Loving One Another

Archive for the ‘Living in Harmony’ Category

Be Braided


When you see the word “Braid,” what do you think of?

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Those braids appear to be two strong strands twisted together.
(Isn’t she beautiful?)

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Likewise, this rope seems to have two strong strands twisted, right?

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When I used to braid my daughter’s hair, I needed three strands to create the braid.

Today’s devotional made me think about these various braids and contemplate the strength of the three strands. Here was the scripture:

Eccelesiates 4:12

“And though a man might prevail
against one who is alone,
two will withstand him –
a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

Katie Minter Jones in “Mornings with Jesus” by Guideposts wrote a devotional based on that scripture. In it she recounted how difficult the days of early marriage were as she and her husband “struggled through difficult times.”

She quoted a friend as saying, “Together we worked hard to get where we are now. It definitely takes two to make a marriage work, and that’s not fifty-fifty. Each person has to give 100%.” Finger pointing and trying to divvy stuff up 50-50 leads to disaster.

One of her lady friends said, “It takes three to make a successful marriage, the husband, the wife, and Jesus.” Each person must give 100% to each other and 100% to Jesus.”

That seems like a tall order! But doing so creates the three strands that make the braid unbreakable. Couples need to walk with Jesus to have a strong marriage.

Here’s my take on what that looks like.

The tie that binds

When our hearts are bound in love around our Lord’s cross, His mercy and grace strengthen our relationship and help us grow closer. As we walk hand in hand, praying and staying together in love, God blesses us. Jesus Christ strengthens us. The Holy Spirit braids our hearts in His love and care. Blessed be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian Love. Be braided!

Write your spouse a love letter today and include a prayer.

Here are mine…

Dear Bob,
I am so grateful for your love and for our mutual reliance on Jesus, our Lord. Thank you for praying with me, staying with me, putting Christ first in our lives, and relying on Him during our times of struggle. His sacrificial love is the perfect reminder of how we need to take care of each other. His presence binds us in purpose and braids us with His promises and His peace. Thank you!
Love Forever and Ever, Rockie ;o) ❤

Dear God,
Thank you for blessing our marriage and knitting our hearts together. May my blogging friends find that same peace and grace and purpose in life. May they sense Your guidance in their relationships and be braided with You. Amen.
In His Care, Jan

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Let the light of God shine on your relationship,
be central to your lives,
and braid you together with peace and purpose.
God bless you!


See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Twelve Ways to Beat the Virus


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In the midst of this pandemic,
With germs spreading far and wide,
We need to be extra cautious –
In TRUST we must abide.

Trusting isn’t foolishness –
It isn’t abandoning MASKS.
Trusting is OBEDIENCE –
Doing what God and SCIENCE asks.

Trusting isn’t carelessness –
It isn’t gathering in bunches.
Trusting is PRAYER and AWARENESS
And listening to our hunches.

This virus is quite deadly –
Unpredictable at best –
So we need to TAKE IT SERIOUSLY,
Don’t give the bug a test!

STEER CLEAR OF CROWDS,
And WASH your HANDS often,
Trust in the Lord and prayer,
While avoiding someone coughin’.

In the midst of this pandemic,
With family and friends in Harm’s Way,
We need to trust the Lord, yes –
But listen to scientists and obey!

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Did you catch the twelve?
I want to make them clear.
Here they are spelled out –
Obey and avoid fear!

Twelve Ways to Keep COVID-19 Away:

1. Be cautious 
2. Trust in Science
3. Trust in God 
4. Pray
5. Obey  
6. Be aware
7. Take it Seriously
8. Wear a Mask
9. Wash Hands Often
10. Avoid Crowds
11. Socially Distance
12. Don't Give the Bug a Test 

God Bless You, my friends.
May He keep you safe and healthy.
May we all do our part to help keep this bug at bay!

Please pray for the Zufferey Family
in Switzerland
(my son-in-law’s cousin,
who was our 1980-81
AFS exchange student).
ZuZu, Celia, and Jeremy
all have tested positive.

Pray for all those affected by this nasty bug.
Dear Lord, may they beat it…
And emerge with no lasting side-effects.

Please give them new strength, too.
DeAna

Lord, keep our daughter, DeAna,
in Switzerland
and all her family

safe.

Amen

(From “Best in Europe”
Switzerland
has become one of the worst
in new cases this week.
Pray for that country…
and all those facing this virus.)


