Wednesday, November 21, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/21/18
A table prayer for Thanksgiving  (Ewan Aitken)
“For the hands that tilled,  for the hands that harvested,
for the hands that processed,  for the hands that transported,
for the hands that stocked,  for the hands that sold,
for the hands that bought,  for the hands that prepared,
for the hands that will hold,  for the hand that made the hands,
our hearts are forever grateful.  Amen.”

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/20/18
“Everybody needs beauty as well as bread.”  (John Muir)  I read of a travel company, Flowers and Bread, which promotes tours with beautiful scenery and good food.  At your Thanksgiving table, will there be room for flowers?  During Detroit’s economic distress, efforts were made to preserve the Art Institute and not sell off its artwork.  A hungry man, with little money, used it to buy a loaf of bread and a rose.  John Muir would admire him.  Would you?   ;-)  Jack

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  That man has my admiration.  He sensed the need to feed more than the body...he fed the soul.  We're regularly advised to "stop and smell the roses."  That man did more...he possessed a rose, which probably lasted longer than his loaf of bread.===JACK:  I'm reminded of the biblical story of anointing the feet of Jesus.  Now when Jesus was in the house of Simon the leper, a woman came up to him with an alabaster flask of very expensive ointment, and she poured it on his head as he reclined at table. And when the disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “Why this waste? 9 For this could have been sold for a large sum and given to the poor.”  But Jesus, aware of this, said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a beautiful thing to me. For you always have the poor with you, but you will not always have me.  In pouring this ointment on my body, she has done it bto prepare me for burial. Truly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is proclaimed in the whole world, what she has done will also be told in memory of her.

FROM GDJ IN WISCONSIN:  Flowers are a miracle. Having them around the house does wonders for the spirit! Do you buy them?  Happy Thanksgiving dear friend. Please extend blessings to your family. We will kids, 4 grandkids, our new neighbors, their 3 kids and 4 dogs. Plus lots of flowers πŸ‘ΆπŸ‘ΆπŸ§‘πŸ§‘πŸˆπŸˆπŸˆπŸˆπŸ¦ƒπŸŒΊπŸ₯€πŸŒΉπŸŒ»πŸŒΌπŸŒ·===JACK:  Thanksgiving this year in Michigan and Christmas in Minnesota.  Family is a great blessing...and so are friends.  God is great; God is good!  There are roses on my kitchen table right now...beautiful red ones.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Absolutely!===JACK:  No wiggle room?===JAN:  I believe that each person has their own list of priorities and, if one of your priorities is beauty, that's what should guide your choices.  There is no "end of the story" there.  He could have bought the rose to present to someone whose love had been gracious to him, or who had prayed for him, or who was just someone he met "on the street" who needed a lift in spirits.  Or, he could have needed that lift in spirits himself, to keep those suicidal thought processes at bay.  There are a dozen possible reasons for choosing beauty over butter for his bread.===JACK:  Absolutely!

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  Yes, we get too caught up in ‘things’.===JACK:  R.L. Stevenson wrote, "The world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings."  There are things. and there are things.  Prioritize!

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:   Margaret bought two big bouquets yesterday for our Thanksgiving table. we will have 16 here on Thursday.    she will rearrange the flowers even more beautifully as she always does.===JACK:  I like the fall flowers...celosia, croton, dianthus and mums.===PAUL:  we also keep a huge bush of Hydrangea near our front door.  Margaret uses them in bouquets even in the dead of winter.===JACK:  It seems as though she's the flower lady and you're the bread guy!===PAUL: yes, i try to bring home the bread===JACK:  ...the bread-winner!

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  How good is life when your beauty bakes your bread?===JACK:  What a great thought!  The smell of baking bread is an added blessing.  We used to have a bakery near our home when I was growing up.  At 5 pm the loaves would come out of the oven,and I would often be there to take home a "hot" loaf of unsliced bread to be served at suppertime.===JON:  Yes, some of the memories of days gone by absolutely bring a warm smile.===JACK:  Even young people can have memories.  On Thanksgiving Day, ask some of the youngsters for their favorite Thanksgiving memories.

FROM PATG:  Happy Thanksgiving.  I enjoy your winning words every day.  Always look forward to an inspiring thought to start me off.===JACK:  Sometimes when I send out Winning Words I think of thI shot an arrow into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For, so swiftly it flew, the sight
Could not follow it in its flight.

I breathed a song into the air,
It fell to earth, I knew not where;
For who has sight so keen and strong,
That it can follow the flight of song?

Long, long afterward, in an oak
I found the arrow, still unbroke;
And the song, from beginning to end,
I found again in the heart of a friend.

FROM M&L:  Yes.  Good one, Jack.  Thanks.===JACK:  I had some misgivings as I sent this one...but what do I know?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Well most do, anyway! I  have made that decision in the past when money was very tight, but the blessings of a beautiful Azealia plant, or a bouquet of fresh flowers does lift the soul!  However, I do remember one time when Bill and I attended a candle-light Christmas service at the big downtown Presbyterian Church which was beautifully adorned with live poinsettia plants all around the sanctuary, on the steps, the rostrum, down the aisles,everywhere you
 looked, and I of course was enchanted, and bathed in the elegance and profusion of them, but  when I commented to Bill, he replied, "I was just thinking what all that money could have been used for, to help the poor, and for mission work. A few flowers would be nice, but I don't need hundreds to get me the Christmas Spirit!"  I agreed he had a point... To Each His Own, as the old pop song goes! Bill particularly loved the beauty of violin music! :-)===JACK:  I sometimes feel that I'm too careful in expressing opinions.  Maybe it's because of this quote that I came across many years ago.  "There is so much good in the worst of us, and so much bad in the best of us, that it ill behooves any of us to find fault with the rest of us."  (James Truslow Adams)  He's famous for another quote, too..."There are obviously two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live."
===OAKS:  The first one was a favorite of my mom; I thought it was from Robert (Robie) Burns!  I stand corrected!  One gets into hot water much more often from something said, than from something
unsaid! YOU are probably wise to be cautious. You're loved AND appreciated Just as you are!

FROM JB IN OLV:  Absolutely!

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  There will be bread but no flowers...Noah and Josh are allergic!  Besides there will be too much good food and candles to miss them.===JACK:  No allergies, but no turkey for two grandchildren who are vegan/vegetarian.

Monday, November 19, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/19/18
“You are being manipulated.  You are the puppet.  They are the puppeteers.”  (Thomas Paine)  If you were to identify with one of the Muppets, who would you choose?  Miss Piggy, Kermit, Elmo, Gonzo…or Jim Henson?   Would you pick Henson…to be in control?  When   someone else chooses for us, frustration grows.  That’s why elections, the stock market, or job security seem to be out of our hands.  Keep this in mind when you are “the Henson.”   ;-)  Jack

FROM HONEST JOHNl  The Swedish Chef???===JACK:  I thought of you as the Swedish Chef, too...but only after I couldn't decide between Statler or Waldorf.

FROM DB IN WB:  (I think that I am in a position of being manipulated in a terrible way) ===JACK:  Yes, there are puppeteers in real life. It's a real problem.

FROM WALMART REV:  But I am trusting you, O LORD, saying, “You are my God!” My future is in your hands. Rescue me from those who hunt me down relentlessly. Let Your favor shine on your servant (Psalm 31:14-16 NLT). 0;-)===JACK:  In a sense, God is a puppeteer to those who believe in predestination.  But for those who believe that God has given us free-will, he is a creator who stands by us a loving and caring father, ready to help in time of need.===REV:  Well said!

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  I don’t tell adults what to do! We are the land of the free and the home of the brave!===JACK:  Have you ever honked the horn on your car?===SHIRL:  Not that I know of. ===JACK:  I don't think that Mother Teresa ever honked the horn on her car, either.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Jim Henson but for a totally different reason.  I loved his imagination!  He could make puppets I could never imagine!   We are more like pawns in a chess game.  One move from some politician and we are moved one way and even lives change... for the good of the people or the detriment.===JACK:  I'd change "from some politician" to read, "from God," and then eliminate "or the detriment."

Friday, November 16, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/16/18
“By mid-November I always like to have an extra 15 pounds on me.”  (Holling Vincoeur dialog written by Diane Frolov & Andrew Schneider for Northern Exposure)  About a week ago we received our first winter’s snow.  It was beautiful, but a reminder of what’s in store.  East, west, north or south, life has a way of catching us off guard.  Time is short!  Are there words that need to be spoken, deeds that need to be done, fences that need mending?  Just do it!   ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL: so why does the world so often not see the wisdom of these words? ===JACK:  I'm not the Answer Man.  BTW, back in the radio days of the 30's, 40's and 50' there was a 15-minute program on Sunday nights called, The Answer Man, where questions submitted by listeners would be answered - ""Why does bubble gum bubble?".  Another program was The Bible Answer Man - "How tall was Jesus?"===PAUL:  i never heard of those programs but i imagine they were quite innovative at that time...

FROM DB IN WB:  Oh wow, Jack! (coincidence)  I have been doing just that lately!===JACK:  Wow!  The snow (making) man must have been looking.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Thanks for the words of wisdom and encouragement!===JACK:  I enjoy it so much that I'm working ahead.  The Winning Words quote planned for 12/31/18 is:  “I think in terms of the day’s resolutions, not the years.”  (Henry Moore)

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  That’s funny!  I would like to say I’d like to take off 15 pounds.  Because of this snow, our leaves aren’t all picked up, the branch pile didn’t get burned the barn didn’t get swept.  But the gardens got cleaned out.  Do you think it will get warm before it gets colder this year?  I don’t think so!===JACK:  After "years" of experience, I have come to rely of the unexpected thaw..  It's not even winter, yet.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Enjoy each day! What today I am attending a class about China! Interesting people-all much younger than me! It should be very interesting. The first class on China that I took was at Columbia in 1953–also a long time ago!===JACK:  65 years ago!  Things have changed since then...including your cognitive skills...and mine.


