belief

If we want to change outcomes we often start with trying to change our actions. But what if we have to go back a few more steps? Because if you start with actions, you’re going to run out of juice and burn out. But if you believe something at your core, the downstream impacts are longer lasting.

Meeting Notes: Conference Edition: Day 2

Day 2 Recap... God is a long term planner. Beyond the 90 Day Roadmap. Beyond the 3-5 Year Strategic Plan. Maybe we shouldn’t expect people to have a 3 second or better website load time when it comes to every day life.

Meeting Notes: Conference Edition: Day 1

When you attend a conference over several days, there is a lot you could and should remember from the time you invested to be there. But (spoiler) most of it you won’t. If you took notes (which you should), rereading those notes is a good way to challenge yourself. I reviewed my notes from my last year of reading the Bible and noticed some themes. This week I’ll be sharing them and today we start with #1. It’s not about me (or you).

peeking peaking piquing through

There are some things you can’t change. However, there is a lot you can change if you’re brave enough to take the chance to change something small and be consistent about it.

Lessons: Joy in the Mundane

We seek epic moments. We search Pinterest boards for ideas and long for Instagram worthy pictures, but what if joy is in between the layers of the mundane? Between the crosswalk, the pile of dishes, layers of laundry, and in between the cheese and meat of the sandwiches you made this week? What if joy only happens if you notice, and realized you have LOTS of chances to notice?

getting loud again

I love to present. And I used to do it a lot. On a personal level I presented to college students and fellow alumni. At my job I traveled around to small groups and big groups to lead discussions, introduce concepts and help with technology. My favorite was presenting from a stage to a roomful... Continue Reading →

Lessons: Sub Zero Edition

My Most Recent Lessons: Sub Zero Edition... (1) Sneezing (2) Self-Doubt (3) Beer (4) Marketing and (5) Mourning

Lessons: prep and reflect

If I pause and reflect daily, I might get an inaccurate representation of how things are going. A bad day could feel like the world is falling apart. One good day could give me an inflated sense of self and delusional success. But a friend reminded me that reflecting at the end of every week... Continue Reading →

do brave

Yes, I am the weirdo in a lawnchair in my front yard, in 4 inches of snow, wearing a snowmobile suit and drinking a beer in front of the snowman I built. It takes bravery to put yourself out there. Do brave.

time

When the alarm clock goes off, my instinct is not to wake up. It’s to lie there and debate with myself. One morning I debated with God instead.

anticipation

God gave us another day. Another sunrise. Another opportunity to choose better. To respond with character, integrity and a patience... that will wait for a sunrise. What will you choose?

go make a sunrise

The sunrise exists because blue and yellow remain who they are, yet hang out together. Together they create a gradient. Go make a sunrise.

My Top 20 : Week 2

If you slow down just enough, and look up you might notice a few things. Like someone turned off the light in the restroom while you were still in the restroom, the water delivery guy does not want a water, a determined child on a big wheel can keep up with the big bikes, and homemade ranch with a side of hugs are what the Midwest is made of.

fear

I quit my job. But I wasn’t unhappy. I wasn’t running away from anything. I was running toward something.

responding

We often miss how much control we have in our response. We claim "we had no choice," but it's our response to their words, no matter what those words are, that reveals our character. We have an opportunity, you and I. To receive feedback with curiosity and compassion. To choose a better way.

planning meeting

Meeting Notes: It's been a long time since we had a planning meeting. They were scheduled but I wasn't showing up because "I had a conflict." I was the conflict. So we met and we started at the beginning.

start slow

I chose to sit in the dark. Sometimes darkness is not a bad thing. It slows things down. In the evening after the sun sets and the sky darkens, your body prepares for sleep. For rest. It slows down. So I chose to sit in the dark. To listen to the rain. To start slow.... Continue Reading →

radiant gradient

It started to spit. I looked up at the cloudy sky and started to place my bets. Should I pack up and run to a covered shelter or wait it out... I chose the former and watched as the soft rain fell all around me. And then the sun came out and I smiled. A... Continue Reading →

pay attention 

Listen when I'm talking to you. Serious sentence with serious undertones. You're in big trouble mister... You have either heard and/or uttered this phrase countless times. Why? Maybe there was something that needed to be done, or not done, in the moments to come... and without this verbal instruction the recipient was sure to suffer... Continue Reading →

love fights

Have you ever had someone fight for you? Not the "step in and beat someone up for teasing you" kind of fighting... rather the kind of fight where someone pursues you and your love because despite whatever is going on, you are that worth it. This is the kind where someone chases you, (not in... Continue Reading →

reach out

On the heels of Christmas, one fire destroyed my cousin’s house and all of their belongings. Nothing is left. All the new things just gifted and opened are gone. All of the previous Christmases, birthdays, anniversaries, and every day momentos are gone. But… they are alive and unharmed. All eight of them. And then it... Continue Reading →

