Friday, November 24, 2006


When I saw the calendar page for November 23, the saying made me think. ---- “Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving. -- W.T. Purkiser ---- I hope that today, you remember the blessing you have received and that you use those blessings wisely.

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good. His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the God of gods. His love endures forever.
Give thanks to the Lord of lords: His love endures forever.
to him who alone does great wonders, His love endures forever.
who by his understand made the heavens, His love endures forever.
who spread out the earth upon the waters, His love endures forever.
who made the great lights -- His love endures forever.
the sun to govern the day, His love endures forever.
the moon and stars to govern the night; His love endures forever.
Psalm 136:1-9


Oh, how time flies, except for the drive home from Rochester one night. On that drive, the time was just perfect. Grandson Nathan, who was four at the time, rode with me to attend a pre-school graduation. We heard the songs and saw Joshua, a five-year-old grandson, move his tassel. At least he could find his. Some had flipped their tassel from side to side so often that it had ended up on the back of the cap. We continued the celebration with cake. Then we headed home – on the back roads.

The ride over had been fun. We talked about rivers and about corn being planted. We talked about how to behave at the church. Yes, the ride over was fun, but the ride home was one wonder after another.

Around one corner, we saw a large lake and talked about water lilies. Then we saw wild geese and their babies. Since no one was behind us, we stopped and watched. What fun to see new life. All fluffy and going in all directions with mom trying to keep up. If that was not enough excitement for one drive, we saw some horses and their colts. Again, we stopped and watched. One colt came over to the fence to check us out. Maybe we were the ones being watched. The talk here involved how the colts were fed and how each was marked differently. We moved on, but again had to stop. This time to watch the deer. They just stood at the side of the road for us to admire. The conversation here? None. I had put the window down so Nathan could see better and he informed me that we needed to be quiet so as not to scare them. Finally, we had to move on. The wonders had not ended though. The sky was on fire. The sun was setting and Nathan kept looking over his shoulder saying, “Look now grandma.”

On this journey, I learned this four year old is never quiet. This is not a new revelation and he has a three-year-old cousin that is the same way. But confined in the car, I listened to him better. What did I hear? I heard the joy of seeing something new. I heard the excitement of watching a colt. I heard the quiet of nature. I learned that time does not have to fly by.


It is Thanksgiving. What are you thankful for? If you are reading this in the evening, did you find any wonders today? Was the sky on fire as the sun rose or set? Did you see a very bright star? Or a new colt? If you are reading this in the morning, where will you look for wonders to appear? Keep your eyes and mind open.


Dear God, I do know you have put many amazing wonders in this world for me to find. I want to see them. I want to feel the sun on my face and feel the breeze cool me. I want to wiggle my toes in the mud and watch a butterfly. Today I saw ………………………………… Amen

Friday, November 17, 2006



Now a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”

“Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, obey the commandments.”

“Which ones?” the man inquired.

Jesus replied, “Do not murder, do not commit adultery, do not steal, do not give false testimony, honor your father and mother, and ‘love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”

“All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?”

Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth.

Matthew 19:16-22


One night our granddaughter, Kailyn, and our grandson, Matthew, were staying overnight. They had fun all afternoon, as only cousins can. They enjoyed crazy pancakes for supper, took their baths and were ready for bed. Off to bed they went. Hugs, kisses and lights out. As Bill and I sat in our easy chairs, we could hear them laughing. I would have been very disappointed if they had been quiet and gone right to sleep, but I was not prepared for them to come downstairs.

Matthew was in the lead and asked - with a straight face - "Did you mean for us to stay in bed?" "Yes," I answered. "Should we go back to bed?" "Yes," I answered again. Off they went, back to bed.

How often do we treat God this way? God gives us an answer and then we ask, "Do you really mean --
-- for me to treat all the people nice? Even the ones I disagree with?"
-- for me to give a tithe for your work?"
-- for me to sit in the pew next to the teenager with orange hair?"


How often do you pray and than ask God to come up with an answer you like better? When have you tried to negotiate with God?


Dear God, Am I like the rich man? Do I pray for answers and then walk away. Why am I so afraid to trust your wisdom? Why do I continue to think I know best? Show me the way. Today, Lord, let me listen to you. Let me trust you as you guide me to ………………………………… Amen

Friday, November 10, 2006



And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life.
Genesis 9:12 - 15


We have worked for years, managing the farmland owned by Starr Commonwealth, a Children’s Charity in Michigan and Ohio. What started as a job became a passion. We admire and support what they do for troubled youth and the lives they have touched for 90 years. Each year they have a Founders Day that features a guest speaker. We were fortunate to hear Maya Angelou. Dr. Angelou is a fantastic speaker with a voice that draws you into the soul of what she is saying.

