Sunday, September 30, 2012

Day 269, September 30

A few weeks ago, I wrote about life's  Plan Bs.  A dear friend shared this poem with me which says it so much better than I could ever attempt to:
Life is All About How you Handle Plan B


Plan A is always my first choice.
You know, the one where
Everything works out to be
Happily ever-after.
But more often than not,
I find myself dealing with
The upside-down, inside-out version --
Where nothing goes as it should.
It's at this point that the real
Test of my character comes in…
Do I sink, or do I swim?
Do I wallow in self-pity and play the victim,
Or simply shift gears
And make the best of the situation?
The choice is all mine...
Life is all about how you handle Plan B.

— Suzy Toronto
(The Sacred Sisterhood of Wonderful Wacky Women)

This I know for sure:  the Lord's  hand is in all our plans, should we choose to acknowledge it.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Day 268, September 29

It is the simple ways and places in which we encounter God that have the most profound impact. --Shane Standford
 
How do we encounter God? We will probably not find Him in grand buildings or while doing grand acts.  And, really, how many of us spend much time in grand buildings and doing grand acts?
 
We find Him in humble places while performing simple acts of service.  (Was not Christ born in a stable?)  I find Him in prayer, while on my knees.  I sometimes (not always) find Him while writing this blog.  I find Him in listening to the Primary children sing.  I find Him when I am helping a friend.
 
These activities usually require quietness on my part.  They require a willingness to listen.  They require humility.  When I give these things, I feel His presence.
 
This I know for sure: God will not be found while we worship the things of this world.   

Friday, September 28, 2012

Day 267, September 28

The Great Gatsby:   “Life starts all over again when it gets crisp in the fall.”  

Many people think that spring is the season of renewal, and in many ways, it is.  The earth turns green again after the starkness of winter.  However, I have always preferred fall.  I love the colors, the air, the sense of purpose when crops are harvested.

And perhaps that is the real reason behind my love affair with this season, the reminder of the harvest.  As I grow older (and older), the law of the harvest has taken on greater meaning.  The Bible teaches us that which we sow, we shall also reap.

We see that in our bodies:  a lifetime of poor eating and lack of exercise comes back to haunt those of us who neglected our health.  We see it in our relationships:  stinginess in words and deed results in loneliness and regret.  Similarly, good habits and kindness are rewarded with health and tender, loving relationships.

This I know for sure:  the law of the harvest cannot and will not be denied.




Thursday, September 27, 2012

Day 266, September 27

"The 'bigger plan' is that God has gifted us to care and to be cared for within the framework of brothers and sisters, who all have their own passions, yearnings, and gifts for making a difference in the world. No one can be enough, but together, we will be more than sufficient."--Shane Stanford
 
I love the idea that we are to care and be cared for by our "brothers and sisers."  In the Mormon Church, we refer to each other as "Brother" and "Sister."   Family is not created by blood alone; it is also created by the acts, both small and large, that we give and receive, those bonds forged by love. 

When we add our passions, our yearnings, our gifts for making a difference in the world to those of our family members, whoever they are, we are building an army of righteousness.

This I know for sure:  God's bigger plan is that we work together for a greater good.



 
 
 

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Day 265, September 26

You may have noticed that several themes keep popping up in this blog.  One of those is entitlement.  I have little patience and even less sympathy for those who believe the world--or anyone else--owes them a living. 

Our society is filled with these people.  They whine about what they don't have.  They moan that they shouldn't have to work because they are "victims."  They groan that they have a right to be supported by others.

Let me tell you about my Grandmother McBride.  When she married my grandfather, a widower, she took on the care of his three children.  Six more children quickly followed.  During this time, my grandparents worked a small farm in Pima, Arizona.  Times were hard.  Water was scarce, money even more so.  What little income they had went to buy shoes for the children (so that they could go to school) and a little white sugar, for bottling fruits.

Despite their modest means, they always paid their tithes and offerings.  When my grandfather died during the height of the Great Depression, Grandma was left alone, with the last six children still at home.  She didn't complain.  Instead, she got to work.  She made sure her children attended school, went to church, and obeyed the Lord.

Grandma lost two sons during World War II, yet she kept going and eventually served a mission for her church.   Her life was devoted to serving others, not to being served.   She would not have recognized the word "entitlement," would have been baffled by the very concept.