Do you have a loved one who is in Harm’s Way
or is suffering from COVID?
Tell me – and I will add his/her name to my prayer list.


Bee well!!
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

The Power of Friendship


“Celebrating the Power of Friendship” is the title of a month-long focus on a friend’s chosen devotional website. On the site today, it said: “Although we are not currently meeting in person, there is no distance between souls and the bond of friendship we share…”

I feel that bond of friendship with you, my WordPress friends, just as I do with family and friends who have reached out to Bob & me during this past week of death and tribulation. Thank you so much!

I can’t count the billions
Of dollars my friends are worth.
They make living worthwhile;
They fill my life with mirth.

When times are sad and troubling,
They reach out with care and love.
Friends are earthly angels
Sent from heaven above.

My friend sent this card to me;
It came right out of the blue,
When I really needed it the most.
Do your friends do that for you?

I hope you have some friends
Who tromp daily on your heart,
Leaving footprints all over it.
I’m here to tromp on yours. Let’s start!

There is power in such friendships.
They turn dark days into bright.
They listen and they love us, and
They help things turn out right.

Thank you for being the sunshine in my darkest days.

Thanks for popping in.
Thanks for being the friends who watch and sit and read with me.
Wish you could walk and eat with me, too.
Enjoy the kids’ song below. It’s a catchy tune.
It’ll have you singing all day long!!

Have a Fabulous Friday.
I love you!
See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Hold On!


What do you need to hold on to?

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At this stage in my life, I don’t need to buy anything else
(except maybe food to sustain Bob & me
and a plane ticket or two to travel
to see our kids when it’s safe to do so)
… but I need to get rid of things instead.

How about you? If you were given this prompt,
“Hold on to your ____,”
how would you fill in the blank?
Ann Kaplow tickled my creative funny bone with her post today:

Day 2886: Hold on to your …

Posted on October 19, 2020 by Ann Koplow

Check it out and see some of the things she identified.
Here are a few things I think I should hold on to:

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Hold on to your umbrella;
Let the wind carry you away.
Hang on and float high
To a joyous, better day.

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Hold on to your future
Let it carry you to the sky,
To days of brighter sunshine.
Let it carry you up high.

Hold on to your faith;
Let it carry you to love.
Let it bring you greater wisdom
And powers from above.

Photo by Alina Vilchenko on Pexels.com

Hang onto your head;
Keep your intellect intact.
Be cautious and discerning;
Know all you hear ain’t fact.

Hold onto your friends,
But remind them to wear masks.
That was Anne Kaplow’s prompt.
Be safe – is all she asks.

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Hold on to earth’s hope
For a better, safer world.
Be kind to our planet –
Don’t let this virus stay unfurled.

What do your think we should hold on to?

I’m gonna hold on to Bob.
I’m feeling so blessed that he is feeling so much better.
Did I tell you that the afternoon my sis died
was the day he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure?

I’m gonna hold on to our wonderful doctor
who stayed long after her “shift” was over –
and ordered blood work, x-rays, and an EKG,
and stayed til the results came in.
Then she walked us up the stairs to the front door
to see how Bob did with climbing stairs.
Then called the next morning to
check on him and offer encouragement
and an appointment this week
for an echocardiogram.

Yes, I’m gonna hold on to that wonderful doctor!!

And this guy:


We have had so many friends
and family members praying for us.
God is good.
All the time.
He put a song of praise in my heart.
God hears and answers prayer!


Life is looking up.
We’re holding on!
{{{Hugs}}} to you.
You hold on, too.
Love ya,
JanBeek

Be An Intrepid Christian!


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An intrepid Christian
Is resolute and fearless,
Has fortitude and endurance,
But is never cheerless!

An intrepid Christian
Is teachable and submissive,
Attentive and humble,
But never repressive.

An intrepid Christian
Is expectant and devout,
Delivers The Word quietly –
But rarely has to shout!

An intrepid Christian
Demonstrates integrity,
Walks the Talk –
But never belittles you or me.

If you believe Donald Trump is a Christian, did you listen to his belittling of Savannah Guthrie after his last Town Hall meeting? Think about the way he insults reporters who are questioning him. Be honest with yourself. Can this man we call our president really be a Christ follower? I am so fed up with his insults to women that I cannot remain quiet any longer. Listen to this!!

If you are an Intrepid Christian,
And you have the right to vote
In the United States of America,
Please listen and take note.

Please help us return to
Decency and civility here.
Help us elect a kind and capable team
And listen to the U.S. cheer!

