Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/31/17
“WWLS  What Would Luther Say?”  (Pamela Nelson)  P M’s article,  noting the 500th Anniversary of the start of the Reformation, lists 3 basic Luther-an precepts.  1) Put the best construction on everything…Be positive.  2) Call a thing what it is…Be honest.  3)  Speak well of your neighbor… Be charitable,   I’m not sure that Luther was consistent in all of these.  Maybe that’s why he spoke extensively about the grace of God.  Good words to ponder today.    ;-)  Jack

FROM HAPPY TRAILS IN NOVA SCOTIA: Was it somebody's joke that I heard that Luther's three precepts for peace of mind were...o amor puellae  o ein butes Bier, und  o spreading manure in the garden?====JACK:  I think that the word, ribald, could sometimes be applied to Martin, especially after a few steins of bier.

FROM TARMART REV:  ...a Pentecostalist would do well to live by them!! One I know of, for sure!!====JACK:  I think that you could actually become a Lutheran, if you'd allow yourself to loosen up a bit.  Drinking beer might be a stretch...but not all Lutherans imbibe.

FROM KIMLM:  Thanks for your daily messages.  Really enjoy them.====JACK:  ...and I enjoy sending them out.  Basically, I try to have the reflect my personality, so it's more like an e-mail conversation.

FROM KANSAN DON:  Amen!====JACK: Are you wearing red today?

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Since Jan and Hal were Lutheran Clergy, I heard a good bit about Luther, a good man, who sometimes suffered the flaws of human Nature that beset us all...His life makes for interesting reading, and these precepts are worth emulating.====JACK:  Augustana College and the Augustana Lutheran Church had roots in Swedish pietism.  In that sense, they could identify with some of the Baptists.  When mergers linked the Swedish Lutherans with the larger German Lutheran Church, pietism tended to give way to the more worldly German customs.

=FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Luther was not perfect and we know it by his struggles.  But he knew God loved him and it was by grace he was saved.====JACK:  It is hard to fight against, "We are saved by our good works."  Listen to most funeral eulogies.

FROM KF:  Good words to live by!  I have a maize and blue tshirt "WWBD" - what would Bo do? (Schembechler)====\JACK:  If Ann Arbor is heaven (as some say), it follows that God should be worshiped there.

FROM TARMART REV:  By the way . . . St Mary's Catholic Church here in Willmar invited members of the Lutheran churches throughout our small city to their sanctuary to celebrate together the 500th year anniversary of the Reformation. I wished I had attended, I'm sure I would have been welcomed among the 800 present.====JACK:  WWLS?  He'd say that you should have gone.  You're more Lutheran that you think you are.

Monday, October 30, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/30/17
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.”  The Psalmist)  The #1 fear for Americans is, being asked to speak before a group.  “My” fear (heights) comes in 2nd.  BTW…I’ve never watched “Silence of the Lambs” to its conclusion.  The Fear of Death shows up as #7.  It doesn’t have to be on the Godly person’s list, because God promises to be with us no matter what may come.  A sense of God’s presence is a great comfort.    ;-)  Jack

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  I'm discovering the facts that:  The older I get the slower I move, and the faster that time goes by. I'm going on a week-long trip without my computer, starting today.
God Bless you today.====JACK: Will you be taking your i-Phone?  That counts as a computer, I think.

FROM HY YO SILVER:  I’m sure you’ve heard of the line...Most Americans would prefer to be in the coffin than giving the eulogy.====JACK:  Nope!  That's a new one to me.  For me, it's the opposite...I'd rather be giving the eulogy.

FROM HONEST JOHN:  I don't so much fear heights...go to the mountains every year....as I fear standing on the edge of a precipice.====JACK:  You remind me of Fearless Fosdick.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  My number one is heights.  I have to be driven across the Mackinac Bridge, and I'm not fond of the Blue Water, either, but they don't provide drivers.====JACK:  Where does the "religious right" appear on your list?====JAN:  I don't know what you're fishing for but my take is:  You may be religious in your own manner but that doesn't mean you're right (in the way you act). ====JACK:  I chose today's quote and commentary, thinking of the coming Halloween when people try to put fear into other people.====JAN:  I'm not afraid of them (the religious right) but I fear they have already and will continue to do great harm to the people of our nation.  :-(====JACK:  What disturbs me is how the word, Evangelical, has been "stolen" and turned into something opposite of what it really means.

FROM RJP IN NAPLES:  Christine and I walked out of Silence of the Lambs. Films likes these have no redeeming value as far as I am concerned. Everyone fears something, but I believe in the saying the all fear is . IS FALSE EXPECTATIONS APPEARING REAL!!====JACK:  I can't remember walking out of a movie because I didn't agree with its content...but I don't go to many movie.  I think that Inspector Gadget was the last one.

FROM LGAM:  I've heard it said there's scripture that states something like "That which you fear most comes upon you." However, I've never actually found this scripture... But it certainly played out in my life! I never wanted to live with addiction again after childhood, and yet, genetics brought it into our home. For me, this is when the "rubber hit the road" of faith. I learned in my fear and powerlessness to fall on my face and submit to God's will. And I found Him to be true to His word!
Fear is an emotion placed in us by God, so it's natural to FEEL fear. I believe the Lord calls us to BELIEVE and TRUST in the face of our fears. And this has made all the difference for me! ====JACK:  Isn't it strange...I think that the only time we met face to face was at a Maple Grove training event on addiction many years ago.  We exchanged e-mail addresses at that time and have been in touch ever since.  In addiction cases, I've seen faith overcome genetics...not always, but enough so that I believe that it's possible.

FROM HUNGRY HOWIE:  I fear being alone; although heights and being enclosed(claustrophobia) are close seconds.  I remember that psalm at my father’s funeral, it was a blustery, blizzard cold day in January and when they were lowering his casket I thought he never liked being cold, he won’t like this. Funny the things you think at those difficult times.  I can also tell the story of how a rabbi spoke inappropriately to me during a shiva service the next day, but another time.====JACK:  I've told this story before...but once, when I was stopped for speeding, the officer discovered that I was a pastor... and he said, "Reverent, you guys are supposed to scare the hell out of people with your preaching, not your driving.  Slow down!"

