No parent is perfect, but I’d like to give it my best shot. Here are 4 things I’m still working on as a dad.
Well folks, it has been a hot minute since I last posted to Walking The Shoreline. What’s been going on with Matt Clark? Where did he go? Why don’t I have any nerdy and/or relationship heavy things to think about in my feed recently?
It’s not always what we do that matters the most, but how and why. Here’s why servant hearted sexuality matters.
I’m very passionate about relationships. I think relationships and in particular the marriage relationship addresses so many of the needs and issues in the human heart. Conversely, when we don’t do it well, it probably introduces and exacerbates all the problems of life to a point that it can change a person forever.
I’ve been having a YouTuber/TikToker pop up in my YouTube and Facebook recently called The Dadvocate. Most of her clips are unashamedly “womansplaining” men to other women, as the behaviour of men is often confusing to women. She also does a really great job at keeping things equal and putting the men who perpetuate crappy behaviour and abuse in their place. I haven’t gone through all her material extensively but I will say she’s been pretty dead on with a lot of the things she’s said about how men think and feel about certain issues.
But one thing she regularly touches on is how much sex matters in a marriage relationship to both men and women, and how this continues to be a factor in the conversation of marital happiness, infidelity and divorce.
Bishop Jeremy Taylor beautifully said, “Love is friendship set on fire”. Here are 7 reasons I think you should consider dating a friend.
I love that quote, you know. We had it read out on our wedding day and I use it to describe our marriage and the marriages of others all the time. It resounds with the view of the Song of Songs and pretty much every love song since then about the flame-like quality of love, burning brightly because it has caught light of the enduring branches of friendship.
It seems like one of the most common statements people make in the search for love is that they want to marry their best friend. This is a fasciniating statement to continually hear, especially when the same people then go off and do anything but date their friends. They go to clubs, they go online, they go to speed dating or social media groups and swipe in all the directions on their phones.
Words saying one thing, but life saying you actually want tall dark and handsome stranger to come sweep you off your feet. Or whatever the female equivalent of tall dark and handsome is. I guess the same term could also apply depending on what you’re into and how many Victorian era novels you enjoy or old world adjectives you apply to women.
Wandering eyes, difficulty sustaining longterm relationships, and double standards – if your wife isn’t your standard of beauty, who is?
It’s amazing how many beautiful women don’t think they’re attractive. I enjoy watching a lot of talk show clips on YouTube and social media and finding out how famous people experience the world. What is constantly shocking is the number of Triple A, super attractive, chart topping women (and men actually) who don’t consider themselves attractive.
And the list of these people is amazing. People like Megan Fox, Penelope Cruz, Scarlet Johansson, and Ryan Gosling. People who literally have a multi-million dollar career of using their stellar appearances to sell products, movie tickets and action figures don’t like the way they look.
And even outside of those who are triple A celebrities, I have spoken to so many beautiful women who are absolute stunners, but they don’t think they are. Everyone else is blinded by their beauty yet they themselves remain blind to it.
This festive time is one of the most confronting times of the year, but instead of running from it, I would encourage you to let Christmas challenge you.
Christmas is here again. This year our kiddo is old enough to really start enjoying things so everything for us has had a little extra layer of magic. Christmas lights are more amazing, presents are more mysterious, and time off has never been more valuable.
There sure is a lot to like about Christmas even if you don’t have young kids. There’s a feeling or an expectation of joy in the year, a buzz about the city, a refocusing of effort and energy that comes as people enter a reflective state whilst making merry at parties with friends, work colleagues and family.
But there’s also a lot of pressure which comes with Christmas. It’s almost as if the time of year mandates that you be of a certain level of joy. And if you’re just not there, it can be a really difficult time.
In other words, the joy and magic of Christmas is a pressure cooker for relationships and mental wellbeing.
Because Christmas challenges you with the best and worst of yourself. As happy or as unhappy you are about the state of your life all year, Christmas is the time the truth comes out. We find out exactly how truly happy you are being single, or single again – how happy you are with your relationship with your wife, your kids – whether or not you feel like you have any real friends – and how you feel about how far along you are with your goals and dreams.
Christmas is the time we are reminded of who we truly want to be, and the difference between who and where we are now, and who and where we want to be, largely determines a lot of the joy or pressure we experience this time of the year.
Characters like Scrooge, the Grinch, and all the rom coms resonate so widely this time of year because they’re extreme archetypes of disappointment and second chances. They are eternally replayed because they reach into this part of ourselves. “Did Christmas change, or just me?” indeed.
And so I would like to submit to you that Christmas challenges you to be who you are born to really be. It reminds you of the dreams you had as a child and also as an adult, and reminds you in the sharpest ways possible of how you would like your life to be.
