I came across this blog post about Bill Watterson (of Calvin & Hobbes fame) and his advice on creative integrity. He says the following, which I just love:

Creating a life that reflects your values and satisfies your soul is a rare achievement. In a culture that relentlessly promotes avarice and excess as the good life, a person happy doing his own work is usually considered an eccentric, if not a subversive. Ambition is only understood if it’s to rise to the top of some imaginary ladder of success. Someone who takes an undemanding job because it affords him the time to pursue other interests and activities is considered a flake. A person who abandons a career in order to stay home and raise children is considered not to be living up to his potential — as if a job title and salary are the sole measure of human worth.

You’ll be told in a hundred ways, some subtle and some not, to keep climbing, and never be satisfied with where you are, who you are, and what you’re doing. There are a million ways to sell yourself out, and I guarantee you’ll hear about them.

To invent your own life’s meaning is not easy, but it’s still allowed, and I think you’ll be happier for the trouble.

Don’t give up on your dreams, no matter how many setbacks and discouragements you face. The world needs hopeful visionaries who can see what might be.

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I was just wondering what everyone is reading this summer? I have an unofficial/now official list that I’m working on. And I’m sure a couple of things will be added to it by the end of August. (Sorry for the lack of links–I’m writing this from my phone!)

1. 4/7 of The Chronicles of Narnia series. I’m halfway through Caspian and I can’t believe I’ve never read these before now.

2. The Emotionally Healthy Church by Peter Scazzero. In pursuit of wholeness.

3. The Great Omission. Dallas Willard’s apologetic for discipleship. Sarah and I are reading this together.

4. One The Verge. I’m interested in the apostolic community conversation and this book by Alan Hirsch and Dave Ferguson looks to expand on things nicely.

5. Team of Rivals by Doris Kearns Goodwin. It’s about President Lincoln’s cabinet and the leadership he exerted to bring them together and function well.

6. Homerun by Kevin Meyers and John Maxwell. Our Executive Team is reading through this leadership book about living a life filled with wins.

Well, there’s mine. What’s yours?

Carey Nieuwhof has written a post that is part-response to Donald Miller’s post about not attending church and part-appeal for people who are about to leave to reconsider. His 10 thoughts are:

1. A step out of a local church is many times a step away from God.

2. The church puts us into contact with people with whom we would rather not associate.

3. A step away from organized community is often a step away from accountability.

4. A movement is more effective when it has leadership and authority.

5. There is tremendous potential when people are aligned and released around a common mission, vision and strategy.

6. An outward focus of the church is best maintained when people gather intentionally.

7. The faith you cherish is built on the foundation of people who were part of the local church.

8. A wound created in community is best healed in community.

9. The promise of the church is still greater than the problems of the church.

10. Trying something new is better than walking away.

You can read his reasoning here.

arena

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

-Teddy Roosevelt

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