Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Archive for the ‘Life and Death’ Category

Embrace Values


My friend, Lee, sent me a You.Tube video today. He said it was “worth your time and thoughts.” I agree!.
It was narrated by a guy with a wonderful British accent. I bet it was created several years ago.
The words in blue below are his. The red is my editorial comment about that item!

Whether you wear a $300. or a $3. watch,
they both tell the same thing.

But the whole deal is, this watch does so much more than tell time!
And it costs way more than $300. . Price tag = $539.98

Whether you carry a $300. or a $30. handbag,
the amount of money inside is still the same.

This one actually is a
$2,350. Guggi
If you buy it, you’ll certainly
have less money to put inside!

Don’t you have better things to do with your money??


Whether we drive a $150,000. car or a $30,000. car,
the road and distance are the same…
and we get to the same destination.

Photo by Pavlo Luchkovski on Pexels.com

But, the Ferrari is so much more fun!
And you can certainly go faster!
(If you survive at those speeds, that is)

Whether you drink a bottle of $300. or a $10. bottle of wine,
the hangover is the same.

But Wine Spectator Magazine says, “It’s not as if wines that cost $10. or less are going to make you feel bad, or that wines that cost over $50 are never going to give you a hangover… How much wine you consume is the biggest variable…” So, in both cases, it’s the whole bottle? Not a good idea regardless of the price!

Photo by Maria Orlova on Pexels.com

Whether the house you live in is 300 sq. ft. or a huge mansion with 30,000 sq. ft.,
loneliness is the same.


Yes, you can be lonely in a shack or you can be lonely in a castle. The size of the house has little to do with it. But, remember loneliness and alone are two different animals. Just because you’re alone doesn’t mean you have to be lonely. And just because you have a kajillion people around you doesn’t mean you feel loved. It has nothing to do with the size of your house… it’s the size of your heart!

Photo by Sheila on Pexels.com

Whether you fly first or economy class,
if the plane goes down – you go with it.


True! But aren’t some seats safer than others? An article in the Huffington Post – when asked about the safest place to sit to a plane – wrote this, “Each incident or crash is unique. Impact could come from a nosedive, a water landing, or a runway collision. As a result there is no safest seat.” The good news in that article, though, is “Air travel is the safest form of transportation in the country.” Bon Voyage!!
.
.

In that same video sent to me this morning by my friend, Lee, this interesting addition was included:

Five Undeniable Facts of Life

Photo by Pragyan Bezbaruah on Pexels.com
  1. Don’t educate your children to be rich;
    Educate them to be happy, so when they grow up,
    they will look for the VALUE of things, not the price.
Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

2. Eat your food (a balanced diet) as your medicine
otherwise you will have to eat medicine as your food.

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

3. The ones who love you will never leave you for another
because even if there are 100 reasons to give up,
s/he will find one reason to hold on.

4. There is a big difference between a human being
and being human… Only a few really understand it.

Photo by Andreas Wohlfahrt on Pexels.com

5. You are loved when you are born.
You will be loved when you die.
In between, you have to manage.

Live
Love
Laugh

You have to manage!

May as well manage joyfully!
Embrace Values
and live the good life…

then…

When your sunset comes,
You will have no regrets!

Good night, my friends.
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Reliance


In a world of self-reliance,
Where “I can do it” is king,
Being reliant on others
Is construed as a “weakness thing.”

But, as Christians we are taught
To rely not on our own strength.
“Lean not on your own understanding.”
God is within a prayer’s length.

In today’s prayerful message,
Our wonderful pastor, Mary Grace,
Talked about God’s will and love,
And seeking our Lord, face-to-face.


“God of forgiveness, hear our confession to you.
You have called us to excellence in compassion
and we fall short of your confidence in us.
You grant us grace and we abuse your gift.
You expect us to align our hearts with your will
and that our love will be genuine.
But we trust our own desires
rather than rely on your goodness.
We look after our own comfort
instead of our neighbor’s needs.
In Christ, have mercy on us
and forgive us our sins.
Amen”

As you know (if you’ve followed my blog for a couple of weeks or more), I take copious notes as I listen to the sermon through my fingertips each Sunday. Sometimes I translate what I am hearing into poetry. Today’s doesn’t rhyme. It’s free verse. But it poured out as I tried to capture the main ideas. First, look at the scripture on which the sermon was based.

Mark 5:21-43.

Jesus Raises a Dead Girl and Heals a Sick Woman

21 When Jesus had again crossed over by boat to the other side of the lake, a large crowd gathered around him while he was by the lake. 22 Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23 He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24 So Jesus went with him.

