Learned something today. . .

The name Pleonast actually has a meaning--but I'm not sure I would consider it a compliment to its users!
Pleonast - One who is addicted to pleonasm, or redundancy in speech or writing.

I think I'll take its other meaning -
Pleonast - Sillimanite, also known as fibrolite, monroelite or bucholzite, is an aluminum silicate mineral.
Nope, not applicable either!

Whatever its meaning or meant to mean, I'm thankful for each one of you on here.
  • truckerswife
    Thankful for you too. I looked it up along time ago, actually on accident searching for something else, ha ha!
    by truckerswife at 01/16/17 1:14PM
  • tryphena
    After awhile, we do tend to become redundant here. But good things bear repeating, right? Right?? RIGHT???? :-D
    by tryphena at 01/16/17 3:03PM
  • marmee
    I think Kennon did a t-shirt not too long ago that had the definition on it! Maybe it was long ago now.

    RIGHT, Anita! Lol
    by marmee at 01/16/17 3:35PM
  • lovescats
    Yes maam!

    I've never heard "tangled on the knees." Interesting! Is that South African or where you're from in the States?
    by lovescats at 01/18/17 8:55AM
  • sjean
    I like our little community. There used to be so many, but now I mostly have friends that I have never met here, but hope to meet in the future.
    by sjean at 01/19/17 11:34AM
  • ginnyann
    Yes, whatever the true meaning of the word, I prefer to think of it as a place for lovely people talking to other lovely people, caring, compassionate, humble and sweet.
    Makes me smile and is helpful!
    So there ya go!
    by ginnyann at 01/20/17 9:14AM
  • praguer
    To answer your question, we haven't gotten to my lesson yet. We had a couple requests for other topics for our class, so I put mine on the back burner. It still needs some pondering and studying. I read your article in the past about phrases used, and I loved it so much that it inspired me to teach a class on something similar. :) However, I now want to go deeper into the idea that some of these phrases are actually an indication of false doctrine creeping into the church. The specific phrases you mentioned are examples of those. Thank you, as always, for your wisdom and teaching! I'll likely be coming back with more questions. :)
    by praguer at 02/21/17 4:22PM


Well! is five months absence any kind of record? I am not proud of it . . .

We had a quiet holiday season. Since all business close for about a month (except stores!) everyone is back home where they grew up. Africans consider this their home and where they work, usually far away in distant cities, this not their home. Gift giving is a given, but no "extras" of any kind, especially those who do not have much.

Soooo, Christians use this time for gospel meetings and lecture series. Dave and my classes that occur weekly are suspended and we are asked to participate in these additional efforts. Three days before Christmas I scheduled classes for young women in my home. We had a wonderful time! Nine ladies camped out and helped me cook in addition to our nine classes. Even got in teaching crochet in the afternoon. Learning to read patterns and recipes was all new to them.

Afterwards, I thought to write a lesson that was incorporated during all nine classes--how to take notes and organizing time spent with God. The following may prove to be helpful to you in your teaching efforts.

Developing A Disciplined Life

Life is about discipline–self-discipline in reaching spiritual maturity. It is an onward effort and not without tears and sorrow amidst laughter and joy. Even at my age self-disciplined effort is still absolutely necessary. The Apostle Paul wrote the following at a similar age: “I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” Phil 3:13-14.

But knowing HOW to develop self-discipline and have workable, reachable goals can seem overwhelming. Perhaps every effort in the past to be spiritually organized (and thus also physically organized) has not been sustainable or has been lost in the shuffle of living. Let’s reexamine our deep desires and longing for a life with Christ and then make a plan.

"Do not worry then, saying, 'What will we eat?' or 'What will we drink?' or 'What will we wear for clothing?' "For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” Mat 6:31-33.

We are to seek Jesus FIRST, really first! Anything else that might be taken out of “all these things” and placed first can destroy our ultimate goal of being with Jesus forever. And when these things take over, our lives become scattered on a daily basis and we feel somewhat lost. Focus is momentary and quickly forgotten even as yet another area of living demands our attention. A rat-race life demands a rest, but a holiday by the sea cannot solve the problem. It is merely awaiting us when we return. Only when we look to God for solutions, can we find peace and rest. When Moses sought help, God answered, "My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest" Exodus 33:14.

How do we make God our number one priority in our lives? First, we must understand, believe and accept that we must live our lives consciously before Him, moment by moment, hour by hour, day by day. David wrote: “I will bless the LORD who has counseled me; Indeed, my mind instructs me in the night. I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will dwell securely.” Psalm 16:7-9.

