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Archive for the ‘contentment’ Category

Embrace Spontaneous Leisure


Elfchen or “Elevenies”
are poems with eleven words
in a pattern of
1+2+3+4+1



Embrace

Spontaneous Leisure
as you relax
and enjoy life today:
Sunday


Sunday
mornings always
are hurried “UP
‘N AT T’EM” days.
Rush!

Shower.
Get up.
And get dressed.
Then gobble your breakfast.
Church!

(Click the arrow below)

Listen
“Rush Hour”
for a minute …
Then click it off.
Frenzy!

Happy?
Not likely.
That “Happy Hardcore”
Destroys any residual sanity.
Yuck!

(Go back and click outta that sound!)

Repetitive,
nerve wracking…
Who needs it?
Put your feet up.
Relax!


Wallow
in silliness
for a while;
Find yourself some laughter.
Chuckle!

Find
some friends
to join you.
Good for your soul.
Laze!

A few friends took me up on my suggestion yesterday. My silly blog was titled, “Embrace a Camel” and I really went off the deep end. One little friend got into a box and joined the insanity club!

How about you?
Do you take a day
to just be silly
and relax
every now and then?

It’s called “Spontaneous Leisure”
and I recommend it!

Today we slept in.
We dressed in a casual, leisurely fashion.
We ate brunch at 10: am
(our church didn’t ZOOM the service today
or we would’ve tuned in to it)
and then we went up to our sanctuary
and had our own worship service up there.

It was just the break from routine that we needed!

Embrace
Spontaneous Leisure.
Just treat yourself
Take an unintentional break –
Relax

Jesus
Accepts worship
Wherever it occurs.
God condones taking breaks.
Recline!

Question: “What does the Bible say about rest and relaxation?”.
Answer: “Rest” is defined as “peace, ease or refreshment.
“Relax” means “to become loose or less firm,
to have a milder manner,
to be less stiff.”
The Bible speaks quite highly of rest.

Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to me,
all you who are weary and burdened,
and I will give you rest.
Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am gentle and humble in heart,
and you will find rest for your souls.
For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Doctor
ordered relaxation:
Just sit back –
Put your feet up –
Chill!

Embrace Spontaneous Leisure

Do it today!
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Getting Ready


If you’ve followed my blog
or seen my posts on FaceBook,
you know my husband, Bob,
has been facing some medical challenges.
I asked for prayers for his return to usual stamina.

Thank you for those prayers,
(if you offered them up to God for us).
He is feeling soooo much better –
and the doctor has okayed his trip tomorrow!!

So, Happy Labor Day weekend, my friends!
I hope you are enjoying a relaxing, fun-filled day.

Bob is getting ready to go
on a fishing trip with two of his buddies.
They leave at 5: am tomorrow for Anchorage
and then will spend a week at Kulik Lodge,
way up north on the peninsula of Alaska,
in the area called Bristol Bay.
Have you every been to Alaska?
Have you been fishing there?

His buddies told him he doesn’t need to
bring all his flies on the trip.
The lodge and guides where he is going
will provide for him all the flies he needs.

Doesn’t that look inviting??

If all goes well, he will not only be able to catch some whoppers,
but he will have at least one smoked and shipped home with him!

While Bob is getting ready for his trip,
I am getting ready for his absence.
In our 60 years of wedded bliss,
I cannot remember ever being
away from him this long!

Here we are in the mid-60’s with our son, Ty.
Here we are together with my parents
in the late 1960’s – or early ’70s.
Here we are with 22 family/friends
at Bob’s 80th.
That’s our daughter DeAna
with her arm around her daddy
and our son, Ty, next to her
with his hand on my shoulder.
You can see from this photo of us
on our 59th anniversary that
the years have been good to us.

So, as I get ready to be away from Bob for more than a week,
send me some ideas for how to avoid loneliness!
Tell me how to get ready to fix a meal for one…
and to eat alone for 9 days!

