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.
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?
Thanks for traveling Vicariously with me. Next year: Go for real!!
Have a Restful Thursday night.
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!
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.”
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
Before I leave you this morning, I want to share something I found on FaceBook:
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!
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.
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…
Leaving the Cattleman’s Gallery, I proceeded to Gallery 287 owned by Cathy Toot.
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!
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!
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!
Just Love One Another – Say: “Do it the Tanaga Way!” Poetry tells you what may Spill from your dear heart today.
How will you show your love today? Try it with Tanaga!
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!
“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.
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.
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!”
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
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.
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
[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.”
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!
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.
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.
“He says, ‘Be still and know that I am God.”
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.
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!
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.
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.
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.
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!
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
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!
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!
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!
Yesterday I missed writing for the first time in about 400 days. Did you miss me?
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.
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?
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?
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!
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?
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!!
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.
See ya tomorrow… maybe. What is keeping you occupied these days? Love ya, JanBeek
Thank you, Vitu Santos for this wonderful photo. It speaks volumes to me… and it exhibits to me the message of today’s sermon…
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.
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.
God bless you with the JOY of Life Given Away because you WANT to!
Have a Happy Labor Day weekend. See ya tomorrow. Love, JanBeek
Have you ever been living in a house for a week without the benefit of running water? That’s been our situation this week.
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.
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!!!
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 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!
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.
Do we have an obsession with image? More concerned about the outside than the inside? As a nation… as a world?
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?
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!
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.
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:
prayer and meditation,
time in nature… being outside with things that are alive
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!
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.
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!!
I’m not afraid of growing older. Just don’t call me old!! See ya tomorrow. Love, JanBeek
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
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 :
What you seek is waiting for you. Go for it!
Shout it Out!! I LOVE YOU!!! See ya tomorrow. Hugs, JanBeek
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.
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.
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!
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 …
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!
We thank Thee for all The blessings You give us, Lord. Thank Thee for Jim Reeves!
What a voice!
What a beautiful land we live in… Let’s take care of it, okay? Protect the animals, the trees and flowers, and rivers, And let’s protect one another, too.
Bob & I are so happy that we were able to sing “Happy Birthday” to our daughter, DeAna this morning. Thank God for the internet! Today is the 53rd anniversary of her birth. She is celebrating it with her son, Chris, and her choir at a retreat in the Alps. Wish we could be there to celebrate with her!
Oh, For Blessed JOY!!! The joy of a child’s birthday… Always our baby!
What are some of the JOYS that fill your heart today, my friends? Is it the great outdoors, the animals, the beauty of God’s creation? Is it family and the love of staying connected in spite of this pandemic? Tell me!
See ya tomorrow. Thanks for visiting!! Hugs, JanBeek
There I am in the top-middle – happily holding my two bells, ready to practice with the Ennis Bell Ringers. This photo was taken last December before all this COVID-19 pandemic was known. We learned a series of songs to play at a Christmas concert, and were set to start learning patriotic songs so we could give a concert here in Ennis on the 4th of July. And all of a sudden, everything was cancelled. You know the feeling.
I sing in our church choir, too… and those practices had to be cancelled.
I volunteered (past tense) at our Senior Center as a sous chef, and at our local hospital as a receptionist one day a week. Those opportunities to serve were cancelled.
singing with the choir
playing with the bell ringers
volunteering as a sous chef
volunteering to work one day a week at our local hospital
visiting my friends at the local nursing home
having neighborhood parties
hugging my friends
the carefree safety of flying to California or Pennsylvania or Switzerland to be with my children and their families, my sis and my niece
the freedom to shake hands with people I meet
and so much more…
I am grateful that we live where we do because here in the Madison Valley of Montana, we still are able to:
go four-wheeling in the mountains with friends in the wide-open spaces
attend church services outside on the lawn
hug one another (Bob & me… thank God!)
wear a mask and socially distance at CostCo or our local grocery store to do our shopping
interact with family and friends using the internet… here’s my sister in her last FaceTime meeting with her daughter and grandson (a real smile – yay!)
