IOU An Update

Posted in Uncategorized on May 10, 2012 by prkt

Long time, no text. Oh, well. Lots to talk about.

My shrink agreed with me a while back that I should half my medication. I am trying (oh, so slowly) to wean myself off chemicals. I thought this would be a cinch. Maybe not.

I just had a nice cry. Aw, man. I thought I was over this juvenile stuff. Guess not. Why am I a wreck?

Pastors conference this week. Generational relationships. The “leadership” does not want to get out of the way and let the young punks take over. I am ready to lead, in their terms (which I despise) “cast a vision.” Shucks, I can’t cast a fishing line. So I have some repressed anger and a lot of vitriol to crucify right now. On the other side is resurrection. Resurrection from the fact that I turn 40 next month. I’m not a child anymore, though when I look in the mirror I still see a man-child staring back at me. Don’t know if I can handle it. Don’t know if I need to double down on chemicals. One thing’s for sure. A week’s vacation is coming in less than two weeks. Brother, do I need it!

– KT


A Radio Station I Try Not To Hear

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on July 6, 2011 by prkt

Anne Lamott’s book “Bird by Bird” is a fascinating account on how to write. It’s observational and highly personal. I recommend it.

One of her chapters deals with self-conversation. She calls the voices in her head (I mean that in a nice way) Radio Station KFKD, which stands for K-F**KED. I think you can fill in the blanks.

K-F**KED sometimes plays in my head. It used to play a lot more in the pre-medication days. One of the loudest placed it would play was on the golf course. When I hit a couple of bad shots, the station would come in crystal clear. Self-loathing came first. Then came “You suck”, followed by a fast chorus of “I hate this game”. The last waltz was usually a round of “I wish I could quit this game.”

One of the most important parts of the game of golf is the mental game. If you don’t have your brain in the right place, then you are going to louse up your golf game. Everything focuses on the most important thing in the world at that very second: HITTING THE BALL. You can’t do anything else right now. You have to hit the ball. When the wheels come off the track, it’s all over. Don’t believe me? Watch a major championship in golf. Consider Rory McGrath at The Masters. I guarantee you he had K-F**KED playing loud and clear on the back nine Sunday afternoon.

Another place this station likes to butt in is the night before big events in a congregation. Consider funerals or weddings or voters meetings. People can sometimes say and do very strange things at these events that make a pastor look like a fool. The way certain people treat pastors is another post for another day. At any rate, K-F**KED used to get going days before the event. “You’re a failure.” “You are compromising.” “This family is merely placating you. They will find a pastor they love because (fill in the blank) and you will get the shaft!” “One of these days, the other shoe will drop and people will hate you.” “This meeting will be a catastrophe.” “No one has your back.”

One of the nuggets I’ve picked up in studying EQ (Emotional Intelligence) is how to control, or even silence, your self-conversation. There is a way to turn down, or even turn off K-F**KED. One way it has stopped for me is medication. Another way is learning how to be confident and not let your inner thoughts control your outer behavior. It is not a lesson easily learned. You have to control body language. You have to watch yourself like a hawk. You can’t let your inner conversation control your outer conversation.

How do you learn this skill? Practice. Lots of practice. For me it was practice and 150mg of Effexor XR (I take the generic). Sometimes medicine can be a powerful help to controlling the volume level of K-F**KED.

Don’t let the voices in your head ruin your life. Learn a little behavior modification. Learn to love silence in order that your body and your brain can tune out K-F**KED and tune in something a little more positive.

– KT

A Thought on The Pursuit of Happiness

Posted in Uncategorized on May 29, 2011 by prkt

If you think life is all about the pursuit of happiness, perhaps you are pursuing the wrong god.

– KT

Superlative Gospel Preaching

Posted in Uncategorized on May 29, 2011 by prkt

Check out this user on YouTube.

He is a reader of this blog.

He is also a fantastic Gospel preacher.

Thanks be to God!

– KT

Out and About

Posted in Uncategorized on May 29, 2011 by prkt

Two mile walk Saturday morning. Massive amount of energy all day long. Deep sleep with technicolor dreams overnight.

Who would have thunk it?

I could get used to this exercise thing.

Now if only the weather would cooperate….

