Have You Been to Prison Recently?

Creative Commons - Trisha Fawver

Alcohol. Recklessness. Death. Murder. Incarceration. When we hear these words they make us cringe. Please don’t say these words. We see enough of them in the daily news. Newspapers are packed with these words. Then movies are made about these exact things. Isn’t there any hope? Isn’t there some way out of all this? I am discovering a reality in the middle of violence for more people in our communities than we may be aware of.   In the past year I have been exposed to a wave of realities—very unfortunate realities—in too many people’s lives in our world. Acts of violence,

26 Things I Would Do If I Had No Fear (the terror kind)

1. I would do exactly the work I have always wanted to do. Because I would have no fear that it would not fulfill me or be anything except profitable. 2. I would share hope freely, and without any restraint in my spirit, by how I speak, how I look, how I walk, and how I act. 3. I would give praise freely, liberally, and candidly because I have no fear of being considered a flatterer or of having motives ulterior. 4. I would produce my art prolifically—and then gregariously present my art and my vision without any fear of rejection or fear of being mocked at or scorned. 5. I would

Is There A Way to Stay Free From Fear?

I had a unique experience on Saturday. It prompted me to write what I dub the Truth and Love Worldview. (For me it holds the answer on how to overcome fear. The following is a portion of it. I'd be happy to get your feedback.). Judge not, that ye be not judged. Matthew 7:1. Judging means I assume the authority to decide whether someone is right or wrong, and then feel, act, and think toward a person or idea as I choose based on my perception of truth. This passage says judge not. No exception. For starters, as an experiment, I will predecide I am not permitted or able to judge.

I’m Still Alive and Well

My life is a work in progress. I felt pained that I wasn't able to really knock it out with blogging the last few months after I launched back in July 2013. I've had many experiences since then. Today, I felt I have to simply open my blog and start typing. Here goes, even though it may sound a little rambly. In October, I hopped aboard a challenge with Kimanzi Constable, a prolific blogger from Wisconsin, to conquer 200 miles on foot in October. I wasn't part of the original group and by the time I was on board I had only 24 days remaining. I never ran regularly in my life but I thought

I Killed a Man: How Does Matthew Cordle’s Chilling Confession Affect You?

Matthew Cordle Main Photo

"I killed a man" is the line that is still reverberating around the world. A well-done YouTube video viewed several million times. Shocking. Awe-striking. Unbelievable. What to make of it? Is the confession impressive? Is the video impressive? Is this an attempt to get a shorter sentence? One thing for sure: it got the attention of the world. The man, Matthew Cordle lived about a hundred miles from my house. I was so struck by the case I drove to the courtroom where he was sentenced yesterday to see it firsthand. That night It happened about 3am, June 22, 2013. Mr.

A Few Observations From an Unplanned Break from Blogging

Full week I have just come off of a loaded week directing the project of a first-time author's first book, including coordinating the editing, and text page and cover design. Wow. What a project it has been. But it's such a privilege helping a person with a valid message to get it out. Because of an overloaded week I had not posted this week. The mini break has not been wasted. It's been a time to reflect. Since I had pulled back from posting I noticed that it's much easier to write about something than actually take action and do it. For example, we can write about writing. Write

Hmm… What I Focus On is What Gets Completed

I cannot begin to imagine the power of attention. This morning I turned my phone off for several hours and wow... I got more done and had more focused time than I have had in a while. Each text message shouts for attention. Each email vibration demands a split second of distraction. A mini moment of decision. Will I continue working on my current project or go check my inbox? I get upset at myself that I can be so easily distracted. Nonetheless, I realized how absolutely powerful attention is. Whatever I give my attention to is what I can get accomplished. Nothing more,

Are We Forward- or Backward-Thinking?

Every morning I have a choice. I can wish myself back to 3AM so I can keep sleeping or get dressed and march into the fray. I can regret. Or I can get a move on and enjoy it. This may seem simple, but I think it's pretty fundamental. When I take a shower in the evening, am I cleaning up from today or preparing for tomorrow? When I crawl into bed, am I resting from a long, hard day or reloading for tomorrow? We might say both, but which is the primary reason? Do we always look forward or always look back? There's a big difference. It affects every area of our lives. It's a

I’m Beginning to Think Action is Almost as Important as Talent

Is it just my notion or are almost all bloggers telling their readers to get a move on? After a conversation I had yesterday in the post office parking lot I drew a new conclusion. The conversation went something like this: Man at the post office: You still auctioneering? Me: No, that's my brother Man: What do you do? Me: I have an office at the church house and do marketing and design stuff. Man: Are all of you talented? Me: [Shrug, stumped] We do stuff. Man: [About the same time he said,] Just admit it. [He hopped back in his car and left] It left me

I Thought I was the Star of My Own Show—Then I Learned the Truth

My job was pushing a pallet through a meat and cheese warehouse filling orders. Occasionally I was in the office on the phone acting the salesman. But mostly picking orders and loading pallets for pick up or delivery by customers. Then one day a call came for me. The call came to the cheese and meat distributor where I was employed. It was the owner of the nearby printing company. He asked whether I would stop in on my way home. Let's just say that my life took a turn. My meat and cheese career quickly drew to a close. It was the beginning of a new chapter. Design and creativity