Keep looking ahead Don’t look backward instead Keep your balance upright And your future in sight
Don’t be in a hurry You don’t need to scurry Be ever expectant But, don’t be a contestant
We’re part of a whole Connection’s our goal Slow down and discover We can lean on each other
May your eyes look ahead And read what is said About those in distress Who live in a mess
Because they don’t pause And look at the cause Of the trouble they’re in It stems from within
They rush here and there Seldom are they aware Of the joy that’s ahead If they’d slow down instead
So keep your eyes looking up Let the calm fill your cup As you savor each day Spreading love on your way.
In his book, Ever Faithful, David Jeremiah reminded me in today’s devotional that there is something to rejoice in, give thanks for, and pray about around every curve. He referenced this scripture:
“16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
David Jeremiah reminds us that looking ahead – keeping your eyes focused on the path is the important task at hand. Do not be hurried! “Real joy in life comes not to the hurried, but to the expectant- those eager for new experiences and discovery.
There are encounters, discoveries, people, events, opportunities, blessings and challenges to be found.”
“However, when He, the spirit of truth has come, He will guide you into all truth.”
Today, trust the Holy Spirit to guide you as you travel your chosen path. Keep your eyes looking ahead.
David Jeremiah invites us to “Keep your eyes and arms open to embrace what you discover.”
I’m gonna do that. I’m gonna ask the Holy Spirit to lead me to a new, peaceful path. And I’m gonna keep my eyes looking ahead.
How about you?
Thanks for joining me today. See ya tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
One of the definitions of grace involved the word “clemency.”
It is the willingness or ability to moderate the severity of a punishment or an act or instance of mercy, compassion, or forgiveness.
We all know that a life lived well is a life lived with compassion, a life filled with forgiveness of others as well as of ourselves.
We all need to practice clemency!
Find grace in your heart. Let forgiveness and compassion be your first response! When we are merciful, we receive mercy in return.
Today’s post was inspired by today’s devotional in Mornings with Jesus. Gwen Faulkenberry wrote a creative take on Hebrews 4:16, “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
She imagined a beggar approaching a palace, being turned away by the butler, but welcomed with open arms by the prince who brings the starving man to the queen. When she sees him approaching, she jumps from her throne, runs to him, and says, “Come in! Come in! How can I help you today?”
Gwen invites us in the “Faith Step” at the bottom of the page to imagine ourselves as the man and imagine the queen as God. What would you ask if you weren’t afraid?
God of grace gives us all the grace we need… and continues to gift us with the compassion, kindness, and courtesy we need in order to pass it on to others freely.
Knowing you have received grace upon grace, approaching the throne of God, what would you ask Him for?
I asked for healing of this broken finger, (it was in there under all that wrapping), renewed strength in this left hand, renewed balance so I could stop falling, and a healing of my head’s 8 stitches before we head for our daughter’s in Switzerland later this month. God is answering my prayers… in His perfect timing (as always).
What will you ask for? See ya tomorrow (God willing) Love to you, from JanBeek
Each day as I read my Daily Guideposts and reflect on what the message means to me, I create a “Take-Away.” I have a page or two on which I record them. Here are the take-aways from July. Which one or two resonates with you as a “Take-away” for the month that you can carry with you into August?
Be an investor in prople
Be grateful for daily love, joy, and peace
Celebrate the peace of Christ
Freedom isn’t free!
Treasure your friends; tell ’em so
Happy Birthday, Mary Grace Reynolds (my pastor)
Thank God for our loving children
Celebrate the birthdays of friends
Enjoy every day the Lord gives us
Share freely and generously with others
Spend quality time with our God/Creator
Take refuge in the familiar
Thank God for free will
As God for direction; then Trust the Journey
Care for the vulnerable
Celebrate milestones with friends
Keep an “I’m good” attitude
Share the humor and laughter of others
Slow down and watch where you’re walkin’
Be forever grateful for God’s miracles
Home is where angels live to guard us
His grace is sufficient
Praise God, friends & family for love
Love your spouse, church family & kids extravagantly
Love and appreciate the color in your life
Praise God for His love, mercy, and guardian angels
Be sure to exercise daily
Thank God for giving you momentum
Thank Jesus for His companionship
I read both Mornings with Jesus and Daily Guideposts each morning up in my sanctuary. Been doing it for over a decade now.
They help me plan my day and start off on the right foot.
With the “Take-Away” tucked in my heart, I head down the circle staircase with this 12 step prayer spoken to God on my way:
Dear God, Thank you for the 1. love, 2. joy, and 3. peace (that are mine) – Help me with: 4. patience, 5. kindness, 6. goodness, and 7. faithfulness (which brings blessings). Help me with 8. gentleness, and 9. self-control. 10. Help me live humbly with an attitude of gratitude, and a response of 11. generosity, forgiveness, 12. obedience and integrity. In Jesus’ name, AMEN.
And at that point, I am at the bottom… ready to start my day.
Which of the Take-Aways from June or July will you carry into August with you?
Have an Awesome month! See ya tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
I believe there are angels among us. I hope when you click on the link above, you can listen to this gorgeous voice singing this wonderful song.
Angels show us how to live Sent down from somewhere up above Angels teach us how to give And they teach us how to love.
Listen to the words of Chris Rupp’s vocal. Angels come to you and me… I had one protecting me last Monday – I am sure – it’s a guarantee!
Look at what I hit my head on when I fell over backward!
With the full weight of my body, I hit that trailer hitch! You tell me how I avoided a concussion- How I walked away with just a stitch…
Actually, if you read yesterday, You know my gash required eight… And I was in the ER four hours, Returning home rather late.
