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Mon, Jul 28, 2014
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Poems & Neat Stuff

Poems & Neat Stuff

Malachi 3:3 says:  "He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver."
 
The verse puzzled some women in a bible study and they wondered what this statement meant about the character and nature of God.  One of the women offered to find out the process of refining silver and get back to the group at their next bible study.
 
That week, the woman called a silversmith and made an appointment to watch him at work.  She didn't mention anything about the reason for her interest beyond her curiosity about the process of refining silver.  As she watched the silversmith, he held a piece of silver over the fire and let it heat up.  He explained that in refining silver, one needed to hole the silver in the middle of the fire where the flames were hottest as to burn away all impurities.
 
The woman thought about God holding us in such a hot spot; then she thought again about the verse that says:  "He sits as a refiner and purifier of silver."  She asked the silversmith if it was true that he had to sit there in front of the fire the whole time the silver was being refined.  The man answered that yes, he not only had to sit there holding the silver, but he had to keep his eyes on the solver the entire time it was in the fire.  If the silver was left a moment too long in the flames, it would be destroyed.
 
The woman was silent for a moment.  Then she asked the silversmith, "How do you know when the silver is fully refined?"  He smiled at her and answered, "Oh that's easy - when I see my image in it."

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This is an excerpt from an interview with Rick Warren, author of "Purpose Driven Life." In the
interview by Paul Bradshaw with Rick Warren, Rick said: People ask What is the purpose of life? And I respond: In a nutshell, life is preparation for eternity. We were made to last forever, and God wants us to be with Him in Heaven.

One day my heart is going to stop, and that will be the end of my body-- but not the end of me. I may live 60 to 100 years on earth, but I am going to spend trillions of years in eternity. This is the warm-up act - the dress rehearsal. God wants us to practice on earth what we will do forever in eternity.

We were made by God and for God, and until you figure that out, life isn't going to make sense.

Life is a series of problems: Either you are in one now, you're just coming out of one, or you're getting ready to go into another one. The  reason for this is that God is more interested in your character than your comfort. God is more interested in making your life holy than He is in making your life happy. We can be reasonably happy here on earth, but that's not the goal of life. The goal is to grow in character, in Christ likeness.

This past year has been the greatest year of my life but also the toughest, with my wife, Kay, getting cancer. I used to think that life was hills and valleys - you go through a dark time, then you go to the mountaintop, back and forth. I don't believe that anymore. Rather than life being hills and valleys, I believe that it's kind of like two rails on a railroad track, and at all times you have something good and something bad in your life.

No matter how good things are in your life, there is always something bad that needs to be worked on. And no matter how bad things are in your life, there is always something good you can thank God for.

You can focus on your purposes, or you can focus on your problems. If you focus on your problems, you're going into self-centeredness, "which is my problem, my issues, my pain." But one of the easiest ways to get rid of pain is to get your focus off yourself and onto God and others.

We discovered quickly that in spite of the prayers of hundreds of thousands of people, God was not going to heal Kay or make it easy for her.  It has been very difficult for her, and yet God has strengthened her character, given her a ministry of helping other people, given her a testimony, drawn her closer to Him and to people.

You have to learn to deal with both the good and the bad of life. Actually,sometimes learning to deal with the good is harder. For nstance, this past year, all of a sudden, when the book sold 15  million copies, it made me instantly very wealthy. It also brought a lot of notoriety that I had never had to deal with before. I don't think God gives you money or notoriety for your own ego or for you to live a life of ease.

So I began to ask God what He wanted me to do with this money, notoriety and influence. He gave me two different passages that helped me decide what to do, II Corinthians 9 and Psalm 72.

First, in spite of all the money coming in, we would not change our lifestyle one bit. We made no major purchases. Second, about midway through last year, I stopped taking a salary from the church.

Third, we set up foundations to fund an initiative we call, The Peace Plan to plant churches, equip leaders, assist the poor, care for the sick, and educate the next generation.

Fourth, I added up all that the church had paid me in the 24 years since I started the church, and I gave it all back. It was liberating to be able to serve God for free.

