Quote of the day

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Death With Dignity

This last election ,the state of Massachusetts voted on question 2,or doctor assisted suicide.
This is the time when it pleases me greatly to live in Connecticut,since we never get asked questions about anything in our state.
Life is cheap in this country and pain or watching someone suffer,is more then we think we can handle,so it must be made palatable and easy on everyone.
Don't get me wrong,I am not one of those persons who feels suffering is a good thing,and with today's multitudes of pain medications,its pretty much unnecessary .
Dying with dignity means,to get everything in your life straight with family members and God.
Many people who are on their deathbed find this a good time to come out with what is most important to them and how corrections can be made,to come to peace.
They say that most people who are dying do not worry about how much money they have,they worry about more personal things,like reconciliation to those whom they may have harmed be it physical or personal.
On the other side family members spending time with the dying, are given the opportunity to do the good they did not have time to do in their day to day lives.
Disagreements can become lessened when one is allowed to show how much they can overcome themselves to care for and love the person who is dying.
Once an author was asked "why do bad things happen to good people?"his answer was because it allows those around them to become more then they can be,or were before the incident happened.
Bad things,can many times,bring out the best in the human beings around you.
Situations in life are many times out of our control and with that we must make do with the best we can at hand,which many times is just our loving caring self.
We in this country view death as a bad thing,not a natural state of affairs,true no one wants to die,but we have no choice in the matter.
Many talk of how this is our opportunity to right our wrongs.
I know being a nurse there is a big difference between giving medication to ease ones suffering and giving a medication to end ones life.
The later for me,is murder,even if the person asking you to do it is in their right mind.
Suicide does not involve others,just your self,assisted suicide brings another person into the picture and causes them to have to live with the action you asked them to assist you with.
How will they feel in 10 or 20 years,being the one who handed you the drink that ended your life.
Seems all so sterile.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Riding The Rollercoaster

O.k its been 4 days since our Republican defeat and all that can be said is..it is what it is.
This is not my  idea of a great thing but living in Connecticut as taught me one thing and that is,being a conservative in a liberal state may not have taught me to lose graciously,but it as taught me to lose often.
Every election is unnerving,wanting so much to see this country succeed is what makes us who we are,but this is the year we take the stony path instead of the high road.
What is to become of my 401k?Not much, for another 4 more years I will slowly watch it erode to nothingness and wonder where all the money that took years to save,all went.
Taxes seem to be ahead of us.
No state,in this country, is in a good state of affairs, and taxing those who are earning anything,will be our new mantra.
We all need to understand that there will be many more poor and hurting,not able to get more then 20 hours of work a week.
Socialism is a theory that works well in the mind but not so in reality.
Those under the age of 40 know little of what real socialism is about,but if it was such a good thing,why did so many people leave their Balkan homelands,some 50 years ago,to live here?
Where do we go from here?
I will be saving allot more money in my savings account,the thought of going through another recession or getting work hours cut back,leaves me with little other choice.
Also the poor will now be in more need of our assistance with food prices sky rocketing and possible gas prices, going up to $5.00 a gallon.
Jobs will continue to stop as big companies move on to other countries with not only their manufacturing and their investments.
Small businesses will have to close or stay small related to the new taxes that will be levied on those who earn $250,000.a year.
Does this all sound depressing to you?
Well we are all in this together and we will all walk off the cliff as a united group.
Time has come for us to understand what is most important in our lives and that is our family,friends,churches and above all God.
Staying small is our best bet,and staying close to assist those who will suffer more then ourselves.
Four more years and we shall see where we shall be...stay tough...and be their for your neighbors...

Monday, October 22, 2012

Jobs Snobs

You know you come from a different generation when everything being told to you from politicians to the media, is contrary to what you have held as a belief.
Several days ago a politician,speaking on t.v.,said that we in this country need to focus our selves and our future generations on the fact that we all need to be educated,having higher paying jobs,allowing the rest of the world to take on the low paying,physical labor,manufacturing.
Does this not strike anyone as a rather snobbish rhetorical?
Only a person who has never had to work hard to get where they are today, can come up with such snobbishness.
Do we now feel we are to good to get our hands dirty?
Many of our ancestors came to this country with a few dollars in their pockets and worked hard at the minimal low pay jobs in order to give their families what they lacked back in the old country,which was namely freedom and the right to get ahead.
We seem to now have a generation of coddled people who feel when they step out of college they are entitled,even with no work experience,to be given the easy sit down jobs making huge salaries.
What made this country great was the fact that we where not elitist,who felt any job was demeaning.
The good thing about the last four years and the lousy economy is it has made this spoiled generation understand that just because you where given much,does not mean in a matter of seconds it can not all be taken away from you,no matter your education or degrees.
When did we become a group of people who felt that any job that was honest and paid you even minimum wage,was a waste of our extraordinary talents.
Who is so above any one that to say because one person has an education puts him above an ethic code of a hard,honest work.
Its sad that this country is now becoming a group of snobs,who think those who do the hands on labor intense,service work makes them someone to be looked down on or pitied.
We are in for a very large fall when all the high paid jobs are gone.
Five years ago while in Macedonia,my husband cousin talked to us about how she was an unemployed Dentist living in a town with 5 other Dentist like her self.
 Because of a high unemployment rate,most people did not have enough money to go to the dentist.
So many people in that country who hold degrees,due to free higher education, do not work.
Those who seemed to be doing well,where the bar,restaurant, and shop owners not to mention the gas station  mechanics who could work on older model cars,since no one can afford a new one.
Is this to be our future?
Allot of well educated people,who lack ambition and feel hands on,unskilled labor is beneath them so they collect from the government.
This country always stood for a way to get ahead,if you worked hard and accepted what was offered you, at some point you also could get the gold ring.
The pursuit of happiness is a wonderful thing but the pursuit of elitism and laziness is not.
Besides with all that education and the ability not to be able to fix even a leaky pipe,who in the end will be the real capitalist,the one with the supposed high IQ or the person charging you  a hundred dollars an hour to fix your toilet?

Monday, September 24, 2012

Who To Believe And Who Not To Believe

Seems every day a new presidential poll comes out and always, not in  favor of my candidate.
Now I'm not sure if what they tell is truth or lies,but I do know its tough to make heads or tails out of what is fact or fiction.
In the past 4 years our television new groups have already decided whom they choose to be our president,kind of like the Soviet Union,we are just suppose to acknowledge whom they feel is the best choice.
In 2008 one media person spoke of how he had a "tingle run up his leg" related to the up and coming candidate,I'm not sure about you,but this is way more information then I choose to know about a television commentator,especially when he claims to want to "play hard ball".
I want facts,good,bad or ugly and really do not care whom the journalist and media feel is their logical slanted choice.
News should enlighten me not indoctrinate me.
This campaign season,I have vowed to not pay much attention to what our liberal press seems to think is good for me and this country.
I'm not concerned how much money a candidate has I'm really more concerned about how much money I have.
To me government is suppose to work for me I am not suppose to work for them.
The government is not my rich grandfather,whom money just spills from his fingers and no one is entitled to anything except what the Constitution says they are,which is namely life,liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
I give charitable contributions,on a weekly basis and am always ready to assist my fellow neighbor in times of need,but I am not willing to work and give my hard earned money over to people who are much younger then me,who choose to never work.
I have raised a child on my own meager earnings and  know how hard it is to bearly get by.
 I also understand that those feelings I had of wanting to do better put me in the position of pushing myself to not only become a nurse but find ways to pay for my own education.
No one is entitled to free college education at the best school,which they make a concouse effort to choose to go to,nor cry about how much in debt they are on graduation day.
If you go to school to be a doctor or a lawyer,then you in your life time will certainly be able to pay back  your investment ,which by the way is what an education is,your investment into your self,not my investment in you.
I believe in helping my fellow man by helping then help themselves.
Give a man a fish and you can feed him for a day,teach a man to fish and you can feed him for a lifetime.
So with the upcoming presidential season upon us,and media bias against us,it is now time to take the high road and ignore all the media hype and slantedness.
Personal I feel that if you are now into September and can not decide which person to vote for,then do us all a favor and stay home on election day,because you obviously have no clue how important this whole race is and what is at stake..
Choose traditional American values of work hard and make it to the top and maybe if your lucky you could become one of those wealthy one percenters,no shame in that, or choose Socialism where you feel the government owes you everything,the media tells you what to think and be a drain on society,then we can all go down broke and in flames,just like Greece.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Hot Lunches

