Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Posts tagged ‘death’

Embrace Blueness


Reblogging a fellow blogger’s post… Thank you, mkvecchitto!


A Renewing Force Within
by mkvecchitto

Embrace unlimited shades of blue

these delicate hues of sapphire, turquoise, and indigo

Recognize beauty manifested though fragile and scarred

Malleable are lists of sins we accrue

a barter between gains we’ve won and debts we owe

Embrace unlimited shades of blue

Exhausting – holding this constant guard

Even stormy melancholy seas are drenched in

these delicate hues of sapphire, turquoise, and indigo

Healing power pulses in each flaw

like a broken heart that still beats

Recognize beauty manifested though fragile and scarred

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

I was going to call my blog today “Embrace Healing,” but the I came across the post above. I decided that post is a gift in blueness – and it speaks more to my mood today than “healing” does.

Today I am blue… because the note I received from my former student’s mother-in-law, Marilyn, left me with no hope for Ty Stiles’ earthly healing. I studied my broken heart and looked again at Marilyn’s words. “He told Roxann [his wife] that he is ready to go to Heaven.” As I prayed for Ty’s last days, I looked at that broken heart again.

Photo by burak kostak on Pexels.com

Did you ever realize that the two parts of a broken heart are angel’s wings?
Look again!

God’s angels spoke to me and reminded me that death is not final. Jesus conquered death. Ty is a believer. Ty is called according to His purpose. Yesterday Ty’s church members gathered outside his home for a prayer vigil. One of his cousins made the gathering into a FaceTime chat so he could see/hear the prayers being offered on his behalf (and if he was unable to hear and comprehend, at least I know his wife, Roxann, could. The prayers were for her, as well.

As I shared in my “Embrace Reassurance” blog a couple days ago, God hears. God cares. God answers. Sometimes HEALING does not come in the form of a magical cure. Sometimes it comes as RELEASE.

Ty is ready to let go pain. God is asking me to let go my blueness. Release the melancholy that blue sometimes represents, and instead, embrace the “delicate hues of sapphire, turquoise, and indigo” – and the promise of the vast blueness of Heaven where “Healing power pulses” and God is ready to transform the broken heart into angel wings.

God bless Ty Stiles!

My heart is with you as you leave the pain
and embrace the beautiful blueness of Christ’s Kingdom.
Someday I’ll join you there, Ty.
Meantime, keep the Pearly Gates polished!

Thanks for joining me at JanBeek
and thank you for praying for Ty and Roxann.
See you tomorrow.

I CAN Keep it Simple


If you have followed my blog for a month or more,
you have seen this journal before.
The topics are inspired by life and living.
I have written about:
I CAN
Volunteer
Share
Bee Hospitable
Tackle Transitions
etc.

Little did I know when I wrote some of those how difficult some would become. Hospitality requires guests, right? Well, so much for that! Most of our friends are afraid in this pandemic world to socialize.

Little did I know how hard it would become to volunteer. Most of my volunteer activities are forbidden right now. I can’t be a “Purple Lady” at the medical center desk. Our auxiliary couldn’t hold its fund raiser this year. We couldn’t earn the money to donate for new equipment and/or medical supplies as we have done in the past.

Yes, that’s right… $31,700. donated .
And remember, we are a little town of about 1,000 residents!
We couldn’t have our usual Madison Valley
Medical Center Christmas party.

Little did I realize how many opportunities I would have to “Tackle Transitions.” Back in June of 2018 when I wrote on that topic, God knew what was coming, but none of us had a clue. My transitions poem was prophetic:

Times of transition
Can be disconcerting –
Facing the unknown
Running, dodging, skirting.

Life is full of changes;
Nothing stays the same.
Rolling with the punches –
Listening for our name.

In the “roll call” of life,
Showing up to be
Ready for transitions
Sometimes is difficult for me.

But I know the Leader
Is my Maker who decides
What my next assignment is.
In Him my life abides.

So, embrace the coming changes;
Set aside all fear and sorrow.
Joyfully put your hand in His;
He’s gotcha covered for tomorrow.

