Loving One Another

Archive for June, 2012

In the Shade of the Shrub


     Some of you know that I am in the habit of taking notes in poetry form while I listen to the sermon in church on Sundays. Through my filter, I condense the 20 minute message to a few stanzas. I enjoy sharing with our pastor what I have written. It’s fun to hear what someone else thought was the “meat of the message,” don’t you think? Then, it’s fun for me to have her say, “Right on! You got it!” This is what I “caught” as I listened this Father’s Day Sunday. The message was based on (or sprouted from) Mark 4:26-34. Check it out!

The Shade of the Shrub
 

Jesus meets His people
In the shade of the shrub.
It started as a small seed
And grew to a small stub.

Then somebody watered it
With care and compassionate love,
And that stub grew to a healthy plant –
Maybe a weed – but with many a hug!

The shrub is the church collective:
A seed, to a stub, to a shrub.
We meet Jesus in the shadows and
Cast His light on the soil at our hub.

The hub of the church is God,
Whose light we shine in the darkness.
With love and compassion we grow
God’s Kingdom on this earth’s starkness.

We, my friends, are the growing shrub.
Christ is at work in us all.
We are a weed in the process of spreading
God’s Love. May we grow strong and tall!

Amen? 

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Three Forks, Montana


We went to Manhattan, MT today to read to the folks at Parkhaven Retirement Home. Then we (our Writers of Madison County) went to one of our members’ homes in Three Forks for a barbecue. What fun! Now we’re headed for home – and here’s the scene we just passed. Oh, my friends, this is truly God’s Country!!

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Sunset on the Madison


Begin Eternity Now!

Today was my last day with my darling Vacation Bible School class. Tomorrow I am headed to Four Corners and Manhattan (Montana) to share some reading/writing with other members of my Writers of Madison County. We are going to bring some inspiration and cheer and thoughtfulness (hopefully) to members of a retirement home there. This morning as I spent quiet time in my sanctuary and contemplated the week of VBS, the messages, the themes, and what we have learned together, I marveled at the receptivity of these young minds. They are beginning their eternity now – seeking to learn – desiring to follow – opening their hearts to one another and to God. I shared with them this poem that I wrote in the peacefulness and reflection of my sanctuary. It is my gift to them. May the message of this week live in their hearts and grow in their faith as they attempt to live as Jesus taught us.  God bless them!

When Jesus walked upon tho earth,
He was the vision of God we see.
He gave God flesh in human form.
He made God live for you and me.

When Jesus asked men to follow,
His magnetism drew them in.
They dropped the lives they were living,
Gave up family, worldly comforts, sin.

They followed Him to far off places;
They listened and they saw His love.
And when He was crucified and buried,
They knew He rose to Heaven above.

They saw a dove descend and land
When the Holy Spirit took Christ’s place.
They knew the joy of following Jesus,
And they spread the Good News everyplace.

We don’t have to leave our homes,
Desert our families, go far away –
We can read the Good News here
By being Christ’s love everyday.

We can study in our Bibles
What jesus taught, how Jesus prayed,
What Jesus did, how he faced trials,
How He took care of all God made.

Then we can go do likewise –
Right where we live, right on our street –
We can love and spread our joy to others,
Show Christ’s compassion to all we meet.

Christ told His twelve disciples,
“I will make you fishers of men,”
When He sent them out to spread His love.
They obeyed. They went. They followed Him.

We need to do as those twelve did.
We need to heed the call of Christ.
By loving, living, doing God’s will,
We’ll receive the gift for which He sacrificed.

Begin Eternity Now!

Thanks for dropping in, my friends. Come again.
Bee Well!

JanBeek ;o)

Montana Sunrise


A New Day Shines Before Me

A New Day

A new day shines before me –
Bright as the morning sun.
It’s stretched out on the horizon –
A happy, “Good Morning, everyone!”

A new day shines before me –
But first I must be still.
Listen for God’s voice within –
And prepare to do God’s Will.

A new day shines before me –
Full of promise, full of needs.
I pray and ask, “What can I do
To be Your Love in thoughts and deeds?”

A new day shines before me –
I hear the Holy Spirit within
Saying, “Go – and see the world as Christ did.
Be Love, Joy, Peace. Ready? Begin!”

The Insanity of Jesus


You get by giving.
You live by dying.
You win by losing.
We are spiritually trying
To understand Jesus’ message.
The poor are rich.
The weak are strong.
Let your mind switch.

The rational world
Has things all wrong.
Priorities are topsy-turvy –
Not where they belong.
Jesus lived an insane life –
Not reasonable at all.
He had no earthly home –
No suitcase – big or small!

In the eyes of the world,
He was out of His mind.
He thought we’d all care –
Take what we have and share.
He gave All He Knew
To twelve unqualified men.
The world saw that crew
And knew He was crazy then!

Today He has given to us
That same “All He Knew,”
And we’re equally unqualified.
Maybe we are crazy, too.

You think?

I Know Something Good About You


Wouldn’t this old world be better
If the folks we meet would say,
“I know something good about you,”
And then treat us just that way?

Wouldn’t it be fine and dandy
If each handclasp warm and true
Carried with it this assurance,
“I know something good about you”?

Wouldn’t life be lots more happy
If the good that’s in us all
Were the only thing about us
That folks bothered to recall?

Wouldn’t life be so much better
If we praised the good we see?
For there’s such a lot of goodness
In the worst of you and me.

