Growing together in the Spirit of Jesus Christ...

"Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another - and all the more as you see the Day approaching." - Hebrews 10:25 NIV

Friday, August 31, 2012

repeat performance...


repeat performance

No matter how well you cultivate
a new, good habit, there are times when
an old habit, from a time
of cultivating gone by,
once again makes an appearance.


Be careful that you plant and cultivate
only good habits.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

nothing hidden...


nothing hidden


A friend once said to me...
“I believe in God and Heaven but
I am going to have a lot of questions
once I get there.”


I think that is probably true for all of us.

And as the one allergy medicine
says about being “Claritin clear”,
things will become, for us, Heavenly clear.



For there is nothing hidden that shall not be disclosed,
nor anything secret that shall not be known
and come out into the open.”

- Luke 8:17 AMP

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

prayer...


prayer
photo by Lee Keefer


Snail mail, email, telephone,
skype, facetime, whatever...
none of these forms of communication
are as fast, reliable, or carry
the promise of eternal blessings...
as prayer to God,
our Heavenly Father.


“The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous
and his ears are attentive to their cry.”

- Psalm 34:15 NIV

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

relaxing with friends...


relaxing with friends
(a multitude of blessings)
photo by Lee Keefer

In everyone's life, at some time,
our inner fire goes out.
It is then burst into flame by
an encounter with another human being.
We should all be thankful for those people
who rekindle the inner spirit.”

- Albert Schweitzer


The man [or woman] who doesn't relax
and hoot a few hoots voluntarily,
now and then,
is in great danger of hooting hoots
and standing on his [her] head
for the edification of the pathologist
and trained nurse, a little later on.”

- Elbert Hubbard

Monday, August 27, 2012

young as your hope...


young as your hope
photo by Lee Keefer

Yesterday I turned 67...
a reminder that I am getting old.


However, I am not giving up.
Lots of dreams to fulfill
and projects to complete.

Nobody grows old merely
by living a number of years.
We grow old by deserting our ideals.
Years may wrinkle the skin,
but to give up enthusiasm
wrinkles the soul.”

- Samuel Ullman
 

“You are as young as your faith,
as old as your doubt;
as young as your self-confidence,
as old as your fear;
as young as your hope,
as old as your despair.

- Douglas MacArthur

Sunday, August 26, 2012

do not swerve...


do not swerve
photo by Lee Keefer


Do not swerve to the right or the left;
keep your foot from evil.”

- Proverbs 4:27 NIV

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Oh my!


photo by Lee Keefer

Lions, and tigers,
and bears! Oh, my!”

- Dorothy
(The Wizard of Oz)


It is curious that physical courage
should be so common in the world
and moral courage so rare.”

- Mark Twain

Friday, August 24, 2012

miracle of joyful living...



miracle of joyful living


I brought this
hummingbird feeder
last Christmas.
Seems like none
have yet partaken
of its sweetness.


Perhaps it needs to be moved
to a new location.


The ruby-throated hummingbird
is a wonder of migration.
Every winter it makes an amazing journey.
Some have been known to make
a journey of 2500 miles or more,
from Alaska to Central America.
Because of it, the hummingbird
is a symbol for accomplishing that
which seems impossible.
It will teach you how to find
the miracle of joyful living
from your own life circumstances.”

- Ted Andrews

Thursday, August 23, 2012

the way we were...


the way we were
43 years ago today

photo by Kitchen Studio


An anniversary is a time to celebrate
the joys of today,
the memories of yesterday,
and the hopes of tomorrow.”

- Author Unknown

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

316


316

About a mile from where we live,
on the way to our daughter's house,
is this address.



The house is on a rather sharp
turn in the road.

It is a reminder
that anyone can turn their life around
by accepting salvation
through the Lord Jesus Christ.



"For God so loved the world
that he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him
shall not perish but have eternal life.”

- John 3:16 NIV

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

preaching...


preaching

While taking some photos
of the evening primrose
I came across this discarded
partially eaten apple in the weeds.


Go to the ant, you sluggard;
consider its ways and be wise!”
- Proverbs 6:6 NIV

None preaches better than the ant,
and she says nothing”

- Benjamin Franklin

Monday, August 20, 2012

guardrails...


guardrail
(a barrier protecting against an area of danger)


Our pastor, this last Sunday,
gave an excellent sermon on
“Guardrails (direct and protect)”.

