“To live in the hearts of those we leave behind is not to die.”
Today we are celebrating the life of my brother-in-law, Stan. He gave us many reasons to smile. He will live on in the hearts of all who knew him.
If you could write your obituary, celebrating your life, what would you want folks to say about you?
Here lies __________________ (insert your name) S/He was __________________ (insert an adjective) We could count on him/her to ____________________ (what could folks count on you for?) His/Her life was noted for ________________________ (what’s your legacy?)
Have you discovered how to discern His Will? Are you asking God each day to help you do His Will?
How are you using your time today? Time is our greatest gift. Use it wisely!
I am praying that you have a Marvelous Monday!
Hugs to you. See you tomorrow (God willing)… JanBeek
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.
No, not like open heart surgery! It’s your open heart of love and compassion! It’s an open heart, ready to listen and respond.
In Chapter 8 of Nehemiah,
“…all the people listened attentively to the Book of the Law.”
With open hearts, they “lifted their hands and responded, ‘Amen! Amen!’ Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord.”
Do you listen eagerly with an expectant mind and heart? Do you listen with a mind that genuinely wants to know more? If so, you will hear the Lord speaking to you when you earnestly pray.
Yesterday I was encouraged to listen – to engage “ears that really hear” – as I bowed in reverence to God while up in my sanctuary. I was feeling badly that no one from our Beekman family was scheduled to be in Oregon next Monday for Bob’s brother-in-law’s funeral. Bob’s sister, Bonnie, lost her husband, Stan, last week. Bonnie has three brothers. Two are in California and plan to go to Stan’s burial later this month. It is scheduled to occur in his hometown cemetery in southern CA. But, we are here in Montana … and were not planning to attend either event. We had lots of excuses. None of them seemed to be holding water!
God spoke loudly and clearly to me as I opened my heart to His message in the daily devotional, In Touch, by Charles Stanley.
“So many things clamor for our focus, but nothing is as important as what the Lord has to say. He is worthy of our undivided attention.”
“Open your heart,” God said to me. “Nothing is more important in your life next week than to be with Bonnie.”
So we will fly to Oregon on Sunday. We will be there to demonstrate our open hearts of love for Bob’s sister and her family. We will not live with “If Only” in our hearts.
It will be a short trip. We’ll return here for those other important obligations on Tuesday… but the Sunday/Monday things can wait. God said “THIS IS MY MESSAGE TO YOU.” And He said it loud and clear. “Open your hearts. Open your wallets. Reschedule what you planned to do here. Find ways to delegate. You’re not indispensable here. Schedule your plane, rental car, and hotel. BE THERE!”
So, dear WordPress friends, if you don’t see a post Sunday or Monday, you’ll know why. How many consecutive days I have posted is not a number that is worth worrying about. Opening our hearts to our loved one who has lost her spouse… that’s the focus!
“Rest assured that whoever listens to God’s Word with an open heart and alert mind will receive from Him.”
I love the Lord, for He heard my voice; He heard my cry for mercy. Because He turned His ear to me, I will call on Him as long as I live.
My day started with a 7:00 am Sunrise Service at our Madison Range putting green. The sun worked to peek out through the cloudy sky.
A small, but appreciate gathering lifted voices to sing “He Arose!” and “He Lives!”
Mule deer gathered close by to listen to our singing and nibble at the emerging greenery. Spring is just thinking about making its debut here!
Usually right after sunrise service, we go as a group to the Baptist Church and enjoy a yummy breakfast of assorted baked goodies and egg casseroles. This year, because of COVID-19, we had to be content to go home and make our own breakfast. Afterward, we went to church where we wore masks, socially distanced, and enjoyed the sermon of the day delivered by our pastor, Rev. Steve Hundley.
What are your earliest Memories of Easter Sunday? Yellow crocuses, dogwoods, And eggs hidden slightly away?
What are your earliest Memories of recognizing in your life God, the Risen Christ? Do you have to think twice?
My memory was on a morning When I’d victoriously ridden My bike down a steep hill – Suddenly God was not hidden.
I’m reminded of Mary Magdalene With the other Mary who saw That Jesus was not in the tomb. An angel said He’d risen – such awe!
They were terrified to realize You can’t escape God in Jesus. They told no one what they heard – Too scared… a Savior to relieve us?
They thought their hopes and dreams Had been buried and sealed away, Buried with Him – they believed. They all deserted Christ that day.
Peter had denied Christ three times. The other disciples hid in fear. Have we also denied the messenger Who told us Jesus is alive and here?
The Easter miracle assures us Our crucified Lord is running free. He is waiting for us to come out Of hiding to see Him. He waits for me!
Am I ready to believe the story Of a man who dies, but rose again? Am I ready to understand that He Suffered that agony to free me from sin?
The Risen Christ stands before me With nail prints in His hands and side. Am I ready to hear the Good News And know there’s no where I can hide?
With fear and amazement this Easter, I will not go away from the empty tomb- Back to daily routine, forgetting Him. No, with reverence I acknowledge Christ in this room.
Crown Him the Lord of years, The Potentate of time, Creator of the rolling spheres Ineffably sublime.
All hail, Redeemer, Hail! For Thou hast died for me. Thy praise shall never, never fail Throughout eternity.
