Buzzards, Bats and Bumblebees


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If you put a buzzard in a pen six or eight feet square and entirely open at the top, the bird, in spite of his ability to fly, will be an absolute prisoner.  The reason is that a buzzard always flight from the ground with a run of ten or twelve feet.  Without space to run, as is his habit, he will not even attempt to fly, but will remain a prisoner for life in a small jail with no top.

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.

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.

In many ways, there are lots of people like the buzzard, the bat and the bee.  They are struggling about with all their problems and frustrations, not realizing that if they look up, they’ll find the answer.

God is patiently waiting for us all to look up to Him.

-Author Unknown

Psalm 121:1-2

A song of ascents.

I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.

 

Blessings on your day.

 

Scripture: www.biblegateway.com

Image: google images

 

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The Oyster


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Far, far away, at the bottom of the ocean, lived an oyster. Of course she was not alone; this was a well-respected and pretty crowded oyster bank. But our little oyster felt out of place compared to the rest of the oysters. All the other oysters were very proud of the pearl they were cultivating inside of them. They would talk about its progress, and show each other too. But our oyster kept very much to herself. She would not participate in the animated conversations, and had never even given the other oysters as much as a glimpse of what she was cultivating. Of course she knew exactly what it looked like; she had repeatedly looked at it when the others were sleeping. It was beautiful and shining with an almost transparent glow.

She could have joined the conversations and showings, but for some reason she felt her pearl was much too beautiful to be exposed. She kept it completely to herself, cherishing it. The other oysters tried to persuade her to open up to them, but she kept resisting them. “No!” she spoke firmly. “It’s much too beautiful to be shown to you! This is the best, most beautiful pearl. I love it, it’s mine and that’s what it will be forever.” She kept loving and cherishing her pearl as it became bigger and more beautiful than ever, while keeping shut.
Soon the time arrived for the oysters to be brought up to the surface. They were bragging about the wonderful destination their pearls would have. “My pearl will become part of a Queen’s necklace!” “My pearl will become an Emperor’s gift to his wife!” “My pearl will be the biggest piece of jewellery on an engagement ring!” “My pearl….”  But our little oyster kept silent as she loved and kept her pearl inside of her.
She had seen lots of oysters being brought to the surface, even beginning to think she would escape this terrible fate, when with a sudden shock she felt herself being grabbed too! She was determined to stay shut, and not let anybody touch her beautiful pearl. But of course, even she was pried open and her pearl taken from her. She managed to look over the edge of the basket that she had been put in. At first she was blinded by the sunlight, but after blinking a couple of times, she could see where she was. She could see a tiny fisherman’s house, kept very clean. She could see the young fisherman, with HER pearl in his hand, approach a beautiful young woman. He held out his hand and gave her the pearl.
Our little oyster could clearly see the surprise on the young woman’s face. “Oh! What a beautiful pearl! I’ve never seen one so beautiful!” Our oyster nearly fell back into the basket, but managed to hold on. She saw the look of sincere love on the fisherman’s face as he asked the woman: “Will you marry me?” “Yes! Yes!” the young woman cried out as she dropped herself into his embrace. He lifted her up and swirled her around as they kissed.
Our oyster gasped in surprise as reality hit her. She suddenly realized what her life had been about. With a stream of tears, that could easily have been mistaken for just plain sea water, she let go of the edge of the basket and dropped herself to the bottom of it. There she sighed her final breath. She had learned the lesson:


“What we have grown and cultivated inside us, we must bring into the world, for its beauty will bring happiness to others, and with that, even greater happiness to us.”

 – Author Unknown

Image: Google Images

Seasons of Life


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There was a man who had four sons. He wanted his sons to learn to not judge things too quickly. So he sent them each on a quest, in turn, to go and look at a pear tree that was a great distance away.

The first son went in the winter, the second in the spring, the third in summer, and the youngest son in the fall.

When they had all gone and come back, he called them together to describe what they had seen.

The first son said that the tree was ugly, bent, and twisted.

The second son said no – it was covered with green buds and full of promise.

