Wednesday, March 23, 2005






                                                                     A True Friend
                                                 Like You

I May Have Known You
For Years Or Just A Day.

This Comes From My Heart
Please Hear What I Say.

We May Be Half A World Apart,
You May Be Just Across The Street.
I May See You Each Day,
We May Never Meet.

Life Is A Circle That Has
Let Our Paths Cross.
Like Spring Time And Summer,
The First Winter Frost.

The Color Of Your Skin
It's Not Important At All.
My Skin Has Color And
So Do The Fall Leaves.

Treasure Is A Word That Can
Mean Many Things.
To Me It's The Joy
That Your Friendship Brings. 

But It's Much More Than That.
It's Something Money Can't Buy.

Can You Hear What I'm Saying,
Am I Making It Clear,
Just How Much You Mean To Me.
Our Friendship So Dear,

You Have Been There For Me
And I'll Always Be Here For You. 

Gosh !

It's So Wonderful To Have
A True Friend 
  Like You.

author unknown

Friday, March 18, 2005







If you've ever struggled making the right decision, you may appreciate
this story:

A young man seemed to take an unusually long time to place his order
at the flower shop. When the clerk asked how she could help, he
explained that his girlfriend was turning 19 and he couldn't decide
whether to give her a dozen roses or 19 roses -- one for each year of
her life.

The woman put aside her business judgment and advised, "She may be
your 19-year-old girlfriend now, but someday she could be your
50-year-old wife."

The young man bought a dozen roses.

My wife Bev understands that logic. As part of our anniversary
tradition, which usually includes an evening out and sometimes a night
away from home, I also buy her a single rose.

I made that decision on wedding anniversary number one. But it wasn't
easy. My heart argued for giving her one rose the first anniversary,
two roses on the second, and so forth. But my head argued that, in
twenty or thirty years, a roomful of roses would not mean as much as
something simpler -- not to mention the cost! In the end, my heart and
head reached a compromise.

So I buy the one special rose every wedding anniversary and then we
treat ourselves to a wonderful and romantic evening away. Over the
years, Bev has dried every anniversary rose and saved the petals in a
decorative jar.

The roses helped teach me something about making decisions. Any kind
of decision. I've discovered that good decisions are made with both my
head and my heart. Together, cool heads and warm hearts can solve most
any problem.

A cool head asks the hard questions. A cool head thinks it through. A
cool head objectively weighs the options.

But a warm heart asks the tender questions. A warm heart considers
feelings and relationships. A warm heart asks what feels right.

Making the right decision is often difficult. And it seems we never
have enough information when we need to decide. But the best decisions
are made from both a cool head and a warm heart. It usually takes both
of them to get it right.

Thursday, March 17, 2005













I shook my head in disbelief.
This couldn't be the right place.
After all, I couldn't possibly be welcome here.
I had been given an invitation several times, by several different people, and I had finally decided to see what this place was all about.
But, this just couldn't be the right place.
Quickly, I glanced down at the invitation that I clutched in my hand.
I scanned past the words,
"Come as you are. No jacket required"
and found the location.
Yes, I was at the right place.
I peered through the window again and saw a room of people whose faces seemed to glow with joy. All were neatly dressed, adorned in fine garments and appeared strangely clean as they dined at this exquisite restaurant.
Ashamed, I looked down at my own tattered and torn clothing, covered in stains. I was dirty, in fact, filthy. A foul smell seemed to consume me and I couldn't shake the grime that clung to my body. As I turned around to leave, the words from the invitation seemed to leap out at me...
"Come as you are. No jacket required."
I decided to give it a shot.
Mustering up every bit of courage I could find, I opened the door to this restaurant and walked up to a man standing behind a podium.
"Your name, sir?" he asked me with a smile.
"Jimmy D. Brown," I mumbled without looking up. I thrust my hands deep into my pockets, hoping to conceal their stains.

He didn't seem to notice the filth that I was covered in and he continued, "Very good, sir. A table is reserved in your name. Would you like to be seated?"
I couldn't believe what I heard! A grin broke out on my face and I said, "Yes, of course!"

 He led me to a table, and sure enough, there was a place-card with my name written on it in a deep, dark red. AsI browsed over a menu, I saw many delightful items listed. There were things like, "peace," "joy," "blessings," "confidence," "assurance," "hope," "love," "faith," and "mercy."
I realized that this was no ordinary restaurant!
I flipped the menu back to the front in order to see where I was at...
"God's Grace," was the name of this place.

