The Foundation

Today I planted a tree!  My cohost Jenn gave me the little tree above and instructed me to hike up Mt. Si and plant it.  So off I went on my great adventure to plant the tree.  I had hoped to plant it on the summit, but once I got there the snow was too deep.  And it was at that moment God spoke to me through the little tree.  Yes, like Moses I had my own burning bush!  Okay, that is a little dramatic, but keep reading, because this is good.

It hasn’t been much of a secret that my love life has not been great.  And while I can’t take all the blame…I can only speak for myself and I do accept most of the blame.  And I think that one of the reasons I haven’t had great success with a relationship is because my foundation is weak.

When I wanted to plant that tree I looked for the perfect spot.  A place where the tree would have a great foundation, and it’s roots would take hold so that it could stand against the difficult days ahead.  For that tree to grow up and thrive it has to have a strong foundation.  The roots have to take hold and then one day it will be able to endure the storms.

The same is true for us.  We need a strong foundation because when difficulties arise (and they always do) we have to be able to handle them.  Life is about being able to handle the crap storms that inevitably come our way.  We are going to face rejection, stress, setbacks, illness, and the list goes on doesn’t it?  And if our foundation is weak we won’t handle the storms appropriately.  And let’s be honest, relationships are challenging.  So if the foundation is weak…we can’t rise to the challenge!

So in the following blogs let’s talk about how to strengthen our foundation.  Yes, at most of our ages we should’ve already done it, but we didn’t and can start now.  Also, some of us may have had strong foundations at one point, and allowed time to weaken it a bit.  So we may just need to go back in and fix a few things. For example, a divorce can destroy our confidence, financial stability, and do I need to go on?  If we allow it to do so…divorce or other forms of heartache can weaken our foundations for future relationships. It is very tough to have a healthy relationship when your foundation is full of unresolved issues of mistrust, heartache, control, and etc.

I was in a relationship with someone I still adore to this day, and it didn’t workout because my foundation was weak.  This became very apparent to me after I read a message I had sent to her on Facebook. It was one of those moments where you just shake your head AT YOURSELF! It was pathetic…I was pathetic.  It was weak, and that is not who I am in my “heart of hearts.”  She wasn’t looking for perfection, but she needed to know I was strong enough to do life with her.  I was not and good for her for picking up on it.  And good for me for allowing it to challenge me to do do better, and to focus on once again establishing a strong foundation.

Today was Thanksgiving and I was thankful for her. Well, thankful for her, Jenn, and that dang miniature tree that I carried around for nearly 4 hours.  Little did I know that I was the one who needed the right foundation!

I hope you’ll follow along and we can work on our foundations together.  Many of us have built our foundation on sand, and it’s time to move to solid ground. The good news is that I know how to fix it…we just have to be willing to do the work.  And this just isn’t about relationships…it is about life.  A weak foundation will cause problems spiritually, and mentally as well. So let’s get busy!

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Love you,



Published by

Tony Russell

Hello, my name is Tony and I have a lot of great advice, because I have made a lot of mistakes! I am a former licensed counselor and pastor, but I have learned more about life through my experiences than my education. I make my living as the host of the morning show on 98.7 The Bull in Portland, Oregon. Being a counselor didn't stop me from hitting a midlife crisis. I began questioning everything from my self-worth to my spiritual beliefs. And if that wasn't enough, surprise! I found out I would be getting a divorce. This has all lead to a journey that can be full of extreme anxiety, depression, and soul searching. I have the same questions as you do and maybe together we can find some answers. My goal for this blog is to share my journey in hopes that it will help you better navigate this amazing time in life. If you have any questions or comments please feel free to contact me. I know life can be difficult, but I find that it is easier when we do it together!

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