A while back a friend hosted several pastors and I for a hunting trip on His ranch in Central Oregon. We were there for a few days, but while we were there our friend treated us like Kings. He guided us up and down the mountains, making sure each of us got a buck. He and his team paddled us across the lakes on his property, making sure each of us caught a trout. All the while, he never fired a shot or put a hook in the water. One early morning while watching the sunrise from on top of a hill, scouting for deer, he mentioned he’d only shot at one buck the entire time he owned the ranch. He simply said I like guiding more than hunting. It’s more fun.
Conflict resolution has not come easily for me in the past.
I’ve always waffled back and forth between avoiding arguments completely, so as not to be perceived as pushy or controlling; or confronting conflicts after the situation has already escalated beyond a simple misunderstanding, which of course meant I had a hard time controlling my temper and would lash out unnecessarily.
They call it “multi-tasking.” I call it annoying. When I read about the merits of efficiency and the need to get more things done at once, it is always written from the perspective of the person doing multiple things at the same time. I have never seen this modern habit described from the point of view of the person interacting with a multi-tasker.
When I walk into a colleague’s office and he is talking to me while simultaneously reading and responding to emails while his eyes dart to his iPhone’s text message alerts . . . I am not impressed with the ability to do several things at once. Honestly, I get frustrated because I do not believe he is listening to me. Over time this pattern has grated on me to the point I try to schedule our meetings in a conference room in an effort to disconnect his work station from our conversation.
Every morning Betsy and I wake up and check the people news. By people news I mean Twitter, Instagram and for Betsy, Facebook. I’m not on Facebook (which makes me morally superior in some way) and talk about who’s doing what in the world.
There are two things we can count on every morning. The first is picture’s of her baby sister (Betsy is the oldest of seven. Her parents adopted an overly cute baby last year) to which we will comment or tweet back “so cute”. I might as well have “so cute” on auto reply for anything sent to me by Betsy’s family. It would always be the appropriate response.
One way we can let people know they are important, is by letting them know that they are seen.
The people who have made me feel most alive have often just let me know I am seen. They’ve done this by making time for me, acknowledging something I’ve done for them, or calling out my strengths.
My friend Branden is a photographer from Portland. A couple of years ago he started a movement called Story Portrait, where he would take portraits of people, and then tell the story of why they were an amazing person. Branden started posting these photos on Instagram, and a movement started.
On the weekend we pour a little more cereal in your bowl. We hope you enjoy some reading from our regular contributors, some viral videos and other great finds from the internet. This is what we loved this week. Share your favorite articles and videos in the comments below.
It was one of those moments that moves in slow motion when you think back on it. My parents were sitting on the brown love seat in our living room. They turned off the TV and asked us to sit down.
“We are sorry”, were the first words out of their mouth.
My eyes met my brother’s, and then we looked back at my mom and dad. They continued to explain they were sorry for holding such strong and legalistic views on alcohol. Their extreme views were unhealthy, they said, and were isolating them from people they cared about, including family members who weren’t Christians.
While shooting Blue Like Jazz we watched hours and hours of auditions. There are four major parts in the film, and many more minor roles. For each role, hundreds may have inquired, and dozens or more sat down to film a reading. I admit the process was fun. Steve would send me his final list with links to the auditions, and I would chime in on the actors that best fit the parts. And I learned something invaluable about life while doing so. I learned that life is about finding the right role for you, and that being “rejected” for a part often has little to do with talent. I don’t remember seeing a single audition in which the actor or actress wasn’t exceptionally talented.
The first time I felt frustrated with the concept of submitting myself to God was when I was choosing where to go to college. I knew it was a big decision—maybe the biggest decision I had made up to that point in my life—so I invested my whole self into it. I researched, applied, and finally heard good news from several schools.
“Okay, God,” I said. “Where should I go?”
My twin daughters are two years old.
They love doing somersaults at gymnastics. Walking on the balance beam. Jumping in the foam pit. They love the zoo – the lumbering elephants and tall giraffes and howling monkeys. Rhinos scare them a little. They love home-made smoothies that Kari calls “Banana Drink.” (Pronounced ‘bo-nana dink’)