We need to ask ourselves: Am I going to live for possessions? Popularity? Am I going to be driven by pressures? Guilt? Bitterness? Materialism? Or am I going to be driven by God 's purposes (for my life)?

 When I get up in the morning, I sit on the side of my bed and say, God, if I don't get anything else done today, I want to know You more and love You better. God didn't put me on earth just to fulfill a to-do list. He's more interested in what I am than what I do. That's why we're called human beings, not human doings.

Happy moments, PRAISE GOD. Difficult moments, SEEK GOD. Quiet moments, WORSHIP GOD. Painful moments, TRUST GOD. Every moment, THANK GOD.

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Do you know the legend of the Cherokee Indian youth's
rite of passage? His dad takes him into the
forest..blindfolded...and leaves him....alone.

He is required to sit on a stump the whole night
...and
not take off the blindfold until the ray of sun shines
through it. He is all by himself. He cannot cry out
for help to anyone. Once he survives the night..he is
a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this
experience. Each
lad must come into his own manhood.

The boy was terrified...could hear all kinds of
noise...Beasts were all around him. Maybe even some
human would hurt him. The wind blew the grass and
earth... and it shook his stump. But he sat
stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be
the only way he could be a man.

Finally, after a horrific night..the sun appeared and
he removed his blindfold. It was then that he saw his
father..sitting on the stump next to him...at watch...
the entire night.

We are never alone. Even when we do not know it,
our Father is protecting us...He is sitting on the
stump beside us.
              All we have to do is reach out to Him.

How to Stay Young

1. Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height.

2. Keep only cheerful friends. the grouches pull you down. If you really need a grouch, there are probably family members that fill that need.

3. Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Just never let the brain idle.

4. Enjoy the simple things. When the children are young, that is all that you can afford. When they are in college, that is all you can afford. When they are grown, and you are on retirement, that is all that you can afford.

5. Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. Laugh so much that you can be tracked in the store by your distinstive laughter.

6. The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life is ourselves.

7. Surround yourself with what you love, whether it is family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

8. Cherish your health, if it is good, preseerve it. If it is unstable, improve it, if it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

9. Don't take guilt trips. Go to the mall, the next county, a foreign country, but not on a guilt trip.

10. Tell the people you love, that you love them, at every opportunity.

Remember, life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away!
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Instructions for Life

An Honest to Goodness Miracle!
In the 10 Meter Diving Competition, the lone American, Laura Wilkinson (a TEXAS girl!), was not faring all that well. Her 2nd dive out of 5 had her placed # 8, behind a pair of consistent, mechanical Chinese competitors and a pair of equally tough Canadian competitors.

Her 3rd dive took her to # 5 -- and the commentators made note that she would at least have a very slim chance at winning the Bronze Medal -- verrrrrrry slim. They went on to talk about the fact that Laura Wilkinson even being in Sydney was a miracle.

Earlier in the year, Laura Wilkinson broke 3 tiny bones in her foot, making practice absolutely impossible for 6 months. At 22 years of age, her goal, her dream, her entire focus had been on qualifying for the 2000 Olympics.
It looked as though that dream had been dashed.

However, rather than give up, instead of physically practicing her dives, Laura spent countless hours, days and months VISUALIZING her dives. She watched herself on the platform, setting herself, pushing off and diving
through the air, completing series of mid-air, grueling acrobatics and, finally, gliding, seemingly effortlessly, into the water. She practiced day after day in her mind, all the while keeping a positive attitude. And, she saw the job through. In her mind, she would visualize herself winning the Gold . . . on the platform, medal around her neck, the American Flag being raised to the strains of the Star Spangled Banner, tears flowing, bright
smile covering wet cheeks.

Dive #3 -- AWESOME! Beautiful, as close to perfect as possible without nailing it!!! WOW!!! But, it would never be enough to unseat those ahead of her, especially the Chinese who had been trained since early childhood in all the arts that comprise the dive. They were little machines, never flinching, always consistent. Laura Wilkinson, after all, had only taken up diving 6 years before.

