Our desire to pray for all people has been a sacred gift for thousands of years. The innocent have had to fight through wars and weather and changes and the challenges that we all pursue at different times of our lives. There is a power in LOVE that we are all born with and we all have the opportunity to share that love with each other. Every day is a new gift and a remembrance of all those who have shared their lives with the many who have crossed my path and made my life so meaningful.There is not time in a day to remember them all and what they have shared with me. To be able to say thank you for all you have shared with me from childhood to today. I smile as each name is remembered and the power of love gives strength no matter what the day brings. For all of you I have yet to meet I have a sense of well being, not just for them, but what they have shared with me in thought. More often than not the gifts you give to me out way how much I can share with you. Jesus put it this way, “Do unto others as you would have them done unto you”.
Enjoy your days and KNOW THAT OUR CARES AND PRAYERS GO WITH YOU AND YOUR FAMILIES.
ME, Mack and Jake
“Cheerful is today’s WORD. Mack and Jake did quite well with an inch of snow at 5 AM. I have been planning to sweep the back patio to make short trips while it snows all day. I am challenged to be cheerful. But wait, I have so much to be grateful for. 2 tails wagging every time I walk in, or get out of bed every morning, or when a treat appears by magic. The things that need to be done, make a day, a day. Without the gifts I have, what would make dinner more than peanut butter and jelly. Where would the treats be, or the fall jackets or the winter jackets. I have spent my life watching snow fall and have a white back yard vs brown today. To keep moving every day is the benefit of activity.
I will watch the snow melt and the grass become green, and the seasons bring all the things that the seasons bring. All the things I see, or fix, or clean, remind me that GOD is busy making a new billboard everyday to enjoy. That creates cheerful, and tail wags, and a good walk, and a gift of life. Have a cheerful day and see the billboard that GOD created for you and the dogs. OUR CARES AND PRAYERS GO WITH YOU EVERY DAY.
ME, Mack and Jake
‘Their GOD is not our GOD.’ So many times have I heard this come out of the mouths of Christians that I am reminded of what Jesus said, “It is not what goes into your mouth that defiles you, but what comes out.”
I was involved in a discussion once with a Christian acquaintance and the topic came up of whom GOD loves more.
Who are the true chosen?
I asked him to list the people on Earth whom GOD did not create. You see we are ALL the children of GOD.
I related a story: when my mother baked cookies for me she always made more oatmeal raisin cookies than chocolate chip cookies. Why? Because I liked oatmeal raisin cookies more than chocolate chip cookies. If we believe that GOD shows some sort of preference for one group over another, certainly the chosen people of GOD are Asian, for there are many more of them than anyone else.
I believe GOD is big enough, intelligent enough, and loving enough to speak to all people in their own language and in their own culture. I believe there is a measure of truth intertwined within all the religions of the world and that we are missing the entire message of GOD when we exclude one faith journey vs another because of our tribalistic propensity to hold our own ritualistic faith as the entire truth of GOD’s teaching. How much wisdom has been lost in such ignorance.
Jesus taught, ”Love One Another”, No caveats, No claims of exclusivity of membership. “By this [love] will they know that you are disciples of mine”, is a common destination that leads to peace. In fact, it is the only destination that leads toward peace.
Until we can embrace our diversity of culture, religion, and faith with the understanding that GOD speaks through many tongues, our destination will be one of division. Until we learn to focus our energies on a common destination of loving one another, our world will never find peace.
I believe that:
GOD WILL NEVER DENY HEAVEN TO ONE WHO LOVES.
THIS IS OUR PROMISE, IT IS OUR HERITAGE,
IT IS OUR TEACHING, AND IT IS OUR GIFT.
ON GOD’S PORCH
So let me see, SUNDAY, October 2. I am still here and I have the sharing of Two Guardian Angels keeping track of me. This morning’s walk included about 7-8 squirrels as we walked to the park and back. It is interesting to have squirrels stop what they are doing and then up the tree to the closest limb and just stop and stare at us as I stop by to say hello.
Each one, different trees, as we made our way to the park and back.