FROM ME IN NEWPORT BEACH:  My current fear is that the Dodgers will lose Game 6.  However, if they do lose the Series, I will be pleased that the winners are the Houston Astros, who, along with their flood ravaged communities, will be most deserving.====JACK:  My wishes for who wins the baseball World Series vacillates...I like the Astros when Verlander is pitching and when Altuve is batting.   I like the Dodgers when I want the better team to win.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Talking in front of people has never been an issue for me.  Driving someplace I’ve never been before scares me.====JACK:  I think that pastors sometimes fear going into a tragic situation and wondering if they will find the "right" words.  I do praying at times like that.====JUDY:  You are put into very bad situations and I can’t even imagine how you deal with some of it!  God blessed you with some special strengths!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I think we tend to be anxious about the "unknown" and life after death is pretty much an unknown entity. The fact that Jesus has prepared a place for us to be with him, is comforting, but "life" without these bodies is a mystery!  I'm not at all fond of snakes, but I wouldn't call it a fear...it might be if I was thrown into the midst of some! :-) Hare to believe Fear of public speaking is # 1.  To each his own, I guess!====JACK:  So, I guess you never went to see the movie, The Snake Pit.  Maybe you should just read a review.===OAKS:  Yes, I did see the Snake Pit: All I remember now is the scene at the dining table where they were passing the food family style, and the words were passed along, "Save some for Virginia"...and of course by the time the food dish got to Virginia it was empty..My gang of girls in H.S.used this as an inside :joke" from then on, when we ate together. ====JACK:  "Save some for Virginia!"  I like it.  I'll have to try it out during the family Thanksgiving dinner this year.  You might want to reprise it at your table, too.


Friday, October 27, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/27/17
“If you keep saying that things are going to be bad, you have a good chance of being a prophet.”  (Isaac Singer)  What’s “your” song going to be today?  Is it Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” or Judy Garland’s “Somewhere, Over The Rainbow” (where troubles melt like lemon drops)?  A. Lincoln said that “you can be as happy or sad as you make up your mind to be.”  While I like Hank, my choice today is Judy’s “where dreams that you dream of really do come true.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Rainbows!!====JACK:  A sign of promise and hope!

FROM KANSAN DON:  How about Dorothy of Wizard of Oz — with friends Cowardly Lion (courage), the Tin Man (heart) and Straw Man (brain) and their inadequacies.====JACK:  The song was written by two Jewish men, Yip Harburg (lyrics) and Harold Arlen (music) in 1939, at a time when Jews in Europe were facing increasing hostility.  The song is about hope that the bad times will come to an end.  Apply "Over the Rainbow" to the Jews of the Holocaust and it takes on a whole new meaning.====DON:  Good comment.  Thanks!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Isaac Singer is an excellent short story writer, and this quote sounds just like him, and I suspect it is true...attitude is everything in most scenarios ! i'm currently staying with my daughter-in-law's mother, who is 91, legally blind from macular and suffers much pain with arthritis, which causes her to use a walker and wheelchair. Brings home how blessed I am, at nearly the same age, but without aches,pains, and disabilities.  Yet she keeps going as best she can, and tries to be upbeat. It would probably be easier to stay in bed all day and mope  !!  A few of us today took a cake and cards to a 94 yr. old friend in the nursing home for her birthday. Same story, but had a pleasant visit, with a cheerful and appreciative bedfast lady!   Positive attitude sure helps!! Rainbows win!====JACK:  The rainbow was given to Noah and his family as a sign of hope.  People continue to use it to signify hope.  It's interesting that the LGBTQ group has chosen rainbow colors as an identifying symbol. 

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/26/17
“A misery is not be measured from the nature of the evil, but from the temper of the sufferer.”  (Joseph Addison)  In the “olden days” people used some pretty descriptive terms to indicate they didn’t feel well.  For example…I’m sick as a dog…I’m ailing…I’m under the weather.  One that I especially remember:  I’ve got the miseries.  All suffering is not necessarily related to illness.  What gives you the miseries these days?  Malaise does it for me.    ;-)  Jack

FROM GOBLULYNN:  GM, J! May a big win over Rutgers help us out!====JACK:  The troops are restless.  Any team that loses its first-string QB is bound to have the miseries.====GB:  Maryland is playing with its third string QB.====JACK:  During the Great Depression, when there wasn't always what was needed, there was an expression: "We're just going to have to make do."

FROM HONEST JOHN:  I actually feel pretty good....both physically and emotionally.....I tend to be very positive about life!     A lot of that is because, ultimately, I think the Lord is very positive about us. ====JACK:  That's quite a trick...being positive in a negative world.  Or, maybe it's not the world that's negative...it may simply be the way most people view it.

FROM TARMART REV:  ...this old body of mine trying to keep up with this "fit as a fiddle" young man inside!!====JACK:  Perhaps you should be wearing that button which reads: PBPGINFWMY!  People might ask what it means, and you can say, "Please Be Patient.  God Is Not Finished With Me Yet." 

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  we all are suffering malaise...  the current state of things in the world is quite enough to give anyone uneasiness. add to that our personal lives... but such is life.  we’ll just have to search a little deeper for the beauty till the feeling passes...and it will.====JACK:  "till the feeling passes" reminds me of the person who prayed, "God give me patience...and give it to me right now!"====LIZ:  it subsides, anyway...====JACK:  In teaching the Lord's Prayer to children, when it says, "Thy will be done," Martin Luther writes, "The good and gracious will of God is done indeed without our prayer; but we pray in this petition that it may be done among us also."  God's will is done, whether we pray for it, or not.  The prayer is rather that we do his will.