Dr. Angelou sang, recited poetry, but mostly encouraged us to be “rainbows.” She explained that the stars and sun and moon are great, but it’s the rainbow that breaks through the clouds. We then heard about the rainbows in her life: Her grandmother took her in when her parents divorced, an uncle taught her to learn and a teacher gave her direction. We heard why she quit speaking, for five years, and how her grandmother, again encouraged her. Rainbows are the rays of hope that come after the clouds. She then challenged us to become rainbows. Rainbows to all who have clouds in their lives.

This all got me to thinking. You can be a rainbow in someone’s life. You can also be an anchor, a harbor, a breeze, a challenge and a path.

Are you an anchor? Sometimes you are the one thing a friend or loved one can hold onto. Are you a harbor? When clouds come and someone is adrift in doubt, or in fear, or in loneliness, you can be their safe harbor.

Are you a breeze? Sometimes you just say one word, or one prayer, or even one smile, a quick, almost un-noticed gesture, like a breeze felt on a cheek, but that word, or prayer or smile is just what is needed.

Are you a challenge? Just a word, deed or insight might challenge someone to be better than they think they can be.

Are you a path? You may be the path that shows someone the way home, the way back to their family and friends or the way to God.

Be a rainbow. Be an anchor. Be a harbor. Be a breeze. Be a challenge. Be a path.


Who has been a rainbow, an anchor, a harbor, a breeze, a challenge or a path to you? Who have you helped by being their rainbow or anchor or harbor or breeze or challenge or path?


Hello God, You have sent so many people into my life. Just the right person was there to help when I was making decisions. Others gave me encouragement and challenged me to grow in my faith. Show me how to be a rainbow, an anchor, a harbor, a breeze, a challenge and a path to others. Let me always appreciate those that help me and open my eyes and heart to those I can help. Today I thank you for ………………………………… Amen

Friday, November 03, 2006



“No one lights a lamp and puts it in a place where it will be hidden, or under a bowl. Instead he puts it on its stand, so that those who come in may see the light. Your eye is the lamp of your body. When your eyes are good, your whole body also is full of light. But when they are bad, your body also is full of darkness. See to it, then, that the light within you is not darkness. Therefore, if your whole body is full of light and no part of it dark, it will be completely lighted, as when the light of a lamp shines on you.”

Luke 11:33-36


It was time to redecorate. Our old farmhouse needed a makeover. During the makeover, we had a near disaster. They were going to sand the woodwork so I wrapped boxes in trash bags. I put covers over everything. I even covered everything in the family room where they were not going to sand. I laid the lamps on the couch and covered the couch with a tarp. I covered the chair. The TV. The tables. It was all protected. They sanded and by the end of the day, there was a layer of dust everywhere. It was then time to clean up.

Bill and I started in the family room. I was cleaning the TV and Bill was getting ready to clean a filter. Then a light came on and Bill said, “Look, the lamp came on under the tarp.” I looked and went back to dusting. I had forgotten to unplug the lamp and had forgotten the lamp would come on automatically.

Now, wouldn’t you think that two, reasonably intelligent adults would think – lamp, couch, tarp, not good? No – we looked and went right on working. The next thing Bill said was, “The couch is on fire.”

The fire was quickly put out and we said a thank you prayer. But it made me realize how one small, seemingly unimportant action could have cost me so much. A lamp left on, a home could have been lost. I am not going to cover up any more lamps without unplugging them first. I want to protect our home.

When I thought about the scripture for this, I had to laugh. The Bible tells us not to cover the light.

A covered lamp was dangerous, but how much more dangerous is it to cover the light of Jesus in our lives? One word spoken in anger can leave a scar that never heals, but just a smile or the touch of a hand can give comfort. One negative comment can stop a dream, but listening, helping and guiding can motivate a person to reach their mountaintop.


What about you? What one small, seemingly unimportant action are you going to change? What in your life, do you want to protect?


Dear Lord, Please surround and protect my family and home. Let my actions be wise and not foolish. Let me use words of praise and encouragement. Let my hands be soft as they touch others. Let me realize each word I say and each deed I do reflects you. Let your light shine through me so that ………………………………… Amen