Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Your Angel

Once upon a time there was a child ready to be born. So one day he asked God: "They tell me you are sending me to earth tomorrow but how am I going to live there being so small and helpless?"

God replied, "Among the many angels, I chose one for you. She will be waiting for you and will take care of you."

"But tell me, here in Heaven, I don't do anything else but sing and smile, that's enough for me to be happy."

"Your angel will sing for you and will also smile for you every day. And you will feel your angel's love and be happy."

"And how am I going to be able to understand when people talk to me, if I don't know the language that men talk?"

"Your angel will tell you the most beautiful and sweet words you will ever hear, and with much patience and care, your angel will teach you how to speak."

"And what am I going to do when I want to talk to you?"

"Your angel will place your hands together and will teach you how to pray."

"I've heard that on earth there are bad men. Who will protect me?"

"Your angel will defend you even if it means risking its life."

"But I will always be sad because I will not see you anymore."

"Your angel will always talk to you about me and will teach you the way for you to come back to me, even though I will always be next to you."

At that moment there was much peace in Heaven, but voices from earth could already be heard, and the child in a hurry asked softly:

"Oh God, if I am about to leave now, please tell me my angel's name."

"Your angel's name is of no importance, but you will call your angel this: Mommy."

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Because that’s all that I could do,

Today I said a prayer for you.

I thought about when Jesus came

And cured all those who called His name;

And wished that He were here today

To also cure you in that way.

If you could only touch His hand

Or just His robe, He’d understand.

If Jesus were with us alive

And if you saw Him, you would thrive;

But Jesus returned to His home above

Where He sits with God and always loves,

So if He decides not to cure you here,

Perhaps it’s because He wants you near;

So dear friend I pray you will be well,

Either here or there—Only God can tell—

But either way, this prayer’s for you,

Whatever our Lord decides to do.

Lord, take care of my friend. In the name of Lord Jesus, I pray.  Amen

B. Killebrew

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Tuesday, 22 May 2012

The Power of One

How powerful can One be? Check this out :)

One song can spark a moment
One flower can wake the dream
One tree can start a forest
One bird can herald spring
One smile begins a friendship
One handclasp lifts a soul
One star can guide a ship at sea
One word can frame the goal
One vote can change a nation
One sunbeam lights a room
One candle wipes out darkness
One laugh will conquer gloom
One step must start each journey
One word must start a prayer
One hope will raise our spirits
One touch can show you care
One voice can speak with wisdom
One heart can know what is true
One Life can make a difference

Thursday, 17 May 2012

You Still Have Hope

If you can look at the sunset and smile,
then you still have hope.

If you can find beauty in the colors of a small flower,
then you still have hope.

If you can find pleasure in the movement of a butterfly,
then you still have hope.

If the smile of a child can still warm your heart,
then you still have hope.

If you can see the good in other people,
then you still have hope.

If the rain breaking on a roof top can still lull you to sleep,
then you still have hope.

If the sight of a rainbow still makes you stop and stare in wonder,
then you still have hope.

If the soft fur of a favored pet still feels pleasant under your fingertips,
then you still have hope.

If you meet new people with a trace of excitement and optimism,
then you still have hope.

If you give people the benefit of a doubt,
then you still have hope.

If you still offer your hand in friendship to others that have touched your life,
then you still have hope.

If receiving an unexpected card
or letter still brings a pleasant surprise,
then you still have hope.

If the suffering of others still fills your with pain and frustration,
then you still have hope.

If you refuse to let a friendship die,
or accept that it must end,
then you still have hope.

If you look forward to a time or place of quiet and reflection,
then you still have hope.

If you still buy the ornaments,
put up the Christmas tree or cook the supper,
then you still have hope.

If you can look to the past and smile,
then you still have hope.

If, when faced with the bad,
when told everything is futile,
you can still look up and end the conversation with the phrase..."yeah...BUT.,"
then you still have hope.

Hope is such a marvelous thing.
It bends, it twists, it sometimes hides,
but rarely does it break.
It sustains us when nothing else can.
It gives us reason to continue and courage to move ahead,
when we tell ourselves we'd rather give in.

Hope puts a smile on our face
when the heart cannot manage.

Hope puts our feet on the path
when our eyes cannot see it.

