Category Archives: Life

2017 > 2016


Imagine a year from now…

You’re looking back on your year thinking to yourself: “What a year I’ve had!”

Goals in all areas of your life were getting ticked off your list.

Health goals. Financial goals. Relationship goals.

Goals you’d been trying to accomplish for years. Finally behind you.

And it all started with this:

Best Year Ever 2017

I have been using Hyatt’s Best Year Ever system for the last 2 years to make significant progress on some of my biggest goals in my life.

When Hyatt’s group asked me to get the word out about BYE I didn’t hesitate because it has made such a difference in my life.

I’ve learned how to set AACTIONable goals that are clear and consistent with what I’ve determined is most important to me.

I’ve learned how to keep my goals in front of me at all times in the year making it harder to ignore or forget.

I’ve learned how to celebrate when I reach my goals and how to readjust or identify what might have gone wrong in missing the mark in a healthy way so that I can regroup and move forward.

I really think that if you are serious about making 2017 a better year than the dumpster fire that was 2016… Best Year Ever is for you!


P.S. You can’t just “hope” that 2017 will be your
best year ever. You need a roadmap. This
will show you how.

Check out Best Year Ever today!

Get Ready for 2017


Is 2017 sneaking up on you?

I know the feeling…

In a little over a month a new year will be upon us. I’m not a big believer in resolutions but I am a believer is setting goals (BHAGGGs – Big Hairy Audacious God Given Goals!). These goals aren’t just about what I want to do or accomplish. They are about the person – the disciple, husband, father, leader, and friend- I want to become.

Right now, I’m taking a few days away with the family to celebrate Thanksgiving. The whole point of this vacation is to connect – connect with God, my wife, my kids, and… myself. I’m giving thanks for the things that happened this year – good and not so good – and I’m giving thanks for the things that are on the horizon. I want to do some great things this next year, but mostly I just want to enjoy the life God has given me and keep loving and leading those he has given me. I want to make a dent in their worlds.

If there is one secret to making the most out of a new year it is this…

To make the new year count all you need to do is simply take a few moments to prepare for it.

That’s why I love this (free!) PDF download from my friend, Micheal Hyatt:

Downlaod a free copy of Achieve What Matters in 2017 for FREE! 

In it, 30+ well known influencers all share the most
important thing they do to set themselves up for a
banner year.

It’s a who’s who of succesful people — Tony Robbins,
John Maxwell, Dave Ramsey, Chalene Johnson, and Andy
Andrews, plus more than 20 leaders.

Access to their answers is all yours (at no cost) here:

Achieve What Matters Most

I hope you’ll check it out and that it will set you on a path to preparing for a great 2017!

P.S. This free PDF is a wealth of wisdom to kickstart
2017. If you’ve felt stuck for a while, don’t miss it.

P.P.S. I’ll have more access to resources from Michael Hyatt and a great opportunity for you to lay down some BHAGGGs for yourself and family so that you can make 2017 your best year ever. Stay tuned!

Workout Wednesday 002

Before we begin, watch this video.

If that doesn’t get you motivated I don’t know what will.

I’ve had a few people ask me, “What are you training for?”

To be honest, the answer is, “Life.”

Today I turn 35. 2 months ago I dodged a bullet. I should have been in a coma or suffering a stroke or shuffling off this mortal coil. Instead I got a huge wake-up call. No more pressing the snooze button on my health. Something had to give. Something had to change. Not tomorrow. Today. Immediately. Now.

Thing is, you’re headed upstream. And when you make that choice, when you decide to turn your back on what’s comfortable and what’s safe and what some would call “common sense”, well that’s day 1. From there it only gets tougher.

So just make sure this is something you want. Because the easy way out will always be there, ready to wash you away, all you have to do is pick up your feet.

If you are going to get healthy, then don’t wait. Do something, anything. Get moving. Eat better. Rest more. Just start.

We will talk about the reasons WHY later. We’ll nail down the details of WHAT you want to accomplish at another time. We’ll plan HOW you’ll get there down the road.

Today is about starting. One foot in front of the other. No more excuses. Don’t wait another day.

Rise and Shine, Baby!

Workout Wednesday 001

Last week I shared with you how I was recently diagnosed with diabetes T2 and that through exercise and diet I have been able to get a handle on the disease and see some success when it comes to my physical health. I shared my story because I also want to help and motivate others who may be struggling with their health – physical, emotional, and spiritual health. Each Wednesday I want to post something related to getting healthy in a weekly feature called Workout Wednesday.

