Loving One Another

What a Week!


Problems
Creep in
Usually they’re unbidden
Happened all week long
Blame

Gifted
With Love
From my Lord
I did move forward
Strength

Possibilities
Are fueled
By firm beliefs
Making hard things easier
Faith

One step at a time
Life is easier with faith
Just follow the Light!

This last one’s a Haiku, but the preceding series of three poems (written in the German-inspired style of Elfchen or Elevenie) shares a total of eleven words in each poem, with a sequence by line of one, two, three, four, and one words.

I hope you had a good week.
Enjoy your weekend.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

BYE!!
BEEEEE Well.

The Power of Friendship


“Celebrating the Power of Friendship” is the title of a month-long focus on a friend’s chosen devotional website. On the site today, it said: “Although we are not currently meeting in person, there is no distance between souls and the bond of friendship we share…”

I feel that bond of friendship with you, my WordPress friends, just as I do with family and friends who have reached out to Bob & me during this past week of death and tribulation. Thank you so much!

I can’t count the billions
Of dollars my friends are worth.
They make living worthwhile;
They fill my life with mirth.

When times are sad and troubling,
They reach out with care and love.
Friends are earthly angels
Sent from heaven above.

My friend sent this card to me;
It came right out of the blue,
When I really needed it the most.
Do your friends do that for you?

I hope you have some friends
Who tromp daily on your heart,
Leaving footprints all over it.
I’m here to tromp on yours. Let’s start!

There is power in such friendships.
They turn dark days into bright.
They listen and they love us, and
They help things turn out right.

Thank you for being the sunshine in my darkest days.

Thanks for popping in.
Thanks for being the friends who watch and sit and read with me.
Wish you could walk and eat with me, too.
Enjoy the kids’ song below. It’s a catchy tune.
It’ll have you singing all day long!!

Have a Fabulous Friday.
I love you!
See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Feelings Check-in


Are you feeling overwhelmed?
Got too much on your plate?
Take a step back and regroup –
Don’t bite the “Gotta” bait!!

You don’t “Gotta” do nothing
But eat and breathe and live.
Set aside the burdens and
Sort life with a sieve.

Sift out what is draining,
And give yourself compassion.
Let go what’s upsetting
And let yourself start laughin’.

Yup, go find yerself a sandbox
And sit in it with friends.
Share the stuff that troublin’
And watch how the sadness ends.

And when the sandbox play
Comes to an end, get up
And bid the spiders, bees, and ants
Good-bye while you go and fill your cup.

Have a cup of kindness
With some honey to sweeten it.
Chase those blues right out the door.
Tell your stress you’ve beaten it!

When you look at each day smiling,
There is really no denying it,
You can beat the blues and stressfulness.
Go out fearlessly … Bee a Leo: Lion it!!

Are you feeling overwhelmed?
Got too much on your plate?
Set some aside – and get some rest –
There’s always tomorrow; that’s not too late!

Thanks for popping in!

Have a good night!
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Hold On!


What do you need to hold on to?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

At this stage in my life, I don’t need to buy anything else
(except maybe food to sustain Bob & me
and a plane ticket or two to travel
to see our kids when it’s safe to do so)
… but I need to get rid of things instead.

How about you? If you were given this prompt,
“Hold on to your ____,”
how would you fill in the blank?
Ann Kaplow tickled my creative funny bone with her post today:

Day 2886: Hold on to your …

Posted on October 19, 2020 by Ann Koplow

Check it out and see some of the things she identified.
Here are a few things I think I should hold on to:

Photo by Ferdinand Studio on Pexels.com

Hold on to your umbrella;
Let the wind carry you away.
Hang on and float high
To a joyous, better day.

Photo by Fru00f6ken Fokus on Pexels.com

Hold on to your future
Let it carry you to the sky,
To days of brighter sunshine.
Let it carry you up high.

Hold on to your faith;
Let it carry you to love.
Let it bring you greater wisdom
And powers from above.

Photo by Alina Vilchenko on Pexels.com

Hang onto your head;
Keep your intellect intact.
Be cautious and discerning;
Know all you hear ain’t fact.

Hold onto your friends,
But remind them to wear masks.
That was Anne Kaplow’s prompt.
Be safe – is all she asks.

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Hold on to earth’s hope
For a better, safer world.
Be kind to our planet –
Don’t let this virus stay unfurled.

What do your think we should hold on to?

I’m gonna hold on to Bob.
I’m feeling so blessed that he is feeling so much better.
Did I tell you that the afternoon my sis died
was the day he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure?

I’m gonna hold on to our wonderful doctor
who stayed long after her “shift” was over –
and ordered blood work, x-rays, and an EKG,
and stayed til the results came in.
Then she walked us up the stairs to the front door
to see how Bob did with climbing stairs.
Then called the next morning to
check on him and offer encouragement
and an appointment this week
for an echocardiogram.

Yes, I’m gonna hold on to that wonderful doctor!!

And this guy:


We have had so many friends
and family members praying for us.
God is good.
All the time.
He put a song of praise in my heart.
God hears and answers prayer!


Life is looking up.
We’re holding on!
{{{Hugs}}} to you.
You hold on, too.
Love ya,
JanBeek


Today’s sermon message by our guest pastor, Rev. Phil Taylen at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, Montana, focused on the theological basis for our assurance of Eternity in Heaven.

It was timely, especially given the fact that this is the week my only sibling, my sister Sally, went to her eternal home.

If you die today, do you know where you’re going from here?

Photo by Adonyi Gu00e1bor on Pexels.com

Is it Hell or a Black Hole?

My guess is that the choice is pretty clear. I was looking for a picture of a black hole… because some people believe this is it! We’re here and then we’re nowhere. A black hole… that’s where they think they’re going. They don’t believe there is a place called Hell where they will burn in the fires of an afterlife separated from God.

Or is it Heaven?

Rev. Phil Taylen’s sermon was titled, “Soaring with Eagles.” He began with that question, “Where Will You Spend Eternity?” His answer was part of a movement he called “The Evangelism Explosion.” Even though he grew up in the Presbyterian Church, he was ordained by an Evangelical Ministry – and his sermon lecture today definitely got down to the basics!

The Bible

B asic
I nstructions
B efore
L eaving
E arth

Photo by John-Mark Smith on Pexels.com

Heaven by Grace

G od’s
R iches
A t
C hrist’s
E xpense

Grace is God’s Unmerited Favor poured out on us.
Grace can’t be earned or deserved.
Heaven is a free gift.

He cited Ephesians 2: 8-9 as further proof of the point he was teaching and preaching:

“For by grace are ye saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves:
it is the gift of God:
Not of works,
lest any man should boast.”

Not By Man

Good works are important, but they will not save us.

I am a sinner.
I can’t save myself.

He cited John 8:24 to prove his message that man cannot save himself:

“Unless you believe that
I am who I claim to be,
you will die in your sins.”

Photo by Kat Jayne on Pexels.com

Only God

God gave us basic instructions to live by before leaving earth.

God is Love.
God is just and righteous.

In the Bible, our instruction book, God told us:

Psalm 46:10
Be still, and know that I am God. …

Photo by Matheus Bertelli on Pexels.com

Heaven Through Christ

The Word became flesh and dwelt among us.
Jesus Christ is God.

Faith is Belief

Faith is the Connector.
Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

I don’t see the whole staircase. I believe in Jesus Christ, God’s Only Begotten Son, but I do not believe God will send all the Jews or Muslims or Hindus or Buddhists to Hell because they do not share my belief in Jesus as a part of the Trinity.

I believe God is bigger than religion. I believe God is omnipotent. I believe God knows all people – and He sees them through His eyes, not mine. That may make me a non-believer in some evangelical eyes. But I believe God is more inclusive than we can fathom.

I find enormous comfort in my faith – my belief in our Lord Jesus Christ – and I want to share that comfort and love with all I meet. I believe 2 Cor. 1:3-5 as quoted below:

Do you believe in Christ?

Thanks for visiting today.
Have a Blessed Sunday.
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Be An Intrepid Christian!


Photo by Sharefaith on Pexels.com

An intrepid Christian
Is resolute and fearless,
Has fortitude and endurance,
But is never cheerless!

An intrepid Christian
Is teachable and submissive,
Attentive and humble,
But never repressive.

An intrepid Christian
Is expectant and devout,
Delivers The Word quietly –
But rarely has to shout!

An intrepid Christian
Demonstrates integrity,
Walks the Talk –
But never belittles you or me.

If you believe Donald Trump is a Christian, did you listen to his belittling of Savannah Guthrie after his last Town Hall meeting? Think about the way he insults reporters who are questioning him. Be honest with yourself. Can this man we call our president really be a Christ follower? I am so fed up with his insults to women that I cannot remain quiet any longer. Listen to this!!

If you are an Intrepid Christian,
And you have the right to vote
In the United States of America,
Please listen and take note.

Please help us return to
Decency and civility here.
Help us elect a kind and capable team
And listen to the U.S. cheer!

Don’t forget to vote
if you haven’t already!


PLEASE believe me when I say
The Democrats will not take your guns away.
The Democrats will not let illegal immigrants in
to take all your money and jobs!
The Democrats believe in the Constitution;
They will not destroy it.
They will improve our immigration system,
create safer gun laws,
protect Medicare
and preserve coverage of those with
pre-existing conditions.
Democrats will restore our foreign relations.
The Democrats will not kill all the unborn babies.
The right to control our own bodies
is not synonymous with unwarranted abortion!

As a life-long Christian and Republican
who has become a Democrat recently
(for obvious reasons),
I believe in the Right to Life.
But I also think a woman who carries a baby
because of rape or incest, or a woman
whose life is endangered
has the right to choose.
Don’t you?

Weigh the rhetoric and please believe me…
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris
are Intrepid Christians!!


Can’t we just LOVE ONE ANOTHER
and stop hurling insults??

Thanks for visiting.
See ya tomorrow.

Love,
JanBeek

Halloween is Coming


Halloween is coming; it was
My favorite holiday as a child.
The Wizard of Oz is a theme
That lets your imagination go wild!

Do you have a favorite costume
You wore for Trick-or-Treating fun?
My grandchildren loved to wear
Their costumes. What’s you favorite one?

Yesterday I posted a blog
About my sis and her holiday clothes.
She was a fun and quirky aunt
Who will be missed, Heaven knows!

Do you have a quirky, memorable
Person in your family who knows
Holidays are perfect times to celebrate
And whose cheerfulness always shows?

Our Boston, TazE, will have to be
The costumed member of our family
Who takes that quirky place this year.
Want to Trick-or-Treat with me?

Photo by u0410u043bu0435u043au0441u0430u043du0434u0430u0440 u0426u0432u0435u0442u0430u043du043eu0432u0438u045b on Pexels.com

Just 15 more days to get ready…
Do you celebrate Halloween?
It’s not my favorite holiday anymore …
What does it really mean?

Real Meaning of Halloween

“Hallow” — or holy person — refers to the saints celebrated on All Saints’ Day, which is November 1. The “een” part of the word is a contraction of “eve” — or evening before. So basically, Halloween is just an old-fashioned way of saying “the night before All Saints’ Day” — also called Hallowmas or All Hallows’ Day.

Modern day trick-or-treating is a confluence of various traditions. Ancient Celts dressed up as evil spirits in order to confuse demons, according to Smithsonian Magazine.