Her positive attitude and infectious smile were what the commentators continued to talk about as, one after another, the numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4 competitors took their turns completing beautiful, methodical dives.

There was no way under Heaven that Laura Wilkinson had any chance of accomplishing her goal -- taking home that Gold Medal. But, oh what a great job she had done hanging in there! And through it all, every time the camera caught her, there she was, smiling brightly, holding on to that positive attitude.

Dive #4 -- AWESOME!!! Beautiful, as close to perfect as possible without nailing it!!! WOW!!!!! But, it would take serious mistakes on the parts of every single one of the 4 competitors placed above her to enable her to have any real hope of winning the gold -- and at least 3 of the 4 didn't make mistakes.

Then the most incredible thing happened . . . . one after another, each of the top 4 fell, each fall caused by miscalculations that seemed impossible just moments before.

Before the 5th and final dive, Laura Wilkinson was in the #1 position -- but could she hold it?

There she was, smiling brightly, eyes shining, at the top of the platform. Beaming over to her parents, letting them know through her eyes and her smile, heart-to-heart, how much she loved them. Instead of showing the
enormous pressure any other person would have felt under the circumstances, she stood . . . glowing. As she took in every cheer, every flash, her eyes shone, her smile beamed, her heart was full. She stood there for a few moments, basking in the warmth.

Then, she moved to her position on the platform . . . set her body, her eyes, her mind . . . and dove for the last time in this event.

Another near-perfect dive.

Again, her competition could not withstand the pressure. Again, one after another, they failed to be able to catch her.

Her dream had been realized. Laura Wilkinson had won the Gold.

In an interview afterwards, when asked how she was able to focus so intently on the prize, how she was able to come from so far behind to realize her dream, she quoted through tears, "I can do all things through Christ
which strengthens me." (Phillipians 4:13)

She had a dream.
She had a plan.
She executed on that plan, never for one moment giving up or giving in.
She MADE the dream a reality.
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1. Take into account that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
2. When you lose, don't lose the lesson.
3. Follow the three Rs:
* Respect for self
* Respect for others and
* Responsibility for all your actions.
4. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck.
5. Learn the rules so you know how to break them properly.
6. Don't let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
7. When you realize you've made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
8. Spend some time alone every day.
9. Open your arms to change, but don't let go of your values.
10. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
11. Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you'll be able to enjoy it a second time.
12. A loving atmosphere in your home is the foundation for your life.
13. In disagreements with loved ones, deal only with the current situation. Don't bring up the past.
14. Share your knowledge. It's a way to achieve immortality.
15. Be gentle with the earth.
16. Once a year, go someplace you've never been before.
17. Remember that the best relationship is one in which your love for each other exceeds your need for each other.
18. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
19. Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon.

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'You horsey people are quite mad', I hear from many sources.
No lunch in town, followed by a shopping spree,
But cheese on toast, made in haste, is lunch for you and me.
But those who never rise at dawn to hear that friendly neigh,
Nor ride across the emerald turf upon a summer day,
Will never share the joy on the day a foal is born,
Nor experience the thrill of the First String out at dawn.
Our protégées we watch until the time of their first show,
Perhaps we are just slightly mad but they will never know,
The smell of hay, a stable warm, a friend at rest and play,
Perchance to dream and fall in love with chestnut, black or bay.

From "Ponies and Dreams"
By Mary Lascelles

 
THE PRESENT

Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them--work, family, health, friends and spirit and you’re keeping all of these in the air.

You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls--family, health, friends and spirit are made of glass. If you drop one of these they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same.

You must understand that and strive for balance in your life. HOW? Don’t undermine your worth by comparing yourself with others. It is because we are different that each of us is special. Don’t set your goals by what other people deem important. Only YOU know what is best for you.

Don’t take for granted the things closest to your heart. Cling to them as you would your life, for without them, life is meaningless. Don’t let your life slip through your fingers by living in the past or for the future. By living your life one day at a time you live ALL the days of your life. Don’t give up when you still have something to give. Nothing is really over until the moment you stop trying. Don’t be afraid to admit that you are less than perfect. It is this fragile tread that binds us each together.

