Self-preservation

Self-preservation

Self-preservation is not all bad. If you are being chased by a bear or mountain cat, it is helpful. Or securing your own oxygen mask before trying to assist others on a plane that’s going down. Seems logical. But there is another type of self-preservation. It is an inner voice that says, “Every man for himself.”  I was sitting in a lifeboat...

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A Tool or a Weapon

A Tool or a Weapon

The knife. It is a simple form that has been around a long time. It has many uses: opening bags of seed, cutting vegetables, extracting splinters, prying staples, cleaning teeth, sharpening pencils, cutting zip ties, removing gum from hair. But it is also true that the blade has been used to kill many a man. So which is it, a tool or a weapon? It...

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A Bunch of Bull

A Bunch of Bull

We were at a family reunion when I discovered this relic of a carnival game. It is in the same genre as the High Striker (the one where you swing a mallet to ring a bell). You literally grab the bull by the horns and squeeze. It is an awkward movement. I’m not really sure which muscle groups I was using but my rib cage hurt for a few days after....

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Jumping for Joy

Jumping for Joy

The world is a heavy place and there are serious people everywhere. There is important work to be done and there are pressing battles that ask for our enlistment. These responsibilities require us to be sober and on point. But what do we do with all the weight? Are we supposed to work without sleeping and keep our guard up indefinitely? Instead,...

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Get the tile on the wall

Get the tile on the wall

I have unfinished work. There are times I forget about the ant and drift in laziness. But there are other forces at play causing drag in my work.  The two main factors are equal but opposite. On one hand there is too much to do. The workload is overwhelming so sometimes I do nothing. Then there are times I work until the point of exhaustion —...

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Who are we listening to?

Who are we listening to?

Who are we listening to? Our waking hours are saturated by an unending flow of information. We have open access to all the content we could ever want and the content we don’t.  The problem is two-fold. First, there is too much. Our minds and hearts can’t contain the flood. Second, there are very few filters in place to sift out bad information....

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Value of a Thing

Value of a Thing

I read a story about a man who inherited a blanket. After his grandmother died and his family members finished “pillaging” her house, he went to sift through what remained. Among her possessions was a dingy blanket no one wanted. He recalled his grandmother had used it for a birthing bed when one of the cats had kittens. He took it home and...

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We Are Small

We Are Small

Usually we act like we are big. We give the finger to people in cars. We kick over anthills. And we use keyboards like machine guns. Also we act like we are smart. We know how to replace livers. We know how to build tiny robots. And we know how to cut apart atoms to blow stuff up. But the truth is we are not that big and we are not that smart. We...

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Stuff That Needs to Die

Stuff That Needs to Die

Healthy soil contains organic matter, which is made from things that have died. The dead matter becomes worm food. As the matter is consumed, nutrients are released that feed other living things like plants. All this to say, decay leads to regeneration. Jesus compared the human heart to soil. Some hearts are hard and cracked, a feeding ground for...

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