This I know for sure:  the world has no need for those who wear the entitlement banner. 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Day 264, September 25

One of my favorite hymns is titled "Lord, I Would Follow Thee."

The fourth verse, in particular, touches my heart:

Savior, may I love my brother
As I know thou lovest me,
Find in thee my strength, my beacon,
For thy servant I would be.
Savior, may I love my brother--
Lord, I would follow thee.

"My strength, my beacon ..."  I love the use of the word "beacon."  A beacon is a stream of light, a touchstone upon which we can count.

This I know for sure:  the Lord is my beacon.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Day 263, September 24

"What if we realize that we can't do everything, and so we decide that we will focus our particular 'something' that God has given us to do, to be, or to accomplish. When everyone is focused on his or her something, then anything is possible. Not because we have it all under control, but because God's plan is now working".--Shane Stanford
 
Too often, when confronted with a problem, I talk myself out of doing something because I know I can't do everything that is needed.  A case in point:   a family in our ward (congregation) was going through an extremely difficult time.  I couldn't solve the problems they faced, couldn't really do anything that was going to be meaningful, so I did nothing.  
 
That was more than wrong; it was selfish and weak. 
 
When I realized that I could have made a difference, however small, in their lives, I resolved not to stand back and wring my hands.  Instead, I offered what help I could.   What if each of us, even knowing that we can't do everything, did something?  What a beautiful world we could build.  
 
This I know for sure: I will never be able to do everything, but I can do something.  

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Day 262, September 23

Have you noticed all the self-help books that are out there?  As you have surmised, I read.  Everything.  So when I find a book that promises to help me be better, to do better, I devour it.  The problem is, these books fail to address what I truly need ... and that is the humility to turn my life over to Christ and allow Him to change it.  To change me.

In eternal matters, I am still a toddler, saying to my Heavenly Parent, "Do it myself.  All by myself."

And like a loving parent, the Lord is probably shaking His head and saying, "All right, Jane.  Go ahead and do it yourself. I'll be here to catch you when you fall."  Do you notice the use of the word "when," not "if?"  For I will fall.  And fail.  It's inevitable.

Finding humility is a tough proposition.  It requires wisdom.  It requires the willingness to accept my own fraililties and weaknesses and say, "I'm ready, Lord.  I'm ready to allow Thee to take over."

This I know for sure:  until I'm ready for that, I will continue to fall ... and to fail.





Saturday, September 22, 2012

Day 261, September 22

"A genuine friendship is a heavenly present.  It blesses our hearts because God's love is in it."--Evelyn McCurdy

When I count my blessings, I count  my friendships.  I have been blessed--or gifted--with wonderful friends.  Truly, they are heavenly presents from a loving Father.  Without them, I would be beyond lost.  I would be bereft.

Who are these heavenly presents?  There is my sister, Carla.  And my daughters, Alanna and Ann.  There are Amanda and Mary and Grace.  There are Jeannie and Janet and Joan and yet another Jeannie.  There are Myrna and Marlene, Maggie and Margie, Marian and Marilyn.  There are Laurie and Laurie, Tami and Holly, Phyllis and Natalie and Jackie and Laura.  And Barbara and Deliese and a host of others.

Many of us have already started our Christmas shopping.  My grandchildren are even now making up their Christmas lists.  To paraphrase a popular holiday carol, "All I want for Christmas is ... my friends."

This I know for sure:  friends are truly "pearls of great price."

Friday, September 21, 2012

Day 260, September 21

Last Sunday, our bishop (minister) gave a beautiful talk on becoming.  I love that word.  It implies a journey, rather than a destination.  Among other things, he spoke on becoming righteous.  One quote in particular stuck with me:  "Righteousness is not merely the absence of sin but the presence of goodness."

Sometimes, in my mortal, immature mind, I believe myself to be righteous.  After all, I do not do the things proscribed by our church.  I don't partake of alcohol, tobacco, or illegal drugs.  Does abstaining from those things make me righteous?  No.  They may help me be healtheir, but absention from them does not make me righteous.

As our wise bishop said, "True righteousness is the presence of goodness." 

And so, I have to ask myself, do I have the presence of goodness.  The answer:  sometimes.  And sometimes not.

Goodness is seeking the Lord's will.  Goodness is doing my best to obey His commandments.  Goodness is putting others before myself (mostly).  Goodness is finding gratitude for everything, even the things which are painful.