Don’t be afraid to encounter risks. It is by taking chances that we learn how to be brave. Don’t shut love out of your life by saying it’s impossible to find. The quickest way to receive love is to give; the fastest way to lose love is to hold it too tightly; and the best way to keep love is to give it wings. Don’t run through life so fast that you forget not only where you’ve been, but also where you’re going.

Don’t forget that a person’s greatest emotional need is to feel appreciated. Don’t be afraid to learn. Knowledge is weightless, a treasure you can always carry easily. Don’t use time or words carelessly. Neither can be retrieved. Life is not a race, but a journey to be savored each step of the way. Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery and Today is a gift:

That is why we call it--The Present.

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Thoughts on Progress:
It is the greatest of all mistakes to do nothing because you can only do a
little. Do what you can. Sydney Smith (1771-1845) Clergyman writer

Do not fear going forward slowly; fear only to stand still.
Chinese Proverb
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The wind of heaven is that which blows between a horse's ears.
....Arabian proverb
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"NEVER underestimate the initiative,drive, determination, creativity, and
sheer persistence of HORSE-CRAZY CHILDREN!"
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Many people will walk in and out of your life, but only true friends will leave footprints in your heart.
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Helpful Hints:
*Apply a clean, sterilized gauze pad dipped in cold milk to itchy, flaky skin.
*Got a screw loose? A squirt of vinegar or hydrogen peroxide will loosen a rusty screw, bolt, or nut.
*Dab just a few drops of your favorite essential oil on a cotton sock and toss it in the dryer with your sheets and towels. Lavender helps induce slumber; peppermint is refreshing and revitalizing.
*Homemade ice pack - Fill a zipper-type plastic freezer bag halfway with 3 parts of water and 1 part rubbing alcohol. Seal the bag and put it inside another freezer bag, then into the freezer. The alcohol keeps the liquid from solidifying so the bag can be molded to the injured body part.
* Use mini marshmallows as a candleholder on a birthday cake. The marshmallows keep the candle wax from dripping onto the icing.
-Got a stubborn string knot? (shoelace, thread, etc.) ? Dust that stubborn knot with talcum powder...it will easily come undone.
*************************************

THE HORSE'S PRAYER
To Thee Master I offer my prayer; Feed me, water and care for me, and when the day's work is done, provide me with shelter, a clean dry bed and a stall wide enough for me to lie down in comfort.

Always be kind to me. Talk to me, for your voice often means as much to me as the reins. Pet me sometimes, that I may serve you the more gladly and learn to love you. Do not jerk the reins, and do not whip me when going uphill. Never strike, beat or kick me when I do not understand what you want, but give me a chance to understand you. Watch me, and if I fail to do your bidding, see if something is wrong with my harness or feet.

I cannot tell you when I am thirsty so give me clean, cool water often. I cannot tell you in words when I am sick, so watch me, that by signs you may know my condition. Give me all possible shelter from the hot sun, and put a blanket on me, not when I am working, but when standing in the cold. Never put a frosty bit in my mouth; first warm it by holding a moment in your hands.

I try to carry you and your burdens without a murmur, and wait patiently for you long hours of the day or night. Without the power to choose
my shoes or path, I sometimes fall on the hard pavements which I have often prayed might be of such a nature as to give me a safe and sure footing. Remember that I must be ready at any moment to lose my life in your service.

And finally, O Master, when my useful strength is gone, do not turn me out to starve or freeze, or sell me to some cruel owner to be slowly tortured or starved to death; but do thou, my Master, take my life in the kindest way. And your God will reward you here and hereafter. You will not consider me irreverent if I ask this in the name of Him who was born in a stable. Amen.

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THE LESSON

The haul to Cadiz went well, didn’t even see a deer,
Am nervous about the lesson, what am I doing here?

Wish I could have done this years ago, I’m so far behind,
But the instructor is most patient, knowledgeable and kind.

As the lesson progresses both mind and body are fast becoming confused,
I forget to breathe, can squeeze no more, my knees are feeling abused.

