September 2018 Archives
Today is Monday, September 3rd, 2018; Karen's Korner #3866|
Back to my computer after a couple of weeks away.
The last two weeks or so of August, our daughter Jamie, her family, and I were 'road runners'. Her older son Luke and his dad enjoyed a Boy Scout trip to the Caribbean for a week. While they were gone, Jamie and their other two children, Molly and Noah, flew to Washington state to visit my sister Jill; daughter and family.
As the threesome were coming home, I enjoyed a two-week trip with our local bank to Ireland, Scotland, England, and Wales.
Just before I left and as Jamie and kids were in Washington, we texted. My great niece was going to be having her first birthday on September 1st. "Why don't you find a nice birthday gift for Raegan before you leave? And I will pay for it!" I wrote.
A day or so later, I got a text with a photo: it was a crystal Mickey Mouse with these words, "We found this nice gift for her on sale. Regular price $399. But it was on sale for only $185.65. Hope you like it!"
Wow! I thought. I guess I should have stipulated either what or dollar limits. Oh, well!
A day or so later, Jill called to see what I thought of the gift for her granddaughter. Hard to tip my hand. That is when she started to laugh. "We went shopping for part of a day at an outlet mall. And the hunt was on to find the most expensive present we could find to tell you that we had purchased it!"
The joke was on me. Later came the photo of the 'real' first birthday gift: a one-piece two-colored outfit - just under $28!
Not only did Raegan have a birthday on Saturday, September 1, so did a 'new friend' on our trip. JoAnne wasn't one, but the celebration was a good one, as we returned to the U.S.
She had gotten a Dr. Seuss pop-up kids' book from our tour guide titled, "Happy Birthday to You".
Here is the last couple of sentences:
'I am lucky to be what I am!'
I'm not a clam or a ham!
I am what I am!
That's a great thing to be!
If I say so myself,
'Happy birthday to Me!'"
The message is the same to each of us as we celebrate our birthdays. Or our every day. God has a plan for each one of us, and every day. We are lucky to be us because God loves us and wants us to enjoy every day of our lives.
So on this Labor Day, "Thank You, God, that we 'are who we are'! And we are 'happy to be us!"
Today is Tuesday, September 4th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3867|
As I reorient myself back to home, I have lots of memories to share of our trip. Our two main countries where we visited were Scotland and Ireland, with duck-ins to northern England and Wales.|
One evening in Edinburgh, Scotland, we attended the 'Military Tattoo' (not pronounced like inked drawings on skin, but with the emphasis on the other syllable 'ta-TOO'). It was held on the grounds of the Edinburgh Castle with stadium-style seating from 8,000 total on both sides of the large open area. The sold-out-event is held each evening in the month of August, with two performances on Saturdays.
For two hours, bagpipe bands, a drum line, horses, dancers, singers, a military choreographed weapons drill among other things took the 'stage' one-by-one from both ends and sides of the area. Non-stop. There were maybe ten countries represented (i.e. Mexico, France, Oman, United States, England, home country of Scotland).
Beautiful production and performance. The finale included all of the groups coming into the arena one-by-one until all of them were assembled; playing and dancing together. All 1200 of them!
What struck me the most were the dancers in particular. Were they as 'good' as when they did their native dances? Maybe not. But their were tartan clad dancers twirling with colorful full skirted gals from a different country.
Wouldn't be great if all of our countries and all of our peoples could all 'dance' together in one accord?
It might not be impossible. It only has to start with one production. One person. Just as well be me. Could be you!
The Bible says, "Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position (or maybe higher position?). Do not be conceited." - Romans 12:16.
Dictionary definition of harmony: 'living in peace and friendship'.
I saw it. What an opportunity to do it! Then and us!!
Today is Wednesday, September 5th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3868|
This Bible verse caught my eye, probably because of my recent trip to Europe and being part of so many cultures and nationalities.
"In this new life (Christian), one's nationality or race or education or social position
is unimportant such things mean nothing.
Whether a person has Christ is what matters,
and he is equally available to all."
~ Colossians 3:13 LAB
Bible Commentary: "Barriers of nationality, race, education, social standing, wealth, and power should not apply in the Christian church. Christ breaks down all barriers and accepts all people who come to Him. Nothing should keep us from telling others about Christ or accepting into our fellowship any and all believers. Christians should be in the business of building bridges...."
