embarrassing

The Institution of Marriage

Recently, a good friend shared an article that  was published in the New York edition of the New York Times that was later reposted online and appears on the New York Time’s website (tinyurl.com/nsyb3gk). The article is titled “The Divorce Surge Is Over, but the Myth Lives On” and  discusses how, despite the drop in the divorce rate, the media and public at large continues to throw around the “50% of all marriages end in divorce” statistic. This led to a discussion of just how tricky statistic can be and how difficult it can be to overcome held assumptions (aka perceptions). In my doctoral dissertation I wrote about marriage and divorce in America and thought I would share some of that here today. Continue reading

more_flowers_Marilyn_Anderes

Advance Praise for: A Marriage between Perception and Reality

 

This book is a must read for anyone longing for improvement in their marriage relationship—and that ought to be all of us. Backed by years of counseling expertise, Dr. Jason Karampatsos is a trustworthy source for helping to make your marriage and mine all that God longs for it to be. He helps those of us who are married to discover how perspectives and perceptions form expectations, how dangerous inappropriate expectations can be, and what to do to foster change. Although this book offers great information, the hope held out for all readers is transformation. Continue reading

Shoot for the Moon

Shoot for the Moon

One of my personal favorite quotations from C.S. Lewis is, “Aim at Heaven and you will get Earth ‘thrown in': aim at Earth and you will get neither.” I love this quote because there is so much packed into it, as it is true on so many levels from so many different perspectives. This is what I would like us to zero in on at this point: What you are aiming for matters. If we set our goals low, too low, we will never get off the ground. Set your goals ridiculously high, and you just might do some amazing things en route to your goal. With my apologies to C.S. Lewis, I have often paraphrased his quote by saying, “Shoot for the moon; that way you will at least clear the fence.” Continue reading

marathon

Never Run Alone

Today my wife logged in her 3,001st mile since she started running just 3 ½ years ago. I couldn’t be any more proud of her. Sure she has a wall of bibs, medals, and a closet full of race shirts and jackets, but it is her steady persistence that has encouraged me so much over the past few years. Greg Henderson, former pro bicyclist, famously once said; “Training is like fighting with a gorilla. You don’t stop when you’re tired. You stop when the gorilla is tired.” Continue reading

metro

Catching the Wrong Train

Yesterday I had the chance to once again travel into Washington DC to participate in the Potomac Ministry Network’s NEXT. This time around John May and Mark Batterson had invited Darren Hileman to join them in challenging young leaders take the “NEXT step in their life and ministry”. As has been the case over the past few years, I feverishly took notes in my Moleskine I received as a gift during my first two-day NEXT and I coordinated with a close friend to meet me at Union Station early in the morning to debrief on life and ministry. I have writer’s cramp this morning from trying to write down Darren Hileman’s one-liners and from trying to keep up with Mark Batterson insights on National Community Church’s “18 years of runway”, but there is one thing that I took away from the day that was never spoken of in the meeting space below Ebenezer’s Coffee House: I have never taken the wrong train. Continue reading

presents

All I Want for Christmas

Say what you mean, and mean what you say. I say it over and over again in working with couples struggling to connect. One of the challenges that they need to overcome is this innate tendency to not truly say what they mean and to not mean what they say. Think about it. Today is sandwiched in between Black Friday and Cyber Monday (no disrespect meant to Small Business Saturday), and the Christmas shopping season is officially in high gear, but there will still be someone out there who will tell their spouse, “Oh, you do not need to buy me anything for Christmas this year.” They will say it, but they will be lying through their teeth.

 

Lying may be a strong word, but it is the best way to describe it. Truth be told, the person they are lying to most is themselves. Perhaps they fear being disappointed, they feel that if they do not ask for anything then they will not be disappointed when the 25th of December rolls around and there are no packages with their name on it from that special loved one. Continue reading

led

It all starts with perspective

Our perspectives are the objective, rational observations of objects or events. Our perspectives are the literal point of view from where we are standing. Our perceptions are the subjective interpretation of those observations. Our perspectives inform our perceptions and it is our perceptions that focus on emotionally connecting the dots of what we saw and subjectively formulating what it means to us. If our perspective is not providing us with correct or helpful information, then naturally our perception will be biased and impaired. Continue reading

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at best heretical…

“New perspectives are necessary, but they are not sufficient in bringing health and wholeness to a person or relationship. A new perspective needs to inform, challenge, and influence one’s perceptions if health is the goal…There was a time when our perspectives informed us that the world was flat, and our perception was that anyone who thought otherwise was wrong at best or heretical or worst.” -Jason Karampatsos, PhD

Catalyst
reflections