FROM SHARIN' SHARON:  Enjoyed reflecting on your WW again this morning, even though miseries is such discomforting emotion to think about.  Here is Richard Rohr's meditation for today too in which he is reflecting on climate change, the miseries connected with it and yet a hopeful and encouraging word at the end of his essay.  A misery of mine is that President Trump seems to be putting in place, in his administration and cabinet, a whole slew of people whose opinions and perspectives run counter to the kinds of opinions and perspectives which I and many people I know hold.  This certainly is a misery but I take heart in knowing the opinion and perspective of the Pope and that I'm on the same side in caring about the indigenous people of the world and the people living a subsistence lifestyle in all the poor areas.  Enjoy your day, there is still the opportunity to pray and the power of faith to lead us forward to some sort of constructive actions.====JACK:  One of my miseries is frustration with people who can't see the world as I see it.  There misery is probably the same as mine.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  (My misery is) G being in the hospital- but that’s also a source of hope...... and faith..... and love.====JACK:  It's a hard prayer, but it's a comforting prayer: "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I suspect any of our miseries pale in comparison to most of the rest of the world...travel broadens your Horizon and makes you thankful for life in USA. Even in illness we have qualified  medical personnel to deal with it.  A small misery was seeing the CUBS LOSE, instead of CUBS WIN!! :-) But everything in perspective, it's a good life!====JACK:  Just wait another 100 years.  The Cubs will be back!!!!!




Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/25/17
“Just because there are checks in the checkbook doesn’t mean there’s money in the bank.”  (Quoted by DAZ)  A 2016 credit study shows that debt is “as American as apple pie.”  For the avg household, it’s $137,067, with $1,300 in yearly interest.  Trends show an escalation, so some are turning to financial consultants.  Bankruptcy isn’t always the answer.  Some go online to sites like NerdWallet.  Regardless, whenever you sense a problem, it’s best to seek help.    ;-)  Jack

 FROM TL:  Thanks for the practical reminder Jack.====JACK:  When my mother was working at Montgomery Ward her pay was cash in an envelope.  When she brought the envelope home, she would take out marked envelopes and put a part of the pay into each of them...food...rent...other bills...etc.  There was nothing extra. left over.  No credit card payments at that time.====TL: I say to myself, "it worked then, why wouldn't it work now?"====JACK:  My sister still uses that method when they go on vacations.  A certain amount put into an envelope for each day.  When it's gone, it's gone.  Not me.

FROM HONEST JOHN:  "Nerd wallet" is an unreal name.====JACK:  It may sound unreal, but it is real.  Google it and see.====JOHN: I don't think of nerds as financial whizzes....better at high tech....

FROM KZB (to her father):  My DAZ?!  Even if not you,  you were always an amazing saver Dad!  I learned well from you.  You always taught us to save before we spend.====JACK:  Are you teaching the same lesson in these days of "easy credit" and "online ordering"?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  We are deeply thankful that we have enough!  Enough to pay the bills, send a little and give a lot.  It’s enough.  What we want??  No but it’s enough!====JACK:  There's an audio-book, How Much Is Enough?  It's a call for a moral approach to economics, drawing on philosophers, political theorists, writers, and economists from Aristotle to Marx to Keynes.  What constitutes the good life? What is the true value of money? Why do we work such long hours merely to acquire greater wealth? These are some of the questions that many ask themselves. This book tackles such questions head-on.====JUDY:  Sounds like a good book.  But the Bible tells us all we need to know about money.  How many do you think can actually tell you what’s in the Bible about money, the good life and the long hours working for money?

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  One of the titles in my book is, Life is Reciprocity.====JACK:  Don't you have to buy "on credit" to stay in business these days?====GEORGE:  You do not have to, at least I never HAD TO DO SO.====JACK:  In business...You NEVER bought anything on credit?  Even machinery?  WOW!====GEORGE:  I misunderstood the writing.

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Yep - help is good - just make sure the help source is knowledgeable and reputable. I have found a lot of so called experts don’t always have the best answers. I normally recommend getting several opinions.====JACK:  ...but, eventually you have to choose.  Even "no choice" is a choice.

FROM LBP:  Huh.====JACK: Huh (I agree!)  Right?====;LBP: It’s a statistic that needs more information. Technically I have more than that in debt because my mortgage is higher but I’ve got decades to make payments. That kinda of debt on a credit card or to a hospital would have much more immediate consequences. Also the 1300 per year is only 1% of the 130000 average debt which is a super interest rate! But that is still a lot of money.  Averages are tricky because they can be skewed by outliers. The average scenario may also be not observed in this context. Who has 130000$ of debt at 1% apr?  Scaled numbers or graphs give more information but aren’t always as easy to digest as simple numbers. I went to a talk this summer about communicating statistics to a general audience. It was certainly interesting to think about how to make information accurate and digestible.
But of course I expect the intent of the post was to think on the state of things that gets people into that kind of hole and how to help them out or to stay out ...  So many different scenarios ...  ====JACK:  House debt really isn't debt, if the house is collateral.  Right?  I guess it depends on the value of the house.  (It's interesting to read a stat answer from a stat person.)====LBP:  Hmmm... maybe I'm borrowing against the value of my property. But I still owe a bill monthly and am fined if I don't pay it. And when taking out a loan it's counted against you as money owed, right? I have a colleague who didn't own a home until he was able to afford to pay in cash because he didn't want the debt. So stat question number 2... how does the person who got the $130,000 estimate interpret debt? what 'counts'?====JACK:  As to "personal debt," I just Googled "personal debt in America for 2016," and the computer sit out the statistics.
 






Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/24/17
“Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everyone else.”  (Margaret Mead)  Proving I.D. is becoming more complex.  PINs, SSNs and photos aren’t enough.  There’s an I.D. business called, biometrics, which uses hands, eyes, voice and other parts of the anatomy to prove that you are you.  At this point, most people rebel against having a chip implant.  But God doesn’t need that stuff.  “Fear not.  I have called you by name.  You are mine!”    ;-)  Jack

FROM PEPPERMINT MARY:  "You are my friend...you are special!"  (Mr.Rogers and Ms.Mary) ====JACK:  "There's no one youer than you!"

FROM SUE:  Your Winning Words today gave me a new favorite, comforting Bible verse.  I have read Isaiah, but  missed the wonder of 43:1  Thanks====JACK:  That's one of the Bible verses that I memorized long ago...but neglected to memorize the source.   Thanks for being my concordance.