We still can hop in the car and go to see the beautiful scenery around us. In places up high, there still is snow on the ground!
And thanks to the internet, friends who go to visit Yellowstone Park can send pictures of the bison – and we can enjoy the sights they see vicariously!
So, instead of focusing on what I miss, I guess I should look at the joys we still can enjoy, right? My grandson, Mike, in Switzerland, went to a friend’s wedding last weekend – and he sent me a lovely picture of him with his darling girlfriend, Tania. I miss seeing him in person and meeting his friend in person, but I am grateful that he reaches out to me and that he sent this terrific photo:
They have those same beautiful mountains there – even prettier – that we have here in Montana. See them behind the couple? The Alps are pretty spectacular! And of course, you noticed that foot that’s stuck in the photo there, right? Someone’s having fun. I can feel the joyfulness, can’t you?
What is it that you are missing? And what are you grateful for today? Tell me!
See ya tomorrow. Love ya…. thanks for visiting JanBeek
When families break down, Children are so resilient. But, sometimes they need help!
Today at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, Montana, we had two guest speakers. They were from Intermountain, a program/place for children in need.
As you know, if you have been with me a week or more, I take sermon notes in poetry every Sunday as I listen to the message. Here are the notes I took as I listened to Tyler, Zimmer, one of the Intermountain representatives who spoke to our congregation today.
Prior to the message scripture I was happy to be the scripture reader sharing these two passage:
Deuteronomy 6:5-7 “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments I give to you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home, and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands, and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”
People were bringing little children to Jesus to have Him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, He was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the Kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And He took the children in His arms, put hands on them, and blessed them.
“The Resilience of Children”
We need to commend children’s good, And scold them when they are bad. When children come to Intermountain, They are victims of the life they’ve had.
Abused children are engineers of their demise When they act out of their hurt and pain. The Bible explains in Deuteronomy The impression of love for children’s gain.
A girl from Haiti came to Intermountain Who had been abused horribly as a child. She was a master of her demise As she rejected compliments and acted wild.
One little guy came as a selective mute. He was a master at keeping quiet. But when he beat me 4x in Battle Mountain, He told me how bad I am! What a riot!!
These children who’ve been so abused Are not throw-away kids. They are LOVE. They can, with help, overcome challenges. Let’s all pray for them for help from God above.
It is not only God who helps them as we pray for their souls and their ability to trust and to bond, but it is the staff of Intermountain, and the people who donate to keep the program alive and effective. Intermountain provides housing, education, clinical counseling, recreation, love and support for the children. AND, it provides folllow-up when the children return to family settings. Intermountain continues their counseling and support in the school setting as well.
Matthew 6:33-34 “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. … Each day has enough trouble of its own… Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live … So don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will have its own worries. … “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself.”
I asked Donna, “Do you know that song?” She replied, “I do!” and then she sent me the song she was singing.
Here’s the one I was singing:
“Seek ye first the kingdom of God…”
What is it you seek? Is it the Kingdom of God? Let’s pursue God first.
What are “all these things”? The scripture was referring to food and clothing… the basics… and reminding us how God takes care of the birds and the lilies of the field.
When I pursue the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, I am seeking His wisdom. I am seeking the peace that only He can give. I am seeking understanding and the deep compassion that God’s Son taught us. I am seeking to exemplify His love ❤️ and the joy that comes with Trust in His Promises. 🙏🏽 I seek His righteousness so that I may exhibit greater patience, kindness, gentleness, and goodness.
Seek Ye first the kingdom of God … and all these things will be given unto you.
Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Pray for discernment I love the Lord’s perfect will Freckles and lashes!!
Do not let the world Trick you into seeking pride – It’s a dead-end street.
Do not let the world Trick you into seeking wealth – Not in hoarded coins.
Do not let the world Tell you what to dream about – Look in God’s Word.
Let the Son set you free. You shall know the Truth And the Truth shall set you free. Trust in the Lord with all your heart. In all your ways acknowledge Him.