In medieval England, “soulers” would go around begging rich folk for “soul cakes” on Halloween. Instead of threatening to play tricks, however, they’d pray for peoples’ souls in return for the cake, according to “The Compleat Teacher’s Almanack.”

Throughout medieval Europe, mummering — dressing in disguises and visiting neighborhoods while dancing, playing music, and doing tricks — was popular on major feast days.

TIME reported Irish and Scottish immigrants brought “souling” to the States in the 1800s. But modern day trick-or-treating didn’t catch on in the US until the 1920s.

The practice was pretty controversial into the 1950s, though. According to the American Journal of Play’s “Gangsters, Pranksters, and the Invention of Trick-or-Treating,” many adults raised “stern objections” to trick-or-treating over the decades, as it was often viewed as a form of extortion.

Thing of the Past?

With adulthood and research, finding out the origins and true meaning of “All Hallows’ Day,” and with the onset of unsafe “treats” being distributed to innocent children by “sick” adults, and with the dangers of this current pandemic, Halloween may have to become a “thing of the past.”

What do you think?

Trick or Treat!
I’d rather have roses than candy!!

Aren’t these beautiful?
They were a gift of cheer –
Wishing us health and
offering condolences
during this crazy week
of roller coaster emotions.


Wasn’t that kind?
If I came “Trick-or-Treating to YOUR door,
what would be your favorite treat to offer?

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com


I’ve been known to hand out a tube of toothpaste and a toothbrush.
With all that candy, the kids’ll need my “treat!”

Love ya, my friends.
Thank you for all your words of comfort.
Hugs –
See ya tomorrow,
JanBeek

My Sis, Sally, Died Today


Me with Mom and Sally

Today my sis, Sally, died.
She was only a year and a half older than I.
As children, Mom often dressed us alike.
People thought we were twins.

As adults we looked so much alike, too, that our long-time friends sometimes called me Sally.

When you lose your only sibling,
A part of you dies with her.
Sally came every Thanksgiving from CA
To spend the holiday with us in Montana.

Sally with oregano

Sally always came with an extra suitcase.
She filled it with oregano that grew in her back yard.
She spent most of the week here at the kitchen table or counter
Picking the leaves off the oregano stems.

I have a couple of quart jars left of her herbs.
When they are gone, another part of her
Will disappear – You can’t find oregano that fresh –
Not in a store, that’s for sure! Can you smell it?

Sally with our son, Ty’s kids

Sally was a nut about holidays!
She had a closet full of clothes
Sorted by the holiday they represented
And she loved every one of them.

She joined her nieces and nephews
For Halloween and Christmas,
For Easter and birthdays, and
For special lunches and dinners.

Sam, Faith, Hope and Jordan with Aunt Sally at Burger King
Sally loved giving gifts and playing games
Sally & Jordan shared a Dec. 20th birthday
They continued to share even as Jordan entered his teens and young adult years.
Bonnie was Sally’s best friend. They enjoyed many River Cats games together.
Sally & Ty

Naturally Sally was there to celebrate her daughter, Jodie’s wedding.
Here she is at the wedding reception, dancing with her nephew,
our son, Ty, the daddy of those nieces and nephews.
And she was there of course, for her grandson, Liam’s baptism.

Bill & Jodie Welge (Sally’s dughter) and their infant son, Liam

Sally loved spending time with her grandson, Liam.
During the last few years of her life, she moved
from California to PA to be near her daughter, son-in-law,
and her dear grandson, Liam.

Besides her family and holidays, Sally had a love of dogs.
She inherited her poodle, Gigi, from our mom after Mom died.
Gigi was stolen from Sally when Gigi was about 4 years old.
Gigi was gone nine years, but Sally never gave up the idea of
finding her!

Sally & Gigi

Sure enough, nine years after the theft, Sally received a call from a veterinarian.
Gigi had a chip, and when she was found wandering, dirty, toothless, and infected,
the person who found her brought her to a vet. The chip had Sally’s number.
Can you imagine her joy at that reunion after nine long years? Gigi lived to be 15.
Dear friends of ours here adopted her and gave her a loving last 9 months of life
when Sally moved to PA and could not take Gigi with her to the Masonic Home.

Sally & Jodie at Christmas in Pennsylvania
Sally with me at Christmas in California
Can’t deny we’re sisters, can we?
Last Thanksgiving in Sewickley, PA

Although Alzheimer’s robbed my sis of her memory and ultimately of her ability to converse, she was tuned in and enjoyed the concert Liam and I presented in her nursing home last Thanksgiving. I am so glad Bob & I were able to go – and we had that time with her. My life is filled with wonderful memories of times we shared together.

I’m pregnant with Ty – Bob’s next to Sally & Dave with Denise
and that’s our Mom & Dad in front
Bob & me with Sally & Dave – one Easter waaaay back when!

Sally had a life filled with service to others through her church, the Hospital Auxiliary, the Girl Scouts (she led a troop for at least 50 years) and her favorite organizations, Rebekahs and Eastern Star.

Her life also was one of tragedy (her oldest daughter died at age 19 and her husband, Dave, was only 60 when he died suddenly and unexpectedly of a heart attack). But Sally was a trooper. She continued to volunteer and give of her time and talents to others.

I was blessed to grow up with a sister who had such a big, giving heart,
She will be missed by all of us who loved her. But her spirit will live on.

Sally and Jan
at my daughter, DeAna’s wedding in 1987

I know her spirit will recognize mine when I join her in Heaven someday.
Meantime, rest in peace, dear Sis. I will carry your love with me always.

Thanks for visiting today my friends.
Treasure every sunrise.
Enjoy every sunset.
Tell your siblings how much you love them.

See ya tomorrow, God willing!
JanBeek

Join Me with a Prosery


I’m quoting Kim from Writing in North Norfolk. “I’m welcoming dVerse poets to Prosery, when we ask you to write a very short piece of prose that tells a story, with a beginning, a middle and an end, in any genre of your choice: flash fiction, nonfiction, or creative nonfiction. 

As it’s a kind of flash fiction, we have a limit of 144 words; an additional challenge is to hit 144 exactly. The special thing about Prosery is that we give you a complete line from a poem, which must be included somewhere in your story, within the 144-word limit. You may change punctuation but you are not allowed to insert words in between parts of the quotation.

Ole Tom

We see Ole Tom with his bent shoulders and thinning torso
We see his wind-weathered face and his thinning gray hair
He sits in my living room strumming his guitar
Singing the fourteenth verse of an old folk song
He has a thousand such songs tucked into his head
Along with the entire books of Matthew and Acts
We see him as an ancient sage
We look at him through the wrong end
Of the long telescope of Time
His mind is sharper than mine ever was
And he shows no signs of stopping
Each Christmas Ole Tom recites the Christmas story
From the book of Acts, never reading, just expounding
Amazing the congregation with his masterful memory
He is the epitome of a wise man: Ninety-three going on thirty
Never see him as old and never underestimate Ole Tom
Turn that telescope around!

Bob, Jan & Tom
New Years Eve 2011

What fun to participate in dVerse poets’ invitation to Prosery.
It’s a challenge to come up with a 144 word poem,
but not when you have such a delightful subject as Ole Tom.
How we loved him!!
He will live in our hearts forever.

Do you have an ole Sage in your life?
Count your blessings if you do…
and consider joining the fun at dVerse Poets!

Were you able to find the “complete line from a poem”
that I was required to insert as part of my Prosery?
Which do you think it was?

See ya tomorrow.
Have a Terrific Tuesday!
Love,
JanBeek

What a Friend!


Today I received in my “Messages” a picture of a dear friend who is fighting cancer. She is in a hospital bed at home. Her family is gathered around and her BFF (best friend forever) is on her way to be at her bedside. My heart goes out to the BFF and to my friend’s husband and children. Seeing a friend preparing to leave this earth is soooo hard!

But, my dear friend is a devoted Christian, and she knows where she is headed. She does not fear death, because she has a friend in Jesus – and she believes in God and His promises. It’s comforting to know where you will spend eternity. It’s just hard on those left behind.

Today’s sermon at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church was the perfect topic for this day when my heart is aching because my dear friend and her family are suffering.

Today we had a guest minister, Phil Taylen. Here are my

Sermon Notes on: “Friendship Sharing”

Friendship is a special thing.
In it we all are connected.
In the New Testament, we see how
In God’s friendship, we all are protected.

The best part of friendship is
Sharing with each other the Good News,
Asking one another and telling them
Of how Jesus opens new views.

God cares about our friendship.
He opens His arms to you.
Through Christ, He came to show us
How to love as He loves: True.

As believers, we need YES faces;
Our countenance should show Trust.
God’s light should shine through us.
Radiate His love; We MUST!

To communicate God’s love
We must be trustworthy and fair.
We must share our eternal vision,
And tell our friends we’ll all be there!*

(*there is our eternal home
with Christ and one another)

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

Share the simplicity of scripture,
Be sure the promise of God is heard.
He gave His only begotten Son
To save our souls. Believe His Word!

What a Friend We Have in Jesus!

Lean on Him and His promises.
Know that when your Christian friends
Leave this earth, they are going
To heaven … where eternal life never ends.

See you “there,” my friends!

See ya tomorrow.

Pray for my friend, Gloria, will you?
And I pray for you…
that you have faith in His promises, too.
Love ya,
JanBeek

World Mental Health Day


Today is World Mental Health Day.
How is your mental health?

The Bible is full of wisdom that applies to mental health.
Romans 12:18 is a perfect example.
Living in peace with everybody includes
Living in Peace with YOURSELF!

Photo by RODNAE Productions on Pexels.com

Some people live in a self-imposed prison,
Locking themselves behind bars of self-hate;
They fail to see the self that God created.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

We all get those days that we just don’t feel good enough. Everything goes wrong. For me, I go to the bible to read the words of God. His personal dialog for us is filled with encouragement, hope, and lessons from which we can learn. Here are my top ten verses that uplift and impact me when I’m at the lowest of lows:

1. Philippians 4:13:


I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.

2. Psalm 46:5

God is within her, she will not fall.

3. Proverbs 31:25

She is clothed with strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future.

4. Psalm 28:76

The Lord is my strength and my shield.

5. 1 Corinthians 25:10

By the grace of God, I am what I am.

6. Romans 5:8

I loved you at your darkest.

7. Psalm 62:5-6

Only God gives inward peace, and I depend on Him. God alone is the mighty rock that keeps me safe, and he is the fortress where I feel secure.

8. 2 Timothy 1:7

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.

9. 1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.

10. 2 Chronicles 20:15

The battle is not ours, but God’s.

Keys to Positive Mental Health

The link below to an article by Brittany Morgan offers ten keys to mental health that worked for her. I found the article to be greatly inspiring. Among her ten ideas that resonated most with me was #1:

1. Unfollowed ‘energy vampires’ on all social media platforms

This one might need a little explaining, so bear with me. An energy vampire is basically anyone who comes into your life and drains you of your positive energy. (Or, any energy in general, for that matter.) I’ve been unlucky enough, as I’m sure you have as well, to meet several of these energy vampires in real life. I’ve decided this past year to unfollow any and all energy vampires on all of my forms of social media, and you should, too.

Life is too short to expend any extra energy on perpetually negative people.


If you agree with her thinking on that idea,
you may want to click the link below
to see the other nine points she makes.

