9 Tips to Combat Impatience

computer frustration impatience

Lost and Found


       Apart from me you can do nothing. (John 15:5) 

Just an Ordinary Day


It’s Ordinary Time.  If you are Catholic, you know what that means.  The Christmas season is officially over, (sigh of relief!) but don’t get too excited, it’s almost Lent.  “Always something” as we like to say.  And so it is in the Church, and in life.  As I get older, I appreciate the ordinary much more.  I even prefer it.  Just an ordinary day, what is more blessed than that?  A day where nothing extraordinarily good, or bad, happens.  I’ll take it!

Years ago, someone told me to be thankful for an ordinary day because she had just gotten word that a friend’s child was helicoptered to the hospital and it was no ordinary day for them. It was a reminder that we must count our blessings each day for we don’t know what tomorrow, or even the next minute, will bring.  (This awareness riddles me with constant anxiety but that is another article.)

We do God’s will in the midst of ordinary.  It is our earthly calling. Many saints of old and monks in monasteries today live simple lives offering their mundane tasks, such as routine cooking and cleaning, up to God.  We need to learn to welcome the ordinary and seek God there because most of our moments really are quite ordinary.  If we can’t find the meaning and magic in the mundane, we will miss so much of what life and God has for us.

So don’t curse the boring and the ordinary, it is often a good place to be!  Don’t get wrapped up in always looking for something better or greater, because it is in the simple, regular moments of our lives that we can find meaning and God.  So go embrace the ordinary!  You will be richer for it.

Stay Home, Waste Lives

“For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”
Phillipians 1:21




14 Ways to Fight the Battle

When I received the Sacrament of Confirmation in the Catholic Church in 6th grade, the nuns endlessly drilled into our heads that we were going to become “soldiers of Christ”.  What on earth did that mean to a 12 year old?  Not much.  Who knew those words would come back to haunt me years later as I watch this country falling apart.  I now literally am feeling called to be a “soldier of Christ”.  Not a task to be taken lightly.

There is a battle going on right now for the soul of America and the world.  It hits me in the face every day and I can’t NOT see it. This is not a battle between Democrats and Republicans, black or white, young or old.  It is between good and evil, darkness and light, tyranny and freedom.

It is a battle in the spiritual realm and on the surface we appear to be losing miserably.  Good thing God knows things we don’t and He has promised to prevail in the end, but how bad will it have to get? 

“For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens.”
Ephesians 6:12

I have never seen this more clearly in my lifetime than in these current days.

Too many people are still asleep. “Take no part in the fruitless works of darkness; rather, expose them, for it is shameful even to mention the things done by them in secret; but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for everything that becomes visible is light.  Therefore it says:

Awake, O sleeper,

and arise from the dead

and Christ will give you light.”

 Ephesians 5:11-14

So what, then, can the average person who is awake to all this evil and corruption, do?  First, we can try to help others wake up, even if we get flack for it or if they try to silence us.  Some of us will of course be able to do more than others, but we can no longer turn a blind eye to all the evil and corruption around us if we want to preserve this great country and our freedom, Constitution and God-given rights.

Below are 14 suggestions for things we can do to help take our country back. Hopefully these will inspire you with more ideas.

  1. Pray like crazy as if your life depended on it, because it does.  “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)
  1. Know scripture.  God’s Word is truth.  The devil is a liar and word-twister.  Remember, even the devil can quote scripture as he did when Jesus was tempted in the desert for 40 days.
  1. If you have children, teach them the Bible and things of God.  Yes they will grow up and make their own choices, but at least the foundation is laid.
  1. Speak what you really believe and don’t censor yourself to be politically correct or follow the culture.  Refuse to use the redefined words the culture comes up with.  Tell things like they are; stop the pronouns! 
  1. Ignore anyone who calls you names such as conspiracy theorist, or whatever “-ist” or “-phobe” words the culture comes up with that are currently fashionable. 
  1. Support churches that aren’t following the culture.  These are getting harder to find.  Such as the ones that stayed open or didn’t bother you if you didn’t wear a mask during the pandemic.  Go into the ministry and follow God’s truth refusing to give in to the evils of the culture. 
  1. Speak with your dollar and shop less, or not at all, at businesses and entertainment venues that censor and support the woke agenda such as Amazon, Target, Disney, NFL, and many more.  There is a popular saying, “Go woke, go broke.”  Make sure of it.  I just came across the website publicsq.com where you can find businesses that support freedom, truth, the Constitution, and the family.
  1. Get off social media that censors and does not value freedom of speech, like Facebook.  There are alternatives starting up all the time such as Rumble, Gab, Telegram and Truth Social. I recently came across Godtube.com which has a variety of positive videos as an alternative to Youtube.
  1. Volunteer during elections.  We must make sure our elections are safe and secure, which they are not.  Support and protect the U.S. Constitution.  Vote for candidates that value life (the few there are).  Or run for office.
  1. Join your school boards.  Consider homeschooling or a faithful private school.  I went back to work and took my youngest out of the public school system when boys in the girls bathroom and locker rooms became an issue I was not willing to compromise on.
  1. Consider going to college to study history, political science, education or law and really make a commitment to fight the culture and woke agenda fearlessly. Hillsdale College in Michigan is one such place. They even have resources for K-12 classical education on their website. Join campus groups like a chapter of Turning Point USA and get involved.
  1. Form your own businesses, groups, websites, blogs, or become active in those that are leading the way. 
  1. Learn to grow your own food and become more self-sufficient.  Create new ways and systems of doing things like alternative health care and education.  Anything that won’t rely on government funding.
  1. And lastly, never become intimidated or apologize for the truth.

It is necessary to know your enemy before going into battle.  Our enemy is Satan and all his works.  He will try to silence us, have us back down, make us feel hopeless and give up.  Don’t let him!!  Put on your spiritual armor!

Chapter 6 in Ephesians continues: 

“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground…. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all of this, take up the shield of faith…. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” (verses 13-17, NIV)

The battle belongs to the Lord.  He will take care of things or issue punishment where it is deserved. Christ will triumph in the end.  But we must be aware that our actions and the seeds we sow today can save ourselves and future generations a lot of suffering tomorrow.  

The battle belongs to the Lord.  The victory is won.  But He calls us to take up the fight.

More Resources:

The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

no reason to hide by Erwin W. Lutzer



Interview with Eric Metaxas on Daystar.tv: https://daystar.tv/player/33568/528934

If Not Now, When?

As a mother and wife, I have heard the words, “Not now” or “I’ll do it later” far too often.  It drives me crazy because when I ask someone to do something, that is when I want it done, not at a future time (or more likely, never).  I have a note jotted in frustration from 2012 while in the thick of raising four children.  It says:  ‘Not now’ is the answer to a lot of things around here! “Do your homework”.  Not now.  “Try on these pants I bought you.”  Not now.  To the husband, “Let’s just relax for a while.”  Not now.  Well if not now, WHEN??

I am reminded of Bartleby’s famous words “I would prefer not to” from the book Bartleby, the Scrivener by Herman Melville.  Bartleby remains expressionless as he responds, “I would prefer not to” to basically everything he is asked to do at work.  This is about the only thing I remember from college English and literature classes.  It struck a nerve.

I can’t help but wonder what God thinks when we don’t do what He asks.  I’ve heard it said He will find somebody else.  I think of that when I see many of my ideas taken flight by other people.  It took me 40 years, like the Israelites wandering around in the desert, to finally get around to doing some more writing.  I always felt a nagging sense that is what I needed to be doing.  Saying “I would prefer not to” to the master of the universe isn’t a good idea.  The ramifications are a lot worse than not taking out the garbage when asked, or not trying on those pants!

When I was younger, I would get so bent out of shape trying to discern God’s will for my life.  As if it were a one-time decision.  I couldn’t come up with anything that felt right (except maybe writing) and many doors were slammed shut in my face.  I still think I may have made the wrong decision when I was offered a newspaper writing job after high school and didn’t accept it.  I have always wondered what direction my life would have taken if I had.  I feel like I am living my “Plan B” because I missed that particular opportunity.  But who knows, I only have the present.  The past is gone and the future is not guaranteed.

Now being able to look back over the years, I think we have many purposes throughout our lives. God’s will is a continuous journey with many twists and turns along the way.  Many times I think I didn’t even realize a lot of the things I was doing were actually God’s will for that time or at the very least, laying the groundwork for the future.

For instance, I worked as a preschool teacher for a time, but only looking back realized it was part of the path God had for me because I ended up raising triplets plus a fourth child.  That time spent working with preschoolers prepared me for my vocation of motherhood.  I was able to use the skills I had developed to run my household.  Triplet babies needed a schedule, if for no other reason than my sanity.  We had meals, craft time, nap time, outside time, music time, story time.  I had an entire repertoire of crafts and activities at my fingertips.  I was ready for the challenge!

So what is it you have been putting off?  Don’t put it off for 40 years like I did.  Whether it’s pursuing a career, improving your health, learning how to play an instrument, re-uniting with someone you are estranged from, whatever it is, there is no time like the present and that is why it’s fittingly called the “present”. The present is a gift, to ourselves and those around us, if we accept it and not let it sit idle. We should treasure and celebrate the present.  If not NOW, when??

Book:  The Present:  The Gift that Makes you Happier and More Successful at Work and in Life, Today!  by Spencer Johnson

God Will Make a Way – 7 Scriptures

One example from my own life where God unexpectedly made a way, was when churches in my area had caved in to government tyranny in the spring of 2020 and went on lock down (for shame!!)  I had not been able to receive Holy Communion for months. You just don’t deny people the Sacraments, no matter what is going on.

