Today in church, the choir taught the congregation a new hymn. At least it was new to us. About verse three, the congregation couldn’t hold – they had to (simply HAD to) join in… and the message resonated with everyone there.
I was reminded of the slogan at Bloom in the Desert where we attended several different Januarys when we vacationed near Palm Springs, CA: “We welcome all who welcome all.”
Wouldn’t it be grand if all people could exhibit that level of inclusivity?
Hallelujah! Love is grown in this place! I am so happy to worship in a place where “All Are Welcome.” I just wish we could cultivate more diversity in our little corner of Montana. We came from California 15 years ago. Our community in CA was made up of people from many ethnicities. I miss that! Montana does have a large Native American population, though. I wish more of them would move into southwest Montana!
Meet a couple of very talented brothers:
What can we – as diversity-loving citizens – do to encourage more of that “We Welcome All” attitude in our world?
Share some ideas with me.
I send my love to you. See you tomorrow (God willing) Love, JanBeek
Every morning I begin my day with a cup of coffee and a climb up the stairs to my sanctuary where I spend time with my Bible, devotionals, prayers, and Jesus.
One of my devotionals is “These Days,” a daily devotion for living by faith, published by the Presbyterian Publishing Corporation. Its format is scripture, devotional, prayer.
Today’s scripture was:
He will feed his flock like a shepherd; he will gather the lambs in his arms, and carry them in his bosom, and gently lead the mother sheep.”
In the devotional, the author, Hope Douglas Harle-Mould, wrote about the comfort Jesus provides. She included a poem she wrote to Our God of all Faithfulness:
“We pray for a cure; God sends us healing. We pray for continued life; God gives us new life. We pray death will not come; God overcomes death. We pray in anguish; God weeps with us. We pray in fear; God teaches us to laugh. We pray for ourselves; God gives us each other. We pray for miracles; God fills us with love. We pray for the future; God showers us with blessedness. God, help me trust the voices heralding your hope.”
I am assured as I read and pray and study God’s word, that just as he carries the lamb in his arms, he will be faithful to carry me.
As I descend the twelve stairs at the end of my devotional time, I recite my personal TWELVE STEP PROGRAM Thank You, Jesus, for the:
Peace (that are mine). Help me with
Faithfulness (which brings blessings),
Help me live humbly with an attitude of gratitude, and
A response of generosity, forgiveness,
Obedience, and integrity. In Jesus name, Amen!
When I get to the 7th step, I see the metal sculpture that says, “Blessings” above my door. It was a gift from our dear friends, Jim & Terry, so I pause to thank God for their faithful friendship. When I get to the bottom of the stairs, I see this cross on the wall:
It was made by Native Americans. I pause to pray for them and their peace and prosperity. I send occasional gifts to schools for Native American children – – places like St. Labre’ and St. Joseph’s – and they faithfully write back acknowledging my small donation.
Faithfulness is a two-way street. We pray to God faithfully; God answers. We give to people who touch our hearts; they give back with gratitude & smiles. We read God’s Word faithfully each day; He gives us wisdom and discernment, understanding and blessings.
Check out this different version of that old song, The B-I-B-L-E… I love it! What a way to learn to names of the books of the Bible, huh?
How do you begin your day, my friends? What does FAITHFULNESS mean to you?
Thanks for visiting today. I hope your Friday is blessed, indeed!
My friend, Doris, sent me the anonymous story below today. It made me cry.
My blog is all about loving one another by spreading love, joy, peace, faith and unity.
Treating each other with respect, giving each human his/her deserved dignity is paramount!
We need to spread the word, support and embrace our Native American families – and help them live peaceful, healthy, productive lives wherever they choose to live. We need to help them get an education equivalent to any other American, and we need to STOP the discrimination.
We need to let every person – regardless of race or other personal qualities – work to achieve the “American Dream.” No holds barred!! Let’s do what we can to make this world a better place for ALL!!
