Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Archive for the ‘Giving’ Category

Embrace Borrowing


Today I read a story that so inspired me that I borrowed it. I hope Alicia Bruxvoort doesn’t mind!

I posted a link to it on my FB page and I am embedding it here for your enjoyment and inspiration.

Do take time to read it. You will be glad you did… and then put on your Jesus glasses and see the world, your life, and others through the eyes of love and grace!

Thank you, Alicia, for sharing your writing talent and your faith with us.
God bless you!

Picking up on that theme of “Jesus, I Wanna See What You See,”
I decided to check out You.Tube for “Seeing Through God’s Eyes.”

Look at what I found…
this is an amazing video –
Guaranteed to help you apply
the ideas Alicia shared in her story!

Yes, as Alicia concluded,
“We can just see better when we borrow our Father’s eyes.”

As you embrace borrowing,
what have you read or seen or heard lately
that you can pass along to inspire others?

Hope you’re having a beautiful Thursday.
See ya tomorrow…


Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Your Pastor


Embrace Your Pastor.
He or she needs your support –
And needs your feedback!

Photo by Binyamin Mellish on Pexels.com

Your pastor plants seeds
With each sermon presented.
You fertilize them.

You add nutrients
To the soil where they’re resting
By watering them.

Water the ideas
By ruminating on them.
What was the message?

Each week I take notes.
I capture the main ideas
As they resonate.

Today’s seeds that Pastor Mary Grace Reynolds sowed were inspired by Ephesians 2:11-22 and enhanced by the experience she had Friday night and Saturday morning with a group of young bicyclists who were traveling 4000 miles for cancer research. Here are my notes that I took while listening this morning.

TENACITY

Serving 400 hours as a hospital chaplain
Was required in my seminary studies.
Why God – why? What’s the answer?
With integrity and stamina, just serve!

Ephesians 2 is not about empty connections.
It’s talking about the death of our worst instincts.
It’s talking about getting on board with Christ.
Paul believed Christ would come back yesterday!

We’re still here thousands of years later…
Wondering when that victory over death
And division will come to this earth.
The Kingdom of God didn’t come in Paul’s time.

It hasn’t come in our time, either.
Addictions, abuse, fires, death, wars continue.
Where is the world where all divisions are erased?
We’re here to put our feet on the ground and be hopeful.

Moments of hope will come to you.
The U of Austin bike riders were my moment.
Stories of lodging needs and cancer research,
Tenacity, friendship, and HOPE scenarios entered.

Hope is a screamer and fighter.
Sometimes it works out for the good.
HOPE is the reality that God is love.
Evil will not win. God’s hope will!

Say YES to what pulls on your heartstrings.
Say YES to the reality of God’s hope.
Say YES to Truth and love and reaching out.
Say YES to cancer research and to helping.

Every inch gained in the fight against cancer
Is an inch toward life and hope.
We are building the Kingdom of God here
Where violence and oppression will be foreign to us.

With tenacity, hang in there.
With tenacity listen to God’s response to
Your questioning… Why God? Why?
With tenacity and stamina and love, just serve!

Amen


Let’s just grow flowers of love.

Embrace Your Pastor.
He or she needs your support –
And needs your feedback!

Happy Sunday.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow (God willing).

Embrace Stepping Out


Photo by Andrew Neel on Pexels.com

Have Faith and Step Out

Don’t overlook your life’s importance
or minimize its worth.
It doesn’t matter if you’re on
an allowance or Social Security.
No matter where you are in life,
you have so much to give.

The vital part of your life
never disappears or fades away.
Each of us is vital to God.
He gives us the courage to go out and live,
to heed His call, and step out in faith
on a new journey today.

In faithful obedience, lean forward
to hear Him. He doesn’t shout.
His call is quiet and personal.
Get serious. Listen carefully.
Are you up for a new journey?
Have faith and step out!

I wrote the poem, “Have Faith and Step Out” in 2002 while we were still living in California. I had officially retired from teaching in 1999, but daily I was looking for new direction, new purpose, new adventures. The International Library of Poetry published the poem in its 2002 Anthology of Poetry and sent me a dozen greeting cards with the poem printed on the front of them. Today I am using one of those cards for a friend who is stepping onto a new path.

The poem has become more meaningful in the nearly 20 years since its creation. The older I am, the more I realize, “No matter where you are in life, you have so much to give.” Your age doesn’t matter. Your place doesn’t matter. What matters is your mindset, your faith, your motivation.