This I know for sure:  when I walk in the Light, I have the presence of goodness.  When I leave the Light, that goodness leaves with me.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Day 259, September 20

I'm back again with more about books.  (For those of you who are weary of hearing about books and reading, you would do well to skip this post.)

I found an excellent article entitled "Reading good, old-fashioned books can still empower society."  The author, a mother of four boys, extolled the virtues of reading, both for herself and for her sons.  Her words immediately resonated within me, for I cannot imagine a world without books, without the joy of reading and learning and traveling to wherever books take me.

She included several quotes that I'd like to share with you:

"No matter how busy you may think you are, you must find time for reading, or surrender yourself to chosen ignorance."--Confucious

"A book is the only place in which you can examine a fragile thought without breaking it, or explore an explosive idea without fear it will go off in your face.  It is one of the few havens remaining where a man's mind can get both provocation and privacy."--Edward P. Morgan

And finally.  "You don't have to burn books to destroy a culture.  Just get people to stop reading them."  Ray Bradbury

This I know for sure:  a world without books, without reading, would be a barren wasteland.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Day 258, September 19

Do you ever feel that you will never "have it all together?"  That you are always "a day late and a dollar short?"  I do.  I frequently feel that I don't measure up to what my family, my friends, and the Lord want me to do, to be. 

It is a daunting feeling.  More, it is a self-destructive one.  I'm so busy trying to find what I'm supposed to be doing, supposed to be giving, that I forget just to be me.  Maybe that's part of the reason why I suffer from depression:  I am always finding ways that I am falling short.   (And sometimes others point those ways out to me.)

The truth is, I do fall short in many of my efforts and endeavors.  I know I've let others down.  It hurts when I acknowledge that.  It hurts when I acknowledge that I've let the Lord down.

This I know for sure:  the Lord is on my side, even when I don't measure up, especially when I don't measure up.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Day 257, September 18

Every luxury must be paid for, and everything is a luxury, starting with being in this world.

Cesare Pavese

I admit it--I'm a sucker for a good article on budgeting.  Inevitably such articles make the distinction between needs and wants--or luxuries.  Some of us have become so accustomed to our luxuries that they have become needs.

The above quote reminds me that everything we have, including our very lives, are luxuries, all courtesy of a loving Father.  Do you complain, as I have, that you need a bigger house?   Do you whine about what you don't have? 

You're not alone, for most of us are subject to such moments.  When I stop and ponder, however, how much I do have, I shake my head at my lack of  gratitude.   When I am able to find the maturity and wisdom to recognize that, I understand that I have everything--and more--that I need materially?  My real need is a softer heart and a more forgiving nature.

This I know for sure:  whatever we have first belonged to the Father. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Day 256, September 17

I had an unpleasant experience the other day.  I was in line at an aluminum recycling center, waiting my turn when the car in front of me pulled out of line.  Believing that the driver had decided not to wait any longer, I pulled up.  When I saw that the driver was only turning around and had pulled back in to line, behind me, I tried to back up, to give her the space she had "vacated."  Unfortunately, that wasn't possible.

In my rearview mirror, I waved and smiled to her, trying to indicate my mistake.  She glared at me in return.   Later, as I was pulling out, I heard her remark that "some people are just rude."

It was a small thing, but I wondered how many times I have assigned rudeness as a motive when a simple mistake or misunderstanding could account for certain behavior.  It's a disconcerting thought that I may have been as quick to assign blame as this woman was.  Perhaps we should all give each other the benefit of a doubt.

This I know for sure:  being generous in our thoughts is as important as being generous in our actions.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Day 255, September 16

 "Do not punish me by granting that which I wish or ask."--Teresa of Avila
 
How many times have I questioned God, even railed at Him, because He did not grant what I asked?  Too many, I'm afraid.  Intellectually, I know that the Lord knows best, that He can see the end from the beginning, yet still I question His wisdom.
 
By giving me everything I ask or wish for, the Father would harm me, which He would never do.  So, wisely, He refrains from doing that, just as parents do not give their children everything they claim they want or need.
 
Why, then do I keep believing that I know best ... in anything ... when my knowledge and judgment are puny when compared to that of the Father?
 
This I know for sure  the Lord has my back.  In everything.
 
