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Friday, September 25, 2015

That One Regret



I think we’ve all had one or two along the way.  Sometimes it’s That One Regret that replays over and over in a continuous loop.  Perhaps it’s That One Regret that we lose sleep over, causes us to worry and doubt.  Funny thing about Regrets- they do cause worry and doubt and loss of sleep.

I think Regrets can be broken down into two groups.

There is That One Regret when we do or say something that hurts or harms.  That One Regret that causes another pain or sorrow.  That One Regret is because we acted in a way that goes against the heart and soul of our being.

Sometimes these Regrets occur because we don’t think.  It happens to us . . . all of us . . . from time to time.  “Shooting From the Hip” I think they call it.  Not a lot of thought or consideration, just action.  It’s a mistake on our part that, hopefully, we try to rectify, and it’s a mistake that occurs because we’re human and less than perfect.

Unfortunately, there are Regrets of intention.  Sometimes we aim to hurt, to lash out, to cause pain. 

To me, these kinds of Regrets are not a mistake at all.  These Regrets are purposeful and calculated, and just plain wrong.  As hard as we might try, these Regrets last a long, long time.  Perhaps lifetimes- yours and the person who was wronged.  The old adage, “I may forgive, but I don’t forget” comes to mind.  And sometimes, these kinds of Regrets aren’t very forgivable.

Then there is That One Regret that is a lost opportunity.  The Regret where we could have said or done something.  The Regret where we should have said or done something.  But we didn’t.

Happens to all of us at one time or another.  We are, after all, human, right?

Too busy.  Not enough time.  Don’t know what to say.  Don’t know what to do.  Perhaps too much of an effort.  Wanting to argue and make a point instead of listening.  And just like the Regrets of Intention, the Regrets of Opportunity hurt us . . . and they hurt the one we could have helped. 

The difference between the two types of Regret is that the Regret of Intention is a choice to hurt or harm, and perhaps we don’t care that we hurt or harmed.  Whereas anyone with a soul or a heart or a conscience recognizes the Regret of Opportunities precisely because we are human- we have a soul and a heart and a conscience.  And this lost opportunity truly does hurt us as much, perhaps more, than the other person.

And, I think it’s these Regrets of Opportunity that cause us to “should on ourselves” and cause us to lose sleep, and cause us to worry.  These Regrets of Opportunity cause us, hopefully, to resolve to do better next time, to make it up to the individual somehow, someway.  If we have a heart, and a soul, and a conscience in good working order, we do resolve to do better next time.  Don’t we?  Something to think about . . .

Live Your Life, and Make A Difference!

To My Readers:

If you like thriller/mystery fiction, and are looking for a series with action and with characters that have heart, check out my Lives Trilogy.  Here is the series with current kindle pricing, and all are free on Kindle Unlimited.

Book #1: Stolen Lives $3.99

Book #2: Shattered Lives $5.99

Prequel to the Lives Trilogy: Taking Lives $.99

Friday, September 18, 2015

R-E-L-A-X



Last year very early in the season, the Green Bay Packers struggled to win.  They looked ugly and lost some games they shouldn’t have lost.  Every fan was worried and every fan was wringing hands and fretting not sure what was happening to the Packers. 

Interestingly enough, even if he was privately unhappy or worried with his team’s 1-2 start, Aaron Rodgers did his best to be calm.  On his weekly radio show, he said, “Five letters here, just for everybody out there in Packer land.  R-E-L-A-X.  Relax. We’re going to be okay.”

Once upon a time, I was a young head coach of a very talented high school basketball team in Wyoming.  Very talented.  Heck, they were so good, even I couldn’t screw them up.  Seriously good!  That particular year, state tournament good.  That particular year, state title runner-up good.  Yeah, that good!

But one night, we had one of those games.  We couldn’t shoot.  We couldn’t play defense.  We couldn’t rebound.  We couldn’t pass the ball.  We fouled everyone, probably even the manager, at inopportune times.  It didn’t matter what combination of players I put out on the court, the combination didn’t work.  Absolutely nothing went right in the first half against a far less talented team.  And we ended up going into the locker room at the half 33 points down.

Can you imagine the half-time talk?  I can’t remember it, but given my personality and coaching style, I kinda think I didn’t respond as Aaron Rodgers did.  No way I could . . . or did . . . just sit by and R-E-L-A-X.  No way!

In the second half, we did some very unusual things.  Instead of pressing all over the court, we played a half-court zone.  Nothing fancy, just a zone.  We invited the other team to shoot over the top of us, which was opposite of what I should have done, because in the first half, everything they put up went in.  But in the second half, it was a different story.  They missed just about everything they put up, but kept on shooting.  I mean, they couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn and remember, this was Wyoming, so there were plenty of barns around. 

As improbable as it seemed, we ended up winning that game by more than twenty points.

Weird how doing the opposite of what you think you should do works.  How when you feel like you have to run around and scream and feel nervous seems like it is the natural thing to do, but weird how slowing yourself down, taking stock and breathing in the face of the frantic rush and worry of the world actually seems to work.  Sort of like us going into a zone rather than pressing all over the court.  It was the opposite of conventional wisdom and flew in the face of everything any coach knows about the game.  Weird.

