invited us to try our hand at a poetry form that is new to me:
A Korean verse form related to haiku and tanka and comprised of three lines of 14-16 syllables each, for a total of 44-46 syllables. Each line contains a pause near the middle, similar to a caesura, though the break need not be metrical. The first half of the line contains six to nine syllables; the second half should contain no fewer than five. Originally intended as songs, sijo can treat romantic, metaphysical, or spiritual themes. Whatever the subject, the first line introduces an idea or story, the second supplies a “turn,” and the third provides closure. Modern sijo are sometimes printed in six lines.
David did a fantastic job with the form. Click on his name & blog title above to read his contribution. I told him I was not sure I was even going to try… it sounds too complicated! But… with the following meme as a prompt, here goes:
Your mind will always believe, if you are ever truthful; But when you are deceitful, you feed it sorrow, deep grief. Feed your mind sincere love and truth, and it will be returned to you.
Bob & I send our love and deep peace to you and your loved ones today.
Thanks for visiting JanBeek. Will you try your hand at Sijo?
My second grandson was the screamer. He spent the first couple years of his life doing it. He certainly knew how to let his emotions out!
Screaming may not be the best way as an adult To emote your emotions! What are some healthy ways to let these feelings out?
But some fear is real and intended It’s good to embrace fear when a bear is growling at you It’s good to fear a runaway truck or an avalanche Know when to embrace fear!
Screaming in anger at a situation you can’t control may not be the best way to embrace your emotion But anger in itself is not wrong Jesus overturned the tables of the money changers Embrace righteous anger!
In Daily Guideposts today, Erika Bentson wrote,
“Cowgirls don’t cry!” She admitted that she is “not the type to carry tissues” but instead she can “brush over ]her] feelings.” “Mourning doesn’t come easily to me,” is how she began. Even in the face of her father’s death, she “stayed strong – mostly.”
In the end of the article, Erika quoted a friend who told her, “Tears are a testament to what a great dad he was.” She encouraged her to let the emotions show. “Don’t be ashamed that you’re human,” she told her.
Embrace your sadness! Allow your grief to play out!
“I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.”
Embrace your tears! Let them flow.
Speaking of “Don’t be ashamed that you’re human,” what about it? Does shame have a place in our emotional outlet?
“O Lord, let me not be put to shame, for I call upon You; let the wicked be put to shame; let them go silently to Sheol.”
Where does that emotion of shame fit in? When we have screwed up and we know it, When we have said something without thinking, When we have done something to hurt someone else, It is the shame we feel that causes remorse. It is the remorse that leads to repentance. It is the repentance that leads to “calling out” And it is calling out that leads to forgiveness. Do not wallow in shame. Face your actions, face your emotions, and clear your conscience.
Confront your shame and eliminate it!
Do not despair! Replace despair with hope. Despair is not a healthy emotion. We are humans, prone to error, But we are not desperate!
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
This is one of my favorite verses. It is my faith that keeps me from despair- And my prayer for you is that regardless of your circumstance, you also can have the faith “which surpasses all understanding.”
Do not embrace despair!
I feared that my second grandson, the Screamer, would grow up to be a very disgruntled human being. I should never have let that emotion embrace me. Embrace the peacefulness of hope! Embrace the peacefulness of letting go. Embrace the peacefulness of knowing God’s got this!!
The emotions that accompany peacefulness are joy, contentment, satisfaction, and submission.
What about that emotion of pride? Pride in self? Pride in your accomplishments – Pride in the person your children or grandchildren have become – What about pride?
“Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight.”
Bob is reading a book right now titled, Soul Survivor, by Philip Yancey. In it he learned about thirteen people who influenced Yancey’s life. One of them is Gandhi who always traveled third class. When asked why, his response was, “Because there is no fourth class.”
In the last years of his life, Gandhi adopted a man with leprosy. Daily he bathed him and changed that man’s bandaged.
“The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.”
Gandhi was invited to meet the King of England. Gandhi approached the king wearing only his loincloth. A bystander asked him why he was dressed so scantily. He responded, “He is wearing enough clothes for both of us,”
Gandhi embraced the emotion of humility to the extreme. As a result, he was indeed rewarded with “honor and life,” but his riches were not in gold and silver, for he disdained material possessions, his riches were in honor, peace, and a meaningful life.
When you go to Google and enter Gandhi’s name, Mahatma Gandhi – Wikipedia, it will tell you: “Mahatma Gandhi, as he is known by his followers with reverence, preached the philosophy of non-violence which has become even more relevant today. His commitment to non-violence and satyagraha (peaceful resistance) gave hope to marginalized sections of India.”
Humility is a Wonderful Emotional Outlet!
Embrace the emotions associated with humility: joy compassion contentment satisfaction and leave all your worries behind!
Tell Me: Which emotion will you embrace more today? And which will you try to release?
I just discovered this morning that my dear friend, Leena’s son, Vince, died suddenly on Friday. No warning! He was about the age of my son, Ty. Vince worked at our local grocery store. I saw him there often … always a smile, always a cheerful greeting. He was at work Friday. Friday night after dinner, he was sitting in his chair at home with his parents, and he just stopped breathing. Can you imagine the shock??