That summer we drove to my daughter’s university to move her into her new apartment which happened to be directly across a small parking lot from the campus Catholic church. I split up from the group to walk over there and check things out. 

It so happened mass had just ended and people began flowing out the main door at the top of the hill.  I watched timidly from a lower, grassy hill which was near a bottom level church door.  Suddenly, for seemingly no particular reason, a young priest came out the door not too far from where I was standing.

He was wearing green vestments, and walked over to me and said hello and asked me if I had come for the ice cream after mass.  We got to talking and I explained that where I was from I was not able to go to church or receive Holy Communion for months.

He then graciously asked if I would like to receive Communion.  We went inside and just around the corner was the tabernacle in the church and I received Jesus!  Privately, just me!  This was a first.  What timing that I happened to run into him!

It was then that I realized it was Jesus standing on that hill greeting me through the priest, and offering me Himself.  It felt like a miracle!  I was finally being fed after starving!  (And yes, I did end up getting ice cream besides, which happens to be my favorite food!)

I discovered the priest had just been ordained 3 weeks prior and he was better at feeding his sheep than most of the priests back home who couldn’t seem to figure out they needed to feed their sheep, no matter what the cost.  A good father feeds his children.

Needless to say, I was rather ecstatic for a couple of days, continually rambling on how I was found and fed by Jesus Himself.  I’m sure I was driving everyone crazy, but that’s okay because maybe I planted some seeds since my daughter and her roommate were going to have to stare at that church building from their apartment window for the next year.  

Jesus came to me 500 miles from home when I least expected it and needed Him so desperately!  He made a way for me that day on that grassy hill, a spot which is now permanently etched into my memory. If Jesus can find me and feed me so far from home, I have no doubt He is always with me no matter where I am or whatever the circumstance.

Maybe you can remember times where God has made a way for you.  It can serve as encouragement the next time things seem impossible.  Following are a few Bible verses to encourage all of us along the road.

 7 Bible Verses Where God Makes a Way

  1. Luke 1:37  For nothing will be impossible with God.
  2. Exodus 14:21-22  Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; and the Lord drove back the sea with a strong east wind all night long and turned the sea into dry ground.  The waters were split, so that the Israelites entered into the midst of the sea on dry land, with the water as a wall to their right and to their left.
  3. Isaiah 43:16  Thus says the Lord, who opens a way in the sea, a path in the mighty waters.
  4. Deuteronomy 31:8  It is the Lord who goes before you; he will be with you and will never fail you or forsake you.  So do not fear or be dismayed.
  5. Proverbs 3:5-6  Trust in the Lord with all Your heart, on your own intelligence do not rely; in all your ways be mindful of Him, and He will make straight your paths.
  6. John 14:6  I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.
  7. Ecclesiastes 3:1  There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for every affair under the heavens.

God will meet you wherever you are at.  You can expect He will make a way in His perfect timing. Sometimes you may have to wait.  Maybe a few minutes, maybe many years, but He will not forsake you.  He promised.


Nothing Else

I just want to lay at Your feet
and absorb Your love, O Lord
for I am weary of this world
and long to find rest
in You. 
                                                                                                 12-21-2022 WordNerd                            

That is the cry of my heart.  At least it was during Christmastime when life was busy and filled with visiting children and a dog.  My previous, fairly solitudinous life, shattered for a while.

However, that longing has been fairly constant for me regardless of busyness.  What is the cry of our heart?  Humans throughout the ages wrestle with this.  A yearning for something better, something more perfect, that which completes us.

Sometimes I am just so sick of this world and all the evil in it and what seems to be so few willing to fight for what is right, no matter the cost.  I can relate to St. Faustina’s words in her Diary, entry 867, “O Jesus, what a dreadful wilderness this life seems to me!  There is no nourishment for either my heart or my soul.  I suffer because of my longing for You, O Lord.”

In all of this mental and spiritual anguish, I come to realize that nothing else really matters but Jesus.  Eternal life is the reward I seek and everything else pales in comparison.  That is often my reality even though it may sound depressing to some. 

It’s difficult to describe, but sometimes it is as if everything dims and fades and swirls into a blur around me and there’s only Jesus.  Kind of like the swirling galaxy in the photo above.

Nothing in this world seems to really matter because our life on earth is temporary.  Each one of us is a tiny speck in time.  Everything is changing.  Everything will pass away.  But it will be okay because….Jesus.  What else in this world can give the same depth of contentment?

So in the meantime, this is our temporary home and we are just visitors passing through and all the earthly stuff of our lives is being crammed into a weathered suitcase, about to burst, which we won’t even need in the life to come.  But I am consoled because God will triumph in the end.

“There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator made known through Jesus.”  Wise words attributed to Blaise Pascal.

This Lent, and every day, perhaps we can come to better know this Jesus.

We can go before the cross and lay down our stuff, throw down our vices, read the Bible to learn who Jesus is, receive the Sacraments, and most importantly, just take time to lay at His feet and absorb His infinite mercy and love.  Because in Him we live…eternally.  There is nothing else.

Quit Grumbling and Complaining?

January 8, 2024

Magnet of God

Have you ever experienced the “magnet of God”?  What is that, you might wonder?

One day I hadn’t planned to go to weekday Mass at the Catholic Church, when I started to feel what I refer to as the “Magnet of God”—a strong, supernatural pull to go.  This is just one small example of the many ways God draws us to Himself.

This particular day turned out to be the Feast of the Sacred Heart, which shame on me, I was not aware of.  But the priest said something that caught my attention.  He said, “I thank God for God loving me to Himself.”  I thought, ah-ha, he is referring to the magnet of God!  The very same thing that drew me there that day.

Of course I have the choice to ignore these promptings, and I have also experienced the opposite sort of pull, just as there are two poles, but nevertheless, there was a continuous gnawing in my Spirit begging for attention.  It was God Himself drawing me.

Many years ago I was in Fairbanks, Alaska. That year there was high magnetic activity in that location.  (I’m sure I don’t have the correct scientific explanation.)  But the point is I still remember feeling off, like something magnetic was pulling at me.  I had never felt that before.

I also learned various animals, such as birds, feel this magnetic pull of the universe.  It helps them with migration. 

Nothing God has created is accidental.  I am completely awestruck at how God’s design of the universe mirrors His relationship with us!  I think it’s quite overwhelming that God has created the universe with this magnetic force and it’s as if He uses it to draw us in.  It shows the vastness and immensity of a humongous God, beyond all human comprehension.  I am humbled and honored this God draws me in.

So be thankful and awed that this immense God of the universe is loving you to Himself.  He is our True North.  Keep your heart open to feeling the magnetic pull of God as you go about your days.  For He is always waiting for you.  He is always pulling for you.  He is always drawing you to Himself.  All you have to do is notice and respond.

“Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” 

James 4:8

Does Prayer Change Things?

Have you ever prayed for something for years?  Were your prayers answered?  Were they answered the way you hoped?

There is a popular saying — Prayer Changes Things.  Does it? 

St. Monica, a patron saint of mothers, prayed for her son to turn from his ungodly lifestyle for 17 years.  He turned out to be the influential St. Augustine who has impacted millions throughout the ages and is the author of numerous written works.  Not all stories end this well, but nevertheless, it speaks to perseverance in prayer and a mother’s love.

Then there was Sarah in the Old Testament (Genesis 17:15-19) who was barren and well past child-bearing years.  God promised her a child but in her impatience, she made some mistakes along the way.  Then at God’s appointed time, it miraculously happened, despite all odds.  

This gives us hope for perseverance in prayer.  If it’s in God’s will, nothing will stop it.

I have had occasions where it has taken years for a specific prayer to be answered–for a mate, for a child and so on.  When I fervently persevered in prayer for a child, I got triplets.  God has a funny sense of humor.  Mother Teresa said, “More tears are shed over answered prayers than unanswered ones.”  Keep that in mind.  Be careful what you pray for.

Yet what do we do when the years roll by and our prayers aren’t answered in a timely way or as we would hope?  This is when we need to consider the journey.  Prayer is not just about asking, it’s about relationship, a relationship with our Creator.  We can ponder:  What have we learned on this journey?  How has this period of waiting changed us?

  • We learn patience for one thing.
  • We learn to trust God’s plan and timing.  (as if we have a choice!)
  • We grow closer to God by spending more time with Him.
  • We increase our faith. 
  • We learn to keep trudging along and come to realize all the other blessings in our life we continue to have, as well as receive, while we wait.     
  • We learn an openness and receptiveness to whatever God may have for us.  It could be something we didn’t even expect or light years better than what we could have hoped.

Sometimes, we need to just pray for the strength to get through whatever our trial is, which can then change our attitude and ability to cope, if not the situation itself.  So we gain an acceptance of the situation.  Thy will be done, all the while learning to cast our cares upon Him.

 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Jeremiah 29:11

We trust that God loves us and knows what we need.  Proverbs 3:5 tells us, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”   God sees the future we cannot see.  He has the blueprints.

And this is just on a personal level.  What about the bigger picture?  People throughout the ages have had to pray for years, often decades, for their country to return to freedom or more recently, for Roe v. Wade to be overturned.  

Some of these world issues require the prayers of a great many people over a large span of time and most of them will not even live to see the fruits of their efforts.  But it must be done, to improve all of our lives and to save the future of humanity.  We must have faith that prayer, does indeed, change things. 

In the end, we will be strengthened from our journey through perseverance in prayer. We will become what God is molding us to be through His plan and purpose for us.  He does not wish to do us harm but desires for us to grow and strengthen our relationship with Him. At times that means He has to put us through trials and waiting so that we can learn valuable lessons. Just as a loving father teaches his children and gives them what they need, yet does not always give them everything they want.  Ultimately, we learn that if we cling to the God who made us and persevere, in the end, prayer does change things!

