Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘gratitude’

The Joy of Human Love


Oh, for the joy of human love,
Brother, sister, parent, child,
Friends on earth and friends above,
For all gentle thoughts and mild

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise.

Enjoy this beautiful hymn while you read the rest of this post. I love The Cambridge Singers directed by John Rutter. Sooooo beautiful!!

Yes, Lord, I raise this joyful hymn
in grateful praise to You!

Yesterday I had the privilege of spending time with my granddaughter, Hope, and her family: her husband, Drew, and their two children, Xander and Sienna. I am so grateful for their visit!

Here is Hope – with her beautiful smile.

I was so busy with the children while they were in the house, I didn’t have time to think about pictures. But once they were strapped in their car seats, ready to leave, I said, “Wait! I need to capture this visit!”

Sienna was tucked in, thumb in place, too tired to smile – ready for a nap on her way back to Big Sky.
This is the typical Sienna – big smiles – big appetite!

I actually captured this photo of Xander & Drew just before Xander was strapped in. His toy phone is his constant companion. He carried on very loud pretend conversations with his dad and Bob and imaginary friends!

This is a scene a mile from our house at the golf course. I bet Sienna was asleep before they got this far!

For the Beauty of the Earth
For the glory of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
Our voices in grateful praise!

I pray that one day my great-grandchildren will grow to become young people who can sit and listen to a story, a poem, a wise parent… as Hope and Drew share “The Great Realisation” with them. God Bless “Tom Foolery” for his beautiful poem and the timely message he is sharing in this video with his child. If you have not heard this before, please take time to to listen. It is WONderful!!

Thanks for visiting today.
Have a WONderful week.
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Enjoy the coolness
of these beautiful Fall Days!

Shalom


John 14:27
(The Living Bible translation)

[Jesus said]
“I am leaving you with a gift –
peace of mind and heart!
And the peace I give isn’t fragile
like the peace the world gives.
So don’t be troubled or afraid.”

Shalom

The peace that Jesus Christ gives us is “Shalom.” It is a deep peace, filled with health and joy, security and contentment. It is a deep, lasting peace that sustains us through any circumstance. Thanks to Jesus, we can have peace with God, with one another, and with our own spirit.What a priceless gift!

Thank you, Ty, for this
1st Cor. 18:31

Peace in Quietness

In silence, I commune with my Maker each morning. In that quietness, I find strength and wisdom. In His Word, I find reassurance.

Isaiah 55:3 (KJ version)

“Incline your ear and come unto Me.
Hear and your soul shall live.”

In the stillness of the 9-11 Friday morning, Bob and I took our TazE and headed with our ATV to meet friends and spend the day communing with them and with nature.

Jan, TazE and Bob
On the road again!
Caroline Feldman Photography

In the quietness of the morning,
the roar of 5 ATV’s pierced the air.
Headed to McAtee Bridge and on to Ruby Creek,
five couples left the Madison Valley,
glanced across the landscape
to the glory of the Sphynx Mountain,
and climbed to the 9,400 ft. level
to enjoy God’s creation.

McAtee Bridge over the Madison River
The Talc Mine
Barn near McAtee
See the mountains of talc ahead of us?
Up, up we went to the look out – high above the valley floor.
A perfect, blue sky day. We were blessed!
Up we climbed –
high enough to find snow at our favorite outhouse!
Time for a picnic
Lunch break with the Asbergs, Feldmans, and Washburns
The trail to Black Butte
Pictures don’t do it justice!
The red rock ridges were spectacular!!
Don Asberg & Barbara Washburn
Dinner time – a BBQ at Ruby Creek Campgrounds
Barb Asberg with Charley Brown and me –
A beautiful spot right by the river
And then Saturday afternoon
we had the privilege of another river view
Steve Hundley fishing the Madison
right below Fran McNeill’s deck
Bob & Steve discussed which flies
would be best on that stretch of the river
Steve enjoyed his time on the river
Elaine Hundley and I enjoyed visiting with Fran McNeill
at her lovely home on the river
Fran has this plaque on her wall –
and we enjoyed an invincible summer day together.

Psalm 46:10

“He says, ‘Be still and know that I am God.”

