Monday, October 31, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/31/16
“Long before Twitter Martin Luther was a media pioneer.”  (NY Times)  The printing press was the new media of Luther’s day, and he was a savvy user.  500 years ago today Martin nailed 95 theses (sort of long tweets) to a church door stating why he thought the Catholic Church should change.  The Catholic/Protestant split was underway.  Ironically Lutheran leaders are now meeting with Pope Francis to celebrate a common understanding of major faith issues.  Google can tell you about it.      ;-)  Jack

Friday, October 28, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/28/16
“There is no them; there is only us.  Some of us think this, or some of us think that, but we’re all us.”  (Lisa Williams)  The greatest photo ever is said to be the one of Earth taken by the astronauts from outer space.  It was a stunning visual of our planet as a spaceship with all of us as passengers.  When we ever learn that we are interdependent?  The things that separate us, borders, race, ethnicity, wealth are nothing compared to what unites us.    ;-)  Jack

FROM HONEST JOHN:  Do Panthers have to think of Maroons as "us"?====JACK:  I always thought that the Tri-Cities (Quad-Cities, Quint-Cities, whatever you want to call it) should have joined together into one metro area called, Moline.  BTW, I remember the Panthers as the Hilltoppers.  And, of course, the Maroons will always be the Maroons.  And,,,I was just kidding about naming the metro area, Moline.  John Deere would have been good..or Illowa.====JOHN:  I think we should call it "Obama" ....that would bug all the rednecks.====JACK:  Given enough time, there will be some schools, roads, and maybe even cities named after this president.  I think that his library (near LSTC is going to be a very popular place.

FROM TARMART REV:  Yes sir!! Very true!! I wonder if God would feel the same today as He did in former days when folk were more united as one? Would we be found thinking the same, if united as such today? Just wondering? 0;-)Genesis 11:1-9Amplified Bible  Universal Language, Babel, Confusion  11 Now the whole earth [a]spoke one language and used the same words (vocabulary). 2 And as people journeyed eastward, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and they settled there. 3 They said one to another, “Come, let us make bricks and fire them thoroughly [in a kiln, to harden and strengthen them].” So they used brick for stone [as building material], and they used tar (bitumen, asphalt) for mortar.4 They said, “Come, let us build a city for ourselves, and a tower whose top will reach into the heavens, and let us make a [famous] name for ourselves, so that we will not be scattered [into separate groups] and be dispersed over the surface of the entire earth [as the Lord instructed].” 5 Now the Lord came down to see the city and the tower which the sons of men had built. 6 And the Lord said, “Behold, they are one [unified] people, and they all have the same language. This is only the beginning of what they will do [in rebellion against Me], and now no evil thing they imagine they can do will be impossible for them. 7 Come, let Us (Father, Son, Holy Spirit) go down and there confuse and mix up their language, so that they will not understand one another’s speech.” 8 So the Lord scattered them abroad from there over the surface of the entire earth; and they stopped building the city. 9 Therefore the name of the city was[b]Babel—because there the Lord confused the language of the entire earth; and from that place the Lord scattered and dispersed them over the surface of all the earth.====JACK:  In the days when that Bible passage was written, the concept of "oneness" was different than it is today.  The earth is no longer flat.  We have the chance to step back and to see Earth as one of many space objects...not the only one.  God, in my view, is timeless, so his mind today is the same as it was in Babel days and before.  Since God is the creator, he is the creator of all...of us and them.  Just musing...and wondering.

FROM SUE BLU:  Except for on Saturday :) Go Blue!!====JACK:  After "the game" there may be some "green" who feel "blue."  If so, they can find comfort in remembering last year.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Yes - as our interim pastor said in his sermon last week, it's the UNITED States of America (and the world).  Now if we could just find like minded people to run for political office........... ====JACK:  On Nov 9 we'll find out whether it's the United States or the Untied States.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  How true that is! Nothing will be perfect until we get to heaven. But we have to keep trying to make a better world.====JACK:  There's a song..."My God and I."  This world is in our hands...God as the owner and we as the caretakers.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Oh if everyone just would get along!  Can you imagine this world?!?


Thursday, October 27, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/27/16
“When things go wrong, consider what went right.”  (Kristen Jordan Shamus)  Some friends told me of a pastor they once had.  He had no arms.  When he came to eat at their home, he ate with his feet.  Somehow, he even painted his house using his feet.  During the Great Depression there was a saying, “We’ll just make do.”  We adjusted, and it seemed to work.  No car?  We’ll walk.  No home?  Some neighbors took us in.  And, they’re called, the good old days.    ;-)  Jack

FROM LBP IN PLYMOUTH:  Re today's WW, have you seen this? (Google: Tell America it's great))====JACK:  How refreshing!  Sometimes we need to be reminded how GREAT America really is.

FROM TARMART REV:  I remember a pastor telling a bunch of us younger ones, he walked all over town making calls on his parishioners, as he had no car in those earlier days. Never knew the size of the town, but have always remembered the illustration, "making do!"====JACK:  When starting new churches pastors have to find temporary meeting places.  You used a Jewish Temple.  I've heard of using a funeral home and even a bar.  The Lord's people know how to make-do.====REV:  Read of the same as well . . . always found it interesting to read of the early Christians meeting in the catacombs of Rome. Wouldn't that be like meeting at a graveyard committal chapel today? Most likely somewhat nicer, I would envision it to be?====JACK:  Some other unusual places for ice rink, a movie theater, in the back of a semi trailer, in a lumber warehouse.  Joel Osteen fills a discarded basketball arena.  My Winning Words Church meets on the computer.

FROM MV AT ML:  I saw a movie about a woman who had no arms. She learned to drive, grocery shop, dress herself, put on makeup without arms. I bet she could have been a good soccer player! ====JACK:  This week I saw a video of a toddler, with no arms, holding a fork with his toes and feeding himself.  I continue to be amazed by people who "make do."

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  I marvel at how God helps even the most "damaged" people to adjust and be made whole!====JACK:  The damage is not always visible.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Makes me think of Nick Vujicik, born with no arms or legs, and what marvelous inspirational speaker he is, and amazing what he is physically able to do as well; And now married with a healthy son.  I have his video, "No Arms, No legs, No worries..." and another bio of him, and he is a gifted Christian, reaching so many. Our young people first got acquainted with him at the ABY convention in Boulder, CO.  So many disabled seem to be able to use humor to cope.  Yes, your WW are good advice for us all....there are always SOME positives. Consider them ... ====JACK:  I have mixed feelings.  One part of me says, "I don't think that I could deal with being in that situation."  The other part of me is a more positive one, quoting St. Paul, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."====OAKS:  He almost committed suicide when he was about 10, but then thought of what that would do to his folks, and didn't want to hurt them!  I'm sure there were many times that he cried bitter tears, but he says he prayed to grow legs, and even kept a pr. of shoes in his closet to show God he believed God could do this!  I don't think any of us would WANT such horrible challenges to grow our faith!!!====JACK:  Keeping the shoes available is really touching...better than the farmers who went to church and prayed for rain, but didn't bring umbrellas.

FROM DMF IN AV MN:  Reminds me of this:
====JACK:  People like Bonnie Consolo really amaze do all who are able to overcome.

FROM JF IN ARIZONA:       This story reminds me of a similar experience I had when Cal and I were at our first church--Belvidere, IL  A pastor, whom I think was then living in and serving a church in Chicago, came for a pastors' get-together at our church who also ate with his feet.  I also remember that he had no coat because he had given his to someone he met on the bus who needed a coat.  That was sometime in the years 1953-54 but has remained clearly in my mind since them. ====JACK:  When I was an inner-mission chaplain in Chicago I made calls at Oak Forest (the poor farm).  They had a wheel chair choir there, directed by Billy Burns who had no hands or feet.  He lost them when they were frozen while he was living on the streets during the winter.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/26/16
“Goodbye to ‘he’ and ‘she’ and hello to ‘ze’?  (  Have you ever wondered why God is  referred to as “He”?  I know some who talk about God as “She”.  Currently, when the lines between the sexes have become blurred, an alternate pronoun is being suggested…he, she and ze.  “Ze” is being using to define someone other than by sexual orientation.  Without going further into that…I see “Ze” as a way of describing God.  Goodbye to “He & She”!    ;-)  Jack

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  ridiculousness. the college crazies think they will do away with biology, & come up with a whole new label.  now we have safe spaces for "people of color." discrimination, segregation... many steps backward. while rome burns.====JACK:  Personally, I don't have a problem with God as "he or she", because I understand the limitations of language.  But, I do believe in helping people to see God in a way that brings understanding.  There are many "walls" in society, and many of them need to come down, or be lowered.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  I hadn't thought of that before. I will think about it.====JACK:  I chose this quote for two reasons.  First, as a way for showing that God is a spirit, not bound to a sexual body.  God is a God for all.  God chose to reveal himself in humans as a male.  He could just as easily reveal herself as a female.  "Who has known the mind of God?"  Secondly, I picked this quote to show sensitivity to those people who, for some reason, have trouble identifying their sexual orientation.  It seems reasonable to have a way of identifying people, other than male or female.  "Ze" is a way of removing that demarcation and saying that "people are people."  I appreciate your comment, "I will think about it."  That's what I try to do through Winning get people to think.====GEORGE:  I have studied homosexuality. People aren't born with an opposite sexual orientation. Much of it comes from abuse and we have to love them into the orientation that God gave them. I remember listening to Focus On The Family years ago, when a former homosexual spoke about sexual orientation. He said that "There are no gay gays."  And I got to know a Christian straight in Youth For Christ who overcame his problem thru his acceptance of Christ as Lord. He was a happily married man when I met him and had him speak to my senior SS class.====JACK:  My comments are relative to those people who have difficulty understanding their sexuality...and there are many of them.  I see "ze" as being a way to recognize this, without necessarily voting up or down based on my feelings.  But, as I wrote at the outset, "ze" is a way of talking about God in a spiritual way without the limitations of he or she.
FROM HONEST JOHN:  I don't.    That is more of an elitist term....won't fly with average people....have to do away with accurate translations of the scriptures....====JACK:  Usually new ideas don't fly with average people, because the "average" is inclined to stay with the comfortable.  As you know, the written scriptures have their limitation, because they are trying to put God into words.  Even referring to God as He, is a limitation.