Thursday, November 15, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/15/18
“If you’re going to follow Jesus you’d better look good on wood.”  (Daniel Berrigan)  Two of us were discussing the meaning of the Berrigan quote… “O, now I get it.  If you choose to really follow the teachings of Jesus, you’ve got to be ready to endure pain and sacrifice.”  D.B. was a 60’s protest leader and a Catholic priest.  Eventually he was jailed, because of his words and actions.  Even from the beginning, it was never easy to follow the teachings of Jesus..  ;-)  Jack

 FROM WALMART REV:  "...nails, carefully aimed arrows and demeaning words are added to the mix." It seems to me the wood and nails are used more so in the third-world countries and the carefully aimed arrows and demeaning words are kept in stock and used affluently for America. 0;-/ ===JACK:  We might not always be aware of it, but there's a lot of suffering going on in this world for people who are trying to be faithful to "the Faith." 

  FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  a great quote, Jack. thanks!===JACK:  Even tho the words are from the Viet Nam War era, they are worth recalling for subsequent generations.  Right?===PAUL:  for sure.   he who forgets the mistakes of the past is condemned to repeat them.  S I Hyakawa. (spell?)   Jack, i just sent you my letter to the editor in response to a Star and Trib front page article last Sunday telling about how many young people are now bailing out of the church.  the NONEs.   checking the none box when asked about their religious affiliation.  peace

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  life tests everyone’s mettle. we all fall... it’s how we get up that counts. ===JACK:  Tradition says that Jesus fell 3 times on the Via Dolorosa...and we know that he also got us 3 times.



Wednesday, November 14, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/14/18
"Maybe it's what's inside that counts, but being told you look good feels good!"  (Takayuki Ikkaku, Arisa Hosaka and Toshihiro Kawabata)  Do you want to put someone in a good mood?  Laura Newcomer has written “34 Ways to Bust a Bad Mood in 10 Minutes, or Less.”  Here are a few of the 34…Eat chocolate…Buy some flowers…Visualize your best self…Do something for somebody,,,Do some yoga.  The mind plays an important part ln helping us to feel good.   ;-)  Jack 

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Absolutely! And keep moving-both physically and intellectually! Enjoy each day!===JACK:  Has anyone told you recently that you look good?  You were looking good when I saw you at our last Moliner reunion.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Very true: A compliment on how you look,(or act) is a spirit-Lifter! Who can we sincerely compliment today? I'm sure there will be several opportunities, if we look around us, and really "see" people!  Our attitudes certainly color  our daily "doins" and moods. The mind is powerful!!===JACK:  Who doesn't like a compliment?  Not me!  ...or you?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  I’m all for #1...chocolate!!===JACK:  In the "olden  days" I would buy a large Hershey's chocolate bar.  Nowadays it's one of those kisses wrapped in silver.

FROM GOPHER LYNN:  Love this one!  All the below are good ones ===JACK:  Double chocolate?===LYNN:  I like a good piece of dark chocolate every now and then.===JACK:  Did you know that you can buy gopher-shaped chocolates?

FROM FM IN WI:  You’re right on, Jack===JACK:  Your comment, "right on" reminds me of the song, On Wisconsin.  Did you know that the tune belonged to Minnesota..."Min-i-so-ta  Min-i-so-ta etc"

FROM JT IN SJ:  My Grandmother told me when things are not going well for me,  to make someone else feel good or do something for someone else.  That is a long time ago and she was "old" when she told me that.  I'll be she was probably 60!===JACK:  JUST GOT BACK FROM A COMMUNITY CONCERT AT OUR CHURCH PLAYRF BY A BRASS ENSEMBLE FROM THE SALVATION ARMY BAND.  OUTSTANDING!  BEDTIME NOW FOR 60 YR OLDS

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/13/18
 “What are the American ideals? …They are the development of the individual through liberty, and the attainment of the common good through democracy and social justice.”  (Louis Brandeis)  I wish I’d saved the textbook from my college American Ideals course, but when a “girl” friend asked for it….  From what I remember, the basic ideals are: rights, democracy, liberty, opportunity and equality.  And…Gov’t is meant to protect them.   ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  and lets tell this to all our elected govt. officials, especially the Prez...===JACK:  As I recall, American Ideals was not a popular college course back then...and the same for Civics in high school.  Life often results in the past choices we have made.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  It is the "common good" that is being most ignored these days.  "My rights" seem to exceed "your rights" at every turn.  It is hard to teach young children that others have rights, too, in an age of "everyone gets a prize".===JACK:  Perhaps we need to teach the meaning of the word, compromise.

FROM WALMART:  That may of been written in the old King James Version , , , some of the modern translations seemingly finding it..."Gov't meant to shape them.===JACK:  Religion, like politics, has the problem of translating old language into new.  Courts are supposed to do that politically, but there's no authoritative religious court in the here and now...so the problems continue.

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  we are a constitutional republic, so democracy is a bit of a misnomer. the majority cannot vote away our constitutional rights.===JACK:  Note that the quote is from a past justice of the Supreme Court (the first Jewish Justice), respected by scholars, regardless of political leanings.  My comment is based on that quote and the reputation 0f Justice Brandeis.

FROM WBDB:  I am so glad that I got to thank some vets yesterday!===JACK:  I guess that any day is an appropriate day to say "thank you" for service rendered.

FROM GOP[HER LYNN:  I would have liked this course ===JACK:  Not an "Easy A!"

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  A timely message.===JACK:  To talk about Justice Brandeis and his respect for the Supreme Court could have been timely, too.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Social Justice is the one that is skewed toward white upper class and wealthy, as many, many, books and articles will attest! "Justice for all" is rarely practiced. Having worked with "The Innocence Project" is an eye-opener! I certainly feel blessed to live in U.S.,where
women are treated with much more respect and opportunities than many other countries that I have visited. American High Ideals give us something to strive for! Hopefully the majority of the population will benefit, even in this divisive land, at present.===JACK:  Sad to say, I think that it will take a long-lens telescope to see the day when there will be "justice for all,"  Maybe it will have to wait until all stand before God's Judgment Throne.

FROM NW SA:  I think that about covers it. A quote from Jefferson, "All people, irrespective of the accident of their birth, are entitled to enjoy aspiring to become fully complete and free human beings." (I need to check the accuracy of the quote) I like the emphasis on the freedom to '...enjoy aspiring...' . (The act) I think this part of being human has much to do with the status of the conversation about guns, police, freedom of speech (thinking of Charlottesville), predatory lending, and others...that, to some, infringe on that birthright to truly enjoy the process of becoming fully complete. Freedom from fear comes to mind.  I heard a story this morning on NPR about dementia and guns. Many aging veterans' identity is intwined with a special gun. The report offered some strategies for including those affected by the disease, in deciding the steps to take to avoid a tragedy. One veteran laughed with his wife, "We've both forgot the combination to the gun safe, and where its written down." I think that's a good problem to have. :).===JACK:  I think that it would be good to forget a lot of things besides combinations...and good to remember some things that we've forgotten.  The trouble is that we sometimes get mixed up as to what to remember and  what to forget.

FROM JT IN SJ:  Bravo....there are times (too frequently) when it seems we are being bulldozed away from our American.values.===JACK:  Synonyms for "bulldoze"...browbeat, cow, bully, hector; tyrannize.  Which one fits best for your comment?

FROM PRAW:  Maybe  another should be protect us from government?===JACK:   You may have a point...but, with no government,,,chaos.  Imagine driving with no traffic rules, or with rules and no enforcement.  










Monday, November 12, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/12/18
“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it’s the home of the brave.”  (Elmer Davis)  How do you say, “Thank you,” to military veterans who have served their country, often in the face of great danger?  The Italians have a word which they shout, Bravo!  It’s a cheer, it’s applause.  “You are brave!”  Maybe it’s a call, an e-mail, a personal letter, or just a handshake.  Thank some veteran this week!   ;-)  Jack

FROM LOUG:  Dear Lord,  Our hearts are filled with gratitude for the men and women who serve our country now and in the past, and for the sacrifices their families make so that we can all enjoy the blessing of freedom.  We praise you for calling them to help protect us, and for giving them the courage and ability to do their jobs well. Help them to see you working in their daily lives, whether in the field, at home, or abroad..Guide their choices and their actions, Lord, Surround them with your mighty angels; protect them in your mercy; cover them with your grace.  Guard their hearts while they are far from loved ones, and bless them with moments to cherish when they are together.
Hold these families close, Lord. May they look to You for the strength and peace that only You can give.  Amen.===JACK:  A good prayer...worth saying and saving.  Thanks  Did you compose it?

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  if you are ever in KC, MO,  go to the WW I Museum there.  it is rated as the 5th best museum in America.  it is sad, sobering, informative, and a reminder of how horrible a war can be.  and often how senseless.===JACK:  I hadn't heard of that museum.  I have visited the WW 2 in New Orleans...and that was impressive, too.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  We had our annual Veterans Day parade on Saturday! Our neighborhood was originally made up of Air Force families stationed at Mac dill in the 1970s ===JACK:  "Birds of a feather..." seems to apply to Air Force birds, too.

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  I learned something watching SNL Saturday night.  The exchange between Pete Davidson and Dan Crenshaw was a great moment of healing.  Representative Crenshaw was asked dhow we can honor veterans,  “When you meet a veteran,instead of saying Thank you for your service, say Never Forget.  The veterans that I have met are so fearful that people will just forget the history of what they did,  I learned something!===JACK:  I think that it was Santayana who said, "Those who do not learn history ( or who forget history) are doomed to repeat it."

