Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Posts tagged ‘giving’

Embrace Cards


Do you save some of the cards people send you?
Are you inspired by the things your friends and family say to and about you?
I have a bulletin board on the back of the door that leads to my laundry room.
Each year I save the birthday cards I receive and post them there.
If ever I feel myself moving into a funk, and I need a spirit lift,
just reading a few of those cards definitely raises me up!

In my sanctuary, I have a bookshelf with my collection of Bibles and various devotionals. On it, I have a card that my friend, Terry, sent to me several years ago. I see it every morning and it is a marvelous source of encouragement and inspiration. Living up to the sentiment it expresses, being the person this friend sees in me, are daily challenges – daily goals. You can see why I have saved and I embrace this card:

Last year when my dear friend, Phyllis, died, I inherited a bagful of cards she had kept during her last year of life. Living in the nursing home during COVID-19 when visitors were not allowed in, the cards were a lifeline to the outside world. Never underestimate the value of the card you take the time to select and send to a friend. They are more precious than gold!

I am going to select some of the most meaningful of these cards and send them to Phyllis’ daughter(s) … knowing their messages will live on in the hearts of my friends’ family members, just as they live on in my heart.

With Thanksgiving coming, that USA holiday dedicated to an attitude of gratitude for our many blessings, I went to the Family Dollar Store yesterday. For $1.00 apiece, I picked up a dozen beautiful cards with lovely sentiments. With precious family and friends in mind, I selected carefully. Today I wrote a personal note of appreciation on each, addressed, and stamped them. Bob took them to the post office. They are on their way to special people who make my life better – just because they are a part of my world.

Letter writing and card sending does not need to be a lost art. Cards can be expensive (those same ones would be between $2.50 and $4.95 at a stationery store). But, check out your local dollar store! Don’t let the expense deter you! Get a few cards today. Find some time to write a personal note to the people who make your life better. Send them off to brighten someone’s day. Let your light shine through your words and thoughtfulness! You never know, your cards may be keepers, too!

Embrace Cards.
Embrace the Expressions of Appreciation you receive from others.

Send yours out tomorrow…
Be the friend everyone wishes they had!

Let your light shine
all the way to
where your loved ones are…


There’s still time for your cards to be received by Thanksgiving!

Good friends- Terry & Elaine –
So blessed to have these as “Keepers!”
Their light shines in my heart everyday!

Thanks for visiting.
Tell me – are you a card saver, too?

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Love ya,
JanBeek

I dare you to listen to this song without smiling!!

Embrace Generosity


Give from your big heart
Embrace generosity
Use Christ’s example

Our Lord gave His all
So we’d have Life Eternal
It’s available

All you need to do
Is open your heart to Him
And embrace His love

If you have followed my blog for awhile, you know that I have a habit of taking notes in poetry as I listen to the weekly sermon. Sometimes it’s easy to do that… other times the poetry escapes me. Today the message came to me in rhythm and rhyme quite easily! It was an inspirational take on this very familiar scripture. I hope it speaks to your heart as it did mine.

Photo by John-Mark Smith on Pexels.com

Today’s sermon
at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
by Rev. Mary Grace Reynolds
was based on this scripture:

Mark 12:38-44

As he taught, he said, “Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces, and to have the best seats in the synagogues and places of honor at banquets! They devour widows’ houses and for the sake of appearance say long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.”
He sat down opposite the treasury, and watched the crowd putting money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums. A poor widow came and put in two small copper coins, which are worth a penny. Then he called his disciples and said to them, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all those who are contributing to the treasury. For all of them have contributed out of their abundance; but she out of her poverty has put in everything she had, all she had to live on.”

Sermon Notes

Usually this scripture
Is used on Stewardship Sunday;
But, relax! This is not
What I’ll talk about today!

Who among us will go to the bank,
Empty it, and put it in the offering plate?
I wouldn’t expect that of tou –
Not today… not on any date!

But, let’s look at the lofty ones,
The ones who act like priests,
But are not… and moreover,
They righteously parade and gorge on feasts.

Jesus isn’t just ranting, but teaching.
He tells the disciples about the widow’s life.
He praises her for her generosity
And coveys her years of trouble and strife.

