Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘believing’

Doing Your Best


Parents As Teachers

In today’s COVID-19 world, a lot of parents world-wide have become their child’s primary teacher. Even though many of the students have access to on-line classes, still parents discover they must oversee the learning process. Most parents are not prepared for this role. Are you one of them who sometimes feels overwhelmed by it??

Do Not Despair

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You’re not alone! Many parents who are on this “Stay at Home” routine find themselves thrust into a much more intense teacher role than they ever bargained for. Your time spent with your child/student during this time is precious. You’re making life-long memories. Make them happy ones!

I am a retired educator. I spent more than two decades as an elementary teacher and administrator. During that time, I had the opportunity to experience first-hand how the expectations of others affects our self-evaluations. Our expectation for ourselves affects our self-esteem, too. Just know you are doing your best! Hang in there!

Do Your Best

How do you know when you have done your best? Who helps you determine what your best is?

I learned from a wise educator (Madeline Hunter) in an in-service once upon a time eons ago that the question is not, “Are you smart?” The question is, “How are you smart?” What a difference that makes!

As teachers, coaches, mentors, parents, friends, our task is to look for the natural strengths in others (as well as in ourselves). We all have them. Dig! Find the positives. Build on successes. Learn from, but do not emphasize, failures. Reward achievement.

Build On Strengths

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Did you read my blog a couple days ago when I told you about our adventures on “Lucille” our Polaris Razor? She is a red-head who is a “Ball” – but she required a whole new level of “Do Your Best” when Bob took her into snow that was too deep for her body. Lucille high-centered and Bob was stuck. His best efforts at digging I her out were not good enough. She was not budging!

Nope, Lucille wasn’t going anywhere. She was stuck!

What does this have to do with “Build On Strengths?” Well thank God, we had friends with us – and one of them, Rex, has a wonderful Boy Scout skill: “Be prepared.” He had the necessary equipment to hook up a rope to his ATV and latch the other end of it to Lucille. He pulled our ATV out of that snow… and “saved our bacon!”

Bob & I can learn from Rex’s strengths. Be prepared! Carry a rope and the necessary winch in case of emergency in the future. And when the rope came loose at the end of the reel, Rex taught Bob how to secure it with a set pin so that it would not come loose again. God bless Rex! And as for us… we’re never too old to learn!

Focus on the Positive

My favorite expression when I was counseling teachers was one with poor grammar, but with great truth: “What you pay attention to is what you get more of.”

Want success? Find the best effort and praise it! Find what the student does best and teach through that strength. Sometimes our teaching is by example – people just watch what we do. Certainly our kids are perfect examples of that! It doesn’t work to tell them “Do as I say, not as I do!” They WATCH!!

Teaching is a JOY!

After I retired, I had the fun of teaching adults who had not learned yet how to read. I joined the volunteers in the “Stanislaus Literacy Program” in Modesto, California.

When I met her, Grace was an illiterate adult. She was nearly 40 and she had spent the last 30 years avoiding the world of print. Her “best” was sorting clothes from the dressing rooms at JC Penney and putting them back on the proper racks. No words needed for that task. But she hated being unable to read. She hid it well, but it made her feel “less than.” You can imagine!

Grace enrolled in the adult literacy program and I had the privilege of working with her to unlock the world of print. Sorting letters was a lot like sorting clothes. Matching capital to small case letters, sounds to letters, classifying vowels and consonants. One step at a time, backing up to the beginning, building on her strengths, we did it. The joy in Grace’s life when she discovered she could read menus, street signs, and billboards was palpable! Next step: books. A whole new world opened up to her.

Have you ever watched the light glow in a learner’s eyes when the key to a previously locked skill is found and the door opens? “I did my best” took on a whole new meaning for me!

You can watch that key unlock new learning, new ideas, new attitudes for your child. These days offer parents great opportunities.

Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

Help Break Down Tough Concepts

When anyone is asked to perform at a level above their capabilities, frustration abounds. I’ve had that happen to me. I was put in a place where I was supposed to lead a ZOOM group. Be the host. What? At that time, I didn’t even know what ZOOM was!

But, I WOULD have been capable of that performance, if somebody took the time to show me how.

You have a chance to be that somebody for your child… or for a neighbor or friend. With love and patience, and confidence in his/her ability to catch on, be the somebody who breaks it down. Step by step, lead him/her through the process of knowing how, trusting that s/he CAN.