A friend is coming over
to keep me company
for awhile tomorrow.
(Thank you, Julie!)

What are you doing Tuesday?

TazE says, “Just relax, Mom. I gotcha covered!”

Thank God for our pets, huh?
I know TazE will be great company.

Have a good Sunday evening.
I send my love and hugs your way.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Embrace Contentment


Romans 12:18

“If it is possible,
so far as it depends on you,
live peaceably with all.”

With all the strife in the world today,
the least we can do is to live in peace
with ourselves, our neighbors, our families.
And if we see someone in need,
reach out a helping hand.
Heaven knows, regardless of how bad
things seem to be for us,
it never is hard to find someone
who is worse off than we are.

He complained about
Having no shoes for his feet
Others had no feet

Photo by Polina Tankilevitch on Pexels.com

Be contented with the little things.
They really aren’t so little after all!

Philippians 4:11-13

“Not that I am speaking of being in need,
for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.
I know how to be brought low,
and I know how to abound.
In any and every circumstance,
I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger,
abundance and need.
I can do all things
through him who strengthens me.”

These photos were sent to me by Daughter #2 in Maryland.
That tornado and car pile-up were about 8 miles from her home.
She is thanking God for the fact that the strong winds
she had at her house didn’t knock down trees
or create a power outage.

Philippians 4:6

Keep praying!

Do not be anxious about anything,
but in everything by prayer and supplication
with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Pray with Me

God Almighty, I honor and praise You
for the works of Your hands,
for the beauty of the earth,
for the love You have for Your people
and for the animals.
I ask you now to protect
those who are ravaged by tornadoes
and floods, fires, and hurricanes,
wars and injustices.
Help us to know and trust
that You are with us
and You hear and answer
the fervent prayers of Your people.

Save us, Lord.
Bring peace.
Bring safety.
Bring rain to those who need it
and sunshine to those
who need freedom from flooding.

Help us find contentment
in Your care and promises.

Amen

Jan’s black eye fading

Find contentment in little blessings (some of them are not so little):

  • my black & blue eyes are healing
  • the bump on my forehead is decreasing
  • our smoky valley has cleared a little (we can see the mountains again)
  • the firefighters are diligently working to contain the wildfires
  • my grandson, Chris, made it safely to Colombia (that’s him & his girlfriend, Natalia’s picture behind me there)
  • so far our granddaughter’s house in South Lake Tahoe has not caught fire – and they are safely evacuated to stay with their other grandparents in southern CA
  • our son & his wife’s house is safe from the fires (and they are graciously housing a family who were evacuated from theirs)
  • my husband’s doctor has okayed his fishing trip to Alaska (he leaves next Monday) – in spite of some health scares this week – he is better :o)
  • you came to visit my blog and share the message of contentment in your life (in spite of challenges) – I look forward to your comments ❤

God bless you!
See ya tomorrow (God Willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Love


Today’s topic was chosen before I read Caralyn’s post today.
After seeing what she shared yesterday,
I decided I cannot say anything on this topic
that would be more meaningful
than what she wrote.
So, I am reposting her message for you here.

It can be found in its entirety at
https://beautybeyondbones.com/2021/08/26/love-is-not-a-rescue-mission/#comment-148217
THANK YOU, CARALYN

Love Sets You Free

Posted on by beautybeyondbones

One of the most special things in my life, is the fact that my best friend since literally birth, is my neighbor in NYC.

Truly. Neighbors. Our buildings are 157 steps apart, and I couldn’t be luckier to have my true blue — someone who has been with me through thick and thin, the most supportive, loving friend right there — it is one of my life’s greatest blessings.

Anywho – I was over at her apartment last weekend for a movie night. We ordered Chinese food, drank wine, it was truly like we were a scene out of Friends.

