Loving One Another

Archive for the ‘Aging Gracefully’ Category

It’s Not Fair!


Sermon Notes
August 9, 2020
Rev. Steve Hundley
Jan’s poetic notes taken while listening
to Steve’s message based on John 21:15-23

“A Side-Long Glance”

Jesus was with His disciples on shore.
Peter thought Jesus didn’t believe him.
Jesus told Peter to feed His sheep.
The answer failed to relieve him.

Have you ever felt misunderstood?
Ever had your sincerity questioned bare?
Peter told Jesus, “You know I love You.”
Jesus had asked him three times there.

Was Jesus expecting too much of Peter?
Does He expect too much of us?
A tithe is a tenth of what you make.
The visible return’s not much to see – why fuss?

Well, Jesus expected even more than a tenth.
“What about him?” Peter asked.
Like Peter, we question others’ faith.
We want Jesus to take ’em to task.

There has to be a difference between
Faith and foolishness – so it’s not fair
Those rich folks don’t seem to give –
They don’t seem to do their share.

We cast a side-long glance across the aisle,
And we ask, as Peter did, “What about them?”
And Jesus answers us as He did Peter,
“What is it to you?” From where does fairness stem?

Jesus says, “Feed My sheep -just love!”
Your side-long glance has no place here.
You do your fair share and don’t worry about
What others do. Give, love, and have no fear.

No side-long glances allowed.
Look ahead at the One who stands
Before a hurting world and says,
“Feed My sheep in all My lands.”

Just follow Jesus –
And what will happen today?
To tell the truth, I don’t know!
Just do it anyway!!

Amen!

After church today we had a barbecue. It was the kick-off of the fiscal year’s drive for finances to fund the Pastor Search Committee and to consider our pledges for the 2020-21 church budget. Jesus said, “Feed My sheep!” and these sheep were fed in grand style out on the church lawn.

Plenty of space to socially distance
Bob with Kathy & Lucy
Here’s Pastor Steve with his wife, Elaine
The darling Nelson family: Murray, Nick, Nellie & Megan
Don’t you love that green bow?
Children like Murray are our church’s future!
Roy (on the left) was today’s scripture reader.
Charlie and his wife, Judy, were our greeters.
Ray and Barbara enjoyed the food and fellowship.

After the church BBQ, we went to my friend, Sue’s. Her birthday is tomorrow. We needed to sing “Happy Birthday!” while we socially distanced. She and her husband are being really careful around this COVID-19 … especially with Montana’s case numbers rising. They are being kept really busy at their beautiful home. Just look at their gardens!

Happy Birthday, Sue!!
Quite the flower bed!!
Impressive garden!
Represents a lot of work!!
This back of their house faces out toward the gorgeous Madison Range.

Sue and Jerry joined the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church on the same Sunday Bob & I did nearly 15 years ago. We have been fast friends ever since. The two of them built this gorgeous house themselves! Just this summer they added that deck outside their bedroom window on the right.

Here is the front of the house:

It’s so beautiful!!
Behind the house to the south side is this cabin.
They lived in it for a couple of years while they built their house.
We had more than a couple cozy dinners there.
It is such a darling, little place. Wanna rent it for a week or so?
Tell me in the comments section below.
Beautiful “Bee Plant” on the south – outside their sun room.
The road (Trail Creek) headed back home from Sue & Jerry’s.

Yes, we are blessed. We live in the gorgeous Madison Valley. We have a terrific church, a wonderful pastor who gives great sermons, beautiful friends, and a picture-perfect setting with glorious August sunshine and enormous “BigSky” drama. Ah, my friends, life is good!

No need for side-long glances. Keep your eyes on your own blessings, your own giving, and your own business. No need focusing on what’s “not fair!” Remember while you’re counting your blessings to share your love with others with your whole heart!

Do have a fantastic week ahead.

Thanks for visiting
and for sharing with me the sermon
and our visit with Sue.

Happy Birthday, Sue!!

This was a couple years ago at our house.
Love you, Sue!!


