Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Posts tagged ‘forgiveness’

Embrace Forgiveness


Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com

For = before
Give = before receiving
Ness = before receiving give

N ever
E xpect
S atisfaction
S imultaneously

Is there someone out there who has wronged you?

Have they treated you so badly, so unjustly, that you are having a hard time forgiving them?

Do you wish you could, and you’ve tried, but you just can’t find the grace to give them that satisfaction?

Do they deserve your unforgiving spirit?

Do they deserve a pay back?

Do you wish you could get even?

Would it serve them right!?

Serve them right if you never forgave them because they don’t deserve to be let off the hook?

Who’s caught on that hook anyway?

They may not even know they hurt you!

That happened to me once. I had a person who was a teacher in a different school. I used to be in the district office and now I was happily and obliviously back in the confines of my own classroom, loving every day with those darling children, putting those two years of district office administration behind me. It had been a tough time. Satisfying opportunities mixed with struggles to satisfy all the new teachers (K-12) who were required to come to my PETAL workshops.

P rinciples of
E ffective
T eaching
A nd
L earning

I enjoyed working with the new teachers, trying to help them be the best they could be. But, inevitably, you can’t please everybody, right? Not every one of them thought what I was teaching was useful to them. I probably rubbed some the wrong way. They’d prefer to be in their classrooms preparing for the next day, rather than being at a required workshop in “The Ivory Tower.” Do you relate?

Photo by Rebrand Cities on Pexels.com

No, they were not all smiles!
But I did my best…
and I got back to the classroom
where I could interact
daily with children
as fast as I could!
The District Office was waaay too far from children!

Then, “that happened to me!” A knock on my door at home one evening. When I answered it, there stood a teacher who had been in a series of my workshops. I invited him in. We sat on the sofa. He was nervous.

“I want you to know I forgive you,” he said.

I didn’t know I needed forgiveness. I didn’t know I had done something to offend him. I am sure my face registered shock.

“I have been harboring a grudge against you for two years,” he said. “I am going to a counselor for a lot of unresolved issues in my life, and my counselor said I need to resolve them.”

So he was in my living room, sitting next to me, letting me know I was forgiven.

I should have asked why. I should have asked him to explain what I did. But, I was too dumb-founded. I’m not sure I wanted to know. Let bygones be bygones, you know?

I just told him I was sorry for whatever I unknowingly did to offend him. I told him I held no ill feelings about him. Never did! I accepted his forgiveness. We hugged. He left.

That young man had been given the courage to confront his offender.
He had been given the courage to let go.
He had been given the courage to ask for forgiveness.
My job was to accept it and to allow him to move on.

My job was to handle what God had given me…
a clean slate in someone’s mind.
A clean slate where there had been a dark smudge.

Is there someone out there
who needs your forgiveness ?
Are you carrying a grudge?

Don’t wait!
Before receiving,
GIVE!
Give the gift to yourself…
the gift of letting go.

Ezekiel 36:26

“I will give you a new heart,
and I will put a new spirit in you.
I will take out your stony, stubborn heart
and give you a tender, responsive heart.”

Thanks for following JanBeek
and for coming to read and leave a comment today.
You matter. I write for you.
God bless you!
See ya tomorrow.

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

The Best You


The best version of you
Is understanding and sweet.
You are loving and forgiving,
Compassionate to all you meet.

The best version of yourself
Is gentle and filled with peace.
You are an overflowing vessel
Of joyfulness that’ll never cease.

Your self’s very best version
Is an example of great patience.
You sparkle with faithfulness
And reflect the Holy Spirit’s radiance.

Our DeDe
Photo by Godisable Jacob on Pexels.com

The best version of yourself
Is generous with everything you’ve got.
You reach out to feed and help others,
Never hoarding what’s in your pot.

When you look deep into your best,
You see a person who is humble and kind.
And if others don’t seem to see it,
Don’t worry, my friend. They must be blind!

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com
Photo by Godisable Jacob on Pexels.com
Photo by Min An on Pexels.com
Photo by Roy Reyna on Pexels.com

The best version of yourself
Is mighty, strong, and wise.
Bee it, beelieve it, and beehave it …
Bee your best self… Never compromise!