FROM LBP IN PLYMOUTH:  I've heard moms of teens say that using they in the singular is common. I've uncomfortably done it in situations where he/she isn't right. The uncomfortableness coming from grammar rules drilled in my head. Just as this CNN story suggests it's hard to break our habits around rules that are so hard wired in our language.  In worship settings I've heard the pronoun replaced with the proper noun when gender assignment isn't wanted. I thing God as "they" would be an especially hard replacement because it confuses the singularity of God.====JACK:  I, too, am a stickler for the rules of grammar.  But I'm also a believer in situation "ethics."  There are times when it's OK to break the rules...grammar, societal and even theological.  BUT...reasonably.

FROM CR IN MICHIGAN:  I like it a lot.   It feels like progress.====JACK:  Reading over the comments so far...the proposed addition of  "ze" as a noun has moved into pro and con regarding sexual orientation.  I thought that "ze" was a worthwhile solution as to how to refer to God and to people who are confused about who they are.

FROM TARMART REV:  I'm finding we have a lot of "Goodbyes to . . ." nowadays when it comes to those longstanding traditions of truths found in what has been called the Word of God these past thousands of years . . . Interestingly (for me anyway) to note the prophets of old and writers of the Epistles found in the New Testament of our Bibles spent a great deal ink and parchment correcting those of that day saying "goodbyes" to what was previously established as truths taught them by Christ Himself and His chosen apostles. Paul, who came along later, said on more than one occasion this was not what I taught you nor left with you (Romans 16:17; I Corinthians 2:13; Galatians 1:12; II Timothy 3:10-17). I guess we'll have to wait and "Ze"?!====JACK:  Situations have sometimes changed from biblical days.  Goodbye to "the 4 corners of the earth."  The earth is no longer flat.  The Bible is meant to help us better understand our relationship to God.  God as 'father" is meant to describe God as the creator, the originator, not the male dominator...or so I think.====REV:  Jesus somewhat described heaven as a place where male and female were not given the same role as here on earth, in the role of "husband and wife" anyway . . . certainly angels are not represented as "he" and "she". Jesus replied, “Are you not in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God? When the dead rise, they will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven" (Mark 12:12-25).====JACK:  The interpretation of marriage and divorce today is  different than it was in Jesus' day.   I wonder how the Sermon on the Mount would sound if Jesus were to preach it today?

FROM JM IN DC:  Have always thought the same since "WE" are made in God's image.  God is both he and she, so I think "Ze" is a reasonable compromise.====JACK:  You seem to think as I think on this subject.  It's surprising (maybe not so)  that in today's socio/political climate people are inclined to see it, using other glasses.

FROM BB IN ILLINOIS:  I do not have another language but understand that many of them assign masculine or feminine pronouns for many words and inanimate objects.  That’s always puzzled me.
Your thought were thought-provoking today; why do we use gender signifiers in English for only individuals….====JACK:  Language is simply a means of communication.  Whatever makes the communication more accurate is OK with me.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  What is this world becoming?  I haven't heard this "ze" thing but it's unbelievable!!!====JACK:  In referring to God, which do you prefer, he, she, ze or it?  Which is the most correct?====JUDY:  Well, the Bible says he so that's what I think.====JACK:  The B-I-B-L-E, that's good enough for me.  I stand alone on the Word of God, the B-I-B-L-E.

FROM GUSTIE MARLYS:  Really???STUPID!  What difference does it make what we call him—just THAT we call him!====JACK:  Tell me what you really think.  And, while your at it, tell me what you think of making the words of hymns politically correct.  OOPs!  I think I already know. ====GUSTIE:  I hate it!  I am usually singing along loud and clear and all of a sudden I am singing the wrong words.  I like them the old way! I ALWAYS sing Joy To the World the old way and I don’t care if the whole congregation hears me!  Ha!  Last Sunday we sang “Guide me O Thou Great Jehovah”.  They changed the whole last phrase of the first verse!  I didn’t!  Ha!====JACK:  Ha! Ha!

FROM FM IN WISCONSIN:  Interesting!    I have forwarded to a couple of theologians.  If I get any reaction, I’ll forward them.====JACK:  Who are the "experts" on the unknowable (God)?  I trust those who have studied the subject...but I also have an ear for the hoi polloi.  If you haven't done so already, you might take a look at the blog responses.  There were more than I expected.====FM:  Jack, you hit a home run, and you were not in the lineup in Cleveland!====JACK:  In the World Series there are avid fans for both teams.  Some cheer for the home run, while others boo.  It's something like that with controversial social/religious issues, as you can see by reading the blog.  I see my role as...getting people to "re-think" their thoughts about some of these issues.

FROM CS IN ROYAL OAK:  👍😊====JACK:  Read the blog to see reactions====CS:  Woah! Lots of opinions!    I guess I've always been more comfortable connecting spiritually without the "limitations of gender"====JACK:  We're on the same page.

FROM JT IN MINNESOTA:  Well, how about that.  It would make my and Danielle's life easier.  I continue to refer to "her" as "he".  Thanks again.====JACK:  What's that old moralism?  "You have to walk in someone's moccasins in order to understand."  Many have responded to today's WWs...but yours is the best!  Thanks.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  ====SP:  well, you like to get people thinking and in that, I believe you have more than succeeded, Jack.  nice work...====JACK:  Just like with the congregation in the pews, I know that there are varieties of opinions out there.  I see my role as being a pastor who "comforts the afflicted and afflicts the comfortable."  In the case of today's WWs, I tried to do that.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/25/16
“Don’t judge someone just because they sin differently than you.”  (Unvirtuous Abbey) When I was a teen a group of us went to a Friday movie and out to eat afterward.  A Catholic girl waited until 12:01 before eating her hamburger.  We waited, too.  These days people are discussing which presidential candidate’s “sins” are worse than the other’s.  I “see” sin as failing  to love  and respect others, yourself and your God.  You figure out what that means.    ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  I see sin not so much as something we do but as a disease that we humans all have.  there is a cure but it is not of our own making.  the "dong of sin" is but a symptom of the disease.  and the cure is the blood of Christ.====JACK:  I haven't heard of that disease/cure theory before.====SP:  I think its a more helpful way to understand sin.  it tells us rather convincingly that "fixing" my life thru works righteousness is just not possible.  I was born with a disease and Jesus is the good Doctor who has the cure and who is the cure...====JACK:  The "cure", to me, is the grace of God.  "Nothing in my hand I bring!"====SP:  not the labors of my hands can fulfil the laws demands.    nothing in my  hands I bring,   simply to the cross I cling.  all for sin could not atone,  Thou must save and Thou alone.  Amen!====SP:  I quote it in almost every Reformation Day sermon and at other times too.  by the way,  I picked up a brochure recently at a Catholic church that was touting the sale of Indulgences (I am not kidding)  and even Purgatory: the final purification!  have we progressed no further than that??!!  God help us all...====JACK:  Oh!  We've progressed.  It's just that some priests and congregations haven't got the message, yet.  Here is MAJOR progress:    Pope to take part in Reformation events in Swedish cities of Lund and Malmö.  The Lutheran World Federation and the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity released details of the ecumenical events that Pope Francis will attend in southern Sweden on October 31st 2016. The joint Lutheran-Catholic commemoration will mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and will feature a liturgy in Lund cathedral, followed by a public event at an arena in the nearby city of Malmö.  The commemoration, structured around the themes of thanksgiving, repentance and commitment to common witness, will also celebrate the fruits of 50 years of Catholic-Lutheran dialogue.  The  prayer service in Lund cathedral will be led by Pope Francis, LWF President Bishop Munib Younan and LWF General Secretary Rev. Martin Junge, based on a shared liturgical guide and the joint report entitled ‘From Conflict to Communion’. The event in the Malmö arena will showcase the common witness of the LWF’s World Service and Caritas Internationalis, including their work to care for refugees, peacebuilding, and advocacy for climate justice.  

FROM DR JUDY:  WISDOM!====JACK:  Wisdom teeth and molars that generally erupt between ages 17 and 25, supposedly when humans gain wisdom.  What do you think?  Is wisdom nature or nurture?====JUDY:  I think that you have to have the capability (nature), but nurture (exposure, etc) sure helps!! What do you think?====JACK:  I'm reminded of the Dr. Seuss poem:  "Oh, the Places You'll Go!"  ...and the people you meet...and the experiences that come your way.  They have a way of influencing our does the family...for better or worse.