"Look up! Soft hands! Move on! More leg!", I hear the instructor cry,
"Just a few more rounds to get it right!". Oh lord, I’m going to die!

Don’t stop, feel that, that’s it, he’s doing it right.
See the bend of his neck, feel his trot, it’s becoming airy and light.

I’m huffing and puffing, my legs are jelly, I can barely stay on top,
But also am filled with elation, so excited I could pop.

We take a break to catch my breath, to enjoy a friendly banter
When suddenly my calm is shattered by the dreaded word ‘CANTER’.

I can do this, I can do this, is all I can fervently pray.
He moves so big and strong, it takes my breath away.

Sit back and enjoy it and relax, I hear the slave master call,
As I think, don’t let him go faster, don’t let him stumble, don’t let me fall!

Through the tired, confused haze, it starts fitting together, we’re becoming one
And in spite of the weariness and frustration, it’s also becoming fun.

Soon it’s time to head home, am beginning to see the light
So we’ll make the trek to Cadiz until we get it right.

by Jenny Wood
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The Horse's Own Dictionary:

Arena: Place where humans can take the fun out of forward motion.

Bit: Means by which a rider's every motion is transmitted to the
extremely sensitive tissues of the mouth.

Bucking: counterirritant
 
Crossties: Gymnastic apparatus.

Dressage: Process by which some riders can eventually be taught to
respect the bit.

Fence: Barrier that protects good grazing.

Grain: sole virtue of domestication.

Hitching rail: Means by which to test one's strength.

Horse trailer: Mobile cave bear den.

Jump: An opportunity for self-expression.

Latch: Type of puzzle.

Longeing: Procedure for keeping a prospective rider at bay.

Owner: Human assigned responsibility for one's feeding.

Rider: Owner overstepping its bounds.

Farrier: Disposable surrogate owner useful for acting out aggression
without compromising food supply.

Trainer: Owner with mob connections.

Veterinarian: Flightless albino vulture.

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Thought for the day:
"No one can teach riding better than the horse"

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The following poem is dedicated to the memory of Kris Gavitt's horse, Apollo:

N'er was there a finer steed
Than the horse named for a God
Apollo served his mistress well
As she sat proud above.

A halt at C, a jump or two,
The task it mattered not,
The twinkle in his big, kind eye
A smile it always brought.

To the fair haired girl who sat astride
The horse with a heart of gold
She brushed & toyed & whispered dreams
To the horse in the days of old.

Through field & stream, over hill & dale
He carried her with grace
A loyal friend, a gift from above
In her heart he will keep a place.

Running free or paired as one
He filled her days with love
Now he shines once again
As he rests with God above.

As he babysits the fields of foals
And romps in heaven's green
Apollo will always keep his eye on you, Kris,
For that is where his heart has always been.

author,
Elizabeth Englert

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This is an excerpt from "Chicken Soup for the Soul":
HEART OF A CHAMPION

Though it’s been years since his racing career ended, Niatross is still a
powerful horse. Taller than most men, he weighs half a ton, with a broad chest and chiseled muscles that ripple under a rich bronze coat.

A racing legend, the champion Standardbred racehorse won 37 of 39 races in 1979-80 and over a million dollars. No horse could pass him once he got the lead.

In 1996, when he was 19 years old, Niatross made a 20-city tour across North America. For 16 years, Niatross had done little more than romp in his paddock and munch hay and oats. Now he’d have a rock star’s schedule, with press conferences and photographers in every city, a strange stall to sleep in and thousands of fans wanting to pet and fuss over him. As his tour manager, I traveled with him.

Niatross greeted fans from Maine to Illinois, in big cities and county fairs, in scorching heat and chilly winds. Niatross endured it all with grace and almost eerie intelligence. He was always able to sense what was expected of him and do it.

One night in Buffalo, New York, Niatross pawed and stomped his feet as he waited for his cue to pace down the racetrack for a photo session. The big horse, in his impatience, reared up on his hind legs, pulling his handler, a 6’6" man, off his feet, before lunging on to the track. But the outburst was over quickly and soon he stood to be photographed, once again the obliging star.

