Friday, January 18, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/18/10
“God enters by a private door into every individual.”  (Emerson)  I like the campfire song, ”He’s got His eye on you, He’s got His eye on you.  My Lord, sittin’ in the Kingdom, He’s got His eye on you.”  That’s a sobering (but also a comforting) thought…knowing that God is aware of “our situation,” and personally cares.  “Nobody knows the trouble I’ve seen” are the first words of a spiritual…followed by this assurance “Nobody knows but Jesus.”   ;-)  Jack

FROM EDUCATOR PAUL:  I've always thought this line of thought was interesting. Not being sarcastic... really.   To me it’s the premise of religion that “man” must have a “entity” that ...always has an eye on you....for a variety of purposes such as noticing when good and bad behavior occurs or that intervention occurs to help.  Jean Piaget wrote about objective and subjective morality. I guess if an entity is needed for s person to do good deeds or be punished, that’s ok with me because the end behavior is what really matters.===JACK:  It's a kind of human characteristics to help understand non-humans.  God is sometimes shown as friendly or judging grandfather type.  An eye (he sees); a pointing finger (he knows).  Christians believe that Jesus is God, in human form, letting people know that he understands what it's like to be human and showing humans how to act in a Godly was.  That's called, incarnation, God "in the flesh."  I've probably written more than you want to read...and there's more...  As a professor on mine once said,"You can't unscrew the inscrutable."

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  It’s scary to think God is watching every second.  A lot of things we do we don’t want him to see....but he does see.  What’s comforting is he loves  all of us anyway!  Even when he sees us talking smack, being very nasty to our loved ones, just being terrible to each other!  And our thoughts, Boy that’s another thing!  And he still died for us!  Amazing Grace and Love!! ===JACK:  "He sees you when you're sleeping.  He knows when you're awake.  He knows when you've been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake."

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  Out of over 7 BILLION people in the world, God knows each one intimately. (Mind blowing) ===JACK:  ...even the non-Christians?  Something for you to talk about at CBSF

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  How true that is.

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/17/19
“He had myopia.  The future lay before him, inevitable, but invisible.”  (John Green)  The news is out that our galaxy is scheduled to catastrophically collide with another galaxy…in 4 billion years.  There’s a psychological truism, “Life goes better when we seek to control those things we can control, our conduct, our emotions, green-house gasses.  The path of galaxies and potential collisions??? I sing with Doris Day, “Que sera, sera.”  It’s all in God’s hands.   ;-)  Jack

FROM DR PHIL:  Wow. This is one of your best quotes===JACK: Sometimes I see myself as the Holy Spirit's amanuensis...and sometimes, not!===PHIL:  cum se cum sa ===JACK:  Google says:
 Neither good nor bad; so so; tolerable, passable, indifferent.  The Bible says:  " So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth."  (Rev 3:16)

FROM JF IN NOVA SCOTIA:  I was half awake this morning with this thought (prompted by recent and I felt unfair negative letters to our editor on Nurse Practitioners (may be called Doctors' Assistants in US) The world needs a better person than me--but I am what it has, so I need to do the best I can.===JACK:  I remember it being said of a person I knew..."He majored in minors."  I like these words by  James Truslow Adams..."There is so much good in the worst of us, and so much bad in the best of us, that it ill behooves any of us to find fault with the rest of us."

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Life is a bowl of cherries according to a song of old!===JACK:  1931 was when that song was released at the beginning of the Great Depression.  Ironic, right?

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/16/19
“What is permissible is not always honorable.”  (Cicero)  I wonder if Cicero’s mom ever said to him,. “Just because everybody jumps off of a cliff, does that mean you jump with them?”  It’s important to learn good decision-making early in life.  Knowing how to make good choices can dramatically affect our well-being…our friends, values, careers, work ethic.  Sociologists refer to  the herd mentality…”Everybody’s doing it!”  More importantly: “What will you do?”   ;-)  Jack 

FROM CH IN WB:  Just wanted to say I really enjoy your winning words and let you know my dad always used that jumping off a cliff example. He was quite a strict father and I think I'm better for it. ===JACK:  Blessed are those who have learned from others....How to make good choices.  How do you learn to make good choices?  Sometimes it's by making bad choices.  "I'll never do that again!"