FROM AW IN ILLINOIS:  Jack,  I  first misread this.  to always remember I am antique like everyone else.    and to that I say: Amen!====JACK:  An antique is something more than 100 years old.  I'd say that you are vintage!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  "Unique, like everyone else"...I LOVE  it! :-) Yes, even identical twins have SOME differences, as my sis and I discovered.  But God loves each of us the same, as  a Father. Rich blessing indeed!  Always!====JACK:  Was there a special way that friends could tell you apart?  We have twin girls at church who still mystify me.  I'll have to ask if there's a secret way to tell the difference.  At birth, one of them almost didn't make it...but she did...and was given the name Crista.====OAKS:  At first my mom had blue and pink tiny bracelets on us (I was pink) which she moved from R to L arm (and back) when she nursed us, so she wouldn't nurse the same baby twice! But quickly saw differences..I had a rounder face for one thing, and a slightly lop ear!  I think the  trick for relatives and friends were to remember which twin had the name Marilyn Jean and which one was  Janet Eileen: We weren't so identical that you didn't know which one was which, I don't think! It didn't help that we dressed alike all through  school ! :-(  But a lot of twins did that, in those days...!

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:   Scary isn't it?  Thankfully, we are God's and God's alone!====JACK:   I'll bet  there's only ONE Outhouse Judy on his list.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/23/17
“What I know for sure is that what you give comes back to you.”  (Oprah)  I don’t know about you, but robo-calls and direct mail don’t motivate me to give…nor, does trying rev up my guilt complex.  I tend to support charities that work to find cures for diseases that have claimed friends of mine.  I also look for those causes that have lower administrative costs.  Oprah probably got her quote from the Biblical promise: “Give, and it will be given to you.”    ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  you could also add:   It is more blessed to give than to receive.... which seems to come with a built-in blessing:):):)====JACK:  That's a good thought for this time of the year....when most churches are concentrating on "stewardship."

FROM EMT SINGS IN TC:  What do you think about Gardenhire coming to Detroit?  I still think about that little exchange we had when Mother was still alive and I wrote that letter.  Fun memories! ====JACK:  That's not a fun memory for me.  I still think that he could have responded to the request to contact your mom.  But, that's in the past.  Since he's now in Detroit, I may have a chance to ask him to contact her daughter.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  ...Or some may "pay it forward". Either way, it is good (and satisfying) to be a Giver. Though it may not be much, it is a blessing to whomever it goes! Our Tues. to feed the homeless in Springfield falls on Halloween, so we are decorating, wearing costumes to serve, and making it a real party. Hope it lifts a few spirits, in what is usually a pretty dreary life! How blessed I am to have a home, food, and all I NEED!! (And most of my WANTS!)====JACK:  Would it be wrong for someone to dress up as Jesus?====OAKS:  Not in my estimation. My son Mark was a great "Jesus" at cantata time, dark hair, dark eyes, beard...He looked the part! Maybe we could incorporate that into the scheme! :-) Hallow-een indeed!====JACK:  The more I think about it, the more I like it.====OAKS:  WOW! You really did your homework on the costumes! We do have some good costumes, beards, etc. at church, as we did the Last Supper drama several years, and almost all of my Christmas and Easter cantatas  required them! You are amazing in your outreach!! ====JACK:  IMO...Everyone should be dressed as they normally would.  The person, dressed as Jesus, should be just one of the servers.  Someone should video the line to see some of the reactions.  In case you're not up on abbreviations, IMO stands for In My Opinion...On second thought, you probably already know that.====OAKS:  No, I didn't , but good suggestion!! :-)  I think we have a good likeness willing to serves...:-)

Friday, October 20, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/20/17
“Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.”  (Thomas รก Kempis)  If you could change one thing about yourself, what might that be?  Emotional?  Physical?  Emotional Consultant, Robyn Stitt, lists “reduction of aches and pains” as the main change that people want in their lives.  A more attractive body, less guilt and more energy are on the list, too.  Self-change precedes trying to change others.    ;-)  Jack

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  This one requires a lot of thought.  Like Solomon, I would love more wisdom.  Wisdom would help me deal with the things I can control:  weight, health, faith etc etc etc.  and it would help me deal with the things I can't control:  pain, issues and general life.====JACK:  A one-time shortstop for the Chicago White Sox was nicknamed, "Old aches and pains," because he was always complaining about how he felt.  Empathetic people can understand!====JUDY:  Unless someone has suffered constant pain they can't understand.  But it's amazing how you can overcome and live with it, isn't it?  Do you have problem with reoccurring pain from the polio?  My friend Tom Shirley had polio.  He had a "shrivel leg" from it so he walked with a big lump.  But he was a swimmer and did wonderful in swim meets!!====JACK:  I was one of the luckier ones, in that the disease affected only my upper right arm, and there is no pain...only the pain of not being able to have total use of the arm.  The good news...at age 16, polio caused me to rethink my life and had a part in leading me to the ministry as a career.

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  I don’t tell adults what to do.====JACK:  Sometimes adults need it more than children.  Of course, adults generally have more hearing problems than do children.

FROM DR J IN OHIO:  Love this…. and a great Jack Freed Quote: "Self-change precedes trying to change others.”====JACK:  Sometimes the teacher needs to be the pupil.  Life can be complicated.

FROM LBP:  matthew 7:3-5? Of course the skill needed to remove a plank is likely different than that required to remove a speck. (Another way of saying what works for one might not work for others.)====JACK:  I don't want someone using a hatchet to do surgery on my eye.====LBP:  Me either! In the literal world of eyes... did you hear that my dad now wears safety goggles (mostly) when using the chainsaw since a couple years back he got a stick lodged in his eye? His eye is thankfully fine. In contrast, my great uncle, a barber, lost his eye after getting an infection from a stray piece of hair that landed in his eye. Sticks, twigs, sawdust, hair... hard to know just what the outcome may be.====JACK:  Stuff like that happens more than we might think.  Every nine weeks the doctor injects medicine (after numbing drops) into my eye to control macular degeneration.  I hold the office record for having received the most injections.====LBP:  numbing drops or no, you are one brave guy. I look away from needles. No looking away from one going in your eye! ====JACK:  A friend mine has a saying, when it comes to choosing the lesser of two evils..."It beats a sharp stick in the eye."

