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Spoiler Alert- Perception ≠ Reality (Claim Your Freedom #3)

You’ve probably heard the phrase “Perception is reality” a few times. 

As correct as that statement sounds, it’s just not accurate. Perception might be reality, but it might not be. Perception might just be the way you view things. Again , perception might be reality, but it might not be reality at all.

Let me show you… 

Let’s say I write a big number 6 on the ground. I write it in large 6’ tall letters, using it to denote the number of biological kids I have who have a birthday before Salter, my youngest kid, who just celebrated his sixth birthday, has another- his seventh. In other words, my 6 is laced with numerous objective facts. 

For the sake of illustration purposes, you see me from afar and walk my way. 

“Why did you draw a 9 on the ground?” you ask.

“I didn’t. I painted a large 6.” Then, I explain everything I just wrote. 

You don’t understand. Looking at the number from...

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Live Inside-Out, Not Outside-In (Claim Your Freedom #2)

King Solomon said, “The righteous are as bold as a lion.” The flip side, he wrote, is that “the wicked flee when no one pursues” (Proverbs 28:1).

When you get to the place Eminem found himself in that film I referenced in our intro, you can be bold. When you realize your identity isn't found in the great stuff you’ve done nor is it defined by you at your worst, you can be even bolder. You sense a humble, tender confidence swelling inside you- one not based on your perfection or lack of flaws but based on the notion that there’s nothing else to hide. You’ve owned your story.

I remember the days of constantly looking over my shoulder, always wondering when life might come unzipped. Constant anxiety sucks. 

When there are holes in your story, it’s easy to hide. You want to hide. The problem, though, is that hiding makes things worse and more tense. Pressure builds beneath the surface. Sooner or later, whatever is inside surfaces....

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I Took the Psych Eval (Claim Your Freedom #1)

Last Fall I did something I never imagined I would do: I took a psychological evaluation. A full one. The kind that has hundreds of questions followed by a sit-down interview with a licensed psychologist. 

To say it another way, I voluntarily took one of those tests that cost several hundred dollars and can label you for the rest of your life. 

Again, I asked to take it.

Here’s why: smack-dab in my mid-40s I effectively averted the typical mid-life crisis by living a few tough years. Most people knew nothing of the trauma and trials I  endured, but the pain was there. Every few months I spoke about pieces of my story from the stage at an event where I spoke, or I offered a glimpse inside my world via my podcast or some other venue where I taught. Looking back in the rearview mirror of my life, I realized I’d endured enough to knock someone off their feet and into the grave.

I mean it. The grave.

At one point several years ago. I actually contemplated...

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Moral Injury = Overcoming Guilt & Shame

In this talk we build on the previous two, so you may want to roll back to the discussion on PTSD ( https://www.Jenkins.tv/blog/wholeness ) or even the intro to emotions in general ( https://www.Jenkins.tv/blog/baggage ) if you haven’t yet listened to those.

Here, I discuss Moral Injury- a close counterpart to PTSD that often looks like it and manifests symptoms in similar ways. However, despite that cliche that if it “looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck… then it’s a duck,” when it comes to PTSD and Moral Injury, the two are different.

Turns out, if you treat someone for PTSD yet they have Moral Injury, the treatment plan won’t work. It will be ineffective.

Just like this- if you treat someone for a broken leg but they really have a broken arm, your treatment will also be ineffective.

We’ve got to address the actual issue, the goal (again) being to walk in total wholeness.

In this talk I cover four main ideas that...

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Emotional Health is a piece of the whole

In this talk we take last week’s release a step further (review here: https://www.Jenkins.tv/blog/baggage). I pulled the content from this talk from some info I planned to teach to a live audience re: emotional wholeness…

 

Emotional Health = part of total health

We’re all multi-faceted people, having various parts to us.

  1. Physical
  2. Spiritual
  3. Intellectual
  4. Social / relational
  5. Emotional

We readily identify with the first four- but maybe not the fifth.

And, we generally OWN and notice the OBVIOUS issue in any area with the exception of emotional issues.

(I spoke more about this in this talk, https://www.jenkins.tv/blog/checklist, where I actually begin with the same point.)

Turns out, though, that you’re only as strong as the weakest link.