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  As William Penn once said (and Bill quoted if on occasion) "Right is
right, even if everyone is against it, and wrong is wrong, even if  everyone is for it." I'm reading Michelle Obama's book " BECOMING" and she stresses how her mother always made them make their own decisions, trusting that they would do the honorable and right thing. Might not work in every family, but it did for her and her brother!  Most of us know the right thing to do, and God does guide!  Good to think about Cicero's quote!===JACK:  Some people believe that we are born into a world as sinless beings.  In a sense that is true, except that we are "conceived and born in sin (into a sinful words)."  We already have two strikes against us, except for people (and situations) who happen to meet us along the way.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  We took the 3 little grandkids to their basketball practice.  They had lessons one at a time do we were there 3 hours.  Middle granddaughter Melanie kept asking us if she could go play in the hallway “because all of her friends were out there!”  Well, we could hear the ruckus out there and knew it wasn’t the place for her.  One of my questions to her was “If your friends jumped off a bridge would you?” And of course she said yes.  So we (I) talked a little longer to set her in the correct path.  She’s very intelligent and very loving so it’s very easy to correct her.  But it’s funny how your quotes often hit right on spot.===JACK:  Maybe you used the wrong illustration.  To Melanie, jumping off of a bridge into water might sound like fun.  Perhaps better... If all of your friends decided to throw their iPhones into the river, would you?===JUDY:  You are correct!  She would love jumping off a bridge!

FROM ST PAUL IN MESA:  i am avoiding all cliffs today!  thanks.===JACK: You'd make a bad leader for lemmings.===PAUL:  i would just tell them to go on i will catch up with them later!

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Long ago when WWJD was popular, I changed it to WWJHMD -- what would Jesus have me do?  As you say, it's important to set values in place to live by, but also to ask what challenges the Lord might have for me to live outside of my comfort zone so that others may thrive.===JACK:  Do you know why Cicero would never join "the crowd" in a wearing WWJD bracelet?

FROM DAZ IN CO:  That is so applicable in our world today, but I guess if Cicero said it all those years ago, it was applicable then too. The more things change the more they are the same.  ===JACK:  Forgetting "politics," I'm distressed by the erosion of basic values in the world today... the acceptance of less than the best as being OK.===DAZ:  We do our best and change things we can change and endure those we can’t.===JACK:  ...and then let it go.


FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Yes life is all about making decisions each day! That is what makes it all so interesting!===JACK:  Yes, interesting! but they can sometimes be distressing at the same time.

FROM OPT MV:  I heard JFK’s mother Rose once said if it’s not illegal, it’s okay.===JACK:  Even though prohibition has ended, there are some churches that still use grape juice for Communion.

FROM HONEST JOHN:  "We have sinned against thee in thought, word, and deed...."    Many things that I think, I believe, are probably not permissible in regard to the "thought" aspect of that confession......they certainly are not honorable....e.g.   I despise the man sitting in the White House  ===JACK:  One of the "sins" is making judgment of others...but "word and deed" can be added to "thought" when it comes to the current White How.  Now, I join of people who kneel and confess: "Forgive me, Lord, for I have sinned."

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/15/19
“Forever is composed of nows.”  (Emily Dickinson)  In my home there’s a grandfather clock that goes…tick tock, tick tock…each tick and tock representing the passing of time, a collection of nows, as Emily calls them.  31,536,000 seconds in a year… and only God can count the seconds in forever.  ;-)  Jack

FROM TAMPA SHIRL  Time flies as we are living our lives!===JACK:  Almost 74 years since we were classmates at MHS.  Lots of water under the bridge....===SHIRL:  WOWI! Where have all those years gone? We are all still here for a reason