Second, we must hide ourselves in a daily quiet time spending the time with Bible, pen and paper, talking with God. We all have 24 hours in a day (what a gift!) and we are the ones who choose how to spend these hours. Is just one hour with God each day too much to ask of ourselves?!

Third, be diligent to be present when the Lord’s people come together to study and worship together. Not only is it a command to remember Jesus’ sacrifice on the first day of the week, but Hebrews 10:24-25 encourages us to “consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.”

Just from these verses we can see three priorities when we make our daily lists of things to do.
Priority #1: Daily time with God and His Word.
Priority#2: Helping another Christian with His walk
Priority #3: My work in this world, including talking to others about Jesus.

Your Life Plan
Let’s get started with your own life plan. It will take a deliberate effort to make your life fit into what God wants. “If God wills. . .” (Acts 18:21; Romans 9:16) and as Paul wrote, “ I run in such a way, as not without aim” 1 Cor 9:26. “Let your eyes look directly ahead And let your gaze be fixed straight in front of you. Watch the path of your feet And all your ways will be established” Proverbs 4:25,26.

At the top of your page write “My Life Goals – Fear God and Keep His Commandments”.
As you write down your main goals, notice that all that’s really important in this life is God, people and connecting people with God.

Each goal should be specific enough to take careful aim. To give you some idea of what your goals might read, I will share mine with you (written back when my children were young).
1. To be meek and humble in seeking a home with God–less of self toward none of self and all for Him.
2. To serve my husband as lovingly and faithfully as a true helpmeet can.
3. To guide my children to a true love and desire to serve God with open honest hearts.
4. To lead others to Christ and strengthen those already on the path. I can do this by my example and teaching."Those who have insight will shine brightly like the brightness of the expanse of heaven, and those who lead the many to righteousness, like the stars forever and ever” Daniel 12:3.

The Apostle Paul gives us a fine list to draw from in Colossians 1:9-12.
1. Be filled with knowledge
2. Walk worthily
3. Bear fruit–good work, knowledge
4. Be steadfast
5. Be patient
6. Be joyous–thankful

Now that you have your life goals, you need to break these down to more manageable pieces by considering what you want to achieve five or ten year goals from now. Consider your first goal on your list and think what you want to be able to complete as a person. For example, for the first one on my list:
1. To have a workable knowledge of the Bible. To have memorized many verses that pertain to character qualities that will help me to grow in the grace and knowledge of Jesus Christ. (By creating more specific goals I can now make a plan, year by year toward the five year goals which are aimed toward my personal life goals.)

Continue planning your five (or 10) year goals directly connected with each one on your life goals. For your one year goals, become even more specific. For example,
1. Continue my personal Bible study by using a one-hour study plan to create a list of all Bible events and their moral lessons on 3x5 index cards. (See One-Hour-Plan and how to use index cards at end of this lesson.)
2. Memorize one Bible verse per week. (Recite from printed card at each meal time with family. By the end of the week, the verse is learned by every member in the family–no pain!
Notice how my plan has become more specific. Do this for the remainder of your one year goals.

At this point consider your one-month goals, aiming toward your one-year goals. Notice from the following how some of my goals in the month of January became tied together within my four main goals.
1. Begin with Genesis and study through the book using the index cards. (Today, many years later, I still have these cards, now being taught to new teachers.)
2. Help Dave to organize his library.
3. Try to always wait for David’s blessing in what you plan to do!
4. Be more patient with my sons.
5. Daily teach our boys using the Bible event recorded on the 3x5 cards. Think of some activity to aid revision throughout the month.
6. Adjust with mouth shut about school demands.
7. Visit new teachers.
8. Laugh! “A merry heart hath a continual feast.”
9. Sew curtains and lawn chair cushions
10. Sew Janet’s dress
11. Work on Bible lesson for ladies’ class.

At the end of the month, tick off each item completed. Make a new list which may have some goals that still need attention. At the end of the year, review and create a new list for the new year. Always keep in mind your five-ten year goals toward your life goals. (As you reach your 5/10 year goals, increase and improve your goals!) Each month you should have a wonderful sense of accomplishment and a positive outlook toward the next month and year as you grow in the Lord.

Your Personal Notebook
You need somewhere to record and refer to your goals on a regular basis. I chose to create a personal notebook where I could expand my plans and ensure a strong interest in continued growth–staying on target! Here are my suggestions that worked well for me.