10 Things I’ve Done For My Mental Health Since Last Year’s World Mental Health Day

So much can happen in 365 days.

Brittany Morgan Oct 09, 2020 National Writers Society

Photo by Maksim Goncharenok on Pexels.com

On Mental Health Day,
I wish you great peace and joy.
Let God take your cares.

Lift them up to Him
And let them just float away;
Replace them with love –

With LOVE for yourself –
Remember your Creator
Made you to be loved.

When LOVE is poured out,
The empty cup returns full!
God replaces it.

Remember you are a Child of God!!

Put your hand in the hand of the One who stilled the waters
Put your hand in the hand of the One who calmed the seas
Take a look at yourself and you can look at others differently
Put your hand in the hand of the Man from Galilee!

Don’t miss this wonderful song from 1970…
One of my favorites!!

Play it again!! Sing along!
Put your hand in God’s hand
And have a peace-filled
World Mental Health Day.

Bye for now.
See ya tomorrow.

Tell me how you’re doing today.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.

Helping Children


Ty with Cosette

This is my son, Ty, with his grandchild, Cosette (my great-granddaughter). Ty sent me this photo yesterday. It warmed my heart so much!

Cosette with The Runaway Bunny by Margaret Wise Brown

Isn’t that the most precious photo and the most adorable expression? Someday with the help of her mom and dad, grandparents, her Uncle Sam, and friends who love her enough to read to her, Cosette will know the difference between an up-side-down view and one that is right-side-up. But meantime, this Great-Grandma (call me “GG”) takes enormous joy in seeing the delight in this child’s face – and her interest in books at her young age!

Uncle Sam, Cosette & her daddy, my grandson, Jordan

When children are surrounded by love, they grow into loving adults who know how to love in return. Yesterday, while Cosette was receiving this kind of nurturing, my friend, Kathy and I took the hour and a half’s drive from Ennis to Helena. We visited Intermountain Children’s Home and delivered some backpacks with school supplies for a boy and a girl who are there.

Intermountain ccottages

Intermountain is a school and residential facility for children who did not have the privilege of a loving start. They are between the ages of 4 and 14 and are critically “at risk.”

I first visited Intermountain about 14 years ago- with my Presbyterian Women’s group. We delivered “Wish List items” to the home for the children. This chapel was not there at that time… it was added to the campus about 6 years ago. I have loved visiting every couple years or so and watching Intermountain grow and thrive.

Intermountain was established in about 1908. It’s been around a long time! It was essentially a home for abandoned children initially. Today it is home to 24 children who need intervention for a variety of reasons. (The numbers were double that before COVID forced the space to house less children for social distancing and safety). There are four cottages with 8 children in each… and a staff of trained professionals who work as counselors, teachers, cottage parents, and administrators.

My friends, Kathy from our PW in Ennis
and Tyler Zimmer, who is Intermountain’s fund-raising coordinator
and an excellent tour guide!
Play is an important part of the children’s rehab.

Children who have been abused or neglected need guidance to learn how to play together peacefully, how to get along, how to trust again.

This is the bell tower in the center of the Intermountain campus
This plaque is at the bottom of the bell tower

Harry “Dibbs” Mitchell is just one of thousands of children who have been helped by the Intermountain brand love and care. Many, like “Dibbs” went on to live successful lives and enjoyed being able to “give back” to the place that changed their lives when they needed that intervention the most. They have about an 80% success rate – sending children out into the world with less traumatic symptoms than they came with. Not every child is receptive and able to change yet. We need to keep all our children in prayer. God’s not through with them yet… nor are we!

Intermountain’s website can tell you how to add your financial help if you are looking for a way to help children that has a long history of success: https://www.intermountainresidential.org/

Meanwhile, back to Cosette:
Grandma Monika, Uncle Sam, and daddy Jordan
(and Grandpa Ty, photographer)
took Cosette to the pumpkin patch
You can see how she loved it!
Cosette got to choose one to take home with her. to show mommy Joss.
I hope their ride home
was as pretty as ours
from Helena back to Ennis
I love this chapel tucked back into the aspen!
I wonder if it still is used every Sunday for worship?

I hope you are inspired to think of a way that you can help children in your life. If you’re a mom or dad with family still at home, you have your task facing you daily. Love ’em, read to ’em, and limit their screen time. Give ’em lots of hugs, encouragement, and face-to-face time!

Cell phones and internet games have their place –
but they are not nearly as good a baby-sitter as you are!
Take a child to a pumpkin patch this month!!
Take a child on a picnic NOW before the snow comes!
It’s predicted for Sunday here in Ennis!

God bless you, Ty & Monika, for being good grandparents.
God bless you, Jordan, for being a loving daddy.
God bless you, Sam, for being an adoring uncle.

Here’s a cute little Halloween kitten to bid you farewell for today.

Have a Happy October Friday!
See ya tomorrow.

Love,
JanBeek


Do you often wish
That you could get a handle
On excessive weight?

Photo by Artem Podrez on Pexels.com

I enjoy burgers –
Especially with french fries.
Eating’s the culprit!

The average person
Has gained fifteen pounds, they say
During this virus.

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

No, it’s not because
The average person’s pregnant!
It may be boredom!

Eating’s an escape
From these monotonous days
Of this pandemic.

So how do we control how much, when, and what we eat? And how do we motivate ourselves to get off the couch and get some exercise?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

TOPS

Today was my first day back at TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensible)
https://www.tops.org/
since March 11th.

When this pandemic hit, we were not allowed to meet in our usual spot at the Madison Valley Medical Center. We were encouraged to stay home, socially distance, and sequester if needed to stop the spread of this disease. So we did.

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Some experienced
Loneliness and depression.
We NEED connection!

But knowing that I
Would eventually go
Back to my TOPS helped.

I did not want to
Disappoint my friends at TOPS
When finally we’d meet.

And I I didn’t want
To balloon back up in weight
To where I once was.

Shhh! Don’t admit how heavy I was!!

TOPS helped me take off
Those excess pounds I had gained.
Friends encouraged me.

I needed to be
Accountable to my friends –
Weighing in each week.

On the way down – “Biggest Loser”

Charms and ribbons helped
To keep me motivated.
Slowly losing weight!

Don’t try to rush it.
It is the gradual loss
That stays off of you.

Ribbons represent
The number of miles walked.
Exercise is king!

Watching what you eat
And when you plan your meals
Is also a key.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Eat colorfully!
Less on fruit, more on veggies,
And watch your portions!

“Mind Over Platter!”
That is an effective goal.
Use a smaller plate!

Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

If the plate is small,
You can fill it easier –
It looks like a lot!

Don’t snack in between
On things that aren’t good for you!
Choose nuts or carrots!

Photo by Marta Branco on Pexels.com
Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Today at my TOPS,
After being gone for months,
I was the winner!

The biggest weight loss
Was only a couple pounds!
But I didn’t GAIN!

MVP = Most Valuable Player = ME
Each TOPS member is “Most Valuable”

So back to the title, “Ten Ways to Get a Handle on Weight”
Did you catch the main points?
Here they are:

  1. Watch what, how much and when you eat.
  2. Exercise Daily.
  3. Avoid boredom – stay connected!
  4. Join with friends who share your passion to remain fit.
  5. Remain accountable to that group of friends.
  6. Lose weight gradually, don’t rush it.
  7. Eat colorfully.
  8. Minimize snacking – and keep it healthy!
  9. Weigh-in weekly – keep a record.
  10. Believe in yourself. You can do it! Remain positive!!
Bee a winner!

Thanks for visiting
JanBeek
See ya tomorrow!

World-wide Communion


Last Sunday was World-wide Communion Sunday. As a congregation, we were asked to bring a piece of cloth from another country. I wish I had some of the colorful cloth these darling girls are wearing!

Don’t you love them?

Many folks in our church have traveled to various countries and have returned with cloth that represents their travels. Our communion table was decorated with some of them.


Here is Pastor Steve talking before church
with one of our talented musicians, Jim.
The communion table was
just beginning to see the results
of donors gorgeous pieces of fabric.
Photo by David Eucaristu00eda on Pexels.com

Rather than going up to the communion table, we each picked up a small plastic container on our way into the sanctuary. In it was a wafer (like those pictured above) under a thin cellophane covering. Beneath that, under another enclosure with the grape juice.

Photo by Maria das Dores on Pexels.com

The wafer and grape juice represent the bread and wine which represent the body and blood of Christ broken and shed for our salvation. Christian people all over the world celebrated that tradition last Sunday. It had to be done differently in order to maintain social distancing and safety during this pandemic. But, where there is a will, there is a way. We did it!

How about you? Did you celebrate World Communion Sunday?

And if not, if your tradition of celebration is different, tell me about it. I’m curious.

Thanks for visiting.
I appreciate you.
Have a beautiful day!
Love,
JanBeek

The Joy of Human Love


Oh, for the joy of human love,
Brother, sister, parent, child,
Friends on earth and friends above,
For all gentle thoughts and mild

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise.

Enjoy this beautiful hymn while you read the rest of this post. I love The Cambridge Singers directed by John Rutter. Sooooo beautiful!!

Yes, Lord, I raise this joyful hymn
in grateful praise to You!

Yesterday I had the privilege of spending time with my granddaughter, Hope, and her family: her husband, Drew, and their two children, Xander and Sienna. I am so grateful for their visit!

Here is Hope – with her beautiful smile.

I was so busy with the children while they were in the house, I didn’t have time to think about pictures. But once they were strapped in their car seats, ready to leave, I said, “Wait! I need to capture this visit!”

Sienna was tucked in, thumb in place, too tired to smile – ready for a nap on her way back to Big Sky.
This is the typical Sienna – big smiles – big appetite!

I actually captured this photo of Xander & Drew just before Xander was strapped in. His toy phone is his constant companion. He carried on very loud pretend conversations with his dad and Bob and imaginary friends!

This is a scene a mile from our house at the golf course. I bet Sienna was asleep before they got this far!

For the Beauty of the Earth
For the glory of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
Our voices in grateful praise!

I pray that one day my great-grandchildren will grow to become young people who can sit and listen to a story, a poem, a wise parent… as Hope and Drew share “The Great Realisation” with them. God Bless “Tom Foolery” for his beautiful poem and the timely message he is sharing in this video with his child. If you have not heard this before, please take time to to listen. It is WONderful!!

Thanks for visiting today.
Have a WONderful week.
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Enjoy the coolness
of these beautiful Fall Days!

Why Forgive?


It’s easy for someone to tell you to forgive
Easy for them to say
But they weren’t the one who was wronged
Advice is cheap today

Photo by NEOSiAM 2020 on Pexels.com

It’s easy for someone to tell you to forgive
Blood’s not on their hands
The ones who performed murderous acts
There: Forgiveness demands

In today’s sermon at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church here in Ennis, Montana, our pastor, Steve Hundley, preached on the scripture found in Matthew 21:33-46. He acknowledged that it is a hard lesson to make sense of. The vineyard owner sent workers to harvest the grapes, and the tenants of the vineyard killed the workers.

The owner sent more workers and the tenants killed them, too.

Photo by Elina Krima on Pexels.com

So the vineyard owner sent his son. Surely the tenants would respect the owner’s son! But, no… they killed him, too!

What are we to make of this story?

