ECCLESIASTES 3:11 ON 3/11

ECCLESIASTES 3 11 ON 3 11

Have you ever had to pray the most difficult prayer?  It’s the one that begins with, “Lord, change me!”

He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man’s heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.  – Ecclesiastes 3:11

Often times we get wrapped up in dreams for the future that may or may not come to pass.  I wonder how healthy it is for us to put so much stock in what might not come to pass.  Maybe it’s better to do our best to enjoy today since  the Bible makes it quite clear that we are not promised tomorrow.  God makes everything beautiful in its time – not in our time.

Everything really does happen for a reason.  Just because we don’t understand the reason doesn’t mean that God doesn’t understand and have a plan.  We get hung up on the questions when things aren’t going our way – questions that usually begin with “why” – Why was I born this way?  Why did my mom treat me like that?  Why did I have to be left alone?  Why couldn’t I be a mother?  Why did You have to take my babies?  It’s exhausting.

We have to come to a point where we give up the WHY questions and lift our hands to the sky and declare that God is God.  He is the wise, omnipotent, omnipresent God of the universe who knows everything.  He alone knows how different my life would have been if I had been a mom.  I don’t pretend to know anything.  I have to call a cease-fire on the war with God because it’s a war I can’t win.  To be honest I’m too old and too tired to keep fighting it.  I surrender all – and I mean ALL to God.  The ultimate surrender is when the why questions stop.

It’s clear that beauty, whether it is beauty in thought or beautiful happenings, come from God above.  That brings the first part of the verse closer together.  And once we trust God to be Lord of our life, He definitely puts the desire in us to know Him better.

How do we know God better?  It’s not complicated.  Read God’s Word, the Holy Bible, and talk with God.  Pray to Him and make sure you listen for His answers.  Don’t be angry if you don’t understand His answers.  Just raise your hands and tell God that He is God – and you are not.

Remember that while we are focused on the external, God is focused on the internal.  While we see today, He is working on eternity.  We focus on the gift bag and He focuses on the gift inside.  He makes all things beautiful in His time – including the losses, the brokenness, the battles, the fragmented dreams, lost romance, heartache and chronic illness.

Without Him, life is purposeless and profitless, miserable and meaningless. With Him, it will ultimately make sense.  🙂

WORLD UKELELE DAY

TL 2-2 WORLD UKULELE DAY

2-2 THERE'S NOTHING LIKE A UKEToday is WORLD UKULELE DAY!!!  Like many of my generation, I think of the great Tiny Tim when I think of a ukulele.  It’s so wrong when a man can sing two octaves above where I can…  anyway…

You can change the world by playing your ukulele and teaching others to play.  How about learning “You’ve Got a Friend in Me”???  Grab your uke and let’s learn!

When I was very young in the mid 1960’s, an older lady in our church played the ukulele and shared special music once in a while.  Have you ever heard a gospel song played on a ukulele?  It leaves a lasting impression, that’s for sure.  Actually, when she played “In the Garden” or “Pass Me Not, O Gentle Savior” it really was quite beautiful.  Sometimes the simple and familiar hymns are what God’s Holy Spirit can speak through best.  I remember saying the words in my mind as she played the tune.

A painter paints pictures on canvas. But musicians paint their pictures on silence.  – Leopold Stokowski

The little mini-guitar became a symbol for the folks in Hawaii.  It was introduced there in 1879 by a group of Portuguese immigrants from Madeira.  The original name in Portuguese is the “braguinha”.  Aren’t you glad we don’t have to call it that?  The Hawaiians renamed it the ukulele, referring to the “jumping flea” as suggested by the jumping motion of the hands playing the instrument.  It was not introduced in the mainland until 1915, first being featured at the Panama Pacific International Exposition in San Francisco.  Later the ukulele became popular in the U.K, Japan and from there around the world.

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.  – Berthold Auerbach

What do you get when you combine the most unassuming instrument known to man with the most powerful theme song ever???  Well, you get something like this – and it is really pretty good!  Kudos to the Brits!  The theme from “Shaft” performed by the United Kingdom Ukulele Orchestra.

If you own a ukulele, today is the day to play it and share your knowledge with others.  Change the world 4 strings at a time.

If you’d like more information about the ukulele, check out Ukulele Movement’s website.  http://ukulelemovement.com/

 The ukulele is a little bundle of joy that will guarantee happiness!  – Ukulele Movement

I’m a pianist, but have a great deal of respect for those who use their fingers to press on strings.  I tried to play the guitar, but I soon discovered my short fingers did not want to make all the chords and as my fingertips became more calloused, I completely lost interest.  Nobody warned me it would be that painful.  🙂

I WILL MISS YOU…

TL A TRIBUTE

WHEN I WHISTLE

I was so sad to hear that at age 89, Lauren Bacall passed away. She was born Betty Joan Perske on September 16, 1924.

At age 19 she had launched a very successful modeling career. She was discovered after a photo shoot with Harper’s Bazaar magazine. As Betty became Lauren, her acting career took off! She was cast in the 1944 classic, “To Have and Have Not”, based on an Ernest Hemingway story. Bacall was the sexy and insolent woman of mystery. The movie was a hit and served as a wonderful springboard for not only her acting career, but her love life as well. America was enthralled as Bogie and Bacall fell in love on-screen and ultimately, off-screen.

Humphrey Bogart referred to Lauren Bacall as “steel with curves”. The most memorable scene was as she prepares to leave Steve’s hotel room. She tells him, in that deep, sultry voice, “You know you don’t have to act with me, Steve. You don’t have to say anything, and you don’t have to do anything. Oh, maybe just whistle. You know how to whistle, don’t you, Steve? You just put your lips together and blow.”