Another of Fran’s plaques

Compassion and Gratitude

In the stillness of this Sunday afternoon, I treasure the blessings of this weekend. The time in the mountains, the camaraderie of friends, the health we enjoy, the beauty of the river, the peacefulness of cloudless blue skies. And I don’t take any of this SHALOM for granted! I know there are others whose homes and businesses are burning right now. I have a heart of compassion for those in Harm’s Way – and I pray for their safety.

Our valley is covered with smoke from fires that are ravaging this western part of the USA. I know there are people for whom “Shalom” is a distant image – a feeling they long to see return. I pray that it will. I pray that my happy pictures gave you pause to smile – and gave you hope for a blue-sky, peace-filled future.

Another of Fran’s plaques…
filled with great promises.

In the midst of COVID-19 and fires,
racial injustice and political unrest,
may you find SHALOM
in your heart.

You are blessed to be a blessing –
So share your joys –
And count your blessings.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.
See ya tomorrow.
Gentle Hugs
Shalom!

Scared of Getting Older?


Do we have an obsession with image? More concerned about the outside than the inside? As a nation… as a world?

Photo by Eternal Happiness on Pexels.com

Are you fed up with it? Do you feel it is robbing us of our sense of purpose and our wisdom?

These are some questions I gleaned from Scilla Elworthy, the elderly South African woman in the Ted Talk above:

Are you fully alive in your body? Do you have energy and attractiveness in your soul? Are you content with what is? Can you remove the mask, let the wrinkles show, and still like yourself?

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Self-acceptance is a great, great gift!

Obsession with image is tiring… Yes, I believe that!

What makes you feel electric? Does the world see your energy? Do you have real aliveness?

Health, exercise, purpose, usefulness… those are the keys!

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Many people struggle to find purpose in life. Scilla Elworthy said, “Most people fear pain and loneliness.”

We worry about what will happen when we are no longer able to care for ourselves and must rely on other people.

Photo by sergio omassi on Pexels.com

Dementia is a real fear for me. My mother was diagnosed with it before she died. My sister is in a home today – a nursing home – being cared for because she has Alzheimer’s. It is in my family. Is it in my future? I cannot dwell on that! I must live in the NOW and love myself so I can love others. The keys are:

  • gratitude,
  • prayer and meditation,
  • time in nature… being outside with things that are alive
Photo by Gustavo Fring on Pexels.com

What about death? It is inevitable. Approach it with curiosity. Think through it. Know that death is not finality.

What are the gains of growing older? We can speak out! Dare to speak up about those things that we think are wrong! Stand up for those things! Make a contribution by making a difference – by being true to ourselves.

Know that with age comes wisdom. Wise, experienced leaders are a gift to the world. As we age, we can be that older, wiser person who sees beyond the horizon. The world need us!

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

But age and wisdom are not synonymous. Wisdom does not come automatically. We can’t live in a foxhole and gain wisdom. We need to go out and risk adventure. Risk rebuke. Risk the world hating you. We need to be true to ourselves as we lift our heads to what is happening around us and seek the solutions to the challenges we all face. We can’t be ostriches with our head in the sand.

Photo by Frans Van Heerden on Pexels.com

A friend of mine said she has decided that the best way to avoid dissension is just to avoid having an opinion. “I try to remain totally objective – with no opinion expressed. Opinions just garner arguments,” she said.

We can’t let ourselves live in that kind of fear! Avoidance invites stagnation.

“Whoever is free from all fear will always be safe,” Scilla Elworthy said in the Ted Talk above. So, we must let go of any fear we have of speaking out.

What do you care about? What’s your opinion about aging? Let’s hear it!!

Derrick told me I earned every wrinkle.
I told him, “… and every silver hair, too!”

I’m not afraid of growing older.
Just don’t call me old!!
See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

For the Joy


For the joy of life

I give You thanks, O my God

Thanks for Montana

For the Joy of Life

In the beautiful outdoors

Thank You, O My Lord

We thank Thee for all
The blessings You give us, Lord.
Thank Thee for Jim Reeves!

What a voice!