Today is Thursday, September 6th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3869|
Today's Karen's Korner is in-part from our ecumenical Bible Study yesterday. It is particularly meaningful in the loss of two friends on Saturday; one funeral yesterday for Naomi Maxheimer and the other, today for Linda Sorenson.
Winnie the Pooh is always popular, but back to the forefront of our minds with the 'Christopher Robin' movie in theatres right now:
"Oh, Pooh," said Robin, "if ever there's a tomorrow when we're not together, there's something you must remember."
"And what might that be, Christopher Robin?", asked Pooh.
"You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think...But the most important thing is even if we're apart; I'll always be with you. I'll always be with you. I'll always be with you, said Robin.
The writer continued with a parallel between those two characters and what Jesus had to say:
"Whoever believes in Me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son." (John 14:12 - 14)
"Therefore go and make disciples of all nations; baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you ALWAYS, to the end of the age." (Matthew 28: 19 & 20)
"May these last words of Jesus serve as a reminder to you today that you are not alone or ill-equipped in your life.....you are enabled through Christ! Live like it! You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem and smarter than you think because the Spirit of God is at work within you to embolden, strengthen and guide you.
"Above all, remember this: God is with you. ALWAYS."
"Lord, Thank You for the presence of Your Holy Spirit in my life. Please open my eyes wide to all the courage, strength, and wisdom you have for me in Christ. Crush my insecurities and doubts so that I might be an effective witness of Your power. In Jesus' Name. Amen."
(Taken from thoughts from the computer web site - crosswalk.com).
Today is Friday, September 7th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3870|
As I alluded to yesterday, Naomi Maxheimer died last Saturday. She was another 'one-of-a-kind' as was Bob Stephenson, who died part of month ago. Both were staunch members of our church. We could count on them for anything. Both were in the early 80s, but young!
Naomi was a do-er, a go-er; someone we could count on; not only in the church, but in the community. And her family; oh, her family! She was active in the M & Ms (Marys & Marthas, an ecumenical group of gals); helped with home communion for shut-ins; and as her funeral brochure said a 'Martha Stewart'. Decorating her home and inviting people in for teas and lunches were high on her 'to do' list.
And what a sparkle for life. Two thoughts came to mind. A good number of years when Irish Riverdance was especially popular, she organized the older ladies (older than she was at the time) to 'dance! Using cardboard boxes she (some else helped her?) painted and colored various legs and dancing shoes. The 'dancers' came out at a Mother and Daughter banquet, holding the waist-high boxes and moving them up and down as they 'danced' to the music. It was fun! Funny!!
Thought #2 was Naomi's 'bright idea' for a handful of us girls to dress up like Christmas gifts using large cardboard boxes which we could put our heads/arms through; wrap them up with Christmas wrap and plunk bows on our heads. She supplied the striped elf-looking socks. We were pretty well set until we found out we didn't fit in the church bus, wearing them. No problem. Take them off and ride them through the wheelchair lift. And we were on our way to Christmas carol people in our lives. Naomi leading the way with her infectious smile and laugh!
At her funeral service on Wednesday, our minister Warren Curry captured these three thoughts from her 'stash':
"Prayers go up....blessings come down!"
"Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves, for they will never cease to be amused."
"If you want to be rich, count all the things you have that money cannot buy."
Rest in peace, Naomi!
Thank You, God, for sharing Naomi with us. We have been, and will continue to be, blessed, by her!
Today is Monday, September 10th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3871|
Some place in upper elementary school, we learned there are three main types of sentences: declarative, question, and exclamatory.
Here is a familiar Bible verse:
"This is the day the Lord has made.
We will rejoice and be glad in it."
~ Psalm 118:24 LAB
'This is the day the Lord has made." Simple declarative statement. It's true.
'We will rejoice". Another simple statement. Not a command. A choice.
'Be glad in it." Another choice. A declarative statement. We are to be glad. Our choice. No matter how we 'feel'. If we have the dreams of our life; a great family; lots of money; a wonderful job, we are to 'rejoice'. If our health isn't the best; our family life is in a shambles; have had to attend one too many funerals lately; or we have made a 'major' life decision mistake, today is a new day 'which the Lord has made.'
The day has just begun. Whether we know what is going to happen the rest of day, 'we will rejoice and be glad in it.'