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Went to the VA hospital in Dallas yesterday. It’s amazing how much they appreciate a little attention and conversation.===JACK:  What a great idea.  There are veterans and there are veterans and there are veterans...those in the cemetery, the battle-participants (wounded and scarred) and the others who gave days of their life.

FROM THE SHARK:  This is how I say thank you to all Veterans every year....by giving a free pizza or 3 free tacos to veterans.===JACK:  This is great and so like you.  BTW, Have any local Chaldeans been members of the Iraqi Army?===TS:  Yes.  In Iraq, it was a mandatory draft, if you didn't enroll in college.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Amen.  Made over 100 cards with grandkids for grandson Noah’s 4H Group to send to soldiers.===JACK:  I guess that those who are currently serving in the military deserve a "thank you", too.  We're never too young to learn to say, "Thank you!"

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  My Bill was a Navy Vet. of WW2, but only involved in one battle before the war ended. Then based on the tiny Isle of Eniwetok for a year. His ship was the USS New Jersey  He recalled when the loudspeaker came on with "NOW HEAR THIS", You'd better hear it, and act accordingly. A fact he drove home to our kids and his parishioners! :-)   BRAVO is a good word for our Vets; People seem more conscious of them than they did in earlier times, it seems to me. I, too, live for the day, when a child will ask his mother, " Mamma, what was War?!" Will it ever happen?? ===JACK:  Did Bill ever say that his "war experience" helped move him toward deciding to enter the ministry?  I see that there is a real need for military chaplains these days.  Different calls,,,but the same ministry!He didn't say that his navy experience had a direct influence on that decision, but he mulled over the idea when he was a SR in High School,and I'm sure thought about what he would do with his life, when he had all night shifts  on the tiny Isle looking out over the ocean. He often said
  God called him to be a pastor, so I could be a pastor's wife! :-) We were a good team! He sold Life Insurance, taught Jr.High Math, managed the Men's dept. at Moline Sears store, ran Oaks & Sons construction CO. before going to Seminary when he was 30. all those Experiences helped him to be
an effective pastor, I think! His call to ministry is quite a story, moving us to Canton, and then to Elgin and Seminary while he served as Asss't Pastor at FBC there. Sometime I will give you the details...:-)===JACK:  Isn't it amazing how the choices we make (even the little ones) have such a big effect on our lives and the lives of others?

FROM LK IN NI:  Who are the veterans?===JACK:  Technically speaking, a veteran is a former member of the Armed Forces of the United States (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) who served on active duty and was discharged under conditions, which were other than dishonorable....but the word is described...A veteran (from Latin vetus, meaning "old"); it is a person who has had long service or experience in a particular occupation or field...like a "veteran pastor."



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Friday, November 09, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/9/18
”Whose faith story are you helping to shape?”  (Seen on a plaque)  It’s said that the average person “meets” upwards of 10,000 people in a lifetime.  Sociologist Stephen Whitehead suggests that in this globalized society it could be tens of thousands…family, friends, co-workers.  Your place/job in society may skew the numbers, but “how many” is really not that important.  Even if it’s only one, that’s important.  Who is “one” who has helped to shape your life?   ;-)  Jack

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  my parents. ♥️===JACK:  I expect a similar response today from many of my friends.

FROM WALMART REV:  I must admit its a dear friend from Nazareth of some 2,000 years ago and His many friends along life's pathway. I met one such pastoral friend of His named "Jack" back in 1984 and have been friends ever since shaping each other's life. 0;-)===JACK:  I still recall the time I first met you as you walked into my office to introduce yourself and tell of your desire to begin AG work in the area.  Only God would know that our friendship would continue for over 30 years.

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  My mom was the biggest faith and life shaper I had, but she also had truly amazing Christian women friends who were my Sunday school and vacation Bible school teachers who also shaped my life.  As I grew older they became my friends as well.  There have been two pastors who have also shaped my faith life – you and Hollis Bishop (pastor I worked for before leaving IL). You two continue to guide me in thinking about how my faith life can be consistent but also grow and change – to be open to new ideas and how to welcome people who might be different than me. I have been truly blest.  Now I wonder who I might have helped on their faith journey…am I living up to my task.===JACK:  I seem to remember having met your mother.  Am I right?  In my history of starting new churches, your husband,  Bob, was the kind of person I was looking for,.  In my opinion, he was a difference maker.  I'm sure that was characteristic of his as he came into people's lives.  Of course, you were that kind of person, too...just in a different way.  Two of my great friends!===CAROL:  ===CAROL:  I’m sure you met my mom as she was a big part of our lives and always involved.  Yes, Bob can be a difference maker.  He is a hard worker wherever you put him, but he’s always ‘challenging’ a person of faith.  He likes to push buttons and make people think.  Know we have cherished our friendship with you and Mary.===JACK:  Do you recall your first date with Bob?===CAROL:  Our first date was to a football game.  The following weekend we went to homecoming our senior year – 1960. That’s a lot of water over the dam.

FROM JDR IN SOCAL:  Here's something to consider:    " Steve Jobs Died a billionaire at age 56.  This is his final essay:  "I reached the pinnacle of success in the business world.  In some others' eyes, my life is the epitome of success.  However, aside from work, I have little joy.  In the end, my wealth is only a fact of life that I am accustomed to.  At this moment, lying on my bed and recalling my life, I realize that all the recognition and wealth that I took so much pride in have paled and become meaningless in the face of my death. You can employ someone to drive the car for you, make money for you but you cannot have someone bear your sickness for you.  Material things lost can be found or replaced.  But there is one thing that can never be found when it's lost - Life.  Whichever stage in life you are in right now, with time, you will face the day when the curtain comes down.
Treasure love for your family, love for your spouse, love for your friends. Treat yourself well and cherish others.  As we grow older, and hopefully wiser, we realize that a $300 or a $30 watch both tell the same time.  You will realize that your true inner happiness does not come from the material things of this world.  Whether you fly first class or economy, if the plane goes down - you go down with it.   Therefore, I hope you realize, when you have mates, buddies and old friends, brothers and sisters, who you chat with, laugh with, talk with, have sing songs with, talk about north-south-east-west or heaven and earth, that is true happiness!  Don't educate your children to be rich.  Educate them to be happy.  So when they grow up they will know the value of things and not the price.  Eat your food as your medicine, otherwise you have to eat medicine as your food.  The One who loves you will never leave you for another because, even if there are 100 reasons to give up, he or she will find a reason to hold on. There is a big difference between a human being and being human.  Only a few really understand it.   You are loved when you are born.  You will be loved when you die.  In between, you have to manage!   The six best doctors in the world are sunlight, rest, exercise, diet, self-confidence and  friends   .     Maintain them in all stages and enjoy a healthy life."===JACK:  It seems as though Steve Jobs was more than the Mouse, the i-Pod, the i-Pad, and the i-Phone.  In fact there's more to each of us than meets the eye.===JDR:  just have to reply to today's "winning words"....my beautiful mother, Margy...hugs,===JACK:  My mother was a Margie, too--and a major influence on my life.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  There are many who have helped shaped my life for the better - including you.  On another note, if you enjoy kids, music and a good message, you will enjoy this  -  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h6d6Yo3DwVI   Hope your day is fabulous.===JACK:  I know of a businessman who keeps a file of letters of appreciation that he has received.  On the "down days" he goes to that file to be uplifted.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  You are, Jack!===JACK:  As a child, did you ever sing this song?
Two little eyes that blink, blink, blink,  Two little eyes that see;
Head and shoulders; knees and toes;  And many more things make me.
Tra la la la la la,  Two little eyes that see,
Two little eyes that blink, blink, blink,  And many more things make me. 
It gives one pause to realize that "eyes" are looking at us as examples.

FROM DS IN SOCAL:  Actually, I think YOU were amongst the many that helped shape my life.  I miss those good old days.===JACK:  The church and the YMCA (and the people I met at those places) helped shape my life.   A major remembrance of the good old days.

FROM GUSTIE MARLYS:  I hope I helped shape the faith of my choir kids and also the confirmation kids I had.  Now—who knows?? ===JACK:  When I wonder about things, like the things you say you "hope" for, this country/Gospel song supports my thinking...
When we see Jesus coming in glory When he comes down from his home in the sky
Then we shall meet him in that bright mansion  We'll understand it all by and by
Farther along we'll know all about it  Farther along we'll understand why
Cheer up my brother live in the sunshine  We'll understand it all by and by 

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  i suspect hundreds if not more...===JACK:  As a pastor, I saw teaching Confirmation classes as an "immense" responsibility.

FROM DAZ IN CO:  YOU!πŸ˜€===JACK:  We've shared a wide variety of experiences, haven't we?  That's what friends are for.

FROM STARRY KNIGHT:  FAye ❤❤❤❤ #1===JACK:  That seems reasonable!


Thursday, November 08, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/8/18
“On a clear night and you see the moon smiling down on you, think of Neil Armstrong and give him a wink.”  (Neil Armstrong’s family)  Perhaps you’ve seen, First Man, the movie about the first human landing on the moon.  A friend of mine was part of the team that made it happen.  Often, on a bright moonlit night, I look up and marvel that such an event as the moon landing took place in my lifetime.  During your life, what marvelous event comes to mind?   ;-)  Jack

  FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  my birth! :):):)    the computer and the internet.   heart  transplants.   the jet engine.  the Red Sox winning the World Series 4 times after an 86 year drought!===JACK:  Those happened in my lifetime, too.===JACK:  Have people ever been offended (or taken it in the wrong way) when you've winked and smiled at them?

