Spring|Mother’s Day [v15]

MAY 2000

GREETINGS — Spring has arrived and the geese are coming back to the lake to ‘settle in.’ This year, though, one mother goose decided that (probably because of a past experience) the safest place to have her young was……on our diving platform! We have no problem of letting her use it right now, since we won’t be using it for a while yet…but we were concerned that she might not be able to get enough food for her and the ‘little ones.’ Well, as I write this, on Sunday, 30 APR 00, things worked out just fine—and we have, at least, five new baby geese—still on the platform!

All new births amaze me—how all the complex ‘connections’ work together to bring forth a new creation…and as we celebrated Easter last week, we too can have a ‘new birth’ if we choose to. Webster’s defines resurrection, “to restore to life.” God has given us a way for us to be ‘restored’ and to have ‘new life’ through a relationship with His son, Jesus.

Helen Keller once said, “The best and the most beautiful things in life cannot be seen or even touched…they must be felt with the heart.”

Might I suggest that we all ‘search’ our hearts to reconcile what the Easter ‘message’ means to us—it just might be the most important thing you will do for yourself.

I.S. Thorton put it this way:

The word of God is like a seed which enters human hearts with varying results according to the nature of the soil. In some the word is able to take root and to create a response of faith. Although the process is in accordance with divinely preordained laws, no attempt is made to interfere with the soil. Each man is free to respond or not. So it was with all our Lord’s teaching.

Blessings….
Mark

LIFE’S DEEP THOUGHTS (v15) for MAY 2000
(NOTE: Please send your ‘thoughts’ to me at: mbesh@ameritech.net)

I am glad to organize and distribute more ‘stuff’ if y’all send it to me… Thank you’s to:

Lezlie Besh
John Gibson
Sandy Lerner
Terry Longo
Beth McMillan
Joe Olson
Bonnie Parkinson
John Waskin

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While waiting for the geese to hatch, I found this ‘lesson’…….

In the Fall or Autumn when you see geese heading south for the winter flying along in “V” formation, you might consider what science has discovered as to why they fly that way.

FACT: As each bird flaps its wings, it creates an “uplift” for the bird immediately following. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock has at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on it’s own.

LESSON: People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

FACT: When a goose flies out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone. It quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird in front of it.

LESSON: If we have as much common sense as a goose, we stay in formation with those headed where we want to go. We are willing to accept their help and give our help to others. It is harder to do something alone than together.

FACT: When the lead goose gets tired, it rotates back into the formation, and another goose flies to the point position.

LESSON: It is sensible to take turns doing the hard and demanding tasks and sharing leadership. As with geese, people are interdependent of each others skills, capabilities, and unique arrangements of gifts, talents, or resources.

FACT: The geese flying in formation honk from behind to
encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

LESSON: We need to make sure our honking is encouraging. In groups where there is encouragement, the production is much greater. The power of encouragement (to stand by one’s heart or core values and encourage the
heart and core of others) is the quality of honking we seek. We need to make sure our honking is encouraging and not discouraging.

FACT: When a goose gets sick, wounded, or shot down, two other geese will drop out of formation with that goose and follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it dies or is able to fly again. Then, they launch out on their own, or with another formation to catch up with their flock.

LESSON: If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by our colleagues and each other in difficult times as well as in good!

[Written by Angeles Arrien]

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NATIONAL DAY OF PRAYER IS MAY 4

This year’s theme, “PRAY2K: America’s Hope for the Millennium,” is based on the words of the Apostle Paul: “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” [Romans 12:12]

You can contact the Michigan Prayer Network at 800-644-9111 for more information and resources.
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PRAYERS

While walking through the woods one day, I was surprised to hear a child’s
voice. I followed the sound, trying in vain to understand the child’s words. When I spotted a boy perched on a rock, I realized why his words had made no sense: He was repeating the alphabet.

“Why are you saying your ABC’s so many times?” I asked him.

The child replied, “I’m saying my prayers.”

I couldn’t help but laugh. “Prayers? All I hear is the alphabet.”

Patiently the child explained, “Well, I don’t know all the words, so I give
God the letters. He knows what I’m trying to say.”

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PRAY ANYWAY!

When you don’t know how to pray, pray anyway!  Ignorance is no excuse.

When you don’t feel like praying, pray anyway!  Depression is no excuse.

When dullness sits on you like a vulture, and you can’t muster enough
enthusiasm to change channels, much less to pray,  pray anyway!
Boredom is no excuse.

When you see no need to pray and no reason to intercede for those about
you, recognize this as a sign of impending danger, and pray anyway.
Blindness is no excuse.

When you’ve grown spiritually lazy and feel that you’ll never be able to
pick up your Bible and read it the way you once did, especially pray anyway.
Laziness is no excuse.

