A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

We don’t want to think that there are modern-day Pharisees in this world, do we?  Sadly, there are some that think they will get to God’s wonderful and glorious Heaven in some way that has nothing to do with a personal relationship with Christ Jesus, God’s only begotten Son.  Some think that a family member in Heaven can put in a good word for you with God…  well – that won’t work.  The ONLY way to Heaven is to place your faith and trust in Christ Jesus.  He willingly sacrificed His life on a cruel cross – for you and me.  If you were the only one on this earth, He still would have died so you could be saved.  Believe in Him and you will be saved.

God refers to His children as sheep in the Bible sometimes.  I don’t know much about sheep, but I know they need a shepherd to guide and direct them.  The shepherd keeps the sheep safe from harm.  Some people don’t want anyone, including the Lord, to tell them what to do – they resent it.  Those who walk with the Lord are comforted by His loving care.  He doesn’t want to hold us back from success.  He opens doors along the way – on the path to success and real joy in Him.

I want to go into the pasture through the open gate, don’t you?  Besides, have you ever seen a sheep jump – I mean, other than when you’re counting them in bed as you try to get to sleep – ???  They are really not jumping creatures.  I don’t think they can hop over that fence.  Sometimes when I encounter a person who thinks they can get to Heaven some other way, I think – “How dare you spit in the face of my Savior!”  Honestly – think about what He went through to save mankind.  For anyone to think they can get to Heaven while completely ignoring the plan that GOD set forth for us…  that’s just dumb and a bit unsettling to me.  Our Savior, Christ Jesus, is great!

Nobody will ever love you like the GOOD SHEPHERD!  His love is true and it lasts.  Praise HIM for all His amazing blessings!  🙂

CELEBRATING BLACK HISTORY MONTH

FEBRUARY - BLACK HISTORY MONTH

A RAINBOW IN HER CLOUDS

Maya Angelou is the most inspirational writer that ever lived, in my humble opinion.  She lived through horrific circumstances early in life, yet she rose above it all – and more to the point, she wrote the survival manual for the rest of us!

The first volume in Dr. Angelou’s autobiography, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, is a poignant and poetic account of the author’s life until age 17.  The title was chosen for the caged-bird image that Lawrence Dunbar used in his poem “Sympathy”.  The book honestly reveals the cruelty, indignity and injustice that confined African-Americans in the 1930’s & 1940’s…  the cage… but also celebrates black people’s spirit, humor and courage.  I recommend you read this book if you are in an abusive relationship or know one who is.  There are some upsetting personal incidents, including rape, racial prejudice and stories of urban life, so may be too disturbing for preteens.  Dr. Angelou also wrote the screenplay for the 1999 movie adaptation of the book.

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Do you believe that Barak Obama is the first African-American President?  I disagree…

Abilene, Kansas is about 90 minutes from Wichita.  From the time I was a child I’ve visited the amazing Eisenhower museum and library.  The grounds are so beautiful and there’s a serenity there that I can’t really explain.  It’s particularly beautiful in the spring and summer months – so quiet except for the birds chirping in the trees – such a lovely place to meditate and think about the past and the future of America.lib-eisenhower-lHow much do you know about Dwight David Eisenhower?  He was a general and then became President of the U.S. in 1953 and served until 1961.  I’ll bet there’s something you did not know.  Did you know that his mother was bi-racial?  Yep.  When I hear people say that we have the first African-American President in Barak Obama, it makes me cringe.  People don’t study history anymore apparently because that’s simply not true.  We’re still waiting for the first African-American President.  Could it be Dr. Ben Carson?  Hmm…  time will tell.eisenhower-FB-mulattoEisenhower’s mother, Ida Stover Eisenhower was a mulatto.

Born in Mount Sidney, Virginia, her original name was Elizabeth Juda according to baptismal records.  She was the only daughter of Elizabeth Ida Judah Link and Simon P. Stover.  Her mother died when she was five years old.  Her maternal grandparents, William Link and Esther Black Link took her in.  William died in 1879 and her maternal uncle and aunt, William J. Link and Susan Cook Link raised her at their farm.