His definition of guardrail
as it pertains to us...
“A personal standard of behavior
that becomes a matter of conscience.”

We have a tendency to try to get
as close to sin without sinning.

If we do not heed to the warnings
we have a real danger of
losing control which leads to disaster.

We must embrace God's will for our lives
by establishing our own personal guardrails
and listen to our conscience via
the Holy Spirits guidance.

Stay away from places and things
where temptation will be strong.

Let our guardrails show us
and remind us of areas
where we do not want to go.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

who so hopes...


who so hopes
(evening primrose)


"Hope is the companion of power,
and mother of success;
for who so hopes strongly
has within him the gift of miracles."

- Samuel Smiles

Saturday, August 18, 2012

exercise...


exercise


I haven't ridden a bicycle in years.
However I do exercise by walking,
if not outside, on a treadmill.

Watching your diet is important,
but exercise is just as important...
if not more so.

Regular, moderate exercise
has multiple benefits...
for the mind and the spirit...
as well as for the body.

My dad used to say...“Physical activity is the best mental rest.”


Physical fitness is not only one
of the most important keys to a healthy body,
it is the basis of dynamic and
creative intellectual activity.”

- John F. Kennedy
I thought of that while riding my bicycle.”
- Albert Einstein
(on the Theory of Relativity)

Friday, August 17, 2012

Le Sorelle...


Le Sorelle
(Mt. Gretna, PA)

This is a wonderful place to have breakfast.



I love the french toast using homemade
wheat bread covered with fresh peaches
and sweet cream. Yummm!

And wash that down with a great mug or two
of fresh brewed coffee...

The atmosphere of the surrounding art gallery
in this rustic setting makes it even more “sweet”.

One of the symptoms of some disease
is the loss of appetite.
I think my wife would agree...
if I ever lose my appetite,
some thing is seriously wrong with me.

However... a word to the wise...

Always rise from the table with an appetite,
and you will never sit down without one.”

- Hotace Greeley

Thursday, August 16, 2012

treasures...


treasures


No matter how much you care for, love,
or treasure something on this earth...
well, you know...
you can't take it with you.


Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth,
where moth and rust destroy,
and where thieves break in and steal.
20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven,
where moth and rust do not destroy,
and where thieves do not break in and steal.
21For where your treasure is,
there your heart will be also.”

- Matthew 6:19-21 NIV

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

beware...


beware

I was admiring some black-eyed susans
and other flowers outside a gift shop
in Mt. Gretna, PA about a week ago,
when I spied this insect, flexing
its forelimbs, in the very center
of one of the blooms.

It brought to mind that something
of great beauty may also contain
the element of danger.

The flower is made to attract
pollinators and this creature
was making use of the flowers attraction
to capture the unwary.

be vigilant and cautious at all times;
for that enemy of yours, the devil,
roams around like a lion roaring in fierce hunger,
seeking someone to seize upon and devour.”

- 1 Peter 5:8 AMP

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

bugging you?


bugging you

Is there a sin that is really bugging you...
one you just can't overcome?

First off... if it is bugging you,
then the Holy Spirit
is working within you.
To recognize it as a sin,
and the fact that you want to
overcome it, is the first step
toward healing.

Beyond that is required perseverance
in prayer, digesting the Word,
and allowing yourself to be picked up
when you stumble again.

And most important of all...
thanking God for your salvation
through His son, Jesus Christ.

Trust in Him... he wants what
is best for your life,
and He will prevail.

Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial,
because when he has stood the test,
he will receive the crown of life
that God has promised to those who love him.”

- James 1:12 NIV

Monday, August 13, 2012

trinity of cats...


trinity of cats
(united)

Our cats were visited yesterday
by a neighbor's cat.

These three made a united front
to protect their territory.

We also must present a united front
against the darkness of the world.

