The Current

Helping you navigate through life

Subscribe

The Grunt and the Gurgle: Communicating with Boys and Girls

We are so glad to feature a guest blog from our friends at Daystar Counseling in Nashville, TN. Research shows that girls are more attuned to the sound of human voices and seem to actually prefer the sound to other sounds.  From birth, baby boys and girls like to grunt and gurgle. The difference is that girls prefer people to interact with while boys are equally happy to chatter away at abstract geometric designs. The male brain is wired for activity while the female brain is biased towards the personal. The male brain is wired for activity while the female

Continue reading...

Lesson #3: 10 Things Wilderness Taught Me in 4 Days

Lesson 3: When you get in a rut, ride it out. This is the third installment in a series of essays about some life lessons I learned on a recent enduro motorcycle adventure designed to help rejuvenate leaders. In total, we covered more than 275 miles from Sequoia National Forest to Yosemite National Park. During the day we rode hard, and at night we sat around the campfire having honest, vulnerable, and courageous conversations. Most of our lives are pretty tame because we spend a lot of energy avoiding things that are potentially painful, difficult, or injurious. Whether the risk

Continue reading...

Hope

As I sit here in Starbucks sipping on a Grande coffee, I remember back to the months and days that led up to my addiction being exposed.  There were many nights I stared at my computer screen hoping that the next image would bring me relief. No matter how many images I viewed, though, none brought me that relief I was looking for. Image after image just seemed to bring more despair and hopelessness until, finally, I became numb to it all. I was numb to the pain, numb to my friends, numb to the look in my wife, Jen’s,

Continue reading...

Lesson #2: 10 Things Wilderness Taught Me in 4 Days

Lesson 2: Ride your own ride. This is the second installment in a series of essays about some life lessons I learned on a recent enduro motorcycle adventure designed to help rejuvenate male leaders. In total, we covered more than 275 miles from Sequoia National Forest to Yosemite National Park ascending to elevations around 10,000 ft. At night, we sat around the campfire having honest, vulnerable, and courageous conversations. After we packed what stuff we could into our small daypacks, we were instructed to head into the trailer and select our riding gear: body armor, boots, helmet, and gloves. As

Continue reading...

10 Things Wilderness Taught Me in 4 Days

Recently, I organized an adventure trip for male leaders through Wilderness Collective . In four days, we covered more than 275 miles from Sequoia National Forest to Yosemite National Park. We traversed rugged terrain on enduro motorcycles that lead us over mountain passes—some more than 10,000 ft. in elevation. At night, we sat around the campfire having honest, vulnerable, and courageous conversations. In all, there were eleven of us. (Ten from Middle Tennessee and one from Louisiana.) Most of us were in our mid-forties, but our ages ranged from late 20s to early 50s. A few of us got injured. All

Continue reading...

Parenting with Heart, Part 3

It was a beautiful spring night in early April. The trees were budding. The days were getting warmer, but the nights were still cool. Heather and Emma Claire were at a movie. I (Stephen) was bowling with our youngest sons, Henry and Teddy. Elijah was off at a friend’s house for a birthday party. We had just finished our first frame when my phone rang. It was the kind of call you never want to get. Heather was on the other end. She had a serious and panicked tone in her voice. “Stephen, they’ve taken Elijah to the hospital. He fell in a fire pit. Meet us there.”

Continue reading...

A To-Not-Do List

I was taken recently by the question of what my “To-Do” lists really do for me? I’ve made them and crossed things off for years. There are seasons in which these seemingly helpful lists prove a profitable exercise; a place to deposit the endless undone things I must attend to. Certainly, they can be helpful in acknowledging things that are necessary and need my attention. In other seasons, these lists, or at least the propensity to create them, feel more like a perpetual exercise in all the things that are undone. It is as if they are frantically waving their

Continue reading...

Parenting with Heart, Part 2

A few weeks ago, I (Stephen) was having a conversation with one of my sons and Heather in the kitchen. We were going round and round, and the conversation was precariously teetering on the verge of a blowup. My son looked me square in the eye and said, “You only listen when you’re talking.” I turned to Heather and said, “Is that true?” She said, “Yeah, it’s kind of true,” and we had a big ole laugh about it. His comment still hurt. It still stung. But he was right. The places our children can’t laugh with us are the places where we need to grow and heal.  

Continue reading...

Parenting with Heart

This is an excerpt from Parenting with Heart: How Imperfect Parents Can Raise Resilient, Loving, and Wise-Hearted Kids, by Stephen James and Chip Dodd  One of my sons (Chip's) and I went on a fly-fishing trip a few years ago. He was out of college, gone from our home, and moving out into the bigger world. Near the lodge where we were staying was a great place to sit and watch the stars come out in the big sky of the West. We sat talking and watching the moon rise and the stars come out. I have always loved him, and he cannot stop loving me,

Continue reading...

Letting Go and Holding On

I work with a lot of people around the dynamics of transition, whether it be vocational, relational, or spiritual. My deep sense is we are constantly in some state of transition, even on a micro-level, like the transition from breath to breath. So when I consider transition, I am always looking for the ways in which I am attached to something or someone, or even attached to an idea. These are hard to let go of when we know them well or when they provide a sense of security. I watched the film Toy Story 3 again recently. The premise of

Continue reading...