What a beautiful land we live in…
Let’s take care of it, okay?
Protect the animals,
the trees and flowers, and rivers,
And let’s protect one another, too.

Bob & I are so happy that we were able to sing “Happy Birthday” to our daughter, DeAna this morning. Thank God for the internet! Today is the 53rd anniversary of her birth. She is celebrating it with her son, Chris, and her choir at a retreat in the Alps. Wish we could be there to celebrate with her!

Newborn DeDe with her brother, Ty..
Her tongue was always out… I thought maybe we needed to have the doctor shorten it!!!
But eventually she grew some teeth and the tongue stayed in!!
Yup, she grew lots of teeth! And the cutest smile, too!!
This was when she was in second grade.
About that time (2nd or 3rd grade)< her Grandma Beekman
made her a slip to match her own and curled her hair.
That’s becoming a big girl!!
I love this photo of DeDe as a high schooler.
Such a sweet and talented kid!
Yes, we are blessed!
And here she is today…
Celebrating her birthday in Switzerland
at a choir retreat with her son, Chris.

Oh, For Blessed JOY!!!
The joy of a child’s birthday…
Always our baby!

We remember so well the day of her wedding!
That’s my wedding dress from 25 years earlier…
Ah, sweet memories!

What are some of the JOYS that fill your heart today, my friends?
Is it the great outdoors, the animals, the beauty of God’s creation?
Is it family and the love of staying connected in spite of this pandemic?
Tell me!

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting!!
Hugs,
JanBeek

What Do You Miss?


Ennis Bell Ringers

There I am in the top-middle – happily holding my two bells, ready to practice with the Ennis Bell Ringers. This photo was taken last December before all this COVID-19 pandemic was known. We learned a series of songs to play at a Christmas concert, and were set to start learning patriotic songs so we could give a concert here in Ennis on the 4th of July. And all of a sudden, everything was cancelled. You know the feeling.

I sing in our church choir, too… and those practices had to be cancelled.

I volunteered (past tense) at our Senior Center as a sous chef, and at our local hospital as a receptionist one day a week. Those opportunities to serve were cancelled.

I miss:

  • singing with the choir
  • playing with the bell ringers
  • volunteering as a sous chef
  • volunteering to work one day a week at our local hospital
  • visiting my friends at the local nursing home
  • having neighborhood parties
  • hugging my friends
  • the carefree safety of flying to California or Pennsylvania or Switzerland to be with my children and their families, my sis and my niece
  • the freedom to shake hands with people I meet
  • and so much more…
I miss family reunions

I am grateful that we live where we do because here in the Madison Valley of Montana, we still are able to:

  • go four-wheeling in the mountains with friends in the wide-open spaces
  • attend church services outside on the lawn
  • hug one another (Bob & me… thank God!)
  • wear a mask and socially distance at CostCo or our local grocery store to do our shopping
  • interact with family and friends using the internet… here’s my sister in her last FaceTime meeting with her daughter and grandson (a real smile – yay!)
Yay! Thank God for the magic of the internet!

We still can hop in the car and go to see the beautiful scenery around us. In places up high, there still is snow on the ground!

And thanks to the internet, friends who go to visit Yellowstone Park can send pictures of the bison – and we can enjoy the sights they see vicariously!

So, instead of focusing on what I miss, I guess I should look at the joys we still can enjoy, right? My grandson, Mike, in Switzerland, went to a friend’s wedding last weekend – and he sent me a lovely picture of him with his darling girlfriend, Tania. I miss seeing him in person and meeting his friend in person, but I am grateful that he reaches out to me and that he sent this terrific photo:

Tania must have been a bridesmaid, don’t you think? Lovely dress!!

They have those same beautiful mountains there – even prettier – that we have here in Montana. See them behind the couple? The Alps are pretty spectacular! And of course, you noticed that foot that’s stuck in the photo there, right? Someone’s having fun. I can feel the joyfulness, can’t you?

What is it that you are missing?
And what are you grateful for today? Tell me!

I’m grateful for life itself…
and for my health.
Cheers, my friends!
I’m grateful for YOU!!

