The Act of Love

If there were a theme for my experiences in 2017 the theme would be love.

I remember when I became a Christian and joined The Assembly of God in 1978, I learned about the three types of love mentioned in the bible; according to the Greek language they are: Eros (desire and longing), Philos (the love in friendship) and Agape (divine love or the pure love of Christ). According to the book Colours of Love, J.A. Lee 1973 there are seven types of love that are loosely based on classical readings, especially those of Plato and Aristotle.

The English language is much more limited, we have just one word to express the many 'types' of love we experience. When I look back on my life and think of the many people who have said "I love you' to me, I am often left wondering what they meant, what they felt and why they said 'I love you'. Of course the same is true for me, I have said 'I love you" to more people then I can remember. When I said 'I love you' …

The Best Gift of All

Based on observation alone there is purpose to life, I am certain, and that purpose is individual, meaning that our lives are for us and about us. One small part of the reason why I am convinced of this fact is the way circumstances in our life change. 

In my experience life offers us lessons that we need, when we learn the lesson being offered, our life changes (our circumstance, the great teacher - changes) and we are then free to learn new and hopefully higher lessons - we progress. But when we resist the lesson(s) our circumstance offers the intensity of the lesson will increase and we are more strongly encouraged to accept the lesson being offered and grow - our emotional pain increases, our physical selves worsen, life generally gets harder and either we respond to the worsening condition and begin to learn what we need to learn or we experience more pain - of various sorts, that will continue to increase until we are willing to accept the lesson offered. If we do not accept th…


One of the things that I found irksome about monastic life was the liturgical calendar. There were aspect I enjoyed, like learning about the saints, but there were emotional demands that I found annoying.For example, Lent is a time for reflection, penance, repentance and self denial,

The liturgical calendar is just one example of how there are social expectations that we will feel specific emotions on demand.

One of the many reasons I do not own a Television is that I do not like to be emotionally manipulated by commercials, 'news' or programs. I prefer to have authentic feelings that are generated by real people, in real situations that are part of my everyday life, I have found that reality is much more enjoyable when I do not have the influence of created / pseudo / augmented / virtual reality that often becomes a comparison and contract with the reality of my everyday life.

There is enough social pressure in the reality of daily life without the added writer generated soc…

To Succeed

I am still constantly amazed and saddened at just how many homeless there are here in Salt Lake.

When one opens up and begins to feel the burdens and the depth of needs in so many hopeless people, it feels incredibly overwhelming and desperately heartbreaking. I now find it easy to understand why so many become so disengaged - it just feels like way too much of a burden to deal with.

With 'Operation Rio Grande' underway and the subsequent arrests during phase one (well over 1200 in less than a month) 'the homeless' are becoming less visible as they spread out around the city, but they are still here and still need so much. The needs are truly profound.

I have been blessed in amazing ways since I started my Inner-City Mission and the blessings, in the form of a grand lesson started immediately.

Just after being called to serve, I received a late night phone call from the Bishop of the Ward where I serve (Big secret - I am actually the one being served). Bishop had a yo…

After the Trial....

I dreamt of old friends and times past last night and it lead me to reflect on where I am, how I got here and why I am here.

It is difficult for old friends to understand the seemly drastic changes in my heart and in my life over the past four years and there is no real way to help them understand that does not seem odd. At times, I myself wake up in the morning with a life so different from the ones I have known before, I too need a moment to remember what I have experienced that has lead me to the Salt Lake City and invoked so many drastic changes in my life.

After my baptism and as changes started to come in my daily routine and I started to spend more time in the Church, with missionaries, and in my church callings, I had less time available to do the things I had done previously. I had less time for "fun" and friends. Less time for the recovery meetings I had attended for so long and less desire for the activities that once gave me 'pleasure'. To outsiders thes…


The creator, God, gives. That is what he does. He gives life, sustains life, he grants eternal life. He desires to give and in order to give there must be a receiver. We are that receiver. So in each of us is a created desire to receive. We were created with that desire so that we could receive what God has to give.

We have lots of desires and many of us spend a great deal of time asking to have our desires fulfilled by God. This is the baseline of our relationship with God. He desires to give, we desire to receive.

So if God's desire is to give and our desire is to receive then it seems a perfect relationship, but that is not true because we are here not to just continually receive. God is complete, we are 'broken' into pieces. We are here to learn and grow, we are here to become like and become one with the Father.

At it's simplest form, we are here to learn how to have the desire to give. A desire to receive cannot create, it only takes, but the desire to give can …

One Year Later: BOS>SLC

I have now been a resident of Salt Lake City Utah for a year. It does not seem possible, but 10 days ago was the anniversary of my arrival to Zion.

This has been an amazing year, one worthy of reflection.

Divesting myself of all the things I coveted for most of my life was a challenge and that came first. There are two primary dimensions of this command I feel came directly from the Lord, that have been important lessons - life changing lessons - that are worth sharing.

Value - much of my life the things in my life have offered a perceived value. A value that not only provided a sense of future security ('Well, if I get desperate I can sell___") but also as sense of self worth and worldly worth to others. Legends of the value of my things, handed down to me from predecessors, from sales people, worldly perspectives and some self generated, added weight to the perceived value of these things. What I have learned is that value (worth) is more a subjective perception than an obj…