Hello friends, here it is, a brand new year; I hope you resolved to do something different this year, something that will improve your life. Whether it is something little or something big, it should enhance the quality (and in some cases, the quantity) of your life.
We were speaking of ‘resolutions’ during our Sunday school class last week and how very few people managed to keep them. Melissa Park said she preferred to think of resolutions as goals, goals that she would strive to achieve during the coming year. That seems like ‘good ole common sense’ to me; if something works for you (no matter what you call it), hang on to it.
If you achieve a goal, reward yourself, if you don’t, don’t beat yourself up over it. Today is the first day of the rest of your life; yesterday is gone and tomorrow will never come. If you want to change something, you can – if you are perfectly satisfied with your life, enjoy it.
Many of us ‘resolve’ to try to live a healthier lifestyle in one way or another like: exercise, dietary changes (up or down, fried versus broiled – you get the idea), cessation of undesired habits and/or the beginning of new good habits, to be kinder and/or more forgiving, etc. Anybody for the ‘Y’?
Whether you have decided to try to achieve something new, or stop something old, or even decided to just pay no attention to it at all, I pray that God will bless you in 2012 with a renewal of spirit and an appreciation of life.
No matter what circumstances you are in, believe me, there are worse. Take a moment to look around you, around the world, and thank God you are not in some of those places, or circumstances, and remember to pray for those who are.
A friend and I (among others) participated in the ‘Watch Night’ prayer meeting at MBC New Year’s Eve; we began at sundown and studied/prayed through midnight. Well neither of us are ‘spring chickens’ and by the time I rang the bell at midnight (I am sure ‘Markland’ town appreciated that), we were pretty much ‘worn out’…and ‘looked it’.
My friend lives over the river in Kentucky right near the bridge and I was taking her home, as her friend that had brought her, left early (it was a ‘come and pray’ for any part of the time, or the whole.) Well let me tell you, when we got on the other side of the bridge, it was lit up like the fourth of July; Kentucky troopers had the road completely blocked off, blue lights flashing everywhere you looked.
When we got up to the officer, I was trying to roll my window down and my hand kept slipping off the handle (it is hard to roll up and down) – remember it was really cold and I had on a goofy looking hat – I know the man thought sure he had caught a couple of wild-party drunks.
He asked for my driver’s license and I was trying to find it in my purse (remember I was tired, and it was dark) and he said, “You do have a driver’s license, don’t you?” And I very intelligently replied, “Of course I do. I am driving aren’t I?”
I concede that may not have been the best thing to say to a man that has been standing out in the cold dark for several hours…and was wearing a gun – in my defense, I was tired, cold, and flustered – policemen make me nervous, even when I am not doing anything wrong (my sincere apologies to all law enforcement personnel.)
Finally I got it out of my wallet and when he looked at my license, he said that Vevay was the other direction so why was I going this way. I told him I had to take my friend home after prayer service and she lived ‘under the bridge’ (remember, tired/cold/flustered) on the Kentucky side of the river. I meant to say she lived in a house ‘by’ the bridge but I must admit that by this time both of us kind of looked like someone that could be living ‘under’ a bridge.
He kind of shook his head and told us to go ahead and be careful. I drove on around the turn (headed to Warsaw), dropped Polly off and said I’d see her later this morning. She said, “How come?” and I said, “It is Sunday, you know church day.” And she said, “Darn, we should have just stayed there.”
Then I drove on around the curve toward Indiana…and the same officer stopped me again. He just smiled, wished me a Happy New Year, and waved me on. And how was your New Year’s Eve?
Talked to Carolyn Green this morning (Tuesday) and she sounded terrible; she said she had a horrible cold. Carolyn said a friend had called earlier and when she answered, the friend thought it was Ivan on the phone.
Carolyn wanted to let me know that she didn’t think she could play Bridge this week (she didn’t want to ‘share’ what she had with us…and I quickly agreed with her) and told her not to worry, we will play next week. She said she thought that Ivan was starting to ‘come down’ with ‘it’ too.
Say a little prayer for both these lovely people and remember to get plenty of rest (well, as much as you can), drink lots of fluids (non-alcoholic of course), and keep your digestive system working well, with both ‘imput’ and ‘output’ (you know what I mean.)