Photo by Ian Panelo on Pexels.com

In the midst of such horrendous acts, the bottom line is love. Love the murderers? Love the tenants who killed the people who came to harvest? Love the tenants who killed the owner’s son?

Realize that this parable is about God, the owner of all we have. It’s about the fact that we live in a world under the shadow of the “American Dream; Ownership.”

Maybe the message is “Nobody likes an absent landlord!” The tenants are the ones who worked hard to maintain that vineyard. Then, at harvest time, the owner expects to send others to reap the benefit of their hard work? No, the tenants hated the idea of others coming to reap the harvest!

When the son was sent… the parable is asking us to see that this was the Son, Jesus. He, too was killed. Killed by those who feared this Messiah was going to take what they thought they owned… the kingship, the ownership of the land and its people.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

God did not create us to take ownership of God’s resources. We are the stewards, the caretakers. God’s vineyard is not for sale. We were not even given a lease with an option to buy!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The parable doesn’t tell us what the owner did to the tenants. It doesn’t say He finally left his mansion and went down and got even with the tenants somehow… what might the retribution look like?

It doesn’t tell us He forgave them for their murderous acts. We are left to finish the story ourselves. How would you finish it?

What is your idea of ownership? What is your understanding of our Owner’s Love? Pastor Steve reminded us that Our Owner longs for a connection with us. “God desires a relationship with us… He asks that we take care of this earth – His gifts to us – and one another… and that we give a portion back.” He asks that we love one another. He asks us to forgive one another – and to love our enemies. Wow! That’s a tall order!!

Pastor Steve concluded his sermon today by reminding us:
“Our gifts are not our own.
They are God’s,
and we are given them
to use for God’s Kingdom.
We are the caretakers.
God’s love
always trumps
God’s justice.

Photo by 42 North on Pexels.com

I love you, dear WordPress friends.
Thank you for visiting today.
I hope you’ve had a Love-filled Sunday.
Hugs,
JanBeek

The Wind Whispers


The autumn wind whispers truth!
Tune in your ear and hear!
Hear the wind whisper love.
Hear with your loving ear.

Photo by Melanie Wupperman on Pexels.com

Sometimes the autumn wind howls.
It shouts Truth to the resistant.
It insists that you tune in and hear –
Hear the wind; it is persistent!

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

And like the wind, we whisper
The Truth we know is true,
And hope the hearers believe
Our words – and take the clue.

We don’t resort to shouting.
It turns hearers off, for sure.
Just keep persisting, like the wind –
With gentle words – and pure.

Photo by Jane Pham on Pexels.com

Like the wind, blow steadily
Upon the troubled ear,
And pray that they receive
The messages so dear.

For troubles need a voice
And a hearer who receives
The message of disturbance,
And readily perceives.

Photo by Mati Mango on Pexels.com

What troubles blow today
Upon your listening ear?
Are they from within, or
From someone who’s near?

Whate’re their source,
Let the Truth be known.
And with steady breeze,
Let Love’s Truth be shown.

Photo by ATC Comm Photo on Pexels.com

Love One Another!
Let the autumn breeze calm you –
Then blow that love to others.

God bless you!
See ya later.
Hugs,
JanBeek

P.S. Here’s an “oldie but goodie”
from the ’70s
that’s a favorite love song of mine:

Welcome October!


Welcome October!

T’is a month of pumpkins and spice
A month for Halloween candy
A month to plan your costume
When sheets are mighty handy

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

T’is a month when ghosts and goblins
And weird imaginations
Concoct front porch scenes
With spiders and smoky stations

Photo by Heorhii Heorhiichuk on Pexels.com

Just as people try to create
Wonders strange and unique ,
Look at what our Creator did –
Come and take a peak!

No one should begin to suggest
These were formed accidentally.
No, it took a God with humor –
To do this so creatively!

What do you think this is?
Look at its funny beard:
Weird, huh? It’s an ant’s face magnified at least 500 times!
And while we are admiring our Creator’s sense of humor,
take a look at this split-colored lobster!!

Our Creator’s imagination is beyond imagination!
Have you ever seen a curly-haired horse?

Well, now you have!
The coat on a poodle is a lot like this, don’t you think?

When I was a kid, Halloween was one of my favorite holidays. We planned for months what our costumes would be. One year I was two things… from the front I was a princess and when I turned around, I was a cave man. How my mom created that, I have no idea. Halloween used to be safe and fun and creative. People made popcorn/caramel balls and cupcakes and candied apples – and no one was afraid to eat what you received. No one was afraid to go alone as a bunch of kids after dark!

Photo by Thirdman on Pexels.com
Photo by Thirdman on Pexels.com

Connection and Wholeness

Yes, we are necessary to one another! If we are going to return to the safety of connection and wholeness, we need to seek to return to the people God made us to be.

We are more unique than an ant, a lobster, or a transparent fish! We are more intelligent and exceptional than a curly-haired horse. Our memories are better than theirs, too.

We need to remember what it felt like before COVID-19. Remember our connectivity. Remember when the world was a safe place for kids to Trick-or-Treat alone after dark. Remember when people knew all their neighbors by name – and people relied on one another.

Remember how creative our Creator is. If He can make an ant with that kind of face, a lobster with those characteristics, and a fish that’s transparent and that exists as an individual and as part of a larger organism, He can help us to emerge a better people when this pandemic passes. Pray for that! Trust in His creative powers.

I need you!
We need one another!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
Have a safe and creative October.


See ya tomorrow.
Love, JanBeek

Major Setbacks


How many setbacks
Has life tossed your way?
Have they made you stronger
And more confident today?

What kinds of setbacks
Add quality to your life?
Do you gain ultimate happiness
By walking through major strife?

What constitutes a setback?
Loss of a job, death of a spouse,
Disappointment at a missed goal?
Losing a bid on your dream house?

How do setbacks make us stronger?
COVID-19 is a world-wide setback.
Will this pandemic make us better?
Will it teach us the compassion we lack?

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

We are one…
We all have setbacks…
We need to reach out to one another…
We need to help one another – pull each other up –
And be sure this setback teaches us the lessons we need to learn.
What are they?

See ya tomorrow.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Mountain Majesty


Thank you, Ed Coyle, for this beautiful photo of the grand Tetons in Wyoming.

My friends, Terry and Jim Groshong, are hiking in the area of the Tetons this week. It is such a gorgeous area. I need to share some of their photos with you.

The Tetons are truly amazing!
Terry & Jim enjoyed a visit to this museum today.
There’s my dear friend, Terry.
Bob calls her Sparkles (because she does).
Great photo, huh?
That previous photo
had to have been taken
through one of these holes,
don’t you think?

Don’t these photos make you want to take a trip to Jackson Hole, WY, and on to the areas around? Terry and Jim did some hiking… You may want to plan on that, too.

Bob and I worked at the manse (church parsonage) today. He painted the area above the garage door where the paint was chipping due to years of snow and sun bearing down on it. I stayed with Bob while he did this project yesterday and today. Not a good idea for an 81 year old to be up on ladders and scaffolding. But, it had to be done.

While Bob painted, we had an audience:

With a little noise, she got up and spent about a half an hour munching on the lawn.

Meantime, Bob completed his job. The manse looks refreshed!

That was the gray base coat. I’ll show you the finished product tomorrow. Time to go now and listen to our Presidential Debate between Biden and Trump. I pray for honest exchange and civility.

See ya tomorrow.

Love ya,
JanBeek

A Satisfied Life


A satisfied life
Is one that applies knowledge
In constructive ways.

Use knowledge wisely.
Then your mind, soul, and heart will
Find satisfaction.

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

Today our daughter, De, in Switzerland shared some pictures of the renovating and decorating and menu planning they are doing in preparation for the Grand Opening of their new restaurant in Vissoie. I am so excited for them! De and Andre’ are using all the knowledge and wisdom they can muster to create an inviting ambience and delightful dining experiences.

Andre’s shrimp in curry sauce
Andre’s chicken with morel mushroom sauce
Their darling new restaurant
in the Alps on the way to Zinal ski area
A cozy corner just for you
This yellow top will be replaced. with a wooden circle,
“The Round Table” was always
our favorite gathering spot
in their previous restaurant.

Our grandson, Mike, is a great photographer. DeAna does a wonderful job, too. They have chosen some of their best shots taken in and around Valais and created a delightful, inviting entrance to the dining room and bar.

Isn’t it inviting?
We told De she should offer to sell the photos.
I think there’d be buyers, don’t you?
My grandson, Mike, could use the cash!

Now, take your knowledge
And with wisdom apply it.
Gain satisfaction!

Thanks, De, for the pictures!

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting
JanBeek

Are You Trustworthy?


Today’s sermon was based on the story of two sons, asked to help their dad. One said yes and didn’t do it, the other said no, but did it anyway. Do you know that story? Imagine those were your sons.

Which of the two sons would you consider trustworthy? How would you react to their replies and subsequent behavior?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Our pastor, Rev. Steve Hundley, at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, MT spoke on that topic today, inspired by the story in Matthew 21: 28-31.

The Parable of the Two Sons

28 “What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.’

29 “‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went.

30 “Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go.

31 “Which of the two did what his father wanted?”

“The first,” they answered.

As usual, I listened to the sermon and took my notes in poetry. He started out by telling us about his grandmother’s advice to him when he announced (after graduating from college) that he had decided to go to seminary:

“When you stand up to preach,
Don’t scold those who don’t come.
They aren’t there to hear it,”
My grandmother advised (she wasn’t dumb!).

“When you preach – remember
To stomp on your own feet first.
When you do that,” my grandma said,
“You’ll serve living water to those who thirst.”

In today’s scripture, we heard
Of two sons and their replies.
One said yes and didn’t do it.
The other, “No!” but did it. Which one cries?

The one who failed to follow through
Was the one who’ll live with regret.
Unlike him, we need to be obedient.
Don’t say yes – and then forget!

Paul Tillick said, “In every human heart
Is a faint recollection of our Maker.”
If that’s true, we can see God
Even in the disobedient faker.

The second son may have said “Yes, but…”
In his response of a silent “No,”
Other things may have taken precedence,
But he didn’t want his “No” to show.

How many times do we say yes
And then fail to follow through?
Better to say No and then do it.
I want to be trustworthy; how about you?

What jobs are you being asked to do?
Are they tasks you look forward to?
Or are you dragging your feet?

Photo by Rodolfo Quiru00f3s on Pexels.com
Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

Schedule it for tomorrow
After a relaxing Sunday afternoon/evening.
And then…
Just Do It!

Hugs,
JanBeek

Bye for now!
As your trustworthy blogger,
I’ll see you tomorrow.

Relax and Enjoy Life


The first time I saw that meme I realized I needed to do all three things. How about you?

Photo by Riccardo Bresciani on Pexels.com

Do you need to get away to an ocean-side view to relax? Do you need to get out into the woods to truly enjoy life?

Photo by WARREN BLAKE on Pexels.com

Can you find a quiet space right where you are? Can you share it with a pet or a partner and release your shoulders and your stress and enjoy life in the moment?

Photo by La Miko on Pexels.com
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

If where you are is not conducive to relaxation, just gather your pet (or a partner) and head for a quiet spot of your choosing!

Photo by Spencer Gurley on Pexels.com
Bob & I take TazE to beautiful, relaxing spots.
There, we can more easily
release all tension and just relax!
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

So, my friends,
whatever it takes,
I invite you to
take time right now
to relax and enjoy life.