"Love cannot rescue you." Doesn't THAT hit like a sack of bricks? A hard truth that speaks volumes. If we go into a relationship expecting our partner to save us, we'll be doomed. It turns out WE have to do the work, so we can go into it as a whole person. And there's only one way to do that. #edrecovery #recovery #health #mentalhealth #love #relationships #life #faith #catholic #christianity

We watched The Last Five Years. A very obscure movie musical that, truly, only the “buffiest” of musical theater buffs know about.

But anyway — there was a line in the movie that literally made me stop and say…WOW.

Has that ever happened to you? Like something is just such a truth bomb that it literally stops you in your tracks?

Before I get to the big one liner, a little background about the movie: it’s about a couple’s marriage that falls apart. How uplifting, right?

But it’s scenes from when they first met, all the way through when the man leaves her, told in an alternating fashion from their different perspectives, him: starting from beginning to the end, her: from the end to the beginning….if that makes any sense at all.

But there was a line in his note to her, telling her that he was leaving…and he said, “I could never rescue you.”

And, I mean – wow, not only did that hit like a sack of bricks to the heart, but when I heard, I immediately thought – truer words have never been spoken.

Thisthis is exactly why I was single for so dang long. This is exactly why only now, have I embraced and welcomed love into my life: because I was not in a whole state, where I could bring someone into my life.

I was not yet at a place where I could welcome someone into my life as a woman who loved herself, had forgiven herself from the anorexia in her past, and freed herself from that shame.

And now — sitting here in an amazing relationship with an incredible man, I can easily say that the most beautiful thing in life, is to love and be loved in return. For so long, I feared doing just that, keeping people at arms length, not opening my heart, because I believed that my past made me unworthy of love. But friends, that is the biggest lie and bunch of malarkey that was keeping me from living fully alive. And though that makes me so sad to think about the abundant life I missed out on, I know that God was in control all along, and allowing things to unfold and bloom in the perfect timing.

"Love cannot rescue you." Doesn't THAT hit like a sack of bricks? A hard truth that speaks volumes. If we go into a relationship expecting our partner to save us, we'll be doomed. It turns out WE have to do the work, so we can go into it as a whole person. And there's only one way to do that. #edrecovery #recovery #health #mentalhealth #love #relationships #life #faith #catholic #christianity

Recovery is a long and winding road, and long after you put the weight on, you still wrestle with that inner voice shouting that you’re you’re not enough, you’re too broken, you’re unlovable and full of shame. I thank God everyday for drowning out those lies with His truth. Because that is the only way I fully healed: Him.
.
The fact is: no one can rescue you. No one can love you enough to get better. No one can do it for you, or want it for you: You have have rescue yourself. Or rather — you and Jesus – together – have to rescue yourself. But you can’t expect your partner to save you: that’s not fair to them, not fair to you. And that’s why it took me so long to get to the beautiful place I’m in today: because I had to do the work. I had to go through that long, arduous, and difficult process of believing that I was worth loving.

"Love cannot rescue you." Doesn't THAT hit like a sack of bricks? A hard truth that speaks volumes. If we go into a relationship expecting our partner to save us, we'll be doomed. It turns out WE have to do the work, so we can go into it as a whole person. And there's only one way to do that. #edrecovery #recovery #health #mentalhealth #love #relationships #life #faith #catholic #christianity

And the crazy thing is: it turns out that LOVE reaffirms all the healing truths God was whispering to me all along: truths that I was precious in His sight, that I was forgiven, that my life has value, but more than that: I was loved beyond my wildest dreams.

Love is truly the last step to a full recovery. It is the key that unlocks the freedom to live fully alive — the life of abundance that God created us for.

And it makes sense too, because God is love. And His love sets us free.

And, now – living in that freedom, I can safely say it is the most beautiful thing in the world. And dare I say, what we were created for.