FROM JB IN OLV:  My Monday night ladies Bible Study group ( presently studying Mark) wrestles with this one quite often.  We are really quick to point out how "others" are way more sinful then we are, because our sins are so "small".====JACK:  A miss is as good as a mile.  Sin is sin is sin.  From Luke 18...…11  The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like the other men—swindlers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12  I fast twice a week and pay tithes of all that I receive.’ 13  But the tax collector stood at a distance, unwilling even to lift up his eyes to heaven. Instead, he beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner!’…"
Martin Luther said that three will surprise him.  He will see some people there that he didn't expect to see.  He will not see some people that he surely expected to see.  And, thirdly, that he was there himself.  We are not saved by the things we do...BUT by the grace of God.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/24/16
“The first wealth is health.”  (Ralph Waldo Emerson)  Research at Penn State has shown that how people react to the stresses of life can affect their health.  Emerson had more than his share of stresses…3 siblings died as children; another was mentally ill; his first wife died at age 20; his own health was poor.  It’s no wonder he wrote that health is wealth.  A cartoon shows a man at the “COMPLAINT” window.  The clerk says, “At least you’ve got your health.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM TARMART REV:  My mind takes me back to one of my college classes and the study of a textbook titled, "None of These Diseases" pointed out the same thought of stress related challenges causing certain responses such as headaches, ulcers, heart attacks and the like. 0:-/ ====JACK:  Even a psychosomatic illness is an illness.====REV:  I have a headache just trying to spell it!!====JACK:  "It" is spelled, I-T.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  true that!    as our teens like to say...  hope you had a good weekend. ====JACK:  Teens seem to be especially affected by the death of peers.  "It shouldn't happen!"  But, it did.  I was visiting at a nursing home once, and a group of men was standing looking down at the parking lot as a hearse pulled away.  "There goes another," said one of them.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  True, true.====JACK:  Experience is a great teacher, as you know.

FROM OPT AW:  Good morning Jack. Health is #1 for sure. I am now recovering from shoulder replacement surgery and basically one-handed for 6 weeks.====JACK:  They'll soon be calling you, "the bionic man."

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  Hear! Hear!  Despite Emerson's poor health he lived to age 79, not bad for that era.  He's buried in a small cemetery 15 miles west of my home.  Another of Emerson's sayings is, "Don't go where the path may lead, go where there is no path and leave a trail,"  an idea that poet Robert Frost wrote about years later.====JACK:  Sometimes we give so much attention to the bad days that we go through life not appreciating the good ones...sort of focusing on the sliver while the rest of the body is doing well.  BTW, Mother Goose is also buried in Boston.====RI:  The belief that Mother Goose was a single writer has been called into question.  There is a notion that a Mrs. Elizabeth Goose compiled the Mother Goose stories, but it doesn't seem to hold up when historians cite Mother Goose references well before Elizabeth Goose's time.  The idea that Elizabeth Goose is the real Mother Goose is so widespread, however, that her alleged gravestone has become a tourist attraction in Boston. To add more humor to the ordeal, it is likely that these tourists are not only misled that the woman was “Mother Goose”, but also, Elizabeth’s grave is unmarked, and the grave they are visiting is actually that of a Mary Goose.====JACK:  Are you telling me that Mother Goose is a fairy tale?====RI:  Witty reply, Jack.   BTW, in the last email I wrote you, I should have put the second paragraph in quotation marks, and noted that it was taken directly from a literary piece discussing the probability that the Mother Goose rhymes and stories originated from various writers.
====JACK:  I could nave said, John Hancock was buried there with a tombstone that has large print.
====RI:  Jack, I can't compete with your sense of humor.  Keep it coming.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Yes, health is wealth, and we are pretty wealthy.  Gloria has been struggling with headaches for some time and we have yet to pinpoint the cause.  Sometimes I think getting sick is a blessing, as it makes you appreciate when you are healthy (not too many of those kinds of blessings, though).====JACK:  "Someone" said, "Pain is a pain."  But, without pain we wouldn't be aware of a problem.  When son David was learning to talk he once pointed to his throat and said with a pained expression..."Something wrongs."  We still use that expression today when we are sick.

====BLAZING OAKS:  I think it was J.L. Kraft who said, "We spend the first half of life ruining our health to gain our wealth, and the last half of life spending our wealth to regain our health." If health is wealth (and it is!) why bother to pursue the "other" wealth?! Can't be thankful enough to be up and about, and out, at my age, "clothed and in my right mind"!====JACK: I wonder if Medicare would have a chance of being enacted in today's political climate?  LBJ had a way of getting things done, even if it involved twisting arms.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Health is important but there are other things just as and children and love!====JACK:  Often it depends on what's bugging you at the time you're asked to say what's most important.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/21/16
“The greatest danger to our future is apathy.”  (Jane Goodall)  Try this today.  List numbers 1 thru 9 on a sheet of paper and prioritize the following things.  Jane’s chimps; health care for all; favorite sports team; having nice stuff; Syrian refugees; who will be president; plight of the poor; my religion; protecting the environment.  Jane’s quote is suggesting that careless-ness will cause some really important things in life to be lost.  Ask a friend to prioritize the list.    ;-)  Jack

FROM BS IN ENGLAND:  Did you know that Sigmund Freud had a home in Walberswick which is seaside village 30 minutes  from here and Kerry Kelly Novak who is Gene Kelly's daughter, our child psychologist at Ann Arbor Hills, was Freud trained!====JACK:  I did not know that.  Did you realize that Freud would be Freed if you changed the u to an e?

FROM CS IN MICHIGAN:  Jack - can I input this on Facebook?====JACK:  Part of my desire for Winning Words is that people might share them in whatever way they can.

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  When considering the presidential race, apathy may be unknowingly engaged as a self-protection mechanism.====JACK:  I was reading today about an illness that is affecting many people in our country.  There are those who are actually getting physically sick from their feelings, one way or the other, from the political situation/  There are also people who are becoming addicted to following all of the political news.  Nothing else matters to them.===JON:  I quit following it a year ago. I get the "ain't it awful" updates from a friend in Atlanta I talk to often.
I decided not to invest so much of my time and energy on something I have no control over. I'll look at in November 7 and vote the 8th (my birthday). Looks like I will not like what I get regardless.

FROM CZB IN NEW HAMPSHIRE:  Good one!  And then if I rank those things according to the resources I give them and a terrible guilt cloud will rain upon me - aaack.  Linda's minister in Atlanta was on 60 minutes because of the support they are giving Syrian refugees.====JACK:  I'd be interested to see your priority list.  There were several scratch outs before my list was finished.

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  Jane has it right.  People get so comfortable in their own lives, and find no challenge to continue to attend to needy concerns around them.  It's an "I've got mine!" attitude.  Past civilizations got complacent and were overtaken by others who were bold and determined to achieve more than comfort.  Our country is teetering on the edge now as other nations are committing themselves to future leadership in the world.  "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"...Santaya====JACK:  It would be interesting to see your prioritization compared with your wife's and your son's.  Does age and background make a difference?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  1.  God.  All others would fall under your belief system.====JACK:  I don't think that God was on that list.  I meant to ask myself (and others) to rate how important certain things are in our lives.  Compare yours and Gary's.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Interesting, but I  don't think that you never are too old to know new things. My new classes at USF OLLI program are Tampa Black History, which is held in a black church, and Science:What a Wonderful World.  Science is way out of my expertise, but space discovery has always been intriguing. I remember when I was teaching at John Deere in the 50's I told my students that their new frontiers would be in space and medicine.====JACK:  What if you'd really been a seer and told them of the world we're in today?  What would have been most surprising?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Apathy has been a great danger in years past, as well. Until disaster is upon them, most people do not get concerned, it seems.  Who will be pres. is probably "up there at the top" right now, because it is so scary! Probably Jane's chimps suffer in the comparison !  Maybe our favorite sports team does, too!  Holding my breath for another victory for the Cubbies!  But realize of course that it doesn't have the weight of most of the other concerns!====JACK:  Nice stuff is toward the bottom, too.  I put "my religion" at the top, because it usually drives order of where I list the other things.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/20/16
“If youth knew; if age could.”  (Sigmund Freud)  Have you ever said, “If I knew then what I know now?”  Siggie was intrigued by the mind and why we think as we do.  Part of the joy of being young is the discovery of knowing.  Who wants to be an old young person?  On the other hand, to grow old, losing youthful abilities, can be frustrating…”If I could do now what I did then…”  The operative word is “if.”  Life, with its variety of ages, is what it is.  Enjoy!    ;-)  Jack

FROM TARMART REV:  Enjoying, I am!!====JACK:  I suppose you know that God is referred to as..."The Great I Am."  I came across this in my reading.  "If I say, I am, I must say, I am something — I am a man, I am bad, or I am good, or I am a soldier, I am a sailor, I am a clergyman. — and then I shall say what is true of me. But God alone can say I AM without saying anything more. And why? Because God alone is. Everybody and everything else in the world becomes: but God is."

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  True, true, true.====JACK:  In manufacturing you've no doubt used the word "true" in this way..."bringing (an object, wheel, or other construction) into the exact shape, alignment, or position required."  God is the absolute "true," and we measure ourselves over and against his perfection.  "Tolerance" allows for some variation.  That's where forgiveness comes in.  so, manufacturing and religion have some you have pointed out in your book.