“Do not be troubled if you do not receive from God immediately what you ask Him; for he desires to do something even greater for you, while you cling to him in prayer.” 

Evagrius Ponticus

And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate to be with you always, the Spirit of truth, which the world cannot accept, because it neither sees nor knows it. But you know it, because it remains with you, and will be in you.

John 14:16-17

When the time for Pentecost was fulfilled, they were all in one place together.  And suddenly there came from the sky a noise like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were.  Then there appeared to them tongues as of fire, which parted and came to rest on each one of them.  And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different tongues, as the Spirit enabled them to proclaim.   (Acts 2:1-4)

For God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.

II Timothy 1:7

Live to Seek God

Remember bookmarkers?  Back in the day when Hallmark shops had a carousel with tasseled words of wisdom?  As a child, I was mesmerized by them.  What profound truths would jump out at me?  I only have a small collection because it was a rare treat to be able to buy one.  Nowadays, if anyone actually reads a physical book, they may use sticky tabs, random scraps of paper, or maybe even a crumpled Kleenex as a bookmark. 

One day during my teen years, my dad happened to give me one of those tasseled bookmarkers.  I was ecstatic!  It said, “Live to seek God and life will not be without God.”  Leo Tolstoy  (tears) My father was not especially religious as far as I could tell, but it was one of the best presents he ever gave me.  It was during the time when I was entertaining the thought of becoming a nun.  I took it as a sign of encouragement, but maybe he was only trying to get out of paying for a daughter’s wedding, as was the custom back then, as well as one of his looming worries.

Live to seek God and life will not be without God, are good words that are just as applicable today as back then.  As I ponder these words with the actual bookmark before me, it echoes the words found in scripture, “When you look for me, you will find me.  Yes, when you seek me with all your heart, I will let you find me…”  (Jer. 29:13)  We should never stop seeking God, but how often do we think about God seeking us, His beloved? 

God continually calls us to Himself if we are sensitive enough to hear His voice.  “Know that the Lord is God, He made us, we belong to Him.”  (Psalm 100:3)  Then there is the parable of the one lost sheep (Luke 15:4-7).  Also, “Behold I stand at the door and knock.  If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will enter his house…”  (Revelation 3:20)  However, God is a gentleman and it is we who have to let Him in. The God of the universe shows us time and again that He actually wants a relationship with us because we are the creatures He made.  We are His works of art.

God obviously and purposefully chooses people for various tasks and reasons.  We see this throughout the Bible.  Jesus chose the twelve disciples and they weren’t the most perfect guys on the planet, and one even turned out to be a traitor.  Why would Jesus choose a traitor if He knew the future?  I guess it goes back to free will and human weakness.  Some choose money— the dark side, the devil and all his empty promises and lies.  We never know what is in God’s plan.  Jesus would also ask people if they were willing to give up everything to follow Him and sadly, many said no, so we do have to reciprocate.  It’s a two-way street.

If Christ seeks us out and chooses us, does that make some of us more special or favored than others?  What happens to everyone else?  Isn’t God’s love for everyone?  I finally began reading the book, Story of a Soul, The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux that has been collecting dust in my house for years.  I am only as far as the first chapter, but she muses about some of the same things I do.  She writes, “I wondered for a long time why God has preferences, why all souls don’t receive an equal amount of graces.  I was surprised when I saw Him shower His extraordinary favors on saints who had offended Him, for instance, St. Paul and St. Augustine…….”  “I wondered why poor savages died in great numbers without even having heard the name of God pronounced.”  So what about those “savages” St. Therese speaks of?  Did God really forget about them?

I think it comes down to being open to hearing God’s call and then seeking Him in return.  It’s a sort of dance, a weaving back and forth between us seeking God, our creator, and Him desiring us.  Like a bride and bridegroom.  Christ refers to the church as His bride in the Bible.  Another great saint, Teresa of Avila says, “Christ does not force our will, He takes only what we give him.  But He does not give Himself entirely until He sees that we yield ourselves entirely to Him.”  That’s quite a challenge!

Sometimes I also wonder if maybe God “edits” His work, like when we write or create art or music.  Usually we edit for the purpose of making improvements.  Obviously we all need growth and improvement.  History has shown God often chooses the most unlikely characters to do his work, so being perfect or the best is not a prerequisite.  “Consider your own calling, brothers.  Not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth.  Rather, God chose the foolish of the world to shame the wise, and God chose the weak of the world to shame the strong…..so that no human being might boast before God.”  (I Corin. 1:26-29)  This should make us feel a bit better and less like we have to compete with the saints of old.  God will mold all of us into something more beautiful over time and for His glory if we let Him.  We are all saints in our own way.

I think St. Therese of Lisieux sums it up beautifully, “Just as the sun shines down simultaneously on the tall cedars and on each little flower as though it were alone on the earth, so Our Lord is occupied particularly with each soul as though there were no others like it.”  We are all special in His sight if we heed the voice of our Beloved.

I am humbled and deeply grateful that I have heard God’s voice and consider myself among God’s chosen ones, even if I don’t always live up to His call.  Let us seek God and be sensitive to when He is knocking at the door of our heart and say a resounding “yes” to Him as He pursues us.  Even if no earthly person cared for us, our Creator and the Lover of our Soul will always be there, waiting for us and welcoming us to Himself.  Live to seek God and your life will not be without God!

(All this from a bookmarker, truly they do impart words of wisdom!)

Prayer of Unknowing

My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following Your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please You does in fact please You. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that, if I do this, You will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust You always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for You are ever with me, and You will never leave me to face my perils alone. Amen

Thomas Merton

Take No Offense

One problem with all of this is that it promotes victim mentality.  They are the victims and the other person or group is the perpetrator.  This can also be seen in our government, justice system and even churches.  It also prevents kids from growing up and makes them less able to solve problems in the real world.  Playing the victim becomes an easy way out of responsibility and a way to gain attention, or get what you want.  It can also foster moral superiority.   

Of course sometimes a person truly is a victim of a crime or abuse, but I’m not talking about physical safety here, which every human being deserves at all times.  Obviously no one should be throwing “sticks or stones”, or even worse, at anyone.  And students with real and serious mental health issues should definitely seek help.  But a lot of this is sheer nonsense.  Things have gone too far.  Everyone is offended with everything.  It has become a way to control how others think, speak, act and feel.  This is NOT appropriate. 

Unfortunately, universities pay staff excessive salaries to promote this kind of garbage and more.  They encourage the notion that any discomfort cannot be tolerated, yet life is uncomfortable sometimes.  Growing into an adult isn’t all fun and games, there is some pain involved.  Pain and discomfort is necessary for growth, and that goes for all of us.

College is supposed to be about learning, about interacting with all kinds of other viewpoints, about preparing for your future career.  Thinking, discussing, debating helps you learn and grow.  It helps you understand where someone else is coming from, and perhaps even results in reformulating your own opinions.  It is NOT to demand that everyone should think and speak the same way or according to some current cultural agenda.  Freedom of speech must be protected at all costs, even if it makes some uncomfortable.

Instead of arming kids with confidence to go out into the world and slay the giants, they are taught the giants are trying to slay them! However, isn’t that what the current cultural agenda wants?  To create as many weak, dependent, unquestioning followers because then they can be controlled.  Dumb the kids down and make them weaker, not stronger, all in the name of some delusion of equity.  

So where has sanity gone?  Is it hiding in the cry room??  I don’t think so. The Bible states, “And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another.  Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.  And because lawlessness will abound the love of many will grow cold.  But he who endures to the end shall be saved.”  (Matt. 24:10-13 NKJV)  

It’s not just the college kids that get offended either.  I see plenty of adults who get offended at the slightest thing.  Either adults are getting touchier or maybe they are learning the wrong things from their offspring.  Whatever happened to turn the other cheek, kill them with kindness, forgiveness, telling someone calmly how you feel, or just ignoring someone or walking away if you are offended or don’t like something?

We can all benefit from being less touchy.  Certainly we can always try to fine-tune our behavior, treat everyone with respect, love your neighbor as yourself, be kinder, but victim mentality has become all too common everywhere you look, and it’s doing far more harm than good.

So if you are offended by this article, perhaps you need to go find a safe space or cry room and let the rest of society live their lives, the good, the bad and the ugly, the insults, wounds and bruises.  Because that is how we all learn and grow, and even heal. Not by playing the victim or hiding in a cry closet.   

Personally, I’d rather run into the loving arms of Jesus as my safe space.  How about you?       

You will learn a lot about what is going on these days. Choose wisely!

Life is Like Laundry

I bought a sign for my laundry area at the dollar store recently that reads, “Laundry, sorting out life one load at a time.”  It just spoke to me so I didn’t think twice about grabbing it.  Words of wisdom found at the dollar store!  Hooray!  Laundry truly is a lot like life, isn’t it?  

Don’t we all have many loads at a time to deal with, whether it be laundry or life’s burdens? Don’t we sometimes feel like “throwing in the towel”? (Which would just create more laundry.)

Perhaps sometimes we feel like we are on the spin cycle.  Everything is too much.  We feel like we are getting tossed about, everything moving too fast.  Our lives and minds spinning out of control.  Where is the stop button??  Pull out the plug! 

We have all had times like that.  I feel dizzy just thinking about it.