Find a binder/file that you feel comfortable with and would enjoy using on a daily basis. It is important to choose a size you can always have with you–or keep open on your desk where you can consult it throughout the day. I also included dividers which could be labeled. As you will see from the following, a pre-made planner might prove too limiting.

On the inside cover of my notebook I have a one-year calendar, folded and attached.

My first page is the present month with space to record appointments, etc. If the appointment is several months away, I write it at the top of the month calendar. (You may wish instead to have a separate year calendar to keep with your notebook.)

The following pages in the notebook are daily pages, divided in half, where I record what must be done each day. This also includes my meal plans for the week. (My ongoing list for the grocery run is in my “Pantry” section.) At the end of the month I check back through and pick up weak areas that swallowed up my days. It will soon become obvious if physical concerns have overpowered spiritual concerns and changes need to be made. These pages may then be discarded.

As the days go by you will begin adding sections in your notebook as I did, created for various reasons. Perhaps some of these will be incorporated into yours.

1. Husband–what he needs, how I can help, ideas, memories.
2. My Boys–thoughts, plans of how I can help them. Memorable events/sayings.
3. Bible Verses–verses to help me grow, verses that will help my sons.
4. Sayings–I love short pithy sayings that cut right to the heart of what is good or evil. I also include poetry and short stories.
5. Sermon Notes–using the Cornell method of study (Date, speaker. Divide page in half, right side for notes, left side for questions to be filled in afterwards to prompt memory of sermon notes or some thought that needs followup. Then at the bottom, a personal note for how to improve my heart/life.) Website: http://lsc.cornell.edu/study-skills/cornell-note-taking-system/
6. Prayers–written. I needed to tie my mind down better while praying. The last page includes those I am praying for. When I read back through this section I can SEE God’s hand and His answers in my life and in the lives of others’.
7. Teaching–Bible class ideas, ways to reach out to the community and a list of specific ones I want to bring to Christ, my sons being at the top of the list.
8. Meal menus–a list of family favorites, location of recipes, grocery list according to month/week plan. U.S.A.–S.A. equivalents and measures.
9. House goals–making a home welcoming takes effort!
10. Family Clothing–needs and wants (consider items for birthdays)
11. Handwork goals and accomplishments. I deliberately take photos of completed work because each item was made with someone special in mind. When I look back through these beautiful photos I remember that person yet again and why they are special to me.
12. Family Health records–date, event, meds, followup, results. I also included medical advice for ongoing problems.
13. Budget–Note how my household monies are being spent–and then improve! Include a list of family needs and a buying plan.
14. Pantry–what to keep on hand, grocery list, foods found in freezer, etc

Now, go and make your own very personal special notebook. It will prove invaluable. In years to come it will become a beautiful memory of a good life filled with good works, glorifying God.

Truly a self-discipline life is a challenge to learn and maintain until death overtakes us. But we CAN do it with our Father’s help. “I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.”

Daily One Hour With God
Draw a large circle on paper. Divide the circle into eight pie slices. Label the following pieces:
1. Pray–for guidance
2. Read chosen chapter in Bible
3. Define unknown words, find places on map, identify on timeline
4. Begin filling in index card/s.
5. Read chapter again
6. Study-find other verses to help, meditate. Use Cornell method.
7. Write down lesson/s learned, attitude/obedience on card/s.
8. Pray–thanksgiving
Cut pie pieces and stack beside your Bible, pen and paper/cards. You will notice some pieces take less time than others. As your hour progresses, note how much time you are taking for each section of the hour. If your hour is up and you have not completed the sections, make a plan to improve your progress, limiting your study time and continue the next day where you left off.

3x5 Index Cards
To be filed in boxes by Bible Books
An excellent source of Bible events reading plan: http://ownit365.com/pick-a-plan/whole-bible/

time Period
Lessons to learn from event
Visual aids made
Questions asked (5W’s&H)

Reverse side:
Sequence of Event (to be used when teaching the lesson to children/ladies