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  There should be a required course everyone must take, something like "Your Strategy For Living...Getting What's Best From Each Stage Of Life".  The course should be commenced early in life and repeated over and over as the years pass, to make us constantly aware, because we have a tendency to get into a groove and stay there while amazing things pass us by.  Youth has its rewards, and so does old age, but the trip between the two needs to be calibrated to gain the best in all of it.  Don't look back because you'll only see opportunities that got missed. ====JACK:  "Act your age!" is good advice for the old, as well as the young."  Do you remember the old German saying, " Vee Get Too Soon Olt Und Too Late Schmart!"?

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  the line I like is this one:  I never thought old age would get here so soon!:):)...and...Jack,  you should have been a Greek philosopher!  (Jack and Plato?)  you would have been a dandy!====JACK:  In college I chose philosophy, rather than religion, as my major, figuring  that I'd get plenty of religion in seminary.  In college I discovered religion in philosophy, and in seminary I discovered philosophy in religion.  We're always learning when we pay attention. ====ST PAUL:  my brother was  a philosophy major in college.  after graduation my Dad used to say of Mark:  "well he doesn't have a job but at least he knows why."

FROM CHESTER THE GOOD:  Your reference to Siggie brought to mind MASH again. I've often thought that the psychiatrist on the show was an inside joke for the writers. Could Sidney Freedman be Sigmund Freud in disguise?====JACK:  That's a good observation.  Was it a stereotype that he was Jewish?  Regardless, he was a good character and came across as very knowledgeable.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  If I knew when I was young what I know now...I would be running for President!====JACK:  If you knew anything...young or old,,,you wouldn't be running for President.

FROM COPPER COUNTRY BOB:   God help America if we fail to learn from our youth how to handle winning and losing!====JACK:  In the song, God Bless can be substituted for bless, and it would mean the same thing.  In fact, if you're preaching on Nov 6, you might consider using that hymn and ask the congregation to use the word, help.

FROM FLGT INSTR TOM:  Hi Jack -  just received this and thought of you.  "Nicest place to be: in someones thoughts  Safest place to be: in someones prayers  Best place to be: in Gods Hands  God Bless You and God Bless America."====JACK:  There's a campfire song that we used to sing at summer Bible Camp.  "He's got the whole world in His hands."

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Interesting discourse on God as I AM. Just read the book "Backwards" by Nanci Danison, a high-powered lawyer with a big corporation, and a Christian, whose NDE turned her beliefs upside down, and really makes you wonder and think. Very well written. She is led to believe that we as "souls", experience many human lives and that "light Being"(soul) truly is within us....It's a fascinating book to read and ponder, and deals with the long and the short of life.  I agree with you wherever you are on the life cycle, ENJOY as much as possible!====JACK:  For people who'd like to be young again...How about living backwards, being born at your death age and going back to the womb?  Personally, I think that God had it right the first time.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Jack’s Winning words 10/19/16
“Sometimes the shortest path between two points is serpentine.”  (Christopher Penfey)  Siri sometimes reconfigures a route to give a driver the best way to a destination, and it isn’t always the shortest way…It’s the BEST way.  Sometimes we have a particular life goal in mind, and our Siri (God) send us on detours.  With the passage of time, I’ve learned to trust my Siri.  I’ve come to realize that the detours can be the best part of the journey.  Has it happened for you?    ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  for sure it has.  I was told for my entire last year at the sem that I was going to someplace in southern Wisconsin, likely Madison.  in the last minute, we ended up at Sylvan Lake where I met Jack F. and a lot of other caring and thoughtful saints of the church.  our disappointment quickly turned to gratitude.  God works in mysterious ways...====JACK:  Some advizors say, "Never look back!  But, when I do, I do so with gratitude.  One of my favorite hymns is by William Cowper.  It begins..."God moves in a mysterious way, his wonders to perform."

FROM TARMART REV:  I have always enjoyed being lost in large hospitals . . . an adventure of meeting new and most usually helpful folk along the way . . . sometimes discovering a shortcut or two for my next visit.====JACK:  A pastor friend of mine was making a hospital visit when he happened to meet a friend of his, a heart specialist.  As they they were talking together in the hall, my friend had a heart attack...right in front of the heart doctor.  Talk about being in the right place at the right time... ====REV:  I would call that a "heart to heart"grace collision.

FROM GOOD DEBT JON:  Sometimes on the way to the lumbermill you realize the project needs a little steel.====JACK:  I like to browse the hardware store.  I go in looking for a particular item and go out with stuff I hadn't even thought of buying.  Does that happen to you?====JON:  All the time.

FROM TRIHARDER:  That's why switchbacks were created.====JACK:  That's one of the problems with politicians today...the unwillingness to use the switchback and see the road from a different point of view.  You won't be able to get up the mountain without back and forth.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Absolutely!  On traveling anywhere, with God on this life's journey or on a vacation, we always take the back roads.  God leads us.====JACK:  God took the Israelites on a serpentine path to the Promised Land.  Should it be any different for us?

FROM MT IN PENNSYLVANIA:  Oh…absolutely!  When I had to leave my ‘mission in life’ (artwork in glass - especially the spiritual work), I thought I would never recover — and indeed, I spent many years feeling rudderless.  Focus returned when I took the helm as CEO of a small software company, and that went on for 10 years, but still there was a sense of something missing. The gap closed when I connected with my new mission in life — which is really the same as the old one, but in a different medium and context. I once wanted to enlighten people with art. Now we are enlightening people with new understanding of each other!  As you may recall, Teamability® identifies and organizes the different ways that people seek to make a meaningful contribution to specific team needs. We’ve been focused on doing that in businesses, but the technology works for all kinds of relationships: personal, parent/child, teacher/students, and so on.  ‘Service to team needs’ happens in every kind of organization, and is analogous to ‘service to the greater good’ (as in, to God), which is why, sometime in 2017, there will be a ‘TeamSpirit’ version of Teamability, specifically for use in spiritual communities. A ‘beta’ version has already produced extraordinary positive results in church planting, in revitalizing church communities, and has been featured in the graduate program at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary.  It’s been serpentine, to say the least, but I’m on the path.  Have a great day!====JACK:  I have enjoyed my pastoral work of establishing new congregations...That's the work of teamability.  I'm glad that a seminary has recognized it.  Even our meeting was a "teamability moment."  We had a problem.  We worked together to solve it.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Yes, we've experienced that in our call to Ministry. Our kids have had some similar experiences; As Siri does; not the shortest route, but the BEST way. :-) It was true on our trip to New York in Sept. too; We wandered some back lesser roads, wondering "Where in the world is she leading us?", only to learn when we reached our destination, that the more direct expressway was under construction, and VERY SLOW!  Good words to ponder!====JACK:  Did you know that Siri, in Norwegian, means "beautiful woman who leads you to victory?"  The guidance inventor was Norwegian.

FROM BB IN ILLINOIS:  Great thoughts; will put this one in my journal.  Yes, the path is serpentine more than it is straight.====JACK:  One of the first modern roller coasters in our part of the country is called The Corkscrew.  I've ridden it, and it does give you a thrill...just like life.  The Cubs are giving their fans a thrill, too.

FROM SBP IN FLORIDA:  Detours offer new and often, unexplored vistas. We used to call them a "bonus" experience. Life's road is not a straight line to the destination toward which we are aiming. And it either annoys or enhances the road to the intended goal. Serpentine progress affords, if not appreciated at the time, new vistas for a new goal entirely. There is a serpentine "drive" in the Colorado Rockies.====JACK:  I like this passage from Proverbs 30:18,19:  “There are three things that are too amazing for me,  four that I do not understand:  the way of an eagle in the sky, the way of a serpent on a rock,  the way of a ship on the high seas,  and the way of a man with a young woman."

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Jack’s Winning words 10/18/16
“Success in golf depends less on strength of body than on strength of mind and character.”  (Arnold Palmer)  Most of us probably play golf more like Rodney Dangerfield than like Arnie.  But it’s still golf…and a lot like life with dubs. missed putts and the sweet shot that keeps us going on.  I’ve never taken a golf lesson (and it shows), but Arnie has given a lesson,  through his life, that there are things more important than being a “scratch golfer.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM HONEST JOHN:  Again I am a "both/and" person.    You need the physical talent AND the mental acuity to be good in a sport.====JACK:  When my children were small, I really had to work hard not to be competitive.  As they grew older, the roles were reversed.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Amen to that.  He, along with Bobby Jones and Byron Nelson epitomized the spirit of what the game of golf was all about - sportsmanship, calling penalties on yourself, respect for others.  I'm with you - not very good at the game but I continue to play it because it allows me to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors and maybe once or twice a round hit a good shot or make a long putt.  I always said that if I could have had dinner and an evening of conversation with anyone, those three would be at the top of my list.====JACK:  I understand that Walter Hagen once lived in our house in West Bloomfield.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Ah golf!  Gary grew up playing golf and for many years spent his high school and college years staying the summer in Cadillac and working at the Cadillac Golf Course!  Of course, he became an excellent 🏌️♀️.  But to tell you the truth, I never cared for the game.  The rest of the family play too and they love it.  I babysit for the little ones!  Arnold had his sorrows too.  His 2 or 3 year old grandson drowned in a swimming pool.    He had strength of body and a strong strength of mind and he too, he lived through heartache like the rest of us and persevered. ====JACK:  Even the best of golfers have some terrible rounds....but they seem to keep coming back.