In life, as with laundry, we have to sort things out.  There are decisions to be made.  Big things like where to work, where to live, how to treat an illness, as well as all the little things on our to-do list, such as what to make for dinner.  So it is with laundry, we must sort the colors or they bleed and we end up with a big, ugly mess, a heap of ruin.  Not looking at all like what we had wanted or hoped.

Mom Moment when
college kids return
home for Christmas.

We wash one load at a time and then it is clean (and maybe put away) but there will always be another load to take its place.  One thing you can be sure of, laundry is certain to pile up again, a healthy sign of life lived.  Laundry doesn’t disappoint, it always returns, like a dear and loyal friend. 

My son played baseball for many years.  I would dread washing his baseball uniform as there were always grass stains to deal with.  I had to find the right stain remover and scrub and scrub and hope for the best.  Life, too, will stain us.  We need to try to scrub away our bad habits and failings. As humans, we all carry the stain of sin.  But Jesus, our Savior, has bled for us and will wash us clean if we ask.  “If we acknowledge our sins, He is faithful and just, and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrong-doing.”  (I John 1:9)

Picture the laundry rinse cycle or standing in a refreshing downpour, drenching us and cleansing us.  I have a Precious Moments picture I stitched in my bathroom that says, “He cleansed my soul”.   O how sweet it is.  “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.  Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin.”  (Psalm 51:1-2)  Also words the priest prays during Catholic mass.

Laundry also has to get hung up or dried.  Life often hangs us up. Time passes, clothes become out of style or worn and so do we.  We get wrinkled, physically and figuratively.  We may have to iron out the wrinkles now and then.  Hopefully we won’t get put away like the clothes, or left in a forgotten heap.  

Personally, I don’t mind doing laundry.  Menial tasks are the stuff of ordinary life with their own rhythm and flow.  Plus they are great procrastination tools.   Nothing like vacuuming when I am putting off something else.  But I must admit I was glad when all of my kids were away at college doing their own laundry.  Sorting out the fabric and colors of their own lives.  It is no longer my job. 

In doing a bit of research on laundry, I came across a business called “Life Without Laundry”.   At the top of the website they ask, “Can you imagine a Life Without Laundry?” and then they list services for pick up, delivery, etc. so that you don’t ever have to do your own laundry.

My answer to that is “no thank you”!  I can’t imagine a life without laundry. 

I prefer not to hand over my dirty laundry to someone else.  I will deal with my own loads and relish every minute.  The dirty and the clean.  The wet and the wrinkled.  It is part of my cleansing journey.  It is my load to carry and mine alone.  No one else knows how to sort out the fabric of my life. 

So my advice is to appreciate those loads of laundry piling up, for you never know what treasures you may find.  People have been known to find money in their pockets they have forgotten about. My son once got a new phone because I washed and ruined the one he left in his pants pocket!

I think I will go hunt down some laundry now!  What about you?

Here’s a snippet of inspo I found along the way:


Wait!  There’s more!  Here are some tips for your laundry day pleasure!



Time to Laugh or Cry?

I’m not a Jolly Jane when I wake up in the morning.  All my problems and worries immediately come flooding into my brain. Or, I am angrily awakened by neighborhood noise such as garbage trucks, landscapers, or birds chirping in the nest they decided to build right outside my bedroom window.  My sentiment is frequently something like: Ugh, another depressing day on planet earth.  I didn’t ask to be here.

I tend to lean negative so I doubt I will ever be one of those people who excitedly jumps out of bed ready to greet a new day. I guess I can’t help but see reality.  A teacher I would share my woes with in high school would tell me, “Life isn’t always a bowl of cherries, sometimes it’s the pits!”  Exactly.  I don’t like to sugar-coat things. 

Growing up, I was influenced, albeit a little too much, by my grandmother who repeatedly warned in German, “After laughing comes crying!”  (Nach dem Lachen kommt das Weinen.)  In other words, don’t get too happy because something bad is right around the corner to steal your joy.  As if being a punishment for daring to be happy.  I suppose this is understandable from someone who had a difficult life and survived World War I and II.

This kind of thinking does paralyze a person and sometimes prevents them from getting things done.  It also makes for stressful vacations.

“Be sober and vigilant.  Your opponent the devil is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” 
1 Peter 5:8

Many years ago, someone suggested I flip the words in my grandmother’s saying to “After crying comes laughing”.  I was stunned.  I never thought of that!  Yet at the same time, I was also kind of angry.  That’s not how the saying goes! 

Maybe I wasn’t ready to hear that back then.  That one phrase was so ingrained in me and had taken over my life for so long.  It takes a lot of concerted effort to change thoughts and habits we have had for years.  I think I only recently made the connection that there is a Bible verse that is the exact opposite of my grandmother’s words!  “Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy.” (Psalm 126:5)  It’s amazing!  Can it actually work the other way around?

I am further reminded of the man in the Bible that was healed at the pool of Bethesda.  He had been sick for 38 years.  He sure was stuck in his situation.  Jesus approached him and asked him, “Do you want to be healed”?  The man replied by saying he couldn’t get his mat into the healing waters and that there was no one to help him, but he did want to be healed.  (John 5:1-15)          

Maybe you are stuck in a bad job, a bad relationship, or have a chronic illness.  Whatever it is, there are many reasons that can keep us “sick” or stuck.  We must ask ourselves:  Do we want to get well?  Do we want things to change?  At what cost?  It may not just be due to a lack of courage or laziness.  Is our “sickness” serving some purpose or benefit?  

If we do want to be healed, we must “pick up our mat” as Jesus instructed the man at the pool of Bethesda.  Getting up and walking, is the first step on the journey to recovery or change.  It’s not always easy or instant, but it is possible.

Ironically, I wrote much of this article before I got out of bed one morning and when I went downstairs my husband greeted me in a jollier than usual mood with “Life is good.  You will be having a fantastic breakfast I am going to make for you.”  Seemed like one of those God coincidences to me.  Something horrible doesn’t always have to be around the corner. Maybe we can just enjoy life.

Jesus offers us healing for our bodies and our souls.  Do we want to laugh again after crying?  Do we want to reap joy after sorrow? Jesus asks all of us, “Do you want to be healed?

Sacred Space


O Sacred space

Fill up with Love

Gratitude and Grace.



As a mother with child

Birth a miracle

and treasure the present

steeped in Mystery

Breathe in deeply each day




until harmony unfolds.

Find rest

and healing in the power of

Divine, enter my heart

my Sacred space.

— Word Nerd

A Psalm

I am a prisoner of my mind
It accuses me all the day long.
It insults me, betrays me.
My mind assaults me as I sleep
It shows me no mercy.
There is no escape, no matter
how far or fast I run.
Fear and worry stand on either side of me
They grasp my hands tightly and walk with me.
Together we wait for tragedy to strike
The ultimate of which is death.
Will it be death to my self -- letting my mind reign?
Or will it be death to the demons fear and worry - crushing the
prison of my mind once and for all?
At this time I do not know
It is a constant battle.
My mind is the communist -- will it ever
find freedom?

-- Word Nerd, 12/8/1989

MUSINGS of a HIGH SCHOOL POET in the 1970’s

Each of Us
is a gift
whether we like it 
or not
depends upon
the extent 
of a process

Thoughts flow within me
Like an endless stream
Drifting past the forest pines
Touching the very heart of my soul
Revealing my innermost dreams
Making me free as a butterfly.
My thoughts dance to the music
                          of the wind in the trees
                          the songs of the birds
                          and the roar of waterfalls.

Suddenly -- a storm crashes through
Blocking out my peace with broken
Dreams thundering inside me,
Haunting memories flashing past like lightning
Tears are raining upon my
Peaceful, happy thoughts.
The stream is now a broken mirror
                           reflecting shattered images
                           broken promises
                           and a broken self.

I hear music........
My soul is filling with harmony
After each storm I gain new meaning and expression
Yet my innermost dreams are still clinging
While my rainbow of thoughts stretches
Through my soul and beyond
Glowing radiantly until --
                            I burst
                            and feel
                            and can be
                                  The inner me.

— Word Nerd, 1976

Season Revelation

Nature speaks
        growth of stemmed treasure
        strength found in newborn deer

Producing a Word.

Nature speaks
        graceful movement of gentle waters
        greenery of a woodland

Producing a sentence.

Nature speaks
        shedding of multi-colored tears
        disappearance of earth's fine friends

Producing a paragraph.

Nature speaks
        sparkling white flakes
        ice hard as stone

Has man failed to read?

                                                              ---1976   Word Nerd



Forever Winter

As I stare outside
At a snowy world,
I see an assembly
Of stone people.
                      With frostbitten hearts
                      They communicate in drifts
                      Blowing bitter snowflakes
                      And cold pardon-me's.
       The sun people come forth.
       A battle begins.
       The blanket of snow melts
       Revealing a struggle against yet harder stone

The stone people never give up
They point their icy wand of 
Rejection-blocking out

                       The sun people are sunk
                       The stone ones have won.
                       Left to project at themselves
                       They shout of fortune and gain

Standing so proud
In their snowy environment
Their eyes feast upon much
Their hearts yet of stone


                                                                                                  --- 1976   Word Nerd

Take O Lord, and receive my entire liberty, my memory, my understanding and my whole will. All that I am and all that I possess You have given me. I surrender it all to You to be disposed of according to Your will. Give me only Your love and Your grace; with these I will be rich enough, and will desire nothing more.

St. Ignatius of Loyola


I Chronicles 16:34

Mind of God


“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways…..For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”  (Isaiah 55:8-9)

I am always trying to comprehend the ways of God, but it’s just not possible with my finite mind.  The nuns told us everything will be revealed to us when we get to heaven and I always hoped they were right!  I want to know all the secrets of God and the universe, the spirit world and other dimensions.  I want to be able to walk through walls or be in two places at once like St. Padre Pio.  I have an insatiable curiosity and need to know why things are the way they are, and what will happen in the future.  But as they say, “curiosity killed the cat”.  This can be dangerous.