Several days ago,while at the hairdressers, I over heard two parents talking about how their children no longer will buy hot lunch,because the new healthier foods being offered,are thing foreign to their  taste buds.
For any one whose ever raised children,the understanding  of good nutrition and pallet ability,are one in the same,in other words if it looks funny,taste strange,or smells odd,you have just lost not only the health food battle but the entire war,making every meal from that day forward a drama of wills, you vs. them.
Most children are no longer raised with the attitude of if it sits on our family table you eat it or if you are served something you do not complain you just eat it.
Children now days are more pampered due to parents inability to listen to the complaints or their  tiredness from a hard day of work to fight the supper time fight.
The rule here seems to be maybe offering hummus as part of a school lunch is not going to fly with most children.
What this all boils down to is,most school lunch rooms that ran on the idea that if you can open a prepared can or package and heat it,no matter how bad the calorie count,sugar,fats and salts,the easier it was on them.
The time as come for these school dietitians to become more creative to appeal to not just little children but teenagers.
Trickery is always important,if you can hide the healthy stuff into the acceptable childhood food fare,you can win the daily  food war.
Most parents understand that there are all sorts of ways to sneak in the good unacceptable childhood food  into the meal,its all about presentation and taste.
Not all so called junk foods are totally bad.
Things like pizza,spaghetti,meat loaf,hamburgers and sandwiches can all be a gold mine of healthy foods wrapped up or hidden in ways making them a positive nutritional value,not only healthy but mouth watering and desirable..
When my son was a child he hated onions,peppers and celery but liked meat loaf,I learned quickly that if you blended the offensive veggies,in a blender, then poured the mixture into the meatloaf mixture,no one but me was the wiser.
Another trick was to cook potatoes and cauliflower then mash them together,with milk butter,or margarine,salt and pepper and we both had a happy stress free meal.
We as parents understand that you can make meals a trauma or a joy,it all depends on your level of creativity,which is something these school systems now have to learn and adopt.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Choose To Be Happy/Choose To Be Grateful

We spend our days feeling like we are always dogged by troubles.
People today are unemployed ,loosing homes,just scraping by.
Issues happen to us everyday with feelings of no recovery in sight.
Many young people do not understand that this is not something that just happens to them,but has been going on for many years through out history.
Back in the Jimmy Carter days,when I was a young adult I went through exactly what is going on in the world today.
No jobs,no gas,and food prices beyond what one could comfortably spend.
All in all this to will pass,just as the great depression did in the 1920's.
Money like jobs,are fleeting but family and friends,hopefully are not.
What to do?Start by understanding that you are as happy and grateful as you choose to be.
You can not change everything in the world around you,but you can change how you handle what is given to you.
Today you need to realize that no matter how bad things are,know many people out there have it much worse then you.
Today start a journal,every night write in what made you happy and why you are grateful.
Understand that bad things happen to everyone,everyday,but that does not make you a bad person or a failure.
Sometimes bad things happen for good reasons,we learn lessons and understand what in our lives are important.
Its not the car,the money or the McMansion that makes us who we are,its the peerson  who comes out the other side with an altered new attitude of just how important we are in this world and how we can encourage and pass on our new perspectives to others.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Missions

I don't know much about Mormonism but one thing they have is called missions.
Now missions to them does not just mean going off to another country and doing religious work,it also means staying in your own church or community and helping.
To many people who belong to a religion or sit in a pew do not feel that what they have to offer is worth being used by their faith.
Most feel that all the action is about those who serve during the Sunday Service,but this should be farthest from the truth.
Church means world outreach and building in reach,if you want people to become more interest in your church make them more involved.
Many churches seem to think that only a certain few need to be involved in everything while the rest sit idly by.
Someone once told me that 20% of the people do  80% of the work,this tells me that 80% of the people do not feel challenged or comfortable enough to even try.
Why? Maybe because they have a fear of failure,or that they will not do the job to the highest standards of perfection held by others,or it could be  they were not asked.
At our church we have a community meal 2 to 3 times a months,one day while there a lady came into the kitchen to deliver a cake and offer her services.Since we have done this meal for almost three years now,our small group as become very comfortable with the fact that we know our jobs,working like a well oiled machine,so we thankfully declined her offer.
Later the thought came to mind of why we did not find,even something simple for her to do.
We tend to forget that most people want to be helpful and when we deny them that right, we cut them off from something that might spark a flame of interest.
Mission is important for peoples psyche,they feel connected and joined to a group.You have a bigger stake in things when you are invited to be a part of things,especially things you have a gift at.
Churches that don't allow everyone from the youngest to the oldest,to take on a job,lose that sense of family,which is crucial to a church.
At home a good family gives a choir to ever member,some set the table,some make the meal,some serve this food,some clear the tables and some,like it or not,wash and put the dishes away.
Why? Not just because it teaches good work ethic and how to get along with each person in the family but more important because what you contribute has worth and makes you a partner with each other member.
Many think church is about ceremony, big words and formal prayer but its really about all Gods children getting together to form one big family.
Today I went to a friend church's car wash.
Everyone doing their part to raise money to help fund their overseas missionaries .
They served me lunch and took my picture along with their own church family,why because I was a visiting friend to a family member and that is how you treat your children's friends,when they come to your home.
Mission means purpose and purpose means unity.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Phrases And Racisim

Today there was a gentleman on TV.who feels certain phrases should be considered racist and offensive,since at there time of conception they were used in a very different manner.
For example to "hold down the fort" he says,originally meant,to keep the Indians out of the fort, even though we fought the revolutionary war,war of 1812 and civil war,trying to keep ahold of our forts,from the British,white European men and later northern and southern men dressed in blue and grey uniforms,which had nothing to do with Native Americans.
How about the phrase "rule of thumb"this started with how  deeply,by law you were allowed to bruise mark your wife,bet you though it just had to do with an assumed rule to be follow.
Many terms were made up hundreds of years ago in less friendly times,maybe they were considered to mean one thing in their day but have come to be understood in a totally different way.
Since we no longer walk into earthen forts and hold them down or beat women to certain measurements,we can not be considered racist or offensive if the terms we use no longer hold the original meanings.
Should "a bird in the hand is worth two in a bush"or "don't count your chickens til they hatch" be considered fowl abuse.
I have never in my life time caught a bird in my hand and since fowl and eggs can be bought in a grocery store,the future seems pretty safe for the bushes and the birds living in said places,near my residence.
We can be so politically correct that it becomes ridiculous.
Most of us know what a  real racist word or phrase consist of.
Not so long ago many,or maybe it just seemed like many,people felt that words in books like the Bible,should be sex neutral,meaning that the world man,woman,male and female should not be used,since someone might be offended and feel lesser,in some way.
No words like sons,daughters,mother or fathers should ever be put into print,these words did not allow for equality,as if a mother or father role was some how diminished,if it was understood that each had a different genitalia.
We live in a pretty neutral world,most men and women can,in this country anyways,interchange jobs as long as they are equal in knowledge and ability.
This was not so in the times of Jesus and to make the Bible gender neutral is to insult the spirit it was written in,back in it day.
Today we do not have this situation to contend with,a woman can be a doctor and a man a nurse,this was not so only 30 years ago.
Phrases made up long ago and books written in different times,do not put us in the position to feel that the way ideas were put together do not also have different but significant meanings.
believe it or not "turning a blind eye" does not mean we are insulting the sight impaired,but rather not noticing the imperfections of another,be it person or thing.
Some times we have to lighten up and not read things into every aspect of our lives

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Out Of The Loop

This is becoming my new  phase "Once again out of the loop".
Seems the more we are involved in things in life,the less we know about whats going on around us.
Sigmund Freud suggested that "we can be successful in our jobs or we can be successful in our family life,but we can not be successful at both,because one has to give some where."
What does this mean?
You can not be involved in everything in life and be a success at it all,because something will always be lost in some fashion,some where.
Jesus put it this way "you can not serve two masters because you will love one and hate the other."
Our lives are like that,we can serve our family ,our jobs,our churches,or our  committees but we can not serve all of them equally,because at some point one or all of them, will seem like a burden and we will become dissatisfied  and feel like a slave, beginning to despise one or all our commitments.
We have to find balance in our lives,deciding what we will devote more time to and let the rest  come in second or third place,pulling our selves away to care less and do only the things we want to do when we choose to do them.
Not all of us are meant to do everything and be everything to everyone.
I decided along time ago that my family comes before my job,if my family needs me then my job comes after them,even if it means the possibility of losing my employment.
We all have commitments and business to deal with but our lives will never be totally fulfilled by all our wants and desires.
Being out of the loop to me means not being fully involved in everything around me,then making the conscience decision that its OK,even if it makes me feel let down or less important.
We all have gifts,some are meant to use their gifts in the houses of a church others in the world.
Though at times it may seem a let down if we are not gifted in a certain area,try as we might,we will never succeed in that area.
Jesus,himself was a traveling Rabbi,or teacher,he taught in temples but had no building of his own,he walked the earth and spoke truth to those in need,trying to gather together the lost sheep and bring them back into the fold.
Some of us may not be people of stone and mortar churches,some may be people of the earth,we all have gifts and talents and those may not mean a building.
The world should be our day to day church and maybe a brick and mortar building on Sunday, our charging station.
To get to locked into politics,of any kind distracts us from our day to day mission of family,friends and strangers in need.
Maybe the loop that encompasses committee things is to small a loop, for some people ,the whole world lays before them,lost and confused,bruised and damaged,maybe our callings are to the lost lonely little lambs who need that special one on one caring that we are gifted to give and do.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Chatter

Most of us spend more time talking then listening.
We do not understand when silence is a good thing,noise is everywhere in our lives and we just don't know how to tune out the static.
We hear to much,speak to much and filter nothing.
Everyone of us thinks our opinion or ideas are the most important ones.
Silence is not something we are accustomed to.
In many monasteries and convents,there are times in the day were no one is allowed to speak,silence is key word because it allows one to focus on what they are doing or praying,in a way that can not be done when our brains are running at a hundred miles an hour looking for thoughts and ideas to for our words and sentences.
Silence can be refreshing but it can also be frightening.
Today while at the grocery store,the cashier had a metal screened,surfaced voice box,she could not speak unless she put her fingers over her metal ring,I began to think how much a person must go through to answer a simple questionnaire unable to answer or speak a comment.
How every word is either something that needs to be said or just useless chatter.
Maybe if we all had to struggle to say the things that need to be said,we would be less inclined to speak gossip out of boredom.
Being a child,I was very shy,people thought it was odd to not want to speak with family or friends,they would encourage and try to get me to say more then just a single word answer,as if being shy was an undesirable  crime.
Now that I am an adult I wish I still had the ability to be a little more on the shy side.
Not everything in our brain needs to be out of our mouths and not every sentence we speak will go down in history as golden and pure,words of wisdom,even though we think so.