After his track appearance, Chris, his handler, unharnessed Niatross and brushed his lustrous coat. As the two rounded the corner from the barn to the grandstand where a crowd of fans waited, Niatross rolled his eyes and stopped in his tracks, as if to say, "Oh, no. I have to do this again?" But with a gentle tug on the lead rope, Niatross moved ahead to take his place of honor.

For two hours, he was petted, stroked, prodded and swooned over. I was silently thanking Niatross for another night of patience with us when out of the corner of my eye, I saw a moving, buzzing blur zipping across the
pavement toward Niatross. As it drew closer, I could see that the blur was a child in an electric wheelchair. The child had his chair going full throttle and before I could caution him not to scare Niatross, he came to an abrupt halt under the horse’s nose, mere inches from his powerful front legs.

Clearly startled, but maintaining his poise, Niatross widened his eyes and craned his neck to peer down at the tiny blonde boy, who was around five years old and looked like a doll in the heavy, motorized chair. I said hello to the child, who perhaps because of his handicap, was unable to speak. The fingers of his right hand were clutched around a button that propelled his chair; the fingers on the left hand were frozen around a Niatross poster. He looked at me intently, his eyes burning a hole through my face.

THE SMILE
I am a mother of three (ages 14, 12, 3) and have recently completed my college degree. The last class I had to take was Sociology. The teacher was absolutely inspiring with the qualities that I wish every human being had been graced with. Her last project of the term was called "Smile." The class was asked to go out and smile at three people and document their reactions. I am a very friendly person and always smile at everyone and say hello anyway, so, I thought, this would be a piece of cake, literally.

Soon after we were assigned the project, my husband, youngest son, and I went out to McDonald's one crisp March morning. It was just our way of sharing special playtime with our son. We were standing in line, waiting to be served, when all of a sudden everyone around us began to back away, and then even my husband did. I did not move an inch...an overwhelming feeling of panic welled up inside of me as I turned to see why they had moved.

As I turned around I smelled a horrible "dirty body" smell, and there standing behind me were two poor homeless men. As I looked down at the short gentleman, close to me, he was "smiling." His beautiful sky blue eyes were full of God's Light as he searched for acceptance. He said, Good day" as he counted the few coins he had been clutching.

The second man fumbled with his hands as he stood behind his friend. I realized the second man was mentally deficient and the blue-eyed gentleman was his salvation. I held my tears as I stood there with them.

The young lady at the counter asked him what they wanted. He said, "Coffee is all, Miss" because that was all they could afford. (If they wanted to sit in the restaurant and warm up, they had to buy something. He just wanted to be warm.)

Then I really felt it - the compulsion was so great I almost reached out and embraced the little man with the blue eyes. That is when I noticed all eyes in the restaurant were set on me, judging my every action. I smiled and asked the young lady behind the counter to give me two more breakfast meals on a separate tray. I then walked around the corner to the table that the men had chosen as a resting spot. I put the tray on the table and laid my hand on the blue eyed gentleman's cold hand. He looked up at me, with tears in his eyes, and said, "Thank you." I leaned over, began to pat his hand and said, "I did not do this for you. God is here working through me to give you hope."

I started to cry as I walked away to join my husband and son. When I> sat down my husband smiled at me and said, "That is why God gave you to me, Honey. To give me hope." We held hands for a moment and at that time we knew that only because of the Grace that we had been given were we able to give. We are not churchgoers, but we are believers. That day showed me the pure light of God's sweet love.

I returned to college, on the last evening of class, with this story in hand. I turned in "my project" and the instructor read it. Then she looked up at me and said, "Can I share this?" I slowly nodded as she got the attention of the class. She began to read and that is when I knew that we, as human beings and being part of God, share this need to heal people and be healed. In my own way I had touched the people at McDonald's, my husband, son, instructor, and every soul that shared the classroom on the last night I spent as a college student. I graduated with one of the biggest lessons I would ever learn: UNCONDITIONAL ACCEPTANCE.

