Sunday, December 21, 2008

Just an old chair

Sarah stood in front of the dusty old shop in Nazareth and looked again at the chair. It carried scars of abuse, yet even they didn't distract from the quality of workmanship or the general condition of the chair. True, it needed repair but every few days she looked at it with longing, hoping one day to save enough to purchase it for her own modest home. As a seamstress, her wages were meager but she managed regularly to deposit a few more coins in the small, clay pot hidden behind her bed.

After several months, Sarah hurried to the shop, counted out her coins to purchase the old chair which was by now covered with dust blown in from the desert sands.

"I don't know why you'd want this chair in the first place," commented the shopkeeper. "You can have it for a little less since no one else has ever shown any interest in it and it's not worth much. I'd guess it's about 75 years old."

Dusting it off with the hem of her long robe, Sarah thanked the shopkeeper and tenderly carried the small chair to her home. She kept it next to the open window where she read or often rested after a long day's work.

Sarah lived alone. Her three grown sons lived in Nazareth but only one came by with any regularity to visit. Ben was the youngest and displayed more interest and affection for his mother than the others.

For the next several years, Sarah suffered declining health and began to require more care. Ben dutifully brought her meals, kept her as comfortable as her bedridden state would permit. Sitting beside her bed in Sarah's favorite chair, Ben read to her or recounted events of his childhood, stories which made his mother smile in faint remembrance.
One morning, with her breathing more labored than usual and sensing that her time was near, Sarah whispered to Ben that after her death she wanted him to have her favorite chair.

Ben held his mother in his arms as she drew her last breath, then laid her back against the pillows, covered her tenderly, then hurried across town to get his two older brothers.

Thomas and Seth helped prepare her for burial and attended the traditional service. Sarah was buried with her fore bearers in the designated spot near their place of worship.

After the burial, the three young men returned to their mother's home to discuss the disposal of her material possessions. There was a small table, a bed, some urns, several items of clothing, clay pots, and a few items that had been passed on to Sarah from previous generations. It was these items that Seth and Thomas began arguing over. Each claimed rights to them, each claimed their mother had promised the items to him.

Each remained intractable.
Ben remained quiet throughout the afternoon as his brothers' tempers flared and their voices grew more agitated. Finally, Ben said "I only want something to remember mother by. Just anything will do. I would be just as happy with this old chair, since I often sat in it beside mother's bed to talk to her during her long illness."

The older brothers, relieved that at least Ben was out of the equation, reached a compromise and began removing the furniture, clothing and other items from their mother's home.
Ben took the old chair to his house where he dusted it, tears spilling down his cheeks. He remembered his mother so often sitting in the chair with her sewing on her lap. It was still a good chair and had been crafted by careful and experienced hands. Maybe it wasn't worth much to someone else, but it held great value to him because it had belonged to his mother.

He turned the chair over to make a minor repair. Hidden in an obscure place behind one of the legs were carved these words: "Carpentry by Jesus of Nazareth."

Wonderful share mom!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Unemployed Graduate

An unemployed graduate woke up one morning and checked his pocket. All he had left was $10. He decided to use it to buy food and then wait for death as he was too proud to go begging. He was frustrated as he could find no job, and nobody was ready to help him.

He bought food and as he sat down to eat, an old man and two little children came along and asked him to help them with food as they had not eaten for almost a week. He looked at them. They were so lean that he could see their bones coming out. Their eyes had gone into the socket. With the last bit of compassion he had, he gave them the food. The old man and children prayed that God would bless and prosper him and then gave him a very old coin. The young graduate said to them 'you need the prayer more than I do'.

With no money, no job, no food, the young graduate went under the bridge to rest and wait for death. As he was about to sleep, he saw an old newspaper on the ground. He picked it up, and suddenly he saw an advertisement for people with old coins to come to a certain address. He decided to go there with the old coin the old man gave him.

On getting to the place, he gave the proprietor the coin. The proprietor screamed, brought out a big book and showed the young graduate a photograph. This same old coin was worth 3 million dollars. The young graduate was overjoyed as the proprietor gave him a bank draft for 3 million dollars within an hour. He collected the Bank Draft and went in search of the old man and little children.

By the time he got to where he left them eating, they had gone. He asked the owner of the canteen if he knew them. He said no but they left a note for you. He quickly opened the note thinking it would lead him to find them. This is what the note said:

'You gave us your all and we have rewarded you back with the coin,'

signed God the Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost.

1 Kings 17:10-16; Matthew 11:28-30

Thanks mom!

Friday, October 10, 2008

Deck of Cards

I thought I had posted this one before , but Im not finding it so if this is a duplicate...I apologize.

It was quiet that day, the guns and the mortars, and land mines for some reason hadn't been heard. The young soldier knew it was Sunday, the holiest day of the week. As he was sitting there, he got out an old deck of cards and laid them out across his bunk.

Just then an army sergeant came in and said, 'Why aren't you with the rest of the platoon?'

The soldier replied, 'I thought I would stay behind and spend some time with the Lord.'

The sergeant said, 'Looks to me like you're going to play cards.'

The soldier said, 'No, sir. You see, since we are not allowed to have Bibles or other spiritual books in this country, I've decided to talk to the Lord by studying this deck of cards.'

The sergeant asked in disbelief, 'How will you do that?'

'You see the Ace, Sergeant? It reminds me that there is only one God.
The Two represents the two parts of the Bible, Old and New Testaments
The Three represents the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost.
The Four stands for the Four Gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John .
The Five is for the five virgins there were ten but only five of them were glorified.
The Six is for the six days it took God to create the Heavens and Earth.
The Seven is for the day God rested after making His Creation.
The Eight is for the family of Noah and his wife, their three sons and their wives -- the eight people God spared from the flood that destroyed the Earth.
The Nine is for the lepers that Jesus cleansed of leprosy He cleansed ten, but nine never thanked Him.
The Ten represents the Ten Commandments that God handed down to Moses on tablets made of stone.
The Jack is a reminder of Satan, one of God's first angels, but he got kicked out of heaven for his sly and wicked ways and is now the joker of eternal hell.
The Queen stands for the Virgin Mary.
The King stands for Jesus, for he is the King of all kings.

When I count the dots on all the cards, I come up with 365 total, one for every day of the year. There are a total of 52 cards in a deck; each is a week - 52 weeks in a year.

The four suits represent the four seasons: Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter.
Each suit has thirteen cards -- there are exactly thirteen weeks in a quarter.

So when I want to talk to God and thank Him, I just pull out this old deck of cards and they remind me of all that I have to be thankful for.'

The sergeant just stood there. After a minute, with tears in his eyes and pain in his heart, he said, 'Soldier, can I borrow that deck of cards?'

Please let this be a reminder and take time to pray for all of our soldiers who are being sent away, putting their lives on the line fighting Prayer for the Military.

Please keep the wheel rolling. It will only take a few seconds of your time, but it'll be worth it to read on.... Lord, hold our troops in your loving hands. Protect them. Bless them and their families. I ask this in the name of Jesus, our Lord and Savior. Amen.

Thanks for the reminder punkn!

Friday, September 12, 2008

A miracle

A little girl went to her bedroom and pulled a glass jelly jar from its hiding place in the closet. She poured the change out on the floor and counted it carefully. Three times, even. The total had to be exactly perfect. No chance here for mistakes.

Carefully placing the coins back in the jar and twisting on the cap, she slipped out the back door and made her way 6 blocks to Rexall's Drug Store with the big red Indian Chief sign above the door. She waited patiently for the pharmacist to give her some attention, but he was too busy at this moment.

Tess twisted her feet to make a scuffing noise. Nothing. She cleared her throat with the most disgusting sound she could muster. No good. Finally she took a quarter from her jar and banged it on the glass counter. That did it!

'And what do you want?' the pharmacist asked in an annoyed tone of voice. I'm talking to my brother from Chicago whom I haven't seen in ages,' he said without waiting for a reply to his question.

'Well, I want to talk to you about my brother,' Tess answered back in the same annoyed tone. 'He's really, really sick...and I want to buy a miracle.'

'I beg your pardon?' said the pharmacist.

'His name is Andrew and he has something bad growing inside his head and my Daddy says only a miracle can save him now. So how much does a miracle cost?'

'We don't sell miracles here, little girl. I'm sorry but I can't help you,' the pharmacist said, softening a little.

'Listen, I have the money to pay for it. If it isn't enough, I will get the rest. Just tell me how much it costs.'

The pharmacist's brother was a well dressed man. He stooped down and asked the little girl, 'What kind of a miracle does your brother need?'

' I don't know,' Tess replied with her eyes welling up. I just know he's really sick and Mommy says he needs an operation. But my Daddy can't pay for it, so I want to use my money.'

'How much do you have?' asked the man from Chicago

'One dollar and eleven cents,' Tess answered barely audibly. 'And it's all the money I have, but I can get some more if I need to.'

'Well, what a coincidence,' smiled the man. 'A dollar and eleven cents---the exact price of a miracle for little brothers. '

He took her money in one hand and with the other hand he grasped her mitten and said 'Take me to where you live. I want to see your brother and meet your parents. Let's see if I have the miracle you need.'