The man returned and said, " recommend the
'Special of the Day'.
With it you are entitled to heaping portions of everything on this menu.
You've got to be kidding! I thought to myself.
You mean, I can have ALL of this?!
"What is the 'Special of the Day'?"
I asked with excitement ringing in my voice.
"Salvation," was his reply.
"I'll take it," I practically cried out.
Then, as quickly as I made that statement, the joy left my body. A sick painful ache jerked through my stomach and tears filled my eyes.
Between my sobs I said...
"Mister, look at me. I'm dirty and nasty.
I am unclean and unworthy of such things.
I'd love to have all of this, but, but, I just can't afford it."

Undaunted, the man smiled again.
"Sir, your check has already been taken care of by that Gentleman over there,"
he said as he pointed to the front of the room.
"His name is Jesus."
Turning, I saw a man whose very presence
seemed to light the room.
He was almost too much to look at.
I found myself walking towards Him
and in a shaking voice I whispered,
"Sir, I'll wash the dishes or sweep the floors
or take out the trash.
I'll do anything I can do to repay You for all this."
He opened His arms and said with a smile,
"Son, all of this is yours if you just come unto me.
Ask me to clean you up and I will.
Ask me to allow you to feast at my table
and you will eat.
Remember, the table is reserved in your name.
All you must do is accept this gift that I offer you."
Astonished, I fell at his feet and said,
"Please, Jesus. Please clean up my life.
Please change me and sit me at your table
and give me this new life."
Immediately, I heard the words,
"It is finished."

I looked down and white robes adorned my body.
Something strange and wonderful had happened.
I felt new, like a weight had been lifted
and I found myself seated at His table.
"The 'Special of the Day' has been served,"
 The Lord said to me.
"Salvation is yours."
We sat and talked for a great while
and I so enjoyed the time that I spent with Him.
He told me, me of all people,
that He would like for me to come back
as often as I liked for another helping from God's Grace.
He made it clear that He wanted me to spend as much time with Him as possible.
As it drew near time for me to go back
outside into the "real world,"
He whispered to me softly,
"And Lo, I am with you always."
And then, He said something to me that I will never forget.
He said...
"My child, do you see these empty tables?"
"Yes, Lord. I see them. What do they mean?"
 I replied.
"These are reserved tables...but the individuals whose names are on each place-card have not accepted their invitation yet.
Would you be so kind as to hand out these invitations
to those who have not joined us as yet?" Jesus asked.
"Of course," I said with excitement as I picked up the invitations.
"Go ye therefore into all nations."
He said as I turned to leave.
I walked into God's Grace dirty and hungry.
Stained in sin.
 My righteousness as filthy rags.
And Jesus cleaned me up.
I walked out a brand new man...robed in white,
His righteousness.
And so, I'll keep my promise to my Lord.
I'll go. I'll spread the Word.
I'll share the Gospel... I'll hand out the invitations.
 And I'll start with you.
Have you been to God's Grace?
 There's a table reserved in your name, and here's your invitation...
 "Come as you are. No jacket required."

~Author Unknown~

Sunday, March 13, 2005













The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand,
nor the kindly smile, nor the joy of companionship;
it is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one
when you discover that someone else believes in you
and is willing to trust you with a friendship.
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Each friend represents a world in us,
a world possibly not born
until they arrive.
~Anais Nin

A friend is a gift you give yourself.
~Robert Louis Stevenson

A true friend is the greatest blessing
of all blessings.
~Francois de la Rochefoucauld

Nobody sees a flower ~ really~
it is so small it takes time~
we haven't time,
like to have a friend
takes time.
~Georgia O'Keefe

If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.
If you want to be happy, practice compassion.
~Dalai Lama

May all beings everywhere
be free from suffering.
May all beings everywhere be fed.
May all beings everywhere be peaceful.
May all beings everywhere be happy.
~Buddhist meditation

My religion is very simple~
my religion is kindness.
~Dalai Lama

You can make more friends in two months
by becoming interested in other people
than you can in two years
by trying to get other people
interested in you.
~Dale Carnegie

You can discover more about a person
in an hour of play
than in a year of conversation.

The ornament of a house
are the friends who frequent it.
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

There was a definite process by which
one made peopleinto friends,
and it involved talking to them
and listening to them
for hours at a time.
~Rebecca West

No road is too long
with good company.
~Turkish Proverb

Saturday, March 12, 2005








Are you setting your sights too low?

I heard of a woman who fished all morning and never caught anything.
But a man in the next boat was reeling in a fish every time she
glanced over. Then, to make matters worse, he kept the small ones and
threw the large ones back into the water!

She couldn't stand it any longer. She called over to him, "How come
you're throwing the big ones back?"

He answered by holding up a little frying pan.