When you don’t understand what the big deal is about prayer, and you
think it’s overrated because it never did you much good, pray anyway.
Immaturity is no excuse.

When you’re too tired to remember your own name, and you know God will understand if you don’t pray, pray anyway.
Fatigue is no excuse.

When you’re embarrassed to be back before God, confessing the same sins
and admitting the same failures, come on and pray anyway.
Shame is no excuse.

When you’ve been unfaithful and you know it and you feel that burden of
guilt that makes you want to run and hide under the porch, pray anyway.  Sin is no excuse.

When the nagging voice of the enemy keeps telling you there is no God
and even if there were, He’d never have anything to do with a nothing like
you, pray anyway.  Unbelief is no excuse.

We can bless ourselves immeasurably by rescuing our prayer life from
bondage to our emotions and circumstances.  There is no time and there are no conditions in which prayer is not necessary, not helpful, and not the
right thing to do.

Let us pray….

[Joe McKeever]

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MOTHER’S DAY

“M” is for the million things she gave me,
“O” means only that she’s growing old,
“T” is for the tears she shed to save me,
“H” is for her heart of purest gold;
“E” is for her eyes, with love-light shining,
“R” means right, and right she’ll always be,

Put them all together, they spell “MOTHER,”
A word that means the world to me.

[Howard Johnson (c. 1915)]
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The earliest Mother’s Day celebrations can be traced back to the spring celebrations of ancient Greece in honor of Rhea, the Mother of the Gods. During the 1600’s, England celebrated a day called “Mothering Sunday”. Celebrated on the 4th Sunday of Lent (the 40 day period leading up to Easter), “Mothering Sunday” honored the mothers of England. During this time many of the England’s poor worked as servants for the wealthy. As most jobs were located far from their homes, the servants would live at the houses of their employers. On Mothering Sunday the servants would have the day off and were encouraged to return home and spend the day with their mothers. A special cake, called the mothering cake, was often brought along to provide a festive touch.

As Christianity spread throughout Europe the celebration changed to honor the “Mother Church” – the spiritual power that gave them life and protected them from harm. Over time the church festival blended with the Mothering Sunday celebration. People began honoring their mothers as well as the church.

In the United States Mother’s Day was first suggested in 1872 by Julia Ward Howe (who wrote the words to the Battle hymn of the Republic) as a day dedicated to peace. Ms. Howe would hold organized Mother’s Day meetings in Boston, Mass ever year.

In 1907 Ana Jarvis, from Philadelphia, began a campaign to establish a national Mother’s Day. Ms. Jarvis persuaded her mother’s church in Grafton, West Virginia to celebrate Mother’s Day on the second anniversary of her mother’s death, the 2nd Sunday of May. By the next year Mother’s Day was also celebrated in Philadelphia.

Ms. Jarvis and her supporters began to write to ministers, businessman, and politicians in their quest to establish a national Mother’s Day. It was successful as by 1911 Mother’s Day was celebrated in almost every state. President Woodrow Wilson, in 1914, made the official announcement proclaiming Mother’s Day as a national holiday that was to be held each year on the 2nd Sunday of May.

While many countries of the world celebrate their own Mother’s Day at different times throughout the year, there are some countries such as Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia, and Belgium which also celebrate Mother’s Day on the second Sunday of May.

WHAT IS A MOTHER?

A mother is someone to shelter and guide us,
To love us, whatever we do,
With a warm understanding and infinite patience
And wonderful gentleness, too.
How often a mother means swift reassurance
In soothing our small, childish fears,
How tenderly mothers watch over their children
And treasure them all through the years!
The heart of a mother is full of forgiveness
For any mistake, big or small,
And generous always in helping her family,
Whose needs she has placed above all.
A mother can utter a word of compassion
And make all our cares fall away,
She can brighten a home with the sound of her laughter
And make life delightful and gay.
A mother possesses incredible wisdom
And wonderful insight and skill –
In each human heart is that one special corner
Which only a mother can fill!

[By Katherine Nelson Davis]

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MEMORIAL DAY

In 1865, Henry C. Welles, a druggist in the village of Waterloo, NY, mentioned at a social gathering that honor should be shown to the patriotic dead of the Civil War by decorating their graves. In the Spring of 1866, he again mentioned this subject to General John B. Murray, Seneca County Clerk. General Murray embraced the idea and a committee was formulated to plan a day devoted to honoring the dead. Townspeople adopted the idea wholeheartedly. Wreaths, crosses and bouquets were made for each veteran’s grave. The village was decorated with flags at half mast and draped with evergreen boughs and mourning black streamers.

