Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘music’

Be Kind – Be Right


Happy Sunday to you, my friends.
What are your plans for today?
Whatever you do,
wherever you go
(even if you stay home),
you will have an opportunity
to be kind
(even if only to yourself).

Choose kindness.
Be right!

Multi-Language Service

If you have followed my blog for a week or more, you know I attend church on Sundays and as I hear the message, I take notes – usually in poetry.

Today we attended the First Presbyterian Church in Redlands, CA. It is a beautiful church in the heart of the city with a mission statement: “Living in the Heart and Mind of Christ at the Heart of the City.” The service was conducted with five languages spoken alternately while the English translations were printed in the bulletin.

It was WONDERFUL to hear the melodic and unusual tongues of Urdu, Indonesian, Banyan, and Chichewa spoken – as well as the familiarity of English.

The pastor, Cheryl Raine, spoke on the topic, “The Mind of Christ.” The scripture on which the sermon was based, Philippians 2:5-8 was read orally in a language I had never heard of before. English-only folks like me read it in English in the bulletin while we listened with fascination to Wilson Kayange whose native language is Chichewa.

Sermon Notes

Morning has broken… like the first day –
Blackbird has spoken … here’s what he’ll say:
Look for the sunrise… it’s the new year –
Praise for the morning… filled with good cheer.

We are God’s people … we live in His love.
We are Christ’s people… we need a good shove!
We try not to stagnate … living in our own will.
We empty ourselves … and try to let Jesus refill.

Leaning on our own mindfulness… we stumble and fall.
We’re two days out from Epiphany … listen for His call.
He asks for patience and grace … decisions slow made.
He tells us to avoid selfishness… my renewal was paid.

Paid by our Lord … with His blood on the cross.
We’re asked to set aside self-interest … at Jesus’ cost.
Self-empty to love and serve others … As an offering, place
our lives before God… Pray daily for His extravagant grace.

Transform my mind … make it more like Christ’s mind.
Give me obedience … and cause me to be kind.
Give me extraordinary focus … on the way I can link
my mind to others’ needs … Let Your love escape with every blink!

The essence of His love… is lodged in me and grows
with each day I live and breathe … and God knows
I am choosing self-emptying … instead of selfishness.
God help me to live in Your will each day … in selflessness.

Amen

Following the sermon, there were more prayers and affirmations in the various languages before we sang one of the closing hymns… a favorite of mine: “Take Thou Our Minds, Dear Lord.”

Our unison prayer,
following the offering of our gifts,
affirmed the sermon message
and the inspiration of the hymn’s words:

“Holy God, thank you for reminding us
that we are to have the same mind as Christ Jesus,
for Christ willingly emptied himself for the sake of others.
In humility, we gathered these first gifts
of the new year for your ministries
through this beloved faith community.
Help us to be ever faithful
to your word and your ways
as we seek to glorify you with our very lives.
Amen.”

As I left the service and digested the messages of kindness, self-emptying, love, and selflessness … the importance of adopting “The Mind of Christ,” I found this meme. The “listening and loving” and the “be at peace with herself” resonated with me. The “healthy boundaries” are important as we seek to live with “the mind of Christ” in a spirit of joy – the spirit Christ personified.

Happiness in Kindness

As I sang,
“Teach us to know the Truth that sets us free”
and “Use us to make the earth like Heaven above,”
and “… yield ourselves to Thee, time, talents, all,”
I realized that when I yield to God’s will,
spread love and peace
using my time and talents,
and wear laughter and curiosity,
spreading kindness,
I am not only making myself happier,
but I am spreading happiness to those around me.

Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

Choose kindness.
Be right!


What will you do today to
spread happiness to those around you?

See ya tomorrow

Sunday before Christmas


Time for kids and joy
It’s Sunday before Christmas
Church and friends and love

The sanctuary
Is ready for the people
The Son waits with us

Fifth Advent candle
Waits with us for Christmas Day
Hope, love, joy, and peace

All are brightly lit
But not the center candle
It represents Christ

Flowers decorate
The stairs to the church’s front
Poinsettias tell all

Kathy and Jaime
Beautifully play the songs
That ring in Christmas

Ruby, Cassidy and Cord

The smiles of children
Remind is of the Christ Child
Whose birth we await

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels.com

Today’s sermon was told by Elaine Hundley, in her husband Rev. Steve Hundley’s absence. The sermon focused on Joseph, the baby Jesus’ earthly father.

We pray for Steve as he sits at his dying mother’s bedside way over on the other side of the USA. We pray for Elaine who is experiencing her first Christmas apart from Steve in 42 years! She remained here to carry on Steve’s ministry in our church. God bless her!

I listened carefully to capture the message as Elaine delivered a sermon Steve had written some years ago. To understand the introduction, you need to know that Steve and Elaine are adoptive parents.

Here are my poetic renderings:

“Feeling Good About Christmas”

The adoption agency checked us out.
They made sure we were okay.
I wonder what God did to check out
Mary and Joseph to parent Jesus His way.