People need to know that we believe in them. Believe in yourself as a teacher. Do your best! Watch the light dawn. It’s a thrill!

Learn Something New

Everyday is a new opportunity to DO MY BEST. My mother-in-law always said, “No day is complete until you have learned something new.”

There is no better way to encourage a student to continue learning than to be the example who is a life-long learner.

What will I tackle with confidence today?

How about you?

Photo by Tim Gouw on Pexels.com

Tell me about a skill you want to acquire.
Then, Just do it!

See ya tomorrow.

Doing Your Best


Donna Marie Nielsen, a dear fellow blogger shared a gripping story and a marvelous poem on her WordPress blog, The Father’s Feet:
https://thefathersfeet.wordpress.com/2020/04/02/revealing-gods-power/

Please go to her post to read the story and become acquainted with Donna. Here is her poem:

TRIED YOUR BEST 

At the end of my life  

when I stand before the Lord, 

I just want to hear Him say, 

“You tried your best.” 

“You may not have always succeeded 

and yes, there were times 

 when you failed; 

but you never let Me down for  

you tried your best.” 

“The gifts that I gave you, 

you did try to use. 

You may not have always used them, 

indeed many times you did fail, 

but it is okay 

I love you, 

You tried your best.” 

“You listened for my voice. 

You did your best to obey. 

The words that I spoke,  

they pierced your heart and you 

 tried your best 

   to let them change you those days.” 

“You were not perfect,  

I did not create you to be. 

I knew that apple  

would be picked off the tree. 

I know you are not perfect, 

 that is okay with me.” 

I provided my Son to take all that away. 

All I ever wanted from you my dear child 

is to know that you wanted to 

try your best.” 

“Tried your best  

to do the right things, 

tried your best  

to be the best you could be.” 

“In all your relationships, I never did frown, 

I saw you my child, you were  

trying your best.” 

At the end of my life when I stand before the Lord, 

more than all else, with such love in His eyes, 

I want to hear Him say, 

MY child, you 

 TRIED YOUR BEST.” 

-Donna Nielsen

Starts with Mind-Set

Part of trying to do and DOING your best is mind-set. It’s where all the effort begins… in your head and in your heart. If you’ve followed my blog very long at all, you know I begin each day in my “Angel Room.” It’s my favorite room in the house.

I sit in that rocker and enjoy quiet time with God.

In my sanctuary, I pray, meditate, read devotionals and the Bible, and often write letters and cards to friends. Often the inspiration for my blog comes during my sanctuary time.

It Takes Divine Guidance

Before I leave my sanctuary each morning
and walk down the spiral staircase,
I ask for Divine Guidance, I pray,

“Lord, take me where you want me to go today.
Help me meet who You want me to meet.
Tell me what you want me to say.
Help me be what You made me to be.
Show me what You want me to do.
Help me walk in Your Way.”

These days, with the COVID-19 restrictions in place, He doesn’t want me to GO very far from home. The people I meet are usually on ZOOM or MarcoPolo, FaceTime, FaceBook, or here on WordPress. But, I do ask for help with what to say here on my blog, elsewhere on the internet, in phone calls and messages, and on those cards I write.

God helps me live up to WHO He made me to be… and I try my best to follow His lead. That’s all we can do you know: DO OUR BEST!

Great Resources

There are so many great resources out there to help us on our daily walk. Guideposts is one of my go-to sources. I have been reading their Daily Guideposts for at least a decade.

Recently I received a complimentary copy of Strength & Grace, daily devotionals for caregivers. I was tempted to pass it along to a friend who is caring for her recuperating spouse, but then I read a page or two, and I decided it is very pertinent to all of us who are sequestered and taking care of ourselves – and whoever may be living in the house with us.

The inside cover says,
“Everything is possible for one who believes,”
Mark 9:23

Today’s message, April 18th, was titled, “Caregiver Foolishness.” It might have just said, “Our Foolishness,” because we all are foolish at times! We all occasionally make “careless mistakes or unwise decisions.” The message went on to explain:

“Foolishness strikes when we are tired and vulnerable, making us feel even worse.” But don’t stop there, we are told, “The opposite of foolishness is wisdom – God’s specialty. We may be fools, but God is always there with us, ready to carry us when we blunder.”

You HAVE received!

Try Your Best and Believe

So, the good news is: God knows our hearts. God knows our sincere efforts. He shares His wisdom and strength with us.