Wouldn’t it be wise to practice
That fine way of thinking, too?
You know something good about me.
I know something good about you!

Louis C. Shimon

COMMENTER / COMMENTATOR AWARD

GinaV at Professions for PEACE practices that way of thinking. She not only thinks, “I know something good about you,” but she takes the time to express it. When she sees others doing the same, she praises it with her affirmations and her nominations. Thank you, Gina, for nominating my blog for the Commenter Award. I am grateful to her for introducing me to so many thoughtful and inspiring bloggers. She does this by reposting blogs that touch her heart, and by acknowledging others through the blogging awards nominations. It is a beautiful blogosphere out there, a big and beautiful world of writers with ideas to share. I thank you all for sharing your time and thoughts. Like Gina, I love to offer comments and insights, both on my own blog as well as in replies or comments on others. In accepting this award, I will continue the “love circle” by passing on the links to some lovely people who also warmly encourage others. My nominees will be posted as an addendum to this soon. Meantime, you are here – reading this – and you may recognize that poem as one of those from my mom’s 1936 collection. More treasures to come!

I want to know something good about YOU, my blogging friend. Write a comment! And – have a beautiful day. God Bless You!


This is too good! I couldn’t resist the temptation to reblog this post!

Freedom to Change

Never let the sight of a broken path keep you from reaching the top of the stairs. ~SMS

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The Secret of Success


In 1936, when my mother and father were newlyweds, my mom collected more than a dozen poems, cutting them out of the weekly newspaper in Newman, CA, the WestSide Index. Mom lived two states away from her family and friends, who were in northern Washington. Missing her own mother’s wisdom and daily advice, she posted selected articles on a piece of cardboard inside her kitchen cupboard door. Today that yellowing collection of wisdom, still on its original cardboard, is tacked inside my kitchen cupboard door. It’s a constant reminder of the power of words and the influence of a mother who valued the them.

Here is one of my favorites:

The Secret of Success (author unknown)

“What is the secret of success?” asked the Sphinx?
“Push the button,” said electricity.
“Never be led,” said the pencil.
“Take pains,” said the window.
“Be sharp in all your dealings,” said the knife.
“Always keep cool,” said the ice.
“Be up to date,” said the calendar.
“Make light of your troubles,” said the fire.
“Never lose your head,” said the match.
“Find a good thing and stick to it,” said the stamp.

Notice that each “secret” is linked to the attribute of the one speaking. Therein lies the real secret to success in my opinion. Find your natural talents, develop them, and use your gifts to build success. What is YOUR secret of success?

 

Limited Options


My friend, Jack Murphy, died two days ago. He was a member of the Writers of Madison County in southwest Montana. Suffering heart problems and other ailments, he had been contemplating his own death for several years. He didn’t dwell on the subject often in his writing. Usually he wrote whimsical poetry regarding such subjects as Humpty Dumpty’s tragedy or Little Miss Muffet’s victory over that dreadful spider. Now, after he left us at a much too early age, I am drawn to his shared poems and short stories. His words take on deeper, more profound meanings. I ponder his musings. I want to call him back to us and discuss his premises. He wrote of “Limited Options” and of leaving this earth as “an empty shell, no heart, no soul, no place to dwell,” to “drift away through time and space.” I had no idea in 2009 when he published his poem, Surrender, in the Madison County Writers’ Group Anthology that he really would “go” so soon. I miss him!

Surrender

It’s time to go, I hear the voice.
It’s time to go, I have no choice.

I sense a tug upon my sleeve
telling me it’s time to leave.

I am not sure I want to go.
I thought that at the time I’d know

if I was really tired of life,
the aches and pains and constant strife.

Do I have the strong resolve
or will that needed strength dissolve?

And leave me like an empty shell,
no heart, no soul, no place to dwell.

I don’t yet know if I should fight
to stick around to do what’s right

and let the natural things take place,
then drift away through time and space.

I want to bring Jack back. I want to discuss his eternal options. I can’t. He’s gone from this earth. But, I am praying that he has met his Creator and has learned that he now has the Unlimited Options of Eternity, not the “Limited Options” he anticipated in this poem. This was published in that same 2009 anthology:

I wanted to be the first to go,
make it quick, not too slow.

It does not happen, sad to say,
that life always works out that way.

But, often life does not conform,
it does not follow every norm.

Illness or accident oft is the one,
that gets the unadorned deed done.

The rules are vague, if there are rules at all,
on who will stay and who will fall.

The pain of loss is often deep
and it’s all right for you to weep.

As long as you remember, too,
the joy that they did bring to you.

The fun you had along the way,
and all the crazy games you’d play.

The loves and laughs, and serious times
that make up life and its designs.

If only we could get to choose
who exits first, who has to lose.

But, it is not our choice, you see;
it is not left to you and me.

We’ll love our lives until the end,
then ride the river around the bend.

Thus, when our final days are here
and we slip from life so dear,

We’ll drift toward that distant shore,
the lights gone, sleep now evermore.

Sleep now, dear friend, Jack Murphy. My faith wants to believe you are in the gentle, forgiving, ever-loving hands of our Savior, resting in eternal peace. I do remember “the joy you [did] bring” – and I weep with the pain of our loss. I hope to see you someday again – – – round the river’s band.

See Ya Round the River’s Bend

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Sunset on the Madison


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