Tag: The Flourishing Project

The End of the Beginning

Yes, you read it right. But, you are probably wondering, “Did he say that correctly? Isn’t it supposed to be, the beginning of the end?” Not in this case. The Flourishing Project has not come to an end. Our commitment to helping you experience abundant life, the real and eternal, more and better life than you […]

Read More

God’s Word is the Way of Flourishing

    Do you know what is the longest chapter in the Bible? Your answer is: (______________). I’ll come back with the answer in a few moments. Here is my proposal, my thesis, my challenge, my invitation. You will FLOURISH when you know God, when you know his plans, his purposes, his will, his way, […]

Read More

4 Ways to Experience Flourishing AND Suffering

Flourishing! Suffering! We normally think of these conditions as being incompatible. I can flourish OR I can suffer. That is a mistaken way to understand flourishing. This misunderstanding is part of the fuel for what is called the Prosperity Gospel (also called the Health and Wealth Gospel or the Name It and Claim It Gospel). This biblical […]

Read More

Suffering for the Sake of Others

Yesterday was Memorial Day: A day of remembering those who died while serving their country. Veterans Day (November 11) remembers all who served in the military, not only those who died. This post does not celebrate war. It does celebrate the greatest of all sacrifices – to give one’s life for the sake of what is loved. […]

Read More

Make it Count, Make it Matter

5 Insights About a Life of Purpose The Purpose Driven Life (it now has a new title: What on Earth Am I Here For?) sold about one billion copies and was translated into 453 languages, including Martian. Well, that is an exaggeration, but not by much! It has sold 40 million copies and has been translated […]

Read More

8 Ways to Deeper Friendships

What’s on your bucket list? What’s in your bucket? I hope your bucket is full of friends. If there is one single predictor of your future happiness, it is the quality of friendships you enjoy. In February and March we did a series on relationships called Life Together. Relationships are about as important as it […]

Read More

Showing the Way of Flourishing

As we have gone through our Get Real series talking about the life of flourishing, I am reflecting on my own life. In so many ways, I believe I am experiencing that real and eternal, more and better life Jesus came to give us (John 10:10). I want the people I love to flourish. It […]

Read More

Bucket List Goals: God Overflowing!

“I don’t believe in God, but I miss him.” What a poignantly insightful and profoundly sad opening to a memoir by the atheist Julian Barnes (Nothing to Be Frightened Of). Here is another one, only from G.K. Chesterton: “He who does not believe in God, doesn’t believe in nothing, he believes in anything.” * Now […]

Read More

What’s On Your Bucket List?

The pleasures we pursue are high on that list! You make choices. Every day. Many of your decisions are automatic and you hardly know you’re making them. Others take longer for you to make up your mind. Some decisions are pretty small in the scheme of things (what restaurant will we dine at tonight?). Others […]

Read More

5 Ways to Deal With Your Life Conditions

Your gender, race, ethnicity, age, geographical location, socio-economic status, education, marital status, etc. are examples of life conditions. Some of these are fixed, which means they are very hard to change. Others are in flux, which means they are very open to change, often by you. I’m sure you’ve heard the saying, “The grass is […]

Read More

11 Insights on the Way of Flourishing

On Sunday, I used a word of life from Deuteronomy 30. Today, I want to give you a fuller context, additional references, and a fresh insight about The Way of Flourishing. It would be best if you had a Bible in order to look at these verses in the complete context. I am only going to […]

Read More

Practice Makes You Better (TFP, Day 35)

At everything. Including good things. Especially the things connected with flourishing. It is striking how many principles, lessons, insights, instructions, and commands are in the Bible that tell you to put into practice something good, and strenuously avoid doing what is wrong. You get better at whatever you practice repeatedly. If you practice anger, you […]

Read More

Psalm 36:5-10, A Vision of Flourishing

  In 1976, when I was a sophomore in college, our campus fellowship group met weekly for a large group gathering. We would spend 20 to 30 minutes in worship, have a speaker for about 30 minutes, then spend the rest of the evening hanging out (the Christian words were fellowship and koinoia). The worship music […]

Read More

6 Suggestions on Comparisons

This is a tricky issue to address. It is virtually impossible not to compare yourself with others. And I don’t think it is always a bad thing to compare yourself with others. In fact, I think there are times when you SHOULD compare yourself with others. You just have to be careful how you do it. If […]

Read More

This Pill Can Really Help You!

