God's Love, The Stories of Life and the Dogs We Love
Retired Quality Manager but still have the "Why" curiosity drive so I am turning my love for Christ and nature into my new why chase and am trying to discover more of His word as it relates to His love for His creation.
I can see it…light at the end of the tunnel. I am optimistic I can make it. It has been a 5 month uphill battle of necessity but it is almost done. One last week of the knee cart, then one more week of walking in boot then on to real shoes. Yahoo!!
Left foot about 90% healed, Right foot soon to free of heavy boot. QC’s prompt on optimism is exactly where I am. I can see the end and optimistic that with therapy I will be back to normal…as normal as I can be at this point of my life. I am looking forward to spring where walks through the parks and forest can be done again.
I loved QC’s opening quote by Roy Bennett – “Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Optimism is a choice. Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice. Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.” ― Roy T. Bennett.
Life is a choice and life is what you make it. QC also stated the difference between optimism and pessimism and fully hit the nail on the head – Optimism is contagious while pessimism is infectious.
Think of how optimism can drive a car through rough times but pessimism will just deflate the tires.
The holidays is a hard emotional time for many. Recent tragedies can amplify those painful times. Reach out to those and give reason for optimism, give them hope to continue. Spread encouragement and kindness where you can as it breeds hope and optimism.
Do you ever really wonder what the Bible is? Where did it come from? Is it real, is it true? I have very strong, foot standing my ground beliefs to all of these questions and I think all of us need to think on these questions to figure out where we stand individually on these questions as it balances us on where our priorities lay.
My answers are – The bible is the very word of God, given to His prophets by God and the disciples to tell the world who He is, what His plans are, the history of His people Israel and how to prepare the entire world for His abundant love.
The month of December I am reading through the book of Luke and trying to stay to one chapter per night as there are 24 chapters which carries you to Christmas eve. On Christmas eve we as a family always read Luke chapter 2 to praise the birth of Jesus.
To help me not read too far ahead, I also add on the study notes at the bottom of the pages as they give you a way to wrap your head around what was happening then and how I can apply it to today. I use the NIV study bible, studying first the word and then referencing the study notes to help me understand what I am reading. And for me, each time I read the same passages I have read many times before, I get different insights depending on what is going on in my life at the time. The bible is a living document, ever teaching and ever loving.
Chapter 5:36-39 of Luke has the parable of the old wine skins verses the new wine skins and while I vaguely understood what they were saying I went to the study notes to see what they could explain to help me correlate to today. What the parable tells us is not to put new wine in old wineskins as they will burst spilling you wine onto the ground. We all understand that things get worn out but lets study that for a second. Wineskins were goat skins where the edges were tightly sewn together to create watertight bags. As the bag ages, the skin becomes hardened and less pliable. The aging process of new wine requires expansion from the gases created so you need a pliable bag, therefore, you need a new bag. If you put new wine in old bag, it will be stiff leaving no access or room for expansion and the bag will split spilling it contents.
What Jesus was teaching with this parable was the comparison of the Pharisees being too rigid to accept His new teachings of Christianity. The old teachers of the Law could not turn lose their traditions and rules to be able to accept the new approaches and structures Jesus was explaining to the people. How does that apply to us today? Well, we as Christians must always follow the word and be careful that our hearts don’t get so hard and rigid with our traditions that it prevents us from from accepting the new way of thinking that Christ brings. We need to keep our hearts soft and pliable, always ready to accept His teachings of life changing messages. You can never tell when he may drop an opportunity to share Him in your lap. Use wisdom, discernment and love in applying His truths so that others may want to come and learn.
Galatians 5:22-23 reminds us that God’s love and showing of His love to all is compared in my mind like sweet succulent grapes hanging from the vine for all to enjoy and share with others – the Fruits of the Spirit. The top of the list is of course Love. Why love? Because God is love. My favorite of the fruits is kindness. To me you cant give kindness without love, so I always close with encouragements of kindness – for those needing it and for others to remember to share it.
Fruits of the Spirit = Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control
OK, its time for some Christmas humor. Most everybody loves Christmas decorations, except for the Grinch and Scrooge. Hope you are not one of those ass I have been blasting my love of decorations here since November. For those who may not know, I am healing from foot surgery and am currently not able to walk. I don’t sit well without something to do and as much as I love the Hallmark channel, there is only so much of that I can watch. So I pulled out the possible Christmas projects and wreaths to see what I and the glue gun could come up with. Also for those who may not know I also am a face painting clown – real clown – not circus clown but Christian clown using this medium to help spread cheer and the love of Christ. I explain all of this so you can understand my mental age is …12… on a good day. It will help you appreciate where I came from on this project. I saw the cutest thing on Pinterest with a small wreath and the letter J and Y – to make a JOY wreath. I painted the J red and the Y green and the O is a straw wreath. The I saw a small house like my village houses and thought I could make a cute scene inside the O.
So the plan was going great until assembly time. That’s when the mischievous Elf show up. This is what he did to my JOY wreath. I call it now “The Elf of No Help” wreath.
Combined with the beauty of Christmas lights, we must never forget the laughter and JOY of the season. Sorry for my beat up door – Mimi is very protective.
As you spread the JOY of Christmas, remember the kindness a hug can bring. The gentleness of love and kindness during his season can brighten anyone’s day.
