In ancient times, boys became men around twelve or thirteen. Girls became women when their bodies were capable of bearing children. But in modern times, we don’t consider someone an adult until much later. Maybe it’s when a boy gets a career. Maybe it’s when a girl gets married. I know I didn’t really feel like an adult until I was married, but even that was a stretch.
This gap in life is called adolescence. You’re no longer a child but you also aren’t an adult. Adolescence has become widely recognized as the time of self-discovery. Every child goes through this search—the search for a unique identity. They make mistakes, try new things, and challenge norms. Then at some point, self-discovery is achieved and they become an adult. (more…)
I just put the last periods on two new books I’m writing. Now comes the editing process.
I’ve noticed an interesting thing that happens when I write. I notice I drift away from my original goals. I get so lost in the flow and my thoughts, that I completely forget about what I really want to talk about,
So for so much of the editing process, I’m consulting a single sheet of information that will help keep me back on track. I have questions like: (more…)
I’ve had the chance to connect and hang out with some pretty high powered individuals. They’re the movers and shakers in the church world or in industry. I’ve also had the chance to meet up with some up-and-comers who are working on doing big things.
Every now and then, I get reached out to by some of these up-and-comers who’d love to meet up either by Skype or in person. The exchange goes a lot like: “Hey, I’d love to meet up with you. Any time you’re free in two or three weeks?”
That’s when I respond, “I have time today. Let’s meet up now.” (more…)
Did you see the Lord of the Rings films that Peter Jackson directed? I love the movies, and I love talking to others about the movies.
One of the common conversation pieces that comes up about the films (and books in general) is the problem of the eagles. At one point our hero of the story, Frodo, meets up with some gigantic eagles that rescue him from peril and take him part of the way to his destination—Mount Doom. From there, Frodo continues his travels to the still distant volcano where he can destroy the ring that is polluting the world with its power.
So many people are frustrated with the stories, because they wonder why the eagles didn’t just take Frodo to the mountain. Essentially, the third book would be completely unnecessary, because Frodo could just land on the mountain and throw the ring into the molten lava. Book complete.
But Gandalf, the god-like wizard who arranged the meet-up with the eagles, chose Frodo to have the finish the journey by himself. Why did he do that? (more…)
I’ve got a friend who wants to flex his entrepreneurial muscle. He’s a starter at his core. But he doesn’t know what idea to follow. He doesn’t know what his “one thing” is.
That’s a problem many entrepreneurial minds have. They have so many great ideas, they don’t know which one to go with. And the fear is that they’ll miss out on the huge idea and follow the small idea.
It’s a somewhat valid fear. If you’re wasting your time doing “good” things, you won’t have time to do the great things. Fortunately, though, I don’t know of any entrepreneur who has just one thing. (more…)
In ninth grade, I attended a great private school. It was one of those smaller, Christian schools that taught Latin. And it was the type where a teacher could smack you on the back of the head with a ruler if you weren’t doing your schoolwork during the assigned time. All of the faculty and parents seemed to be okay with that. Fortunately, I never had a problem with any of my teachers or the administration. I was a straight-A student and all of my teachers loved me.
But one day, my Latin teacher asked me to come by his office after class. He sat me down and said, “I don’t think you’re living up to your full potential.”
Frankly, this baffled me. I mean, yes I was getting a 95 on my test when I could have gotten 100, but that was still an A. Those extra points don’t matter. A 95 is a 4.0 on the GPA scale. A 100 is a 4.0 on the GPA scale. And guess what? So is a 90. (more…)
I wouldn’t call myself a paranoid person. But there are times I find myself dwelling on irrational fears. For instance, sometimes when I’m driving my car on a nice day, I put my arm out the window to feel the cool air between my fingers. In that instance, a small fear creeps into my mind. What if a car comes by and severs my hand? How would I be able to write and do my job without a left hand? For the next few minutes, I imagine myself sitting at a computer with only one hand, pecking away like a hen at corn on the ground. Or I imagine I’ll have to hire a secretary who will write down all my thoughts as I dictate them to her. Of course I’ll need to become better at public speaking, otherwise the writing will be atrocious. I wrote so much better than I speak. (more…)
During orientation at college, I learned that knowledge made you a better person. The key to every problem in the world—war, poverty, hate—was a more intellectual population.
Unfortunately, after my first set of classes, I learned that education didn’t make you a better person. In fact, most of my professors were horrible people. Under the guise of intellectualism and tolerance, they spouted some of the most hateful and intolerant things I’ve ever heard. They were the liberal version of Bible-thumping hellfire preachers.
So I soon came to the conclusion that education ensured you would be successful. Only, that newfound knowledge didn’t last for very long when I met professors who were complaining that a Bachelors degree wasn’t worth anything anymore. If you want to really be successful, you have to have a Masters or Doctoral degree. That would ensure your success. (more…)
What do you do if you find that all your friends are losers and life-suckers…if you find your friends are taking you places you don’t want to go and draining all of your life energy so you just want to give up on life.
Okay, so maybe all your friends aren’t that bad. But maybe you find that your friends are encouraging folks. They aren’t the type who make you want to risk. In fact, they seem to be the ones who discourage innovation and individuality. These are the types who seem to call you and ask to hang out, while the ones who would be the best type of people to hang out seem to be busy with all their own friends.
This happens often. The people who are the most life-giving and inspiring are the ones everyone wants to hang around. While the ones who aren’t…well…they’re the ones who have time to call you up and ask you to come over to their house. They’re the ones who are willing to dog you about going out drinking with them on a Friday night. (more…)
I talked last week quite a bit about the people you naturally attract. It’s a chance for you to influence others for the positive—for individuality, risk, passion for God, etc.
But what if you attract the wrong kind of people? The truth is, some of the people I’ve attracted in my life are not necessarily the types of people I want to hang around with. A sportscaster named Charlie Jones said, “You will be the same person in five years as you are today except for the people you meet and the books you read.” Those people and those books will either take you closer to the person you want to be or further away from it.
1 Corinthians 15:33 says it like this: Stop being deceived: “Wicked friends lead to evil ends.” (more…)