Spreading love, joy, peace, faith & unity

Posts tagged ‘joy’

Embrace Contagious Joy!


Want to be happy?
Just embrace contagious joy.
Hang with happy folks!

Find reasons to smile.
Folks will smile back at you.
Smiles are contagious!

Bee contagious!!

Psalm 144:15

“Happy are the people whose God is the LORD.”

The Good News:

God is the true source of
happiness,
strength,
hope,
and wisdom.

Those who are in His favor
will always have these things.

Just as mopey people can pull you into the doldrums,
Happy People can lift your spirits and make you smile.
Happiness is a choice… choose it!
Beeeee Contagious!
Spread JOY!
SMILE!

See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Love,
JanBeek

Embrace Ukiah


As I strive to spread love, joy, peace, faith and unity, I often embrace haiku as a means of expression. Today I learned about a poetry form that is new to me: ukiah. It is reverse haiku. Instead of pattern of 5-7-5, it uses a 7-5-7 pattern. It is a joy to me to learn new things … and to put new ideas into practice. Do you find joy in newness?

Try applying new concepts
Making room for joy
Embrace ukiah today

Then I learned, Oh no! There’s another requirement for ukiah. It has to rhyme! All three lines? Or just two of the three?

I researched it and found the definition written by the person who invented it, Robert Ropars :

“My idea is the opposite of the haiku. I was thinking it should be a “Roparsku” but my lack of ego (and my very wise girlfriend) kept me grounded. So since I’m talking about the opposite, then reversed it would a “Ukiah.” Now searching around online I see some people have played with variations (calling this a “reverse haiku”), but only changed the syllabic construction. I think a true “reversal” would also take into account the rhyme aspect. In addition, this adds an extra level of challenge to the endeavor.

It would be composed of:
•3 lines in length
•rhyming
•lines 1 and 3 contain 7 syllables
•line 2 contains 5 syllables

Haiku example:
Winds blowing lightly
Leaves whispering in the dark
Stars twinkling above

Ukiah example:
Leaves are drifting in the night
The stars are so bright
Shivering I hold you tight

Wow… all three lines rhyme. That changes everything!
Poetry takes many forms.
This poem of Laura’s is free verse.

I took its ideas and tried to create a Ukiah using it:


You can’t see me; I hear you –
And you can’t touch – true,
But I feel you near clear through.

You do not taste my sad tears,
But I cry your fears.
Your sadness pierces like spears.

In this very empty room,
Silence is perfume:
A claustrophobic deep gloom.

I smell and feel it around.
Miss your loving sound.
Hate social distance ground!

Photo by Bekka Mongeau on Pexels.com

When ukiah is so sad,
Where’s joy to be had?
Just creating makes me glad.

Practice keeps newness churning.
Embrace the yearning.
Apply newness while learning.

7-5-7
and add rhyme…
Try it!
Embrace Ukiah!!

Be a sport!
Share your try at ukiah in the comments below.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
See ya tomorrow (God willing!)

Embrace Gladness


What has made you glad today?
Are you thanking God for this day?

I will reJOYce for He has made me glad.
This is such a beautiful spring day –
The weather is a gift from God
and
My dear husband, Bob, has our yard
Looking like a very inviting park.

Come sit awhile with me.
Enjoy the birds singing.
Enjoy the sunshine.
Let the peacefulness
of the mountain vistas
Make you glad!

Our robins are such a treat.
They make me glad!

Let your heart sing with the music of the birds!
So beautiful!

I had a yellow chested blackbird singing to me this morning-
-and while up in my sanctuary, a pair of doves
landed on the garage roof
and sang their hearts out.

(Thank God
it wasn’t those
“common cranes”
or the “snipe”
or the “corn crepe.”
Those would have driven me crazy!

(If you glide your cursor over the red line on the video,
it will tell you what kind of bird you are listening to.

The European turtle dove sounds like those we have here.
They make me glad!

Photo by Magda Ehlers on Pexels.com

Our friend, Jim, took a break
from his yard work today
and came to visit for awhile.

Friends who drop by to visit
make my heart glad!

Tomorrow I get to spend time with his wife,
my good friend, Terry.
We’ll share a lunch and catch up on life.
Sharing life with friends makes me glad!

This blanket’s a gift from Terry.
Seeing it, wrapping myself up in it,
that makes me glad!

“Serve the Lord with gladness;
come before His presence with singing.”

Psalm 100:2

What makes you glad?

Share with me…
Your comments make me glad!


EMBRACE GLADNESS!

See ya tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek!

Embrace Expectant Waiting


Are you waiting expectantly for something?
Somewhere in time what you long for
Is out there for you … you just need to
EMBRACE EXPECTANT WAITING.

(I recommend you listen to that gorgeous
piano and orchestra as you read this blog.
“Somewhere in Time” – so beautifully played
From Maksim Mrvisa/Royal Philharmonic Orchestra)

I have been waiting – trying to be patient –
This past nine months has felt a little like
The nine months of pregnancy:
Expectantly waiting for a new beginning!

But unlike the birth of a baby,
This wait has birthed for us
A new pastor for our church…
And now we have to wait.

Wait for the Presbytery to approve –
Wait for Mary Grace to check out of her college dorm
And check back into her home in Tennessee
And check out of there to drive here.

Meantime, as we wait expectantly,
God says, “Live in the now!
Every day is a new beginning.
Don’t waste today waiting for tomorrow.”

What are you looking forward to?
Are you waiting expectantly for retirement?
Are you planning a cruise or a vacation of some sort?
Are you anticipating a visit from special family members?

DeAna’s new toy

Our daughter, DeAna, who lives in Switzerland,
Is anticipating a trip to Turkey this September.
She bought herself a motorcycle so she can
Ride her own bike – not sit behind on her hubby’s.

I would not be looking forward to such a trip.
I’d be shaking in my boots! But Bob & I are
Eagerly anticipating a trip to England and then
On to Switzerland to spend time with De & family.

We also are expectantly waiting
For our trip to California next month.
We’re going there for my sister’s memorial –
We’ve waited half a year for this closure.

What are you expectantly waiting for?
It seems to me that life is more exciting
If you have something to look forward to.
Never stop dreaming about tomorrow’s joys!

While Mary Grace, our new pastor, was here last week,
The weather decided to rain and snow and blow.
It was mid-May for crying out loud! S’posed to be spring!
So we eagerly anticipated springtime’s return.

Yesterday when Mary Grace flew back to Virginia,
Montana was gray and cold – not looking like spring at all.
But today we had the most beautiful blue sky with
Puffy clouds and warm temperatures. Go figure!!

Our Madison Range was hidden behind grayness,
But today the gray lifted and beautiful snow-capped
Mountains emerged. That’s Jack Creek Canyon
And Fan Mountain out there. Come back, springtime!

Knowing I was missing the colors of spring,
My friend, Lisa, in North Carolina, sent me
Photos of her gorgeous roses in her garden.
I am expectantly waiting for our flowers now, too.

Romans 15:13

“May the God of hope fill you with
all joy and peace as you trust in Him,
so you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Because the future SOMETIMES (often) depends
On what you do today, look for the joy and hope around you.
Do whatever you can to make today the best it can be.
Don’t worry about tomorrow. Just live today with joyful expectation.

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

Romans 8:24-25

“For in this hope we were saved.
Now hope that is seen is not hope.
For who hopes for what he sees?
But if we hope for what we do not see,
we wait for it with patience.”

We waited for the pastor candidate we did not see.
We waited for the congregation to vote affirmatively.
And now we wait for our Mary Grace to return
And begin her spiritual leadership in our church.

It’s hard to wait with patience, but we are told
Like those beautiful roses that sprang from a plant
That was brown and leafless in the winter,
The blossom will bloom – and it’ll be worth the wait.

My mom often told me when I was
Eagerly, anxiously, anticipating something,
“Cross that bridge when you come to it!” Good advice!
Go back now to the top now… and watch that musical video.

The images are wonderful. This bridge is one of them.
“Edited video Leonidas” – magnificent!
Worth the wait!


Tell me, what are you
expectantly waiting for?


Thank you for taking time to visit JanBeek today.
See ya tomorrow (God willing)

Embrace a Clear Conscience


Having a clear conscience is one life’s joys.
Looking at myself in the mirror has to be
A time when I can honestly say to myself,
“I am being my best self. I like what I see!”

Life is not about being perfect.
Life is not about never making mistakes.
Life is about appreciation and forgiveness,
Loving God and one another – that’s what it takes.

A clear conscience doesn’t come because
You never say or do things you eventually regret.
It comes because you admit your failings,
Ask forgiveness, receive it, and then forget!

Don’t forget the lessons that you learn
From the errors you readily can see,
But put the mistakes behind you, never to be
Repeated – Never to divide you and me.

Photo by Deeana Creates on Pexels.com

I try not to let my faux pas get me down.
I know I am only human and I disappoint,
But I try not to become entangled in them.
There’s more to life than to finger point!

My conscience is clear when I know in my heart
That my motives were pure when I blew it.
So, if there’s more to it than admittance,
Remorse, and forgiveness, who knew it?

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

Whatever I said or did to hurt you,
I really didn’t aim to bring harm.
So hug me, my friend, and forgive me –
So my conscience won’t sound the alarm!

I can embrace a clear, clean conscience –
One that is free to stand quiet and true
Before my Lord and Savior, my Maker.
I pray the same blessing, my friend, for you.

May you experience the “Sweet Forgiveness”
That Christ can provide so we can pass it on.
As we embrace a clear conscience, may we
Spread the love so others also have a Bright New Dawn.

1 Timothy 1:5

But the goal of our instruction
is love from a pure heart
and a good conscience
and a sincere faith.



I had not heard Gordon Mote before –
and I didn’t know this song. Was it new to you, too?

Do you have a clear conscience?
If not, is there something you need to
ask God to help you clear up
so you, too, can have a clean slate?

I invite you to contemplate
what that level of forgiveness
means in your heart
as you sit quietly for awhile
and listen to the soothing piano
of this “Gaither Instrumentals.”

Thanks for dropping by JanBeek today.

See ya tomorrow (God willing).

Embrace Uniqueness


Aren’t you totally amazed at how
The Creator made us each so unique?
No two fingerprints, no two zebra’s stripes
Are the same – – – just take a peek!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

No two sets of eyes, not even twins
Have exactly the same DNA.
No two cats – and no two dogs
Are just the same – no matter what you say.

Photo by Sam Lion on Pexels.com

No two leaves – nor clouds in the sky
Are just like any other one.
How did God create such uniqueness
In this world beneath the sun?

Photo by Vali S. on Pexels.com

No two ways of looking
At exactly the same motivation
will result in the same response –
Some see sadness others elation.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com

It is our uniqueness that makes us
An interesting, diverse, beautiful world.
We fly our flags in different colors,
But in reality we’re all one world unfurled.

Photo by Shakeb Tawheed on Pexels.com
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Let’s embrace our uniqueness
And celebrate how we see things differently
While remembering we are more alike
Than not… and we’re all designed magnificently!

Photo by Carl Attard on Pexels.com

I am grateful for the unique qualities
Of each bird and fish and friend –
And I thank God for His imagination –
For His Creation – that has no end.

Photo by Francesco Ungaro on Pexels.com

There’s no one on earth like me;
No one in the whole world like you,
So embrace your uniqueness, my friend…
Share with others your point of view.

No one sees life quite like you do.
No one can paint or write as you do.
Let your expression of life splash out of you
And help others see the world anew.

Ecclesiastes 3:11

He has made everything beautiful in its time.
Also, He has put eternity into man’s heart,
yet so that he cannot find out
what God has done from the beginning to the end.

Just as no pot created on the potter’s wheel
Ends up looking just like another pot,
And yet each is beautiful in its own way,
So each of us beautiful – no one is not!

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Something beautiful, something good –
All my confusion He understood.
All I had to offer Him was brokenness and strife,
But He made something beautiful of my life.

Give your brokenness and strife to God.
Let Him make something beautiful in you.
Then share it – as only you can do –
So others can appreciate their uniqueness, too.

Use your unique qualities to make the world a better place.
Don’t judge others or turn them away because they’re different.
Embrace them. Love them. Appreciate the way they add color to your world.
Know God designed each of us intentionally … be reverent!

I love you, my friend.
Thank you for adding your uniqueness to my world.
See ya tomorrow.

Hugs,
JanBeek

(& Bob – my unique hubby)

Embrace Tranquility


The ticking of the clock –
The music of chimes’ agility –
The puppy in the corner snoring –
Ah, such tranquility!

Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com

Ecclesiastes 4:6

“Better is a handful of quietness
than two hands full of toil
and a striving after wind.”

The windmill worked its way
Into the ground with daily spinning.
Standing quiet and tall, the hills
Live in tranquility – stillness winning.

Tranquility is not always stillness;
Sometimes it is purposeful motion –
Tossing away burdens and keeping
Hours of exercise and devotion.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Proverbs 14:30

“A tranquil heart gives life to the flesh,
but envy makes the bones rot.”

Tranquility at the core of your soul
Is the result of a heart filled with love.
Your bones cry out in joy when you
Let peace and calm in from above.

The Prayer of St. Francis

When you sow peace, love, hope,
Light, faith, pardon and joy,
Tranquility enters your being –
And no earthly tension can destroy.


James 3:18

“And a harvest of righteousness
is sown in peace
by those who make peace.”

Inside my kitchen cabinet

Arriving at a state of tranquility
In the midst of all this earth’s pain
Is like standing in a gorgeous garden
After a long, earth-quenching rain.

Derrick & Jackie’s garden

Matthew 5:9

“Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they shall be called sons of God.”

And to that we might add,

“Blessed are the gardeners,
for they shall find tranquility
in the beauty of their creation.”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

A sure path to tranquility:
Keep your eyes on the Son.
Easter is coming and so we know
Death did not win… Eternal Tranquility won!!

EMBRACE TRANQUILITY

SEE ya tomorrow (God willing)

What will you do today
to feel the tranquility
that is God’s gift to you?

I’m sending Hugs,
JanBeek

Embrace Obedience


Obedience
First listen
Learn to absorb
Take it all in
Heed

We all know what it means to be obedient, right? Listen, absorb, heed…
Did you hear any of these expressions when you were growing up?

“If you don’t stop crying, I’ll give you something to cry about!”

“Why?? Because I said so, that’s why!”

Photo by Joshua Santos on Pexels.com

“Yours is not to question why. Yours is just to do or die!”

Photo by Nelly Aran on Pexels.com

Where did those images of obedience come from? Certainly not from a Loving Father.

Photo by William Fortunato on Pexels.com

He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”Luke 11:28


“If only you had paid attention to My commandments!
Then your well-being would have been like a river,
And your righteousness like the waves of the sea.”
Isaiah 48:18

Photo by Sebastian Voortman on Pexels.com


“If you consent and obey,
You will eat the best of the land”
Isaiah 1:19

Photo by Trang Doan on Pexels.com


“And we are witnesses of these things;
and so is the Holy Spirit,
whom God has given to those who obey Him.”
Acts 5:32

Who or What to Obey?

Obedience
Differs with
Who you obey
Make it “The Word”
God

Photo by John-Mark Smith on Pexels.com


Samuel said,
“Has the Lord as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
As in obeying the voice of the Lord?
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,
And to heed than the fat of rams.”
1 Samuel 15:22

To heed God’s Word
Is better than honey
Better than palaces
Better than money

To heed God’s voice
As He whispers in your ear
Is to hear His angels speaking
And to cherish what you hear

Obedience to the teachings
Of wise men and women, too
Is the road successful people
Travel daily. How about you?

Are you tuning in to wisdom
Are you listening really well?
If so, then your obedience
Will show – others will tell.

They’ll tell of your goodness.
They’ll see what brings you peace
And they’ll want to have a share
In the joy that will not cease.


“But this is what I commanded them, saying,
‘Obey My voice, and I will be your God,
and you will be My people;
and you will walk in all the way
which I command you,
that it may be well with you.’
Jeremiah 7:23

When we live in obedience,
We can sing with the best of them:
It is well with my soul –
And we can can pray for the rest of them!

Embrace Obedience!
Easter is coming… when we set aside time
To thank our God for sending the Perfect Example
Of what Obedience – even to the cross – looks like.

Praise God!
Hear – Heed -Obey!

Jesus – simple, yet complex

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
I pray my Embrace series is encouraging you.
See ya tomorrow.

Embrace Flexibility


Being flexible:
A sign of a healthy soul!
It’s well with my soul.

Rigidity means
There’s inflexibility…
Like old, wrinkled skin.

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Rigidity lacks
The ability to spring –
Spring up and bounce back.

Flexibility
Is living life on the edge –
Edge of Adventure!

When Bob & I were much younger, we were living in the San Francisco Bay Area. I was happy in my teaching job, but Bob was restless. He had been coaching wrestling and teaching drivers’ education for about nine years. He’d had the “Seven Year Itch” for a couple years… looking for a way to feel compensated for the tons of extra hours he put in as a coach. But, coaches don’t get paid more than a measly $500 stipend for the gajillion extra hours. They watch the guy who comes and goes with the bells. In at 8: am and out at 3:00 pm. It was discouraging after a while. Love his students as he did, it was not “well with his soul.” He wanted the freedom to be compensated fairly for his efforts. So, he left teaching and returned to the family farm. Farming allowed him the flexibility he was craving.

He went back to the family farm … almonds, walnuts, and mainly – beekeeping. Producing honey, selling his bees’ product, scheduling his own time… Ah yes, the flexibility was good for his soul. He thrived!

Flexibility
Is important for your soul.
Keeps your life limber.

Retirement brings flexibility

The freedom to fish
Or go four-wheeling with friends:
Retirement JOY!

Are you flexible?
Can you readjust your life
When it feels too stiff?

Do you feel you’re trapped
In a spot not fulfilling?
Make your soul feel well.

Listen to your heart.
Life’s too short to be rutted –
Stuck and unhappy!

Just dig yourself out.
Uncover many options –
Start digging today!

There’s a world waiting
For the flexible and strong
To step out in faith.

Know you are not stuck
In an unfulfilling place.
Exercise options!

Do some exploring.
Embrace flexibility.
You have just one life.

Look for your purpose
Find it in your prayer-filled time
Embrace Flexibility.

You were born to start
The work set out just for you.
God bless you today!

Just live your own dream –
Not the dream of someone else.
Step out in faith now!

Photo by Josu00e9 Luis Photographer on Pexels.com

Yup, that’s right –
Flexibility means JOY –
Jump into it NOW!

We’re living in joy!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek
See ya tomorrow.

Embrace Marriage


Happy 59th Anniversary today to my sweetheart, Bob, my life’s partner!!

February 11, 1962
Bob & his brother, Bill…
The week when we first met…
What a ham!!
While we were dating, and engaged,
I was bridesmaid in Bob’s sister, Bonnie’s wedding.
Our engagement was “trying times”

Bob & I both have a deep faith. It was God who put us together. It was our faith and prayer that kept us together. During our engagement, he was in Germany, in the army. I was in college, wanting to enjoy college life. I broke up with him. But, God knew we belonged together. He made sure we got back together again! (Thank You, God!) And He helped us stick it out all these years through good times and bad. I’m so grateful!!

In the car – after the wedding – headed for the reception
We were married nearly three years
before I became pregnant
There’s DeDe and Ty with Bob –
-blowing out his birthday candles

Our children, Ty & DeAna, have been such a blessing in our lives. Thank You, God, for the gift of these children!! During our early married years (after the first 8 months in Germany), we lived in Turlock (for a year) and then San Francisco and San Mateo. Bob worked for Shell Oil and then went back to college (San Francisco State). He earned his teaching credential and then coached wrestling and taught Driver’s Ed at Hillsdale High School in San Mateo, CA.

Bob curled his hair when he became a beekeeper in the 70’s.
We had lots of fun on weekends in the winter
going skiing together.

We moved from the Bay Area back to the San Joaquin Valley in CA. Bob took over his Dad’s beekeeping business when his father retired. Did you know that beekeepers with hair that is close their head (hair that gets greasy or sweaty) are targets for bee stings? With a perm, the bees couldn’t get to the scalp.

You ask why he didn’t just wear a hat like most beekeepers do? Bob hates wearing a hat! He didn’t wear protective gloves either. Those are topics for another day!

I was teaching in Hughson, Ceres, and Modesto, CA in those days.
Then I moved into administration for a dozen years.
Principal and Curriculum Coordinator
Time passed.
Gray hair started to change our appearance!
We both claim we were the one who loved the most!!
After retirement, we were able to travel.
I dyed my hair for awhile before I learned to embrace the gray.
(That’s a good topic for another day)

Our Daughter, De

In 1987, our daughter, DeAna, married Andre’, a Swiss (the first cousin of our AFS exchange student).

She wore my wedding dress 25 years after I did!

I have written about De & Andre’s fairy tale story in the past. She moved to Switzerland when our first grandchild was “in the hopper.” That was nearly 30 years ago! Every other year we would go to visit them (so, no, we didn’t really wait ’til retirement to travel … we just got to do more of it after Bob left beekeeping and we moved here to Montana).

Thank you, Diana Housel, for this gorgeous photo of our dear Montana!!

This is the village of Vissoie, Switzerland where DeDe and Andre’ live now.
Andre’ and De have three boys.
Our Swiss grandsons are Mike, Nick & Chris.
We hope to travel there this October to spend time with them.
Virus, be gone!!!

You will recall, they have a restaurant there!
We NEED to go and see it in person!!

Our Son, Ty

Our son, Ty, blessed our family in 1989
by marrying his sweetheart, Monika.
The two of them adopted four children.
Sam, Hope, Jordan & Faith are young adults now.
I’ve written about them here on my blog.
Our lives are so enriched by this extended family.
Ty & Moni live in CA, near Lake Tahoe.
This picture of them was taken of them
at our youngest granddaughter, Faith’s wedding.
We hope to travel to CA to be with them this year in June.
Virus be gone!!

Pleeeease God, help us be able to travel to CA in June!
I need to see my darling great-granddaughter, Cosette!

Life is Full

Life is full of love and joy and promises for a bright tomorrow. We have so much for which to be grateful. We know we are blessed to have one another and to have lived into our 80s and remained married to that same partner for nearly 60 years.

Embrace Marriage, my friends! And EMBRACE YOUR LIFE’S PARTNER if you are fortunate as I am to have one!

Today, February 11, 2021, our 59th anniversary, starts our 60th year of marriage, doesn’t it? When a baby turns one, they are starting their 2nd year on earth. Yes, that’s the way it works! Sixty years with one life partner!! I am extremely blessed!

With God every day is full
of simple delights
and unexpected joys.

Couples that pray together, stay together.
And it helps to do other things together, too!

On Super Bowl Sunday, we had a Pizza Party.
We made our pizza together.
Turned out pretty well!
We plan to keep on doing things together
as long as the Good Lord allows…

The road is long… and
We’ve come a long way together.

With God’s grace and blessings,
we will continue to travel this road of life together
for many more years to come.
We don’t know what the future holds,
but we know Who holds the future…
and we let Him lead us.

Happy Anniversary,
Sweetheart Bob.
I love you!

Wherever you lead me, I will follow…
I’ll go with you, with you, all the way!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
Have a blessed February 11th.
See ya tomorrow.

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