Even though the sun is probably up and shining somewhere, it is not here. As I drink my early cup of tea I am surrounded by the quiet of fresh falling snow. Even Mimi is refusing to get out of bed. She knows stuff if falling from the sky.
The sound you hear when snow is lightly falling is very tranquil. There is a slight sound as the frozen crystals find their resting place. It reminds you that if you look hard at nature, there is always a beauty in God’s creation.
Even the birds are quiet this morning. That may be because the feeder is empty for now. Once they get up and going they will sit on the edge of my window and peck at the glass to let me know that I am falling down on the job.
In the summer they are on their own but in the winter, I like to help. They are very comical to watch.
Today’s Photo Challenge from Dutch Goes the Photo is a challenge we all need to focus on in this crazy fast paced world. Finding tranquility so that you can focus on the important things surrounding you. For me, finding my center is refocusing on Christ. Yes, He is the reason for the season but it should last through out the year. If we could share the love and kindness in everything we do it could make this world a better place. No act of kindness is ever wasted. I leave you with a tree of love from Hope for the Broken Hearted.
We have now crossed over to December so it is a perfect time to add more pictures of my over zealous indoor Christmas. I do hope it is not a total bore to you. Since I knew my surgery would prohibit me from decorating in December, I got to get ready by the second week of November. So I have been enjoying my 3 trees already along with my village and other Christmas cheer. I will display some that you may have seen and some new.
The first pic is my tree on the dining room table with my 40+ piece village beneath the tree. The second pic is the tree in my bedroom bump out window. Santa and Chris Moose had different opinions on how to hang lights on the tree. The last one is the tree in the living room. So you see I have lots of enjoyment surrounding me. Next week I may be walking(sort of) and I will get that small trees up in the kitchen and bathrooms – no room left unattended. But with all this decoration, is there a favorite? I dunno – maybe each tree has one, but not really. I do know some are favorites as they bring special memories to mind. For instance, my bedroom tree is the fun tree which holds my silly ornaments and ornaments my children made when they were young. Of those my favorite is the clothes pen angel my oldest made when he was 3. (He turned 40 this year) And of course this tree has all the S’more ornaments, over 30 of those. You can see the angel S’more behind Jimmy’s angel.
The other 2 trees are harder to find a favorite as they are all wonderful. Each year I try to find 1 or 2 special ornaments that are different or extra special. So I will give you a few samples from each of the other trees. The tree on the dining room table is all white, glass or silver.
The tree that is in the living room is the so-called formal tree but my idea of formal probably differs from other ideas of formality as I am a pretty laid back type person. Since I was an art major in college, some of that bleeds through on this tree.
As the month goes onward, I will also share my nativity scenes. Yes, there are more than one, not including all the nativity type ornaments hanging on the tree that represent the true reason for the season.
In the gentle mindset of the holiday season remember the value of being kind. Even Charlie Brown understands the gift of kindness.
If you have a favorite ornament or like sharing the Christmas decor from your house, do share. I so enjoy looking to see how others decorate. Have a marvelous week.
Ma is generally thought of as a shortened name for the mother in the family as in mama. But there are other uses for ma as in gauging your mental age. According to this below, I am 12.
And of course the state of Massachusetts is abbreviated as Ma. And let us not forget the learned folks with a Master of Art, MA that goes with their title.
My favorite use though refers to the matriarch of the family which is usually the grandmother, normally referred to as grandma, as that is what I am, a grandma. Generally it is the first grandchild that sets the precedence of what the grandparents are called unless of course the grandparents have something to say about that or in the lucky marvelous situation with multiple grandparents still alive and being enjoyed.
In my siblings situation, my sister was the first to have children so my parents were chosen by the first grandchild to be called Ma and Pa as Grandma or Grandpa was too hard to get out, and the grand was dropped. Actually it was my father who was first named as my nephew was asked who that man was and he was certain that it was Pa. The standard was set for my parents.
When you get into the grandma names, the variation are amazing. Some off the top of my head that I have heard are:
grandma, granny, gamaw, memaw, mimi, and we cant leave out the formal grandmother.
It’s all fun stuff and movies depict these women from sweet ladies that have mastered the kitchen to power matriarchs that dare you to breathe.
As we go through this life remember we generally don’t get but one chance to show our inner love and peace as the Stream of Consciousness icon displays, so let’s embrace the peace and love of family and be that cookie baking and sweet loving grandma.
And in closing, I remind all the wonderful opportunity we have in sharing kindness. Express the kindness we envision with love towards all creatures and warm cookies from the oven only like grandma.
I remember when in school I would always get in trouble from doodling on my notebook or the backs of my homework. Now, thanks to Linda G Hill, we have permission, plus there are now books for adult doodlers like me. The Escapist Coloring Book Club is fun seeing others that are doodlers or their children’s doodling work – future book club members.
Since I did have minor surgery( if any is really minor at all) I did have extra down time. Therefore, I had time to do an intricate one. Here is the before picture (I remembered to add that this time).
Once I got it finished the creature that showed out the most was the rainbow bee in the upper center.
Come along and join in on the fun. Its a fun way to relax and share fun with others. Click on Linda’s Escapist Coloring prompt above and show you colors.
And as always “Tis the season to be merry. So be merry by being kind. A tiny spark of everyday kindness can light a fire in the meekest or loneliest heart. Then that fire of kindness can spread to others in love. Always be Kind.