Hope moves us to act
when our souls are confused of the direction.

Hope is a wonderful thing,
something to be cherished and nurtured,
and something that will refresh us in return.
And it can be found in each of us,
and it can bring light into the darkest of places.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Judge Me by the Footprints I Leave Behind

A story is told about a soldier who was finally coming home after having fought in Vietnam.

He called his parents from San Francisco.

“Mom and Dad, I’m coming home, but I’ve got a favor to ask. I have a friend I’d like to bring with me.”

“Sure,” they replied, “we’d love to meet him.”

“There’s something you should know the son continued, “he was hurt pretty badly in the fighting. He stepped on a land mined and lost an arm and a leg. He has nowhere else to go, and I want him to come live with us.”

“I’m sorry to hear that, son. Maybe we can help him find somewhere to live.”

“No, Mom and Dad, I want him to live with us.”

“Son,” said the father, “you don’t know what you’re asking. Someone with such a handicap would be a terrible burden on us. We have our own lives to live, and we can’t let something like this interfere with our lives. I think you should just come home and forget about this guy. He’ll find a way to live on his own.”

At that point, the son hung up the phone. The parents heard nothing more from him.

A few days later, however, they received a call from the San Francisco police. Their son had died after falling from a building, they were told. The police believed it was suicide. The grief-stricken parents flew to San Francisco and were taken to the city morgue to identify the body of their son. They recognized him, but to their horror they also discovered something they didn’t know, their son had only one arm and one leg.

The parents in this story are like many of us. We find it easy to love those who are good-looking or fun to have around, but we don’t like people who inconvenience us or make us feel uncomfortable. We would rather stay away from people who aren’t as healthy, beautiful, or smart as we are.

Thankfully, there’s someone who won’t treat us that way. Someone who loves us with an unconditional love that welcomes us into the forever family, regardless of how messed up we are.

Tonight, before you tuck yourself in for the night, say a little prayer that God will give you the strength you need to accept people as they are, and to help us all be more understanding of those who are different from us!!!

There’s a miracle called -Friendship- that dwells in the heart. You don’t know how it happens or when it gets started. But you know the special lift It always brings and you realize that Friendship Is God’s most precious gift!

Friends are a very rare jewel, indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed. They lend an ear, they share a word of praise, and they always want to open their hearts to us.

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Saturday, 12 May 2012

A Bouquet for Mother

This puts it all into perspective. Happy Mother's Day.

A man stopped at a flower shop to order some flowers to be wired to his mother who lived two hundred miles away.

As he got out of his car he noticed a young girl sitting on the curb sobbing.

He asked her what was wrong and she replied, "I wanted to buy a red rose for my mother. But I only have seventy-five cents, and a rose costs two dollars."

The man smiled and said, "Come on in with me. I'll buy you a rose."

He bought the little girl her rose and ordered his own mother's flowers.

As they were leaving he offered the girl a ride home. She said, "Yes, please! You can take me to my mother."

She directed him to a cemetery, where she placed the rose on a freshly dug grave.

The man returned to the flower shop, canceled the wire order, picked up a bouquet and drove the two hundred miles to his mother's house.


Thursday, 10 May 2012

The Wemmick Story

This is a long story, but it's a beautiful analogy about our lives here on Earth and the relationship we should have with God.

The Wemmicks were small wooden people. These little wooden people were carved by a woodworker named "Eli." Eli's workshop sat on a hill overlooking the Wemmick Village. Every one of the Wemmicks were different. Some had big noses, others had large eyes. Some were tall and others were short. Some wore hats, others wore coats. But all were made by the same carver and all lived in the same village.

All day long, every day, the Wemmicks did the same thing. They gave each other stickers. Each Wemmick had a box of golden star stickers and a box of dull gray dot stickers. Up and down the streets all over the city, people could be seen sticking gold stars or gray dots onto each other. The pretty ones, those with smooth wood and fine paint, always got shiny gold stars! But if the wood was rough or the paint was chipped, the Wemmicks gave dull gray dots. The talented ones got stars, too. Some could lift big sticks high above their heads or jump over tall boxes. Still others knew big words or could sing very pretty songs. Everyone gave them shiny gold stars! Some Wemmicks had stars all over them! Every time they got a star it made them feel so good that they did something else and got another star.