Choosing JOY in the midst of this pandemic is not easy.
My list of “I Can” do’s has changed this year.
But, I try to keep it positive:

I CAN
Believe
Only Imagine
ReJOYce
Whistle!

You recognize some of those. They became blogging themes.
This morning’s I CAN prompted today’s post:

I CAN
Keep it Simple

No large family gatherings
No stockings stuffed with toys
No sounds of giggling laughter
From excited girls and boys

No trudging through the snow
With accordion on my back
No carols at windows
Or St. Nicholas with his sack

It’s a different sort of year
COVID-19 has changed us quite a lot
We cancelled our travel plans
And we altered what we bought

Christmas Day will be different
We can mourn the things we miss
Or we can vow to keep it simple
Pray for those we cannot kiss

The virus and death took too many –
They’re in Heaven with our Lord
Let us focus on Christ Jesus
And the grace He richly poured.

Believe the Christmas promise
Jesus came to save our souls
Eternity knows no endings
His love comforts and consoles

Keep it Simple!

This nativity is over a hundred years old.
It belonged to my grandmother.
I treasure its simplicity.
My sister is one who went to her eternal home this year.
Sally would have been 83 on December 20th.
Eternity knows know endings.
I will see her again someday.
I Believe!
Thank You, Jesus!!

Have a Beautiful Christmas Week!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
See you tomorrow.

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

Why Forgive?


It’s easy for someone to tell you to forgive
Easy for them to say
But they weren’t the one who was wronged
Advice is cheap today

Photo by NEOSiAM 2020 on Pexels.com

It’s easy for someone to tell you to forgive
Blood’s not on their hands
The ones who performed murderous acts
There: Forgiveness demands

In today’s sermon at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church here in Ennis, Montana, our pastor, Steve Hundley, preached on the scripture found in Matthew 21:33-46. He acknowledged that it is a hard lesson to make sense of. The vineyard owner sent workers to harvest the grapes, and the tenants of the vineyard killed the workers.

The owner sent more workers and the tenants killed them, too.

Photo by Elina Krima on Pexels.com

So the vineyard owner sent his son. Surely the tenants would respect the owner’s son! But, no… they killed him, too!

What are we to make of this story?

Photo by Ian Panelo on Pexels.com

In the midst of such horrendous acts, the bottom line is love. Love the murderers? Love the tenants who killed the people who came to harvest? Love the tenants who killed the owner’s son?

Realize that this parable is about God, the owner of all we have. It’s about the fact that we live in a world under the shadow of the “American Dream; Ownership.”

Maybe the message is “Nobody likes an absent landlord!” The tenants are the ones who worked hard to maintain that vineyard. Then, at harvest time, the owner expects to send others to reap the benefit of their hard work? No, the tenants hated the idea of others coming to reap the harvest!

When the son was sent… the parable is asking us to see that this was the Son, Jesus. He, too was killed. Killed by those who feared this Messiah was going to take what they thought they owned… the kingship, the ownership of the land and its people.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

God did not create us to take ownership of God’s resources. We are the stewards, the caretakers. God’s vineyard is not for sale. We were not even given a lease with an option to buy!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The parable doesn’t tell us what the owner did to the tenants. It doesn’t say He finally left his mansion and went down and got even with the tenants somehow… what might the retribution look like?

It doesn’t tell us He forgave them for their murderous acts. We are left to finish the story ourselves. How would you finish it?

What is your idea of ownership? What is your understanding of our Owner’s Love? Pastor Steve reminded us that Our Owner longs for a connection with us. “God desires a relationship with us… He asks that we take care of this earth – His gifts to us – and one another… and that we give a portion back.” He asks that we love one another. He asks us to forgive one another – and to love our enemies. Wow! That’s a tall order!!

Pastor Steve concluded his sermon today by reminding us:
“Our gifts are not our own.
They are God’s,
and we are given them
to use for God’s Kingdom.
We are the caretakers.
God’s love
always trumps
God’s justice.

Photo by 42 North on Pexels.com

I love you, dear WordPress friends.
Thank you for visiting today.
I hope you’ve had a Love-filled Sunday.
Hugs,
JanBeek

If I Die This Afternoon…


No one can ever say it all.
What if I die this afternoon?
What words will die with me
That I should have shared at noon?