– KT

Reading Made Easier

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on May 22, 2011 by prkt

I bought a Kindle in early March. I had a nice funeral honorarium and used it to by the e-reader. My wife was not happy. The money could have been saved. I splurged. I haven’t been sorry I bought it. It’s an amazing tool. Amazon just announced the other day that Kindle Books are outselling regular books. No surprise, there.

The Kindle is perfect for buying complete works. I bought Shakespeare and Dickens. I might buy Mark Twain’s works too. I’ve also downloaded a number of “classic” books for free, not to mention some newer “paid” titles.

Will Kindle, Nook, etc. be the death of paper books? I hope not. There will always be a need for books that need to be held. I love the feel, the look, and especially the SMELL of books. They comfort me. Just having some around me makes me feel better. Is this breaking the First Commandment? Yeah, I think so. But books are so cool!

The Kindle makes my life quite handy. I have a couple of Bible translations on there, not to mention a couple of Book of Concord translations. There’s some other religious titles that are reference material when I’m away from the study.

The zeal to read has returned thanks to the Kindle. That zeal is not contained to e-books. I don’t mind picking up a real, live, paper book either. There’s something about a book that brings comfort to me.

– KT

The Intimidation Factor

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , on May 22, 2011 by prkt

I am intimidated easily, though from the unlikeliest source.

Beautiful people intimidate me.

Yesterday I went to a local bookstore to bum around. I walked into the story and a very well dressed, very well made up woman said hello to me while trying to sell a product. I was intimidated. I couldn’t even look at her. She was too beautiful and I feared I would lust after her.

Such is my life, even on medication. Beautiful women intimidate me. They have an air of superiority that tells me I’m not good enough to stand in their presence. So I don’t look at them, try hard to avoid them, and carry on with my life.

For the longest time I thought I would marry a high-maintenance woman. God had other plans. I am married to a low-maintenance woman. Perhaps that is why I am not intimidated by her…or, in turn, by other women who do not take great pains to make themselves look beautiful.

What causes such intimidation? Perhaps it’s the fact that I was bullied as a child because I am overweight. Perhaps it was because I wore normal clothing rather than “designer” names from fancy stores. Perhaps my hormones are over-reactive. I don’t know.

If I don’t look you in the eye, please don’t be offended. You may be intimidating me and not realize it. You can’t help it. I wish I could.

– KT

Going Home

Posted in Uncategorized on April 16, 2011 by prkt

Tomorrow after Divine Service we’re off to my hometown for a couple days of R and R before the crunch of Holy Week hits. It’s my daughter’s “spring break” and if we don’t get away now we’ll never get away.

Going home makes me a bit dyspeptic. I have so many memories of home. My parents’ house was the only house I knew until I left for seminary. My hometown is dying a slow and tragic death. There are so many empty storefronts, so many business no longer there. Everything is depressed.

Add to that the notion of perhaps stopping through where I used to serve in order to show our daughter where she used to live. I’m still not sure I’m ready to do that right now. Memories are still fresh four years after leaving.

I’ll get to see some family, maybe some friends too. My folks are getting older, so I cherish every moment I’m home. They may not be around too much longer.

My current home feels more and more like home every day. We love our little town. I love my congregation. They treat me better than I deserve. I mean that. Perhaps this is how my parents felt when they first moved to my home town. It has become more home for them than where they grew up.

Not much else to say.

– KT

Our Latest Reading Material

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24, 2011 by prkt

My wife and I are reading through this book. We’re using an earlier edition than what I linked. I read to her and we work through the exercises at the end of each chapter.

It’s been revealing to say the least. We’ve learned to communicate much better, especially when one of us is having a bad day. It’s important to let your spouse know when you’re having a bad day or a good day, lest husband or wife improperly filter a conversation.

I recommend the book. There is a “Christianized” version of the book that I own but haven’t read. I can’t speak to any differences between the two books.

– KT

Checking In

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24, 2011 by prkt

I have not deserted you all. I am still here with some news.

This past Tuesday my therapist and I decided mutually not to meet unless I need to meet with her. My life has progressed quite well over the last year and a half.

I’m a bit melancholy about it. On one hand, it’s nice to drive 35 minutes and visit with someone who is an outstanding listener. On the other hand, the last few visits has been me rambling about my life and my family. Nevertheless, it’s a good time to step away and fly solo.

I’m still on meds and probably will be for the foreseeable future. The one thing I’m looking forward to is springtime, when I can go outside and walk, ride my bike, or play golf.

– KT