He scold the scribes and pharisees
For giving out of their spare change.
While the widow gave all she had,
He admonishes the limits they arrange.

These two teachings arre Jesus’s last.
From here Jesus will face His fate.
Chist encourages us to learn
There’s no pay grade low enough to be ingrate.

The widow is a victim of the system.
But, in spite of that, she gives all –
Knowing her money will help someone.
That widow certainly stands tall!

As part of the sum of many,
She gives out of sacrificial love.
Likewise, Jesus gave His all, so we
Can learn from Him and join Him above.

“God so love the world
That He gave His only begotten Son
That whosoever believeth in Him
Shall not perish
But have everlasting life”

That marvelous rendition of this hymn by St. Paul’s Cathedral Choir reminds me of the men and boys’ double choir that we heard last month at Westminster Abbey in London. Sitting next to our daughter, who cried buckets of emotion all the way through it, I remembered my years as member of the University of Pacific’s A Capella Choir. We sang this version of the song at most of our concerts. I love it! I hope you are blessed by it, too. Soooo beautiful!!

Have a blessed rest of your Sunday
and a wonderful week!

I send you my love
and lotsa hugs.

See ya tomorrow (God willing)
Embrace Generosity…
and generously give as you are able…

Love,
JanBeek

That’s me with our pastor,
Mary Grace Reynolds
She’s a gift from God!!

Missing Or Giving?


This is Vissoie, Switzerland.
Our daughter and son-in-law have a restaurant here.
Isn’t it beautiful?

We missed our visit with them this year. We are not even able to go to California to celebrate Christmas with our son and his family there. I bet we are not alone. Many of you are missing your visits with your family this Christmas, too.

We’ll miss being with our son, Ty, and having my sister, Sally with us this year.

What are you missing?

Photo by Maximiliano Ignacio Pinilla Alvarado on Pexels.com

Like this sad looking dog, we can sit around and look all mopey.
We can focus on what we’re missing.
Or we can go to Ann Kaplow’s blog this morning,
try focusing on the positive,
and answer her question,
“Can you find something to celebrate in today’s images?”

Ann Koplow
Check out her blog below.

Ann KoplowThe Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

Celebrate the fact that even though we feel the darkness of this Coronavirus and the isolation caused by this pandemic, we also can experience the LIGHT! The Light still shines – and we can reflect it!

Focus on the Reason for the Season

Let us not focus
On the things we are missing
But on our blessings

We have so much to give!
Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

Basic needs are met
And we have great resources
Enough to share them

When your needs are met
Leave the reptilian brain
And share your great smile

Food, clothing, shelter –
Not all people are so blessed.
Take these for granted?

No! Let’s treasure them.
Now we can go beyond them –
Reach out to others.

What do we have to give?

You have love to give
You have compassion to give
And you have kindness

Focus on giving
Blessings are overflowing
Share them with others

As long as you give
Know your cup will be refilled
You can’t out-give God!

In this weary world
People long for what you have
Share your love – give faith!

Have a little faith
Not in the things of this world
But in the True Light

Take the LOVE He gives
And let that love shine through you
Give a little FAITH!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
Have a blessed Thursday.
Count your blessings!
See ya tomorrow.

Give Cheerfully


Photo by Daria Shevtsova on Pexels.com

2 Corinthians 9:7

“Each of you should give
what you have decided to give,
not reluctantly or under compulsion,
for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Photo by Hassan OUAJBIR on Pexels.com

I give cheerfully
Not out of obligation
But from abundance

I am richly blessed
So I can be a blessing
I give cheerfully

You are richly blessed
Your needs are taken care of
Reach out to others

You give cheerfully
Out of a generous heart
And God blessed you

Thank You!

Photo by Elly Fairytale on Pexels.com

Have a blessed first Sunday in Advent!
It is a season of HOPE and ANTICIPATION.
I pray your season be filled with love and generosity.

Do you have a child or grandchild in your family who would love to see this video explaining the meaning of Advent? If so, pass this along. It’s wonderfully kid friendly… and a good way to begin the season of gifts and giving.

Before I go, let me give a gift to you:
The gift of music by Laura Story…
The blessing of faith in the “what ifs” of life…

God bless You!
See ya tomorrow.

