Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘community’

Z = Zeal!


Zeal!

Zeal is the zest of life!
It’s the spice that adds joy to our days.
It’s the the ingredient that allows our passion to take the reins.

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What are your passions?
What are you zealous about?

As we wrap up this A-Z series designed to help us
add more meaning and find more purpose in life,
what is your take-away?

 

I often have quoted Frederic & Mary Ann Brussat
from their book, Spiritual Literacy.
Here is what they had to say about ZEAL:

“Be passionately aroused by life.
Cherish every moment,
honor your commitments,
and treasure your kinship with all.”

Be Passionate About Life

What are you passionate about?
Make a list of those things, people, ideas, places
that arouse your passions.
Prioritize them, if you can,
and decide to
zealously do something positive
about each one of them this week.

 

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Here are a half a dozen things I am passionate about:

1. FAITH

2. FAMILY

3. FRIENDS

4. COMMUNITY

5. NATURE

6. SERVING

To “zealously do something positive about each one” of them this week, I will:

1. Practice my faith by attending church and teaching Sunday School, singing in the choir, and leading as moderator for our Presbyterian Women. I will “walk the talk” as I strive to apply the principles Jesus is teaching me in His Word. Practice the principle this JanBeek.blog is built on: “Loving One Another.”

2. Devote time and energy to keeping in touch with family far and near. Treasure time with those who are here now… my husband, our daughter and son-in-law, grandson, granddaughter and her family. We are so blessed! Let the ones far away know they are precious to us, too. Write them, pray for them, call, text, or visit them. Never take them for granted.

3. Exercise hospitality as I invite friends to come for dinner, or treat a friend to lunch. Write cards of appreciation, those “Just Because” kinds of cards… not waiting for a birthday, anniversary, illness, or some other “expected” time to get a message. Pray daily for my friends, just as I do my family and our community and world leaders. Put their faces up to God and ask His blessings on them. He knows their needs better than I do.

4. Serve my community in the ways I am able: Food Bank, volunteer sous-chef at the Sr. Center, “man” the desk at the Medical Center as a “Purple Lady,” and visit friends at the nursing home (sometimes with my accordion in hand so we can sing “Oldies but Goodies” together). Shop locally – and express appreciation to our local merchants.

5. Appreciate and help to preserve nature. Pick up after myself. Give to the Wildlife Preserve, the Nature Conservancy., and other worthwhile organizations that work to enhance and protect our environment. Admire the mountains. Appreciate the deer and antelope who roam our grasslands here on Pintail Ridge, and admire the beauty of our birds – and even the cute little rodents (the hawks have to have something to feed on!).

6. Give Time! By now you know serving is a passion of mine – because I am retired and I am blessed with good health and TIME. In the list above I mentioned many ways I intend to serve. One I didn’t mention was my friend, Raymond, whom I visit weekly. He lives alone and his family is out of state. As long as I am able, I hope to look for those in need of what I have to give, and to serve in whatever way the Lord leads me. I am zealous about serving!

Cherish Every Moment

Honor Commitments

Be Zealous About Life (every day is a gift) – unwrap it!

 

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God Bless You, dear blogging friends.

Thank you for journeying with me through this A-Z series.

See you tomorrow!

Receptivity is Key


In my introduction to this
A-Z series,
I wrote the following:

I want a greater understanding of:

  • who I am,
  • how to decode the world around me,
  • what my purpose is here on earth,
  • and how I can live more intentionally to fulfill that purpose.

You are here because, hopefully, you have embraced the journey, the exploration of ways to add more meaning to life. Thank you for joining me!!

Today’s letter is “R”
I have chosen the word “Receptivity”

The picture below is Logan Crowley, my darling neighbor,
with me. She received a scholarship
award of $1000 to assist her venture into college at
Montana State University next school year.
EAA stands for Ennis Arts Association,
of which I am an active member.

Seeking, applying, striving for what we need,
and being receptive when gifts come our way
are important qualities for
adding more meaning
and finding greater purpose
in life.

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Everyday Receptivity

It is easy to be receptive every day when someone is giving you a thousand bucks, right?

But what about other areas of everyday receptivity? How do we remain open to all that’s out there for us?

Tune in to Inspiration

Today I listened to a podcast on Bob Goff’s “Love Does” website:
https://dreambigframework.com/podcast-1/amygrant

Bob is a wonderful, whimsical lawyer/author/inspirational speaker who has written three best-selling books, Love Does, and Love Does For Kids, as well as Everybody Always. His Facebook website, https://www.facebook.com/bobgoffis/ , will introduce you to his “Dream Big” workshops and lead you to the podcasts that are so heart-warming.

