Life of Meaning

When the End Is a New Beginning

June 25, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

Don’t “they” say, “All good things must come to an end?”

Who am I to argue with the most infamous “they,” but I must say that “they” are dead wrong. It is Wednesday June 24, 2015 and my last day in Amsterdam. My last day in Europe (for now). My 15 day trip ends tomorrow with a flight back to LA. So, my trip is over. Done. Finite. The End.

But is it? I don’t think so. It continues in my mind and imagination, influencing my creativity, my relationships with other people, and the way I think about life. I will never be the same Charlie I was before I began this trip.
[Read more…]

Trapped in the Wrong Body

June 4, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 3 Comments

I am a 35-year-old Millennial/GenXer trapped in the body of a 65-year-old Baby Boomer.

Since I was about 50, I’ve felt like an Outsider hanging out on the edge of an Insider’s world that I could just never really “get into.” I love almost anything new and unusual, the more unusual the better. I used to describe myself as a very average person—it’s just that I was average about two years before most of the population.

Then I read a post on Millennials by futurist, Peter Diamandes. That’s me! I’m blessed with the heart of a Millennial. Who cares about my age? In many ways I feel 30 years younger than my real age.
[Read more…]

When You Get Less Than You Expected

May 29, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

Man, did Pam and I have a day last Saturday May 23, 2015! Our 22 year old son made his Dodger Stadium debut as the catcher for the San Diego Padres. He was “called up” two weeks ago. Unreal! We sat in the suite of his agent, Scott Boras, ate fabulous (and free) food and reveled with 8 family and friends.


[Read more…]

Making Friends with Your Demons

May 21, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 8 Comments

Caution: This post will require “Vulnerability”

There are times when I don’t embrace (and manage) my life as well as I would like. Surprised? Don’t be.

I believe that life is, in fact, unmanageable—except when you proactively and super-consciously make an “effort” to manage and embrace it. Sound contradictory? That’s because it is contradictory. You see I also believe in Paradox, Ambiguity, and the Mutual Co-Existence of Opposites.



[Read more…]

When “Yes” is Good and “No” Is Better

April 22, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

I was a “yes man” far too long. Ask me to be a member of a special committee. “Yes!” Need someone to manage a difficult project. “Hell yes. I’m your guy!” And then… if you didn’t ask, I’d probably volunteer.

The Insidious Need to Be Needed

It’s a sickness. A pathology. Some kind of insidious “need to be needed.” When I’d say, “I’m your guy” I really was your guy. Whatever I chose to do, I’d do well. Like really well.
[Read more…]

Just Be a Good One

April 16, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

I was watching an old documentary on B.B. King. I’ll never forget his comment when talking about up and coming blues guitar players, “I likes to tell ‘em, “Don’t try to be the best one, just be a good one.’”


[Read more…]

When You Don’t Have Time, “Make Time!”

April 9, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

So the older guy is relaxing in his recliner reading the morning newspaper when his wife asks him, “What are you going to do today?” to which he quickly responds, “Nothin.” “That’s what you did yesterday,” she harped. “Yea,” he replied, “but I didn’t finish.”

Unfortunately, that’s a pretty rare state of being in our gotta-be-busy lifestyles today, especially if you have kids and more especially if those kids are in sports or dance or cheer or whatever else is out there to keep them occupied.
[Read more…]

Virtue: A Virtual Mystery

April 2, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

“A Good Man is Hard to Find”

Not only is this the title of Flannery O’Connor’s most famous short story but, more important, it’s also the mantra of almost every unmarried woman in probably the entire world. When I was a minister to a thousand single adults it certainly was.

So what are the attributes of this “good man?” I imagine if I were to take a poll I would most likely find things like: kind, tenderhearted, responsive to need, loving, spiritual, faithful, sense of humor, and the like. Although many would never admit it, but good looking and in shape never hurts!
[Read more…]

My Single Greatest Obstacle to Success!

March 25, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

TODAY there is one single greatest obstacle to my success in lifeI CAN GET STUCK IN A LAZY RUT!!!

Before I semi-retired in 2010, or so, I was way too busy to be lazy. I had too much to do: my job (25 hrs per wk), coaching baseball (25 hrs per wk), volunteering at church, cooking for the family, devoting time to my wife and son (other than baseball)… the list goes on.

Then I slowed down… a lot: very little work, no baseball, my wife was working 50-60 hours per week, my son lived out of state… I had nothing to do. Worse, I was just too “stuck in a lazy rut” to find something to do. I didn’t even read. Get this: I stopped painting because I was too lazy to change my clothes. LOL!!!

I think I felt that if I wasn’t doing something really productive it wasn’t worth doing at all. Nothing was worth doing! I’m not sure what filled my days. I just didn’t feel like doing anything, except going to movies. I saw almost every movie that was out in those days.

So I sat around and whined about not having anything to do. I know, wah, wah, wah.
[Read more…]

I’m Not Sure… Thank God

March 20, 2015 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

I was sitting with a friend in a Mexican restaurant in Peoria, AZ-where the Padres and Mariners play Spring Baseball. He was experiencing one of those oh-so healthy periods of questioning the legitimacy of his faith tradition. He asked me directly, “Charlie, do you believe in God and what you’ve been taught about the Bible with 100% assurance?”

Such an easy question to answer; I responded, “Of course not!” I might believe 100%, but I can’t be 100% sure that my belief is “for sure.”

A bishop once told me, “Charlie, we confidently believe in our faith, but with modesty and humility, always knowing that we could be wrong.” There are indeed certain genuine universal truths but we, as finite humans, are incapable of grasping all the mysteries of God.

“Almost” Sure


[Read more…]

The Next Chapter Podcast
Living a life of meaning Living a life with adventure Living a life with awe