"Love cannot rescue you." Doesn't THAT hit like a sack of bricks? A hard truth that speaks volumes. If we go into a relationship expecting our partner to save us, we'll be doomed. It turns out WE have to do the work, so we can go into it as a whole person. And there's only one way to do that. #edrecovery #recovery #health #mentalhealth #love #relationships #life #faith #catholic #christianity

So — The Last Five Years — just goes to show that God can speak to you even in the most obscure ways: reminding us of His love, and the beautiful journey He’s brought us through, and helped us overcome.

Maybe this is super cheesy, and yeah, it probably is. 😉 But reflecting on all this, just makes me feel super grateful for this man who makes my heart feel safe, seen and loved. I might not need rescuing, but it is a beautiful thing to have a partner who loves and supports you just the way you are.

What’s a movie quote or song lyric that has stuck with you?

"Love cannot rescue you." Doesn't THAT hit like a sack of bricks? A hard truth that speaks volumes. If we go into a relationship expecting our partner to save us, we'll be doomed. It turns out WE have to do the work, so we can go into it as a whole person. And there's only one way to do that. #edrecovery #recovery #health #mentalhealth #love #relationships #life #faith #catholic #christianity

“This is what the Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.” Ez 37:5

So, since Caralyn has reminded us that
“Life is vulnerability,”
and
Love is truly the last step to a full recovery,”
help me embrace these bruises
and love the changing colors, ok??
Love your troubles away!
Are they on their way to full recovery?

EMBRACE LOVE

Believe it or not,
it is getting better!

I dressed in yellow
to match the yellow hew
of the bruises yesterday
(I’ve always loved the cheerfulness of yellow)
and
by this morning,
the yellow is accentuated…
maybe chartreuse
is the color for this
beautiful, sunny, blue-sky
Saturday.
ADD A LITTLE GREEN AND BLUE TO THE YELLOW.

Don’t you love it?

Now, there’s a face only a mother could love!

Caralyn wrote, “it is a beautiful thing to have a partner who loves and supports you just the way you are.”

And I couldn’t agree more. I am certainly grateful for my partner of nearly 60 years who told me I was looking better this morning! Oh my… better than what? Love me just the way I am??

I LOVE YOUR VISIT
AND YOUR COMMENTS.

Thanks for sharing some loving thoughts.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace Encouragement


Do you ever get into a funk?

Life can feel downright discouraging.
Life can feel out of control.
The world is burning up here in the western USA
And life is tenuous at best
In places like Afghanistan and Haiti.

Flames are uncontrolled
Smoke fills Madison Valley
Bless firefighters
As the red sun rose
through the smoke-filled, sad, gray sky
It cleared a little
Air quality sad
My response is funky mood
Looking for more rain
Sad Afghanistan
The loss of life and freedom
Brutalization
People desperate
To leave Kabul rapidly
Not a chance of that
The Haiti earthquake
It’s horrifying! to see
Worse yet to live it

In the midst of this
Devastation, what’s the word?
It’s ENCOURAGEMENT


How can that be true?
Where to find encouragement?
Get out of this funk!

In tragedy’s midst
Where can I find strength and hope?
Circumvent sadness?

How can anything
I do or say dent sorrow?
Search within myself?

I live in such peace
That I feel enormous guilt
For prosperity.

What strength is in me
To bring firefighters hope?
To save Haitian lives?

People who have lost
Their homes and their businesses
Still have lives to live.

Can they get through this
With their faith in God intact?
Where’s encouragement?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

At Bible Study
We focused on Ephesians
6:10-20

The Whole Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.”

Find hope biblically
Look for encouragement there
All is not hopeless

Don’t abandon faith.
Let it bolster your spirits
Encourage others

In our Bible Study, I was encouraged with this definition of joy:

“Joy is resistance to:

* hopelessness
* hatred
* divisiveness
* greed
* despair
* rigidity
* darkness
* complacency
* lies, and
* discouragement.”

I asked my Bible Study friends,
“In the midst of all this despair,
what can we really DO
to encourage others
and to avoid the pitfalls
of discouragement
and despair?”