See ya tomorrow.
Love ya…. thanks for visiting
JanBeek

Deep Peace


Deep Peace I wish you.
Deep Peace flowing out to you
From love of children.

Deep Peace they bring us
With their angelic voices.
Let us sing along.

Deep Peace from Christ’s light
Shining on the earth’s beauty –
Music pours it out.

For the earth’s beauty,
For the purity of song,
I thank You, O Lord.

Have a blessed Friday night, my friends,
and a lovely, peace-filled weekend.
I hope this music blessed you.
It did me!

I’ll see you tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek

Selah


Selah

It is time to pause
Received blessings, expressed thanks
Now stop and absorb

Yes, I thank you all for the
lovely birthday wishes.

It is time to pause
Today is a “Selah Day”
Psalm 61:4

“I long to dwell in your tent forever and take shelter in the refuge of your wings.”

Selah (Pause)
See ya tomorrow.

Have a restful Saturday.
What are your plans?
I’m just gonna “cool it!”
Sending love and gratitude,
JanBeek

June was Bustin’ Out All Over!


Yup, June was Bustin’

Yup, June was bustin’ out all over… and I’m glad it is behind us! My hernia is gone. I’m on the road to recovery. I appreciate all your prayers and good wishes.

The surgery that was scheduled for 12:45 yesterday ended up not happening until 4:30, so they kept me overnight. I was so glad they did! The nurses and assistants at Deaconess Hospital in Bozeman were so kind and efficient. I really needed that extra time of TLC before returning home… and Bob needed a good night’s sleep before driving that hour up and hour back to get me.

June’s Behind Us

Now that June is behind us – and I am on the way to healing, let’s pray that our world can put the last 4 or 5 months behind it, too… and we ALL can heal. Find a vaccine for COVID-19, learn to love one another unconditionally, appreciate our uniqueness, live each day with a prayer and a song, and put the One God back into the center of our being!

June was a Bust!

Yup, June was quite the month… June was not “a love song sweetly sung” as this Rogers and Hammerstein suggested. It was a BUST from my perspective! But I tried to keep my attitude positive anyway. Upbeat music like this was one way to do it. Another way to stay positive in the midst of turmoil was to be sure to go up to my sanctuary every morning, spend time reading my Bible and devotionals, and listen for God’s voice to tell me how best to spend each day.

Focus on the Positive

If you have followed my blog for a while, you know I read and am inspired by a book with spirit-lifting devotionals, Daily Guideposts, every day. Each day the devotional starts out with a scripture. Then one of about 50 writers is assigned to write a reflection on it and then end with a prayer. I meditate on the message and write a “Take Away” on the page. It’s a thought I carry with me that day. I record them at the end of each month’s pages where there are two pages with a blank line for each day.

Here are my June pages. Read the Take Aways and see one of the sources for my ability to remain positive in the midst of this pandemic, this social unrest, protests, riots, and my anticipated surgery. These are the thoughts I carried around each day:

Be Grateful

Wherever you are, you have reasons to be grateful.
Just look around you. You can see!
Breathe deeply. You’re alive!
Soak in the beauty. You can feel!
Relax and sing. You have a voice!
Grab a snack. You have food!
Thank God.

The view from my hospital bed

Look Around You

I had the prettiest room in the hospital! A corner room with a view of the sunset last night and the sunrise this morning. No need to concentrate on the pain when I can concentrate on the view instead, right?

Bob came and got me at 10: this morning. I was grateful for my expedited release. There was a major storm predicted, and we had a one hour drive to get home. We were safely inside before the rain came down and the thunder clapped. And now, the sun is out again!

Look carefully at the horizon. Those are not more clouds.
That’s snow on the Tobacco Root Range. Yup, snow… July 1st!

So, as this day comes to a close, I want to thank you again for your love and prayers. I will take it easy for a while and let Bob and our friends and neighbors pamper me. I hope you feel my love being returned to you. Thank you for being my friend here on WordPress. You mean a lot to me.

Have a great rest of your week. If you’re in the USA, you know this weekend is our Independence Day. We usually have parades and barbecues and family here to celebrate with us. Not this year. This has been a different year, hasn’t it?

Keep your spirits up. Maybe you can use one of those “Take Aways” each day to help you.