“You’re doing well, have a great day, take care of yourself”.
They were making my day as I moved about.
We are not alone in this Iowa universe. The Owls chat, the squirrels chat, the other dogs say Hi, and I smile and say hi. They record my progress one to another, to another to another. We are all entities that watch the sunrise and sunset. They feel the air get cooler and the wind blows more, or less. A human walks by and says “What a beautiful day”. The journey of more than people.
As you go about the day see all the creatures that GOD has provided you, as well as the people of a world that GOD enjoys. OUR CARES AND PRAYERS GO OUT FOR ALL OF YOU, AND ALL OF THEM.
THERE IS ALWAYS A GIFT ON GOD’S PORCH
ME, Mack and Jake
Unorthodox Christianity is getting more pronounced as time moves on.
What was once a beginning of one culture is now 30,000 individual denominations of Christians, in churches around the world and wanting to decide the lives of others from their pulpits. How many churches wave a banner that says “WE ARE THE “REAL CHURCH”. “WE KNOW WHAT GOD WILL DO TO YOU”. “IT WAS WRITTEN IN A BOOK FROM 2,000 PLUS YEARS AGO FROM A CULTURE IN JERUSALEM ABOUT A CULTURE THAT NEVER ACCEPTED A CHRIST ON THEIR OWN GROUND”. That culture fell in love with with an itinerant preacher whose beliefs resulted in him being crucified by many of those leaders who are clueless about JESUS, a good Samaritan who was born in Bethlehem in what today is Israel.
And you wonder why I called it UNORTHODOX.
I may comment on my dogs, or my help from those who have helped me for so many years that when I hear of an Orthodox debate about just what GOD is going to do to someone else, I wonder how they figured that out. Or the result of some situation that shakes your head and a life decision is expected to be made by someone that you will never know who that person is. You will never know, and that you are basing your judgment on a religious or political decision from a Church or a judge or a Supreme Court that is going to allow many to decide a decision based on how someone who GOD has known their entire life, every day every hour and who GOD will be with every day and moment for the rest of their lives vs. any judge or church or politic whose knowledge of this person is unknown to them and yet fully known to GOD. That person from birth has thought about that decision and every day has asked GOD for help. GOD gives GOD’s reasons and GOD’s Reason alone. If GOD enters your sphere and says LOVE ONE ANOTHER and an Itinerant Rabbi says “FORGIVE THEM FATHER THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO” How do you know what GOD is thinking?
WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO SAY?
A light rainfall in Iowa this morning. Hoping for a break in the clouds so that the dogs can go out. They were out at 5:30 for breakfast and they did their thing for now. The most common conversation in Iowa goes “WE NEED THE RAIN”. I have laundry drying and trying to think ahead. I will have to test exercise for inside like in rehab. I have plenty of examples to utilize.
When I wake up in the morning I meet life for another day. I am grateful to have another opportunity. The things I have to concentrate on is taking time to quietly sit in my chair, take as much time as I can and simply say Thank You GOD. I do not believe that I truly need to say more than that. I like to think GOD smiles when I take the time to say Thank You. I may just say “Have a nice day” also.
In the midst of all the business that surrounds GOD in whatever day, having someone say “Have a nice day GOD” followed by my Aunt Vera reminding GOD “Isn’t that wonderful” can help GOD to break out in a smile and say “Thank You”. Life is the gift I wake up for.
I think I will take some chair time when done with this and share a cup of coffee with GOD. I am sure He (or She or Whatever) will enjoy it. For my everyday friends, Have a wonderful day and KNOW THAT OUR CARES AND PRAYERS ARE WITH YOU also.
ME, Mack and Jake
So I am moving forward from therapy and rehabilitation and now preparing to head back to work. I have been blessed by doctors and nurses and house cleaners and my dog watchers and on and on. GOD reserved more than one person to help me. Every day the neighbors were saying how have I been doing. How are the dogs? How have I been motivated by so many nearby. I have had more smiles from people I share walking the dogs with.