I love my best self!
I love your best self!!
Hello, in there… Come on out!
Don’t keep your love trapped on a shelf.

Thank you for bein’ you!



Worship With Us 4-26-20


Sermon and prayers by Rev. Steve Hundley
Song selections by Fran McNeill

Preparation for Worship:

Bless us, O God, with a reverent sense of Your presence, that we may be at peace and may worship You with all our minds and spirits; through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Call to Worship:   Psalm 116: 12-13

What can we give back to God for the blessings He has poured out on us?

We will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the Lord.

Opening Prayer

Blow upon us, O Lord, the fresh wind of Your Spirit.  Refresh our souls, which are weary from continuous social distancing.  Help us to forget for a little while the difficulties of daily existence, and breathe from Your presence new hope, new purpose, and new direction for our lives.  Embolden us to pray and seek Your face, that everything else may find its proper place in these unprecedented times.   Amen.

Prayer of Confession:

Gracious Lord, teach us always to respect and love all the lives You create.  Forgive our lack of concern and love for those who are silently suffering around the world in the face of this ongoing pandemic.  Forgive us when we are negligent and uncaring for those who are most vulnerable; for those who are elderly; for those forgotten in nursing homes; for those who have little or no access to medical care; for those essential workers on the front lines; and, for those who have and continue to suffer from a careless society.  Teach us to open our hearts and our lives up in ways that will be beneficial to all.  Amen.

Assurance of Pardon:  Psalm 32: 3-5

Hear these words of hope from the Psalmist: “While I kept silence, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long.  For day and night Your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was dried up as by the heat of summer.  Then I acknowledged my sin to You, and I did not hide my iniquity; I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the Lord,” and You forgave the guilt of my sin.

Photo by Lukas on Pexels.com

A Children’s Message for Adults, too!

(a true story)

In early spring in the Blue Ridge mountains where I grew up, we would plant a garden full of corn and vegetables, as well as a strawberry patch.  There were also apple and pear trees, not to mention the wild grapes, blackberries, huckleberries, and raspberries that grew in the woods. 

Every summer my mother would pull out the old pressure cooker and spend days canning quart jars of every kind of vegetables and berries and put them away in the cellar.  Then when winter came and the ground was cold, icy, and barren and nothing seemed to be alive, mom would go down into the cellar, come up with some canned vegetable or savory berry preserve, and it would be May and June once more at our family table, and how blessed we were!

During this difficult time while we are all forced to stay home for fear of getting or spreading the dangerous coronavirus, I can’t help but think about how many of us spent hours in front of the television, on our computers and phones playing video games, or watching meaningless YouTube videos.  It occurred to me that there is hardly anything there to nourish the soul or help us through this pandemic.  There’s not a calorie there at all that can strengthen us when life is hard and barren.

That is why it is so important that we turn to the stories of our faith: the stories of the Old Testament, the stories of Jesus—His life and ministry, as well as the other letters and books of the Bible.  By dipping down into the deep reservoir of God’s Word for all life and faith, we can find nourishment for the facing of these days.

Photo by Eduardo Braga on Pexels.com

Message:                                  At Home with the Risen Lord

John 20:13-32

Two travelers on the road, making the seven-mile hike from Jerusalem to Emmaus.  Why Emmaus?  Well, it would appear that they live there.  Emmaus is home.  Still, the excitement and energy usually associated with home—the place where we belong—the place where we grew up, is not evident on these traveler’s faces, nor can it be heard in their voices.  The joy we normally associate with a homecoming is nowhere to be found.  Instead, their hopelessly slow pace exposes their disappointment and disillusionment.  The reality is, their demeanor has more to do with where they are coming from than where they are heading.

These two travelers are leaving the holy city of Jerusalem.  They are leaving because there is nothing left for them there.  They are leaving because everything they had hoped for and dreamed of, is gone.  They are leaving because the One in whom they had placed their faith is dead.  They are leaving because their hope has been nailed to a cross.  Their Savior is dead.  The movement is over.

