We ALL want to make a positive difference in this world – right?
One way to make a difference is simply to be kind and helpful! But there is no “simply” about that.
It takes a concerted effort sometimes to respond with kindness. Our natural, almost automatic, first response when someone is being mean or unkind to us is to snap back… at least that’s the way it used to be with me.
It has taken me 80 years of living to learn to guard my tongue! And sometimes, even now it gets the best of me. But I usually am quick to realize it when that happens, and I am never reluctant to ask for forgiveness.
The problem is sometimes I am too self-centered to even realize I have hurt someone with my words!! That never happen to you, does it?
I guess I’m not perfect yet.
Another way to make a difference is simply to plant love. But there is no “simply” about that either.
Sometimes the seeds of adversity and division get the best of me.
I watch something on TV or I read something in a magazine or newspaper that is hateful or just plain false and deceptive. And I let that simmer in my soul. I want to lash out at the TV person or rip up the newspaper.
But surely that never happens to you!
Just Love One Another
It’s easy to say, but ever so hard to do! But if we want to make a positive difference in this world, it has to be all about LOVE first and foremost!
Be Forgivingof Yourself
Even when we try hard, we may not always be the loving person God intended us to be.
But we can make a difference if we learn to forgive ourselves for those mistakes of character. Others see and are encouraged by our ability to overcome!
Be Forgiving of Others
Another way to make a difference in this world is simply to be forgiving of others. But there is no “simply about that either.
Sometimes I want to use a “mad” icon. “Sad” just doesn’t do it. It’s not enough.
I want to show the world that what was said or done just makes me angry.
But anger never solved any of this world’s problems. It only exacerbates them, ya know?
Forgive the ones who anger you, Pray for your understanding of their position. Try to figure out where they’re coming from. Forgive their ignorance (hah!)!
Disagree without being disagreeable!
Be a PeaceMaker
And yet another way to make a positive difference in this world is to be a PEACEMAKER!
Pray daily for the wisdom,
obedience to God,
and the humility
that it takes to be a peacemaker, and to make a positive difference in this world.
It’s not a task for the Lone Ranger, the Lone Stranger, or the Lone YOU! It takes the LOVE of the HOLY SPIRIT working in you.
Know that God is your heart… so Pay attention to His Leading!
He will always lead you to Love, Peace, and Making a Positive Difference!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
I’m headed off to TOPS. (Those are my friends who help me keep the weight off. They make a difference in my life!)
Yesterday I posted “What’s Important?” and listed concerns that are most important to me. A year ago I might have answered that question far differently. God, Family, Friends… those will always remain high on my list of “What’s Important?”
But yesterday my #1 answer was Climate Change. I am among a growing number of people world-wide who is realizing how real and devastating this issue is.
As a result of my #1 concern being listed as a “tag” on my blog, I had the opportunity to become familiar with a new (to me) blog site: Climate Change Take Action Now. I thank them for leading me to their link: https://newsonclimatechange.com/
When I logged on there, I was delighted to find a link to DiCaprio’s inspirational speech to the United Nations on the climate change topic:
Which of these 15 suggestions are NOT already part of your morning routine? The one that’s lacking for me is exercise! So, if I’m gonna “Walk the Talk” as I promised myself, I guess I better start walking, huh?
It’s another beautiful morning here. I’m outta here.
Forgiveness is a two-way street. Not only do we need to forgive others, but we need to forgive ourselves. Sometimes that is much harder than forgiving others.
So, as this decade of 2010 to 2019 ends, commit your heart to forgiveness. Let go of any hurts from others. Tell them so. And let go of those regrets that creep into your heart and cause you to scold yourself.
None of us is perfect. We all make mistakes. We all say things and do things and think things that we regret afterward. Forgive yourself … and move on!
Let those mistakes (sometimes intentionally placed in our lives … so not mistakes at all) be building blocks toward a better you! With 20/20 CLARITY, let this new decade be a time of strength and sincerity, compassion and courage, challenge and change, faith and fearlessness.
Know in the midst of life’s struggles that you are never alone. In my devotional this morning, I am reminded of God’s love for me and His changelessness with Ps. 59:10
It is our fluctuating emotions that cause us to ask for forgiveness and then take back the guilt that God has taken from us. We try to forgive, but we remember. We remember our own wrongs. We suffer the wrongs others have inflicted on us, carrying them in our hearts long after we think we have given them to God. The devo from Guideposts for today tells me, “Stop that!”
Accept His forgiveness. Acknowledge His death that took away our sins. Know His changeless love and His unconditional acceptance of us. And pray with me the prayer Rebecca Barlow Jordan wrote as our “Faith Step” for today in the last entry of Daily Guideposts 2019:
“This coming year, as I confess any wrong things in my heart to Jesus, (either my own wrongs or those inflicted on me by others), remind me to thank Him for His changeless love and acceptance. (And help me imitate His unconditional love as I interact with others… and with myself.