R-E-L-A-X

You know those days when we struggle, when nothing seems to go right, when things fall apart, and one thing after another goes wrong?

It happens, doesn’t it?  We have those kinds of days every now and then.  All of us from time to time.

And it doesn’t help if we react in a frenzy.  It doesn’t help if we throw our hands in the air and rush about not knowing what to do or where to do it.

R-E-L-A-X

Perhaps instead of reacting the way we might normally react, instead of running around in a frenzy, we slow down.  We calm down.  We breathe.  We take Aaron’s advice and R-E-L-A-X.  I mean after all, he did pretty well on Jeopardy.  He ended up being the league MVP.  In the chaotic world of pro football, and the ensuing chaos of being a quarterback with 6 foot 5 inch, 300 pound linemen running at you with the intent to do you bodily harm .  .  . I mean, if he says we should R-E-L-A-X, maybe we should give it a try.  Something to think about . . .

Live Your Life, and Make A Difference!

To My Readers:

From a Very Enthusiastic Reader/Reviewer:
READERS, this one is for you! I cannot fully put in words why you should read this book. I lack the ability to fully capture my excitement & enthusiasm for this series. This book as well as the other books that make up the trilogy are truly movies in print. Every character relatable…seeable. The pain, palpable. I cried, I laughed, and I found myself holding my breath in anticipation of the next page wondering where the story would take me. You don't want to miss out on this trilogy. I am personally waiting for the final installment "Splintered Lives" due out this month.

Here is the series with current kindle pricing, and all are free on Kindle Unlimited.

Book #1: Stolen Lives $3.99

Book #2: Shattered Lives $5.99

Prequel to the Lives Trilogy: Taking Lives $.99

Book #3: Splintered Lives - Coming soon!

**And for those asking, no I do not work for Joseph Lewis, Author.  I am simply a book enthusiast. When I find a read I love, I feel it's my duty to share!
Here is my share.....Enjoy!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Another Beginning



Summer is a time of growth and lush beauty.  Flowers are in bloom.  The sun is warmer, days hotter, and where I live, it is humid.  Still, a nice time to be alive.

Fall is a time when the earth shows its age.  The leaves on trees change colors, die and fall off the branch.  Sweatshirts and jeans replace shorts and t-shirts.  I have to admit that I love fall a little more than the other seasons.  There is a different tone to the air, a different feel, a brisk crispness, I think, that doesn’t exist in the other seasons.

I find it interesting that we begin a school year in the fall.  I mean, learning should equate to growth, to beginning.  The beginning of school seems to be the opposite of the season in which it begins.  Interesting to me how that works.

Today, I spoke to about 500 kids, 400 of which are about to begin high school for the first time.  Nervous laughter.  Some quiet.  Most curious.  The other 100 or so were the upper classmen who have been around for several years, who have been walking the halls of high school for a while, and were in those same seats as freshmen not too long ago.

I purposely held the door to the auditorium and greeted parents as they arrived.  I’d say things like, “Welcome!” or “Good morning!” or “Thank you for coming!”  I could tell that several were nervous also.  Others, old vets who have been through this drill before with one of their older children.

For me, this year is bittersweet.  My youngest is one of the seniors who has been through it and who is anxious to get moving and get it done.  As a dad, I’m not that anxious, certainly not as anxious as she is.  I imagine there are other parents in my shoes.

Part of the natural progression of things, of life.  Ease the child out into the real world, watch them grow, struggle a little, pick them up when they fall- and they will.  They all do.  We all do.  Be there to help them back up and let them know that it’s okay, things will be alright.  Let them know that you love them.

Parents entrusting their children to teachers who will help guide, support, and mentor.  Hopefully love them enough to help them back up once the kids fall.  And they will.  We all have.  To let them know it’s okay, things will be alright.  Let them know that they love them.  At least, that they care.

And, as a principal, I have to tell you that I have some of the very best.  They work wonders with kids.  Kids enter their rooms and magic happens.  You don’t believe in magic?  Come to my school and I’ll show you what real magic looks like.  Every day.  Hallways, classrooms, parking lot, the practice field- doesn’t matter where or when.  Magic happens because they care.

So parents, kids, relax a little.  As the commercial says, “You’re in good hands with  . . .”  I believe that.  We care.  We’ll do our best and when there is a bloody knee or a bruise because of a fall, someone will be there to help pick them up, to let them know it’s okay, that things will be alright.  Absolutely.  After all, it’s magic.  It’s real and it happens.  Something to think about . . .

Live Your Life, and Make A Difference!

To my readers:
Follow me on Twitter: @jrlewisauthor

If you like thriller fiction, check out:

Shattered Lives, Book Two of The Lives Trilogy on Amazon in both kindle and paperback at

Taking Lives, the Prequel of The Lives Trilogy on Amazon in both kindle and paperback at