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Ah, one of my top 5 poets.  Helen Hayes played Emily in a one person play at the Fisher Theatre.  It was absolutely awesome.  I got a book of her poems when I was very young.  Now is the will be too late later.     Our grandfather clock was destroyed in our Great Flood and never replaced.  I do miss it.  I bought it for Gary on our 10th anniversary out of grocery money I saved.  I made payments until I had it paid off.  Wow, that was 30 years ago.  How time flies.  Anyway, every minute is precious and should be lived to the fullest...just like Emily says!  Have a special day today!===JACK:  I wonder what poets "today's generation" will remember and quote,?  Eminem. Snoop Dogg, Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Ice Cube?  Which one of those is your favorite?  ===JUDY:  Well, none of the above.  While I do think they are all talented, I really don’t care for their poems.===JACK:  You'd probably like The Beastie Boys, known as Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Ii love this idea, especially in times of trouble such as now with the federal government shut down.  Luther said, "How soon 'not now' becomes never".  Now is the time when strangers are helping strangers (in storms, in food pantries for those without paychecks, in local banks saying they'll defer mortgage payments) and now is the opportunity to be of service..  Thanks, Jack!  ===JACK:  There's an old saying..."This, too, will pass."  That "thought" applies to situations and to people, too.  God is forever.

FROM HONEST JOHN:  God's realm is by definition outside of the space/time continuum.... therefore, "forever" does not translate to that situation.....leaves us helpless to explain the whole business of God "breaking into" our world....e.g.   the Word became flesh and dwelt among us".....even Augustine couldn't peel through that one....if he couldn't, where does that leave me??? ===JACK:  Wasn't it Luther who said that when he came to a portion of the Bible that he didn't understand, he'd just tip his hat and move on to something else?  I do that with trying to understand space/time continuum.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  My class of '48, MHS, celebrated our 70th class reunion at a luncheon in MOline in September. Suppose it might be our last...unless some hale and hearty member plans
another one. We've met every 5 yrs. since graduation; used' to be a 3 day event! I too, have a grandfather clock that Bill made for my Christmas present one year. Beautiful and much cherished! The years seem to unroll faster and faster in our old age! I  try to take advantage of every
"now", as long as health and strength hold out! Life is really precious! Good quote by Emily D. today. I would have LOVED to see that one woman show  of her poetry!===JACK:  As the events of life come upon us (especially the unexpected ones)  we begin to appreciate the "nows" more and more.

Monday, January 14, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/14/19
“If one sticks too rigidly to one’s principles, one would hardly see anybody.”  (Agatha Christie)  Agatha holds the record for the most copies sold of her books,,,over 2 billion…which means you’ve probably read one of them.   A Christie book that intrigues me is called, The Lonely God.  It’s about a god-like statue, tucked away on a museum shelf.  Some lonely people seek help from this God who understands “loneliness.”  What are you seeking from your God?   ;-)  Jack

FROM HAWKEYE GEORGE:  Unearned Salvation. Just accept Him as Lord and Savior. ===JACK:  You write that you are seeking "unearned" salvation, then follow it with "just accept."  Not to disagree...why not say that what I am seeking salvation, and I am amazed that it the free gift of God...and not dependent on what I say or do.  That's the basis of Luther's reformation message.  "It is by grace that we are saved...not by our works."  I'm not criticizing, but only pointing out the danger of making salvation dependent on what we say or do.

FROM SS IN MI:  Good question, usually I am seeking peace.===JACK:  There are different kinds of peace.  Freedom from war; peace in a troubled mind or situation; peace from national strife.  On Sunday, I heard someone say to another parishioner..."Pax vobiscum!"  I don't know if that's still used in the Roman Catholic mass, but it's Latin, for "Peace be with you!"