Hugs from
JanBeek

Another Angel in Heaven


Phyllis Wasick and me –
about 10 years ago

The older we get,
The more ready we must be
For our angel friends
To leave you and me.

They ascend to heaven
Where loved ones wait
To greet them in song
At the pearly gate.

Today’s selfie

When our hair turns silver
And wrinkles show our age,
We have to be ready
To turn the eternal page.

The eighties are great;
It’s a decade of reflection
And a time to appreciate
Every earthly connection.

But it also is a time
When we look at this season
As the winter of our years,
And we search for life’s reason.

Photo by Ivan Bertolazzi on Pexels.com

We look at life differently
Than we did in our teens.
We see through our experience
What life is – what purpose means.

It’s not about what we can get,
Or what riches we acquire.
It’s about the love we give
To the people we admire.

It’s about reaching out to strangers
Who are falling between the crack.
It’s about filling their needs –
Helping give the things they lack.

Photo by Luis Dalvan on Pexels.com

Reaching up in prayer and praise
I thank the Lord for all His gifts.
As long as I have life and breath,
I’ll reach out to give others lifts.

I hope you’ll use your senior years
To do the same – to spread your love –
Because we are blessed to be a blessing.
For every day, I thank. God above.

My Prayer for You

When your time comes
To say good-bye to earth,
May the angels welcome you
And your friends rejoice at your New Birth!
Amen

Welcome to Heaven, Phyllis.
I miss you here…
But I rejoice at your Eternal Reunion.
May all who were blessed by your presence
And who entered the pearly gates before you did
Be there to welcome you HOME.
God bless you!
Keep the light on!

Love,
JanBeek

Without Water


Have you ever been living in a house for a week without the benefit of running water? That’s been our situation this week.

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

If you don’t have water running in your house, then your toilets don’t work. Have you lived in your house without a toilet working and with no outhouse? That’s what we’ve done… and our dear neighbors let us drive the 1/4 mile to their house to use their bathroom when we needed it this week. At night, we’ve slept in the church manse where we could use the toilet when needed without driving to the neighbors’ place at midnight!

We’ve been updating the water system in our house – replacing the water tank, pump, radiant floor heating system, etc… Long story as to why this was necessary, but suffice to say, I am not complaining. I know I am blessed.

Photo by Artsy Solomon on Pexels.com

I know there are people in this world who have to walk miles to get drinking water – or any kind of water for that matter – and they carry it on their heads to bring it home to their families. So, am I complaining about driving a quarter mile to use a toilet – or about not having running water in my house for a week? No way!!!

Photo by James Frid on Pexels.com

But an outhouse would come in handy right about now! Maybe I should just pretend I’m camping right now. Ya think?

When you go to Amazon.com and buy something on-line, you have a chance to donate a percentage of your dollars to a charity of your choice. I give to

Water To Thrive
which is headquartered in Austin, TX

Water to Thrive provides clean safe water to rural African communities by connecting donors, sponsors, congregations, schools and community groups directly to communities in need.

There are many organizations related to clean water and building wells in remote places around the world – where fresh, running water is a luxury. I hope you find one that you can support – – – The people who receive your support will rejoice, for sure!

Photo by Belle Co on Pexels.com

People all over the world are in need of fresh water for their survival. Being without running water in my home for a week has certainly taught me empathy.

What charity is dear to your heart?
Have you ever been in a situation
where you lacked the water
you needed for your daily needs?

Tell me about it.

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Here’s to the Goodness!


My friend, Doris, who graduated from high school with me back in the Dark Ages, sent me an e-mail today with 48 pictures designed to demonstrate acts of kindness in the midst of this world-wide time of struggle with COVID-19 and racial injustices.

I selected my favorites from the 48 – and want to share them with you here as an encouragement to go out and do likewise. Pick your favorite from these seven that I have chosen. Tell me why it touches your heart.

Each of the seven (selected in random order) were important to me. They demonstrate our need for ONENESS, UNITY, RESPECT, GOODNESS, LOVE, and KINDNESS.