A large crowd followed and pressed around him. 25 And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. 26 She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. 27 When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, 28 because she thought, “If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed.” 29 Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering.

30 At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, “Who touched my clothes?”

31 “You see the people crowding against you,” his disciples answered, “and yet you can ask, ‘Who touched me?’ ”

32 But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. 33 Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. 34 He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

35 While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher anymore?”

36 Overhearing[a] what they said, Jesus told him, “Don’t be afraid; just believe.”

37 He did not let anyone follow him except Peter, James and John the brother of James. 38 When they came to the home of the synagogue leader, Jesus saw a commotion, with people crying and wailing loudly. 39 He went in and said to them, “Why all this commotion and wailing? The child is not dead but asleep.” 40 But they laughed at him.

After he put them all out, he took the child’s father and mother and the disciples who were with him, and went in where the child was. 41 He took her by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum!” (which means “Little girl, I say to you, get up!”). 42 Immediately the girl stood up and began to walk around (she was twelve years old). At this they were completely astonished. 43 He gave strict orders not to let anyone know about this, and told them to give her something to eat.

The sermon title was
“Fools for Hoping”

“Secondhand Lions” was a movie with Caine and Duvall.
The fictional characters were replicas of my grandfather and uncle!
The film is wonderful and whimsical (don’t believe the critics).
Believe what you want to believe… and here are some essentials:
“What every boy needs to know” – a speech worth hearing…

  • People are basically good
  • Money and power mean nothing
  • True love never dies
  • Integrity means everything
  • Love, truth, and integrity are essential

True or not, those are worth believing!

We don’t see much love in the news these days.
The news is full of the ways we are really awful to one another.
Recent news revealed 751 unmarked graves of indigenous children
found this week in Canada. Children taken from their families
and forced to attend the former Marieval Indian Residential School.

Survivors, community honour 751 unmarked graves at Sask. residential school site with vigil

Seven-hundred and fifty-one lights
spanned the entirety of the unmarked graves
discovered on Cowessess First Nation
in southeast Saskatchewan
where a large group of people,
many wearing orange clothes,
gathered on Saturday night
in honour of the remains.

An elder in the community
who spoke at the vigil
likened the finding
of 751 unmarked graves 
to a scab that had been
“slowly healing”
being ripped off.

Not one of us is wholly good, so the natural inclination
When confronted with our sinful nature is despair.
Confession and repentance are the next steps, but
Where do we go after confession?

We need to define our beliefs and act on hope…
Even when it seems foolish to do so.
Be ready to be made fools for your integrity.
Stand up for what is right… stand up for Truth!

The woman in Mark 5 took the show!
Jesus asked, “Who touched me?”
The disciples laughed, “Everyone’s touching you!”
Jairus was impatient, “My daughter needs you!”

He wondered why Jesus was taking precious time
To deal with a woman with a 12 year infirmity.
Let’s assume the woman just happened to be
Outside the crowd that day and heard of Jesus.

She heard Jairus – with hopefulness in his voice –
Asking Jesus to help his dying daughter.
His hope inspired her hope as well.
Two lives were saved that day.

Our speech, our attitudes, and our actions
Can have a positive affect on others.
We need to consciously lean on God
With hope and trust and mindfulness.

Jairus could have listened to his tears,
But he stepped up and listened to hope.
His act of believing in the power of Christ to heal
Allowed other to respond in hope, too.

“Your faith has made you whole,” Jesus told
The woman whose hemorrhaging stopped.
The only way out is reaching out in the hope
That God’s love will make life better.

I’ll stay a fool for hope!



EMBRACE RELIANCE

Rely on God

I’ll stay a fool for God.

HOW ABOUT YOU?

Thanks for sharing a part of your Sunday with me.
I hope you have a wonderful week.



See you tomorrow (God willing)
Love,
JanBeek

Pastor Mary Grace Reynolds
and Jan

Embrace Loving Memories


In Loving memory
Of my dear, only sister
All of us gathered

Many remembered
The loving kindness of her
I wrote and read this poem:

Sisters are a real treasure –
A gift from Heaven with love.
Sally shared with me a relationship
Designed by God above.

When Sally and I were little,
Mom dressed me as her twin.
People thought we really were –
But she would say, “I’m the oldest –
so I win!”

I used to blame my sis for things
When I was the culprit – clearly!
“I no pick the flaws – maybe Sally d!”
Fist full of flowers, I’d point sincerely.

She never held it against me;
Her heart was too big for grudges!
Always first to shrug nd forgive,
She didn’t need a lot of nudges.

We both joined Turlock High Band;
Played clarinet – marched in every parade.
But she preferred being treasurer –
Being sure ny dues were paid.