Rich Man Poor Man

When did it become such a bad thing to be rich?
We spend a great deal of our lives doing things like going to college,taking courses,trying for a good paying job and desiring to live the good life,but in the same breath we dislike those who have made it to be successful.
While growing up in the 70's,the whole idea was to be comfortable in life,my parents never drove us by rich peoples small mansions and said"those people are evil and we need to take all their money,so we can work less and live better."
My parents always impressed on us how lucky we were to live in a country were every generation can do better then  those who immigrated here.
My grandparents came from Canada,they were farmers ,my grandfather had a 3th grade education,my father made it to the 8th grade,he worked hard to built his own house and hoped for more for his children.
The torch,so to speak,gets passed from one generation to the next,none of us is guaranteed a better life,but every one  of us is a stepping stone for the next generation.
Yesterday,while at coffee hour after church,someone at the table I was sitting at,pointed to a table across the room ,filled with church members talking about the up coming golf tournament,this gentleman  said,"look  over there,that's where all the rich people are ,you don't see them sitting with us,the poor people."
The thought came to my mind,who cares if people are rich or poor, just because some one plays golf does not mean they are wealthy.
Envy can be a terrible thing,it causes division.
We can not all have money but we can all have wealth.
Personal happiness with your self is more important then what one has in their saving account.
In the end, when we are laid to rest,the only wealth we will attain,is being in the presence of God.
Someone once told me the error of having wealth is not how big your house is or fancy your car,it is what you do with that home or vehicle.
We are required to help those in need,if God has given us more then it is our job to do the best we can with the extra we have.
A poor person can be just as earthly,if not more so,with the little God as graced them with,by not sharing,in a loving way,what they have.
Mother Teresa once told a story about how one day one of her sisters brought some rice to a poor family,the lady of the household divided her gift in half then said,I will give this to my neighbor because she is poorer the me.
Now that is wealth.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Premonitions

Do you every have a sense about things,only to find out what your feeling comes true?
I have been blessed or cursed with just such issues.
Seems most of my adult life I get these feelings about things or people that I can not shake.
Most times when these waves come over me its usually a warning of what may be a bad person or situation.
I have had times at work where I will get this feeling of doom or dread only to have things go wrong on the floor,with patients or staff members.
Most people wish to have glimpse into the future,I,on the other hand,usually choose not to.
There have been times while quietly sitting at home, this absolute need to pray for someone comes across my whole being,making me feel if I do not do what is being asked of me, this person may not be comforted.
Most times I do not even know who needs my prayer,but several days later it will be made clear to me.
Some may call this a premonition or being psychic,I just call it a passing wave which in most instances,becomes true.
Many is the new person I have met,where upon saying hello to them,I have an overwhelming feeling to stay away from them.
Where I work the nurses aides have come to me and told me that when I have these feeling I am to tell them so they can prepare themselves for what is about to happen to them or their patients.
As a matter of fact Friday while standing at my med cart getting ready for the morning med pass this intense feeling of doom entered my body,I told the aides to prepare themselves I was getting "one of those feelings"and before I knew it within an hour I Had two staff people have to leave because they began to run fevers and vomit and one patient who started to take a turn for the worse.
It ended up being a very challenging morning,which did not settle down til lunch time.
What is a person to do with such an issue?
I have found deep heart felt prayer tends to help me ease and prepare myself for what is to befall those around me and myself.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Connecting The Dots

Several times this week I have done things that in the end connect with some ones life in ways I could not have even imagine.
It amazes me how my simple small acts can be joined together to make up a larger picture causing, what I now refer to as a " God connection".
Mother Teresa used to say that we are each like pieces in a watch,some small,some large,some cheap and some expensive,but together we make up the watch and God the energy,that makes the watch  run.
That one simple act we do,for reasons we think are the answers, end up being so much more,to another person life.
Send some one a gift or a card and the intent on your part may be something to lift a friends spirits,but in the receivers eyes or heart it may be just the words that have the right answer,to the receivers prayers or worries.
Spend some time speaking with a friend or making a suggestion and one word you have just said may have a different meaning then what you intended,just the right word to help them take action.
We do not understand the connections we make,on a day to day basis,but God does and sometimes He even allows us to glimpse into its hidden meaning.
The connections we make are like a ripple on a pond,caused by a stone,we see the ripples spread across the surface and hear the sound, but we miss the depth of its descent, as it lands on the bottom.
Choose to do and say good,be kind and encouraging and someday when your allowed a glimpse at the connection it will surprise you what the real meaning is and why your were allowed to play a part.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

To Thine Own Self Be True

To thine own self be true..W.Shakespeare.

Today while watching Joyce Myers, she mentioned how we should question our selves on everything we do.
The Bible says we should be humble and honest in order to bring God his glory.
So how can this be so, if our reasons for doing things are self centered and power grabbing,for our glory.
Why do we do the things we do?
This may seem very difficult to figure out,but really, is not.
Most of the time when we do something,just the simple question "why" will bring to our minds,the immediate and exact reason.
Today,I have decided,that from now on when ever I choose to do or agree to something,I will ask myself  "why" whats in it for me? and whats in it for God?
Questions like "why am I angry at this or that person?" " why do I want to be on this or that committee?" " why do I say yes or no to certain things when asked to do them?"..why,why,why.
Most of the times the answers we get will not be the ones we may want to face,We tend to think everything we do is for the good of others but most times its for self glorification .
Soon it will become evident to us,that the things we agree to are not so much for the glorification of God but for the praise of our selves.
If we took the time, to be honest, we would soon find ,we deceive ourselves on many levels.
Our days are filled with garbage,that we think is important,if we could rid ourselves from our lies we would see how much more manageable life would become and whats really important  to us.
My new watch word will now be "why" and with it I'm hoping to have a more quality filled and less junk accumulated, life
To my own life I now choose to be true,and so should you.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Help a soldier in afghanistan

want to help a soldier and their bunk mates in Afghanistan?
just go to the web site...AnySoldier.com
you can scroll through specific request posted by troops in Afghanistan who are seeking everything from room freshener to candy and playing cards.
click "where to send"to read the latest postings.
Once you've chosen the soldier you'd like to help,simple request his/her mailing address and you can send your package directly.
Help a hero and make a difference in their daily lives.

Less Media Publicity For Killers

Several days ago,in Colorado, it came to light that at a midnight showing of a new batman movie, a person of evil decided to kill 12 innocent people and wound multiple others.
Since Saturday morning,the news media as been filled with this horrible act,not just about those who where the victims,but the shooter himself.
Today is now Tuesday and still this sick individual is the lead story in most news medias.
True what this person did was despicable and horrible and most of us can not even conceive how someone so intelligent,can be so mentally ill.
The problem in this country, is we spend way to much time making this person famous,we worry about what this person looks like,is he mentally ill,what was his childhood like,did he show signs to his neighbors and friends of this behavior and should we enact gun control.
All this does is feed the evil inside this person by giving him what he wants,notoriety.
When things like this happen,maybe we need to say his name once,then never again
No publicity for him,only his victims.
What this person did was wrong and to continually have the media try to search out his behavior only gives him what he craves,attention.
Evil abounds in the world and because of it we will never be safe.
Sick people do sick things but making him important does us as a society no justice.
Everyone is entitled to their day in court and a  good defense,but maybe we need to do it away from the spot light and universal media attention.
Back in the day of old,when someone committed an act of such evil,their name would be stricken off of  everything,as if they never had lived,there was no fame,you were considered evil and your punishment was to be forgotten.
Those who suffered in this tragedy deserve our compassion and concern,the person who performed the evil act needs to face his justice,but not through notoriety.
What he did should not make him greater,it should make him a lesser.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Giving Away Your Privacy

