I love playing around with various poetry forms. I love learning about new forms. Yesterday I encountered a “Dalit” for the first time. Do you know it? It is 4 lines of 8 syllables each. I thought that would be fun to try. Here we go…
The choice is yours – choose joy today. We are blessed to be in sunshine. I select happiness today, And it splashes over to you!
Yes, even if you are in rain or snow, you can have sunshine in your heart. My heart prays for peace in war-torn places. My heart prays for safety for those in Harm’s Way. My heart prays for rain in Australia and stability in all places of turmoil. My heart prays for joy in your heart. Choose joy!
Try a Dalit poem. Share it! And Have a Marvelous Monday! See ya later.
Which of these 15 suggestions are NOT already part of your morning routine? The one that’s lacking for me is exercise! So, if I’m gonna “Walk the Talk” as I promised myself, I guess I better start walking, huh?
It’s another beautiful morning here. I’m outta here.
Happy Sunday to you, my friends. What are your plans for today? Whatever you do, wherever you go (even if you stay home), you will have an opportunity to be kind (even if only to yourself).
Choose kindness. Be right!
If you have followed my blog for a week or more, you know I attend church on Sundays and as I hear the message, I take notes – usually in poetry.
Today we attended the First Presbyterian Church in Redlands, CA. It is a beautiful church in the heart of the city with a mission statement: “Living in the Heart and Mind of Christ at the Heart of the City.” The service was conducted with five languages spoken alternately while the English translations were printed in the bulletin.
It was WONDERFUL to hear the melodic and unusual tongues of Urdu, Indonesian, Banyan, and Chichewa spoken – as well as the familiarity of English.
The pastor, Cheryl Raine, spoke on the topic, “The Mind of Christ.” The scripture on which the sermon was based, Philippians 2:5-8 was read orally in a language I had never heard of before. English-only folks like me read it in English in the bulletin while we listened with fascination to Wilson Kayange whose native language is Chichewa.
Morning has broken… like the first day – Blackbird has spoken … here’s what he’ll say: Look for the sunrise… it’s the new year – Praise for the morning… filled with good cheer.
We are God’s people … we live in His love. We are Christ’s people… we need a good shove! We try not to stagnate … living in our own will. We empty ourselves … and try to let Jesus refill.
Leaning on our own mindfulness… we stumble and fall. We’re two days out from Epiphany … listen for His call. He asks for patience and grace … decisions slow made. He tells us to avoid selfishness… my renewal was paid.
Paid by our Lord … with His blood on the cross. We’re asked to set aside self-interest … at Jesus’ cost. Self-empty to love and serve others … As an offering, place our lives before God… Pray daily for His extravagant grace.
Transform my mind … make it more like Christ’s mind. Give me obedience … and cause me to be kind. Give me extraordinary focus … on the way I can link my mind to others’ needs … Let Your love escape with every blink!
The essence of His love… is lodged in me and grows with each day I live and breathe … and God knows I am choosing self-emptying … instead of selfishness. God help me to live in Your will each day … in selflessness.
Following the sermon, there were more prayers and affirmations in the various languages before we sang one of the closing hymns… a favorite of mine: “Take Thou Our Minds, Dear Lord.”
Our unison prayer, following the offering of our gifts, affirmed the sermon message and the inspiration of the hymn’s words:
“Holy God, thank you for reminding us that we are to have the same mind as Christ Jesus, for Christ willingly emptied himself for the sake of others. In humility, we gathered these first gifts of the new year for your ministries through this beloved faith community. Help us to be ever faithful to your word and your ways as we seek to glorify you with our very lives. Amen.”
As I left the service and digested the messages of kindness, self-emptying, love, and selflessness … the importance of adopting “The Mind of Christ,” I found this meme. The “listening and loving” and the “be at peace with herself” resonated with me. The “healthy boundaries” are important as we seek to live with “the mind of Christ” in a spirit of joy – the spirit Christ personified.
Happiness in Kindness
As I sang, “Teach us to know the Truth that sets us free” and “Use us to make the earth like Heaven above,” and “… yield ourselves to Thee, time, talents, all,” I realized that when I yield to God’s will, spread love and peace using my time and talents, and wear laughter and curiosity, spreading kindness, I am not only making myself happier, but I am spreading happiness to those around me.
Choose kindness. Be right!
What will you do today to spread happiness to those around you?
We had a wonderful day yesterday – the day of Bob’s 81st birthday. It started at our son’s house in Placerville where happiness definitely knocked on our door and entered in full array!
We went to church with our family at “Jesus Culture” in Folsom. We filled a row in the congregation of more than 1,500 people. It was amazing! Every seat was filled. People were standing in the aisles. The music and the message were God-inspired.
After church we visited dear, long-time friends whom we had not seen in a decade. We learned that our friend has stayed in touch with us (between years of Christmas cards) by following my Facebook posts. She doesn’t click “like” or leave a message, so I had no idea that she was one of my regular followers. When we got together, the years dissolved … and it was like we had never been apart. Do you have friends like that?
After that wonderful visit, with a delicious lunch and memorable, heart-felt, warm conversation, we returned to our son’s house where we celebrated Bob’s 81st birthday. Our daughter-in-law and granddaughter made Bob’s favorite birthday “cake,” a Jamoca-Almond-Fudge pie. Mmmm!
I pray that the happiness we feel be in your heart today. May it knock on your door, stay late, and leave the gifts of peace, love, joy and good health behind.
In my conversation with my friend over lunch yesterday, she reminded me that I need to set boundaries. She suggested that if there is too much drama, conflict or stress in my life, it is because I have not set my own boundaries. I have allowed those elements to invade my peace.
Do you have drama, conflict, or stress in your life? Is there a way to eliminate those negatives and invite only positives in my life? What choices do I have?
Sometimes the stress and drama come from family, dearly beloved family. Does setting boundaries mean I should eliminate them from my life? Would that make me happier? Does having a cozy home, good food, and limiting my contacts to only “Happy People” mean I would have a better life?
No, my choice is to love those family members unconditionally – and invite them into my “cozy home” and share with them my “good food” and if they are not “happy people,” then pray that my patience, generosity, and love offered unconditionally can bring them some joy.
Sharing what we have is what the “Christmas Spirit” is all about. You may not be able to eliminate the drama, conflict, and stress in your life. Not unless you want to alienate those people God has placed in your life … those people who create troublesome circumstances in their own lives as well as yours.
Is that what Jesus teaches? Only deal with happy people? Is that what He did? Think about it.
It is the joy of having breakfast with your granddaughter and her family! Look at these darling great-grandchildren:
Sienna is 5 months old and she in in 8-12 month sizes!! Aren’t those the most kissable cheeks you’ve ever seen?
This is the happy big brother, my great-grandson, Xander. His favorite trick today was pulling his sister’s socks off!
The busy parents, Drew & Hope, have their hands full! I was happy to be able to spend time with them.
Hope shared some of her photos from two days ago, our Halloween here in the USA. She dressed the kids up, but the snow and lousy road conditions kept them from Trick-or-Treating. It’ll be something Xander can look forward to next year.
I had fun talking with Xander about his little sister.
Yes, “Happiness Personified” is time with my Great-Grandkids. We have a date to meet here again in a couple of weeks. Good plan, don’t you agree?
Don’t grow too fast, little ones!
See ya later, my friends. What’s your idea of “Happiness Personified?”