FROM PEPPERMINT MARY:  Today is my 62nd birthday. I am the only me I know how to be. I try to improve each year the me that I am. I will try to accept any aches and pains with grace. I love each day granted!====JACK:  I just read that some of the coolest people have birthdays along with you today...Kim Kardashian, Carrie Fisher, Judge Judy and Lux Interior.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/19/17
“It’s easy to sit up and take notice.  What is difficult is getting up and taking action.”  (Honore de Balzac)  Did you know that there’s a punk band, Balzac, named after the famous French author?  And do you recall the accusation in “The Music Man” movie that Marian the Librarian advocated racy books like those written by…Balzac?  Honore’s realistic writing was new for its time.  Hardly anything (realism) is left to the imagination these days.  Ho-hum!    ;-)  Jack

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  You absolutely amaze me in your eclectic approach to human challenges!====JACK:  Have you read anything of Balzac...or listened to the punk band?

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Never put the references together!  Very interesting! The statement is very true.  As I sit here and look out my window, I see a trench, dug for the electrical wires for our barn, need to be filled in.  Gary's in California so it's up to me, but I'm having problems getting into gear to get up and do it!!  Balzac knew what he was talking about!!====JACK:  "Get cracking!" brings Balzac up to date...or Todd Beamer's 9/11 unforgettable..."Let's roll!"====JUDY:  Yes sir!!!  Let's roll.  You're more than welcome to come and help!!!  Need my address?๐Ÿ˜Š⛏====JACK:  Thanks for the notice.  Right now I'm REALLY having difficulty getting up and taking action.

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  but to kill a mockingbird was just banned in mississippi... ====JACK:  Racism has more lives than a cat,

FROM DR J IN OHIO:  so true… so many people say “I support black people” or “muslims” etc… but often they won’t STAND UP for disenfranchised groups via their vote or their voice. Truth be known, we all do this at some point most likely. I think too often we believe as long as we say “I support…” then we are guilt free.  my two cents ;-) keep writing… I love your messages. They always get my neurons firing!====JACK:  No wonder Eulalie Mackecknie Shinn of River City wanted to ban Balzac.  Realism is often hard to take.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  AH, yes! I portrayed Eulalie McKecknie Shinn in THE MUSIC MAN in Springfield Muni Opera. What a fun part to play, and what a great show....still love it!  Balzac!! Racy indeed, for that time! :-) The WW words today are so true, and the older we get the harder it is to get fired up and get going!! But much easier to settle down with a good book, which in turn may make us "sit up and take notice"!.====JACK:  I liked the way that "Balzac" would roll off of her sneering tongue.  You probably can remember the dialog....and say it, right now!  Paul Ford was the perfect husband for her.


Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/18/17
“In youth we learn, in age we understand.”  (Marie von Ebner-Eschenbach)  There’s a song, “Grandpa, tell me ‘bout the good old days.”  Sometimes it takes a look at the past to enable us to understand and appreciate the present.  Recently I had a chance to make a video recollection of “the good old days.”  Great as they were, time has allowed me to appreciate new discoveries and life improvements…and new generations, too!  Remember, this is still God’s world!    ;-)  Jack

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  youth IS wasted on the young!====JACK:  I learned a lot while growing up, but didn't realize it at the time.  Such it usually is for each generation. 

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

  Jack’s Winning Words 10/17/17
“Nomophobia, short for ‘no mobile phone phobia,’ is the fear of being without your cellphone or being out of mobile device contact.”  (The Daily Extra)  I wonder if nomophobia is related to separation anxiety disorder (SAD), that fear of being away from home, parent or any safe place?  I looked for a word describing the fear of being separated from God, but couldn’t find one.  Maybe it’s because God has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”    ;-)  Jack 

FROM TRIHARDER:  It's liberating to forget my phone now and then.====JACK:  What are the rules for mobile phones in the courtroom, or does each judge have personal rules?====TH:  The ringer had better be turned off.  Some judges would go ballistic. Others would just give looks.  My watch went off once during a hearing.  The judge demanded to know whose phone was going off in the crowded courtroom. I remained silent and continued to conduct myself as if I didn't hear it.

FROM KITTY:  Interesting thought as always. And being an early riser myself, I can’t help but notice how early you are getting up these days====JACK:  If I wake up after 3 am, I go to the computer and spent 15 minutes sending out WWs to over 500 people.  Then, it's back to bed for some more sleep.  I generally want to have a "positive" message appear on computer screens when people turn on their pc-s.====K:  Often the first thing I see. Thanks=====JACK: . I do it for people such as you…and for my personal satisfaction, too.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Amen!  One of my favorite God-quotes!  SAD also refers to my disorder: Seasonal Affective Disorder which i'm hoping a brighter winter will help me avoid in 2018! ====JACK:  I'm already looking forward to Groundhog Day, which signals the coming of my favorite season....as expressed in these song lyrics...
"So when it's raining have no regrets  Because it isn't raining rain you know  It's raining violets
And when you see clouds up on a hill  You know they'll bring crowds of daffodils
So just keep looking for a bluebird  And listening for his song..."
 
 

Monday, October 16, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/16/17
“Be nice to people…maybe it will be unappreciated, unreciprocated, or ignored, but spread love anyway.  We rise by lifting others.”  (Germany Kent)  I worshiped at a church yesterday, Good Samaritan, which seeks to live up to its name and to the spirit of today’s quote.  I know of another church that seeks to do the same: House For All Sinners and Saints.  Jiffy Church promises: in and out in 15 minutes.  Names identify us.  What do our names say to others?    ;-)  Jack

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  i have heard the Pastor from House For All Sinners and Saints speak at the seminary and also interviewed by Krista Tippet on NPR Radio.  she is quite a character with all the tattoos and body piercing and colored hair, etc.  but her theology is quite sound and she is a good theologian.  i have not read her book====JACK:  She abbreviates her church's name...HFASS.  She is out of the ordinary, to be sure.  But, we each have our individuality.====PAUL:  i love it.  at least she has a good sense of humor!