And I would encourage you to let it. Let Christmas challenge you this year.
I know it’s confronting. I know it’s difficult. I know there are things in my life I’d like to do better and be better at. And it can be really frustrating when you’re not quite there yet.
But if it weren’t for the pointed reminder of who we are really meant to be, would we ever become that person?
We spend so much of the year running or distracting ourselves from the things that really matter. Family, friends, fulfilling our calling, seeing our dreams fulfilled. Let Christmas challenge you to make the effort. To put those things back in first place.
At Christmas time, we have been given the great gift of a Saviour. In that nativity scene, we see demonstrated in full that the world was not as it should be, and we were given a gift to allow for the restoration of our dreams, our hearts, and indeed our very souls.
Allow that gift to permeate every part of your life. Restoration for your family is possible. Seeing that dream come back to life is still possible, if even it occurs in a slightly different form. Healing of your broken heart is possible. The chance to start again is possible.
Merry Christmas to you and yours this year. I pray you let Christmas challenge you and change you to become the best version of yourself, and to remember the dreams of your heart that are still very possible to see fulfilled.
This year’s main challenge for me has been trying to carry shifting priorities… without losing any of them. Please join me for my 2022 in review.
Well, here we are. Another year is about to roll on through. This has been a truly tumultuous year for the whole world with a lot of great and terrible things happening across our planet. It’s always a bit of a shock to realise that in a short period of time, we’ll already be having to stop ending our dates in 22 and talking about what we want to do this year, and already shift focus for the new year.
If you haven’t read any of my previous Years in Review (like for 2021 or 2020), I like to take a big sweeping look at things that happened in the news, in entertainment, in my life and then take a super reflective zoom in at the matters of the heart and the themes the year has held for me. So, come with me and have a bit of fun reflecting on the large and the small of the year called 2022 – a year of shifting priorities, and trying my best not to lose any of them.
Everyone’s got them, and here are some of mine. These are 7 unpopular gaming opinions about great and not so great parts of gaming.
I write about many aspects of my life and interests here on Walking The Shoreline. I’m fascinated by relationships, love seeing people find their purpose, want to be a better leader, husband, and father, and enjoy really having a good look at the larger issues of life. A lot of my Featured Posts are to this effect.
At the same time, I am a massive nerd and a big gamer. I majored in Games Technology (programming) at university, have 15 game consoles, and frequently still recharge my little introverted batteries after a big week or weekend or time with people with a good game or two.
A culture of appreciation is the strongest culture for a healthy marriage. Here are 6 ways to appreciate your spouse.
I like to stay across what a lot of leading voices on the fields of faith and relationships have to say. I follow a lot of people on social media and make sure at least a few times a week that I’m checking in on someone’s video podcast or teaching series or Ted Talk or book or something. Doing relationships can be very difficult and they change over the seasons and so to do well in my own marriage and also in helping others, I myself need all the help I can get. Personally my current mission is trying to be a lot better at doing marriage and parenthood well.
One of the recent series driven by well known teacher Craig Groeschel caught my eye, in particular the responses he was getting to some of his content. He was posting some videos about how men can specifically value their wives, and how women can specifically value their husbands. Some of the comments on his observations on how to appreciate women were in resounding agreement, and most of the comments on appreciating men amounted to “not relevant to me” “tried it” “doesn’t work”.
Are you saying no before someone else has the chance to? Here’s how the fear of rejection leads to more rejection.
Well, it’s official. Reels are here to stay. You thought you were safe by not having TikTok? No such luck for you my friend. YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, heck, even LinkedIn is in on it now. Short videos with big punchlines abound.
To be honest I kinda like it. I’m finding some really great content creators out of it like Caitlin Reilly who could be one of the funniest women ever alive. But also the memes are alive, and the themes with them. And one theme that keeps coming up every day in the feed with tens of thousands of comments and millions of reactions alike – the short videos about wanting to find love, but saying no to everyone. Wanting to make friends, but cutting everyone short.
Just want to say though, that’s a real thing. The relatability and realistic point behind the funny dancing hits on the fear of rejection and how it screws with our relationships. And the topic of today’s post.
It’s hard to find or keep someone when you have reasons why you wouldn’t. Here are 5 attitudes that keep people single and relationships short.
I was out with a few different groups of mainly men and then mainly women over the last month or so. It’s always interesting to hear how the conversation shifts when the topic of relationships comes up when there’s no or few people of the opposite sex around.
Inevitably someone asks if anyone is going out with someone, or how a particular relationship is going. The other day one of the guys got asked if his relationship was still going. He said no and made some complaint about how women can be. A few of the other guys joined in in agreement and all had a little quip about it. I recall a similar conversation on how men can be with a group of women.