In Truth we Trust

I can be completely captivated by a two hour debate that attempts to define and flesh out the concept of a profound five-letter word. In fact, these kinds of deliberations are so interesting to me, that I’ve filled my days with them lately.

I love podcasts and one I heard this week was all about the word Truth.

This kind of topic is right up my alley. I am fascinated anytime I can hear people discuss such a fundamental concept.

In this exchange, the intelligent atheist host had just begun his program when he and the guest found a divergent opinion on the definition and application of the idea of Truth.

I won’t go into each person’s argument and attempt to make interesting reading out of somebody else’s verbal chess match. I will say however that I LOVED the fact that they locked horns and dug so deeply into this deceptively simple notion.

I’m sure that we’ve all thrown the word Truth around in our lives, usually in order to cement an observation, recollection or prediction. We may even judge others in their behavior and claim to have some inside track on the Truth behind their ways.

In any case, I know that I don’t have a PhD in the usage of every word or phrase I spout. Therefore I find it so interesting when two people wear themselves out in argument over something as fundamental as this.

Don’t we too often take for granted wide swaths of understanding and assumption, when talking with ourselves or others? Don’t we just speak through a conversation like a drive to store and back home. Trying to get to the point and return as quickly as possible without expending real capital? Can you remember a time when you had the substructure of your very conception of a core value challenged openly and gentlemanly, with a chance to rebut? I really don’t find myself in these mental MMA matches and it’s a good thing too. I probably would tap out pretty quickly…

Hooray though, that we aren’t all just zombified, caring only about the next basketball game or Tee Vee Show. It does seem that as a culture we’re waking up more to questioning reality, politics and being outwardly opinionated. Many are constantly outraged and terrified too. I find it just a little disheartening though, to see so much barking and exclaiming online. It’s as if these clipart ideas are skipping across the top of the pond like stones flung with fury, but barely touching the surface.

I prefer the deeper dive. My heart was warmed to hear these two agents, staunch in their positions, trade blow after blow in defense of their idea of the concept named Truth.

It’s paramount that their discussion didn’t proceed beyond this little hiccup of difference in opinion, because that one little difference colored everything else that could be said afterward.

Our core beliefs are the womb that births all. If you and if I have opposite root perspectives, we will be spinning our wheels talking about situations and observations of life. The color of the lens that we see everything through, will convince us and solidify our opinion, in ways that another person can rarely alter.

So then, an in-depth study of the tiniest kernel of our ‘come-from’ and ‘inner stance’, is really the only conversation to have. It’s the thing, that will create all the other things that we have to say.

I will link to the podcast here. If you are like me, on a search for Truth, or find interesting the debate over an acceptable definition of the concept of the Truth, have at it. Otherwise, just take a moment to reflect on the last time you questioned yourself to the core. Could you articulate to someone else, and communicate on the nature of your human experience of life itself?

I haven’t tried to do that in any conversational debate. Maybe though, I’m hinting at it through the words you can read here. I’m compelled and provoked by stuff like this and maybe some of you are too. You must be, otherwise, why would you have read this far?

Until next week my friends, dive deep. Unpack and dissect the profound. I can’t wait to hear or see your Truth, so please share. 🙂


Aaron Nichols

PS: if you want my take on the podcast I linked to, I tended to agree with the guest, rather than the host, on his interpretation of Truth. I appreciated the whole coversation however, obviously 🙂

The trouble with kids, when will they learn!

Better not set anything fragile or important on the end table. Surely it’ll be sent off with a zing, flying fast to the floor! Our little Angel is quick to dismiss a couple remotes, and a book or baby that she’d already put there before. We don’t let anything important rest on the end table anymore…

A one and almost a half-year-old can be a whirlwind to a tidy living room. Just this morning she instantly cleared a shelf full of books as soon as the babysitter arrived. They probably read at least a couple of them 🙂

The end table though is different. She doesn’t empty the top of it just for fun. Actually, I don’t think she is aware that it is a table at all. She is too young to understand the standards of livingroom furniture function. She doesn’t get it, and it may be awhile before she does!

It seems to be that she actually considers our solid oak end table to be a piece of gymnastic equipment. It happens to sit between the couch and the rocking recliner. To her, this slick flat wooden top is just perfect for belly sliding across. That’s it! There isn’t another reason for it to exist to her. She seems to think it’s just another part of the amusement park of our house.

In this child’s world, everything can be made into a game or a tool or can be torn apart, or fed to the dog. There are no ‘supposed to’s’ yet built into the way she interacts with life itself.

Along the same lines, she finds new families to join up with at our restaurant every evening. Any group of people with other little kids is fair game to her. She just climbs up on the Mom or Dad’s lap, and makes herself at home. Sometimes it goes too far, when she digs into the macaroni and cheese bought by our guests for their own kids. And for now, she’s cute enough to get away with it.

Luckily for me, I almost NEVER attack my day with same reckless abandon and pure intent on having silly fun at all expense. I am MUCH too adult for that! Yup, I know a lot more about the supposed to’s, the expected social norms, and the highly important opinion of other people! I won’t be making mistakes like my daughter, and enjoying myself just because I can!

Rest assured, that even though I’ve noticed my daughter acting ‘crazy’, I’ll try and stick to the upright and prudent script of ‘normality’, as best I can. And anyway, it’s not easy to just make everything into smiling funtimes, right? She must be too young to maturely understand ‘the real world’ yet…

Actually… now as I type these words… I’m beginning to think that I hope she never does…

Until next week my friends… Do Some Belly Sliding!!!