Today is Tuesday, September 11th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3872|
If we are old enough, we remember where we were seventeen years ago today: when more than 3,000 people were brutally killed at the trade towers and in Pennsylvania. It's always good to remember!
Today's entry from Sarah Young in "Jesus Calling: Enjoying Peace in His Presence":
"Rejoice in Me always! No matter what is going on, you can rejoice in your Love-relationship with Me. This is the secret of being content in all circumstances. So many people dream of the day when they will finally be happy: when they are out of debt, when their children are out of trouble, when they have more leisure time, and so on. While they daydream, their moments are trickling into the ground like precious balm spilling wastefully from overturned bottles.
"Fantasizing about future happiness will never bring fulfillment, because fantasy is unreality. Even though I am invisible, I am far more Real than the world you see around you. My reality is eternal and unchanging. Bring your moments to Me, and I will fill them with vibrant Joy. Now is the time to rejoice in My Presence."
~ Taken from Philippians 4:4; Psalm 102:27
Today is Wednesday, September 12th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3873|
Sometimes when we sit in church for a number of years, we get almost numb to what we believe. Jesus, cross, sin,salvation, blood become catch words. Sure, we know. Sometimes we need to be reminded.|
Why Did Jesus Have to Die?
We have all done things that are wrong, and we have failed to obey God's law. Because of this, we have been separated from God our Creator. Separation from God is death; but, by ourselves, we can do nothing to become united with God.
Why Jesus Could Help
Jesus was not only man; he was God's unique Son. Because Jesus never disobeyed God and never sinned, only He can bridge the gap between the sinless God and sinful mankind.
Jesus freely offered His life for us, dying on the cross in our place, taking all our wrongdoing upon Himself, and saving us from the consequences of sin---including God's judgment and death.
Jesus took our past, present, and future sins upon Himself so that we could have new life. Because all our wrongdoing is forgiven, we are reconciled to God. Furthermore, Jesus' resurrection from the dead is the proof that His substitutionary sacrifice on the cross was acceptable to God, and His resurrection has become the source of new life for whoever believes that Jesus is the Son of God. All who believe in Him may have this new life and live it in union with Him.
Taken from Life Application Bible
Today is Thursday, September 13th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3874|
As Good As It Gets
"Is this as good as it gets? Many people assume that it is! Many people think their deepest joy and most profound happiness happens somewhere between the delivery room and the funeral home. Is that as good as it gets? For the Christian, this world is as bad as it gets. Set your heart on this hope from the 2 Corinthians:
"Our physical body is becoming older and weaker, but our spirit inside
us is made new every day. We have small troubles for awhile now,
but they are helping us to gain an eternal glory that is much greater than our troubles.
We set our eyes not on what we see but on what we cannot see.
What we see will last only a short time,
but what we cannot see will last forever."
(2 Corinthians 4:16 - 18)
"Because God's promises are unbreakable, our hope is unshakable!"
~ Today's inspirational email by Max Lucado
Today is Friday, September 14th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3875|
I am not much of a facebook person but here are two. I don't know who posted this first one:
You don't get a GOOD LIFE
or a BAD LIFE.
You get a LIFE
what are you going to do with it?
The second one was emailed to our long-term friends Jacob & Jaynie Michael who were missionaries for years to Africa; now retired and reside in Ohio:
"You are holding a cup of coffee when someone comes along and bumps into you, making you spill your coffee everywhere. Why did you spill your coffee? You spilled the coffee because there was coffee in your cup. Had there been tea in the cup, you would have spilled tea.
"The point is whatever is inside the cup, is what will spill out. Therefore, when life comes along and shakes you (which will happen), whatever is inside you will come out. So, we have to ask ourselves, 'What's in my cup?'
"When life gets tough, what spills out? Joy, gratefulness, peace and humility? Or does anger, bitterness, harsh words and reactions come out? You choose!
"Today let's work towards filling our cups with gratitude, forgiveness, joy, words of affirmation, kindness, gentleness, and love for others."
"But the things that come out of a person's mouth come from the heart and these defile them. For out of the heart comes evil thoughts---murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them." ~ Matthew 15:18 - 20
Today is Monday, September 17th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3876|
Today's inspirational thought by Max Lucado:|
A Word for the Dark Nights of the Soul
"Self-help manuals might get you through a bad mood or a tough patch. But what about an abusive childhood or years of chronic pain? Does God have a word for the dark nights of the soul? He does.