I'm not sure why so many people are willing, to give away their personal information to anyone in ear shot.
This morning while sitting at my local Honda Dealership,having my oil changed,I became privy to a woman personal conversation,while I and four other people were in the waiting room.
She revealed that she has been unemployed for 2 years,the different places she had applied to,where she worked previously ,what her phone number was, her address,house number,color and exact location on the street her house was located on.
I also know  what happened at her recent job interview,the position she applied for, why she turned down the job and her health issues.
Was I eavesdropping?
No I was actually trying to read a newspaper and avoid what she was saying,basically I was a captive audience,with no where to go.
Recently on T.V. there was a commercial for life lock security,a company to help keep your person information,and accounts from those who would try to steal your identity.They charge you a monthly fee and let you know when someone is trying to use your identity.
While listening to this woman conversation,which went on for over a half hour,it became clear to me that if your concerned about who is doing what with your personal information,maybe you need to be more careful about what you say and who is in ear shot.
If I had been an opportunist,with a shady background there was more volunteered information then I would have needed to know to rob your house,steal your identity and understand your lifestyle.
I'm not sure why people think ,when they are in a public place,everyone around them needs to know information, they would not even give to their closet friends.
Today while reading the newspaper there was an article stating that if you are  sitting in a bar  and have just made a phone call,there is a new app that allows anyone in that bar with you to tap into your face book account and find out all the personal information you  have on it.
Everything  about you can be given away,who you chat with,where you went to school and possibly where you live.All of it gone to a total stranger,with who knows what kind of criminal background.
Many  people today, talk about invasion of privacy but most do not even realize how much information is give away on a daily basis just because of  careless phone use in public places.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Church Change

What purpose does the church have and what is its responsibility?
Should it change with the wind,whenever a more popular opinion comes along?or should it stay the course,standing firm in its beliefs, til the bitter end?
Who should point out what is wrong and what is right? the church,the people or society?
Being first Catholic and now Easter Orthodox as always led me to believe that although I may not always agree with the stance of my religion,I know that my faith and its leaders,understand that these are the teachings of Jesus Christ and can not be changed on a fashionable whim.
What happens when a religion chooses a more liberal path,like accepting and embracing say gay marriage,sex change or abortion,are they still in unison with the principles and teachings of God?
Back in the days of Moses,over one thousand laws,rules and regulations where laid out with the Ten Commandments being the most important.
When Jesus came to earth,he was to be the Shepard who brought the lost sheep back into the fold.
He said the rules where made for man,not man for the rules.
To many people where pushed out of the Jewish faith because it became more about the rules and less about the person being burdened.
Does this mean that rules are not important?I say no,but with that comes the understanding that we need to know what is right and wrong,and what is acceptable and not acceptable.
To many churches, now days follow the law of "lets not make people feel uncomfortable or they may leave."
But are people leaving really as important as saving their souls and bringing them to the understanding of God laws and principles.
Jesus himself tells the apostles,when he sends them out into the world,that if people don't want to hear what you have to say, then shake the sand from your sandals and walk away,for this town will be more damned then Saddam and Gomorrah.
The rules of the church should be the teachings of God himself.
Why is it important for the church to put the rules forward and stand behind them?
Back in the days of Moses,it was believed that that the Jewish race was a chosen people,set apart by God himself,to be a holy priesthood,different from the rest of the world.
Today this same principle holds true,we as Christians are chosen to be different,Jesus called us the light of the world and as such the rules hold true not only for we the parishioners,but more so for our Christian Leader, Chuirches and  Institutions.
Yes you must love the sinner,but you must also work with them to gain adulthood into the faith.
We,as individuals, understand where we stand in our faith walk and how and why we do what we do in our daily lives.
But the church can not be so broad,it can  not bend its teachings just to keep the faithful happy and sitting in the pews.
We are not a social club but a faith and to wash down the truth,needed to gain entrance into heaven is not an option for our church leaders.

Bread Of Faith

You never know what will pass through a person mind while sitting in a Church Service,at least that's my perspective.
Today bread filled my head.Not the smell,or the thoughts of eating it,but the loaf it self.
How simple is bread,made with the least,most basic ingredients,but in the end it can become the greatest part of a church service.
True it is the blessing of God and the hands of the Priest that turns the contents of this humble loaf into the body of God,but before that happens,it is constructed by the hands of a simple servant of faith mixing,kneading,cooking and praying through the process that brings about the first steps of its future destination.
Like the preparation of a sacrifice to be offered in the Temple of old,humble yet pure.
Through out the Bible,both old and new testaments,much is said about this product being important for not just life,but praise and thanksgiving.
Something as basic as flour,water,salt and leavening baked into a loaf,brought to a church,then raised up to the heavens in prayer,becomes the body of our dear Savior Jesus Christ.
How great is our Lord that all he ask from us is a product of the Earth,formed by the hands of a servant,offered by a priest,and accepted by the All Mighty.
In the end God created the earth,we produce and grow the products to be offered and glorified to and by God,in humble prayers and with pure gratitude.
Its not about gold or silver,things given to earthly kings,but lowly wheat,water,salt and leaven with and sincerity of heart.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Giving Up Before Even Starting

During the time of the Roman Empire people became so dependent on those around them,like slaves  and their government,they forgot how to be strong and motivated.
Soon the strongest nation in the world was being conquered by a more brutal regime,and wondering what happened.
Today while at the gas station,a gentleman pumping gas was telling the man near him,"I don't know what is wrong with my 19 year old son,he is not even willing to learn how to drive a car and could care less if he ever does."
I hate to admit this but my own 22 year old nephew is feeling the same way,he works part time for Star Bucks and his parents take him  to  and from his place of employment, although he has tried several times to get his license,he seems very happy to not be saddled with this responsibility.
Funny back in the olden days,the mid 1970's,the very first thing I wanted in life was a drivers license.
For me it meant freedom and adulthood.
The idea comes to mind are we raising a group of adults who can't stand the thought of freedom and adulthood? People who feel dependency on their parents,is allot easier then dependency on themselves?
My mother used to say"you help your children,when they are trying to help themselves" but now days I see and hear people complaining about how hard life is and how their children can't possibly make it out there .
When my father was growing up,in the 1940's,he decided that high school was not his thing,so at 13 years of age,he quit school and got a job working in a factory.
Back in his day,growing up in a family of 10 children,there was not much to go around,and if you wanted things you worked at what ever job was given to you,for what ever amount of money your employer chose to pay you.
Then,as today,people from foreign lands, came here with little to no money in their pockets,happy to work at what ever they could get,many taking multiple jobs in order to establish themselves.
Young people now days, just don't want to start at the bottom,they want to educate themselves for years on end then feel they are entitled to the big dollars,even though they have no experience in their field.
Last month more people went on to disability,then jobs were created in the work force.
We will,sadly to say,soon be turning into ancient Rome.
No one wants to start at the bottom and work hard to become one of those so called 1%,its just to hard and we are just to unmotivated.
Instead of climbing the ladder,we are lowering the rungs.
Why pull yourself up,when you can just drag everyone else down.
It becomes a sad ordeal when young people would rather sit in their parents cellar playing video games for hours on end and not even try to be independent adults.
I know most people will say there are no jobs out there,well yes and no,there are jobs but they don't pay well,nor offer allot of hours and require you to do hard,possibly dirty work.
We are lazy and we are raising young adults who are uninspired with little to no work ethic.
People say that all the jobs are being given to seniors and not to young people,why you ask?Because they have a work ethic.
I am in my mid fifties and have come to the conclusion that if there is no more social security for me to retire on,it will be because the younger work force will still be sitting in their parents cellar playing video games,living on disability,because they are to depressed to go to work and someone needs to take care of them.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Economic Slowdown

The best place to find out how the economy is doing,is to stand in line at your local check out,in the grocery store.
Today this was my vantage on just how poor our economic growth,or lack there of,is taking us.
The women placing her goods on the cashiers check out belt,turned to me and said "I wish some one would come along and pay for my food,who can even afford to eat,but it will never be because I'm just not that lucky."
Wishing I had extra cash,to assist her with her unhappiness,but only have exactly enough for myself,I agreed that continually high prices,week after week,puts all of us in a position of just getting by,unable to budget form one week to the next.
The cashier,who was in her late fifties,went on to add,that she wishes she could take a vacation,but two years of unenployment and now only being able to get 20 hours of work a week,has left her only longing for,even just a weekend away.
The lady in front of me went on to add,how her husband,who has had triple bipass surgery,can only hope to get by"no welfare help or food stamps for us,we make to much money","To much money and look what little I can purchase,it's just not fair"she added.
The world is in a sorry state of affairs and has I listened to their stories,the show the Waltons came to mind.
Oh we are doing better then they did,at least we have unemployment and welfare,but the depression in peoples voices and lives is all pretty evident.
When it became my turn The cashier noticed I had bought 4 pies that were marked down,she asked about my pie consumtion,to which I laughed and told her it was for our church community meal,we have three thursdays a month at St. Micheal Church in Southbridge Mass,I invited her to come and join us for a free meal this thursday from 4:30 to 6:30 and meet more people in need of good conversation and a chance to just shoot the breeze.
Things are not good out there and the President insisting we all need social programs,is a waste of most peoples time.
Alot of folks just want to work and maybe have enough left over to get away for a weekend,some place quite to forget their desperate situations.
See the people this economy is hurting the most are the ones trying the hardest to get by and stay afloat.
Its not the 1% or those on welfare,its the underemployed desperately trying to make the house payment,buy food,get gas,go to work and pay all the taxes and bills,swamping them.
November is coming and hopefully people will take a long hard look at what they have and what they've lost and vote accordingly.
Is your situation better then 4 years ago? How about your friends and neighbors?
If your not sure spend some time in a grocery line or sitting in a mcDonalds,have a cup of coffee and just listen to the conversations around you.
Being in a position to not only hear,but realy pay attention to what is being said,is the greatest economic classroom you will every spend time in,and the best indicator of where our markets are headed.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Doing The Right Thing

