Misfits

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is one of my favorite Christmas movies. One of the most heartfelt scenes in the movie is when the Island of Misfit Toys is visited by Santa on Christmas Eve. Charlie in the Box, the squirt gun that shoots jelly, and the rest of the misfit toys joyfully jump into Santa’s sleigh to be distributed to awaiting girls and boys on Christmas morning.

Did you know that the original script did not show Santa going back to the Island of Misfit Toys? There was a write-in campaign in 1964 because people wanted to see Santa pick up the Misfits from the island. Why is this scene of Misfit Toys so touching?

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Give These Two Gifts

As the Christmas season approaches, there are two gifts I want to suggest you give this year. Ones I want to give regularly and generously. The first gift is forgiveness. Anyone who says they have gone through the past year or the past week for that matter, without feeling some relational hurt is simply not paying attention. Some hurts are very minor and unintentional, while others are deep and deliberate. Regardless of the source or intensity, I suggest that it is our response that will either initiate healing or promote infection. Charlotte vanOyen Witvliet of Hope College in Michigan...

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Between Magical and Miserable

The holidays can be a challenging time for distressed marriages. All of the lights, music, decorations, and celebrations make everything seem more intense. When things go well – life can feel magical. When things go poorly – life can feel miserable. The truth is that most of life is lived somewhere between magical and miserable. You can thrive during the Christmas season, with some thoughtful preparation. I can usually tell when one of my clients is on the magical/miserable roller-coaster.  If I hear words like “always” or “never” along with descriptions like “incredible” “horrible” or...

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Marrwiage Is A Funny Thing, Isn’t It?

Marrwiage. Marrwiage is what bwings us together today. Marrwiage, that bwessed awangement, that dweam wifin a dweam. This is a quote from the movie The Princess Bride,  one of my family’s favorites. Marriage is a common topic around our home. As a marriage counselor I try to help couples make fun of their marriage. Marriage is a funny thing, isn’t it? It has been likened to flies on a screen – those on the outside looking for a way in, and those on the inside looking to get out! Why is it that marriage – one of the most universal relationships in the world, found in every culture throughout...

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The Search for Counseling

How do I begin to search for counseling? This is a common question. Many people struggle for far too long before calling for help. There are many reasons, but most of them are based in various fears, such as seeming weak, or family shame. How do you begin? First, consider whether you need counseling. If you think about it often; If you feel trapped or stuck; If you feel you have no options or hope. If any of these statements are true for you, start your search for a counselor that shares your faith, and has experience in your area of need. Finding the right counselor Today you have access to...

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Every Man’s Battle Workshop

Chuck is a group coach at the upcoming Every Man’s Battle Workshop being held December 5-7 in Denver. Read below for details and a link to register. Porn. Lust. Affairs. They’ve taken your life to a place you never could have imagined. It’s a serious problem that requires a serious solution. The Every Man’s Battle Workshop is the place where men engage in the battle to get back their sexual integrity. In this intensive three-day workshop you’ll work with licensed Christian counselors who will arm you with the weapons you need for victory. The enemy may have wounded you, but the battle...

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Relationships and Mental Illness

Mental illness can be a terrifying experience – for those who have mental illness, for those who are in relationship with the mentally ill, and for those who do not have much contact with the mentally ill. This is an issue that touches almost everyone in our society. People need to be invited into healthy relationships in spite of their human frailties – and ours. Overcoming fear is essential for this to happen. As a Christian counselor, I struggle because I believe the Word of God is the final authority for matters of life. That in and of itself is not a problem. The problem is that the...

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10 Reasons People Put Off Counseling

Here are 10 reasons people often put off counseling: Going to counseling shows I am weak. Nothing could be further from the truth. Going to counseling takes great courage! Entering counseling is the first step in resolving difficulties, to address problems and openly discuss feelings. Counseling is for crazy people! Counseling is not for people who are sick; it is for people who feel stuck. Counseling helps when you have tried to address an issue in all the ways you know how but nothing has solved the problem. Strong people ask for help! What if someone finds out what I talk about....

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Life Changes – How to Transition Successfully

When I work with clients during difficult times, the situations almost always involve transition. Some are chosen – such as getting married, having children, changing careers, or moving to a new home. Others seem to choose us – such as losing a job, suffering poor health, experiencing rejection, or loss of a loved one. Colorado State University’s article on Transitions and Changes* states; Transitions are times of crossing or traveling from something old and familiar to something new and unfamiliar. Most transitions are small and pass by almost unnoticed. Some, however, involve major...

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Embracing the Season

Autumn brings beautiful colors to the Colorado mountains. I’m reminded of God the Creator, who is clearly delighted with beauty. I am also reminded that when the leaves turn, they are dying. Eventually this process makes room for the new buds to come. So in this turn of the season, consider with me these questions: What needs to die in my life? What needs to change so it will become beautiful? How can death to self bring life to others? In a few weeks, the gorgeous leaves will turn brown and drop off the trees. Again, my senses come alive as I crunch dried leaves under my feet and...

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