Welcome to The Purpose Post!

Friday, October 24, 2014


Ha! That got your attention, didn't it? Well, no this isn't going to be a blog discussing the pros and cons of last Christmas' mega-hit. But I am going to riff a bit on the title of "Let It Go".

Which is apt, I suppose, as many of you might be feeling that way in general about the song which inspired the title. I mean, we have heard it a lot. A LOT. We like it, but we are ready for it to 'Go'. And although it's been awhile, it seems to be poking its little notes back out of the LAN systems of all the stores selling Elsa costumes, which I hear is a big seller this Halloween.

So maybe that's what prompted me to write on the blog again. I have been pretty busy in the past three years, but not busy blogging. Obviously. I let it go, but not in the way the song means. More like, I 'Let It Slip'. But I'm not letting it go.

No, Letting It Go at this stage of the game is more about reassessing priorities and boundaries. Assessing something means to place a value on it.  And while we cannot put a monetary value on such things as family, friends, passion, creativity, affection, et.al., we can look at what we spend our time upon. That's frequently a good assessment of the things in our lives.

While the blog may not command a high assessment, it is a treasured one. So I am going to do my best to post weekly. The blog's purpose may change. The title may change. But it will claim more of my attention.

Which leads me to the "Let It Go" thing. Because for this to grow in my assessment, something else will have to recede a bit. So here are some of the things I'm Letting Go of:

  • Perfectionism. Yes, I call myself a recovering perfectionist, which means I'm still working on it although it may seem like I'm 'cured'. But I am not. I continually have to fight it and kick it to the curb. It is an ugly, pervasive, pernicious troll of a characteristic; all the more so because it masquerades as a virtue:  "Don't you want it to be right? How can you accept mediocrity", etc. Ugh. I must remember to strive for excellence, not perfection. 
  • Procrastination. It stems from the first one. If it can't be perfect (because almost nothing ever is), then I'm going to wait until I've figured out how to make it perfect. Circular thinking at its best. Or rather, worst.
  • Mynocks. Huh?!? Geek alert here, but they are creatures from 'Star Wars'. They latch onto starships like the Milennium Falcon, start chewing on the power cables, and drain the ship of its energy. Han Solo had to shoo them off. You see where I'm going with this one. Look, I love my Mynocks in a big way. They are some of the most important people in my life.  But I need to learn to shoo them off (hopefully lovingly, but I'm not perfect!). You can land on my ship and go along for the ride, but you can't chew my power cables. 
  • Enough-edness. Again, huh? Let me explain. I will never be enough. There will always be someone smarter, more talented, richer, holier, better parent (oh, the Mommy Wars, stop already!!) etc. than I am. I will never be enough because I always want to get better. Not in a perfectionist way, but in a way that keeps me learning, growing, exploring. In a way that keeps me from stagnating. I don't want to be 'enough'. But with that comes vulnerability. We stop allowing ourselves to 'begin' something new. And even when we do, frequently there's a Mynock or a Perfectionist waiting to tear us down. I'm going to try new things, I'm warning you. And I just might stink at them until I get it right. 
So the blog starts anew. It will still have a Purpose, but it won't be Perfect. Because I'm Letting Go of that. I assessed its value and found it wanting, along with Procrastination, Mynocks and Enough-edness. Love, Laughter, Joy, Creativity; these are the things of value. 

Until next time!

Thursday, May 5, 2011


Today I am rebooting this blog. I haven't checked it in awhile and have been using links to update the blog, or so I thought. While the updates are coming through, they are not listing as blog entries. So all this time I thought I was contributing content. But when I finally checked the actual blog page....Really? 10 months since the last post?? Whoo boy! NOT what I intended!

But I can reboot. Start up again. Get re-focused. So here I go.

And isn't this what Jesus did for us? We just celebrated Easter, when we remember the redemptive sacrifice He made for us and the new life that awaits us. He gave us a second chance. An opportunity to reboot.

The great thing is that we don't just get one chance to have a second chance. If we blow it, we can still reboot. If we fail, we can ask forgiveness and reboot. Even if we have an EPIC FAIL, our "God is the God of second chances", as the VeggieTales song says.

Are you feeling like a failure today? Did something not go as you planned? Did you not act with integrity? Have you hurt someone?

You can reboot. Just ask Him. Our God IS the God of second chances!!

Smiles and Blessings,

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Great day yesterday with The Children's Chorus of San Antonio coaching Alexander Technique. They will be with SA Symphony on October 2nd!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Superhero Character

My son Evan has a best friend, Kenny. Many of you have followed Kenny's saga over the past two years, but for those who are new to The Purpose Post, a brief synopsis of Kenny's journey. Two years ago, just days after he turned five, the van in which Kenny was riding was t-boned. The vehicle hit right where Kenny was sitting. He sustained massive injuries to his spinal cord, and was hospitalized for 6 months.

Kenny practicing to be 'Aquaman'!
Thankfully and with God's great grace, Kenny is making amazing progress in his recovery! Just last week, he was able to take some very shaky steps in a swimming pool. This is a boy about whom some doctors said would never be able to move his legs again. You can view more of Kenny's story and progress at the Caring Bridge site link on the left.