Doing the right thing is not always the easy thing,but being a Christian puts us in the position of being different,you know..the change in the world.
Several days ago I went to Lowes,in Dayville Conn.to pick up multiple garden items.While preparing to cash out,it occured to me that the cashier had missed one of my bags of loom. In this position I had two choices,one tell the man or two don't tell him.
A worldly person would say its a small item,and a big company, who would know or care about a $2.00 bag of dirt? But the question here,if you are a Christian,you know the kind riding around with the metal fish on your car bumper,what should be not only the correct choice but the God choice ?
I told the cashier his error,to which he was so shocked he almost forgot how to make change. This man thanked me multiple times for my honesty and several workers came over to ask me if they could assist me with the loading up of my car.
This was the correct thing to do,not because everyone seemed greatful for my honesty but because I did what my own license plate on my car said by"living the faith".
This was an easy situation but doing what is right,is not always easy,it goes against the grain of those around us and can cause irritation in the eyes of the world.
We need to be the change,in all things both big and small.We have to try and live what we say or we are liers,to not only our selves but to Christ him self.
We are never told in the Bible to go with the world and do what everyone else is doing,we are told to be honest and truthful even if it leads to things like prison,or worse.
We need to live what we preach or we are not going to allow people around us to see how different we are.
Say what you mean,mean what you say but always do it in a loving kind way. Don't expext those around you to respect you as a Christian if you try to cut corners and look the other way.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Flowers At The Cemetary

Ever since I was a child,the Saturday leading up to the Memorial Day,was the day my family went out to buy and deliver flowers,to my grandparents grave.
This ritual was an important part to the start of the upcoming summer,it meant fun would soon be upon us with swimming and picnics.
But first we needed to focus on the importance of those who could no longer be with us.
There was something wonderful about walking around the cemetery watching all the cars pull up,people walking to the various Head stones to plant or deliver their flowers to a waiting vase.
This loving gesture was proof to me that their was something more besides this planet,that we lived on,these were not bones in a grave,but real people who lived and loved and maybe died to young.
I can remember walking and looking at the different stones,the great and the small,the new and the old,those that were well taken care of and those lost in time and leaning a little to the side.
Who were these men and women,what where their lives like and how did they live and die?
With the grass so well maintained and the smell of the flowers every where,this quite,peaceful setting almost seemed joyful.
This Memorial Saturday,I decided that since I could not be at the Memorial Day Parade on Monday,due to my work schedule.
I would some how find a way to remember a soldier or two,whose grave seemed lonely.
First I headed to Putnam,Conn.where my material grandparents are laid to rest and wandered around until I saw a grave of a man who served in the Korean War.
No flowers sat by his head stone and I felt this was the one I needed to leave my lily by.
Next on to North Grosvenordale Cemetery,where my parents and brother lay and with my last pot of flowers,I saw a white washed,paint peeling wooden cross,which bore no name or date.
Thinking this a rather sad sight,I decided that since I don't know whose buried here,maybe a soldier,why not leave it at the cross in honor of all the soldier asleep in this cemetery.
Sunday when we attended Church Service Fr. Peter spoke about Memorial Day being not just for the Soldiers but also for all Christens who have lost their lives fighting for their beliefs.
It became clear to me that this was what I had done,with out any knowledge.
One pot of flowers left for a soldier and one pot of flowers for those who have given their lives for the faith.
Both of whom have given us our God given right to live as we choose and to pray in faith,not fear.
Because of both we live in a country with freedom of choice..

Thursday, May 3, 2012

"Line In The Sand"

Last night my husband and I drove to Woonsocket Rhode Island,to attend a rally to help support the fire department over an old World War 1 monument,which an atheist group,from Wisconsin, and one resident of this town,feels its an infringement on their rights because it has a cross sitting on top of this deteriorated cement self.
Now not only does this group dislike the monument,but the fact that the firemen prayer,on the Woonsockets Fire Department web site,holds the words "God" and "Amen",in its prayer,imagine that.
Why,you may ask,does an atheist group,from across the country, care about a small poor,run down town like Woonsocket and their religious beliefs and monuments? Because they are just that,small and poor.
Its always easier to push around those who can least afford to fight back,its the bully effect.Pick on the weakest,win and become more emboldened, then work your way up to the bigger,stronger and towns.
Last night as we stood in the cool evening air,with about 1,500,like minded,though diverse, people,it became clear to me that if we want to save our way of life we need to make our presence known.
The a military veteran speakers said "We have gone to other countries to bring freedom and rights of worship to those in far off lands,and if need be we will also fight for the rights of this country."
"We have draw a line in the sand and its around that monument." "They will not tear it down,nor will it be moved." "We will encircle this monument and if need be fight for it."
We need to be aware and we need to stand up.
It's alright to afford others their rights but we also need to show we are not going to tolerate the abuse of our faith and belief systems,because of one person.
Several days ago,while some high school students sat at an anti bullying speech,many of these young people got up and walked out as the speaker berated,those who believe in religion,he called them "pansy assed".
Just because a few people feel religion is a joke,does not mean the rest of us have to passively be mowed over.Martin Luther King and Gandhi both knew that in order to win the fight we must make our needs know in a pacifistic way.
The rights of the one,do not surpass the rights of the majority,but if the majority remains silent and action less,then the minority will win every time.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Cursive Writing Will Be No More

Yesterday a retired teacher told me that in several years cursive writing will no longer be taught in the school systems,it seems with the advent of computers children now only need to know how to read and write the printed word.
He told me that 7 school systems in this country have already eliminated this form of writing.
This seems very sad.
As he told me this,the thought of the Pharaohs tombs and their hieroglyphics came to mind.
It took hundreds of years for man to relearn to decipher what the Egyptians knew thousands of years ago.
Losing the art of reading cursive writing will not allow our children or grandchildren to have the ability to view and understand beautifully hand penned letters by great people of the past.
So personal is our penmanship that they claim our characteristics can be seen in our letter stroke,swirls and angles.
Like an artistic expression,the world is given glimpses into our dreams and desires.
We will now curse our children of the future with the loss of the beauty of a hand written love letter or poem,from the one dearest to their hearts.
No longer will they know the tactile feeling and smell of ink to paper,sent to them by a distant lover.
Cursive writing is more then just a scribble on a paper its a personal expression of release,not just from the mind but from the heart and soul.
Back in the days of the dark ages only a certain few had the ability to write,these people were called scribes.
The rich felt it beneath them to learn to read and write and the poor could only dream of ever having such an ability,it was beyond their means.
To lose the art of penmanship seems a very sad future,like one more artistic endeavored crushed because of a public school laziness.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Feeling Judas

Every year at Holy Week,before Easter,I am always gifted with some form of personal revelation.
Last year it started out with the Ten Virgins ans led up to Christ Cross nestled above the heavens and the earth,like Moses staff raised above his head.
Two years ago it was the sight of a Jewish prayer shawl,on an Icon Stand,that made me desire to know more about Jesus Jewish background.
This year for the first three days,Sunday,Monday and Tuesday,I was in the position of feeling,what I think,was the emotions of Judas Iscariot.
Now I have always empathised with Judas,feeling he was put the position of betrayal,because of his own failed human nature.
On Sunday evening I began to have intense feelings of anger,disappointment and fear.
Every time I entered the church on those days my mind was plagued with self doubt,unforgiveness,jealousy,envy and negative thoughts.
No matter how I would try to shake these intense feelings,they would follow me around from the time I awoke in the morning,then keep me awake for hours into the night.
Though I tried to turn my attention toward more positive,loving thoughts,these same ideas would not only crop up in my mind but intensify and brew.
Praying multiple time through out my day and night for peace,the ideas would not let me go on with my life.
Everything I heard or saw became a personal affront to me and thoughts of leaving my church and faith,played through my mind like a skip on a record.
Why am I here? What purpose does this all serve? Why them and not me? Why am I not a part of this church and faith? Where else can I go and what else can I do?
By Wednesday morning it became clear that I must submit my mind to God and allow what ever was going on to take its full course,not fight or interfere with it.
The answer became clear,no matter how bad or angry I felt inside I must not allow myself to act out rashly or harshly toward those around me.
Just continue to pray and allow the feelings to come and go but do not outwardly react to them.
While at Service on Wednesday evening,whenever the name Judas was mentioned,a feeling of some sort of evil presence,standing near this Apostle washed over me.
That evening while I haphazardly went to confession,thinking nothing would really be gained from this half hearted attempt,an easing started to come over my soul,I went home to intently write an Ode To Judas.
Though it took me three hours to complete,once done a sense of peace washed over my thought process and for the first time in several nights,I slept in calmness.
After Easter it took me several days to unravel all I had just felt,It became clear that God may have allowed me to feel what Judas did,in his own hours of darkness.
I have come away with an entirely different picture of what this man soul went through,the suffering of both his mind and heart.
The point becomes did Judas ever think of asking to be forgiven?
Just feeling bad and sorry does not cut it,repentance and belief does.
It could be he felt what he had done was unforgivable or maybe he was to wrapped up in self pity he did not understand the bigger story,that no matter what you do God will forgive you and make it right.
He will always show you your way out of hell,if you choose it.
The Devil may keep telling you that you are too bad for God love,but you are not.
The Prodigal Son learned this lesson when he decided to be humble and repentant,going to ask his father to forgive him and expecting nothing out of it but to be treated like a servant,not a son.
We are never so bad that God will turn us away if we are honest with him.
Basically we judge ourselves more harshly then God ever will and unlike Him,we never forgive ourselves as well as he does.
We are our own personal demon of the mind.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Ode To Judas

I Judas..