FROM SF:  Yup. A 'Mitzvah' is a good deed with no expectations in return. Whether noticed, appreciated, or reciprocated...====JACK:  Are they commanded, or simply done as the occasion arises?====SF:  I would say, both.

FROM TARMART REV:  1 Take the name of Jesus with you, Child of sorrow and of woe; It will joy and comfort give you, Take it then where'er you go. -- 2 Take the name of Jesus ever As a shield from ev'ry snare; When temptations round you gather, Breathe that holy name in prayer. -- Hopefully found walking in His Name.====JACK:  Are you the Good Samaritan when you sit and wait, while eating popcorn?

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  We are how we are perceived, and we are perceived based on our actions and words.  RE: G- she now has pneumonia- going to do a culture to see the severity. One more hurdle. A real test of our ability to turn it over to God and have peace knowing He is in charge.====JACK:  There are things far more important that baseball and football, aren't there?

FROM DANIEL RIFT  Director, ELCA World Hunger and Disaster Appeal : Today is World Food Day. A day when millions of people around the world come together in the commitment to end hunger – for good.  n commemoration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, we’re partnering with our friends at Australian Lutheran World Service in the ambitious goal of raising a combined $500,000 toward our jointly supported work in Indonesia.  Your gifts will help fund this cooperative work in Indonesia focusing on sustainable agriculture, education, safe water and sanitation. Any support beyond the goal will go toward other programs where we partner with Australian Lutheran World Service – in Burundi, Cambodia, Kenya, Nepal, Papua New Guinea and South Sudan.   Every dollar given up to our target will be paired with one from our friends in Australia, so we can make maximum impact – together.

FROM CS: Those churches sound interesting.  Where are they?====JACK:  Good Samaritan is in Waterford, MI.  HFASS is in Denver..  I think Jiffy Church is someone's idea of an antidote for loooong church services.

FFROM BLAZING OAKS:  This SO fits my experience at church yesterday! After our service, a man, woman, 2 children knocked at our back entrance, which another deacon any myself answered, telling them they were too late for our service but could join a S.S. class if interested. The man said they had come to ask a favor; They were on their way to Delaware (!) and were out of gas and needed money...Our deacon pulled out his wallet and showed he had $7.00 in it. I had to hurry to teach my S.S. class, but hurried to retrieve my purse, and took a 20.00 bill out, and ran back and gave it to him, saying, "This won[t get you to Delaware , but it's a start!" He grabbed it angrily, and shouted, "You could give a lot more than that!" I was stunned, as he turned away and stomped off. (He didn't offer to return the money).  I had to remind myself that the judgment was on him; I had been as kind as I could afford to be....Hopefully the kids will remember someone was nice to them!====JACK:  I hope that you're not feeling guilty.  Some churches have a deal with a nearby gas station.  The "needy" get a fill-up.  I was involved in the arrest of a "serial scammer."  He had been telling the same story to churches and synagogues.  The arrest (and a fight) took place in my office.  It turned out that he had a long rap sheet.  His wife, waiting in the car, was so happy that he was to be locked up.  He had been a terrible abuser of her and their children.  I had to testify in court.  WWJD?

FROM TRIHARDER:  Like saying "Thank you" to the person who  pours your water and picks up your dishes at the restaurant. ====JACK:  There's an article in this week's Crainn's Business about Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin advocating raising the $3+ per hour wage to $15+ and eliminating tipping.  Some responses indicated that would result in a lower take hope pay.  Personally, I'd rather tip.  How about you?====TH:  Restaurant owners take "taxes" out for tips. Usually, the formula WAY underestimates the amount of the tips.  The result is that most servers way underpay taxes due based upon their actual wages (including tips) -- I agree they generally make more than $15 /hr, especially at a well attended restaurant.  I'm not in favor of anyone not paying their full share in taxes. Hostesses and clean up crew are generally not tipped unless the restaurant requires shared tips.

FROM BB:  Wonderful, inspirational quote.  Thank you for sharing!====JACK:  Another...Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/13/17
“It’s a healthy thing to hang a question mark on the things you have long taken for granted.”  (Bertrand Russell)  Russell has been labeled a liberal, a socialist and a pacifist, but said, “I have never been any of these in any profound sense.”  I can identify with him in this respect.  I resist being “tagged.”  But, I am willing to be called observant, interested, and open-minded.  With the passing of years, there are both more ?-s and also more !-s.    ;-)  Jack 

FROM HONEST JOHN:  When I was a boy, I was very patriotic and loved my country.   I am much less that way now.   I will fight to try to make it better but know that it is doomed like any other nation or empire.    The Lord, on the other hand, continues to grow in importance to me...in the long run, that is all we have....and, fortunately, that is enough.====JACK:  I think that Russell's question mark reference was a call to "rethink."  Your response indicates that you've done that. ====JOHN:  I have rethought...and continue to rethink....I want to think better of my country than I do. ====JACK:  The Christian Century magazine carries essays from time to time from theologians.  The series is titled:  How My Mind Has Changed.

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  you got up early today, Jack.  hope you went back to bed:):) ====JACK:  2 AM, your time....which reminds me of an old song...
Well, it's 2 o'clock  In the morning
And I'm sittin' thinkin', wonderin'
Gettin' curious about one thing
Because you and I  Have a lot in common
And I figure it's the reason
Why we get along so easily
Natural friends  Oh, yeah, yeah, yeah
====PAUL:  your memory for old songs and their  lyrics is truly amazing.  you can sing it to me sometime:):):)

FROM TARMART REV:  "... observant, interested, open-minded and friend of many!!"====JACK:  "To have a friend, be a friend!"

