A ROYAL CROWN

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A royal prince became a man and took on human flesh,

His kingdom left behind so that our hearts would intermesh,

It was a greater plan than any man could comprehend,

Where He would shed His precious blood and death would be His end,

The story didn’t end there, because He rose again.

He conquered death and brought us life eternal without end,

So lift your voices, praise His name, the King of Kings does live,

His life for ours, the price He paid, the ransom He did give,

Now we are sons and daughters of the only living God,

We’ll take our place upon the throne when our last walk we trod,

We’ll wear the crown of royalty, the robes of righteousness,

The majesty of David’s line upon our heads now rests.

KATHY BOECHER©

 

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GRANDMA & GRANDPA TIME

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Picture taken last year at Joshua’s high school graduation.  He’s in the middle.  Jordan graduates from college next weekend.  He’s the handsome dude in the white shirt.

Our bags are packed and I’m so ready to go.  The call of warmer weather, green grass and blooming flowers was remote and even impossible last weekend.  A new blanket, about a foot deep, was laid upon the beginnings of spring here in Minnesota.  When we do weather, it’s always bigger than life.  We will soon hit the road to S. Carolina, via a stop in Nashville (my annual visit with my only sibling.)

Our oldest grandson is graduating from college.  He’s the first member of our immediate family to accomplish this task, so it is fitting that we be there to celebrate with him.

We’re fortunate to have had a wonderful relationship with our grandchildren. Usually at this point in their lives, grandkids don’t spend much time with the old fogies.  We’ve just become antiquated versions of what they will become some day.  However, we created a very strong bond from the moment they were all born.  Each grandchild, like every child, has their unique characteristics.  Each will follow their dreams and attain success in what ever they decide to do in the future.  Our job is to encourage and inspire them.

This grandson has always been the studious one.  He often was seen in the wings of a theater production, reading.  More often than not, the book he was reading was the Bible.  For a time I thought he might even become a pastor, but that was not in God’s plan.  We rarely realize what God’s plan for our lives might be until it’s passed us by.  In hindsight we can see His almighty intervention and achieved goals for us, but prior to the actual accomplishments, we seldom know what the outcome will be.  We can, however, trust that God has our best interests in mind and His plan for us will be achieved.

I recall this young man, sitting under our dining room table with our Golden Retriever, Bo.  The two were great friends from the time both of them were pretty much brand new.  This same young lad was so interested in nature and God’s creation and every living thing had a purpose to him.  When I stepped on an ant, he quickly admonished me for taking the life of a living organism.  At the age of five, he went on to write a book about ants, their habitat, their work ethic and their social skills.  The book was illustrated with delightful pictures of ants.  He was the kid on the block that invited everyone to come to church with him.  His paternal grandfather was an evangelist and I’m certain the gene carried on to his grandson.

He would collaborate on plays I wrote – always offering comedic relief during a tense situation.  His voice changed early and it seemed to happen over night.  I don’t recall his voice ever cracking.  He magically turned from a little boy into a young man. By the time he was in high school, he discovered the joy of running.  Up until that time, he had little interest in sports.  I recall a T-ball league he was part of at an early age.  They put him in center field, where absolutely no action occurs and he sat picking dandelions and blowing the seeds to the wind.  Cross country running soon became a passion for him.

His braininess carried over into his studies and he’s always done well in school.  When I referred to him as a walking encyclopedia, his younger brother piped up and said,
“Yes, and I’m just a pocket dictionary – with pages missing.”

There were the hours spent whittling with grandpa, while sitting on a log in the backyard – learning to sketch and paint – enjoying nature.  The silly little performances done by all three of our grandchildren to entertain us.  There were the countless plays he performed in – my special bonding time with him.  There were the “Grandparents Day” events at school, where we saw then progress they made during the year.

Being a grandparent holds a special joy, because we have a chance to make up for missed opportunities we had as parents.  Our grandchildren have learned several things from us.  They know they are loved unconditionally.  They know we still remain active and busy in our lives and that we love the work we do.  They’ve seen us succeed and fail and pick ourselves up and start over again.  They know we are available for them when ever they need us.  They know we won’t judge them – we’re extremely proud of them – we are eternally grateful for them.

So off we go – hitting the road again with my road warrior husband.  I can’t wait!

 

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THE GREATEST OF THESE IS LOVE …

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The power we hold as women cannot be measured in the size of a paycheck.  Women have been holding the keys to true strength from the beginning of time.  When I hear some complain that life isn’t giving them a fair shake, or that they still aren’t equal to men in value, it makes my heart sad.  Much of that thinking is self-inflicted and doesn’t stand up to great testing.