You have heard that old ‘saw’ that says, ‘you can’t teach an old dog new tricks’, haven’t you? Well let me tell you baby, they lie. It may take a little longer but us old ‘foggies’ can learn new ‘tricks’, even ‘mental’ stuff.
For example, I have never liked reading Ecclesiastes; it seemed like the most depressing group of ideas I have ever heard. I have read it through (after all, you can’t ‘pick and choose’ what parts of the Bible to read) but never really appreciated it (didn’t really understand why God put it in there to tell you the truth.)
Well sure enough, first sermon in 2012, Pastor preaches on Ecclesiastes. I am sitting there thinking how tired I am (remember it was after two in the morning before I got to bed – Polly may have had the right idea after all), how am I going to stay focused on his sermon…no problem. Pastor Bobby kept me thinking the whole time; it actually seemed like a really short sermon (but we got out at the same time so I know it wasn’t.)
The Bible is full of examples of what we should do and what we should not do and then tells us the consequences for each action. Pastor said Solomon wrote Ecclesiastes near the end of his life and was reflecting on his mistakes. In other words, don’t do what he did (most especially in the matter of the 1,000 wives – no matter how rich you are, that is now against the law.)
If you choose to do the things Solomon talks about in Ecclesiastes, he then tells you how it will end…and none of them have a good ending, even though some of them sound ‘good’ at the beginning.
Jesus tells us how to live a satisfying, and successful, life, “Love the Lord thy God with all your heart, mind, and soul first, and second, love your neighbor as yourself.” Course like most other wise things, it is easier said than done.
Melissa Park wanted me to remind all the ladies in the community that the Ladies’ Bible Study would be starting up again January 9th (this is next Monday – they used to be on Thursdays but have changed to Mondays this year – same time though, 6:30pm.) I saw Melissa at the ‘Y’ Monday morning her and husband Marty too); (yes, one of my ‘goals’ this year is to be more active – honestly speaking, that won’t take too much – I really do enjoy my lovely big, soft chair, haha.)
The new study will be four weeks long, with no book (other than the Bible) and no homework. It is entitled, “Back to the Beginning” and logically enough, starts in Genesis. Melissa’s studies are always fun and very informative so make plans to come out to Markland BC (in the schoolhouse) next Monday and join in fun…and it is free.
After I left the ‘Y’ Monday morning, I stopped in to visit with Patty and Mike Miller and I am happy to say, they were both looking a lot better. Patty is recovering from knee surgery and Mike from pneumonia. Their daughter Jennie dropped in to ‘yak’ a bit too. It was a nice visit.
Mike and Mary were both sick over the weekend; Mike is fighting migraine headaches and Mary has some kind of intestinal virus. Mary said the grandsons had it first, then passed it around of course. You know how that goes.
When I was at Patty’s house, she mentioned that daughter Mindy Otter had called and said her boys were down with about the same thing. Mindy was worried that they were getting dehydrated, so she took them to the ER Sunday morning. The doctor said it was an intestinal virus and would last 5-7 days…and gave the same advice as above listed: rest, drink, eat, etc.
Do continue to remember them in your prayers this week along with: Chester Meisberger (didn’t get to talk to Debbie Allen this week to find out how he is doing), Lucinda Mangold (spoke to her at church Sunday and she is really doing well, in fact, she and Dan both looked better than I have seen them in a while), Susie Chatham, Unspoken requests (God knows), Betty Williams’ granddaughter, Charlotte Kroening (the surgery on her hand/arm is progressing but still needing lots of improvement), Mary Davenport, Joy and Eldric Hazeldean, Vandora Bennett, Bob Baatz (Bob was in the hospital in Madison but I haven’t heard how he is doing), Louise Rayles, Larry Rose and Jack Brown (both gentlemen recovering from surgery), Nora Gross’s two granddaughters, Our church (and other Christian churches) in 2012, Ron Keller (Marty’s friend battling cancer), Service personnel and their families, Shyla’s cousin (seizures), Bobby and Melanie and baby Emma, Jessica Ledbetter, Activities planned at/for the church, Grieving families in our community, and for Christian teachers everywhere.
We offer our praise and thanksgiving to Almighty God for all the answered prayers and many blessings He has provided us this past year; thank you Lord!
Until next week, may the Lord cause His face to shine on you, to bless you and keep you safe from harm; may He lift up His countenance and give you heart-peace. Amen.