Photo by lexi lauwers on Pexels.com

Get off the merry-go-round of life.
Step down from the carousel of cares
And unclench your jaw.
Drop the tongue from the roof of your mouth
And take a few very deep breaths.

Photo by Ingrid Santana on Pexels.com

And then,
after a nice refreshing break,
get back to work!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Or not!!

Thanks for
visiting
JanBeek

See ya tomorrow.
Have a relaxing Friday night!
What’re you doing this weekend to
“Relax and Enjoy Life”??


Begin with some soothing music…
Close your eyes and enjoy!

Fondue and Chalets


Fondue and chalets
Speak of Switzerland to me
It’s so beautiful!

My grandson, Mikey,
Is teasing me with this cheese.
He knows I love it!

And my daughter, De,
Is teasing me with Swiss scenes.
USA’s shut out!

Because of COVID,
We can’t even think of going.
I long to visit.

Come travel with me
Via Internet magic.
No place prettier!

That church is close by
De and Andre’s restaurant.
Opening date soon.

I love Swiss chalets!
This is not a chalet. Notice, no windows.
It’s for grain storage and tools.

Notice the big flat rocks under the building at the top of the posts. That’s to keep mice and other rodents from climbing in and stealing the grain!

Do you imagine
Travel restrictions will lift
In a year from now?

Anyone know who this man is on the memorial rock?

Thanks for traveling
Vicariously with me.
Next year: Go for real!!

Have a Restful Thursday night.

See ya tomorrow.
Meantime, enjoy some Swiss music.

The next You.Tube is a young man from Germany who is at an alphorn competition in Nendaz, Switzerland – very near where De and Andre’s home is in Sierre and their restaurant in Vissoie. He is delightful. Do take time to listen to him!

Hugs,
JanBeek

If I Die This Afternoon…


No one can ever say it all.
What if I die this afternoon?
What words will die with me
That I should have shared at noon?

What words will die with me
That I might have said too late?
Is there a right time for silence –
A perfect time for words to wait?

Have I left unspoken affirmations
That should have been shared?
Have I failed to let folks know
How very much I cared?

If I die this afternoon,
I want you to be sure and know
That my love for you and God are deep.
I hope the depths of it will glow.

I hope my unwavering faith
Was an inspiration to you,
And my prayers were comforting
When you were feeling blue.

If I die this afternoon,
May you smile when you think
Of the things I did so sweet –
And forget the things that stink!

May my words on blogs and cards
Live on in your loving hearts,
And keep you remembering how
Reaching out’s where loving starts.

If I die this afternoon,
Take care of my dear Bob.
He needs me to help him dress,
And do any technology job!

Take care of my TazE, too.
She relies on me for her meals.
I spoil her with hamburger
And know just how she feels.

Let my blogging friends know
That JanBeek will no longer send.
Give them this last post,
“Jan’s gone to her eternal end.”

If I die this afternoon,
Be sure to help it to be true:
As folks celebrated my birth,
They’ll cheer my departure, too.

They won’t cry that I have left.
Don’t mourn and feel bad –
Know that I am in Heaven
Reunited with Mom and Dad.

Know that I will be at the gate
To greet you when you ascend.
And live your life with dreams
Unfulfilled until the very end.

Never stop dreaming big,
As Bob Goff wrote in his book.
Live fully each day you’re here,
With new thoughts and delights to cook.

If I die this afternoon,
Let Bob know it’s alright
To find another love in life –
Someone to hug and hold him tight.

Tell my kids that I always did
My best to leave a loving legacy.
I pray they’ll smile more than frown
When things come up to remember me.

Remember my smile!

But of course, the chances that I am going to die this afternoon are slim. I am a healthy 81-year-old who expects to live happily to celebrate my 100th birthday, BUT…

If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster.

Isaac Asimov
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

A post about quotes on “The Art of Blogging” yesterday inspired my poem. Cristian posted it and several other good quotes on Cristian Mihaihttps://artofblogging.net/2020/09/23/writing-quotes-to-inspire-you-to-punch-the-damn-keys/

What inspires your writing?

I have an old faded cardboard with poems on it posted inside my kitchen cabinet door. They are poems gathered by my mom in 1936, the year she & Dad married – and she moved from her family in Washington to live the rest of her 89 years in California. She had most of those poems memorized.

One of my favorites reads:

“When I quit this mortal shore,
And mosey round the earth no more,
Don’t weep, don’t sigh, don’t sob –
I may have struck a better job.

Don’t go and buy a large bouquet
For which you’ll find it hard to pay,
Don’t mope around and feel all blue –
I may be better off than you.

Don’t tell the folks I was a saint
Or any old thing that I ain’t.
If you have jam like that to spread,
Please hand it out before I’m dead.

If you have roses, bless your soul,
Just pin one in my buttonhole,
While I’m alive and well today.
Don’t wait until I’ve gone away.”

Poet unknown

Photo by Hassan OUAJBIR on Pexels.com


What would you want people to remember about you if your doctor told you your days are numbered? All of ours are, you know.

By God’s Grace,
I’ll see you tomorrow.

Hugs,
JanBeek


Come to the water
The living water of God
Come to the water

Come to the water
And you’ll never thirst again
Drink of the Lord’s love

Come on a world tour
With “We the Kingdom” music
Come to the water

God so loved the world…
In a new and current song version
Thank you, Ed Coyle!

Come to the water
Enjoy eternal cleansing
Drink of His water

Come to the water
The living water of God
Let His Love heal you

John 3:16

New International Version

16 For God so loved the world
that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in Him
shall not perish but have eternal life.

Let what matters surface.
God bless you!

May the love of Christ
Refresh your soul with water
The living water

Amen

Water to wine?
Oh yes!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow.
Have a Wonderful Wednesday!


Sharing more pictures
from yesterday’s autumn colors ride
I wonder why some are golden
while others remain green?
So many wonders to behold everywhere we looked!
The picture doesn’t do it justice.
With the sun coming through them,
those trees were pure gold!
Our friends, the Feldmans, led the way.
I posted this one yesterday.
Bob told me today, “Those aren’t aspen.”
Well, anyway, I like their color!

Before I leave you this morning, I want to share something I found on FaceBook:

#11 on the list
is at least a half hour
of journaling and beginning my blog post

I do #9 regularly.
I love the Proverbs.
There are 31 chapters.
Today read Chapter 22. Full of wisdom!

I’m at #11 on the routine list right now.
Do you get notices like this from WordPress?
I wonder what’s magic about 1337?
You’d think they’d wait til 1500 or some round number, wouldn’t you?
Anyway you look at it though, that’s a lot of posts.

I hope you spend some time perusing them
by putting your favorite topic up in the search bar at the upper right.
Topics like bees or animals, Switzerland or Jesus will lend some beautiful results!

I appreciate your visit.
I’m off to do #12…
See ya tomorrow.

Sending you my love,
JanBeek

Montana Aspen in Autumn


There is no better way
To spend an autumn day
Than to take a ride with friends
Up into the Gravelly Range

We traveled along the Madison
Overlooking the Palisades
And enjoyed the river view
And the hint of what’s to come

Every mile closer to
Antelope Basin, our destination,
The scenery became more and more
breathtaking!

Lake at Antelope Basin


At the 7,000 foot level
The autumn colors amaze
The aspen are changing color
From green to gold to orange

Golden grasses and blue sky
Accented the purple mountains
And created a wonderland
For this appreciative photographer

Wow!

We went in and out of twelve
Or more gates to keep cattle in
They stood at the road’s edge
Unperturbed by our noisy ATVs

When you sing of purple mountain majesty
And you wonder what that might look like,
Just come to Montana and you will
Wonder no more… you’ll just be in awe!

We stopped by Hidden Lake
To rest and have our lunch
The lake is soooo beautiful
And it really is hidden down there

Chuck and Caroline relaxed with Bob
After enjoying a picnic lunch
Penny & Rex were with us
And TazE, too, of course!

Isn’t that blue sky spectacular?
And the colors of the trees glorious?
Don’t you wish you could be
In an ATV traveling with us?

golden aspen

‘Tis time to return to our pickups
Load up the four-wheelers
Return down to our Madison Valley
And look forward to the next trip.

Wish you could join us!
I’ll share a couple more pics tomorrow.
Have a good night.
Thanks for traveling with me vicariously!
Hugs,
JanBeek


Is God’s Grace Exasperating?


Today’s sermon at our Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
was titled, “The Amazing and Exasperating Grace of God.”
I’ve certainly heard God’s grace described as
AMAZING before. That’s typical.
But, exasperating?
When?
How?

Do you know the story of the “Workers in the Vineyard”? It’s found in Matthew 20: 1-16.
Essentially it tells of a landowner who needed extra workers in his vineyard. He agreed to pay the ones who started picking grapes that morning a silver coin for their day’s labor.

Later, with just an hour left in the work day, he realized the workers needed help to finish the job before sundown, so he hired a bunch more workers to help finish the job. This last bunch were the “left-overs” who had not been hired earlier. We can only imagine why they may have been left behind.

At the end of the day, the ones who came last (and had only worked an hour) were paid first. Each received a silver coin.

The ones who had worked all day saw that – and figured they would get more. They probably expected ten times more, since they had worked a ten hour day. When all they received was the same pay as the ones who worked only the last hour, they complained bitterly.

On that story, Rev. Steve Hundley based his sermon, and I took notes (as I do each Sunday) in poetry as I listened. Here they are:

The Amazing and Exasperating Grace of God

Reading the Word of God daily
Helps you discover joy in life;
But some difficult passages
Cause misunderstanding and strife.

Like the story of the workers
Who were paid equal wages
Whether they worked one hour
Or ten… Imagine the rages!

It’s hard to understand
How such treatment is fair.
Jesus explained the boss could
Pay the wages anyway he cared.

Likewise, those who come lately
To the Kingdom of God on earth
Will receive the same blessings as
Those who served the Lord since birth.

Does this seem a fair idea?
Are deathbed conversions real?
Maybe some of them are fake,
But it’s not up to me or how I feel.

This parable isn’t about the workers.
It’s about the generous vineyard boss
Who is a symbol of our Gracious God.
He focuses on the workers, not the cost.

Our God calls out the left-overs
And tells them, “I have room for you.”
God’s amazing grace and love are real,
And they’re available to all – not just a few.

Load me up, Lord.
Haul me to your vineyard.
I’m ready to work!
Amen.


Have you ever found God’s Amazing Grace to be Exasperating?

Or is there a Bible story that you find difficult to understand?
Tell me about it.

Have a Super Sunday.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

Montana Art Walk


Yesterday was the last of the Ennis, Montana Art Walks for 2020. I attended three gallery’s showings and enjoyed seeing several artists at work. I thought you might enjoy walking along with me. So, here we go…

Peggy and Frank Giblin own this gallery.
Artist, Sherrill Gold’s “Wolf.”
Sherry’s paintings of animals are my favorites.
The art on display was for sale.
Here is more of Sherry’s work.
Gerry Mooney and Patsy Eckert chatted at the refreshments table.
Gerry is an extraordinary photographer
and Patsy’s watercolors are wonderful!

Leaving the Cattleman’s Gallery, I proceeded to Gallery 287 owned by Cathy Toot.