I pray for you, my friend… For your health, happiness, safety, And for God to guide you in His Way.
What does S.O.S. mean to you? It’s an urgent message for help. But yesterday, a Facebook friend said, “It means Same ole Shit!”
Oh my! I had not heard that before! She was referring to a message I posted On Facebook about the U.S. Postal Service. She is convinced it’s all legit – not “shit” at all!
The post received 66 responses within a few hours And it deteriorated to the point where I Called a “Truce” and wished I had not started it. But, hey, ya gotta stand up for what you believe, right?
And we have a responsibility to fact check. Yes, some of the removed boxes were being replaced. The guy in charge of our postal service now, DeJoy, Has spread his “S.O.S.” and intelligent people believe him.
Other equally intelligent people weighed in on the conversation. “I worked for the P.O. and I know these claims are false.” “The sorting machines being removed are not being replaced.” “This has been going on routinely for decades. Why blame Trump?”
I don’t care who is to blame, I just care about our U.S.P.S. And I want to speak up to defend our right to vote by mail. I need all the boxes protected and all the sorting machines left. I need to know our election in November is not being compromised.
So, I came out of my box of comfort and said, “Stop!” I came out and expressed my outrage at what’s happening. Enough other people have expressed their concern that DeJoy Announced he will stop this nonsense until after November elections.
“I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.”
We need to TRUST God’s Word and expect the best. We need to pray to God for His wisdom And for our courage to step up to the plate When His perfect time comes.
But, before we grab the bat And swing at the falsehoods, We need to ask the SUPREME COACH To guide us, teach us, and give us TRUTH.
We need to persevere in the face of the S.O.S. People throw at us – and don’t be deterred. We need to listen to His voice and grasp As clearly as we can His purposes for our stand.
STAND UP FOR WHAT’S RIGHT! Silence is no longer a viable option!! I love you, even if you think I’m wrong. Let’s exchange ideas with respect.
Some GOOD people will disagree with me. May my optimism about a brighter future be contagious. Let’s draw on the Word and promises of God. Stand up and carry on with perseverance!
“Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
Send me a love letter!
In my GuidepostsMornings with Jesus today, Jolynn Strandberg wrote:
“Even when I am surrounded by people who do not understand my convictions, I hope I will always have the courage to stand up for my beliefs.”
Ya gotta read this post! It’s full of gorgeous flowers from derrickjknight
and you don’t want to miss seeing more! It’s full of a variety of humor and thoughtfulness!
Do you know the word “HodgePodge”?? Is it real or is it one that my mom made up? When I put it in Pexels to look for a picture, nothing came up. But my iPhone dictionary had it! Here are some synonyms:
Don’t you love the concept? It doesn’t say “junk” (which is often what I thought of when I used the word hodgepodge). No, not junk… just a mishmash of unrelated ideas or an assortment of things that can actually be related – like this meat on a grill.
Need to Share
Today’s blog is a mishmash – a hodgepodge of various things, ideas, photos that caught my eye this week. I saved them because I either loved them or hated them, laughed or groaned at them, and I wanted to share them for your viewing, too.
Love One Another
My blog’s subtitle is “Loving One Another” – so I try to share ideas that represent ways we can reach out in love more fully and unconditionally to one another.
A friend (who was born in Canada but is now a USA citizen) sent me these pictures/memes/jokes/thoughts today. I decided if the election goes the wrong way next November here in the USA, Canada may be my next residency! It appears they have a handle on how to “Love One Another.” Even their graffiti is kinder than ours!!
And if they wear a hat with something written on it, I guess it is positive, too…
Going on with my hodgepodge, I received this meme from a friend today. It made me laugh. I think laughter is what keeps me going these days!
Oh, Other Options?
