While at the park one day, a woman sat down next to a man on a bench near a playground. "That's my son over there," she said, pointing to a little boy in a red sweater who was gliding down the slide.

"He's a fine looking boy" the man said. "That's my daughter on the bike in the white dress." Then, looking at his watch, he called to his daughter.

"What do you say we go, Melissa?"

Melissa pleaded, "Just five more minutes, Dad. Please? Just five more minutes."

The man nodded and Melissa continued to ride her bike to her heart's content.

Minutes passed and the father stood and called again to his daughter. "Time to go now?"

Again Melissa pleaded, "Five more minutes, Dad. Just five more minutes."

The man smiled and said, "O.K."

"My, you certainly are a patient father," the woman responded.

The man smiled and then said, "Her older brother Tommy was killed by a drunk driver last year while he was riding his bike near here. I never spent much time with Tommy and now I'd give anything for just five more minutes with him. I've vowed not to make the same mistake with Melissa. She thinks she has five more minutes to ride her bike. The truth is, I get Five more minutes to watch her play."

Life is all about making priorities, what are your priorities? Give someone you love 5 more minutes of your time today.

THE RISK OF LOVE by Kris Hydmore

There is a risk involved in everything
Every time you share a smile
Every time you shed a tear
You are opening yourself up to hurt.

Some people tread slowly through life,
Avoiding the risk closeness brings,
Side-stepping the things they can't understand
Turning away from those who care too much,
Those who care stay too long,
Those who hold too tightly.

There is never an easy way to love
You can not approach it cautiously
It will not wait for you to arm yourself.
It does not care if you turn away
It is everywhere, it is everything.

Love is the greatest of all risks.
It is not reliable, it is not cautious,
It is not sympathetic
It is unprejudiced and unmerciliess.
It strikes the strongest of mind,
And brings them to their knees in one blow.

Even in the best of times, love hurts.
It hurts to need, it hurts to belong,
It hurts to be the other part of someone else,
Without either of your consent.
But, from the moment it overtakes you,
It hurts worse to be all alone.

The risk of love never depletes;
It grows stronger and more dangerous with time.
But, it's in the total surrender of all defense,
That we, no matter weak or strong,
No matter willing or captive,
No matter what, we truly experience love.

Despite the many things love is not,
Outweighing it all are the things that love is.
Love is surrender without a loss.
It is a gift without the cost.
It consumes your every thought & desire,
Every breath you take.
It is the fire that fuels you
To do more than pass through life;
It urges you, instead, to live.

No matter the outcome, having felt love,
You will never be the same.
It may scar your heart & soul
And Leave you only memories of forever.
Or, it may cause every day of your life
To feel like there is no need for tomorrow.
But, love is worth it. It is worth the risk...

For in all of life,
Love is truly the only risk worth taking.

CALL TO ME By Sally I. Kennedy

Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.' Jeremiah 33:3,

We could hear it before we could see it. One lone goose, honking loudly on his way in. If any other geese had been on the small lake this beautiful autumn mo rning, they would have answered the call.

"Hunters know this", my husband explained. "That's the reason for the turkey callers that they use; they can learn where the birds are."

The goose paddled around, near the water's muddy edge by the lily pads, all alone. No answer. No geese were on this lake. Perhaps they had all flown south for the winter. It was well into fall, and there'd been one chilly frost already.

I thought, good thing we can call to God ANY time at all, and He is never gone. Isn't it amazing? This almighty God of the universe, who is unchanging, sovereign, steadfast, and ever-faithful, is the same God who keeps a listening ear out for those calling out- for companions, for help, for whatever. And, He will answer. It's a promise.

That is good news.

NOT YET Author Unknown

Sometimes I ask the question, "My Lord, is this your will?" It's then I hear you answer me, "My Precious Child ... be still."

Sometimes I feel frustrated, cause I think I know what's best. It's then I hear you say to me, "My Busy Child ... just rest"

Sometimes I feel so lonely and I think I'd like a mate. Your still small voice gets oh so clear and says, "My Child ... please wait"

"I know the plans I have for you, the wondrous things you'll see; If you can just be patient, Child, and put your trust in me.

I've plans to draw you closer. I've plans to help you grow. There's much I do you cannot see and much you do not know.

But know This, Child ..... I LOVE YOU. You are Precious unto Me. Before I formed you in the womb, I planned your destiny.

I've something very special I hope for you to learn. The gifts I wish to give to you are gifts you cannot earn.

They come without a price tag, but not without a cost; at Calvary, I gave My Son, so You would not be lost.

Rest Child, and do not weary of doing what is good. I promise I'll come back for you just like I said I would.

Your name is written on my palm, I never could forget; Therefore, do not be discouraged when my answer is... "Not Yet"

BLACKBIRDS By Marion Smith

This morning, as I sat on my back porch, I noticed a large flock of blackbirds in the backyard. They were flying from the trees to the ground and back again. While on the ground, they scurried around looking for food. They would hunt and peck, hunt and peck, hunt and peck. Finally one of them noticed the birdfeeder filled with delicious sunflower seeds. This particular bird flew to the feeder, taking his fill, and didn't move for a very long time. Soon,others joined him. They filled each available perch on the feeder while twenty or more sat on the fence, looking as if they were waiting their turn. It is this way for many people.

They flit here and there, looking for something to satisfy them. They think they've discovered it, so they perch for awhile and digest the activity they've pursued. Hopefully, someone they know or encounter will have found the true source of satisfaction- God, through His Word. They will draw others who are spiritually hungry,inviting them to "the feast." The Bible is just like that full birdfeeder - it is waiting for people to come and feast.When this occurs, they will no longer be satisfied to hunt and peck, and hunt and peck for fulfillment. God's Word will fill them, and they will want to will share the good news with their friends.

THE "LAYERED" LOOK By Marion Smith

Fall is here, and it is time for me to rearrange my closet. Put all the summer shorts and tees in the back and place slacks, jackets and the clothes of heavier material and "fall colors" to the front. It is a fact of life for those of us who live in areas where we experience the change of seasons that we must have a variety of clothes appropriate for each type of weather conditions.

God has given us two types of clothing. There is clothing appropriate for living, and that which we need for war. Actually, it is a layered look we have with our heavenly wardrobe, for we need both kinds of clothing to live our lives as God has planned for us to do. The battle wardrobe is used to fight spiritual warfare, for we are always in an unseen struggle with Satan. God told us to put on the helmet of salvation, breastplate of righteousness, belt of truth, and shoes of peace . We must also carry the sword of the spirit and the shield of faith. These items will keep Satan at bay as he tries to invade our thoughts and lives. He also tells us in the Bible, in Colossians, 3:12,13 that we should be ever ready to donn tenderhearted mercies and kindness to others. We must wear gentleness ,forgiveness and humbleness. Theses beautiful garments of love are for us to wear today, just as God gave beautiful garments for Arron, the priest, in the Old Testament of the Bible. His clothes were sacred garments and they indicated he was separated to God, and so are ours.

