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October 2007 Archives

Printable Issue 1156  Today is Monday, October 1st, 2007; Karen's Korner #1156
(Back after one week away from our home computer!)
Ever have a time when you promise yourself and God that you will spend more time with Him? Reading the Bible? Praying? Whatever??
But it seems that is when you have more distractions. More interruptions. More negative thoughts. More, some people say, of the devil/Satan trying to keep you from enjoying your relationship with the Creator of the Universe.
We had such an encounter about a month ago when two friends and I were invited to another friend's home to read several chapters of the Bible together for about half an hour. It was such a nice late afternoon that sitting outside on our hostess' patio seemed like a good idea.
"Let's start by reading First John, " she said. It's short and we would move on to Second and Third John, each with a single chapter.
We had no more than started to read when a next-door neighbor started his boat to make sure it was running properly. He would shut it off and start it again; several times. Next the neighbor behind where we were seated decided it was a good time to mow his lawn; and the noise from the mower began. Next a dog less than a block away began to bark.
Some of the noises subsided, as our hostess said off-handedly, "Now all we need is a train to go through," as she kept with her turn of reading. Almost as if on demand, we could begin to hear the train whistle blaring in the distance. Of course, it had to blast several times as it made its way into to town and at the crossings with which the engine came in contact.
By now, all four of the readers began to laugh, as we are learning how the negative forces can attempt to derail us.
Before we finished, an emergency vehicle's siren could be heard in the distance, a low flying plane could be seen, as well as heard in the sky above, and a couple of girls walked by talking and giggling; also enjoying the day.
Were we distracted? Somewhat, I am sure.
Did we quit what we had started to do? No!
Sometimes when life gives us a handful of distractions, do we throw up our hands with contempt? Or do we buckle down and put our shoulder to the task at hand? Doing what we believe God would have us to be doing? Asking Him for His continued guidance and help??
Dear Father in Heaven, help us to recognize times when our attention is diverted from You and from our resolve to know You better or worship You as You deserve. Help us not to be distracted nor allow our emotions to take us away from Your best. Thank You that You can show us Your way. In the name of Jesus. Amen.
Printable Issue 1157  Today is Tuesday, October 2nd, 2007; Karen's Korner #1157
Feel the need or desire to pray but don't know what to say?
Want to worship God and haven't got the words?
I have several friends who pick up the Bible and turn to the Psalms and make a verse or chapter into a prayer of praise or worship.
Psalms 103 is written in the third person: "he heals me; he fills my life with good things". But it can be turned into a first person prayer.
I am doing that below (you might want to reread it from the Bible to see what I have done to the chapter!):
I bless you, God with all of my heart.
I will not forget the glorious things you do for me.
You forgive all my sins.
You heal me.
You ransom me from hell.
You surround me with lovingkindness and tender mercies.
You fill my life with good things!
My youth is renewed like the eagle's!
You give justice to all who are treated unfairly.
You reveal Your will to us.
You are merciful and tender toward those who don't deserve it.
You are slow to get angry and full of kindness and love.
You never bear a grudge, nor remain angry forever.
You have not punished us as we deserve for all of our sins.
You give mercy toward those who fear and honor You.
You have removed our sins as far away from us as the east is from the west.
You are like a Father to us, tender and sympathetic as we reverence You.
You know we are but dust and our days are few.
But Your lovingkindness to us is from everlasting to everlasting.
Let everything everywhere bless You, Lord.
I bless You, Lord!
~ Psalms 103
Printable Issue 1158  Today is Wednesday, October 3rd, 2007; Karen's Korner #1158
I like it when people email me things they have written; things they find interesting. Sharing their ideas. Not all Karen's Korners are alike; they are as varied as the number of seeds in an apple and the number of apples on an apple tree.
This is a very descriptive writing by my friend, Sue Freund. It is appropriate for this time of year as we watch the fall come and the changing of the seasons. Come away with Sue and visualize some time alone!
The Apple Tree
See the apple tree with its arms grown this way and that.
She reaches out to say,
"Come climb among my branches
so that your young lives may be filled with fond memories of me."
She is laden with bright tempting red apples this warm summer day.
As I lay in her arms I explore the idea of biting into an apple
even though it has a small dark hole in it.
Will I too experience the horror of finding a half wiggling worm after my first bite?
I muster up the courage.
There is nothing like the taste of joy when you actually do it.
Brave enough to try,
then making the decision on your own to do just that.
I contently slump back against her branches once I have discovered there is no worm.
The honeybees and fruit flies hum a gentle song
among the sweet ripe fruit about her feet.
Gentle memories are what we all hope to leave
on the minds of those who know us well.
Well enough to climb among our branches.
Printable Issue 1159  Today is Thursday, October 4th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1159
Something shared with me by a friend; what we could say to children. After you have read it once, read it one more time. Many of the things could be said by our Heavenly Father to you:


1. I love you! There is nothing that will make me stop loving you. Nothing
you could do or say or think will ever change that.

2. You are amazing! I look at you with wonder! Not just at what you can do,
but who you are. There is no one like you. No one!

3. It's all right to cry. People cry for all kinds of reasons: when they
are hurt, sad, glad, or worried; when they are angry, afraid, or lonely.
Big people cry too. I do.

4. You've made a mistake. That was wrong. People make mistakes. I do. Is
it something we can fix? What can we do? It's all over. You can start
fresh. I know you are sorry. I forgive you.

5. You did the right thing. That was scary or hard. Even though it wasn't
easy, you did it. I am proud of you; you should be too.

6. I'm sorry. Forgive me. I made a mistake.

7. You can change your mind. It's good to decide, but it is also fine to

8. What a great idea! You were really thinking! How did you come up with
that? Tell me more. Your mind is clever!

9. That was kind. You did something helpful and thoughtful for that person.
That must make you feel good inside. Thank you!

10. I have a surprise for you. It's not your birthday. It's for no reason
at all. Just a surprise, a little one, but a surprise.

11. I can wait. We have time. You don't have to hurry this time.

12. What would you like to do? It's your turn to pick. You have great
ideas. It's important to follow your special interests.

13. Tell me about it. I'd like to hear more. And then what happened? I'll

14. I'm right here. I won't leave without saying good-bye. I am watching
you. I am listening to you.

15. Please and Thank You. These are important words. If I forget to use
them, will you remind me?

16. I missed you. I think about you when we are not together!

17. Just try. A little bit. One taste, one step. You might like it. Let's
see. I'll help you if you need it. I think you can do it.

18. I'll help you. I heard you call me, here I am. How can I help you? If we
both work together, we can get this done. I know you can do it by yourself,
but I'm glad to help since you asked.

19. What do you wish for? Even if it's not yet time for birthday candles
and we don't have a wishbone, it's still fun to hear about what you wish
for, hope for, and dream about

-- Author Unknown
Printable Issue 1160  Today is Friday, October 5th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1160
A forwarded email from a friend; I had not read it before. Liked it; hope you do too:

How often do you let other people's nonsense change your mood? Do you let a bad driver, rude waiter, curt boss, or an insensitive employee ruin your day? However, the mark of a successful person is how quickly she can get back her focus on what's important.

Sixteen years ago I learned this lesson. I learned it in the back of a New York City taxi cab. Here's what happened.

I hopped in a taxi, and we took off for Grand Central Station. We were driving in the right lane when, all of a sudden, a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his breaks, skidded, and missed the other car's back end by just inches!

The driver of the other car, the guy who almost caused a big accident, whipped his head around and he started yelling bad words at us.My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was friendly. So, I said, "Why did you just do that? This guy almost ruined your car and sent us to the hospital!"

And this is when my taxi driver told me what I now call, "The Law of the Garbage Truck." Many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they need a place to dump it. And if you let them, they'll dump it on you. When someone wants to dump on you, don't take it personally. You just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. You'll be happy you did.

So this was it: The "Law of the Garbage Truck."

I started thinking, how often do I let Garbage Trucks run right over me? And how often do I take their garbage and spread it to other people: at work, at home, on the streets? It was that day I said, "I'm not going to do it anymore."

I began to see garbage trucks. Like in the movie "The Sixth Sense," the little boy said, "I see Dead People." Well, now "I see Garbage Trucks." I see the load they're carrying. I see them coming to drop it off. And like my Taxi Driver, I don't make it a personal thing; I just smile, wave, wish them well, and I move on.