In a recent podcast, Bob was interviewing very talented and lovely Amy Grant. Amy is a Grammy Award-winning Gospel singer who was inducted into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame and has written a book, Mosaic: Pieces of My Life So Far.

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The podcast, “What If We…?” was so full of wisdom that I listened to it several times and wrote to Bob Goff asking permission to quote some of the most poignant statements. I received an affirmative response. I posted on Amy’s Facebook page telling her of this blog and hoping it’s okay with her, too, that I quote some of her delightful comments.

One of the messages that rang clear was:

Be Open to Vulnerability Every Day!

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Everyday receptivity involves the concept
Bob referred to in this podcast
when he said,
“Be where your feet are!”

Bob Goff and Amy Grant were talking about the subjects of vulnerability and community.

You need to be wiling to be receptive,” Amy suggested. “It takes the hard things in life to pull you into the community that then gives you connections to pursue something beautiful.”

Bob affirmed,
“Vulnerability to say ‘I have a need’ leads you into community…
Some of the best advice I’ve ever gotten has been a hug!”

Be Receptive to Dreams

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“If you have a dream or an ambition,” Bob Goff said,
“let everyone know about it …
Imagine everyone in heaven leaning over the railing,
watching and wondering what’s next!”

I love that image! I have several dreams for my future and the future of my children,  grandchildren and great-grandchildren. I want to capture them in my dream catcher, and then imagine that heaven’s angels are leaning over the railings cheering us on!

Goals/dreams are an important part of living a full and meaningful life. They provide the seeds for our journey toward meeting our life’s purpose.

Amy Grant said, “Make room for the seeds that matter most to [you] to be watered and grown.”

 

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Add Clarity to your Receptivity

“As soon as you have clarity
on why you’re doing what you’re doing,”
Bob Goff said,
“you’ll find the opportunity to actually go for it!”

Go for it! But what is IT?

“It” is the activity that gives you joy!

“It” is the thing you do that moves you in the direction of your ultimate goal.

“It” is finding out what that goal is!!

Bob suggested if we wish to find fulfillment in receptivity to opportunities, we must first:

  • Find the right kind of mischief (he’s all about having fun while we search for meaning and purpose)
  • Find what brings you joy
  • Be receptive to whimsy (Read his book, Love Does, and learn all about whimsy!)
  • Look for opportunities (You’ll find what you’re looking for)
  • Be purposeful, and
  • Celebrate!

Celebrate!

In their conversation, Bob shared that he gave Amy a bell some time ago. She told him that she has it on a post in her back yard (at least I think that’s where she said she posted it).

Amy said, “I think of you each time I see that bell. I ring it every time I move in the direction of a goal.”

Bob asked her about her ultimate goal, and she responded, “I want to die being a fire hose of generosity.”

I love that … not just a garden hose, but a fire hose, spraying out to others the gifts we’ve been given. Celebrate your gifts by giving them generously and freely to others. Yes!

Be Receptive to God’s Guidance and the Wisdom of His Followers

Amy noted that her first mother-in-law was a woman of great wisdom who lived her faith. Once, when Amy was feeling overwhelmed with trying to balance life as a mother of young children with the life of a recording artist who was traveling the world, her mother-in-law told her, “You only need one prayer a day.”

“One prayer?” Amy asked. “What would it be?”

“God, lead me today to those I need –
and to those who need me –
and let something I do today
have eternal significance.”

Bob reacted saying,
“Yes, it’s not just ‘What do I want?’
It’s ‘Who needs something I’ve got?’ “

Ask God to guide you to those who need you.
Ask God to guide you to those you need.
And ask God to help you find meaningful tasks
that might have eternal significance.
Listen to the wisdom of others, and
Be receptive to God’s guidance!

Receptivity and Understanding are the Keys

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Photo by Ylanite Koppens on Pexels.com

Be receptive to the voice of reason within you.

“You need to understand what you want,”
Bob Goff said in this podcast,
“and not just be limited by what you want,
but look at what other people want.
Look for the opportunity to do something
about it in your life and in their lives –
in a hundred creative ways –
then stand back and let God do His thing!”

Stand back, my friends,
be receptive,
and watch God do His thing!

See you tomorrow!

 

 

Bee Wise (Haiku x4)


Bee Wise

 

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Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com

Bee wise and gentle
Try to bee reasonable
Live your destiny

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Photo by Michael Hodgins on Pexels.com

Love one another
And pray for those who hurt you
Live with intention

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Photo by Simon Matzinger on Pexels.com

Just live your best life
Characterized by your faith
Bee the real you

Love and get along
Like bees in community
Spread wisdom’s honey!
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       … “Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life
and is characterized by getting along with others.
It is gentle and reasonable.”