FROM FLGT INSTR TG:  Arnie once said that to have success in golf, one must learn how to relax and concentrate at the same time, not an easy task.  Keep your eye on the ball - no Chinese Golf (peeking)!!!====JACK:  Times change.  With today's BIG money, golf doesn't seem to be as much fun as it once was.  Chinese Golf...I liked that.  Talking about times changing and Chinese...When I was in high school the basketball team from Peking, Illinois, were called the Peking Chinks.  I see that they are  now called the Peking Dragons.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I like his half tea, half lemonade drink! :-) Most of us who love the game realize that "the course record will still stand", but it's good to get out  on the beautiful courses, and walk (much less now that I take a cart) and socialize. Some of course, never appreciate the thrill of driving a little white ball, and chasing after it....It's all in the perspective. HA!  Most sports build character and urge integrity, if one has a mind to pay attention to that !====JACK:  My most fun playing golf was when I was learning (at Indian Bluff).  We'd go out early in morning when the course was wet with dew and the skimmers would leave roostertails.  Once we tried to see how fast we could play a round.  Hit and run and hit and run and putt and run.  I think we did it in less than an hour.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/17/16
“Do not be afraid…for the Lord will be with you wherever you go.”  (Joshua 1:9)  Are you one who fears what will happen after Nov 8?  I ask you to reread the quote from Joshua.  A new book by David Gushee has the sub-title, From Fear To Faith In Unsettled Times.  Its purpose is  to help the believer think through the societal changes of today and move from fear to faith.  All sorts of fears can consume us.  “Be not afraid…The Lord will be there on Nov 9.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM SHARIN' SHARON:  As painful and shocking as this election cycle has been, I wonder if it is far preferable for some of this dark side of our nation coming more visibly into the light so voters can deal with it in the voting booth and so our laws and institutions can be changed and made better and healthier rather than all the cultural and societal foment and chaos resulting from individual citizens who harbor dark feelings and stereotypes, prejudices, etc., etc., etc. hatreds maybe basically having no checks or balances on their antisocial behavior. Hopeful for Democracy to continue to work and absolutely positive--not just hopeful--that God is with us even if it doesn't.====JACK:  I have a feeling that the stalemate in Washington will not continue after the election.  I also have a feeling that bi-partisonship will remain only a dream.  I need to keep reminding myself of the words from Joshua.

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  What a great confidence-builder that statement is!====JACK:  The people needed those words "then," and we need them "now."

FROM TARMART REV:  I think I'm hearing His voice loudly now, in the midst of this wilderness experience, calling out-- "Repent, Repent!" It seems to have fallen on our deaf ears.  In days of old, there were those "redeeming times" that would moved a nation from fear to faith!!  Exodus 33:1-6 (NIV)  Then the Lord said to Moses, “Leave this place, you and the people you brought up out of Egypt, and go up to the land I promised on oathto Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, saying, ‘I will give it to your descendants.’2 I will send an angel before you and drive out the Canaanites, Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites and Jebusites. 3 Go up to the land flowing with milk and honey. But I will not go with you, because you are a stiff-necked people and I might destroy you on the way.”  4 When the people heard these distressing words, they began to mourn and no one put on any ornaments. 5 For the Lord had said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites, ‘You are a stiff-necked people. If I were to go with you even for a moment, I might destroy you. Now take off your ornaments and I will decide what to do with you.’” 6 So the Israelites stripped off their ornaments at Mount Horeb.====JACK:  Now, interpret and apply them to today!

FROM AMC IN WATERFORD:  I so agree.====JACK:  Just like in the 23rd Psalm.

FROM DR JUDY:  Well done. Great beginning AND ending statements.====JACK:  Some people are REALLY going to be disappointed on the 9th.  I don't know that any presidential election has  been unanimous.====JUDY:  LOVE LOVE LOVE ❤️ this Jack!!!====JACK:  "What the world needs now is love, sweet love..."====JUDY:  No truer words. Paul told me he asked you for some grounding truth about how crazy things are right now. Even though I didn't hear your answer personally, since I heard your reassurance, it's helping me to get through this the last couple days.====JACK:  One way or another, some friends of mine are really going to terribly disappointed with the election result.  My apprehension is over how "the government" will work after election.====JUDY:  If I, and the people like me, are disappointed on November 9 it will be emotionally challenging. But I'm trying really hard to not fear the potential resulting actions of trump's followers, if Hillary (please God when Hillary) gets elected.  And yet, the spiritual/metaphysical side of my understanding says that everything will be absolutely perfect regardless of how this whole thing ends. And that may be requiring them to win so that we can more adequately see the shadows of ourselves and of society. ====JACK:  More than the election of a president, it's a referendum on what kind of an America we want our country to be.====JUDY:  Yes. This is what troubles me. ..... I don't like what I see from such a large segment. And accepting that this is just perfect from the larger perspective.====JACK:  What troubles me is that my good friends are just as passionate with their feelings as you are.

FROM LS IN MICHIGAN:  Does that mean I don't have to move to Canada?====JACK: The Lord is in Canada, too.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Will try to get that book; sounds like a needed read!  Good to be reminded that the Lord will be with us on Nov. 9th.. I'm sure we will need that assurance!! I, too, fear that the days of Rep/Dem working together on almost anything is not going to happen.  That bodes ill for any President accomplishing much!  This campaign has showed us how divided and diverse our country really is!! So much hate and hardship...

FROM DAIRYLAND DONNA:  So important. There is so much anxiety around this.====JACK: Mel Brooks could make a movie...High Anxiety, Part 2.  (A comedy or a scary one?)

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  It will be okay.  If God be for us, who can be against.====JACK:   Even though the Children of God knew that God was with them while they wandered in the wilderness, they still weren't satisfied...and complained to him.

FROM DM IN LIV:  Whew!  I really needed this one!!!  Thank you====JACK:  You don't seem to be the only one.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  We have lived through many elections.  My first was 1948 and I am about 50-50 for winners. If we think this year is different, and it is, then  read Alexander Hamilton where  there is much conniving.====JACK:  Historians call the Hayes/Tilden president election the "ugliest ever."  Do you remember the details?  140 years from now people will have forgotten the details of Trump/Clinton.  That's the way it works.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/14/16
“You seriously have no idea what people are dealing with in their personal life, so just be nice.  It’s that simple.”  (Inspirational Quotes Genie)  Harry Golden tells of a man who was late for work and was fired by his employer.  “Get out, and don’t come back!”  As the man left, he said, “I’m sorry, but my daughter died last night.”  The Prayer List I keep shows the names of people who are going through some hard times.  This world needs more kindness.    ;-)  Jack

FROM BROKER JB:  I love this quote!  So very true.  I'm going to "borrow" it for my Friday commentary today.  Have a great weekend.====JACK:  You're welcome to use it...You'll be like the sower who sows his seed.  Who knows where it will take root and bear fruit?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  So true! Bill loved Harry Golden's writing...He used one of his examples of a tourist standing at the foot of the Museum of Natural History in Chicago, buttons on his lapel, and pens dripping from his vest pocket to declare his responsible status, in his ignorant arrogance yelling up to someone at the top of the steps, "What's in there? Anything worth my time"?  And then Bill said, "And that the question the whole ill-begotten, suffering and often indifferent world is calling out below the steps of the church...what's in there? Anything worth my time?!"  (Not exact wording, but I never forgot that illustration....)  The world does need much more kindness! Hopefully we in the church have an answer!====JACK:  I think of this hymn verse when I think of the message that the Church has to offer...
Could we with ink the ocean fill,  And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,  And every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above  Would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,  Though stretched from sky to sky.

FROM TARMART REV:  ...true-- we really don't know?! I'm not sure I always know what I'm going through either?====JACK:  Retrospect is the gift that allows us to "see," to really see.

FROM DM IN MICHIGAN:  Thank you Jack!!!    So what I needed to hear!!====JACK:  I had a feeling that this quote would find some people who could benefit by it.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  How very true!  We need kindness from our "neighbors" and mercy from God.  Blessings for a kind day.====JACK:  Glen Campbell used to sing...
"You got to try a little kindness  Yes show a little kindness
Just shine your light for everyone to see  And if you try a little kindness
Then you'll overlook the blindness  Of narrow-minded people on the narrow-minded streets"

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/13/15
“If you truly love nature, you will find beauty everywhere.”  (Vincent van Gogh)  I browsed Vincent’s work and saw a Starry Night, Sunflowers, Thistles, a Bible and Two Rats.  I remember going to a van Gogh exhibit at the Detroit Institute of Arts and seeing an original of him in a straw hat.  In fact, I have a copy on my wall.  Just for fun, look for “beauty” in the ordinary things that surround you.  Is there something of interest that you would paint today?    ;-)  Jack

 FROM MK IN WL:  I'd paint my son, Garrett, playing his clarinet for his dog.====JACK: Great subject!  Be sure to show the dog's reaction!

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  It is so interesting to me that beauty is such a subjective cultural well as so egocentric.  We are a complicated species!====JACK:  I think that it's telling...that when there's a crunch for school dollars, the first program to be cut seems to be the arts.  I'm impressed that Jewish people, on the whole, have a real appreciation for the arts. 

 FROM TARMART REV:  I'm one to admire the beauty of another's!!====JACK:  What is beauty?  "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder."

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  and yet he was so tortured himself.  like many artists I suppose... ====JACK:  I remember the words of Isaiah (6:5), "Woe is me, for I am ruined.  I am a man of unclean lips living among people of unclean lips."  Do you ever feel like saying, "Woe is me?" ====ST PAUL:  not too often but then I think I got an extra measure of Serotonin somewhere along the way.  but I am very sympathetic (I  hope) to people who often claim the feeling/emotion.  and yes,  there have been a few times when that sentiment has been kind of cathartic for me.