One of my favorite football players of all time, Walter Payton, did this every day on the football field. He would jump up as quickly as he hit the ground after being tackled. He never dwelled on a hit. Payton was ready to make the next play his best. Good leaders know they have to be ready for their next meeting. Good parents know that they have to welcome their children home from school with hugs and kisses. Leaders and parents know that they have to be fully present, and at their best for the people they care about.

The bottom line is that successful people do not let Garbage Trucks take over their day. What about you? What would happen in your life, starting today, if you let more garbage trucks pass you by?

Here's my bet. You'll be happier. Life's too short to wake up in the morning with regrets, so...
Love the people who treat you right. Forget about the ones who don't. Believe that everything happens for a reason. If you get a chance, TAKE IT!

If it changes your life, LET IT! Nobody said it would be easy... They just promised it would be worth it!
Printable Issue 1161  Today is Monday, October 8th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1161
For the past five years the Marys and Marthas (M & Ms), an ecumenical group of gals to which I belong, has done a project of some kind for the National Make a Difference Day. And this year is no exception!
We are organizing some M & M members, their spouses, youth, and community members to help 26 Clarion area residents with simple weatherizations to make homes more comfortable and energy efficient. The actual day is Saturday, October 27; we are doing the bulk of our work this Saturday, October 13 to avoid some scheduling conflicts.
Along with weatherization items, there will be a packet of information taken to each home when the volunteers come to do the work. Included in the packets will be a prayer for each home, written by Chris Lousias who is one of our M & M members. Many who have read it have said, "My, that would good for everyone's home!"
Here it is for your home:





Oh God, You are my Strength, You are my Refuge.


I trust in You, most Holy Lord, to supply all my needs.


I pray You give Your angels charge over me and my household.


I love Your mercy, I love Your grace, I love the way You help me when I call.


Your Word is True and everything that You promise I know You will do.


Let my house be filled with dancing and my heart be filled with joy because today You have not forgotten me.


Holy Spirit, fill my home with Your presence.


Let my house be a sanctuary for all who enter and may Your presence fill their hearts.


I praise You Lord, for Your loving kindness.


Your protection surrounds me.


I release my troubles into Your hands.


I thank You for all my blessings in the name of Christ Jesus, Amen.



~ written by Christine Lousias, Clarion’s Marys and Marthas (M & Ms)

Home Weatherization Project in Clarion


October 2007



Printable Issue 1162  Today is Tuesday, October 9th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1162
Some highlights of our Sunday's sermon as we heard about "giving HOPE for the family". All of our families need additional hope and help, especially as we become His 'Best family", which turns into a blessed family!:
Our minister Tim Platt used the the letters which spelled out B-E-S-T:
BLESSINGS - (which means using well words) - I Peter 3:9 - "Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing."
EDIFYING - (which means to build up)  I Thessalonions 5:11 - "so encourage one another...."
SHARING - Ephesians 5:21 - "Honor Christ by submitting to each other......" (speaking to husbands and wives).
TOUCHING - Ephesians 5:31 - "husbands, love your wives..........wives, respect your husbands....."; Ephesians 6:4 - "parents, don't keep scolding and nagging your children, but rather bring them up with loving discipline...."
We need to touch one another physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
Printable Issue 1163  Today is Wednesday, October 10th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1163
One of Joel and Victoria Osteen's emailed daily devotionals which I have in my 'saved' folder. This one was originally mailed out on May 1 of this year:

Be Courageous

"Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go."
~~ Joshua 1:9

God says not to tremble or be dismayed by anything, because He is with you wherever you may go. That is such an encouragement, and it's absolutely true! You should be walking around in life without even the slightest amount of fear, because that is not the nature God gave you. You should refuse to be defeated by the things around you, even if they seem insurmountable. Perhaps one definition of courage might be staying strong and moving forward, even when most would give up and even surrender their ground to fear. Be strong and courageous today for God and do not allow yourself to be defeated by fear or the unknown!