What words will die with me
That I might have said too late?
Is there a right time for silence –
A perfect time for words to wait?

Have I left unspoken affirmations
That should have been shared?
Have I failed to let folks know
How very much I cared?

If I die this afternoon,
I want you to be sure and know
That my love for you and God are deep.
I hope the depths of it will glow.

I hope my unwavering faith
Was an inspiration to you,
And my prayers were comforting
When you were feeling blue.

If I die this afternoon,
May you smile when you think
Of the things I did so sweet –
And forget the things that stink!

May my words on blogs and cards
Live on in your loving hearts,
And keep you remembering how
Reaching out’s where loving starts.

If I die this afternoon,
Take care of my dear Bob.
He needs me to help him dress,
And do any technology job!

Take care of my TazE, too.
She relies on me for her meals.
I spoil her with hamburger
And know just how she feels.

Let my blogging friends know
That JanBeek will no longer send.
Give them this last post,
“Jan’s gone to her eternal end.”

If I die this afternoon,
Be sure to help it to be true:
As folks celebrated my birth,
They’ll cheer my departure, too.

They won’t cry that I have left.
Don’t mourn and feel bad –
Know that I am in Heaven
Reunited with Mom and Dad.

Know that I will be at the gate
To greet you when you ascend.
And live your life with dreams
Unfulfilled until the very end.

Never stop dreaming big,
As Bob Goff wrote in his book.
Live fully each day you’re here,
With new thoughts and delights to cook.

If I die this afternoon,
Let Bob know it’s alright
To find another love in life –
Someone to hug and hold him tight.

Tell my kids that I always did
My best to leave a loving legacy.
I pray they’ll smile more than frown
When things come up to remember me.

Remember my smile!

But of course, the chances that I am going to die this afternoon are slim. I am a healthy 81-year-old who expects to live happily to celebrate my 100th birthday, BUT…

If my doctor told me I had only six minutes to live, I wouldn’t brood. I’d type a little faster.

Isaac Asimov
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on Pexels.com

A post about quotes on “The Art of Blogging” yesterday inspired my poem. Cristian posted it and several other good quotes on Cristian Mihaihttps://artofblogging.net/2020/09/23/writing-quotes-to-inspire-you-to-punch-the-damn-keys/

What inspires your writing?

I have an old faded cardboard with poems on it posted inside my kitchen cabinet door. They are poems gathered by my mom in 1936, the year she & Dad married – and she moved from her family in Washington to live the rest of her 89 years in California. She had most of those poems memorized.

One of my favorites reads:

“When I quit this mortal shore,
And mosey round the earth no more,
Don’t weep, don’t sigh, don’t sob –
I may have struck a better job.

Don’t go and buy a large bouquet
For which you’ll find it hard to pay,
Don’t mope around and feel all blue –
I may be better off than you.

Don’t tell the folks I was a saint
Or any old thing that I ain’t.
If you have jam like that to spread,
Please hand it out before I’m dead.

If you have roses, bless your soul,
Just pin one in my buttonhole,
While I’m alive and well today.
Don’t wait until I’ve gone away.”

Poet unknown

Photo by Hassan OUAJBIR on Pexels.com


What would you want people to remember about you if your doctor told you your days are numbered? All of ours are, you know.

By God’s Grace,
I’ll see you tomorrow.

Hugs,
JanBeek

Memories


Susan Hardwick & Phyllis Wasick

In March Susan got to visit
With Phyllis, our dear sister,
Before our dear friend’s life
Ended on earth. Oh how we missed her!

Tomorrow we’ll remember
Stories of Phyllis’ life
And share them with each other.
She was a loving wife.

Her husband died too young,
Over thirty years past.
Phyllis made his ring a heart
And wore the love that last.

The heart hung ’round her neck
All these many years –
She willed it to her Yana
Through memories and tears.

How many of us have
A memory to share
Of a loved one gone too soon
To their heavenly home up there?

If life is lived so fully
That when time comes, we are ready,
It’s easier to say good-bye.
Live your life with grace. Be steady!