Unable to ignore the tired and empty look on their faces or the despair in their voices, a stranger inquires: “What is your conversation about?”  Now, having to explain the cause of one’s pain only serves to intensify it.  So, stopping dead in their tracks, Luke says: “They just stood there looking sad.”  Suddenly, the one named Cleopas breaks the silence: “Who are you, Rip Van Winkle?” (He didn’t really say that, but that is what he meant.) “Are you the only one who does not know what has happened?”  You can almost hear the mixture of amazement and irritation ringing in his voice.  And, who can blame him?  They had wagered everything on this Jesus, and lost!

Have you ever lost?  I mean, really lost?  It is an empty feeling, like a political incumbent, who though their candidacy was certain, waits to the last hour to concede defeat.  Arriving at his campaign headquarters, surrounded by a remnant of faithful supporters and the media, of course, steps to the podium and says: “I really thought we were going to win.  We gave it our best shot, and we lost.  But the people have spoken, and they have chosen Barabbas.  I would like to thank all of you who came out.  But, before we go, could you take down the posters and the streamers?   We want to leave the place just as if we were never here.”

“We lost,” Cleopas says to the stranger.  “Jesus was turned over to the authorities, condemned to death, and nailed to a cross, and there he died along with our greatest hopes and dreams.”  Lost in his own despair and forgetting himself for a moment, Cleopas goes on to say, “Oh yes, some women surprised us babbling on about finding his tomb empty, and angels appearing and reporting him to be alive.  But, we discounted it as nothing but an idle tale—some kind of cruel joke.  You see, he died!” 

Just ask those who were there.  They will tell you: “We saw it all with our own eyes. He’s dead alright.”  Ask his own mother: “Yes, I was there.  My son died there on that cross.”  Ask the soldiers: “Oh he’s dead alright, we made certain of that with one good thrust of a spear.”  Even his closest disciples will tell you: “We didn’t get too close for obvious reasons, but yes, he is dead.  And Joseph of Arimathea confirmed it.  You see, he helped to take down the body and wrap it in a shroud to be laid in his own tomb.”  Yes, Jesus is dead, and with him all the hopes and dreams of a new Israel.

Then, the stranger, the risen Lord unbeknownst to them, speaks.  He speaks as if He sees something wonderful that they cannot see.  He speaks as if the hopeless and meaningless events of the past three days make perfect sense.  “Beginning with Moses and all the prophets,” Luke says, “He interprets to them in all the scriptures, the things concerning Himself!”  For Cleopas and his traveling companion, it must have been something like finding the missing pieces of an incomplete puzzle.

I don’t know about you, but as I read this scripture, I couldn’t help but wonder why the Risen Jesus didn’t just say: “WHY THE LONG FACES?  CHEER UP!  IT IS ME, IN THE FLESH!  “I WAS DEAD, BUT NOW I AM ALIVE AGAIN!” (I know; I know…I had a New Testament professor who once said that I tended to ask questions that no one else would even think to ask.  I wonder if he meant it as a compliment?  I meant to ask him if I ever saw him again.)  Besides, maybe Jesus was afraid what their response would be if he came right out and said: “Look, it is me, Jesus, alive and well.”

I remember years ago, helping to lay the foundation for a medical clinic in the mountains of Haiti.  As we were digging the footings for the building, I asked if there were any poisonous snakes in Haiti.  I was told that there were no snakes at all on the island, so there was nothing to worry about.  However, one morning about 6:00 a.m., while walking up the hill towards our work site, low and behold, in the middle of the path was a small brown snake.  Calling out to two Haitian women carrying their goods to the market, I motioned for them to come and see what I had found.  I thought clearing up a national misconception was the honorable thing to do.  But, one look at that snake caused the two women to fling their goods into the air and tear off screaming and running down the side of the mountain!  Perhaps, Jesus thought that He, too, would have received a similar response if He had come right out and announced His true identity.  Hmm?

Instead, the risen Christ turns the two travelers’ attention back to the scriptures.  He unfolds for them what God is doing in the world.  He shows them how every reference in the Torah and the prophets describes what God has done or said which throws light on the events of the past three fateful days.