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  That would do it, for sure! WOWSIE!====JACK:  Joe E. Brown used to say, "Wowser!"====JACK:  Inspector Gadget used to say, "Wowser!?  Were you ever a fan of his?
"

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/12/17
“Let’s not get panicky.”  (Branch Rickey)  Did you know that Abe Lincoln had problems with anxiety?  And so do Barbra Streisand. and Whoopi.  In fact, most of us have experienced “panic” situations.  “Experts” advise…Stop and take a deep breath; try to think through the situation, and try to think positively (I think I can; I know I can).  Maybe it’s an unexpected stress event, or being in a crowd, or asked to speak publicly.  If Lincoln could master it, I can, too.    ;-)  Jack

FROM LBP:  And it's ok to seek experts for help. Took me many years to accept that I needed help. Years of feeling physically ill. Years of feeling dread. I can work through it better now but an outside perspective was needed to guide me down the path and give me tools to navigate better. I see friends and family struggle with similar things but there is such a reluctance to find help. So maybe I'm a bit preachy on it now but it can affect anyone, whether life is good or tough. It's ok.====JACK:   I recall someone who would not come forward to receive Holy Communion.  I decided to talk with her about the situation.  While we did not get to the bottom of the issue (and that was not my purpose), my assurance that God welcomes all to his table, regardless of past issues, seemed to unlock the gate that had kept her away. 

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  One day at a time====JACK:  ...or, one minute.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Panicking is when you realize you can't find your child in the store!!  Sometimes it's hard to stop and take a deep breath even though that's the thing to do.====JACK:  That happened to my mom when I was little.  A person came in the store and announced that "a child has been hit by a car outside."  Yes, I was the child (not injured).  I had a habit of running away.  They tried to solve the problem by putting a harness on me with a leash.  ====JUDY:  You were hit by a car?  Your parents must have had nervous breakdowns!!!  We were at Hershey, PA., and we lost Andy in the crowd.  We looked everywhere and were panicked.  He had walked to an employee and told her we were lost and could she help him find us!!!  So....they did.

FROM TARMART REV:  “I think I can . . . I know I can!”====JACK:  So help me, God.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  A comedian once said, "I tried to drown my sorrows, but the little devils learned to swim!" :-)My husband was pretty unflappable, which probably kept me grounded, for who doesn't have panicky moments?   When upon the Billows you are Tempest tossed, When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost, Count your many blessings, Angels will attend, Help and Comfort Give you, 'til your journey's end!"  Stay Positive!====JACK:  Panicky?  I was at an out of town meeting and received a message that our youngest daughter was in the hospital and that I needed to come home immediately!  Nothing more than that.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/11/17
“If I am what I have, and I lose what I have, who then am I?”  (Eric Fromm)  The word, xenophobia, is often seen in the news…fearing people who are different.  It’s part of racism, ethnic superiority,  classism.  A children’s song says: “All creatures, great and small, the Lord God made them all.”  Or in the words of Dr. Seuss, “There’s nobody you-er than you.”  Resist the temptation to preen at the expense of others.  Who do you think you are?    ;-)  Jack
www.jackswinningwords.blogspot.com to see my blog

FROM TARMART REV:  Resisting the temptation to "preen" at the expense of others, I am. 0;-) ====JACK:  Jesus described two people praying:  One stood by himself and prayed: "God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers...or like the tax collector over there.  I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get."  But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, "God, have mercy on me, a sinner." ====REV:  ...beating my breast, in deed, with grateful thanksgiving and praise!

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  good words, Jack!  thanks...====JACK:  Jesus said, "My words are not my own.  They come from the Father who sent me."  My "good words" are the words of the people I quote...and the words of the Spirit who often puts them into my mind.

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  you know, dr seuss is racist now...====JACK:  If I were placed under the same microscope that was used to examine Dr. Seuss, I know that some signs of racism, classism and superiority would show up.  "God, be merciful to me, a sinner."====LIZ:  no kidding! all of us!!!

FROM BS IN ENGLAND:  I don't  think  "All things bright and beautiful"  is necessarily  a children's hymn. Many couples choose  it for their wedding, some for funerals and always at Harvest Festival.  I used it just last week when taking a celebration service for harvest at the home where Angela is a resident.  Of course even people with dementia  can sing it because of childhood memories, sadly no longer for Angela, she no longer speaks.====JACK:  Wikipedia isn't always reliable, but that is where I often get my information.  "The hymn (All Things Bright and Beautiful) was first published in 1848 in Mrs Cecil Alexander's Hymns for Little Children. It consists of a series of stanzas that elaborate upon verses of the Apostles' Creed. The hymn may have been inspired by a verse from Samuel Taylor Coleridge's The Rime of the Ancient Mariner: 'He prayeth best, who loveth best; All things great and small; For the dear God who loveth us; He made and loveth all.'"  Regardless...It's one of my favorite songs.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  A redeemed Child of God without the garbage!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Jack’s Winning Words 10/10/17
“Don’t tell me it doesn’t pay to worry; most of the things I worry about never happen.”  (The Church Secretary)  I like the Bible verse: “Cast all your cares on the Lord, because he cares about you.” (1 Peter 5:7).  To know that God cares about us and our situation is a real comfort.  It may be apocryphal, but I once read of an Asian man, named, Lo, whose favorite Bible verse was, “Lo, I am with you…always.”  It really helps to know that God is always with us.    ;-)  Jack   

FROM TL:  Jack, thank you for the beautiful reminder.  Thanks for WW.

FROM HONEST JOHN:  I love that story about Lo...have used it many times....it is comforting  ====JACK:  I suppose you've used is at Christmastime, too.  "Lo, how a rose e'er blooming."

FROM RS IN TEXAS:  Trying to remember that this AM.  They had to put G into ICU last night for an elevated heart rate.====JACK:  "The hopes and fears of all the years are met in Thee (O Lord)." ====JACK:  God hears, God understands.  "Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven."