They responded with these suggestions,
“Pray,
Write,
Block negativity
(especially on Social media),
Volunteer to help others,
and PLAY!”

There’s no better way
To trade your funk for pleasure
Than to learn to play!

Take a look within –
How do you avoid despair?
Click below and share!

Smile!
God loves you!
(And so do I!)

Embrace Day’s End


Sunset
Cooling down
Illuminating the clouds
Allowing colors to change
Night

Do play this beautiful music
and hear the soothing sounds
as you read on…

Sit
Find peace
Embrace day’s end
Reflect on today’s highlights
Breathe

Observe
Changing seasons
Time passing by
Snow melting in mountains
Notice

Capture
Time slowing
Night creeping in
Birds finding their nest
Sleep

Imagine
Better tomorrows
Problems being solved
God’s blessings poured down
Nightfall

Clouds
Drifting by
Silently gathering momentum
Taking troubles with them
Peace

Beautiful wonderful and majestic
Ocean Sunset Guincho Beach
I hope you’re listening to that

Glowing
Slowly disappearing
Taking struggles away
Timeless tides – shifting sands
Goodnight!



See you tomorrow (God willing!)
Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Playfulness


Doesn’t that word make you smile?
PLAYFULNESS is underrated!
We all need to have days when
we determine it is the Word of the Day!
Today was that day for me!

Photo by Chevanon Photography on Pexels.com

It started with a day to celebrate
my friend, Sue’s birthday.
We met at a local coffee shop
and shared some quality one-on-one time.

We talked about the ways
people whose ideas may differ
in some areas of life
can love each other
for all their commonalities.

Then I spent a couple hours playing
Scrabble with a friend who is
recuperating from surgery.
A little playfulness is good for us all.

Playing in the sandbox
would be a welcome next activity.
Do you have a sandbox available?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I’d love to be at the ocean right now
Playing in the sand with you –
Jumping in the waves, and
drawing hearts on the beach.

Let’s spend time
listening to the waves crash against the shore
and enjoying the chance to
embrace playfulness!
Photo by Daniel Torobekov on Pexels.com

It’s a good day to embrace playfulness.
It’s a beautiful blue-sky, no wind afternoon.
Bob & I are headed to play with friends
Who are so dear… and so much fun to play with!

Terry & Jim – really fun-filled friends!

The Bible reinforces the idea of playfulness:

“Moreover, it is God’s gift that all should
eat and drink and take pleasure in all their toil.”

Ecclesiastes 3:13

Eating
Drinking
and taking pleasure
in the company
of our “Hood”

Do you have friends who embrace playfulness?

I didn’t get this posted yesterday.
I was having too much fun playing.
So here we are another day…

Bob, TazE & I
are headed out
with friends
on our ATV
(Lucille – the redhead
on which we have a “Ball”)

I wish you could come and enjoy this playfulness with us!


What kind of play is your favorite?
What will you do to enjoy playfulness today?

Whatever it is…
Take joy!


I send my love.
JanBeek

Embrace Answered Prayers


Have you had a worry today?
Something you have no control over?
I have!

My daughter, DeAna, in Switzerland
had surgery this morning.
When I went to bed last night,
I prayed to God.

“Take care of my girl, God.
Be with the surgeon.
Guide the anesthesiologist.
Make the results perfect.
Keep the whole process in Your capable hands!”

I set aside worry.
I slept soundly after giving it to God.
This morning DeDe sent me a text.
“It all came out ok.
I am fine!”

Praise God for answered prayers!

Do you turn your worries over to God in prayer?
Then, do you remember to thank our Heavenly Father
when the things and people you pray for turn out OK?

.

Every day I sit in my rocker up in my sanctuary
and I pray for my family and friends.
I pray for my neighbors and my church friends,
I pray for my pastor, my cousins who live in other states,
my son and daughter and their families, and
I pray for you, my Word Press friends.