Angry toward all,blinded by sickness of the heart.
A darkness engulfs me,for what is to be my new part.

The other apostles lean in toward the King,trying to grasp even one little thing.

Never again to hear the Shepard's heart.
No glory,no closeness,we are like two roads which depart.

"These goods are for others", the demons continue to pound,like a mallet to an anvil the sparks of hatred and envy abound.

The poison pulsing through the blood stream,shows me no glorious home.
The thickness of the murk like,quick sand enveloping the soul.

It is finished,it is done.
No glory for me the race will never be won.

A tree and a rope is all I have left,I see no other way out of this unbridled mess.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Christian Check Out Line

"Christ is Risen"
That is what was told to me at the check out line this morning by a kind cashier,after he said Happy Easter.
At that moment I replied "indeed he has risen."
"Amen"he said and "Amen" I replied back.
With a feeling of tingling and happiness radiating over my whole being,because I knew how difficult this must have been for this poor cashier to say,in his quite whisper,and how shocked he was when I replied back.
Back in the early days of Christendom,when one christian met another,they made the sign of the cross to each as a silent ritual saying I believe as you do that
Jesus Christ is the resurrected son of God.
We who live in this free country are once again beginning to feel our roots by testing the waters and trying to connect,one Christian to another.
Jesus did not come to this earth to found a religion,he came to bring the hurt and lost sheep back into the fold.
People in this country build great monuments to themselves,sometimes even churches meant to house God.
True no building is good enough to house the Master of the universe,but in our feeble attempt to pay tribute we feel bricks and mortar come close.
But could it be our greatest monument to Him should be our unity with each other,in words and deeds.
Last monday at Bible study Fr. Peter said church is like a big family but when someone does not show up its like having a great Sunday Dinner with one relative missing.
True the meal is still wonderful,but the feeling of that person not being present is felt by everyone.
We are a universe of mankind,we do not have to belong to the same Churches to be united with each other but we do have to reach out and touch each other to strengthen our faith.
We as Christians need to step up to the plate and say the words to each other that do not come easy in places we may feel uncomfortable.
Words of praise and glory to God are easy when were standing in a church but how easy are they when we are standing in the check out line with a total stranger.
We are to be different then the rest of the world,the change we want around us sometimes has to start with us.
Be it one or two words at a time.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Questional Beliefs And Understandings

Last night at Bible study we discussed the 5 books of Moses or what the Jews call The Torah.
The interesting fact about most of these works is that up until you get to Abraham, its hard to figure out exactly where these stories come from and are they true or just allegory.
Being an Orthodox Christian,our study bible tells us of the symbolism which will become reality in the New Testament.
Jesus in the tomb for three days,is like Jonah in the whale.
It's very hard to sort what is truth and fact based history,form what is unsubstantiated like the Garden of Eden or Noah's Ark.
Moses is attributed with the works of the Torah and is considered even in the Orthodox Christian Church to be a prophet.
No one can prove the stories in the first five books of the Old Testaments,but there seems to be connections with events that are told in the writings of other ancient societies that coincide with the Torah.
We live in a world of prove to me and I will believe,but religion is not a physical force in terms of its writings,its more a spiritual force of belief.
The Bible was written by men of faith not men of science.
Do we have to believe everything we are told in order to be good Christians?
No we do not.
There is nothing wrong with questioning repeatedly until we find the answer we are looking for,or at least believe is possible,maybe even agree to disagree til our situations change.
In the Jewish faith it is very customary to question everything,in the end it makes you a better believer.
In our Christian society we should think that asking questions and searching for answers,makes us more knowledgeable and less likely to be lead astray by a preachers pretty face and smooth words,but no foundation.
Jesus spoke several times in the Bible about teachers in wolf clothing pretending to lead people into heaven when all they want is selfish personal gain.
Cults happen when people blindly follow like sheep going to their own slaughter.
Many times I have thought about martyrs believing in their faith so much they are willing to be led to an ugly death.
What would lead people to such an action,when denial would be so much easier?
Conviction! Knowing that what your beliefs are unquestionable through your entire being,right to the very core.
All answers are not always clear,but as we mature in our beliefs we are given revelation and slowly begin to understand what we need to know and why.
Many religious scholars spend their whole lives on a quest for truth and knowledge,but in the end they learn only what is given to them in this life and at this time.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Best Laid Plans

The one thing I know about life is never plan anything and if you do be flexible.
Today is my second day of vacation,as always,I try to plan to do the things I can not normally do,due to my work schedule.
Today was to be my go to the bank,then grocery shopping,home to put everything that was purchased away, work on my Connecticut tax form and update resume,day.
Everything seemed to be going as planned,clothes in the washing machine and dryer,myself in the shower and slips written up to take to the bank to move money from this account to that,in order to buy food.
Jacket on and reusable bags in hand I started for the door when I heard something hit the siding on the house and a giant crash.
Walking outside in the windy weather I saw the tree limb we had been working on several days ago,which has been hanging high up in the neighbors tree since November,almost on the ground with part of my siding hanging from the second story bedroom window.
Not knowing what to about this issue I drove to where my husband was working and had him come home to decide how to best handle this.
With electric chain saw in his hand and a prayer in my heart and mind,we spent the next half hour cutting and hauling wood into the truck.
What a day always expect the unexpected in life and everything will be fine.
Now I'm tired and my taxes and resume are not done,oh well there's always tomorrow,shh, but don't tell anyone or this plan may not work out either.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Who Should Pay For What ?

It's tough to be a conservative in a country that has,in most respects,become liberal.
I am very much in favor of all people being treated with equal rights and respect,but have come to believe that as Christians we get neither of the above.
To many people live a life of live and let live,but only when it encompasses their lifestyles,feeling that everyone else needs to finance their choices,even those of us who are not in agreement.
Lets take birth control,even though its a personal choice to decide when and where to have sex,we are all made to believe that this is for the benefit of the entire country.
I have been told that free birth control will allow for less children,I tend to think if 90% of people are already using birth control and still having unwanted pregnancies,that maybe free birth control will not help much anyways,since many seem to irresponsible to use it.
We are a very casual society feeling our rights to sleep with whom ever we choose to should be funded by the rest of the country.
If a law student spends $3,000.00 from freshmen year to graduation year on birth control,I have to ask my self when would said student have time to study to become a lawyer anyways?
I also have to ask if birth control is to be free,why is not also my blood pressure medication or my friends $400.00 a month insulin,is this any less important?
If the government decides that no one has to pay for any medications,then who will pay for it all? you? me?
I know how about all those rich people,who by the way do not have to be rich in this country,they could all move to a country where they pay less for everything,cause lets face it if your rich enough to live in this country just imagine how much better you could live in say Macedonia.
We can not have everything we want just simply because we want it and if you think giving free things to people will make them responsible users,your sadly mistaken.
This country is trying to run over the rights of the Religious in order to give to those who have little moral fiber to begin with.
I understand that we live in a fallen world but when our own representatives sitting in the Senate feel that the rights of the religious are below the rights of the rest of the country,then we have bigger problems on our hands then simple free contraceptives.
I recently say a show on Stalin and one of the first things he touted was rounding up the rich,taking all their money and property and distributing it to the poor,of course these rich people were sent off to prison but that's another story.
The one thing I can tell you about communism is the leaders always make off better then the little people do,some how the money and property ends up in their pockets and they lead a very nice life style.
Making a common enemy out of certain groups of people is always the way these people work,they make you think we are all equal in everything and those we do not need or like,are gotten rid of.
Stalin had the rich,Hitler had the Jews and undesirables.
In this country we are entitled to the pursuit of happiness but we are not guaranteed to be given it by the government.

Monday, February 27, 2012

How Far Are You Willing To Go For Your Faith ?

