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Archive for the ‘blessings’ Category

Peace of Mind


How do you find peace of mind?

Photo by Jonathan Meyer on Pexels.com

In my devotional studies today,
the Moody Bible Institute’s “Today in the Word”
asked that question. What is peace and where do you find it?

If you go to Pexels.com
and put in the word “peace”
you will find many images
that suggest answers to those questions:

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

What does this one suggest to you?

Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi on Pexels.com

Of course, this suggests prayer…

Photo by Nandhu Kumar on Pexels.com

… and this has a Zen origin, right?

Photo by M Venter on Pexels.com

Many folks find peace by going out into nature and finding seclusion.

Photo by Anastasiya Lobanovskaya on Pexels.com

Others look for peace in communication
with others who are seeking the same goals.

Photo by Fernando Arcos on Pexels.com

Music provides a source of peace for me and many others.


My greatest sense of peace comes from my faith.
As a Christian, PEACE is not a place.
It is not an unattainable emotion.
Peace is a person!

My peace comes from God’s grace
in the person of Jesus.


John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you;
my peace I give to you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled
and do not be afraid.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I find evidence of that joy-giving peace all around me…
and I am assured of it as I read my Bible
and study the devotionals that reinforce my faith.

Today in the Word
has a study of The Gospel of Luke
titled, “Peace on Earth” this month.

In his introductory pages,
Dr. John Koessler wrote,
“This promise of peace belongs to
those upon whom His favor rests.”

Does His favor rest on you?

Photo by mododeolhar on Pexels.com

Thousands of years before His birth, Isaiah predicted Him:

Isaiah 9:6

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be upon his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God,
Everlasting Father,
Prince of Peace.”

Then, when Isaiah’s prediction came true,
Jesus came to earth… the Prince of Peace,
Here to show us how to find His peace,
Here to show us how to live.

Ephesians2:14 put it this way:

“Jesus is our peace”
Because Jesus “came and preached peace to you
who were far away and those who were near.”

Photo by Rodolfo Clix on Pexels.com

Jesus came, lived to show us and teach us, and died to save us.
Believing that is the road to His grace.
Believing that is the way to Eternal Life.
Believing that is the path to peace.

Dr. John Koessler wrote:
“Those who know the peace of Christ
become agents od peace themselves.
When Jesus first sent His disciples
to proclaim the kingdom,
He told them,
‘As you enter the home, give it your greeting.’
Matthew 10:12
(the traditional Jewish greeting, Shalom)

This was more than a social formality,
Christians are offering peace through
faith in Christ to others.
The shalom of Christ is more than a greeting.
It is a promise.
There is more to peace than a personal experience.
For the Christian, peace is a person.
Jesus is our peace.”

Photo by Josh Hild on Pexels.com

Reach out!
Touch Him!
He is the Holy Spirit in you.
He is the King of Peace,
here to give you His peace.
Take it!

In Him is my peace of mind.
Where is yours?

I pray you find it in Him.
Merry Christmas!
He came to save you and me.

Love and peace to you,
JanBeek

Thank you, God, Lord, Christ Jesus, Holy Spirit
for the love, joy, and peace that are mine!

It’s Beginning


It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

From my toes to my head … see that hat?

Christmas parties have begun

That’s the luncheon at our Madison Valley Woman’s Club yesterday.
45 ladies showed up from our little Ennis community!

My dear friend, Susan P, came and helped me decorate our house from tree to…

…fireplace mantle and lotsa places around the house.
She did things I could never do by myself.
God bless her!

Those candles on the mantle are battery operated
and can be set to change colors!!

Isn’t that fun?
They can all be one of any choice of 8 colors
or they can rotate.
Good ole CostCo.
They have lotsa fun things
to get you in the holiday spirit!

But nothing depicts the Christmas season
quite as well as this treasure
that I found at our Christmas bazaar last Saturday.
It’s a manger scene made by a darling lady in Nairobi.
She used the bark from banana trees!!

It’s not Christmas unless we
recognize the nativity as
central to the holiday!

Is it beginning to look a lot like Christmas at your house? Tell me about it!

Have fun fixing your home
to reflect this holiday season
in a way that is meaningful for you.

For me and my family, it’s Christmas…

Thanking God for the gift of
Baby Jesus,
sharing time with family & friends,
sending out cards,
decorating with trees, candles, music
and presents…

and the fun has just begun!

Our TazE looks just like this Boston on the right.
She has decided the blanket under the tree is her bed.
She thinks the presents are for her.
Help!