God, I want to live and serve You boldly without being crippled by fear. Make me strong and courageous in Your power to do what You want me to do. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Printable Issue 1164  Today is Thursday, October 11th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1164
A bookmark prayer mailed to me by some Christian ministry. If you are a guy reading this poem, the message is the same. Praise God:
My beloved is mine, and I am his.
~ Song of Solomom 2:16 NKJV
Dearest Beautiful Woman,
You are Mine. I chose you. I've given
everything to have a relationship with you.
You are My passion and desire.
Believe Me when I tell you that
My love is better than life.
In My eyes, you are beautiful in every way.
You have ravished My heart. Come to Me
and know love. Dwell with Me; abide in Me.
Let Me be your all and come alive to the rich
pleasure found in the sacred romance I created
you to have with Me.
Eternally yours,
The Lover of your soul
Printable Issue 1165  Today is Friday, October 12th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1165
About a year ago my sister and her husband won a four-day trip to Las Vegas for meeting some sales quotas from their family electrical business. Jan said that before she left she thought about doing some 'random acts of kindness' while she was there.
"I couldn't think of much to do but I finally hit on the idea of tidying up our motel room each day a bit to help with the work load of the cleaning lady," said Jan.
One day while they were out walking, seeing the sights of the town and looking for one special store to buy some t-shirts for granddaughters, a black lady with a large car stopped and asked if she could help them. "We told her where we were wanting to go and she said it was probably farther than we would want to walk," said Jan, "so she offered to give us a ride to our destination. Here I was trying to think of what I could do for others and it was us that received the 'random act of kindess'."
I think that is what the Bible tries to tell us and makes us as promises if we help others, we will be helped. If we bless others, some where, some day, some how....we will be blessed in return.
Jesus said to a crowd of people in the Sermon on the Mount that we would be blessed if we are humble, if we mourn, if we are meek and lowly, if we give kindness and mercy, if our hearts are pure, if we strive for peace, and if we are faithful (Matthew 5:1 - 11). We will receive His Kingdom, His comfort, His satisfaction, and we will see Him and be called His Sons.
Printable Issue 1166  Today is Monday, October 15th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1166
Poem forwarded to me by my cousin Marilyn Jackson via my Aunt Sara:

Look back and thank God.
Look forward and trust God.
Look around and serve God.
Look within and find God!"

"I asked God, 'How do I get the best out of life?'
God said,
'Face your past without regrets.
Handle your present with confidence.
And prepare for the future without fear!'"

"Without God, our week is:
Mournday, Tearsday,
Wasteday, Thirstday,
Fightday, Shatterday and Sinday.
So, allow Him to
be with you everyday!"
Life is short, so
Forgive quickly.
Believe slowly.
Love truly.
Laugh uncontrollably.