When God gave out number sense,
I must have hid behind the door –
Or else I missed it because my sis
Had enough for the two of us -and more!

We never really competed with each other.
She did her own thing – for sure.
A more unique soul never existed –
Cut from a loving mold – honest and pure.

She’d give you the shirt off her back
If she thought you needed one –
And she never missed a potluck –
Or any other activity with games and fun.

Her closet was quite organized
From Valentine’s to New Year’s Day.
You never had to guess the holiday –
Her clothing was the display.

After God created Sally, though,
He threw away the mold.
No one earth could match
Her heart, her style – so quirky and bold!

Sally loved her family – of that we had no doubt.
She loved her church and her yippy pups.
She adored her Lodge sisters and her scouts.
She generously gave us oregano, bee stuff, and cups.

I smile when I look at her pictures.
They tell a story of a life filled with joy.
They help me recall my sister’s love –
And be grateful – She was the Real McCoy!

Here is Sally with my grandson, Jordan. The two of them shared a December 20th birthday.

I ended my remarks at Sally’s Memorial with this scripture:

1 Kings 3:12b
“…no one like you has been before you
and no one like you shall arrive after you.”

Rest in peace, Sis.
I’ll see ya later!

And my dear blogging friends, I’ll see YOU later, too.
Bob & I will head back to Montana via Delta Airlines tonight.
Your prayers for our safe travel and smooth connections will be greatly appreciated.

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 Harmony


Live in harmony
Let your steps dance to the tune:
“Embraceable You!”

Romans 12:16-18

Live in harmony with one another.
Do not be haughty,
but associate with the lowly.
Never be wise in your own sight.
Repay no one evil for evil,
but give thought to do what is honorable
in the sight of all.
If possible,
so far as it depends on you,
live peaceably with all.

Living peacefully
Brings out the best in others –
Invites harmony.

Photo by Candelario Benu00edtez on Pexels.com

Beautiful to see –
Guys who live in harmony –
Enjoy company.

The relationships
Born of friendship and shared joy –
Beautiful to see.

Photo by Gabby K on Pexels.com

Beautiful to be
Playing harmoniously –
Embracing friendships.

As my outer world
Reflects my inner spirit,
Harmony abounds.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is humanitylove.png

Happiness is when
what you think,
what you say,
and
what you do
are in harmony.

Mahatma Gandhi

My friend, Elaine Forsberg, recently left this earth for her eternal home. The memorial service for her was last weekend. She was a woman who raised her children to love God, follow Jesus, embrace harmony, and play harmonically. She did all those things herself. She taught by example.

Her son, Jim, plays the guitar and the saw! Her daughter, Peggy, also plays the saw… and the violin (magnificently). If you had attended Elaine’s service, you would have come away knowing this was a woman of great integrity – a woman who loved God – a woman secure in her destiny.

The Gandhi quote above fit Elaine Forsberg to a tee!

Besides loving God, Elaine loved music. She played the piano and made it possible for her children to appreciate the beauty of harmony.

The video below with its beautiful harmonies and gorgeous scenes of nature would be a favorite of hers. It’s a favorite of mine, I sang in the A Capella Choir all four years at the University of the Pacific. It was one of my favorite activities in college – and those harmonies still live in my heart.

To survive in peace and harmony,
united and strong,
we must have one people,
one nation,
one flag.

Pauline Hanson

My prayer today is this:

O Lord, may we learn to live in harmony.
May our world embrace harmonious unity.
Help us, God of Creation,
to learn to follow Your commandments.
There is no better way, we know, to live peacefully.
Help us “Embrace Harmony”
and spread its beauty to all we meet.
Today we focus on harmony, peace, wholeness, and joy.
Embrace us, O Lord,
as these thoughts flower in our consciousness –
and bring our dreams of world-wide harmony to vivid life.
Amen.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.

May you feel the peace of harmony
in your heart today.


God bless You!
See ya tomorrow!

Embrace Your Roots


When I hear the word “Roots,”
I think of the TV program
that captivated the nation
in 1977 when it first
was aired on ABC.

Roots is an American television miniseries based on Alex Haley‘s 1976 novel Roots: The Saga of an American Family. The series first aired on ABC in January 1977. Roots received 37 Primetime Emmy Award nominations and won nine. It also won a Golden Globe and a Peabody Award. It received unprecedented Nielsen ratings for the finale, which still holds a record as the third-highest-rated episode for any type of television series, and the second-most watched overall series finale in U.S. television history.[1][2] It was produced on a budget of $6.6 million.

If you are a genealogical buff, “Roots” conjures up images of family history … and maybe links to Ancestry.com.