"God's promise begins with this phrase: 'Weeping may last through the night........'. That part may not be news to you. But this part may be - 'Joy comes with the morning' (Psalm 30:5). Despair will not rule the day. Night might delay the dawn, but it cannot defeat it. Morning comes. Not always as quickly as we want. Not as dramatically as we desire. But morning comes, and with it comes joy.
"Do you need this promise? Have you wept a river? Have you forsaken hope? Do you wonder if morning will ever bring this night to an end? Hear this! Because God's promises are unbreakable, our hope is unshakable!"
Today is Tuesday, September 18th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3877|
"And so we keep on praying for you that our God will make
you the kind of children he wants to have----
will make you as good as you wish you could be!---
rewarding your faith with his power."
~ 2 Thessalonians 1:11 LAB
Bible Commentary: "When we truly love God, we are repeatedly disappointed in our performance. We want to be good; and yet we are unable to do so. God's purpose for all believers is to make them the kind to do so. God's people for all believers is to make them the kind of children he wants to have. This would mean becoming as good as we wish we could be. As our faith in God increases, God increases the power available in us to do good. If we want God's power in our lives, believe in his ability to do good. If we want God's power in our lives, we need to believe in his ability to do good rather than in ours. Then when Christ comes again, he will make us better than we ever thought we could be."
Today is Wednesday, September 19th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3878|
It's not uncommon for us to have flip calendars in our possession; usually with dates and a thought for the day.|
Here are some good 'words of wisdom' from a 'spiral flip of 101 inspirations' from "Touched by an Angel", no dates or days:
"God sees you just exactly as you are.
He sees you more perfectly and more truly than people can.
And He loves you more than
you can ever imagine."
"When you cry, God cries with you.
But He can only wipe your tears if you let Him."
"Don't be afraid.
God loves you.
And He has heard your prayer."
"Lots of people believe.
But trusting Him is the next step."
"Nothing can separate you
from the love of God."
"There is nothing to be afraid of.
On one side, there is life.
And on the other..........there is life, too."
"Just let yourself be loved!"
Today is Thursday, September 20th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3879|
Isn't it amazing with the changing seasons, how the sunrises and sunset times change? At first, the days are longer. Light in the morning early. Stays light pretty late at night.
There is the longest day and then it begins to shorten. At first, we don't notice the few less minutes at each end of the day. But now! It is pretty dark in the morning, later. And it gets dark earlier and earlier.
A few minutes at each end of the day, makes a big difference....over time.
I couldn't help but think that many times that is how 'sin' does that in our lives. First, it is just a 'little' change. And then, sometimes something we 'should' or 'shouldn't' be doing controls our lives. I have heard my cousin say, "The problem with sin is that it is so much fun.....in the beginning!" He has participated a number of things in his life!
Who among us doesn't know that is true? Either in our own lives? Or the lives of others? Some things we can 'see' easier than some others.
My dictionary definition says of sin, "breaking a religious law, especially when done on purpose; a wrong or fault".
So who sins? "Yes, ALL have sinned; all fall short of God's glorious ideal..." (Romans 3:23).
Later in Romans, it says, "Sin fooled me by taking the good news of God and using them to make me guilt of death." (Romans 7:11).
Oh great! So now what?
Later in Romans 3:23 (now verse 24), it says, "......yet now God declares us 'not guilty' of offending Him if we trust in Jesus Christ---who in His Kindness freely takes away our sins."
Thank You, Jesus, we sin. We trust You. We are not guilty, because of you! Amen.
Today is Friday, September 21st, 2018; Karen's Korner #3880|
Don't know where you live or how much rain you have received in the last few days. At my farmhouse, I dumped nearly four inches of water out of my rain gauge, the day before yesterday. And about an inch and a half out of the gauge this morning from the rains last night.
Today's writing by Anne Graham Lotz talks about a different kind of 'shower'.
Showered with Blessings
"From the fullness of His grace, we have all received one blessing after another."
~ John 1:16 NIV
"As children of God, we are the primary recipients of His blessings. Regardless of our past failures or present shortcoming, our relationship with Jesus Christ ensures that 'from the fullness of His grace, we have all received one blessing after another'.
"When the Mediterranean Sea evaporates or runs low, the Atlantic Ocean rushes in at the Strait of Gibraltar to replenish it and keep it full. When you and I are related to Jesus Christ, our strength and wisdom and peace and joy and love and hope may run out, but His life rushes in to keep us filled to the brim - not because of anything we have or have not done, but just because of Him, we are showered with blessings."