Have fun this Christmas season…
and good luck keeping your dog, cat or kids
out from under the Christmas tree!

Love,
JanBeek

OOOPS!!


Ooooops! In yesterday’s post on “Waiting” I made a real boo-boo!

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

I was up in my sanctuairee this morning reflecting on the subject of waiting, anticipating the coming of Christmas – and I realized, Oh Lord, help me my God!! I mixed up Lent and Advent!! I said we had 40 days of waiting for the Christ Child during Advent! No, no, no… Lent is the 40 days of waiting for Easter, Advent is the 4 weeks before Christmas with 4 Sundays to celebrate the coming of the Baby in the manger. It might be the period of time the Wise Men followed the star to find the manger scene and present their gifts to the Savior.

But there is a mystery about the Wise men and their travel to follow the star. The wise men arrived after the birth. If they saw the star at the moment of Jesus’ birth, then it would have taken at least a few months for the wise men to arrive.

Regardless of the time it took the Wise Men to travel, since when did Nov. 27 to Dec. 25 equal 40 days?? Sheesh!!

The season of Advent is celebrated over four Sundays before Christmas
– this year, those Sundays are Nov. 27 and Dec. 4, 11, and 18.
The Advent season ends at sundown on Christmas Eve.
The end of Advent marks the beginning
of the liturgical or church year for Christians.

Photo by Kevin Bidwell on Pexels.com

So, this season of “Waiting” is a time when my Jewish friends wait, too. They celebrate Hanukkah. The word Hanukkah is Hebrew for “dedication,” which refers to the rededication of the temple after the Maccabees’ victory. They need to wait for that season to begin on December 19th. Hanukkah, (Hebrew: “Dedication”) also spelled Ḥanukka, Chanukah, or Chanukkah, also called Feast of Dedication, Festival of Lights, or Feast of the Maccabees, Jewish festival that begins on Kislev 25 (usually in December, according to the Gregorian calendar) and is celebrated for eight days. Hanukkah reaffirms the ideals of Judaism and often involves a festival with lighting of candles each day of the festival. Although not mentioned in the Hebrew Scriptures, Hanukkah came to be widely celebrated and remains one of the most popular Jewish religious observances. Hanukkah is celebrated from Monday, December 19 to Monday, December 26 in 2022.

The menorah is a symbol of Hanukkah. The menorah is meant to spread light to others. It is traditionally placed in a window,on a table or outside your door. Jewish faithfuls are supposed to light the menorah just after dark each night of Hanukkah.



As Christians, we pause and take time to put up our Christmas tree, decorate our home, our church, our community, and purchase the presents we want to give to our loved ones. Santa Claus has usurped the place of Jesus Christ as the central Christmas figure in many homes. It’s not Santa’s birthday we wait for and celebrate, however.

It’s not 40 days til Christmas! It’s coming sooner than you think… sooner than I imagined! We need to approach this season as innocent children… a Child of God … waiting expectantly. Focusing on the real Reason for the Season.

Jesus actually tells us to be like children and to come to Him full of faith and trust. The popular children‘s song “Jesus Loves the Little Children” reminds us that “all are precious in His sight” and no matter your race, gender or nationality, God wants to see all children come to Him.

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels.com



So, forgive my “Ooops!” from yesterday… and get busy, my friends. Finish up those Thanksgiving leftovers, and get in the spirit! And let’s look – as through the eyes of a child – at what Advent really means:

Thanks for visiting JanBeek and my OOOPS today!
See ya tomorrow.

Hugs to you and your loved ones!

By the way, I am missing the Bell Choir this year.
Our director, Jan Thomas, is moving from Ennis to Bozeman.
Tomorrow the moving van comes.
Keep her and her hubby in prayer, wouldja?
They are going to be sorely missed in our community.


We are WAITING for a new bell choir director to emerge.
Got any recommendations?

Waiting


Photo by Gary Barnes on Pexels.com

There is more than one way to interpret the word “wait.”
The photo above shows you a waitress who is “waiting” on a table.

Some waiting is defined by
an expectation of something
or someone to come…
like a good friend.

Other waiting is short-term, self-imposed, self-defined…
…. like waiting for your food to digest before
that next meal or dessert after a huge Thanksgiving dinner!

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

What are you waiting for?

Today is the first day of Advent.
As a Christian, that means we have 40 days of waiting.

The season of Advent lasts through Christmas Eve.
When Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday,
it is the last or fourth Sunday of Advent.
In Eastern Orthodox churches,
which use the Julian calendar,
Advent begins earlier, on November 15,
and lasts 40 days, rather than 4 weeks.