When I see or hear the word “Roots,” I also think of this scripture:

Jeremiah 17:7-8

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord
And whose trust is the Lord.
“For he will be like a tree planted by the water,
That extends its roots by a stream
And will not fear when the heat comes;
But its leaves will be green,
And it will not be anxious in a year of drought
Nor cease to yield fruit.

Roots
Buried deep
Connect to vine
Result in the branches
Mine

John 15:5

“I am the vine, you are the branches:
He that abideth in Me, and I in him,
the same bringeth forth much fruit:
for without Me you can do nothing.”

My roots are planted deep in faith.

Rooted and Grounded
In the name of the Lord
Rooted and Grounded
By the Holy Ghost

If you want to go to Heaven
You have to be
Rooted and Grounded
In the Name of the Lord!


Embrace Your Roots –
Examine where they are grounded.
How do they stabilize you?
What comes to mind when you hear the word
ROOTS?

Thanks for visiting JanBeek

See ya tomorrow (God willing)


Embrace Life


“To live in the hearts of those we leave behind is not to die.”

-Thomas Campbell

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!

We’re in Oregon with Bob’s sister.
Priceless time!

I am praying that you
have a Marvelous Monday!

Hugs to you.
See you tomorrow (God willing)…
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

Embrace Inner Strength


Photo by Mikhail Nilov on Pexels.com

“Why do we need compassion?
Experience tells us that it brings inner strength.
It also benefits others
and we face many unnecessary problems
when we lack it.

To understand this
we must develop a holistic way
of seeing the bigger picture,
which means we must use our intelligence.”

Dalai Lama@DalaiLama



Inner Strength brings peace
When we use it to create
Inner compassion

Then compassion brings
Inner strength when we use it
To show outer peace

Peace be with you, my friends.
Tomorrow we’ll be on our way to Oregon
to be with my sister-in-law
as we celebrate the life and memory
of her husband of 60+ years.

May your soul
Rest in peace, Stanley P Hunt.

And my dear WordPress Friends,
May your day be filled with peace and blessings,
compassion and inner strength.
God bless you!

Hugs,
JanBeek


P.S. May you find sweet peace that passes understanding.

Embrace Haibun


There are days when it seems harder than others to put on a happy face, don’t you agree? I don’t have a lot of those, so when I do, they usually are memorable.

I remember one such day when my dad was out of sorts. He was a business owner. Not the typical image of a “business owner” that comes to mind when you hear that description. His business was a Tallow Works. Do you know what that is? It’s a place that picks up dead animals from farmers and ranchers and meat scraps from butcher shops. All parts of those animals and scraps are processed. It’s a smelly business.

It’s devastating
Beloved animals die
Someone hauls them off

This is called a Haibun. It is a brief couple of paragraphs of prose, followed by a Haiku that adds dimension to the prose!

Oh, Lordy, Lordy!! My blog is supposed to share love, joy, peace, faith, and unity. How I got off on a kick of wanting to share various forms of poetry is all Dwight Roth’s fault! Blame him! He tried my Shadorma poetry and invited me to try his Haibun.

https://rothpoetry.wordpress.com/2021/04/08/on-fire/

But he can’t be blamed for my morbid Haibun and photo today. My mind just went there after reading a post by someone who was recalling a sadness from their childhood. That day when Dad and I went to pick up a dead horse sticks in my memory because the horse was a child’s pet. It wasn’t like one of a herd of beef cattle or some old cow that got into the clover field, ate too much, bloated, and bit the dust!

My experiences with my dad, riding with him on weekends as we went to various farms to pick up the dead animals, usually were not sad times. I treasured one-on-one time with Daddy, and I was happy to get that time under whatever circumstances! The death of animals didn’t seem morbid to me. It was just part of the cycle of life! You know – like egg to tadpole, froglet to frog!

But on that particular Saturday, the animal’s young owner was there, crying as Dad hauled her beloved horse into the truck and we drove away. The horse did not represent the cycle of life. It was too young, and so was its owner! That was a day when it was harder to put on a happy face, you know?

This weekend Bob & I are headed to my brother-in-law’s funeral. He was 86. He led a good life. He was a believer who knew where he was headed when he left this earth. But, he had just had a knee replacement – just a week before – and he thought he had a lot of years left to enjoy the greater mobility that knee would give him. However, it is not our privilege to count our days!

Dying is, indeed, part of the cycle of life!

“Everyone who lives
and believes in me
will never die.
Do you believe this?”

— John 11:26

S’pose that horse and sweet little girl will be reunited in Heaven?

It’s the life cycle
Beloved animals die
Are they in Heaven?

Bye for now.
See ya tomorrow –
God willing!

JanBeek

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: