Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Posts tagged ‘Jesus’

Kindness


The Septolet is a poem consisting of seven lines containing fourteen words with a break anywhere in between the two parts. Both parts deal with the same thought and create a picture.

.
.
.
Kindness
Lovingly given
Gratefully received
Reap what you sow

We rise
Lifting others
Carry
.
.
.

What picture did those words create for you?




Here
is
the
picture
that
came
to
my
mind.



:o)

And this is the scripture that came to mind:

Luke 6:25
“But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil.”

Jesus is my inspiration.
God’s Word is my go-to for direction.
It inspires me to be kind,
not just to my family, friends, and loved ones,
but also to those who annoy me…
maybe most to them!

Thank you, David, from skepticskaddish.com,
for introducing me to this new (to me) poetry form.
It was fun to give The Septolet  a try.

Hey, WP Friends,
why don’t you try it, too?
I’d love to see your word picture.


Tim McGraw sings the message in a most beautiful song.
This is new to me, too.
Have you heard it before?
The images that accompany it
are so inspiring.
You’ll be glad if you
take time to see and listen!

Hugs to you…
Have a Wonderful Weekend.

Always be Humble and Kind!

Love,
JanBeek

Family Christmas


We are very blessed
To be with family today
A Merry Christmas

Four generations
With fourteen of us in all
God bless our family

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Generation One
With sweet Generation Four
Thank God for babies

Children grow so fast
Remain babies a short time
Enjoy while you can

As a babe Christ came
Helpless and vulnerable
To live as we live

Mary and Joseph
Provided a loving home
Knowing He’s Special

Peace- John 14:27

So when did they know
The Truth of His intentions
Did God prepare them?

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I can’t imagine
Raising a loving child
For Him to die young

Some friends are hurting
On this day after Christmas
They lost a child, too

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Maybe their lost one
Is a sweet four-legged friend
That breaks your heart, too

On this Christmas night,
let’s reflect with my loved one from Zimbabwe
on Christmas Meaning:
God’s Plan by Taking the Human Form
– Birth of Jesus –

John 3
16 : For God loved the world so much
that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him
may not die but have eternal life.

17 :
For God did not send his Son
into the world to be its judge,
but to be its savior.

11 :
“I am the good shepherd,
who is willing to die for the sheep.

It’s not about the day
as no one knows for certain when Jesus Christ was born.
It is a celebration of why He was born.

Here’s to our Salvation celebration
through the birth of Baby Jesus.
Let us make room for Him in our hearts 💕

Blessed Christmas beloved ones of God.
Shalom 🙏🏽❤️

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God Bless You, dear friends.
I pray you had a wonderful, family-filled Merry Christmas!

Love,
JanBeek

Peace of Mind


How do you find peace of mind?

Photo by Jonathan Meyer on Pexels.com

In my devotional studies today,
the Moody Bible Institute’s “Today in the Word”
asked that question. What is peace and where do you find it?

If you go to Pexels.com
and put in the word “peace”
you will find many images
that suggest answers to those questions:

Photo by eberhard grossgasteiger on Pexels.com

What does this one suggest to you?

Photo by Oleksandr Pidvalnyi on Pexels.com

Of course, this suggests prayer…

Photo by Nandhu Kumar on Pexels.com

… and this has a Zen origin, right?

Photo by M Venter on Pexels.com

Many folks find peace by going out into nature and finding seclusion.

Photo by Anastasiya Lobanovskaya on Pexels.com

Others look for peace in communication
with others who are seeking the same goals.

Photo by Fernando Arcos on Pexels.com

Music provides a source of peace for me and many others.


My greatest sense of peace comes from my faith.
As a Christian, PEACE is not a place.
It is not an unattainable emotion.
Peace is a person!

My peace comes from God’s grace
in the person of Jesus.


John 14:27

“Peace I leave with you;
my peace I give to you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled
and do not be afraid.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I find evidence of that joy-giving peace all around me…
and I am assured of it as I read my Bible
and study the devotionals that reinforce my faith.

Today in the Word
has a study of The Gospel of Luke
titled, “Peace on Earth” this month.

In his introductory pages,
Dr. John Koessler wrote,
“This promise of peace belongs to
those upon whom His favor rests.”

Does His favor rest on you?

Photo by mododeolhar on Pexels.com

Thousands of years before His birth, Isaiah predicted Him:

Isaiah 9:6

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be upon his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God,
Everlasting Father,
Prince of Peace.”

Then, when Isaiah’s prediction came true,
Jesus came to earth… the Prince of Peace,
Here to show us how to find His peace,
Here to show us how to live.

Ephesians2:14 put it this way:

“Jesus is our peace”
Because Jesus “came and preached peace to you
who were far away and those who were near.”

Photo by Rodolfo Clix on Pexels.com

Jesus came, lived to show us and teach us, and died to save us.
Believing that is the road to His grace.
Believing that is the way to Eternal Life.
Believing that is the path to peace.

Dr. John Koessler wrote:

“Those who know the peace of Christ
become agents of peace themselves.
When Jesus first sent His disciples
to proclaim the kingdom,
He told them,
‘As you enter the home, give it your greeting.’


Matthew 10:12
(the traditional Jewish greeting, Shalom)

This was more than a social formality,
Christians are offering peace through
faith in Christ to others.
The shalom of Christ is more than a greeting.
It is a promise.
There is more to peace than a personal experience.
For the Christian, peace is a person.
Jesus is our peace.”

Photo by Josh Hild on Pexels.com

Reach out!
Touch Him!
He is the Holy Spirit in you.
He is the King of Peace,
here to give you His peace.
Take it!

In Him is my peace of mind.
Where is yours?

I pray you find it in Him.
Merry Christmas!
He came to save you and me.

Love and peace to you,
JanBeek

Thank you, God, Lord, Christ Jesus, Holy Spirit
for the love, joy, and peace that are mine!

OOOPS!!


Ooooops! In yesterday’s post on “Waiting” I made a real boo-boo!

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

I was up in my sanctuairee this morning reflecting on the subject of waiting, anticipating the coming of Christmas – and I realized, Oh Lord, help me my God!! I mixed up Lent and Advent!! I said we had 40 days of waiting for the Christ Child during Advent! No, no, no… Lent is the 40 days of waiting for Easter, Advent is the 4 weeks before Christmas with 4 Sundays to celebrate the coming of the Baby in the manger. It might be the period of time the Wise Men followed the star to find the manger scene and present their gifts to the Savior.

But there is a mystery about the Wise men and their travel to follow the star. The wise men arrived after the birth. If they saw the star at the moment of Jesus’ birth, then it would have taken at least a few months for the wise men to arrive.

Regardless of the time it took the Wise Men to travel, since when did Nov. 27 to Dec. 25 equal 40 days?? Sheesh!!

The season of Advent is celebrated over four Sundays before Christmas
– this year, those Sundays are Nov. 27 and Dec. 4, 11, and 18.
The Advent season ends at sundown on Christmas Eve.
The end of Advent marks the beginning
of the liturgical or church year for Christians.

Photo by Kevin Bidwell on Pexels.com

So, this season of “Waiting” is a time when my Jewish friends wait, too. They celebrate Hanukkah. The word Hanukkah is Hebrew for “dedication,” which refers to the rededication of the temple after the Maccabees’ victory. They need to wait for that season to begin on December 19th. Hanukkah, (Hebrew: “Dedication”) also spelled Ḥanukka, Chanukah, or Chanukkah, also called Feast of Dedication, Festival of Lights, or Feast of the Maccabees, Jewish festival that begins on Kislev 25 (usually in December, according to the Gregorian calendar) and is celebrated for eight days. Hanukkah reaffirms the ideals of Judaism and often involves a festival with lighting of candles each day of the festival. Although not mentioned in the Hebrew Scriptures, Hanukkah came to be widely celebrated and remains one of the most popular Jewish religious observances. Hanukkah is celebrated from Monday, December 19 to Monday, December 26 in 2022.

The menorah is a symbol of Hanukkah. The menorah is meant to spread light to others. It is traditionally placed in a window,on a table or outside your door. Jewish faithfuls are supposed to light the menorah just after dark each night of Hanukkah.



As Christians, we pause and take time to put up our Christmas tree, decorate our home, our church, our community, and purchase the presents we want to give to our loved ones. Santa Claus has usurped the place of Jesus Christ as the central Christmas figure in many homes. It’s not Santa’s birthday we wait for and celebrate, however.

It’s not 40 days til Christmas! It’s coming sooner than you think… sooner than I imagined! We need to approach this season as innocent children… a Child of God … waiting expectantly. Focusing on the real Reason for the Season.

Jesus actually tells us to be like children and to come to Him full of faith and trust. The popular children‘s song “Jesus Loves the Little Children” reminds us that “all are precious in His sight” and no matter your race, gender or nationality, God wants to see all children come to Him.

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels.com



So, forgive my “Ooops!” from yesterday… and get busy, my friends. Finish up those Thanksgiving leftovers, and get in the spirit! And let’s look – as through the eyes of a child – at what Advent really means:

Thanks for visiting JanBeek and my OOOPS today!
See ya tomorrow.

Hugs to you and your loved ones!

By the way, I am missing the Bell Choir this year.
Our director, Jan Thomas, is moving from Ennis to Bozeman.
Tomorrow the moving van comes.
Keep her and her hubby in prayer, wouldja?
They are going to be sorely missed in our community.


We are WAITING for a new bell choir director to emerge.
Got any recommendations?

Waiting


Photo by Gary Barnes on Pexels.com

There is more than one way to interpret the word “wait.”
The photo above shows you a waitress who is “waiting” on a table.

Some waiting is defined by
an expectation of something
or someone to come…
like a good friend.

Other waiting is short-term, self-imposed, self-defined…
…. like waiting for your food to digest before
that next meal or dessert after a huge Thanksgiving dinner!

Photo by Karolina Grabowska on Pexels.com

What are you waiting for?

Today is the first day of Advent.
As a Christian, that means we have 40 days of waiting.

The season of Advent lasts through Christmas Eve.
When Christmas Eve falls on a Sunday,
it is the last or fourth Sunday of Advent.
In Eastern Orthodox churches,
which use the Julian calendar,
Advent begins earlier, on November 15,
and lasts 40 days, rather than 4 weeks.

40 days of waiting for the coming of the Christ Child
… waiting for Christmas.

Photo by Bich Tran on Pexels.com

The word “Advent” stems from the Latin word adventus,
which literally means “coming” or “arrival.”
Our sermon at my church this morning
dealt with this topic of waiting…
waiting for that special arrival.

Pastor Mary Grace Reynolds
spoke about a children’s book
(I think it was a Dr. Seuss)
that depicted a “waiting place”
as a “useless place”
but she encouraged us
to view waiting differently.

She asked us what we do when we are waiting.
Some people find something to read.
Others play on their phones
or engage in conversation with a friend.
Some write letters or cards
or they reach out to help a neighbor.
Spend the waiting time productively.

I wrote this conclusion as I listened:

There is a lot we can do while we wait.
Think about the good things we can do.
Gracious God, help us make waiting useful.
Let’s fill it with good things for me and You.

We can live during this time of waiting
With love and hope in our heart.
We have control over our actions.
We can spread peace – today’s the day to start.

Ready? Begin!

Psalms 27:13-14
I believe that I shall look upon
the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living!
Wait for the LORD;
be strong,
and let your heart take courage;
wait for the LORD!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
Have a wonderful season of Advent.

Love and hugs to you!

Make your waiting a time of love and compassion!
Reach out today!

S/He’ll Be Back!


It’s been a wonderful early winter Sunday.
It snowed all night last night!
Yes, I know… too soon!
It’s only mid-October.

See those footprints under the tree?
When I looked out the window this morning,
there was a deer,
nibbling on the berries in that tree.
By the time I dashed to get my camera/phone,
she was long gone!
I think she is the same doe
who visited us last week,
and chewed off/ spit out
the geranium blossoms that were in that planter.

Yes, she’s been here before.
I captured her on camera last spring.
She’ll be back!
She’s pretty… but she is a nuisance.
She thinks our plants were put there
to supply her salad bar!

Today’s sermon by Rev. Mary Grace Reynolds
dealt with this same theme: “He’ll be back!”

John 16:16
Your Sorrow Will Turn into Joy

16 “A little while, and you will see me no longer; and again a little while, and you will see me.”

