Today we received a thank you letter from Intermountain. We get a personalized letter from them every month. The letter provides a great source of encouragement. It motivates us to continue to give gladly because we know it is received and used meaningfully.
Our gift to Intermountain is a small donation. I have it taken out automatically from my monthly retirement income. I don’t even miss it… but I know it is pooled with other small gifts and together, they matter. Intermountain helps hundreds of children increase their mental health.
The thank you letter we receive each month lets us know our gift was received, and it tells us, “Your support, combined with the tireless efforts of our direct care staff, provides transformative outcomes in the lives of the children we serve.” Thanks! We believe it!
The academic and counseling programs at Intermountain, the recreational opportunities and clinical integrity are superb. We are encouraged to continue to support their efforts and to spread the word so others are encouraged to donate to them also. They are an excellent Montana-based 501(c) organization Check out their school, cottages, counseling, and community outreach programs at intermountain.org
How do you choose to share encouragement?
Donations are one way – but there are so many others: cards, letters, phone calls, texts, e-mails, home visits, hugs, volunteering time, you name it …
We all need encouragement, you know.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Staying young while growing older begins with a mind-set.
Notice I did not say, “Growing OLD.” Growing OLDER is not the same as growing old. I’m not OLD; at 82, I am simply in my advanced years – growing in wisdom and grace – with God’s blessings!
In the Natural Living newsletter, Dr. Z and Mama Z write the following:
“God will carry us through, even into our advanced years. Our Creator has had a plan for us since before we were born. He had our days numbered since the beginning of time and it is up to us to make wise decisions to help our bodies live a more vibrant and full life and to impart our wisdom to those placed in our lives.”
“Those who are older should speak, for wisdom comes with age.”
~ Job 32:7
I DO think about things differently… especially THINGS. Yes, I have my “treasures,” – those things I am reluctant to part with – but as time goes by, I realize the wisdom of knowing “I can’t take it with me.” And God don’t allow no U-Hauls in Heaven!!
In my daily devotions today, Charles Stanley wrote in his In Touch entry, “Our culture is obsessed with youth… But… Unless death intervenes, growing old is inevitable.”
See that’s where I differ with him. But it is only a matter of semantics, I’m sure. He must have meant “growing older.” Because he went on to say, “We can be young in soul and spirit, regardless of our chronological age.”
Magnificence comes with age… Yes, the root word is “magnify” and that’s what age does for us. It magnifies our failures (if we let it) – It magnifies our faults (if we let it) – It requires magnification to see clearly!
The question we need to ask ourselves is, “What am I magnifying as I age?”
Charles Stanley’s devotional today reminded us, “Never stop listening to the Father and learning from His Word. Allow godly thinking to shape your attitude. Be thankful, never stop laughing, and rejoice in the Lord. Above all, keep believing and loving Him with all your heart.”
Making the most of the dash means we have to stop dashing! We’re not created to be honeybees, dashing from one bit of pollen to another!
“Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is obtained by following a righteous path.” ~ Proverbs 16:31
We are created in the image of God, designed to glorify Him each day by following the righteous path… stopping along the way and taking time to pour out the honey of forgiveness, dish out the power of experience, and spray the gladness of grace on all we meet.
The way Eugene Peterson paraphrased that verse in his study Bible, The Message, is this:
“Your words are so choice, so tasty; I prefer them to the best home cooking.”
So, let’s return to the original premise here: “Staying young while growing older begins with a mind-set.”
What is your mind-set today?
Are you young at heart? Are you pouring out the honey of forgiveness? Are you dishing out the power of experience? Are you spraying the gladness of grace?
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today. See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Every morning I begin my day with a cup of coffee and a climb up the stairs to my sanctuary where I spend time with my Bible, devotionals, prayers, and Jesus.
One of my devotionals is “These Days,” a daily devotion for living by faith, published by the Presbyterian Publishing Corporation. Its format is scripture, devotional, prayer.
Today’s scripture was:
He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.”
In the devotional, the author, Hope Douglas Harle-Mould, wrote about the comfort Jesus provides. She included a poem she wrote to Our God of all Faithfulness:
“We pray for a cure; God sends us healing. We pray for continued life; God gives us new life. We pray death will not come; God overcomes death. We pray in anguish; God weeps with us. We pray in fear; God teaches us to laugh. We pray for ourselves; God gives us each other. We pray for miracles; God fills us with love. We pray for the future; God showers us with blessedness. God, help me trust the voices heralding your hope.”
I am assured as I read and pray and study God’s word, that just as he carries the lamb in his arms, he will be faithful to carry me.