Virtual Hugs,
JanBeek

Selah


Selah

It is time to pause
Received blessings, expressed thanks
Now stop and absorb

Yes, I thank you all for the
lovely birthday wishes.

It is time to pause
Today is a “Selah Day”
Psalm 61:4

“I long to dwell in your tent forever and take shelter in the refuge of your wings.”

Selah (Pause)
See ya tomorrow.

Have a restful Saturday.
What are your plans?
I’m just gonna “cool it!”
Sending love and gratitude,
JanBeek

Too Many Birthdays


Every time Bob and I see someone who is driving like they don’t have a brain in their gray and wrinkled head, we comment to one another, “Too many birthdays!” We’ve been doing that for years. And guess what? Now we are they!!

Gray and wrinkled Bob with graying TazE…
Hey, her butt didn’t used to be gray!!!

Well, at least HE is they! At 81 (he’ll be 82 in December), Bob is 5 months ahead of me. He’ll always be older! I can smile in the rear view mirror, wear a hat to cover the gray, and pretend I’m still a young chick! Heck, age is just a matter of how you feel, right? HEALTH is everything! Love is essential. God is good!

Yup, today is my birthday…
and for the next 5 months,
Bob & I are the same age.
No way!!

The hair may be gray, and the face has a few added wrinkles with “too many birthdays,” but age is a matter of the MIND. Right? If you don’t mind, I don’t mind!

Just don’t call me old!!

Tell me I’m “bee-YOU-tiful”
like this card I received yesterday
from Bob’s sister!
(Thank you, Bonnie)

And pick a few flowers from your garden to decorate your table…
like my neighbor, Sue, did yesterday.
(God bless her)

Keep singing and dancing
(ya gotta keep movin’),
writing and blogging your thoughts,
dreaming and making those dreams come true,
living your passions,
and you’ll never have
“Too Many Birthdays” –
no matter how many years
the calendar tells you!!

It’s time to open presents,
sing the birthday song,
blow out a few candles (don’t try to count them!)
and praise God for the years
he has given me “Too Many Birthdays!”
I’ll take ’em all – gladly!

I’m happy to be in the passenger seat!
I thank God every day for my health,
and for my driver, Bob!

Have a Fabulous Friday!
I’ll see you tomorrow
and tell you all about
my “Happy (not too many) Birthday!”

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Pexels.com

Come on, friends, sing along.
I’m listening!!

(When I get old, I’m gonna wear more purple…
Just don’t rush me!)
Love,
JanBeek

Blue


Photo by Sohel Patel on Pexels.com

Usually a person who sees the glass full,
not just half-full, and seldom empty,
this COVID-19 is getting to me.
A friend wrote a poem called a QUADRILL.
I decided to use its format to vent.

Quadrille
44 words –

“Blue”

All the world seems blue
Sadly holding its breath
Some behind masks
Some behind fear
Some behind doors
All afraid to breathe
Lest virus droplets lurk
Hanging in the air
Waiting to land
And infect
Particularly blue
Are the young
Socialization matters
Sooo
Much

It’s a lonely path we’re on.

Reach out across the blue.
Connect.
We need one another.

See ya tomorrow.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Spend it All or Give it Away!


“Being of sound mind, I spent it all!”

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Those were the words read from the will
when my friend, Marion,
met with her siblings after their mother died.

Today’s devotional in
“Mornings with Jesus 2020”
told of a similar story.
The writer quoted her father as saying,
“Before I leave here, I intend to spend every dollar I ever made.”

She thought he was kidding.
After all, he was a God-fearing man …
“who could quote scripture from Genesis to Revelation.”
(Alice Thompson, Thursday July 9th).

But her earthly father had given her no inheritance!


After being angry for awhile,
Alice turned to her Bible,
and she turned to the Lord.
Alice wrote that she spoke to her head
about Lamentations 3:24.
It says,
“The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.”

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

Even though Proverbs 13:22 says, “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children,” Alice realized her father – who left “nothing for me,” had indeed left the most precious gifts of all: His loving relationship with her and his faith in God.