FROM BS IN ENGLAND:  I guess to walk along side me in all that I do and say!===JACK:  Perhaps you've heard of this spiritual song...
I want Jesus to walk with me
I want Jesus to walk with me
All along my pilgrim journey
I want Jesus to walk with me
In my trial, Lord, walk with me
In my trials, Lord, walk with me
When the shades of life are falling
Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me
In my sorrow, Lord walk with me
In my sorrows, Lord walk with me
When my heart is aching
Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me
In my troubles, Lord walk with me
In my troubles, Lord walk with me
When my life becomes a burden,
Lord, I want Jesus to walk with me

FROM LBP:  It’s taken me to my middle age to be ok boldly being “me.” The other day a friend was stressed out. I had been loving this new Christmas album I was listening to, so we had a spontaneous dance party in her office. We both laughed and got a little of that tension out. My kids think I’m odd but music makes me happy and sometimes you just need to tap or skip or jazz along ... even if it’s at Meijer ;)===JACK:  I have a hard time imagining you as middle-aged...but I don't have trouble imagining spontaneously dancing in an office or anyplace else.  I was in a church recently where dancers came down the aisle with candles to be placed on the Advent wreath.  I don't think of you as being odd...just the best sense of the word.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  Quite amazing that her books are still being bought and read!  still think "Murder on the Orient Express" (1934!) is such a good one,and enjoyed the recent movie  remake of it. "The Mirror Crack'd From Side to Side" in another intriguing one I remember (1964).
Involving a famous actress hosting a party in which a murder is committed.  I enjoy reading in the mystery Genre, Not familiar with The Lonely God, but would guess it is fascinating read!  right now I"m seeking the healing powers of God for my son who had a major heart attack, and watch care for my family! I know God watches over us! As Anne Lamott says, we only need two prayers: Help me, Help me, Help me, and Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!  That about does it, doesn't it??
===JACK:   As you pray and wait for healing, be assured that you are NOT alone.  Family and friends pray and wait beside you...and be comforted by the Word(s) of God: "I will never leave you nor forsake you.  "Our Father who art in heaven...Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven."

FROM TAMPA SHIRL:  Just to enjoy each day-especially since I am getting my stitches removed from my lip by the plastic surgeon!===JACK:  I've heard of a surgeon who prays before any work that he does in the operating room.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  What I would need and what I would want are two different things.  Our God has been very good to us but I could use strength, compassion and less anger.===JACK:  I think that God can help with the strength and compassion.  He might leave it to you with the anger control situation.  Where there's a WILL, there's a way.

Friday, January 11, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/11/19
“Whoever gossips to you will gossip about you.”  (Spanish Proverb)  Martin Luther explained the commandment, “You shall not bear false witness,” by saying:  “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor. ... but defend him, speak well of him, and explain everything in the kindest way,”or, in other words,..Don’t gossip!…Don’t be a blabbermouth! or a dirt-disher! but  rather, deflect the negatives of the gossiper with positives about the gossipee.   ;-)  Jack

 FROM HONEST JOHN:  I love the term "gossippee" is a category that probably includes everyone who has ever lived!===JACK:  I "like" the gossipers in the Music Man, Eulalie and her group of biddies.

Music Man Pick-A-Little Ladies and Quartet - YouTube

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/10/19
“I’d rather look ridiculous when everybody else does than plain and sensible all by myself.”  (L.M. Montgomery--Anne of Green Gables)  My father-in-law would often explain his actions by saying, “I am who I am.”  That expression seems to have its origin from the Bible when God spoke to Moses out of the burning bush, referring to himself as, “I am.”  “I Am” is God!    I have a place in this world, because God has put me here for a reason.  Ridiculous or sensible, I am who I am, because “I Am” has made a place for me.    ;-)  Jack

FROM FACEBOOK LIZ:  i am recklessly sensible at all costs.===JACK:  Yes, it is possible to be reckless and sensible at the same time, just as it is possible to be cautious and foolish at the same time.  Your choice is the better, IMO.

FROM SHALOM JAN:  Also a saying of Popeye!===JACK: Popeye uses, “I yam what I yam” as a description of why he behaves in the manner in which he behaves. He’s saying that such behavior reflects his basic nature..

FROM ST PAUL IN MESA:  a rather profound thought for today,  Jack.  thanks!===JACK:  The profound thought is that...Wherever I am, I AM is with me.

FROM LBP:  Try, “good morning” by Max Frost
Max Frost - Good Morning [Music Video] - YouTube
===JACK:  I like it!