In my sermon notes today, I captured these main ideas,

Life doesn’t always turn out as we imagine.
Disappointments run the gamut.
The disciples were puzzled, not understanding
where Jesus was going and why He had to leave.
Jesus knew His disciples would grieve
and they would be mocked for believing in Him
as their Savior, so He wanted to encourage them.


20 “Truly, truly, I say to you,
you will weep and lament,
but the world will rejoice.
You will be sorrowful,
but your sorrow will turn into joy.”

He would not leave them for good…
He promised He’d send them
A Comforter (The Holy Spirit),
and then He would return to them.

Jesus told the disciples,
“The Holy Spirit is a gift
that will come in my absence.”

The Holy Spirit is with us today.
The Spirit is a nudge in the night,
the inexplicable comfort in times of distress,
a direct line to God (God on speed dial!)
Sometimes referred to as the Holy Ghost,
He will come to remind you of everything
Jesus taught during His ministry on earth.

Tragedy is tragedy-
However, there is a wisdom obtained
when we experience the goodness
and the tragedy together.

Life can take us on turns we don’t expect.
We’d like to trade pain and tragedy for comfort.
However,
disappointment and pain help us be
more fully connected to others
with empathy and compassion.
That ain’t always easy – that’s for sure!

Mary Grace concluded her sermon with this thought to ponder:
“We become stronger than what hurts us.
There is much hope in that.”


Are you like me?
Wouldn’t you rather just avoid that which hurts you?
Don’t hurts just feel like a trap?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

God is asking us to look at life’s challenges through Jesus glasses.
Don’t deny yourself the lessons learned.
When things aren’t working out, take another look!

Like that deer on my front lawn,
troubles and disappointments return.
But so do joys and blessings.

My cough has been quiet while I typed this.
It may return when I try to sleep tonight,
but it won’t last forever. JOY comes in the morning!
Hang in there, my friends.
I’ll be back!

Have a blessed week.
Today was my grandson, Chrissy’s 27th birthday!!

Happy Birthday, Toki!!
(He’s in Switzerland…)


Thanks for visiting and leaving your comment below.
I love having positive exchanges with you.


Grace to you,
JanBeek

A Humble Heart


My blogging friend, Donna, The Fathers Feet, posted this song today. I am going to sing it all day long. Listen, be inspired, and sing with me!

Give me a humble heart! Make me pure and true… Make me more like You!

🙏🏽❤️👍🏽

Melt my pride away…

Have a Marvelous Monday!

Hugs,
JanBeek

The Joy of Being (in Switzerland)


The joy of just being

Is certainly joy enough

But the joy of being in Switzerland

Is a joy that’s hard to beat – it’d be tough.

While friends and family back home

In California and Montana are roasting

We were enjoying comfy mid-seventies

And lovely meals and yummy wine toasting

Then the weather changed!

.

We were having ham with salad & sausage

At De & Andrés wonderful chalet

I came back to our room to post

And left Bob to finish dessert, but hey…

.

There were two girls outside

Hunkered under umbrellas in the rain

So I pointed to our inside table

And sent them to Bob – let me explain

He was having sorbet; I was done

My place at the table was free

He will love getting acquainted

And they will love his company!

This morning we cooled it in our room

Bob read and I enjoyed reading posts

The day started off rather quiet

More alone time than Swiss’s most

We went for a walk in Vissoie

And enjoyed every sight and each sound

We visited the local church and had

Time for prayer, finding God all around

“Daily Word” gave us the scripture

“Be glad in the Lord and rejoice”

Let nothing keep your joy from you-

Respond with a song; raise your voice!

Like a well that can never run dry

My joy is a wellspring from the Lord

I deal with whatever life brings me

With a smile – and I never am bored!

Keep your sense of humor alive

Find the joy in whatever you see

That poor bunny hit the door with a bang

Oh come on, have a good laugh with me!

There he is on the other side!!

.

The joy of being in Switzerland

Is part of the happiness of being alive

Well enough to travel and adapt

Thanking God each day we survive!

Thank you for traveling vicariously with us!

We love sharing with you. Take joy!

“Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, O righteous, and shout for joy, all you upright in heart.” Psalm 32:11

See ya tomorrow (God willing) –

Love, JanBeek

July Take-Aways


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?

July Take-Aways

  1. Be an investor in prople
  2. Be grateful for daily love, joy, and peace
  3. Celebrate the peace of Christ
  4. Freedom isn’t free!
  5. Treasure your friends; tell ’em so
  6. Happy Birthday, Mary Grace Reynolds (my pastor)
  7. Thank God for our loving children
  8. Celebrate the birthdays of friends
  9. Enjoy every day the Lord gives us
  10. Share freely and generously with others
  11. Spend quality time with our God/Creator
  12. Take refuge in the familiar
  13. Thank God for free will
  14. As God for direction; then Trust the Journey
  15. Care for the vulnerable
  16. Celebrate milestones with friends
  17. Keep an “I’m good” attitude
  18. Share the humor and laughter of others
  19. Slow down and watch where you’re walkin’
  20. Be forever grateful for God’s miracles
  21. Home is where angels live to guard us
  22. His grace is sufficient
  23. Praise God, friends & family for love
  24. Love your spouse, church family & kids extravagantly
  25. Love and appreciate the color in your life
  26. Git Movin’
  27. Praise God for His love, mercy, and guardian angels
  28. Be sure to exercise daily
  29. Thank God for giving you momentum
  30. 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.
Here are half of the June Take-Aways

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

Enough!


The poem above is an edited version of an original by Bob Perks. I first read his poem about two decades ago. It spoke to me. Like the one above, it did not give credit to the poet, so I credited “Anonymous.” I posted it on my FaceBook page or somewhere (I wasn’t on WP yet at that time).

I heard from Bob Perks. He was irate! People were posting his poem, tweaking it, and not giving him credit. I had done so innocently. Maybe others were as unknowing as I.

Is it OK to use someone else’s words without acknowledging them? Bob Perks said, “No, that’s plagiarism!”

But if you saw the poem posted as I did, without an author’s name, how would you go about researching who wrote it?

In today’s world, I just “Googled it!” I found this version:

Is that really Bob Perks’ original version? How can I tell? And is it ok for some company to put it on a plaque and sell it for profit without the poet getting some kind of royalty? Did Bob Perks copyright it? I don’t know.

I have mixed feelings on this subject – because I have always believed that when someone steals your idea it is a form of flattery. After all, they liked it that much, right?

People have been doing that with Jesus’ words and ideas for centuries.

Did Nancy DeMoss really create that idea?

2 Corinthians 12:9

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

People always are rephrasing Jesus’ words.
There are countless translations of the Bible
and dozens of books that paraphrase it.
But, they do not take the ideas
without giving credit to the creator,
do they?

So, is it OK to be a copycat
without acknowledgement?

Depends… depends on who you’re copying and why!
Sometimes copying is considered a cheap form of imitation.

As an elementary school principal, I used encourage my teachers to share their good ideas with others – and be happy if someone copied their method, stole their lesson plan, or imitated their teaching style. It’s OK to go beyond admiring an idea. It’s OK to use it, embellish it, improve upon it, personalize it. Is it enough to just recognize the other for their inspiration? If you copy, do you need permission?

In our WordPress world, we try to ask permission before reposting someone’s idea. If we don’t get an answer, is it enough to just acknowledge the source?

Lee Ann Womack advocates originality.

I believe Bob Perk’s poem is a beautiful original.
He deserves to receive credit for it.
I wish him ENOUGH accolades
to satisfy his heart’s content.
I love following his ideas
even today on FaceBook.
https://www.facebook.com/bob.perks

His website is about
Starting Over…
New Beginnings

I bet Bob Perks has had ENOUGH of this rewriting of his poem and people copying and tweaking it. I bet he is ready to move on… start over … reinvent his image. As a writer, he now says he is a “Speaker” and a “Vocalist.” He’s said ENOUGH of that old life. Let’s begin again. His website says, “Starting Over Again” at the top of it.

I am an orginal.
You are an original.
There is no one else on earth like you.
Your eyes are only yours.
Your fingerprints are only yours.
Your voice is an original – only yours!
Celebrate your originality!

Cheers!

Loved having you visit today.
Come back again tomorrow
and celebrate my birthday with me, OK?

I wish you enough!

Hugs,
JanBeek

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