Woman was designed by God to be a partner – a coworker – an encourager – an equal to man.  She was crafted from the rib of the man so she actually was taken from him.  This was God’s original design for His people.  When sin entered the world through disobedience, that partnership, along with our perfect union with God, was broken.  As the years went by and Satan infected the souls of men, there has been a constant power struggle over who is the best.

Throughout history, we’ve seen women trying to outdo men.  They use whatever means they have available to make that happen – whether it be their beauty, charm, seductiveness or lies.  Many women in power would take advantage of their position to put a man down or lay him victim to even the grip of death.

In modern times, the woman has often become the bread winner of the family.  Because of this additional stress on her, she feels used or abused, rather than appreciated or placed on a pedestal.  In addition to bringing home the bacon, she’s still responsible for putting it on the table.  She makes sure children have done their homework, she’s done two loads of wash, made appointments, done the shopping and numerous other jobs.  Who wouldn’t feel oppressed and stressed?

Getting back to that original idea of marriage being a partnership – somehow things have turned upside down.  When we look at our world today it seems that everything is that way.  The laws we used to hold sacred are now simply guidelines for living. They bear no consequences.  Respect for those in authority has deteriorated so much that no one trusts anyone anymore.  Not only that, but the roles of men and women have changed so much over time, there is often no difference in gender.  Maybe it’s time to go back in time. Maybe we should all jump into a time machine and go back to the Garden of Eden.  What was the difference then?

During the past fifty years, I’ve seen a huge change in the role of men in our society.  We’ve always had the womanizers – those who use women to their advantage by letting them do the bulk of the work, while they take the credit for it.  There are those who have been henpecked into believing they have no value in the family.  There are the dolts and idiots we see on the TV screen or in the movies.  Advertising also depicts men as fools.  Fathers now believe that they must become friends with their children, rather than guiding them through this thing called life.  They are not the spiritual leaders they once were in the family.

So where does our power lie as women?  Because God placed both men and women on a level playing field from the beginning, maybe we should start thinking of marriage as an equal opportunity relationship.  Both have jobs to do.  Both have responsibilities to each other and the rest of the family.  Both can work together to make that happen.  As soon as we realize that we have the same goals in mind, the job becomes less of a job and more of partnership.  When we add the most powerful ingredient – love – we have the perfect recipe.

 

 

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MOTHER, DID YOU KNOW?

I’ve spent the last couple weeks getting well.  I’m on the road to recovery, but each time I get sick in these later years of life, I can’t help but think about my mother.  She was a remarkable woman, with strong moral values, great determination and wisdom she never realized she possessed.  I guess when we’re not feeling well, it’s natural to think about our mommies and their tender care, but I wonder if they ever know just how much we grow to depend on them even in our own aging.

Moms are always there with chicken soup and hot lemonade.  They check your temperature – take more time than usual with you – give extra hugs – listen to you and watch over you.   They get you to the doctor when necessary and make sure you get plenty of rest.  It’s a trait that God bestowed in the hearts of mothers, because we are the nurturers.

I look forward to the day when we’ll all be reunited in paradise, but in the meantime, my memories of my mother will never fade.

 

MOTHER, DID YOU KNOW?  BY KATHY BOECHER©

Did you know on that first day?

Was it apparent to you, just how much I needed you?

For nine months I’d rested snuggly inside of you,

Hearing the ever present beating of your heart,

Soon it grew fainter, but still I had you close to me,

Did you know on that first day?

That I would now become totally dependent on you,

For shelter,

For comfort,

For love,

For guidance, and yet,

In those early months you were also teaching me to be independent,

You gave me the gift of life,

With no limitations,

You set the bar and I followed,

As time went by, did you know?

That with each step, each adventure, each new beginning,

I held you close within,

You were the driving force in all that I did,

I wanted so hard to please you, yet I didn’t have to try,

You loved with unconditional love,

Undeserved at times,

Unrequited often,

Unselfish always,

Did you know that I heard every argument?

Did you know that I blamed myself?

Did you know that I couldn’t have gotten through most of my early life without you?

Did you know that I was testing your love each time I fought you?

I wanted boundaries,

I wanted guidelines,

I wanted rules,

Yet I also wanted to break them,

Did you know how proud I was of every thing you did?

You were so beautiful, so kind, so loving,

How could I not be proud of that?

Did you know that I cheered for you when things didn’t go your way?

Did you know that you were my greatest hero in life?

Did you know that even in your last hours,

I could still feel the beating of your failing heart as part of mine?

You have been gone for a long time now, but you live on,

Not in just a memory, but in the legacy you’ve left me,

The women of steel that came from your line continues,

You live on through them and through me,

Did you know, I will always love you?