40 days of waiting for the coming of the Christ Child
… waiting for Christmas.

Photo by Bich Tran on Pexels.com

The word “Advent” stems from the Latin word adventus,
which literally means “coming” or “arrival.”
Our sermon at my church this morning
dealt with this topic of waiting…
waiting for that special arrival.

Pastor Mary Grace Reynolds
spoke about a children’s book
(I think it was a Dr. Seuss)
that depicted a “waiting place”
as a “useless place”
but she encouraged us
to view waiting differently.

She asked us what we do when we are waiting.
Some people find something to read.
Others play on their phones
or engage in conversation with a friend.
Some write letters or cards
or they reach out to help a neighbor.
Spend the waiting time productively.

I wrote this conclusion as I listened:

There is a lot we can do while we wait.
Think about the good things we can do.
Gracious God, help us make waiting useful.
Let’s fill it with good things for me and You.

We can live during this time of waiting
With love and hope in our heart.
We have control over our actions.
We can spread peace – today’s the day to start.

Ready? Begin!

Psalms 27:13-14
I believe that I shall look upon
the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living!
Wait for the LORD;
be strong,
and let your heart take courage;
wait for the LORD!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
Have a wonderful season of Advent.

Love and hugs to you!

Make your waiting a time of love and compassion!
Reach out today!

Happy Day Before


Happy Day Before…. the rest of your life … a day of gratitude in the USA,… I pray you are well, anticipating a happy tomorrow, and living the good life.

Thank you for checking out JanBeek today. What are your tomorrow plans? We are planning to go to dinner with dear friends who live just a mile away … that is, if we can get out of our driveway! Look at what’s happening outside:

It’s pretty from the inside looking out! I’m not complaining. We have had several relatively dry years – so we can use the moisture! I just pray the roads are clear enough that we can get out tomorrow!

Yup, like that turkey who avoided the chopping block, I am grateful for life! Grateful for love and health, and all God’s blessings. What are you grateful for today? I pray that you’re feeling blessed, too.

Cheers!
Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow…
Happy Day Before…

Love to you and your family,
JanBeek

Reblog #15 – Relationships


This blog was posted in my “Embrace” series a year or so ago. Many of you, my faithful followers, saw it and commented. Thank you so much!

It is worth revisiting! I have several new friends since then, so I think this is a good one to reblog as we approach this Thanksgiving Day 2022. Gathering with friends and family reminds us of the blessing these friendships are to us.

My devotional this morning in These Days, Daily Devotions for Living by Faith, quoted Col.1:11-12 and reminded us, “Being in a healthy relationship is no small task.”

It went on to tell us, “It takes work, sacrifice, and understanding.” Yesterday I reblogged a post titled, “Partners” that pointed to those same requirements for lasting relationships.

I recommend that
you click on the “Best Friendship Songs” below
and listen as you read my Haiku renderings
on this subject of Relationships.

Relationships are
What this life is all about
Friends are our life’s gifts

We need each other
Going through life alone won’t work
Loneliness smothers

We’re never alone
When we’ve a relationship
With God, our Maker

Put God first in life
Let Him help you bind your love
So it never breaks

In an article in Woman’s Day Magazine, I quote:

“Whether you’re starting out a new relationship,
have been married for years,
simply love your friends,
or adore your family,
there’s always a way to
incorporate God
into each of the unique relationships
in your life.”

Choose relationships
Grounded in mutual love
With respect at center

Seek Godly friendships
Not just with your great neighbors,
But with every one

Especially when
You are choosing a life’s mate,
Be centered in God

Men, listen to this:
If she does not know your God,
She doesn’t know real love.

Don’t give up on her!
Teach her about the Savior
Save relationships

Embrace your friendships
Love one another fully
Treasure your family

I am grateful for
The love of my family
I can count on them

I pray your friends care
For you as mine do for me…
And know I love you!

You are blogging friends
Who visit JanBeek to say
“I care about you”

I am inspired by
The way I can count on you
To come, read, and write

God bless you, dear friends
Your relationship matters
It’s more than on-line

It’s alive in me
You’re a friend I depend on
I can count on you!

Have you been listening
To that collection of songs?
Lots of good words there!

Like: “Live your story”
“Know our love will never die”
“Hold on to your friends.”

Thank you for visiting JanBeek today.
You matter to me.
Thank you for being my friend.
See you tomorrow.

My niece, Jodie, with me and her best friend, Melissa…
Such treasures in my life!!

Who do you treasure as a best friend?