On May 5, 1866, civic societies joined the procession to the three existing cemeteries and were led by veterans marching to martial music. At each cemetery there were impressive and lengthy services including speeches by General Murray and a local clergyman. The ceremonies were repeated on May 5, 1867. The first official recognition of Memorial Day as such was issued by General John A. Logan, first commander of the Grand Army of the Republic. This was General Order No. 11 establishing “Decoration Day” when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The South refused to acknowledge Decoration Day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I. It is now celebrated in almost every state on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress in 1968 to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional, separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead. The date of the order was May 5, 1868, exactly two years after Waterloo’s first observance. That year, Waterloo joined other communities in the nation by having their ceremony on May 30.

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WHAT HAPPENED TO THE DOLLAR?

Three men go to a hotel and the room costs $30. They each chip in $10
and go to their room. The hotel attendant realizes that the room
should have been $25 and sends a bellman with $5 to return to the
three men.  The bell can’t figure out how to divide the $5 three ways
so he gives each of the  men $1 and keeps $2. At this point each of
the men has paid $9 for a total of $27 and the bellman kept $2 which
equals $29. What happened to the other dollar.

(Answer at the end of this newsletter)

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ROSES

Red roses were her favorites,
her name was also Rose.
And every year her husband sent them,
tied with pretty bows.

The year he died,
the roses were delivered to her door.
The card said, “Be my Valentine,”
like all the years before.

Each year he sent her roses,
and the note would always say,
“I love you even more this year,
than last year on this day.

My love for you will always grow,
with every passing year.”
She knew this was the last time
that the roses would appear.

She thought, he ordered roses
in advance before this day.
Her loving husband did not know,
that he would pass away.

He always liked to do things early,
way before the time.
Then, if he got too busy,
everything would work out fine.

She trimmed the stems,
and placed them in a very special vase.
Then, sat the vase
beside the portrait of his smiling face.

She would sit for hours,
in her husband’s favorite chair.
While staring at his picture,
and the roses sitting there.

A year went by,
and it was hard to live without her mate.
With loneliness and solitude,
that had become her fate.

Then, the very hour,
as on Valentines before,
The doorbell rang, and there were roses,
sitting by her door.

She brought the roses in,
and then just looked at them in shock.
Then, went to get the telephone,
to call the florist shop.

The owner answered, and she asked him,
if he would explain,
Why would someone do this to her,
causing her such pain?

“I know your husband passed away,
more than a year ago,”
The owner said, “I knew you’d call,
and you would want to know.

The flowers you received today,
were paid for in advance.
Your husband always planned ahead,
he left nothing to chance.

There is a standing order,
that I have on file down here,
And he has paid, well in advance,
you’ll get them every year.
There also is another thing,
that I think you should know,

He wrote a special little card…he did this years ago.
Then, should ever I find out that he’s no longer here,
That’s the card…that should be sent,
to you the following year.”

She thanked him and hung up the phone,
her tears now flowing hard.
Her fingers shaking,
as she slowly reached to get the card.

Inside the card, she saw
that he had written her a note.
Then, as she stared in total silence,
this is what he wrote…

“Hello my love,
I know it’s been a year since I’ve been gone,
I hope it hasn’t been too hard
for you to overcome.

I know it must be lonely,
and the pain is very real.
Or if it was the other way,
I know how I would feel.

The love we shared made everything
so beautiful in life.
I loved you more than words can say,
you were the perfect wife.

You were my friend and lover,
you fulfilled my every need.
I know it’s only been a year,
but please try not to grieve.

I want you to be happy,
even when you shed your tears.
That is why the roses will
be sent to you for years.

When you get these roses,
think of  all the happiness,
That we had together,
and how both of us were blessed.

I have always loved you
and I know I always will.
But, my love, you must go on,
you have some living still.

Please…try to find happiness,
while living out your days.
I know it is not easy,
but I hope you find some ways.

The roses will come every year,
and they will only stop,
When your door’s not answered,
when the florist stops to knock.

He will come five times that day,
in case you have gone out.
But after his last visit,
he will know without a doubt,

To take the roses to the place,
where I’ve instructed him.
And place the roses where we are,
together once again.

Sometimes in life, you find a special friend;
Someone who changes your life just by being part of it.
Someone who makes you laugh until you can’t stop;
Someone who makes you believe that there really is good in the world.
Someone who convinces you that there really is an unlocked door
just waiting for you to open it.
This is Forever Friendship.
This is the sacred RED ROSE.

[Received from John Gibson]

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TIME TO PLANT YOUR GARDEN!

Four rows of peas:
Patience,
Perseverance,
Promise to win others,
Prayer.
Three rows of lettuce:
Let us be unselfish,
Let us love,
Let us tithe.
One row of squash:
Squash indifference.
For rows of turnips:
Turn up for church,
Turn up regularly,
Turn up to help,
Turn up with determination.