This is the reason we look to the scriptures of the Old and New Testaments.  The scriptures remind us of God’s unfolding work in our world.  Scripture sets our lives and these unprecedented times in their proper perspective.  Sitting here in our own homes, not knowing what the next weeks might bring, scripture reminds us that our lives, too, are in a direct, long line of witnesses from Moses to David, to Jesus and Paul, to Augustine, to Martin Luther and John Calvin, to John Knox and John Wesley, to Karl Barth and Reinhold Niebuhr, etc.   Scripture reminds us that we are not alone in this world.  Through scripture we can know that the God who presides over all history is our God, and that God is faithful no matter what is happening in our lives at any given moment.

I remember reading of a famous dancer who was a victim of a terrible accident.  She lay in traction for months. When asked how she was able to survive during that time, she said: “Every day, I would dance the 23rd Psalm in my head.”  And, it was through Scripture that the Apostle Paul discovered faith through grace alone.  It was through Scripture that Augustine found meaning and purpose for living.  It was through Scripture that John Wesley found his heart strangely warmed.  And, it is through Scripture that our hearts are tendered and our eyes are opened to the power and presence of our risen Lord in these unprecedented times.

Sure, I know that some of what we find in Scripture is often violent, narrow, primitive, incomprehensible, disordered, and even weird.  But, so are we.  And the Bible is also about us.  It is God’s dealing with the likes of us throughout history.  Someone said:

If you look “at” a window, you see fly-specks, dust, the crack where Jr.’s frisbee hit it.  If You look “through” a window, you see the world beyond.  Something like this is the difference between those who see the Bible as a “holy bore” and those who see it as the “Word of God” which speaks out of the depths of an almost unimaginable past, into the depths of ourselves.” 

So, beginning with Moses and all the prophets, Luke tells us, Jesus opened for them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself, preparing them to see Him in all His resurrected glory.

“Stay with us,” the travelers said to the stranger, “and when the Risen Lord was at table with them, he took the bread and blessed and broke it, and gave it to them.  Then their eyes were opened and they recognized them.”

  Some years ago when my grandfather died, my uncle did most of the planning for his funeral.  Still, I was surprised how hard he seemed to take his father’s death.  Even so, he wrote a moving eulogy for his father, and asked the most elegant preacher in the Roanoke Valley to read it.  Looking over at my uncle during the service, I could see the despair in his eyes.  He did brighten up as his eulogy was read, but slumped down in the pew during the Scripture reading and funeral sermon, seemingly unaware of the promises of Scripture and words of hope and life that the preacher also shared that day.  The Scriptures read were familiar passages of eternal hope and resurrection; words I used often at funeral services I conducted…words I believed.  I couldn’t help but wonder how long it would take those words of hope and the resurrection to claim victory over the pain of my grandfather’s passing from this life to the next.

After my grandfather’s service, my aunt, with tears in her eyes, said that my uncle had refused to join the family for the meal she had prepared.  He said that he would not party on the day of his father’s death.  However, it was at that family meal following the service together with family and friends, that those funeral scripture passages began to claim their victory over death.  It was at that meal that someone said the preacher: “I cannot help but think of those Scriptures you read.  They were so fitting and true.”  You see, it was at that family meal, where hope, peace, smiles, tears, and laughter shouted God’s victory over death.  It was at that meal that our eyes were opened and we recognized the promises and presence of our risen Lord.  After all, the scriptures readings had prepared us.

I am reminded of two children coloring their worksheets and talking about this story of “The Road to Emmaus” in their Sunday School Class.  One asked: “How do you know when you are blind?”  “You don’t,” said the other, “You only know afterwards, when you can see again.”

Pastoral Prayer:

O God, whom we see in every sunrise and sunset, teach us to see You as well in the haggard faces of the medical worker and every essential worker on the front lines of this ongoing fight against this unseen, but deadly virus.  Help us who are called by Your name to have Your vision of the future of our world, as a place where the lion lies down with the lamb, where the person with two coats shares with the person who has none, and where everyone takes care of the suffering, the sick, and the aged.

Release us from our bondage to self-interest, worrying about what we shall eat or what we shall wear or how we look to others who are watching us.  Guide us into the freedom of Your Spirit, where we shall be at peace and confident and supportive of others.