Much love and compassion are sent to each and every person who may read this and learn how to LOVE PEOPLE AND USE THINGS - NOT LOVE THINGS AND USE PEOPLE.
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DRINKING FROM MY SAUCER
I’ve never made a fortune
and it’s probably too late now.
But I don’t worry about that much,
I’m happy anyhow.
And as I go along life’s way,
I’m reaping better than I sowed.
I’m drinking from my saucer,
‘cause my cup has overflowed.

Haven’t got a lot of riches,
and sometimes the going’s tough.
But I’ve got loving ones around me,
and that makes me rich enough.
I thank God for his blessings,
and the mercies He’s bestowed.
I’m drinking from my saucer,
‘cause my cup has overflowed.

I remember times when things went wrong,
my faith wore somewhat thin.
But all at once the dark clouds broke,
and sun peeped through again.
So Lord, help me not to gripe
about the tough rows that I’ve hoed.
I’m drinking from my saucer,
‘cause my cup has overflowed.

If God gives me strength and courage,
when the way grows steep and rough,
I’ll not ask for other blessings;
I’m already blessed enough.
And may I never be too busy,
to help others bear their loads.
Then I’ll keep drinking from my saucer,
‘cause my cup has overflowed.

TIME GETS BETTER WITH AGE
Read it through to the end, it gets better as you go!

I've learned that I like my teacher because she cries
when we sing "Silent Night".
Age 5

I've learned that our dog doesn't want to eat my
broccoli either.
Age 7

I've learned that when I wave to people in the
country, they stop what they are doing and wave back.
Age 9

I've learned that just when I get my room the way I
like it, Mom makes me clean it up again.
Age 12

I've learned that if you want to cheer yourself up,
you should try cheering someone else up.
Age 14

I've learned that although it's hard to admit it, I'm
secretly glad my parents are strict with me.
Age 15

I've learned that silent company is often more healing
than words of advice.
Age 24

I've learned that brushing my child's hair is one of
life's great pleasures.
Age 26

I've learned that wherever I go, the world's worst
drivers have followed me there.
Age 29

I've learned that if someone says something unkind
about me, I must live so that no one will believe it.
Age 30

I've learned that there are people who love you dearly
but just don't know how to show it.
Age 42

I've learned that you can make someone's day by simply
sending them a little note.
Age 44

I've learned that the greater a person's sense of
guilt, the greater his or her need to cast blame on
others.
Age 46

I've learned that children and grandparents are
natural allies.
Age 47

I've learned that no matter what happens, or how bad
it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better
tomorrow.
Age 48

I've learned that singing "Amazing Grace" can lift my
spirits for hours.
Age 49

I've learned that motel mattresses are better on the
side away from the phone.
Age 50

I've learned that you can tell a lot about a man by
the way he handles these three things: a rainy day,
lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.
Age 51

I've learned that keeping a vegetable garden is worth
a medicine cabinet full of pills.
Age 52

I've learned that regardless of your relationship with
your parents, you miss them terribly after they die.
Age 53

I've learned that making a living is not the same
thing as making a life.
Age 58

I've learned that if you want to do something positive
for your children, work to improve your marriage.
Age 61

I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second
chance.
Age 62

I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a
catchers mitt on both hands. You need to be able to
throw something back.
Age 64

I've learned that if you pursue happiness, it will
elude you. But if you focus on your family, the needs
of others, your work, meeting new people, and doing
the very best you can, happiness will find you.
Age 65

I've learned that whenever I decide something with
kindness, I usually make the right decision.
Age 66

I've learned that everyone can use a prayer.
Age 72

I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have
to be one.
Age 82

I've learned that every day you should reach out and
touch someone. People love that human touch -- holding
hands, a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.

Age 90

I've learned that I still have a lot to learn.
Age 92

I've learned that you should pass this on to someone
you care about. Sometimes they just need a little
something to make them smile.

May your angels always watch over you!!!!!!!!!!
~Author unknown
----------------------------------------
THE WOODEN BOWL
A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year old grandson. The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered. The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor. When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. "We must do something about Grandfather," said the son. I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.

So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner. There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner. Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl.

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