There were many other Wemmicks though that could do very little. They got dull gray dots! There was one little Wemmick and his name was "Punchinello." He tried to jump high like the others, but he always fell. And when he fell, the others would gather 'round and give him dull gray dots. Sometimes when he fell, it would scar his wood, so the people would give him more gray dots. He would try to explain why he fell and, in doing so, he would say something really silly. Then the Wemmicks would give him some more dots!!!

After a while, Punchinello had so many dots that he didn't want to go outside. He was afraid he would do something dumb such as forget his hat or step in the water, and then people would give him more dull gray dots. In fact, he had so many gray dots that some people would come up and just give him one without any reason! "He deserves lots of dots," they would say. The wooden people would agree with one another. "He's not a good wooden person," they would say. After a while Punchinello believed them. "I am not a good Wemmick!" he would say. The few times he went outside, he hung around other Wemmicks who had a lot of gray dots. At least he felt better around them.

One day, Punchinello met a Wemmick who was unlike any he'd ever met. She had no dull gray dots and did not have any shiny golden stars either. She was a wooden Wemmick and her name was "Lucia." It wasn't that people didn't try to give her stickers; it's just that the stickers didn't stick to her!!! Some admired Lucia for having no dots, so they would run up and give her a star. But it would fall off. Some would look down on her for having no stars, so they would give her a dot. But they would not stick either!!!

"That's the way I want to be!" thought Punchinello. "I don't want anyone's marks!" So he asked the "stickerless" Wemmick how she did it. "It's easy," Lucia replied. "Every day I go see Eli." Punchinello asked,"Eli? Who is Eli?" She replied "Yes, Eli, He is the woodcarver. I sit in His workshop and spend time with Him." He asked Lucia,"Why do you do that?" Lucia told him, "Why don't you find out for yourself? Go up the hill and visit with Him. He's there!" And with that, the sweet little Wemmick named Lucia turned and skipped away.

"But He won't want to see me!" Punchinello cried out to her. Lucia didn't hear him, as she was too far away. So Punchinello went home. He sat near a window and watched the wooden people as they scurried around giving each other gold stars and gray dots. "It's just not right," he muttered to himself. Then he resolved to go see Eli after all. Punchinello walked up the narrow path to the top of the hill and stepped into the big Woodcarver Shop. His little wooden eyes widened at the size of everything. The stool was as tall as he was. He had to stretch on his tippy-toes to see the top of the workbench. A hammer was as long as his arm. Punchinello swallowed hard and thought to himself, "I'm not staying here!" and he turned to leave. Then he heard his name. "Punchinello?" said this voice, so deep and strong. Just then Punchinello stopped. The voice said, "Punchinello, oh how good it is of you to come! Let me have a look at you."

Punchinello slowly turned around and looked at the large bearded craftsman and said, "Sir, you know my name?" "Of course I do. I made you," Eli said. All of a sudden, Eli stooped down and picked little Punchinello up and set him on the workbench. "Hmmmmm," the Maker spoke thoughtfully as he inspected the gray circles all over him, "Looks like you've been given some bad marks." Punchinello explained,"Oh, Eli, I didn't mean to; really I didn't!!! I really tried hard not to." The Maker said, "Oh, you don't have to defend yourself to me, my child. I don't care what the other Wemmicks think." Punchinello asked, "Really? You don't?" Then Eli said, "No and you shouldn't either. Who are they to give stars or dots? They are Wemmicks just like you. What they think really doesn't matter at all, Punchinello. All that matters is what I think. And I think you are pretty special." Punchinello laughed, "Oh, me special? How can I be special? I can't walk fast. I can't jump. My paint is peeling. I make silly mistakes all the time and I am not a beautiful Wemmick like some of the others. How could I matter to you?" Eli looked at Punchinello and put his hands on those little wooden shoulders of his and spoke very slowly, "Because Punchinello... you are mine. That's why you matter to me." Punchinello had never had anyone look at him like this before or say anything so nice, much less his Maker! He didn't know what to say!