Aaron Nichols

“Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
– Mark 10:15

This weather hits me right in the ‘feels!’

Even though I ‘feel’ like complaining and I can tell myself there are lots of real reasons to do so, it probably doesn’t help. This week there was a tragic Icemaggedon Storm predicted and so far, it hasn’t showed up. I notice a lot of emotions within myself about how the issue has played out. I could even write in detail about that here…

However, it seems that the focus on these negative ‘feelings’ wouldn’t help me out much. I can’t bring back lost revenues or un-ache my head from dealing with lots of conversations about ‘What if it gets real icy out!’ It almost seems to me that if I could forget about the flavor of those feelings altogether, I’d be better off.

In reality, all is well in my world. I have a beautifully pregnant bride, a bright-eyed bundle of fun daughter and work hard in two successful small businesses. It’s hard to complain about much, from a birds-eye-view.

Those darn ‘feelings’ though can be tricky.

I’m wondering if the warm tension in my gut and dull throbbing of my head don’t come from ‘feeling’ too much of my ‘feelings’… I have probably spent a long time and lots of effort on dissecting the inner world of my emotional responses, and instead it may be more helpful to overlook them.

Discipline and determination, faith and perseverance all operate contrary to and in-spite-of feelings. These habits and character traits are forged straight through the burning desires to procrastinate, or to change course, or quit altogether. In this sense, the ‘feelings’ themselves can be an enemy!

We may put too much weight and importance on the existence and elaborate behavior of our feelings. I know I have done it myself this week. I wonder too, if THE Enemy, uses our feelings as bridle and bit, to direct our attention, our momentum toward his lies and corruption.

If effective and positive progress toward God’s will, is to be made, we may have to disregard our own feelings from time to time… Soooo, much easier said than done.

Until next week my friends, be well and operate beyond the boundaries of just what ‘feels good’.


Aaron Nichols

Watch that bottom line!

I was a little startled at the price I heard coming from the other end of the phone call.  A chunk of plastic should be cheaper than that, right? Then I was even more surprised when the person told me that if I looked up the part on Amazon, I could save our business $15.00… Well that was a NO BRAINER!!

‘Order it up please. I would much rather buy it from you locally for only $15.00 more. Thanks for your help on this!’

Especially when I’m spending money for our restaurant, The Brand’N Iron, I feel compelled to keep as many dollars as possible circulating within our local economy. We are patronized mostly by the community around us. There aren’t a large percentage of our customers from the City or other states. I feel responsible to trade in the neighborhood whenever common-sense shows it’s possible.

We are always appreciative when someone chooses to dine with us, instead of driving out of town. I want to treat other businesses the same way, with our equipment and supplies issues.

Of course spending more money when it could be saved happens to impact the bottom line. I understand that too. The bottom line is that we are a community establishment, and part of that is working together as much possible. That’s the real bottom line.

Until next week my friends, choose to support your hometown community, whenever you can.


Aaron Nichols

Happy New Now

A lot of anxiety is based on the possible ending of things. It’s more than just a physics law, and it seems we actually prefer the objects already in motion, to stay in motion. Another way to put it, as I’ve heard, is ‘The only person who likes change, is a baby with a dirty diaper.’ And I can add, that even the baby doesn’t always like that!

New Years is different on the surface level. The celebration is about the next thing coming, a fresh start, and excitement for possibilities to come. Ho hum, big deal, that’s not what you clicked here to hear.

The End and our relationship with it, has everything to do with… well… Everything.

I can create a stream of sentences describing the inner panic that washes over me, when I think of various ‘Ends’ that could and most likely will occur, in the average person’s life. As a self aware control freak, I could blame the mystery of the timing and circumstances surrounding those ‘Ends’ to be the problem, but I’m fooling myself there too.

I wonder though, if the truth isn’t even stranger than we can conceive. I think it would be easy to prove that our current understanding of our coordinates within this journey of life, are off. How else could we be thrown off, when changes come our way? If we had pinpoint accurate knowledge of our position in relation to work, or our relationships, or our intellectual and spiritual path, then how could surprises exist?

Therefore we must, at all times, be experiencing a margin of error in our own interpretation of the world around us. This error could be miniscule enough that we live out day after day, month and year after year as ‘same crap, different day’. We may be cycling around in the same ol ruts, and know it, finding comfort in the repetition. That’s not most of us. Would you agree?

I see my world unfolding in a constant version of California freeway driving: full throttle, slam on the brakes, full throttle again! This is most likely because of a slight misperception about what I am actually experiencing. Even though I feel the waves of emotional impact one after the other, it’s just because I stick to the idea that I’m in a concrete world, not a fluid one. No sailor would be surprised by the movement of a boat on the water, somehow I freak out at each dip or rise.

The illusion of linear time, the imagination of security vs uncertainty, the impression of permanence is all between my own ears. Believing untruths about nature, about God’s creation, when we repeatedly experience it otherwise could be defined as insanity.

Oh well, all I could do is give up my lunacy, my death grip on delusion. Then when things come unhinged or doors slam shut in my face I could smile in the knowing that doors and hinges are made of smoky ether. This substance takes on lots of imagery, but any physical reaction is conducted from within.

I can celebrate the New Year, yes. 2017 seems like a high number right now. However, there aren’t even things like years, that can exist within the tiniest becoming moment we experience as Now. Here is where life actually happens. With faith, there is always a way to experience the touch of Almighty God, in that place, no matter what your perception tells you, about the End of this or even the Beginning of that.

Until next week my friends, find a tiny now, breathe and enjoy.


Aaron Nichols