To kick it off, I wanted to write a fun post about some of the things that I am currently using to help me at the gym. From equipment to workouts to gear check out these 5 Things That I Use to Workout and then tell me what you are using to get healthy in the comments before you leave.

Have a great day and get healthy!

5 Things That I Use to Work Out

1) The Machine

Last week I felt like I was in high school again. I lifted weights MWF and then ran/conditioned on TTh.

Memories, pressed between the pages of my mind…

Sorry, I’m back. I am in love with this machine. As you can see all of the weights are mounted to the side of the machine so no walking around trying to find the right plate. I can do all of my barbell exercises (squat, deadlift, clean, bench, overhead press) at this rack, Love, love, love it. So far when I’ve gone up to the gym to work out this corner has been empty so I proclaim this machine for me and my people. I need a flag.

2) The Tunes

You can’t work out with out music.

Well, you can… but at what cost? I believe in living.

3) The Chute

I’m a chugger. I don’t take sips. I’m not a bird. I’m a sashquatch except, despite what you may believe about me, I have a small mouth. In my zeal to remain hydrated more water can get on my shirt than in my body. That’s why I love my Camelbak Chute. Not only does the bottle fit in my car cupholder but the spigot on the lid is the perfect size for gulping down larger amounts of water fast.

Get you one: Camelbak Chute


4) The App

I haven’t lifted weights in over a decade. I knew that I wanted to add strength training to my running but I had know idea where to start. I was reading an article about training for an event I was interested in and I came across and the 5×5  workout. The site claims that this program is “the simplest workout to gain strength.” While it is too early to gage the truth of that entire statement I will say that this is a simple strength workout that puts you through the paces, is fun, engaging, and challenging. The idea is simple 3 workouts every other day, 5 sets or 5 reps. That’s it. The app helps you keep tabs on your progress, lets you watch training videos, and even gives you an audible prompt when it is time to quit resting between sets and get after it. In a few weeks, I should know if this program works but until then I am enjoying get back under the bar and pumping some iron.

Check out

The 5×5 Workout Plan

5) The Beard

I’m growing my beard out until I hit a particular weight goal I’ve set for myself. Now, I have no intention to become the TX cousin of Duck Dynasty. I will trim and taper and take care of the beard but I am keeping it until (at least) until I hit my goal. That means that I have to endure my little girl grabbing fistfuls of beard and yanking as hard as she can. I’ll have to tough out the heat in the coming months. I’ll also have to answer questions as to wether or not I dye it this color red (Thank You St Paddy’s Day). But you know what… I don’t mind any of it. Beards are sweet. Achievements are even sweeter.

What motivates you to workout or what are you currently using that has helped you stay in the game, break a sweat, or stay motivated?

Breaking News Alert!

Do Not Be Afraid.

These 4 words appear over 70 times in the Old and New Testament.

Do not be afraid… when you don’t know what will happen next.

Do not be afraid… when God’s promises seem far away.

Do not be afraid… when the enemy looms large.

Do not be afraid… when armies surround you.

Do not be afraid… when you carry out God’s calling.

Do not be afraid… when rumors abound.

Do not be afraid… when discouragement is all you see.

Do not be afraid… when you feel as if no one hears you.

Do not be afraid… when you can’t understand all that is happening around you.

Do not be afraid… when you feel alone.

Do not be afraid… when all you experience is pain and turmoil.

Do Not Be Afraid.

There is a lot going on right now in our world. Hospital visits. Illnesses. Cancer. Layoffs. Stress. Pressure to conform. Planes being shot out of the sky. Ground wars. Work place drama. Hurt feelings. Confusion. Loneliness. Depression. Anxiety.

When fear grips us, often times we react in ways that are contrary to how God would have us respond. We may lash to at those closest to us or retreat back to the relative safety of our own homes. We may look for blame or we may begin to resent a particular people group. We respond to the things that scare us in fear rather than in faith.

Paul tells us in Eph 5 to “Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. (Ephesians 5:1–2)”

If you want to overcome fear, look to Jesus. His example of facing fear and standing firm didn’t come from a cereal box. If didn’t come from his strong backbone or situational ethics class. This ability to overcome fear came to him through the Holy Spirit and faith in a God who keeps his covenant of love.

So today, before you look at another news article… before you read another headline or watch another breaking news alert…

Remember, our Savior faced the cross for you. Remember, our Savior died for you. Remember, our Savior, conquered the power of sin and death for you. Remember, our Savior is still firmly in charge and is coming back for you.