Bogie and Bacall starred in 3 more movies together in the 1940’s. The rest is Hollywood history! The stars of the 1940’s were truly gracious and classic. Lauren Bacall was one of the best. Rest in Peace, Ms. Bacall. ❤

ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

TL ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY (3)

HEAVEN IS JOY WITH JESUS
On this day in 1776 in Philadelphia, the Liberty Bell rang out from the tower of the Pennsylvania State House.  It summoned citizens to the first public reading of the Declaration of Independence, by Colonel John Nixon.  As an American that naturally makes me feel proud because it was the beginning of our country’s freedom.

The freedom I look forward to in the future is heaven.  The older I get, the more attractive heaven sounds because God’s Holy Bible promises that there will not only be no more parting, but there will be no more pain! I will no longer have to buy Mineral Ice at Wal-Mart and take a bath in it. I won’t have to walk with a cane. Blood sugar? What’s that???

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. – Revelation 21:4

Not long ago, we were shopping at an antique store and I found a beautiful decorative plate. It was solid black with a stream of bright colors running through it. I was mesmerized by it and intrigued with the intricacy of the pattern. For some reason, it reminded me of heaven’s brightness in the shadow of death.

In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? – John 14:2

I like to think that my dad is in heaven planning and designing mansions. I know it is God who has already prepared my place, but I like to think that maybe dad is building little extras for my place, much like he did down here for me. My mansion will be yellow and blue. After all, surely the colors there will be the most vivid ones – and the Lamb of God is the light – so it will be very bright! We will praise Him forever for all He’s done for us.

This is from 1948, but it’s as true today as it was back then.  May we never take our liberty for granted.  May we always be grateful to God that we live in America.

I read an article about what a good blog is made of. They said a good blog post should be researched thoroughly and written with a great degree of accuracy and no beating around the bush. They said the average blog reader has a goldfish’s attention span – about 9 seconds. People scan and if it “catches” them, they read, if not, they move on.

Well, research, hmm… God’s Word is my source and God’s Holy Spirit is my inspiration. Written accurately? I pray before I write, so I sure hope so. Wow, if the subject of heaven does not “catch” you, I feel sorry for ya!  Wink!   😉

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (15)WISTERIA

I don’t suffer from seasonal allergies, so the sights and sounds and scents of spring fill me with joy!  My heart goes out to those who have to enjoy spring with a spade in one hand and a Kleenex box in the other!

I love wisteria, or is it spelled with an “a”? Experts at the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden maintain the plant was named to honor Caspar Wistar (1761-1818), an American physician and teacher from the University of Pennsylvania responsible for writing the first anatomy textbook. When the name of Wisteria was put into the book it was incorrectly transcribed.

The spelling is of little importance when standing under the canopy in awe of the visual beauty and stunning fragrance.

Aside from the amazing scent and unique appearance of wisteria, the heartiness of this vine is like no other. When other plants are fading fast in the Kansas heat, the wisteria stays strong and beautiful throughout the season.

One of my favorite authors, Beth Hoffman, talks about the strength of wisteria:

Wisteria is my favorite flowering vine. Do you know why? I shook my head, ‘No ma’am.’ ‘Because it’s strong — just like me.’ – Beth Hoffman, Saving Cee Cee Honeycutt

Wouldn’t we all like to have all of those qualities? The strength of wood-like vines, a sweet scent and such beauty?

In Christ we can definitely have strength and assurance while showing sweetness in our attitude and be beautiful and Christ-like in our behavior.

The Lord is my strength and song, and He is become my salvation; He is my God, and I will prepare Him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt Him. – Exodus 15:2

THE CANOPY

The strength of wisteria in a canopy also reminds me that the strength of God covers us throughout our lives. His strength is perfect when our strength is waning. ❤

BEAUTICIAN’S DAY

TL 6-26 BEAUTICIAN'S DAY

DAZZLES AND DUCKLINGS

I try to focus on who I am rather than who I’m not.  – Mariska Hargitay

Today we celebrate those wonderful people who make the rest of us feel more confident to face that dog-eat-dog world we live in. It is BEAUTICIAN’S DAY!!! Nothing boosts my self-esteem more than going to see my beautician, Melanie, for a freshen-up.

There’s just not a better high available than walking out of the salon knowing that I look better than I did when I went in. If I had to choose an addiction, that would be it! Diet plans and exercise routines come and go, but when I go to see Melanie, I know that I will receive instant gratification with little to no effort on my part. She does all the work, and I get all the great results! What could be better???

I read all about Mariska Hargitay in the March 2013 issue of Ladies’ Home Journal. She’s a natural beauty, I think we can all agree, but what struck me was her attitude toward herself. She makes it very clear that she is not in competition with anyone else, but she always tries to be her personal best. Here’s Mariska when she was 2 years old on The Merv Griffin Show:

Just a little side note: Jane Mansfield was one of my Aunt Mary’s clients. Maybe she styled her hair for this appearance – I don’t know. ❤

The second you stop comparing your talent or your height or your weight with others, then you begin to feel a real sense of freedom and joy in your own journey. Place your faith in the Lord because He made you! He has a great plan for everyone’s life.

Don’t be sad because you lack something, but use it to your advantage! Don’t cave in to the tired old peer pressure that you have to look like a model (at least 5’9″) to be beautiful. There’s simply no way I’m going to get any taller than 5’2″, and that’s a fact. I’ve come to terms with reality – I will always wear petite clothing and only get to eat about half the calories per day as my taller friends.

I am me – and I am free! I have confidence in my Creator and confidence is beautiful. 🙂