Don’t forget to vote
if you haven’t already!


PLEASE believe me when I say
The Democrats will not take your guns away.
The Democrats will not let illegal immigrants in
to take all your money and jobs!
The Democrats believe in the Constitution;
They will not destroy it.
They will improve our immigration system,
create safer gun laws,
protect Medicare
and preserve coverage of those with
pre-existing conditions.
Democrats will restore our foreign relations.
The Democrats will not kill all the unborn babies.
The right to control our own bodies
is not synonymous with unwarranted abortion!

As a life-long Christian and Republican
who has become a Democrat recently
(for obvious reasons),
I believe in the Right to Life.
But I also think a woman who carries a baby
because of rape or incest, or a woman
whose life is endangered
has the right to choose.
Don’t you?

Weigh the rhetoric and please believe me…
Joe Biden and Kamala Harris
are Intrepid Christians!!


Can’t we just LOVE ONE ANOTHER
and stop hurling insults??

Thanks for visiting.
See ya tomorrow.

Love,
JanBeek

Halloween is Coming


Halloween is coming; it was
My favorite holiday as a child.
The Wizard of Oz is a theme
That lets your imagination go wild!

Do you have a favorite costume
You wore for Trick-or-Treating fun?
My grandchildren loved to wear
Their costumes. What’s you favorite one?

Yesterday I posted a blog
About my sis and her holiday clothes.
She was a fun and quirky aunt
Who will be missed, Heaven knows!

Do you have a quirky, memorable
Person in your family who knows
Holidays are perfect times to celebrate
And whose cheerfulness always shows?

Our Boston, TazE, will have to be
The costumed member of our family
Who takes that quirky place this year.
Want to Trick-or-Treat with me?

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Just 15 more days to get ready…
Do you celebrate Halloween?
It’s not my favorite holiday anymore …
What does it really mean?

Real Meaning of Halloween

“Hallow” — or holy person — refers to the saints celebrated on All Saints’ Day, which is November 1. The “een” part of the word is a contraction of “eve” — or evening before. So basically, Halloween is just an old-fashioned way of saying “the night before All Saints’ Day” — also called Hallowmas or All Hallows’ Day.

Modern day trick-or-treating is a confluence of various traditions. Ancient Celts dressed up as evil spirits in order to confuse demons, according to Smithsonian Magazine.

In medieval England, “soulers” would go around begging rich folk for “soul cakes” on Halloween. Instead of threatening to play tricks, however, they’d pray for peoples’ souls in return for the cake, according to “The Compleat Teacher’s Almanack.”

Throughout medieval Europe, mummering — dressing in disguises and visiting neighborhoods while dancing, playing music, and doing tricks — was popular on major feast days.

TIME reported Irish and Scottish immigrants brought “souling” to the States in the 1800s. But modern day trick-or-treating didn’t catch on in the US until the 1920s.

The practice was pretty controversial into the 1950s, though. According to the American Journal of Play’s “Gangsters, Pranksters, and the Invention of Trick-or-Treating,” many adults raised “stern objections” to trick-or-treating over the decades, as it was often viewed as a form of extortion.

Thing of the Past?

With adulthood and research, finding out the origins and true meaning of “All Hallows’ Day,” and with the onset of unsafe “treats” being distributed to innocent children by “sick” adults, and with the dangers of this current pandemic, Halloween may have to become a “thing of the past.”

What do you think?

Trick or Treat!
I’d rather have roses than candy!!

Aren’t these beautiful?
They were a gift of cheer –
Wishing us health and
offering condolences
during this crazy week
of roller coaster emotions.


Wasn’t that kind?
If I came “Trick-or-Treating to YOUR door,
what would be your favorite treat to offer?

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com


I’ve been known to hand out a tube of toothpaste and a toothbrush.
With all that candy, the kids’ll need my “treat!”

Love ya, my friends.
Thank you for all your words of comfort.
Hugs –
See ya tomorrow,
JanBeek

My Sis, Sally, Died Today


Me with Mom and Sally

Today my sis, Sally, died.
She was only a year and a half older than I.
As children, Mom often dressed us alike.
People thought we were twins.

As adults we looked so much alike, too, that our long-time friends sometimes called me Sally.

When you lose your only sibling,
A part of you dies with her.
Sally came every Thanksgiving from CA
To spend the holiday with us in Montana.