I frequently ponder things like: how can God hear us when we are praying silently in our minds?  Or how does He hear all the people on earth that are praying simultaneously??  How can He be present in all the tabernacles in the world, and at every Christian gathering, and at the deathbeds of every dying person? 

It is said God exists outside of time, so I can’t even begin to fathom these things, and that is what fuels my doubts and endlessly frustrates me.  Faith is based on the unseen and the mysterious, but honestly, this drives me crazy!  Out of nowhere Jesus appeared to His disciples after His resurrection and on one occasion He said to the disciple Thomas, “Have you come to believe because you have seen Me?  Blessed are those who have not seen and believed.”  (John 20:29)

A friend of mine uses this analogy–we are like ants in comparison to God.  Think of how much bigger we are than an ant!  The size of our brains alone!  Our perspective is so much different from up where we are.  People can get on airplanes and travel from one end of the earth to the other.  We can birth new human beings into the world.  Some of us can make music or paint masterpieces.   Others help build skyscrapers and cathedrals, or rockets that soar into space to explore the vastness of the universe.  Just because ants can’t do these things doesn’t mean they aren’t possible.  But all of this pales in comparison to the magnitude and mind of God.  Maybe to God our accomplishments look like the tiny hills of ants that we see.  It’s like looking down at the street below from the top of a skyscraper and spotting vehicles that look like tiny Matchbox cars.

Another thing that separates us from ants is that each of us has a soul, the part of us that Christians believe will live on after we die.  We are made in the image and likeness of God.  “Then God said: Let us make human beings in our image, after our likeness.  Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the tame animals, all the wild animals, and all the creatures that crawl on the earth.”  (Genesis 1:26)

But notice, we do not have dominion over God, and that is where our earthly problems stem from.  We will never be on the same level or have the knowledge of the Creator of the universe.  It started in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve ate from the forbidden tree, all the way through to modern times.  Destruction and evil, sin and death, are the results of wanting to be God.  Bill Gates and Fauci come to mind, as well as many political leaders now and throughout history.  They have caused much needless death and suffering for their own ego, gain and their need to play God.  We ultimately are not the ones in charge, though all too many would like to be or act as if they are.  It never has a good ending. 

So in the meantime, we will have to learn to humble ourselves before the all-powerful Creator of the universe and exercise faith in things unseen.  We need to let the Holy Spirit guide us and not the spirit of this age or fallible leaders.  We need to allow our minds to be shaped into the mind of Christ and trust that everything will be revealed in the next life, like the nuns indicated.  Expecting, that what awaits us for all eternity, will be infinitely greater than anything we could ever imagine because the God of the universe mysteriously loves us.

(1 Corinthians 2:7-10, 16)  “Rather, we speak God’s wisdom, mysterious, hidden, which God predetermined before the ages for our glory, and which none of the rulers of this age knew; for, if they had known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. But as it is written:  What eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and what has not entered the human heart, what God has prepared for those who love Him, this God has revealed to us through the Spirit.  For the Spirit scrutinizes everything, even the depths of God.” ….“For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct Him?  But we have the mind of Christ.”

Do not look forward to the changes and chances of this life in fear; rather look to them with full hope that, as they arise, God will deliver you out of them. He has kept you hitherto, – do you but hold fast to His dear hand, and He will lead you safely through all things; and, when you cannot stand, He will bear you in His arms. Do not look forward to what may happen tomorrow; the same everlasting Father who cares for you today will take care of you tomorrow and every day. Either He will shield you from suffering, or He will give you unfailing strength to bear it. Be at peace then, and put aside all anxious thoughts and imaginations.

— St. Francis de Sales

Thank you Jesus for Your great Love, which I cannot fathom.

I am here in Your mighty, Holy, presence

My heart burns on fire for You.

Fill me with Your holy presence and wash me clean.

I don’t know why You call me to Yourself when there is so much evil in the world I could fall prey to.

Do not cast me aside to wicked men, for it is to You I belong.

Fill me, fill me, fill me with Your great Love! Hosanna!

by WordNerd

Jesus be my strength, Jesus be my guide.
Jesus give me rest, when I'm weary deep inside.
Jesus take my pain, Jesus take my fear,
Jesus hold me tight and let me know that you are near.
Be with me in my plight and in my darkest night,
Because you bled for me, eveything will be all right.
Jesus be my peace, Jesus be my rock
Let me know that you are there whenever I aknock.
Jesus help me trust, and not give up the fight.
Jesus help me grow and love you
So I can be your radiant light.                                                                   

by WordNerd

Prayer to Saint Michael

Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil; may God rebuke him, we humbly pray; and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

The Memorare

Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your help, or sought your intercession was left unaided. Inspired by this confidence, we fly unto you, O Virgin of Virgins, our Mother! To you we come, before you we stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word incarnate, despise not our petitions, but in your mercy hear and answer us. Amen.

Catholic Clutter

Catholicism is a fascinating thing.  Often I am really stumped by it.  There is so much doctrine, ritual, legalism, rote prayers, Sacraments, Mary, saints, statues—the list is endless.  I call it “Catholic clutter” and so I basically took a break from the Catholic Church during my child-rearing years for what seemed to be simpler, Protestant ways.  I did my fair share of church shopping and reluctantly settled on a place where my severely wheat allergic daughter could receive gluten-free communion.

As a child, I went to Catholic grammar school with the mostly scary nuns, who had masculine names and rosaries jingling from their belts.  At least we knew when they were coming!  As it happened, I found myself in “Catholic” institutions all the way through my first two years of college.  I was also active in music ministry throughout my young adulthood. 

What started me thinking about all this was a particular day recently when I happened to go to Adoration at the Catholic church, which then turned into Benediction, which then turned into people praying the Divine Mercy Chaplet, which then turned into Mass complete with a cappella hymn singing and topped off with the, suddenly controversial, St. Michael prayer.  Whoa! When I got out of there I felt like I was doused in a full round of Catholicism, like getting a full service car wash or a hamburger with the works!  It felt kind of good and cleansing! 

On the other hand, it also felt kind of weird.  What on earth was I doing there and even kind of liking it???  Me, the previous Charismatic, hand-raising, speaking in tongues, guitar playing, baptized in the Holy Spirit follower.  What to make of this?  Perhaps my doubts are from the devil, trying to tempt me away from Christ, or maybe it’s okay to like reverent rituals as well as joyful praise sessions.  There are many forms of worship.  After all, to everything there is a season. 

As I get older, I am growing to like the “Catholic clutter”.  There is an over 2,000 year history to the Church that provides a richness and depth that other churches can’t rival.  I am more fully appreciating the majesty of ritual with the incense, holy water and elaborate priestly garb, especially during holidays.  I am more curious about what I can learn from the saints, that I used to write off as mentally ill, and am thankful we have a perfect Heavenly Mother who watches over us.  I find comfort in the familiarity and I love good music (when it can be found).  Now, being Catholic is like the icing on the cake.  It’s like having all the flavors of ice cream ever made, not just some of them.

I will always cherish emotional experiences, and feelings of God’s presence, but that isn’t realistic all the time.  It’s about commitment and faith, no matter what I feel.  It’s about relationship and Jesus in the Eucharist, communing with me. And what is more glorious than that?

Book: The Eucharistic Miracles of the World , presented by the Real Presence Eucharistic Education and Adoration Association, Inc.

Mindful Pancakes

On a recent trip out of town we had three great choices of where to go out for breakfast.  We ended up at the place I rarely get a chance to visit that has a country shop I love, yet I was still thinking maybe we were missing something better at the other possibilities.  One place was highly recommended by my daughter’s boyfriend who eats there weekly, and the free hotel breakfast was also better than usual that day, so I was feeling rather tormented.

Normally, I would be ranting endlessly about how we should have chosen one of the other places because I am always seeking perfection, which is not possible this side of heaven.  However, this time I actually made the conscious, mindful choice of just trying to be satisfied where I was.  Satisfied that I was at this particular place in time, even though the menu choices weren’t overflowing with things I would have preferred.  I decided to just enjoy the unseasonably warm day on the road and the time with my husband and the blessing that we were there, together.  Not to mention it also spared my husband a lot of grief to not have to listen to my typical indecisive rant, setting a better tone for the rest of the day.

As it turned out, the pancakes I ordered were probably the best I ever ate!  They were SO delicious!  Crunchy, yet fluffy and moist!!  I thought, wow, we ended up at the right place after all, and it was as if I was rewarded for my efforts to be content (which believe me, is no easy task!) My husband had tasted the pancakes off my plate and he loved them too and kept stealing bites!  I even saved the leftovers and ate them later in the car. Turns out he bought a box of their special pancake mix to bring home but I bet they won’t taste as good as the ones we ate that warm, fall day.

And so it goes…….how to be mindful in the moment and satisfied that no matter what life brings we are supposed to be in that time and place, appreciating the little blessings in each day or accepting whatever difficulties come our way.  I will see if I can keep this up and turn over a new leaf, as I write this while the autumn leaves are turning colors and falling.

Phillipians 2:14  “Do everything without grumbling or questioning,..”

False gods

Like many people, I was a Target fan.  I lived for the clearance pile.  My heart would pound with excitement driving to the store each week.  I couldn’t wait to get there!  It was like a person needing their morning coffee.  I had to have my Target fix.  I would find stylish clothes for my kids so cheaply.  It was also my escape time while the kids were at school.  I referred to it as Target therapy.  Sometimes I would run into other moms enjoying some Target therapy too. 