Today is Monday, September 24th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3881|
"That Is what is meant by the Scriptures
which say no mere man has ever seen, heard, or even imagined
what wonderful things God has ready for those who love the Lord."
~ 2 Corinthians 2:9 LAB
Bible Commentary: "We cannot imagine all that God has in store for us both in this life and for eternity. He will crate a new heaven and a new earth, and we will live with Him forever. Until then, His Holy Spirit comforts and guides us. Knowing the future that awaits us should give us hope and courage to press on in this life, to endure hardship, and to avoid giving in to temptation. This world is not all there is."
Today is Wednesday, September 26th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3882|
(I was away from my computer yesterday. Count on a Saturday Karen's Korner to make five for the week!)
Today's 'words of wisdom' from the 'philosopher' Charles Schultz of Peanuts, Snoopy, and Charlie Brown fame. It is the first of two installments of six each. They were emailed to me by my Tennessee Uncle Bud. The email came complete with graphics. If you'd like the words and the pictures, email me!
"Worry won't stop the bad stuff from happening.
It just stops you from enjoying the good stuff."
"A good laugh and a long sleep are the two best cures for anything."
~ IRISH PROVERB
"I don't have time to worry about who doesn't like me....
I'm too busy loving the people who love me!
"The less you respond to rude, critical, argumentative people,
the more peaceful you life will become.
"I love the kind of hugs where you can physically feel the sadness leaving your body."
"There are moments in life where you miss someone so much
that you just want to pick them from your dreams
and hug them for real."
Today is Thursday, September 27th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3883|
It's Time to Grow Up!
"Children have a tendency to say, 'Look at me!' On the tricycle: 'Look at me go!' On the trampoline: 'Look at me bounce!' On the swing set: 'Look at me swing!' Such behavior is acceptable for children. Yet many adults spend their grown up years saying the same thing: 'Look at me drive this fancy car!' 'Look at me make money!' 'Look at me wear provocative clothes, or use big words, or flex my muscles. Look at me!'
"Isn't it time we grew up? We were made to live a life that says, 'Look at God!' People are to look at us and see not US but the image of our Maker. This is God's plan: 2 Corinthians 3:18 says, 'We......are being transformed into His image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.' Because God's promises are unbreakable, our hope is unshakeable!"
~ By Max Lucado
Today is Friday, September 28th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3884|
Fertile, the little town near where I grew up, has a monthly typed and copied newsletter. Some is government news; what is happening in town and library; obituaries; a walk down memory lane; and other topics.
This was something carried in the latest edition and comments that were heard at that time:
THE YEAR WAS 1955
* Did you hear the post office is thinking about charging 7 cents just to mail a letter?
* If they raise the minimum wage to $1.00, nobody will be able to hire outside help at the store.
* When I first started driving, who would have thought gas would someday cost 25 cents a gallon?
* It's too bad things are so tough nowadays, I see where a few married women are having to work to make ends meet.
* I'm afraid the Volkswagen car is going to open the door to a whole lot of foreign business.
*The fast food restaurant is convenient for a quick meal, but I seriously doubt they will ever catch on.
* No sense going on short trips any more. It costs nearly $2 a night to stay in a hotel.
* No one can afford to be sick any more. At $15 a day in the hospital, it's too rich for my blood.
* If they think I'll pay 30 cents for a haircut, forget it!
Today is Saturday, September 29th, 2018; Karen's Korner #3885|
Since I didn't send a 'korner' out on Monday, here is a Saturday edition to make 'five for the week'.
A few years ago we heard a lot about the Prayer of Jabez. Here it is for today. Always the same:
"He was the one who prayed to the God of Israel,
'Oh, that you would wonderfully bless me and help me in my work;
please be with me in all that I do,
and keep me from all evil and disaster!'
And God granted him his request."
~ I Chronicles 4:10 LAB
Bible Commentary: "Jabez prayed specifically to be protected from evil and disaster. We live in a fallen world where sin abounds, and it is important to ask God to keep us safe from unavoidable evil that comes our way. But we must also avoid evil motives, desires, and actions that begin within us. Therefore, we must not only seek God's protection from evil, but ask God to keep evil from becoming a part of our thoughts and actions."