Sue Kinn-Brown was there,
working on her pottery.
Sue is an active member
(the vice-president)
of our Ennis Arts Association
EAA.
I don’t know this gentleman’s name,
but I love the glass art of fish.
Fun to see the weaver at work.
A lovely display of necklaces
A belt buckle for every occasion
One of my favorite cowboy paintings
I think this painting of cows is by Margie Reck, another of our EAA members.
I like it, don’t you?
I love the way Margaret Casolara embosses the spoons.
I have one of these with bees on it!
BK was set up to make jewelry right there.
BJ Goodman demonstrated her felt pillow art.
Beautiful stuff!! I love that rooster.

Before the Art Walk on that busy Friday, I participated in a rally on the lawn by our Ennis fisherman at the town’s triangle. Some of the local Democratic candidates were there waving flags and holding up signs with about 25 of us patriotic Madison Valley residents. It was time to “Put your body where your mouth is!” Just putting your money out there to support the candidates of your choice is not enough – ever – but particularly this election year. We need to be brave enough to advocate for our blue candidates in this red state!

A group picture was taken earlier. I wonder if it will appear in our local newspaper?

We waved our flags, smiled at passersby and motorists, and gave thumbs up. Many returned our smiles and honked their horns and gave us a return thumbs up. About 1/3 gave us a thumbs down. Another portion just drove by avoiding eye contact or any kind of reaction. Fortunately I only received one middle-finger-salute!

I figure that guy who gave me the F-U sign was probably the same one who wrote and posted this sign.

And with that, I conclude my “Art Walk” with you.
I hope you enjoyed it…
and you are having a Stupendous Saturday.
What are you doing to “Walk the Talk” in your world today?

See ya later.
Love, JanBeek
(and Bob, too)

Peace and Joy to you, my friends!
Enjoy this gorgeous rendition of “Let there be Peace on Earth.”
(The second half is a little boy’s gorgeous voice. So enchanting!)
Let me walk with you in perfect harmony!

Try Tanaga


‘Tanaga’ is a traditional Filipino poetic form comprising four lines of 7 syllables with an AAAA rhyming sequence. I learned about it today at:

https://jemverse.wordpress.com/2020/09/18/six-poetics-5-tanaga/

I decided to give Tanaga a try. You might enjoy having a go at it, too. Since my JanBeek topic is about Loving One Another, I decided to use love as my Tanaga rhyme.

For my country I have love
It’s not peaceful like a dove
Democracy needs a shove
We need help from God above

I need a yard sign that reads
Love is all the help one needs.
“Unity is Power” Plant seeds.
Turn off all divisive feeds.

Love, unity, and respect
Go farther than you suspect.
Wear them so others detect
The LOVE than others neglect.

Have a Fabulous Friday.
TGIF is my day
To stand for the straight and gay
In UNITY every day!

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Just Love One Another – Say:
“Do it the Tanaga Way!”
Poetry tells you what may
Spill from your dear heart today.

Photo by ATC Comm Photo on Pexels.com

How will you show your love today?
Try it with Tanaga!

Oh, by the way,
I told you Bob’s former student, Peter, was visiting, right?
He left today. Coach Beekman and I
really enjoyed the visit.

Nothing makes a former teacher feel more loved than to be remembered and respected, loved, and visited by a former student. Do you have a favorite teacher you could honor somehow today? Maybe that could be your Tanaga topic!

See ya later.
Love ya, JanBeek

P.S.
Bob lost a cap on one tooth.

It looks strange; that is the truth!
Don’t tell him he looks uncouth.
Ready for Halloween booth!

Smile


Smile when your heart is aching
Smile even though it’s breaking
Though there are clouds in the sky
You’ll get by – if you’ll just smile!

Do you know that song?
I’ll share it with you …
Along with some things
that made me smile today:

Everyone needs a blue-footed booby for a smile!
And I dare you to look at this cross-eyed owl trying to see that ladybug – and not smile!!
This snowy egret got its feathers ruffled over SOMEthing!
I used to have a pet goat when I was a kid. This one made me smile big time!
But before I tuck in, I told you I’d share that song with you.
It’s not the current version of “Smile” by Katy Perry.
It’s the version from the 1950s when I was a kid!
Here it is. Smile!
Nat King Cole had a voice described as “Liquid Velvet.”
This is one of his songs that I loved the most.
Its message is so important for us in this world today.

You’ll find that life is still worthwhile, if you’ll just smile!

Hug each other tight.
Like these rainbow lorikeets

Good night, my friends.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.


Photo by Karyme Franu00e7a on Pexels.com

John 1:16

“For of His fullness we have all received,
and grace upon grace.”

As we approach life through the lens of grace,
dreams are possible, dreams come true,
and we learn to never stop dreaming.

Fishing boats in Alaska

My husband, Bob was scheduled to go on a once-in-a-lifetime fishing trip to Alaska this year. Except for this pandemic, he would have been there right now.

Ah yes, he was going with two buddies. One of the buddies used his fly miles to arrange for Bob’s transportation. That financial help made the trip possible, because even with that help, Bob was out of pocket over $6,000 in various reservartions.

When the pandemic hit – and masks are required at the lodge and restrictions were going to compromise the enjoyment of the experience, the guys decided to cancel.

The company gave them credit, not a refund. Good for 2021. They keep the money until then.

Unfulfilled Dreams

Both of Bob’s buddies are at least a decade younger than he is. They were fine with the idea of a credit… and waiting to use it in 2021 when we dream of this CORONA-19 Virus being under control with an effective vaccine.

BUT, Bob said, “At 81, how do I know what my health will be like in a year? How do I know if I will be able to fly to Alaska and enjoy the rigors of a fishing trip?”

He wanted a refund. “That’s a long time to keep that much money of mine,” he told the fishing company.

I overheard the conversation. My response was, “It’s okay, Bob. Let them keep it. Let them give you a credit. Plan that 2021 trip, and look forward to it! Know that your health will be fine – and you will be strong enough to go and enjoy he experience. It’s important to live with unfulfilled dreams. When we stop dreaming, we stop living!”

Catching the big one!

Dream Big

Dream big, Bob! Imagine catching that big one! Imagine spending a week or two with your good buddies. Imagine being healthy and strong and holding that big one all by yourself!

Pray for God’s grace as you look forward to each tomorrow. Live with gratitude for the health and happiness He gives you each day. Know that He cares for you… and that “of His fullness” we have received – and will continue to do so.

Dream Big. Never Stop!
Live with unfulfilled dreams.
Let them keep you moving forward.

Thanks for stopping by today.
I send you my love and best wishes for a DREAM BIG day!
What are your unfulfilled dreams?
Hugs,
JanBeek

Memories


Susan Hardwick & Phyllis Wasick

In March Susan got to visit
With Phyllis, our dear sister,
Before our dear friend’s life
Ended on earth. Oh how we missed her!

Tomorrow we’ll remember
Stories of Phyllis’ life
And share them with each other.
She was a loving wife.

Her husband died too young,
Over thirty years past.
Phyllis made his ring a heart
And wore the love that last.

The heart hung ’round her neck
All these many years –
She willed it to her Yana
Through memories and tears.

How many of us have
A memory to share
Of a loved one gone too soon
To their heavenly home up there?

If life is lived so fully
That when time comes, we are ready,
It’s easier to say good-bye.
Live your life with grace. Be steady!

Be loving and kind-hearted.
Be compassionate to those you meet.
Then, like my good friend, Phyllis,
Your friends’ memories all will be sweet.

Her children know the treasure
Of a mom whose love was always true.
She shared her life with God and friends.
I hope there is a friend like her for YOU!

Keep your memories of friends
Alive and smiling in your heart.
Make memories others will treasure.
Today’s a perfect day to start.

Rest in peace, dear Phyllis.
I’ll love you forever!

Phyllis was a grown up who did not “act more like children than children”
BUT
She was one of those people who needed people… just as I am.
We are/were “the luckiest people in the world!”
We each have (had) the person who made us whole…
… thank God for that “very special person.”


Share your memories of a loved one with me.
I’d love to read some of your thoughts on this subject
in the comments below.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Are You Fully Dressed?


Are you fully dressed?
Have you cloaked yourself in love?
Dressed in quiet time?

Photo by murat esibatir on Pexels.com
Photo by Elizaveta Kozorezova on Pexels.com

Is your brain engaged
In the hush of the morning?
Still and communing?

Photo by Flickr on Pexels.com

Isaiah 55:3
King James version

“Incline your ear,
and come unto me,
hear,
and your soul shall live.”

Photo by Breston Kenya on Pexels.com


In the quietness, I find my strength.
In silence, I commune with my Maker.
Sustained peacefulness covers me
And I tune in to God as my pacer.

.

Photo by Tembela Bohle on Pexels.com

We must cloak each day
In the hush of quiet time.
Listen to the Lord.

Then we really hear
Our God’s infinite wisdom.
We’re completely dressed.

Let the Lord come in
And visit with you today.
He is there waiting!

The words to this are soooo beautiful!
Listen to the music and see the words
on this next video…
Sing along and. be inspired!
Thanks for dropping by.
I hope you are fully dressed…
And ready to share your quiet center
with all who enter.

Have an awesome week.
See all the things that really matter…
Be at peace and really see.
See ya tomorrow.
Love ya,
JanBeek

Shalom


John 14:27
(The Living Bible translation)

[Jesus said]
“I am leaving you with a gift –
peace of mind and heart!
And the peace I give isn’t fragile
like the peace the world gives.
So don’t be troubled or afraid.”

Shalom

The peace that Jesus Christ gives us is “Shalom.” It is a deep peace, filled with health and joy, security and contentment. It is a deep, lasting peace that sustains us through any circumstance. Thanks to Jesus, we can have peace with God, with one another, and with our own spirit.What a priceless gift!

Thank you, Ty, for this
1st Cor. 18:31

Peace in Quietness

In silence, I commune with my Maker each morning. In that quietness, I find strength and wisdom. In His Word, I find reassurance.

Isaiah 55:3 (KJ version)

“Incline your ear and come unto Me.
Hear and your soul shall live.”

In the stillness of the 9-11 Friday morning, Bob and I took our TazE and headed with our ATV to meet friends and spend the day communing with them and with nature.

Jan, TazE and Bob
On the road again!
Caroline Feldman Photography

In the quietness of the morning,
the roar of 5 ATV’s pierced the air.
Headed to McAtee Bridge and on to Ruby Creek,
five couples left the Madison Valley,
glanced across the landscape
to the glory of the Sphynx Mountain,
and climbed to the 9,400 ft. level
to enjoy God’s creation.

McAtee Bridge over the Madison River
The Talc Mine
Barn near McAtee
See the mountains of talc ahead of us?
Up, up we went to the look out – high above the valley floor.
A perfect, blue sky day. We were blessed!
Up we climbed –
high enough to find snow at our favorite outhouse!
Time for a picnic
Lunch break with the Asbergs, Feldmans, and Washburns
The trail to Black Butte
Pictures don’t do it justice!
The red rock ridges were spectacular!!
Don Asberg & Barbara Washburn
Dinner time – a BBQ at Ruby Creek Campgrounds
Barb Asberg with Charley Brown and me –
A beautiful spot right by the river
And then Saturday afternoon
we had the privilege of another river view
Steve Hundley fishing the Madison
right below Fran McNeill’s deck
Bob & Steve discussed which flies
would be best on that stretch of the river
Steve enjoyed his time on the river
Elaine Hundley and I enjoyed visiting with Fran McNeill
at her lovely home on the river
Fran has this plaque on her wall –
and we enjoyed an invincible summer day together.