Now, each morning when I mentally put on my armor of God, I will also remember the 2nd layer of clothing God wants me to wear… the one that will radiate Christ's love through us when we dress as He has instructed us to. We will shine for HIM, all day long.

CLOSINGS By Sally I. Kennedy

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD,"plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

I was feeling like life is just one big series of closings. Dissolution of the corporation earlier this year was now playing out. Each letter that came, each call seemed one more loose end to tie up with the goodbye package. I felt sad.

"Is it true?" I mused. Is it all about endings?

In a flash, the now, as well as near future, popped into mind. Aha. Yes. Big sigh. This is OK. This is good. This is just how it is supposed to be.

Things move out, make way for something else. It is a fact of physics that two things cannot inhabit one space simultaneously. So closings happen. And good they do, for how else could openings happen? In the oft-quoted scripture verse from Jeremiah, God really does have a plan for me, for us, and it is good. So today I'll gratefully go with it, and go with God.


"Poor little butterfly," the young girl said. "Poor little butterfly."

Then reaching down slowly so as to not scare it away, she slid her tiny fingers underneath, urging it to step upon her hand.

It would appear to anyone that this delicate creature was lifeless leaving behind remains of what once was.

But not her. She sensed something. She knew right away that there was indeed some life left in this most fragile example of God's work.

The butterfly nearly tumbled onto her hand, wings folded straight up, apparently unable to fly.

Then, perhaps it was the warmth of her hands or the welcoming response to the attention it was given, but the butterfly began to walk slowly up to her palm.

"Poor little butterfly," she repeated again as she brought it closer to her face.

"If I could kiss you I would, " she said.

The butterfly, appearing to respond, slowly opened its wings, to reveal its beautiful designand colors. Now open fully, the child brought it closer and gave an angel's kiss of love.

Just off in the distance watching this precious moment, her grandmother walked toward them.

"Oh, you have found it," she said. "I was waiting for it and wondered where it was."

The child looked a bit surprised and said. "You were waiting for this butterfly? Why?"

"It is sent to remind us," grandmother said.

"But it is dying. I feel sorry for it. Don't they fly away when it gets cold?"

"Yes, they do. But one is always chosen to remain behind," she said.

Maybe this was just grandmother' s way of softening the the truth so that the child would not be saddened by the thought of the butterfly dying. But what unfolded here was an incredible moment, an opportunity seen and taken to teach a lesson of love.

"Why would they choose to be left behind?" the child asked as she gently stroked the butterfly.

"They don't choose to be, they are chosen," she told her.

The child looked down again and held it closer.

"It is a great honor to be chosen. The story goes that God realized that when winter comes color disappears. The color of the flowers fade into the earth and all the delicate butterflies leave for warmer places. So, God decided that one should remain to remind us of the beautiful world He has created and the promise of Spring's return."

The child looked down and then lifting her head slowly, she whispered, "And I found it, grandmother. "

"Yes, and with that you have a great responsibility, " she said as she held the young girl's face in her hands.


"You must now take time to see God's colors in the darkness of winter. You must be the sunshine. You must help those who have forgotten how beautiful life is, to see the color of God's love for them."

"Oh, grandmother. I don't know how to," she said.

"It is simple. Be yourself. People believe only what they see. Like the flowers and butterflies. But God makes people beautiful inside. It is up to us to bring that beauty out by loving each other, helping each other and when we find someone who has fallen, just like that butterfly, it is up to us to pick them up, carress them and care for them. For one day it may very well be His Chosen One left behind."

The child moved closer to her grandmother as they sat admiring God's messenger.

Take time to see the beauty, the colors of God in the people around you.

You, too may find the "Poor little butterfly!"

"I believe in you!"

I encourage you to share my stories but I do ask tha t you keep my name and contact information with my work. If you would like to receive Bob's Inspirational stories, please visit http://www.IWishYou Enough.com and submit your email address.

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

"I Wish You enough!"
© 2001 Bob Perks
I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun more.
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive.
I wish you enough pain so that the smallest joys in life appear much bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish you enough "Hello's" to get you through the final "Goodbye."

Bob Perks, P.O. Box 1702, Shavertown, PA 18708-1702, USA

WHAT'S IN A NAME By Sally I. Kennedy

God gave him the name above all other names. Philippians 2:9

"Sticks and stones may hurt my bones, but names can never hurt me."

Or can they? And if names can be hurtful, can they be helpful? Healing?

In some countries, people were named after their parents. For example, if you were Ben's son, you might be called Benson. Or Martin's son, Martinson. One of Jesus' names was Jesus Bar Joseph, Jesus son of Joseph.

The names used in the Bible often have spiritual significance and are descriptive of those persons. The name Isaac meant 'laughter', Moses drawn out of water, Sarah - 'princess', Eve 'life', David beloved. God has many names. A couple are Jehovah Jireh (the Lord who provides, Gen.22:14), and Jehovah Rohi (the Lord is my Shepherd, Ps. 23:1)

Do our names define us?

As believers, we can claim the names: redeemed, adopted, saved, set free, holy, set aside, healed, whole, chosen, sent, and Christian, follower of Christ.

I am thankful today, that whatever my given name, or how others have defined me, I am a child of the King!


Gal. 5:22,23 The fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, self control and gentleness.

Many things in life are contagious, and the first I think of are childhood diseases . Measles, mumps and chicken pox are illnesses which usually run through a family, affecting one child after another. Head lice are very transmittable, and when they enter a classroom, great pains must be taken to eliminate their rampant spread. Emotions are also catching - fear can spread easily, along with joy, laughter and even anger.

A while ago, when I attended the Outrageous Joy Conference, here in Atlanta Ga., I witnessed a most beautiful contagious epidemic! Babbie Mason was the singer/ speaker of the moment, and her voice reverberated from the depths of her being with love and honor for the Lord. During a portion of the song when the entire audience joined in, I noticed one section of ladies waving white hankies above their head. This delightful and spontaneous gesture traveled from the small nucleus to the entire auditorium . The white luncheon napkins were torn apart and shared all around- and with each tear came the contagious, exuberant joy and love for the Lord. It reminded me of the time Jesus fed the 5,000 with just a loaf of bread and a fish. There was plenty for all, with some left over.

By the last stanza of the song I believe every hand was raised with their little white napkin piece, giving glory to God and allowing the power of the Holy Spirit to really move in this body of women believers. It was a very special moment, and I praise God that I was able to participate in it. Our love for the Lord can be contagious, also. If we exhibit the fruit of the Spirit, others will want to know how we can do this, and we will have an opportunity to share The Good News!


