LET IT GO DAY

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There seems to be a holiday for everything, if you go on the internet.  In fact today is “Let It Go Day.  I’m not sure when it originated, but the movie FROZEN certainly took off on it.

We as human beings tend to hang on to things – not only material stuff, but mental baggage that weighs us down much more than anything tangible.  We can become victims of this horrible dilemma, if we continue to dwell on past mistakes, words misspoken or deeds unconsciously done.  I think a more reasonable word for this is called guilt.

Guilt can eat away at us, often more so than the deed itself.  I spent much of my childhood believing that I would never amount to anything.  So many wasted years, because there really was no reason for those feelings. Much of it was self-inflicted.  Some of it was caused by words used by my dad, which cut deeply into my psyche.  However, he had his own demons to deal with.

I grew up in a legalistic church which preached death and damnation (which is all I heard) but the message of the Gospel was clouded by my images of rotting in hell.  With each year of my life, the weight of all that guilt became intolerable.

When the truth of the love of God was finally revealed to me in truth, it was as if all the heaviness vanished.  Much of our guilt is a result of our upbringing, our surroundings, the people we associate with and a warped opinion of God’s anger.

We definitely need to stand in awe of our Creator, but we shouldn’t be afraid of Him.  He welcomes the greatest of sinners into His waiting arms.  Run to Him for comfort.  Let it go!

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WHERE DO YOU PRAY?

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Is it in the quiet, stillness of the morning or when the evening comes?  Is it in a closet full of shoes and boxes that words of solace, supplication, praise and thanksgiving spill from your lips?  Do you pray when you first awake, or when you end your day?  Do you pray when you think about it, or when your heart is full of questions and doubts?  Are your prayers directed to the Creator of the Universe, or merely problems you’re trying to muddle through on your own?

Prayer is a very personal thing, in my opinion.  Asking, searching, quietness, peace, anger, guilt, hopelessness, anxiety are things we face on a daily basis.  These are things we often have no control over and we need help to overcome them.  Jesus spoke a lot about prayer in His ministry, but I love the comparison He gave when he spoke of knocking on the door.

There is a natural wall between us and God.  A wall which we constructed through our original sin as well as our disobedience.  For us to approach the throne of God, the barricade needs someone to tear it down.  Jesus did that when He took the weight of sin upon His own shoulders and carried it to the cross.  Because of that, we have a direct line to the Father.

We can pray while driving our cars, playing with our children, walking with our spouse, in our beds, on the floor.  We don’t need a special place to communicate with God.  He is everywhere and is available 24/7.  Sometimes we need the trappings of a sanctuary – a beautiful church – a small chapel, but God is not confined to those places.  We can go to Him in the beauty of nature, the busyness of daily life, the turmoil of a storm.  He will always be there.

Knock on the door by reaching your hand towards it. God wants us to talk to Him and He can’t wait to hear from us.  He loves us more than we can possibly imagine.  Don’t wait until things are out of control.   Remember too that God can understand even the feeblest of our prayers.  He has the power to translate groans when we don’t know what to say.  Just do it – PRAY!

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THE PLEIN AIR ARTIST

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ORIGINAL ART & POETRY BY PAUL T. & KATHY BOECHER©

The artist follows a journey of his own making,

Travelling down a road less wandered,

Trying to catch the light,

Searching desperately,

For the right subject matter,

A vagabond living in the moment,

On an expedition,

An adventure,

An unexplored trail,

He sets his easel,

Makes ready his paint,

A virtual studio out of the back of his truck,

He attaches a canvas, fills his palette with color,

And waits,

For just the right light,

The right glisten of the water,

The perfect stillness and mood,

And then it begins.

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WRITERS’ FUNNIES

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JULIE’S FRIDAY FUNNY

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REMEMBER WHEN?

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I think every generation considers the “good old days” as their times growing up and as young adults.  George Washington undoubtedly preferred remembering the days when he was cutting down cherry trees more than his time leading a fledgling country out of a revolution and building what is now America.  On the other hand, he would probably be rolling over in his grave (if that’s possible) if he knew what has happened to the country since it’s beginnings.

The older we get, the more we seem to dwell on the past.  We reminisce about how much better things were when we were kids.  We believe that particular juncture in time was perfect, but not so.  For example when I was growing up in the 40s and 50s, we had no clue about global warming or the internet.  Our lives were simpler then.  Kids played in the street – we didn’t lock our doors – we ate dirt – we recycled before it was popular,

BUT it also was a time right after a world war and during the Korean War .  The atomic bomb was a real threat.  Air raid drills were held in our schools.  Many were building bomb shelters in their backyards.  The economy was still in a state of recovery.  We wore second hand clothes and shoes.  Our food was home made and consisted of starchy things like pasta to fill us up. We never knew about the ill effects of gluten. We never thought of paying $50 bucks for a pair of old, torn blue jeans and we were lucky if we got a pair of new shoes when school started –  but. I digress.

The truth is, every decade has its good and bad memories.  One of the blessings God has given me is the ability to forget the bad things that have happened in my life.  I’ve been able to tuck the icky stuff into the back of my brain.  Maybe that’s why I have such weird dreams, but I digress again.