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SOME MORE PLANTING

Spring is here
let’s start a garden!

Plant three rows of peas:
Peace of mind
Peace of heart
Peace of soul

Plant four rows of squash:
Squash gossip
Squash indifference
Squash grumbling
Squash selfishness

Plant four rows of lettuce:
Lettuce be faithful
Lettuce be kind
Lettuce be happy
Lettuce really love one another

No garden should be without turnips:
Turnip for service when needed
Turnip to help one another
Turnip the music and dance

Water freely with patience
and cultivate with love.

There’s much fruit in this garden
because you reap what you sow.

To conclude the garden
we must have some thyme:
Thyme for fun
Thyme for rest
Thyme for ourselves

Pretty nice garden,
don’t you think?

Smile-It’s Contagious!
[Received from Cher’re Walters]

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FRIENDSHIP

Oh, the comfort,
the inexpressible comfort,
of feeling safe with a person,
Having neither to weigh thoughts,
nor measure words,
But pouring them all right out just as they are,
chaff and grain together,
Certain that a faithful hand will take and sift them,
Keep what is worth keeping,
And with the breath of kindness,
blow the rest away.

[Dinah Maria Mulock Craik]

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To love is to take the greatest risk of all. It is to give one’s
future and one’s happiness into another’s hands. It is to allow
oneself to trust without reserve. It is to accept vulnerability. And
thus I love you.

[Helen Thomson]

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Helen Keller was asked once, “Is there anything worse that not having sight?”

She replied, “Yes, having sight, and no vision!”

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“If a man knows not what harbor he seeks, any wind is the right wind.”

[Seneca]

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THE PILLSBURY DOUGHBOY DEAD AT 71

Veteran Pillsbury spokesman, The Pillsbury Doughboy, died yesterday of a
severe yeast infection and complications from repeated pokes to the belly.
He was 71.

Doughboy was buried in a lightly greased coffin. Dozens of celebrities
turned out including Mrs. Butterworth, The California Raisins, Hungry Jack, Betty Crocker, The Hostess Twinkies, Captain Crunch, and many others.

The graveside was piled high with flours as longtime friend Aunt Jemima
delivered the eulogy, describing Doughboy as a man who “never knew how much he was kneaded.”

Doughboy rose quickly in show business, but his later life was filled with
many turnovers.

He was not considered a very smart cookie, wasting much of his dough on
half-baked schemes.  Still, even as a crusty old man, he was a roll model
for millions.

Doughboy is survived by his second wife, Play Dough. They have two children and one in the oven.

The funeral was held at 3:50 for about 20 minutes….

[Forwarded by Darcie Howe]

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You know you’re getting older when you finally reach the top of the
ladder and find it leaning against the wrong wall!

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FUNNY HOW…

This is so true and shame on us!

Funny how simple it is for people to trash God and then wonder why the world’s going to hell.

Funny how we believe what the newspapers say, but question what the Bible says.

Funny how everyone wants to go to heaven provided they do not have to believe, think, say, or do anything the Bible says.

Or is it scary?

Funny how someone can say “I believe in God” but still follow Satan (who, by the way, also “believes” in God).

Funny how you can send a thousand ‘jokes’ through e-mail and they spread like wildfire, but when you start sending messages regarding the Lord, people think twice about sharing.

Funny how the lewd, crude, vulgar and obscene pass freely through cyberspace, but the public discussion of Jesus is suppressed in the school and workplace.

FUNNY, ISN’T IT?

Funny how someone can be so fired up for Christ on Sunday, but be an invisible Christian the rest of the week.

Are you laughing?

Funny how when you go to forward this message, you will not sent it to many on your address list because you’re not sure what they believe, or what they will think of you for sending it to them.

Funny how I can be more worried about what other people think of me than what God thinks of me.

Are you thinking?

[Received from Bonnie Parkinson]

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CELEBRATION OF LIFE

On my way home from coaching basketball yesterday, I was listening to WGN; my favorite talk radio station out of Chicago.  I could tell right away that there was something wrong by the somber mood of the speaker.  There had been a plane crash.  Two small planes collided into each other over a northern suburb of Chicago.  What made the story hit close to home was that Bob Collins, the morning show man for WGN, was the pilot of one of the planes and had been killed.  (I’m sure that many readers have tuned in “Uncle Bobby” on their car radios in the Midwest.) Later that night, as I made my 40 minute drive to my third shift job, I listened as the station reminisced and paid tribute to a man who was loved by many.  They told story after story, describing him as the ultimate friend, and a man who had lived life to the fullest. Genuine love and affection poured in from all over the country. The more I listened about how this man had influenced those around him, the more discouraged I became.

Why you ask?

