Good and Hard

Dec 11, 2019

Rick Warren once said that life is like the parallel rails of a train track. Just like the two tracks, the good and the hard parts of life often occur at the same time. 

Around the same time as the release of Rick’s Purpose Driven Life, his wife, Kay, was diagnosed with cancer. Two rails in action: the exploding popularity of a book alongside a devastating diagnosis.

You’ve probably noticed this over the course of your own life--the disorientation of incredible grace...

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An Experiment in Human Omnipresence

Dec 04, 2019

A little over a dozen years ago, an experiment was launched. I don’t think anyone called it an experiment, but it turns out to have become one. The smartphone was introduced: The iPhone. 

In one way, it was an experiment in human omnipresence. At any moment now, I can check in on just about anyone or anything. The increase in information access does not appear to have been met with an increase in wisdom. 

A while back, I decided that my iPhone was a little too omnipresent, so...

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The "In Between" Matters

Nov 27, 2019

At Unhurried Living, we give a lot of thought and care to the idea of being spiritually formed. We encourage people to be cooperative responders to the transformational process of God.

Over the course of our lives we are actually being formed in many ways, some conscious and some unconscious. One such formation can occur when we watch TV shows or movies. We can be “formed” by the creative choices that are used to tell these stories.

For example, I just saw a movie in which a man...

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An Unexpected Solution for Stress

Nov 20, 2019

Last week, I said goodbye to an old friend. We’ve been friends for nearly twenty years. It was hard to see him go. 

On my fortieth birthday, my family pitched in and bought me what was then the largest recliner La-Z-Boy makes. It was called the “Grand Canyon.” It’s been a very good friend. 

I’d often come home from a long, stressful day, lean back, kick out the footrest and, as tall as I am, I wouldn’t hang off the end. Over the years, I’ve...

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One Great Tip for Managing Interactions During the Holidays

Nov 15, 2019

As we approach Thanksgiving and Christmas, many of us will have the opportunity to gather with family and friends. There is so much joy this time of year.

Whatever the makeup of your family, everyone feels a little stressed during the holidays. Some of you may feel a little more like Marge Simpson than Carol Brady as you entertain or attend large gatherings.

Expectations are formed, finances and gift giving come to the forefront, perfectionism can sneak in–any one of which can lead to...

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What Makes a House a Home?

Nov 13, 2019

On winter mornings and evenings (if you can say that Southern California has a winter) you’ll often find me in my recliner. A fire crackles to my right, and to my left, pressed up against my leg, is Lex, our faithful companion dog. Various activities go on in this chair. Praying, reading, journaling, watching shows on my iPad, scrolling through Instagram, laughing with Alan about some random post.

But this morning, I lift my eyes from the book I’m reading and I stare at my living...

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Transitions in Identity

Nov 06, 2019

What does it look like to become more securely and deeply rooted in Christ, to become confident in him? I think of how Eugene Peterson paraphrased Colossians 2:6-7 in The Message: 

“My counsel for you is simple and straightforward: Just go ahead with what you’ve been given. You received Christ Jesus, the Master; now live him. You’re deeply rooted in him. You’re well-constructed upon him. You know your way around the faith. Now do what you’ve been...

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The Gift of Mentors

Oct 30, 2019

I’ve had the treat of having many mentor-like people in my life who were ahead of me on life’s journey. They knew more than me and they readily shared their knowledge and wisdom. They believed in me and my potential and were willing to help draw me into the next level. 

Maya Angelou once said, “I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” 

It is certainly true that...

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One Important Way to Strengthen Your Leadership

Oct 23, 2019

In July, Gem and I had the honor of leading a two-day retreat for the House of Bishops of the Church of Uganda. Present were the archbishop and his wife along with about 35 bishops and their wives. About one-third of today’s 43 million Ugandans are part of this national church. It was encouraging to discover that our important insights about Christian life and leadership were life-giving to them as well. 

At the end of our two days, the Archbishop expressed his appreciation for...

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Intentional Soul Care

Oct 16, 2019

Recently, we read a study on stress statistics published by the American Psychological Association back in 2014. The numbers from even five years ago are sobering.

77% of people regularly experience physical symptoms caused by stress. 
73% regularly experience psychological symptoms caused by stress. 
48% feel their stress has increased over the past five years. 
And 48% reported lying awake at night due to stress. 

My guess is that things haven’t gotten better in these...

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