You say you have other survivor options? One way my blogging friend, Derrick Knight and his wife, Jackie, are surviving this pandemic is by being voracious gardeners. And Derrick is a phenomenal photographer. Let me add to my hodgepodge today by sharing a couple of my favorite photos he posted recently from his rainy vistas in Great Britain:
Pictures Bring Back Memories
In my past life, some of you know I was a teacher for 24 years and a principal for 9 years and worked in the district office as curriculum coordinator (wearing a hundred hats with all kinds of responsibility and no authority to back ’em up!)… and then I decided to do what I loved most – and go back into the classroom before I retired. I taught a first grade and took them on to second. Oh, what a joy that was! Many of those students are my FaceBook friends today… 21 years later!!
That poppy brought back those memories because the school where I was principal for 9 years was Caswell Elementary in the Ceres Unified School District in California. Our school song was:
“Poppies, Golden Poppies, Gleaming in the sun. Closing up at evening when the day is done. Pride of California, Flower of our state, Growing from the mountains To the Golden Gate.
We’re the Caswell Cougars, We are Number One. Green and yellow banners Waving in the sun. Caswell is a place for Learning and for fun. We’re the Caswell Cougars, We are Number One!!
And the HodgePodge Continues…
Yesterday, if you read my blog, you know we went for a farewell ice cream social to say “See ya later” to our two favorite little Sunday School friends, Cord and Ruby. We are praying for their happy resettling on their dad’s home ranch in Jordan, MT. It’s a six-hour drive from here. They’ll have horses and cattle and dogs and cats and lots of room to roam. Our love and prayers go with them. We gave them great big farewell hugs and told ’em how much we love and will miss them.
Great HodgePodge Finish
A great end to my hodgepodge for today is this wonderful photo that I JUST received via the magic of WhatsApp from my daughter, DeAna. She wrote,
“I took this photo from the parking lot near our restaurant this morning while thinking of you.”
Ah, our children certainly know how to melt a mothers heart, don’t they? Nothing could make me happier than to know that when my daughter sees a symbol of our faith, she thinks of me! What a gift, huh?
Maybe I am not so disturbed after all!!
What HodgePodge of thoughts captured your imagination today? I hope they were a medley of love and laughter, memories and musings that lightened your soul.
“15 Peter said, “Explain the parable to us.”16 “Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them. 17 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.”
The Faith of a Canaanite Woman
21 Leaving that place, Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. 22 A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is demon-possessed and suffering terribly.”
23 Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.”
24 He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.”
25 The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said.
26 He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”
27 “Yes it is, Lord,” she said. “Even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their master’s table.”
28 Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment.
How in the world do you take that scripture and make sense of it in a sermon?
Well, Rev. Steve Hundley at our Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis, Montana tackled it today. Preceding the sermon, Elaine, Steve’s wife, read the scripture using The Message, Eugene Petersen’s version of the Bible. In part, it said,
“It is not what you swallow that defiles a person, but what you vomit up!”
The Canaanite woman who came to Jesus, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me!” was indeed vomiting up a whole lot of agony. Why did Jesus suggest that helping her would be like feeding bread to the dogs? Listen to what I heard Steve saying about this is his sermon today:
Jesus called a desperate woman a dog! She was a Canaanite who child’s life was grim. Why would Jesus insult her like that? She threw His words right back at Him.
We can relate to her and her dark side. We all have a little bit of the devil in us. But, not Jesus … No! He was perfect! So why did He call her a dog?
Was He rejecting her because she wasn’t Jewish? No, it can’t be true. He must have been saying, “I have a special spot in my heart for the Jews.” Maybe He used this to show the disciples their playing.
Playing with the idea of parroting back to them Their rejection of others – their callous attitude. Jesus seemed to be sending the mother away. Gladly, we can see Jesus help her and sense her gratitude.
We are living in strange times – a nation divided. There are desperate voices shouting out. You have a choice. Whose voices will you hear? How will you respond? Are your words and attitudes matching Jesus’ voice?
When you hear the desperate mother cry, Do you hear her pain and heed her pleas? She boldly calls with faith for her child’s healing. May we also listen, hear, and respond with help to such as these.
Lord, speak to our hearts that we might know Your heart more clearly.
“Open my mouth and let me bear gladly the warm truth everywhere. Open my heart and let me prepare love with Thy children thus to share.”