The numbers attached to the pictures were on the website… they are not in any way prioritizing. And that message above was part of the post… “Bored Panda” was the source. Their word “tolerance” is not mine. It seems condescending to me. I prefer “LOVE.” Don’t just tolerate me! Love me… and treat me as I am: your equal! One of God’s children!! Just love me!!

I love YOU!

Can you choose one from those seven? Tell me why it resonated with you.

The YouTube below was also sent to me by that same high school friend, Doris. It’s a wonderful children’s choir singing about the memories that will live on in their lives after this time passes. Click on the arrow, sit back, and enjoy the voices, the melody, and the message.

And don’t forget the message here:
ONENESS,
UNITY,
RESPECT,
GOODNESS,
LOVE,
and KINDNESS.

Bee well, my friends.
I’m so glad I didn’t lose you…
Memories bring back YOU!!


See ya tomorrow.
Hugs, JanBeek

(Oh, leave me a note about your favorite of those seven, will you?)

One Small Act


If you see someone
Who desperately needs your help,
Of course you’ll reach out.

But most people seem
Afraid to really let on –
They hide what they need.

Too proud to reach out,
They act like everything’s fine.
Sharpen your feelers!

Reach out secretly.
It’s like that wine meme I saw:
Make it a fun game!

Hah, I did just that!
But was surprisingly caught!
Yup, laughter is good.

What is one small act
You can do to cheer a friend?
How about a card?

When you mail a card to a friend,
consider inserting a tea bag or a seed packet.

Lord, make me a channel of Your peace…
This is Susan Boyle at her best –
So pure, so sweet, so inspiring.

To be loved – as to love with all my soul –
It is in giving to all that we receive –

Where there is darkness,
Only light;
Where there is sadness,
Ever joy!

Virtual Hugs to you
from me and my daddy!
Hah! I used to have dark hair like his was.

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek.

What’s that “One Small Act” for you today?
Tell me!



What the World Needs Now


What the world needs now
Is just a huge dose of love –
Oh, a few more things…

So many bloggers
Are giving us great ideas
About the world’s needs.

One thing is for sure:
We are all very needy.
What is it you need?

The world needs sweet love,
Not just one, but everyone.
What else do we need?

During this Coronavirus , we need to reach out.
Be the hands and feet of God on earth. He needs us to give:

  • food – to remove malnourishment
  • laughter – to remove anger
  • tissues – to remove sadness
  • rest – to remove fatigue
  • a clean bath – to remove dirt
  • chicken soup – to remove sickness
  • play – to remove boredom
  • conversation – to remove loneliness
  • prayer – to remove hopelessness
  • flowers – to remove dreariness

See how these flowers
Brighten the space where they are?
Share what you can give!

Even if all you have to give
is a smile,
Do not underestimate its worth!

What can you do now
To reach someone in kindness?
Make the world better!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I’m off to leave a pizza on a friend’s doorstep,
ring the bell,
and dash away.
See ya later!

A Crappy Day


It’s a crappy day
A gray and cloudy Tuesday
There’s no place to go

California’s far
For a one day drive in car
And flying is out

Switzerland’s too far
To drive, fly, or even swim
It’s a crappy time

I want to hug them
I want to see my grandkids
One has a birthday

This week is her day
To celebrate twenty-six
No, I can’t be there

Are you feeling it?
Is your separation tough?
Is your day crappy?

We just want to love –
Love one another right here
Is there a good way?

Thank God for the Net
Thank God for phones and e-cards
Thank God for your life

Gratitude’s the key
For changing crappy to good
Do you feel thankful?

Thank God you’re alive
Thank Him for your daily bread
Reach out to your friends

Write a card today
Put it in the mailbox
Brighten someone’s mood

Personalize it
With a special note from you
Let shared love cheer you

And if you live close,
You might deliver a piece
Of your berry pie

Or the cinnamon
Sticks you learned to make from Mom
Who never wasted

The left-over dough
Does that memory bring smiles?
It does that for me!

Day’s not so crappy
When you reach out with a smile;
So, try it yourself!

Don’t think of crappy
Think of happiness instead
You are what you think!

Thanks for visiting
JanBeek
and sharing below a little bit
about what you did
to change
crappy to happy
for you and your loved ones today.

Just Love One Another!

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