Posted March 1, 2018.
It’s been a bit more than a year and a half since I have written an essay for “Mark: My Words.” It feels good to be writing again. So why the hiatus?
Posted May 3, 2016.
We live in a society with high expectations for success – personal, relational, financial and professional. Though defined in many different ways and set in many different contexts, our pursuit of success is animated by both opportunities and threats. Some of us are motivated more by opportunities and channel our ambition through creativity and innovation….
Posted March 29, 2016.
Expectations for being right the first time are becoming very high – perhaps too high. We are told to pursue efficiency, productivity and to avoid risk through seasons and circumstances of life that are inherently messy. Limiting the scope of our ambitions and resisting the temptation to explore are often recommended strategies for success. While…
Posted February 19, 2016.
A recent article in the New York Times entitled, “How to Cultivate the Art of Serendipity,” has stirred my thinking. The author, Pagan Kennedy, draws our attention to the importance of finding fresh ideas hidden in the ordinary stuff of life. Among the many historic examples of serendipitous discoveries she describes, she reminds us of…
Posted December 31, 2015.
. . . I can’t resist. I hear the beguiling voice of a fresh opportunity as I turn the page to a new year. I will resolve to change . . . well . . . something. Maybe. I haven’t figured that part out yet. But I mean it this time. It’s too important…
Posted November 17, 2015.
Cynicism is cunning. It moves freely and quietly like a dense fog over a darkened horizon. Vision becomes limited, even distorted. Movement is slowed in its grip, cautious of what may be hidden. Uncertainty impairs judgment and entangles reason. Sometimes everything stops. Most of us have seasons of cynicism when the circumstances of our…
Posted October 26, 2015.
Every once in a while I check in with those who live a bit more on the intellectual fringes of American society. It’s not that I intend to follow the patterns of extremism, but I learn something about my own thinking as an educator when I look through the lenses of others. Extreme positions, while…
Posted October 1, 2015.
I first sat down in front of a personal computer in 1987. It felt strange to see the things I typed actually appear on a screen. I remember being stunned as I saw the text fill the first line I typed and the cursor magically jumped to the next line allowing me to keep typing….
Posted September 3, 2015.
I have a friend whose philosophy of life is: “In the end, people do what they want.” When you first hear these words, they seem a bit cynical and narcissistic. We quickly interpret the words to say, “In the end, I get what I want.” That’s not what he means. His expression is actually much…
Posted March 24, 2014.
Sometimes I ask friends and colleagues, who have spent significant portions of their lives working among those in poverty in developing countries, a single question: “If you were to bring friends from the community you are serving to the United States, what would they find most surprising?” The answer is almost always the same. “A grocery store.”