Do Not Be Afraid.

The War Within

“Never give in–never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense. Never yield to force; never yield to the apparently overwhelming might of the enemy.” – Winston Churchill

Every feel like you just can’t get any traction? No matter how hard you try, no matter what you do, no matter the preparation? We all have plans and visions but often life gets in the way and we abandon these hopes and dreams before we can even get started.

Take for example what happened to me yesterday morning: I wanted to schedule a mid-morning workout so that I could get in a run before lunch. In order to do that I had to plan my day, get up a bit earlier, eat a good breakfast, get the kids off to school, and crush my morning tasks before 11am.

I hit everyone of those targets like a boss! As I gathered up my keys and wallet to head to the gym I suddenly realized that I left my hat at home. (I’ve been growing out my hair and my luxurious mane keeps getting in my face.) “Oh well, good try. I guess you’ll have to wait until later to run.”

I pushed back. “No worries,” I thought. “I’ll swing by the house and grab one. It’s on the way.”

As I pulled out of the parking lot I remembered that I had left my gym lock on my desk. “Oh well, better luck next time. Don’t want someone to steal your stuff.”

I let out an audible sigh groan and determined that I would grab my hat from the house, head back to the building, grab the lock, and then, finally, get to the gym.

Once at the gym, I put on my running gear and then put on my wireless headphones. Dead.

“Are you kidding me!?!?!” I thought. I wanted to leave and come back later. Fortunately, I pictured Eric Liddell kicking me in the shin for giving up because the battery had died on my headphones so that didn’t detain me for too long. (And Yes, in my vision Liddell kicked me dramatically and in slow motion.)

Now, I was about 15-20 minutes past the time I had wanted to start my workout and as I headed to my favorite treadmill I got a call from my wife. I stepped to the side to answer my phone and watched as another gentleman got on my favorite treadmill and start walking backwards on it. He. was. walking. backwards.

“Ok! That’s it! I’m done. Maybe I’ll come back tonight!”

That’s when it hit me. The Voices WITHIN me are often louder than the voices around me.

Nobody in that gym was telling me to pack it in and give up. Nobody was encouraging me to put my jeans back on and go get a cheeseburger. No, the loudest voice of discouragement and of self-doubt was coming from inside my own head and heart.

The Voice Within was telling me that I was too messed up, that I was incomplete, and that I was lacking what I needed to fulfill the hopes and plans I had for my day.

Steven Pressfield, author of The War of Art, calls this The Voice of Resistance. The Resistance is “the most toxic force on the planet. To yield to Resistance deforms our spirit. It stunts us and makes us less than we are and were born to be.” The Resistance doesn’t come to play- it comes to destroy.

So how do we silence this Voice of Resistance? How can we defend ourselves from something so insidious and debilitating.

We overcome the Voice of Resistance by remembering our Identity. Author Jeff Goins believes that once we have a clear understanding about our identity, that clarity can and will move us to action.

In order to quiet those negative thoughts and feelings inside of me today, I had to remind myself who I was and why I was at the gym in the first place.

I was there because I AM A RUNNER.

I may not be very fast but, I AM A RUNNER.
I may not have a hat today but, I AM A RUNNER.
My headphones may not work but, I AM A RUNNER.
I may not feel like it but, I AM A RUNNER.

That’s my identity. I have a log of all my runs, some race bibs, and a couple of medals that says that’s who I am. When I presented the facts of who I am to The Resistance, he left me until a more opportune time. I got on another treadmill and hit the start button.

Walt Disney once said, “The difference in winning or losing is most often not quitting.”

What ever you do today, what ever obstacle you face from within or without, what ever voice is telling you to pack it in… REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE.


Watered-Down Love

Happy Valentine’s Day!

A few years ago I purchased the Bob Dylan Collection, a digital box set, from iTunes. The collection included every single Bob Dylan song, bootleg, and album from Bob Dylan (’62) to Modern Times (’06).

As I sifted through all the tracks, I came across a handful (ok, more than a handful) of songs that I had never heard before. One of the songs that I came across wasWatered-Down Love from the 1981 album Shot of Love.

The first time I listened to this song the lyrics seemed instantly familiar to me. The song is a contrast between pure love and the cheap, imitation that the world tries to pass off to us as love. Bob seems to say to us what Paul had to say to the church in Corinth.

Watered-Down Love
Shot of Love
Bob Dylan

Love that’s pure hopes all things,
Believes all things, won’t pull no strings,
Won’t sneak up into your room, tall, dark and handsome,
Capture your heart and hold it for ransom.