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  https://youtu.be/Nz5DLO8fclA===JACK:  On a clear day, or on a cloudy day, Barbra's voice brightens my day.===LIZ:  https://youtu.be/vipeYpS7m14  this was one of dad’s favorite movies & songs, “annie.” no one does it better than barbra...the sun always shines again. if not tomorrow, then the next day... or the day after that. bet your bottom dollar!===JACK:  Gaga has Little Monsters.  Mariah has Mariah's Lambs.  There are Fanilows, Claymates and Parrotheads.  Sometimes Barbra's fans are called, "People who need People!"

FROM WALMART REV:  Up till now, my lifetime on planet earth...here, I thought the moon was winking at me in agreement?!?! 0;-)===JACK:   Have people ever been offended (or taken it in the wrong way) when you've winked and smiled at them?===EWV:  You can count them on one hand over the past many years here in Willlmar . . . usually lumped them into just the greeting in general . . . only 2 or 3 come to mind.===JACK:  Life is full of risks.  To do nothing is a risk, too!

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  All my children and their families have accepted Christ, and I think they are tithers.===JACK:  Congratulations.  I'm pleased that my children seem to be following the teachings of Christ.

FROM DB IN WB:  1) seeing blood moons  2) seeing the ocean floor and tropical fish firsthand ===JACK:  I've heard that the4 ocean is the most unexplored frontier on Earth.===DB:  Thank you for helping bring to mind such beauty and wonder!  for fun:   go to You Tube and type in  "scuba video"  search for whatever looks interesting.  Certain parts of the world are known for their extraordinary diving due to the water clarity. Belize is one site, Indonesia is another. I was at John Pennicamp Park in Key Largo. It was pretty good. I saw parrot fish and queen fish, and a baby nurse shark and a tiny fish that was magenta!  Amazing!

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  The births of my daughter and grandkids.===JACK:  Of course, but, apart from that...how about learning to fly a helicopter?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  The births of my 4 children; Riding high above the panoramic terrain of IL in the 12 story high Disney Hot Air Balloon; Trip to Japan during Cherry Blossom time; Yes, the Space saga is certainly fascinating and spectacular!  (I cannot believe that 207 people have prepaid ($250,000.00!) to be a passenger on the first tourist rockets to go 100 miles up into space, and view the Earth, and experience weightlessness , tentatively scheduled for 2023!) So many
"Spectaculars" in our lifetime! Who would have thought of robots and drones in the work force, of computers and phones with instant messaging and information , etc. etc. etc. during our childhood in the 30's and 40's??! Incredible years to be alive, haven't they been?!===JACK:  ...and, “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,  Nor have entered into the heart of man  The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” (1 Cor 2:9)

FROM APPY TRAILS IN NOVA SCOTIA:  I was on a USAF C-141 transport bound for Europe when the landing occurred. A matter of tremendous excitement and pride for all aboard.  You may remember that I am a ham radio operator. My present emphasis is on bouncing signals off the moon back to other hams. You really get the feeling of the distance when you simply ping and listen for your own echo. Your signal takes around 2 1/2 seconds to return and because of Doppler effect its tone is either higher (when the moon is rising and getting closer) or lower (on moonset). The signal is extremely weak under the best of conditions.===JACK:  Are the "ham operators" a dying breed?  It would be such a terrible loss if they went the way of T-Rex.  What is the source for new operators?

FROM SHALOM JAN:  That event was witnessed on TV at the "clubhouse" for a park where we were vacationing together by our then-3-year-old son and my dad, his only grandfather.  That's a pretty cool event for my 52-year-old-son to remember!===JACK:  9/11 kept me glued to the TV.  I'd rather be watching the moon landing...more positive.

FROM MY LAWYER:  Indoor plumbing!  When I was a little boy growing up on a farm here in Oakland County, we had a one-hole privy.  Fortunately, it was just in the summertime, so we didn't have to wade out in the cold!!!===JACK:  What I remember about outhouses was the odor , the bees, and the catalogs and their shiny paper.===ML:  I remember my Dad shoveling lye in the hole about once a week!!!  All that aside, look what we've witnessed during out lifetimes.  From privies, to watching men walking on the moon, to instant world communications, etc.  Just amazing.  Think of what changes our grandchildren will experience!!!===JACK:  My grandchildren and I may see the same things today, but they understand more than I do.  They skim through the information on their Smart Phone while I hunt and peck on my old-fashioned Flip Phone.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  There are so many! We used to love to drive across the state to see the rockets go up!  And now we love to visit NASA!===JACK:  I'm told that the sight, as well as the sound, make the lift-off event spectacular!

FROM JP IN MF:  I always marvel that my mother's grandpa Harvey, who lived with us, was 19 when Wright brothers flew at Kitty hawk AND alive for manned space flight. Talk about blowing your mind!===JACK:  Yes, that is a "two-fer."  Does it count for anything that I knew Harvey and was his pastor?

FROM CPA BOB:  The polio vaccine, end of the Vietnam war, revitalization of Detroit (excluding schools), particularly downtown, the Tigers winning the 1984 World Series.  I’m sure there are many more.  What have others come up with?===JACK:  The Salk Vaccine!  How could I forget?  Read the blog for some more interesting =comments.  www.jackswinningwords.blogspot.com 
===BOB:  I was thinking public type events.  Of the comments in your blog, the miracle of childbirth would come first for me. Thanks for giving us so many things to think about.===JACK:  As I sat down at the computer to begin my day...for some reason your name came to mind even before I touched the keys.  Twilight Zone!

FROM PRAW:  I thought of a pizza pie..=== JACK:  Do you remember the song, That's Amore withe line:  "When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie?"  It was sung by Dean Martin.

Dean Martin - That's Amore - YouTube


Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/7/18
“If you do not change direction, you may wind up where you are heading.”  (Buddha)  A pastor that I knew would begin his daily radio program with these words…”Up and away, this is God’s day.  Are you going God’s way?”  Then, he’d suggest positive ways in which life could be made better.  Today might be a good time to do a self-check.  Up and away!  Are you satisfied with where you’re heading?  Are there possible adjustments that could/should be made?  ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  MN made some positive changes last night!===JACK:  "You gotta accent the positive, e-lim-i-nate the negative"...so sang Johnny Mercer.===PAUL:  So true! ===JACK:  In case you don't know that song...
Gather 'round me, everybody
Gather 'round me while I'm preachin'
Feel a sermon comin' on me
The topic will be sin and that's what I'm ag'in'
If you wanna hear my story
The settle back and just sit tight
While I start reviewin'
The attitude of doin' right

You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
And latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

You've got to spread joy up to the maximum
Bring gloom down to the minimum
Have faith or pandemonium's
Liable to walk upon the scene

To illustrate my last remark
Jonah in the whale, Noah in the ark
What did they do just when everything looked so dark?

(Man, they said "We'd better accentuate the positive")
("Eliminate the negative")
("And latch on to the affirmative")
Don't mess with Mister In-Between (No!)
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

(Ya got to spread joy up to the maximum)
(Bring gloom down to the minimum)
(Have faith or pandemonium's)
(Liable to walk upon the scene)

You got to ac (yes, yes) -cent-tchu-ate the positive
Eliminate (yes, yes) the negative
And latch (yes, yes) on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  https://youtu.be/HfxqQmWtGNM===JACK:  "My Beautiful Balloon" by the 5th Dimension is a great song with a great message.  Have you ever ridden in a balloon?   I was scheduled for one, but it was scrapped because of unfavorable wind conditions.===LIZ:  no, not sure i would want to! i quit flying decades ago, after challenger crashed. had just returned from phoenix.
am considering meeting college friends in florida next spring... we shall see!

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Lot’s of ways I know I can be better. Thanks for the reminder to do something about it.===JACK:  Every day presents a new opportunity to get "it" right.

FROM IKE AT THE MIC:  On that theme:  Ikeism #311states:"If God does not seem as close in your life as he used to,guess who moved?"===JACK:  Are you familiar with the word, immutable? ===IKE:  According to Webster's definition it means unchangeable or unchanging  & that's why I thought my '' ism'' was appropriate for your message, because when people change their belief of their religion they are upset that their religion is not as meaningful as it used to be to them.
The religion stays the same it is their change that has caused them less belief in a higher power.
One of my favorite quotes about religion is: "The purpose of religion is to comfort the troubled & trouble the overly comforted"===JACK:  Do you think that God ever changes his mind?

FROM CZB IN NH:  Was this purposely timed for after elections? ;)===JACK:  There's an old saying, "If the shoe fits,..."

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  So many good books which help to "change' or adjust our daily lives, like
My Utmost For His Highest, (Oswald Chambers), an oldie but goodie, and the newest one I'm reading, "Be Anxious For Nothing" by Max Lucado, who is so good at putting things clearly understandable and "doable'! Key verse:  "Rejoice in the Lord Always"...the focus being on IN THE LORD, as of course there are times in our lives where we cannot rejoice in our circumstances.  Plenty of help out there, if we strive to take a higher road!===JACK:  "You can lead a horse to water..." ...but sometimes you patiently need to lead a blind horse to the water.===OAKS:  I imagine you've had your share of "blind horses" to lead!===JACK:  I have to remind myself that I, too, have been a blind horse in my lifetime..  These words from Amazing Grace, by God's grace can apply to me..."I once...was blind, but now I see."

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  One day at a time is my philosophy!===JACK:  Each new day presents you with new choices.

FRO KZB:  LOVE this!===JACK:  Buddha's not such a bad guy!===KZB:  Yeah, he’s pretty wise!===JACK:  So you're saying that "he's a wise guy?"






Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/6/18
“The ingredients of good conversation are truth, good sense, good humor and wit.”  (William Temple)  I would add to Temple’s ingredients this one--have a genuine interest in other people and what they have to say,..and you might learn something, too!  One thing I particularly enjoy about being a pastor is the chance to talk with people…of all ages…from a variety of backgrounds.  We’ve shared ideas about truth, some good sense and some good jokes, too.   ;-)  Jack

 FROM SF LEAVING MI FOR FL:  Love it. And yes, that is definitely your gift to yourself and to others!  Leaving shortly for the airport.  Be well. See you in the spring!  Warm (literally too) regards,===JACK:  It's sometimes said that a person who hogs the conversation has "eye (I) trouble." That's not a problem when we get together...at least, not on your part.  I like this song!
That's What Friends Are For - YouTube

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:   i would like to have a dinner party w/you as a guest!  ===JACK:  I remember well our first dinner party, a couple of years ago, held on the streets of Moline.  You brought the cake.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  One thought I've been dwelling on lately is, "Love your neighbor as yourself."===JACK:  I recall how you once drove to Michigan to meet me for face to face conversation.  Your concern for others is not just a recent one.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  when i was at the sem for those 3 years as 1/2 time interim campus pastor, i sometimes told the students that if they did not truly enjoy conversing with people of all ages, in all walks of life, and all conditions of life,  they should perhaps think about a different profession.  i sometimes got some strange looks in response.===JACK:  It might not "fly," but I'd like to have you (or someone like you) conduct a required conversation with seminarians on "Tips on how to become an effective pastor."

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Love those with a good sense of humor!  Good conversation is a treat, and you're right, you hear some interesting stories shared! (The cache of "Marilyn" stories are fairly extensive by this time in my life! Usually good for a hearty
laugh!)  As my grandchildren used to say, ""Nitwit Nana strikes again!"  Hoping the voters elect a few new faces, with good sense, great ideas, and respect for the truth!! I'll try to keep my sense of humor!===JACK:  My favorite "M" story is about how you ran out of gas on the bridge in the morning with no purse...the policeman...the tow truck driver...etc.


  

Monday, November 05, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/5/18
“Your life is the result of your choices.  What will you choose today for your tomorrows?  (Robert Allen)  Recently, I saw this sign in a doctor’s office: “Thou Shalt Not Whine!”  Have you heard any political whiners lately?  Perhaps the whiners (or all of us) should read this  thought-provoking essay: “Is voting a right, a privilege or a responsibility?” Think about that!  If it’s a Blue Wave or a Red Wave, unless you have voted, “Thou Shalt Not Whine!”   ;-)  Jack

 FROM VW MARY:  All three, don't you think? Listened to a high school classmate rant about politics for over an hour last night ☹️.===JACK:  Over an hour?  Over a minute of ranting is too much for me..  A "RIGHT" is the most important to me.

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  A result of choices and very much environment.===JACK: In Michigan we have a chance to vote on an anti-gerrymandering issue.  One way, or the other...the effectiveness of casting a ballot will make a difference.

. FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  i voted early for the first time. voting is a right!===JACK:  Should the "right" to vote early be offered to all voters?===LIZ:  i do not like early voting, bc it gives our beloved gov’t more time to manipulate the results.  It should be left up to the states whether to offer it.===JACK:  As a child I was taught that "cheaters never win."

FROM HONEST JOHN:  Again, why either/or?     Why isn't it all three?===JACK:  As a citizen I have a "right" to reject all three and choose not to vote (without being made to feel guilty) .===JOHN:  But since voting is a duty  , you have a right to exercise your privilege.===JACK: Which "duty" is it?  A requirement? or a moral obligation?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Certainly both a right and a responsibility. My son's 92 yr. old wheelchair-bound mother-in-law is set to get out to vote tomorrow, no matter what the weather! She's blind and frail, but WILL vote. Listens to the endless news and political ads, so is well-versed on candidates!  I'm sure most of us are hoping for some changes;  We've lost so much morally, civility-wise and  sensibility toward those different than we are: Such divisiveness fosters hatred and violence! PRAY and VOTE! That's something we can all do! Then whine if we have to...:-(  (Our Governor's race is the most expensive in history...$$$ talks, but both candidates are far from Ideal! :-(  )===JACK:  Who is the IDEAL candidate?  When the crowd was asked what to do about Jesus, they cried out, "Crucify him, crucify him."===OAKS:  Yes, I hear you...even Jesus was not considered by this crowd,  worthy of being saved, or released.... The way of the World...?

FROM HUNGRY HOWIE:  If you don’t vote then you can’t bitch ===JACK:  There are winners and losers, and there are sore-losers.

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  Today’s WW motivated me to look up the derivation of the word “Whine”. It turns out that it is old english meaning”whistling through the air”. That means to me that whining is a passive activity void of action to help solve the problem. It has such relevant meaning today and tomorrow. So, we can “stop whistling in the air” and take action!   VOTE!!!!!!===JACK: A more descriptive word for whine is mewl!
...and, NO, I don't want to be paid to vote
FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  someone told me that in Australia,  they pay everyone a small amount to go and vote.  seems like a good idea to me.  also,  in AZ i often see this sign:  Stop in and we can WINE for a while:):)===JACK:  I like the rejoinder..."Do you want some cheese with that whine?"...and even setting aside a "Voting Holiday" would be subject to abuse.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  re: whether voting is a right, privilege or responsibility......I think it's all three.===JACK:  During this "go-round" in Texas, responsibility seems to be the dominant reason.

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  I’m hoping that when the elections are over and voters have made their choices, the media will accept graciously whatever the results are.  This last two years of ‘whine’ by the media has me to the point of not watching many news programs anymore.  We can’t always have our way when it comes to people making choices; teams winning/losing a game.  Life moves forward and changes will be made; elections will happen again and new choices will be made and life will move forward once again and changes will occur…maybe to our liking and then again maybe not.  I would like to choose to look on the positive side of life, but understand there is a lot of unnecessary tragedy in life that we must also address.  Our area is worrying about a young 13 year old girl taken from her home after her parents were murdered and now 3 Girl Scouts and one of their leaders (a mom to one of the deceased girls) have lost their lives doing something good and others are injured by someone being irresponsible with his choice about drinking and driving.  PS It snowed here yesterday, stuck around for a while and then thankfully melted.  Might see more of it yet tonight and tomorrow.===JACK:  What disturbs me more than "the media" ate the PACs (Political Action Committees) which pay the profit-making/losing media to run the incessant ads...particularly the negative ones.  Give me a break (That will come on Wednesday)===CAROL:  I agree with this too…if you just listened to the negative political ads you know none of them are fit for office.===JACK:  ,,,and yet they see3m to be effective, which says something about some of the voters.

FROM THE SHARK:  That's why I always vote Jack, so I can whine often :)===JACK:  What I like from you is your inside knowledge/background to explain the reasons for a win or a loss.

FROM AW IN WB:  Well said, Jack.  Keep up your good work.===JACK:  After the voting is over and the results are tallied,  we need to be reminded of the last words from the novel, Gone With the Wind,.."after all, tomorrow is another day!"

FROM JDR IN PSCAL:  voting is all of things you mention.....oh, how I wish the California politicians could have been on term limits years ago===JACK:  Be careful what you wish for.  In Michigan we voted for term limits, and it didn't seem to make a bit of difference.




Friday, November 02, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/2/18
“If we don’t heal our own hood, who will?”  (Nelly – the rapper)  birthday 1974)  As a kid, , Nelly moved from hood to hood, but wherever he lived was important to him.  Most people are proud of where they live.  Our high school fight song was, We are Moliners!  Moline was our hood!  Do you feel like that about where you live?  During this time of a divided nation I’m listening for a Nelly-voice calling out, “If we don’t heal our own hood, who will?”   ;-)  Jack

FROM RVB:  That is why I’m still so connected to my home church and love the roots of my hood in respect and history of the Jewish faith and traditions. Thanks for reminding me!!===JACK:  I think that I'd feel the same way, if we were to exchange places.

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  https://youtu.be/o_NxSTX0jkc  my 2nd favorite fight song is this ^ ===JACK:  I always thought that the Univ of Iowa Fight song was" We're from I-o-way...That's where the tall corn grows."  Thanks for enlightening me.===LIZ:  https://youtu.be/l4ANP8g8wrE
and you can’t beat meredith wilson. my mom’s old ‘hood/alma mater.===JACK:  Were your mom and Meredith in the same Iowa class?===LIZ:  no, he was born in 1902. she, in 1923...

FROM GOPHER (POLAR) LYNN:  I was a Polar in high school – fight song was “We are the mighty mighty Polars”    mascot was a polar bear.  I have so many fond memories of high school
===JACK:  Have you ever taken "The Polar Bear Plunge" where members in swimming suits dive into ice-chocked waters?  Not for me.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  Jack,  we just saw the movie,  The Hate U Give.  its quite powerful and disturbing but does end on a small note of hope.  mostly about race relations and growing up "in the hood".  go for a matinee===JACK:  My children grew up in a different hood than I did, and it reveals that "we are who we were."===PAUL:  i was only in Moline, Ill. once in my life as a teen when my  Bro was a student at Augustana College.  he dated Marty Lindberg for a time whose Dad taught at the seminary.  perhaps you had him as a Prof.  I  can't even recall why we were in Moline.  but i saw an actual, working steam locomotive switch engine with smoke pouring out of its stack  and i thot it was the coolest thing i had ever seen.    i love railroading and even model railroading to this day.  but that was a highlight that i clearly recall to this day.  i assume it was soon taken out of service for reasons of air pollution, if for not other reason.===JACK: Conrad Lindberg was one of my profs.  The coal-buring engines gave way to the cheaper and cleaner-burning diesels.  I remember when the switch was made.  I don't think that pollution was that big of an issue.

FROM JDR:  Were your mom and Meredith in the same Iowa class?===JACK:  It may sound like a "corny" song, but it's OUR song!.