They did not believe girls should be educated, but encouraged her instead to memorize the Bible.  She ran away when she learned she could not enroll in high school.  When she turned twenty-one, she joined two of her brothers Stover who had moved to Kansas.

Stover graduated from high school at age 19 and taught for two years before entering Lane University, where she met her future husband, David Jacob Eisenhower, of German and Swiss ancestry.  The two were married on September 23, 1885 in Lecompton, Kansas on the campus of their alma mater.  The family was always poor, even though David was a college-educated engineer.

In the 1890’s, Eisenhower left the River Brethren Christian group, and joined the International Bible Students, which would evolve into what is now known as Jehovah’s Witnesses.  The Eisenhower home served as the local meeting hall for the Bible Students from 1896-1915 but her sons never joined the movement.

When their son, Dwight, decided to attend West Point it saddened his mother.  She felt that warfare was “rather wicked,” but she didn’t overrule him.

In 1945, Eisenhower was named Kansas Mother of the Year.

“Many such persons of her faith, selflessness, and boundless consideration of others have been called saintly. She was that—but above all she was a worker, an administrator, a teacher and guide, a truly wonderful woman.”  – Dwight D. Eisenhower

ida-stover-mulattoIt’s entirely possible that Eisenhower was not the first President with African-American roots.  In years past these things were not necessarily made part of public record.

The Eisenhower’s had six children – and what if they had not???  We would not have had such a good 34th President of the United States, right???  I LIKE IKE!!!  🙂

 

 

FEBRUARY IS NATIONAL HAIKU WRITING MONTH

TL FEBRUARY IS NATIONAL HAIKU WRITING MONTH
It’s a weird word – haiku…
What is it?

It’s a Japanese poetry form concerned with sound and syllables. As the picture tells, the first line consists of 5 syllables, the middle line, 7, and the last line, 5, to create a total of 17 syllables and none of them rhyme.

Traditional Japanese haiku poems are about nature, but now we have contemporary English haiku poems which do not adhere to the typical syllable count, some falling to 15 or 10 syllables in a poem or exceeding the 3 line structure.

However, for the purposes of this little exercise, let’s say that a haiku is 3 lines, 5-7-5 syllables respectively and do not rhyme.  Here are some examples:
cake candy cookies
tasting  nibbling indulging
a woman’s reward.
3/15/15

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licks, tails, and snuggles
unconditional and true
every one’s best friend.
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dark clouds moving in
hovering, thickening
time to be quiet.
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blue skies and water
calming and inviting

everyone needs peace.

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tiny hands and feet
reaching, stumbling, playing
A feeling of  joy.
Connect with Lucinda Berry Hill on facebook!
The focus is on a brief moment in time; a use of provocative, colorful images; an ability to be read in one breath; and a sense of sudden enlightenment and illumination.
I remember writing haiku back in school, but I’ve definitely slept since then!  Thank you, Lucinda, for the wonderful refresher course!
Let’s see if I can write a haiku…
I am so sleepy
I should count fluffy white sheep
I just want to sleep.
Hey – I did it!!!  How many haiku writings will you work on today???  Maybe you could write a haiku for your special Valentine this year – hmm…  just a thought.  Write from your heart because that’s all that really matters.  Make it fun because life is too short.  Be yourself because nobody does that better than you do!  Wink!  😉

THANK A MAILMAN DAY

TL 2-4 THANK A MAILMAN DAY

Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds. – Inscription NYC Post Office

Some have a walking route and others drive the all-too familiar looking vehicle, but every one is an important link in the chain of the USPS.  Today we tip our hats to the amazing people who make sure our mail gets to the right location – today is THANK A MAILMAN DAY!!!

Women too – for sure – I have a few friends who work for the USPS – women who are optimistic and positive and real go-getters.