Learn To Say No… So You Can Say A Bigger Yes To Life!
Difficult People Will Teach You How To Build Your Boundaries

If you’re an approval addict or people-pleaser like me, I’m writing this especially to you.

You see, I’m a person who didn’t like saying “No”.

For the longest time, that word wasn’t even in my vocabulary.

For years, I never showed my anger to anyone. After years of smiling even if I was offended, there came a point when I didn’t even feel anger anymore. I simply shut it out of my life. (Believe me, I thought I was very holy because of this. Not realizing I was emotionally a mess deep within.)

I had an approval addiction so powerful, it ruled every decision I made.

Why? Because I was desperate for people to like me.

When someone didn’t like me, I died within.

I didn’t love myself.

I had an abysmal low-self worth.

So I tried to please everyone in everyway.

I abhorred any kind of conflict.

Oh yes, I was a mess.

And one of the ways of making them love me was to always say “Yes.”

I never knew that saying “Yes” all the time was actually saying “No” to an abundant life.

So I tolerated all the difficult people and emotional vampires on the planet: Control-Freaks. Drama-Queens. Nut-Cases. Rage-aholics. Irresponsible Jerks. Hyper-sensitive people. Possessive Parasites. You name the difficult person, I pleased each one of them—just to keep the peace. But the false peace came with a price: I was throwing away myinner peace. My self-respect. My self-worth.

Let me tell you one story…

Build Your Boundaries—

So You Could Welcome People As Guests Through The Gate,

Not Thieves That Run Amok Through Your Life

Billy (not his real name) was a friend who invited me to become a business partner in one of his ventures.

But he had a weakness: He was a controller. He wanted to control me. He wanted to control everyone. The sun and moon and stars included.

For a while, I lived with it. I chalked it up as one of those inconveniences of life, lumped up with Manila traffic, the humidity of the Philippines, and my allergies to shrimp.

But it was incredibly stressful working with Billy.

I didn’t want to admit it. “But he’s my friend,” I told myself every time I felt stressed out. I was in denial. My approval addiction was blinding me to the fact that working with him was driving me nuts.

But one day, I had to say “No” and build my personal boundaries. I allowed him to stomp over my fences many times. I had to repair my boundaries and protect myself.

It was painful, but I knew there was only one way out. So one day, I told Billy that though I wanted to remain friends, I wanted to get out of our business partnership.

That wasn’t acceptable to him. So ever since that day, he never spoke to me again. It was painful because our friendship ended.

But I immediately knew I did the right thing because of the inner peace I felt that day. My approval addiction was defanged. For the first time in a long while, I created a conflict. By respecting myself and my boundary lines, I was growing in self-power.

That day, I finally loved myself.

Today, my relationships are richer.

Because my boundaries are whole, people who come into my life are welcomed guests who pass through the gate (I deliberately opened it for them), not thieves that run amok through my life.

When you say “No” at the right situations, you’re saying a bigger “Yes” to life.

Truth: People Will Do What You Tolerate

So let me ask you this question: Are there people in your life who you should be saying “No” to? Are there difficult people in your life who have been gate-crashing and running amok in your life?

Remember: You teach people how to treat you.

If that person is abusing you, or breaking your boundaries, that means you taught that person that it was okay to do so. You tolerated it. And people will do what you tolerate.

The solution may not be to end the relationship (though sometimes, it is the solution), but to simply say “No” at the specific situations where the person is crossing your boundary lines.

Reclaim your self.

Don’t allow people to trash you.

God loves you. God created you as His child. God wants you to be happy.

So be happy.

May your dreams come true,

Bo Sanchez


A stranger came by the other day with an offer that set me to thinking. He wanted to buy the old barn that sits out by the highway. I told him right off he was crazy. He was a city type, you could tell by his clothes, his car, his hands, and the way he talked. He said he was driving by and saw that beautiful barn sitting out in the tall grass and wanted to know if it was for sale. I told him he had a funny idea of beauty.

Sure, it was a handsome building in its day. But then, there's been a lot of winters pass with their snow and ice and howling wind. The summer sun's beat down on that old barn till all the paint's gone, and the wood has turned silver gray. Now the old building leans a good deal, looking kind of tired. Yet, that fellow called it beautiful.

That set me to thinking. I walked out to the field and just stood there, gazing at that old barn. The stranger said he planned to use the lumber to line the walls of his den in a new country home he's building down the road. He said you couldn't get paint that beautiful. Only years of standing in the weather, bearing the storms and scorching sun, only that can produce beautiful barn wood.

It came to me then. We're a lot like that, you and I. Only it's on the inside that the beauty grows with us. Sure we turn silver gray too and lean a bit more than we did when we were young and full of sap. But the Good Lord knows what He's doing. And as the years pass He's busy using the hard wealth of our lives, the dry spells and the stormy seasons, to do a job of beautifying our souls that nothing else can produce. And to think how often folks holler because they want life

They took the old barn down today and hauled it away to beautify a rich man's house. And I reckon someday you and I'll be hauled off to Heaven to take on whatever chores the Good Lord has for us on the Great Sky Ranch.

And I suspect we'll be more beautiful then for the seasons we've been through here ... and just maybe even add a bit of beauty to our Father's house.

May today there be peace within you.

May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be.

OCEAN By Melanie Schurr

While on vacation in Florida, I walked along the ocean shore collecting shells and enjoying the early morning coolness. As the clear surf rhythmically crashed over the rocks and sand, I looked into the distance to the seemingly never-ending blanket of water. I knew there was an end to the ocean, the other side of it, but from where I stood, no end was in sight.

Isn't this exactly how troubles in our life often appear as we tend to focus on the expanse of our inevitable problems, ignoring the end in sight?

Like the ocean, in all earthly things, there is a beginning and an end. So, too, with every sadness, conflict, or hardship, there will follow a resolution and an end. With every storm comes the sun afterwards.

In the Bible, God tells us that, although we may feel alone, we are not. Our Heavenly Father is there to hold our hand, to comfort and offer peace to a hurting world.

If you are going through a difficult period in your life, now is the time to call on Christ. The end to your problem will not be so far off and it will be the beginning of a new relationship with Christ!

BENT DOWN By Sally I. Kennedy

A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. Isaiah 42:3, Matthew 12:20

Packing up the decorations from Christmas and the holidays, I began to feel a bit weary, and bent down. Not really tired, although there had been a lot of extra things going on during the month of December. A warm, grateful feeling, yet still a bit weary.

I was wondering what was going on, why I would feel overwhelmed all of a sudden, when the thought occurred to me that I might be stepping into the future.