 

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Day 254, September 15

If, then, I were asked for the most important advice I could give, that which I considered to be the most useful to the men of our century, I should simply say: in the name of God, stop a moment, cease your work, look around you.

Leo Tolstoy

Do you ever find yourself so busy, so focused on what is next on your to-do list, that you forget to look around you?  I am fortunate enough to live in Colorado, where fall is particularly wondrous.  Leaves take on the vibrant colors of autumn--scarlet and saffron, amber and sage.  The air is green apple crisp, the sky a brilliant bowl of blue.  How many times, though, do I truly look ... and appreciate the beauty the Lord has provided?

I wish I could say that I immerse myself in this beauty on a daily basis.  But my mind is elsewhere, worrying over things that don't deserve to be worried about, fretting over a perceived slight, gnawing on a family problem that won't go away.  Even on my walks, I fail to appreciate the perfection of a September day.

This I know for sure: our world was created for us by a loving Father. 



Friday, September 14, 2012

Day 253, September 14

When we measure success, we tend to fall in to the trap of  measuring worldly achievement.  Writers talk about how many books they publish (I plead guilty).  Businessmen talk in terms of how much product they sell.  Politicians talk of what offices they have held.  These are (usually) fine units of measure. 

However, these units give no mention of how many lives an individual has touched, how many kindnesses he extended, how many words of encouragement he offered.

I had cause to think of this at a funeral I attended not too long ago.  There was no mention of what bank account the individual left, what positions he had held in his profession, his community, or his church.  Instead, there were tender words of how much he gave, how much he listened, how much he loved.

This I know for sure:  worldly success is just that.  True success is found in the approbation of our Father.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Day 252, September 13

A small cathedral outside Bethlehem marks the supposed birthplace of Jesus. Behind a high altar in the church is a cave, a little cavern lit by silver lamps. You can enter the main edifice and admire the ancient church. You can also enter the quiet cave where a star embedded in the floor recognized the birth of the King. There is one stipulation, however. You have to stoop. The door is so low you can't go in standing up. The same is true of the Christ. You can see the world standing tall, but to witness the Savior, you have to get on your knees.--Max Lucado
 
Don't you love these words?  The truth in them resounds beyond their humbleness.
 
Every morning, every evening, and many times in between, I pray.  Sometimes though prayers are uttered while I am not on my knees literally, but always, always, I am on my knees in spirit, as I supplicate the Father for His mercies and blessings, and, I'm afraid, less often, as I thanki Him for those same mercies and blessings.
 
The Lord Himself was frequently found on His knees, while He washed His apostles feet, as He knelt to offer a blessing upon a sick individual, as He prayed in the Garden.
 
This I know for sure:  when we are on our knees in prayer, we never stand so tall.
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Day 251, September 12

If you would tell me the heart of a man, tell me not what he reads, but what he rereads.

Fran├žois Mauriac

Here I am again, with another post about reading.  Or, in this case, rereading.  My bookshelves are filled with "keepers."  These are the books I can't part with, the ones I turn to again and again.  These are the books that buoy me up when I am down, that bring laughter to my lips and tears to my eyes.  These are the books of my heart.

What books do you read and then reread?  Think of them and you will probably find insights in to your own character.

It is the same with friends.  What friends do you know you can turn to at any time, for any reason?  Friends and books just go together, don't they?  They are both indispensable to happiness.

This I know for sure:  my life would be barren without books and friends.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Day 250, September 11

The date September 11 holds a myriad of emotions for many people.  Who can forget that terrible day of infamy eleven years ago?  However, for me, it will always be my parents' anniversary.

My mother has been gone for 15 years now, my father 5 years, but I cherish their memory, cherish this date.  Unlike couples of today, my parents didn't have a splashy "white wedding." 

They married during the years of World War II, my mother in a simple yellow suit and my father dressed equally as modestly.  There were no catered refreshments, flower arrangements, bridesmaids, or groomsmen.  Shortly after their marriage, my father shipped out to serve in the Pacific Theatre.  My mother remained at home, working to support herself and build a nest egg for them.

These two young people had no sense of entitlement, indeed, would have been baffled at the word and the concept.  When my father returned to the States, he, too, started work, going to school at night to obtain a degree.   Work, and more work, were their watchwords,

Years later, after the births of my sister and myself, my parents made the trip from their home in the east to Salt Lake City, where they were sealed for time and all eternity in the Salt Lake City Temple.