It’s OK to be petrified.
Sometimes God takes us to
the edge of adventures
where we feel unprepared.
With faith,
He will remove our fear,
put us on a bridge,
and send us the Light to follow.

Deuteronomy 31:6

Quote from Deuteronomy 31:6

Today Bob is out on Lucille (our red-headed ATV on which we have a “Ball”)
with his former student, Victor, who is visiting from Alabama.
Victor was Bob’s wrestling student back in the 1970’s.
He reminded us that Bob also was
his Drivers Education teacher.
They are on an adventure –
going to a lake above Sheridan.
Our Boston, TazE, is with them.
Ah, yes, step out in faith.
Have fun!

Where He leads me,
I will follow!

Remember,
no matter where you are in life,
you have so much to give.

Where are you being called to go today?
What are you being called to do?
Whatever it is, step out in faith.
He will give you grace and glory…
He’ll be with you all the way!

Have a Fabulous Friday!

Love and Hugs,
In Faith,
JanBeek

Embrace Change


Reason- change-smile.jpg

They say a picture’s worth a thousand words,
But a smile is even greater.
It’s personal, it’s contagious,
It can melt the heart of a hater.

This is my daughter’s cheery face.
It glows and grows across the miles.
She lives in Switzerland,
But the airwaves carry her smiles.

De's smile - new glasses.JPG

If you see someone without a smile,
You have smiles to spare you know,
So give ’em one of yours.
It’ll set their heart aglow.

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There!
I saw you smile 😉

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Back atcha…
Ya sent me one of yours, so
Here’s one of mine!

cropped-snapchat-me
If you want to see more smiles,
Embrace the ability you have to be
The catalyst for spreading love
I Smile at You – You smile at me!

Change happens one at a time –
One smile, one thought, one act.
Embrace change. It is your friend.
Without change, we’d die. That’s a fact!

See ya later!
Have a fabulous Sunday!
Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace Memorial Day


Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. … Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971.

I went to our Madison Valley Cemetery this morning. The grave sites of veterans were marked by American flags. Many of the tombstones were freshly decorated for this important holiday. Come visit with me – and let’s honor the memories of our brave military ancestors.

The music at the end of this blog is so beautiful, you may want to scroll down there, click on it, and listen as you view the rest of this post.

Only in Montana might you find a gravestone decorated with a set of antlers!

The Daems memorial was especially meaningful to me. Doris was a friend of mine here in Ennis who was a faithful volunteer with the Women’s Club as well as the Madison Valley Manor and at the Medical Center. What a wonderful lady! Her 86 year-old brother and 90 year-old sister were there today to honor her memory as well as the many veterans.

Doris Daems served her country, too…
here at home in so many ways!

It was a beautiful blue sky day. A memorial service brought many people from our area out to this beautiful cemetery today… an opportunity to honor those brave men and women whose blood was spilled on the battlefields so we might enjoy the freedoms we have today.

If you were given the opportunity to select the 3 words to go on your tombstone to describe who you are, what words would you choose? Gene Wilkins was known as “Doc” here in Ennis… “Healer” was a perfect word for him!

Two of my words would probably be “Mother” and “Grammy” – A third word would need to be “Wife” since that identifies 60 years of my life. Although I was a teacher, a principal, and a district office administrator for 36 years, I think I’d have to choose “Child of God” or “Friend” before I’d call attention to my professional career. But, I don’t know what I’d do if I had to limit it to just three. How about you?

Here’s a wife, mother, daughter, sister,
grandmother, and friend.
Melissa’s family couldn’t limit it
to just three descriptors!

Would you include “Hero” for a description? How about pets, would they be part of your cemetery memorabilia? I’d like an angel by mine… (my maiden name is DeAngeles – and angels are a big part of my world!)

Some of the tombstones were decorated in very special ways, but a simple stone flush with the ground with letters worn away by time and weather intrigued me a lot. Who was that veteran? Is his/her family still in this area?

Thank you for your service, nameless one!

Rest in peace, dear ones. May your service to our country never be taken for granted!

God bless you, dear friends.
May your life be a long, happy one
and may you leave a legacy
that inspires your grandchildren.

Happy Memorial Day!

See ya tomorrow.
Love, JanBeek

Embrace Veterans & The Trinity


Today in the USA it is Veteran’s Day.
(Oooops! Nope, it’s Memorial Day!)
World-wide it is Holy Trinity Sunday.