I was a Target expert.  I knew which days the different departments marked down.  I followed groups online for Target lovers and Target shopping tips.  Some of the best deals I snagged over the years were:  a ping pong table for $30, a gas grill for $90, a large inflatable swimming pool for $20 and outdoor wicker chairs for $25!  My record shopping streak was nine consecutive days!  I was the Clearance Queen!

However, I was beginning to feel like Target had become a false god in my life.  Shopping there was too emotional.  I shouldn’t like it THAT much, should I?  The thing that eventually tore me away from the hold Target had on me was becoming an actual Target employee!  God has an interesting sense of humor.

I thought I would finally learn all the secrets of the clearance piles and Target in general, but I didn’t.  They divulged nothing to regular employees.  Their  woke agenda made me feel like a traitor to my own values, even if I was doing it to pay private school tuition, which made it seem all the more wrong.  The work was physically grueling, the pay terrible, the treatment worse.  My life was taken over by Target alright, but no longer in the fun, Target therapy way.  It was a very humbling experience.

While there, I ended up meeting all kinds of people from very different cultures and backgrounds.  I worked with young and old, manipulators and back stabbers.  I had many different conversations with people in the lunch room.  I listened to people’s stories and life journeys and at times tears were shed.  I saw a lot of brokenness in people.  I like to think I was sent there for a time to be a light in the darkness.   Maybe some seeds were sown.  Maybe there was a reason for that season of my life.

Some years later, I no longer enjoy shopping at Target very much.  Things have changed a lot, prices have risen.  My kids have grown up and I don’t need as much stuff, plus I still have way too much stockpiled from days gone by. 

And so God cured me of constantly needing a Target fix and now, instead, I sometimes experience that same pounding heart kind of excitement, but it’s while driving to church.  There are times when I can hardly stand it and can’t wait to get there to spend time with the Lord and receive Him in the Eucharist or spend quiet time with Him at Adoration.  Often I will hear just the right Christian song on the radio in the car and it becomes a kind of praise session.  Other times, it is just the song I need at the time, God speaking to me through the music.  It’s like a glimpse of heaven.  

So let us be aware of the false gods in our life.  Sometimes it could be a person or material things, sometimes power, money, security (or Target).  But whatever it is, nothing should keep us from our first Love.  Let Christ be number one in our lives.  It’s easier said than done, the world is full of distractions, but I do enjoy the times I am blessed with a little glimpse of heaven.

Matthew 6:24 “No one can serve two masters.  He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and mammon.”

Exodus 20:2-3   “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.  You shall not have other gods beside me.”

60 Jars of Pickles – An Alzheimer’s Tribute

One of the saddest, most heart-wrenching experiences I have had was watching my grandmother, and then my mother, descend into the abyss of Alzheimer’s Disease.  Both came from Europe as immigrants in the 1950’s with only the clothes on their back, to find a better life.  

My mother’s childhood during the war consisted of fleeing from bombs, hiding Jews on their property and later becoming refugees.  Their lives were filled with fear and hardship and I did not escape unscathed.  My mother always wanted her story to be told, but I am sorry now that I know so little of it. 

I vividly remember the first time I realized my mother had Alzheimer’s.   We went shopping and she was trying on some clothes.  She tried the same clothes on over and over and over again, cheerily asking me how they looked each time.  It was then that I realized, she doesn’t remember at all that she tried these clothes on before.  We could have been there all day.  All the times where the ugly Alzheimer’s was there but I hadn’t realized it yet, came flooding back to me. The notes of where to meet me at the mall, getting lost when trying to take the bus, inability to read or work on a craft project, it was all there staring me in the face.

I reported to my brother that it seems obvious that mom has Alzheimer’s just like grandma, who was still alive and completely bedridden.  He was in denial and didn’t believe it at first.  That was rough too.  As a child I was always told my grandmother was “forgetful.”   Alzheimer’s wasn’t mentioned then, it was referred to as hardening of the arteries and just a normal part of getting old.  I thought what a horrible thing it was to become old!

As time went on, I noticed mail would be returned, either because my mother did not add postage or address the envelope properly, or because the check inside to pay a bill was written in complete gibberish.  She would say with the saddest puppy dog face, “I made a mistake, didn’t I?”  As a result, I cannot write a check without scouring over it a dozen times to make sure it is correct.

Then there was the time she told me to take her to the bank.  She told the teller she needed to withdraw $2,000.  My father wanted her to.  The teller was arguing with her and I found out she did not have that amount of money in the account.  The teller was looking at us like we were trying to pull something.  I am lucky she didn’t call security.  I tried to explain to her that my mom has a problem, painful to do with her standing right there, plus the teller didn’t seem to believe me and the whole experience was humiliating.

At my parents’ house I would find all kinds of crazy things, like plates stacked together wet, with mold in between.  The silverware in the drawer was unsorted in a big heap and my mom got violently angry at me when I noticed.  Now, every day when I put away the clean silverware, I think about my mother and try to sort them as quickly as possible telling myself, phew, I am still able to do this and in record time!  Maybe the Alzheimer’s ghost hasn’t come for me yet.

Another time I wandered into my parents’ basement pantry and found endless jars of pickles and spaghetti sauce.  I counted them……..60 jars of pickles, and about as many of spaghetti sauce!  I was devastated and felt like someone had punched me in the stomach.  It became apparent that every time the neighbor lady took my mother shopping, she didn’t know what to buy so always bought pickles and spaghetti sauce.  Sadder yet, is when the neighbor stopped taking her shopping altogether. 

Throughout all of this, I would see her lose friend after friend and most of the relatives stopped visiting.  No one wanted to interact with a shell of a person they once knew, not even me.  The depth and intensity of the sadness of all of this is indescribable.  I did not have the best relationship with my mom, but to see someone you once knew become so completely helpless and unrecognizable was sheer anguish.

I always feel I should have done more, but what?  My father also had health issues and was incapable of taking care of his wife and my brother moved out of state.  I, myself, was the mother of triplets and then another child 2 years later, so my involvement was quite restricted.  The solution became to hire a live-in caregiver.   I still sometimes have guilt about all of this, especially since my mom devoted her life to taking care of her own mother, but that is just the way things played out.  

In the end stages, when my mother stopped recognizing who I was, it was the worst feeling and sadly, I don’t think she ever fully realized she had four grandchildren.  I have a few photos of her with my kids when they were babies, but she looks wretched and it scares all of us to look at them.  There is one photo, however, of when my youngest was born and we brought her over to meet my parents for the first time.  We placed the baby next to my mom and she reached out her frail, weathered hand to gently touch her granddaughter’s face.  I have this photo framed because it reminds me that even when you don’t seem to have any kind of mind left, you can still instinctively reach out to another human being in love.

This all causes me to wonder how God deals with us when our minds are gone and we can no longer pray or acknowledge Him.  Are we in some other realm where He is more present?  Are we waiting to be birthed into the next life like an infant in the womb?  Does God just interact with the heart?  Do other people have to step in for us?  Your mind and memories are who you are.  Without them you are just a breathing blob of body.  People would try to comfort me by telling me the sense of hearing is the last to go and so my mother could still hear…….I had to cling to that, although I was not good at speaking loving words.

Shortly before she died in a nursing home, she spoke to me, which was rare at this point.  She was trying to get out of the bed and told me she “was going home”.  I didn’t know which home she really meant, but turns out God did take her home not too long after that.  I can only hope she is now made whole and that a cure for this mind-robbing disease be found quickly.

Dedicated to my grandmother, Anna and my mother, Elizabeth.

Ps. 150:3-6  “Give praise with blasts upon the horn, praise Him with harp and lyre.  Give praise with tambourines and dance, praise Him with strings and pipes.  Give praise with crashing cymbals, praise Him with sounding cymbals.  Let everything that has breath give praise to the Lord!”

“Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy.”

Psalm 126:5

“God will not look you over for medals, degrees or diplomas, but for scars.”

Elbert Hubbard

The Swing

I used to always say, “Mother feels best when everyone’s in the nest.”  Well, nowadays the nest has been mostly empty which is mostly good, but there are still lots of times when I am restless and worry about all of my “birdies”.

My youngest used to sit on the backyard swing for hours at a time.  She helped her dad rebuild the swing section of the outdoor play set because she has loved to swing and rock since Day One, plus these days she likes to build things and use power tools. When she was little, she had a green plastic rocking horse we had to take everywhere she went for the first few years of her life until she no longer fit on it.  Now, swinging is still her comfort but also her thinking and alone time (and even sing-on-the-swing time).

It would often aggravate me how much time she would spend out on that swing, even in the cold and rain, even during her college summers.  But recently when I looked at that swing from my kitchen window, I was sad to see it sitting idle and I thought of the song, “Puff the Magic Dragon” by Peter, Paul and Mary and it melted me to tears.  How I wished she was still sitting out there.  Memories of days gone by flooded over me.

Jackie Paper, the boy in the song, visits Puff the Magic Dragon by the sea and they have imaginary adventures together until one day, “Jackie Paper came no more”.  He grew up.  The dragon was sad, just like this mama.  But alas, as necessary, I did my job. 

Mama may feel best when everyone is in the nest, but they can’t stay there. There is an entire world to explore. They fly away as they should. 

By the looks of that empty swing, it appears my youngest birdie has successfully flown out of the nest, soon to graduate from college.  It’s a bittersweet time that moves me to tears and emotion as I write this.  But all mamas have been there, in the land of Honah Lee, just like Puff. 