  • ginnyann
    Well, hello there! Happy 2017.....May you have health, happiness and prosperity in the work of the Lord.
    Love the lesson......well needed. You are so wise!
    Thank you for the love.....we all need that!
    Remembering you and your husband in my prayers!
    by ginnyann at 01/05/17 11:06AM
  • split_rock
    Thank you for this. I continue to struggle to sharpen my focus. This will help.
    by split_rock at 01/07/17 7:19AM
  • magnolia
    Granny, this was a gift to read. Thank you! Happy new year!
    by magnolia at 01/08/17 11:31PM
  • ginnyann
    Guess who is going to church with us occasionally??????
    Pat and Chuck Gates.
    Yep, your ears had to burn yesterday as we talked about how we each knew you.
    She is more blessed since she has met you in person......I love them. Such a blessing they are.
    We are going to a small group in Loganville now which is about 30 minutes from where we live. It's mostly older christians but we fit in since we are old and gray headed too. The men take turns preaching so it gives High an opportunity to preach. They don't do a class on sundays or Wednesday but maybe we can get one started on Sundays. Further down the road! :)
    Each couple lives a little distance so it makes it hard for everyone on wednesdays but since we are already there in Sunday maybe they would be willing to start a class cause Hugh would love to teach it.......he misses the full time work even though he has some health issues.
    Have a wonderful, blessed week.
    by ginnyann at 01/09/17 8:24AM
  • dawnmk23
    Thanks, Granny! I've really missed you on here.
    by dawnmk23 at 01/09/17 8:45AM
  • lovescats
    Oh thank you - yes, they give me a lot of pleasure!

    You wrote in your article about looking up words we read in the Bible but don't know the meaning of. I experienced that this morning. It was "dandled" in Isaiah 66:12. I actually was correct in my guess of the meaning but looked it up to be sure. It means to bounce on one's knees - as with a child. Interesting word.

    It is interesting how one can read a verse numerous times, but all of a sudden a word hits the brain and one goes, "Huh?"
    by lovescats at 01/09/17 7:23PM
  • sjean
    Happy 2017.
    by sjean at 01/12/17 4:48PM
  • anne
    I don't know what Grandaddy did to earn (!) those 43 demerits! I always thought he was an upright, law-abiding citizen! In reading our family's history, I learned that Mother's oldest brother (a teenager) and my grandfather were baptized the same day. :)
    by anne at 01/13/17 8:03PM


Sigh, its surely been a while since I was on here. I offer my sincere apologies. I miss you!

I was asked to prepare a lesson on the following subject. Perhaps you will find it helpful. As always, whatever I write and share, you are free to download. Just include my name and keep me honest :)

A godly woman’s attitude toward service
Joanne Beckley

Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus said to him, 'You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.' "This is the first and great commandment. "And the second is like it: 'You shall love your neighbour as yourself.'

Who is my “neighbour?” Jesus told a story (parable) to help us understand who our neighbour is (Luke 10:29-37). Ultimately, our neighbour is anyone who is in need. That need might be a physical need (as was the man who was left for dead in Jesus’ story), or a mental/emotional need, or a spiritual need. Whatever area we are capable of fulfilling, we are to do so as though fulfilling the need to ourselves. The love God requires of us toward our neighbour must equal what we would give to ourselves. In fact, God says that we must be merciful to others if we want to claim that we love God (Hosea 6:6).

Before a godly woman can effectively give of herself to others she must first turn her thoughts inward and make sure she is not serving from a resentful attitude concerning her time and efforts. As long as the spiritual part of her nature is in tune with God, her outward service will also be good and right. “For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7).

There are several things a godly woman must consider if she wishes to live in her community in such a way that she will “give none occasion to the adversary to speak reproachfully” (1 Timothy 5:14).

1. A woman proves who she is by her performance. (See Titus 1:16.) The world soon loses respect for anyone who says one thing and does not practice it. If a woman wants her neighbours to see what Christ can do for them, let them see what Christ has done for her. A godly woman will control her temper and watch that her language remains pure. She will not drink or smoke. She will be honest in her words and actions.

2. A godly woman will demonstrate a friendly disposition (Proverbs 18:24). Acting like she is better than those she is trying to help will destroy all her efforts for good. Jesus came to save sinners; even the godly woman cannot save herself!

3. She must respect herself in order for others to recognize that a godly woman has something to offer to the community. This means her hair and clothing are presentable. Her hair and clothing should speak of her pure heart. Her home also demonstrates how much she values those she serves in her home.

4. The godly woman will not participate in neighbourhood gossip (1 Timothy 5:13; Psalm 15:3). She will keep her children under control and work to have a peaceful home environment.

5. She will always be willing to give extra effort to serve (Matthew 5:38-48; Romans 12:19-21). She will consider how she should react to those who say things to hurt her. She will consider how she should respect traditional ways of doing things that are not against God’s Word. She will consider whether places she enters may prove awkward, causing unnecessary criticism.

