Category: Life

Why Don't I…

This is me at the intersection of knowing what I need to do and actually taking concrete action…

  • I know that the guy selling the homeless newspaper on the street corner can make a lot better use of a dollar than I can, so why don’t I just buy a paper?
  • I know that my business will grow and my student loans will disappear if I just spend a little more time looking for work, so why don’t I pick up the phone more often?
  • I know that my sense of intimacy with God will deepen if I would devote myself more heavily to prayer, so why don’t I hit my knees a little more often?

100 Cups in 100 Days

100 Cups 100 Days

So, I’ve become a bit of a recluse lately.

Finishing up a book project, planning a wedding, running a business, working on a masters degree… These are my excuses. Good ones… kinda… not really.

This is the sort of introverted life I lived just a few short years ago. I lived with myself, for myself, and by myself. I was totally removed from any sort of meaningful community. This was a bad way to live. I’m sorry to say that, using the weight of my current commitments as an excuse, I’ve been heading right back into that pit.

Social media has been a good way of keeping in pseudo-touch with the world, but in my case its been just another cop-out. A couple of tweets a day… A blog post here and there… Sporadic Facebook status updates when I feel like it. For me, these have all amounted to nothing but a shallow attempt to cling to meager scraps of visibility in the community.

I don’t want to keep going down that road.

So this is me turning the tables. This is me making a decision to fight my natural inclination to recede into the comfortable complacency of seclusion. This is me doing something bold and probably foolish. This is me going to war against my desire to hide behind a computer screen and pretend like I’m still active in my community.

This is also me asking you to take part in my little crusade…

Over the next 100 days, I’m going to sit down for a cup of coffee with 100 different people. I want to hear their stories and learn from their experiences. I want to learn about their worries and struggles, business or personal, and do my best to serve them. I want to connect them with others who may share a similar story or be able to help. If nothing else, I want to restore a genuine sense of community in my life and the lives of those I meet.

I want you to be one of those people.

Now, I’m not under the impression that I’m someone particularly special or some self-proclaimed celebrity whom you should desperately desire to know in real life. This has nothing to do with ego. If you think so, spend a little more time on my site getting to know me. Shoot me an email and we’ll chat.

So let’s do coffee.

If you’re in the Nashville area (or you will be in the next 3 months) and are interested, leave a comment below with the best way for me to get in touch about scheduling. Of course, you can email me, or hit me on Twitter if that’s easier. If you know of someone whom you’d like me to meet, share this post with them. You can even share it with your friends on Twitter or Facebook.

Everybody’s welcome.

I’ll write about my experiences along this journey from time to time and let you all know how its going using the #100cups hash-tag on Twitter. Don’t worry, I won’t air anybody’s dirty laundry unless they specifically ask me to!

Fear Makes You Want to Take a Bite Out of God

Fear Makes You Stupid

I have a beautiful 16 week old puppy named Cooper. Here’s his picture. I give you full permission to make whatever ohhh and awe signs that you feel are necessary. He is quite the cutie pie.

As you could imagine, I love this little guy and spoil him rotten as I would imagine most loving dog-owners do. He gets the best food, lots of fun toys, and an ample amount of quality time with Daddy. He’s my little man and, in my house, he is richly provided for.

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Show Your Work

Show Your WorkBig thanks to Joey Strawn for teasing this long overdue blog post out of me this morning…

I’ve always been good at math. Something about my right-brain sees numbers and situations and enjoys making sense of them. My problem, however, is that my right-brain is so fixed on solutions and results that I tend to completely neglect the process.

I’ll get you the right answer, but good luck getting me to show the work. This is the reason why my 12th grade Calculus teacher absolutely hated me.

Exit the high school and enter the big classroom that we call life; this approach is great for getting things done, but terrible for experiencing any sort of meaningful growth along the way. It’s a fantastic way to get to the destination but a miserable way to enjoy the trip.

Does this sound like a fun way to live?

Not really. When we fix our eyes on the destination to the exclusion of the beauty and wonder that occurs around us in every moment, we miss out on all that God would want to show us. Don’t get me wrong, as adopted children, we do have a destination that has been fixed from the foundation of this world, but there’s a whole lot of lifetime that separates us from that destination and we can’t simply ignore it.

A Different Path

For those who would believe, we all possess this common destination of glory. The beauty of our individual stories, however, comes in the journey to get there. Although we all may have the same destination, we’re all getting there by a different path. This path is rocky and full of obstacles, yet every detail of it has been laid by the sovereign God of the universe and every our step has been ordered through the Son whom He sent to save us.

If your life were a math problem, you’ve already got the solution in the perfect, finished work of Christ. Now its on you and its on me to work out that salvation that God has worked within is. Set your hope on the promised result, but don’t forget to pay attention as you walk down that path.

As you walk and encounter other wearied travelers, don’t just show them your answer.

Show your work.

Quit Hitting Yourself

Quit Hitting Yourself

When we were kids, my brother and I used to fight from time to time. He was great at this one particular move where he would grab my arm and proceed to beat on me with my own hand. Surely enough, he’d taunt me with these words, “Quit hitting yourself!” I know you know what I’m talking about.

Remember the story; it’ll come in handy later on.

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What Tetons and Babies Can Teach You About Success

Tetons, Baby Steps, and Business Success

Building a successful business, non-profit, or ministry can be about as imposing as staring up at the highest of mountains. Small steps of faith, however, are the catalytic moments that allow us to accomplish more than we could ever imagine.

Snow-Capped Intimidation

About 7 years ago, my unit went on a “secret mission” to Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Vice President Dick Cheney was visiting his vacation home and we were there to secure the airspace while he was in town. As glamorous as that sounds, I promise you that it wasn’t.

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Serve the Best Wine

Serving the Best Wine

Religious or not, we’ve all heard the story before…

  • Jesus gets invited to a first century Hebrew wedding.
  • The party rages on.
  • The last box of Franzia runs dry.
  • Some servants bring Jesus 6 bottles of Aquafina.
  • Jesus changes the water into a 1787 Chateau Lafite Bordeaux.

How’s that for contextualization?

If you want to read the story for yourself (please do) check out John 2:1-12. As I was reading tonight, this truth hit me: Everybody knows that Jesus turned water into wine. The part that often gets left out, however, is that he changed it into the best wine. [John 2:9-10]

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What I Learned While Dodging Pretend Bullets in Southern Idaho

Dodging Bullets in Idaho

The poignant words of a salty old combat training instructor still ring in my head…

“For good or for bad,
decisions need to be made.”

Playing War in Idaho

I was on a long training exercise in the middle of southern Idaho. Our combat communications unit conducted these exercises pretty regularly. A couple of times a year, we’d practice heading out into the desert, setting up our radar site, and developing a defense perimeter around it.

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