I was discouraged because I wanted to know why we as a culture, wait until somebody has passed away before we tell them how much we love them?  Why do we wait until someone’s ears can’t hear before we let them how much they mean to us?  Why do we wait until it is too late before we recall the good qualities of a person? Why do we build someone up after they have gone into eternity?  What good does it do then!  We share memory after memory, as we laugh, cry, and think back about what was positive in a person’s life.  Yes, it does help us cope with the grief of losing someone that was special to us. And yes it does bring those who are coping, closer together.  But as we lovingly remember this person, our words fall short of the ears that most needed to hear them.

Just once I would like to see a celebration of life, instead of a gathering of death. A celebration where stories are told, eyes mist over, laughter rings out; and as the speaker concludes his or her loving tribute, the person they are honoring rises from their chair and gives them the biggest bear hug! Wouldn’t that be something!  The special person gets to hear the stories and come to the realization that they have made a difference on this earth.  And all this is done well before they leave their earthly bodies and go into eternity.  And when the inevitable funeral finally comes, we can say good bye with the knowledge that they knew exactly how people felt about them while they were here on earth.

I now have a stronger resolve to tell those around me how much they mean to me. I am going to let my wife know just how loved and appreciated she is, not only by my words, but also by my actions.  I am going to play Batman with my four year old more often, and in the middle of our romping, I am going to grab him, hug him tightly, and tell him how thankful I am that he is my son. I am going to sneak into my sleeping toddler’s bedroom, place my lips on his chubby cheek, and thank God for the bundle of joy he has brought into my life. Each day I will make a point to tell both of my boys how much I love them, whether they are four or eighteen!  From there, I am going to let family and friends know the tremendous impact they have had on my life. And last but not least, I am going to let the high school players I coach know that I look forward to each and every minute that I get to spend with them in the gym.

Do you love someone? Then tell them!  Has someone been an influence in your life?  Then give them a call!  Has someone made a difference in your life? Then write them a letter or send them an email!  Don’t let another day go by without letting that person know.  There is something special about a written letter that expresses feelings of love towards another.  I don’t know about you, but I have letters and cards from people that I have saved for years, and from time to time, I get them out and reread them. They can turn a depressing day into one where you realize just how blessed and loved you are.

Life is too short to leave kind words unsaid.  The words you say, or the
letter you write, might just make all the difference in the world.

[Copyright © 2000 by Michael T. Powers, All rights reserved]

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“To suppose that the eye with all its inimitable contrivances for
adjusting the focus to different distances, for admitting different
amounts of light, and for the correction of spherical and chromatic
aberration, could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I
freely confess, absurd in the highest degree.”

[Charles Darwin-The Origin of Species]

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The formula for a happy marriage?
It’s the same as the one for living in California–
when you find a fault, don’t dwell on it.

[Jay Trachman]

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“CLASSIC VERSION”

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his
house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks he’s a
fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter so he dies out in the cold.

“MODERN VERSION”

The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his
house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks he’s a
fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the
shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving.

CBS, NBC and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can it be that, in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?

Then a representative of the NAAGB (National Association of Green Bugs)
shows up on Nightline and charges the ant with “green bias,” and makes the
case that the grasshopper is the victim of 30 million years of greenism.
Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper, and everybody cries when he sings “It’s Not Easy Being Green.”

Bill and Hillary Clinton make a special guest appearance on the CBS Evening News. They tell a concerned Dan Rather that they will do everything they can for the grasshopper who has been denied the prosperity he deserves by those who benefited unfairly during the Reagan summers, or as Bill refers to it, the “Temperatures of the 80’s.”

Richard Gephardt exclaims in an interview with Peter Jennings that the ant
has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and calls for an immediate
tax hike on the ant to make him pay his “fair share.”

Finally, the EEOC drafts the “Economic Equity and Anti-Greenism Act”
retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failing to
hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay
his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.

Hillary gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation
suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Bill appointed from a list of single-parent welfare moms who can only hear cases on Thursday’s between 1:30 and 3pm when there are no talk shows scheduled.

The ant loses the case. The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing
up the last bits of the ant’s food while the government house he’s in, which just happens to be the ant’s old house,  crumbles around him since he
doesn’t know how to maintain it.

The ant has disappeared in the snow. And on the TV, which the grasshopper bought by selling most of the ant’s food, they are showing Bill Clinton standing before a wildly applauding group of politicians announcing that a new era of “fairness” has dawned in America.

[Received from John Waskin]

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On a business trip in California, I realized that I had forgotten my wife’s
birthday the day before. Assuming I was in big trouble, I went to the jewelry section of a San Francisco department store. After explaining to the saleswoman that I desperately needed a gift to make up for my forgetfulness, she quipped, “I’m sorry, but we don’t have anything that expensive.”

