Topic | Relationships

Posts Categorized: Relationships

15 Things to Remember When You’re Shattered

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My congregation, Saint Peter Presbyterian Church, had a split ten years ago. It was a sad and ugly affair that hurt deeply and estranged friends from one another. Suspicion, doubt, and anger, permeated our days while sleep evaded our nights. Food had little taste and music did little to comfort. As the Psalmist well said, “weeping endured the night.” We were in a season of great distress and sadness and even when I, as an individual, might succeed in “encouraging yourself in the Lord” I still suffered for others who struggled on wondering just what had happened. Not only did. . .
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Hospitality Tips

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Hospitality Tips (wecome mat with slippers)

How can you make your home into a place where people, even your own children, want to be? How do you keep people prioritized over stuff? Are there biblical ideas that can be applied to how we practice hospitality? Steve and Kara share some things they have learned that help them to be a blessing to the people who come into their home.

Pursuing a Shared Life

By in Highlands Blog on

Growing in More than Knowledge When we live in an education-centric society, we tend to see the world through the lens of growing in knowledge and will filter our needs through an educational process. We look at the things we want to grow in, or the parts of our lives that we have a deficiency in, and we begin to seek out how we can better educate ourselves on this particular deficiency. I remember when our oldest son was just a few months old, I wanted to learn about what it’s like to have family worship. For me, this meant. . .
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What if You Died Today?

By in Highlands Blog on

The Business of Dying Warning! This article is pretty boring. But that is not to say in the same breath that it isn’t vital. Many of the important things in life are a matter of diligence, being consistent, by nature are routine and are not—how shall we say—the spice of life. But speaking of life, this article is about Your Contingency Plan when your life is over. Recently I had a dear friend, a young friend die suddenly. He was married, with a house full of children, good job, great church, and then he was gone. I think that in. . .
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Showing Hospitality to Strangers

By in Highlands Blog on

An Inhospitable Place I had a dream the other night. This isn’t a unique occurrence for me but my dreams usually tend to mirror my conscious fears—something disastrous happening to my children for example. This dream was different. I dreamed that I was in a strange city. I’ve traveled a lot around the country, so this would normally not mean much. However, this was a foreign city. More specifically, I am guessing that it was a city either in the middle east, north Africa, or the region known as Eurasia. It was predominantly Muslim, and non-English speaking. I knew nothing. . .
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What to Do When Sheep Act Like Wolves

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Are They Sheep or Wolves? It’s easy to distinguish in our minds between wolves and sheep: Wolves are the ones attacking and eating sheep, sheep are the ones eating grass and listening to the shepherd’s voice. It becomes complicated though when we have to reckon with the reality of wolves in sheep’s clothing. Having been whacked a time or two or twelve by the shepherd’s rod, a wolf covers himself for a time in behaviors and actions designed to help him blend in with the sheep so that he can devour them on the sly. Thankfully, shepherds know to watch. . .
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Is Your Communication Style Killing Your Marriage?

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Identifying Marital Communication Problems I’ve been reading a lot recently from the writings of Malcolm Gladwell, whose books I have found fascinating and I highly recommend them to you. In his book Blink, as part of a larger discussion of how we know what we know seemingly instinctively, he wrote about a psychologist who studied the communication styles of married couples. He placed them in a room and asked them to talk for thirty minutes about any topic that had caused them tension as a couple. He videotaped and analyzed the interaction repeatedly looking for a large number of specific,. . .
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Don’t Be a Careless Pray-er

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“Will you pray for me?” or its slightly more urgent cousin “Please pray!” are phrases that should flow freely throughout a church family. It is a high privilege of God’s sons and daughters to bear one another’s burdens and remember each other in our prayers. But what happens after a prayer request is born? All too often, we are very bad mothers to these nursing children, leaving them to fend for themselves for long stretches or even forgetting them altogether until we see the person we’ve promised to pray for, or when we encounter a faithful prayer request babysitter who. . .
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Your Kids & Their Friends

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Who are your children’s friends? How much should you interfere in your child’s relationships? How can you encourage good and edifying friendships and discourage detrimental ones? How can your kids be a good influence on kids that need encouragement without being too influenced by them? How can you protect your kids from dangerous friendships? Are church friendships always safe and good? Join Kara and Steve for a conversation on wise friendships in the childhood years.

Understanding the Life Context Where God Has Placed You

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Everyone Has a Life Context We don’t live our lives in a vacuum; God has us living in a certain place and time. Wherever you are, you live in a specific culture, you speak a certain language, and you are surrounded by a unique group of people, be it family, friends, or relative strangers. Also, you and the people you are surrounded by, live with certain cultural perceptions and legacies that frame how you understand the world around you. All of these factors make up your life context. To deny or ignore the life context that you live within sounds. . .
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Did You Have a Blue Christmas?