He lived his life loving her and her mother, giving to the Lord and to those in need, and using his hard-earned dollars to enjoy a good life. A nice house, a new car every few years, memorable vacations, generosity with his children, and gifts to charity… these were the signatures he left. He left her the gifts money can’t buy: love, faith, a good work-ethic, respect, and joy.

If our parents live their lives in love and faith, generosity and joy.
If our parents pass those gifts on to us,
We have the received the most important gifts of all.
They don’t owe us a rich monetary inheritance.

If our parents demonstrate a good work-ethic,
and teach us to do likewise,
If our parents help us learn to read and compute,
pray and serve, and get a good education,
then they have equipped us to do as they might:

Being of sound mind,
I spent it all
or gave it away.

Go and do likewise!
Have a great Thursday.

I’m headed to a Happy 70th Birthday party!
See ya tomorrow.
Live in peace with EVERYBODY, my friends!
Hugs, JanBeek

Listen and Grow


Dr. Jimmy Walters
has been posting a 30 day series on healing.
Today his topic was “Listening.”
Check it out by clicking n “Day 26” below:

30 Days of Healing
as we seek to be instruments of peace and change
“Discovering God’s Vision for Your Life”
Discover “God’s Vision for Your Life”
by wearing a mask… and
Listen, Look, Smile
as we grow in
Love, Health & Healing

Dr. Jimmy said in his article,
“… listening can inform us,
guide us,
as we grow
and as we learn.”

My daughter DeAna, and her husband, Andre’ (pictured above and below here) are celebrating their 33rd anniversary today. It has been an interesting journey for them. They married when she was not quite 20 and he was 24. Young and naive, coming from a world apart – she a California girl and he a fun-loving guy who’d been working as a chef in Switzerland.

De & Andre’s wedding at UOP Chapel 1987

DeAna wore my dress and Andre’ wore Bob’s red bow tie and cummerbund as they were married in the same University of the Pacific chapel where Bob & I were wed 25 years earlier.

They remained in California four more years while De finished college, but eventually, they moved back to Andre’s hometown in Sierre, Switzerland.
He missed his mountains, his family, his culture. I don’t blame him!!! De was pregnant with our first grandchild when they left. Talk about a difficult good-bye! But hey… Switzerland…. what a beautiful place to HAVE TO visit, huh?

Life was beautiful – but, oh so different – there.

Listening to Andre’s mom, Denise, was an important part of their marital success. As the years went by, DeAna and Andre’ grew in their ability to share their minds, let their dreams be known, and listen to one another.

Today
as they anticipate
the opening of their new restaurant,
they are happier than ever.

Bob & I have been married 58 years, and we, too, are busy still learning to be better listeners. It’s a life-long process. But the effort is worth it. We, too, are happier now than ever.

Psalm 37:10-11 (MSG)

“The deeper your love, the higher it goes;
every cloud is a flag to your faithfulness.
Soar high in the skies, O God!
Cover the whole earth with Your glory!”

Today the skies revealed a slight rainbow arching the skies … look carefully:

As I stood on the porch after the rain, listening to the thunder in the hills, the robins chirped from their nest nearby and the doves flew back onto the roof to coo at one another. Listen! The earth is alive with God’s symphonies.

The rain returned – just light sprinkles, but the birds continued their songs.

Bob came out on the porch and said, “What’s for lunch?”
I responded with a shrug, “I don’t have anything planned.”
“How about a hamburger and huckleberry milkshake?” he asked.
Believe me, I listened, I heard, and … We were in the car in a jiffy.

That’s a happy smirk!

The sign over Bob’s shoulder says,
“Without ICE CREAM, Life is Darkness and Chaos.”

Without good listening,
Without open sharing of dreams,
You’ll miss out on lots of hamburgers and milkshakes!

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Now,
doesn’t that look like
“God’s Vision for Your Life”??

Listen for your Health!
Listen for your Happiness.
Don’t miss out!

