Loving One Another

Archive for December, 2019

Come to Us


I have a dear friend in California who is sending inspirational scripture with music and devotionals each day during this season of Advent. Today she sent a link to a song that started my day with a smile.

I hope it makes you smile, too.

The song, composed in the minor key, is perfect for this season.
Do you know it? The choir and soloists are superb:

“Come to set us free, come to make us your own.
Come to show the way to your people, your chosen.
Open our lives to the light of your promise.
Come to our hearts with healing, come to our minds with power,
come to us and bring us your life.”

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels.com

You can click on this link and hear it if you like:
http://catholichymn.blogspot.com/2015/11/come-to-set-us-free.html

For me, Advent is the season of Adventure – a season of reaching out to others in love while we prepare our hearts for the coming of the Christ child each Christmas.

I know many of my readers are people of other faiths, and I respect your right to worship the One God in your chosen way. But, I hope you feel a sense of greater love, more generous giving, and the promised peace during this holiday time of the year. I hope the drama, the stress, and the conflict are minimized in your life… and you can find JOY in the hustle and bustle of the season.

Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

Gracious God,
Be with my Word Press friends this season.
Bring them JOY and PEACE.
Help them live with compassion
and reach out in love.
In His name I pray,
Amen.

See ya later!

Drama, Conflict & Stress


Set Boundaries

In my conversation with my friend over lunch yesterday, she reminded me that I need to set boundaries. She suggested that if there is too much drama, conflict or stress in my life, it is because I have not set my own boundaries. I have allowed those elements to invade my peace.

Choices

Do you have drama, conflict, or stress in your life? Is there a way to eliminate those negatives and invite only positives in my life? What choices do I have?

Sometimes the stress and drama come from family, dearly beloved family. Does setting boundaries mean I should eliminate them from my life? Would that make me happier? Does having a cozy home, good food, and limiting my contacts to only “Happy People” mean I would have a better life?

No, my choice is to love those family members unconditionally – and invite them into my “cozy home” and share with them my “good food” and if they are not “happy people,” then pray that my patience, generosity, and love offered unconditionally can bring them some joy.

Sharing

Sharing what we have is what the “Christmas Spirit” is all about. You may not be able to eliminate the drama, conflict, and stress in your life. Not unless you want to alienate those people God has placed in your life … those people who create troublesome circumstances in their own lives as well as yours.

Is that what Jesus teaches? Only deal with happy people? Is that what He did? Think about it.

What do you think?

Let me hear from you!

See ya later!

Running Low


Are you running low?
Finding energy is scarce?
Go to your refuel.

Where’s your refuel place?
Is it visiting a friend?
I did that today.

Took time to converse
With a compassionate soul.
Did a world of good!

“Refuel” is a place
On the web by Bayside Church.
It’s one place to fuel.

Refuel by blogging.
Refuel by singing a song.
Refuel by walking.

It’s necessary;
Self-care’s a priority
Not a luxury.

If you’re out of gas,
You can’t help others or YOU.
STOP, rest, breathe and PRAY.

Let God fill you up
With His compassionate love.
It’s better than gas!

Have a Happy Wednesday!
See ya tomorrow.

Shakespeare in the Schools


Our Ennis Arts Association supports a performance each year of Shakespeare in the Schools for our Ennis students. I was so impressed today with the performance of these young people.

Following the performance of Romeo & Juliet, the cast sat down and gave the Ennis High students a chance to ask questions.

Then members of our Ennis Arts Association gathered for a delicious lunch at the Sr. Center followed by installation of our 2020 Ennis Arts Association Officers.

The shortest one there is yours truly, installed as the new president. It’s a privilege to work with these folks (left to right): Chelsee Mahsman (Secretary) with her baby, Clementine, Sue Kinn-Brown (Vice-President and jury committee chair), yours truly, and Patsy Eckert (past president).

Unable to attend were Barbara Swan-Roger (treasurer), Jan Brooks (co-treasurer). Also in attendance was one who serves on the jury for our annual adjudicated Art Festival and serves as a member of the publicity committee, Margie Reck; Shirley Storey, one of our talented artists, and Barbara Gillispie, also on the jury committee and a key member of the Art Festival planning group. It takes a dedicated team to support the arts and artists in our art-focused Madison Valley.

Look for more art related posts as the year progresses. Last summer I wrote about our festival on this post: http://www.janbeek.blog/love-our-ennis-arts-festival

Have you enjoyed a Shakespeare in the Schools performance in the past? Tell me about it.

See ya tomorrow.

Happy Birthday, #1 Grandson


Today is the 28th birthday of my #1 grandson, Mike.

Happy Birthday, Mikey!
Mike with his darling girlfriend, Tania

I have written a memoir titled, All My Marbles. I did it with my grandchildren in mind. I want them to understand who their grandmother is (from my inside perspective), how I met their grandfather and what our early days of marriage were like. I hope they enjoy getting a glimpse into who their great grandparents on their mom’s side of the family were, too.

In the memoir (of which I have only printed a couple rough draft copies), I devote one chapter to each of my seven grandchildren. The chapter devoted to Michael, Grandson #1, begins this way:

Let me tell you about our first grandchild, the one who was “in the hatch” when DeAna and Andre left California to live in Switzerland.

“Paaaay-shuns!!” Mikey whined. I chuckled. Standing in the tiny Swiss kitchen, heating milk to put in the plastic pouch for her toddler’s bottle, our daughter, DeAna, felt a tug on her apron. He had heard his mom say, “Patience!” so many times already in his young life. It makes me smile twenty-six years later when I think of it.

Since this is now his 28th birthday, you can see I wrote that memoir two years ago.