Joseph was a righteous man who
Believed the angel Gabriel who told:
“The baby was conceived by the Holy Spirit.”
So Joseph didn’t desert her – nor scold.

He took her to be his wife,
And ignored what might have been said
By the town folks as they gossiped.
He knew she was pure and had not “gone to bed.”

Joseph was a good man, a believer,
Who read and understood God’s grace.
He saw through the Holy Spirit’s lenses,
And was able to accept this Holy Child
from God’s Holy place.

May we, too, know the Christ Child
as God’s gift to us.
Amen!

Happy Fourth Sunday of Advent.
May the peace of Christ permeate your heart
and give you a peace-filled week.

Photo by Alexandro David on Pexels.com

Have a good Sunday night.
See ya tomorrow.

Come to Us


I have a dear friend in California who is sending inspirational scripture with music and devotionals each day during this season of Advent. Today she sent a link to a song that started my day with a smile.

I hope it makes you smile, too.

The song, composed in the minor key, is perfect for this season.
Do you know it? The choir and soloists are superb:

“Come to set us free, come to make us your own.
Come to show the way to your people, your chosen.
Open our lives to the light of your promise.
Come to our hearts with healing, come to our minds with power,
come to us and bring us your life.”

Photo by Jeswin Thomas on Pexels.com

You can click on this link and hear it if you like:
http://catholichymn.blogspot.com/2015/11/come-to-set-us-free.html

For me, Advent is the season of Adventure – a season of reaching out to others in love while we prepare our hearts for the coming of the Christ child each Christmas.

I know many of my readers are people of other faiths, and I respect your right to worship the One God in your chosen way. But, I hope you feel a sense of greater love, more generous giving, and the promised peace during this holiday time of the year. I hope the drama, the stress, and the conflict are minimized in your life… and you can find JOY in the hustle and bustle of the season.

Photo by Jill Wellington on Pexels.com

Gracious God,
Be with my Word Press friends this season.
Bring them JOY and PEACE.
Help them live with compassion
and reach out in love.
In His name I pray,
Amen.

See ya later!

Running Low


Are you running low?
Finding energy is scarce?
Go to your refuel.

Where’s your refuel place?
Is it visiting a friend?
I did that today.

Took time to converse
With a compassionate soul.
Did a world of good!

“Refuel” is a place
On the web by Bayside Church.
It’s one place to fuel.

Refuel by blogging.
Refuel by singing a song.
Refuel by walking.

It’s necessary;
Self-care’s a priority
Not a luxury.

If you’re out of gas,
You can’t help others or YOU.
STOP, rest, breathe and PRAY.

Let God fill you up
With His compassionate love.
It’s better than gas!

Have a Happy Wednesday!
See ya tomorrow.

Most Wonderful Time


Most Wonderful Time #Crosscards

Christmas is coming

Bell choirs are ringing round here

Most wonderful time

Music, Birds & Joy


Yesterday I promised I would send you a video of Liam and me playing at my sister’s Masonic Home. My niece, Jodie, recorded videos and took these pictures. Thanks, Jodie!

We had a “full house” of residents from the Masonic Home listening to our “concert.”
I have videos so you can hear the residents singing along to “Home on the Range” and “Battle Hymn of the Republic” – but I can’t get the videos to load here. Sorry! You just gotta trust me, it was fun – and the residents really seemed to enjoy it. I know I did!
And today I said “Good-bye” for now to my sis, Sally. I’m glad I got a chance to see her in her new environment.

Now, as Thanksgiving approaches, we plan to celebrate with dinner out – and then our first opportunity to see a performance of Les Miserables! Thanks to Jodie & Bill… what a wonderful gift!

Have YOU had a chance to see that production?

This afternoon I am sitting and watching the birds find food here in Pennsylvania. I pray with God’s grace, tomorrow we will be looking for birds in our Montana snow. They won’t be these colorful ones… but we’ll be happy with whatever feathered friends we find.

Photo by Frank Cone on Pexels.com

What kinds of birds do you have in your area this time of year?

Are any of yours this colorful?
Photo by Andrew Mckie on Pexels.com
Please keep an eye out – and listen for their song.
Happy Thanksgiving to you, my USA friends –
and Happy end of November to you all.
See ya tomorrow.

Pray for our safe flight back to Montana, okay?

Headed Back


We are headed back

To my niece, Jodie, and Bill’s place

Kutztown was just great!

We attended Trinity Evangelical Lutheran Church with Lisa & Allen this morning.

My favorite was the last hymn. I’d never heard or sung it before. Have you?

The congregation really got into it, clapping and singing enthusiastically. We loved it!! 💕

The sky was threatening as we left Kutztown
But less threatening as we approach Pittsburgh

I hope you’ve had a blessed Sunday, too.

Bye for now. I send my love … and I’ll see ya tomorrow.

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