For My Friends

I have always had a desire to know people from other lands, and other cultures.  I studied Policy Problems in International Relations in college as well as a few languages, but sadly, I have not gotten to travel past the American Continent—yes, that means I’ve been to Canada and Mexico as well as the USA. 

However, I have some friends who are from other countries.  They are helping me “travel” and experience other cultures, from the comfort of my own home and community.  More than expanding my horizons—they have brought a richness and depth into my life through their friendships.

Many of my International friends are Islamic.  They eagerly share with me and our “American” friends—their lives, their faith, their food, and their hilarious senses of humor.  They are amazing!  Before Covid19, we used to gather in each other’s homes once a month and have tea and share food and just talk!!  Since Covid19, we have had some zoom meetings, and we have also had some visits in individual’s homes.

I have found that they talk about things that we might consider private.  They talk about religion, openly.  They talk about Islam, and they talk about Christianity and Jesus.

One of my friends gave me a Koran.  We gave our Islamic friends, Bibles.  In fact, one of our friends asked for a Bible.  She told me that they were encouraged to read from the Torah and the Christian Bible.  She said these books were Holy to them.

With this in mind, I wanted to share a link to a film called JesusClick on the blue line to go to link.  It is a film that is taken directly from the gospel of Luke, and it has been translated into almost every known language there is.

If you go to the link, below the movie, on the right-hand side is another link that will take you to more than 1800 translations of the film.

I am doing this, because my friends are celebrating Ramadan right now, and I want to encourage them in their fast.  Since finding out that they read all the Scriptures, I thought they would enjoy this film taken directly from the gospel of Luke.

I also want to share this link with the readers of this blog, reading from other countries, who would enjoy watching a film in their own language.

I also want to encourage my fellow Americans with these thoughts:

“Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers….”  Hebrews 13:2

“You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. Exodus 22:21

““You shall not oppress a stranger, since you yourselves know the feelings of a stranger, for you also were strangers in the land of Egypt.  Exodus 23:9

Much love to you all!!  And May you be encouraged!!

Sleepless Nights–A Blessing?

Songs—the music and lyrics— make their way past the walls of my life into my emotions, into my soul, and help me to understand what was previously not understandable.  Blessings, by Laura Story, is a song that has reached into my heart, and helped me comprehend with my heart and mind, a perspective on trials being a blessing. This is something I could not get my mind around in the past.

I found out that Laura wrote this song after her husband was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. 

Perhaps you too are dealing with a trial that seems too hard to bear—and you are desperate for hope and help.

Listen to this song and read the words to the song posted after the song. 

We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love is way too much to give us lesser things

‘Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom
Your voice to hear
We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt your goodness, we doubt your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we’d have faith to believe

When friends betray us
When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not our home

What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
What if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are your mercies in disguise

I pray that the message of this song, will minister to your heart, as it has to mine, and I pray that:

You will be encouraged!!



The first tulips have blossomed in my garden. I simply love Tulips!! I love going to the Tulip Festival in our State. I have been a frequent visitor for the past 7 years, except last year when it was cancelled due to Covid19.

The year after my son died, I took my mom, my daughters and a couple of their friends to The Tulip Festival. I had decided to be proactive in making time to “Do” little things with special people—to make memories.  I was very aware that any day could be my last day on earth.

That is what happens when someone you love deeply– dies.  You are very aware of how fragile life truly is, and you want to celebrate the gift of life.  You want to celebrate the people you love.  You want to take moments and celebrate.

Seeing the tulips come up reminds me of this memory and the resolve behind it—to seize the moment– to seize the day.  You see, I had wanted to go to the Tulip Festival for many, many years, but the busyness of life made it just one more thing that got pushed out of the way.

After, my son died, I resolved that celebrating people and life would not get pushed away anymore.

I need to remind myself of this decision I made, and that is why I am writing this blog.  The Tulips coming up have reminded me of my decision I made 7+ years ago, and the small act of celebrating love, in going to the Tulip Festival.   Every day has its moments to think of someone else and love, serve, and listen.

Every day is an opportunity to celebrate love!!

Happy Tulip Time!!

May You be Encouraged!!

Gardening awaits!!

The daffodils are up in my garden.  I love their yellow, sunny selves; they are such happy flowers!!

I noticed them up yesterday and took a couple of quick photos of them.  After doing this, I took a walk around the perimeter of my house, to look at all my flower and vegetable beds, and make a mental list of what work awaits me in my garden.

I am feeling a bit overwhelmed with all the work that awaits.  I am reminding myself of sayings like, “A thousand miles begins with the first step, and weeded bed begins with the first pulled weed.”  Things like that.

I like to grow a lot of groundcover in my flower gardens—along with an abundance of perennial plants—I like how it looks, and it saves on the weeding.   

However, when it comes to my vegetable beds, nothing but turning over the ground will do, and then applying straw or ripped newspaper heavily around the plants, once they are in the ground.

I think I am a better flower gardener than I am a vegetable gardener.  With veggies, one must be careful and consistent, in weeding and watering.  With Flowers—one has a lot more leeway.  

My parents had a huge vegetable garden, and their grandparents had huge gardens—as both my mom and dad came from farming people.  Their grandparents grew crops to sell but had their own personal gardens to feed their families.

 I used to love it when my great-grandmother would ask my siblings and I to pick the strawberries in her garden.  More strawberries made it into our mouths and tummies than ended up in the pails she gave us.   Have you ever had a strawberry fresh from the garden?  Indescribably delicious!!  Most vegetables and fruit picked and eaten right away, have a freshness and sweetness that is not to be believed.

Sweet corn does not have to be cooked when you pick it and eat it right away.  It is tender and sweet, and succulent.  Some farmers will let you go into their fields and pick your own sweet corn.  Or you could grow it.  (Just don’t grow it around any feed corn, as they will cross pollinate, and then you will just have tough feed corn, not the delicious, sweet corn you were imagining.  Yes—this word of advice comes from personal experience.  LOL )

Well, I hope my writing about gardening will inspire some of you to have a garden yourselves this year.!!

Remember—you will reap what you sow!!

So Be Encouraged!!

He Is Risen by Keith Green

When I was in college, I heard Keith Green sing. I listened to his songs over and over again. I could not get enough of his music. One of the songs I listened to is: He Is Risen!! Please enjoy it today, as we celebrate Jesus Resurrection from the Dead. He is Risen, He is Risen Indeed!!

I am also including a link about Keith Green’s life–so you can read more about Keith Green’s life. Click here to read his bio.

Happy, Happy Easter!! May you be Encouraged!!