Be loving and kind-hearted.
Be compassionate to those you meet.
Then, like my good friend, Phyllis,
Your friends’ memories all will be sweet.

Her children know the treasure
Of a mom whose love was always true.
She shared her life with God and friends.
I hope there is a friend like her for YOU!

Keep your memories of friends
Alive and smiling in your heart.
Make memories others will treasure.
Today’s a perfect day to start.

Rest in peace, dear Phyllis.
I’ll love you forever!

Phyllis was a grown up who did not “act more like children than children”
BUT
She was one of those people who needed people… just as I am.
We are/were “the luckiest people in the world!”
We each have (had) the person who made us whole…
… thank God for that “very special person.”


Share your memories of a loved one with me.
I’d love to read some of your thoughts on this subject
in the comments below.
Hugs,
JanBeek

Love is Louder


God bless the Jefferson County Mental Health Local Advisory Council here in Montana!

Let’s all shout it out, “LOVE IS LOUDER!”

Let’s make it true!!

Th distance between me and my friend, Carol Orr, is from here to Eternity … but our love is louder than the distance! I was her Senior Companion – and she was my friend and mentor… always right for a laugh and a hug … always ready to share her 95 years of wisdom from her beautiful, sparkling soul.

LOVE is LOUDER than death! LOVE is LOUDER than disguises! LOVE sees through the darkness to the sparkle beneath and behind. LOVE brings out the best in us and in others. Let your LOVE SHINE!!

The motivational video below tells us, “One of life’s gifts is that its greatest moments are often disguised.” Our inability to see through the dark glasses finds us sometimes lost in a state of hopelessness. We live disguised as people behind a gloom of despair, seeing life as lost and hard.

My friend, Carol, was an upbeat person who enjoyed life to its fullest I posted a blog about her back on August 15, 2018 when she was in the hospital, looking toward the end of her time on earth. If you have time, check it out at

https://janbeek.blog/2019/07/28/95-years-of-life-lessons/

Carol spent her last months in our local nursing home, The Manor, hooked up to oxygen, and knowing her time was short, but LOVE was LOUDER than impending death. She never lost her smile nor her sense of humor. Ah, we should all be so blessed!

When all hope of living an eternity on earth, or of solving all the earth’s problems is lost, we need to take off the disguises, toss the dark glasses, and take each moment to see life’s infinite possibilities. What you seek is waiting. You are never too old to seek LOVE and you are never through positively influencing others – even (and maybe most especially) after leaving this earth.

Love is LOUDER

LOUDER than ANYTHING!


Every day you are :

  • smarter and
  • stronger and
  • better equipped
  • wiser and
  • sharper and
  • braver

What you seek is waiting for you.
Go for it!

Love is Louder

Shout it Out!!
I LOVE YOU!!!
See ya tomorrow.
Hugs,
JanBeek

This Cliff-Dweller is Heavy-Hearted


My heart is heavy.
God answered my fervent prayer.
So why am I sad?

My cousin, Cliff, died.
I received the news today:
God answered my prayer.

I prayed for freedom –
Freedom from this earthy pain.
Our God is faithful.

His family gathered;
All his loved ones surrounded,
And God took him home.

God of Great Mercy,
Thank you for answering prayer.
Now, heal my heart’s hole!

Cliff & Janine
with their two daughters
and sons-in-law,
two sons,
daughter-in-law,
and three grandsons

Cliff and Janine are two of my favorite people in the world!
And now Cliff has left this world…
but he lives on in the hearts of all of us who will always love him.


Janine’s mom is my second cousin, Betty.
Her mom was my mom’s oldest sister’s oldest daughter.

That sounds rather confusing and maybe like a “distant relative”… but there is nothing distant about my relationship with Janine. I was twelve when my family drove from California to Washington to visit mom’s family near Seattle in Issaquah…
and to meet Aunt Evelyn’s first grandchild.

Aunt Evelyn and Uncle Hans were my first connection to the land of Switzerland which claimed our daughter DeAna about two dozen years later! Uncle Hans immigrated from the German part of Switzerland to the state of Washington. Their daughter, my cousin, Betty, with her husband, Nick, lived right across the alleyway from her parents. Knowing we were there, she came over with her new baby, Janine. You know my name in JAN – and so I immediately claimed JANine as my own!!