[Edwin L. Ray, Reader’s Digest]

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When Minister Joe Wright was asked to open the new session of the Kansas
Senate, everyone was expecting the usual generalities, but this is what they
heard:

“Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask Your forgiveness and to seek Your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, “Woe to those who call evil good” but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values. We confess that. We have ridiculed the absolute truth of Your Word and called it Pluralism; We have worshipped other gods and called it multiculturalism; We have endorsed perversion and called it alternative lifestyle; We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery; We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare; We have killed our unborn and called it choice; We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable; We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem; We have abused power and called it politics; We have coveted our neighbor’s possessions and called it ambition; We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression; We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment.

Search us, Oh, God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and set us free. Guide and bless these men and women who have been sent to direct us to the center of Your will, and we ask it in the name of Your Son, the living Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen”

[Received from Beth McMillan]

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The Golden Rule –golden because it’s genuine, lasting, and valuable. Imagine how different our world would be if we practiced this principle — not just in our “church life” but in our daily life with our family, with our
coworkers and employer, with the people we manage, with the folks on the freeway and in the neighborhoods where we drive, toward the waiters and waitresses who serve us. What a wonderfully different world it would be if the Golden Rule were to be practiced. I think I’ll start changing my world with it today! How about you?

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Emotion without devotion is really only commotion

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

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The mind is like a parachute;
it works much better when it’s open.

*****************************
I’d rather live my life as if there is a God, And die to find out there isn’t. Than live my life as if there isn’t and find out there is.

[Albert Camus]

*****************************
JUST WONDERING…

Why is it that when you’re driving and looking for an address, you turn down the volume on the radio?

Why isn’t phonetics spelled the way it sounds?

Why is the hardness of the butter proportional to the softness of the bread?

Are part-time bandleaders semi-conductors?

Can you buy an entire chess set in a pawn shop?

How do you write zero in Roman numerals?

Why don’t tomb, comb, and bomb sound alike?

Why isn’t 11 pronounced onety one?

Why do psychics have to ask you for your name?

Have you ever wondered why just one letter makes all the
difference between here and there?

Why is a fine a tax for doing wrong, and a tax is a fine for doing well?

If space is a vacuum, who changes the bags?

Why doesn’t glue stick to the inside of the bottle?

If space is a vacuum, who changes the bags?

Why doesn’t glue stick to the inside of the bottle?

How come abbreviated is such a long word?

Why are cigarettes sold at gas stations where smoking is prohibited?

[Jeff and Janette Lilley]

*****************************
Words have the power to motivate or destroy, energize or deflate, inspire, or create despair. Many a successful executive can remember the time their father failed to give affirmation to them as a child. The result was either over achievement to prove their worth, or under achievement to prove he
was right.

Many a wife has lost her ability to love because of a critical husband. Many a husband has left a marriage because of words of disrespect and ungratefulness. Stories abound to the power of words. There are just as many stories of those who have encouraged, challenged and comforted
with words that made a difference in their life.

Jesus knew the power of words. He used parables to convey his principles of the Kingdom of God. He used words of forgiveness and mercy. He used words to challenge. He used words to inspire His disciples to miraculous faith.

Do your words give life? Do they inspire and challenge others to greatness? Who does God want you to encourage through your words today? Affirm someone close to you today.

*****************************
“We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark;
the real tragedy of life is when adults are afraid of the light.”

[Plato]

*****************************
“Tell them and they will forget.
Show them and they will remember.
Involve them and they will learn.”
[Chinese proverb]

*****************************
There were four clergymen who were discussing the merits of the various translations of the Bible. One liked the King James Version because of its simple, beautiful English.

Another liked the American Revised Version best because it is more literal and came nearer to the original Hebrew and Greek.

Still another liked Moffat’s translation because of its up-to-date vocabulary.

The fourth minister was silent.  when asked to express his opinion, he replied, “I like my mother’s translation best.”

The other three expressed surprise.  They did not know that his mother had  translated the Bible.

But he assured them, “She translated it into life, every day of her life, and it was the most convincing translation I ever saw.”

*****************************
Going to church does not make you a Christian anymore than going to McDonald’s makes you a hamburger.

Photons have mass? I didn’t even know they were Catholic…

A diagnostic is someone who doesn’t know whether there are two gods.