Thinking and planning can absolutely get me feeling overwhelmed. One day at a time is definitely the ticket for me. The bible says to not worry about the future, because each day has enough “troubles” of its own! (Matthew 6:34)

Just as snow can fall on an evergreen tree, and a sturdy branch can become bent down with the weight of the snow, the branch doesn’t break. Things do, and will, come into our lives, but we can bear up as we give them to the Lord.

Lord, whenever I feel a bit weary, and bent down, please help me to remember that You died to carry our burdens….burdens, cares, and concerns of all kinds. Thank You, Lord! In Jesus’ name, amen.


There was a little boy who lived by the sea and the one thing he loved best was to carve out little boats from the pieces of driftwood that came from that sea. One day he found washed up on the shore a solid block of wood so perfect for sculpting that he told himself, "This is going to be the best boat I'll make!" and so he proceeded to carve it, making sure that the details were perfect. After sculpting it, he sanded it and painted and lacquered it. He'd then take it wherever he went, always showing it off to his friends.

One day, he waded into the sea, put his little boat on the water, and watched it bob up and down on the water. He was very proud of his boat. But suddenly, a great wave descended on him and the little boat, and the wave engulfed the little boat until it drifted far, far away from the boy and disappeared. The boy ran to his father, crying, and his father tried to comfort him, to no avail.

The days went past, and became weeks, then months, but the boy still missed his little boat. One day, while he was accompanying his father to town, he wandered into a store, and there, among the other souvenirs and merchandise the store was selling, was his little boat! He then approached the owner, and asked him where he got the little boat over there by the shelf.

"Well now," said the owner, "someone came into the store just last week and sold me that little boat, and since it's a fine piece of craftmanship, I thought it was a good deal."

"Sir, you see, I was the one who made that little boat." the boy said. "I carved it, sanded it, painted and lacquered it. It's the best little boat I ever made, and it got lost at sea and I've searched and searched for it and now I'm so happy to have found it. Can I have it back please?"

The owner looked at the boy, shook his head, and said, "I'm sorry son, but I paid for that little boat, and if you want to get it back, then you'd have to buy it ."

The boy, who didn't have any money on him at the time, said, "Okay. I'll be back soon. Just keep it in reserve for me, okay?" Then he took one last look at his little boat, and ran to join his father.

As soon as they came home, he went to his room, took his piggy bank, broke it, and counted the money in it. Alas, he came up short! He sat there, tears rolling down his face, and his father came in the room. "Son, what's the matter?," his father asked. So the boy told him what happened, and his father said, "Son, why do love that little boat so much? There are so many pieces of wood that wash up daily from the sea. You could make another little boat, or even more if you wished."

The boy replied, "Father, I loved that little boat so much. I couldn't eat nor sleep, wondering what had happened to it all these months. And to have found it after all this time! Father, I don't care how much it costs, I'm going to work hard so I can save up to buy back my little boat." His father lovingly looked at his son's sad face, and said, "Okay, my son, I understand. Here, I'll give you the money to buy back your boat," and handed him the money. The boy hugged his father tightly, whispering, "Thank you, father." and ran off towards the store, and bought back his little boat. He took it home, cradling it in his arms, and showed it off to his father, his mother, and the rest of his family. From then on, he never let it drift too far at sea, and always kept it at his side.

Jesus is that boy, and you and I are that little boat. He molded us, polished us, cherished us so much, and when we drifted off where he couldn't find us or reach us, he became so sad. And, after having found us again, he did not hesitate to pay whatever price in order to redeem us. With Jesus, he paid for us by giving up his life. When you have someone who loves you that much, and you sometimes feel that nobody in this world really cares whether you come and go, take heart; somebody cares, and will never, ever let you out of his sight ever again.


The Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says, "Only in returning to me and waiting for me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength. Isaiah 30:15

Sounds like the two dwarfs who didn’t make the cut for the snow white movie. Drippy and drizzly, precisely how it was for several days. When you’re on vacation, rain’s the last thing you want. But you know what they say, can’t do much about the weather.

As I sat watching the clouds drip onto the water, making hypnotic little circles that merged into other circles, how the years melted away, and in my memory I was transported to an earlier time .

At a remote spot, at the end of a long dirt road, was the clearing with a pretty spring-fed lake. A sprinkling of cottages; one where my parents honeymooned, then later purchased. I spent summers there, as a child. Rustic hardly describes it. Today, I believe camping would be more sophisticated than life at our cottage was, back then. And it was the best time of my life. Well, one of the very best, for sure. Life was so simple. We enjoyed reading stories and books, did lots of puzzles. Outdoors there were limitless opportunities for creative play. And sunny afternoons, we could swim.

Every summer we would borrow a farm dog, and he’d be our friend for the months we were there. He, my sister, and I had many an adventure in the old rowboat, scouting bullfrogs on lily pads.

Today I am thankful for time to be still, like this. To just ‘be’, and not ‘do’. I am too often guilty of operating as a ‘human doing’ and not a ‘human being’.

God can really use our drippy, drizzly days, to quiet our minds, minister to our souls, and settle our spirits.

That is good news.

Psalm 46:10 (NIV) Be still, and know that I am God

Psalm 55: 6-8 (MSG) Get me out of here on dove wings; I want some peace and quiet. I want a walk in the country. I want a cabin in the woods. I'm desperate for a change from rage and stormy weather.

Psalm 4:4 (ASV) Stand in awe, and sin not: Commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still.

Ps 131:2 (NKJV) Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul


I found a penny today
just laying on the ground
But it's not just a penny
this little coin I've found

"Found" pennies come from heaven
that's what my Grandpa told me
He said angels toss them down
oh, how I loved that story

He said when an angel misses you
they toss a penny down
Sometimes just to cheer you up
make a smile out of your frown

So don't pass by that penny
when you're feeling blue
It may be a penny from heaven
that an angels tossed to you


"If you lie down with dogs, you will rise with fleas." That saying holds much truth, and so does this story.

The modern jet on the runway was a beauty. It was equipped with the latest technology and weaponry. The jet could fly at supersonic speeds, and quickly race to great heights. If an enemy plane were in the vicinity, the jet's pilot could destroy that plane miles away, before the plane's pilot could even see him. An Air Force pilot climbed into the jet and off he flew, leaving the earth far behind as he soared above the clouds. Although no one was looking, the pilot straightened himself in his seat. He was naturally proud of his jet, and of himself for qualifying to fly such a sophisticated mode of transportation.

After he reached cruising altitude, the pilot heard a strange noise. He took off his helmet, and recognized the noise--it sounded like someone gnawing on rubber or plastic. Peering down below the instrument panel, to his horror the pilot saw a rat, out of his reach and gnawing on the main electrical wire between the jet's controls and its engine. If the rat were to cut through that line, the jet would careen out of control, and crash immediately.