We read in the book of Acts that the community spoke well of the members of the Jerusalem church. They maintained their good reputations. Concerning them it is written, “Praising God, and having favour with all the people” (Acts 2:47). Notice several characteristics this church exhibited as a whole. They were steadfast. They had a deep respect for God. They encouraging others to have the same respect for God. They were united (no fighting among themselves). They were willing to share what they had, unselfishly (Acts 2:42-47). Elsewhere we read Christians were happy in all they did for Christ (1 Thess.5:16; Phil.4:4; John 16:33).

The evening before Jesus was crucified, He was evidently very aware that His disciples had not yet understood what it means to be a servant if they wanted to be a part of His kingdom. So Jesus took a towel and began washing their feet. He needed them to understand that the choice to serve or be served is one of life’s very important choices. (See John 13:12-17.) You and I, as well as every godly woman, must make this choice over and over, day by day. Our choice to serve or be served will affect our character, our influence, our happiness – and our destiny. Consider the following points (taken from a sermon by P Earnhart):

1. Jesus is the Son of God, yet He humbled Himself to wash the disciples’ feet. We cannot choose to serve and be worried about our rights.
2. Jesus saw dusty hot feet and used the custom of washing guests’ feet to demonstrate how we must serve. To be any good our service has to be practical to be effective.
3. Jesus was not concerned that His disciples would not offer to wash His feet. The decision to serve cannot rely on someone serving you in return.
4. Jesus did not wait until someone else washed their feet. The decision to serve does not wait on others to begin serving.
5. Jesus didn’t expect others to help Him with the task He chose to do. The servant will choose to serve alone if necessary.
6. Jesus knew His disciples would not understand why He was washing their feet. The decision to serve cannot expect a certain favourable response from the one served.
7. Jesus even washed the feet of the one who would betray Him with a kiss. The decision to serve must not be reserved for our friends.
8. Jesus wasn’t concerned what others were thinking about Him. The decision to serve means you will look and be treated like a servant.

After Jesus completed His task, He issued a command: "If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another's feet. For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them” (John 13:14-17). Jesus taught us to serve. Both men and women must learn to serve the needs of others. The blessing He promised only comes by being a servant. We have our work cut out for us. Time is passing. We cannot delay.

How a godly woman is to serve:

Woman, by her very nature of being helper, is well suited to serve those who need her help in the community. Each woman has different abilities and different personalities to bring to community. Each area of need also requires different skills and personalities to fulfill each need. But all servants need to be able to feel compassion toward those they help. Proving Jesus’ divinity was not His only reason for bringing life back to the widow’s son at Nain (Luke 7:11-17). Verse 13 states that He had compassion on her. A mother’s tears touched the heart of the Lord.

Compassion is defined as “sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others.” (Oxford Concise Dictionary) Sadly, too often our concern for others falls into one of two extreme categories. We either completely neglect those who are in need (some call this “compassion fatigue” because we are faced with so many appeals), or we spend too much time and attention that we hinder those who need help from helping themselves. Somewhere in between these two extremes is where we need to stand.
Compassion prompted Dorcas to help others. At her death, widows were found weeping and showing the clothes which Dorcas had made for them. She saw a way she could help and she did so (Acts 9:36-39).

In the New Testament we are given the key to pure and undefiled religion before God. We are to “visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world” (James 1:27). “Visiting” implies far more than just a social call. The Greek word for “visit” (episkeptesthai) means to go and see, to inspect what the need is and then relieve the need (Robertson’s NT Word Pictures). This is the same word used in Matthew 25:36 concerning “visiting” the sick. But if relieving the needs of others is only done out of a sense of duty and without love, it is useless (1 Cor.13:3).

Considerations that limit a godly woman’s service:

Just as we learn a godly woman must continue to exhibit a submissive attitude when she considers working outside the home, so also must she consider whether God has spoken concerning any limitations in volunteer work.

Did God create woman and give her the primary job as a servant in the community, to volunteer to do good and worthwhile works as her number one job? No. Her number one job is within her home as a wife and mother (Genesis 2:24). Whether she must supplement her husband’s income in order to feed and clothe her family or perform deeds of kindness in the community, she must balance them according to the needs of her family (Titus 2:4-5).

We also understand God created man to lead and woman to be a suitable helper. These roles do not change when we are involved in community service of any kind. This restriction is not given by God as punishment, but rather He gave man and woman distinct abilities in order to fulfill their roles. “Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4).