That well dressed man was Dr. Carlton Armstrong, a surgeon, specializing in neuro-surgery. The operation was completed free of charge and it wasn't long until Andrew was home again and doing well. Mom and Dad were happily talking about the chain of events that had led them to this place. 'That surgery,' her Mom whispered. 'was a real miracle. I wonder how much it would have cost?'

Tess smiled. She knew exactly how much a miracle dollar and eleven the faith of a little child.

In our lives, we never know how many miracles we will need. A miracle is not the suspension of natural law, but the operation of a higher law.

I know you'll keep the ball moving! Here it goes. Throw it back to someone who means something to you! A ball is a circle, no beginning, no end. It keeps us together like our Circle of Friends. But the treasure inside for you to see is the treasure of friendship you've granted to me. Today I pass the friendship ball to you. Pass it on to someone who is a friend to you.

When you are sad....I will dry your tears.
When you are scared.....I will comfort your fears.
When you are worried.....I will give you hope.
When you are confused.....I will help you cope.
And when you are lost....And can't see the light, I shall be your beacon....Shining ever so bright.
This is my oath.....I pledge till the end.
Why you may ask?....Because you're my friend.

Signed: GOD

Funny how our kids can't read the Bible in school, but they certainly can in prison.

This was passed to me by my daddy.

Monday, August 18, 2008

A carrot, an egg and a cuppa coffee

A carrot, an egg, and a cup of coffee ... You will never look at a cup of coffee the same way again.

A young woman went to her mother and told her about her life and how things were so hard for her. She did not know how she was going to make it and wanted to give up. She was tired of fighting and struggling. It seemed as one problem was solved, a new one arose.

Her mother took her to the kitchen. She filled three pots with water and placed each on a high fire. Soon the pots came to boil. In the first she placed carrots, in the second she placed eggs, and in the last she placed ground coffee beans. She let them sit and boil; without saying a word.

In about twenty minutes she turned off the burners. She fished the carrots out and placed them in a bowl. She pulled the eggs out and placed them in a bowl. Then she ladled the coffee out and placed it in a bowl. Turning to her daughter, she asked, "Tell me what you see."

"Carrots, eggs, and coffee," she replied.

Her mother brought her closer and asked her to feel the carrots. She did and noted that they were soft. The mother then asked the daughter to take an egg and break it. After pulling off the shell, she observed the hard boiled egg. Finally, the mother asked the daughter to sip the coffee. The daughter smiled as she tasted its rich aroma.

The daughter then asked, "What does it mean, mother?"

Her mother explained that each of these objects had faced the same adversity: boiling water. Each reacted differently. The carrot went in strong, hard, and unrelenting. However, after being subjected to the boiling water, it softened and became weak. The egg had been fragile. Its thin outer shell had protected its liquid interior, but after sitting through the boiling water, its inside became hardened. The ground coffee beans were unique, however. After they were in the boiling water, they had changed the water.

"Which are you?" she asked her daughter.

When adversity knocks on your door, how do you respond? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

Think of this: Which am I? Am I the carrot that seems strong, but with pain and adversity do I wilt and become soft and lose my strength?

Am I the egg that starts with a malleable heart, but changes with the heat? Did I have a fluid spirit, but after a death, a breakup, a financial hardship or some other trial, have I become hardened and stiff? Does my shell look the same, but on the inside am I bitter and tough with a stiff spirit and hardened heart?

Or am I like the coffee bean? The bean actually changes the hot water, the very circumstance that brings the pain. When the water gets hot, it releases the fragrance and flavor. If you are like the bean, when things are at their worst, you get better and change the situation around you.

When the hour is the darkest and trials are their greatest, do you elevate yourself to another level? How do you handle adversity? Are you a carrot, an egg or a coffee bean?

May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human and enough hope to make you happy. The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way. The brightest future will always be based on a forgotten past; you can't go forward in life until you let go of your past failures and heartaches.

When you were born, you were crying and everyone around you was smiling. Live your life so at the end, you're the one who is smiling and everyone around you is crying.

You might want to send this message to those people who mean something to you; to those who have touched your life in one way or another; to those who make you smile when you really need it; to those who make you see the brighter side of things when you are really down; to those whose friendship you appreciate; to those who are so meaningful in your life. If you don't send it, you will just miss out on the opportunity to brighten someone's day with this message! It's easier to build a child than repair an adult.

This is so true.

May we all be COFFEE...have a great day!

Unknown source

Friday, July 25, 2008

The teacup

There was a couple who took a trip to England to shop in a beautiful antique store to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They both liked antiques and pottery, and especially teacups. Spotting an exceptional cup, they asked "May we see that? We've never seen a cup quite so beautiful."

As the lady handed it to them, suddenly the teacup spoke, "You don't understand. I have not always been a teacup. There was a time when I was just a lump of red clay. My master took me and rolled me pounded and patted me over and over and I yelled out, "Don't do that." "I don't like it!" "Let me alone," but he only smiled, and gently said; "Not yet!"

Then WHAM! I was placed on a spinning wheel and suddenly I was spun around and around and around. "Stop it! I'm getting so dizzy! I'm going to be sick!", I screamed. But the master only nodded and said, quietly; 'Not yet.'

He spun me and poked and prodded and bent me out of shape to suit himself and then he put me in the oven. I never felt such heat. I yelled and knocked and pounded at the door. "Help! Get me out of here!" I could see him through the opening and I could read his lips as he shook his head from side to side, 'Not yet'.

When I thought I couldn't bear it another minute, the door opened. He carefully took me out and put me on he shelf, and I began to cool. Oh, that felt so good! "Ah, this is much better," I thought. But, after I cooled he picked me up and he brushed and painted me all over The fumes were horrible. I thought I would gag. 'Oh, please, Stop it, Stop, I cried. He only shook his head and said. 'Not yet!'.

Then suddenly he put me back in to the oven. Only it was not like the first one. This was twice as hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged. I pleaded. I screamed. I cried I was convinced I would never make it. I was ready to give up. Just then the door opened and he took me out and again placed me on the shelf, where I cooled and waited and waited, wondering "What's he going to do to me next?"

An hour later he handed me a mirror and said 'Look at yourself.' And I did. I said, That's not me; that couldn't be me. It's beautiful. I'm beautiful!!!

Quietly he spoke: "I want you to remember, then,' he said, 'I know it hurt to be rolled and pounded and patted, but had I just left you alone, you'd have dried up. I know it made you dizzy to spin around on the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled. I know it hurt and it was hot and disagreeable in the oven, but if I hadn't put you there, you would have cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed and painted you all over, but if I hadn't done that, you never would have hardened. You would not have had any color in your life. If I hadn't put you back in that second oven, you wouldn't have survived for long because the hardness would not have held. Now you are a finished product. Now you are what I had in mind when I first began with you."

The moral of this story is this: God knows what He's doing for each of us. He is the potter, and we are His clay. He will mold us and make us and expose us to just enough pressures of just the right kinds that we may be made into a flawless piece of work to fulfill His good, pleasing and perfect will.

So when life seems hard, and you are being pounded and patted and pushed almost beyond endurance; when your world seems to be spinning out of control; when you feel like you are in a fiery furnace of trials; when life seems to "stink", try this.

Brew a cup of your favorite tea in your prettiest tea cup, sit down and think on this story and then, have a little talk with the Potter.

Wow. Thanks mom!

Friday, July 18, 2008


THE BUZZARD: If you put a buzzard in a pen that is 6 feet by 8 feet and is entirely open at the top, the bird, in spite of its ability to fly, will be an absolute prisoner. The reason is that a buzzard always begins a flight from the ground with a run of 10 to 12 feet. Without space to run, as is its habit, it will not even attempt to fly, but will remain a prisoner for life in a small jail with no top.

THE BAT: The ordinary bat that flies around at night, a remarkable nimble creature in the air, cannot take off from a level place. If it is placed on the floor or flat ground, all it can do is shuffle about helplessly and, no doubt, painfully, until it reaches some slight elevation from which it can throw itself into the air. Then, at once, it takes off like a flash.

THE BUMBLEBEE: A bumblebee, if dropped into an open tumbler, will be there until it dies, unless it is taken out. It never sees the means of escape at the top, but persists in trying to find some way out through the sides near the bottom.. It will seek a way where none exists, until it completely destroys itself.

PEOPLE: In many ways, we are like the buzzard, the bat, and the bumblebee. We struggle about with all our problems and frustrations, never realizing that all we have to do is look up! Sorrow looks back, Worry looks around, **But Faith looks up**!

Live simply, love generously, care deeply, speak kindly, and trust in God, who loves us.

Thanks for the share mom!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

How to dance in the rain

It was a busy morning, about 8:30, when an elderly gentleman in his 80s arrived to have stitches removed from his thumb. He said he was in a hurry, as he had an appointment at 9:00 am. I took his vital signs and had him take a seat, knowing it would be over an hour before someone would be able to see him.

I saw him looking at his watch, and decided, since I was not busy with another patient, I would evaluate his wound. On exam, it was well healed, so I talked to one of the doctors, got the needed supplies to remove his sutures and redress his wound. While taking care of his wound, I asked him if he had another doctor's appointment this morning, as he was in such a hurry.

