Five Insights From One Hour with God

Sep 02, 2020

I love acorns. I found one a few years ago during a solitude walk up in the mountains.


I am always amazed by a beautiful little acorn, especially when it has a cap on it. So cute. It is amazing to me that an oak tree grows from something so small.


As I held the acorn in my hand and pondered its ability and power to grow an oak tree, it led to this thought, “You have the power within to do what is next.” A nice encouragement from God. (Eph. 3:20-21) 


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Podcast 138: The Way Up is Down (Gem with Marlena Graves)

Aug 31, 2020

Our guest today is Marlena Graves, author of The Way Up Is Down. In her own words: “…we’ll explore ways in which God is calling you and me to surrender continually to being emptied and then filled with his abounding grace. We’ll soon discover that this is the process whereby saints are made. This is the selfless-way, the God-shaped life.”

For writer, pastor, and activist Marlena Graves, formation and justice always intertwine on the path to a balanced life of...

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Live What You Teach

Aug 27, 2020

In an unprecedented season of change and pivots, Alan and Gem found themselves exhausted.  Many of us are.  This short video message offers you a glimpse of how they handled that exhaustion and what they did to bring themselves back to a season of unhurry.

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Dallas Willard on Being the Church

Aug 26, 2020

Sometimes, when I’m mining my journal, I stumble on a treasure. Today I’m sharing notes I took from a morning with Dallas Willard at Tree of Life Community in Orange, CA on Sunday, August 14, 2011. The theme was “Being Church.”


I was typing on my iPad, which I don’t do quickly, so this is not a transcript. These are insights that I gained from listening to Dallas. They are sometimes in my own words. So, don’t assume that every word here is straight...

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Podcast 137: Growing Deep Leadership Roots (Alan with Jerome Daley)

Aug 24, 2020

Many of you who listen to this podcast are leaders in business, church, nonprofit and other organizational settings. Others of you may not have a leadership title, but you live a leadership life…a life of influence. Today’s episode is going to help a lot. I’m talking with Jerome Daley, author of the book Gravitas: The Monastic Rhythms of Healthy Leadership about where spiritual depth and authority in leadership come.

These continue to be challenging days for...

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In the Likeness of the Master

Aug 19, 2020

A few years ago, on trip to St. Petersburg, we had the pleasure of visiting the Hermitage Museum.


A mere fraction of their 3,000,000 pieces are on display at any one time, and we saw a fraction of a fraction of that. The amount of beauty and craftsmanship is overwhelming.


Alan had been there before, so he knew when we were nearing the painting we were most looking forward to seeing, Rembrandt’s Prodigal Son. He gave me a brief warning as we turned the corner,...

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Podcast 136: Attachment and Attunement: Finding Homebase in the Heart of God (Gem with Rev. Summer Gross)

Aug 17, 2020

Summer is another beautiful soul that Gem has met on Instagram. Last year Gem and Summer had the treat of meeting each other in person at a conference in the Midwest. Summer is a caring and wise listener and teacher and we can’t wait for you to learn from her today.

Summer is an Anglican priest, spiritual director, homeschool mom of three, and still madly in love with her high school sweetheart. She comes alive listening to people’s hard and holy stories and setting the table for...

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Still Thirsty for God

Aug 12, 2020

A couple of weeks ago, I shared some personal reflections from Psalm 42. This post continues that journal entry:

My tears are my food, by day and by night,
and everyone asks, “Where is your God?”
I remember how I went up to your glorious dwelling-place
and into the house of God:
the memory melts my soul.
The sound of joy and thanksgiving,
the crowds at the festival.
Psalm 42:3-4 (JB)


Instead of feeling nourished and refreshed, this psalm writer grieves and feels abandoned by God....

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Podcast 135: The Sacred Overlap (Alan with J.R. Briggs)

Aug 10, 2020

We are living in a season where “us and them” thinking can be very tempting. Political differences, racial tensions, generational and even religious differences can push us to build thick walls we think will protect ourselves and keep bad things out. But reality is always bigger than simple “us and them” categories.

Today, I’m talking with my friend, J. R. Briggs about his new book, releasing Sept. 8, titled The Sacred Overlap: Learning to Live...

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Gratitude in the Wilderness

Aug 05, 2020

The desert has always been my least favorite geography. The desert is hot and dry and sand colored. Plus, there’s cactus. I know that people have worked hard to bring water into the desert and there are plenty of oasis-type places there. But the desert is still the desert.


A few years ago, while at the Prince of Peace Abbey for a 24-hour personal retreat, I took a walk around the lovely property. The retreat grounds were lush and landscaped, however, the walking path was a...

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