us, we often look at the influence of others or the effects of our circumstances. The choices we make, however, are what truly matter in the determining of our character. At the end of the day, we have to own the responsibility of who we are. Our circumstances can influence… Read more

August 1, 2018

Relationships are essential to human living. We find (or inherit) people who become close to us. We care for one another, work to develop trust, and grow through the values of community. But there is one cancer that threatens it all. Selfishness. When relationship is at its worst this is what it boils down to: each party trying to get their own way, using the other(s) as a means to that end.   Keeping Score Relationships too often devolve into… Read more

July 30, 2018

My nephew, Judah, had a rough morning today. He is in town visiting and he got embarrassed this morning because his four-year-old self could not do something we asked of him. After retreating to his room for a little while and shedding some tears, Judah had to practice the most difficult of human tasks: courage. Through tears and high emotions, Judah came in and asked for help. It was hard. He didn’t want to do it. But he mustered up… Read more

July 27, 2018

John Rockefeller, a billionaire in the early 1900’s, was asked, “how much money is enough?” He responded, “Just a little bit more.” This could be the mantra of modern American culture. We are obsessed with the belief that satisfaction lies in attaining just a little more. A few more friends. A spouse or a child (or another child). Retirement. A raise. Better weather. A vacation. More appreciation at work. It comes in a myriad of ways, but the obsession is… Read more

July 25, 2018

Routine gets a bad wrap in today’s world. We equate the establishment of habit with settling, being bored, stubbornness, and monotony. In order to get out of such ‘ruts’, we romanticize vacations and innovation. We idolize the thrill of newness, trying hard to escape the routines that we think enslave us. But the truth is, ironically, it might be the routines that really set us free. Establishing patterns is a way of life and it is not all bad. We… Read more

July 23, 2018

Freedom is an important value for all of us. We were not meant to be manipulated, oppressed, or controlled. Each of us is uniquely beautiful and has been granted one precious life to steward. This liberty, however, does not mean we can do absolutely anything we want without consequence. We have perverted our value for freedom to mean something entirely different than what it really means.   Consequences There are consequences for the choices we make. Legal consequences like jail. Moral… Read more

July 20, 2018

We moved to New York City two years ago. It has been nothing short of a dream come true. The magic of this city has enticed me for years and it is a joy to be living here. One of the things I do as a New Yorker is take walks around the city. Past famous landmarks. Through famous parks. I want to get the full experience of the city. After two years of this, a certain routine has developed…. Read more

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