I’m excited to let you know I have another essay appearing in the current issue of AlexandriaLiving magazine!
It’s always a thrill to work with the kind folks at the magazine and as an Alexandria, Virginia resident it was especially fun to contribute.
Below is the link to my piece in the online version of AlexandriaLiving. Check it out, and if you like, please comment on the magazine website in the space just below the essay. We would love to hear your feedback!
My blog, “Loving One Another” is all about how to love, encourage, and inspire one another. Cristian Mihai of “The Art of Blogging” says we need to be able to express in 6 words or less why we blog and what we blog about.
I answered his query saying, “I spread love and inspiration daily.” That’s six words.
I augmented my answer by adding, “I plan to inspire, inform, entertain, and encourage.”
If we want to shine, to inspire and encourage others, to be unconditional, effective lovers, are there some tips we need to keep in mind?
Yes, I believe there are habits that lovers of people, lovers of animals, lovers of nature and of God, need to develop. I think they include these SEVEN HABITS OF EFFECTIVE LOVERS:
1. Listening with Intent
Effective lovers perk up their ears and really hear the voices, the sounds, the cries and laughter, the heart of everything around them.
2. Seeing non-judgmentally
Effective lovers look for the best in others. They see what they’re looking for. They see the person, animal or object as the Creator intended them/it to be. They imagine perfection, wholeness, beauty. They bring out the love that’s embedded in what they see.
3. Feeling with Compassion& Empathy
Effective lovers feel what others are feeling. They are compassionate and empathetic … not sympathetic. They don’t look at someone or something and say, “Oh, I feel so sorry for you/it.” They try to put themselves in the others’ shoes. They look for solutions. They offer real help. They fertilize the dying bush or bring the parched animal a drink.
4. Reaching Out
Effective lovers extend a helping hand without being asked. Their “feelers” are out looking for ways to help. They have a servant’s heart.
5. Taking Time
A habit effective lovers develop is the act of taking time for others. Whether it is visiting a friend who’s sick, caring for a pet while its owner is away, watering a garden, going to a nursing home, building a birdhouse or helping to complete a project, the effective lover is ever ready.
Knowing your own power is limited, knowing we’re all imperfect mortals who need divine guidance, effective lovers pray for others, pray for world peace, pray for endangered species and help in times of disasters and seemingly insurmountable struggles. Effective lovers reach for help beyond themselves.
We know our own limitations, and we know our own weaknesses. We know we do not always exhibit the kindness, patience and gentleness that effective lovers need. So, we ask for divine guidance and help from the One who strengthens us.
Effective lovers have staying power. They are tenacious. They are in it for the long haul. They are not quick to let go. Instead, they continue to love through thick and thin.
Like this beautiful spider web that is covered with snow, but hanging on for dear life as the wind howls outside my sanctuary, this web has a job to do. It will capture any insects that survive the storm … it will provide food for the spider that created it. It hangs on and fulfills its given purpose.
Being an Effective Lover involves listening, seeing, feeling, reaching, taking time, praying, and being tenacious… and it’s worth all that effort because you know:
“What you bring into the lives of others comes back into your own.”
Do you agree with these 7 habits or qualities for “Effective Lovers”? Do you have others you might add?
You’ve been a very good month –
Messages each day.
My take-aways were
Great daily inspirations –
Always carry them!
When glancing to the right,
You see numbers 1-15,
Next page to 30.
Every day I write
The take-away to carry
In heart to guide me.
It provides a list
That inspires me to live
Thankful for blessings.
Please strip me of me
Until nothing remains but
These are my daily prayers.
It was an inspirational
Daily Guideposts take-aways for each day of September –
Carry these with you:
Thank God for my family and friends
God bless all our laborers
Thank God for our “hood”
God is Always with me
Stay Connected in Love
Rely on God’s Strength
Walk in Step with Jesus
Listen to God’s Wisdom
Lord, Increase my Insight
Trust God with my Dreams
Never Forget 9-11
He walks with Me
Give Love Unconditionally
Jesus Forgives “Missteaks”
Be Consistent; and Treasure People
Use Your Gifts to Praise God
Live in the Hope of the Lord
Focus on God’s Grace
A Hug Includes Letting Go
Bless my Former Students (Thank You, Lord, for giving me chances to positively influence others)
Lift my Hands, Heart & Voice to Praise God
I Am at Home in my Soul with God
Make Wise Choices
Lord, Hear my Prayers
Serve with Compassion
Pray for a Cancer Cure
Thank God for His Gift of Peace
Take Courage in All Circumstances
Lean on God Always
Many of these daily themes in Daily Guideposts were the inspirations for my daily blogs.
The end of the “Daily Devotions for Living by Faith” called These Days features three coloring pages. I will write about them tomorrow … telling about the way coloring can relieve stress.
As September ends and I send this book off to my grandson, I thank God for the people who write these daily messages – and for the way in which they inspire my life. I hope they inspire yours today, too. Thank you for sharing!God bless you!