"To gather with God's people
in united adoration of the Father
is as necessary to the Christian life as prayer.”
- Martin Luther

Sunday, August 12, 2012

light your world...


light your world

There is a candle in every soul
Some brightly burning, some dark and cold
There is a Spirit who brings fire
Ignites a candle and makes His home

Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the hopeless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world

Frustrated brother, see how he's tried to
Light his own candle some other way
See now your sister, she's been robbed and lied to
Still holds a candle without a flame
Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the lonely, the tired and worn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world

We are a family whose hearts are blazing
So let's raise our candles and light up the sky
Praying to our Father, in the name of Jesus
Make us a beacon in darkest times

Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the helpless, deceived and poor
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world

Carry your candle, run to the darkness
Seek out the hopeless, confused and torn
Hold out your candle for all to see it
Take your candle, and go light your world
Take your candle, and go light your world”

- Go Light Your World

Saturday, August 11, 2012

balance...


balance
Man maintains his balance, poise,
and sense of security
only as he is moving forward.”

-Maxwell Maltz

Friday, August 10, 2012

reflection...


reflection

People travel to wonder
at the height of the mountains,
at the huge waves of the sea,
at the long courses of rivers,
at the vast compass of the ocean,
at the circular motion of the stars;
and they pass by themselves
without wondering.”

-St. Augustine


Retire into yourself as much as possible.
Associate with people
who are likely to improve you.
Welcome those whom you are capable of improving.
The process is a mutual one.
People learn as they teach.”

-Seneca

Thursday, August 9, 2012

humility?


Willow
(The Matriarch)

Solomon, in the Bible,
was perhaps one of the greatest kings
of all time. Here was a man of
exceptional wisdom... one which
the kings of surrounding nations
very much wanted to visit
and learn from.

Yet, in front of thousands,
he humbled himself by kneeling
down to the Lord and giving Him thanks
and asking for His continued guidance.

Oh for such a wise leader today...
one that believes, upholds, and follows
America's motto of “In God We Trust”.

It begins with us...
utilizing control of self
and putting “our” faith in the Lord.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

perception...


perception

It is one of the commonest of mistakes
to consider that the limit
of our power of perception
is also the limit of all there is to perceive.”

- C. W. Leadbeater

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

conflict...


conflict
Conflict is inevitable, but combat is optional.”
- Max Lucade

Monday, August 6, 2012

look up...


look up


God didn't promise days without pain,
laughter without sorrow, sun without rain,
but He did promise strength for the day,
comfort for the tears, and light for the way.”

- Author Unknown


And when it rains on your parade,
look up rather than down.
Without the rain,
there would be no rainbow.”

- Gilbert K. Chesterton

Sunday, August 5, 2012

broken...


broken

Until you're broken,
you don't know what you're made of.
It gives you the ability
to build yourself all over again,
but stronger than ever.”

- Author Unknown

Saturday, August 4, 2012

coffee and conscience...


a favorite place to get coffee

I am perhaps one of those very few people
that can drink caffeinated coffee all day,
even late in the day, and still sleep soundly.


"Conscience keeps more people awake than coffee."
- Author Unknown

Friday, August 3, 2012

rewards of the simple life...


rewards of the simple life


To find the universal elements enough;
to find the air and the water exhilarating;
to be refreshed by a morning walk
or an evening saunter;
to be thrilled by the stars at night;
to be elated over a bird's nest
or a wildflower in spring -
these are some of the rewards
of the simple life.”

- John Burroughs

Thursday, August 2, 2012

catnaps...


catnaps

If it is one thing I have learned from our cats,
it is the value of an afternoon catnap.

Now these felines excel at the
fine art of pure relaxation.


No day is so bad it can't be fixed with a nap.”
- Carrie Snow

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

OH GREAT! (grate)



OH GREAT! (grate)

There are two of these storm drains
directly outside our home...
one on either side of the road.

Along with performing their essential duty
they also act like collectors of debris.

It is amazing how fast these drains
clog with leaves, twigs, grass, etc.
The worse is when we get heavy,
long lasting rain throughout the night.

Awakening to a river of water
flowing down the driveway toward the garage
and a flooded street is a real mess.

Removing the debris from under all that water
isn't any fun either particularly when it is still
raining heavily.

Forewarned, a little work now
can save a major cleanup later.


As my dad used to say (quoting Ben Franklin),
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

And don't forget your prayers...

Therefore let everyone who is godly pray to you
while you may be found;
surely when the mighty waters rise,
they will not reach him.
You are my hiding place;
you will protect me from trouble
and surround me with songs of deliverance.”

- Psalm 32:6,7 NIV