Kenny just celebrated his seventh birthday and requested a Superman theme for his party this year. He rolled in to the party room with a huge smile and a Superman-style cape on; only his had a big 'K' in the center. His attitude in adversity is monumental. Kenny is truly the closest person I know to a real superhero!

We all have superheroes in our lives. Most of them don't think of themselves that way. I am very blessed to know several: a young single mom, a firefighter, a band teacher who spends a month before school starts with his students...Just the other day I ran into an acquaintance who is working at the new homeless shelter downtown. She is no doubt a hero to someone.

Being a superhero isn't just about the physical, either. Strength of character is just as important; more so, in fact. Are you getting tired of listening to the seemingly never-ending parade of people messing up and then having a million excuses and justifications for their motives? Bah. It's refreshing when you hear someone say, "I messed up. I did something wrong. I am sorry. I am ready to take the consequences." Even more so when they truly mean it.

Perhaps that is why King David is appealing to so many people. Almost everyone knows the story of David and Goliath. David became the greatest warrior king in the history of Israel. In his day, he was a superhero, strong and wise.

Most people also know the story of King David and Bathsheba. How he looked out over the city and saw a beautiful woman in her bath...and didn't do the right thing. How he had her husband Uriah killed and tried to act as if nothing had happened. But David knew the truth. And when God sent a prophet to chastise David, he said merely, "I have sinned against the Lord." That's all he said. No whiny explanations about women tempting him or how he was the King and could do whatever he wanted or how Uriah got in the way of the arrow that shot him. Nope. David admitted his mistake. And then did an amazing thing. He shut up. He took  responsibility and he shut up.

To me, this takes even more courage than facing a giant in battle. Admitting our mistakes and humbly asking forgiveness of the people we've hurt; risking embarrassment and gossip. This is superhuman character. The story of David is proof that even the best of us mess up. The good news is that, if we have a truly repentant heart, we can be forgiven. By God and by the people around us.

So how many superheroes do you know? A bunch, I'll bet. The caregiver for an ailing spouse or parent, the friend who rehabilitates abused dogs, the volunteer who makes sure the scout meeting happens. Maybe you could let them know how super you think they are. Do you have a friend fighting cancer or rebuilding a life after abuse? That takes superhuman strength of character, too. Say a prayer of thanksgiving for the example and the inspiration they bring to your life.

While you're at it, give yourself a pat on the back, too. Because you are probably a hero to someone. And don't worry if your cape gets a bit "wrinkled" at times! Just be a Character Superhero, admit it and ask for forgiveness. You'll get it from God. Chances are, from the people around you, as well.

P.S. Check out Kenny's amazing progress at the Caring Bridge link on the upper left!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Oatmeal for the Soul

I know, it's the thing your mom always made you eat for breakfast when you really wanted Cocoa Puffs. Now, it's the thing your doctor (or your spouse) is telling you to eat when you really want bacon and eggs. Oatmeal. Tan, mushy, sticky and bland. Boring.

Or is it?

I started eating oatmeal to help my cholesterol. It was creeping up, and I dislike taking medicine if I can manage my health in other ways. So,...heavy sigh...it was time to drop some pounds and hopefully, my hdl levels. Something unexpected happened, though.

My seven-year-old son started asking if he could have some, too. Eschewing waffles with syrup(!), he eyed my oatmeal one morning and requested a bowlful. My husband and I were speechless. Kids are supposed to hate this stuff, right?

We dished up a small quantity, thinking he'd take one bite and pull a face - yeech! Instead, he put a bit of butter, some sugar and some cinnamon on it and gobbled it up. Then he asked for more. And he's been having it every morning since. Amazing. The kid likes something healthy. How did that happen?

As I thought about it, I realized that part of the answer might be that the oatmeal was never presented to him as a healthy food or something that he had to eat. It just appeared in my bowl with a bit of butter and pepper and fruit and cinnamon. There was no commentary or coercion or parental wheedling involved. It was just...there. He got curious and he tried it. The fact that it is good for him is a bonus as far as he's concerned. And I am just glad he's eating it, even if he does add some sugar.

It got me thinking about how we 'do church'. We know it's good for us. It helps to center us, make us listen to and nurture our spiritual selves and resolve to do right with our lives. Then why do so many of us not like to go?

Some of us don't like to get up on Sunday morning. Some of us don't like being preached at. Some don't like the decor or the music or the people or the offering or the....., well, fill in the blank. Something we know we're supposed to like, but don't. It's boring, bland, mushy. Oatmeal for the soul.

Yum - blueberries!
Have you considered that the problem might not be the oatmeal, but what you add to it? Deconstructed, oatmeal is truly a wonderful gift. It is easy to grow. It is cheap, plentiful and filling. It is healthy and provides energy that gets you through the morning. Cooked well, it has amazing flavors: nuttiness and a bread-like quality in one little flake. It really is a kind of super-food! A foundation upon which to build a delicious meal.