The third son disagreed, he said it was laden with blossoms that smelled so sweet and looked so beautiful, it was the most graceful thing he had ever seen.

The last son disagreed with all of them; he said it was ripe and drooping with fruit, full of life and fulfillment.

The man then explained to his sons that they were all right, because they had each seen but one season in the tree’s life. He told them that you cannot judge a tree, or a person, by only one season, and that the essence of who they are – and the pleasure, joy, and love that come from that life – can only be measured at the end, when all the seasons are up.

If you give up when it’s winter, you will miss the promise of your spring, the beauty of your summer, fulfillment of your fall.
Don’t judge a life by one difficult season. Don’t let the pain of one season destroy the joy of all the rest.

Parable of the Pencil


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The Pencil Maker took the pencil aside, just before putting him into the box.  “There are five things you need to know”, he told the pencil, “before I send you out into the world. Always remember and never forget, and you will become the best pencil you can be.”

One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in Someone’s hand.

Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time, but you’ll need it to become a better pencil.

Three: You will be able to correct mistakes you make.

Four: The most important part of you will always be what’s inside.

Five: On every surface you are used on, you must leave your mark. No matter what the condition, you must continue to write.

The pencil understood and promised to remember, and went into the box with purpose in its heart.

Now replacing the pencil with you; always remember and never forget, and you will become the best person you can be.

One: You will be able to do many great things, but only if you allow yourself to be held in God’s hand, and allow other human beings access to you for the many gifts you possess.

Two: You will experience a painful sharpening from time to time by going through various problems, but you’ll need it to become a stronger person.

Three: You will be able to correct mistakes you might make, or grow through them.

Four: The most important part of you will always be what’s inside.

Five: On every surface you walk, you must leave your mark.  No matter what your situation, you must continue to serve God in everything.

– Author Unknown

The Three Trees


 

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At dinner this evening, my children were talking about their hopes for their future. That conversation reminded me of this story.

 

The Three Trees – A Folk Tale

Once there were three trees on a hill in the woods. They were discussing their hopes and dreams when the first tree said “Someday I hope to be a treasure chest. I could be filled with gold, silver and precious gems. I could be decorated with intricate carving and everyone would see the beauty.”

Then the second tree said “Someday I will be a mighty ship. I will take kings and queens across the waters and sail to the corners of the world. Everyone will feel safe in me because of the strength of my hull.”

Finally the third tree said. “I want to grow to be the tallest and straightest tree in the forest. People will see me on top of the hill and look up to my branches, and think of the heavens and God and how close to them I am reaching. I will be the greatest tree of all time and people will always remember me…”

After a few years of praying that their dreams would come true, a group of woodsmen came upon the trees. When one came to the first tree he said, “This looks like a strong tree, I think I should be able to sell the wood to a carpenter.” and he began cutting it down. The tree was happy, because he knew that the carpenter would make him into a treasure chest.

At the second tree a woodsman said, “This looks like a strong tree, I should be able to sell it to the shipyard.” The second tree was happy because he knew he was on his way to becoming a mighty ship.

When the woodsmen came upon the third tree, the tree was frightened because he knew that if they cut him down his dreams would not come true. One of the woodsman said, “I don’t need anything special from my tree so I’ll take this one” and he cut it down.

When the first tree arrived at the carpenters, he was made into a feed box for animals. He was then placed in a barn and filled with hay. This was not at all what he had prayed for. The second tree was cut and made into a small fishing boat. His dreams of being a mighty ship and carrying kings had come to an end. The third tree was cut into large pieces and left alone in the dark.

The years went by, and the trees forgot about their dreams. Then one day, a man and women came to the barn. She gave birth and they placed the baby in the hay in the feed box that was made from the first tree. The man wished that he could have made a crib for the baby, but this manger would have to do. The tree could feel the importance of this event and knew that it had held the greatest treasure of all time.