I am off this evening to say good-bye to our favorite Sunday School kids. Love with Thy children thus to share… This adorable pair is moving from Ennis to go with their parents to Jordan, MT where their dad will take over the family farm. I can’t tell you how much we will miss them. But of course, we will pray for them and hope their transition to their new home is a smooth one.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek and reading the sermon notes. Please add Cord and Ruby and their parents, Suzanne & Casey, to your prayer list. And ask God to send some new little kids to our church, okay?
Days in Montana Are out of a fairy tale: Unbelievable!
Come for a trail ride On Lucille, our ATV, Into the mountains.
Today North Meadow – First past gorgeous Sure Shot Lakes, Then to reservoir.
The fish were jumping – Little ones jumped on the fly. Big ones were cautious.
Lunch was relaxing With our dear friends, the Washburns. Wish you could have come!
The fish are jumpin’ – Summertime – livin’s easy… And life is peaceful!
Barbara & I enjoyed the scenes And did a little hiking Trails above the lake
TazE came with us We enjoyed the clear blue skies With clouds drifting by.
They call this Big Sky There’s a very good reason Unimpeded views!
Makes you want to keep on singing!!
Quake Lake’s a wonder. Have you heard the great story? Come – and I’ll tell you!
Thanks for joining me for another beautiful Montana day. It’s so wonderful to live in this great state with the wide open spaces… especially during this pandemic. Nothing heals like Mother Nature at her finest… in Madison County, Montana.
D’Verse Poetry then invited readers to write a Stream of Consciousness poem. After listening to Billy Collins, former USA Poet Laureate, reference “The wheel and the suitcase,” on his Ted Talk, I was inspired me to use that prompt and write my own stream of consciousness poem.
Do click on the Billy Collins link and listen to his delightful TedTalk. You’ll be glad you did. He is extremely talented and very entertaining!
The wheel was invented By cavemen or women Long before air travel And the suitcase was invented Long before the covered wagon Carried lovely luggage Into rugged western regions But It took longer than The invention of the wheel Or the need for a suitcase For some smart person To put the wheel On the suitcase I wonder what Two unlikely objects Will be creatively joined By some smart person Tomorrow?
(The poem below was written on my flight back to CA after some 4: AM cuddles with my newborn grandson in Switzerland two and a half decades ago)
Two fellow bloggers wrote yesterday about their grandchildren – and how this pandemic has taken away their ability to visit and hug them. It reminded me of this poem I wrote 26 years ago… and how much I miss my hugs and cuddles with my grandkids (and the three great-grandchildren). I decided to repost my poem and give you an updated picture of my three Swiss grandsons.
Here’s Nicky, the 26 year old for whom “The 4 o’clock Cuddle” was written. I seemed to know even when he was a newborn that someday he would have a “bearded cheek!” Hah!
The Four O’Clock Cuddle
Recalling our precious time together, I wonder about Future four o’clock cuddles. Who will be there In a decade or three? Where will your bearded cheek Nuzzle in four decades?
Will your big, round eyes Remain innocent, And your heart remain pure, And with perfect trust, Will you find the world Always loves you As I do?
Wrap your fingers Around carefully chosen thumbs, My dear grandson. The world is yours, But here There will always be A four o’clock cuddle.
Nicky is in the middle of this adorable picture of my three Swiss grandsons today. Ah yes, a photo only a Grammy could call ADORABLE” … It’s a kiddie pool in the back of Nick’s new house that he’s sharing with two or three buddies in Switzerland. Here he is flanked by his brothers: Mike (28) and Chris (24)… Oh Lordy! I miss them!!
What kind of cuddles are you missing these days? Tell me about ’em!!
Today at d’Verse, Victoria Sloto asked us to write a Quadrille of exactly 44 words using the word Garden.
Derrick Knight can tell you Gardening is hard work. Ask his wife, Jackie, She’ll tell you he’s no jerk When it comes to their garden He’s the chief dead-header!! Jackie plants and tends the garden With utmost expertise And countless hours Of sweaty toil.