resolve

I sit here at the tail end of a cold, head pressure filled, mouth dry, teeth oddly achy, nose plugged (and yet miraculously runny at the same time). Laying in bed no longer felt good, so I made some coffee and cleared some space at the table for time with God. I open the Bible... Continue Reading →

different winds

The clouds are still rolling in, at 30 mph apparently (so says the weather channel app). It was worse all night, sustained ridiculous winds that never ceased and kept me up. My cup of coffee is pretty important this morning to get me going. And despite my whining over being tired, I am so thankful.... Continue Reading →

cream puffs & chili

I printed out my calendar for work on Monday. A color coded rainbow of where I need to be and who I need to meet with. Looks daunting. Should I dread it? Is work bad? Is it the necessary evil we make it out to be? Just a decades long drudgery until we can retire? No.... Continue Reading →

push pause

There is a lot of background noise (and foreground noise) in life. A lot of things going on that want or demand our attention. And when we're in the middle of a tough time, a tough relationship, a tough job... (fill in the blank)... every ask seems louder, every task more daunting. So what are... Continue Reading →

leaves change

I love fall. The trees go through a season of change every year. They don't freak out when their leaves fall off. The world is not ending. This change sets them up for something beautiful next year. Next year they will be taller and stronger than before. We have the opportunity to be stronger after... Continue Reading →

bring coffee

I complain that I'm too busy. Too many meetings. And now I laugh. Jesus was ridiculously busy. Everyone was scheduling meetings with him, speaking events, miracle performances, one on one sessions, interrupting his day... and yet he made time for God. Relationships require investments of time. Invest time every day with God (and bring coffee)... Continue Reading →

look up

I see a lot of screens in my life these days. This morning I am watching leaders on a big screen, typing notes on a tablet, and tweeting on my iPhone. So at lunch I took a moment to step outside, lay in the grass and look up. And in this moment I was thankful... Continue Reading →

one body

Today is a new day, but this body I am sitting in is the only one I get on this earth and there is a lot God has for me to do. Do I treat his gift with respect? Not often enough if I'm being honest. What choices will keep me alert and healthy so... Continue Reading →

approval jar

If I could store up "approval from others" in a jar, that would be the treasure I hold on to. That's my guilty pursuit and the thing that drives my decisions most days, unfortunately. I worry more about what you (reading this) will think of me. My boss. My coworkers. My employees. My parents. My... Continue Reading →

rebuild

It takes more than a day to rebuild. But it's worth it. There is a lot of history (and even recent stories in the news) of people destroying buildings. But the stories we hear about less, though they happen, are the people coming together to rebuild. Those stories aren't as enticing. Being patient, determined and... Continue Reading →

trust directions

One of my favorite scenes from Indiana Jones is when he has to walk across a chasm and trust there is a bridge beneath his feet even though he can't see it with his own eyes. That first step was a step of faith. He had to trust the directions and the instructions even though... Continue Reading →

follower

He changed. I changed. We're not the same people we were when we got married. He is a better man than he was when I met him, and he will tell you I am a better woman. So what changed? The advice that we listened to. There was a paralyzed man who was told that... Continue Reading →

dramatic lighting

I am thankful. It's been a rough 2-3 weeks for me. But today I find myself looking out the window and genuinely smiling. Not much has changed in my circumstances honestly, so why the smile? I can see colors. It sounds silly, but looking at the pond and the trees and the sky I realized... Continue Reading →

accomplished heart

This morning I wrote down the following prayer before I opened my devotional, "Thank you God for the morning & the sun. Quiet my heart and my mind to focus on you and not rush through you like a checkbox on a to-do list." Then I open my devotional and the title for today, "The... Continue Reading →

sunrise possibilities

I sat in simple wonder this morning. Not trying to solve a problem, make a to do list, or build my schedule for the day. I took a moment to sit, and see and listen. To feel a slight breeze in my hair and the warming sun on my face. To smell the faint hint... Continue Reading →

super powers

I always thought it would be awesome to be a super hero. I always wanted the ability to fly. Or to swim underwater without ever having to take a breath. Turns out we each have the same set of super powers. The ability to make people laugh, or cry, or fear. The way we talk... Continue Reading →

make your mark

My husband doesn't like when I wear lipstick. Not only does he dislike the texture when he kisses me, but more often than not, it leaves a mark. I don't blame him, he's not the one who chose to wear lipstick (thankfully) and yet my choice leaves a mark on him. Our choices leave marks... Continue Reading →

through the fog

Another week of humidity is upon us, fogging up the windows with long drips of condensation. So much that sometimes it's hard to see. My view is obstructed and I get a fuzzy incomplete picture of reality. Life is way too often like that. Things get in the way of the truth. We see one... Continue Reading →

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