Wednesday, January 09, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/9/19
“Pobody’s nerfect!”  (Eleanor Shellstrop--The Good Place TV Show)  Many people believe that Heaven is where the good go after they die.  Biblically speaking, Eleanor’s right, “There’s none righteous.” (Ps 53).  So, going to Heaven isn’t of our own doing.  It is by the grace of God, thru faith.  If I were a seminary prof, I’d have my students watch The Good Place on Netflix; then write 100 times: “Pobody’s nerfect!” followed by “We are saved by Grace alone, not by works.”    ;-) Jack

FROM JT IN SJ:  I really liked this winning word ===JACK:  Hou yave a bunny fone

.FROM HONEST JOHN:  And that grace is a transforming grace...Rom. 13:2===JACK:  "Change and decay all around, I see.  O Thou who changest not, abide with me."

Monday, January 07, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/7/19
“Old rockin’ chair’s got me, my cane by my side.  I ain’t goin’ nowhere, just sittin’ here grabbin’ at the flies.”  (Hoagy Carmichael)  Great Christmas cards this year!  Beautiful pictures and messages…one even included “rocking chair exercises.”  Yes, you don’t have to invest in a Boflex or NordicTrack.  President JFK eased his back pain by a daily rocking chair routine.  I’ve been told that another good exercise is to get down on your knees to pray.  The hard part comes when you try to get up after the prayer.   ;-)  Jack

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  We love to rock.  We both have Lazy Boy Rocker/Recliners.  A hospice worker who helped with my mom told us they considered the rocker/recliners death chairs.  Most elderly persons who died at home were in them.  I would say they passed away comfortably.  My mom lived in one for about 9 months.  She loved her chair.    As for kneeling, haven’t done that in years....but I would if I could!  There’s something about kneeling and praying that is special.  But God hears them whether you’re kneeling or not!  Thank you God!===JACK:  My Methodist pastor friend has a license plate that reads...GOD ROX.

FROM VK IN MI:  Love all ur messages.  Start the day with them.  Ur message of today is perfect for “seniors “.  Hope all is going well with you ===JACK:  Back pain is a pain at whatever age.  JFK was in his mid-40s when he used rocking chair therapy.

Friday, January 04, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/4/19
“Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience:  this is the ideal life.”  (Mark Twain)
What’s your idea of the ideal life?  Did Mark forget to include good health, plenty of money and a warm climate?  Or, maybe he thought that friends, books and a calm mind counted more!  Try this out on some friends today.  “What’s your idea of the ideal life?”  Any surprises?   ;-)  Jack

 FROM HONEST JOHN:  To know that you are loved...all else falls in place if that is true... ===JACK:  Mark Twain was married to his wife, Olivia. for 34 years, until she died.  How long have you been married?===JOHN:  We have been married for over 45 years...I made it to 34 before I got married...I have been lucky to have been loved for all my someone(s).     Of course, the Love of God is the ultimate for life

FROM QUILTING CAROL:  I truthfully don’t believe there is an ideal life as our lives are so complicated these days.  Maybe in bygone eras people could sit on their porches and visit with neighbors or one another; find time to play games in the evening. I think we need to learn to make time for our spouse, our children, grandchildren, extended family and friends.  To find time to listen to one another, share thoughts and dreams…when do you hear of people talking about their dreams anymore?  We all run around in our little circles of life trying to stay ahead of ‘something’.  I’d love to sit and read good books, do handwork or visit with a family member or friend, but find myself trying to stick to a schedule to stay ahead of what might pop up that needs doing.  Wishing you your ideal day!===JACK:  OK, you've listed some frustrating negatives...Now, look back over the past year and name the blessed times that you've spent with husband, children, grandchildren, friends and even strangers.  Knowing you...there have been those times.  You always seem to make time for those you love.  Ideal doesn't necessarily mean, perfect!===QC:  Yes, there are the positives – quilt retreats with friends, camp with two youngest grandsons in the summer, trip around Lake Superior with Bob this fall, helping our oldest granddaughter make a quilt for her other grandpa as a surprise, spending weekends with our kids, family holiday dinners, the joys of hearing our youngest granddaughter talk about her first teaching position…and some of the bad things that happen with it, hearing the joy in our oldest granddaughter’s voice telling me she got a new job in Duluth and would be moving soon.  I guess I shouldn’t forget the wonderful times, but I guess that I wish there would be more of them!   You mean I can’t have a perfect life???? HA!  Thanks for straightening me out once again!
===JACK:  When your cup overfloweth, maybe it’s time to say, “That’s enough!”  But. That doesn’t seem to be your nature, nor mine.