Never regret anything that makes you happy.
And have a wonderful journey!!!"
Printable Issue 1167  Today is Tuesday, October 16th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1167
A poem shared with us by Dick Ashpole, a 92 year old Clarion resident. Even at his advanced age, he recalls many things which he learned in his younger years. This is one of them which he can recite:
Let me believe in many things,
God...since that is faith's beginning
The faith to which one longest clings
through age and illness, grief, and sinning.
Let me believe in something more
Than something seen my soul explore
The life beyond that I may borrow
Something today from some tomorrow.
Let me believe in other hearts
Not all condemn when one deceives me
Remembering when love departs
That it is only one who grieves me.
Let me believe, although belief,
Like man must have some hours of grief
let not my faithless friend undo me
But draw the others closer to me.
Let me believe in morning skies
In days to be in years to follow
Oh give me hope that never dies
That spring will bring the sun and swallow.
Let me believe in hours of strife
In the eternal good of life
Whatever sorrow seems to rend it
Let me believe that time will mend it.
Printable Issue 1168  Today is Wednesday, October 17th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1168
This is a email daily devotional from Shirley Choat; enjoy!
 "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."
~~ 2 Timothy 4:7
  All of us would like to have our loved ones reach a ripe old age, but that really isn't the most important consideration. I would much rather have a few fruitful years than to be given a long life, only to waste it by living solely for the pleasures of this world. It's the quality of our days here on earth, not the quantity, that counts for eternity.
  Don't make longevity your greatest aspiration. Instead, ask the LORD to help you run the race well, not matter how long it may be.
    Life claims our best, God would not have me waste
    A single day in selfish idle woe.
    I fancy that I hear God bid me haste
    Lest I should sadly falter as I go.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY - The true measure of life is not its duration, but its donation.
Printable Issue 1169  Today is Thursday, October 18th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1169
Sorry for the delay in sending this message. Early this a.m. Jim went to our local hospital and then was moved to Fort Dodge where he had heart surgery for recurring problems which he has had over the past 30 years. Praise God, the surgery is successful and he should be returning home in a few days!
When walking through the hallways at the Fort Dodge hospital, here are a couple of slogans/sayings on ther walls:
** When we do the best that we can,
who knows what miracle is wrought in our life,
or in the life of another.
~~ Helen Keller
** Choose to make today a GREAT day!
Have some FUN!
Be serious about our work,
Without always being serious about ourselves!
** What life means to us is determined not so much by what life brings us
As by the attitude we bring to life;
Not so much by what happens to us
As by our reaction to what happens.
Think BIG.
Act BIG.
Dream BIG.
Believe BIG.
(I am adding - Pray BIG!)
And the Results will be BIG!
Printable Issue 1170  Today is Friday, October 19th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1170
A couple of paragraphs from the book "Secrets of the Secret Place" by Bob Sorge; a book about praying:
"Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mind, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock, and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on the house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be ike a foolish man who built his house on the sand; and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall."  ~~ Matthew 7:24 - 27
Jesus' message is unmistakable, He is saying, "If you will hear and do what I have taught you in this Sermon on the Mount, you will build foundations into your life that will survive the harshest storms of life." And believe me, friend, storms will most certainly come! There are some storms that have yet to hit your life. The question is, will you have the foundation in place to survive the storms?
Printable Issue 1171  Today is Monday, October 22nd, 2007; Karen's Korner #1171
Jim got home from the Fort Dodge hospital yesterday and continues to recover.
Our daughter Jamie and her two children, Luke who is 3 1/2, and Molly, 2, came to visit grandpa and keep grandma company on Friday late afternoon and early evening. For a few minutes here and there, we took turns visiting grandpa in the intensive care unit. Most of the time was spent in the waiting room and we went out for supper, together with my oldest sister and her husband who had also come to visit.
As I was helping to strap Luke into his car seat, I thanked him for coming to visit, "You are such a nice boy, Luke. You visited grandpa and made him happy. You played nicely with your sister. You helped us bring your books down the halls in your sister's roller suitcase. You led us out of the hospital following the Bob the Builder signs (hospital has some construction going on). Thank you, Luke."
Then I had a turn with Molly: "Molly, you are so much fun. You made grandpa laugh. You can be so silly sometimes. We read books together. And you played nice with your brother. You talked and sang us songs. We had fun today didn't we, Molly? I love you."
And then it was a moment with Jamie: "Thanks for coming up. We know you are busy. You are always so thoughtul and share your time with so many other people. Love you, Jamie."
Then I heard Luke say, "Grandma and Mom, I have something to tell you!"
Standing outside of their van with both slide doors open, we listened as Luke said, "You both have nice hair!"
This tired little three-year-old had just heard lots of nice words; he had decided to say something nice to both of us but what was it.....oh, yeah, nice hair!!
Sometimes in our society today, we hear lots of negative things. But we are beginning to make deliberate choices of using 'well' words. Or as the Bible says 'blessings' to one another. If we 'bless someone else' with our words, hard to tell what we kind of words we might receive in return.
And in case I haven't told you lately, "You have nice hair!"
Printable Issue 1172  Today is Tuesday, October 23rd, 2007; Karen's Korner #1172
Yesterday Dorothy Riekens made me aware of a "positive news" daily email. Each day subscirbers can receive a 'good news' article on their computers. I know nothing about this web site except this one article. If you would like to check it out for yourself or subscribe, go to  www.Gimundo.com :
The October 18 edition talked about how a dying boy was crowned his school's homecoming king.
Five senior football players from Lake Fenton High School in Michigan were nominated for the honor of being in the court with one being voted on as the school's king. They made the decision among them that the title was most deserved by 15-year-ol Eli Florence, who had been on the team but couldn't continue due to leukemia. The students had just learned that Eli had only a few weeks left to live.

According to the news story, "on October 4th, the day of the dance, the homecoming king candidates announced in the school cafeteria that they were stepping down to honor Eli with the crown. The entire crowd of 538 students erupted in applause. Everyone was in agreement: No one deserved the award more than this brave young man."

"Eli has become an icon for strength and perseverance and character for this entire community, and especially our student body," the school principal, John Spicko, told ESPN.