Prayers for All Grieving
My heart is broken for Leena and Bob and their family. My prayers go out to all of you who have lost a loved one this year.
Your hearts are grieving, too, as you face this first Valentine’s Day without that special person. God bless you! Link heartstrings with mine.
In our ZOOM church service this morning, I provided the “special music.” It was inspired by the February 14th message in Charles Stanley’s In Touch Daily Devotional.
“When facing all kinds of difficulties, many of us have a tendency to power through in our own strength. But the reality is that’s never effective – at least not for long. God wants us to come closer to Him.
When we stay focused on Jesus, we can take comfort in knowing He’ll lead us through the hard places.
As you continue walking with Him, trust that He already knows what will happen in your life – and that regardless of what lies ahead, He will never leave you.”
EMBRACE HEARTS Lord, link mine to yours – And link ours to one another.
Embrace Hearts with one another – Offer your love and support to heal. Heal the broken-hearted by sharing. Share your love with a song or a meal.
Not everyone has a heart full of love today; Some are feeling quite empty. Lord, fill their hearts with the love of God – And encourage others to “Go With Him” today.
Today a good friend of ours Is having to say good-bye To her furry companion Such days make me cry
The doggy’s name is Hannah. She’s been a faithful friend. Companionship and a love – Giving comfort to the end
I wrote this poem for my friend, Fran, as a comfort as she sees Hannah off on her final journey. Bon Voyage, dear pup. You’ve been a treasured friend for over 15 years. You’ve earned you eternal reward!
I don’t have to understand In order to believe. I just have to trust – And know it’s okay to grieve.
When tragedy strikes – Like the death of a friend – I don’t have to comprehend Why my friend’s life must end.
I can just believe There’s a heaven and a hell. My friend will ascend To eternity to dwell.
In heaven are the ones Who lived by the Cross. They accepted God’s grace, So their death is not loss.
There are people and pets In that paradise up high. I don’t have to understand – Just anticipate the sky!
Rest in Peace, Sweet Hannah. Your cross to bear has ended – Your life you shared and blended. Your soul to heaven ascended.
Have a blessed Saturday. Say a prayer for my friend, Fran.
These pictures below are from a book by Cynthia Rylant titled, “Dog Heaven.” It was a gift to us from the Colorado State Veterinary Hospital staff after our beloved Boston, Angela, died following a two year bout with cancer.
And thank God there are fields for romping in Heaven.
See ya round the bend. (Do you have a pet waiting for you in Heaven?)
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.
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.
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.
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!
Each man as my brother, Each woman as my sister Each one as my friend We need one another…
When I was in college back in the late 50s and early 60s, we sang this song in the A Cappella choir at the University of the Pacific in Stockton, California. I loved it then. I love it even more now. We need it!!
We need one another So I will defend Each man as my brother, Each man as my friend.
Each woman as my sister, Each one as my friend.
Lord, heal our nation. Almighty God, step in and heal our divisions. Help us understand our Oneness. Help us just LOVE ONE ANOTHER!!
Lie down, my friends. Put your feet up. Fold your hands. Click that arrow up there – And pray this as a prayer with me As we sing that song together,
“No man is an island… No man stands alone, Each man’s joy is joy to me Each man’s grief is my own. We need one another, So I will defend Each man as my brother, Each man as my friend.” Each woman as my sister, With love that knows no end.
Beth Guckenberger, from her book, Reckless Faith: Let Go and Be Led,
“Hope is reborn in the form of faith, faith that God will take over, even if you can’t see how.”
Rest in that thought!!
You are in my thoughts, in my prayers, in my heart. Bee well. Just love!
While perusing FaceBook this evening, I came across this article that I thought was so well written. The author, Nancy Guthrie, said what many of us know, “… for those who’ve recently lost someone they love, the holidays can seem more like something to survive than to enjoy.”
Nancy Guthrie is a guest writer on the FB page, desiringGod. She goes on to write,
“While those of us who surround grieving people can’t fix the pain of loss, we can bring comfort as we come alongside those who hurt with special sensitivity to what grief is like during the holidays. Grieving people wish we all knew at least five truths, among others, at Christmas.”
You can click on the link below to see the full article, learn what those five truths are, and learn a little more about Nancy Guthrie.
Over the course of several years, the term Rainbow Bridge has become synonymous with animal lovers who have lost a pet.
You may hear a grief-stricken owner say their deceased pet has “crossed the Rainbow Bridge” or say “I’ll meet you at the Rainbow Bridge” in reference to the pet.
However, have you wondered what exactly the “Rainbow Bridge” is, where it came from, and how it became so widely used?
Although there is still some speculation as to how the term came about, pet lovers do have a number of answers which we’ll cover in this article.
What is the Rainbow Bridge?
The “Rainbow Bridge” refers to an other-worldly place consisting of a sunny, green meadow and multi-colored, prismatic bridge the pet eventually crosses that leads it to heaven.