As I descend the twelve stairs at the end of my devotional time, I recite my personal TWELVE STEP PROGRAM Thank You, Jesus, for the:
Peace (that are mine). Help me with
Faithfulness (which brings blessings),
Help me live humbly with an attitude of gratitude, and
A response of generosity, forgiveness,
Obedience, and integrity. In Jesus name, Amen!
When I get to the 7th step, I see the metal sculpture that says, “Blessings” above my door. It was a gift from our dear friends, Jim & Terry, so I pause to thank God for their faithful friendship. When I get to the bottom of the stairs, I see this cross on the wall:
It was made by Native Americans. I pause to pray for them and their peace and prosperity. I send occasional gifts to schools for Native American children – – places like St. Labre’ and St. Joseph’s – and they faithfully write back acknowledging my small donation.
Faithfulness is a two-way street. We pray to God faithfully; God answers. We give to people who touch our hearts; they give back with gratitude & smiles. We read God’s Word faithfully each day; He gives us wisdom and discernment, understanding and blessings.
Check out this different version of that old song, The B-I-B-L-E… I love it! What a way to learn to names of the books of the Bible, huh?
How do you begin your day, my friends? What does FAITHFULNESS mean to you?
Thanks for visiting today. I hope your Friday is blessed, indeed!
“You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in Your word.”
Life can beat us down with trials, sorrows and debilitating worries. God’s messages about our future hope can deeply encourage, inspire, uplift and motivate us.
Don’t worry; be happy!
“Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; my flesh also will rest in hope.”
“‘The LORD is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I hope in Him!’”
H ang O n to P ositivity and E ncouragement
As we prepare to return to Bozeman today for more lab work and a bone marrow biopsy for Bob, our hearts are full of gratitude for all the love and support extended to us during this time of tests, unknowing, waiting, and hopefulness. Our faith is strong and our prayers are many. Your prayers for Bob’s good results and proper/effective treatment are heard, we’re sure. Our God cares. Our God’s got this! We can rest in this knowledge. We can feel His loving arms around us. Thank you all!
I will keep you posted as we learn more. Yesterday the gastroenterologist (GI doctor) confirmed that the blood in the stool is not colon cancer… and the cause is more superficial. That was an answer to prayer. Today we are praying the bone marrow scan confirms that this is not AL Amyloidosis (a cancer in the marrow). The doctors are busy trying to rule things out so when they send us to Mayo Clinic, the experts there can move on to finding what type it IS (if in fact it IS that rare disorder)… and then a proper treatment can begin. The symptoms include a lower functioning of both the heart and the kidneys resulting in lack of stamina. That’s really hard for this guy who is used to hard, physical work and never having to think twice about what he is capable of doing!
Meantime, we start each day with grateful hearts for our friends here on WP, our supportive neighbors and family, and our God who holds us all in His care.
God bless you. Have a wonderful Thursday. Embrace Hopefulness!
Life can feel downright discouraging. Life can feel out of control. The world is burning up here in the western USA And life is tenuous at best In places like Afghanistan and Haiti.
In the midst of this Devastation, what’s the word? It’s ENCOURAGEMENT
How can that be true? Where to find encouragement? Get out of this funk!
In tragedy’s midst Where can I find strength and hope? Circumvent sadness?
How can anything I do or say dent sorrow? Search within myself?
I live in such peace That I feel enormous guilt For prosperity.
What strength is in me To bring firefighters hope? To save Haitian lives?
People who have lost Their homes and their businesses Still have lives to live.
Can they get through this With their faith in God intact? Where’s encouragement?
At Bible Study We focused on Ephesians 6:10-20
The Whole Armor of God
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.”
Find hope biblically Look for encouragement there All is not hopeless
Don’t abandon faith. Let it bolster your spirits Encourage others
In our Bible Study, I was encouraged with this definition of joy:
When are you the most creative? Where do your creative juices flow most freely? What’s your God-given creative talent?
I am not a painter. I may have some latent talent there, but I have never developed it.
Do you have hidden talents that you have not fully explored?
When children are given the tools and the examples early in life, often that becomes the springboard for a life of artistic talent shared.
No one told me that my scribbles might lead to a creative talent that would be appreciated by others!
But, I was encouraged to sing as a child. That was a talent that did not go unnoticed. How could you ignore it when I was a 3-year-old singing “Appo-Tee, Appo-Tee, AppoTee” all the way through the hymns at church. Singing loudly and joyfully!
Hah! It was during the time of WWII and a popular song was “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree (with Anyone Else But Me).”
