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Sunday, May 30, 2021


 I recently read Hearing God: Developing a Conversational Relationship with God, by Dallas Willard (2012). 

In this book, DW leads us through a careful consideration of what it really means to communicate with the God of our understanding, deeply, meaningfully, continually.

My top takeaways:

·     The Bible – THE word of God – is not EVERY word of God.

·     Our conversation with God should be similar to that which we have with a spouse or dear friend, simply a continuation of the one begun years ago.

·     Real communication is a two-way street that is only substantive when both parties choose to be engaged. It is bogus and hollow when either party doesn’t.

·     God can and does communicate with us through a wide array of media: the Bible, other humans, our spirit, music, nature, events, …

·     Just as with the other beings in our lives (not just the human ones), the quality of the communications is directly proportional to the depth of our relationship with one another.

·     Presence is a powerful medium of communication, both spoken and non-spoken.

·     A very nice recipe for learning: Read > Reflect > Respond > Rest.

·     Our faith walk is about sense-making, us making sense of our existence and purpose. We can only do so via a communicative relationship with God.

My favorite quote(s):

“God is not looking for a holy place. Places are holy because God is there.” (p. 97)

    “Great faith, like great strength in general, is revealed by the ease of its workings.” (p. 156)


    “We are required to “bet our life” that the visible world, while real, is not reality itself.” (p. 284)


    “Spiritual people are not those who engage in certain spiritual practices; they are those who draw their life from a conversational relationship with God.” (p. 288)

This book helped me think about my relationship to the God of my understanding, and about how I might make that relationship even richer. 

Thanks for the recommendation, LP.

Monday, May 24, 2021


 Somehow, I got old.

I wasn't really aiming for it, but here I am. And, I'm happy to be here. Old, that is.

As I heard another oldie say a few years ago, "I can see the finish line from here." True enough. 

I often reflect on what I might have done better over the years, but I don't perseverate about it. Just a look-back and think-forward process. There is very little about what I did/didn't do in the past that can be changed now. 

What I CAN do is apply that knowledge to the remaining years available to me. I know a few of the things I want to focus on with the days remaining:

> LOVE - those whom God has brought into my sphere, freely and fully.

> WORK - predominantly on those things I deem consequential (and not so much on the other).

> ABSORB - as appreciatively as possible all the blessings with which I have been gifted.

> COMMUNICATE - deeply with others, asking and listening with my full being, probing to learn.

> LEARN - as much as I can, as fast as I can.

> TEACH - what I have learned, generously and often, right up to the last breath.

Not to worry. The homestretch is a nice view.

Sunday, May 16, 2021


 It is widely believed that blood is the life-sustaining medium. Blood has three primary functions in our bodies: transportation, protection, and regulation.

Blood transports good stuff (oxygen, nutrients, etc.) into to each cell of the body, and it transports not-so-good stuff (carbon dioxide, waste materials, etc.) out.

Blood also serves as the lead element of the "homeland security" system of the body. It carries around a host of "first responders" that initiate the protective response of the body when unhealthy invaders are at the door.

Blood also plays a regulatory role, serving as the bridge medium between and among all the integrated systems that make up our bodies (respiratory, digestive, muscular, etc.). It helps keep the interface among/between those systems functional and smoothly operating. 

The best leaders I know are superb communicators. They effectively use varying types of communications methodologies as a sort of "blood" of the organization. 

Those wise leaders know full well that the health of the organizational "blood" - communications - is the upstream determinate of the health of the organization.

Sunday, May 9, 2021


We said our final farewells to another long-time friend this week. Those "good-bye" events seem to be coming more frequently these days.

While painful, attending memorial services always prompt some reflection on the WHY instead of the What and the How.

Clearly, we are all on a journey toward our last day, our last breath, on this planet. None are exempt. 

For some, it's a very long walk. Even so, those long lives are immensely varied in the levels of joy and pain they experience. 

For others, those life-walks are short indeed. Some, even in utero. Through the millennia, countless billions of parents have laid children to rest; from childhood diseases, tragic accidents, casualties of war...

Important to remember is that our life journey is NOT the destination. We are all, every one of us, moving toward that same moment in time: the one just AFTER our last breath here. 

Depending on our personal beliefs and faith, that first breath in the next journey has EVERYTHING to do with WHY we take each step in the current one. 

Either way, THIS is not the destination. 

Safe travels.

Sunday, May 2, 2021


 The wisest leaders I know work diligently to garner buy-in from stakeholders.

Why? They understand that agency is by far a better force multiplier than compliance.

When organizational members enthusiastically and energetically invest in the work (as opposed to being, or feeling, "forced" to it), rather amazing outcomes ensue.

Christensen refers to it as a mindset of "covenant" vs "contract."

Hagel, et al, describe it as "pull" vs "push" leadership.

Schlechty articulates it as gaining the highest levels of engagement.

Agency = High Commitment + High Effort

An aspiration well worth pursuing. 

Maybe that's why those wise leaders are so diligent in that regard.