Psalm 46:10

“He says, ‘Be still and know that I am God.”

Another of Fran’s plaques

Compassion and Gratitude

In the stillness of this Sunday afternoon, I treasure the blessings of this weekend. The time in the mountains, the camaraderie of friends, the health we enjoy, the beauty of the river, the peacefulness of cloudless blue skies. And I don’t take any of this SHALOM for granted! I know there are others whose homes and businesses are burning right now. I have a heart of compassion for those in Harm’s Way – and I pray for their safety.

Our valley is covered with smoke from fires that are ravaging this western part of the USA. I know there are people for whom “Shalom” is a distant image – a feeling they long to see return. I pray that it will. I pray that my happy pictures gave you pause to smile – and gave you hope for a blue-sky, peace-filled future.

Another of Fran’s plaques…
filled with great promises.

In the midst of COVID-19 and fires,
racial injustice and political unrest,
may you find SHALOM
in your heart.

You are blessed to be a blessing –
So share your joys –
And count your blessings.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.
Gentle Hugs
Shalom!

A Day to Remember


This is a day to remember –
Remember the lives lost on 9-11-2001.
Remember the heroes who risked –
Risked their own lives to save others.

Today is a day to acknowledge
We as a nation are not impenetrable.
I used to think we were;
I used to think wars were someplace else.

Now I know wars rage right here.
Wars rage in our hearts and homes.
Wars rage on our streets.
Wars don’t need tanks and guns.

Wars are acts of hatred and violence
Against those we wish to oppress.
Wars rage where love is absent.
Love is the only way to douse wars.

So today, remember the feeling
Of fright and disbelief – – – the horror.
Remember how we came together
Joined hands as a nation to help.

And let’s do it again!
Let’s join hands to save our souls.
Let’s reach out to heal our wounds.
Let’s just love one another.

Never forget 9-11
Never let it happen again!

Another Angel in Heaven


Phyllis Wasick and me –
about 10 years ago

The older we get,
The more ready we must be
For our angel friends
To leave you and me.

They ascend to heaven
Where loved ones wait
To greet them in song
At the pearly gate.

Today’s selfie

When our hair turns silver
And wrinkles show our age,
We have to be ready
To turn the eternal page.

The eighties are great;
It’s a decade of reflection
And a time to appreciate
Every earthly connection.

But it also is a time
When we look at this season
As the winter of our years,
And we search for life’s reason.

Photo by Ivan Bertolazzi on Pexels.com

We look at life differently
Than we did in our teens.
We see through our experience
What life is – what purpose means.

It’s not about what we can get,
Or what riches we acquire.
It’s about the love we give
To the people we admire.

It’s about reaching out to strangers
Who are falling between the crack.
It’s about filling their needs –
Helping give the things they lack.

Photo by Luis Dalvan on Pexels.com

Reaching up in prayer and praise
I thank the Lord for all His gifts.
As long as I have life and breath,
I’ll reach out to give others lifts.

I hope you’ll use your senior years
To do the same – to spread your love –
Because we are blessed to be a blessing.
For every day, I thank. God above.

My Prayer for You

When your time comes
To say good-bye to earth,
May the angels welcome you
And your friends rejoice at your New Birth!
Amen

Welcome to Heaven, Phyllis.
I miss you here…
But I rejoice at your Eternal Reunion.
May all who were blessed by your presence
And who entered the pearly gates before you did
Be there to welcome you HOME.
God bless you!
Keep the light on!

Love,
JanBeek

What Binds Us Together


What Binds Us Together?

A little of this
A little of that
A mountain of snow
A dog and a cat

A look through a window
At September snow
A beautiful fence line
Where horizons glow

A plate of raclette
To make my mouth water
A beautiful friend sharing dinner
With my lovely Swiss daughter

Dear Liz, sweet life-long friend!

A look into hearts
From an angel’s swing
Helps us see one another
With the love we bring

If we can see others
Through an angel child’s eyes,
How much kinder this world
Would be… and how wise!

Look for the magic that binds!
.
2 Sweet Rainbow Lorikeets
.

What binds us together
Like birds of a feather
Is not what you see
On a plate or the weather

What binds us together
Is the love that we share
So, let’s share it generously…
Spread your love everywhere!

Share LOVE!!

What is it that binds you to your loved ones?
Of course, it’s the love… but it’s also shared interests.
How do you cultivate and grow those interests?
Think about it… and buy an extra bag of that fertilizer!

Thanks for visiting
JanBeek
See ya tomorrow.



Happy 31st Anniversary to
our son, Ty & his sweetheart, Monika

Best wishes to Ty & Monika
May they have many more years of wedded bliss!

How many years have YOU been married (if at all)?
Bob & I have 58 1/2 years under our belts.

See ya later…
I’m on my way to Bozeman for the day.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Did You Miss Me?


Yesterday I missed writing for the first time in about 400 days. Did you miss me?

No, I wasn’t out on my ATV with TazE!

WordPress said I was only on my 20th consecutive day – or something like that – but actually what happened was I started the post on one day, finished it the next day and when I posted, they chose the day I started the post rather than the posted date. That caused me to miss a day. Have you ever had that happen to you?

I learned to check the post date in the future and don’t assume it will be exactly when you click on the “Publish” button.

Oh well… big deal!
It caused me to stop being so obsessed with how many consecutive days I have!
Just smile, post when you have something to say,
And don’t sweat the small stuff.

Who cares how many consecutive days you’ve posted? I used to really care a lot. Now I have decided, “So I miss a day… big deal! Ya gotta live your life and eliminate the stress of unreal expectations!”

BUT, you know, I always have something to say! That’s not the issue. The issue is: some days other things besides writing occupy my time.

Two days ago we had the privilege of meeting for the first time IN PERSON a gal who has been my FaceBook friend for at least a decade. She and her husband were on a road trip from Ohio to California. They wanted to visit Yellowstone. It’s only an hour from us. I invited them to come stay a few days with us. They DID!! So, I was much too busy with Margo and Ron to stop and write on my blog. You understand?

Margo and me

It was fun to get acquainted with this gal who was my FB friend waaay back when we were both hooked on Farmville. Did you ever do that?

Margo used to help take care of my Farmville animals if I was away!

Now, we have graduated to helping one another in a different way. We reconnected when I reposted a comment by my friend, Father Keith, who is as concerned as I am about what’s happening with the US Postal Service. I opened Pandora’s Box – and the conversation turned caustic. Margo (who is a retired postal service worker and has a son and many friends who work for the USPS) weighed in on the conversation. God bless her!

Ron & Margo … FaceBook friend comes to life – real and wonderful!

It was wonderful to make a personal acquaintance with an on-line friend. I hope some day some of you who are my WordPress friends will come to Montana and let me meet YOU face-to-fce, too!!

What else occupied my time this past few days?

Walkin’ in the rain

Our weather here in south-western Montana is sooooo unpredictable! On Saturday we had temperatures in the high 90’s – and then Sunday it was lovely in the 80’s. That night, Margo and Ron arrived… and the next day we had rain, sleet, hail, and snow! Welcome to Montana! Let’s go for a walk in the rain!!

The flowers survived –
and by Tuesday the sun was out
and the temperatures were back
to being comfortable again!

They say if you don’t like the weather in Montana, wait five minutes! It changes so radically so fast that it is always a topic of conversation.

I hope you had a wonderful Tuesday…
and you missed me!
Take a ride this week.
Take a beautiful break!

See ya tomorrow… maybe.
What is keeping you occupied these days?
Love ya,
JanBeek

Is Your Cross Too Heavy?


Photo by Vitu00f3ria Santos on Pexels.com

Thank you, Vitu Santos for this wonderful photo.
It speaks volumes to me…
and it exhibits to me
the message of today’s sermon…

Today’s sermon notes

At the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, MT today,
Rev. Steve Hundley delivered his sermon titled, “Is Your Cross Too Heavy?”
The Lord prompted me to take my sermon notes in the shape of a cross.
The photo of the cross sermon above is the result of that effort.

Photo by Mauriciooliveira109 on Pexels.com

To illustrate his point – that we need to give Jesus our burdens,
lighten our load, and live in joy, Rev. Steve used this story:

“It’s hard for an egg to become a bird,
but it would be harder for a bird
to fly while still in the egg.”

Let go the egg…
and FLY!
Give Jesus your burdens
and follow Him
with JOY,
not because you HAVE to,
but because you
WANT to.

Photo by Joshua Abner on Pexels.com

God bless you
with the JOY
of
Life Given Away
because you WANT to!

Thank you, Ty, for this beautiful image.

Have a Happy Labor Day weekend.
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek


Do you have “Could Haves”?
What is it you could have done?
So why didn’t you?

We had a pie sale
Presbyterian Women
In downtown Ennis

I could’ve bought some
But I baked four pies instead
Bob bought Kathy’s pie

No one bakes a pie
Like Kathy’s lemon meringue
If I could, I would!

Bob’s a happy guy
With the world’s best lemon pie
Don’t stress the could haves!

What’s your favorite pie?
With or without ice cream?
Enjoy!

Here’s Kathy – the lemon meringue pie wizard!

Bob didn’t sweat the woulda – coulda – shoulda!
He just invited Kathy over to teach him how to make his favorite pie.
She came. He learned. But, he still likes it better when she makes them!

See ya tomorrow.
Have a Wonderful Labor Day weekend.
Don’t sweat the woulda- coulda- shouldas!
Hugs,
JanBeek

Without Water


Have you ever been living in a house for a week without the benefit of running water? That’s been our situation this week.

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

If you don’t have water running in your house, then your toilets don’t work. Have you lived in your house without a toilet working and with no outhouse? That’s what we’ve done… and our dear neighbors let us drive the 1/4 mile to their house to use their bathroom when we needed it this week. At night, we’ve slept in the church manse where we could use the toilet when needed without driving to the neighbors’ place at midnight!

We’ve been updating the water system in our house – replacing the water tank, pump, radiant floor heating system, etc… Long story as to why this was necessary, but suffice to say, I am not complaining. I know I am blessed.

Photo by Artsy Solomon on Pexels.com

I know there are people in this world who have to walk miles to get drinking water – or any kind of water for that matter – and they carry it on their heads to bring it home to their families. So, am I complaining about driving a quarter mile to use a toilet – or about not having running water in my house for a week? No way!!!

Photo by James Frid on Pexels.com

But an outhouse would come in handy right about now! Maybe I should just pretend I’m camping right now. Ya think?

When you go to Amazon.com and buy something on-line, you have a chance to donate a percentage of your dollars to a charity of your choice. I give to

Water To Thrive
which is headquartered in Austin, TX

Water to Thrive provides clean safe water to rural African communities by connecting donors, sponsors, congregations, schools and community groups directly to communities in need.

There are many organizations related to clean water and building wells in remote places around the world – where fresh, running water is a luxury. I hope you find one that you can support – – – The people who receive your support will rejoice, for sure!

Photo by Belle Co on Pexels.com

People all over the world are in need of fresh water for their survival. Being without running water in my home for a week has certainly taught me empathy.