You don’t want a love that’s pure
You wanna drown love
You want a watered-down love

Love that’s pure, it don’t make no claims,
Intercedes for you ‘stead of casting you blame,
Will not deceive you or lead you to transgression,
Won’t write it up and make you sign a false confession.

You don’t want a love that’s pure
You wanna drown love
You want a watered-down love

Love that’s pure won’t lead you astray,
Won’t hold you back, won’t mess up your day,
Won’t pervert you, corrupt you with stupid wishes,
It don’t make you envious, it don’t make you suspicious.

You don’t want a love that’s pure
You wanna drown love
You want a watered-down love

Love that’s pure ain’t no accident,
Always on time, is always content,
An eternal flame, quietly burning,
Never needs to be proud, restlessly yearning.

You don’t want a love that’s pure
You wanna drown love
You want a watered-down love

I hope that no one would ever dedicate this song to you or me. Jesus said that people will know that we are his disciples by the way we love others. For too long, the people of God have been known more for what we hate than for what we love.

Paul writes, “If I speak in human or angelic tongues, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient, love is kind. Itdoes not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil butrejoices with the truth. It alwaysprotects, always trusts, alwayshopes, always perseveresLove never fails.” (1Corinthians 13:1-8)

Let’s resolve to live everyday loving those around us with a pure and unadulterated love. A love that lifts high the name of Jesus. A love that seeks to bring hope and healing. A love that is fueled by the Holy Spirit.

Let there be NO watered-down love around here.

An earlier version of this essay was posted on August 28, 2009.


Last Sunday, I began a new sermon series entitled, “Legacy.” All of us desire to leave something of worth to those we leave behind. Our legacy can be an inheritance, character traits, or a passion for a cause or people group. Leaving a legacy then is really about STEWARDSHIP.

Traditionally, when we have heard the word stewardship we automatically begin thinking about finances or writing a check to the church or another organization. Stewardship encompasses much more than just our money. Stewardship is about living the life that God has given us in such a way that all the glory and honor goes to Him.

If we are going to understand the true, biblical understanding of stewardship then we have to understand 3 things:

  1. God is the owner of everything. He owns our money. He owns our things. He owns our livelihoods, and ultimately, He owns our lives.
  2. We are merely stewards of all that God owns. When God created Adam and Eve, he made them stewards of the Garden. They were placed in charge of all that God created and they were given the responsibility of taking care of God’s creation. The same is true for us. We get confused when we begin to believe that everything we have is ours and that it is owned by us. We can get possessive. We can get territorial. We can get selfish. However, when we begin to see that everything we have – our families, our things, our relationships, our lives – has been entrusted to us to care for, tend, and nurture than that can change our hearts and the way we live.
  3. We have the responsibility to manage everything for God’s glory. Everything that God has given us isn’t ours to own but ours to manage. You don’t own your finances, God has blessed you with income so that you can take care of your family and bless others. Your job isn’t yours to own, you have been put in your position in order to interact with and impact those around you. You aren’t just a student, you are using the gifts and cognitive abilities that God has given you in order to learn and grow.

So, if God owns everything and if we are merely stewards of those things, talents, and abilities than leaving a legacy is really about how we live.Your legacy won’t be determined by how much money you have when you die. Your legacy won’t be determined by how many buildings or organizations are named after you.

The truth is, your legacy will only be determined by the way that you steward the life and relationships that God gives you.

Only One Life

Two little lines I heard one day,
Traveling along life’s busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart,
And from my mind would not depart;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,
Soon will its fleeting hours be done;
Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet,
And stand before His Judgement seat;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice,
Gently pleads for a better choice
Bidding me selfish aims to leave,
And to God’s holy will to cleave;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years,
Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;
Each with its clays I must fulfill,
living for self or in His will;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

When this bright world would tempt me sore,
When Satan would a victory score;
When self would seek to have its way,
Then help me Lord with joy to say;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep,
In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep;
Faithful and true what e’er the strife,
Pleasing Thee in my daily life;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Oh let my love with fervor burn,
And from the world now let me turn;
Living for Thee, and Thee alone,
Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;
Only one life, “twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one,
Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call,
I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;
Only one life,’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last. ”

Only one life, ’twill soon be past,
Only what’s done for Christ will last.
And when I am dying, how happy I’ll be,
If the lamp of my life has been burned out for Thee.

– CT Studd