The Climb

On Top of the World - Almost

“The Good Lord gave us mountains so we can learn how to climb.”

I reached the top of a mountain Sunday night that I have been climbing, well, for all intents and purposes, my whole life. It isn’t the only mountain I have been scaling for a long time, nor the last that I will attempt to ascend to the top. But it was, it is, a big one for me that has required a lot of time, learning, effort, sacrifice, and perseverance.

And I could not have climbed it alone.

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It Takes a Village

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#NothingButGratitudeNovember: 11/17/2015 Restated

Fall Village

Today I am grateful for the villages that raised me.

It takes a village to raise a child.” – African proverb

In my case, thankfully, there were a few. I was very, very, … very blessed to be raised, taught, mentored, coached, led, and loved by many wonderful people. Uncles, aunts, grandparents, a step father, cousins, neighbors, teachers, coaches, church leaders, friends, “adopted extended family,” and remarkable role models are wonderful memories of the villages of my youth. Patient, selfless, generous, wise, and kind people who cared for me in a number of different roles and across a number of different locations. And cared for me as if I were one of their own. Teaching me both by silent, tireless example and by patient, hands-on guidance.

I will forever be grateful for all of those villagers and everything that they, individually and collectively, did for me. I have so many incredible, vivid memories of those villages, villagers, and seasons. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

Believe Bravely; Dare Greatly; Thank Boldly,


May the God Who Formed Our Hands Bless Them to Be Instruments of Comfort and Healing

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Lost and Found by Greg Olsen

[Painting: Lost and Found by Greg Olsen]

Last night I had the privilege of attending the Combined Board Certification and Chaplain Graduation Ceremony of the World Spiritual Health Organization (“WSHO”). The graduation was held at the William E. Christoffersen Salt Lake City Veterans Home located on the VA Salt Lake City Health Care System campus.

The ceremony was conducted by Chaplain Mark Allison, WSHO’s founder, and the graduation’s theme was hands. Unselfish, competent, and compassionate hands and how and who they serve. And how the value of any particular tool, product, or service is increased – often exponentially – by the skills, training, and experience of the hands that wield the tool or deliver the product or service. Each graduate’s hands were washed and individually anointed by Father L. Gally, of the Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City, with a prayer of “May your hands bring comfort and promote healing to all who come into your care.”

Click here to read about whose talented hands were at the graduation and what insight such individual shared!