See ya tomorrow…
Love and Hugs
from
JanBeek

150-year-old Church


Back in the mid-1800’s, the land for this church was deeded to the Methodist- Episcopal Church of Madison County. Sometime in the 1860s, around the time of the Montana Gold Rush, this wonderful church was built on the property.

McAllister, Montana

History of the Church

“Brother Van” served as a traveling preacher/minister and had people from miles around come to worship here in the 1850s through to early 1900s.

Sometime in the mid-1900s, the Methodist Church and the Presbyterian Church traded properties from the Ruby Valley to the Madison Valley. As the story goes, there were not enough folks in each valley to support both a Presbyterian and a Methodist church in such close proximity to one another. (These denominations are so close in theology and worship practices!) So, this church building joined the Presbyterian family while the Ruby Valley Presbyterian Church became a Methodist worship center.

Use of the Church Today

The church has no running water, but it does have electricity. Once a year, in early September, the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church in Ennis holds services out there in the McAllister Church. Porta-potties are brought in. And it is a challenge to provide coffee and goodies for fellowship in this waterless place! But, the service always is a memorable experience.

Looking at the front of the worship center
Looking toward the back (Bob in doorway)
On the side wall… notice the picture; here’s a close-up of it:
Precious picture!
When we first came here about 15 years ago, this pump organ actually worked. I wonder what it would take to get it operational again?
Isn’t this a grand old stove? It’s in the kitchen behind the pulpit area. I wonder how they cooked here with no water? Must have had a well outside, you think?
There is a place out this back door where it looks like a well once was.

Future of the Church

Last week we had wind gusts up to 62 mph here in the Madison Valley. A few of the roof pieces blew off in the storm. So, we were out here yesterday with a roofer, getting a bid on what it would cost to repair or replace it.

Seeing the trucks on the property, several neighbors, new to the area, came to check it out. It’s a curiosity for those who have never been inside, and they were glad to be invited in.

This dear gentleman, new to Montana, even offered to help with the roofing project. We hope he retires soon from his home in California and moves with his family to our “Paradise on Earth” full time so we can become better acquainted – and take him up on the offer to help.

Donnie – my new friend!

Meeting New people

Do you enjoy meeting new people as much as I do? Donnie is a firefighter in California. He and his wife have built a home in those mountains you see behind him there. Welcome to Montana, Donnie! Nice meeting you!

I hope Donnie and his wife, Cheryl, will come and visit us… you, too, my friends.
We have an “open door” policy. Come and enjoy this “Big Sky Country” with us.

Birthday and Anniversary


And by the way,
Happy Birthday today to my dear son-in-law in Switzerland,
Andre’ Solioz…
and De & Andre’s anniversary is tomorrow.
Wish we could be there to help them celebrate!

That’s me kissing Andre’ !!
Happy Anniversary tomorrow to my dear daughter, DeDe, and her fun-loving hubby!

Have a wonderful Saturday.

I hope YOU have a lovey-dovey day, too…
Enjoy it, wherever you are!!

Hope you enjoyed those photos of our wonderful old church.
Do you have old buildings in your area
that are worthy of preservation?

I bet some of you have places
that make an 1800s church
look like it’s
NEW!!

Have a wonderful Saturday.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

Beeks’ 34 Ford


This is Bob’s brother, Bill, with his wife Marge. The wonderful vehicle is one that Bob & Bill bought back in the early ’50s. Look at how wonderfully Bill has maintained and restored it! It is in great running condition, too – and is obviously well loved.

Aren’t those wheels magnificent?

Old Cars Haiku

Look at some old cars
Forlorn – dilapidated
While some others thrive

This one rusts away
In a distant field of weeds
It needs more than love

It’s like some of us
Feeling secluded – rusty
Needing more than love

But love is enough
To shine up a human soul
Try it on someone!

Have a Fabulous Friday!
See ya later.

Hugs, JanBeek ;o)

Lay Me Bare


I want to lay bare.
Unwrap all my coverings;
Lay bare my soul, Lord.

Photo by Nikolay Bondarev on Pexels.com

It is a process –
Unwrapping our gifts –
Being all we are.

