I SEE you

In the spring of 1989 I climbed in my car and made the trip alone to Grace, Idaho. I had made an appointment to meet with Ann’s parents to discuss my intention to marry their daughter.

Much to my chagrin, they asked me to dinner. I would have preferred a quick in-and-out kind of thing.

It seemed like all through dinner we talked about everything BUT a possible marriage to Ann. Who knew that we could spend so long talking about nothing?

At the time I really didn’t like to eat ice cream because it was so cold and made my teeth hurt. We laugh about it now, but you can imagine my discomfort when Ann’s dad came out with a bowl filled with what had to be a quart of ice cream.

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I waited for him to divide it up between the three of us, only to be horrified to see him return with two identical bowls, each filled with the same amount.

The huge bowl was my responsibility to make disappear.

This was going to be worse than I thought.

Continue reading I SEE you

I’m grateful for gratitude

Dear Friends,








Gratitude: the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness



That’s kind of it in a nutshell, isn’t it?




Gratitude is an exchange of kindness.




The world can use more kindness.



So can we.


Thank you for all the kindnesses you have shown me over the years that help bring us together, they always arrive just at the right time.



To express my gratitude, I’ll do my best to follow your example.



And send out as much kindness as possible.

Happy Holidays – truly.




Have we asked the refugees what it is they need?

I’ve become concerned the last few days over the anger regarding “what to do about the refugee problem.”

What concerns me more is some of the proposals that are being put out there.

And, of most concern, is that people are agreeing with these ideas.

american flagIt seems to me that these solutions are all about what we think is best for us – increased guarantee of protection from terrorism, or patting ourselves on the back for being so magnanimous.

It could certainly be a sign that we may be living more in fear and less in faith, more in pride and less in humility.

I’ve tried studying to gain a better understanding of the situation. The general consensus of the articles that make the most sense to me is that the real solution lies closer to where the refugees actually are, not about where we may or may not want them to be.

The argument shouldn’t be so much about what happens within our own borders, but more of what kind of change we can affect overseas.

Continue reading Have we asked the refugees what it is they need?

Anonymity breeds apathy

The world is in turmoil right now, some parts more than others.

In France, the wounds are raw and wide open; in the UK the wounds have scabbed over but are still tender and red around the edges.

In Syria, canon fire is taking off limbs – with no one to help staunch the bleeding.

globeHere in the United States we have scars that are more of a reminder of pain than source of immediate pain.

But we are understandably still pretty gun shy.

Each country has its own personal pain.

And fears.

Rightly so.

In the madness that is extremism, it only takes one to carry out terrorist acts – leaving a bloody trail of what were, to him, nameless strangers who were guilty for no other reason than they were there.

We are repulsed at the callousness and insanity of it all.

depression5For someone to act in such a way, they surely must be beyond feeling.


What causes someone to become that way?

Continue reading Anonymity breeds apathy

Offering humbly-confident prayers

When Alex and Nick were very young, we knew what they were doing all the time.

No, really, ALL the time.

It was incredibly exhausting.

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As they grew and we had witnessed enough wonderful choices and decisions, we stepped back a bit and parts of their day were their own.

Of course, we’d hear the pitter-patter of feet coming down the hall, giggles, and Nick emerging around the corner.

“Mom, Dad…wait just a minute.”

And then he’d disappear around the corner again and we could hear loud whispers of “what was I supposed to ask”, followed by an intense whisper by his sister of exactly what it was that she wanted.

We’d call “come out you two” and we’d wait for them to come, pushing each other a little so as to not be the one in front.

Soon they were on our laps and we’d talk about just what it was on their minds.

Quickly, however, this magical time disappeared and was replaced by more serious petitions about things that truly mattered to them.

Continue reading Offering humbly-confident prayers