The term is believed to have originated in several works of poetry from the 1980s and 1990s that were meant to help relieve deceased pet owners of the pain of their loss.
According to poems, upon death, the pet finds itself in a lush, green meadow filled with sunshine. The pet’s health is fully restored and it can run and play as it did in its prime with unlimited food and water.
There, the pet waits until its human companion dies and is reunited with them in the meadow. Together, they cross the Rainbow Bridge to heaven.
Where Did the Rainbow Bridge Idea Come From?
The concept for the pet Rainbow Bridge may have been based on the Bifröst bridge of Norse Mythology.
The Bifrost bridge was said to be a burning rainbow bridge that reaches between Midgard (Earth) and Asgard, the realm of the gods.
The first reference to a meadow in which pets await their owners can be found in the book Beautiful Joe’s Paradise by Margaret Marshall Saunders.
Beautiful Joe’s Paradise is a sequel to the book Beautiful Joe, which was one of the first that helped raise awareness toward animal cruelty and told the story Beautiful Joe, a dog from the town of Meaford, Ontario
In Beautiful Joe’s Paradise, pets await their owners in a grassland and help one another heal from cruelty they endured during their lives. However, the book makes no mention of a Rainbow Bridge and the pets eventually ascend into heaven by balloon.
Who Wrote the Original Rainbow Bridge Poem?
The first appearance of the Rainbow Bridge in relation to animals is believed to come from a poem by Paul C. Dahm, a grief counselor in Oregon. He wrote the first Rainbow Bridge poem in prose style as seen below:
“Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge. When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.
All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind.
They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.
You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart.
Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together….”
The popular rhyming version by Steve and Diane Bodofsky came later and was inspired by this original version.
How Did the Term “Rainbow Bridge” Become So Popular?
Steve Bodofsky believed the original poem by Paul C. Dahm was great, but needed “a bit of coaxing to bring out the meter and rhyme”.
Together with his wife they created their own rhyming version of the Rainbow Bridge poem which they shared with friends shown below:
Another popular Rainbow Bridge poem that helped popularize the concept worldwide came later from Steve and Diane Bodofsky, a couple that operated a ferret rescue.
“By the edge of a woods, at the foot of a hill,
Is a lush, green meadow where time stands still.
Where the friends of man and woman do run,
When their time on earth is over and done.
For here, between this world and the next,
Is a place where each beloved creature finds rest.
On this golden land, they wait and they play,
Till the Rainbow Bridge they cross over one day.
No more do they suffer, in pain or in sadness,
For here they are whole, their lives filled with gladness.
Their limbs are restored, their health renewed,
Their bodies have healed, with strength imbued.
They romp through the grass, without even a care,
Until one day they start, and sniff at the air.
All ears prick forward, eyes dart front and back,
Then all of a sudden, one breaks from the pack.
For just at that instant, their eyes have met;
Together again, both person and pet.
So they run to each other, these friends from long past,
The time of their parting is over at last.
The sadness they felt while they were apart,
Has turned into joy once more in each heart.
They embrace with a love that will last forever,
And then, side-by-side, they cross over… together.
(I hope I have not violated copyright laws by posting this for you!)
Upon getting positive feedback, they collaborated with a graphic design artist to produce Rainbow Bridge Fine Art Print and Rainbow Bridge Sympathy Cards and thus began increasing popularity of the term.
It’s debated when exactly the term Rainbow Bridge was first mentioned online, but the term began circulating in articles and websites as early as 1993 and possibly before that.
The rise of pet forums and pet groups, especially public Facebook pet owner groups, helped Rainbow Bridge reach the mainstream term that it is today.
Rainbow Bridge and Memorials
The reason the term because so popular is because most pet owners view their pet as more than just “a cat” or “a dog”.
The thought of reuniting with that specific animal companion is a heartwarming feeling in a very painful, emotional time.
In addition to printed versions of the poem in sympathy cards, there are now several “Rainbow Bridge” memorials one can buy to honor their pet or to give to someone who is grief-stricken.
In fact, Humane Goods is proud to have made our own memorial, the Rainbow Bridge Memorial Chimes.
These chimes are multi-colored and made of high-quality material for a beautiful sound. Each chime has a special remembrance seal at the bottom which catches the wind for the chime.
Are you in sanctuary or synagogue or temple or church today? God Bless You!
In my quiet time this morning, Carol Mackey reflected on 1 Cor. 1:10 in which Paul wrote to the people of Corinth, “Now I plead with you… that you speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind…”
Carol wrote in Guideposts’ Mornings with Jesus, “Sunday morning at eleven o’clock is the most segregated hour of the week.”
I was prompted in thinking about that statement to create this Haiku x4:
Segregation thrives most in Sunday morning pews. Where’s our unity?
Race and culture, Ideology and thoughts Pull worship apart.
It must sadden God; It must grieve Jesus’ heart To see divisions.
Instead of focus On our obvious fractures, Focus on One God!