It was not a pleasant scene. I was chatting with two wonderful friends, Parker and Meg at their house when we were joined by two surprise guests—Mark and Abigail—who showed up to announce big news: They were pregnant with their first. They’d just had the ultrasound and the baby was healthy as a horse. And, wouldn’t you know, Mark’s employer was giving them a house so that there’d be enough room for Junior to run around, and their parents were just thrilled and oh isn’t God good?
I make a lot of decisions using intuition, which researchers are beginning to understand as more reliable and less mystical than previously thought. Intuition is really about pattern recognition, about subconsciously picking up on conflicting patterns in a situation. One of the more discussed examples of intuitive decision making has to do with a fire chief who, shortly after entering a burning house, commanded all his men leave the house immediately without really understanding why.
Have you ever done something wrong and then been irritated when someone told you to “look on the bright side?” Sometimes it just feels better to wallow in the sorrow of our own loss/failure without letting anything positive taint it. It’s like we don’t want to accept that anything good could come from the bad we caused.
In John 7, Jesus decides to go to Galilee and avoid Judea because the Jews in Judea were hatching a plan to kill Him. I often turn my faith into voodoo like seances and emotion-filled prayers in seeking God’s will, while Jesus Himself just uses common sense. I’m not going to Judea, He says, because […]
My friend Alicia and I used to meet for yoga a few times a week. We loved the strenuous workout, the relaxation… okay, mostly the strenuous workout. We were actresses in our forties and needed to stay fit. We were competitive, too, with the mindsets of our younger, more limber selves — a competition you can never win in yoga, by the way. It didn’t matter how often the teacher said, “Every body is different; don’t compare yourselves to others,” I’d still end up envying some chick who was doing a hand stand while the rest of us were in child’s pose.
My friend Ben, who is an accomplished photographer, told me a long time ago he got rid of the takers in his life. I’ve done the same, and it’s improved my life and relationships for the better. This is a harsh thing to talk about, because most of us think we are supposed to love and be accessible to everybody. But here’s the truth, if you were accessible to everybody, all the time, you’d be spent.
Our culture habitually judges people by the skewed subjective standard of personal experience. This means that we generally show compassion when it makes sense to us, is convenient, or makes us feel better about ourselves. However, our personal perception does not define reality for other people.
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