Reblog #14 – Partners


Four years ago I posted this blog, feeling grateful for my lifetime partner, dear, precious, faithful Bob Beekman.
Today I am reposting it with even greater gratitude and a few more photos for the fun of it.

9F2753E8-8596-4E0B-9D7C-D49B09334FC9

PARTNERS

Partners add dimension

To our self-focused lives.

They draw us out

To form a bigger circle.

If we are blessed indeed

With a loving partner who

Accentuates our strengths

And helps us build up

Our areas of weakness,

Then we have cause to

Celebrate with abandon!

Everyday is a gift

Of celebration with

My life-time partner,

Bob!

I wish for you
the blessing of
a “Bob”
in your life!!

Have a blessed Friday
and come back
and see us again this weekend.


Love,
JanBeek

1 Corinthians 13:4-7Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

1 Corinthians says love endures all things. Thank God, Lordy, Lordy, my Bob certainly has endured all things! What a blessing that he put up with me all these 60+ years!!

Reblog #13 – Hug Your Neighbor!


Welcome to JanBeek and my month of reblogging.

Who is your neighbor?


This post was originally blogged last year.
I was inspired to repost it for you today
because Dr. David Jeremiah wrote this in his devotional today
in response to the story of the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:30-37:

Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. 31 A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. 32 So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33 But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. 34 He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35 The next day he took out two denarii[c] and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

36 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.”

Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”

“Jesus’ point was this:
Your neighbor is anyone with a need
that you are able to meet.
Look for a neighbor whose need you might meet.”

People may excite in themselves a glow of compassion…
by going and seeking an object that requires compassion.
Henry Ward Beecher

The post was part of my “Embrace” series
and it was titled. “Embrace Everyone.”

Photo by Trinity Kubassek on Pexels.com
Photo by August de Richelieu on Pexels.com
Photo by Gabby K on Pexels.com
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Embrace Everybody
and
Recognize our Commonality
while we
Celebrate our Differences

Know that
We are more alike
than different.
More binds us than separates us.

Photo by fauxels on Pexels.com

Embrace Everybody.
Work to make this world
A better place because
You are in it.


May tomorrow
be a new day of new hope
and greater unity.
Let’s each do our part
to make it so.

Embrace Everybody.
Oh, and take care of our bees.
We need them!

Who will you meet who needs a hug from you today?
Reach out, my friends … here’s a virtual one from Bob & me!

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Reblog #12 – Grace Alone


This post was titled God’s Grace – first posted in November of 2018… Reblogged today for your pleasure and reassurance.

green trees

Photo by James Wheeler on Pexels.com


“I am under the canopy of God’s Grace,”
the story in my Guideposts devotional assured me.


portrait of teenage girl playing outdoors


I know it without a doubt. I am guided by the Holy Spirit and the Scriptures.

“Do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself.
Each day has enough troubles of its own.”
Matthew 6:34


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Accept each day as a gift.
The present is a present.
Open it – and live in the NOW!

I am sure you know:

God’s grace is sufficient
when you believe
and
live intentionally
in FAITH.

belief bible book business

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith,
we have peace with God
through whom we have gained access by faith
into this grace in which we now stand.”
Romans 5:1-2

Grace alone which God supplies;
Strength unknown He will provide…
Every soul we long to reach
Every heart we hope to teach
Everywhere we share…
It’s only by His Grace.

Do take time to hear Scott Wesley Brown sing this for us:

God’s grace – and peace to you – dear friends,

PEACE now and forever!

Bee well.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

Reblog #11 – Smile


It was September two years ago when we were in the midst of the pandemic, isolated, sequestered, missing friends and family. I posted this blog titled “Smile.” It’s time this cold, snow sparkling in the sunshine day in November to repost it. I hope it makes you smile. It brought a smile to MY face!

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

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

Everyone needs a blue-footed booby for a smile!
And I dare you to look at this cross-eyed owl trying to see that ladybug – and not smile!!
This snowy egret got its feathers ruffled over SOMEthing!
I used to have a pet goat when I was a kid. This one made me smile big time!

(Change the Thursday to Friday on the following meme) And that “Good Night” can say “Good Morning” or “Good Afternoon” (depending on where you are in th world).
But before I leave you, I told you I’d share that song with you.
It’s not the current version of “Smile” by Katy Perry.
It’s the version from the 1950s when I was a kid (a freshman in high school -to be exact!)!
Here it is. Smile!


This is one of Nat King Cole’s songs that I loved the most.
Its message is so important for us in this world today.

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

Hug each other tight…
Just like these rainbow lorikeets


SMILE!!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.

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