Sally with oregano

Sally always came with an extra suitcase.
She filled it with oregano that grew in her back yard.
She spent most of the week here at the kitchen table or counter
Picking the leaves off the oregano stems.

I have a couple of quart jars left of her herbs.
When they are gone, another part of her
Will disappear – You can’t find oregano that fresh –
Not in a store, that’s for sure! Can you smell it?

Sally with our son, Ty’s kids

Sally was a nut about holidays!
She had a closet full of clothes
Sorted by the holiday they represented
And she loved every one of them.

She joined her nieces and nephews
For Halloween and Christmas,
For Easter and birthdays, and
For special lunches and dinners.

Sam, Faith, Hope and Jordan with Aunt Sally at Burger King
Sally loved giving gifts and playing games
Sally & Jordan shared a Dec. 20th birthday
They continued to share even as Jordan entered his teens and young adult years.
Bonnie was Sally’s best friend. They enjoyed many River Cats games together.
Sally & Ty

Naturally Sally was there to celebrate her daughter, Jodie’s wedding.
Here she is at the wedding reception, dancing with her nephew,
our son, Ty, the daddy of those nieces and nephews.
And she was there of course, for her grandson, Liam’s baptism.

Bill & Jodie Welge (Sally’s dughter) and their infant son, Liam

Sally loved spending time with her grandson, Liam.
During the last few years of her life, she moved
from California to PA to be near her daughter, son-in-law,
and her dear grandson, Liam.

Besides her family and holidays, Sally had a love of dogs.
She inherited her poodle, Gigi, from our mom after Mom died.
Gigi was stolen from Sally when Gigi was about 4 years old.
Gigi was gone nine years, but Sally never gave up the idea of
finding her!

Sally & Gigi

Sure enough, nine years after the theft, Sally received a call from a veterinarian.
Gigi had a chip, and when she was found wandering, dirty, toothless, and infected,
the person who found her brought her to a vet. The chip had Sally’s number.
Can you imagine her joy at that reunion after nine long years? Gigi lived to be 15.
Dear friends of ours here adopted her and gave her a loving last 9 months of life
when Sally moved to PA and could not take Gigi with her to the Masonic Home.

Sally & Jodie at Christmas in Pennsylvania
Sally with me at Christmas in California
Can’t deny we’re sisters, can we?
Last Thanksgiving in Sewickley, PA

Although Alzheimer’s robbed my sis of her memory and ultimately of her ability to converse, she was tuned in and enjoyed the concert Liam and I presented in her nursing home last Thanksgiving. I am so glad Bob & I were able to go – and we had that time with her. My life is filled with wonderful memories of times we shared together.

I’m pregnant with Ty – Bob’s next to Sally & Dave with Denise
and that’s our Mom & Dad in front
Bob & me with Sally & Dave – one Easter waaaay back when!

Sally had a life filled with service to others through her church, the Hospital Auxiliary, the Girl Scouts (she led a troop for at least 50 years) and her favorite organizations, Rebekahs and Eastern Star.

Her life also was one of tragedy (her oldest daughter died at age 19 and her husband, Dave, was only 60 when he died suddenly and unexpectedly of a heart attack). But Sally was a trooper. She continued to volunteer and give of her time and talents to others.

I was blessed to grow up with a sister who had such a big, giving heart,
She will be missed by all of us who loved her. But her spirit will live on.

Sally and Jan
at my daughter, DeAna’s wedding in 1987

I know her spirit will recognize mine when I join her in Heaven someday.
Meantime, rest in peace, dear Sis. I will carry your love with me always.

Thanks for visiting today my friends.
Treasure every sunrise.
Enjoy every sunset.
Tell your siblings how much you love them.

See ya tomorrow, God willing!
JanBeek

Change Poetry to Prose


We were invited by dVerse Poetry to write a Prosery.

I forgot that prose is not written in poetry format. I wrote my 144 words as a poem. Let me change it to prose for the sake of following the instructions!!

Written for Monday’s Prosery prompt at dVerse.
Kim hosts today, asking us to include the line “From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time” in a piece of flash fiction, exactly 144 words in length. The line is from D. H. Lawrence’s poem Humming Bird.

Ole Tom

We see Ole Tom with his bent shoulders and thinning torso. We see his wind-weathered face and his thinning gray hair. He sits in my living room strumming his guitar, singing the fourteenth verse of an old folk song. He has a thousand such songs tucked into his head, along with the entire books of Matthew and Acts.