At the homecoming dance that night, Eli's friend guided him into the ballroom just in time to hear the P.A. announcement: "Your 2007 king, as designated by the five candidates is … is Eli Florence." They young man was stunned and elated. He'd had no idea that he would be chosen. As he stood to pose beside the homecoming queen, and the crown was placed upon his head, the 2,000 students and faculty at the dance stood and cheered for him, their faces  wet with tears at the sight of Eli's radiant smile.

Sadly, Eli succumbed to his disease not long after the homecoming dance – he passed away peacefully at home on October 14th. But one thing's for sure: He couldn't have gotten a more amazing send-off.
Printable Issue 1173  Today is Wednesday, October 24th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1173

A Karen's Korner by Joel and Victoria Osteen:

All of a Sudden

"Moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes; and immediately they regained their sight and followed Him." (Matthew 20:34)

"No matter how discouraged or down you are, God can change your heart, mind and body in a split second. In Matthew 20, Jesus healed two blind men right on the spot, and they walked away completely changed forever. In order to experience this amazing and life-changing turnaround, you may have to take a chance. Nothing is gained without risk or going out on a limb a little bit. You may look at the obstacles or the potholes, but God sees victory. In just a moment, you can see things the way God sees them, which means you'll see the path to victory, not defeat. God rewards you when you step out in faith, not when you stay where you are out of fear."

God, thank You for seeing victory where I see defeat. Give me the eyes to see things the way You see them. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

Printable Issue 1174  Today is Thursday, October 25th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1174
My sister, Jill, emailed me this poem awhile ago. She is a few weeks into a two-year Bible study class at her church. She shares this poem which was printed in her study book:
  Folks in Heaven

I was shocked, confused, bewildered
As I entered Heaven's door.
Not by the beauty of it all
Nor the lights or its decor.

But it was the folks in Heaven
Who made me sputter and gasp -
The thieves, the liars, the sinners,
The alcoholics, and the trash.

There stood the kid from seventh grade
Who swiped my lunch money twice.
Next to him was my old neighbor
Who never said anything nice.

Herb, who I always thought
Was rotting away in hell,
Was sitting pretty on cloud nine,
Looking incredibly well.

I nudged Jesus, "What's the deal?"
I would love to hear Your take.
How'd all these sinners get up here?
God must've made a mistake."

"And why's everyone so quiet,
So somber - give me a clue."
"Hush, child," He said, "they're all in shock.
No one thought they'd be seeing you."