How far are you willing to go for your faith?
Most Sunday mornings,that I do not have work,just getting out of bed seems like a war of wills.
Yes I need to get up and no I don't want to.
Today on the news they spoke of a minister in Iran who was to be executed because he dared to ask the school why his children were being taught Islam,when the constitution of the country says they are free to practice other religions,like Christianity.
He has been in prison for over a year now and was to be executed today,but as of yet has not.
All this man is being asked to do is renounce his faith and he can again be a husband and father with his life back.
To which he says "No"
It makes me ashamed when I realize all that is asked of me by faith is to come to church,pray and spread the good news by both words and actions,the very things this man has done and now is in jail for.
We,in this country, are not so persecuted as we lead our selves to believe.Our rights are given to us and all we have to do is take the fundamental easy steps which we do not because of our own laziness.
I always say I could never be a martyr because I can't stand the though of pain,I am a whiner.
But do we ever know how we would tolerate being asked to renounce our beliefs just to be left alone and out of harms way?
I know people who tell me they would go to the death for their religious beliefs,to which I must ask..would you,really? And if so how can you be so sure?
For I am sure of nothing in life and can greatly understand how St.Peter felt when he denied Christ,three times.
Fear can seize you in an instant and who can tell what will come out of ones mouth.
The White House and Justice department along with the majority leader Bainer, have all urged Iran to take a breath and understand the back lash that will come from the execution of this Minister.
So little is asked of us in this country and only our own laziness stops us from being all we can be.
God can give us greatness of courage but we have to be able to put faith in the fact that only He and the Holy Spirit can lead us from our own selves.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Misinterpretation By President Obama

I have come to the point in my life where I most definitely do not want my President to tell me Bible quotes,especially when he is misinterpreting its meaning.
Recently while at a religious clergy breakfast in Washington D.C. the president spoke about his views on taxing the rich to give to the government to distribute to the poor,he said "and for us Christians we are told that 'for those who much is given,much is required'."
O.K. lets give credit due to the fact that he did know a Bible verse but lets also understand that he missed its context,it does not mean,as President Obama erroneously misspoke,that the government has the right to take from the rich and give to the poor.
The passage means that you as an individual,through your own richness,be it money,food,talent or time are to help your fellow brother or sister in their times of need.
Jesus did not say if you go into the world and some one ask you for a coat to go to the federal government,take your second coat,hand it to them and they will distribute it for you to whom ever they feel is in need.
In this scenario both you lose out on the good feelings of love and kindness being extended in help to a person in need and the recipient may lose out because the government may not feel like he qualifies for the coat but someone else does whom they feel is more in need.
But what if the gift you were to give this person,be it your coat,had some special meaning that only the recipient and God knew about and your giving of said clothing was to make a great difference in this person life,not because of the physical warmth it would provide,but because of the human kindness and generosity that was extended by you.
Would the government have more insight then God and give it to the right person for the right reason.
Not all we do is monetary sometimes what is given or done by another has meaning that we know nothing about,not just for the person receiving the gift but also for the one giving the gift.
We are told in the Bible not to follow false teachers,those who take Bible verses and use them for their own intent.
Any passage in the Bible can be manipulated to suit any person need depending on who they are,even Satan tried to use Bible verses when he tempted Jesus in the desert.
The act of giving is required by those of faith and for the government to try and wiggle its way into using these saying as a way to fund their political agendas are wrong.
Extra money taken from those who have more to give,has nothing to do with the helping of the poor,but does have everything to do with the growth of the government into our lives.
Can we be guaranteed that this money is not going to be used to fund a contra group,buy guns for things like fast and furious,attempt to overthrow our religious rights,fund abortions or euthanasia?
More money does not give us a promise that those in need are to be helped,all it does is make for more restrictions and laws turning us into a better funded nanny state.
We as church become insignificant when we do not fulfill our call to help the less fortunate,we become unnecessary and then we become...gone..
In the end why would anyone need religion when the government can now be their new god?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Good Enough,Smart Enough

"I'm good enough,I'm smart enough and gosh darn it people like me"..Steward Smalley..Saturday Night Live.

With change in mind comes change in manners.

Today while looking through my nursing school looses leaf book,trying to find my resume,I came across my papers and grades.
It shocked me at how good my grades where.When I was in school I didn't really pay attention to all those little details,because the every day stresses took over my view point and shattered my illusions of how well I was doing through out the year.
We are what we think we are.
One day while listening to Donald Trump speak,it became clear to me the difference between him and I was he didn't have a problem giving himself a pat on the back for a job well done.
There is something to be learned here,and that is there is nothing wrong with realizing all your hard work and saying "you did a really great job,good for you."
We are harder on our selves then probably anyone else in the whole world.
It took me almost 9 years to realize all I achieved,in those ten months,to get to this point in life and understand that being your own cheerleader is not such a bad thing.
People with confidence can literally walk on water,just ask St.Peter.
When he stepped out of the boat Jesus kept him atop the waves,but as soon has his confidence in God failed so did he.
I have heard many religious people talk about being humble,but does that mean not being happy with your self and all you have accomplished?
I think not.
There is nothing wrong with patting your self on the back as a matter of fact it helps us focus with confidence,to what we can achieve in the future.
Being humble means understanding that all our triumphs are the result of our hard work and God guidance in our lives.
We move no where in life if we feel we are failures,which is so easy to do when we look at our every day struggles.
It has came to me today, that it is time to dust off and revitalize my resume so as to be in a better position to look for a new job for my own happiness.
No one can sell themselves if they don't like themselves,and feeling worthless is not uplifting or in anyway positive.
God does not want us to dislike ourselves nor be self loathing and demeaning.Many religious writers ring of self hate for our bodies,minds and values,but in my mind God made me who I am and although I'm not perfect it does not mean I am a terrible person,I tend to think that God made me and I am not a mistake or disappointment to him.
He has known me since I was in the womb,and that's a very long time.
We are worthy people,loving and kind and have achieved,with his help,much and should be proud of ourselves.
To not realize our potential is to not understand just how mighty God can be through us and our lives.
We can achieve greatness and God knows it,unfortunately we delude our selves in to believing we can not attain these things.
We're like Peter walking on the water and suddenly looking down and seeing only the raging water below instead of the calm shore in front of us.
So if we are good enough,smart enough and people like us,then why do we not also like our selves?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Religious Institutions Must Now Provide Insurance with Free Contaceptive Care

Several days ago I read how the new Obama health care would effect the Catholic and Christian institutions which accept money from the government.
Places like Catholic hospitals,schools and other institutions which allow themselves to get money in any way from the federal government would now have to provide health insurance to their employees which included free contraceptive pills and/or devices.
The government feels that since not all people who work at these religious institution are Catholic or even Christian,they need their contraceptive needs provide for,no matter what the teachings of the church is.
I have come to the conclusion that accepting money from the government may be seen as a good thing when your in need of income,but in the end its like dancing with the devil,you may get to pick the tune but you don't get to call the steps.
Now it is very understandable that in these times of expense health care,the need for assistance is very much a reality,lets face it if you want to stay in business you need to compete on the same scale as the big boys or you are not a very effective entity.
Back in the days when Catholic,Christian and religious groups started these hospitals and schools,they were the only ones with enough money to fund and run such large enterprises,but alas the time has come when no longer do people pay the doctor or hospital form their own pockets,now the cost is so great that we all have to share in each others expenses by the use of insurance.
Several days before Obama rammed this health care plan down every ones throats,there was a small group of representatives looking for grantees that this sort of thing would not happen to religious organizations,no group would be forced to provide or pay for what they deemed not correct to their religious foundation of beliefs.
Like the wind that whole idea has gone away never to be seen again.
The problem with church groups is they believe what they are told and act has if its a great shock when they get blind sided.
I'm not so sure why they trust so much but the fact is once you realize the devil is in the details then its to hard to turn back..that's the way he works you know.
I don't know about you but I have not heard anything in the main stream media about this whole situation,though I did read it in a Worcester news paper.
Once again we lose a little more of our selves as Christians to a world were they think any thing goes.
In the end its really our own fault because when you sell your soul what else is there left to do but compromise and dilute your self just a little bit more.
First funded contraceptives then funded abortions,it all goes hand in hand.
Don't feel so shocked.
If you don't like this write to your representatives and tell them this goes against the separation of church and state and you feel this is wrong..or ignore it and wait for the next blow to the head of you faith.

Monday, January 23, 2012

St.Anna's Visit To St. Michael Church

Last weekend our church hosted the visit of a special Icon of St.Anna the mother of Mary and grandmother of Jesus.
Saturday Evening Vespers and Sunday morning Divine liturgy saw a swelling of faithful people all wanting a glimpse at this very special lady and healer.
Some feel such things as healing can not happen through oils flowing from an image,but whose to say how God chooses to touch us .
I must admit that all in all the weekend was quite special,not just for the Icon but for the people who took the time to come and visit our little church community in Southbridge,Mass.
St. Michael Parish does not often draw such a gathering of people to pray with us.
For me the best part of the day came after the Liturgy and coffee hour when I walked outside of the hall and could hear the rooster repeatedly crowing and a father with his children sledding down the hill by the side of the church.
Suddenly it dawned on me this is what "Church" should be,many people enjoying the company of each other and the world around.
A Church should be alive,it should breath with those around it,just as a home should draw in friends,neighbors and family,so should we.
People interacting with each other and comfortable enough to be thankful for all we have to give and receive.
A church community should be a verb not a noun and as such requires movement and interaction from everyone.
We,as a church,are always at our best when hosting the company of others.
Food,warmth and communion always play one of the biggest parts to religion and faith.
God has told us many times,in both the Old and New Testaments that no man should be alone and isolated.
In the Bible when ever God wanted to punish someone he sent them off to be alone and see how bad it was to live in isolation.
Adam and Eve,were sent away from the Garden of Edan,Cain,after murdering his brother,had a mark placed on him and was sent off,the tower of babel had an entire community sent to the far reaches of the known world.
A wise friend once told me loneliness is everything it's cracked up to be.
Sunday this point was driven home to me as I opened the door of St.Michael hall and viewed and heard the laughter of children sliding down the hill on their sleds and people talking and admiring the rooster and chickens.
Laughter and joy filled the air and isn't that what a family is suppose to be about.
Funny St. Anne is the grandmother of Jesus and on this day as I exited the hall,it truly felt like being at my own grandmother's house,with all the children and grandchildren interacting and having fun,like relatives that had not been in each others company for a very long time.
Maybe this was our miracle at St. Michael,to once again be at grandma's house.
Now isn't that special... Thanks St. Anna