We may think that is silly but, in our minds, don't we all hold up
frying pans? Every time we throw away a big idea, a magnificent dream
or an exciting possibility, are we measuring it against a small frying

We talk about making more money or be­coming more successful, but I
believe that this con­cept works in other, and sometimes more
important areas, as well. We can love more than we ever dreamed
possible! We can be happier and live more fully than we ever thought
we could! What we can do or become is limited more by the size of the
frying pan in our minds than by actual circum­stances.

Author Brian Tracy reminds us that "you are not what you think you
are, but what you think, you are." Think big. Dream big. Pray big...
and look for big results. It all begins with changing the size of your

What would happen if you threw away the frying pan you have been using
to measure the size of your dreams, and replaced it with a larger one?
What would happen if you decided that it may really be possible to
have a better relationship with the one you love, or that you actually
can be hap­pier and more fulfilled than you are now? What would
hap­pen if you decided never to settle for anything less than what you
truly want? What if, from now on, you threw the little fish back and
kept the big ones?

And what if you decided to begin today?

Friday, March 11, 2005








If your world looks gloomy and you're feeling grim and glum
make a rainbow for yourself, don't wait for one to come.

Don't sit watching at the window for the clouds to part.
There'll soon be a rainbow if you start one in your heart.

Take some lovely thought out of a poem or a prayer.
Turn it over in your mind and let it linger there.
Keep out every memory that dims the light within,
And hold on to the magic word that lets the brightness in.

Work your own small miracle and make the dull days glow.
Put some sunshine into life and let the glory show.

Make a rainbow for yourself with colors brave and gay,
And underneath its golden arch your cares will fade away.

author unknown

Tuesday, March 8, 2005





Deck of Cards  

It was quiet that day, the guns and the mortars, and land mines for some reason hadn't been heard.   The young soldier knew it was Sunday, the holiest day of the week.   As he was sitting there, he got out an old deck of cards and laid them out across his bunk.   Just then an army sergeant came in and said, "Why aren't you with the rest of the platoon?"   The soldier replied, "I thought I would stay behind and spend some time with the Lord."   The sergeant said, "Looks to me like you're going to play cards."   The soldier said, "No, sir. You see, since we are not allowed to have Bibles or other spiritual books in this country,   I've decided to talk to the Lord by studying this deck of cards."   The sergeant asked in disbelief, "How will you do that?"   "You see the Ace, Sergeant? It reminds me that there is only one God.   The Two represents the two parts of the Bible, Old and New Testaments.   The Three represents the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost.   The Four stands for the Four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.   The Five is for the five virgins that were ten but only five of them were glorified.   The Six is for the six days it took God to create the Heavens and Earth.   The Seven is for the day God rested after making His Creation.   The Eight is for the family of Noah and his wife, their three sons and their wives - the eight people God spared from the flood that destroyed the Earth.   The Nine is for the lepers that Jesus cleansed of leprosy. He cleansed ten, but nine never thanked Him.   The Ten represents the Ten Commandments that God handed down to Moses on tablets made of stone.   The Jack is a reminder of Satan, one of God's first angels, but he got kicked out of heaven for his sly and wicked ways and is now the joker of eternal hell.   The Queen stands for the Virgin Mary.   The King stands for Jesus, for he is the King of all kings.   When I count the dots on all the cards, I come up with 365 total, one for every day of the year.   There are a total of 52 cards in a deck; each is a week - 52 weeks in a year..   The four suits represent the four seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter.   Each suit has thirteen cards - there are exactly thirteen weeks in a quarter..   So when I want to talk to God and thank Him, I just pull out this old deck of cards and they remind me of all that I have to be thankful for."

Tuesday, March 1, 2005







One woman complained to a friend that she couldn't remember anything
from one day to the next.

"Let me get this straight," he said. "You can't remember anything from
one day to the next. How long has this been going on?"

She said, "How long has what been going on?"

If your memory is not what you would like it to be, it may help to
focus on the few things you really need to remember. This list,
compiled from several sources, may just be suitable for framing.

*   Remember that your presence is a present to the world.
*   Remember that you are a unique and unrepeatable creation.
*   Remember that your life can be what you want it to be.
*   Remember to count your blessings, not your troubles.
*   Remember that you'll make it through whatever comes along.
*   Remember that most of the answers you need are within you.
*   Remember those dreams waiting to be realized.
*   Remember that decisions are too important to leave to chance.
*   Remember to always reach for the best that is within you.
*   Remember that nothing wastes more energy than worry.
*   Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful
        stroke of luck.
*   Remember that the longer you carry a grudge, the heavier it
*   Remember not to take things too seriously.
*   Remember to laugh.
*   Remember that a little love goes a long way.
*   Remember that a lot goes forever.
*   Remember that happiness is more often found in giving than
*   Remember that life's treasures are people, not things.
*   Remember that miracles still happen.