James 3:17 (MSG)

Increased LOVE, like FAITH, takes EFFORT


Loving Takes Effort

 

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Photo by Suraphat Nuea-on on Pexels.com

 

Work at Loving!

Yes, I want to be more kind, more loving, more at peace. Don’t we all? In giving, we receive. Kindness is reciprocal. Peace of mind is a gift to those who live in the fullness of LOVE. We have to work at loving!

Work to Find Time to Know Him

I schedule TIME each morning to be with the Holy Spirit. In my quiet meditation time this morning, I stumbled upon 2Peter 1:2-7 and the question that starts that scripture caught my heart. “Do you want more and more of God’s kindness and peace?”

I was reading the Living Bible, paraphrased – a large print copy that used to belong to my father-in-law. Gratefully, I inherited it when he passed on to his eternal home. This passage was underlined. Grandpa Beekman had double-underlined the next sentence, “Then learn to know Him better and better.”

Meditation and Study Time

Yes, that’s what my sanctuary time is all about each morning. Study God’s Word, and get to know Him better. What are some of the benefits? The rest of this passage spells it out – and I easily connected the idea of “increased faith” with the reality of “increased love.” But there is a long pathway that leads to increased love (which equates to more of God’s kindness and peace). It takes plain old good, hard work!

“For as you know Him better, He will give you, through His great power, everything you need for living a truly good life: He even shares His own glory and His own goodness with us!”

Study to Know His Goodness and His Promises

I have added the capitals to “Him.” The Bible doesn’t capitalize it. For me, the word requires a capital case letter when the him is not just any old him, but the One HIM, our Lord and Savior, God. So, when I share in His glory and goodness, it is special indeed! The scripture doesn’t stop there, though.

2Peter 1, Verse 4- “And by that same mighty power, He has given us all the other rich and wonderful blessings He promised; for instance, the promise to save us from the lust and rottenness all around us, and to give us His own character.” Wow! What a promise!! How can I attain such blessings? Some would say it is totally by His grace. I don’t have to DO anything. Just because I BELIEVE I am His “chosen,” I will receive all these blessings. Well, not according to 2Peter 1: 5-7. Read on!

Work at Increased Faith

“BUT, to obtain these gifts, you need more than faith; you must also work hard to be good, and even that is not enough. For then you must learn to know God better and discover what He wants you to do.” (That’s always a trick to discern what He wants me to do!)

With Patience, Put Aside Your Own Desires

“Next, learn to put aside your own desires so that you will become patient and godly, gladly letting God have His way with you.” (I am reminded of my oldest grandson, Mikey. He’s now 20, but when he was barely able to pull himself up by his mother’s apron strings and stand knee-high next to her, he would tug on that apron as she warmed his bottle in hot water on the stove. Sure he was starving to death, he would cry, “Paaaay-shuns! Paaaay-shuns!” Ah, we long for it even as we are barely able to verbalize a sentence!)

Walk the Path to Grow in the Capacity to Love

“This will make possible the next step, which is for you to enjoy other people and to like them, and finally you will grow to love them deeply.”

Grow to love.
Grow in faith.
Work at it.

Take the path that has “exercise stops” along the way.

  • Exercise your goodness first – the goodness Christ has given you.
  • Then stop to exercise wisdom – the knowledge we gain as we study God’s Word and practice being more and more like Christ.
  • Next, exercise selflessness and self-control, the fruits that the Holy Spirit has planted in you.
  • Practice patience and gentleness.
  • Your next stop on the exercise trail is labeled “Gratitude.” It is there that you learn to be grateful for the gifts you have been given while you focus on the gifts in others.

Put On Your Jesus Glasses

When you put on your Jesus glasses, you see the goodness, compassion, and faithfulness of others as God sees them. When you put on your Jesus glasses and appreciate all that is unique and wonderful about others, you see them as God’s creations. You have exercised enough now to love them.

Love Takes Effort!

Love is a gift worth working for. Thank God, He has freely loved us long before we knew how to love Him back. But now we do! We are getting to know God better and better. Praise the Lord!

The Bottom Line

Yes, the bottom line is the key:

Love One Another.

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What will you do today to demonstrate your love for others?
Tell me about it!

 

Celebrating the Kindness of Strangers


Celebrating the Kindness of Strangers. This video and song sums up the whole “Love One Another” message so poignantly. Thank you, Gina (at Professions for Peace) for posting this and including the words to the song.

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