Teach us to number our days as gifts, so that we may never treat them as obstacles to be overcome or burdens to be endured until our lives are back to normal.  And, though we are apart, enable us to be a community of Christ, whose body we are.  Give to us a special capacity for grace to reach out to those who are ill in body and spirit, and let the very sense of Your presence become their balm in these difficult days.

Give wisdom to the leaders of our world, that they may better cope with the confusion and complexity of this perilous time.  Bring us all into a greater sensitivity to the needs of those who are suffering the most, whether from the virus or from the economic hardship it has caused.  We pray too, for the family and friends of Neil Kent.  We will miss his gentle spirit and contagious smile, but help us to hold near to our hearts the memory of his faith, perseverance, peaceful spirit by which he faces both life and death.  We pray for Jerry and Sue Woodruff’s son-in-law, Ed.  Lord, bring healing to his body and wisdom for the doctors and medical professionals treating him, that he may experience a complete recovery.  Lord, use the surgeons and medical staff as your instruments of healing for little Ezra, and young Michael in these coming days. 

Now let Your Holy Spirit overpower us as we worship, blotting out sin that would blind us to Your glory and raising us to the newness of life that is in Christ Jesus our Lord, to whom in whose name we pray saying…Our Father, who art in heaven… 

Blessing:

May the love of God surround you,
The wisdom of God guide you,
And the power of the Holy Spirit encourage you
As you joyfully proclaim:
“The whole world is in God’s hands.” 
Amen.

Go in Peace.
See ya tomorrow.

Rinse and Repeat


Photo by Sebastian Voortman on Pexels.com

Rinse away the hurt
Like water over the rocks
Don’t let anger stay

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com
Photo by The Craft Wonder on Pexels.com

Let the hurt dissolve
Like bubbles in the bathtub
Rinse and then repeat

Whatever you do,
Smile, because God loves you…
And so does JanBeek!

See ya later!

Forgiveness


Two-Way Street

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!

Be Strengthened

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

Fluctuating Emotions

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.

Amen”

May 2020 begin our decade of CLARITY.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow.

The Road to Inner Peace


Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

“In today’s world,
despite ample material development,
too many lack inner peace.
One way to counter anger, jealousy and competitiveness
is to cultivate non-violence
and compassion towards others.”


-Dalai Lama

Cultivate Compassion

Photo by Snapwire on Pexels.com

When you have a friend who’s down,
You may not be able to physically lift them up,
But you can bend down to understand
And massage their heart and fill their cup.

Giving comfort to others who hurt
Seems to lift my spirit as much as theirs.
Compassion is directed in as well as out,
It’s a two-way street, an up-the-down stairs!

Photo by Jc Romero on Pexels.com

Journey Inward

“And you? When will you begin that long journey inward?”
– Rumi

I am certain that my friend, Lilie, is on the road to inner peace. Yesterday she quoted the wisdom I copied above from Rumi on her WordPress blog, Tea and Toast with Kindness.

I learn a lot by reading the ruminations of others. This week I especially appreciated the writings of Dr. Perry in his blog,

Dr. PerrySep 15, 2019bloggingpositivitymotivation

Dr. Perry, posted a blog titled, It’s OK to Have a Bad Day. It caused me to internalize this inward journey for peace and think about the habits I have worked to develop in order to be my own best friend.

He quoted Emerson, who wrote:
“Bad times have a scientific value. These are occasions a good learner would not miss.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Photo by David Garrison on Pexels.com

Ten Habits of Peaceful Living

Traveling inward, looking for contentment, I have found that I need to consciously adopt habits that foster inner peace:

  1. Forgiveness
  2. Positivity
  3. Self-Acceptance
  4. Recognition of Limitations
  5. Confrontation of Temptations
  6. Elimination of Blame
  7. Hope in the Face of Despair
  8. Celebration of Where my Hope Lies
  9. Life-long Learning
  10. Prayer

Reflect

In the process of traveling the Road to Inner Peace, it is important to stop every now and then to look back. Consider your progress or regression. Have you every noticed when you’re traveling up a hill that you don’t realize how steep it is until you look back at the incline you have just traversed?