What charity is dear to your heart?
Have you ever been in a situation
where you lacked the water
you needed for your daily needs?

Tell me about it.

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Wish You Were Here


Hello, my blogging friends!
I wish you could be here in Montana with me.
It’s a beautiful day – and yesterday was equally as wonderful.
I took a video to share with you the gorgeous view.

Life is good!

Here’s to friendship, fresh air, and perfect views!
Love ya,
JanBeek

Scared of Getting Older?


Do we have an obsession with image? More concerned about the outside than the inside? As a nation… as a world?

Photo by Eternal Happiness on Pexels.com

Are you fed up with it? Do you feel it is robbing us of our sense of purpose and our wisdom?

These are some questions I gleaned from Scilla Elworthy, the elderly South African woman in the Ted Talk above:

Are you fully alive in your body? Do you have energy and attractiveness in your soul? Are you content with what is? Can you remove the mask, let the wrinkles show, and still like yourself?

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Self-acceptance is a great, great gift!

Obsession with image is tiring… Yes, I believe that!

What makes you feel electric? Does the world see your energy? Do you have real aliveness?

Health, exercise, purpose, usefulness… those are the keys!

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Many people struggle to find purpose in life. Scilla Elworthy said, “Most people fear pain and loneliness.”

We worry about what will happen when we are no longer able to care for ourselves and must rely on other people.

Photo by sergio omassi on Pexels.com

Dementia is a real fear for me. My mother was diagnosed with it before she died. My sister is in a home today – a nursing home – being cared for because she has Alzheimer’s. It is in my family. Is it in my future? I cannot dwell on that! I must live in the NOW and love myself so I can love others. The keys are:

  • gratitude,
  • prayer and meditation,
  • time in nature… being outside with things that are alive
Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

What about death? It is inevitable. Approach it with curiosity. Think through it. Know that death is not finality.

What are the gains of growing older? We can speak out! Dare to speak up about those things that we think are wrong! Stand up for those things! Make a contribution by making a difference – by being true to ourselves.

Know that with age comes wisdom. Wise, experienced leaders are a gift to the world. As we age, we can be that older, wiser person who sees beyond the horizon. The world need us!

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

But age and wisdom are not synonymous. Wisdom does not come automatically. We can’t live in a foxhole and gain wisdom. We need to go out and risk adventure. Risk rebuke. Risk the world hating you. We need to be true to ourselves as we lift our heads to what is happening around us and seek the solutions to the challenges we all face. We can’t be ostriches with our head in the sand.

Photo by Frans Van Heerden on Pexels.com

A friend of mine said she has decided that the best way to avoid dissension is just to avoid having an opinion. “I try to remain totally objective – with no opinion expressed. Opinions just garner arguments,” she said.

We can’t let ourselves live in that kind of fear! Avoidance invites stagnation.

“Whoever is free from all fear will always be safe,” Scilla Elworthy said in the Ted Talk above. So, we must let go of any fear we have of speaking out.

What do you care about? What’s your opinion about aging? Let’s hear it!!

Derrick told me I earned every wrinkle.
I told him, “… and every silver hair, too!”

I’m not afraid of growing older.
Just don’t call me old!!
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Love is Louder


God bless the Jefferson County Mental Health Local Advisory Council here in Montana!

Let’s all shout it out, “LOVE IS LOUDER!”

Let’s make it true!!

Th distance between me and my friend, Carol Orr, is from here to Eternity … but our love is louder than the distance! I was her Senior Companion – and she was my friend and mentor… always right for a laugh and a hug … always ready to share her 95 years of wisdom from her beautiful, sparkling soul.

LOVE is LOUDER than death! LOVE is LOUDER than disguises! LOVE sees through the darkness to the sparkle beneath and behind. LOVE brings out the best in us and in others. Let your LOVE SHINE!!

The motivational video below tells us, “One of life’s gifts is that its greatest moments are often disguised.” Our inability to see through the dark glasses finds us sometimes lost in a state of hopelessness. We live disguised as people behind a gloom of despair, seeing life as lost and hard.

My friend, Carol, was an upbeat person who enjoyed life to its fullest I posted a blog about her back on August 15, 2018 when she was in the hospital, looking toward the end of her time on earth. If you have time, check it out at

https://janbeek.blog/2019/07/28/95-years-of-life-lessons/

Carol spent her last months in our local nursing home, The Manor, hooked up to oxygen, and knowing her time was short, but LOVE was LOUDER than impending death. She never lost her smile nor her sense of humor. Ah, we should all be so blessed!

When all hope of living an eternity on earth, or of solving all the earth’s problems is lost, we need to take off the disguises, toss the dark glasses, and take each moment to see life’s infinite possibilities. What you seek is waiting. You are never too old to seek LOVE and you are never through positively influencing others – even (and maybe most especially) after leaving this earth.

Love is LOUDER

LOUDER than ANYTHING!


Every day you are :

  • smarter and
  • stronger and
  • better equipped
  • wiser and
  • sharper and
  • braver

What you seek is waiting for you.
Go for it!

Love is Louder

Shout it Out!!
I LOVE YOU!!!
See ya tomorrow.
Hugs,
JanBeek


Photo by Ivan Bertolazzi on Pexels.com

Do I see myself
As a white supremacist?
Am I prejudiced?

Sometimes we don’t see
The worst things in you and me
We turn a blind eye

May peace and love be
Multiplied in you and me
Freely given out

May peace and love be
The aura that surrounds us
Reflecting God’s love

Let hatred be gone
And have no place in our hearts
Only compassion

Let prejudices
Be recognized and dealt with
Live in unity

White supremacy
Is an unrecognized force
Most do not see it

Help us recognize
How we add to the problem
May we only love

Let’s go out and just DO LOVE!
Go out and forge a path of peace
By seeing things and thinking things differently.
We are not our skin …
We are not our jobs…
We are not what others see…
We are our souls!
Don’t follow the crowd –
Forge your own path
And live love!!



How does White Supremacy affect you?
Do you see it??
Do you see your own hidden prejudices?
How can we be
Great Minds that Think Alone?
Great Minds that Reflect Love and Peace?
Think about it.
Be SURE to watch the video!!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
Have a great week.
See ya tomorrow.

Photo by ATC Comm Photo on Pexels.com

The Moment of Truth


Today’s sermon preached by Rev. Steve Hundley
at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
in Ennis, Montana was titled
“The Moment of Truth.”
It was based on the scripture passages:
Matthew 16:13-20

13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”

14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”

15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”

16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”

17 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. 18 And I tell you that you are Peter,[a] and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades[b] will not overcome it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be[c] bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be[d] loosed in heaven.” 20 Then he ordered his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah.

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

The Moment of Truth

What are you afraid of?
Is it something quiet and small?
Is your fear founded and grounded?
Do you understand it at all?

The greatest fear most folks say
Is speaking in public – sweating starts!
The stakes seem highest when asked
To speak from the depths of our hearts.

Stating facts – what somebody else has said –
Is not as hard as speaking your own
Thoughts and feelings out loud
(Unless it’s on social media or the phone).

There was a time when Jesus asked Peter,
“Who do YOU say that I am? Be true!”
Simon Peter readily proclaimed to Him,
“You are the Messiah, Son of the Living God, that’s You!”

Peter had no fear of speaking his heart.
His faith he readily proclaimed.
In a harsh world, draw your breath in pain.
Tell what you believe. God’s asking YOU. You’re named!

There’s a feeling some people have
That God is in the sunset and the trees.
They say they don’t need church –
And they don’t need to worship on their knees.

But Jesus told us it’s not enough
To see God in the river and the dawn.
We need to see God in Jesus Christ.
He’s the One we rest our salvation on.

How can we know who God is
In Christ, the Messiah and teach
Our children about the Savior
If we’ve never had His Word within reach?

We need to talk to Jesus in prayer.
We need to imitate Him, too.
We need to take hold of God’s love
Through Jesus and the Holy Spirit in you.

How can we see the world today,
Watch the brutality of teens with guns
And still believe in God and His goodness?
It’s faith. It’s knowing what God has done.

What are you afraid of?
Is it speaking in public from the heart?
Is it expressing your faith?
This is the Moment of Truth – time to start!

I believe in Christ – Son of the Living God.
I believe Jesus is my Lord and Savior.
Step out and boldly speak from your soul.
God will reward your brave behavior.

“On you, this rock I will build my church,
And the gates of Hades[b] will not overcome it.”
Speak up with firm conviction…
You’ll be so relieved once you’ve done it!

Amen?
Amen!

Photo by Pressmaster on Pexels.com

For special music today, we had Jaime Roberts on keyboard, Jim Forsberg singing and playing the saw, and George Ennis (with his amazing bass voice) singing. It started with Jaime’s lovely solo. I woke up to thinking I should record this for you when Jim started playing. Have you ever heard a musical saw? Tune in! God bless our musicians! As you can see, we are worshiping outside these days. We had about 40 people in attendance (behind me).

Hope you’ve had a lovely Sunday.
Mine was.
See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting,
Love ya,
JanBeek


This list of wisdom gained through the ages is beautifully done. I know you will appreciate it as much as I do. Click on the word “ages” below and tell SJ at “Change Therapy” how much you appreciate her blog, too.

“Throughout the Ages Age 6: I’ve learned that I like my teacher because she cries when we sing “Silent Night.” Age 7: I’ve learned that our dog …

Ages

Have a great Sunday afternoon, my friends. We just returned from a wonderful worship service outdoors on this beautiful day. It was predicted to be cccccold – and we were told to dress warmly. But, God is good! It was a comfortable morning in the mid-60s with the sun peeking in and out of clouds.

I video-taped on my phone some of the special music with Jim, Jaime and George singing; Jaime on the keyboard and Jim playing his saw! And of course, I recorded the sermon in my typical poetic fashion. Will share them with you later this afternoon. Come on back!

Have a beautiful Sunday afternoon.
Love to you,

Jan ;o)

Change Poetry to Prose


We were invited by dVerse Poetry to write a Prosery.

I forgot that prose is not written in poetry format. I wrote my 144 words as a poem. Let me change it to prose for the sake of following the instructions!!

Written for Monday’s Prosery prompt at dVerse.
Kim hosts today, asking us to include the line “From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time” in a piece of flash fiction, exactly 144 words in length. The line is from D. H. Lawrence’s poem Humming Bird.

Ole Tom

We see Ole Tom with his bent shoulders and thinning torso. We see his wind-weathered face and his thinning gray hair. He sits in my living room strumming his guitar, singing the fourteenth verse of an old folk song. He has a thousand such songs tucked into his head, along with the entire books of Matthew and Acts.

We see him as an ancient sage. We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time. His mind is sharper than mine ever was, and he shows no signs of stopping.

Each Christmas Ole Tom recites the Christmas story from the book of Acts, never reading, just expounding, amazing the congregation with his masterful memory. His is the epitome of a wise man: Ninety-three going on thirty. Never see him as old and never underestimate Ole Tom. Turn that telescope around!

Bob, Jan & Tom
New Years Eve, 2011

Now you have been told which “line” was dictated to be used… did you guess it in the previous form where it was two lines in the poem?

Whenever I see or hear a guitar,
I always think of Tom.
And I never looked at him through the wrong end of a telescope!

Thanks for checking back in
to see poetry changed to prose.
Hugs,
JanBeek