Years later, a group of men got in the fishing boat made from the second tree. One of them was tired and went to sleep. While they were out on the water, a great storm arose and the tree didn’t think it was strong enough to keep the men safe. The men woke the sleeping man, and he stood and said “peace” and the storm stopped. At this time, the tree knew that it had carried the king of kings in its boat.

Finally, someone came and got the third tree. It was carried through the streets as the people mocked the man who was carrying it. When they came to a stop, the man was nailed to the tree and raised in the air to die at the top of a hill. When Sunday came, the tree came to realize that it was strong enough to stand at the top of the hill and be as close to God as was possible, because Jesus had been crucified on it.

The moral of this story is that when things don’t seem to be going your way, always know that God has a plan for you. If you place your trust in Him, He will give you great gifts. Each of the trees got what they wanted, just not in the way they had imagined.

The Real Pearl Necklace


I hope you enjoy this little story.

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The Real Pearl Necklace  – Author Unknown

The cheerful girl with bouncy golden curls was almost five. Waiting with her mother at the checkout stand, she saw them: a circle of glistening white pearls in a pink foil box. “Oh please, Mommy. Can I have them? Please, Mommy, please?”

Quickly the mother checked the back of the little foil box and then looked back into the pleading blue eyes of her little girl’s upturned face.

“A dollar ninety-five. That’s almost $2.00. If you really want them, I’ll think of some extra chores for you and in no time you can save enough money to buy them for yourself. Your birthday’s only a week away and you might get another crisp dollar bill from Grandma.”

As soon as Jenny got home, she emptied her penny bank and counted out 17 pennies. After dinner, she did more than her share of chores and she went to the neighbor and asked Mrs. McJames if she could pick dandelions for ten cents. On her birthday, Grandma did give her another new dollar bill and at last she had enough money to buy the necklace.

Jenny loved her pearls.  They made her feel dressed up and grown up. She wore them everywhere – Sunday school, kindergarten, even to bed. The only time she took them off was when she went swimming or had a bubble bath. Mother said if they got wet; they might turn her neck green.

Jenny had a very loving daddy and every night when she was ready for bed, he would stop whatever he was doing and come upstairs to read her a story. One night when he finished the story, he asked Jenny, “Do you love me?”

“Oh yes, Daddy. You know that I love you.”

“Then give me your pearls.”

“Oh, Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have Princess – the white horse from my collection. The one with the pink tail. Remember, Daddy? The one  you gave me. She’s my favorite.”

“That’s okay, Honey. Daddy loves you. Good night.” And he brushed her cheek with a kiss.”

About a week later, after the story time, Jenny’s daddy asked again,  “Do you love me?”

“Daddy, you know I love you.” “Then give me your pearls.”

“Oh Daddy, not my pearls. But you can have my baby doll. The brand new one I got for my birthday. She is so beautiful and you can have the yellow blanket that matches her sleeper.”

“That’s okay. Sleep well. God bless you, little one. Daddy loves you” And as always, he brushed her cheek with a gentle kiss.

A few nights later when her daddy came in, Jenny was sitting on her bed with her legs crossed Indian-style. As he came close, he noticed her chin was trembling and one silent tear rolled down her cheek.

“What is it, Jenny? What’s the matter?”

Jenny didn’t say anything but lifted her little hand up to her daddy. And when she opened it, there was her little pearl necklace. With a little quiver, she finally said, “Here, Daddy.  It’s for you.” With tears gathering in his own eyes, Jenny’s kind daddy reached out with one hand to take the dime-store necklace, and with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a blue velvet case with a strand of genuine pearls and gave them to Jenny. He had them all the time. He was just waiting for her to give up the dime-store stuff so he could give her the genuine treasure.

So it is with our Heavenly Father. He is waiting for us to give up the cheap things in our lives so that he can give us beautiful treasure.  Isn’t God good? Are you holding onto things which God wants you to let go of.  Are you holding on to harmful or unnecessary partners, relationships, habits and activities which you have come so attached to that it seems impossible to let go? Sometimes it is so hard to see what is in the other hand but do believe this one thing……………… God will never take away something without giving you something better in its place. 

 

What are you hanging on to?