I find it interesting the way people receive gifts differently.  Maybe this stems from my grandmother sobbing whenever she received a present.  She would insist, “I don’t need anything for my last three days.”  As a child, this always confused and frightened me.  I felt dejected because she did not receive my gifts happily.  Perhaps she felt unworthy.   As the years went by, we all just stopped giving her gifts.  How sad.

I used to make a lot of handmade gifts for family and friends.  It was very disappointing that after spending many hours on these items, they often were not fully appreciated.  I could have used that time in other ways.

Some people actually return gifts back to the giver or criticize the gift!  Others always have to be “even”.   Still others have a sense of entitlement or are completely ungrateful and would never even think to send a thank you note. While yet others are meticulous about always sending a thank you in the mail, which is becoming increasingly rare with modern technology.   Some receive gifts graciously and without emotion so you can never tell if they like the gift or not.  Not much fun to give these types a gift.

The most ideal gift receiving style is reflected in those that love to receive gifts and can’t hold back their excitement, no matter what kind of gift, whether material, or gifts of time or talent.  Just observe a child at their birthday party or at Christmas!  They love being the center of attention and opening all those gifts!  No feelings of unworthiness there.  It reminds me of when the sinful woman poured expensive perfume on Jesus. (Luke 7:36-47)  He graciously received her gift and forgave her sins, admonishing the Pharisees.  Also, when Jesus was born He received gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh from the Magi.  (Matt 2:11)  Later, at the Last Supper, Jesus broke bread and gave thanks. (Mark 14:22-24)

In order to instill a sense of gratitude in our children, we teach them to say “thank you” when they receive a gift and then to send a handwritten note.  I vividly remember the time my Catholic school nun read the Bible story of the ten lepers to us.  (Luke 17:11-19)   It really struck me that ONLY ONE, returned to say thank you to Jesus for being healed.   How tragic.  What a tremendous gift they were given, yet only ONE was truly grateful!

I think most of us would rather give gifts to the people that are open to receiving them and get excited and show some form of gratitude.  If we are open to receiving gifts, it seems more gifts will come our way.  People who feel unworthy or ungrateful miss a lot of gifts and opportunities like my grandmother did. 

But none of this compares with the ultimate gift of Jesus dying on the cross for us.  He gave the gift of Himself, so that we could have eternal life even though none of us are worthy of this immense gift.  How many of us would give up our very lives for another?  How do we thank Him for this most precious gift?

So let us be more aware of the gifts we receive each day.  From waking up in the morning, to the food we eat and the people we love, living life with an openness to the gifts around us, never forgetting to give thanks.    


St. Patrick’s Day, 2009

Today I learned that people are fragile, just like kites. Easily torn and broken.

It was an unseasonably warm, almost spring kind of day. The wind was fairly strong, as is typical in March. My youngest daughter, who seemed to have a flair for physics, had been constructing homemade kites out of tissue paper, popsicle sticks and tin foil. Her artistic side added beautiful ribbons and bows for tails, but the kites didn’t really fly all too well, even when she stood on the picnic table to help them along. So alas, I journeyed to the store in search of kites.

I found some colorful kites of varying shapes and sizes in the toy department at the store, and my four kids were excited to try them out right away. Unfortunately, we were so impatient we made the mistake of trying to fly them in front of the house where there were lots of trees.

My youngest had the grand idea of flying her kite while riding her bike. That turned into a big tangled mess in the bike spokes, chain and handlebars resulting in her crying and running into the house.

Meanwhile, one of her older sisters and my son were doing a pretty good job navigating their kites around the trees, when my other daughter got hers stuck so badly in the tree that it took a ladder and a pole saw to chop off the entire branch the kite was stuck in! And so another child ran into the house crying!

What a nightmare it was! I was left feeling like the worst ogre mother in the universe because needless to say, I was not taking all of this very well. Who knew kites could provoke so much emotion!

Just like kites, life can become a tangled mess. We can easily become torn and broken. We can get stuck, waiting for someone to rescue us like a kite out of a tree. We must hold the kite tightly to anchor it or it will blow off into the wind like a loose balloon with no destiny.

So the question becomes, what is our anchor when life gets all tangled up and messy? Is it in Christ who holds us tightly if we let Him? Or do we run to something else that is not lasting or another flawed human who cannot possibly fill all our needs?

With a lot of patience and no obstructions, a kite will soar and fly beautifully, but that can only happen if it is anchored in someone’s skilled hand.

To this day, many years later, I still feel sad about how badly I handled that March day. It didn’t turn out all happy and delightful like the song, “Let’s Go Fly a Kite” in the movie Mary Poppins, but it is important to learn from our mistakes and move on and fly high, just like kites are supposed to do.

Trusting God

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.”

Proverbs 3:5

Having been on pregnancy bedrest with triplets, I have had to trust God like never before. I could eat nutritiously, follow the doctor’s orders, pray, but I really had no control over the outcome.

My constant prayer for myself and the three fragile lives inside me was, “Every breath is from you, O Lord.”

Fortunately, I had a happy ending to this story and my triplets just turned 25! Yet I often wonder, what if things had not turned out so well? Would I have been able to continue to trust in God’s goodness? And do I choose to humbly trust Him still? Back then I didn’t have much choice…….the babies were going to come out of my body in some way or another. But trusting God didn’t stop there. It is a constant struggle and in fulfilling my call to motherhood, I have had plenty of opportunities to learn to trust God over the years!

During the recent pandemic I have been further challenged to trust God in all things and found myself going back to my prayer from over 25 years ago, “Every breath is from you, O Lord”. While the world around me lived in fear, for the most part I was trusting God and not worried about illness. I was much more worried about the loss of freedom, the tyranny and all the economic and psychological damage from the promotion of fear over faith, shockingly even from most churches. It was as if fear had become a virtue which is not truth. God is in charge of every breath we take, from the first to the last, not any human being, the government or the church.

I don’t know what new challenges lie ahead for me in life, but my struggle to trust God is difficult and ongoing. All too often I find myself choosing fear over faith. Sometimes we have done all we can or know how to do and need to give the rest to God. I am glad His goodness and love is unchanging. And so I conclude with the words on the Divine Mercy image of Jesus as seen through the eyes of St. Faustina, “Jesus, I trust in You.”



“My soul, wait in stillness, only for God—from Him comes my salvation.”  

Ps. 62:2  (TLV-Tree of Life Version)

In preparing our hearts for celebrating the birth of our Savior, it is difficult to obtain peace in the midst of worldly Christmas preparations like shopping, meal prep, relatives and adult children descending upon us….perhaps pets and grandchildren as well.  These can be happy times, but also stressful and certainly not the picture that comes to mind when we think of “stillness”.

Often, when I have experienced stillness, it has come as a welcome surprise in the least likely places.  Once, believe it or not, a sense of stillness came over me in the midst of IKEA (a gigantic, bustling four-story home emporium).  Maybe it was necessary for survival in that place (!) but I still recall the time I was sitting in a snack area with my four young children and it was extremely crowded and noisy. It seemed like over-consumption and greed was everywhere.  I started thinking about how the quietness of God was in stark contrast to the frenzy I was experiencing at that moment.  It was then that I started to feel God’s presence and a deep sense of stillness in the midst of the madness.  No one around me could see the stillness I had found in my soul, but oddly enough, it was there. 

Other times I’ve experienced a profound sense of stillness in more expected places, for instance after a heavy, night-time snowfall.  The snow covers the earth like a thick white blanket, absorbing the sounds of the world, and it feels so cozy and still, compared to a typical night.  I just love the “sound” of it! 

Another time, I was in Yellowstone National Park and our group decided to hike to the top of Mt. Washburn for the sunrise, starting out in the dark of night.  This was way out of my comfort zone but once we got past the timber line, there were no cars roaring in the distance, no birds chirping or any of the myriad of daily sounds we have grown accustomed to.  There was complete and utter silence hanging heavy in the air.  I will never forget this ultimate experience of stillness and have never experienced anything quite like it since.

Stillness, however, isn’t necessarily complete silence.  The goal is to find it in the midst of the madness of daily life.  It is a state of being.  It comes from deep within us, from the very core of our being.  We must wear stillness like a favorite sweater or pair of snuggly pj’s.  We must know it, befriend it, and embrace it, so that we can call upon it like a dear and familiar friend.  It is a place of peace, rest, and tranquility no matter what is going on around us. And in the stillness, we will find God.

So as we prepare for Christmas, let us try to wait in stillness.  Waiting not only to celebrate the birth of our Savior, but for whatever may be birthed within us from this sacred stillness in our soul.

“Be still and know that I am God!”

(Psalm 46:11)

8 Ways to Encourage Solitude

December, 2023

“The Lord said to St. Teresa one day, ‘I would speak to many souls, but the world makes so much noise in their ears that they can­not hear My voice. Oh, if only they would stand a little apart from the world!’ ”


  1. Meditate or pray.    
  1. Use repetitive prayer such as the Rosary which many Catholics find meditative and soothing. I also find it gives me something to focus on, which helps quiet my mind.
He will keep those in perfect peace whose mind is fixed on Him
Isaiah 26:3



Taize song samples: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m4-dnOrdJrs



Nov. 18, 2022

“Rejoice always. Pray without ceasing. In all circumstances give thanks, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.”  (1 Thessalonians: 16-18)

‘Tis the season for Thanksgiving.  A holiday most everyone in America seems to celebrate, no matter their religious beliefs.  The time to think about what we are grateful for.  It sounds so cliché.  A gratitude journal?  Been there, done that. 