The gentleman told me no, that he needed to go to the nursing home to eat breakfast with his wife. I inquired as to her health; he told me that she had been there for a while and that she was a victim of Alzheimer's Disease. As we talked, I asked if she would be upset if he was a bit late. He replied that she no longer knew who he was, that she had not recognized him in five years now.

I was surprised, and asked him, 'And you still go every morning, even though she doesn't know who you are'?

He smiled as he patted my hand and said, 'She doesn't know me, but I still know who she is.'

I had to hold back tears as he left. I had goose bumps on my arms and thought, 'That is the kind of love I want in my life'.

True love is neither physical nor romantic. True love is an acceptance of all that is, has been, will be, and will not be.

Thanks iggy :)

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Clay Balls

A man was exploring caves by the Seashore. In one of the caves he found a canvas bag with a bunch of hardened clay balls. It was like someone had rolled clay balls and left them out in the sun to bake. They didn't look like much, but they intrigued the man, so he took the bag out of the cave with him. As he strolled along the beach, he would throw the clay balls one at a time out into the ocean as far as he could.

He thought little about it, until he dropped one of the clay balls and it cracked open on a rock . Inside was a beautiful, precious stone!

Excited, the man started breaking open the remaining clay balls. Each contained a similar treasure. He found thousands of dollars worth of jewels in the 20 or so clay balls he had left.
Then it struck him. He had been on the beach a long time. He had thrown maybe 50 or 60 of the clay balls with their hidden treasure into the ocean waves. Instead of thousands of dollars in treasure, he could have taken home tens of thousands, but he had just thrown it away!

It's like that with people. We look at someone, maybe even ourselves, and we see the external clay vessel. It doesn't look like much from the outside. It isn't always beautiful or sparkling, so we discount it.

We see that person as less important than someone more beautiful or stylish or well known or wealthy. But we have not taken the time to find the treasure hidden inside that person.
There is a treasure in each and every one of us. If we take the time to get to know that person, and if we ask God to show us that person the way He sees them, then the clay begins to peel away and the brilliant gem begins to shine forth.

May we not come to the end of our lives and find out that we have thrown away a fortune in friendships because the gems were hidden in bits of clay. May we see the people in our world as God sees them.

I am so blessed by the gems of friendship I have with you. Thank you for looking beyond my clay vessel.

Thanks mom!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

What Goes Around Comes Around

A long read but so worth it--- get out the kleenex~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The man slowly looked up. This was a woman clearly accustomed to the finer things of life. Her coat was new. She looked like that she had never missed a meal in her life. His first thought was that she wanted to make fun of him, like so many others had done before.

'Leave me alone,' he growled. To his amazement, the woman continued standing. She was smiling -- her even white teeth displayed in dazzling rows.

'Are you hungry?' she asked.

'No,' he answered sarcastically. 'I've just come from dining with the president. Now go away.'

The woman's smile became even broader. Suddenly the man felt a gentle hand under his arm.'What are you doing, lady?' the man asked angrily. 'I said to leave me alone.'

Just then a policeman came up. 'Is there any problem, ma'am?' he asked.

'No problem here , officer,' the woman answered. 'I'm just trying to get this man to his feet. Will you help me?'

The officer scratched his head. 'That's old Jack. He's been a fixture around here for a couple of years. What do you want with him?'

'See that cafeteria over there?' she asked. 'I'm going to get him something to eat and get him out of the cold for awhile.'

'Are you crazy, lady?' the homeless man resisted. 'I don't want to go in there!' Then he felt strong hands grab his other arm and lift him up.'Let me go, officer. I didn't do anything.'

'This is a good deal for you, Jack,' the officer answered. 'Don't blow it..'

Finally, and with some difficulty, the woman and the police officer got Jack into the cafeteria and sat him at a table in a remote corner. It was the middle of the morning, so most of the breakfast crowd had already left and the lunch bunch had not yet arrived. The manager strode across the cafeteria and stood by his table.'What's going on here, officer?' he asked. 'What is all this. Is this man in trouble?'

'This lady brought this man in here to be fed,' the policeman answered.

'Not in here!' the manager replied angrily. 'Having a person like that here is bad for business.'

Old Jack smiled a toothless grin. 'See, lady. I told you so. Now if you'll let me go. I didn't want to come here in the first place.'

The woman turned to the cafeteria manager and smiled. 'Sir, are you familiar with Eddy and Associates, the banking firm down the street?'

'Of course I am,' the manager answered impatiently. 'They hold their weekly meetings in one of my banquet rooms.'

'And do you make a goodly amount of money providing food at these weekly meetings?'

'What business is that of yours?'

'I, sir, am Penelope Eddy, president and CEO of the company.'


The woman smiled again. 'I thought that might make a difference'
She glanced at the cop who was busy stifling a giggle. 'Would you like to join us in a cup of
coffee and a meal, officer?'

'No thanks, ma'am,' the officer replied. 'I'm on duty.'

'Then, perhaps, a cup of coffee to go?'

'Yes, ma'am. That would be very nice.'

The cafeteria manager turned on his heel 'I'll get your coffee for you right away, officer.'

The officer watched him walk away. 'You certainly put him in his place,' he said.

'That was not my intent. Believe it or not, I have a reason for all this.'She sat down at the table across from her amazed dinner guest She stared at him intently. 'Jack, do you remember me?'

Old Jack searched her face with his old, rheumy eyes 'I think so -- I mean you do look familiar.'

'I'm a little older perhaps,' she said. 'Maybe I've even filled out more than in my younger days when you worked here, and I came through that very door, cold and hungry.'

'Ma'am?' the officer said questioningly. He couldn't believe that such a magnificently turned out woman could ever have been hungry.

'I was just out of college,' the woman began. 'I had come to the city looking for a job, but I couldn't find anything. Finally I was down to my last few cents and had been kicked out of my apartment. I walked the streets for days. It was February and I was cold and nearly starving. I saw this place and walked in on the off chance that I could get something to eat.'

Jack lit up with a smile. 'Now I remember,' he said. 'I was behind the serving counter. You came up and asked me if you could work for something to eat. I said that it was against company policy.'

'I know,' the woman continued. 'Then you made me the biggest roast beef sandwich that I had ever seen, gave me a cup of coffee, and told me to go over to a corner table and enjoy it. I was afraid that you would get into trouble. Then, when I looked over, I saw you put the price of my food in the cash register I knew then that everything would be all right.'

'So you started your own business?' Old Jack said.

'I got a job that very afternoon. I worked my way up. Eventually I started my own business, that, with the help of God, prospered.' She opened her purse and pulled out a business card. 'When you are finished here, I want you to pay a visit to a Mr. Lyons. He's the personnel director of my company. I'll go talk to him now and I'm certain he'll find something for you to do around the office.' She smiled. 'I think he might even find the funds to give you a little advance so that you can buy some clothes and get a place to live until you get on your feet. If you ever need anything, my door is always opened to you.'

There were tears in the old man's eyes. 'How can I ever thank you? ' he said.

'Don't thank me,' the woman answered. 'To God goes the glory. Thank Jesus...He led me to you.'

Outside the cafeteria, the officer and the woman paused at the entrance before going their separate ways. 'Thank you for all your help, officer,' she said.

'On the contrary, Ms. Eddy,' he answered. 'Thank you. I saw a miracle today, something that I will never forget. And... And thank you for the coffee.'

If you have missed knowing me, you have missed nothing. If you have missed some of my emails, you might have missed a laugh. But, if you have missed knowing my LORD and SAVIOR, JESUS CHRIST, you have missed everything in the world. Have a Wonderful Day. May God Bless You Always. And don't forget that when you 'cast your bread upon the waters,' you never know how it will be returned to you. God is so big He can cover the whole world with his Love and so small He can curl up inside your heart.

Thanks, mom, for this awesome share.

Monday, June 23, 2008

The Old Man and the Dog

The Old Man and the Dog
by Catherine Moore

"Watch out! You nearly broad sided that car!" My father yelled at me. "Can't you do anything right?"

Those words hurt worse than blows. I turned my head toward the elderly man in the seat beside me, daring me to challenge him. A lump rose in my throat as I averted my eyes. I wasn't prepared for another battle.

"I saw the car, Dad. Please don't yell at me when I'm driving." My voice was measured and steady, sounding far calmer than I really felt.

Dad glared at me, then turned away and settled back. At home I left Dad in front of the television and went outside to collect my thoughts. Dark, heavy clouds hung in the air with a promise of rain. The rumble of distant thunder seemed to echo my inner turmoil. What could I do about him? Dad had been a lumberjack in Washington and Oregon . He had enjoyed being outdoors and had reveled in pitting his strength against the forces of nature. He had entered grueling lumberjack competitions, and had placed often. The shelves in his house were filled with trophies that attested to his prowess. The years marched on relentlessly. The first time he couldn't lift a heavy log, he joked about it; but later that same day I saw him outside alone, straining to lift it. He became irritable whenever anyone teased him about his advancing age, or when he couldn't do something he had done as a younger man.