You’re probably not old enough to remember it!! Go ahead, click on it here. You’ll love it!!
So how did my “Appo Tee” singing graduate into a full-blown creative talent? Like any talent, it takes involvement, participation, practice.
I have been a member of a choir for as long as I can remember… … always in school, then in church, and eventually our community choir. I am not a soloist, but I love singing in a duet or trio or with a large group. Recently our church choir was able to start up again… it is such a joy!
Once I even got to sing with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir during one of their dress rehearsals for their Christmas concert!
The rendition below of “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” was sung by the University of the Pacific Choir at Bob’s and my wedding 2/11/62. Here is the Mormon Tabernacle singing it. I love it so much!
If your talent is not singing or painting, maybe you developed a talent in another area – like cooking or woodworking or metal sculpture.
Of course, one major talent I forgot mention Is instrumental music … the piano or a woodwind or string or brass instrument… Such talent brings so much joy to the player as well to a world of listeners.
I played the accordion and the clarinet as a child and continued to do so until just recently. My accordion is not functioning, there’s a hole in the bellows.
Perhaps I will find another small accordion that I can handle… and will resume that creative endeavor. The children at the day care center and the residents at our local Nursing Home enjoyed it!
Here’s just a small clip – (it’s only 10 seconds!!) of me playing for the residents at my sister’s place in PA a couple of years ago. (I won’t burden you with too much of this!) Hah!
My cousin always used to send me comic strips about the accordion. One was a guy entering heaven and the angel said, “Welcome to Heaven, here’s your harp.” The other was a gal entering Hades. The angel greeted her and said, “Welcome to Hell, here’s your accordion.”
Hah! I miss Cliff and those jokes!!
The question remains: What are your God-given talents? Have you developed an area of creativity?
I forgot to mention writing!! Us bloggers imagine ourselves to have that talent or else we wouldn’t be posting here on WordPress, right?
But, even this writing talent doesn’t improve without practice, right? Never stop learning and trying to improve – regardless of the area of creativity… gardening & photography (Derrick) – poetry (Dwight, Richard, Pat, Rahul, etc.) cooking (Andre’ & Caralyn) You know who you are… and what you need to do!
Our library was having a book sale last week. For a dollar, I was able to buy this wonderful book. Copyrighted 20 years ago, it’s never outdated, and I can never stop learning how to be a better writer. Like any talent, it takes practice, study, and more practice. And feedback always helps!
Roses are red. Violets are pink. I’m an emerging poet. Man, don’t I stink?
No, don’t badmouth yourself!! Keep workin’ at it…
Embrace Creativity! Tell me about yours…
Thanks for sharing! See ya tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
Daily Guideposts 2021 devotional today inspired this blog topic. After I chose “Multiplying” as my EMBRACE theme today, every place I looked, I saw evidence of answers to my question, “But what needs to be multiplied?”
When you hear/read the word “multiplying” what comes to mind? I asked Bob that question this morning after my devotional time while we were chatting at the breakfast table.
“Increasing comes to mind. Numbers come to mind,” he answered.
What comes to your mind?
In her blog this morning, Marva Seaton wrote about multiplying. She didn’t use the word, but the concept definitely was there.
Yesterday I posted a question, “What do you expect When you hear Expectation?” Today I added an S to the word.
What does that do to the meaning for you? Derrick Knight responded yesterday saying, “Expectation can sometimes be a touch optimistic.” The picture of the pregnant gal shows such optimism to me.
She is probably more than “a touch” optimistic!
Expectation to me is personal. It is what I am looking forward to – or not. But the added S causes it to take on a different nuance. “Expectations” often come from others in my mind.
In Luke 21:26, the expectation the men felt was the “or not.”
“… men fainting from fear and the expectation of the things which are coming upon the world; for the powers of the heavens will be shaken.”
But in Philippians, the expectation is that optimistic viewpoint Derrick was talking about:
As it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death.
Expectations from others can often produce stress. People sometimes put pressure on us to be more than we feel capable of being.
On the other hand, expectations can be motivating. Is someone expecting you to perform right now? Is that person an encourager, telling you, “You can do this! You’re strong enough… smart enough… capable enough”?
Embrace those expectations! Believe those accolades. Let that encouragement motivate you. You are not given more than you can do… … with God’s help!
In yesterday’s Daily Word, the word for March 30, 2021 was “Expectation.” The statement at the top of the page was,
“Expectation keeps me passionate about my life.”
In the article expounding on the subject, the message emphasized was:
“Expectation keeps me in a state of gratitude… I claim peace, prosperity, and joy in prayer. I carry a confident expectation into my daily life.”