Likewise, when the road is on a decline, you may not realize how drastic the angle until you stop and look back up to the place you began. Reflecting on where you started and seeing how far you have improved or deteriorated can be very helpful.

Dr. Perry, in the post I referenced above says it this way,
“After a period of time, reflect on what you have learned and gained from the negative event or interaction in your life. More often than not you will find that you have learned something. Perhaps you will discover an inner strength that you were not aware of or a higher purpose for your existence.”

Find Purpose

In her September 27th, The Godly Chic Diaries posted a WordPress guest writer. She introduced Matik Nicholls by saying, “I’m a firm believer that if you have a pulse, you have a purpose. I say this with my whole heart, Everyone needs a blessing. And if you have the ability to bless others, be a blessing. And when you are a blessing to others, you will find ‘joy unspeakable’ in the process….”

Photo by Samantha Garrote on Pexels.com

Guest Blogger: Matik Nicholls wrote:
“Every gift, ability and blessing we have
is for the service of others.
We are blessers not blessees!
We carry the presence of God
wherever we go
for a greater purpose
than just for us to be happy.
It is our privilege and purpose
to transfer the blessings of God to others!”

Take Joy in the Journey

Photo by Bekka Mongeau on Pexels.com

Traveling life’s road,
I take joy in the journey.
Spreading it’s my goal.

With The Godly Chic’s help, I discovered this new website, and decided to subscribe to it. The author, Matik Amilcar Nicholls, has created an inspirational web blog at http://www.Authenticjoy.org. This handsome, positive-thinking young man resides in the beautiful islands of Trinidad and Tobago.
On his site, he shared, “I am an engineer by training, having graduated from the University of the West Indies with a B.Sc. Computer and Electrical Engineering (with honours). More recently, I completed an M.B.A. with the Heriot-Watt University. I also have a certificate in Applied Theology (class valedictorian) from the Millennium Bible Institute and currently I am pursuing an online programme with the International Coaching Academy to become a Certified Coach.”

Naturally, reading about him, I am inspired to want to learn more. My Road to Inner Peace is made more successful when I can join hands on the journey with people like Matik. People in other parts of the world. People whose life stories are far different from mine, but who share the common purpose of wanting to “Be a Blessing.” I encourage you to let Matik’s JOY infect you as I found it to be quite “catching” indeed!

Like me, spreading joy
– and the source of his joy (his FAITH) –
is what Matik says he is all about.
He wrote,
“I love Jesus. I love spending time with Him.
I love His mercy that keeps flowing endlessly in my life.
I love what He stands for:
love, grace, mercy, peace,
truth, freedom, humility and transformation.
I am committed to these values.
I’m committed to doing my part to preach the gospel,
heal the sick, feed the poor,
comfort the hurting and free the oppressed…
I enjoy seeing people walk in the fullness
of all that God has for them to be and do.

Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

Walk in the fullness
Of all that God has for you
Find that Inner Peace.

Amen!

See ya tomorrow.

Ten Ways to Keep Marriage Alive


Ten Ways to Keep Marriage Alive

 

accessory anniversary band celebration

Bob and I have been married more than 57 years. Our love for one another is more alive today than it ever has been. (I read that statement to him just now and asked if he agreed. Of course, he said, “Of course,” That’s part of the secret, guys! Ya gotta readily agree on things like that!)

How do we do it? How do we keep love alive after all these years? What is a healthy marriage anyway?

Jane Smiley, in her book, At Paradise Gate, wrote the following:

“You know what getting married is? It’s agreeing to take this person who right now is at the top of his form, full of hopes and ideas, feeling good, wildly interested in you because you’re the same way, and sticking by him while he slowly disintegrates. And he does the same for you. You’re his responsibility now, and he is yours. If no one else will take care of him, you will. If everyone else rejects you, he won’t.

What do you think love is? Going to bed all the time? Poo! Don’t be weak. Have some spine! He’s yours and you’re his. He doesn’t beat you or abuse you, and you’ve made the same bargain. Now that you know what it’s like to be married, now that all the gold leaf has sort of worn off, you can make something of it; you can really learn to love each other.”