Four days after his sixty-seventh birthday, he had a heart attack. An ambulance sped him to the hospital while a paramedic administered CPR to keep blood and oxygen flowing. At the hospital, Dad was rushed into an operating room. He was lucky; he survived. But something inside Dad died. His zest for life was gone. He obstinately refused to follow doctor's orders. Suggestions and offers of help were turned aside with sarcasm and insults. The number of visitors thinned, then finally stopped altogether. Dad was left alone. My husband, Dick, and I asked Dad to come live with us on our small farm. We hoped the fresh air and rustic atmosphere would help him adjust. Within a week after he moved in, I regretted the invitation. It seemed nothing was satisfactory. He criticized everything I did. I became frustrated and moody.

Soon I was taking my pent-up anger out on Dick. We began to bicker and argue. Alarmed, Dick sought out our pastor and explained the situation. The clergyman set up weekly counseling appointments for us. At the close of each session he prayed, asking God to soothe Dad's troubled mind. But the months wore on and God was silent. Something had to be done and it was up to me to do it. The next day I sat down with the phone book and methodically called each of the mental health clinics listed in the Yellow Pages. I explained my problem to each of the sympathetic voices that answered. In vain.

Just when I was giving up hope, one of the voices suddenly exclaimed, "I just read something that might help you! Let me go get the article."

I listened as she read. The article described a remarkable study done at a nursing home. All of the patients were under treatment for chronic depression. Yet their attitudes had improved dramatically when they were given responsibility for a dog. I drove to the animal shelter that afternoon. After I filled out a questionnaire, a uniformed officer led me to the kennels. The odor of disinfectant stung my nostrils as I moved down the row of pens. Each contained five to seven dogs. Long-haired dogs, curly-haired dogs, black dogs, spotted dogs all jumped up, trying to reach me. I studied each one but rejected one after the other for various reasons too big, too small, too much hair.

As I neared the last pen a dog in the shadows of the far corner struggled to his feet, walked to the front of the run and sat down. It was a pointer, one of the dog world's aristocrats. But this was a caricature of the breed. Years had etched his face and muzzle with shades of gray. His hipbones jutted out in lopsided triangles. But it was his eyes that caught and held my attention. Calm and clear, they beheld me unwaveringly. I pointed to the dog. "Can you tell me about him?"

The officer looked, then shook his head in puzzlement."He's a funny one. Appeared out of nowhere and sat in front of the gate. We brought him in, figuring someone would be right down to claim him. That was two weeks ago and we've heard nothing. His time is up tomorrow." He gestured helplessly.

As the words sank in I turned to the man in horror. "You mean you're going to kill him?"

"Ma'am," he said gently, "that's our policy. We don't have room for every unclaimed dog."

I looked at the pointer again. The calm brown eyes awaited my decision. "I'll take him," I said.

I drove home with the dog on the front seat beside me. When I reached the house I honked the horn twice. I was helping my prize out of the car when Dad shuffled onto the front porch.

"Ta-da! Look what I got for you, Dad!" I said excitedly.

Dad looked, then wrinkled his face in disgust. "If I had wanted a dog I would have gotten one. And I would have picked out a better specimen than that bag of bones. Keep it! I don't want it"

Dad waved his arm scornfully and turned back toward the house. Anger rose inside me. It squeezed together my throat muscles and pounded into my temples."You'd better get used to him, Dad. He's staying!"

Dad ignored me.

"Did you hear me, Dad?" I screamed.

At those words Dad whirled angrily, his hands clenched at his sides, his eyes narrowed and blazing with hate. We stood glaring at each other like duelists, when suddenly the pointer pulled free from my grasp. He wobbled toward my dad and sat down in front of him. Then slowly, carefully, he raised his paw. Dad's lower jaw trembled as he stared at the uplifted paw. Confusion replaced the anger in his eyes. The pointer waited patiently. Then Dad was on his knees hugging the animal. It was the beginning of a warm and intimate friendship.

Dad named the pointer Cheyenne . Together he and Cheyenne explored the community. They spent long hours walking down dusty lanes. They spent reflective moments on the banks of streams, angling for tasty trout. They even started to attend Sunday services together, Dad sitting in a pew and Cheyenne lying quietly at his feet. Dad and Cheyenne were inseparable throughout the next three years. Dad's bitterness faded, and he and Cheyenne made many friends.

Then late one night I was startled to feel Cheyenne 's cold nose burrowing through our bed covers. He had never before come into our bedroom at night. I woke Dick, put on my robe and ran into my father's room. Dad lay in his bed, his face serene. But his spirit had left quietly sometime during the night.

Two days later my shock and grief deepened when I discovered Cheyenne lying dead beside Dad's bed. I wrapped his still form in the rag rug he had slept on. As Dick and I buried him near a favorite fishing hole, I silently thanked the dog for the help he had given me in restoring Dad's peace of mind.

The morning of Dad's funeral dawned overcast and dreary. This day looks like the way I feel, I thought, as I walked down the aisle to the pews reserved for family. I was surprised to see the many friends Dad and Cheyenne had made filling the church. The pastor began his eulogy. It was a tribute to both Dad and the dog who had changed his life. And then the pastor turned to Hebrews 13:2. "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers."

"I've often thanked God for sending that angel," he said.

For me, the past dropped into place, completing a puzzle that I had not seen before: the sympathetic voice that had just read the right article... Cheyenne 's unexpected appearance at the animal shelter. . .his calm acceptance and complete devotion to my father. . and the proximity of their deaths. And suddenly I understood. I knew that God had answered my prayers after all.

Life is too short for drama & petty things, so laugh hard, love truly and forgive quickly.
Live While You Are Alive.
Tell the people you love that you love them, at every opportunity.
Forgive now those who made you cry. You might not get a second time.

And if you don't send this to at least 4 people - who cares? But do share this with someone.

This was sent to me by my mom.

A fallen brother

A man fell into a pit and couldn't get himself out.
A subjective person came along and said, "I feel for you down there."
An objective person walked by and said, "It's logical that someone would fall down there."
A Pharisee said, "Only bad people fall into pits."
A mathematician calculated how deep the pit was.
A news reporter wanted the exclusive story on the pit.
An IRS agent asked if he was paying taxes on the pit.
A self-pitying person said, "You haven't seen anything until you've seen my pit."
A fire-and-brimstone preacher said, "You deserve your pit."
A Christian Scientist observed, "The pit is just in your mind."
A psychologist noted, "Your mother and father are to blame for your being in that pit."
A self-esteem therapist said, "Believe in yourself and you can get out of that pit."
An optimist said, "Things could be worse."
A pessimist claimed, "Things couldn't be worse."
Jesus, seeing the man, took him by the hand and lifted him out of the pit.

This share came from my mom.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Duct Tape or Nail?

A man dies and goes to heaven. St. Peter meets him at the Pearly Gates and says, "Here's how it works. You need 100 points to make it into heaven. You tell me all the good things you've done, and I give you a certain number of points for each item, depending on how good it was. When you reach 100 points, you get in."

"Okay," the man says, "I was married to the same woman for 50 years and never cheated on her, even in my heart."

"That's wonderful," says St.Peter, "that's worth two points!"

"Two points?" he says. "Well, I attended church all my life and supported its ministry with my tithe and service."

"Terrific!" say s St.Peter.. "That's certainly worth a point."

"One point!?!!" "I started a soup kitchen in my city and worked in a shelter for homeless veterans."

"Fantastic, that's good for two more points," he says."Two points!?!! " Exasperated, the man cries. "At this rate the only way I'll get into heaven is by the grace of God."

"Bingo! 100 points ! Come on in!"

We often try to fix problems with WD-40 and duct tape. God did it with a nail.


This one *just* got to my inbox from my mom. Thanks mom.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Dont Give Up

One day I decided to quit... I quit my job, my relationship, my spirituality... I wanted to quit my life. I went to the woods to have one last talk with God.

'God', I asked, 'Can you give me one good reason not to quit?' His answer surprised me...

'Look around', He said. 'Do you see the fern and the bamboo?'

'Yes', I replied.

'When I planted the fern and the bamboo seeds, I took very good care of them. I gave them light. I gave them water. The fern quickly grew from the earth. Its brilliant green covered the floor. Yet nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo. ' He said.

'In the second year the Fern grew more vibrant and plentiful. And again, nothing came from the bamboo seed. But I did not quit on the bamboo. ' He said.

'In year three there was still nothing from the bamboo seed. But I would not quit. In year four, again, there was nothing from the bamboo seed. I would not quit.' He said.

'Then in the fifth year a tiny sprout emerged from the earth. Compared to the fern it was seemingly small and insignificant...But just 6 months later the bamboo rose to over 100 feet tall.
It had spent the five years growing roots. Those roots made it strong and gave it what it needed to survive. I would not give any of my creations a challenge it could not handle.' He asked me. 'Did you know, my child, that all this time you have been struggling, you have actually been growing roots?'

'I would not quit on the bamboo. I will never quit on you. Don't compare yourself to others.' He said. 'The bamboo had a different Purpose than the fern. Yet they both make the forest beautiful. Your time will come', God said to me. 'You will rise high'

'How high should I rise?' I asked.

'How high will the bamboo rise?' He asked in return.

'As high as it can?' I questioned.

'Yes.' He said, 'Give me glory by rising as high as you can.'

I left the forest and brought back this story.