Veteran’s Day is a time to celebrate and honor
the men and women who are or have served
our country in the military. It is a day to
thank God for four freedom and to remember
the men and women who fought to keep us free.
(It is Nov. 11th. I get it mixed up with today…
the last Monday in May:
A day to honor those who DIED
while serving our country.)

My day started in my sanctuary as it usually does –
A place where I feel the Holy Spirit alive and well.
There, I pray to God, learn from His Son’s life,
And listen to the Spirit guiding me.

Downstairs, I joined Bob who was busy fixing fruit
For our breakfast. It was a beautiful blue sky day.


After breakfast, we went to church where I was a greeter
And Bob read scripture. As usual, I took sermon notes.

Chuck Wright delivered the message:
“Holy Trinity.”

Here are the notes I took as I listened:

Inspired by: Romans 5:1-11

We have been justified by faith.
We rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.
We rejoice in suffering, for it brings perseverance.
We were powerless until Christ came to this sod.

We received reconciliation throgh the cross.
The Holy Trinity, the Godhead, is God, Son, Holy SPirit.
The word “Trinity” is not in the Bible, but
The separate parts are there. With ears, hear it!

Jesus existed at the beginning of time.
He came to earth for the purpose of saving us.
When He ascended back to His Heavenly home,
He put the Holy Spirit in our hearts, engraving us.

We are marked by the blood of Jesus.
We remember His blood and body in communion.
We celebrate the spiritual world of God,
Knowing His Trinity is present in our world – in union.

In union, the Father, Son, and Spirit are one.
Understanding that is beyond our comprehension.
So we read His Word. study His Son’s life,
And listen for His Spirit in us. Pay attention!

God is love. Love is from God. We’re gifted with it.
God sent His Son to the world to show us how to love.
Christ died for us that we might live forever
In Heaven with God – our Eternal Home above.

Back home, the focus was on Veteran’s (nope… Memorial Day) weekend.
Tomorrow (now it’s today) we will go to the Ennis Cemetery for a special service.
Then we will attend a Memorial Day Barbecue at the rodeo grounds.
It started out as a meal for veterans and their families only…
but then it grew exponentially until it’s “Ya’all Come!”
They anticipate there could be as many as 500 diners.
I’m praying for the dear guys who are preparing the food.
God bless ’em! I hope they survive it!
Tonight I watched a Memorial Day Concert…
My favorite was the playing of TAPS.
It was beautiful!

If you are in the USA, what will you do to celebrate Memorial Day?


If you are in another country, do you have a day comparable to this one – when you honor those people who served and died while in the military (in the act of service to preserve your country’s freedom?) How do you thank those who serve your country in this way?

And how about the Trinity? Is it a part of your understanding?

I am grateful for your visit here today.
Thanks for reading JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Embrace Need


When you think of the word, NEED, what comes to mind?
Do you think of what YOU need or what OTHERS might need?
Have you internalized the difference between NEED and WANT?

Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

Often “Wanted” signs express what someone thinks is a NEED.
Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

Daily there are folks who think they NEED
their Starbucks coffee first thing each morning
or they can’t get through the day.
Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels.com

T’was a time when folks thought they NEEDED
toilet paper stacked up in their garages.
Photo by Dziana Hasanbekava on Pexels.com

Now there’s a belief in some parts of the USA
that gas cans NEED to be filled and waiting for future use.
Because of a security breach, stations were shut down.
Folks NEEDED gas to get to their jobs or wherever…



What is on your NEEDS list?

I NEED hugs.
Physical touch is sooo important!
My husband thinks he NEEDS ice cream after dinner each night.

Learning the Difference
Between Necessity and Luxury

When our son, Ty, graduated from high school, he spent a year as an AFS (American Field Service) foreign exchange student in what was then Yugoslavia. He lived with a family who was communist. They wanted their son to learn English because the next year he intended to travel to the USA to attend college.

The family was “well off” by that country’s standards. The father was head of what we might call our EPA: “Environmental Protection Agency.” They lived in a small (less than 500 square feet) apartment in Beograd (Belgrade). The family of four had two bedrooms (one for the parents and one for their daughter), a very small kitchen, one bathroom, and a living room which converted into a bedroom at night for their son. Ty shared that space with the son.