FROM ST PAUL IN ST PAUL:  this one i really like!   will add it to my Mary/Martha sermon file having to do with worry and anxiety.   glad you got home safe and sound.  have a blessed day...   p.s. the Lo story reminds me of a fellow in the Army whose name was Glenn Oscar Davidson (true story).  so on all his equipment he had the initials GOD.   he took a lot of ribbing for this but he was also reminded constantly that God was with him:):)

FROM JE:  I really needed this today. Thank you for your words of wisdom.  God is with me and HE helps me every day.  Take good care and enjoy this beautiful sunshine.====JACK:  Our family tombstone has "Cast all your cares on the Lord..." engraved on it.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  It does indeed, tho sometimes like my daughter Sarah, I want "someone with skin on"!:-)  I have a small wooden plaque on my fridge that says, "Good Morning; This is GOD. I will be handling all of your problems today."  I often have to be reminded of that! "Be not anxious....He tells us!====JACK:  It also helps to sing: "Jesus loves me, this I know," or "Jesus knows me this I love."

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  That's funny!  I'm not a worrier but Gary is.  I love the Lo story.  Judith is in the unbible so I don't know a lot about her.  I wonder if she was a worrier!?!====JACK:  What's the un-Bible?====JUDY:  We tried to figure out how to spell apocrypha!  I finally ask Siri.



Jack’s Winning Words 10/9/17
“I stand in awe of my body.”  (Thoreau)  In this world of ours, with its penchant for “rating” people based on bodily appearance…each of us needs to look in the mirror and repeat, “I am not my body.”  The body is simply a transportation device for the real me, my soul.  It is a marvelous gift to have been created in the image of God, to have a spirit.  Yes, the body is a remarkable piece of equipment, but what is that compared to being like God?  I’m in awe!    ;-)  Jack

FROM SHALOM JAN:  In my late teens and early 20s when my friends and I at Capital University referred to Sallman's "Head of Christ" (a copy of which I carried in my wallet for decades), we called it "The Girl Jesus" because of the long, dark-blonde, curly hair on "Jesus".  My favorite(s) are several of Rembrandt's paintings.  He used as his models young, Jewish men who lived near his studio in Amsterdam, where Jews were much better accepted into the fabric of the city than elsewhere in Europe in the 17th century.  One copy, stuck on the side of my fridge, is an almost wistful-looking "Jesus".  Maybe that is why Rembrandt's depictions of Jesus weren't as well-accepted as his other paintings, because Jesus looked, as you say, like a Middle Eastern "misfit".  One of my favorite children's books about the birth of Christ is Room for a Little One by Martin Waddell, because of the illustrations by Jason Cockcroft of Mary and Joseph appearing very Middle Eastern.  I often have used this book to "tell" the story during Children's Time at worship.====JACK:  We received Sallman's Head of Christ as a wedding gift and still have it hanging on the wall,,,a reminder of "the good old days."  But, times change, and so do our tastes...even religious ones.

 


Jack’s Winning Words 10/6/17
“We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.”  (Quoted by Dave Johnson)  Mick Jagger sings, “I can’t get no satisfaction…”  Is it that way with you?  I guess that there are times for all of us when we become frustrated because of some “lack” in life.  Dave J suggests that satisfaction can come by helping those in need.  “Find a need and fill it” is good career advice, but it also has a way of making this world a better place.    ;-)  Jack 

Jack’s Winning Words 10/5/17
“The first step to getting the things you want out of life is to decide what you want.”  (Ben Stein)  What is it that would cause you to be happy?  Is it more money, more control, more things, more love?  Or maybe less…less stress, fewer problems, etc.  Maybe it all begins with an attitude adjustment,..a willingness to make some changes.   Maybe we need to reassess this life of ours and that which is so important.  Is it really those things?...or something else?    ;-)  Jack

Jack’s Winning Words 10/4/17
“You have to be sold to sell, convinced to be convincing.”  (An Old Saying)  Anyone who’s been into sales knows about Zig Ziglar, one of the greatest salesmen and motivational speakers.  Zig said,  “You can have everything you want by helping others get what they want.”  The turning point in his career happened when he began living by Biblical principles.  It also helps to be able to get along with your co-workers, customers, neighbors, family…and self.    ;-)  Jack

Jack’s Winning Words 10/3/17
“Tomorrow is promised to no one.”  (Walter Payton)  After Las Vegas, do we stop going to concerts?  After 40,000 highway deaths last year, do we park our cars?  All it takes is a crazed shooter or a drunk driver…life is so uncertain.   A friend of mine used to close his TV program by saying, “Be safe.  Remember, tomorrow is promised to no one.”  Annie Johnson Flint wrote:  “God has not promised skies always blue, Flower-strewn pathways all our lives through…But God has promised strength for the day, Rest for the labor, light for the way,”    ;-)  Jack


Jack’s Winning Words 10/2/17
“Be interesting and enthusiastic and don’t talk too much.”  (Norman Vincent Peale)  In my home church the pastor was called, “20-Minute-Tillberg,” because his sermons were that length (which was short for that time).  A preacher in our area once held the Guinness record…a 24-hour sermon.  FDR said it best: “Be sincere, be brief, be seated.”  Whether it be a sermon, a business presentation, or any talking, you can’t miss by following NVP’s advice.    ;-)  Jack

Jack’s Winning Words 9/29/17
“Be content with your lot.  You can’t be first in everything.”  (Aesop)  Are you contented, happy, satisfied?  Cicero said, “If you have a garden and a library you have everything.”  In the movie, The Jerk, Navin says that all he needs is an ashtray, a thermos, matches and this remote control.  “What do you think I am, a Jerk?”  Only a jerk has to have it all.  Only a jerk is never satisfied.  Today is a good day to appreciate the good in the lot that is ours.    ;-)  Jack

Jack’s Winning Words 9/28/17
“You always get lucky…sometimes!”  (Unknown)  “Lucky at cards” doesn’t apply to Alex Mullen.  He’s a memory athlete and recently won a contest, memorizing the order of a shuffled deck of cards in 18.65 seconds.  Luck doesn’t apply to Alex.  “Luck” is that which, good or bad,  is beyond our control.  Interestingly, “luck” traces its origin to a word meaning, “appointed by destiny.”  If you can’t explain it, God comes in handy.  For me, I’ll just wait and see.    ;-)  Jack