A Free eBook: Coming Clean |Austin Outtakes

On the weekend of my coming clean—the weekend I was blinded by the epiphany that, yes, I had a drinking problem—I traveled to Austin. A lawyer by trade, I was presenting at a humanitarian conference known as the Idea Camp. My topic du jour related to international orphan care, and how worldview, international legal frameworks, and Gospel dignity should shape our view of it. Riveting stuff, eh? Don't answer that question.

A group of friends converged from across the country for the conference, and opting against the bourgeois trappings of single rooms at the conference-recommended hotel, we split room and board at an Austin house situated at 1900 David Street. We gathered under the roof of that spacious house, under the broad-shouldered and gnarled Spanish oak that protected the far corner of the porch. I remember that Spanish oak. How it seemed to anchor so much of that weekend.

My little band of compatriots calls this house “The David House.” I call it my halfway house—the house where I entered fully dependent on alcohol, where I left in the newness of a shaky sobriety. The folks at The David House, along with a few Idea Camp attendees (Heather King, most notably) played a direct role in the birth of my sobriety. I couldn’t be more grateful for them.

In my soon-to-be-released book Coming Clean, I write more about that Austin weekend. But in my little eBook, Coming Clean|Austin Outtakes, I flesh out that weekend a little more with the help of my friends, my first community of support. In the Austin Outtakes, I've compiled pieces from Kristen Howerton, Karen Yates, Preston Yancey, Heather King, Matt Mooney, and my wife, Amber Haines. They discuss The David House, lead you through their experiences of the weekend, and their interactions with me as I came clean.

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The eBook is completely free for those who've pre-ordered Coming Clean. If you pre-order today (or if you've already pre-ordered), let me know (whether in the comments below or on social media), and I'll make sure you get your free copy of the Austin Outtakes.

And if you'd like to help spread the word about Coming Clean and the Austin Outtakes, [tweetherder text="Pre-order @sethhaines' new book, Coming Clean, and receive a free eBook! http://amzn.to/1QIsKGH // "]click this link.[/tweetherder]

Thanks to all of you who've followed and supported this journey. I couldn't be more grateful. Sincerely.



Cover.FrancisThanks for stopping in! If you enjoy reading here, sign up to receive my bi-monthly Tiny Letter. In it, I discuss faith, doubt, and random bits and pieces of my life. Sign up and  received access to my serial eBook, Dear Little Brothers.

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And don't forget to keep you eyes out for my upcoming book from Zondervan, Coming Clean.

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Good Links (Front Porch Edition)

"From the stage, I am taught and I am so thankful for that. But on the porch, I learn.  From the stage, I am redirected where I need it.  But on the porch, I am restored. From the stage, I am enlightened and (often) excited.  From the porch, I get to enter into the story." ~Dr. Jacob Kaler, certified genius.

Last week, I made the drive past Bob's Stage 4 Cancer Sale, past (or should I say, "through") the In-N-Out restaurant, past the new Bears stadium in Waco (sick 'em), and deep into the heart of Austin (keep it weird, folks!). I attended the Idea Camp, where, as the fates would have it, a few old friends and a few new ones rented the house at 1900 David. It was part party house, part worship house, but all peace house, and it rested in the shadow of one of the most beautiful twisted Spanish oaks I've ever seen.  Each evening, after a day's worth of discussing orphan care, relief work, and other sorts of complex human care issues, we'd return to the peace house, friends in tow, and sit in the living room or on the front porch and unpack one heckuva good time.

I've found myself missing not only my housemates, but those who dropped in to wind down the evenings with us. They were good people from whom I learned good things. Today's linkup is dedicated to them.*


On the house: On spending time at the peace house, Mike Rusch, Idea Camp MC and best-brother to us all, says "[t]here are times in life when the way you walk changes, and there are times when you must stop and stack stones." Perhaps Sarah Markley feels the same way about our time at 1900 David. She writes, "It’s been a long time and now here, for whatever short time I am filled, I’m aware at how hungry I’ve been."

On the direction: Amber only stayed one night with us in the peace house. It's a shame, ain't it? Nonetheless, she was there, and as things go, she turned out one of the better posts I've read in a while on the direction of a life. See how she gives contours to her story? See how she writes with a poetic flair?

On orphan care ethics: If you read one thing from this linkup, please take the time read Kristen Howerton's piece, "How the Christian Oprhan Care Movement May be Enabling Child Abandonment." Kristen is a top-tier thinker who has spent the time to consider her position on orphan care ethics, and has the chops to put words to it. I learned a great deal from Kristen this weekend. You should, too.

On reclaiming evangelical roots: Preston Yancey is evangelical again. Well ain't that just a thing! That's really all I have to say about that. That, and that he's a gent and a scholar (literally on both accounts).

On being a Russian nesting doll: Heather King is a Babushka? Whoops! From a woman who claims difficulty fitting in certain circles, she sure did prove herself to be the missing piece of the Austin puzzle last week. Struggle with finding your fit? Read it.

On the good way: Know Karen Yates? You should. Let her lead you in the way forward.

On Tsh Oxenreider's generosity: I was floored by Tsh's generosity. (Man, were those breakfast tacos incredible!)  After the Idea Camp, Tsh invited me to share my new poem, "Nuevos Santos," at her place. Thanks, Tsh!

On the conference culture: Sarah Bessey dropped in on the first night, which qualifies her for this week's link up. This week, she deals with the conference culture and hero worship. Shake it up, Sarah.

It's been a joy knowing (and getting to know) these good folks. Give them a visit this weekend and enjoy their words.

Until next week, comma...
*Click the names to connect on twitter: Jacob, Mike, Sarah M., Amber, Kristen, Preston, Heather, Karen, Tsh, Sarah B.