Many people ask “Where is GOD” because of Unorthodox Christianity. They can’t find GOD, or Jesus in their every day and I am supposed to know all about it. As I get a smile for the dog “Liberty” or give a treat to “Daisy” or have “Harry and Chloe” run up to me to share a treat that I get called the Candy Man can. It is the smile on a 3 year old when Mack or Jake smile with them. It is the smile of a mom and dad playing with their kids at the park. There isn’t enough space to write down all the smiles, all the concern, all the friends who started as neighbors and have become friends.
And then someone asks, “Just where is GOD”.
Times get tough. Tragedy stands at doors, in the weather, in the floods. “Where is GOD”. Of all the things we have happen in our lives to say, “Where is GOD”. I watch the news and can not see where GOD isn’t.
My surgeon, I found out, came to work on me on His Birthday, to be sure that the procedure was done in a timely manner rather than run a risk for having to wait until the surgery fit the schedule. It would have been very risky over a wait until the schedule was in my schedule. Every day the news reflects GOD in motion. Every day people are helping others, rescuing people through the floods, fires, and they wrap their arms around the ones whose family, friends, or neighbors to not make it here. Not for the sake of GOD or JESUS not being there at the right time. For the sake of GOD and JESUS are there helping the helpers. Not just a few who come home.GOD and JESUS are busy every day, and every where and every moment in every place are the helpers of GOD and JESUS.
A cohort at rehab asked me the other day just what will I do when rehab is over. I put it this way:
“For right now, for me, it is better to make some progress daily, then have no daily to experience at all.”
GOD and JESUS are everywhere. All the time. Some days life starts over for some in a new experience. Some days life is a gift of the every day. GOD and JESUS know what life is. Don’t miss those who’s job it it is to care. NO one should question where GOD is or where JESUS just might be.They are so far beyond your capabilities do not measure them by who we think they are. Just look at the every day no matter where you are. GOD and JESUS are there. And they are doing just what they do always.
AS FOR ME AND MY HOUSE, WE ALL CAN SHARE THE GIFT OF THE EVERY DAY.
“ORDINARY PEOPLE” Click on music if it doesn’t start by itself.
So on July 15th, 2022 GOD stopped by while I had Open Heart Surgery at GOD’s own bequest. GOD didn’t want me to do this just with the help of some excellent doctors and nurses. GOD always prepares and never gives up on a project. The first thing GOD did was prepare the project with GOD’s gift in the hands of the people that the above song is all about. Not just me, not just a few. Once GOD had put all the pieces of this project together over a period of a year and a half. GOD got so many people to help me, to watch the dogs, to drive me here and there, and a whole team of encouragement givers appeared. As I was talking with a couple of the encouragers the other night they asked me a question. “You have done all of this so well with your surgery, and your positiveness. Just how did you do it?”
I thought about the question for a few minutes and the word came to me. “CONFIDENCE”. I was getting ready to be off to bed and I found myself remembering with a group of people from a song I had written years ago. The song at the beginning of this writing. “Ordinary People.” I talked to my encouragers. “Confidence is not just a gift. If you do not mind me sharing. Confidence is not born of one event. It is born of a lifetime of events of “Ordinary People” who have shared their “Confidence” in hundreds of events in my life. ORDINARY PEOPLE who have shared my lifetime in so many situations”. I shortly left for bed. But I was not done with this note for this lesson.
You see we often make a huge mistake when we miss the values of Unorthodox Christianity. We think that the Bible’s have all the stories. We write them down and memorize them from Bible school to Bible College to Sunday School and all kinds of Bible Studies. There are all kinds of Churches and stories about what will happen if you don’t believe this story, or that story. The truth of GOD is this:
THE BOOKS ARE NEVER FINISHED. THE “ORDINARY PEOPLE” ARE NEVER DONE. GOD has provided us with enough encourgers and personal stories of so many events over lifetimes of stories that they have become libraries that have filled the ages of writings, and stories, and songs for you to share with and lives to learn from. They surpass the few books that we ascribe to our Bibles and we miss the thousands of books that have become thousands of years of events throughout the world. GOD knows that the few books we attribute to the “Bibles” are such a small volume of the works of GOD and “ORDINARY PEOPLE” that telling people what GOD has in mind for our lives doesn’t scratch the surface of just one ORDINARY PERSON, let alone thousands, let alone billions that have become just who we are.
