Teachers aren’t supposed to have favorites. Right?
See that young man on the left up there? His name is Ty. He is my favorite!
(Well, in honesty… don’t be dismayed if you’re one of my students…. I have lots of favorites, OK? But Ty… well, read on!)
Ty was my kindergarten student in 1962-3. Every day when he stepped off the school bus, the girls all stopped what they were doing. “Hi Ty!” they would swoon. Yes, even kindergarten girls recognize a sweetheart when they see one!
And every day when it was time to go home, the girls all waved to Ty, “Bye, Ty!” they would swoon.
I was a newlywed. It was my second year of teaching. I decided if I had a boy someday, I would name him Ty. And I did!
Ah yes, my Ty is a sweetheart, just like his namesake!
So why the HOPE title?
Yesterday I heard the devastating news that my favorite student, Ty, has been diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. It has metastasized. He needs our prayers. My heart is heavy, but I am a believer… and HOPE is what believers do, right?
Day before yesterday I posted this scripture:
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.”
I know God has Ty tucked into the palm of His hand, just as He holds our world in His hand.
I know God is watching over Ty and his treatment process. But, won’t you add your prayers to mine? “Dear Lord, please give healing to Ty.”
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.”
It’s a day when we in the USA Are feeling particularly vulnerable. A day when we ponder the meaning Of the troublesome events of yesterday.
It was a day of Troubled Waters When our fragile democracy Seemed on the brink of collapse, A day some imagined, but not I.
I knew we were a country deeply divided, A country needing a renewed sense of unity, But never did I think our Capitol Would be under siege by our own people.
Not just one of the rioters was killed in the debacle, but 3 health care workers also lost their lives.
In the aftermath, when the Senate and Assembly resumed their stations and continued the task of counting the electoral votes, a new sense of purpose seemed to emerge.
It took an attack on our democracy for our lawmakers to unify and recognize the importance of our constitution. The tone was bipartisan. The future is hopeful.
A ray of hope for the unification of this divided country was launched yesterday.
A seed of collaboration was planted.
Yesterday I posted a meme that read: “We’ve tried hate. We’ve tried wars. We’ve tried destruction. They only caused more pain. Let’s try something different…”
…and the “different” was peace love empowerment collaboration.
Today let’s reinforce that commitment. Let’s try Open and Honest Communication, Building bridges instead of walls, LET’S EMBRACE UNITY!
EMBRACE UNITY! Let’s honor One Nation Under God. One world for us all, One CREATOR of us all.
Back in 1970, Paul Simon was inspired to write the words to the song, “Bridge Over Troubled Waters.” The video below is the story of how that song came to be. The words are just what we need today… A Bridge Over [these] Troubled Waters.
Let’s Embrace UNITY. Let’s see how that turns out!
I hope you took time to hear that You.Tube story. It’s powerful. Believe me, the song is just what we need today.
“When you’re weary Feeling small, When tears are in your eyes I’ll dry them all. I’m on your side. Oh, when times get rough And friends just can’t be found, Like a bridge over troubled water I will lay me down. Like a bridge over troubled water I will lay me down. When you’re down and out When you’re on the street, When evening falls so hard I will comfort you. I’ll take your part. Oh, when darkness comes And pain is all around, Like a bridge over troubled water I will lay me down… Like a bridge over troubled water I will lay me down. Sail on silver girl Sail on by… More
Talented musician and poet, Laura Sullivan, can look at her stats and know they spell SUCCESS. No doubt about it! When you earn your living as a musician – and you play to be heard, getting two and a half million listeners has got to be a rush. Don’t you think?
How About You?
How about you? Do you care how many followers you have on WordPress? Do you count a successful post by how many likes you get? Or by the number of comments? Or by the viewers the stats show?
Looking at your daily stats can reveal patterns that give you clues about what titles or numbers of posts per day can do.
BUT, they can be very discouraging.
What? All that effort and only 16 likes or comments?
When I look at my stats by the years instead of weeks or months, Wow! How encouraging! What a lot of improvement I made after I decided to post on a regular basis!
Hmmm, do those stats define success for me?
No! I won’t let numbers define me! But, look at those likes and comments for this 2020 year. Now, that can get my blood rolling through my veins at a quicker pace, can’t it?
Is it Numbers?
Oh no, wait! Are numbers why we do this? Are we motivated by our ability to reach out? Do our world views show us what we’re about?
Beware the Comparison Game!
When Cristian Mihai (The Art of Blogging) shows us his world map, every continent is colored in. It’s easy to play that comparison game – and decide you’re never gonna be good enough. Don’t fall into that trap!!
Define Your Purpose
Why do you blog? Is it for numbers? I doubt it!
Some people do it for money … they are full time bloggers and stats mean income. I understand that. But, my guess is that the majority of us are in it for the joy of being inspired and being an inspiration.
That’s my purpose! To spread positivity and optimism and to help us all just “Love One Another” more unconditionally.
When I get a response like the one below, that’s what makes it all worthwhile. That’s what makes my heart swell.
I want to be a “Beacon of Light and Hope.” Don’t we all??
Yesterday I receive this comment:
Yes, I want to be a beacon of hope and light … and be unafraid to tell you where that light originates! I can’t fulfill my purpose alone! Only as I am connected to my source am I authentic enough to inspire. It’s not a candle that keeps burning on its own!
The flame is “This Little Light of Mine” and I don’t intend to hide it under a bushel! Let it SHINE!!!
Who or what electrifies your light? What prompts your posts? Is it to inspire?
Let the stats speak… But don’t let them be your only motivation. SHINE!
“Each of you should give what you have decided to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.”
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
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 the Jefferson County Mental Health Local Advisory Council here in Montana!
Let’s all shout it out, “LOVE IS LOUDER!”
Let’s make it true!!
Th distance between me and my friend, Carol Orr, is from here to Eternity … but our love is louder than the distance! I was her Senior Companion – and she was my friend and mentor… always right for a laugh and a hug … always ready to share her 95 years of wisdom from her beautiful, sparkling soul.
LOVE is LOUDER than death! LOVE is LOUDER than disguises! LOVE sees through the darkness to the sparkle beneath and behind. LOVE brings out the best in us and in others. Let your LOVE SHINE!!
The motivational video below tells us, “One of life’s gifts is that its greatest moments are often disguised.” Our inability to see through the dark glasses finds us sometimes lost in a state of hopelessness. We live disguised as people behind a gloom of despair, seeing life as lost and hard.
My friend, Carol, was an upbeat person who enjoyed life to its fullest I posted a blog about her back on August 15, 2018 when she was in the hospital, looking toward the end of her time on earth. If you have time, check it out at
Carol spent her last months in our local nursing home, The Manor, hooked up to oxygen, and knowing her time was short, but LOVE was LOUDER than impending death. She never lost her smile nor her sense of humor. Ah, we should all be so blessed!
When all hope of living an eternity on earth, or of solving all the earth’s problems is lost, we need to take off the disguises, toss the dark glasses, and take each moment to see life’s infinite possibilities. What you seek is waiting. You are never too old to seek LOVE and you are never through positively influencing others – even (and maybe most especially) after leaving this earth.
Love is LOUDER
LOUDER than ANYTHING!
Every day you are :
What you seek is waiting for you. Go for it!
Shout it Out!! I LOVE YOU!!! See ya tomorrow. Hugs, JanBeek
What does S.O.S. mean to you? It’s an urgent message for help. But yesterday, a Facebook friend said, “It means Same ole Shit!”
Oh my! I had not heard that before! She was referring to a message I posted On Facebook about the U.S. Postal Service. She is convinced it’s all legit – not “shit” at all!
The post received 66 responses within a few hours And it deteriorated to the point where I Called a “Truce” and wished I had not started it. But, hey, ya gotta stand up for what you believe, right?