Here is a scenario/question posed by Jonathan Haidt in his book, The Happiness Hypothesis: “Suppose you read about a pill that you could take once a day to reduce anxiety and increase your contentment. Would you take it? Suppose further that the pill has a great variety of side effects, all of them good: increased […]

Read More

The Negativity Bias

One of the reasons we are unhappy is because of the negativity bias. The brain is wired to notice danger more than delight. The brain is more alert to what is bad than what is good. We respond more quickly and powerfully to what is unpleasant than to the pleasurable. In fact, our reactions to […]

Read More

Everything I Love is Killing Me

Today we are halfway through 50 Days of Flourishing. Thanks for following, reading, and reflecting on these themes. I pray you are taking slow, steady, persistent steps toward flourishing. Let’s dive right in to the idea for today. It is time for a little more good, robust, biblical theology. The title of this blog post […]

Read More

Working Your Way to Happiness

Study after study shows two things. First, happy people are better workers. They have fewer sick days. They have higher levels of production. They have more friends where they work. Second, good work makes you happy! Isn’t that interesting … and isn’t that enticing? Let me jump on my soapbox and complain for a short paragraph. I am […]

Read More

Psalms of Joy

Joy is a hallmark of the Christian faith. You are made for joy. You are made to find joy in Christ. Rejoicing should be as automatic and natural as breathing. Here are three thoughts from C.S. Lewis about joy: “The whole of man is to drink joy from the fountain of joy.” (The Weight of […]

Read More

3 Reasons Devoted People Are Happier People

We had a leadership staff meeting recently where we talked about the early church being devoted to a cluster of activities and values (see Acts 2:42-47 to see the things to which they were devoted). That word – DEVOTED – hit me. It really hit me. Devoted people are happier people. Why? For three reasons (I […]

Read More

Flourishing From Where You Are

I will tell you what I mean by flourishing from where you are by asking several related questions. What’s your starting point? In other words, what is your immediate and real life situation? Are you doing well? Are you doing so-so? Are things pretty bad? How hard and difficult or how smooth and flowing is your […]

Read More

6 Perspectives Worth Having

Did you ever hear someone say “Perception is reality”? Well, no it isn’t. No matter how much someone insists that his or her perception is reality, perception does not make it real. And, you can ignore “real” reality with a distorted perspective. What you cannot ignore is the consequences of ignoring reality. You cannot ignore the consequences […]

Read More

Six Quotes to Consider

  Many of you know I love to collect quotes, ponder them, and pass them on. I have collected quite a few on happiness. Here are a few for you to chew on. Which one speaks to you the most? QUOTE ONE: If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want […]

Read More

Do You Need Tightening or Loosening?

Some people need tightening. Others need loosening. How about you? What do you need? If you are someone who needs tightening, that means your life is too loose, random, unorganized, and unstructured. And you feel it. Life is harder because you are too loose. Things are not working out as well as they should and that […]

Read More

Identity or Image?

When I look back over the decades at the old photos I was in, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry! Maybe you have had the same experience, especially when you look at the different styles of clothing and hair you tried out. When you got tired of your current look, you changed your appearance. […]

Read More

The Real You

Do you find your “self”? Do you create your “self”? Do you receive your “self”? Or is there some combination of finding, making, and receiving? Who are you? How well do you know yourself? How well do you like who you are (and who you are becoming)? Are you comfortable being the “real you” around others? […]

Read More

Three Ways to Energize Your Day

Energetic people are happier people and happier people choose to engage in more energetic activities. This is another simple way to flourish and be happy. Get active. Get going. Get moving. ONE: Exercise. Work out. Go on brisk walks. Join an exercise class. Do aerobics. Take 5 minute walk breaks during your work day. (These […]

Read More

Remember, Relive, Rejoice

So, you have a wonderful experience that causes you great joy and happiness. Do you know you can go back and enjoy it once again? And you may actually have almost the same amount of happiness as you did with the original experience! No, I am not talking about actually doing it again, I am talking […]

Read More

Life is Hard, Don’t Make it Harder

I don’t know when or where I first read this quote. Today’s blog title is the nicer version: “Life is hard, don’t make it harder.” The real version is a bit more sarcastic: “Life is hard. Being dumb makes it harder. Don’t be dumb.” In yesterday’s post, I talked about how thoughts and actions can shape […]

Read More

Flanguish (or How to Make a New Word)

Let’s have a little fun with today’s post. There are always new words being added to the English language. The words below officially made it into various leading dictionaries (Oxford, Miriam-Webster) in 2016. Bitcoin: Digital currency. (I’m not sure what this is, but I don’t think I have any.) Breakfunch: A small meal consumed between breakfast […]

Read More

Meaningful or Meaningless

When was the last time you read the book of Ecclesiastes? If you have 60-70 minutes of time, sit down and read through it in one sitting. You will be glad you did. The second verse of the book introduces the theme that is repeated throughout: “Meaningless! Meaningless! Utterly Meaningless. Everything is Meaningless, says the […]

Read More

How Happy Are You?

Have you heard about the little book, 14,000 Things to be Happy About? It was written by Barbara Kipfer. It is just a list (a long list) of things that should make you happy. What is beautiful about these 14,000 things is that most of them are simple. (Sorry, there are also some vulgar ones […]

Read More

Welcome to “The Flourishing Project”

I have been thinking about this for a long time. Flourishing. Thriving. Abundance. Life. Love. Laughter. Family. Friends. Meaning. Purpose. Health. Beauty. Goodness. Truth. Virtue. And Jesus! I have been thinking about Jesus a lot! “In him was life and that life was the light of men.” (John 1:4) “I came so they may have […]

Read More