Some specific ways the godly woman can help others:

The Bible requires the godly woman to do “good works” that she may glorify her Father which is in heaven (Matthew 5:16; 1 Timothy 2:10; 5:10). The nature of woman is especially suited to the performance of all deeds demanding kindness, tenderness, and gentleness of feeling; prompted by pity, sympathy, and affection; and in deeds of humble and quiet sympathy.

The godly woman will consider whether she is capable of fulfilling a certain need someone has. Does she have nursing skills? Or can she sit and talk with an elderly woman who needs companionship? Is it only food or clothing AIDS orphans need? Or can she offer her home to one of the orphans? Can she volunteer to collect food for the poor? Or does she have organisational skills that can be used to help other volunteers? During times of illness, or when someone dies, or a tragedy, the godly woman has a particular occasion to let her light shine in the community. Her heart of compassion will be seen, her care and sympathy will be observed in a number of ways. Her community should be a better place in which to live because a godly woman lives there.

I am my neighbour’s Bible, He reads me when we meet;
Today he reads me in my home, Tomorrow in the street.
He may a relative or friend, Or slight acquaintance be;
He may not even know my name, Yet he is reading me.
Oh, we could make our record plain, And labour hard to see
Our worldly neighbours won to Christ, While reading you and me.
–author unknown

Helping the sick – prayer, written notes, small gifts. Practical help includes sitting/aiding directly, house cleaning, cooking, caring for children.

Helping the elderly – Many are not ill in the sense that they are bedfast, but their days are very lonely because they are not as active as they once were and because they remain at home most of the time. Practical help includes visiting, offering transportation to go to the doctor, groceries, whatever. Reading the Bible to them.

Helping mothers with small children – Prepare a dish of food for the busy mother, offer to keep the small children so she can have some time for herself.

Helping the bereaved – Attending a funeral is only the beginning point of helping those who are grieving the loss of a husband, child or relative. Perhaps the godly woman has experienced a death in her own family and knows how to handle all the legal concerns (who to contact, copies of death certificate, etc). Do not forget that grieving can take as much as two years and they need compassion and support during this time. Just sitting beside them without conversation is often all they need. Find out if a new widow needs help financially and seek ways to help.

Helping the needy – The poor don’t need pity. It won’t help them at all. Listen to them and understand their needs. Try to put yourself in their dirty, worn out, ill-fitting shoes. Poverty is filth, bad smells, being tired all the time and above all, hungry. It can also mean broken homes because the never-ending battle was just too much for the husband/father.

Helping travellers to their destination – The New Testament calls this “hospitality.” This word filoxenon, literally means a lover of strangers; one who is ready to receive into his house and relieve every need of a stranger. The early Christians considered it their duty to offer hospitality to strangers (Romans 12:13; 1Titus 5:10); remembering that our Saviour had said, whoever received those belonging to Him, received Himself; and that whatever was given to such a one, even if it was just a cup of cold water, the giver should not lose his reward (Matthew 10:40-42; 25:34-45).

The Christians during New Testament times were to be hospitable to all strangers, but especially to faithful Christians (3 John 5). Believers scarcely ever travelled without letters of commendation, which testified who they were and what they believed concerning Jesus Christ. This gave them a favourable reception wherever the name of Jesus Christ was known. Second and Third John may be such letters of recommendation. Remember Lydia? (Acts 16:14-15). She took four preachers into her home when they were visiting in Philippi. Lydia insisted that they stay in her home. Priscilla (and her husband Aquila) offered their home for the church to meet together (Romans 16:4-5).

Choose a Work!
There are many more good works that a godly woman can do. She should concentrate on at least one of the good works that she can do and make it hers. No one person can do everything. She will become discouraged if she tries to do too much. She cannot do it all, so she ends up doing nothing.