"Punchinello, every day I've been waiting and hoping you would come to see me," Eli explained. Punchinello looked up at him and said, "I came because I met a sweet Wemmick girl who had no marks." Eli said, "I know. Lucia told me about you." So Punchinello asked, "Why don't the stickers stay on Lucia?" Eli said, "Because she has decided that what I think is more important than what anyone else thinks. The stickers only stick if you let them." Punchinello looked puzzled and said, "What?" Eli said, "Yes, the stickers only stick if they matter to you. The more you trust My love, the less you will care about those stickers." But Punchinello said, "I'm not sure I really understand. What you are saying?" The maker said, "You will, but it will take some time. You've got a lot of marks. So for now, just come to see me every day and let me remind you how much I care about you." Eli lifted Punchinello off the bench and set him on the floor. "Now remember," Eli said as the Wemmick walked out the door. "You ARE special because I made you, and I don't make mistakes."

Punchinello didn't stop, but in his heart he thought, "I think He really means it." And each time he remembered what Eli told him and each time he went to visit and talk with Eli, one of Punchinello's dots would fall off. They kept falling off and soon they were all gone!!!

So like Punchinello, we must remember one thing: "Man looks on the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart." (I Samuel 16:7)

Thursday, 3 May 2012

Not fit for the job…

There is probably no job so difficult as caring for other people’s children.  I know it was the most difficult job I ever had and I wasn’t very good at it.  Actually, I wasn’t very good to other people’s children. I was good with my own, to the best of my memory, I just didn’t have much patience with other children, who sometimes sassed me, thought their mother knew better than I and messed up my house.

I was young then and had lots of energy but little wisdom.  Now that I’m old, I am easily able to fall in love with children, whether they are my own grandchildren or the children of a total stranger.  Of course, now I don’t have the energy to ever take on a babysitting job although I continue to work daily at my office job. That’s because babysitting is hard work physically and can be emotionally draining.  But even if you’re young, strong and basically nice, if you don’t have patience, you aren’t fit for the job.  I wasn’t patient back when I was a babysitter for other people.  I was a young mother at home with my own child and needed to make some money.  Therein that lies the problem.  When a mother goes out to work, the people she has care for her children are too often those who are least equipped to do so.

Needing money and being willing to take children into your home to care for them is no guarantee that you will give those children the love and acceptance they need.  You may be a nice person when you’re on public display, but you may scold like a fishwife if some little person puts jam covered hands all over your new curtains.  I know I did.  And I’m ashamed that I did.

Once I had the nicest little boy stay with me.  My son was about a year and a half old.  My little paying guest was a couple of years older and he was very bright.  He talked my arm off, and every day he wore me down with trying to keep up with his inquisitiveness.  Inevitably he would do something that would make me snap.  I would scold him nastily and later be ashamed.

I am still ashamed of that behavior.

I think his mother finally figured out that I was not as good to her son as I should have been, because eventually she made other arrangements.  I’m glad she did. I hope I didn’t seriously damage the psyche of that wonderful little guy whom I now recall with amazement.  He was truly a bright, wonderful child.  I was truly a flawed babysitter.

I think I’m a better person now, but I can’t undo my early life when I was given responsibility for which I was unfit.  All I can do now is ask God to forgive me for my harshness and ask Him to bless that brilliant little boy, now a middle-aged man, wherever he may now be and for as long as he may live.

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Tuesday, 1 May 2012

The Real Meaning of Peace

Here's an inspiring tale that helps us better understand the true meaning of peace.

There once was a King who offered a prize to the artist who would paint the best picture of peace. Many artists tried. The King looked at all the pictures, but there were only two he really liked and he had to choose between them.

One picture was of a calm lake. The lake was a perfect mirror, for peaceful towering mountains were all around it. Overhead was a blue sky with fluffy white clouds. All who saw this picture thought that it was a perfect picture of peace.

The other picture had mountains too. But these were rugged and bare. Above was an angry sky from which rain fell and in which lightening played. Down the side of the mountain tumbled a foaming waterfall. This did not look peaceful at all. But when the King looked, he saw behind the waterfall a tiny bush growing in a crack in the rock. In the bush a mother bird had built her nest. There, in the midst of the rush of angry water, sat the mother bird on her nest... perfect peace.

Which picture do you think won the prize?

The King chose the second picture. "Because,"explained the King, "peace does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble, or hard work. Peace means to be in the midst of all those things and still be calm in your heart. That is the real meaning of peace."
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