I ran across some interesting facts about the delivery methods in my research today.  There’s apparently a mule train delivery in Arizona.  Each mule carries about 130 pounds of mail, food, supplies and furniture down the 8 mile trail to the Havasupai Indians at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, averaging 4,000 pounds per day.

I caught up with a couple of those mules – and they were all too happy to pose for a photo.  Actually, they were a bit hammy…  LOL!

12650516_1716307285280401_284835294_nThere’s also a boat delivery on the Detroit River in Michigan.  The JW Westcott is a 45′ contract mail boat out of Detroit that delivers mail to passing ships.  The JW Westcott has its own ZIP Code – 48222.

http://www.jwwestcott.com/contact.html

There’s dock-to-dock delivery on the Magnolia River in Alabama.  A 15′ contract mail boat delivers to 176 dockside mailboxes on a 31 mile stretch of the river.

Much of Alaska’s mail is delivered by bush pilot and much of the mail in the lower 48 is also delivered by plane.

Sometimes we think the USPS consists of that one individual that either walks or drives to our mailbox and puts the mail in it.  There is so much more to the big picture.

2-4 DELIVERING LOVE

So today – to all the links in the USPS chain…  including our own mailman – we say THANK YOU!!!  🙂

 

 

 

 

ZEPHANIAH 2:3 ON 2/3

TL ZEPHANIAH 2 3 ON 2 3

Seek the Lord, all you humble of the land, you who do what He commands.  Seek righteousness, seek humility; perhaps you will be sheltered on the day of the Lord’s anger.  – Zephaniah 2:3

 How careful should we all be to seek peace with God, before the Holy Spirit withdraws from us, or ceases to strive with us.  We are living in the day of Grace right now.  If you have been on the fence – thinking about getting “right” with God – now is that time, because our Lord Jesus is coming back soon to snatch up His own.

I don’t debate the whole pre or post tribulation – if God wanted that to be a big deal He would have made it crystal clear.  I know some post tribulation believers think it’s all spelled out in Matthew, but regardless – it’s best to just be ready no matter what!  It’s more important to be ready than to debate whether God’s children will have to endure the tribulation.

Humility is to make a right estimate of one’s self.  – Charles Haddon Spurgeon

These days it’s not easy to be a Christian because man is constantly changing the rules.  Even the rules are being tweaked in some churches to “fit and accept” certain sinful desires.  Beware of false doctrines in the last days.  Now more than ever we need to remember that God and His rules in the Holy Bible never change.  We can claim to be progressive and diverse and any other description you can dream up – but the truth is that God’s Holy Word is the final authority forever.  By the same token, God is the only judge of man.  Man is not to judge – ever.

HIS LOVE IS EXTRA-LARGE

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.  He died on the cross – one time – for everybody.  You may think you’ve sunk too low or gone too far – but that’s not true.  No matter what you’ve done, it’s not too late to ask forgiveness with a sincere heart and make a U-turn!  He loves you so much and I hope you will do that today.  I don’t want anyone to miss heaven.  I want everyone to be there.  🙂

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR. DAY

TL MARTIN LUTHER KING JR DAYPUTTING HOLES IN THE DARKNESSRegardless of the divisiveness in our country, we are to shine with the kindness, joy, hope, love and caring nature of our Lord, Savior and Master, Christ Jesus.  MLK QUOTE (3)

Give me one hundred preachers who fear nothing but sin, and desire nothing but God, and I care not a straw whether they be clergymen or laymen; such alone will shake the gates of hell and set up the kingdom of heaven on Earth.  – John Wesley

At the risk of repeating myself…  GOD LOVES YOU!  It doesn’t end there…  He wants us to love one another as well.  That’s where, sadly, it gets tricky – and I’m not even sure why.  If we profess to have the Holy Spirit of God living inside us, it should be a piece of cake to love our brother, right?  :-/

We must live together as brothers or perish together as fools. – Martin Luther King, Jr.

We can show love to others – but it takes a lot of prayer beforehand.  Let’s get on our knees and pray today for the necessary tools so that we can show mutual respect for one another!  Once we’ve asked God to help us, let’s rise and be bigger!  I want to rise about petty behavior, don’t you?