FROM PASTY PAT:  New Year's blessings, Pastor Freed  --- and thank you for another year of WW. It's one of my "touchstones" when I'm wandering about the world. 2018's travels included a Habitat Build in Portugal, a mission trip to Uganda, and of course the olive harvest in Palestine. Re Mark Twain, I guess I'd substitute "doing some good" or something similar for "a quiet conscience". I'd hate to think I just took up space and used up oxygen and resources while I was here. But I'm having every-other- Sat. coffee with friends today and will ask the question.😊===JACK:  I seem to remember when you made your first trip to Palestine...and what a satisfying adventure it was!  A lot of water has gone under the bridge since that time.  You have no sleepy conscience, that's for sure!
===PAT:  Yes --- no one has been more surprised than I at the ensuing chapters.===JACK:  Amazing things start to happen when God gets involved with your life.

FROM JT IN SJ:  Loved your ww for today  Any surprises???  You tell me!!!  A very very good surprise!😍===JACK:  Last evening daughter J was backing out of the driveway and noticed a lady on the ground two houses down.  She drove over to see what was wrong.  The woman had slipped on the ice, fallen and couldn't get up.  After checking to see if everything was OK, J helped her to her feet, gave her a hug and drove off.===JT:  NI CE.  A Good Samaritan!!===JACK:  Yes, the Good Sam in 21st century garb!

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  I agree that good health and enough money to live comfortably are
essential to enjoying life. Good books, love of family and friends and work to do to make a slight difference in your little corner of the world also are so needed.  We all have made our peace
perhaps in not expecting life to be Perfect...but I'd have to say mine is blessed in many ways!!! So thankful. Happy New Year, Jack, to life "as it is"!!===JACK:  Being able to "move on" is essential, too.

Thursday, January 03, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/3/19
“I haven’t got the slightest idea how to change people, but I still keep a long list of prospective candidates just in case I should figure it out.”  (David Sedaris)  I first heard of Sedaris on NPR.  Funny man!  He had trouble getting thru various colleges; yet, he was asked to be Princeton’s commencement speaker..  Today’s WWs show the edge of his humor.  You might know some “smart” people who don’t necessarily have a fancy degree after their name.   ;-)  Jack

FROM PRAW:  thanks for each of your are smart and you do have a few degrees after your name.Blessings to you.===JACK:  You have the same letters after your name.

FROM OUTHOUSE JUDY:  Imagine that...a list of people to change! I love it and I have a long list too!  Funny!!!===JUDY: Some think that people who has a fascination for privies are funny, too!

FROM DAZ IN CO:  There are some smart people and then there are also some educated people with fancy degrees after their names.===JACK:  I'm glad for the experience of working in a factory where I met some very smart people who learned a lot at the College of Hard Knox.

FROM BLAZING OAKS:  The quirky Sedaris has also written some books; He can get his points
across with humor. As we get older, I think changing ourselves is about all we can handle! :-) ===JACK:  Yes, self change is not easy!

Wednesday, January 02, 2019

Jack’s Winning Words 1/2/19
“New Year’s Resolutions; why we fail in Detroit.”  (Patch Newsletter)  San Francisco comes out 1st in a “success rate” of keeping “resolutions.”  Detroit is 178.  Various factors account for this.  Kinds of food available is one.  Debt affects diet; so does unemployment, smoking and heavy drinking.  No matter the city, resolutions can be kept with a desire for a new life-style.  “I will exercise daily and eat healthy for 45 days!”  Adding a time-line leads to a pattern.   ;-)  Jack