The pilot's first instinct was to descend--an emergency landing. But he had flown so far that there was not enough time to land. So he decided to ascend--maybe the rat couldn't survive at a higher altitude. The pilot put on his oxygen mask, boosted power to the jet's engine, and quickly climbed as high as he could go. Soon the gnawing sound ended. When the pilot landed safely, he found the rat--dead.

How Does This Apply to Our Lives?

The pilot was highly trained, at the top of his profession. His equipment was the best that technology could provide. But his safety was threatened by the appetite of one of the most primitive of animals--a rat.

Like the jet pilot, we live in a world of high technology. Robots make our clothes, microwave ovens cook our food, cordless telephones carry our voices, and computers analyze our cars. And yet our lives are also affected by many things people faced centuries ago. Hate, jealousy, and dishonesty continue to exist. We are still plagued by temptations to strike out in anger, cut corners to get ahead, and toy with the truth.

And something else has not changed: most people say they want to be delivered from temptations, but really would like to keep in touch with them. You see, we know certain things are wrong, yet we still flirt with them. As our power of resistance weakens, we think that one small compromise of our principles won't matter. But it does. Lying down with dogs has unhealthy results, and so does compromising with wrong.

Take care to avoid being lured into moral and ethical trouble. Build a wall of protection around your life by shunning anything that promotes or gives credibility to unwholesome attitudes. Read Scripture, meditate upon its truths, and do your best to live by them.

Those steps will lead you to new spiritual altitudes. Just as the hungry rat could not survive at high altitudes, sinful appetites cannot survive at such spiritual heights.

"The righteous will hold to their ways, and those with clean hands will grow stronger." Job 17:9

SANDBOX ROCK Author Unknown

A little boy was spending his Saturday morning playing in his sandbox. He had with him his box of cars and trucks, his plastic pail, and a shiny, red plastic shovel. In the process of creating roads and tunnels in the soft sand, he discovered a large rock in the middle of the sandbox. The lad dug around the rock, managing to dislodge it from the dirt. With no little bit of struggle, he pushed and nudged the rock across the sandbox by using his feet. (He was a very small boy and the rock was very huge.)

When the boy got the rock to the edge of the sandbox, however, he found that he couldn't roll it up and over the little wall. Determined, the little boy shoved, pushed, and pried, but every time he thought he had made some progress, the rock tipped and then fell back into the sandbox. The little boy grunted, struggled, pushed, shoved -- but his only reward was to have the rock roll back, smashing his chubby fingers. Finally he burst into tears of frustration.

All this time the boy's father watched from his living room window as the drama unfolded. At the moment the tears fell, a large shadow fell across the boy and the sandbox. It was the boy's father. Gently but firmly he said, "Son, why didn't you use all the strength that you had available?"

Defeated, the boy sobbed back, "But I did, Daddy, I did! I used all the strength that I had!"

"No, son," corrected the father kindly. "You didn't use all the strength you had. You didn't ask me."

With that the father reached down, picked up the rock, and removed it from the sandbox.

Do you have "rocks" in your life that need to be removed? Are you discovering that you don't have what it takes to lift them? There is One who is always available to us and willing to give us the strength we need. When the apostle Paul faced times of a broken spirit and sapped strength, he proclaimed to the Corinthian church, "My grace is enough for you. When you are weak, then my power is made perfect in you" (2 Corinthians 12:9b NCV). When we are broken in spirit and our strength is spent, we can turn to our Savior Jesus.


A number of years ago, in a mental institution just outside Boston, Mass., a young girl known as "Little Annie" was locked in the dungeon. This institution was one of the more enlightened ones for the treatment of the mentally disturbed. However, the doctors felt that a dungeon was the only place for those who were "hopelessly" insane. In Little Annie's case, they saw no hope for her, so she was confined to a small cage which received little light and even less hope.

About that time, an elderly nurse in the institution was nearing retirement. She felt there was hope for all of God's creatures,so she started taking her lunch into the dungeon and eating outside Little Annie's cage. When the nurse started visiting her, Little Annie gave no indication that she was even aware of her presence. One day, the nurse brought some brownies to the dungeon and left them outside the cage. Little Annie gave no hint she knew they were there, but when the nurse returned the next day, the brownies were gone.

From that time on, the nurse would bring brownies when she made her Thursday visit. Soon, the doctors in the institution noticed a change was taking place. After a period of time, they decided to move Little Annie upstairs. Finally, the day came when this "hopeless case" was told she could return home. But Little Annie did not wish to leave. The place had meant so much to her she felt she could make a contribution if she stayed and worked with the other patients. The elderly nurse had seen and brought out so much in her life that Little Annie felt she could see and help develop something in others. In years, she devoted her life to helping a blind and deaf child, named Helen Keller, to develop her full potential.

Many years later, Queen Victoria of England, while pinning England's highest award on a foreigner, asked Helen Keller, "How do you account for your remarkable accomplishments in life? How do you explain the fact that even though you were both blind and deaf, you were able to accomplish so much?"

Without a moment's hesitation, Helen Keller said that had it not been for Anne Sullivan (Little Annie), the name of Helen Keller would have remained unknown.

In whom have you invested your life? Someone is waiting to receive the encouragement you have to offer.

THE BEST PURSUIT From God's Little Lessons On Life

In 1947 Dr. Chandrasekhar was asked to teach an advance seminar in astrophysics at the University of Chicago. At the time, he was living in Wisconsin, doing research at the Yerkes astronomical observatory. He faced a 100-mile commute twice a week in the dead of winter to teach the class, but he nonetheless agreed.

However, registration for the advanced seminar was far below expectations. In fact, only two students signed up for the class. Other faculty members expected Dr. Chandrasekhar to cancel the course, so as not to waste his valuable time. He determined, however, to continue with the course and give his very best to the two students registered. Those students, Chen Ning Yang and Tsung-dao Lee, made his efforts worthwhile. Ten years later, in 1957, they both won the Nobel prize for physics. In 1983, Dr. Chandrasekhar won that same award.

Ends and means are not meant to exist in conflict. Good means to good ends are what challenges us to find and to do, regardless of the personal cost, the effort required, or the lack of resulting public acclaim. The best pursuit of the best ideals -- that's what it means to have integrity.

"I know, my God that you test men to see if they are good; for you enjoy good men. I have done all this with good motives, and I have watched your people offer their gifts willingly and joyously. (1 Chronicles 29: 17)


As I walked along Ponte Verde beach recently had a bizarre desire to tramp directly upon the shells and pulverize them. Some would crushed and turned to powder under my feet, but some of them survived the onslaught. The tough ones pushed down into the sand as I applied force to them and others just seemed to withstand the pressure, not cracking or crumbling. The actual size of the shell didn't’t seem to make much difference - it was the thickness that determined its “crush ability” ..The shells which remained intact reminded me of the Christian, clothed in the armor of God. Paul tells us in Ephesians 6:13-17 that God has given the Christian an armor to don. This armor gives us extra protection and makes us “less easy to crush”, just like those dense shells.

