Loving One Another

Posts tagged ‘religion’

Looking for Jesus


jesus christ figurine

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If you look for Me at Christmas

You won’t need a special star-

I’m no longer just in Bethlehem,

I’m right there where you are.

You may not be aware of Me

Amid the celebrations-

You’ll have to look beyond the stores

And all the decorations.

But if you take a moment

From your list of things to do

And listen to your heart, you’ll find

I’m waiting there for you.

You’re the one I want to be with,

You’re the reason that I came,

And you’ll find Me in the stillness

As I’m whispering your name.

Love, Jesus

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Merry Christmas, dear Blogging Friends.
May your day be filled with
love, hugs, and opportunities
to reflect on the real Reason for the Season.

What’s Your Image of Afghanistan?


Last night Bob & I attended a documentary at the Emerson Theater in Bozeman, MT. The topic: “Angels Are Made of Light.”

What is your perception of the people of Afghanistan?

police army commando special task force

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Before the documentary, our response to that question was, “War-torn, depressed, aggressive, beaten-down, varied, down-trodden and fearful.”

 

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After seeing the documentary, our response is, “Resourceful, hopeful in the midst of what might look hopeless, tenacious, clean, basically healthy looking, and respectful of their elders.”

The newspaper review that prompted us to attend was glowing. We met Jason, the reviewer last night. Sorry I didn’t catch his last name. The newspaper page we have doesn’t list it. I’ll edit this and include it when I find out, because I will quote him:

“It is not a complete and objective telling of the country’s history, but rather a series of powerful semblances from those who lived through it. The imagery is vivid, and the contrast between the historic images of the city (Kabul), in times of greater prosperity, and those of the present day are stark reminders of how much the country has changed.”

Jason’s review hooked us in when he wrote, “The cinematography is simply exceptional. Langley is a true craftsman, and he works brilliantly with natural light.”

We were intrigued by the opportunity to  “linger up close with the film’s subjects for long moments… ”  The concentration of subjects was on the school children – – – especially a group of Afghani boys of about 10 -14 years of age. We wanted to “feel their breathing, see them thinking, working, watching the world go by.” And we did!

grayscale photo of group of children

“Over the course of the film,” Jason, the reviewer promised we would “accompany the students through lessons in history, poetry, social studies, and math.” And we did!

He wrote, “In the end, the film itself is a lesson in humanity, found right there, on the streets, in broad daylight.” And it was!

The documentary promised to “narrow the gap in our minds between us and them.” And it did!

It was indeed eye-opening.

We all are God’s children. Let’s do whatever we can to:

JUST LOVE ONE ANOTHER!

It begins with trying to understand one another. Set aside those prior perceptions, and get the real picture! I’m grateful for “Angels Are Made of Light” and the Bozeman Doc Series for bringing documentaries such as this one to our community.

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Loss, Lament & Loyalty


Loss, Lament, and Loyalty

 

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Sermon Notes by Jan Beekman
from the sermon today
based on the scripture – Mark 12:38-44 –
Preached by Rev. Jean Johnson
at the Madison Valley Presbyterian Church
in Ennis, Montana

 

Naomi’s son had died.
She was alone and old.
Her future was grim.
What had she been told?

 

“Deal with your losses –
Send your daughters-in-law
Back to their homes.”
But, the plan had a flaw.

 

Ruth did not want to return!
She told Naomi she’d stay.
Orpha decided to go back.
Each woman to her own way.

 

We each have a choice.
We think we’re paralyzed, but we’re not.
We may lack energy and will power;
We may feel in our losses, we’re caught.

 

Ruth knew she couldn’t run
From the pain life threw at her.
She chose to stay and face her life,
And be in a place she could matter.

 

To turn evil into something good,
She was loyal to her mother-in-law.
She broke ties with her past
And looked ahead at what she saw.

 

She saw through eyes of faith.
Naomi had taught her to use God’s eyes –
Do more than just endure;
Keep your faith and be kind and wise.

 

To endure the evil of today’s world,
Cling to one another in love –
And look out for those in need.
Use your discerning power from God above.

 

Amen?

Mass Shootings in Pittsburgh


two black assault rifle beside tactical knife bullets and torch

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When will the atrocities end?

When will we as a nation send

A clear and strong message to say

“Stop these mass shootings today”

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Our hearts are hurting for the ones today

Who lost their lives; hate killed Jewish friends who pray.