This I know for sure:  my parents' union and their love for each other persists today.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Day 249, September 10

Yesterday I wrote about pitfalls of having a grateful heart, specifically expecting gratitude in return. I realize that I did not address the flip side of that and may have been perceived as saying that expressing gratitiude is not necessary. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Though the giver of a gift should give without strings, so should the recepient of a gift give back, not so much for the giver's sake, but for his own. For without the expression of gratefulness, the recepient may find himself in the untenable state of entitlement. Have you ever encountered someone who accepts any and everything with the air of "This is my due. I am entitled to it?" I have. Such a person is unpleasant to be around.

Short-cuts to gratitude are like most short-cuts in life: cheap, paltry, and meaningless.

This I know for sure: both the giver and the recipient of a gift bear responsibility.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Day 248, September 9

I recently read the book THANKS by Robert A. Emmns in which he presented carefully researched studies about gratitude and ingratitude.  In this excellently written book, the author outlined some pitfalls to gratitiude.  One such pitfall was expecting gratitude from others.

"Act with kindness, but do not expect gratitude."  Confucious

I am guilty of this pitfall.  So, I supsect, are others.  It is natural, indeed, human to want to receive gratitude for a kindness extended, a gift presented.  The trouble is, when that gratitude fails to materialize, as is frequently the case, we are left feeling cheated.  At least I am.  After all, did I not go out of my way for another, did I not share of my means?

Does this mean we should not help someone else?  Absolutely not.  To do so would be to deny that part of us which is divine, that part which strives to emulate the Father.  What it does suggest is that we re-examine our motives for offering help.  Do we do it out of a desire to serve or do we do it out of a need for gratitude? 

This I know for sure:  the desire to help another, to lift another, is worthy and noble and should not be tied with strings.



Saturday, September 8, 2012

Day 247, September 8

"He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else."--Benjamin Franklin

I have been guilty of making excuses.  I have even made excuses for stopping this blog.  It takes too much time.  It takes too much energy.  It takes time away from other projects.  These are paltry, puny excuses.

What else have I made excuses for?  I excused those times when I was selfish and lazy.  I excused those times when I was selfish and greedy.  I excused myself all over the place.

I even have an excuse for my excuses:  "Well, everyone does it."  I don't know about everyone, but a great many individuals excuse themselves for all sorts of reasons, many like the ones above.  And what a poor excuse that is on my part.

The person who says "I have no excuse" earns my admiration.  Rarely do we hear a politician own up to anything without offering an excuse.  I don't know about you, but I am less than excited about having such a thing in common with politicians.

This I know for sure:  excuses are cheap and fool no one, especially our Savior.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Day 246, September 7

More than a month ago, my husband and I attended the funeral of a dear friend where a speaker quoted from our friend's journal.  One quote in particular stuck with me.  "What do you do when Plan A doesn't work out?"

I've thought a lot about this.  (Perhaps I've blogged about it before--my poor old mind doesn't retain things as it once did.)  Most of us have experienced Plan As that didn't work out.  Our lives took twists and turns.  We suffered setbacks and tragedies.  What separates those who thrived from those merely survived is how they handled the Plan Bs that life handed them.

I haven't done very well with my Plan Bs.  (Or Plans C, D, E, and F for that matter.)  But I keep trying.  And maybe that's the lesson from our friend: to keep trying.

This I know for sure:  God's hand is in all of our plans.  Our job is to acknowledge it.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Day 245, September 6

Sometimes we confuse gratitude with giving thanks.  Giving thanks for something is great.  We should all do more of it. Gratitude, however, comes from a deeper place within.  It comes from knowing that our life stories could well have turned out very differently if not for the Lord's grace.

Gratitude on this level requires a spiritual maturity as we work to acknowledge that we are not in charge.  The Lord is.  Always.  When we think we are in charge--of anything--we are beyond arrogant.  I imagine the Lord shaking His head at our naivete and pride.  Only when we attribute any blessing as coming from Him do we approach the gratitude He asks of us.

I struggle with this concept.  I struggle with admitting my own powerlessness to effect change in my life.  I struggle to find the humility to thank the Lord in any meaningful way for His continued blessings.

