I am a Sin Addict

I lust. I greed. I hate. I anger. I envy. I worry. I’m lazy. I’m prideful. I fear. I’m self-righteous. I am a hypocrite. And I try really hard to keep you from knowing these things about me. I go to church. I pray. I attend Bible Study, where I reveal small snippets of how awful I truly am, just enough to make me feel (and look) like I am a humble person. I teach my kids about God. I do the Right Thing. Most people would say I am a Good Person. But am I really? If at my core I continue to sin, … [Read more...]

Communication: Back to the Basics Part 4

I hope that the first 3 parts of this series have been helpful reminders of simple ways to reduce conflict and improve communication in your marriages and families. There is one more golden rule to discuss, and this one is the primary phrase that we heard our parents and teachers say over and over when we were growing up. Rule #4: Treat others the way you want to be treated. When all else fails, and when we can’t remember in the heat of the moment those constructive suggestions that we wanted … [Read more...]

Back to the Basics: Improving Communication in Your Family (Part 2 of 4)

Last time you heard from me, I discussed the importance of remembering the “golden rules” we learned as children but may have forgotten or taken for granted as adults.  This often leads to hurting families and poor communication.  Today I would like to pick up where I left off by introducing Rule # 2, which, again, seems very basic, but how well do we really execute it consistently? “Listen while others are speaking.”  I bet if I asked ten people to rate themselves on their listening skills, … [Read more...]

Back to the Basics: Improving Communication in Your Family (Part 1)

Do you remember the ‘golden rules’ that we all learned in kindergarten—the simple rules that taught us how to be polite and respectful of others? We do a great job of being courteous to strangers and acquaintances, so we clearly remember what we have learned. So where does all of this knowledge go when we get home to our families and spouses, the people that matter the most to us? Why is it that we hurt the people most who mean the most to us? I think in large part it is due to the fact that we … [Read more...]

Responding To Thoughts Of Suicide

A loved one who is contemplating suicide presents a sad and frightening scenario, but one that might not be so terrifying if armed with the knowledge of how to respond appropriately. The biggest thing to keep in mind is that thoughts do NOT equal action…it is normal at times for anyone to think about what the world would be like if we were not in it, what the ‘afterlife’ consists of, how our problems would be better if we just didn’t have to deal with them, etc…death and suicide are logical … [Read more...]

The Power of Regret

When did having regrets become such a bad thing? I frequently hear people referring to unfortunate decisions they have made, and referencing the fact that they don’t regret what they have done almost with a sense of pride, or others subscribing to a philosophy of living without regret. I decided to spend some time thinking about why I inwardly cringe when I hear such things… after all, I certainly never desire for anyone to make decisions they will later regret. Nor do I want people to be so … [Read more...]

Building Up Your Marriage

Books and movies often come to a close shortly after a couple has learned of their passionate love for each other, and therefore live ‘happily ever after.’ But in real life, that’s where a true love story begins. Fairytales aside, it takes more than a passionate feeling to maintain a fulfilling and committed relationship, day in and day out, for the rest or your life. One of the biggest challenges after entering into a marriage is the inevitable shift from a ‘me’ focus to a ‘we’ focus. In a … [Read more...]

Healthy and Effective Ways to Deal with Depression

Depression is a nasty thing, and it will take over your life if you allow it. I’m not just referring to clinical depression, but also the depressed moods that we all experience occasionally. Despite feeling helpless and overwhelmed, there are ways that you can fight depression — you do have a say in what takes place in your mind! Admittedly, it is much more difficult to find the will and energy to do so when you are in its grips, but there are steps you can take that will help keep the situation … [Read more...]