If I have know specific needs
(like DeAna’s surgery this morning),
I will make my requests specific.
But most of the time I just ask God,
“Please take care of these beloved people.
You know their needs. Be with them, Lord.”

Like a river cutting through rock.
my prayers are tenacious.
I know God hears my prayers.
I know the Holy Spirit speaks to me
and reminds me of the people I need to remember.
I know God expects me to be persistent in prayer.
I am inspired by the way Jesus prayed.

This painting of Jesus praying
sits in front of me in my sanctuary.
So, as I pray, I know Jesus intercedes for me.
I know He hears and He models prayer for me.


Luke 6:12

“It was at this time that He went off to the mountain to pray,
and He spent the whole night in prayer to God.”

.

Prayers for Yourself

Not all prayers are for others.
Sometimes we need to pray for ourselves.
We need to ask God to provide for our needs
and we need to thank God for the way He provides.

Bob and I will celebrate our 60th anniversary next February.
Every day I pray to God for Bob’s health and safety
and I thank God for sending him into my life.
Every day I spend with him as my partner
is an answered prayer.



Every day
our lives are blessed
by the power of what love can do.
Our love grows richer
year after year.
Are you so blessed, too?



We are grateful for the love we share
and the way our friends and family
love us in return.

Thank you, friends.
Thank You, God…
for answered prayer!!

We found a love
only few ever find.

If life should end tomorrow,
I’d leave this earth a millionaire –
Because every day with you, my dear,
Is a day of answered prayer.

I love you, BobbyBee.

What answered prayer
is your “million dollar gift”
my friends?

Embrace Gray


Embrace gray?
No way!!
I hate gray!

Especially humid, sultry, gray days.
Smokey days that sting my eyes,
assail my nostrils,
and remind me
of the forest fires in the area.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

People’s homes are in danger.
Firefighters’ lives are at risk.
The habitats of birds and deer,
chipmunks and moose,
squirrels and rabbits
are being devoured.

The smoke blows in.
The sun is hidden.
Gray engulfs our valley.
I hate gray!

And yet, as I sit here
looking out at the gray,
praying for rain
to douse the fires
and chase the smoke away,
I hear the birds chirping in the trees.



They see the same gray sky,
smell the same smoke,
feel the same humid, sultry air,
and yet – they sing!
They dance in the leaves.
They fly free –
knowing a rainbow
sits beyond the gray.

Photo by Paweu0142 Fijau0142kowski on Pexels.com

So, rather than hating gray,
God is challenging me to
see gray in a new way.

See the light.
See gray as silver!

When my hair first started turning gray,
I dyed it – trying to keep
the deep brown color of my youth.
But God spoke to me:

“Gray hair is a crown of splendor,
it is attained by a righteous life.”

Proverbs 16:31
Embrace Gray!

Hello gray!
Hello silver!

I can sing your praises
just as the birds
continue to sing
on this gray day.

It’s all a matter of perspective, right?
Not everyone lives long enough
to earn their “crown of splendor.”

Silver brings wisdom.
It signifies the blessing of longevity.

How can you hate gray?
Embrace it and
thank God for that crown!!

How do you feel about gray?

See you tomorrow (God willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace the Night


I sit on the porch
In the quiet of the night
Embracing darkness

I sit in my chair
In the quiet of the night
Absent mosquitoes

I sit quietly
Embracing night’s coolness
Praying smoke leaves us

I stare at the sky
Wanting to see the moon shine
Longing for mountains

I know they are there
Behind the smoke and ashes
Muted by the gray

I sit on the porch
Praying for firefighters
In the smoke-filled night

I sit on the porch
In the quiet of the night
Embracing darkness

Come and sit with me!

Good night, dear WordPress friends.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Smell the hov’ring smoke
Hear sleepy birds chirp good night
Feel the peacefulness


I send my true love…
and hold you so tight
In the still of night
Love,
JanBeek

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