Many thanks to “Dreamstime” for these lovely photos of a few Native American people:
Here is the “anonymous story” …
A white man and an elderly Native man became pretty good friends, so the white guy decided to ask him: “What do you think about Indian mascots?” The Native elder responded, “Here’s what you’ve got to understand. When you look at black people, you see ghosts of all the slavery and the rapes and the hangings and the chains. When you look at Jews, you see ghosts of all those bodies piled up in death camps. And those ghosts keep you trying to do the right thing. “But when you look at us you don’t see the ghosts of the little babies with their heads smashed in by rifle butts at the Big Hole, or the old folks dying by the side of the trail on the way to Oklahoma while their families cried and tried to make them comfortable, or the dead mothers at Wounded Knee or the little kids at Sand Creek who were shot for target practice. You don’t see any ghosts at all. “Instead you see casinos and drunks and junk cars and shacks. “Well, we see those ghosts. And they make our hearts sad and they hurt our little children. And when we try to say something, you tell us, ‘Get over it. This is America. Look at the American dream.’ But as long as you’re calling us Redskins and doing tomahawk chops, we can’t look at the American dream, because those things remind us that we are not real human beings to you. And when people aren’t humans, you can turn them into slaves or kill six million of them or shoot them down with Hotchkiss guns and throw them into mass graves at Wounded Knee. “No, we’re not looking at the American dream. And why should we? We still haven’t woken up from the American nightmare. ~source unknown
Pray with me that the “American Nightmare” will end for our Native American people. Work with me in ways we can help.
These are legitimate places where the money donated is guaranteed to help Native American students. You may have other ideas for ways we can EMBRACE NATIVE AMERICANS. If so, I’d love to hear from you. It is waaaay past time for us to end the way in which these lovely people are downtrodden.
Time to embrace friends Time to invite them again Leave the masks behind
Time to hug our friends Time to share a laugh or two A welcome relief!
Just grin and bear it Don’t worry, spring will return We will survive this!
My daffodils are probably toast And the crocus will wait to return next year They’re buried under four inches of powder But the ground needs the moisture – never fear The snow will melt and the sun will shine By Sunday we could be wearing shorts Keep an eye on the weatherman But don’t put too much stock in his reports!
We’re getting ready for Pentecost Sunday Mary Grace will preach for the congregation Afterward, at a special meeting, members will vote. I’m praying we’ll have cause for celebration.
Pray with me, will you, my friends? Have a wonderful weekend. Thanks for dropping by. See ya tomorrow.
This quote came in the mail today from Billy Mills, national spokesperson for “Running Strong for American Indian Youth” – a project associated with Christian Relief Service.
The synchronicity of the arrival of this in mailbox today was not lost on me. I already had spent my hour up in my sanctuary reading my Bible, devotionals, and praying for you – and other family and friends on my prayer list (yes, you are there!). Among the names on my list is “Native American Youth.” Lord knows their needs and yours.
The word that was my “Take-Away” from that time upstairs today was “Perseverance.” And that’s BEFORE the mail came with this gift! Go back up and read it again… “Collective Perseverance…” and HOPE …Resilience and Certainty in tomorrow – – – Tomorrow: a better day!
It’s perseverance That changes maybe’s to YES. Chase the doubt away!
To make an impact Just practice perseverance. Keep your dreams alive.
Being persistent As you work to problem solve: The road to success!
I can’t just sit here Expecting success to come. Gotta go get it!
It’s perseverance – Working to make it happen That completes the goal.
What are you working To complete with great success? Live with that purpose.
But tenacity Ain’t easy when we don’t see The results we need.
Positivity Is hard to always maintain When we keep failing.
But unless we fail, We’re not trying hard enough! Gotta fail to learn.
3 “Not only that, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance,character;andcharacter,hope. 5And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.…”
Don’t let the fact that There’s certain failure keep you From taking chances!
Folks who developed The vaccines we are using Failed many times.
Before succeeding, They conjured up their courage And kept on trying.
That’s the way it is! So Embrace Perseverance And live your purpose.
1 “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” Hebrews 12:1
Look at that runner; He did not win his first race! But perseverance paid off.
What race are you in? What’s marked out for you to do? Step out and do it!
Long term marriages like ours don’t happen accidentally. Takes lots of perseverance. Believe me!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today.
Before you click out, leave a comment below, will you? What is the “race marked out for you” today?
Sue Dreamwalker wrote this today, “I will be joining the Global Day of Gratitude. This Thanksgiving we need to give thanks for family and friends, and grow our New soul family as we reach out and create New Connections all over the World… As we reach out with our hearts to create Unity and Peace.”
The day called “Thanksgiving” has drawn to a close this challenging year of 2020. But as Dwight Roth reminded us in his post yesterday, it is not just a day to be reminded to be grateful for all our blessings, but it also is a day called “National Day of Mourning for Native Americans.” Check out his informative and poignant post:
In the midst of plenty, I am reminded of the suffering of many. I am reminded of the sacrifice of many. I am mournful as I realize the injustices that brought me to the place of comfort where I am today. I apologize to my Native American friends … and yet I know nothing I can say or do today can erase the truth of what white people did to these dear people. I want to be thankful for what I have – (and I am) – but I recognize the cost… and I am humbled in my position of plenty – and trying NOT to be “Blinded by Comfort.”
I hope your Thanksgiving Day was a day of small gatherings … not the big family crowd we are used to on this day. I hope you kept it intimate and safe. We did. Just four of us. But in our hearts we included you all… and thanked God for your presence in our lives. WordPress is a wonderful community – and I am thankful for your shared thoughts, your insightfulness, and your faithful visits to JanBeek.
Throughout the day, we texted with our family in California and Maryland and Switzerland and bemoaned the fact that we can’t all be together this year. But, we thanked God for our health and our many blesssings. With the magic of WhatsApp and Messenger and FaceTime, we shared pictures. I hope you were able to do the same thing.
Monika is taking the photo. Her parents were able to join them along with our grandson, Sam, on the left and our granddaughter, Faith and her husband, Kyle, on the right. Two other of our grandchildren are missing here. COVID says, “Keep it small.” Tough task!
We feel blessed to be able to share this important day with our pastor, Steve, and his wife, Elaine. Thank God for friends near and far who can join us in these days of social distancing and masks and fear – and can help us feel less alone!
I hope you were able to share the day with loved ones, too… and that you had reasons to count your blessings in the midst of this very unusual year.
This morning I received this wonderful photo of a very talented and compassionate man, Ken Hall. It was attached to a beautiful tribute written by his wife, Penny. You just need to read it! Click the link below.
Above our bed, Bob & I have a photograph taken by Ken. It captures a gorgeous sunrise above our Madison Range. On a good day, we can see that sunrise out our bedroom window. But, on cloudy days when the sun is hidden, thanks to Ken’s creative lens, we still have our sunrise.
As Penny mentions in her tribute, one of Ken’s talents was music. He played the Indian flute magnificently. I think he may have had a heavy dose of Native American in him. Here is the video Ken produced shortly before his untimely, unexpected death. I hope it will open for you.
I leave you with the peace that only God can give. May you live in such a way that a tribute to you is this heart-warming after your unexpected, untimely death (hopefully that’s after you’ve lived a healthy 100 years).
Reaching out to help another is a clear demonstration of these “10 simple words — hope, love, care, culture, kindness, faith, knowledge, health, comfort and warmth.” This quote is not mine… but I repeat them here because these concepts mean so much …
Especially today, October 14th, Columbus Day in the USA. Our banks and post offices and federal buildings and some schools are closed today in honor of Columbus. Why?
Because : “In 1492 Columbus sailed the ocean blue!”
I memorized that rhyme as a kid in school. Why was it important? Well, Columbus purportedly “discovered America” on this day.
But, who Really “Discovered” America?
I received this e-mail from St. Joseph’s Indian School today:
“They are 10 simple words — hope, love, care, culture, kindness, faith, knowledge, health, comfort and warmth — but they mean so much … Especially today.“
St. Joseph’s Indian School here in Montana wants you to know it’s not about Columbus! They announced, “Today is Native American Day!”
They continued, “…we want to celebrate in a BIG way! Today we are hosting a special day of giving at St. Joseph’s Indian School. We need 365 people — one donor for every day of the year — to open their hearts and give a gift.
Will you be 1 of the 365? BE 1 OF THE 365 Some St. Joseph’s students arrive without knowledge of their deep, rich Native American culture. They have spent their young lives more focused on surviving day to day than learning about their ancestors and traditions.
As more people give, more student programs and services will be unlocked.
At 165 gifts, donors will help unlock regalia for students to wear during powwows. At 165 gifts, donors will help unlock a cultural trip.
At 365 donors: we will receive a special matching gift offer of $25,000 from a special group of friends who have pledged to support the Lakota students!”
You can join in this effort to recognize, help enrich, and appreciate our Native American friends today. Let’s acknowledge the ones who REALLY discovered America… our Native Americans. They were here long before some white man came to rob them of their land and relegate them to reservations!
I am a faithful supporter of St. Joseph’s as well as the school for our Lakota Natives here in Montana. Won’t you join in?