We see him as an ancient sage. We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time. His mind is sharper than mine ever was, and he shows no signs of stopping.

Each Christmas Ole Tom recites the Christmas story from the book of Acts, never reading, just expounding, amazing the congregation with his masterful memory. His is the epitome of a wise man: Ninety-three going on thirty. Never see him as old and never underestimate Ole Tom. Turn that telescope around!

Bob, Jan & Tom
New Years Eve, 2011

Now you have been told which “line” was dictated to be used… did you guess it in the previous form where it was two lines in the poem?

Whenever I see or hear a guitar,
I always think of Tom.
And I never looked at him through the wrong end of a telescope!

Thanks for checking back in
to see poetry changed to prose.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Join Me with a Prosery


I’m quoting Kim from Writing in North Norfolk. “I’m welcoming dVerse poets to Prosery, when we ask you to write a very short piece of prose that tells a story, with a beginning, a middle and an end, in any genre of your choice: flash fiction, nonfiction, or creative nonfiction. 

As it’s a kind of flash fiction, we have a limit of 144 words; an additional challenge is to hit 144 exactly. The special thing about Prosery is that we give you a complete line from a poem, which must be included somewhere in your story, within the 144-word limit. You may change punctuation but you are not allowed to insert words in between parts of the quotation.

Ole Tom

We see Ole Tom with his bent shoulders and thinning torso
We see his wind-weathered face and his thinning gray hair
He sits in my living room strumming his guitar
Singing the fourteenth verse of an old folk song
He has a thousand such songs tucked into his head
Along with the entire books of Matthew and Acts
We see him as an ancient sage
We look at him through the wrong end
Of the long telescope of Time
His mind is sharper than mine ever was
And he shows no signs of stopping
Each Christmas Ole Tom recites the Christmas story
From the book of Acts, never reading, just expounding
Amazing the congregation with his masterful memory
He is the epitome of a wise man: Ninety-three going on thirty
Never see him as old and never underestimate Ole Tom
Turn that telescope around!

Bob, Jan & Tom
New Years Eve 2011

What fun to participate in dVerse poets’ invitation to Prosery.
It’s a challenge to come up with a 144 word poem,
but not when you have such a delightful subject as Ole Tom.
How we loved him!!
He will live in our hearts forever.

Do you have an ole Sage in your life?
Count your blessings if you do…
and consider joining the fun at dVerse Poets!

Were you able to find the “complete line from a poem”
that I was required to insert as part of my Prosery?
Which do you think it was?

See ya tomorrow.
Have a Terrific Tuesday!
Love,
JanBeek

What a Friend!


Today I received in my “Messages” a picture of a dear friend who is fighting cancer. She is in a hospital bed at home. Her family is gathered around and her BFF (best friend forever) is on her way to be at her bedside. My heart goes out to the BFF and to my friend’s husband and children. Seeing a friend preparing to leave this earth is soooo hard!

But, my dear friend is a devoted Christian, and she knows where she is headed. She does not fear death, because she has a friend in Jesus – and she believes in God and His promises. It’s comforting to know where you will spend eternity. It’s just hard on those left behind.

Today’s sermon at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church was the perfect topic for this day when my heart is aching because my dear friend and her family are suffering.

Today we had a guest minister, Phil Taylen. Here are my

Sermon Notes on: “Friendship Sharing”

Friendship is a special thing.
In it we all are connected.
In the New Testament, we see how
In God’s friendship, we all are protected.

The best part of friendship is
Sharing with each other the Good News,
Asking one another and telling them
Of how Jesus opens new views.

God cares about our friendship.
He opens His arms to you.
Through Christ, He came to show us
How to love as He loves: True.

As believers, we need YES faces;
Our countenance should show Trust.
God’s light should shine through us.
Radiate His love; We MUST!

To communicate God’s love
We must be trustworthy and fair.
We must share our eternal vision,
And tell our friends we’ll all be there!*

(*there is our eternal home
with Christ and one another)

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

Share the simplicity of scripture,
Be sure the promise of God is heard.
He gave His only begotten Son
To save our souls. Believe His Word!

What a Friend We Have in Jesus!

Lean on Him and His promises.
Know that when your Christian friends
Leave this earth, they are going
To heaven … where eternal life never ends.

See you “there,” my friends!

See ya tomorrow.

Pray for my friend, Gloria, will you?
And I pray for you…
that you have faith in His promises, too.
Love ya,
JanBeek

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