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Thursday, December 31, 2015

One key to success for 2016.

A short time ago I had the opportunity to attend a ninetieth birthday celebration for a very nice woman. 
While we stood and eagerly listened to her humble reminiscing, her son asked her "what advice can you give us to help us to live a happy and successful life like yours?"  The words she spoke I will never forget, because they were so simple, powerful, and true. 
She said, "Respect others. Treat people the way you want to be treated, and it will take you a long way in life."
As I hung on her every word, I also noticed the gratefulness she embraced as she recognized the many blessings of her life.
What a positive and lasting impact this short time of celebration had on my life. 
May 2016 bring each of you blessing and inspiration.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Three ways to love my kids (and others) more.

A few weeks ago I knelt in my laundry room and began to remove the cloth pieces to my son's car seat, as it was way over-due for a much needed cleaning.
 As I removed each layer, I wondered how, (and what), could so many things that I can't even now identify get crushed and crammed into every available open space, and then accumulate on the bottom of a car seat?!
I caught myself being ashamed in thinking "I hope he knows how much I love him because I'm cleaning his car seat!" 
Why was I having this thought?  He's three, I'm his Daddy, I'm supposed to do things like clean his car seat!  But in that moment, all I could think about is, "I don't know what that multi-color sticky blob is, and I really don't want to peel it off of there!" 
But I did it, I only complained a little to my wife Bridget (as she chuckled), and I made up my mind that I was gonna be intentional about showing my kids, and others, the love that they deserve. 
Here are the three different ways I thought I could put this into action.
1.  Love without expectation.  I need to lay aside my own expectations, wants, and needs and love unconditionally. 
2. Laugh more. This is just a win-win situation.
3. Stop taking life so seriously. We can experience and enjoy life to the fullest when we let our guard down. 
I realize this makes me a lot more vulnerable, and I think that's right where I need to be.
Until next time.