Thanks for visiting.
See ya tomorrow.
Love, JanBeek

For the Joy of Human Love


For the beauty of the earth,
For the glory of the skies,
For the love which from our birth
Over and around us lies:

CHORUS:
Lord of all, to Thee we raise
This our hymn of grateful praise

Pray with me:

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
This our voice of righteous rage.
Hear our anguish, hear our pleas.
See us down on bended knees.

We are angered and hurting now
By the lack of love that somehow
Has made life unfair for our brothers,
Made life a nightmare for too many mothers.

The hymn says we are supposed to have
Love “from our birth.” We need a salve
To spread that love to ALL our kin.
We all are one – and we all live in sin.

It is the sin of overlooking
The hatred and the needless booking,
The deaths and harassment many face,
The fear and hatred in this place.

Take away our bent toward sinning.
Take away our need to be winning
An upperhand when we all are ONE,
ONE in Christ, Your Saving Son.



Check out this heart-wrenching account of what it means to be a black man in today’s divided, prejudice-filled society. God bless R. Eric Thomas and all those who feel the injustice he experiences:

It Does Not Matter If You Are Good

On Omar Jimenez, George Floyd, Christian Cooper and the myth of being non-threatening by R. Eric Thomas

R Eric Thomas is a Senior Staff Writer at ELLE.com,

Love is power within us all –
Do not let it be silent!

For the beauty of each hour,
Of the day and of the night,
Hill and vale and tree and flower,
Sun and moon and stars of light:

Lord of all, to Thee we raise
This our voice of grateful praise.

For the joy of ear and eye,
For the heart and mind’s delight,
For the mystic harmony
Linking sense to to sound and sight:

Lord of all to Thee we raise
This our song of grateful praise.

Look at the earth and all our blessings.
Let us thank God:

“All things come of Thee…
Help us, Lord, to be grateful
And to share our love and joy freely
With ALL God’s children.”

Amen

Work together for peace.
Pray together for unity.


Love ya lots, my brothers and sisters,
JanBeek

See ya tomorrow.

Expand Your Peripheral Vision


adventure conifer daylight desert
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Expand your peripheral vision
To see blessings in unexpected places.
How could Jonah in the whale do so
While he was down under – sleeping?

Reading the first chapter of Jonah,
I discovered Jonah sleeping below deck.
The sailors found him there, too.
They found he was the cause of the storm.

They tried to save the ship and him
By aggressively rowing  toward shore,
But God turned up the turbulence.
Finally, they had to throw him overboard.

The storm ceased. The seas calmed.
God sent a whale to swallow Jonah.
Inside the big fish, his vision widened!
Jonah was able to see the big picture.

You can’t hop a ship to get away
From the tasks God puts before you.
You have to stay and face the storm.
He sends turbulence to teach us.

We are in the midst of a storm today.
There is no end in sight for this virus.
God needs us to grow spiritually, and
Learn to rely on Him for our rescue.

Take comfort in knowing He’s in control
Of every storm that comes our way.
His mighty power and unfailing love
Governs whatever comes your way.

1 Timothy 4:4 helps us realize the truth:
“For everything God created is good,
And nothing is to be rejected
If it is received with thanksgiving.”

Are we to understand that this storm,
This COVID-19 is sent by God? No!
No, I do not believe God wills evil.
I believe He uses it to teach us lessons.

I do not understand the reasons why
Bad things happen to good people
Or why death rains down on our world.
But, I know God’s love surrounds me.

I know if He can send a whale
To swallow up Jonah and save the crew,
He can send a vaccine to cure this virus.
That’s how much He cares for me and You.

Expand your peripheral vison.
Look around you, don’t focus on what was.
Look to see the ways God is at work today.
Focus on what we have, not what we’ve lost.

Thank God today for all your many blessings.
Thank Him for the people who step up,
The courageous ones who make lives better.
Don’t get caught down under – sleeping!

photo of brown dog lying on throw pillow
Photo by Enrique Hoyos on Pexels.com

It’s not the “Dog Days of Summer!”
Wake up to a new day – 

A new chance to live and serve Him.

See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

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