I didn’t even crack my skull- And I didn’t break my neck. I could have broken my back! Where’s that angel hiding? Let me check!
You have angels among you, too… At least one on duty at all times. Tune in – you can feel the protection. Look around, you’ll see the signs!
As the poem above tells us, Angels sometimes are disguised as friends – Sometimes family are our angels – Angels are the love God sends.
Listen here to another beautiful song: I Will Be Here – Steven Curtis Chapman – Chris Rupp A Cappella I hope this link takes you there.
Who is always there for you?
Bob is an angel who is here for me. It took a few minutes of screaming his name To wake him from his nap, but I could see him there … And when he heard me, how quickly he came!
Yes, my friends, angels are among us. We need to open our hearts and our eyes To see and to feel them around us. Mine’s trying to teach me to be more wise!
In Hebrews 13:2, Paul said, “Be not forgetful to entertain strangers; for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” That verse leads us to wonder if angels appear to us in human form at times. We know that they appeared to many in human form in the Bible. [See Genesis 18:2].
You may be blessed to have an angel living with you all the time, too!
If you’ve followed my blog for a while, You know I attend church every Sunday, And I usually try to take sermon notes. As I listen, I try to record the message poetically.
Our pastor, Rev. Mary Grace Reynolds, is doing a bold sermon series. She’s asking our church congregants to send her scripture that puzzles or troubles them.
This week the scripture passage she used is from Luke 9:57-62. A weird one indeed! I’ve often thought Jesus was rather harsh with these two men who wanted to follow Him.
New International Version
The Cost of Following Jesus
57 As they were walking along the road, a man said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.”
58 Jesus replied, “Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.”
59 He said to another man, “Follow me.”
But he replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”
60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”
61 Still another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but first let me go back and say goodbye to my family.”
62 Jesus replied, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for service in the kingdom of God.”
Today’s sermon notes:
The mid-west mecca of modern architecture Is Columbus, Indiana. Ever been there? I watched the movie, “Columbus,” recently. Jinn & Casey meet and share.
Ultimately the movie is about Staying or leaving – choices we make. Casey needs to go, but doesn’t want to. Jinn convinces her to leave for her own sake.
Jesus may have been telling the men To leave for their own sake. Their situations were different, But departure was what it would take.
Jewish burial rites have many parts: Wrapping body, burial, dig up, burn, urn… In this scripture a man wants to tend to his father. Jesus prompts, “Come now and learn.”
We don’t know at what point in the rites This man’s father may have been – But it seems harsh for Jesus to tell him “Let the dead bury their dead.” Such chagrin!
Another man wants to go back to his family, But Jesus says, “Do not do an about face!” This passage is all about priorities. Jesus asks us to put Him in first place.
Love is not selfish, sinking in its talons. Love is generous – love always is kind. There often is sadness in leaving, But when God calls, listen, decide, and mind!
Don’t get stuck looking back (like Lot’s wife). You’ll become a pillar in your own tears and grief. It’s all about priorities and obedience. Hear God’s call and follow your belief!
What is it that determines your values and beliefs?
Perhaps Jesus was not being harsh with those two men after all. Perhaps, like Jinn and Casey in the movie, “Columbus,” He was telling them to leave for their own sake – even though they didn’t want to go quite yet.
Sometimes God’s perfect timing doesn’t seem perfect… … at least not at the time He jerks us out of our comfort zone! But often, looking back, we can say, “Aha! Now I see… God always knows what is best for me!”
Jesus’ words may seem harsh at first glance, But He always has our best interest at heart. I need to trust His encouragement to step out… And what better time than now to start?
See ya on the road to success tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
Life is a wonderful journey Of ups and overs and downs It’s filled with joy and sorrow With more smiles (I pray) than frowns!
As I travel this road of life, I weather the storms and bumps I look for roses and buttercups And try to jump over the humps
I look for butterflies and bees And appreciate the beauty I see I share the joy and the peace That God daily gives to me.
Our WordPress friends share their joy with us everyday. For example: Roth Poetry.com posted about butterflies today. He wrote:
“I just could not help myself today, when I saw these beautiful butterflies on my Zinnias. I kept shooting and shooting. and they stayed around flitting from flower to flower, poetry in motion! With my 200mm zoom, I was able to focus all the way in on them. These are some of the most beautiful butterflies I have seen!
Beauty flits lightly from yellow to red buffet Basking in sunshine
Life is a journey of beauty Take time to allow it to sink in Don’t let the ugliness and discord Make your vision a stink-in!
There’s plenty of garbage out there It’s not what God asks us to see God says to focus on the beauty There’s plenty of it in you and me!
You might have to take a few pit stops, you might get a flat tire here and there, you might go through a few thunderstorms, but through all your experiences, fruit is being built. You are becoming stronger, and your faith and reliance on God is growing.
Laugh a lot and keep it light Let sorrow just roll off your back Turn a blind eye to the ugly sites And give the love that others lack
“And no matter what dreams you’re chasing, Never get above your raising. May the simple things be amazing On the journey of your life.”
Treasure the journey!
“The only impossible journey is the one you never begin.”
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own understanding. Acknowledge him in all your ways, and he will make your paths straight.”
Years ago I wrote a poem that was published in the International Library of Poetry annual publication. The title of the book in 2002 was “Chasing Revelation.” My poem was titled, “Have Faith and Step Out.” You can find it here: https://janbeek.blog/2020/01/02/have-faith-and-step-out/ It is as poignant in my life today as it was 20 years ago… maybe more so. How about you? Does it apply? Are you up for the next step of your journey?