joy and listening


For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:21

To begin our entrepreneurial quest, the guides invited parent Mike Kalis to give a hero talk about marketing.  After an afternoon of selling bananas, building houses for special clients out of marshmallows and spaghetti as well as developing tools to convince parents about buying a pet, Mike reflected this with me out loud. “If they could walk away with two things I’d want them to think that business is joyful and it’s important to listen to people.”

The heroes found Mike persuasive as they built with joy and listened intently.

In the middle of the afternoon, Mike told the heroes, “You heard what Dr. T wants in a house.  He wants a huge dining room to have big dinner parties. He wants a porch for sitting.  And he threw in a request for a zip line and game room for his grandchildren.” You’ve got ten minutes to design it with the materials you’ve been given.” I was eventually persuaded by Carter’s group who came up with an innovative zip line and a multipurpose dining area.  They heard my heart’s value of innovation and multi-tasking.

Even with all of this collaboration, the vast majority of heroes are developing individual products for the Children’s Business Fair.  Conversations around slingshots, lemonade bombs, doll clothes, pillows and placemats have resounded during the week.  They have been bringing their initial plans and elevator pitches to colleague-heroes for feedback.

It’s this blend of personalized projects with social engagement that creates the dynamic flow of Journey Academy’s day.  The joy and the listening are at the heart of our endeavor.  And they will continue to accompany us for the rest of our journeys.

//Dr. T//


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“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?  And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’  (Luke 15:4-6)
Finding continues to be a theme in our session as well as our Forensics Quest. Heroes are discovering core skills like writing and entrepreneurial planning that they have developed.

During collaborative core skills, Carter and Elias developed a brochure for Carter’s business called Carter’s Craft Store. They are looking to custom design wood products like shelving, picture frames, plant holders, coat hangers and desks.  I’ve decided to purchase a picture frame for my Hero’s Journey print.  If any other readers are interested, I can serve as a communication conduit to Carter’s Craft Store. 

“I don’t want to eat lunch.  I just want to read.” Liviet has been working hard, meeting her goals in Core Skills and declared this as I was walking by.  Apparently, she’s found the draw to the word more enticing than her lunch (at least on that day).

The finding seems to extend to our Kingdom Time sessions.  On Monday as we reflected on the passage from Luke, the heroes talked about what might lead a shepherd to leave ninety nine sheep to find the one.  As they talked about the value that that sheep must have, we linked it back to the value that God must have for us discussing what the hug must feel like from the Father who finds you. As we transitioned to Core Skills, Ella pulled me aside and said, “While we were talking about hugs from God, I could actually feeling Him hugging me. And He’s Still Hugging Me!” In the swirl (and yes occasional chaos) of heroes driving their learning, these moments of discovery are the moments of rejoicing like the shepherd describes.

And these discoveries, thanks to our model, often have a firm grounding in real world learning.  This Thursday Deputy Omar returned as a consultant for our Forensics Quest to hear about the evidence that heroes are analyzing and to hear their tentative theories about what happened.  In a real world way, he asked clarifying questions based in his professional expertise. Looking back over the week, the skills they are developing equip them to step into a host of learning settings.

  • Phone interviews/etiquette
  • Scientific method
  • Careful observation
  • Problem solving through deductive reasoning
  • Reading body language
  • Creating reports based on their key conclusions

Included in this learning is an exposure to Forensics Vocabulary from Deputy Omar and his Crime Scene Unit including: Implicate, Search warrant, Privacy rights, GPS , Proof, Evidence, Latent prints, Fibers, Burglar, Point of entry, Point of exit, Disturbance, Alibi, Eliminate, Red herring, Whorls, Swirls and Deltas.

We Rejoice at all of this Finding and we invite you to join us.

May He Lift us up on His Shoulders.

//Dr. T//