Printable Issue 1175  Today is Friday, October 26th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1175
I sometimes 'dog-ear' things that I like in books or magazines; sometime I rip something out of a magazine, if I like it. One in my collection is something from a "Our Daily Bread" devotional magazine; it is dated January 11 (but I don't know if it 2007's edition or not!):
How to be Happy!
"Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help."
~~ Psalm 146:5
"Everyone wants to be happy. But many fail in their quest to find that elusize prize because they are looking in the wrong places.
"Proverbs 16:20 tell us, "Whoever trust in the Lord, happy is he." And Psalm 146:5 indicates that happiness comes to those who find their help and hope in God.
"The foundation for happiness is a proper relationship with the Lord. But to fully experience that happiness, we must build on that foundation in practical ways. I found a list of Ten Rules for Happier Living:
* Give soomething away;
* Do a kindness;
* Give thanks always;
* Work with vim and vigor;
* Visit the elderly and learn from their experiences;
* Look intently into the face of a baby and marvel;
* Laugh often - it's life's lubricant;
* Pray to know God's way;
* Plan as though you will live forever -- because you will;
* Live as though today is your last day on earth.
"These are excellent ideas for living a happy life. Undergird each of these rules with praise, and your happiness will be complete. "Praise the Lord, O my soul! While I live I will praise the Lord." - Psalms 146:1,2."
By Richard De Haan
Printable Issue 1176  Today is Monday, October 29th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1176
Friday morning was chilly, but still. I was in the process of putting away my golf clubs (which I use about six times a year!). When I thought, "Hmm, maybe I should golf a few holes and get some exercise walking at the same time!"
Off I went to the Dows Golf Course, knowing that it was no longer open for the season. But the golf course is still there!!
Dragging the golf clubs out of the van, I discovered I had only one golf ball. "This oughta be good," I thought. Not that I am such a great golfer that the ball is out of my sight, but between longer grass and fall leaves...... It probably wouldn't take long before my one-and-only would be lost. Oh, well, I will golf as long as it holds out!
As I moved down the first fairway, I started feeling guilty because I wasn't paying green fees nor am I course member."Okay, God, you got me! Next spring I will tell them what I did and then they can decide if I owe them something or how much!"
First hole was fine; second hole no problems; third hole the tee off shot went some to the right, still in the fairway. I couldn't find the ball amongst all of the leaves. "Time to go home," I thought. Walking back toward the car and closer to the hole on number three, I started to think that maybe I shouldn't give up so easily. Maybe I should look for another ball. Maybe there would be one under some of the evergreen boughs that were touching the ground.
Three-fourths of the way around the first tree......there was a shiny white golf ball! I was back in business. When I was walking off the green for hole number three, I spotted another golf ball!
I finished hole number four and went to my fifth hole. Wow! Only three strokes to make par on the under-two-hundred-yard hole (might not seem like a big deal to you, but for me.......that is almost unheard of!).
Now my time was up and I headed back to the car. I chose to walk along the ditch which parallels the  hole I had just played. Wow! I found two more golf balls.
It made me think of having only one golf ball and my internal dialogue of 'telling the truth'; seems like God was showing me a analogy for life:
first, look up;
listen to God's instruction;
make the decision to do what He tells you to do;
keep playing the game, even when it looks hopeless;
don't forget to look around for a new answer;
stay the course;
begin to see some unanticipated rewards;
 God's grace will cause you to celebrate the game He has given you to play!
If the weather is right, I might go back to the golf course in November. I'll tell the clubhouse guy next spring what I have done.
After all, I have four more golf balls.......
Printable Issue 1177  Today is Tuesday, October 30th, 2007; Karen's Korner #1177
As we get ready to turn the page to November and we begin to think about Thanksgiving coming up, here in our area we reflect about the good corn and soybean crops and yields. Add to that, the prices are good. We know we have much for which to be thankful.
Ecclesiastes 7:14 says, "Enjoy prosperity whenever you can, and when hard times strike, realize that God gives one as well as the other -- so that everyone will realize that nothing is certain in this life."
Twenty five years ago, I wrote in the margin near that verse, "Harder farm economic times in 1982." And the times were much harder for many.....
Bible Commentary on the verse:  "God allows both adversity and prosperity to come to all. He blends them in our lives in such a way that we can't predict the future or count on human wisdom and power. In prosperous times, we love to give ourselves the credit. Then in adversity, we tend to blame God without thanking Him for the good that comes out of it. When life appears certain and controllable, don't let pride make you too comfortable or God may allow adversity to drive you back to Him. When life seems uncertain and uncontrollable, don't despair -- God is in control and will bring good results out of tough times."
Father God, we thank You for both the good times and the bad! Help us to recognize they are both from You and that everything is meant for our ultimate good. Thank You for loving us and taking care of us. Help us to believe You, trust You, love You, and lean on You today. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
Printable Issue 1178  Today is Wednesday, October 31st, 2007; Karen's Korner #1178
People don't have to be around churches very long before they are introduced to the 23rd Psalm. Verse number one says, "The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want," in the most familiar translation. Unfortunately for most of us, and in the American culture in particular, we WANT!
I like the Living Bible translation of that same verse, "Because the Lord is my Shepherd, I have everything I need!" I might want a lot of different things, but if I have the Shepherd, I have everything I NEED!
This is a devotional by Shirley Choat from February of this year:
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. Psalm 23:1
   The Bible contains more than 1200 chapters, but none is more comforting, inspiring, and encouraging than the 23rd Psalm. It is very warm and personal, and it assures us that we are completely surrounded by God's love. His care can be found beneath us in green pastures, beside us in still waters, with us as our Shepherd, before us on a table, around us as protection from our enemies, behind us as goodness and mercy, and ahead of us in the house of the LORD, where we will dwell forever.
  When we are faced with fear and difficulty, think of this psalm and repeat over and over until your heart is comforted. "The LORD is my Shepherd, MY SHEPHERD, I shall not want."
    O for a faith that will not shrink,
    Though pressed by every foe,
    That will not tremble on the brink
    Of any earthly woe.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY - Man knows no want when God is his supply.