By in Highlands Blog on

Christmas Bright & Christmas Blue For our Christmas morning breakfast we had waffles, eggs, link sausage, coffee, tea, eggnog, and lots of conversation. A playlist of Christmas hymns and songs played in the background as we ate, talked, and laughed. Later in the day we joined another family for more of the same but this time we were slicing into prime rib and pouring wine. Now all my Yuletides have not been nearly as full. Some late Decembers I went hungry and was mostly alone. I worked on December 25 several times and there was no one to come home. . .
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Your Kids Need to Hear Your Story

By in Highlands Blog on

Untold Stories Many people are closed books; their stories are untold. Though they may be locked away in memories past, they are presently on display in every facet of one’s personality. Temperament, sense of humor, work ethic, reactions, values, are all just the iceberg’s tip, Beneath the surface there is so much more. And while this tragic phenomenon is worthy of unpacking in multi-book form, I instead just want to encourage you to tell your children Your Story. When you are disciplining your children, tell them of similar sins that you committed. Relay to them how your parents reacted (for. . .
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More Than Facebook Friendship

By in Highlands Blog on

We Need Friendship The deep need of many in our world is the need for friendship. Our society is bent towards making and growing friendships because we are made in the image of the Trinitarian God, a God of friendship. While many, myself included, decry what Facebook has done to the nature of friendships and community, Facebook is trying to be at the center of humanity’s deep desire for friendship. We can’t escape our need of friends because the One who created us is a Friend. “The friendship of the Lord is for those who fear Him, and He makes known. . .
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Practicing Hospitality

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Welcome sign. Practicing Hospitality.

Hospitality is in the Bible and we’re supposed to do it, but what is it? How can you view hospitality as shared life instead of putting on a show. True hospitality brings real people into your real life and can be humbling. It can also be a huge blessing to others.

In Sickness & In Health

By in Highlands Blog on

So Many Sick People There seems to be a lot of sickness in my world. Maybe it’s because I have a close-knit church community and everyone’s eager to share their burdens with each other or social media has made such information flow, but certainly sickness seems to surround me. For starters, each week my church prayer list has a dozen names on it and some of those names have been on the list for years. My own wife Lindsay suffers from food allergies, thyroid issues, and difficult pregnancies. She has been sick in some way, shape, or form, since I. . .
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You Need a Mentor

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Mentoring is not something our culture values, but Christian women should heed God’s word and seek mentors for themselves and prepare themselves to be a mentor for others. Titus 2 women are not easy to find now, but we can try to change that for our daughters’ generation.

You Have the Power to Build Christian Culture

By in Highlands Blog on

There are lots of things in life that we cannot define, we just know it when we see it. When Wile E. Coyote sets some birdseed just below a large boulder and plans on dropping it on the Roadrunner, we laugh when it all goes wrong and he himself gets mashed. That’s called irony and few of us can define it but we know it when we see it. Culture is a lot like this. Every one of us humans has a myriad of built-in sensors that let data in, both as a way of offering protection, but also for. . .
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When a Friend is Hurting

By in Highlands Blog on

When I think of relating to friends, I immediately remember times like last New Year’s Eve when good friends were over and we laughed at an inside joke until we could hardly breathe. Fun times are certainly wonderful parts of friendship, but recently I’ve been reminded that we and our friends will also go through seasons of hurt. Sometimes laughter is replaced with tears and we can’t escape the pain. Sometimes life this side of heaven just hurts. It’s usually easy to rejoice and have fun with others when we’re both doing well, but knowing how to relate to a. . .
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My Dad Tells the Best Stories

By in Highlands Blog on

Father and daughter laughing and talking together.

“Just a little while longer Before we know We’ll be eating blood oranges In the snow.” – Over the Rhine My Dad tells the best stories. He has that deep, unexplained talent for making words obey him. Every story he decides to tell gets his full attention and his full effort, and every story has the chance to be a little bit more wonderful when he gets a hold of it. He tells us he has a story, and we settle back, and when he opens his mouth, the words traipse out in a purposeful meander, always sure of where. . .
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Raising Young Men (Teenage Boys)

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Bored teenage boy, leaning back in his chair.

Listen as Kara & Steve talk about parenting teenage boys. They talk about work, academics, protecting moral purity, moms & sons butting heads, teaching boys how to be men, and defying cultural norms by having great relationships with your teenagers.

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