This I know for sure:  gratitude is knowing that, without the Lord, we are nothing.  And it is required of all of us.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Day 244, September 5

"Friendship isn't about those you've known the longest, but those who came and never left your side." Anonymous

I found this in an email, a caption for a picture of animals nestled together in unlikely pairings such as a canary and a cat.  The beauty and simplicity of it touched my heart on several levels.  I have long-time friends who have found their place in my life and my heart.  We may have everything in common or little in common, it doesn't matter.  What matters is that we are there for each other.

I have other friendships, much newer.   Like the long-time friends, these women have also found their place in my life and my heart.  And they are also there for me, as I try to be for them.

Frieinds lift us up when our own wings are tired of flying.  They remind us that we are valued, even when we feel that we are not.  And they give us a good kick in the pants when we start to feel sorry for ourselves.

This I know for sure:  friends are truly a "pearl of great price."

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Day 243, September 4

The Sufi mystic Hazrat Inayat Khan, who brought his spiritual teachings of "Universal Sufism" to the West in the early 1900s, said this:  "Once you have linked yourself with love, a flood of inspiration is revealed to you, whatever the subject, whatever the problem in life may be. Whatever it be that your eye casts its glance upon, it will disclose itself. Then you are on the real road, and what a joy this is!"

Have you ever wondered what your purpose in life is?  I have.  Especially in the past few years as my role of  hands-on mothering has evolved in to that of a supporting role.

When I puruse something with full heart and passion, nothing seems out of reach.  Conversely, when that heart and passion are missing, nothing is possible.  The trick is to know what pursuits merit that heart and passion.  A few weeks ago, I wrote about what happens when we find we have suscceeded in something we did not want.  Succeeding at the wrong things is perhaps worse than failing at the right ones.

This I know for sure:  that which captures our passion, good or bad, will also capture our energies and our time.  Our task is to choose wisely.


Monday, September 3, 2012

Day 242, September 3

A man's mind is stretched by a new idea or sensation, and never shrinks back to its former dimensions.

Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr.

Many years ago, when I was pregnant with my first child, a friend asked, "Why did you bother to graduate from college if you're just going to be a full-time mother?"

The question offended me on many levels.  First, there was the word "just."  There is no "just" in being a full-time mother.  Being a mother requires stamina, energy, intelligence, education, and a host of other qualities. 

Pertinent to today's blog, though, is the idea that any education, any learning, any sensation is wasted.   Every time we read something, every time we learn something, every time we think something, we stretch ourselves.  We stretch our minds, our abilitlies to understand, our vision of the world.  Would I have understood the Islamic view of gratitude, which I wrote about a few weeks ago, if I hadn't read of it in a book on gratitude?  Doubtful.  Now I have a greater appreciation for a faith which I had dismissed because of prejudice.

This I know for sure:  whatever learning and education we achieve in this life will remain with us, in this life and in the next.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Day 241, September 2

Please forgive me as I return to one of my favorite subjects ... and my favorite people.  If you guessed kindness and my Aunt Mae, you'd be correct.

I called my Aunt Mae a few mornings ago and found that she was busy writing letters and cards, as she so often does.  On that day, she was writing to a young man in prison.

"I've never met him," she said, "but I know his daddy."  (In the south, fathers are referred to as "daddies" whatever their age.)  "I don't know what put him (the boy) in prison but I know he's working to turn his life around."

I have never thought of writing to someone in prison.  Never.  I think myself good when I send a card to a friend.  I realize how puny my efforts are.

Aunt Mae went on to say that she had been shopping for men's pajamas to send to a lady whose husband was bed-ridden.   The list of her acts of kindness alone could fill this blog.

This I know for sure:  People like my aunt fill our world, but we rarely hear of their good deeds.  And that is how they want it.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Day 240, September 1

"Some things have to be believed to be seen."--Ralph Hodgson

The writer in me loves this take on a well-known adage.  It set me to thinking about how what I believe affects what I see.

What do I believe?

I believe in God the Father.
I believe in His Son, Jesus Christ.
I believe that They love me, despite my unworthiness.
I believe that They are with me, even when I do my best to turn away from Them.

What do I see?

I see my Father's love in my own love for my children.  (If someone as flawed as I am can love my children fully, how much greater must His love be for all of us?)
I see my Savior's love in the world He created.  The Creator of a perfect rose must be filled with love.
I see His love in the tender mercies He extends to me, to all of us.

What do you believe?  What do you see?

It's worth pondering.

This I know for sure:  believing precedes seeing.