I looked in the mirror, My face reflected there Showed lines of fear and worry, The strain of daily care. I looked into a quiet pool, Green branches framed my face. Snow-white cloud passed overhead, Some care seemed to erase.
The Winds of Fate – by Salesian Missions
I found myself in a shady nook My cares confessed to Him. I felt Him near and knew that He was looking deep within. I looked into His loving eyes; Reflecting back to me Was one I’d never truly known … The “Self” He’d helped me be. I looked into the mirror. Sweet peace reflected there. His perfect love had touched my life. He had erased all care.
Anna Lee Edwards McAlpin
Look into His face, my friends. Let Him into your heart. Let Him erase all cares. Feel His loving arms around you. Live in His peace.
Love Lives in His Enormous Heart Ready to share now Peace
Sending to you the Love, Joy and Peace that are mine through Christ.
“For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.”
Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.
When we badmouth our bodies, we are insulting God, don’t you think?
Last week when our Presbyterian Women met, the Bible lesson we studied was the story of Bathsheba. It pointed out the secular take on who Bathsheba was may be flawed. Instead of a gorgeous seductress, she may have been the victim. Hollywood’s version of her is the perfectly gorgeous Rita Hayward.
Is that how you see Bathsheba?
The artists who have painted her have a different version:
I much prefer this one! A little bit of a double chin, a poochy stomach, and hefty thighs. Yes, I can relate! Now don’t you think she was fearfully and wonderfully made?
We’re all different in our body type – and yet God says we all are beautiful, lovable, and created in His image. Do you believe that about yourself? Even if you’re not perfect?
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
Did you hear that? “… as yourself.”
Yes, you are fearfully and wonderfully made. Accept God’s love. Love yourself … and then You can love others!
There are bodies of all shapes and sizes – All are made in God’s image – All are fearfully and wonderfully made!
And – hey guys, You don’t have to have a six-pack to be considered handsome!
Those old Charles Atlas ads are outdated – and those muscles don’t make the man!
That guy on the left is my Bob at the time we met – – – and his brother, Bill, on the right. They don’t look like that today, but they still are fearfully and wonderfully made – and their bodies have lasted into their mid-80’s!
Hah! Here’s Bob celebrating his 80th a few years ago with his younger brother, Bruce, and his brother-in-law, Stan. When asked, “What makes the man?”
Bob answered, “Character! A man who says what he’ll do and does what he says. A man of his word.”
Being fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of God means you are made a hero because you are made with the characteristics of heroism.
12 Characteristics of Heroism
Filled with Conviction
Exhibiting Moral integrity
And that’s not just for you guys out there. Those are the qualities of a woman made in God’s image, too!
Add faithful to that list… It’s a part of honesty and being inspirational and moral integrity.
It’s faith that gives you that character Bob was talking about!
May God bless you today – Your mind and your body – Know for sure, my friends, you are fearfully and wonderfully made!
Thanks for visiting JanBeek today. See ya tomorrow (God willing) Hugs!
Your imperfections Are not the Creator’s fault. Know, no one’s perfect!
We all have our faults. And as we age, wrinkles show. Otherwise you’re numb.
It’s our emotions That birth our imperfections. So, just embrace them!
In today’s Daily Guideposts, Bill Giovannetti ended his devotional with this prayer: “Lord, You alone are perfect. Help me be good with that. Amen.”
Bill shared that perfectionism lurks in the corners of his heart, always ready to pounce.
Do you have that problem? Do you expect yourself to write the perfect article, paint the perfect picture, bake the perfect cake, or create the perfect garden? Does the fear of making mistakes nag at you? Do your imperfections make you question your worth? Do you ever feel like covering your troubling issues by hiding in a box?
Here are seven verses to help you lay down the idol of perfectionism and embrace your own weaknesses.
Romans 5:7-8. …
2 Corinthians 12:9. …
James 3:2. …
Matthew 19:21. …
Galatians 1:10. …
1 Thessalonians 2:4. …
What does God say about perfectionism?
Romans 15:7 “Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.”
God/Jesus doesn’t require your perfection, because He is the only one who is perfect. His acceptance of you can help you accept others with their flaws as well.
In this season of Thanksgiving, I invite you to sit quietly with yourself. Thank God for the way you are “wonderfully made,” And give yourself a break.
As you listen to these relaxing hymns of Thanksgiving and worship, count your many blessings. Embrace your imperfections, and know they simply prove you are human!