Look at it this way: a 20-link chain with 19 links can carry 1,500 pounds and one link that can hold only 15 pounds will never lift more than 15 pounds. Regardless of how powerful the other 19 are, they’re held...

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The PTSD Project & Handling Your Unclaimed Baggage

In this talk, I fire the podcast back up- after a long hiatus- and talk about a project I’ve been involved with for the past year +++). A few months ago, we released the book Warrior Hope, which I wrote with the Executive Director of Crosswinds Foundation- a nonprofit that’s been involved in the PSTD + Moral Injury space for 7 years and counting.

Last week we launched a group based on the book- a group currently being hosted at Hoover Tactical on Monday evenings, 6:30pm- 7:30pm.

Here are the main talking points from this podcast.

#1- Perception CAN be reality.

I’ve heard the phrase “perception is reality” a bunch of times. You probably have, too.

But, as correct as that statement sounds, it’s not accurate. Perception MIGHT be reality, but it might not be. Perception might just be the way you view things.

Let me explain…

You may have seen the cartoon online.

From one person’s perspective the number on the ground is clearly a 6. From...

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Perfect love casts out fear- Podcast #58

podcast Apr 30, 2018

Over the past few months I’ve pondered 1 John 4:18 over and over. Here are two translations-  

“There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love” (ESV).

“Love never brings fear, for fear is always related to punishment. But love’s perfection drives the fear of punishment far from our hearts. Whoever walks constantly afraid of punishment has not reached love’s perfection” (Passion). 

I want to highlight three things from the verse above:

  • Perfect love
  • Casts out fear
  • Fear = not yet perfected in love

 

Perfect love

The word used in this passage doesn’t infer we’ll always love each other without flaws, rather it suggests we will love each other maturely. The Greek word for “perfect” here is the same world used for “complete.” Paul uses the same word in Colossians 1 when he says that he endeavors to...

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Waiting- Podcast #57

podcast Apr 23, 2018

Waiting, though hard, creates sacred space where great things happen. Waiting can be a time when God does something to you so He can then do something through you. 

Yes it’s a period when- many times- we wonder if God even sees us. Many times, even, we want to blame Him for what’s happening while we wait…

If we’re going to blame God every time something bad happens, we also have to credit Him every time something good occurs.  This act of maintaining a divine balance sheet, a “God” scorecard, is an odd game to play. Eventually, you learn that there aren’t many tidy answers. You let go of the need to understand everything, and you simply let grace do its great work…

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Rest- Podcast #56

podcast Apr 16, 2018

Over the past few months it hit me: rest is part of the rhythm of life. In the same way that good music depends on the times when the instruments are NOT being played (think about it- if there are no “rests” the you simply have noise), so also does life depend on the times when we’re off. 

This is a principle that goes all the way back to Creation…

We think of our days as daylight and then nighttime. But, in the Creation story we read this refrain over and over- that there was “evening” and then “morning.” In other words, days originally began with night time, not daytime… they began with rest, not activity. 

This is why Jesus was pulled from the Cross before sundown. The Sabbath began as soon as the sun dropped. That was the sign of a new day… the rest.

Here’s where it gets interesting in the Creation story…

Adam was created on the 6th day- at the end of the day. By the time he’s scooped...

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God is emotive- Podcast #55

podcast Apr 09, 2018

The Bible tells us, “God is _________.”

Yeah, you can complete that sentence. Everyone can. 

“God is love” (1 John 4:8).

We’re so familiar with the phrase that we forget love is both a commitment of unconditional covenant and it is an emotion. God, committed to us, is emotional, too. 

Throughout the New Testament we read truths like- 

  • Jesus was distressed with the Pharisees (Mark 3:5)/
  • Jesus was moved with compassion (Mark 6:34).
  • Jesus was full of joy through the Hoy Spirit (Luke 10:21).
  • Jesus was sorrowful and troubled (Matthew 26:37-38).
  • Jesus lingers even now, because the Lord is patient (2 Peter 3:9).

In God (Jesus is God) we see the full range of emotions- even the ones we typically consider to be “bad” or “taboo” ones- expressed in a healthy way.

There aren’t bad emotions. Again, notice Jesus Himself experiencing the “bad” ones- 

  • Jesus wept multiple times throughout His ministry,...
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