Monday Windows, Even in the Restroom

Ludwig has a fun post for showing off windows you see. Since we are “sheltered in place” I am going through archives and found this one that I don’t think I have ever shared. To help understand the history of this window, in 1985 a storm came through our town and crashed the steeple through the roof of the church taking out the pipe organ and nursery among other things. So in the repairs, they also decided to make some much needed renovations to the areas of damage. One was to add restrooms to the sanctuary floor. Now while you are thinking this is odd, this building is over 100 years old and with a couple of renovation already under its belt, it was now  4 floors for people to meander about and get lost in if you have never been there. So the majority of the plumbing was downstairs, except for the fellowship where other restrooms were available. But nothing much for the main sanctuary floor. And of course this building being over 100 years old was filled with beautiful stained glass windows. Now we have restroom on the main sanctuary level…with stained glass windows. Something you don’t find in  every church.

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I am also sharing my favorite window which I know I have shared. Yes it is crooked because I didn’t take into account I was standing on a slanted floor.

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I have hopes you are all staying safe and sheltering as much as you can. Remember in all that you do to always be kind, especially now as our lives seem more stressed that at other times.

Kind fire

 

CFFC, Fun With the Past

Cee’s Fun Foto Challenge allows us to bring fun from our archives or new pictures that reflect ideas from the picture above : Mural, covered bridge, car, green, grass, vintage car, people, trees, road, flowers, landscape, sidewalk, or come up with your own topic.

So below are some of my pictures of the past. Since we are venturing out less right now, I felt this was a fun way to deal with the self quarantine.

Mural, one of several from my town, Rock Island Illinois:

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Centennial Bridge between Iowa and Illinois and blue sky:

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Flowers, can’t wait until spring:

Landscape & trees around town:

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Old cars:

We are now in a time of more fear and resentment and the need for kindness and patience is drastically needed more than ever. Remember to always be kind especially when others are not. Be the light they need.

hope 6

The Fun We Expect & Beauty Too, SoCS

Linda G Hill challenged us to write something for Stream of Consciousness Saturday with words including ect, so here we go….

The exceptional subject matter photographers use here on WordPress are an amazing way to enjoy the perfect beauty of this world we live in – even with all of it disrespectful ugliness.  So today I post some respectful beauty from bloggers here, one I respectfully downloaded. I expect you to at least enjoy the picture if not the short notes.

Foggy Sunrise
Photo by  Irene Tron of Heaven’s Sunshine

Fog

Like smoke

Fills the forest

In the eerie morning

Quiet

 

Jez Sunrise
Photo By Jez Braithwaite of Jez Photos

Dawn

Brightly emerges

On open sea

To start a new

Day

Altoona
From FaceBook of Lake Altoona in Georgia

Beautiful

Orange sky

At day’s beginning

To help us enjoy

Life

And in all things remember the value of kindness and let it fall expectantly from you.

sun rise

 

Lent, Is it For You? Is it Biblical?

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The practice of lent goes back to the 4th century, 325 actually, so no, it is not mentioned in the bible…but…(don’t you just love(sarcastically) a but when someone seems to agree with you and then turns a corner)…the practices spoken of with lent are scriptural, just not called lent. Lent is the 40 days prior to Easter. Why 40 days? It symbolizes Jesus fasting in the desert to prepare him for saving us. So now people associate lent with fasting from food.

From what I can surmise, in 325, Emperor Constantine and the Nicaea Church held the first Church council and created the Nicene Christian Traditions which is based on Christian ideology. And Lent was part of those traditions. In the 5th century the church ideology split, then it split again in the 11th century with the catholic church, then again in the 16th century with the Protestant reformation. I say all that historical gibberish to show how different we all do God, Jesus and church. It doesn’t make us right or wrong in how we do it as long as we truly follow scripture. To me you can boil down religion into two questions – Who Is God & Jesus to you and what are you going to do with that belief and information. The way you prioritize that information is the reflection of your heart.

If you look at lent’s true purpose, it is an inward reflection of your Christian ways. What am I doing that has become 1st in my life instead of Christ being 1st in my life. The second chapter of Joel explains how desperate the Israelites were. They had turned from God (which is a repeat pattern even with us today) and God allowed them to suffer to try to get their attention. A plague of locust has destroyed everything and they were literally starving. Vs. 12-13 says Even now, declare the LORD, return to me with all of your heart…Rend your hearts and return to the Lord your God.

Lent is a 40 day true inward reflection with fasting to get you back on track with God and Jesus. It does not have to be a food fast. It can be anything that you do a lot and when you reach for that food, item of entertainment or whatever you chose to fast from and it is temporarily gone, your focus can then turn to God and why you chose that item to fast from for 40 days. And hard inward reflection. Me, I am choosing emotional fasting from the list below. I have tried food fasting but with health issues, its just not practical – I am watching the clock too much and missing the whole point of why I am fasting.

The biggest thing I need to turn from with inward reflection comes from my mouth. I found a list online from a pastor and I revised it to better fit me and what I want my goals to be so that I can be a better reflection of Christ.

