Loving One Another

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Love One Another


Love One Another

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Our marching orders are “LOVE.”
What’s confusing about that?
Is love unpredictable, my friends?
Can’t we just LOVE at the drop of a hat?

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What about those annoying people?
Can we just love them unconditionally, too?
That’s not as easy as loving the lovely –
At least not for me, how about you?

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Is love something we can command?
Well, Jesus did command it, in fact!
He said, “Love as I’ve loved you.”
What’s that mean to us? What’s the impact?

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He paid the price for our forgiveness.
He loved us so much, He died.
We couldn’t love as much as He did,
No matter how much we tried.

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The commandment before that one
Was to love neighbor as self.
The new commandment is an extension;
It doesn’t put the old one on the shelf.

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We are commanded to love others and God.
It’s a mutual love for us all.
The standard of love goes from self
To loving as Jesus loves us. That’s tall!

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It’s a tall order to love sacrificially;
It goes beyond self love so much.
It goes beyond whimsical emotion;
It goes beyond just those we touch.

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How well we love all others
Is a reflection of our faithfulness.
It’s a hard order to obey;
It requires prayer and holy helpfulness.

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This command is not a suggestion.
It wasn’t spoken for only a few.
It is a definition of us as Christians.
It’s not a feeling; it’s what we do!

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Love One Another.

smiling woman hugging another person

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Amen!

Sermon notes – Sunday, May 19, 2019
My “Take-away” from today’s sermon
by Rev. Jean Johnson
at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
Ennis, MT.

Rev. Jean Johnson defined love by saying,
“Love is something we decide to do,
a gift we decide to give.”

I’ve decided to give.
Dear Blog Readers,

have you??

I love you!

Thank you for visiting
and reading
and commenting,
and creating your own
loving and inspirational posts!

 

heart shaped red neon signage

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Happy Sunday!
Back to the Family…

See you tomorrow!

 

Acrostic Sermon Notes


Happy Sunday, my friends.

Did you go to church (or synagogue or temple or mosque) this morning?

Did you take time to worship God and hang out with your friends?

We did!

round stained glass

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And, as usual,
I took my sermon notes in poetry as I listened to
Rev. Jean Johnson deliver her sermon
at Madison Valley Presbyterian Church.

The bulletin was so full of the picture on the front and print on the inside that there was little room for note-taking. So, I used the margins and wrote the main ideas vertically. Then I used those letters/words to create acrostics. Here are the words:

Reconciling The World

Love, Learn and Live Faithfully

Share, Restore and Believe

Now, as I listened, those words fleshed out the message for today:

R ejoice
E veryone!
C hrist
O versees the
N ations!
C hrist
I s
L iving
I n us
N ow; our
G od
T eaches us
H is Love.
E veryone in the
W orld
O wes their
R ejoicing to the
L ord who
D elivers us.

L ive
O nly in
V ictory,
E veryone!

L ive in
E nlightenment
A nd
R eceive
N ewness.

L earn with
I ntent to
V enture out
E verywhere.

F ill
A ll
I njuries with
T he
H ealing
F reedom of God
U ntil there is
L imitless
L ove in
Y ou.

S hare
H is
A wesome
R epairs
E arnestly.

R ealize
E veryone’s
S piritual Life
T hrough
O ur
R ecognized
E ternal gifts.

B ecause we can’t
E arn Eternal
L ife; accept His
I ntervention.
E njoy renewed
V itality –
E specially now.

Amen!

-If you attended a worship service today
what was the message you came away with ?

Terribly Self-Serving?


Are the terribly blessed also terribly self-serving?
This is a question we were inspired to ponder
as we listened to the sermon in church today.

The sermon, by Rev. Jean Johnson
at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
was titled, “Blessed.”
It was a response to the scriptural message in
Luke 6:17-26.
Here are my poetic notes,

taken as I listened carefully and digested the message:

 

woman wearing gray scarf and gray coat near group of people

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“How are you today?”
“Oh, me?  I’m terribly blessed!”
She answered me happier
Than do most of the rest.

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Photo by Brayden Law on Pexels.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She lived in a shabby
apartment for the poor,
But her attitude was
Blessed with something more.

Count your blessings!
You, too, have something more
Than most other folks.
But how do you keep score?