I hope these words can help you see that God will never give up on you. Never, Never, Never Give up.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Heaven's Grocery Store

I was walking down life's highway...just needing things galore. When suddenly I saw a sign that read: "Heaven's Grocery Store." As I got a little close, the door came open wide; and pretty soon I found myself there inside. I saw a host of angels. They were standing everywhere.

One handed me a basket and said, "My child, shop with care."

Everything a Christian needed was in that grocery store. All you couldn't carry, you'd come back the next day for more. First, I got some Patience. Love was in the same row. Further down was Understanding. You need that everywhere you go. I got a box or two of Wisdom, a bag or two of Faith. I just couldn't miss the Holy Spirit, for it was all over the place. I stopped to get some Strength and Courage, to help me run this race. By then my basket was getting full, and I remember needing Grace. I didn't forget Salvation - that is free. So I tried to get enough of that, to save both you and me. Up the isle a way was Prayer, and I just had to put that in. For I knew that when I stopped outside, I'd run into sin. Peace and Joy were plentiful, they were on the very last shelf. Songs and praises were hanging near, so I just helped myself.

Then I started to the counter to pay the grocery bill - for I thought I'd gotten everything to my Masters will. I inquired of an angel, "Oh, sir, what do I owe?"

He looked at me and smiled and said, "Just take them all to go."

I was confused, so again I asked, "How much do I owe?"

Again he smiled and said, "JESUS PAID YOUR BILL...A LONG TIME AGO!"

Your church is God's grocery store - - help yourself and come back for more.
Author Unknown

I'd heard this one many years ago when I was working for a Christian school. It's one of the many lessons that stayed on my heart to this day.

The Brick

A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street, going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching for kids darting out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something. As his car passed, no children appeared . Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag's side door! He slammed on the brakes and backed the Jag back to the spot where the brick had been thrown.

The angry driver then jumped out of the car, grabbed the nearest kid and pushed him up against a parked car shouting, "What was that all about and who are you? Just what the heck are you doing? That's a new car and that brick you threw is going to cost a lot of money. Why did you do it?"

The young boy was apologetic. "Please, mister...please, I'm sorry but I didn't know what else to do," He pleaded. "I threw the brick because no one else would stop..." With tears dripping down his face and off his chin, the youth pointed to a spot just around a parked car. "It's my brother, "he said. "He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can't lift him up."

Now sobbing, the boy asked the stunned executive, "Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair? He's hurt and he's too heavy for me."

Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He hurriedly lifted the handicapped boy back into the wheelchair, then took out a linen handkerchief and dabbed at the fresh scrapes and cuts. A quick look told him everything was going to be okay.

"Thank you and may God bless you," the grateful child told the stranger.

Too shook up for words, the man simply watched the boy push his wheelchair-bound brother down the sidewalk toward their home.

It was a long, slow walk back to the Jaguar. The damage was very noticeable, but the driver never bothered to repair the dented side door. He kept the dent there to remind him of this message: "Don't go through life so fast that someone has to throw a brick at you to get your attention!"

God whispers in our souls and speaks to our hearts. Sometimes when we don't have time to listen, He has to throw a brick at us. It's our choice to listen or not.

I've received this one a few times too. The last one who sent it was my mom. Thanks for the share!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

New version of Footprints in the Sand

Imagine you and the Lord Jesus are walking down the road together.

For much of the way, the Lord's footprints go along steadily, consistently, rarely varying the pace. But your footprints are a disorganized stream of zigzags, starts, stops, turnarounds, circles, departures, and returns.

For much of the way, it seems to go like this, but gradually your footprints come more in line with the Lord's, soon paralleling His consistently. You and Jesus are walking as true friends! This seems perfect, but then an interesting thing happens: Your footprints that once etched the sand next to Jesus' are now walking precisely in His steps.

Inside His larger footprints are your smaller ones, you and Jesus are becoming one. This goes on for many miles, but gradually you notice another change. The footprints inside the large footprints seem to grow larger. Eventually they disappear altogether. There is only one set of footprints they have become one.

This goes on for a long time, but suddenly the second set of footprints is back. This time it seems even worse! Zigzags all over the place. Stops. Starts. Gashes in the sand. A variable mess of prints. You are amazed and shocked.

Your dream ends. Now you pray: "Lord, I understand the first scene with zigzags and fits. I was a new Christian; I was just learning. But you walked on through the storm and helped me learn to walk with you."

"That is correct,"

" ... And when the smaller footprints were inside of Yours, I was actually learning to walk in Your steps; I followed you very closely."

"Very good. You have understood everything so far."

" ... When the smaller footprints grew and filled in Yours, I suppose that I was becoming like you in every way."


"So, Lord, was there a regression or something? The footprints separated, and this time it was worse than at first."

There is a pause as the Lord answers with a smile in his voice. "You didn't know? That was when we danced."

To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven: A time to weep, a time to laugh, A time to mourn, and a time to dance. (Ecclesiastes 3:1,4)

By Mark Littleton � 1990

I cant remember who sent this to me, it's on this link though:

Sunday, April 6, 2008

When the music stopped

I know I've been pretty much keeping this section dedicated to the religious items, however this was just too awesome to not put anywhere. I have already looked in to see if there's anything debunking it and there isnt.

WHEN THE MUSIC STOPPED .. I believe you will find this very interesting as well as inspiring.For those who are unaware, at a military theater, the National Anthem is played before every movie.

This from a US Military Chaplain in Iraq:

I recently attended a showing of "Superman 3," here at LSA Anaconda. We have a large auditorium we use for movies, as well as memorial services and other large gatherings. As is the custom back in the States, we stood and snapped to attention when the National Anthem began before the main feature. All was going as planned until about three-quarters of the way through The National Anthem the music stopped. Now, what would happen if this occurred with 1,000 18-22 year-olds back in the States? I imagine there would be hoots, catcalls, laughter, a few rude comments; and everyone would sit down and call for a movie. Of course, that is, if they had stood for the National Anthem in the first place. Here, the 1,000 Soldiers continued to stand at attention, eyes fixed forward. The music started again. The Soldiers continued to quietly stand at attention. And again, at the same point, the music stopped. What would you expect to happen? Even here I would imagine laughter, as everyone finally sat down and expected the movie to start. But here, you could have heard a pin drop. Every Soldier continued to stand at attention. Suddenly there was a lone voice, then a dozen, and quickly the room was filled with the voices of a thousand soldiers, finishing where the recording left off:

" And the rockets red glare, The bombs bursting in air, Gave proof through the night That our flag was still there. Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave, O'er the land of the free And the home of the brave"

It was the most inspiring moment I have had here in Iraq . I wanted you to know what kind of Soldiers are serving you here. Remember them as they fight for you! Pass this along as a reminder to others to be ever in prayer for all our soldiers serving us here at home and abroad. For many have already paid the ultimate price.

Written by Chaplain Jim Higgins LSA Anaconda is at the Balad Airport in Iraq, north of Bagdad

Awesome share mom.

Friday, March 28, 2008

I know who I am

I am God's child (John 1:12)
I am Christ's friend (John 15:15)
I am united with the Lord(1 Cor. 6:17)
I am bought with a price(1 Cor. 6:19-20)
I am a saint (set apart for God). (Eph. 1:1)
I am a personal witness of Christ (Acts 1:8)
I am the salt & light of the earth (Matt.5:13-14)
I am a member of the body of Christ(1 Cor 12:27)
I am free forever from condemnation ( Rom. 8: 1-2)
I am a citizen of Heaven. I am significant (Phil.3:20)
I am free from any charge against me (Rom. 8:31-34)
I am a minister of reconciliation for God(2 Cor5:17-21)
I have access to God through the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:18)
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Eph. 2:6)
I cannot be separated from the love of God(Rom.8:35-39)
I am established, anointed, sealed by God (2 Cor.1:21-22)
I am assured all things work together for good (Rom. 8: 28)
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit (John 15:16)
I may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3: 12)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
I am the branch of the true vine, a channel of His life (John 15: 1-5)
I am God's temple (1 Cor. 3: 16).
I am complete in Christ (Col. 2: 10)
I am hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3).
I have been justified (Romans 5:1)
I am God's co-worker (1 Cor. 3:9; 2 Cor 6:1).
I am God's workmanship(Eph. 2:10)
I am confident that the good works God has begun in me will be perfected (Phil 1: 5)
I have been redeemed and forgiven (Col. 1:14).
I have been adopted as God's child(Eph 1:5)
I belong to God
Do you know who you are!?

This is actually called "The Bell" and in the email is shaped as such. To be honest I dont know if I can get it to look like that in here so I renamed it. Thanks mom for the share.

The Cracked Pot

An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck. One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water. Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream.

"I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house."

The old woman smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?"

"That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them."

"For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house."

Each of us is unique. You've just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.

SO, to all of my crackpot friends, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

Thanks PaSis

Gingham Dress

A lady in a faded gingham dress and her husband, dressed in a homespun threadbare suit, stepped off the train in Boston, and walked timidly without an appointment into the Harvard University President's outer office. The secretary could tell in a moment that such backwoods, country hicks had no business at Harvard and probably didn't even deserve to be in Cambridge.