Probably a better way to cultivate gratitude is to make it a habit so that it becomes second nature.  This is, of course, easier said than done.  Perhaps we should have a gratitude buddy, like an exercise buddy, to keep us accountable all year long.

A good place to start, is by being thankful in the everyday mundane stuff of life.  Many years ago, when I was on bed rest, pregnant with triplets, I wasn’t allowed to do much of anything. I was thankfully(!) allowed to take a daily shower.  But that was it.   It got to the point where I was longing to do even the simplest task, like washing dishes.  That would have been sheer bliss! 

It was then that I vowed to always remember what a blessing it is to be able to do something as simple as washing dishes.  This challenge was put to the test soon after, when I found myself endlessly washing baby bottles because we had no dishwasher. I think a person could go to heaven just for that!  I am happy to report that I still frequently remember to be thankful when I wash those dirty dishes.  A trick that can also help is putting a picture of Jesus by the kitchen sink.    

St. Therese of Lisieux

I really enjoy the following video by Fr. Mark Goring, which is about praying while grocery shopping.  Maybe it will inspire you and be something to keep in mind while shopping for our Thanksgiving feasts.  It is a reminder that every occasion in life is an opportunity to practice gratitude and that our prayers can have far-reaching effects.

May we, then, humbly make this our prayer:

“O Jesus, eternal God, thank You for Your countless graces and blessings.  Let every beat of my heart be a new hymn of thanksgiving to You, O God.”

From the Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska, Divine Mercy in My Soul, entry 1794


“My soul, be at rest in God alone, from whom comes my hope.  God alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not fall.”   Psalm 62:6

Welcome to 2023.  (I still feel stuck in the 1980’s somewhere)

I don’t like beginning a new year.  It makes me nervous.  I worry about what could happen in the future.  Will it be good?  Bad?  Surely there will be some of both.  Worst case scenarios run through my mind like water out of a faucet, but even so, I am usually more than ready to let the previous year go.  Why?  Because I hope the new year will be better than the last.  And that is the gist of it — hope.

We can hope for many things.  Hope that America will start going in a better direction than it is now, with a real leader in charge……….not an improperly elected, dementia-stricken, corrupt puppet controlled by the deep state that wants to destroy this great country.

Hope that people realize the gift of freedom and not cooperate with pandemic lies, fear and tyranny ever again.

Hope that believers will rise up for what is right and not allow themselves to sit back or become intimidated by the opposition.

Hope that people come to their senses and choose human life as a priority and stop worrying about ridiculous things like global warming.  (Yes, the original name proponents now look foolish using.  Changing names and definitions doesn’t change reality, sorry.)

Hope that Christ’s church will have a revival like never seen before.

Hope that our loved ones stay safe and healthy and that we have enough food and shelter.

The list is endless…

And so we dare to hope, because the alternative is despair. Hope in light over darkness.  Hope in right over wrong.  Hope in good over evil.  Hope in the unseen. Hope in eternity.  But our hope must be rooted in Christ.  For Jesus is the only one who can save us from the mess we have made.  He is our only hope.  So no matter what happens there is always hope; if not in this life, then in the life to come.  We can’t go wrong with hope.  Never give up hope!

God and Curtains


What does God have to do with curtains?  Well, I’ll tell you.

I dropped the kids off at school, cleaned the bathroom, and decided to hang the gold curtain panels I had bought for our new home.  I found the curtains in the clearance pile at Wal-Mart for $5.00 per panel!  A steal!  I needed 6 panels, which totaled $30.00 compared to a custom curtain quote of $1,600! 

I wanted the floor length size and there were only 3 packs left but one pack was a shorter length.   I figured I have 3 windows, for this price I’ll make it work.  As it turns out it was a blessing in disguise because the shorter panels looked much better on the main window anyway.  It was too good to be true. The color looked great with the barn red walls and the price was unbeatable.  I felt like I was a good steward of our finances.

I was so excited, I whispered, “Gee Lord, it seems like you have blessed me with these curtains for some reason, why would you care about curtains?”  And He immediately seemed to respond, “because you care about Me.”  Whoa!  I wasn’t really expecting an answer!

I used to watch Joyce Meyer, a television preacher and author, and she would speak about being “anointed to shop”.  I always could relate to that. I sure was “anointed” to shop for those curtains!

The whole experience got me thinking about how we can find God in all the little things that happen each day and talk to Him as we go about whatever we are doing.  Nothing is too insignificant for our Creator that loves us, not even curtains.  He meets all our needs.  God will come to us wherever we are.  Drawing us to Himself, communing with us, loving us, blessing us, surprising us, filling us with joy.  Yes, even furnishing us with curtains!

Further, it occurred to me there is even some significance to the curtains being gold.  Gold is associated with riches, blessing.  It’s a precious metal that’s been around through the centuries.  The first place Olympic medal is gold.  Gold is used in jewelry and wedding rings.  It symbolizes royalty.  One of the gifts the Christ child, the King of Kings, was given, was gold.   I looked up “gold” in my small Bible concordance.  Wow!  There are more entries for “gold” than most other words!  Starting in Genesis through to Revelation, gold is mentioned.

So it was as if God gave me a golden gift of curtains, but even better, the gift of Himself and His presence in my day.  Reminding me that each one of us, our faith, our Jesus, are all infinitely more precious than gold.

I’ll never look at those curtains the same way again.  And it’s 2022 as I edit and post this, and those curtains are still hanging there, as gold as ever!

“Our heart is restless until it rests in Thee.”

St. Augustine

“Give me liberty or give me death.”

Patrick Henry

God’s Opportunities

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.”

Matthew 7:7

When my son was a little boy he would find money almost everywhere he went. He even had a small collection of foreign coins. Part of the reason was that he was looking! He looked under store shelves, in vending machines, in the dirt and sand at playgrounds. Sometimes he didn’t even have to look very far, money was on the ground right in front of him!

One day I noticed his piggy-bank was full of pennies and I said, “See how all those pennies add up.” He responded, “I know, I know.” Guess I wasn’t telling him anything new, but the incident made me realize I had found many pennies in my life but I had stopped picking them up. Suddenly those pennies reflected the lost opportunities in my life. How sad to think I could have not only been a bit richer financially, but more importantly, richer in opportunities.

I now pick up those pennies and let them remind me to take the opportunities that come along in life. I encourage you to do the same. And as for my son, not surprisingly, he now has a job in finance!


I was gazing out my kitchen window as I was eating breakfast one morning after a summer rainfall.  The window didn’t have a screen at the time, but I decided to open it anyway.  I was amazed at the difference in the clarity of the view without the screen or the window glass!  The trees appeared clearer, the greens more vivid and bold.  Everything looked better and fresher after the cleansing rain.

From time to time in our lives we should “open a window” so to speak.  All too often we view the world through our particular screen and view life through our clouded experiences.  We screen out the things we don’t like and maybe even pull down the window shade!  Screens definitely have a purpose, they provide a filter against unwanted pests, but the trade-off is they can skew the clarity of the view.

It’s like rearranging the furniture in a room, we get a new perspective. Maybe a chair is in a new place in front of a different window view. We see things in a new way from a new angle. It’s good to do the same in our lives once in a while. Open the “window” and check out the view with an open mind. Maybe we will see something we didn’t before and will learn something new.

As it turned out, we spent extra money on a new screen for that window which provided a more “natural” view with less visual interference.  I highly recommend it!

God’s Healing

“And even though I’m walking through the valley of the shadow

I will hold tight to the hand of Him Whose love will comfort me

And when all hope is gone and I’ve been wounded in the battle

He is all the strength that I will ever need. He will carry me.”

lyrics from “He Will Carry Me” by Mark Schultz

We’ve all experienced brokenness of some sort in our lives, from the loss of a loved one, to missed opportunities, to the little disappointments in each day.  Sometimes it hurts so bad we think we will never recover.  But our brokenness opens a place for Christ to enter.  We enter into His suffering and His becoming bread broken for us.  And sometimes then we, in turn, can go out and help heal a broken world.  

In Christ we have hope and healing.  We will survive.  There is a resurrection.  Let us rest in the security only He can provide.  Like a child feels safe in the arms of its mother.  He is there embracing us, loving us, carrying us.  What more could we ever want?

“Pray, hope and don’t worry. Worry is useless. God is merciful and will hear your prayer. Have courage and do not fear the assaults of the Devil.”

Padre Pio of Pietrelcina

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear? The Lord is my life’s refuge; of whom should I be afraid?”

Psalm 27


I was asked to play a tune,

But there was no key

And way too many flats

The timing was confusing

And the notes disappeared suddenly

As my eyes became clouded by the tears of

my own sad song.

“Consider how precious a soul must be, when both God and the devil are after it.”

Charles Spurgeon

God’s Creation

“I sing for joy at the work of Your hands,” is a line from a song entitled “Shout to the Lord” by Darlene Zschech.  I was listening to it one summer day as I was gazing out the bedroom window of our new home.  I was enjoying the bright blue sky and the view of tall pines when those words suddenly jumped out at me and I was filled with such wonder and awe at God’s marvelous creation that I could barely stand it!

More often I fail to see the ordinary beauty around me because I long for the spectacular experiences I’ve had like staring down into the Grand Canyon or hiking to a mountaintop in Yellowstone National Park to see the sunrise.  But all moments of life are spectacular in their own way, and the challenge is to see the miracle in the mundane.  To see the world around us like an infant discovering it for the first time.  Babies get so excited!  Everything has a name–a language learned.  Tree, flower, sun, bird!  How spectacular!  How do we busy, burdened adults recapture the wonder of an infant?  I should like to keep trying!

Scroll to Top