They were brutally killed because some looney man

Chose to open fire on innocent folks. He had a plan.

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But I believe and so do you, my friend,

That this insanity has got to end.

If our legislators can’t ban assault weapons today,

Then we need to vote them out – send ’em on their way.

.

Armed guards in our schools or worship places

Won’t stop the carnage or remove antisemitic traces.

More guns is not the answer to stopping hate, I know.

Initiate better gun control – increase mental health – help love grow.

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Each of us has a role to play; we must shout out now.

Raise our voices in protest and outrage and figure out how

America can regain its heritage as a Land of the Free –

Safe for everyone – regardless of the color or religion we may be.

K = Kindness


Day #11 in the A-Z series of “What Makes Me Happy?”

KINDNESS

 

woman holding heart cut out

This picture tells all. Notice the word on her shirt behind the heart. It says, “Volunteer.” A big heart full of love reaches out to help others, exudes kindness, and makes the world a better place.

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When you’re tempted to be surley
In response to evil – speak your mind –
Remember you were taught quite early
Always to be kind.

When you’re tempted to lash back
At some person mean and rude,
Remember repercussions of attack
Return for whatever you exude.

Kindness is the only way
To be happy in your soul;
So in everything you do and say,
Let only kindness be your goal.

.

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People around the world are happier
when they reach out to help others.
Whatever motivates you to be kinder, gentler,
more compassionate…
think on these things.

For me, my daily devotional time upstairs in my sanctuary
sets my heart on the right path as I study His Word
and learn of His Ways.

man holding sheep statuette

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Isaiah 63:7a – “I will tell of the kindnesses of the Lord…”
and let His examples lead me.

 

What “K” word makes you happy? And what act of kindness are you planning today? Think about it!

 

E is for Easter


This is Day 5 of my A-Z series on “What Makes Me Happy?”

 

Easter

Like Christmas, Easter has been commercialized to the point that most images depicting this special day of the year are Easter eggs, bunnies, baskets, and parades with ladies in their Easter bonnets.

I told you, my blogging friends yesterday that I’d try another new (to me) poetry form today. The Punnett is a 9 line poem. It’s supposed to have a biological topic. I’ll do that with doves of peace after the Easter punnett. No rhyme scheme. First line part of or an offspring of the last line. Word count on the lines: 1/2/1/2/4/2/1/2/1

Easter

Fun Holiday

Bunnies

Decorated Eggs

What about Jesus Christ?

Who’s He?

Redeemer

Risen Indeed!

Baskets

Is that all Easter is? Has it been so commercialized that people don’t realize its connection to Christmas? Jesus Christ came for Easter! Our Savior was born on Christmas to die on that Easter morning and rise again three days later that we might be free!

What Peace I have in knowing the true meaning of Easter! Free from sin! Guaranteed eternal life! What joy I receive daily in the Promise of Peace!

Here is my punnett with a biological topic:

.

Doves

in pairs

cooing

always devoted

joined together for life

perfect examples

loving

bringing joy

Peace

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Oh, sorry about that! But you did laugh, right?
I was looking for a picture of a dove.

I found ducks and turkeys, bluebirds and eagles, swans and long-necked cranes,
but no doves! Can you imagine that?

The dove is the symbol of the Holy Spirit
that lives joyfully in our hearts.
God sent the Holy Spirit as our guide,
our reminder of all Jesus taught
as He lived a life of love and light
during His ministry on earth.

May the joy of Easter’s true meaning bring you peace every day.
May the Holy Spirit live in your heart!

Thank you for visiting JanBeek! Thank you to the many who have added your names as followers. I appreciate getting to know you through your comments.

 

What “E” word makes YOU happy? If you’d like to, try responding using a Punnett 🤪✌🏽

Dogwood


Day 4 of the A-Z activity of “What Makes Me Happy.”

Little did I realize when I chose Dogwood for my D word what I would learn about this beautiful tree (now a large bush)!

Dogwood and Daddy are in the same pocket of my heart. This picture of my daddy was taken under the dogwood tree in my brother-in-law’s back yard in central California about two and a half decades ago. I treasure it because it captures my father’s sweet disposition and kindness so perfectly. That tree is not gnarled and twisted as the Legend of the Dogwood tree suggests. But the blossoms are as the legend describes in this poem I found on the Internet this morning:

I didn’t know this legend until now. How did I miss it all these years? Did you know it?

What’s the D word that makes YOU happy?

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