John Michael

Life Is a Sweet, Tender Bruise XIV

John Michael continues his series, reflecting on life and people encountered, with three new stories about defense mechanisms, basketball, and contemplating what's next.   We All Have Our Defense Mechanisms Some folks may see a friend of mine around town. They may assume he is crazy or on drugs; he is neither. However, when it comes ... Read the full article
John Michael

Hello, good people. I am rarely sure how to describe myself. If I say I am a Christian, many things may arise in your mind that ain't necessarily so. I was homeless for seven years and learned more about myself in that stretch of time than in any other segment of my life. I read the Bible a lot out there and came across a passage in Proverbs that has shaped my approach to life: "A man's pursuit is his kindness." I am well educated with a Master of Social Work degree and have worked a wide variety of jobs in my 52 years. None have lasted too long however. When I was homeless, the beauty of Texas wildflowers made me decide to want to live again. Along with kindness, beauty, play, and self-expression are life-guiding ideas. My shadow contains things like feeling sorry for myself, a truckload of defiance, a desperate need to please women, and no small amount of cruelty. A quote from Luke also has had a lasting effect on me: "For God is kind to the ungrateful and the evil." When I read that I thought, "Hell, I have got a fighting chance." I am here to tell you, you have a fighting chance as well. Besides Christianity, practicing Buddhist and Shamanic techniques inform my relationship to God and the world.

Dear Grandson: Boot Camp, Part III

In his latest “Dear Grandson,” Stan Gerding continues the story about joining the Navy, his experience at boot camp, and learning what job he’s been assigned. 

Dear Grandson: My First Car

In his latest “Dear Grandson,” Stan Gerding tells the story about his first car and all the elbow grease (and the detailed costs) that went into it.

Life Is a Sweet, Tender Bruise XII

John Michael continues his series, reflecting on life and people encountered, with three new stories about dealing with accepting yourself, being compassionate, and doing heroic things.

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