For years I have tried to memorize this passage of scripture from Ephesians, as I wanted to clothe myself in Gods armor each day. I was unable to do so until recently when my friend, Donna, told me her method. Now I have it down pat, and put the armor of God on each morning before I even get out of bed. I not only dress myself in it, but my husband, daughters, son in laws and grandchildren! I place the helmet of salvation on our heads- it protects my mind and all my thoughts. It allows us to rest in the reality of who we am in Christ. Next is our breastplate of righteousness(protecting our hearts), belt of truth, shoes of peace(so we may spread the true peace, which is available in God). I pick up our shields of faith to protect us from Satan’s attacks and the sword of the spirit (God’s Word.) Now we are ready to face the day- dressed in the armor of God. Satan will not crack our faith or crush our spirit with insults, temptations, or setbacks, for we are dressed- head to foot: plus some extras- to face him head on! For He that lives within us is grater than he who is in the world. I hope you will consider dressing yourself and perhaps your loved ones each morning, also! It’s a GOOD thing to do!

Thank you, Lord, for your Word and also for a special friend who taught me how to memorize it.


Our house was directly across the street from the clinic Entrance Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. We lived downstairs and rented the upstairs rooms to out patients at the clinic. One summer evening as I was fixing supper, therewas a knock at the door. I opened it to see a truly awful looking man.

"Why, he's hardly taller than my eight-year-old, " I thought as I stared atthe stooped, shriveled body. But the appalling thing was his face--lopsided from swelling, red and raw. Yet his voice was pleasant as he said, "Good evening. I've come to see if you've a room for just one night. I came for a treatment this morning from the eastern shore, and there's no bus 'til morning." He told me he'd been hunting for a room since noon but with no success, no one seemed to have a room. "I guess it's my face...I know it looks terrible, but my doctor says with a few more treatments.. ."

For a moment I hesitated, but his next words convinced me: "I could sleep in this rocking chair on the porch. My bus leaves early in the morning." I told him we would find him a bed, but to rest on the porch.

I went inside and finished getting supper. When we were ready, I asked the old man if he would join us "No thank you. I have plenty." And he held up a brown paper bag. When I had finished the dishes, I went out on the porch to talk with him a few minutes. It didn't take a long time to see that this old man had an oversized heart crowded into that tiny body. He told me he fished for a living to support his daughter, her five children, and her husband, who was hopelessly crippled from a back injury.

He didn't tell it by way of complaint; in fact, every other sentence was prefaced with a thanks to God for a blessing. He was grateful that no pain accompanied his disease, which was apparently a form of skin cancer. He thanked God for giving him the strength to keep going.

At bedtime, we put a camp cot in the children's room for him. When I got up in the morning, the bed linens were neatly folded and the little man was out on the porch. He refused breakfast, but just before he left for his bus, haltingly, as if asking a great favor, he said, "Could I please come back and stay the next time I have a treatment? I won't put you out a bit. I can sleep fine in a chair." He paused a moment and then added, "Your children made me feel at home. Grownups are bothered by my face, but children don't seem to mind." I told him he was welcome to come again.

On his next trip he arrived a little after seven in the morning. As a gift, he brought a big fish and a quart of the largest oysters I had ever seen. He said he had shucked them that morning before he left so that they'd be nice and fresh. I knew his bus left at 4:00 a.m. and I wondered what time he had to get up in order to do this for us. In the years he came to stay overnight with us there was never a time that he did not bring us fish or oysters or vegetables from his garden. Other times we received packages in the mail, always by special delivery; fish and oysters packed in a box of fresh young spinach or kale, every leaf carefully washed.

Knowing that he must walk three miles to mail these, and knowing how little money he had made the gifts doubly precious. When I received these little remembrances, I often thought of a comment our next-door neighbor made after he left that first morning. "Did you keep that awful looking man last night? I turned him away! You can lose roomers by putting up such people!" Maybe we did lose roomers once or twice. But oh! If only they could have known him, perhaps their illnesses would have been easier to bear. I know our family always will be grateful to have known him; from him we learned what it was to accept the bad without complaint and the good with gratitude to God.

Recently I was visiting a friend who has a greenhouse. As she showed me her flowers, we came to the most beautiful one of all, a golden chrysanthemum, bursting with blooms. But to my great surprise, it was growing in an old dented, rusty bucket. I thought to myself, "If this were my plant, I'd put it in the loveliest container I had!" My friend changed my mind. "I ran short of pots," she explained, "and knowing how beautiful this one would be, I thought it wouldn't mind starting out in this old pail. It's just for a little while, till I can put it out in the garden."

She must have wondered why I laughed so delightedly, but I was imagining just such a scene in heaven. "Here's an especially beautiful one," God might have said when he came to the soul of the sweet old fisherman. "He won't mind starting in this small body."


On several occasions I have seen houses moved on land, but never before have I seen one moved across the water. I observed this awhile ago, and it was surely a strange sight for me to behold. The house was a two story wooden structure, balancing precisely on two large pontoons. It was being moved through the water by a small tug boat. As I watched its excursion through the water, it became stuck on a sandbar. The little tugboat did all it could to move or maneuver it, but to no avail. Before long, two more boats arrived on the scene to assist the stranded vessel. They succeeded in their endeavor, and the house on pontoons moved along. I wondered where it was going, and how it would be anchored when it got there.

Like the boat-afloat, people can be moving along in life at a comfortable pace. Before we know it, we too, can become stuck on a sandbar of life. It can happen in a flash- and then we may be completely immobilized, unable to move in any direction. Someone may come along and help push or pull us off this uncomfortable spot, or it may take a joint effort of people, circumstances, and mostly time to get us back into the waters of life.

The question is,¼ where do we go and how are we anchored when we are finally jarred loose from the sandbar? Do we just float here and there, taking our chances to drift out to sea? Or, do we set our anchor deep and secure; knowing it will hold us steady, even if the going gets rough? We need to anchor to the Word of God, which is active and alive (Hebrews 4:12), to the throne of God, where mercy and grace abound (Hebrews 4:16), to the cross of God, where Jesus blood was shed, to the body of Christ, who encourage one another (Hebrews 10:24,25), working for God, which gives meaning, purpose and direction (Hebrews 13:16) and to Jesus, our Savior and Redeemer. He is as strong and reliable as they come, and His truths will carry us through the good times and bad. I claim Jesus as my anchor today and each day of my life. Won’t you do the same?

LOVE NOTES By Francis J. Kong

A mother named Antoinette Kuritz shared this idea of hers and we sure can pick this up and apply it to our own kids. Antoinette says:

From the time each of my children started school, I packed their lunches. And in each lunch I packed, I included a note. Often written on a napkin, the note might be a thank you for a special moment, a reminder of something we were happily anticipating, or a bit of encouragement for
an upcoming test or sporting event.