As long as we rely on God, it’s okay to be foolish at times. After all, we’re mortal. He did not create us to be perfect! Just join the Guideposts prayer team and me:

“God of strength and wisdom, even in my most foolish moments, You are there. I thank You for Your wisdom when I try my best, and for Your grace when my best doesn’t measure up.

I thank You for Your strength when I am weak. Help me always to remember, as Donna Marie wrote in her poem, ‘At the end of my life, when I stand before the Lord, I just want to hear Him say, you tried your best!’

Help me with my mind-set, my adherence to Your divine guidance, and my wise use of the many resources out there to assist my efforts. Help me in my Belief and forgive my doubts.

In Jesus Name,
Amen”

My efforts may not
always be trophy-worthy,
but I try my best!

Thanks for your visit to JanBeek today.
Do your best to have
a restful Saturday night
and a blessed Sunday.

Bee well!!
See ya tomorrow.

Trapped?


Are you feeling trapped?

Know someone else who is?

Rescuing people isn’t like

The funny saying on my apron.

.

I can’t pick you up,

Tip you sideways,

And pour you out

Of your trap.

.

But in all seriousness,

We help rescue one another.

We can help others

Escape their traps.

.

Now don’t look at me

And call me Pollyanna.

I’m not a do-gooder,

But I have a secret.

.

It’s the path to love.

It’s the joy and peace

That are absolutely mine.

The path is Jesus!

.

Yes, the right answer

Was learned on Sunday

Way back when you

Were just a little kid.

.

Your Sunday School teacher

Asked you a question,

And you had the key to answer:

“Jesus!” He is the Way!

.

Don’t believe me?

Give Him a try.

If you’re feeling trapped,

Give your struggles to Jesus.

.

My Lord saved the groom

At the wedding feast.

He turned water into wine

And the guests celebrated.

.

If He can do that,

He can turn your challenges

Into learning opportunities.

He can unlock your traps!

.

I hope you really know

That guy named Jesus

Who came to unlock

The traps that bind us.

.

If He isn’t your friend,

I invite you to get acquainted.

Let Him rescue you.

He stands at your heart door.

.

Open it! Don’t remain

Trapped in a bottle, or

In sorrow, or in pain.

Whatever your question…

.

The answer is simply, “Jesus!”

He came to save us

From our entrapments.

Learn from Him – and be free!

.

Heartache


The Hearings

The heartache

Of yesterday’s

Dying day

Will live on

In our memories

As cinders

In the heap

Of society’s sorrows.

Living in One Accord


(Notes from a sermon based on Romans 8:12-17 delivered by Rev. Jean Johnson. Many of you know, to listen more intently, I take notes on Sunday mornings while listening to the message from the pulpit. Sometimes they are recorded in poetry. Last Sunday was one of those times.)

We all are God’s children.

Some call God, “Our Father.”

But, some folks choose to ignore Him.

They balk and say, “Why bother?”

God speaks to us in Romans,

To us who’ve already heard.

It’s not for the unknowing

Who think the Gospel’s absurd.

Those led by God’s Spirit

Are children of our Lord.

We show our Love and faith

By living in One Accord.

To live in One Accord with God,

We worship, study, love, and pray.

Our witness shows The Spirit

At work in us each day.

We’re living out the reality

Of what already is in us.

Be who you already are

Without works or trouble or fuss.

We used to belong to sin,

But Jesus came to the rescue.

We have reason for joy and acceptance.

Isn’t this Good News to you?

We have assurance of this reality –

This adoption is done, signed and sealed.

We sing praises to God, our Father.

Our case clearly has been appealed.

Knowing God as Father is possible

By Christ’s life, His Word, His death.

That evidence is proof enough;

We affirm it with every breath.

I believe in God, The Father,

In Jesus Christ, my loving Lord.

Thank You for Your Saving Grace.

Now, let us live in One Accord.

Amen?

New Life


… the strength of His — ?

How would you finish that?

Here are my notes from Easter Sunday’s sermon.

What does this message say about God’s strength?

When you die, your body is buried.

Life’s circumstances can bury us, too.

But God comes and unburies us.

That’s the Easter story – true.

God grants us peace in Truth.

He promises to save our souls.

He removes the stone that

Seals us from our goals.

I cannot roll the stones away;

They’re too heavy for me to lift.

But Jesus, in His death & resurrection

Opens the sealed. What a gift!

In His death of pain and suffering,

Jesus took our stones of grief.

He opened The Way to joyful life –

He cleared the Path. What a relief!