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Photo by Mat Brown on Pexels.com

Is it a warm, safe home?
Is it items of comfort and joy?
Is it how many things you have –
More “stuff” – a favorite “toy”?

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Jesus suggested a different way
To measure how much we’re blessed.
He told us being poor and hungry
Makes us more blessed than the rest.

What was Jesus really saying?
“Look out! Your blessings bring you danger!”
Do your good things make you proud?
Stingy to the needy, hungry stranger?

grayscale photography of man praying on sidewalk with food in front

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Are we supposed to long to be
Hated and hungry and poor?
If we have so much to give,
Doesn’t that bless us to give more?

God takes the hand of the pitiful.
He says the mountains will be made low.
If our Madison Range was lowered
And our valley raised, we would know:

A leveling off of highs and lows,
A giving of our hearts to those in need.

brown haired boy

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The most vulnerable need us
To share our blessings, not harbor greed.

All should live with dignity.
All should have self-respect.

man person men old

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We, the wealthy, must be willing
To help the poor, the sick, the wrecked.

The more we are blessed,
The more we are tempted to be
Selfish and terribly self-serving.
Lord, please take such temptations out of me!

orange fruit

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Help me be like the prolific orange tree
That freely gives from its abundant fruit.
Let me work for God’s “Leveled-off Kingdom.”
Let Christ’s generosity enter me and take root!

 

Paying Attention


For those of you who are new to following JanBeek,
let me explain.

I take sermon notes in poetry when I listen
to the Pastor’s message each Sunday.

Here are my notes from today’s sermon.
It was preached by a guest in the pulpit,

Retired Presbyterian minister (and friend of mine),
Rev. Steve Hundley. What a gift!!

belief bible book business

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

 

Paying Attention
(a reflection on the Scripture in Luke 2:21-40)

When we remember our history
And travel thoughtfully through it,
We take a journey of understanding
To truly comprehend life as Jesus knew it.

We can’t take a plane through Christmas
And miss the trip along the way.
We need to slowly walk before and after
And bring Jesus into our life today.

Mary and Joseph probably had a hard time
Understanding the meaning of Jesus’ birth.
There they were in Bethlehem
Wondering what this baby really was worth.

Simeon told them Jesus was “The Light.”
His power would bring glory to the Israeli people.
That must have puzzled those in the temple.
God’s spirit came upon those under the temple steeple.

Have we, like Simeon, seen God’s salvation?
Do we know the Redeemer has come?
Jesus came to honor roots and bring wings.
He came for eternal life for all – not just some.

God is with us every day of our life.
We can’t fly in and out of the Christmas season.
We need to come, meet, greet, and stay.
For Christmas is every day – for good reason!

Amen?

P.S.
Sometimes we have to take the LONG ROAD
in order to make it Home.

Abounding in Hope


In this month’s Guideposts magazine (December 2013), two quotes from “The Up Side” caught my eye. These quotes from positive thinkers fit right in to the theme of our sermon at church yesterday. The first was by Jon Gordon, “If you think your best days are behind you, they are. If you think your best days are ahead of you, they are.”

The second quote that caught my attention was by columnist Marilyn Vos Savant, “Being defeated is often only a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent.” Yes, it is the giving up that signals defeat… and that was the main message of the sermon we heard yesterday. It was titled, “Abounding in Hope.” I took these notes while I listened:

If I think I’m not good enough,
If I quit before I try,
I tell myself I’m a quitter.
That message is a lie.

The lie lived on inside me;
My confidence suffered most.
I thought I was a quitter.
I began to lose all hope.

Despair and hopelessness consumed me;
I felt useless as can be.
I knew I wasn’t good enough
To change anything even one degree.

To enter Hell is to give up Hope,
According to Dante who penned those words.
The Bible tells us otherwise.
With God, hopelessness is absurd.

Realize that God is in control.
Whatever our future holds near,
Remember God won’t abandon you.
Trust in His Hope and have cheer!

God will take care of you.
God will give you joy, peace, and power.
Allow God to work inside you.
His Hope is yours – every minute – every hour.

You may not be good enough
If you set out to go it alone,
But you don’t need to solo it.
Take God’s Hope and make it your own.

Amen?

Amen!

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