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Statins And A Link To Diabetes In Women Older Then 50

This week on January 10Th,the Worcester Telegram and Gazette printed an article about a UMass study showing statins,or cholesterol lowering drugs,having a risk of helping to cause diabetes in older women.
It says that your doctors advice to making lifestyle changes rather then swallowing one of several pills aimed at lowering cholesterol may be more challenging but a better choice in the long run.
A study at UMass Medical School,which was published on line Monday in the Archives of Internal Medicine,showed a publication from the Journal of the American Medical Association,found women older then 50 who use drugs such as statins like Lipitor,Pravachol,Crestor,Zocor,and Mevacor to reduce cholesterol are at a significantly higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
According to Dr. Yunsheng Ma,an epidemiologist and associate professor of medicine at UMass,said the study found a 48% increase of diabetes compared to postmenopausal women not on cholesterol-lowering medications.
The reason for the the higher risk in women is unclear,Dr. Ma said,and there may be similar risk in men.
The results emphasize the need for doctors to monitor patients blood sugar and other diabetes markers closely,take each ones cardiac risk factors and lifestyles into account,and stress the need for dietary changes and increased exercise.Doctors with patients on statins,may consider gradually decreasing their dosages.But he pointed out that medical guidelines for prescribing statins have not changed because of the study.
Dr.Ma said an average of one in four Americans older then 45 are prescribed stations to lower cholesterol,a ten fold increase during the last 20 years.
The study,which used data from the Women's Health Initiative,a national health study funded by the National Institute of Health,included 161,808 post menopausal women ages 50 to 79 who were followed for 15 years.
The UMass study focused on 153,840 of those women who did not have diabetes when they enrolled in the study.
A total of 10,242 new cases of diabetes related to statin use were found,from their total studies.
Women with lower BMI,below 25,were at greater risk for developing diabetes than those with a higher BMI of 30 or higher.They speculated that genetic or hormonal factors related to weight redistribution after menopause could be independent of BMI as a diabetes risk factor. Also there could be paradoxical protection against diabetes in postmenopausal women not taking statins to a factor that protects older women from recurrent heart attacks.
Given the wide use of statins further studies need to be done on men and diverse ethnicities should further clarify the diabetes risk.
To sum this up in my own personal mind,never take any drug unless the good out ways the bad.
Every drug has not only a positive effect but can have an equal negative effect.
Always take the time to study a drug before you choose to take it,then make a clear minded decision.
Just because a doctor tells you to take something does not mean you don't have the right to think it over before you agree to it.
Your in charge of your own body and with the Internet it has become much easier to research your choices.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Icons And Images

There are many religions that feel anything that shows any form of God,be it statue,picture or crucifix,is idol worship.
Being once Catholic and now Orthodox,has put me into two faiths that feel the more statues and Icons the better.
Just enter either an Orthodox or Catholic Church and you will understand the importance of these reminders of God,Mother of God,Angles,Apostles and Saints.
This week we had a religous study on Icons,how they are made,the colors used and why,even the training an Iconographer has to go through in order to properly make these glimpses into heaven,and that what Icons are considered,windows into the heavens.
Back in the days when people were unable to read they used this form of religous telling,to relate and understand the importance of the stories found in the Bible, better understanding their faith.
Once a country learns to read then they need to incorporate these works of faith into peoples daily lives on a different basis.
As with everything in life there are multiple rules as to where you should place Icons in your home,the east wall is always the best,also it should be centrally located in your home for all to view and use,the candles that should be placed near by,prayer books,Bible,holy water and oils,palms or other seasonal things should also be nearby.
Your Icons should consist of one of Jesus,one of his mother Mary and the ones your household family feels personal about,maybe a family saint or personal Icon of each person in your household.
I must admit that although I have done most of this in our parlor,it was never done by rules,things that were suppose to be near by just seemed to end up where they should be near my Icons.
Though this is not a prayer area for me,its always nice to be facing t.v. and looking up to see the Icon of Jesus the Teacher looking back at me.
My own personal prayer area is my bedroom,there I have an etching of Jesus hugging a lamb to his shoulder.
It is such a touching picture to me that many is the time I just stare at its simple
beauty and rub its face.
This etching is really more of a reminder to me of Jesus then all of my gold painted beautiful Icons down stairs in the parlor.
What this tells me is that we are all touched and reached by certain religious things,and if it brings you closer to God it has done its job.
No Icon,picture or statue is to be used as an idol,we don't pray to the them, we pray to God,but since we are human,sight is very important to us and helps us have a more open communication with the Almighty.
I explain Icons to people who ask me why I pray to a picture in this way,If a close family member called me on the phone and I had not seen them in a very long time,I might pick up their near by photograph and lovingly stare or hug their image while speaking to them in our phone conversation.
I know this picture is not the voice talking to me,but a likeness,yet it makes me feel closer to them because I can see their image smiling back at me.
The picture is only the image but the words I speak to them are more loving because
I am viewing them on paper,I can hold it to my bosom just as I would them if they were standing next to me at that moment.
The paper and frame are nothing but the image is a reminder of my love for that person.
An Icon is not meant to be God but it is meant to be a reminder that he is ever present with us and we have invited him into the center of our homes and that is very important to him,God will never enter your home unless you invite him to.
And the center is where he wants to be in your world.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

To Those Much Is Given

To those much is given,much is expected.

We live in a world of haves and have nots,those who work,those who do not and those who wished they did.
We are never happy with our positions or situations in life and wish always to be something or someone else.
We all dream of having more money and more power and dislike those who have the most.
We has a country are linked up to each other and though most of us would not sell everything we have and live on the streets,it doesn't hurt us now and then to think about the many who go with out all around the world.
Over whelming as it may seem we can change the world.
How?
One person and one act of kindness at a time.
Do you realize what effects you have on others by a simple small action or one little step,especially when you unite your mission with other like minded people,suddenly you have a movement or mission.
God is not asking us to save the whole world alone,he is asking us to extend one act of kindness that will flow and unite with other peoples acts of kindness.
We as a world think its all about us and our climb to the top.
Life has educated us that the person who is number one is always the best.
This is not true and though you may be fortunate enough to have money,a nice house or a great car,what are you doing with your possessions that is making another person life better.
Maybe you can help support a hands on charity,with your cash,open your home up to those who are hunger and can not pay you back or drive an elderly neighbor or cancer patient to an appointment and stay with them through their treatments.
Wealth is not a bad thing but selfishness is.
We are a united world,no man or woman is meant to not be co dependent on each other.
So take the time to think about what you have and what you can do to better the lives of those around you.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Clean Your Closets And Give Away Your Abundance

One show I like to watch is house hunts and house hunter international.
It amazes me the cost of these houses,people choose to buy,from $400,000. to a million dollars,or more.
The question that always comes to my mind is where do these people get the money to make those monthly payments and why do they need such large houses.
Most women,on this show say they want walk in closets because in their present living situations they have no space to put all their clothes,one woman said she had about 500 boxes of shoes,stuffed on a shelf in her closet.
Why people insist on collecting so much clothing and shoes is just way out of my thought process.
Do these folks actually wear all of this clothing or ever even remember what they have stored away?
When I seasonably clean my closets the first thing I ask myself is "when was the last time I wore this and do I really need something,no matter how pretty it is, that is just collecting dust?"
We forget that the things we hoard out of mindless,materialistic need,may better be used by some one who has nothing in their closets,if they have closets.
What we buy out of desire is taken away from those who we could truly help.
Most people buy things just because they happen to be in a store and they have a need to spend money for self gratification,not for real need.
Now I'm not saying we should never own nice things but the things we buy we should at least want to wear occasionally.
One rule I try to use in my own house is when I bring new things in equal older things,that are unwanted need to leave the house.
Most people,like hoarders,never even know everything they have,but have a sick need to be engulfed by it all.
When we hoard we deny those around us who are really in need to have what we store and never use.
If we own 5 winter jackets but only wear two,we deny 3 other people something that could keep them warm.
Less in many cases,can be more in our lives and the lives of others.
It must be the new year because things like this fill my mind.
Waste of money,time and food in the end is all waste and someone else could benefit from say your other 450 pairs of shoes sitting,unused in our closets.
New Year means new starts,time to clean out those clothes and houses and give to a charity, help those who would appreciate and wear all the things that have fallen on floor in the back of the closet.
Your excess can be someone abundance.