Life unburied is a new creation.

Christ took the old – rolled it away.

Christ is risen – your old life’s buried.

What will you do with New Life today?

Feeling: The Language of the Heart


IMG_2732.jpg

 

In his book, Be!, James Dillet Freeman wrote, “Feeling is the unforgotten language of the heart; you could speak it before you learned words, the language of the mind.”

 

What are you feeling now? Feelings were there in your heart before your mind conjured the words to describe them. Sometimes feelings are never put into words. They just lie there in the heart – unforgotten.

 

Often the work of psychiatrists is to draw out those unforgettable feelings and help them take word form. Is it necessary? Is it helpful? Must we define all our feelings? What happens to the wordless ones? Do they impact us?

 

As a small child, I grew up in an Ozzie & Harriet family. My dad went off to work. My mom stayed home and nurtured my sister and me. Then, during World War II, my mom went to work at a bomb plant. My sister went to kindergarten, and I went to stay with my mom’s friend in town. Dad got a military deferment because of his family obligations. He entered into a business venture with his brother-in-law and spent long hours away from home. How did I feel about all that change? I don’t know. I never verbalized those feelings. Do they need words to be real?

 

It’s reassuring to realize that God hears the language of the heart. Before we learn to speak, He hears us. He understands our needs even better than a nurturing, attentive mother comprehends her infant’s cries. Before we know how to say what we’re feeling, God knows. In the depths of our souls, unspoken feelings are stored. Yes, they impact us. They are unforgotten by God as well. Knowing He helps our circumstances “work together for good, for those who believe in Him” gives me great comfort.

 

Remembering now those early days of change, I can see how Mom’s friend (I called her Aunt Artie) impacted my life for good. She took me regularly to the library. She encouraged my ability to read. Hers was a happy, safe haven. The unforgotten language of my heart feels her support and acceptance.

 

What unforgotten language lingers in your heart? My prayer is that you, too, have the reassurance of God’s understanding. May you feel comfort in the dormancy of wordless memories. Let the feeling lie in your heart – unforgotten – but working for good. Believe!

 

 

Jan Beekman

3-1-18

 

What Do You Believe?


happy-easter-religious-cross-banner

Terminal or Eternal?

T ime on
E arth is not
R evolving.
M inutes spent
I n mortality
N ever repeat.
A lways spend each one
L ovingly and joyfully.

Time on earth is terminal.

Some believe in a revolving door called reincarnation, believing they’ll return as another person if the good deeds they do in this lifetime do not raise their karma above the 50% mark. Reincarnation becomes a chance to try it again. Be better, kinder, more loving and more wise the next time around, and eventually the Karmic Board will judge you worthy. Your life will tip the Karmic Scale and you’ll earn the right to resurrection and life in Eternity.

Others believe when this terminal life as a human being is over, they’ll return as a creature. They talk about what it might be like to come back as a family pet or as a bee, a bird, or a lion.

Acknowledging that life on earth is terminal, some think that this is all there is. When we die, that’s it. From dust we come; to dust we will return. No reincarnation. No resurrection. No nothing. What a bleak, meaningless existence that must be!

As for me, I believe life on earth is terminal. I don’t believe I’ll return as another person. I don’t see myself coming back in the form of another earthly creature. But, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that this brief earthly life is not all there is. I want to live in love and peace, to spread joy and hope, and to serve my Maker and others. But, I don’t live giving out blessings because I think I’m earning the right to live eternally. I don’t serve to rack up points and move a notch closer to God in Heaven in the “After-Life.” My place already has been secured. I serve out of gratitude, hopefully with an attitude of generosity – grateful for the fact that the price was paid. Paid by God’s Son.

That’s what Easter is all about. It’s not bunnies and colored eggs, frilly new dresses, fancy hats, and patent leather shoes. It’s about a Man named Jesus, a span of three years of ministry on earth, teaching us how to live and how to treat one another, and a forty day period we call Lent. Lent is the time when Jesus was accused, tried, convicted for our sins, beaten, crucified on a cross, and buried in a tomb. Because He died with, “Father, forgive them,” on His lips, I am assured of my forgiveness. I know because He rose again, and because He lives, and because He promised, “I go to prepare a place for you,” when my terminal life on earth is over, I will take that place in Eternity reserved for me. My soul will live on. This is not the end.

This is what I believe. Easter assures me. This life is only the beginning.

Hallelujah! Happy Easter!

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