Are you familiar with “Kintsugi” or “Kintsukuroi”? This is the Japanese art of repairing broken pottery by mending the areas of breakage with lacquer dusted or mixed with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. The method is similar to the maki-e technique. As a philosophy, it treats breakage and repair as part of the history of an object, rather than something to disguise.
Like repaired pottery, Kintsugi style, our imperfections are those cracks that allow room for the power and grace of God to fill us with the gold of humility, repentance, and dependence on Him.
Bill Giovannetti wrote, “… my worth before both God and those I love doesn’t depend on me being perfect. It just depends on me being me.”
“Help me be who You made me to be. Help me accept myself with all my imperfections. Help me, Lord, to relax in Your promise of acceptance. Help me love unconditionally, refraining from judging others, just as You love and accept me – just as I am. In Jesus name, Amen.”
Thanks for visiting today. I pray you see yourself as God’s beloved creation – imperfections and all! See ya tomorrow (God willing). Love, JanBeek
Back in April of 21012, when I first started blogging, I posted this… Today I was looking at old posts, trying to find photos I can erase to make room for the new. I noticed that back in those days, I had few (if any) followers. This post had zero likes… probably zero views… but it is still there – and… It is worthy of a second look. I know that beautiful (inside and out) friend… I have met other friends like her since then.
Today I posted “Embrace Blogging Friends,” and you, my dear reader, are one. You are the faithful reader who has encourages me, nearly ten years later, to keep on. You make like special. You are special. Thank you for loving me here at WP. Thank you for encouraging me, Thank you for being you.
Click on that title now… it deserves a couple of reads, I think!
Daily Guideposts 2021 devotional today inspired this blog topic. After I chose “Multiplying” as my EMBRACE theme today, every place I looked, I saw evidence of answers to my question, “But what needs to be multiplied?”
When you hear/read the word “multiplying” what comes to mind? I asked Bob that question this morning after my devotional time while we were chatting at the breakfast table.
“Increasing comes to mind. Numbers come to mind,” he answered.
What comes to your mind?
In her blog this morning, Marva Seaton wrote about multiplying. She didn’t use the word, but the concept definitely was there.
While you are thanking God for making you human, giving you courage to try hard things, helping you learn and grow and understand the lessons life has for you, don’t forget to count your blessings!
Goodness Surrounds you. You’ll find it If you look thoughtfully – Blessings!
Count your blessings Name them one by one Count your many blessings See what God has done
If that is your focus, You won’t have time to See the other side of the coin! You’ll be too busy giving back!!
We are blessed To be a blessing. Count your blessings See what God has done!
Focus on what you have Not what you wish you had! Use your gifts for others And watch them come back multiplied!
Plant the seeds in your garden carefully. Make sure they are in rich, fertilized soil. Keep your soul seeped in the encouraging Words of scripture… and you’ll grow fruits of the spirit!
I am thankful for you, Grateful for your presence in my life. You’re the flowers in my life’s garden. I feel blessed to have you visit JanBeek Leaving encouraging comments. Thank you!!
See you later. Have a blessed day!
I’m off to church… I’ll share my sermon notes later today. Come on back!
P.S. Did I tell you yesterday was my dad’s birthday? He would have been 110!! One of my many blessings is having him for my earthly father. Check out my blog from way back when – when I posted a poem I wrote about my dad:
Reach out to others Make meaningful connections Share your thoughtfulness
Did you click the link? The link was “Thanks for the Dance” From Leonard Cohen.
If you didn’t hear – Didn’t see the video, Go up and do it!
EMBRACE CONNECTIONS Look into another’s heart See the hidden pain
Learn to disagree Learn to listen with your heart Show your compassion
Connections can save The loneliest from despair Suicide is real
Express your concern Let your compassion embrace Those in depression
Depression is real Too often it is hidden Inside solitude
Leonard Cohen’s poem Hit me right between the eyes Took me to my niece
‘Twas nineteen years old When her life appeared hopeless Jumped Golden Gate Bridge
‘Twas two weeks later When her decomposed body Washed its way ashore
Only dental charts Helped to identify her Memories are raw
Never imagined Her pain was so very deep Didn’t see the signs
So much is known now Nearly forty years ago We just weren’t aware
Today it’s rampant Especially Montana Third in the nation
Growing suicides It’s not a good statistic Something must be done
These are images from Leonard Cohen’s impactful video. (Haven’t watched it yet? Go back up to that link. Take five minutes and then come on back.) The poetry and his raspy, musical voice will touch your heart. You’ll carry it with you.
You’ll ask yourself, “What Happens to the Heart?” and you will want to be more aware, more compassionate, more helpful. You’ll look in your friend’s eyes. You’ll study your loved one’s face. You’ll ask questions. You’ll care. And you’ll want to know WHAT CAN I DO? When you see sadness, despair, loneliness, you’ll want to help. How??
There are visible Ways we can show how we care Check out resources
Reach out to others Make meaningful connections Share your thoughtfulness
Embrace Connections They can make the difference YOU are important!
Thanks for dropping by JanBeek
Sending you love and hugs – Stay Connected!! See ya tomorrow
These two little darlings exude happiness, confidence, pure joy… I can’t help but smile when I look at them. (I bet you’re smiling, too) I’ve been saving this photo for just the right time. Today is it!
In my devotionals this morning, I read an article by Brenda Wade, Ph.D. Brenda is based in San Francisco. She hosts a radio talk show, “Modern Love” and she facilitates trainings on relationships. Her article in the Jan.-Feb. Unity magazine, Daily Word, is titled, “Overcoming Racism, Healing from Shame, Opening to Love.”
“The love and peace we want to know in our lives begins inside of us,” Dr. Wade wrote. “This has been on my mind lately as I’ve dug deeply into … my work, leading anti-racism trainings.”
In her article, she went on to describe an incident in her life that deeply affected her self-image. She was only 6-years-old.
“One day at school, my classmates and I were told to line up two by two and hold hands. I extended my hand, but the girl standing next to me refused to take it. ‘I can’t hold your hand,’ she said matter-of-factly. ‘My mother told me your skin is brown because it’s dirty.’ I was confused. My skin was brown, but it certainly was not dirty.”
It took years for that little 6-year-old to deal with the hurt. Her young brain just didn’t understand. She felt immediate rejection, pain, and the sting of shame. The notion that there was something wrong with her kept her from telling the teacher or her parents. She just carried that message of inferiority with her and it was reinforced by a high school principal who ignorantly expressed surprise that someone of her color could score so high on her tests.
It was further reinforced in graduate school when a department chair “was more interested in my race than my qualifications” – and as an adult when “a landlord candidly admitted he was denying me housing because I am African American.”
How does someone overcome such prejudicial treatment and regain the confidence that ALL PEOPLE deserve?
That is the question Dr. Walker deals with in her profession. She conquered it in her own life with “years of psychological work, spiritual practice, self-care, and healing.”
Dr. Brenda Wade wrote, “When we feel too hurt or afraid to let ourselves out, it becomes impossible to let others in.”
Embrace the confidence that there is hope and a future and a return of self-confidence when self-insight and self-love can be applied.
The pain of those early wounds go deep.
We know that we ALL have a responsibility to respond to one another in love, with compassion and respect, and to stand together hand-in-hand to obliterate oppression and prejudice.
Embrace that future with confidence and determination!
Yesterday during our ZOOM church service, our pastor, Steve Hundley, offered the following prayer. It is just what I needed to hear as I embrace with confidence the power of prayer and the belief that God hears, God cares, and God answers us when we cry out to Him:
“How many times in Your earthly ministry, O Lord, did You touch the fevered brows of those who were ill; or, the trembling hands of those who were afraid; or, the sagging shoulders of those bowed down in grief?
Walk among us now, we pray, and touch us for the same reasons… * Let those who are ill in body or in spirit feel the power of Your presence, and sense that healing is taking place. * We pray for all those sick with COVID throughout our nation and world… * Give those who are constricted by fears and anxieties a feeling of relaxation in Your grace. * Let peace flow over them like a river, carrying them away from self-preoccupation and into the openness of love and sharing… * Pour out the hope of Your resurrection upon those who are grieving the loss of loved ones… * May they walk the Emmaus Road with You and feel their hearts strangely and wonderfully warmed… * In the chaos and uncertainty of the coming weeks and months, give us confidence of faith in knowing that You are Lord of our lives and Lord of this world, and that You are working Your purpose out… * As Your children, O Lord, You know how often we recoil from those things that should not frighten or upset us in this world. Comfort us with Your presence, and teach us so to live within the disciplines of faith, so that, we are never without You.”
Embrace with Confidence, my friends, the knowledge that you regard all God’s Children as equals… and determine never to inflict on anyone the pain of rejection or the sting of shame.
As God’s children… Let us live as One. Let’s just walk around makng the world a better place! Embrace Confidence!