I love that take on marriage by Jane Smiley. It coincides with my opinion on what it takes to make a marriage work. Here is my list:
Ten Constant Steps toward Being Married Happily Ever After:

  1. Accept and Respect one another’s differences, and celebrate your areas of sameness.
  2. Stick by one another – even as you slowly disintegrate.
  3. Take responsibility for yourself and your actions. Be forgiving.
  4. Defend one another to a hostile world.
  5. Be strong in your faith; pray and laugh and play together.
  6. Be a diligent partner, doing more than your share without bitterness or resentment or complaint.
  7. Praise one another for the little things.
  8. Never take one another for granted.
  9. Always be trustworthy; don’t stab one another in the back!
  10. Practice the art of compromise – with God as your Constant Guide.

Keep Learning

Yes, when all the gold leaf has sort of worn off and you’re each comfortable in your own space, keep the space open and inviting. Invite one another in. Keep on learning to love one another as long as you both shall live.

You’re in this box together. You’re in it for the long haul. Enjoy the ride!

box cheerful color cute

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

img_8408
Hang tight!!


pexels-photo-704748
See ya later.

 

Looking Back for Inspiration


Inspiration from
Daily June “Take-Aways”

Life's a Book

When daily I read
Daily Guideposts 2019, – A Spirit-Lifting Devotional –
I write 2 to 9 words on the page
to remember the message
that I want to “take-away” with me.

Here are the daily Take-Aways from June:

  1. Think creatively!
  2. Trust first; Faith follows.
  3. Work at Loving.
  4. See and feel God (at work in my life)
  5. Relax into what comes.
  6. Accept and Appreciate God’s Grace
  7. Some things are worse than death.
  8. Share Openly My Faith
  9. Find God is the Seeing, not the Being
  10. Create in Me a Legacy of Love
  11. Respond with Compassion
  12. Project Positivity to All!
  13. Let You Inner Self Sparkle!
  14. Let God Keep You Tuned
  15. Forgive as You’re Forgiven
  16. Pray Daily for Confidence in God’s Wisdom and Guidance
  17. Trust in God’s Hope
  18. Find and Follow God’s Paths
  19. Be a Reflection of Jesus’ Love
  20. Accept Barriers
  21. Be in the Moment
  22. See Beauty Everywhere
  23. Live in and Love the Trinity
  24. Praise Him – It Feels Good!!
  25. Speak Love; Exhibit Kindness
  26. Erase Past Regrets
  27. Bee Generous ;o)
  28. Go With the Flow
  29. Focus on Blessings
  30. Live with Purpose!

Which one speaks loudly to your heart
and gives you the inspiration to go out
and JUST DO IT?

Thanks for dropping by.
I’d love to see your choice below.

pexels-photo-887349-1
See ya tomorrow

Feed and Follow


Sermon Notes from
5/5/19
Rev. Jean Johnson’s message
inspired by John 21:1-19

“Feed and Follow”

We are needy people
Who need daily encouragement.
We need assurance;
We need to know what Jesus meant
When He said, “Feed my sheep.”

.
We call out for forgiveness.
We are hungry for God’s grace.
How shall we feed on grace?
How shall we receive forgiveness?
Obey Christ’s command, “Feed My sheep!”

.
We hunger for His grace.
We yearn for His mercy.
We are healed by forgiveness.
We are to care for and feed those
Christ meant with, “Feed My sheep.”

.
Christ converted Shakey Simon
Into the Solid Rock Peter.
Through Christ, God provides us
With the Solid Word to feed others.
We can, in fact, follow “Feed My Sheep.”

.
In His command is God ‘s promise
Of provision for His followers.
The church will feed on the Gospel.
The church will nourish others
With Good News – “We feed God’s Sheep!”

.
We are here as needy people
To receive the encouragement
To feed on His assurance,
And then to go out and indeed
Do as He commands: “Feed My sheep!”

.
On this Cinco de Mayo,
I have decided that when we
go out into the world and
Feed His Sheep,
we bring color into their lives.

colored sheep
Don’t you agree?
The Good News certainly colors MY world!!

Happy Cinco de Mayo, my friends.
See you tomorrow.

Tag Cloud

<span>%d</span> bloggers like this: