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Posts tagged ‘marriage’

Repurpose Your Life


Photo by Tim Samuel on Pexels.com

Mark Collins‘ prayer in Daily Guideposts today spoke to me.
He wrote:

“Lord, let me repurpose my own life
toward Your will
and not mine.”

What is your life’s purpose?

What have you determined to be your life’s purpose? Has it always been so?

Seems to me this pandemic has given us time to pause and reconsider what our life’s purpose is! This virus has been like a stop light – a red signal – “Wait here!”

As I paused and considered my life’s purpose this morning, I decided my purpose has shifted with each quarter century of my life. Have you considered how age, the passing of time, and the changing of circumstances have impacted your life’s purpose?

Maybe my purpose SHOULD always have been “to glorify God” – but did I know that? Did I live according to that calling? No!

Life seemed so simple as a child!

First Quarter

In that first quarter of my life, the innocence of childhood helped me see others with a purity of heart, but most of my purpose was pretty self-centered.

To be honest with myself and you, most of age 0 to 25 was devoted to serving self.

Second Quarter

Then in the second quarter, my life’s purpose shifted from self to family. With marriage and children, it was important to turn the focus from myself to my husband and our children.

These were the years when my career flourished and I spent a lot of time devoted to my job. But even as I did so, it all came back to bringing in the resources to provide a better life and more opportunities for us and our children.

Age 25 to 50 my life’s purpose was mostly devoted to serving family.

Photo by Arthur Krijgsman on Pexels.com

Third Quarter

In the third quarter of my life, I moved from being a mom with kids at home, and being a teacher in the classroom working with children, to being a cheerleader for my young adult children and a leader for teachers.

Even after I retired, my role as a cheerleader for my children and grandchildren and as a leader in various organizations where I volunteered was focused on how I could reach out to help.

My purpose in life from age 50 to 75 seemed to be to serve others.

Fourth Quarter

And then came this fourth quarter of my life. The period from 75 to 100 is when I have come face to face with the purpose God intended for me all along: to glorify Him.

Everything I do these days is intended to fulfill the purpose the Lord intended for me: to serve God.

I look for ways to BEE what He made me to BEE… to use the talents He gave me … and to use them for HIS PURPOSES.

I look for ways to DO what God needs me to DO to BEE His hands and feet on earth.

I find places where the love, joy and peace that are mine are lacking… and I try to spread those Fruits of the Spirit wherever I go.

What Really Matters

How much more meaningful
my life would have been
if I had spoken this prayer
by Mark Collins years ago:

“Lord, let me repurpose my own life
toward Your will
and not mine.”

Photo by Paulo Mu00e1rcio Dos Santos on Pexels.com

Don’t wait until the fourth quarter of your life to repurpose!
Ask God today to help you discern what He has in mind for you.
You can serve family and others more effectively if you:

1) Pray for God’s guidance
2) Listen for the Holy Spirit to guide you, and
3) Use your gifts, talents and time to serve God first.

In so doing, God will bless you in ways you can hardly imagine!

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

By using your time,
gifts and talents
for the glory of your Creator,
you will find true joy,
a true sense of fulfillment,
and an REAL answer to:
What is my life’s purpose?

Score what really matters NOW.
Don’t wait until the fourth quarter!!

See ya tomorrow!

Thanks for visiting JanBeek.

A comment below
telling me what you have defined
as your life’s purpose
would be so interesting to me.
Do consider commenting!

When I first told my family…


We were having one of my favorite meals, spaghetti with meat sauce, when I first told my family that I had broken up with my fiance’. My dad nearly choked on his mouthful. My mom shoved her plate of spaghetti half-way across the table!

Photo by Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels.com

To this day, I can’t eat spaghetti with meat sauce without remembering that day.

My fiance’ and I had been engaged for about a year. He was in the army, stationed in Germany. I was a senior in college, missing the social life, trying to remain true to my engagement. I wanted to attend the school’s dances and other social functions. It was hard!

Rather than being untrue to my boyfriend who was so far away (we had not seen each other in six months), I broke off with him. Obviously, my parents were devastated. Especially when they learned the guy I wanted to date was a divorce’.

“Why buy a used car when you can have a new one?” my dad finally spoke. Then he got up and walked out of the room. (Yes, Dad was a man of few words, but a list of prejudices a mile long!)

Mom followed him, without speaking a word. That was so unlike her.

Proverbs 6: 20-23

20 My son, obey your father’s commands,and don’t neglect your mother’s instruction. 21 Keep their words always in your heart. Tie them around your neck. 22 When you walk, their counsel will lead you. When you sleep, they will protect you. When you wake up, they will advise you. 23 For their command is a lamp and their instruction a light; their corrective discipline is the way to life.

The man I broke up with was from a family very much like my own. He grew up in the same area I did. We shared common roots. My parent and his got along wonderfully. The man I wanted to date was nine years older than I. I won’t get into why he was so attractive to me, but suffice to say, my parents’ dismay touched me deeply.

They let me have my “fling.” They did not bad-mouth my new friend. But when my ex-boyfriend came home on leave, they invited him over. When I returned home from college that weekend, he was there. I realized how much I loved him. That love has carried us through 58 years of marriage. Not always perfect, not always blissful, but always respectful, and always knitted together in prayer, faith in God, and common purpose. The love has grown as years passed – and I am grateful every day for my parents’ wisdom.

Put a plate of spaghetti and meatballs in front of me. I can taste the kindness of my parents in every meatball. I can hear my mom’s silence and feel her prayers in every slurp of pasta. I feel my dad’s concern about age differences and divorce. I keep their love in my heart with every Italian meal! God bless ’em!!

Today at d’Verse we are trying a new form of poetry. Synesthesia is a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sense leads to automatic, involuntary experiences of a second one.   There are over 80 types of synesthesia described by science.   Nearly every combination of sensory experiences or cognitive concepts is possible.

Seeing music as colors is one form of synesthesia. Perceiving letters as personalities is another one, or seeing numbers in color. Even hearing colors or touching smells.

How about tasting memories?
Do you have any of those?

Photo by Ali Nafezarefi on Pexels.com

This post is a combination prompt: 1) My Madison Valley Writers’ Group Prompt was the title of the blog, and 2) the d’Verse prompt informed the style and content. It’s not poetry… but it may qualify as Synesthesia. What do you think?

My Italian Daddy and me

See ya tomorrow.
Thanks for visiting
JanBeek

Be Braided


When you see the word “Braid,” what do you think of?

Photo by Bran Sodre on Pexels.com

Those braids appear to be two strong strands twisted together.
(Isn’t she beautiful?)

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Likewise, this rope seems to have two strong strands twisted, right?

Photo by Roman Koval on Pexels.com

When I used to braid my daughter’s hair, I needed three strands to create the braid.

Today’s devotional made me think about these various braids and contemplate the strength of the three strands. Here was the scripture:

Eccelesiates 4:12

“And though a man might prevail
against one who is alone,
two will withstand him –
a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

Katie Minter Jones in “Mornings with Jesus” by Guideposts wrote a devotional based on that scripture. In it she recounted how difficult the days of early marriage were as she and her husband “struggled through difficult times.”

She quoted a friend as saying, “Together we worked hard to get where we are now. It definitely takes two to make a marriage work, and that’s not fifty-fifty. Each person has to give 100%.” Finger pointing and trying to divvy stuff up 50-50 leads to disaster.

One of her lady friends said, “It takes three to make a successful marriage, the husband, the wife, and Jesus.” Each person must give 100% to each other and 100% to Jesus.”

That seems like a tall order! But doing so creates the three strands that make the braid unbreakable. Couples need to walk with Jesus to have a strong marriage.

Here’s my take on what that looks like.

The tie that binds

When our hearts are bound in love around our Lord’s cross, His mercy and grace strengthen our relationship and help us grow closer. As we walk hand in hand, praying and staying together in love, God blesses us. Jesus Christ strengthens us. The Holy Spirit braids our hearts in His love and care. Blessed be the tie that binds our hearts in Christian Love. Be braided!

Write your spouse a love letter today and include a prayer.

Here are mine…

Dear Bob,
I am so grateful for your love and for our mutual reliance on Jesus, our Lord. Thank you for praying with me, staying with me, putting Christ first in our lives, and relying on Him during our times of struggle. His sacrificial love is the perfect reminder of how we need to take care of each other. His presence binds us in purpose and braids us with His promises and His peace. Thank you!
Love Forever and Ever, Rockie ;o) ❤

Dear God,
Thank you for blessing our marriage and knitting our hearts together. May my blogging friends find that same peace and grace and purpose in life. May they sense Your guidance in their relationships and be braided with You. Amen.
In His Care, Jan

Photo by Trung Nguyen on Pexels.com

Let the light of God shine on your relationship,
be central to your lives,
and braid you together with peace and purpose.
God bless you!


See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Meet Faithful and Faith


Here is Faithful:

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.”

Happy 1st Anniversary, Faith and Kyle.

May they love with a universal love –
always generous,
compassionate,
grateful and hopeful,
brave and forgiving,
proud and yet humble.

Here is Faith – on her wedding day –
dancing with her dad, our son, Ty.

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!

BEE WELL!

See ya tomorrow.
Love,
JanBeek


Listen and Grow


Dr. Jimmy Walters
has been posting a 30 day series on healing.
Today his topic was “Listening.”
Check it out by clicking n “Day 26” below:

30 Days of Healing
as we seek to be instruments of peace and change
“Discovering God’s Vision for Your Life”
Discover “God’s Vision for Your Life”
by wearing a mask… and
Listen, Look, Smile
as we grow in
Love, Health & Healing

Dr. Jimmy said in his article,
“… listening can inform us,
guide us,
as we grow
and as we learn.”

My daughter DeAna, and her husband, Andre’ (pictured above and below here) are celebrating their 33rd anniversary today. It has been an interesting journey for them. They married when she was not quite 20 and he was 24. Young and naive, coming from a world apart – she a California girl and he a fun-loving guy who’d been working as a chef in Switzerland.

De & Andre’s wedding at UOP Chapel 1987

DeAna wore my dress and Andre’ wore Bob’s red bow tie and cummerbund as they were married in the same University of the Pacific chapel where Bob & I were wed 25 years earlier.

They remained in California four more years while De finished college, but eventually, they moved back to Andre’s hometown in Sierre, Switzerland.
He missed his mountains, his family, his culture. I don’t blame him!!! De was pregnant with our first grandchild when they left. Talk about a difficult good-bye! But hey… Switzerland…. what a beautiful place to HAVE TO visit, huh?

Life was beautiful – but, oh so different – there.

Listening to Andre’s mom, Denise, was an important part of their marital success. As the years went by, DeAna and Andre’ grew in their ability to share their minds, let their dreams be known, and listen to one another.

Today
as they anticipate
the opening of their new restaurant,
they are happier than ever.

Bob & I have been married 58 years, and we, too, are busy still learning to be better listeners. It’s a life-long process. But the effort is worth it. We, too, are happier now than ever.

Psalm 37:10-11 (MSG)

“The deeper your love, the higher it goes;
every cloud is a flag to your faithfulness.
Soar high in the skies, O God!
Cover the whole earth with Your glory!”

Today the skies revealed a slight rainbow arching the skies … look carefully:

As I stood on the porch after the rain, listening to the thunder in the hills, the robins chirped from their nest nearby and the doves flew back onto the roof to coo at one another. Listen! The earth is alive with God’s symphonies.

The rain returned – just light sprinkles, but the birds continued their songs.

Bob came out on the porch and said, “What’s for lunch?”
I responded with a shrug, “I don’t have anything planned.”
“How about a hamburger and huckleberry milkshake?” he asked.
Believe me, I listened, I heard, and … We were in the car in a jiffy.

That’s a happy smirk!

The sign over Bob’s shoulder says,
“Without ICE CREAM, Life is Darkness and Chaos.”

Without good listening,
Without open sharing of dreams,
You’ll miss out on lots of hamburgers and milkshakes!

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Now,
doesn’t that look like
“God’s Vision for Your Life”??

Listen for your Health!
Listen for your Happiness.
Don’t miss out!

See ya tomorrow…
Love and Hugs
from
JanBeek

Where ya Headed?



Philippians 3:13

“… forgetting what is behind
and straining toward
what is ahead,
press on toward the goal
to win the prize
for which God has called me
heavenward…”


Looking Back

I need you to see a photo of my youngest granddaughter when she was a little baby. Read on and I’ll tell you why I want you to see this on a post that’s all about where you’re headed. Here’s Faith Austynn Beekman:

Faith was adopted at birth by our son, Ty, and his wife Monika. The story of her adoption is a good one for another day. But for now, let me fast-forward:

Ruthie, Faith, Jan (me)

Faith has grown to be a woman of great faith. This photo of her between her two grandmothers was taken two years before she graduated from High School. I tried to find my photo of her at her graduation, but this was as close as I came to it.

Ah, tenacity… it paid off… I found it! Here Faith is with us on the day of her graduation. Look at how much taller she is! Or did I just shrink?

Why do you think it was so important to see Faith on her graduation day – on this post titled, “Where ya Headed?” Well, a scripture with ta similar message as Philippians 3:13 – was printed on the top of her commencement hat! Hebrews 12:1 …

Looking Ahead

Fast forward again. Here is Faith with her fiance’, Kyle McSparron, on the day of their engagement:

And here they are at the rehearsal dance the day before their wedding:

Faith’s life so far is a fairy tale of love and success and faithful direction. Obedience to God and to her parents’ teachings, adherence to Biblical Principles, and the tenacity to “run with endurance the race God has set before [her]” are criterion that characterize her young life.

Living the Race

Faith and Kyle joined her parents (our son) Ty and Monika with their dog, Nakota at our home for Thanksgiving last year. Kyle has an electrical business that is suffering the downturn caused by this COVID-19 pandemic. He needs our prayers as he works to keep the company afloat.

Faith is working for the state of Nevada as a “Disaster Preparedness Advisor” (that may not be the exact title, but you get the idea. Her job is particularly vital right now… and much can be done on-line. Moving forward, we can see the two of them are living Hebrews 12:1 as fully as possible.

Bob & I are in our pj’s in that photo because it was very early on the morning they were leaving to head back to California.

Don’t look back. You’re not headed that way!”

Looking Forward

“I don’t know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future.”

I don’t know to whom I should attribute that quote, but it sounds like somebody like Billy Graham would have said it… or Mother Theresa.” And I know it is so true. God is in charge of where I’m headed. If today’s world and our circumstances are any indication, then we know the path to where we’re going is a rocky one. The only way to navigate it is through faith and prayer.

See that moose on my bed? When Faith was about 6 or 7, she and her family came to visit us. We spent a day in Yellowstone National Park. It’s ony an hour’s drive from our home. At the end of the visit, she and her three siblings were given the opportunity to go into the gift shop and buy themselves something to help them remember the trip. Faith bought this moose – and then gave it to me! She has such a loving heart!

If you saw my tribute to Ken Hall on my blog
a few days ago, you saw that photo above the bed,
but I didn’t show you “Faithful” – my moose.

Each morning when I make my bed, I place “Faithful,” this little moose in front of the pillows, and I say a prayer for Faith and Kyle. I thank God for Faithful, my reminder of my granddaughter Faith – and I thank Him for her and her faith, for her beautiful marriage to Kyle, and I ask God to watch over them.

May God watch over you today, too, my friends.
And may He guide you as you
“Run with endurance the race He set before you.”
Look to a bright future…
It’s coming!
Face Forward –
That’s where you’re headed.


See ya tomorrow.
JanBeek

Practicing for Divorce


No, I am not practicing for divorce!
After 58 eventful years of marriage, it’s too late to give up now!!

February 11, 1962

But life is not a bed of roses (or carnations!)
And marriage is not easy!
Nobody promised it would be.

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

Sometimes we get mad at one another.
Sometimes we disappoint one another.
Sometimes we don’t understand
where the other one is coming from!

Yes, I make Bob wonder lots of times!

What Families Know

In his devotional today on Bayside Church’s on-line “Refuel,”
Andrew McCourt talked about marriage and relationships.


He titled his message, “What Families Know,” and he said,

“People who aren’t married do married things…
they are lovers practicing for divorce.”

It’s an age-old problem!

Love Without Commitment

For as long as life began – back to the days of Adam and Eve – men and women have found a way to “find each other’s cracks.” And eventually pouring into that crack can burst the container!

Eve found Adam’s crack!
And look what happened…

Andrew McCourt offered some suggestions for how to relate to one another in genuine love that does not seek to “find the crack” – but rather seeks to FILL AND FULFILL.

Andrew said something to this effect,

“What successful married folks know is this:
there is an order to successful relationships.

First, you stand together shoulder to shoulder
(Don’t let kids or anyone else get between you).

Second, you stand or sit together face-to-face
(You look each other in the eye and you communicate).

Third, you do the bellybutton-to-bellybutton thing
(You love each other emotionally and physically).”

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Reverse Order

Andrew said, “When we get that order of things reversed, that’s when we start Practicing for Divorce.”

When did this whole thing of living together first to try it out before getting married come into being?

I have a biased (informed, of course) opinion about that! I think “Three’s Company” is the culprit.

Photo by Fikayo Aderoju on Pexels.com

Living Together Out of Wedlock

I couldn’t find a picture of those three folks (a guy and two gals) who lived together in an apartment in NYC on a TV show back in the 70’s or early 80’s, but it was funny and popular and it made it look like it was okay for unmarried people of the opposite sex to live together. “Three’s Company” was one of my mom’s favorite shows. And she would be considered a prude by today’s standards.

When my niece lived with a guy before marriage in NYC, my mom said it was a great idea because it made her safer in an unsafe city!

See how media can change our idea of right and wrong?

Ah, here: I found a video. It was a darling TV show!

Bayside’s “Refuel” Podcast

If you want to hear Andrew McCourt himself
and his actual words on the subject,
try this link:
bit.ly/devo021020
I have that on my iPhone and it takes me there.

On With My Day

‘Tis time for me to get on with my day. Tomorrow is our actual anniversary… 58 years. It’s not always been a bed of roses, but the key ingredient always has been there:

RESPECT

Yup, that’s the bottom line!
So, whatever your relationship…
whether it’s three’s company,
living with your lover,
or married,
keep that RESPECT alive!

And there are a few other tips
for how to keep from practicing for divorce, too.
I’ll save those for tomorrow.

Thanks for visiting JanBeek
I hope I haven’t offended any of you out there.

See ya later!

Keep the Spark Alive


Next Tuesday Bob & I will celebrate our 58th anniversary.
We still have that spark alive and well!
We started celebrating already
by going to a wonderful
“Food & Wine Pairing Event” last night.

Later today, when Zach, the coordinator of the event, sends me pictures, I will share the photos of the various plates with you. They were small portions, but delicious and beautifully presented. No one left hungry. It was quite something!

The venue was the lovely Madison Valley Ranch on Jeffers, MT

Bob thoroughly enjoyed his conversation with our friend, Els, afterward. During the meal he got to sit next to Doug Badenoch, the wine guru from The Wine Gallery in Bozeman, MT. Doug was the one who chose the wine pairings. He did a great job.

Here’s Matt, the chef.
He did a great job, too!

Today is a snowy, cold day in Ennis. It’s a good day to stay hunkered inside.

Gotcha in prayer.
God knows your needs.
I’m asking Him to hold you.
He will.
Believe it!

Keep the Spark Alive…

See ya later.

Ten Ways to Keep Marriage Alive


Ten Ways to Keep Marriage Alive

 

accessory anniversary band celebration

Bob and I have been married more than 57 years. Our love for one another is more alive today than it ever has been. (I read that statement to him just now and asked if he agreed. Of course, he said, “Of course,” That’s part of the secret, guys! Ya gotta readily agree on things like that!)

How do we do it? How do we keep love alive after all these years? What is a healthy marriage anyway?

Jane Smiley, in her book, At Paradise Gate, wrote the following:

“You know what getting married is? It’s agreeing to take this person who right now is at the top of his form, full of hopes and ideas, feeling good, wildly interested in you because you’re the same way, and sticking by him while he slowly disintegrates. And he does the same for you. You’re his responsibility now, and he is yours. If no one else will take care of him, you will. If everyone else rejects you, he won’t.

What do you think love is? Going to bed all the time? Poo! Don’t be weak. Have some spine! He’s yours and you’re his. He doesn’t beat you or abuse you, and you’ve made the same bargain. Now that you know what it’s like to be married, now that all the gold leaf has sort of worn off, you can make something of it; you can really learn to love each other.”

I love that take on marriage by Jane Smiley. It coincides with my opinion on what it takes to make a marriage work. Here is my list:
Ten Constant Steps toward Being Married Happily Ever After:

  1. Accept and Respect one another’s differences, and celebrate your areas of sameness.
  2. Stick by one another – even as you slowly disintegrate.
  3. Take responsibility for yourself and your actions. Be forgiving.
  4. Defend one another to a hostile world.
  5. Be strong in your faith; pray and laugh and play together.
  6. Be a diligent partner, doing more than your share without bitterness or resentment or complaint.
  7. Praise one another for the little things.
  8. Never take one another for granted.
  9. Always be trustworthy; don’t stab one another in the back!
  10. Practice the art of compromise – with God as your Constant Guide.

Keep Learning

Yes, when all the gold leaf has sort of worn off and you’re each comfortable in your own space, keep the space open and inviting. Invite one another in. Keep on learning to love one another as long as you both shall live.

You’re in this box together. You’re in it for the long haul. Enjoy the ride!

box cheerful color cute

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

img_8408
Hang tight!!


pexels-photo-704748
See ya later.

 

Holding Hands


Everything I ever needed to know
I learned in kindergarten!
Never stop holding hands!

Bob helped me down the steep Mount Baldy hillside

Holding hands is underrated
It’s akin to holding hearts
When you stop holding hands
That’s when the trouble starts

Dancing with your loved one
In the kitchen or bedroom
Keeps your relationship fresh
As when you were bride and groom

Expressing how I love you
In words both clear and sweet
Helps our love stay fresh as
The day you swept me off my feet

You know, I never ever want to
Take our love, Honey, for granted.
Hand-holding, dancing, expressing –
Grows our love right where we’re planted.

80th birthday bouquet

No need to buy me flowers
Although a rose or two don’t hurt
Just hold my hand, kiss me, and
Remember how I love it when you flirt!

My sweet husband of 57 1/2 years
Never stop holding my hand!

I wish you love

See you tomorrow

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