"We'd like to see the president," the man said softly.

"He'll be busy all day," the secretary snapped.

"We'll wait," the lady replied.

For hours the secretary ignored them, hoping that the couple would finally become discouraged and go away. They didn't, and the secretary grew frustrated and finally decided to disturb the president, even though it was a chore she always regretted.

"Maybe if you see them for a few minutes, they'll leave," she said to him.

He sighed in exasperation and nodded. Someone of his importance obviously didn't have the time to spend with them, and he detested gingham dresses and homespun suits cluttering up his outer office. The president, stern faced and with dignity, strutted toward the couple.

The lady told him, "We had a son who attended Harvard for one year. He loved Harvard. He was happy here. But about a year ago, he was accidentally killed. My husband and I would like to erect a memorial to him, somewhere on campus."

The president wasn't touched. He was shocked. "Madam," he said, gruffly, "we can't put up a statue for every person who attended Harvard and died. If we did, this place would look like a cemetery."

"Oh, no," the lady explained quickly. "We don't want to erect a statue. We thought we would like to give a building to Harvard."

The president rolled his eyes. He glanced at the gingham dress and homespun suit, and then exclaimed, "A building! Do you have any earthly idea how much a building costs? We have over seven and a half million dollars in the physical buildings here at Harvard."

For a moment the lady was silent. The president was pleased. Maybe he could get rid of them now.

The lady turned to her husband and said quietly, "Is that all it costs to start a university? Why don't we just start our own?"

Her husband nodded. The president's face wilted in confusion and bewilderment. Mr. and Mrs. Leland Stanford got up and walked away, traveling to Palo Alto, California where they established the university that bears their name, Stanford University, a memorial to a son that Harvard no longer cared about.

You can easily judge the character of others by how they treat those who they think can do nothing for them.

Awesome share Alice.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Lord and the holy man

A holy man was having a conversation with the Lord one day and said. "Lord, I would like to know what Heaven and Hell are like."

The Lord led the holy man to two doors. He opened one of the doors and the holy man looked in. In the middle of the room was a large round table. In the middle of the table was a large pot of stew, which smelled delicious and made the holy man's mouth water. The people sitting around the table were thin and sickly. They appeared to be famished. They were holding spoons with very long handles that were strapped to their arms and each found it possible to reach into the pot of stew and take a spoonful. But because the handle was longer than their arms, they could not get the spoons back into their mouths. The holy man shuddered at the sight of their misery and suffering.

The Lord said, "You have seen Hell."

They went to the next room and opened the door. It was exactly the same as the first one. There was the large round table with the large pot of stew which made the holy man's mouth water. The people were equipped with the same long-handled spoons, but here the people were well nourished and plump, laughing and talking.

The holy man said, "I don't understand."

"It is simple," said the Lord. "It requires but one skill. You see they have learned to feed each other, while the greedy think only of themselves."

I cant remember where I got this one from but thanks. I'll share my spoon with you too.

Woman and a fork

Woman and a Fork

There was a young woman who had been diagnosed with a terminal illness and had been given three months to live. So as she was getting her things 'in order,' she contacted her Pastor and had him come to her house to discuss certain aspects of her final wishes.

She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service, what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she wanted to be buried in.

Everything was in order and the Pastor was preparing to leave when the young woman suddenly remembered something very important to her.

'There's one more thing,' she said excitedly.

'What's that?' came the Pastor's reply.

'This is very important,' the young woman continued. 'I want to be buried with a fork in my right hand.'

The Pastor stood looking at the young woman, not knowing
quite what to say.

That surprises you, doesn't it?' the young woman asked.

'Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the request,' said the Pastor.

The young woman explained. 'My grandmother once told me this story, and from that time on I have always tried to pass along its message to those I love and those who are in need of encouragement. In all my years of attending socials and dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably lean over and say, 'Keep your fork.' It was my favorite part because I knew that something better was velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple pie. Something wonderful, and with substance!'

So, I just want people to see me there in that casket with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder 'What's with the fork?' Then I want you to tell them: 'Keep your fork ..the best is yet to come.'

The Pastor's eyes welled up with tears
of joy as he hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew this would be one of the last times he would see her before her death. But he also knew that the young woman had a better grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp of what heaven would be like than many people twice her age, with twice as much experience and knowledge. She KNEW that something better was coming.

At the funeral people were walking by the young woman's casket and they saw the cloak she was wearing and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the Pastor heard the question, 'What's with the fork?' And over and over he smiled.

During his message, the Pastor told the people of
the conversation he had with the young woman shortly before she died. He also told them about the fork and about what it symbolized to her. He told the people how he could not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they probably would not be able to stop thinking about it either.

He was right. So the next time you reach down for your fork let it remind you, ever so gently, that the best is yet to come. Friends are a very rare jewel , indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed Cherish the time you have, and the memories you share ... being friends with someone is not an opportunity but a sweet responsibility.

And keep your fork.

Im keeping my fork. Thanks mom!

If I Die Before You Wake

This beautiful piece was sent to me by a friend of mine in Pennsylvania. Thank you so much for sharing this with me.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

John 3:16

A little boy was selling newspapers on the corner, the people were in and out of the cold. The little boy was so cold that he wasn't trying to sell many papers. He walked up to a policeman and said, 'Mister, you wouldn't happen to know where a poor boy could find a warm place to sleep tonight would you ? You see, I sleep in a box up around the corner there and down the alley and it's awful cold in there for tonight. Sure would be nice to have a warm place to stay.'

The policeman looked down at the little boy and said, 'You go down the street to that big white house and you knock on the door. When they come out the door you just say John 3:16, and they will let you in.'

So he did. He walked up the steps and knocked on the door, and a lady answered. He looked up and said, 'John 3:16.'

The lady said, 'Come on in, Son.'

She took him in and she sat him down in a split bottom rocker in front of a great big old fireplace, and she went off. The boy sat there for a while and thought to himself: John 3:16 .I don't understand it, but it sure makes a cold boy warm.

Later she came back and asked him 'Are you hungry ? '

He said, 'Well, just a little. I haven't eaten in a couple of days, and I guess I could stand a little bit of food,'

The lady took him in the kitchen and sat him down to a table full of wonderful food. He ate and ate until he couldn't eat any more. Then he thought to himself: John 3:16 .Boy, I sure don't understand it but it sure makes a hungry boy full.

She took him upstairs to a bathroom to a huge bathtub filled with warm water, and he sat there and soaked for a while. As he soaked, he thought to himself: John 3:16 . I sure don't understand it, but it sure makes a dirty boy clean. You know, I've not had a bath, a real bath, in my whole life. The only bath I ever had was when I stood in front of that big old fire hydrant as they flushed it out.

The lady came in and got him. She took him to a room, tucked him into a big old feather bed, pulled the covers up around his neck, kissed him goodnight and turned out the lights. As he lay in the darkness and looked out the window at the snow coming down on that cold night, he thought to himself: John 3:16 ...I don't understand it but it sure makes a tired boy rested.

The next morning the lady came back up and took him down again to that same big table full of food. After he ate, she took him back to that same big old split bottom rocker in front of the fireplace and picked up a big old Bible. She sat down in front of him and looked into his young face.. 'Do you understand John 3:16 ? ' she asked gently.

He replied, 'No, Ma'am, I don't. The first time I ever heard it was last night when the policeman told me to use it,'

She opened the Bible to John 3:16 and began to explain to him about Jesus . Right there, in front of that big old fireplace, he gave his heart and life to Jesus. He sat there and thought: John 3:16 -- don't understand it, but it sure makes a lost boy feel safe.

You know, I have to confess I don't understand it either, how God was willing to send His Son to die for me, and how Jesus would agree to do such a thing. I don't understand the agony of the Father and every angel in heaven as they watched Jesus suffer and die. I don't understand the intense love for ME that kept Jesus on the cross till the end. I don't understand it, but it sure does make life worth living. John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life .

Thank you, daddy, for the reminder.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Fireman and Angel pic

This one arrived in my inbox several times. It was always hooked to some chain letter thingy. I really dont like chain letter thingies... however this is an awesome picture. Just look at the detail that went into this piece.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Hidden in plain view

This one was given to me several years back while I was working the aftercare program in a Louisiana Christian school. I was able to find all the necessary books in about 20 minutes. Not bad considering I wasnt as overly familiar with the Bible as some of those kids. I did manage to find them all before some of the teachers though LOL. Anyhow, it's made it to my inbox a couple times since then and I enjoy trying to beat that 20 minutes. Im putting it in here for your enjoyment.