It comes but once a year Yet its significance Lives in our hearts daily… Thank God for the gift of His Son who secured my spot and yours in heaven.
Praise Him! Alleluia! Amen!
Oh, and in the afternoon, we had the joy of a visit from our granddaughter, Hope, and her husband, Drew, and their two children (our great-grandchildren, Xander and Sienna).
Did you send out and receive a few Easter cards this season? I did.. and I enjoyed every one. I thought I’d share one of my favorites with you:
That was decorated with a glitter cupcake by our darling Ruby… with a note added from her big brother, first grader, Cord. So precious!!
And now, the eggs are gone. The Easter ham left-overs are in the fridge. The family departed. The dishes are looming large – Begging to be done… But first, join me and the Easter bunny, will you? Sit down and relax. Contemplate the day… Think about what Easter means. Thank God for the gift of His Son. Let’s drink a toast to Eternity in His Heavenly Kingdom. The dishes can wait! My computer’s about to run outta battery…
Embrace Karfreitag! That’s German for “Sorrowful Friday.” The same day named “Guode Friday” in Old English back in the 1200’s.
I always wondered how it got named “Good.” What’s good about the Friday when Christ died? I’m more apt to agree with the Germans” It’s a sorrowful day!
The Baltimore Catechism from 1885 says it is “Good Friday” because it’s the day Jesus showed his great love for mankind.
And about three o’clock Jesus cried with a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema tabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
“Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb… He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away. Mary Magdalene and the other Mary were sitting there opposite the tomb.”
Today is the day when Jesus seems gone. Mary and Mary Magdalene wept in front of the giant rock that was between them and the One they loved. Can you imagine their despair?
The reason I am embracing “Karfreitag!” is because I think it would be a shame to jump from Sorrowful Friday to the joy of Easter morning without sitting for a day and contemplating the sorrow that surrounded Christ’s death.
Imagine yourself at the tomb. Imagine the shock of finding Jesus gone… with the stone rolled away.
Tomorrow is called “Holy Saturday.” This is all that is written about it:
The next day the Pharisees and chief priests went to Pilate. “Sir, they said, we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, ‘After three days I will rise again.’ So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day…”
What would you have thought if you had seen this scene on the day after Jesus died?
Holy Saturday is a day to pause gather our thoughts, process what happened, and get ready for the beautiful message of Easter.
Before you go, treat yourself to this wonderful rendition of one of my favorite hymns by a phenomenal boys’ choir … joined by the wonderful men’s voices of the King’s College Choir. You’ll be glad you did!
Are you enthused about life? Have you overcome great strife? Are you ready to step out enthusiastically To conquer your challenges gleefully?
I am enthused because I look forward to returning to my volunteering today at the Madison Valley Medical Center. Ever since this pandemic shutdown last March, all the volunteers were told to stay home, socially distance, be safe, and wait this thing out. So this wonderful group of ladies who have annually saved the hospital the salary and benefits of at least two full-time staff members (as well as raising thousands of dollars in fund-raisers to donate for medical center needs) have been shut out. Yes, it was for our own safety… as well as others … but TODAY I GET TO GO BACK!!
I am also enthusiastic today because after a year of searching with the Pastor Nominating Committee for a new pastor to lead our congregation forward following this strange year, we can see a light at the end of the tunnel! Our pastor of 32 years died and we’ve had a wonderful interim pastor who went out of retirement to help us. He is enthusiastically looking forward to returning to the retired life. I am looking forward to taking the next steps with our committee and our #1 candidate – – – enthusiasm bubbles over in all involved! What a wonderful way to approach Easter Sunday!
Today is Maundy Thursday. It’s the day Jesus invited the disciples into the upper room, washed their feet, and served the Last Supper. It was not with enthusiasm that they heard Him say He would die, be buried, and rise again in three days. They didn’t understand. But, I understand – so I am enthused!
I am enthusiastic about the coming of Easter. I know we must endure the pain of “Good Friday” – wondering what’s good about the day Jesus dies on the cross. But, we know the rest of the story, so we can live through the remembrance of Christ’s misery because we know the way the story ends.
As a child I remember being enthusiastic about the Easter bunny and Easter egg hunts. I see no harm in that, but as an adult the focus on Easter eggs doesn’t enthuse me… not unless the story that accompanies them is the reminder of the empty tomb when the child finds the plastic egg with no candy in it… and that child is the one who wins the Golden Egg – and realizes the empty egg was the favored one!
I just returned from volunteering at the medical center as a “Purple Lady” … member of the Auxiliary. I am enthused telling you that the two nurses and a host of staff members made it possible for around 120 Madison County residents to receive their vaccines today. Many of those were receiving their second shot. I enthusiastically look forward to “herd immunity.”
Here is my Haiku series celebrating enthusiasm:
Enthusiasm It’s a feeling of great joy Anticipation
It’s sweet engagement In delightful chosen tasks Active involvement
Looking bright ahead Accomplishments come at last Feeling in God’s Will
Seeing smiles around Others feeling included Successful efforts
Anticipating Hearing “Congratulations!” It’s a job well done
It’s shared excitement Knowing we have done our best Enthusiasm!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today Have a Blessed Maundy Thursday and Good Friday
What are you enthusiastic about today?
I’m enthused that you are here, my friend. Bee well!! See ya tomorrow.