FROM CH ON CAPE COD:  The expression on my daughter’s face when something finally “clicked” as I was helping her study for a math test before school this morning!====JACK:  It's called "an A-HA moment."  It's one of the great rewards a teacher gets from a pupil.

FROM RI IN BOSTON:  Vincent's painting Wheat Field with Crows has been a favorite of mine since the first time I saw it.  That image was real for me, a common sight during the grain harvest when I was growing up in rural Missouri.  It keeps me in touch with my roots.  There is something here to paint today...from our window we see a row of maples up the street, ablaze in autumn red.  Simply stunning!====JACK:  It's beauty is in its simplicity.

FROM TARMART REV:  I'm certainly found beholding often!!====JACK:  I like the piece from Handel's Messiah...Behold, I tell you a mystery."  The beauty of God is in the mystery of God.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  As John Keats so poetically expressed, "A thing of beauty is a joy forever".  And it truly is! Beauty abounds in nature, especially for me, scenes of Lakes and the Ocean, or beautiful flowers; in the faces of our loved ones, and the amazing variety of animal life in the world!  So blessed!  Each sees beauty in his/her own way!  A member of our church sees interesting beauty in snakes and reptiles!====JACK:  Beauty Pageants seem to be going out of vogue.  Did you or your twin ever pretend that you were "Miss America?"====OAKS:  Oh yes, we've sung that song, and funny, I was just humming that song yesterday, as I fixed Sunday lunch. Have no idea why that popped into my head. Maybe I have YOU to blame! :-)  Don't know who to blame for the CUBS silent bats!!

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  This made me laugh this morning.  There is a fat old toad who comes out every night to feast on the juicy bugs of our porch lights.  It has been cold the last little while, and the toad comes out when it's not too cold.  The bugs are less and less too.  So, every night I go out and catch what bugs and spiders that are out and feed them to this toad.  He's going to go into his hibernation soon and I want to make sure he comes back next spring.  I know....weird....but I'm also one who would (and I have) stop to let geese, ducks, turkeys, and even have moved a turtle out of the road.  I also think God made this world so beautiful it's incredible!====JACK:  If Cinderella were a frog, she would have kissed a prince to turn him into a frog.

FROM HAROLD AND LOIS:  We love van Gogh, too, and have two of his paintings on our bedroom walls.====JACK:  In our bedroom we have a copy of the saying: "Cast all your cares upon him, because he cares about you."  Those words were boldly painted on the front wall of the church (Covenant) her father grew up in.

FROM FM IN WISCONSIN:  Yes, a beautiful Lake Michigan – so peaceful, so quiet and so blue.====JACK:  Outside of our kitchen window is a bird feeder with six openings.  Often they are all filled, with many other circling around waiting for their turn.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/12/16
“Knowing what’s right doesn’t mean much unless you do what’s right.”  (FDR)  It’s Yom Kippur, a day for stressing the importance of doing the right thing.  In 1934, Detroit Tigers star, Hank Greenberg, chose not to play on Yom Kippur, the Jewish High Holy Day.  The Tigers lost that game and, eventually, the World Series.  Hank was ridiculed for the choice he made, but now, he is now admired for that choice.  The right way is always the right way.    ;-)  Jack  

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  interesting story.  do you think they would have won both the game and the World Series had he played that day?  or is that just too much speculation?====JACK:  Well, he did play on Rosh Hashanah, a few days earlier and hit 2 homers, the last was a walk-off winner as the Tigers beat the Red Sox 2 to 1.  You be the judge!====PAUL:  holy cow, Jack.   you must be a baseball whiz kid?  how do you know all these details/facts?====JACK:  Since Greenberg was from Detroit, stories are often printed about him.  Not only was baseball racist at that time.  There was also anti-semitism, and some players were openly critical, because he let the team down in favor of his religion.  There were fans who thought the same way.

FROM PRJM:  Amen to that!  Not always the easy way, either. ====JACK:  Real atonement isn't supposed to be easy.  Even self-flagellation didn't work for Luther.  He had to rely on grace alone.

FROM TRIHARDER:  When he walked into Shaari Zedek for services that morning, it is said that he received a standing ovation.====JACK:  I always like to hear "the rest of the story."  Each of us has a story beyond that which is commonly known...even you...and me.

FROM TARMART REV:  I always felt guilty about practicing my bowling on Sundays, however, if it was bowling during a tournament on Sunday, I made that an exception . . . I still will not mow our lawn on a Sunday.====JACK:  I think that much of "Sabbath behavior" goes back to works righteousness.  Having said that, I'm not going to criticize someone for practicing their religion in a way that meets their spiritual needs...wearing a hijab, for example'

 FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Today is Kimberly's birthday.  Many years either her birthday or my birthday (Oct 8) lands on Yom Kippur.  When I was little, I asked what Yom Kippur was and as usual, my parents told me to look it up in the Books of Knowledge.  Then I had to tell everyone at dinner what I researched....we all did that.  Every meal was a long conversation between all of us kids and our parents.  We all took times telling what we did that day or what we found interesting.  We carried that relationship in our families.====JACK:  One of my church members was able to quote, word for word, classical poetry (The Village Smithy, for example).  When he was growing up his father had him recite poetry at the supper table.  It was similar to your B of K assignment.

FROM MY ATTORNEY:  Hank Greenberg was a baseball player. A team leader. A league leader. A Jew. Both Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur fall in the regular season and in 1934 Greenberg's Detroit Tigers were involved in the pennant race. Greenberg wrote in his autobiography, "The team was fighting for first place, and I was probably the only batter in the lineup who was not in a slump. But in the Jewish religion, it is traditional that one observe the holiday solemnly, with prayer. One should not engage in work or play. And I wasn't sure what to do." Greenberg's rabbi said that Rosh Hashanah was a "festive holiday" and playing would be acceptable. Hank played and hit two home runs including a ninth inning game winner.  "I caught hell from my fellow parishioners, I caught hell from some rabbis, and I don't know what to do. It's ten days until the next holiday — Yom Kippur." Those words, and his choice not to play on Yom Kippur due to its significance, inspired Edgar Guest to pen the following prose.  "Suppose I stay out of the game and we lost the pennant by one game?" - Hank Greenberg
Came Yom Kippur -- A Hank Greenberg Poem
Author: Edgar Guest ©. Published: 1934. Appeared In: Detroit Free Press
"Came Yom Kippur — holy fast day world wide over to the Jew,
And Hank Greenberg to his teaching and the old tradition true
Spent the day among his people and he didn't come to play.
Said Murphy to Mulrooney, 'We shall lose the game today!
We shall miss him on the infield and shall miss him at the bat
But he's true to his religion — and I honor him for that!'"

Jack’s Winning Words 10/12/16
“Knowing what’s right doesn’t mean much unless you do what’s right.”  (FDR)  It’s Yom Kippur, a day for stressing the importance of doing the right thing.  In 1934, Detroit Tigers star, Hank Greenberg, chose not to play on Yom Kippur, the Jewish High Holy Day.  The Tigers lost that game and, eventually, the World Series.  Hank was ridiculed for the choice he made, but now, he is now admired for that choice.  The right way is always the right way.    ;-)  Jack  

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  interesting story.  do you think they would have won both the game and the World Series had he played that day?  or is that just too much speculation?====JACK:  Well, he did play on Rosh Hashanah, a few days earlier and hit 2 homers, the last was a walk-off winner as the Tigers beat the Red Sox 2 to 1.  You be the judge!

FROM TARMART REV:  There was a time when Sundays were honored that way . . . not as much today! I wouldn't set myself up as good role model in this regard either.====JACK:  I remember a time when there was no ironing on Sunday, few stores were open, no going to the movie, no reading of the funny papers.  I feel no guilt over the changes that have taken place.  That was then; now is now.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/11/16
“You know more than you think you do.”  (Benjamin Spock)  Dr Spock began his best-selling Baby & Child Care book by saying to parents, “Trust your common sense when raising your children…Don’t take the advice of experts too seriously.”  It’s true!  Nearly all people have an innate ability to know what works and what doesn’t.  Even Aristotle wrote about it.  Bob Wiley (What About Bob?) called it, “Horse sense.”  Note the ways in which you use it today.    ;-)  Jack

FROM HONEST JOHN:  Is it common sense that is driving people to vote for Trump?   Some claim that it is.====JACK:  Some good friends intend to vote for Trump.  In the recent debate, the issue of a public face and a private face was raised.  I understand that a pastor needs that quality in order to minister to a congregation.

FROM TARMART REV:  "Sure makes sense to me, to do so!"====JACK:  As one who has "farm" roots, you strike me as one who has horse sense.

FROM TRIHARDER:  Did you know that he won a gold medal in the 1924 Olympics as a member of a rowing team. He ran for president in 1972 as the People's Party candidate and VP in 1976 as the Socialist Workers' Party candidate.  I went to a church near campus to meet him and to hear him speak.====JACK:  Viet Nam War supporters claimed that his book was responsible for helping to raise a generation of irresponsible young people who protested that war.====TH:  Yes, I remember. I believe that, later in life, he said that he was responsible for raising a generation of brats.====JACK:  I think that most parents try to do their best at raising children, but the best doesn't always work out.  There's the issue of "free will" that we each have.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  "To acquire knowledge, one must study; to acquire wisdom, one must observe." That's a pretty good bit of advice from Marilyn Vos Savant, of "genius" I.Q.  Although Pablo Picasso once said, "The chief enemy of creativity is common sense!"  Guess you have to be a bit of a dreamer to create!  We probably all know at least one person who is very very bright in his/her field, but pretty hopeless in the  common sense living of every day.... ====JACK:  I'm currently reading The Artist's Way which seems to say that the "creative person" has to escape the ordinary way...the common path.