And we have a responsibility to fact check. Yes, some of the removed boxes were being replaced. The guy in charge of our postal service now, DeJoy, Has spread his “S.O.S.” and intelligent people believe him.
Other equally intelligent people weighed in on the conversation. “I worked for the P.O. and I know these claims are false.” “The sorting machines being removed are not being replaced.” “This has been going on routinely for decades. Why blame Trump?”
I don’t care who is to blame, I just care about our U.S.P.S. And I want to speak up to defend our right to vote by mail. I need all the boxes protected and all the sorting machines left. I need to know our election in November is not being compromised.
So, I came out of my box of comfort and said, “Stop!” I came out and expressed my outrage at what’s happening. Enough other people have expressed their concern that DeJoy Announced he will stop this nonsense until after November elections.
“I have good plans for you, not plans to hurt you. I will give you hope and a good future.”
We need to TRUST God’s Word and expect the best. We need to pray to God for His wisdom And for our courage to step up to the plate When His perfect time comes.
But, before we grab the bat And swing at the falsehoods, We need to ask the SUPREME COACH To guide us, teach us, and give us TRUTH.
We need to persevere in the face of the S.O.S. People throw at us – and don’t be deterred. We need to listen to His voice and grasp As clearly as we can His purposes for our stand.
STAND UP FOR WHAT’S RIGHT! Silence is no longer a viable option!! I love you, even if you think I’m wrong. Let’s exchange ideas with respect.
Some GOOD people will disagree with me. May my optimism about a brighter future be contagious. Let’s draw on the Word and promises of God. Stand up and carry on with perseverance!
“Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
Send me a love letter!
In my GuidepostsMornings with Jesus today, Jolynn Strandberg wrote:
“Even when I am surrounded by people who do not understand my convictions, I hope I will always have the courage to stand up for my beliefs.”
We’re unreachable When we are unteachable. Let’s check our mindset.
Is our mind open To attentive mindfulness? Live expectantly?
Anticipate good? Humbly work for improvements In self and others?
Develop ideas – Hopeful and doable ones In a right spirit.
We close open doors When we are unteachable. Let’s check our mindset.
Keep your mind focused On the good that you can do. Let’s be teachable.
Let’s be reachable. Let us reach out to others With humble mindset.
Pray with me: “Lord, help us to develop a heavenly perspective to look at life’s trials and difficulties through the Truth and Hope of God’s Word. Peel away all barriers to Your wisdom, Lord, And make us teachable and reachable! Amen!”
Faithful is a Yellowstone moose. He’s 14 years old! When our granddaughter, Faith, was about 10 years old, she visited us here in Montana. As a family, we visited Yellowstone Park. She and her three siblings each were given a little money to select a souvenir from the gift shop. As kids typically do, they chose something for themselves. But, Faith was not typical. She selected this moose – and gave it to me as a present … a thank you for their visit.
Today is Faith and her husband, Kyle’s wedding anniversary. They were married a year ago. Faith is as thoughtful a young lady as she was as a little ten-year-old. Every morning I say a special prayer for Faith and Kyle as I make my bed, and put “Faithful” back in his central place of honor in front of the pillows.
Fourteen years has taken its toll on Old Faithful. His hat is torn – and it was chewed a little by TazE when she was a puppy. But still, I cherish this little stuffed moose.
I tuck the torn hat in under his antler and ask the Lord,
“Please watch over Faith and Kyle. Tuck them under Your wings, O Lord, just as I tuck Faithful’s hat under his ear. Give them health and happiness, love and longevity. Keep them safe. And help them lean on Your love and their Faithfulness this day and every day. Amen.”
May they love with a universal love – always generous, compassionate, grateful and hopeful, brave and forgiving, proud and yet humble.
Do you have children? Or grandchildren? How about great-grandchildren? The most important gift you can give them is the gift of daily prayer.
God bless you, Faith and Kyle. And both our children and their families. Yes, we are so blessed. Thank You, God, for You are always FAITHFUL!