In early grade school, they loved their notes. They commented on them after school, and when I went back to teaching, they even put notes in my lunches. But as kids grow older, they become self-conscious, and by the time he reached high school, my older son, Marc, informed me he
no longer needed my daily missives. Informing him that they had been written as much for me as for him, and that he no longer needed to read them, but I still needed to write them, I continued the tradition until the day he graduated.

Six years after high school graduation, Marc called and asked if he could move home for a couple of months. He had spent those years well, graduating Phi Beta Kappa magna cum laude from college, completing two congressional internships in Washington, D.C., winning the Jesse Marvin Unruh Fellowship to the California State Legislature, and finally, becoming a legislative assistant in Sacramento. Other than short vacation visits, however, he had lived away from home. With his younger sister leaving for college, I was especially thrilled to have Marc coming home.

A couple weeks after Marc arrived home to rest, regroup and write for a while, he was back at work. He had been recruited to do campaign work. Since I was still making lunch every day for his younger brother, I packed one for Marc, too. Imagine my surprise when I got a call from my 24-year-old son, complaining about his lunch.

"Did I do something wrong? Aren't I still your kid? Don't you love me anymore, Mom?" were just a few of the queries he threw at me as I laughingly asked him what was wrong.

"My note, Mom," he answered. "Where's my note?"

This year, my youngest son will be a senior in high school. He, too, has now announced that he is too old for notes. But like his older brother and sister before him, he will receive those notes till the day he graduates, and in whatever lunches I pack for him afterwards.

What a great idea from a great mother who knows how to communicate her love to her children. Wish that all mothers would do the same.

The question I would like to ask you is as a mother, are you positive with your kids?

There is a great need for being creative with the way we treat our kids. And while the whole world wallows in negativity, the best thing we can do for our kids is to offer them an option that the family is a place for peace, joy and security. Your children will grow up with confidence, joy and optimism if you first display that in the way you deal with them.

Love notes? Corny? Some of you are probably thinking but not for kids who are reassured that no matter what happens, their parents will love them unconditionally.

This is why God leaves us with His "Love Notes" through the Holy Scriptures reminding us all the time that even when we have messed up, His love for us will never change.

You might want to pick up on this idea and leave love notes to your kids. But better still, you may want to practice being loving and joyful first. And do you know why? Because the best inheritance you can leave your children is a good example.

STAIRS NO WHERE By Sally I. Kennedy

As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the Lord is flawless. 2 Samuel 22:31 Psalm 18

The wooden stairs appeared to lead up off the decking to something beyond, but what? Thick brushy mangroves bulged around the edges of the planking. As far as I could see from where I was standing, however, the stairs led to nowhere.

I’ve been there….. on rabbit trails that take you to a dead end. On stairs that lead to nowhere. It just seemed I was getting somewhere, somewhere meaningful at that. In the end it was no more than like running on a hamster wheel. Maybe you can relate.

One of the best examples of intentionally mapping a route and following it is reading the Bible. It is the best roadmap for living there is. There are thousands, probably millions, of books that purport the same, yet none has stood the test of time like the Word of God.

I’ve heard it said that if you have no where in particular you’re going that you’ll probably get there. The Bible, not stairs to nowhere.

That’s good news.


A teacher in New York decided to honor each of her seniors in high school by telling them the difference they each made. She called each student to the front of the class, one at a time. First she told each of them how they had made a difference to her and the class. Then she presented each of them with a blue ribbon imprinted with gold letters which read, "Who I Am Makes a Difference." Afterwards the teacher decided to do a class project to see what kind of impact recognition would have on a community.

She gave each of the students three more ribbons and instructed them to go out and spread this acknowledgment ceremony. Then they were to follow up on the results, see who honored whom and report back to the class in about a week.

One of the boys in the class went to a junior executive in a nearby company and honored him for helping him with his career planning. He gave him a blue ribbon and put it on his shirt. Then he gave him two extra ribbons and said, "We're doing a class project on recognition, and we'd like you to go out, find somebody to honor, give them a blue ribbon, then give them the extra blue ribbon so they can acknowledge a third person to keep this acknowledgment ceremony going. Then please report back to me and tell me what happened.

Later that day the junior executive went in to see his boss, who had been noted, by the way, as being kind of a grouchy fellow. He sat his boss down and he told him that he deeply admired him for being a creative genius. The boss seemed very surprised. The junior executive asked him if he would accept the gift of the blue ribbon and would he give him permission to put it on him. His surprised boss said, "Well, sure." The junior executive took the blue ribbon and placed it right on his boss's jacket above his heart. As he gave him the last extra ribbon, he said, "Would you do me a favor? Would you take this extra ribbon and pass it on by honoring somebody else? The young boy who first gave me the ribbons is doing a project in school and we want to keep this recognition ceremony going and find out how it affects people.

That night the boss came home to his 14-year-old son and sat him down. He said, "The most incredible thing happened to me today. I was in my office and one of the junior executives came in and told me he admired me and gave me a blue ribbon for being a creative genius. Imagine. He thinks I'm a creative genius. Then he put this blue ribbon that says 'Who I Am Makes A Difference' on my jacket above my heart. He gave me an extra ribbon and asked me to find somebody else to honor. As I was driving home tonight, I started thinking about whom I would honor with this ribbon and I thought about you. I want to honor you. My days are really hectic and when I come ome I don't pay a lot of attention to you. Sometimes I scream at you for not getting good enough grades in school and for your bedroom being a mess, but somehow tonight, I just wanted to sit here and, well, just let you know that you do make a difference to me. Besides your mother, you are the most important person in my life. You're a great kid and I love you!"

The startled boy started to sob and sob, and he couldn't stop crying. His whole body shook. He looked up at his father and said through his tears, "I was planning on committing suicide tomorrow, Dad, because I didn't think you loved me. Now I know you care. This is the happiest day I've known."

The boss went back to work a changed man. He was no longer a grouch but made sure to let all his employees know that they made a difference. The junior executive helped several other young people with career planning and never forgot to let them know that they made a difference it his life...one being the bosses son. And the young boy and his classmates learned a valuable lesson.

Who you are DOES make a difference.

Remember that!

I give you a blue ribbon.


One thing can always cheer me
When I'm feeling sad and low
When I tired of daily trials
That I have to undergo,
When those who should
Seem closest, seem like
People I don't know,
One thing can always cheer me
I know that God is near me.

One thing can always cheer me
When I do not understand
How pain and sadness
In our lives
Can get so out of hand,
When the best of human efforts
Doesn't meet the days demands,
One thing can always cheer me
I know that God is always near me.