Monday, October 10, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/10/16
“This world is not my home.  I’m just a-passing through.”  (Albert Brumley)  There’s a lot of talk these days about immigrants.  In Vermont they’re now calling Columbus Day, Indigenous Peoples’ Day, saying that only the American Indian is the true non-immigrant.  Now, it appears that the Indians were immigrants, too, coming from Asia.  Enough!  My faith tells me that we’re all God’s people, put on his Earth as temporary residents.  “This land is his land!”    ;-)  Jack

FROM DRPH IN MICHIGAN:  Keep up the good word. Indeed we are all just passing through "in the Lord's hands"    In Christ====JACK:  It's like the words written on the net that catches footballs when they're kicked through the goalposts...YOU'RE IN GOOD HANDS!

FROM SBP IN FLORIDA:  "Service is the rent you pay for your room here on earth." Mohammad Ali====JACK:  For all of my growing up years we lived in rental places.  We never had "a place to call our own."  It's the same with this earth upon which we live...It's just a rental place.  Ali's words seem to fit.

FROM EMT SINGS IN TRAVERSE CITY:  I am wondering how you are weathering this whole political season?  It will soon be over! I am always glad to read your winning words.  Sanity in an increasingly insane world!====JACK:  I'm comforted to know that this world is God's world, and that, in the end, everything's going to work out OK.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  This world is a little nuts!  We just have to remember we are not of this world...we are God's people.====JACK:  "God sent his son into the world, not to condemn the world...." but to show the bad might be made better.  It's an ongoing task.

FROM PASTY PAT:  AMEN!!! (from Jerusalem) I returned home on Sept. 15th from a 5-week 'emergency cover' stint in my village. I was home for 3 weeks and just returned yesterday for a previously scheduled fun trip for the olive harvest.====JACK:  If and when you "go back," you might ponder, "what makes this land "holy?"  Isn't Michigan a Holy Land, too?====PP:Hmmm --- as usual you've succeeded in getting my 'pondering juices' flowing!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Yep..maybe we'll have to rewrite the words to that song that says "This land is your land, this land is my land..." :-)   But it might be true that "this land was made for you and me..."  Chaotic as it stands right now, with last night's debate more suitable for sleazy 'Maury's" talk show. More so for Trump, but Clinton bears some blame as well.  Remember when debates used to discuss the burning issues of the day?!  When debaters were allowed to state their case without interruption and the other side allowed rebuttal without the other one commenting and butting in?  Ah, for the good ol' days.  I do think it is VERY challenging to integrate 1000's of immigrants into another country with different language, customs, beliefs, etc. As Europe is finding out, but their situations are so hopeless unless humanitarian aid & asylum is offered it seems we must do "something".  The world has such a dilemma with all the wars in the Middle East, and Africa.
I guess we try to do what we can, during our temporary residence!====JACK:  The (im)migration of Abraham  and his family to Palestine has been somewhat of a problem for me.  "God has promised this land to me and my people.  You will have to leave!"  Imagine if that were to happen today with some refugees coming to the USA and saying, "God has said that we can live here.  You will have to let us in!"  Refugees...immigration...the poor...It continues to be a problem that will have to be addressed.====OAKS:  In regard to this day's quote, I just read a quote from George B.Shaw, "Life's ultimate statistic is the same for all people everywhere; One out of one dies". This world is definitely not our final home!!====JACK:  "One out of one"....That's an impressive statistic.  It won't be proven until the apocalypse.

FROM FM IN WISCONSIN:  In North Dakota they call it ‘Native American Day.   For the Post Office it is a day off from work.====JACK:  From what I've read, even the "Indians" aren't native to America...but who knows?  My grandson works for PNC Bank and got the day off, too.

Friday, October 07, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/7/16
“When everything seems to be going against you, remember that the airplane takes off against the wind.”  (Henry Ford)  2 years before Kitty Hawk, Wilbur Wright said,  “Not is a thousand years will man ever fly.”  Then a wind tunnel experiment showed that flying depended on going against the wind.  It can be the same way with life.  Sometimes life’s adversities can lead to unexpected successes.  Bob Seger’s “Against the Wind’ is a favorite of mine.    ;-)  Jack

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  sunspot baby is my fav bob seger, but i catch your drift!====JACK:  Bob lives in our community and can be seen around from time to time.  I also like "Old Time Rock & Roll."  That kind of music really soothes my soul...and makes me sing along.

FROM TARMART REV:  I've been running late to everything it seems since coming back from vacation . . . still enjoying your daily comments . . . I must be really flying high going against the wind this past week!!====JACK:  So...You're higher than a kite (as the saying goes).

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  what a good reminder!  I'll use that in my S.S.  class lesson.  When Bill decided to go to seminary, and serve as a pastor to a new church start in a suburb of Elgin, at the urging of Dr Reed, the Pres. of the AB Convention at that time, and pastor of Elgin First Baptist Church, the committee turned us down, on the basis that Bill did not have enough experience to pastor a new start church. (You would know something about that, Jack!)  We thought, "O.K., we said we'd go, and God nixed it, so we're not supposed to go into the ministry, after all. (A bit relieved!)  Two weeks later, the Elgin 1st Baptist church (a big downtown church at that time) offered Bill the position of Associate pastor, and paid for all his Seminary expenses and provided a lovely home for us and our two young sons!  It was a much better situation for a new pastor to "learn the ropes" which he did, and I was paid to direct the children and youth choirs.  God works in wondrous ways...:-)  It was a great life!====JACK:  Yours is a perfect example of how God works things out in spite of "know-it-all" committees and (some) Church executives.  In the Sweet By and By other workings of God will finally make sense, too.

Thursday, October 06, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/6/16
“Twilight again…No matter how perfect the day is, it always has to end.”  (Stephenie Meyer)  The song, “The End of a Perfect Day,” closes with the thought that a perfect day is one where we’ve made a new friend.  How does a perfect day end for you?  One of my all-time favorite TV shows was “Twilight Zone.”  Each episode seemed to have a thought-provoking ending.  Was there something thought-provoking for you as yesterday ended?    ;-)  Jack

FROM TRIHARDER:  I came home to a beautiful dusk followed by a partly cloudy sky occasionally secluding a picturesque crescent moon. About an hour later, I left home for a short drive, top down, and rain drops started hitting my windshield.====JACK:  One of my favorite songs...."Raindrops keep fallin' on my head  But that doesn't mean my eyes will soon be turning red  Crying's not for me
Cause I ain't gonna stop the rain by complaining  Because I'm free  Nothing's bothering me."
====TH:  From Butch Cassidy.====JACK:  I think that his "convertible" was a bicycle.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I have a picture of Pooh and Piglet walking down a wooded path, on my kitchen wall, in which Pooh is asking, "What day is it, Piglet?" And piglet squeaks, "It's today. Pooh!"  "My FAVORITE day", exclaims Pooh. Thankful for TODAY, perfect or not!  My very full day ended yesterday, by catching the final innings of the Giants-Met play-off game, with the exciting win by Giants in the 9th inning...Now we know who the CUBS will face on Friday!  Hopefully THAT day will have a happy ending for Cub fans, but who knows?!====JACK:  At least it won't be a one-game playoff.  Talk about highs and lows...if the Cubs win or the Cubs lose.  I know sons fans in heaven who will be on the edge of their seats.====OAKS:  HA! My mother will be one of them! She was a die-hard Cub fan; rarely missed a game, and knew all the players and stats.  On her 80th birthday we had Harry Caray greet her from Wrigley Field.  She almost missed it...a couple of seconds later, she sat up straight, and asked, "Did Harry just say Happy Birthday to Ruth  Blaser on her 80th!  We assured her that he had! :-)====JACK:  Harry interviewed my mom in the booth on her 90th.  Ron Santo said, "She doesn't look 90, does she?"  Harry responded, "She doesn't look 18, either."  I think that she was buried with her Cubs cap.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Yes, and it Is the hurricane which has and will affect so many lives. ====JACK:  I can remember watching the movie, Hurricane, and being frightened by the fury of it.  I can't imagine what it must be like to actually be in one.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  I loved "Twilight Zone".  I loved the unusual thought process of the writers.  It was a different program but I also loved the endings!====JACK:  One of my favorite episodes was called, "The Eye of the Beholder."  A young woman lying in a hospital bed, her head wrapped in bandages, awaits the outcome of a surgical procedure performed by the State in a last-ditch attempt to make her look "normal."====JUDY:  I liked the one where an old man had a watch that stopped time.  A thief stole it and the story was him stopping time when he wanted.  It was a very interesting story.

FROM SBP IN FLORIDA:  Absolutely! The potential for life threatening situations and structural damages paramount! Prayer and more prayer are the basics for coping and survival.====JACK:  Some disasters come unexpectedly, but modern forecasting and TV gives some time for preparation, but it's a disaster, just the same.

FROM NRFC IN NAPER:  I REMEMBER UNCLE WALTER SINGING "WHEN YOU COME TO THE END OF A PERFECT DAY.====JACK:  That song was written by Carrie Jacobs-Bond and became extremely much so, that Carrie said she grew tired of hearing it.  She also wrote, "I Love You Truly."  Did your husband ever sing that song to you?