Just what are people looking for when they seek out GOD for their own relationship with GOD? What do the “Ordinary People” ask of GOD? More and more people have a harder time with a GOD who criticizes everything from a journey that GOD will sort out and that GOD will see lifetimes of challenges and changes. GOD will send ORDINARY PEOPLE to encourage so many encourgers over so many lifetimes to support so many. And suddenly it becomes lifetimes of forever lifetimes of “Life after Death”.
One thing I have gotten out of Unorthodox Christianity over all these years is pretty simple. ” Lifetimes of CONFIDENCE”.
THE BOOKS ARE NEVER FINISHED. THE BOOKS WILL ALWAYS EXIST. THE BOOKS WILL ALWAYS BE FOUND NO MATTER WHERE THEY MAY BE HIDING. THAT IS WHAT CREATES CONFIDENCE. AND CONFIDENCE IS WHAT CREATES FAITH. AND FAITH IS THE HALLMARK OF GOD.
“HE CHOSE ORDINARY PEOPLE TO BE FOLLOWERS OF CHRIST.”
As I was sitting down the other evening, and thinking about just what “Life Is” some 70 years into “Life Is”. Some things came to my attention. I found myself thinking about just what have I accomplished so far in my life?
I thought about my debt to asset ratio after all these years. I have seen many of the retirement preparations shows on the TV and how I have made it to this point. I am in the Social Security part of my life. I still work and probably will for the rest of of my life. The question rambled throughout my head just what have I accomplished?
I explain it to people that I am independently poor.
That word ACCOMPLISHED seemed to jump out at me like I had just entered into a boxing ring. Just what have I accomplished in my life? I have a long list of what I have wanted to accomplish. What I wanted in elementary school, or high school, or college. How about that first job, or the last one.
In the world of religion and GOD and JESUS and BUDDHA, and many more different religious groups and beliefs is UNORTHODOX CHRISTIANITY.
WHAT HAVE I ACCOMPLISHED?
How many of us ask ourselves what have we accomplished so far in this Life? People I have talked to in my life have asked me, religiously, in different ways, what have I accomplished in my life? So I asked GOD for a clarification.
“Just what, GOD, have I ACCOMPLISHED in 70+ years so far?”
As though it was written by an ancient prophet from somewhere, GOD wrote it like this:
“Life is not about all the things you may have wanted to do. Life is about all of the things that you have done. The people that you have met. The opportunities that you have had a chance to help of or be a part of something important or just fun.
Life is not about what I may feel that I have missed in life. Life is about the journey that I and you have been on as individuals. That is what started on the day I was born and won’t end until I have the opportunity to start over again, and again, and again. That has been called eternal life. It is a thief sharing a cross with JESUS that recognized that JESUS should not have been punished for being good, and Jesus’s response was “Today you will be with me in Paradise”. For a thief, It was recognizing that it was not for accomplishing the great things that he may have wanted, It was now about what he had ACCOMPLISHED in the journey. “Today I will be with Him in Paradise”.
The journey starts every day. It is all you have done and enjoyed and what has become your journey. It is about where you may have crossed the path with someone you will forever remember. The smile someone else brought to you face. The bottle of water that came over to you when you were working to help someone next door. It was watching a baseball game of the kids playing next door and the smiles on their faces. It was opening that first box of girl scout cookies.
It is not about me, it is whatever you have done and what it has become. It has become your life, your friends, your challenges. Your decisions. It is your story and your history for you. You have accomplished more than you recognize. You have worked on LIFE since day one. You can sit in your easy chair and smile at the things that have come your way and made you smile, or changed a disaster and met a friend you will only meet once and forever remember.
Unorthodox Christianity is rooted in an opportunity to take a tremendous journey through Life in what has been and is your world. Just what have you accomplished? You are on your way there, everyday.