One thing can always cheer me
More than anything I've known
And show me I will never
Have to struggle on my own
For no matter what might happen
I will never be alone
The thing that will always cheer me
Is just knowing God is near me.

Our lives are in God's loving
Hands, in everything we do
He is with us constantly,
He always sees us through.
And if our faith is strong enough
We'll never walk alone,
For with His great and perfect love
He takes care of His own.

FYI Asparagus Author Unknown

Several years ago, I had a man seeking asparagus for a friend who had cancer. He gave me a photocopied copy of an article entitled `Asparagus for Cancer' printed in Cancer News Journal, December 1979.

I will share it here, just as it was shared with me: 'I am a biochemist, and have specialized in the relation of diet to health for over 50 years. Several years ago, I learned of the discovery of Richard R. Vensal, D.D.S. that asparagus might cure cancer.

Since then, I have worked with him on his project. We have accumulated a number of favorable case histories.

Here are a few examples:

Case No. 1, A man with an almost hopeless case of Hodgkin's disease (cancer of the lymph glands) who was completely incapacitated. Within 1 year of starting the asparagus therapy, his doctors were unable to detect any signs of cancer, and he was back on a schedule of strenuous exercise.

Case No. 2, a successful businessman 68 years old who suffered from cancer of the bladder for 16 years. After years of medical treatments, including radiation without improvement, he went on asparagus. Within 3 months, examinations revealed that his bladder tumor had disappeared and that his kidneys were normal.

Case No. 3, a man who had lung cancer. On March 5th 1971, he was put on the operating table where they found lung cancer so widely spread that it was inoperable. The surgeon sewed him up and declared his case hopeless. On April 5th he heard about the asparagus therapy and immediately started taking it.By August, x-ray pictures revealed that all signs of the cancer had disappeared. He is back at his regular business routine.

Case No. 4, a woman who was troubled for a number of years with skin cancer. She finally developed different skin cancers which were diagnosed by asking specialist as advanced. Within 3 months after starting on asparagus, her skin specialist said that her skin looked fine and no more skin lesions. This woman reported that the asparagus therapy also cured her kidney disease, which started in 1949. She had over 10 operations for kidney stones, and was receiving government disability payments for an inoperable, terminal, kidney condition. She attributes the cure of this kidney trouble entirely to the asparagus.

I was not surprised at this result as `The elements of materia medica', edited in 1854 by a Professor at the University of Pennsylvania stated that asparagus was used as a popular remedy for kidney stones. He even referred to experiments in 1739 on the power of asparagus in dissolving stones.

We would have other case histories, but the medical establishment has interfered with our obtaining some of the records. I am therefore appealing to readers to spread this good news and help us to gather a large number of case histories that will overwhelm the medical skeptics about this unbelievably simple and natural remedy. For the treatment, asparagus should be cooked before using, and therefore canned asparagus is just as good as fresh.

I have corresponded with the two leading canners of asparagus, Giant Giant and Stokely, and I am satisfied that these brands contain no pesticides or preservatives.
Place the cooked asparagus in a blender and liquefy to make a puree, and store in the refrigerator. Give the patient 4 full tablespoons twice daily, morning and evening.

Patients usually show some improvement in 2-4 weeks. It can be diluted with water and used as a cold or hot drink. This suggested dosage is based on present experience, but certainly larger amounts can do no harm and may be needed in some cases.

As a biochemist I am convinced of the old saying that `what cures can prevent'. Based on this theory, my wife and I have been using asparagus puree as a beverage with our meals.

We take 2 tablespoons diluted in water to suit our taste with breakfast and with dinner. I take mine hot and my wife prefers hers cold. For years, we have made it a practice to have blood surveys taken as part of our regular checkups.

The last blood survey, taken by a medical doctor who specializes in the nutritional approach to health, showed substantial improvements in all categories over the last one, and we can attribute these improvements to nothing but the asparagus drink.

As a biochemist, I have made an extensive study of all aspects of cancer, and all of the proposed cures. As a result, I am convinced that asparagus fits in better with the latest theories about cancer. Asparagus contains a good supply of protein called histones, which are believed to be active in controlling cell growth. For that reason, I believe asparagus can be said to contain a substance that I call cell growth normalizer. That accounts for its action on cancer and inacting as a general body tonic.

In any event, regardless of theory, asparagus used as we suggest is a harmless substance.

The FDA cannot prevent you from using it and it may do you much good. It has been reported by the US National Cancer Institute that asparagus is the highest tested food containing glutathione, which is considered one of the body's most potent anticarcinogens and antioxidants.

ROSE Author Unknown

The first day of school our professor introduced himself and challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know. I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder.

I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me with a smile that lit up her entire being. She said, "Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years old. Can I give you a hug?"

I laughed and enthusiastically responded, "Of course you may!" and she gave me a giant squeeze." Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?" I asked.

She jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, have a couple of children, and then retire and travel."

"No seriously," I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her to be taking on this challenge at her age. "I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting one!" she told me. After class we walked to the student union building and shared a chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends.

Every day for the next three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop. I was always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared her wisdom and experience with me. Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she easily made friends
wherever she went. She loved to dress up and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other students. She was living it up.

At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football banquet. I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech, she dropped her three by five cards on the floor. Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone and simply said "I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order so let me just tell you what I know."

As we laughed she cleared her throat and began: "We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy, and achieving success.

"You have to laugh and find humor every day."

"You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die. We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know it!"

"There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up. If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn eighty-eight. Anybody can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or ability.

The idea is to grow up by always finding the opportunity in change."

"Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did, but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are those with regrets."

She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose." She challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily lives.

At the years end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all those years ago. One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in her sleep. Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late to be all you can possibly be.

SPRING GREEN By Sally I Kennedy

The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. Lam.3:22-23, NLT

What a fresh, lovely, light color. Spring green! The trees and bushes were loaded with it. Grass too. Tiny leaves and buds forming and bursting on the branches; leaves unfurling towards the sun. Tiny sparrows and little songbirds were flitting about, chirping with a happy sound. Spring had sprung!

Here where we live, the weather is tropical, and comments I hear from time to time are how much people love to be here but would miss the seasons if they lived here year-round. Actually we do have seasons, but they are subtle, indeed. The month of February is our spring season.

On a walk, as I took in the beauty of the new growth on the many and varied trees, I was reminded of the newness of spring. The earth, being renewed each year.

I thought, too, of one of my favorite Bible verses, and how it speaks of the newness of the grace of God. God’s mercy and grace are constant, and yet at the same time new, each and every day. “God is good, all the time, and all the time, God is good.”

God’s mercy and grace, new every morning. Like spring. Mercy and grace – spring green. New. Fresh. What a gift. For me. For YOU! That, is good news.

Thank you Lord that we can have “spring-green” from You each day of our lives. In Jesus’ name! Amen.

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