Don't grab your Bible---I challenge you to do this without any outside assistance. One bit of advice I would give is to read the following through before you start trying to solve it. The instructions are in the paragraph. Enjoy!
There are 30 books of the bible in this paragraph. Can you find them? This is a most remarkable puzzle. It was found by a gentleman in an airplane seat pocket, on a flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu, keeping him occupied for hours. He enjoyed it so much; he passed it on to some friends. One friend from Illinois worked on this while fishing from his johnboat. Another friend studied it while playing his banjo. Elaine Taylor, a columnist friend, was so intrigued by it she mentioned it in her weekly newspaper column. Another friend judges the job of solving this puzzle so involving; she brews a cup of tea to help her nerves. There will be some names that are really easy to spot. That's a fact . Some people, however, will soon find themselves in a jam; especially since the book names are not necessarily capitalized. Truthfully, from answers we get, we are forced to admit it usually takes a minister or a scholar to see some of them at the worst. Research has shown that something in our genes is responsible for the difficulty we have in seeing books in this paragraph. During a recent fund raising event, which featured this puzzle, the Alpha Delta Philemonade booth set a new record. The local paper, the Chronicle, surveyed over 200 patrons who reported that this puzzle was one of the most difficult they had ever seen. As Daniel Humana humbly puts it, "Those able to find them all will hear great lamentations from those who have to be shown. One revelation that may help is that books like Timothy and Samuel may occur without their numbers. Also, keep in mind, that punctuation and spaces in the middle are normal. A chipper attitude will help you to compete really well against those who claim to know the answer. Remember, there is no need for a man to exodus, there really are 30 books of the Bible lurking somewhere in this paragraph waiting to be found. God Bless.

Ecclesiastes 3 video link

Ecclesiastes 3

This beautiful share was sent to me by my friend Maureen up in Canada.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Just stay

A nurse took the tired, anxious serviceman to the bedside.

"Your son is here," she said to the old man. She had to repeat the words several times before the patient's eyes opened. He was heavily sedated because of the pain of his heart attack, he dimly saw the young uniformed Marine standing outside the oxygen tent. He reached out his hand. The Marine wrapped his toughened fingers around the old man's limp ones, squeezing a message of love and encouragement.The nurse brought a chair so that the Marine could sit beside the bed. All through the night the young Marine sat there in the poorly lighted ward, holding the old man's hand and offering him words of love and strength. Occasionally, the nurse suggested that the Marine move away and rest awhile. He refused. Whenever the nurse came into the ward, the Marine was oblivious of her and of the night noises of the hospital - the clanking of the oxygen tank, the laughter of the night staff members exchanging greetings, the cries and moans of the other patients. Now and then she heard him say a few gentle words. The dying man said nothing, only held tightly to his son all through the night. Along towards dawn, the old man died. The Marine released the now lifeless hand he had been holding and went to tell the nurse. While she did what she had to do, he waited. Finally, she returned.

She started to offer words of sympathy, but the Marine interrupted her. "Who was that man?" he asked.

The nurse was startled, "He was your father," she answered.

"No, he wasn't,"the Marine replied. "I never saw him before in my life."

''Then why didn't you say something when I took you to him?''

"I knew right away there had been a mistake, but I also knew he needed his son, and his son just wasn't here. When I realized that he was too sick to tell whether or not I was his son, knowing how much he needed me, I stayed."

The next time someone needs you ... just be there. Stay.


Busy Angels

Busy Angels
Author Unknown

Many of us have done special things for people that have gone unmentioned and you will all be blessed for it. This is a great story! This was written by a Metro Denver Hospice Physician:

I was driving home from a meeting this evening about 5, stuck in traffic on Colorado Blvd., and the car started to choke and splutter and die -I barelymanaged to coast, cursing, into a gas station, glad only that I would not be blocking traffic and would have a somewhat warm spot to wait for the tow truck. It wouldn't even turn over. Before I could make the call, I saw a woman walking out of the 'quickie mart' building, and it looked like she slipped on some ice and fell into a Gas pump, so I got out to see if she was okay.

When I got there, it looked more like she had been overcome by sobs than that she had fallen; she was a young woman who looked really haggard with dark circles under her eyes. She dropped something as I helped her up, and I picked it up to give it to her. It was a nickel.
At that moment, everything came into focus for me: the crying woman, the ancient Suburban crammed full of stuff with 3 kids in the back(1 in a car seat),and the gas pump reading $4.95.

I asked her if she was okay and if she needed help, and she just kept saying 'don't want my kids to see me crying,' so we stood on the other side of the pump from her car. She said she was driving to California and that things were very hard for her right now. So I asked, 'And you were praying?' That made her back away from me a little, but I assured her I was not a crazy person and said, 'He heard you, and He sent me.'

I took out my card and swiped it through the card reader on the pump so she could fill up her car completely, and while it was fueling, walked to the next door McDonald's and bought 2 big bags of food, some gift certificates for more,and a big cup of coffee. She gave the food to the kids in the car, who attacked it like wolves, and we stood by the pump eating fries and talking a little. She told me her name, and that she lived in Kansas City Her boyfriend left 2 months ago and she had not been able to make ends meet. She knew she wouldn't have money to pay rent Jan 1, and finally in desperation had finally called her parents, with whom she had not spoken in about 5 years. They lived in California and said she could come live with them and try to get on her feet there. So she packed up everything she owned in the car. She told the kids they were going to California for Christmas, but not that they were going to live there. I gave her my gloves, a little hug and said a quick prayer with her for safety on the road.

As I was walking over to my car, she said, 'So,are you like an angel or something?' This definitely made me cry. I said, 'Sweetie, at this time of year angels are really busy, so sometimes God uses regular people.'

It was so incredible to be a part of someone else's miracle. And of course,you guessed it, when I got in my car it started right away and got me home with no problem. I'll put it in the shop tomorrow to check, but I suspect the mechanic won't find anything wrong. Sometimes the angels fly close enough to you that you can hear the flutter of their wings...

Psalms 55:22 'Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and He shall sustain thee. He shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.'

Author Unknown

Kyle's story

One day, when I was a freshman in high school, I saw a kid from my class was walking home from school. His name was Kyle. It looked like he was carrying all of his books. I thought to myself, 'Why would anyone bring home all his books on a Friday? He must really be a nerd.' I had sweet a weekend planned (parties and a football game with my friends tomorrow afternoon), so I shrugged my shoulders and went on.

As I was walking, I saw a bunch of kids running toward him. They ran at him, knocking all his books out of his arms and tripping him so he landed in the dirt. His glasses went flying, and I saw them land in the grass about ten feet from him. He looked up and I saw this terrible sadness in his eyes. My heart went out to him. So, I jogged over to him as he crawled around looking for his glasses, and I saw a tear in his eye. As I handed him his glasses, I said, 'Those guys are jerks. They really should get lives. '

He looked at me and said, 'Hey thanks!' There was a big smile on his face. It was one of those smiles that showed real gratitude. I helped him pick up his books, and asked him where he lived. As it turned out, he lived near me, so I asked him why I had never seen him before. Hesaid he had gone to private school before now. I would have never hung out with a private school kid before. We walked all the way home, and I carried some of his books. He turned out to be a pretty cool kid. I asked him if he wanted to play a little football with my friends He said yes. We hung out all weekend and the more I got to know Kyle, the more I liked him, and my friends thought the same of him.

Monday morning came, and there was Kyle with the huge stack of books again. I stopped him and said, 'Boy, you are gonna really build some serious muscles with this pile of books everyday!'
He just laughed and handed me half the books.

Over the next four years, Kyle and I became best friends. When we were seniors we began to think about college. Kyle decided on Georgetown and I was going to Duke. I knew that we would always be friends, that the miles would never be a problem. He was going to be a doctor and I was going for business on a football scholarship.

Kyle was valedictorian of our class. I teased him all the time about being a nerd. He had to prepare a speech for graduation. I was so glad it wasn't me having to get up there and speak Graduation day, I saw Kyle. He looked great. He was one of those guys that really found himself during high school. He filled out and actually looked good in glasses. He had more dates than I had and all the girls loved him. Boy, sometimes I was jealous! Today was one of those days. I could see that he was nervous about his speech. So, I smacked him on the back and said, 'Hey, big guy, you'll be great!'

He looked at me with one of those looks (the really grateful one) and smiled. ' Thanks,' he said.

As he started his speech, he cleared his throat, and began 'Graduation is a time to thank those who helped you make it through those tough years. Your parents, your teachers, your siblings, maybe a coach...but mostly your friends. I am here to tell all of you that being a friend to someone is the best gift you can give them. I am going to tell you a story.'

I just looked at my friend with disbelief as he told the story of the first day we met. He had planned to kill himself over the weekend. He talked of how he had cleaned out his locker so his Mom wouldn't have to do it later and was carrying his stuff home. He looked hard at me and gave me a little smile. 'Thankfully, I was saved. My friend saved me from doing the unspeakable.'

I heard the gasp go through the crowd as this handsome, popular boy told us all about his weakest moment. I saw his Mom and dad looking at me and smiling that same grateful smile. Not until that moment did I realize it's depth. Never underestimate the power of your actions. With one small gesture you can change a person's life. For better or for worse. God puts us all in each others lives to impact one another in some way. Look for God in others.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Daddy's Poem

Her hair was up in a pony tail,
Her favorite dress tied with a bow.
Today was Daddy's Day at school,
And she couldn't wait to go.

But her mommy tried to tell her,
That she probably should stay home.
Why the kids might not understand,
If she went to school alone.

But she was not afraid;
She knew just what to say.
What to tell her classmates
Of why he wasn't there today.

But still her mother worried,
For her to face this day alone.
And that was why once again,
She tried to keep her daughter home.

But the little girl went to school
Eager to tell them all.
About a dad she never sees
A dad who never calls.