Wednesday, October 05, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/5/16
“Between the saying and the doing, many a pair of shoes are worn out.”  (Iris Murdoch)  I came across these words that describe how I react to today’s politicians…” I pay ZERO attention to what you say, but your actions have my undivided attention?”  That applies to not only Trump and Clinton, but “if the shoe fits...”  Chores around the house, volunteer organizations, in the workplace…You name it.  Jesus said, “By their fruits you shall know them.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM CS IN MICHIGAN:  Good quote this morning.====JACK:  Like I said..."If the shoe fits."  I've found that with my Sunday preaching.  The words can be more meaningful to some than to others.

FROM CH ON CAPE COD:  OK- see the point, but  what about poets, prophets and visionaries?
What about the pastor who comes into a hospital room to visit someone equipped with words and prayers, and not the tools of medicine, x-rays, treatment plans or pain relievers… “God’s word shall never return empty…”  but that doesn’t mean we see the fruit immediately…God spoke words of promise to Abraham… it took a VERY LONG time til those promises were fulfilled- in the meantime the promise was repeated every generation!  Good topic!====JACK:  I've found that a pastor's hospital visit can be good medicine for the patient, family members and even the hospital staff.  Life is full of mysteries.  While I certainly appreciate the stories of Jesus, I am constantly amazed by the presence of the Spirit of God.  At our church in West Bloomfield, a set of stained glass windows are dedicated to listing the Fruits of the Spirit from Galatians.  They are often referred to when pastors preach.  They are also a visual reminder.

FROIM RR AT ST JAMES:   “The whole Problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts.”  - Bertrand Russell (1872-1970   I thought that you might like this Jack!====JACK:  I do like it it.  I also like curmudgeons.  They have a way of telling it like it is, without being concerned about what the reaction might be.  Do you know any people like that, besides Bertrand?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Margaret Thatcher:(New York Magazine) "In politics, if you want anything said, ask a man. If you want anything done, ask a woman".  Seemed appropriate for today's musings! Loved the quote describing how you feel about today's politicians: Will share with my Adult S.S. class in case "the shoe fits"...:-)====JACK:  It would be interesting to have a discussion with your group on "values," to gauge how they have adjusted to today's world.  "Are values subject to change?"====OAKS:  They love to discuss, and yes, many of our values have adjusted from youth to old age. Like Tony Campolo says in his book "Who Switched the Price Tags?", telling of a scheme he and a H.S. friend had to switch the price tags in the local Five and Dime store, to see the surprise of customers who found bobby pins cost $5.00 and a radio was $.25...He says some dastardly "somebody" has rearranged the price tags in our lives, and we spend a lot of time on activities that don't matter, and a lot of money on things that don't last.  We have to recognize that our materialistic culture has switched our value price tags, and adjust our priorities to get the price tags back in place!  Interesting concept!  But our values to respect the dignity of each life, be kind, understanding and patient in stress, remain intact. Honesty and Integrity are still valued my most.====JACK:  The basic values remain the same.  It's the interpretation that often changes with the evolution of society.  No everyone agrees with Situational Ethics, but it's an example of what is accepted or not accepted as times change.

Tuesday, October 04, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/4/16
“Home is heaven for beginners.”  (Charles Parkhurst)  In John Loudermilk ‘s song, Tobacco Road, there’s a line, “But it’s home, the only life I’ve known.”  We each have our remembrances of that place called, home.  If church-going is a prep for heaven, I got off on the right foot.  My sister and I earned special pins for perfect attendance at Sunday School.  Later I learned that you don’t get into heaven by showing a pin…It’s by something called, the Grace of God.    ;-)  Jack

FROM REV JACK-E:  One day, when my children are grown,I hope they will still come through the front door without knocking.  I hope they will head to the kitchen for a snack, and rifle through the mail for a magazine they always read.  I hope they come in and feel the weight of asulthood leave them, for they are home.  for my children, my door will be forever open."  JACK:  Thanks for sending this.  It fits perfectly with what I was trying to say about home and heaven.

FROM DMF IN AV:  Chuck’s relative?====JACK:  It's a common name from Bavaria and means, "Pure Milk."

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAU:  at the same time,  had you not been there and gotten that pin,  you might never have heard of the Grace of God.  I too was a "pin winner" at one time...  some really good memories of some of my Sunday School teachers... ====JACK:  One of my S.S. memories is a lady teacher who threatened to "quit," if she had to continue to teach our class of boys.  She was given a class of girls, and we got a man who maintained order.====PAUL:  one of my fav teachers was Don Holmstrom (good Swede) who was a beer taster for Anheiser-Busch brewers in St. Louis.  Don took a sample from a vat of 5,000 gallons and if he said it was good, it got bottled or canned.  and if not,  down the drain and they would start all over.  a really good man!  he made every kid feel special in that class!====JACK:  I can't remember the occupations of my teachers, but I'm sure there were no beer-tasters.

FROM TARMART RWV:  "Everybody ought to go to Sunday School, Sunday School, Sunday School. The men and the women and the boys and the girls, everybody ought to go to Sunday School!!" There as well, all the way through and up to 15-20 years ago when for some reason it became outdated in many our churches. 0;-/====JACK:  Robert Raikes began the Sunday School movement in 18th Century England, so there was a time before Sunday Schools, and the faith was still passed on from generation to generation.  The faith is still being passed on, though differently from what we experienced as children.  God has a way.

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  Yes, those pins were certainly important in our early life and how hard we worked to get them!  Along the way we learned the importance of God’s love for us, but I wonder if I truly understood what God’s grace was until I was an adult.====JACK:  Besides enticing children to attend Sunday School with perfect attendance pins, there was also the Christmas Goodie Bag (lots of candy and an apple)  given to those who participated in the Christmas Program.  At a Sunday School picnic I was once given a pocket knife as a prize.  WOW.  I went home and used it...but that's another story.

FROM BB IN ILLINOIS:  This is the first I’ve heard of the pins; I’d like to see one!====JACK:  Through the magic of Google, here's a picture of like ,ime.====BB:  My gosh that looks so familiar.  I’m beginning to wonder if I didn’t have one too.  Will print a copy of yours and ask my mom.
Who knows what’s squirreled in her jewelry box?

FROM GUSTIE MARLYS:  I too had an attendance pin.  So did Clem.  I went even if I really should have stayed home.  I wanted that pin!  Ha!====JACK:  I still have mine.  How about you?   ====GM:  I do have mine.  I think I have Clem’s too.  Our kids never had them.  Not PC anymore!  Too bad I think!====JACK:  Wear it to church sometime, and see if anyone notices.

FROM SBP IN FLORIDA:  I believe that one of the greatest revelations I've received along the way is the g[ft of grace. What a marvelous gift!====JACK:  It certainly beats trying to buy your way into heaven by good deeds and not sinning.

Monday, October 03, 2016

Jack’s Winning Words 10/3/16
“There are no problems, only opportunities for growth.”  (Rebbetzin Dena Weinberg)  Blow the shofar!  That sound reminds my Jewish friends that it’s a new year, a time to put away old problems and to concentrate on new opportunities.  The shofar blows for all of us.  Yesterday is past.  Today is a new day.  Among the slogans by my computer is, “What if….”  The future is full of opportunities.  “What if we did this…that…or the other thing?”  It’s up to us!    ;-)  Jack

FROM TARMART REV:  Might not be in tune with the Jewish calendar, but can appreciate the anticipation present with our friends at this time in their lives...Our calendar today indicates a brand new week begins and one that has never been lived in before...Onward together, Jack, let's see what God has in store for us!!====JACK:  Here's an idea for you.  Preach a sermon on "New Beginnings" and begin it by blowing a shofar.  That would wake up the congregation!

FROM MY LAWYER:  May you be inscribed in The Book of Life for another peaceful year and may it be filled with health and happiness.====JACK:  There's an old song which describes God taling out the Book of Life and calling the roll.  "Let us labor for the Master from the dawn till setting sun,
Let us talk of all His wondrous love and care;  Then when all of life is over, and our work on earth is done,  And the roll is called up yonder, I’ll be there."  I think your name's in there, too/

FROM THE HEAD OF FABER UNIV::  Hope you're doing well and since it is the Jewish new year I wish you a happy and healthy year to come!====JACK:  Who's to say the the New Year has to begin on January 1?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  It's hard to say but true!  Old year old problems...if they weren't fixed yet, you alone can't fix them.  Leave them to God and move on in faith!====JACK:  God is the original Mr. Fix-It.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Clarence Thomas (Supreme Court Justice) recently said, "One of the advantages of living in a free, democratic society is that each day we have many opportunities to be leaders, simply by living virtuous lives".  In our present moral culture he may be right!  Certainly in the Political realm... !====JACK:  Are you sure he said this?  He's famous for never saying anything during Supreme Court sessions.  Oops!  That was not nice!  Bur, the words are nice, and he probably did say them.

FROM DMF IN AV:  Blow the Gjallarhorn!  (not quite the same meaning as blowing the shofar)====JACK:  A similarity...The ancient Norwegians blew that horn to announce the coming of their gods.  I see that the Minnesota Vikings have installed a giant one in their new stadium.  Horns, besides the shofar, have long been used used to say: PAY ATTENTION!  I heard one sound behind me as I was driving not long ago.