LET'S RISE AND BE BIGGER

FORGIVENESSLove, forgiveness, showing interest in others in a genuine manner – that’s the blessing I want from God today!  I will ask Him to give me the gift of real compassion for all people.

The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.  – Mahatma Gandhi

I want to exercise honest sympathy and true empathy in life.  Think of the sacrifice Christ made for all of us – then think of the way He wants us to live.  Let’s be the best representatives for Christ we can possibly be in 2016.LOVEThere is such darkness in our country – and in our world.  Let’s humbly ask God through Jesus for LIGHT and LOVE which pokes holes in the darkness.

Forgiveness does not change the past, but it does enlarge the future.  –  Paul Boese

There is hope for America!  If we each commit to a life of forgiveness and peace, wrapped up in God’s love and grace, He will guide us to a brighter place and help us to share this country in unity.  It’s my prayer that the words of Dr. King will resonate throughout the United States, especially at this crucial time in history.  May God Bless America!  🙂

JANUARY 18-24 IS NATIONAL BIBLE WEEK

TL JANUARY 18-24 2016 IS NATIONAL BIBLE WEEKMY BIBLEBIBLE HUGSNOT JUST A BOOK

A BOOK WITH PROMISE

Have you hugged your Bible lately?  We should be hugging it every day as we have devotionals – but I get it…  life gets busy.  The year is young, so isn’t this the perfect time to get back in the swing – the habit – of daily devotionals with the LORD?  He’s so patient with us, isn’t He?

Since this is National Bible Week, I thought a few passages of Scripture for this new year may be appropriate.  Here we go!

May the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ be blessed! On account of his vast mercy, he has given us new birth. You have been born anew into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.  – 1 Peter 1:3
Don’t remember the prior things; don’t ponder ancient history. Look! I’m doing a new thing; now it sprouts up; don’t you recognize it? I’m making a way in the desert, paths in the wilderness.  – Isaiah 43:18-19
I believe that the present suffering is nothing compared to the coming glory that is going to be revealed to us.   – Romans 8:38
Certainly the faithful love of the Lord hasn’t ended; certainly God’s compassion isn’t through! They are renewed every morning. Great is your faithfulness.  – Lamentations 3:22-23
Then the one seated on the throne said, “Look! I’m making all things new.” He also said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”  – Revelation 21:5

Look among the nations and watch! Be astonished and stare because something is happening in your days that you wouldn’t believe even if told.  – Habakkuk 1:5

Sing to the Lord a new song because he has done wonderful things! His own strong hand and his own holy arm have won the victory!  – Psalm 98:1

I will give them a single heart, and I will put a new spirit in them. I will remove the stony hearts from their bodies and give them hearts of flesh.  – Ezekiel 11:19

May God richly bless you as you study His Word in 2016!  🙂

And we are having our first annual CHRISTIAN AUTHOR’S VIRTUAL TEA PARTY & BOOK EXTRAVAGANZA this coming Saturday, January 23rd from 2-4 pm CST.  If you would like to be a part of this great event, please send me a FRIEND REQUEST on facebook and I will make sure to send you an invitation so you can RSVP.  If for some reason I don’t send an invitation – send me a message and remind me please.  :-/

Remember – this is a VIRTUAL TEA PARTY – no traveling involved – except to your own computer – it will take place on the facebook event page!  Our wonderful Christian authors will be standing by ready to post all sorts of goodies and we want YOU to post your questions and comments to them!  It will be a fun time of getting to know our favorite authors – those who God has clearly gifted with such talent – and they turn around and share it with us!

So – friend me on facebook!  Here’s the link:

https://www.facebook.com/linda.palmer.399041

I look forward to your friend request and having you join us on Saturday!  🙂

CHRISTIAN AUTHOR'S VIRTUAL TEA PARTY & BOOK EXTRAVAGANZA 2016I’m taking a little break but will begin writing again on Monday, January 25th.  🙂

Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can.  – Charles Wesley