There were daddies along the wall in back,
For everyone to meet.
Children squirming impatiently,
Anxious in their seats

One by one the teacher called
A student from the class.
To introduce their daddy,
As seconds slowly passed.

At last the teacher called her name,
Every child turned to stare.
Each of them was searching,
For a man who wasn't there. '

Where's her daddy at?'
She heard a boy call out.
'She probably doesn't have one,'
Another student dared to shout.

And from somewhere near the back,
She heard a daddy say,
'Looks like another deadbeat dad,
Too busy to waste his day.'

The words did not offend her,
As she smiled up at her Mom.
And looked back at her teacher,
Who told her to go on

And with hands behind her back,
Slowly she began to speak.
And out from the mouth of a child,
Came words incredibly unique.

'My Daddy couldn't be here,
Because he lives so far away.
But I know he wishes he could be,
Since this is such a special day.

And though you cannot meet him,
I wanted you to know.
All about my daddy,
And how much he loves me so

He loved to tell me stories
He taught me to ride my bike.
He surprised me with pink roses,
And taught me to fly a kite.

We used to share fudge sundaes,
And ice cream in a cone.
And though you cannot see him.
I'm not standing here alone. '

'Cause my daddy's always with me,
Even though we are apart
I know because he told me,
He'll forever be in my heart'

With that, her little hand reached up,
And lay across her chest.
Feeling her own heartbeat,
And from somewhere here in the crowd of dads,

Her mother stood in tears.
Proudly watching her daughter,
Who was wise beyond her years.
For she stood up for the love
Of a man not in her life.

Doing what was best for her,
Doing what was right.
And when she dropped her hand back down,
Staring straight into the crowd.
She finished with a voice so soft,
But its message clear and loud.
'I love my daddy very much, he's my shining star.
And if he could, he'd be here, But heaven's, just too far.

You see he is a Marine
And died just this past year
When a roadside bomb hit his convoy
And taught Americans to fear.
But sometimes when I close my eyes,
it's like he never went away.'
And then she closed her eyes,
And saw him there that day.
And to her mothers amazement,
She witnessed with surprise.
A room full of daddies and children,
All starting to close their eyes.

Who knows what they saw before them,
Who knows what they felt inside.
Perhaps for merely a second,
They saw him at her side.
'I know you're with me, Daddy,'
To the silence she called out.
And what happened next made believers,
Of those once filled with doubt.

Not one in that room could explain it,
For each of their eyes had been closed.
But there on the desk beside her,
Was a fragrant long-stemmed pink rose.
And a child was blessed, if only for a moment,
By the love of her shining star.
And given the gift of believing,
That heaven is never too far.

Ho-Chunk Indian

Do you know the legend of the Ho-Chunk Indian youth's rite of passage?

His father takes him into the forest, blindfolds him and leaves him alone. He is required to sit on a stump the whole night and not remove the blindfold until the rays of the morning sun shine through it. He cannot cry out forhelp to anyone. Once he survives the night, he is a MAN. He cannot tell the other boys of this experience, because each lad must come into manhood on his own.

The boy is naturally terrified. He can hear all kinds of noises.Wild beasts must surely be all around him. Maybe even some human might do him harm. The wind blew the grass and earth, and shook his stump, but he sat stoically, never removing the blindfold. It would be the only way he could become a man!

Finally, after a horrific night the sun appeared and he removed his blindfold. It was then that he discovered his father sitting on the stump next to him. He had been at watch the entire night, protecting his son from harm.

We, too, are never alone. Even when we don't know it, our Heavenly Father is watching over us, sitting on the stump beside us. When trouble comes, all we have to do is reach out to Him. If you liked this story, pass it on. If not, you took off your blindfold before dawn...

Battle Hymn of the Republic

This is an awesome version of the song. Definitely a dont miss. If it comes up that he had to remove it due to traffic, just book mark the site and check back at the top of the next month.

Two Choices

What would you do? You make the choice. Don't look for a punch line, there isn't one. Read it anyway. My question is: Would you have made the same choice?

At a fund raising dinner for a school that serves learning-disabled children, the father of one of the students delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended. After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he offered a question: 'When not interfered with by outside influences, everything nature does is done with perfection. Yet my son, Shay, cannot learn things as other children do. He cannot understand things as other children do. Where is the natural order of things in my son?'

The audience was stilled by the query.

The father continued. 'I believe that when a child like Shay, physically and mentally handicap ped comes into the world, an opportunity to realize true human nature presents itself, and it comes in the way other people treat that child.'

Then he told the following story:

Shay and his father had walked past a park where some boys Shay knew were playing baseball. Shay asked, 'Do you think they'll let me play?' Shay's father knew that most of the boys would not want someone like Shay on their team, but the father also understood that if his son were allowed to play, it would give him a much-needed sense of belonging and some confidence to be accepted by others in spite of his handicaps.

Shay's father approached one of the boys on the field and asked (not expecting much) if Shay could play. The boy looked around for guidance and said, 'We're losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him in to bat in the ninth inning.'

Shay struggled over to the team's bench and, with a broad sm ile, put on a team shirt. His Father watched with a small tear in his eye and warmth in his heart. The boys saw the father's joy at his son being accepted. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shay's team scored a few runs but was still behind by three. In the top of the ninth inning, Shay put on a glove and played in the right field. Even though no hits came his way, he was obviously ecstatic just to be in the game and on the field, grinning from ear to ear as his father waved to him from the stands. In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shay's team scored again.. Now, with two outs and the bases loaded, the potential winning run was on base and Shay was scheduled to be next at bat.

At this juncture, do they let Shay bat and give awa y their chance to win the game? Surprisingly, Shay was given the bat. Everyone knew that a hit was all but impossible because Shay didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, much less connect with the ball.

However, as Shay stepped up to the plate, the pitcher, recognizing that the other team was putting winning aside for this moment in Shay's life, moved in a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shay could at least make contact. The first pitch came and Shay swung clumsily and missed. The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly towards Shay. As the pitch came in, Shay swung at the ball and hit a slow ground ball right back to the pitcher.

The game would now be over. The pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could have easily thrown the ball to the first baseman. Shay would have been out and that would have been the end of the game.

Instead, the pitcher threw the ball right over the first baseman's head, out of reach of all team mates. Everyone from the stands and both teams started yelling, 'Shay, run to first! Run to first!' Never in his life had Shay ever run that far, but he made it to first base. He scampered down the baseline, wide-eyed and startled.

Everyone yelled, 'Run to second, run to second!' Catching his breath, Shay awkwardly ran towards second, gleaming and struggling to make it to the base. By the time Shay rounded towards second base, the right fielder had the ball .. the smallest guy on their team who now had his first chance to be the hero for his team. He could have thrown the ball to the second-baseman for the tag, but he understood the pitcher's intentions so he, too, intention ally threw the ball high and far over the third-baseman's head.. Shay ran toward third base deliriously as the runners ahead of him circled the bases toward home.

All were screaming, 'Shay, Shay, Shay, all the Way Shay'

Shay reached third base because the opposing shortstop ran to help h im by turning him in the direction of third base, and shouted, 'Run to third! Shay, run to third!'

As Shay rounded third, the boys from both teams, and the spectators, were on their feet screaming, 'Shay, run home! Run home!' Shay ran to home, stepped on the plate, and was cheered as the hero who hit the grand slam and won the game for his team.

'That day', said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, 'the boys from both teams helped bring a piece of true love and humanity into this world'.

Shay didn't make it to another summer. He died that winter, having never forgotten being the hero and making his father so happy, and coming home and seeing his Mother tearfully embrace her little hero of the day!

A wise man once said every society is judged by how it treats it's least fortunate amongst them.

May your day, be a Shay Day

Becareful How You Vote

While walking down the street one day a US senator is tragically hit by a truck and dies.

His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

"Welcome to heaven," says St. Peter. "Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you."

"No problem, just let me in," says the man.

"Well, I'd like to, but I have orders from higher up . What we'll do is have you spend one day in hell and one in heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity."

"Really, I've made up my mind. I want to be in heaven," says the senator.

"I'm sorry, but we have our rules."

And with that, St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a clubhouse and standing in front of it are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him.

Everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, shake his hand, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at the expense of the people. They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster, caviar and champagne.

Also present is the devil, who really is a very friendly guy who has a good time dancing and telling jokes. They are having such a good time that before he realizes it, it is time to go.

Everyone gives him a hearty farewell and waves while the elevator rises...

The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on heaven where St Peter is waiting for him.

"Now it' s time to visit heaven."

So, 24 hours pass with the senator joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns.

"Well, then, you've spent a day in hell and another in heaven. Now choose your eternity."

The senator reflects for a minute, then he answers: "Well, I would never have said it before, I mean heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in hell."

So St. Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to hell. Now the doors of the elevator open and he's in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage.

He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags as more trash falls from above.

The devil comes over to him and puts his arm around his shoulder.

"I don't understand," stammers the senator. "Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and clubhouse, and we ate lobster and caviar, drank champagne, and danced and had a great time. Now there's just a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable. What happened?"

The devil looks at him, smiles and says, "Yesterday we were campaigning.... .. Today you voted."