Our son learned very quickly how very privileged he was growing up with us in California with plenty of space and a swimming pool in the back yard. He learned overnight the difference between necessity and luxury. He learned his NEEDS were much smaller than he once thought – and people could live happily with soooo much less.

We all NEED a friend-
and if you have a true friend,
you are rich, indeed!

Happiness does not NEED a big house, a fancy car, or a lotta money in the bank.
But, it does NEED at least one true friend… and a bunch of ’em is a bonus!!

Happiness does not need a room full of toys.
Children who can build their own tent,
play together in the woods,
and go home at the end of the day of play
to a loving family
and a nourishing meal
are blessed indeed!

I used to think that I NEEDED
a glass of wine and a sushi meal
every now and then…

… or a cucumber roll

But then I googled my needs and I discovered:

Hah! What do you NEED?

A pup to snuggle with?
All you NEED for Christmas
is your two front teeth?
Maybe all you need is
a blanket and a good book!
Sometimes all I NEED
is a nice warm bath!!
A baby only needs
milk, loving hugs, a clean body,
and a swaddling cloth!

And we all need a dream –
Someone who believes in us –
and encourages us –
and teaches us how
to live our dreams.

I NEED time in the wide open spaces,
time each morning in my sanctuary to pray
and to ask the Holy Spirit for guidance,
and I NEED music in my life…
because it lifts my spirits and strengthens me.

I don’t NEED a tattoo!
But, isn’t that a hoot?
I NEED laughter!

Hah!

See ya tomorrow.
Have a great rest of your day
wherever you are.

Embrace NEEDS.
See the needs of others –
and fulfill them if you can!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
I NEED your comments!

What are your NEEDS?

Embrace Goodness


Exodus 33:19

And he said, “I will make all my goodness pass before you and will proclaim before you my name ‘The Lord.’ And I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy.

Psalm 23:6

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

When I ask God each day
To help me live in the Fruits of the Spirit,
I begin by thanking the Lord for
The love, joy and peace that are mine,
But then I ask Him to help me with
The patience, kindness, and goodness
Which do not always come naturally.
I ask for help with the faithfulness
Which brings blessings, and then
Help with gentleness and self control.

Those nine fruits of the spirit are God’s gifts.

Because I have the love, joy and peace,
I can give them away … and they return to me.
When I give love, I exhibit God’s gift through
My actions – and He multiplies it in me.

God’s goodness is exhibited in the gentle breeze;
It is felt in the warmth of the sunshine and in the
Heartfelt hugs of a friend who finally can come visit.
It is evident in every bird’s song and every flower’s blooming.

God’s goodness is in my hospitality – my open door.
God’s goodness is in my phone call or the note I send.
God’s goodness prompts me to share the Good News
And invite you to love God and trust His promises – as I do.

God’s goodness is in you!
Embrace Goodness –
And share it freely.
It will return to you overflowing!

Join the “Spread Goodness” Challenge –
Be the goodness you want to see in this world.
What can you decide to do right now
That will spread GOODNESS in your path?

As Nike says,
“Just do it!”


Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
See ya tomorrow (God willing).

Good night!


Embrace Anticipation


Woman learned birth mother was star on ‘That’s My Mama’

By Lisa Respers France, CNN

Updated 10:20 AM ET, Sun May 9, 2021 Lynne Moody in a promotional photo for the ABC TV series "That's My Mama." Lynne Moody in a promotional photo for the ABC TV series “That’s My Mama.”

(CNN)Lisa Wright always knew she was adopted, but had no idea her biological mother was a star on one of her favorite television shows.Now Wright is sharing the story of having been reunited with actress Lynne Moody after 50 years in what reads like the perfect Hollywood ending, according to NBC’s “Today.” “I grew up watching my mother on TV and didn’t even know it,” Wright told the morning show. “‘That’s My Mama’ — that was our must-see TV. We all sat down and watched ‘That’s My Mama’ every week, and who knew? No idea. … And that’s my mama!”

The series ran for two seasons on ABC from 1974-75. https://68151845e449bd7bd92b8064c37f7ae2.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html

Wright said she knew very little about Moody, who was 18 when she gave birth, and had a closed adoption.

“My (adoptive) mom told me, ‘Your mommy loved you, but she was really young, and she knew she couldn’t take care of you. I wanted the baby so bad, and that’s why your mom let me take care of you,'” Wright said. “You weren’t abandoned. This was just the best thing for you.”More of CNN’s Mother’s Day coverage

But encouraged by her son a few years ago to do genetic testing, Wright first tracked down an uncle who told her the family had been searching for her all these years and who led her to Moody, who, like her daughter, was living in Los Angeles.