God doesn’t expect her to do everything. She is not the only eyes or hands or feet serving Jesus Christ, but she must do what she is able to do. “I’m too busy.” “I’m too tired.” “I don’t know how.” “Someone else can do it.” These are all excuses given by those who are trying to free themselves from blame. Excuses will not hold with the Lord. He continues to work for us, providing for us and taking care of us (1 Peter 5:7). The godly woman should count it a pleasure, a privilege and a blessing to work with and for Him (1 Corinthians 3:9).
  • dawnmk23
    Very lovely. Great words of wisdom, Granny! I've missed you on here.
    by dawnmk23 at 07/07/16 5:19PM
  • ginnyann
    You have certainly been missed. This is a wonderful lesson. Thank you. Hope all is well in your "neck of the woods".....
    by ginnyann at 07/08/16 10:35AM
  • sjean
    Have you read the book, She Did What She Could? There are some parallels.
    by sjean at 07/09/16 4:02PM
  • joc
    I am looking for your name to light up. Missing your posts.
    by joc at 08/19/16 9:55PM
  • dawnmk23
    I miss you on here, Granny.
    by dawnmk23 at 11/11/16 2:32PM
  • ginnyann
    I've missed you also. This is a wonderful lesson.
    Welcome back.
    by ginnyann at 11/12/16 12:58PM
  • ginnyann
    ^^^^^i just wanted to emphasize how much you were misssed.......
    I know I had already posted.
    Keep on posting cause you always have encouraging thoughts and lessons.
    by ginnyann at 11/12/16 1:00PM


Lessons Mom Learned

There are no original thoughts in the following bits of wisdom that I accumulated through the years.
Yes, you may even have been one of the wise ones from whom I listened and learned!

Specifically for Mom
1. When you are tired or angry, shut your mouth. Everything is colored and wisdom is not present.
2. Listen! Whether it is wise counsel from husband, friends or, yes, even your child.
3. Adapt, adapt, adapt. Life does not revolve around your desired special bed of roses.
4. Go to bed with a tomorrow list in hand. Tomorrow will have purpose and your smile will be present.
5. Awake with a Bible reading, song and prayer. Ideally, your entire family will join in, led by your husband.
And don’t forget to make time for personal Bible study and meditation.
“Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ” 2 Pet 3:18.
6. People often think the worst first. Forgive them.
7. “I’m sorry” should not be hidden treasure.
8. Everyone benefits from a cheery greeting. And don’t be surprised when suddenly your ear needs bending.
9. Husbands come first, then children. In time and priority, always. BTW, your husband is NOT one of your children.
10. Someday is Today. Set goals and aim toward them. Life goals, 40 years, 20 years, 10 years, 5 years, 1 year, 1 month, and one day at a time.
What you do today should be toward your 1 month goals. Life is precious. Don’t live with regrets.
11. Bears are not allow at our house. Recognize what ticks you off and either fix it or adapt.

Training Children
1. The Bible is your training manual. Use it! Www.childtrainingbible.com
2. Kids are manipulators par excellence. Stand your ground.
3. Begin as you mean to go on. Train for the future. Don’t change the rules.
Modesty, obedience, respect, etc. Remember, God sets the standards.
4. Service is first learned at home. How you serve is what they learn.
5. Training is two-fold: affection and discipline. Both must be present and wisely distributed at all times.
6. “If a man will not work, neither will he eat.” Teach your children to work, and work with pride of accomplishment.
If an attitude problem is present, remove the food.
7. Require respect toward ALL adults.
8. Children grieve. Help them.
9. Discipline problems at school will be noted at home.
10. When all is well, get ready for another surprise. Kids have a knack of tossing yet another challenge into the ring
and you will be scrabbling yet again to find the answers.
11. When you are at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang tight. Set the children down - separate chairs, separate areas,
and tell the children you need to go pray. And then go!
12. There is nothing wrong with sleeping in tomorrow’s clothes. Bathe the children, dress them in t-shirt and shorts/jeans.
Tomorrow’s day begins without hassle.
13. Consistency, thou art a jewel. Say what you mean and mean what you say.
14. Clean the high-chair before you leave the kitchen.
15. Teach daily from God’s Word. Teaching character is critical in your child’s first five years. Bible stories, yes,
but USE them as you emphasize character building qualities. Bible chronology can come later when they have a better understanding of time.
16. Don’t always hide to pray. Children need to see you practice what you preach.
17. Walk your Talk. Think seriously about baptizing a child. Knowledge is not enough.
Do they understand Biblical steadfastness (commitment)? Do they understand what it means to confess Jesus as Lord?
18. You talk they listen. They talk you listen. Listen!
19. Post family rules–on the back of the kitchen door. End of discussion.
20. Food and worship do not mix. Neither do toys and worship.
21. Refusing to obey is called rebellion. Nip it!
22. Purity is respect for self as God made you. Others (boys!) need to recognize the “No!” in you.
23. Encourage, encourage, encourage!
  • dawnmk23
    Great list. Thank you for posting.
    by dawnmk23 at 12/29/15 8:54AM
  • lovescats
    I love this list. I love when folks implement this list!
    by lovescats at 12/29/15 9:15AM
  • aleta
    Thank you for this.
    by aleta at 12/29/15 2:40PM
  • lovescats
    I think you're right. It's such a simple thing that we all can do. Just read "Stone Soup"!!