 

 

 

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STILL WE STAND

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ART & POETRY BY PAUL & KATHY BOECHER©

The old flour mill stands beside the rolling Mississippi River,

An icon, once thriving, once useful –

A place where industry grew a small town into a great city,

A testament to hard work and determination,

Now inoperative, surrounded by the ruins of yesterday,

But still it stands,

We’re much like these old relics from the past,

We’ve served a useful purpose for a lifetime,

Then become tired, sometimes broken down and beat up,

But still we stand,

This building has been repurposed, despite its unproductivity,

Today a museum – a tribute to those who built it –

and served the community around it,

We also stand as antiques, old fashioned, decrepit, useless.

But we continue to have a purpose,

Life continues,

We go on,

We see that we still have value to society,

Growing old doesn’t have to mean death,

We can live on through what we’ve given as a lifetime legacy,

We live with purpose until the very end,

Where we’ll  continue to stand.

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SILENCE CAN BE GOLDEN

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The past couple of weeks have been a vague meshing of thoughts, highs and lows, energy and exhaustion.  Mix in a measure of illness and thoughts of spending your last moments of life and you have a concoction of poison which would destroy even the strongest of heart.  For the past week, this has been my walk.  Whenever we work hard to achieve something good there are bound to be moments of doubt – fear – helplessness – failure – but on the other hand, a job well done – instilling some learning into young minds – building others up – finally accomplishing your goal.

During this past week, my mind has been far from putting words on paper.  All I could do was think about getting physically well again.  As I age, I should know I can’t do the things I was capable of years ago.  I should accept that fact and try not to bite off more than I can chew.  There is something within me that has a hard time with that.  Maybe it’s a strong work ethic – maybe it’s wanting to be useful – maybe it’s insanity.  Whatever the case, I felt it best to keep my pen dry for a while.  Sometimes when we don’t feel well or are overwhelmed, it’s best to be quiet.

My mind is working on some new ideas for my blog and hopefully this time off will allow me to formulate that.  In the meantime, I’m re-posting a few and sharing some of Paul’s art.  No winter funnies for the moment.  The snow is flying up here and it isn’t the least bit funny anymore.

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NO SMALL PARTS

quote-remember-there-are-no-small-parts-only-small-actors-constantin-stanislavski-28-10-73Where do you fit in to the scheme of things? I always tell my young performers that each of them is an important piece of the story we’re trying to portray – without their participation, the story is incomplete, no matter how small the part may seem.

Each of us is part of something much bigger than we are. If you consider how a business runs, a government, an orchestra or anything that involves multiple talents and abilities, you will see that each one involved in that enterprise has an important contribution to make.

Some of us have great organizational skills while others are more inclined to handling the people management issues. Some folks have wonderful visual abilities and can create ideas just like that. Some are more capable with numbers or the mechanics of things.

What ever skill you have, don’t ever underestimate or underplay the importance of your part in the big picture. It’s up to you to discover where your talents lie and then make good use them.

Do you know that God knew exactly what you would become long before you were even conceived? He has a plan for each one of us and He wants to partner with us to accomplish the work He has set before us.

We all have the same opportunities in life, whether we’re rich or poor. We can overcome adversity, disabilities, having dreams shattered. We can accomplish amazing things, but we can’t do it alone. As soon as we recognize that we are part of something greater than us, doors will open – changes will occur – relationships will improve and all of this will draw us closer to the one who made it all possible in the first place.

Walk on, with God and you’ll never walk alone.

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COLORLESS

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POETRY BY KATHY BOECHER©

My world has turned to black and white, enveloped in ice and snow,

Birds longing to sing their arias. feel temperatures soar below,

Calendars say it should be spring, but heaven has other plans,

An abundance of snow up there is now falling on our lands,

Covering waiting tulip buds, freezing out newborn sprouts,

This difficult winter weather, is causing us to act out,

Deceivingly warming climate is nothing more than fake words,

The thought of a global warming, seems absolutely absurd,

Looking on the wintry landscape, it makes me just wonder why,

We don’t have spring until summer and Christmas should be in July.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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JULIE’S FRIDAY FUNNY

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It seems you and I both need a little range time.  The blogging world has taken a back seat to being sick for me and you taking on a new role in life.  Time to saddle a horse and go for a ride.

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GROUNDED

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ART & POETRY BY PAUL & KATHY BOECHER©

A tangled mass of long spindly fingers, reach out desperately,,

Longing for the life giving, thirst quenching desire to survive,

Roots, once deeply entrenched, now surface and meander through the muck,

Facing obstacles unknown, yet pushing forward, yearning for more,

Even though submerged in hopelessness,

Life can thrive when the roots run deep,

All the tangles, obstacles and bumps in the road will lessen,

When they are nurtured, loved and preserved by their Creator.

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