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Commendable and Forgivable

Much rhetoric on morals viewed so-called “sin” as something God condemns. Sure, as Judge over the living and the dead, God will need to condemn certain souls, but that’s where we think our own opinions are the same as an opinion of the Court. They’re not.

When Jesus stood before the Sanhedrin, Jesus was not on trial; humanity was. Jesus had already decided that our so-called “sins” needed to be forgiven, and his death was the only verdict he could pass. Jesus doesn’t see our actions as commendable or condemnable. His worldview asks whether a thing is commendable or forgivable.  · · · →

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Fighting and Growth

Trouble with the locals is always an opportunity. You may have a parking squabble in your new neighborhood. But once it’s resolved, everyone got to know you quite quickly. And, you discovered that neither you nor the neighbors were anyone’s enemy, but the enemy is the parking problem across your city. Identifying the community nuisance can bring even the fiercest enemies together.

You may drop a flower pot in your neighbor’s yard, just to have the neighbor bring you another missing plant. You see it’s time for bigger pots that won’t fall over and your garden grows all at once.  · · · →

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Self Admission

It’s a near impossibility—admitting when you’re not enough. The older generation is responsible for the glass ceilings it places above the next generation. If you are in that older generation, you must blame yourself for everything that hadn’t gone as you’d hoped. If you are in the next generation, you must forgive the older generation for giving you this blend of limits and powers—making you want to love and blame at the same time.

Neither generation wants to swallow that big pill. But, we can only move forward as much as we let ourselves face our generational reality.  · · · →

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Your charge must be strong

Be concise. Whether you will wait or whether you will charge in, do one or the other, and do so with certainty. When waiting or charging in, you’ll guarantee failure if you hesitate. So, the deeper issue is confidence and judgment.

When is it time to wait and when is it time to charge? This is one question, not two; the answer comes from patience. If you’re not in a hurry, and if your goals are redemptive in nature and demonstrate enough good will, you’ll have no problem waiting, then finally pouncing on the enemy when the proper time arrives.  · · · →

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Falling

Humanity will never have a shortage dissenters. Don’t get bent out of shape over normalcy. And, don’t fret over the schemes of people who do not yet know better. You’re bigger than that. You know that.

The best retort is results. The best way to gain respect is results. The best way to convince people you’re right is the size of your wallet—because the secret to wealth is only doing what makes money rather than only doing what squanders money. If it doesn’t win, winners won’t care either way. Neither should you. Let all forms of failure fall away.  · · · →

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What Needs Saying

Thoughts and words operate by the same rules. Just because we have a brain fart doesn’t mean our idea isn’t worthless. Many ideas are worthless, just like words. Vet. Filter. Bounce. Discuss. Ideas need to go through other people before you can trust them, even when they are your own. Don’t trust just anyone’s feedback. Their ideas might not be trustworthy either. Trust people’s feedback the same as you trust the results in their lives—because their words are only as credible as the fruit of their ideas, as with yours.

Also, sleep on your own words before sharing them.  · · · →

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Why We Talk So Much

Overtalking is unfriendly. It’s something we each know we should never do, but it’s something we each do anyway. Why? It’s not as if others need our many words or our self-expression. Inadvertently dominating relationships by unplanned filibuster isn’t exactly the best way to win friends and influence people. So, why do we do so much of it?

Deep inside, it probably comes down to a love issue or a self-acceptance issue. We somehow fear rejection or dejection or ejection, so we want someone to validate our coordinates and status. But, others want the same thing, which we can give.  · · · →

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How Friends Arrive

There is a good reason Jesus commanded us to love our enemies. That reason specifically relates to how much it isn’t easy. If it were easy to love enemies, Jesus wouldn’t have needed to make it a command. But, it isn’t, so he did. And, most of us have a better idea.

Jesus’s command wasn’t enough for most of us, especially those who think they believe Jesus and thus think they define truth and so justify their grudges. But, when someone else tells us to return kindness for insult, we listen and often discover that enemies can become excellent friends.  · · · →

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Fire & Water

Conflicts between most people are a battle of elements. Fire wants drive without empathy, water wants empathy without drive. Of course, the needs are the needs and don’t change, but we all have our corners we feel some need to emphasize. When the other guy doesn’t focus on the angle we zero in on, we blame him of being unethical—either he doesn’t care about people or he doesn’t care about results.

These differences are only a conflict during immaturity. We weren’t meant to fight against each other; we were meant to lean against each other. That is growing up.  · · · →

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Winning the Peace

Many conflicts don’t get squared without some scuffle. Someone ignores some important courtesy. Someone else takes offense or sustains injury. The offender ignores the polite call for help. Sabers rattle. Pistols come out of their holsters. The tavern piano player stops playing.

Things only calm down when the offended, injured party kindly asks for peace. Peacefulness requires that we win friendships, not brawls. We must forgive, rebuild burnt bridges, and build new bridges. That’s the only gratifying conclusion. But, that doesn’t mean sabers shouldn’t rattle. Winning peace requires something that will get everyone’s attention. But, it still ends with peace.  · · · →

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Nonsense Misleads

Nonsense is no moral roadmap. You can’t infuse yourself with both poison and wisdom, then experience a satisfied life. So much in our world of failed advisors is nonsense. Nonsense is all a failure can teach. One of the biggest oxymorons ever is an “economics professor”; if the teacher truly understood economics, the teacher wouldn’t have a job, especially working for a bureaucratic university. That’s just nonsense.

The smokescreen is a classic confusion tactic in military and police strategy. Nonsense only blinds. So-called “wisdom” from a failure is as nourishing as bubble gum. It tastes sweet, but clogs your system.  · · · →

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Watch It

Getting a fix on your location can be hard when we don’t want to face the ugly truth about where we really are. Maybe you don’t want to know where you are in life because it would say something bad about someone else in your life—the truth about where that person is in life. But, navigation requires knowing your location.

Mirrors are good, as every musician, dancer, and actor knows. They give us a fix on the status we need in order to navigate. But, don’t just look at it every once in a while, keep watch on it.  · · · →

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Strong Compatibility

It’s not our weaknesses which determine our ability to work with others; it’s our strengths. Strengths cover our weaknesses, but that is not to say that covering a weakness makes a team strong. Somewhere, a team must carry all different, necessary strengths somewhere among its team members. Whether those strengths compensate for a weakness somewhere on the team is irrelevant; it is the recipe of strengths that leads a team to its victory.

How much time is wasted on evaluating people’s weaknesses or need to improve? As you improve and grow, remember: We get more of whatever we focus on.  · · · →

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Succeed Together

We go forward together. That’s part of the concept of “we”—it’s a “together” sort of thing. We fail when we’re not together. We are defeated by untalented, useless, even evil people because they work together when we don’t.

No one is an island. Many twist this wisdom to mean we should let others boss us around or we should share what shouldn’t be shared. But, the insight that humans aren’t islands has a deeper undertone that victors can’t ignore: cooperation. Synergy, teamwork, strengths covering weaknesses—call it what you like. You’ll only succeed if you’re not the only one.  · · · →

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