After taking a look back at how our daughter happened to be in Switzerland – how she and Andre’ met, etc. – I go on to tell more about Mike.

Mikey was two weeks old in December of 1992 when we arrived to visit for his first Christmas. De and Andre had a cute little apartment in Crans-Montana, a ski resort area high in the Alps above the city of Sierre where Andre and Mikey both were born. What stands out in my memory from that three-week visit are four things: 1) the joy of holding that healthy, chubby little baby, and seeing our lovely nineteen-year-old daughter as a mommy, 2) the fun of introducing Mikey to the village where he was living as we took him in his stroller through the snow to the little resort town down the mountain, 3) the luck of meeting Liz Bestenheider in a Montana boutique and introducing her to DeAna a day later or so – they would ultimately become very good friends – and 4) the love of the extended Swiss family who took us in so graciously. We had been acquainted with that extended family of Solioz/Zufferey since 1981 when our first AFS exchange student, Christian Zufferey, came to California. So in many ways it was “old home week.” But now we weren’t just related through an international organization, God had sealed us in a covenant! What a joy!

Mikey was a very easy baby. Quiet by nature, he was generally happy. He didn’t cry unless there was something really wrong. He would sit for hours in his stroller or the infant seat, content to watch patiently whatever was happening around him.

By the time we saw him on our second visit the next December, he was the toddler who was reminding himself to be PAAAY-shunt – and he was learning other words and actions that amused us. Since he was the first grandchild on both his maternal and paternal sides, adults doted on his every word, every burp, and every new action. We have a drawer full of videotapes taken of him before his brothers came along.

Mike’s bro, Chris, and mom (our daughter De) with TazE

Mike’s been here to Montana with his brothers and his mom, but it’s been a while. Time to bring Tania and come back to Grammy & Grampy’s. In the picture above, Mike’s youngest brother and his mom (our daughter, DeAna) were here last May. It’s time for Mike to return, too. Happy Birthday, Mike!

Here he is (the one next to Bob, his Grampy)
in his younger years – with his two brothers.

Have you written a memoir?
Do you have grandchildren?
If so, how old are yours?
We wish we could see ours more often!

Happy Birthday!!

Have a good day.
See ya later.

What Were/Are You Expecting?


Happy Second Sunday of Advent, my friends!
It’s the Sunday devoted to the subject of JOY.

Last year at this time, as I looked forward to Christmas and New Years, I was thinking about what to give for presents. I also gave thought to what I was wishing for… what I was expecting for Christmas and for the year to come. I posted this wish for 2019:

Did I expect my wishes to come true?
You bet!

Joyfully, I can report that we have been blessed with good health and a wealth of friends and loving family, and blissful days. Not EVERY day was perfect, of course, – we all face challenges from time to time – but I am eternally thankful – daily for the JOY and peace and the love that are mine.

And now we are back in that holiday season again – looking forward to Christmas and the new year. As a congregation of worshipers, we all were drawn into that expectant mood today.

Here are my sermon notes. (If you have followed my blog for awhile, you know I take notes poetically as I listen to the sermon each Sunday.)

Today in church, Pastor Steve Hundley’s message was titled,
“What Are You Expecting?”

What are you expecting for Christmas?
Reindeer on your rooftop or Santa Claus
Coming down your chimney?
Better reset your sights because…

Clyde came dressed up as Santa.
He was a crusty old guy,
And he looked like Ghandi.
But the problem was, he was high.

Clyde was high on Moonshine.
He was a jolly old soul,
But I was not impressed.
Clyde was far from my expected goal.

I was expecting the real Santa,
And I knew Clyde wasn’t he.
Like expectations of Santa,
The world is waiting expectantly…

For the birth of a Savior King,
And instead here comes a baby,
Born in a lowly stable.
He’s not the King He’s s’posed to be!

John the Baptist predeicted
The coming of this Royal King.
He spoke of confession and judgement.
He told the world about everything…

God’s prophets of old had proclaimed,
“A Savior of Priestly stock would come.”
John was so convincing, folks thought
He might in fact be God’s promised Son.

But John assured them Jesus was
The Savior King they’d waited for.
Even though Jesus was loving and kind,
Not the Leader with sword. They wanted more…

More of what they had expected.
“Are you really the One?” they inquired.
“Don’t look elsewhere; just see what I’ve done –
Go,” Jesus said. “Go and be inspired.”

Jesus reminded them that He was
Indeed doing what Isaiah said:
“The blind will see; the deaf shall hear;
The lame will walk. Believe I AM Christ.
GOD IS NOT DEAD!”

This quote by Dale Evans is worth repeating!

Have a Wonderful Sunday!
I hope you are expecting the Risen Christ!
He’s coming again, you know.

Merry Christmas!
See ya tomorrow.

Grow Through Temptation


Does temptation lift
Its ugly head around you?
Cookies and parties?

Do you look at fun
As life’s diversion from Christ?
That’s not His intent!

Christianity
Is built sure on nothing less
Than Christ’s love and joy

He intends for us
To experience His FUN
In the Spirit’s fruit:

Galatians 5:22-23

“When the Holy Spirit
controls our lives,
he will produce this kind
of fruit in us,
love, JOY, peace.
patience, kindness, goodness,
faithfulness, and self-control.

Photo by Marta Dzedyshko on Pexels.com

Yesterday I went
To a FUN cookie exchange
Temptation abounds!

In his book,
Daily Inspirations for the Purpose Driven Life,
Rick Warren wrote,
“God uses the opposite situation of each fruit to allow us a choice.
Integrity is built by defeating the temptation…”

Photo by Nishant Aneja on Pexels.com

When I learn, “No Thanks,”
I grow (through the temptation)
In spirit, not pounds!

Good luck with the fruit of self-control today!
See ya later!

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