What I’m trying to say is this – Looking back is a good thing, but looking forward is even better.  We, as Christians, have been promised a perfect life in eternity after our death.  How great is that?  We will some day be in the paradise that God originally planned for us.  We will have all our teeth – healthy bodies – no sorrows or tears – our joy will be overflowing.  So without hesitation we can say “Throw every day forward!”

 

Hebrews 10:17 “I will remember their sins and their lawless deeds no more.”

 

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ALONE

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ORIGINAL ART & INSPIRATION BY PAUL & KATHY BOECHER©

Gentle waves lap up against the base of this bastion,

It seems to be going nowhere – stalled,

Sun blazes down,

Creating reflections of a past life,

A life filled with good times.

Rain beats against it,

Destroying any semblance of glory,

Cold and snow integrate into its space,

It stands alone,

Steadfastly it has stood the test of time,

Diligently it holds sway again adversity,

It is no longer filled with laughter and joy,

It sleeps alone,

Within the confines of a relentless river,

This old haven of delight,

Now fades into oblivion,

It lives alone,

Never to feel the caress of that raging water,

Never to feel the gentle tug of the current,

Never to dance with the sky and waltz with the wind,

It waits alone,

Never to rush through the torrential waves,

To feel life surging through each ripple,

To be suffocated with laughter,

It dies alone.

 

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WRITERS’ FUNNIES

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WHAT IS TRUTH?

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“Tell me I’m clever, Tell me I’m kind, Tell me I’m talented, Tell me I’m cute, Tell me I’m sensitive, Graceful and wise, Tell me I’m perfect – But tell me the truth.” Shel Silverstein

When seeking the truth, we might not always get what we want. We may be searching for it in the mess of the media.  We may long for it in the smile of a child. We might even see it in the face of love.  Truth is a word that means honesty – purity – without embellishment.  When truth is tarnished, how can we be sure of it?

We can learn what truth is from experience.  We soon discover that everything we hear is not true.  Even things we were taught as little children – like, “you can do amazing things if you just try” – become slanted by the voice of bully who can take the wind right out of your sails.

We suffer when the slings and arrows of untruth embed themselves in our hearts.  We are exposed daily to lies and deception.  Where on earth is it?  The truth is, it no longer exists in common knowledge.  Somewhere along the line the ninth commandment given to Moses has been forgotten.

“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.”

In my 75 years of living, I’ve been amazed to see the decline of truth in almost all areas of our lives.  There is really no truth in advertising.  We’re now simply entertained by commercials.  We often don’t even remember the brand.  In every day dealings, people lie to make friends, to influence others, to make themselves look good.  We’ve seen an increase in lawsuits over the past 50 years – ranging from serving coffee which is too hot, to health care, to who knows what else.  It’s become a national trend to sue our neighbor. Not to mention the untruths seen in the media, on the internet and in every day conversation.

So what is truth?  Pontius Pilate asked that question when Jesus stood before him to be judged.  It is an age old query posed by philosophers and theologians.  The most scholarly in our world can’t see to come up with the right definition, because we’ve become numbed by the fact that a little white lie never hurt anyone.  We’ve seen how sneaky the devil is in selling us stuff like that.

Truth in God’s terms isn’t a part-time activity. We can rely on His truth – the only truth which exists anymore.  Jesus, said of Himself, “I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.”

Who do you trust?  There is none other we can trust, than the true Son of God.  His Holy inspired Word, the Bible, gives evidence of this truth.

 

 

 

 

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TRANSITIONS

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I’ve come to the conclusion that part of God’s wrath came down specifically on women in the form of hormonal imbalance.  There are some changes as men age, but women get the brunt of it.

In the teen years, our estrogen has begun to work overtime.  Bodies are developing.  We’re prone to mood swings, acne, weight gain or loss, hair in unwanted places, overactive sweat glands, not wanting to give up childhood and a plethora of new and unknown feelings.  We’re expected to become women overnight when we’d much rather play with Barbies or Legos.

Pregnancy is another time of change.  The body becomes swollen. You often lose recognition of your feet, because the bump in your middle has obliterated them.  When you do get a look at them, they also have grown to twice their original size.  You go through times of nausea, panic, worry and wonder why you ever agreed to this.  You struggle for nine months to learn new ways to pick things up off the floor, walk and embrace your spouse.  Your back aches, your feet hurt, your bloated and uncomfortable.  At least at the end of it, you have something wonderful to show for it.

When we go through menopause, we undergo many changes as well. We become irritated by things we have no control over. We don’t have periods anymore – which is really a blessing in my opinion.  We experience hot flashes and would find great solace sitting inside the freezer on a hot summer day.  Our hair thins, arms become flabby.  Skin loses its elasticity.  Intimacy now means “I’d rather be by myself.”

When we enter old age, there are more things to look forward to.  Teeth have now been replaced with dentures.  Hearing and other senses fail.  You are prone to memory lapses, especially when you move from one room to the other.  Your hands are now arthritic and you never know when one or two fingers are going to cramp up.  Your eyesight dims.  Your hair loss continues.  You have countless ailments and often wonder why God doesn’t simply call you home.

Being a woman is overrated.

Of course men have their share of issues as well, but they seem to muddle through, enough to tease us about our erratic internal thermostat.  They seem to find it funny.  There’s nothing funny about suddenly feeling like you have entered the gates of hell.  Thanks a lot, Adam and Eve.  How different it would’ve been if you had just obeyed one simple rule.

 

 

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