FROM DS IN SOCAL:  I have had wonderful friends in the "neighborhoods" of all the places Ruth and I have moved to, but NO feeling is the same as our original Moline "hood" when we were growing up.  The 50's were definitely a different, and I feel, better time.  I still think of Moline as "home"===JACK:  Even tho I was born in Des Moines, I always claim Moline as my home-town..
===DS:  You almost had it right...it's  "our team's the FINEST you've ever seen"   
WE ARE MOLINERS
WE’RE FROM MOLINE
OUR TEAM’S THE BEST TEAM
YOU’VE EVER SEEN
YOU DO YOUR BEST, BOYS
WE’LL DO THE REST, BOYS
RIGHT ON FOR OLD MOLINE!
RAH, RAH!
===JACK:  Since you're so smart...What are the words to the Augustana Fight Song?===D:  All Hail to you Augustana, all hail to the Gold and Blue, our heroes we cheer to victory as .......Do you want me to continue?===JACK:  That's enough, thank you.  Do you know the Augie cheer that goes, "Rootum, scrootum,etc>? 

 FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  We have always had the right to think for ourselves! Mother was a republican and Dad was a strong union Democrat and the were married for 73 years!===JACK:  Just like Kellyanne Conway and her husband.===FRPM TAMPA SHIRL:  A good reminder of our high school days- a loooonng time ago!===JACK:  BTW, Do you remember when girls weren't permitted to be cheerleaders?  At the time, did you think that that was unfair?===SHIRL:  I do remember Joline from Moline. I also remember Kenny Johnson!===JACK:  I think the Class of 45 might have been the last one with male cheerleaders...only.  Bill Gustafson was one.  Tom Getz was an earlier one.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  Jack, I'm so happy to be living in Iowa along the Mississippi River. Our neighborhood is very special to us, having moved here in 1976. Sue & I started an annual Fall Picnic for our area of 75 homes in 2004 or 5, which has had good success.  But I'm still a Moliner and am going to the M Men's night for basketball this January.===JACK:  For me, nothing has replaced the "growing up" years.

FRO SHALOM JAN:  Good one!  As a resident of Pontiac, my hood is charged more for life, health and auto insurance, gets fewer road services such as patching and scraping, and still has an unconscionable unemployment rate.  So, I keep urging people to vote, to attend meetings held by our Representative, Brenda Lawrence, and in other ways seek to improve things here.  We need a lot of healing but we need to act on that ourselves, too.===JACK:  Pontiac, IMO, seems to be making a turn-around.  Baby steps, to be sure, but steps.===JAN:  "'The times are bad! The times are troublesome!' This is what humans say. But we are our times. Let us live well and our times will be good. Such as we are, such are our times."--Augustine of Hippo.........Love in action is a harsh and dreadful thing compared to love in dreams."--Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoyevsky..."We will not raise arms against other nations, we will not practice the art of war, because through Jesus Christ we have become children of peace."--Origen of Alexandria--3rd century...and another. from Mother Teresa of Calcutta:  "If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other."  Ain't that the truth!===JAN:  I agree!  I hope, "Slow but sure wins the race," applies.  :-)

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  We are the Pioneers mighty mighty Pioneers!  We grew up in Harper Woods.  Harper Woods is s little under 2 miles wide and long but there were 9 school.  There was Harper Woods High School, Regina High, Notre Dame High, Bishop Gallagher, Lutheran East High and Tyrone, Beacon, Parsells, and Queen of Peace.  Needless to say, we were all strong supporters of our own schools!  The other schools called us “Harper Hoods” and we were looked down on.  Everyone has issues and we’ve all learned how to deal with it.  Well, mostly all of us.  It was appalling to see that pastor at the Jewish funeral screaming.  I asked for prayers for her but she did a lot of damage to the Christian imagine.  In my humble opinion.===JACK:  I guess that every "time" has its appaling events.  I try to put them in the rearview mirror.



...

Thursday, November 01, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 11/1/18
 “I’d rather be black than gay, because when you’re black you don’t have to tell your mother.”   Charles Pierce)  I’d be surprised if you didn’t know of someone who is LGBTQ.  .  We used to sing in Sunday School…“You can meet them in school, on the street, in the store, in church, by the sea, in the house next door, They are saints of God, whether rich or poor….”  All Saints Day is a reminder that the judgment of who is (or is not) a saint, is God’s.    ;-)  Jack.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  good one, Jack!  thanks...    we have a grand niece and a grand nephew who are gay.  the niece is a rather amazing young lady and is now married to her partner.  the nephew has lots of issues mostly due to the fact that both of his parents have been in jail for doing drugs,  petty theft, etc.  kind of a sad story.  but as you said,  only God gets to decide who is truly a saint.  now don't O D on any left over Halloween candy:):)===JACK:  The song should say that you can even meet them among your relatives.===PAUL:  agreed.   when MeKenzie and Julie got married, about 2 years ago,  some members of the family did not attend in protest.   they are mostly the LCMS wing of the family which explains a lot.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Yes it is a holy day! One of my cousins in Moline just passed away! We used to be 14 cousins. Now we r 3! One is in Rockford! He went to Augustana and his Lutheran Church has now sold it to a Lutheran school and shares services with an episcopal church! ===JACK:  Yes, we should not forget that this All Saints' Day,  The Winning Words were chosen with that in mind.

FROM M&L IN WB:  That's a good one, Jack.  I wonder if there is a universal consciousness  shared by all, instead of it being personal.  That would preclde judgement===JACK:  There shall be a final judgment when "the wrong shall fail and the right prevail."

FROM DR J:  Yep... even the Pirates are of us and of God :-)===JACK:  When it comes to bare bones we are all equal.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Hi Jack - Our church - King of Glory Lutheran in Dallas - just recently re-emphasized that welcome all - lbgtq, all races, etc. That makes me feel really good.===JACK:  It's good to know that there are "welcoming: churches in Texas.  How does the community respond?

FROM GDJ IN WI:  Love it!===JACK:  Love the Saints, too.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Love this WW! I know several gay people very well, and it's a hard life, though these I know have made something admirable of their lives. One Atty. in Chicago often very creative!  Your quote from the song "I Sing a Song of the Saints of God, Loyal and brave and true" is such a good one. Like Lazarus and Dives in Luke 16, we many find our roles in reversal when we greet Eternity!! Ours not to judge, but to love unconditionally, and serve where we can!===JACK:  I remember, growing up in Moline, that it wasn''t "Kum Ba Ya" with regard to people of color and gays.===OAKSL  Dave McAdams was a good friend of mine, and as we sang in a mixed quartette, often walked home together, as he had to go my way to get to his house. My mother once said, "I don't know what the neighbors think, when you walk by with David carrying your books". I said, "I hope they say, "Isn't  that Dave McAdams,outstanding athlete and beautiful singer?  What a nice guy!" She never mentioned it again...I was "going steady" with Crutch, so she knew I wouldn['t be dating him!  He was class President, and 1st attendant to Crutch in Homecoming Royal Court!  Of course he never talked about hard times he experienced. :-( So more a superficial friend. ===JACK:  A perfect example of what I was talking about.  The McAdams boys were great kids.  It was a time when nicknames were used.  Not only "Crutch," but "Stinky" trevarrow, too.  I have a book by Jack Zukerman in which he describes growing up in Moline as a jew.  The kids in grade school called him, "Christ Killer."  He cried to his mom, "I wasn't even there when Jesus was killed."

FROM JK:  Thank You Pastor John!===JACK: Thanks.  I appreciate your commrnt.

FROM OUTHOUSE MARRIAGE:  It reminds of the Simon and Garfield song...”El Condor Pasa!”  I do know some gay fellows.  One of the guys who came to live with us in his teens named Steve, and another boy who my parents raised has a grown son who is gay.  The church should have open arms for all of them but should follow God’s Word on marriage.

FROM JT:  Awesome!  Thank you for sharing.===JACK:  We're still in the process of understanding some things.  I'm suspicious of those who have all of the answers.




Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/31/18
“Give a man a mask, and he will tell you the truth.”  (Oscar Wilde)    Masks have been used long before there was a Halloween.  In some cases they were for protection.  They were used for entertainment, too.  In most cases they were used to hide something.  Theologically, Adam’s fig leaf was considered to be a mask.  Some communities have banned clown masks, not because of Bozo, but because of the Market Rasen clown who is really creepy.  Boooo!~   ;-)  Jack 

FROM HUNGRY HOWIE:  I keep hearing from people that Halloween is there favorite holiday. Most holidays are either religious or civic celebrations. Why do you think that Halloween is so popular? ===JACK:    Halloween is a religious holiday.  Halloween is short for All Hallows Evening, the day before A;; Saints Day (Nov 1(, a day for remembering the faithful who have died.  In days of yore, it was thought that evil spirits were around seeking to enter God’s people.  The scary masks and costumes were meant to chase those ebil spirits away.  Like Christmas Eve, much of the meaning of the day has been lodt to commercialism.

FROM WALMART REV:  I'm a Lone Ranger fan myself and always we be! Isn't that right, Kemo Sabe!?!?   0;-)===JACK"  Many people don't know that The Lone Ranger radio program originated in Detroit..  One of the actors who played the Lone Ranger lived in West Bloomfield.  I happened to meet him and talk with him in a local restaurant.  Tonto wasn't with him.

FROM GF:  Happy Halloween Jack!===JACK:  Is that like Merry Christmas?

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  It is so much fun to see the children in their costumes! I am looking forward to tonight.===JACK:  I'll bet it's really scary when the Tampa old folks dress up and knock at your door and yell, :Trick or Treat!"

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  what or who is the Market Rasen clown?  was that the guy in the news a year or two ago who was sort of terrorizing some neighborhood?===JACK:  I purposely did not"say," hoping that curious people woul go to Dog Pile.com.

FRPM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Halloween was never fun for me.  I don’t like Masks and never have.  I like to see a person, even a little person, face to face.  We always had painted faces as did my kids and now my grandkids!!\\\JACK: No trick or treaters...mask, or no mask.