Perhaps church is a bit like 'spiritual oatmeal' to some of us. Perhaps it has become a 'chore' because we were forced to 'eat' it. But just think, maybe if we add some 'toppings' we like, church could become a wonderful feast! Think about it: what if church was FUN? I don't mean a bounce-house in the sanctuary (although my seven-year-old would like that), but if you went to a church that was warm and joyous, filled with people serving its members and the community, would that make you more likely to 'eat your oatmeal'? Maybe you'd want to go to church. Maybe you'd get EXCITED about church! In Psalm 100, David tells us to:

"Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs." (vs.2)

See, like oatmeal, church doesn't have to be any one particular thing. There are some requirements: prayer, teaching, sacraments, confession and assurance. But other than the things we are given in the scriptures, we are able to add 'toppings'. It really doesn't matter if the carpet is green, blue or non-existent. If we have a choir or a band. If there are flowers or not. An auditorium or a steeple. These are matters of cultural and individual choice, not salvation issues.

So if you have kind of 'given up' on church, it could be that you still haven't been to a church that was the one for you. Please don't stop searching. Keep trying until you find the mix that 'tastes' satisfying to you. So how to do that? Start with church websites. They usually have a statement of faith and a run-down of missions and programs. If the church doesn't have a website, then that tells you something, too: it could be that traditional, old-fashioned church that you might prefer over a large, noisy congregation. (Or maybe they are just waiting for someone like you to help them set up that website!) If you like big, rock-band style worship, listen to your local Christian radio station. They are usually plugged in to which churches have vibrant services.

God has a place for you to be in a body that wants and needs your gifts and talents; a place for you to grow and be challenged. A place where you are called to be for service to his people. Whether they go to church or not.

And as to the oatmeal? Well, my cholesterol is lower by eleven points and in the 'normal' range. So it has been good for me to eat my oatmeal.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Fed Up

By now, many of you have heard the story of the JetBlue flight attendant who quit his job in a most spectacular way. 'Fed Up' with two squabbling passengers, one of whom cursed him out and banged him in the head with a suitcase, he delivered a 'colorful' farewell speech and grabbed a six-pack. He then deployed the emergency chute and exited the aircraft by sliding down like a kid at a water park. Hopefully it was worth it, for he is in no end of hot water and may even go to jail.

So much for his bad behavior. What about the woman who created the problem in the first place? Apparently she and another passenger got into a fight about overhead bins. Honestly, have we become so entitled that we cannot brook one moment of inconvenience? Is it really so awful to check your bag? (I know, they charge for that now...sigh...) Or to have to wait for a few minutes while they off-load it? Heaven forbid that a wheelchair-bound passenger has his chair put out before your Louis Vitton. Have we truly become so spoiled and uncivilized? And when you observe such nonsense, don't you feel a little 'Fed Up', too?

We've all seen it happen, and not just on an airliner. Ever been in line behind someone in a hurry at Starbuck's? How about some good old-fashioned road rage? Or, riffing on the airline theme,  felt that sinking pit in your stomach when you see the line for airport security? I admit that tries my patience. Can I be frank with you?  I just loathe it! 'Fed Up'!

As a recovering 'impatient-aholic', I have to check myself on these things. I get 'Fed Up', but that is no excuse for me making it worse by whining or having a tantrum. I try and get my sense of humor out when confronted with such situations - like the soccer-mom who was having a meltdown in the car behind me one day as we were picking up our children. The school zone is 20 mph, and there is usually a nice motorcycle officer ready to 'remind' you of that. So, impatient as I am, I go 20 mph. Well, one day the lady behind me was just 'Fed Up'. She was yelling at me and flinging her arms up, then started banging on her steering wheel. At first, I had a bad opinion of her, but then I got to watching how silly she looked, and it made me laugh out loud. I mean, what good was it doing? It didn't make me go any faster - I wasn't going to get a ticket to just make her feel better. Then I felt sorry for her. I have found myself in situations where I feel stressed for time, and it rarely brings out the best in me. And I realized that I must look just as ridiculous when I'm getting annoyed. That made me laugh, too.

It's things like this that make me think God must have a great sense of humor. He has to watch all of us get cranky and irritable and fussy. What a loving and grace-filled God we have that he does not get
'Fed Up' with us on a regular basis! Instead, he loves us and forgives our foibles; and gives us some practical advice for the times when we feel 'Fed Up'. In Ecclesiastes, chapter 5 he tells us:

"Do not be quick with your mouth,
do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God.
God is in heaven and you are on earth, 
so let your words be few.
As a dream comes when there are many cares,
so the speech of a fool when there are many words."

So the best thing to do when we're feeling 'Fed Up' is, to use an impolite term, to 'Shut Up'. Just be quiet for a minute. ...'do not be hasty in your heart...' and think before we speak. Remember mom telling you to, "count to ten before you say anything..."? It's still good advice, isn't it? Godly advice, for the next time we feel "Fed Up'.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

From Rick Warren: Everytime you take responsibility FOR someone,you take responsibility FROM them, creating dependency & weakening them.

About Me

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San Antonio, Texas
I am a certified life coach and would love to help you discover and live your life's purpose!