Moody called her birth daughter.”A voice on the other end says, ‘Is this my daughter?’ And then I just went, ‘Oh, my God, is this my mother?'” Wright said. “And then she goes, ‘Yes, sweetie, this is your mom.’ It was just the most indescribable feeling.”It was a deep connection for Moody, who never had any other children and never thought she would find her beloved child.”When I found out that she was my daughter, at that moment, it was like I was giving birth,” Moody said. “Because I lost my legs, I was on the floor in a fetal position, screaming and crying. I didn’t know how deep that hole was.”

And the actress best known for roles in the TV series “Roots” and “Knots Landing” had a Mother’s Day message for all.”Life is full of surprises sometimes, so hang in there no matter what your circumstances are,” she said. “Be open to miracles, be open to surprises, and keep the faith.”

Photo by Fuzzy Rescue on Pexels.com

I have four adopted grandchildren. This story touched my heart for obvious reasons. On this Mother’s Day, there are many children out there who have been raised by loving adoptive parents. There are many biological parents out there who gave up their child for altruistic reasons. Some of them have located their children and have a happily-ever-after reconnection story. Others have reconnected, but the results were not so glorious. Still others have not tried to find their biological parents (or children) and live with that sense of unknowing, not sure that filling in the blanks would be helpful for anyone.

Whatever the situation, it is always heartwarming to me when I read about these cases of rejoining. It is sweet to know there are cases where the child can find his/her roots – and the parent can fill that empty spot with fresh discovery. I know when it happens and it is positive, God’s hand is involved… and it makes my heart sing.

I am grateful for the mom who gave her child up for adoption because she knew she could not provide a suitable home. I am equally grateful for the family who took the child in – and loved him or her completely – fully embracing him or her as their own.

On this Mother’s Day, may all those adopted children feel a sense of gratitude for the mom who gave them birth – and for the mom who raised them. May they know, whatever the circumstance, they are loved. They are wanted. They are not an accident. God don’t make mistakes!!

Embrace Anticipation!
You never know what God has in store for you around the next bend.

Happy Mother’s Day!
Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace Your Journey


The word “Race” implies competition when you “Run the Race.”
But life lived in competition rather than collaboration is a lonely one.
When I was an elementary school principal back in the 1980’s,
I wrote our school theme song using the California Poppies tune.

The California Poppies song went like this:

“Poppies, golden poppies, gleaming in the sun,
Closing up at evening when the day is done.
Pride of California, flower of our state,
Growing from the mountains to the Golden Gate.”

The words I wrote for our Caswell Elementary School in California were:

We’re the Caswell Cougars.
We are Number One!
Green and yellow banners
Waving in the sun.
Caswell is a place for
Learning and for fun.
We’re the Caswell Cougars;
We are Number One!”

One of my fellow principals objected to our song.
She felt I was in competition with her school.
I responded, “There’s room at the top
for more than one.
Come up and join us!”

As I have journeyed through this life,
I am going and growing.
I am understanding better
where my colleague was coming from.

Thirty years later I can look back
And I can see my competitive spirit
At work in that school song…
Unintended yes, but obvious to others.



If life is viewed as a race,
then there is room for only one at the top.
The race goes to the swiftest.
But a journey has room for many.

Hold my hand as we walk this path.
Pray with me. stay by my side.
Soon enough we will reach the mountain top
And when we do, celebrate with me.

Today Bob & I are journeying to Oregon
where we will join his sister and her family.
We will gather to give back to one another
The love we have shared on this life’s journey.

We will hear the echo of Bonnie’s husband
As their daughter and son speak of the ways
Their dad sent out, sowed, and radiated love
During his 86 years here on this earth.

As we travel today, Bob and I acknowledge
The grace of God that has allowed us to share
These six decades with one another –
And we take not one of those chapters for granted.

Stan Hunt’s chapters on earth have ended,
But we know his story doesn’t end here.
We know death is not an end to our journey;
It is a beginning of our eternal life – forever with our Lord.

We will share, hug, and weep for our loss,
And we will assure one another of the faith we have.
We know we will see one another in eternity.
We will continue the journey – writing our masterpiece!

Have a beautiful Sunday, my friends.
I send you my love
as we journey this life together.


See ya tomorrow (God willing),
JanBeek

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