Do You See What I See? Episode 2: The Pretender

I want you to do something that will feel silly:  Get in front of a mirror, your phone, tablet—whatever—and look at yourself for thirty seconds.  Try it.  Stare into your own face and start counting.

One.  Two.  Three …

It’s harder than it should be, isn’t it?

If you even made it to ten, I now have a question for you:  What did you see?

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Continue reading

Breaking Rules with Jesus

(Excerpt from a larger work)

[…] Do you see the slippery slope of rule-keeping?  I know a lot of people who are poster-child Christians (when the congregation is watching), but they are among the biggest sinners I know; sinners because they deny the free heart of a living God within them.  Rest assured, they know the stories, the history, and the liturgy, but they are gloomy cynics with painted on smiles, secretly filled with disdain, regret, and reproach.  They are trapped in a miserable existence living under the tyrannical supernatural master who they say loves them infinitely, but yet, they are drowning in a sad life of judgmental rule-following.  And that, friends, is sin at its very best—and worst.  I know, because I grew up in church and I’ve been this person for too many years.

To simplify, allow me to list some things that are definite sins:  Continue reading

Starting Over. Again.

Change is scary.  I’ve certainly avoided it many times in my life.  But it’s often for the better.

I once read a book (Creating Magic, I believe) by a former Disney executive who said that most leaders fail because they are afraid of change.  They’re terrified of making the wrong decision, so they linger, making no decision at all.  Eventually, they fall behind and fade away.  Disney, on the other hand, has a different policy.  They start with a simple question:  “Is this decision reversible?”  In other words, if it doesn’t work out, can we go back?  If the answer is yes, then they go for it.  You risk some disruption and annoyance, but the reward … oh, the reward!

That’s not a bad policy to follow.  In business or life.

As we are revamping our website (Empty Stone Ministry) and our blogs, it’s become necessary to just start over in some areas.  We’ll be dismantling our old blog site and building new, personal sites to give these writings a more personal flavor and less formal style.

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you find what you’re looking for, my friends.

-Bert