    If you do make it, you'll have to let me know what you thought of them. Can't remember if I wrote that I used the turkey sausage for this particular recipe - just for something different. Next time I'll probably use regular and see if I like them better or the same!

    Now, with our recent gathering last Sunday night after services, I made the completely unhealthy Velveeta cheese dip with Rotel tomatoes - HA!! And I fried up sausage for that. That did is so good and fail proof - which is the kind of recipe I need!!! And it was all eaten - gone - nothing to worry about taking home and stuffing myself later.
    by lovescats at 12/31/15 8:41AM
  • truckerswife
    Love this list!
    by truckerswife at 01/05/16 10:52AM
  • ginnyann
    Love, love this......can u email this to me so I can print it out for my daughter?
    Thanks.....I can't get it to print from my blog without printing everything on the blog?
    by ginnyann at 01/11/16 8:34AM
  • ginnyann
    Love this a lot. Can you email it to me so I can print it out for my daughter?
    I can't print it from the blog.
    by ginnyann at 01/11/16 8:41AM
  • ceoltoir
    Yesterday I was helping my second grader practice counting money. We took some time to imagine what we would do if we had certain amounts of money. We got to $4000 and I asked him what he would do with that much. He drew a picture of South Africa! You're on the dream list! Seriously, though, we are saving up for a trip. I don't know how long it will take but we truly hope to get there to visit you and the Liggins. My little guy has some concern about the lions he imagines roaming in all of the streets. Ha!
    by ceoltoir at 01/12/16 2:56PM
  • deputyheadmistress
    Terrific list.
    by deputyheadmistress at 02/11/16 11:14PM
  • ginnyann
    Finally got this to print.....sorry for the request,......should have just kept trying til it worked and it did.....
    Hope your days are going well.
    God bless you and your husband for all the hard work you do for the Lord.
    by ginnyann at 02/12/16 6:59AM
  • quincysmom
    WOW! These are GREAT!!!!!!!!
    by quincysmom at 02/26/16 9:45AM

12/26/15 11:32AM

I have been enjoying thinking of families all over who are enjoying each other during this holiday time. May yours be joyous.

An old man died four days before Christmas. Christians, relatives and friends from surrounding villages came each evening to sing and hear words from the Bible. Last night (Christmas day) I attended. As I entered the house through the smoke of courtyard cooking fires, I saw women sitting on the floor surrounded by huge tubs of raw beef, preparing for the big feast tomorrow (today). In one of the back rooms the new widow was sitting on a mattress placed on the floor and surrounded by other widows. On this very hot day a blanket was wrapped around her but for me her sweet smile shone through.

Back outside I entered a large tent (set up in the road) and sat down beside my husband. Throughout the singing and my husband’s preaching more and more people entered until by 6.30pm there was a sea of dark faces facing a setting sun. The beautiful sunset was accompanied by the lowing of cattle and the children playing in the roadway. As the meeting broke up and we began greeting many loved ones, I looked up and saw a full moon in the sky. The heavens in their courses, God is and I gave thanks that all is well. Tomorrow morning at 5.00am many many will return for one more prayer service before walking to the graveyard about a kilometre away. Afterwards the entire village will enjoy the big feast.
  • lovescats
    Enjoyed this glimpse into your life and that of the family's who lost a loved one. It makes Heaven even sweeter.
    by lovescats at 12/26/15 11:37AM
  • aleta
    We've been watching that same beautiful, full moon here. Thank you, God, for all things big and small, all trials that draw us together and closer to you. Thank you, Joanne, for sharing this.
    by aleta at 12/26/15 11:48AM
  • ginnyann
    We didn't get to see the full moon as our skies were crowded with the rain clouds....but I can imagine it was a very moving moment to see the moon in the sky shinning so bright....
    Sorry for the man's death and for the new widow......opportunities to preach God's word!
    Love to you both and keep up the good work for the Lord.
    God bless you and your family.
    by ginnyann at 12/26/15 12:32PM
  • sjean
    Love the moon post and comment. "I see the moon. the moon sees me, down through the leaves of the old oak tree.....
    by sjean at 12/26/15 7:13PM