*****************************
PORTRAITS YOU WON’T SEE AT THE DIA

His dizzy aunt:  Verti Gogh
The brother who ate prunes:  Gotta Gogh
The brother who worked at a convenience store: Stopn Gogh
The brother who bleached his clothes white: Hue Gogh
His magician uncle:  Wherediddy Gogh
His Mexican cousin:  Amee Gogh
The Mexican cousin’s American half brother: Grin Gogh
The nephew who drove a stage coach:  Wellsfar Gogh
The constipated uncle: Can’t Gogh
The ballroom dancing aunt: Tan Gogh
The bird lover uncle:  Flamin Gogh
His nephew psychoanalyst:  E Gogh
The fruit loving cousin: Man Gogh
An aunt who taught positive thinking:  Wayto Gogh
The little bouncy nephew: Poe Gogh
A sister who loved disco: Go Gogh
And his niece who travels the country in a van: Winnie Bay Gogh

[From Filomena]

*****************************
A SHORT BUDDHIST OUTLOOK ON LIFE

1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
2. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.
3. Follow the three Rs: Respect for self; Respect for others; and Responsibility for all your actions.
4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.
5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.
6. Don’t let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
7. When you realize you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
8. Spend some time alone every day.
9. Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.
10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
11. Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll be able to enjoy it a second time.
12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life.
13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don’t bring up the past.
14. Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality.
15. Be gentle with the earth.
16. Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been before.
17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.
18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
19. Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon.

I also know that dreams really do come true and you have my Best Wishes and my best efforts in those.

Dalai Lama

[Received from John Gibson]

*****************************
A mother was reading a book about animals to her 3 year old
daughter:
Mother: “What does the cow say?”

Child: “Moooo!”
Mother: “Great! What does the cat say?”

Child: “Meow.”
Mother: “Oh, you’re so smart! What does the frog say?”

And this wide-eyed little three-year-old looked up at her mother
and replied, “Bud.”

*****************************
Heartprints

Whatever our hands touch…
We leave fingerprints.
On walls, on furniture,
On door knobs, dishes and books.
Smudges, showing we were there!

Oh Lord, please,
Wherever I go today…
Help me leave Heartprints..
Heartprints of compassion,
Understanding and love.
Heartprints of kindness
And genuine concern.

I shall go out today…To leave Heartprints…
And if someone should say…
“I felt your touch!”
May that one feeling be…Your loving touch,
Lord, Through me!
May my heart touch
my lonely neighbor, with a smile,
a worried mother, with peace,
a runaway child, with safety,
a homeless person, with warmth,
and my dear friends, with love.

*****************************
MOMMY

Johnny brought a gun to school,
He told his friends that it was cool,
And when he pulled the trigger back,
It shot with a great crack.
Mommy, I was a good girl, I did
What I was told,
I went to school, I got straight As’,
I even got the gold!
But Mommy, when I went to school that day,
I never said goodbye,
I’m sorry Mommy, I had to go,
But Mommy, please don’t cry.
When Johnny shot the gun,
He hit me and another,
And all because Johnny,
Got the gun from his older brother.
Mommy, please tell Daddy;
That I love him very much,
And please tell Chris; my boyfriend;
That it wasn’t just a crush.
And tell my little sister;
That she is the only now,
And tell my dear sweet Grandmother;
I’ll be waiting for her now,
And tell my wonderful friends;
That they always were the best,
Mommy, I’m not the first,
I’m no better then the rest.
Mommy, tell my teachers;
I won’t show up for class,
And never to forget this,
And please don’t let this pass.
Mommy, why’d it have to be me?
No one deserves this,
Mommy, warn the others,
Mommy, I left without a kiss.
And Mommy, tell the doctors;
I know they really did try,
I think I even saw a doctor,
Trying not to cry.
Mommy, I’m slowly dying,
With a bullet in my chest,
But Mommy, please remember,
I’m in heaven with the rest.
Mommy, I ran as fast as I could,
When I heard that crack,
Mommy, listen to me if you would,
I’m not coming back.
I wanted to go to college,
I wanted to try things that were new,
I guess I’m not going with Daddy;
On that trip to the new zoo.
I wanted to get married,
I wanted to have a kid,
I wanted to be an actress,
Mommy, I wanted to live.
But Mommy, I’m must go now,
The time is getting late,
Mommy tell my boyfriend,
I’m sorry, but I had to cancel the date.
I love you Mommy, I always have,
I know; you know it’s true,
And Mommy all I wanted to say is,
“Mommy, I love you”

[Received from Joe Olson]

*****************************
When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed outwardly or inwardly. They have come to assist you through difficulty, to provide you with guidance and support, to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually. They may seem like a godsend, and they are. They are there for the reason you need them to be. Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring this relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up or out and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our  desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered and it is now time to move on.

When people come into your life for a SEASON, it is because your turn has come to share, grow, or learn. They may bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done.  They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it! It is real! But, only for a season.

LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; those things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person/people (anyway), and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind, but friendship is clairvoyant.

Thank you for being part of my life!!

[Received from Terry Longo]

*****************************
For many people today the problem is not false religion, but a total lack of any religious views at all. They may say, “Yes, I believe in God,”
when a Gallup poll is taken–but He has no influence on their lives.  They are what someone termed “practical atheists” living life just as if God did not exist.