In the midst of this pandemic, with social distancing, mask-wearing, and the administration of vaccines becoming more and more politicized, it is sometimes difficult to follow the advice of that Daily Word message. Sometimes when the expectations of the world weigh us down, when dissension and divisiveness try to bury our joy, it is easy to fall into a dark mood.
So, the message today is to take those expectations And color them brightly with the promises of Easter. Remember that today marks the day that Jesus was Honored with a flask of expensive perfume poured on him.
The disciples who were scornful were reminded To keep their focus on the expectations of Christ: He knew He would die, be buried, and rise again. My expectation is to do the same – due to His sacrifice.
I am planted today with the expectation That I will grow from the Sea of Expectations To rise in encouragement and hope- So that I can spread that optimism to others.
EMBRACE POSITIVE EXPECTATIONS
Have a Happy, Meaningful Holy Week. Whatever you are being called to do, believe you can, expect that you will. Get on with it!
Our Pastor Nominating Committee has been working for months – Seems like a year already – Trying to find the person God has in mind for us.
In this COVID-19 pandemic world, It is an on-line ballgame. Research, paperwork, phone calls, ZOOM meetings, waiting – It’s easy to become discouraged. BUT…
“Be encouraged, knowing that God has planned good things for those who wait.”
Yesterday the Lord reinforced the idea of spontaneity And so I wrote about it. Today, He said, “Flip the page!”
The other side of spontaneity is patience. The other side of the coin says, “Wait!” The next page tells us to set aside Frustration and replace it with trust.
Today’s message in the Daily Readings for Devoted Living, In Touch Magazine says,
“Sometimes… it may seem He’s unconcerned about us, because our prayers aren’t answered as quickly as we expect. When that happens, we need to remember it doesn’t mean God has stopped working. He is actively involved in our lives, but often in ways that are not visible.”
Behind the trees, out of our sight, there may be the answer we are looking for. Wait for the right answer! Don’t settle for less.
In Touch Magazine‘s message today went on to remind me, “God orchestrates circumstances, changes people’s hearts, and protects his children from making foolish decisions that could have disastrous consequences.”
“Waiting times are opportunities for growth in character, obedience, faith, and service.”
Today in the Word from Moody Bible Institute carried that same theme in my devotional today,
“What about you? Are you feeling stuck in God’s waiting room today? While it is no doubt frustrating, these times of delay are not necessarily a deviation from God’s plan. Trust God’s hand to set the next stage for your life. Let Him work in and through you, even during your waiting time.”
John Mayer sang a song “Waiting on the World to Change” – but I don’t think that’s what God has in mind for you. I think God is asking you to pray about your uncertainly. God is asking us to study His Word and learn from Him how to move forward. How is this song a different message?
In our period of waiting, God does not want us to feel powerless. We struggle with fear, insecurity, doubt, and a feeling of lack of power, but Christ is working in our hearts. As I sit in God’s waiting room, I pray for discernment, courage of conviction, confidence and wisdom.
If you are also feeling like you’re in God’s waiting room, Pray with me, “Lord, use this time when nothing seems to be happening. Use it for Your purposes. All our days are Yours. Amen!”
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
I’ll be waiting for your answer to my question, “How did that song by John Mayer send a different message about waiting?” Are you waiting for the world to change?
We All have Gifts to give All others do, too Embrace
Embrace The gifts Celebrate others’ gifts Open them with care Receive
Recognize And see What others give To enhance your life Appreciate
Name Your gifts Use them lovingly Share them with humility Blessings
Share Love and Time and compassion Remember that you matter Engage
Engage In life With your heart Wide open to receive Gifts
Gifts Don’t always Come all wrapped In pretty Christmas packages Discern
Precious Loving gifts Often are disguised In very simple acts of Humility
You Have gifts Unique to you Never underestimate your impact Shine
Shine Your gifts With loving kindness Embrace the many opportunities Smile!
Thanks For coming To JanBeek today Your loving presence here Matters
Elfchen or Elevensie is a poetic form that uses eleven words in a configuration of 1,2,3,4,1. Did you recognize it as you read my post today? If you haven’t already, you should try it. It’s fun! Thank you, Richard at Big Sky Buckeye for inspiring me and sharing your gift! Check out his blog, my friends.
P.S. I found this insightful You.Tube presentation on the subject of GIFTS… gifts of the Holy Spirit. I thought it was quite well done – and a good addition to the topic, Embrace Gifts. If you have time, I highly recommend it.