Monday, October 29, 2018

Jack’s Winnning Words 10/29/18
“Oh, Man, if in real life…I had all the answers, things would be easier.”  (Kyle Chandler)  I started with Google…and then to Dog Pile looking for the origin of the expression, “Oh Man.”  The phrase traces to Anglo-Saxon days, and can mean: surprise, amazement, even exasperation.  I’m reading Man, Oh Man, a new book (an un-novel novel) by Mike Corrao.  A book’s title can often hint at its content.  As I read, I’m being surprised, amazed and even exasperated.  ;-)  Jack
Man, Oh Man - Orson's Publishing

FROM SF:  I’m going to read it. πŸ“š===JACK:  Have you ever read an un-novel novel?   Man, Oh Man!

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  I am reading Alexander McCall  Smiths a time of love and tartan! Have u read any of his series? The r great! I started with the woman’s detective agency. This is part of his Scotland series! The author of Harry Potter series are neighbors in Edinburgh where I once spent the summer of 1956!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I've never heard of an "un-novel, novel". It sounds intriguing, and yes,
exasperating!!  I'll have to check it out. But having "all the answers" to Life would take away the thrill of the "adventure" wouldn't it?  Who knows, since most of us have come by some answers to an abundant life by trying to live out our faith. (More or less, now and then, as Bill used to opine...)
Big Blessings, and continued answers!


Friday, October 26, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/26/18
“Life is not like Burger King.  We can’t always have it our way.”  (Randi Zuckerberg)  R.Z. wanted to do it all!..Work, Sleep, Family, Fitness, Friends..and what she got was guilt.  I can’t do it.  What she did was to choose 3 of the 5 to concentrate on each day and stick to 3 (not the same 3 each day).  Randi tracked what she did each day.  Prioritizing worked for her.  Really, it was a way of balancing her life..and shedding some guilt.  You can have it all…kinda!   ;-)  Jack

FROM DR J:  Maybe life is like McDonald’s, “I’m loving it!”===JACK:  A great response, and "I'll have fries with that!"

FROM DR PHIL:  My cousin is a marketing guru and wrote several books. In one book  he called "Marketing Warfare" he used Burger King to note that they lived on the fact that they were no 2 compared to Macdonald's.  I have used it in a sermon or two.===JACK:  Avis used to advertise that they were #2 in the car rental business.  I haven't seen football fans hold up two fingers and scream, "We're number two!"  I guess we just celebrate who we are, whatever the number might be.

FROM SF WAITING FOR FL:  Hah! Forget about Burger King.===JACK:  Did you ever wear one of those paper crows that Burger King passed out for kids?

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  I just have a sort of plan each day! Today I plan to early vote and then to do errands! Tomorrow is Susie and Jeannie’s birthday and we will be celebrating the first year that we know they're identical twins-not fraternal-due to ancestry DNA!===JACK:  DNA is something our parents didn't know about...among other things.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  That’s so true!  We can and do have it all.  Life is a balancing act.  It’s a matter o“.”f when, what and how we balance!  Life is grand!===JACK:  John Milton wrote in Paradise Lost, “The mind is its own place, and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven..”

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Participated in an all day bus tour by Network Knowledge yesterday, and that was challenging enough for ONE day, for this old lady. Always time to catch up on other things later, I say! No, you can't always "have it your way", but usually God's way works better anyhow! Good words for today. I'm not a McDonald's fan for food, but I like their slogan for Life, "You'll Love IT!". Gotta think positive!! :-)===JACK:  2 McD burgers suits me just fine for a snack while traveling.  BTW, how do you know the difference between God's way and your way?  OOPS!  That's right.  God's way is, "Don't go chasing golf balls in ditches."




Thursday, October 25, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/25/19
“The elderly don’t drive that badly; they’re just the only ones with time to do the speed limit.” (Jason Love)  I know of someone who got arrested for going below the speed limit.  It wasn’t me!  AAA research shows that older drivers are safer than any other group, generally avoiding situations that put them in danger.  A recent study shows that the number of drivers over 65 has increased by 20% in last 10 years.  So, ease up on the horn when see grampa or grandma behind the wheel.   ;-)  Jack

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  The secret is to stay off the main highways like I-4 in Florida and to take the surface roads! To me the traffic is horrendous-especially in Southern California, Washington, Boston, and Miami! Maine is good!===JACK:  A lot of jokes are made about Florida's elderly drivers.  You've probably seen that some of it is true.  But, of course, you're certainly not one of them.

FROM EAGLE EYE JAN:  Is this your own quote?  No one else's name is attached.  I learned a long time ago that it's more dangerous in these parts to travel the speed limit due to tailgaters on my back bumper than it is for me, with decreasing eyesight, to speed up and still try to keep a good following distance between my car and the vehicle ahead of me.  When I was in Houston last winter I learned they follow too close for my comfort because, as more than one person said, "Texans drive as if they're on horses."===JACK:  Thanks for your observation.  I've since made the addition of Jason Love's name.  Jason is a stand-u[ comedian from California.  He probably has some jokes about ordinary California drivers, too.

FROM TL:  Thanks for the good chuckle to start off my day.===JACK:  Don't chuckle too hard.  You'll be old one of these days, too.

FROM DR J:  my first week of “retirement” I had a car following me very closely, then pass me and scream bad things at me…. all for… going the speed limit.  I find myself slowing down and enjoying the ride more often now… and I LIKE IT!===JACK:  Which car gets the most reaction, the Bug or the Bolt?

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  good words for today,  Jack.  thanks!  i am putting this quote in my sermon file on aging!    i have given this sermon  twice down in AZ and i always get lots of positive feedback.===JACK:  Isn't it about time from your annual migration to Trumpland?  Are sermons different there from those in Minnesota.  Don't "snow" me with "I preach the Gospel in both places."

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  That’s funny but also true.  Several of my friends are struggling with how to get their parents to stop driving because they are truly unsafe drivers.  We got a call from an aunt saying she saw my dad driving 20 mph down M72 in a 55 mph zone.  We all talked quickly to figure out how to tell my dad he couldn’t drive anymore.  But thank the Good Lord, Dad walked in the house and tossed the keys to me sister and said “I’m done driving!”    It must be so frightening to lose your freedom to drive.===JACK:  It "means" something when young people first get a license to drive.  It also "means" something when that license to drive is taken away from the elderly.

FROM LK IN NV:  Everyone has the time to drive without electronic devices===JACK:  I know someone who owns two self-driving cars.  Do they count as electronic devices?







Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/24/18
“I hear, I know!  I see, I remember!  I do, I understand!”  (Confucius)  Confucius usually says serious stuff, but do you remember Confucius say… jokes?  Confucius say, man who laughs last not get joke.  Confucius say, a bird in hand makes hard to blow nose…Confucius say, man who sit on hot stove will rise again.  Jimmy Durante would sing, You gotta start off each day with a song.  Let’s change that a bit and sing, You gotta start off each day with a smile.   ;-)  Jack 

FROM A POLICE OFFICER:  How about you gotta start off each day with a prayer===JACK:  A good suggestion...and how about starting with a prayer for the safety of all protect and serve us each day?

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  Thanks for bringing Confucius back to mind.  And a serious sample of his thinking.  The humor generated by his sayings isn't prevalent lately, but the jokes you mentioned still provoke laughs.  I'm starting off this day with a smile!===JACK:  There may be some confusion about Confucius in the minds of some (not you).  How about Googling him to clarify?

FROM TEACHER AP:  When I first read this years ago, I created a large poster which hung in my classroom for many years. It was a good reminder for me on how to conduct my teaching.
Thank you for this good reminder today. I'm working in a preschool daily this year. I missed working with children!!===JACK:  Speaking of magic, do kids still like to sing, "Puff, the Magic Dragon?"

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Yes enjoy each day! We went to Epcot yesterday and saw lots of happy people enjoying the food and wine festival on a very beautiful day!===JACK:  I didn't realize that
 EPCOT, is an acronym for Experimental Prototype Community of Tomorrow, a utopian city of the future planned by Walt Disney, often interchanging "city" and "community."===SHIRL:  Unfortunately Walt died before he could carry out his plan. It is very beautiful though and we were there for the food and wine festival!===JACK:  So, you were on a first-name acquaintance with Mr Disney.  Was he ever over at your house for sinner?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  “Let a smile be your umbrella for a rainy rainy day!”===JACK:  Did you sing that song at Girl Scout Camp when it was a rainy day?  I'm sure that you sang some other "smile" songs at camp.  Summer camp...a great experience.===JUDY:  We learned and later I taught many songs. Most had “sunny words”.  A lot we silly songs and some were Girl Scout Songs. ===JACK:  Did you ever sing, "I wear my [ink pajamas?"===JUDY:  Yep!!  The girls loved it!!  Lol

FROM DAZ IN COLORADO:  This did start off our day with a smile and some laughter. ===JACK:  Not politically correct, but in those days the term was not known.  But society always has room for improvement.

FROM LB IN MI:  Well, Jim's mom sometimes took a while to get a joke, but she did get it.  One day she was laughing at the sink while washing dishes and Jim asked her what she was laughing about.  She had just gotten the joke he told her the day before.===JACK:  Not everyone is able to process humor at the same rate of speed.  That's why some conversational-speak is misunderstood.









Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/23/18
“Robots are not people.  They are mechanically more perfect, they have an astoundingly intellectual capacity, but they have no soul.”  (Karol Capek)  In a recent conversation, robots came up in 4 unrelated ways…cleaning Hospital ORs…a surgeon saying that robotic surgery can be more exact than humans in certain situations…a person who owns two self-driving cars…and, after seeing, 2001, A Space Odyssey…The final thought was: “but robots have no soul!”  What are the ramifications?   ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  i once met a person who i thought may also have had no soul.  hopefully he one day found one.  such an "empty" person morally, spiritually, ethically, etc.  have a good day, Jack.   btw,  i saw a video clip a year or two ago of an auto plant in Japan and 70% of those cars were made by robots.  robots don't get sick, don't show up late,  don't argue with the boss,  don't go on strike, don't take vacations, and generally they do near-perfect work.  you can see their appeal for manufacturing companies.===JACK:  What is a soul?  A God-connection?  Even the person you described has a God-connection by way of being human.  The manifestation of a robot society is a society apart from God.  I believe that the omnipotent God can do something about that.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  Getting an early start today?===JACK: Winning Words is such a part of my life that I want to make sure that readers get them as they start off their day.

FROM WALMART REV:  All I know is I keep being asked if I am one on many of my internet correspondences nowadays . . . even have to decipher some hard to read alphabet letters and numbers to prove I am not?!?! 0;-)===JACK: Ministers have to work at proving that they are human.  I remember the first time I heard my pastor fart.  I never thought that preachers did that.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  They may be able to do many many things and even be given some type of emotions but, they don't have souls.  They can’t imagine what people feel deep down in souls and can they make choices such as good vs evil?===JACK:  Some folks think that when God created people He created robots...Predestination...that it is predetermined (preprogrammed) who will go to heaven and who will go to hell.  That concept is beyond my understanding.

FROM DB IN WB:  Ramifications:  we lose our souls as we rely on them too much and start to expect people to perform just like them!===JACK:  That's an interesting take!  Thanks

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I suppose we'll. always need humans to program the robots; Hard to imagine what the future will look like, isn't it?  Robots are fascinating, but won't ever replace need for humans. Reading material about Artificial Intelligence can give one the shivers! :-)  But assuredly, they have no soul, as we define soul, no Godly relationship.====JACK:  When I begin to fear that robots will take over this world...and that things are going from bad to worse...that old hymn puts things into perspective..."This is my Father's World, O, let me ne'er forget that though the wrong seems oft so strong, God is the rukler, yet."



FROM RS IN TEXAS:  No making a decision on gut feel there.===JACK:  No "grace" either.

Monday, October 22, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/22/18
“My desire is to walk with God every day.”  (Janine Turner)  I miss TV’s Northern Exposure with Janine Turner as Maggie.  What I didn’t know about Janine was that her great-grandfather left her 365 typewritten pages of “Wisdom for Each Day.”  Today’s thought is from one of those pages.  Wise words from Grandpa!  Could the WWJD bracelet be a reminder that we’re walking with God every day?  You can YouTube Janine talking about Front Porch Philosophy.   ;-)  Jack
Janine Turner Front Porch Philosophy - YouTube

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  What a nice memento her great grandfather left her….and others as she shares.===JACK:  Do you have anything special left to you by a grandparent?  I have a letter sent to me by my grandmother congratulating me on becoming a pastor.  After receiving that letter, hers was the first funeral I conducted...along with my cousin who was a Catholic priest.===CAROL:  After my grandma died, I was given a meat fork, meat knife, and a meat cleaver that she had used.  A couple of my aunts had cleaned out Grandma’s apartment when she went into the nursing home and saved things for each of us grandchildren. When my mom died, my sisters and I divided up some other treasures of Grandma’s – I have four sauce dishes from her good dishes and a green milk glass sugar bowl she got from purchasing gas…a thing in northern MN.  I also have a crocheted edged camisole that belonged to my grandmother too.  I’d rather have a few more minutes of time spent with her instead – but good to have these fun memories.  I never knew my grandparents on my dad’s side.  They died before I was born.  I’m sure you treasure your letter from your grandmother, but how sad you had to do her funeral so soon after.===JACK:  If something were to happen to that letter I'd remind myself..."It's the memory that important.

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  my dad loved that show. i never saw it... not sure why.===JACK:  An all-time favorite for me.  The characters were sooooreal!  A niece of mine has every episode on dvd.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I too enjoyed Northern Exposure, but did not single out "Maggie", who was very good in her part. Interesting insight into her family!  Bill had a saying on his desk (I forget who said it!) "The purpose of Life is to spend it for something that will outlast it".  The ministry is a pretty good opportunity to do that!  Walking with God every day leads to some unique "adventures" and opportunities, and her phrasing 'My desire is" acknowledges that we do not always do what we hope to do or try to do, day by day !  Hence, Thankfulness for a forgiving God!!===JACK:  I can't remember a day when I regretted living the life of a pastor.  With Winning Words, I feel that I'm still living that life.

FROM BB IN CHCO:  I watched Northern on occasion and found it funny and touching.  What an inspirational idea about the daily wisdom.  It might take me decades to compile such a list but…God willing, I have at least a few years===JACK:  In the past you've shared with me things and ideas that have been passed on to you by both of your parents.  We each do it in our own way.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  We should all desire to walk with God everyday.  One of my favorite anthems is “My God and I”.  It’s wonderful to know He is with us everywhere and always!  We did watch a little of Northern Exposure.  We’re not big tv watchers. Really enjoy her Front Porch talk!  Sent it to Family and friends! ===JACK:  Janine's life has been more than what's seen on the screen.  I'm sure that Grandpa and his words helped straighten things out.


Friday, October 19, 2018

Jack’s Winning Words 10/19/18
“There’s no bad day that can’t be overcome by listening to a barbershop quartet.”  (Chuck Sigars)  A favorite movie of mine is The Music Man.  Great music!  Prof Harold Hill’s Seventy-Six Trombones…the Barbershop Quartet singing, Lida Rose.  Quartet singing has had its ups and downs, but it seems to be regaining popularity, even among women.  There’s something about 4-part harmony that brings smiles to listeners.  Are you one of the smiling ones?  ;-)  Jack

FROM PASTY PAT:  Yup!===JACK:  Yup, Yup, Yup and Yup...in 4-part harmony!

FROM DR JUDY:  YES!!!!!! You’re right. When I come across it, I can’t help but smile.===JACK:  One of the barbershop favorites is Charlie Chaplin's song, Smile.

FROM M&L:  Thanks Jack.  We saw Music Man in Stratford Ont. and it was great!  Nice reminder ===JACK:  Stratford doesn't always have to be about Shakespeare.

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  I disagree. Barbershop Quartets are annoying to me personally. Barbershop Quartets and Opera singers....no thanks. ===JACK:  There's usually someone singing off-key, but that's OK.  I'm like that (more than) occasionally.

FROM CPA BOB:  I smiled when I read “Seventy-Six Trombones”.  They bring back good memories.===JACK:  That's a real toe-tapper, isn't it?

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  I love BSQ’s!===JACK:  I can't recall any school-age children singing BSQ.  Is it just "old-folk's" stuff?

fROM GOPHER LYNN:  I am!    Happy Friday to you!JACK:  I seem to recall that Barber-shoppers sing..."When you're smilin' the whole world smiles with you."

FROM CZB IN NH:  One of my favorites too! Alex played Marion in the school musical. I know all those songs by heart!===JACK:  I'm sure that a lot of people don't know that"Good-night my love" is a slower version of "76 trombones."

FROM INDY GENIE:  Yes I am one of the smiling faces. Music in general does that for me but that 4 part harmony gets right to my heart!===JACK:  A seminary professor once said that church music should appeal to heart and not to the toe. Later in life, he changed his tune.===GENIE:  Oh, that's good!

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  The perfect blend of four musically gifted voices sound like heavenly angels!  Love Sweet Adeline’s and Barbershop music!===JACK:  Barbershop Angels?  I guess it says in the Bible that Heaven will be a place where "ear hath not heard" certain things.===JUDY:  Wouldn’t it be wonderful to hear the angels sing barbershop songs?  I for one believe angels are fearsome creatures and when I picture them singing makes me smile!!

FROM GUSTIE MARLYS:   Barbershop Angels?  I guess it says in the Bible that Heaven will be a place where "ear hath not heard" certain things.===JACK:  Has your women's group ever tried "barbershop-style singing?===MARLYS:  Oh yes.  It is fun—but hard to find music.  Most of it is not written in treble clef and they don’t read bass clef.

from kk:  FROM KK:  So timely.  I am at International contest and quartet finals today in St Louis
My chorus Mike tests for finals tomorrow .performances on you tube  My chorus Motor City Blend ===JACK:  I'm going to have to check that out!
Motor City Blend Chorus, Chorus Semifinals, 2018 - YouTube

FROM BB IN CHGO:  I smiled at the funeral/memorial service.  Lutherans are great at the SATB harmony and unafraid to sing.  I recall choir at the Missouri synod school I attended – once some of the guys were able to get low in 8th grade that it took on another dimension.  I feel like good singing is a hallmark of the denomination – what would Luther think? ===JACK:  I could envision Martin singing bass in a BSQ.


FROM SUES:  Agreeing with you, barbershop quartet music warms the heart! ===JACK:  I don't think I've ever heard a barbershop quartet in a church worship service.  I take that back.  In my younger days there was a radio program, The Old-Fashioned Revival Hour, which featured a quartet.  I remember them singing "This World Is Not My Home."  A real toe-tapper!  01 This World Is Not My Home - YouTube

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I sang in Sweet Adelines for several years, and wrote some of their annual shows; In a quartette I sang lead, and in another tenor. It's great music to sing, and I still always go to their annual show. I'm having a men's quartette (champions in contest) sing for our April Senior Event! Music in general is a Smile Promoter! I portrayed the Mayor's wife twice In MUSIC MAN; Such a fun and lively show !! ===JACK:  Eulalie Mackecknie Shinn!  You'd be perfect!  (...because you act good!)  I like the sound of that name, especially when said by Paul Ford.