[Billy Graham]

*****************************
Live every day as if it were your last,
for one day you’re sure to be right.

*****************************
REMINDERS:

Maybe God wants us to meet a few wrong people before meeting the right one so that when we finally meet the right person, we will know how to be grateful for that gift.

When the door of happiness closes, another opens, but often times we look so long at the closed door that we don’t see the one which has been opened for us.

The best kind of friend is the kind you can sit on a porch and swing with, never say a word, and then walk away feeling like it was the best conversation you’ve ever had.

It’s true that we don’t know what we’ve got until we lose it, but it’s also true that we don’t know what we’ve been missing until it arrives.

Don’t go for looks; they can deceive. Don’t go for wealth; even that fades away.  Go for someone who makes you smile because it takes only a smile to make a dark day seem bright. Find the one that makes your heart smile.

May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human, enough hope to bring you joy.

Always put yourself in another’s shoes. If you feel that it hurts you, it probably hurts the other person, too.

The happiest of people don’t necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.

The brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past, you can’t get on well in life until you let go of past failures and heartaches.

When you were born, you were crying and everyone around you was smiling. Live your life so that when you die, you’re the one who is smiling and  everyone around you is crying.

[Received from Sandy Lerner]

*****************************
A man recently died, leaving a large number of music boxes, pocket watches, and clocks among his worldly possessions. The attorney is currently busy winding up the estate.

*****************************
Do not fear the winds of adversity. Kites rise against the wind rather than with it.”

[Author unknown]

*****************************
Yesterday is like a canceled check; Tomorrow is like a promissory note; and Today is like ready cash—so spend it wisely and don’t try to ‘buy back’ a canceled check with ready cash–the debt is already spent—don’t live in the past!
[Joyce Meyer]

*****************************
MISTAKES TO AVOID

Remorse over yesterday’s failures.
Anxiety over today’s problems.
Worry over tomorrow’s uncertainty.
Waste of the moment’s opportunity.
Procrastination with one’s  present duty.
Resentment of another’s success.
Criticism of a neighbor’s imperfection.
Impatience with youth’s immaturity.
Skepticism of our nation’s future.
Unbelief in God’s providence.

[William Arthur Ward]

*****************************
Forgiveness is the fragrance that the flower leaves
on the heel of the one that crushed it.
[Anonymous]

*****************************
CONFUCIUS SAYS…..

“Man who run in front of car get tired”

“Man who run behind car get exhausted”

“Two wrongs not make a right – Three lefts do”

“Man who eat many prunes get good run for money.”

“War doesn’t determine who’s right. War determines who’s left.”

“Man who tell one too many light bulb jokes soon burn out!”

“Man who sit on tack get point!”

“Man who lives in glass house should change in basement”

*****************************
THERE IS NO GUARANTEE

I may never see tomorrow, there’s no guarantee,
And things that happened yesterday belong to history.
I can’t predict the future, I can’t change the past,
I may have just the present memories to treat as my last.
I must use this moment wisely, for soon it will pass away,
And be lost forever as a part of yesterday.
I must exercise compassion, help the fallen to their feet,
Be a friend unto the friendless, make their life complete.
The unkind things I do today, may never be undone,
And friendships that I fail to win, may never more be won.
I may not have another chance on bended knees to pray,
And I thank God with a humble heart for giving me this day!
I salute you and I thank you for your life.

[Author unknown]

*****************************
When I say…”I am a Christian”
I’m not shouting “I am saved”
I’m whispering “I get lost!”
“That is why I chose this way.”

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I don’t speak of this with pride.
I’m confessing that I stumble
and need someone to be my guide.

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I’m not trying to be strong.
I’m professing that I’m weak
and pray for strength to carry on.

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I’m not bragging of success.
I’m admitting I have failed
and cannot ever pay the debt.

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I’m not claiming to be perfect,
my flaws are too visible
but God believes I’m worth it.

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I still feel the sting of pain
I have my share of heartaches
which is why I seek His name.

When I say…”I am a Christian”
I do not wish to judge.
I have no authority.
I only know I’m loved.

[Author unknown]

*****************************

ANSWER TO STORY PROBLEM:
There is no missing dollar.  At this point each man has paid $9 for a total of $27 and the bellman kept $2 which equals $29.  You need to take 27 and substract 2 not add 2.  You would then have 25!!!!!!!!!

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Hope you enjoyed some of these insights—share them with your friends and colleagues—so we can have a larger ‘pool’ to receive from, and more to share with!

Also, remember to include your name as the “source,” if some of this wisdom is of your doing—I would like to give credit where credit is due!

“LORD, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light; and
Where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

[St. Francis of Assisi]

Mark
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