I was there for Cliff and Janine’s wedding. I claim Cliff as my cousin, too!

Cliff was “Opa” to his three grandsons.
A more doting and loving grandfather never graced this earth!
I am so sad that those three boys will not have
the presence of the Opa as they grow into adulthood.
And the youngest one is too little
to have lasting memories of him.
It makes me cry!

Cliff was a robust man
– a former University of Washington champion rower –
weighing over 200 pounds most of his adult life.
Cancer and the chemo treatments
wasted away his body and took away his strength
– and eventually his life.
But his spirit lives on.

He’ll remain strong and robust forever
in all of us who knew and loved him.

We are a vast array of Cliff-Dwellers!

Love and condolences to
Hans, Stefan, Janine, Heidi, and Erika

God bless you, my Word Press family.
Thank you for praying for my cousin, JANine, and her family.
See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Spend it All or Give it Away!


“Being of sound mind, I spent it all!”

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Those were the words read from the will
when my friend, Marion,
met with her siblings after their mother died.

Today’s devotional in
“Mornings with Jesus 2020”
told of a similar story.
The writer quoted her father as saying,
“Before I leave here, I intend to spend every dollar I ever made.”

She thought he was kidding.
After all, he was a God-fearing man …
“who could quote scripture from Genesis to Revelation.”
(Alice Thompson, Thursday July 9th).

But her earthly father had given her no inheritance!


After being angry for awhile,
Alice turned to her Bible,
and she turned to the Lord.
Alice wrote that she spoke to her head
about Lamentations 3:24.
It says,
“The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.”

Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

Even though Proverbs 13:22 says, “A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children,” Alice realized her father – who left “nothing for me,” had indeed left the most precious gifts of all: His loving relationship with her and his faith in God.

He lived his life loving her and her mother, giving to the Lord and to those in need, and using his hard-earned dollars to enjoy a good life. A nice house, a new car every few years, memorable vacations, generosity with his children, and gifts to charity… these were the signatures he left. He left her the gifts money can’t buy: love, faith, a good work-ethic, respect, and joy.

If our parents live their lives in love and faith, generosity and joy.
If our parents pass those gifts on to us,
We have the received the most important gifts of all.
They don’t owe us a rich monetary inheritance.

If our parents demonstrate a good work-ethic,
and teach us to do likewise,
If our parents help us learn to read and compute,
pray and serve, and get a good education,
then they have equipped us to do as they might:

Being of sound mind,
I spent it all
or gave it away.

Go and do likewise!
Have a great Thursday.

I’m headed to a Happy 70th Birthday party!
See ya tomorrow.
Live in peace with EVERYBODY, my friends!
Hugs, JanBeek

Eyes on Jesus – Just As I Am


Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in His wonderful face
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

O soul, are you weary and troubled?
No light at the darkness you see?
There’s light for a look at the savior,
And life more abundant and free…

Dear Lord,

Go to this world that is dying.
Come to us who are sad and sighing.
Come to us who are weary and worried.
Just calm all of us who are hurried.

We come as we are to your alter,
Knowing without You, we falter.
Take what is broken and mend it.
Take was is wounded. heal and tend it.

Hold those who are desperate; rescue us.
Fill those who are empty; You treasure us.
We know we are guilty, so pardon us.
Help us to grow love as You garden us.

Photo by Ella Olsson on Pexels.com

Help us grow the fruit of compassion.
Where you find hate, please refashion.
Take what you see and improve us,
Let your Holy Spirit truly move us.

Move us to love unity and justice.
Don’t let divisions and rhetoric bust us.
Make us strong, wise and actively trying
To restore peace to earth. We are crying.

Crying for healing and restoration.
Crying for prejudice’s elimination.
Crying for every adult and child
To adopt Christ’s ways, which are mild.

Turn your eyes upon Jesus
Look full in His wonderful face
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim
In the light of His glory and grace.

I am praying for you.
See ya later.
Hugs,
JanBeek





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