Photo by Henley Design Studio on Pexels.com

I want to be clean,
Free of all the barriers
that keep me from God.

Photo by ALLAN FRANCA CARMO on Pexels.com

Life can be twisted,
Locking out our special gifts.
Unlock barriers.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Rid yourself of them –
The chains of security.
Be vulnerable!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Only when your shell
Is cracked open and you flow
Can your gifts be used.

Lord, lay bare my soul.
Unwrap my coverings, Lord.
Reveal my gifts.

Let them be useful
As I reach out in kindness
And share all my gifts.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Blog title and ideas inspired during my devotional time this morning with Strength & Grace, Daily Devotions from Guideposts

James 1:17

“Every good thing given
and every perfect gift
is from above,
coming down from
the Father of Lights,
with whom there is no variation
or shifting shadow.”

Photo by Luis Dalvan on Pexels.com

Lord,
I pray for Your grace and strength
as You unwrap the layers of these gifts.
May we be blessed to become
all that You would have us to be.”

Amen

(Prayer for today from
Strength & Grace)

Lay me bare!
See ya later.
JanBeek

Monday Musings


It’s already past noon here. I really needed that Monday morning coffee!! It was a really different kind of Mother’s Day yesterday.

We couldn’t travel to see our son and family in California.
And they couldn’t come here.

We couldn’t fly to see our daughter and family in Switzerland.
And they couldn’t fly here.

We couldn’t even go into the Madison Valley Manor nursing home to give our friends there a hug.

BUT, we could go and see our dear Elaine Forsberg through the window! And the CNA came to the door and took my balloons and delivered them to three dear friends there: Elaine, Phyllis and Kitty. The latter two couldn’t come to the Sun Room to greet us at the window, but Elaine did. Yay!

It’s a sad sign of the times when this pandemic keeps us from the warm hugs that brighten our days. We will never take those hugs for granted again!

As a group of family and friends, we gathered outside the Sun Room window and sang “Happy Mother’s Day” to Elaine.

Elaine’s son and daughter-in-law, her daughter and son-in-law, and a few grandkids and friends braved the gray, cold, windy spring Montana day to cheer her. It cheered us, too.

“Whatever you bring into the lives of others
comes back into your own.”


My mom always told me that.
Did you hear that as a child, too?

That smile was worth a million bucks.

If I coulda done so, I woulda delivered a basket of tulips to each of the Manor residents… and I’d send a basket of flowers to each of you, too. Thank you, my blogging friends, for visiting JanBeek today. I hope you had a memorable, happy Mother’s Day.

Our daughter, DeAna (who lives in Switzerland), called on FaceTime yesterday. She and her “Mother-in-Love” Denise were having a glorious Mothers’ Day. My son-in-law, Andre’ and three grandsons made a fabulous dinner with a beautiful dessert for their mom/grandmama and even cleaned up all the dishes afterward!

DeDe and Andre’ are going through some tough times right now. The COVID-19 pandemic has taken away their jobs. They are weighing some difficult decisions about their future. I keep them in my daily prayers. Thank God for the Internet so we can stay connected.

Our son, Ty, and Monika

Ty and Monika called us on one of those social media apps (FaceTime or WhatsApp …) and we had a wonderful chat. Their lives are kinda topsy-turvy right now, too. I hope you were able to talk yesterday with all the people who matter most to you, too.

Lisa and Phyllis

It must be especially difficult for people like Phyllis’ daughters, Lisa, Avis, and Julie. Phyllis is one of my dear friends at the Manor Nursing Home. Her daughters are scattered states away from their mom – – – and unable to visit her right now. My heart goes out them.

There was a beautiful blog written about that very subject yesterday:

Audrey Kletscher Helbling, Minnesota Prairie Roots

The title of her post was: “Gratitude for Mother’s Day photos & the love of a rural Minnesota care center staff”. It was a lovely tribute to the care givers who are such a treasure!!

Photo by Matthias Zomer on Pexels.com

Take my hand, dear friend.
Let’s share and muse together.


What is on your mind
this Monday?


See ya later.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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