Acknowledged Emotions are Good Emotions

It’s been two years since the Disney/Pixar release of the movie Inside Out, a film set inside the mind of an 11-year-old girl named Riley. If you haven’t seen it, the main characters are actually Riley’s emotions: Joy, Sadness, Fear, Anger, and Disgust. The movie follows the antics of these 5 emotions as Riley’s family moves across the country to a new home in San Francisco.  The filmmakers show us the mayhem caused as each of her emotions try to control her behavior in their own distinct ways.  It is a complicated film and it makes several good points, but … continue reading…

Emotionally Healthy vs. Spiritually Healthy

Amy Volstad pix

These two concepts are so important in how we relate to God and how we relate to others because they were so central to Jesus’ heart. In Matthew 22:36-40 the disciples asked Jesus what is the greatest commandment. He answered, “Love God with all your heart and with all your SOUL (how can we love God with our soul if we don’t even understand our souls?) and with all your mind. The second is to Love your neighbor as yourself. (How can we do that if we don’t know how to relate?) but that’s for another day! Today, let’s look … continue reading…

Influence

Recently I watched 13 Reasons Why, a sad and grim show on Netflix about a girl who kills herself and leaves 13 tapes behind explaining that the reason she did so was because the people in her life failed her. Most of those people are other students at her high school.  In response to the show, there has been an outcry in the press about how the show failed to address mental health issues and unfairly cast blame.  I can understand that reaction – I share the stomach-churning knee-jerk refusal to believe that we are really capable of causing that … continue reading…

Why Can’t We Be Friends?

As I typed the title, the song started in my head. I apologize if it’s now lodged in yours. The Apostle Paul, in his second letter to the church in Corinth, reminds us that we have been given the ministry of reconciliation.  Some may view this ministry as evangelistic, or some may see it as social justice. I see it as both. I don’t think you can separate the love of Jesus from social justice and actually achieve justice (hence our current legal system). I also don’t think you can divorce social justice from the love of Jesus and be … continue reading…

How to Hire the Right Spouse

Companies go to great lengths to write job descriptions and analyze the psychological profile of a potential hire. But when it comes to choosing a spouse, most of us just wing it and pray it works out. Bill Hybels, in his book Courageous Leadership, outlines three qualities to look for in a potential hire: character, chemistry, competency. What if we applied this to finding a spouse? Most of us choose a spouse solely on chemistry. While chemistry is certainly important and serves as an indicator of compatibility, it changes with time. The chemistry, or emotional connection that my wife and I had … continue reading…