Lent

Ash Wednesday is the first day of Lent. Its official name is ‘Day of Ashes’ so called because of the practice of rubbing ashes on one’s forehead in the form of a cross.

Jesus prepared for his mission of saving us by spending 40 days of fasting in the desert. Let us honor Him by fasting for 40 days in preparation for Easter by giving up all forms of negativity and turn our hearts toward the love of Christ by reflecting His positive beauty of hope.

  • Fast from hurtful words and strive to always be Kind
  • Fast from sadness and be filled Gratitude and Joy
  • Fast from anger and be filled with Patience and Gentleness
  • Fast from pessimism and be filled with Optimism and Hope
  • Fast from worries and trust in God
  • Fast from speaking and focus on Listening
  • Fast from stress and be filled with Prayer
  • Fast from selfishness and be filled with Generosity

So even though my church does not practice lent, that does not mean I can not have an inward look at how I am showing my Christian beliefs and see if I need some fine tuning. We should always look for ways of improving our spiritual selves. The practice of ashes on the forehead in the form of a cross reflects of the bible speaking of from dust we are made and to dust we will return. That is a message of truth for our bodies…BUT..our hearts, our mind and our souls – that’s what we have to rento God because that is what lives forever to those who love God.

And the first item on the list is Be Kind…

kind Eph

 

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Yard

Jansen Photo’s challenge this week is YARD . As he says, this gives you plenty of opportunity to take this into many directions, as it can be a length, the yard, in which children play, or the train yard… and many more meanings! Let your minds take it into the direction that you want and share your ideas.

Since this Yard is located at the end of my street, that was my choice of yard.

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Graveyard

Rest quietly

Gray of winter

Waiting for the call

Home

 

With the certainty of death, which is where we all will go at one point, remember to share kindness while you are still here. Be that ONE…

Kind One

Calm Before the Storm

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The beauty and gnarly curves of tree limbs has always been a fascination to me. When I was younger I tried to draw them but my skills were weak at best. Today is a freak of nature day by being 58 degrees on the 23rd of February. This is a spoiler day as people are out walking and enjoying the marvelous temps outside. And of course the dogs are going nuts seeing all the activity. But…

“Have no fear” says old man winter “I am still near”!!

Starting now and continuing through to Wednesday the temps will steadily drop down in the low teens, more typical of this time of year. Combined with the temp drop, a slow moving storm front is planning on coming through and dropping an expected 12+ inches of snow on top of possible ice. While we have had the average amount of snow this winter, it has been in acceptable amounts of 1-2 inches each time, not the mass dumping we are expecting. Oh, well. It will give me the chance to get back to some writing here. I have been so busy getting book #2 off to the publisher, I have not had the chance to play with the impromptu writing I have come to enjoy in blogging.

So I wish you all a safe last attempt of old man winter – we all know the ground hog lied – but soon spring will show its beautiful colors and new life. So until next time, I wish you peace and remind you as always to be kind. Kindness is a true reflection of our inner beings.

Kindness reflection

come. 

Fandango’s Friday Flashback

Fandango asks   “Why don’t you reach back into your own archives and highlight a post that you wrote on this very date in a previous year?”

I have many photographers I follow and Irene is one of my favorites. She posted this picture, then I posted it again and wrote a poem about it. I actually had two posts on this day but this one got the most likes so I hope you also enjoy it or remember it.

Fun With Poetry

As I play with my blog, I enjoy what others say, write and photograph. Today I saw a photograph that so inspired me that I thought again I would write about it. I have done this in the past and it is relaxing to me. After the wonderful day of 48 degrees (before it plummets back to single digits) I was able to get out and enjoy the sun so I think more fun is good thing to do. Irene of Heaven’s Sunshine takes lovely and fun pictures of nature and things around nature and today she posted a Leafy Heart. Do drop by her blog and enjoy her photographs. So below are my words to go with Irene’s Leafy Heart.

Leafy Heart
The Leafy Heart / The Autumn Leaf

The Autumn Leaf

The audible sigh of the leaf in fall as it begins to die

 Drops slowly from trees above like tears when you cry

We wait for them all winter as they quietly rest and sleep

Popping out at spring and stretching to soak up warmth so deep

As summer comes in to brighten their worth, they create abundant shade

For we sit and rest under them and block the heat that is made.

As changing season turns again once more to cooler fall

The leaves display their dying hues that are admired by one and all

The leaf hangs tight to its dear life as long as it possibly can

But winds of fall will toss them down to be crushed by steps of man

As other lives rush over them when preparing their own winter deeds

A spider crawls around them to see if there is anything he needs

But alas he leaves as nothing was found for him of the leaf to give

And he heads towards home and other things in hopes of his life to live.

                  -Anita Neal-

 

And always in closing I remind all of the extraordinary value of kindness and how if we can share that kindness with others, even when we don’t feel like it,  that may be the only kindness shared with that one person on that day.

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