Michele’s Red-dee for Christmas Mall Walk

This is the week I completed my goal for the end of the 7-week Faithful Finish Lines fitness program.

Today’s weather was rainy, with some snow mixed in so an outdoor walk was impossible.

I struggled with this round because of my goal, another mall walk was so unless appealing. Then just before I left an idea came to me – red. So I wore my red earrings, lipstick and watch and decided to take pictures of red at the mall. Some of the pictures did not turn out well.

My focus for the walk was not speed, or distance but the number of steps. A couple weeks ago I did 2500 steps, so I had an idea of what route I wanted to go. In measuring steps, that meant I could go shopping in order to break up the monotony of doing laps.

So I walked the upper and lower levels, the main concourse and through Macy’s, Dillard’s, Bare Minerals, Sephora, and Penney’s.

Total steps 3,550, 2,485 meters, time 38:59 and 137 calories burned.

Below are some scenes from my walk.

An expensive gag gift – the Browns are on their way to 0-16 season.     🤣😂🤣

Rest break

Me at the North Pole. Video of polar bears playing in Santa’s house.

So it did not turn out as Red as I wanted but weather permitting, I will try it next Wednesday.

Holiday Resource

The holiday season kicks off next week. To help you get through the chaos I’ve published a new page 2017 Holiday Resources. 

It is filled with lots of goodies to help you deal with this time of year. There are links to websites, articles (such as  How Does Running Improve Health and Mood ),  and books. I intended for it to be longer, but I pulled a muscle in my back so sitting at the computer is not fun.

There will be updates throughout the season, most likely Tuesday – Thursdays so check back as you never know what you will find.

Praying you experience a lot of joy today and during the holiday season.

Santa Bacon

(Santa Bacon was a gift from my Mom. She found it at Big Lots 2 years ago.)

52 Bible Verses for a Joy Filled Year – Week 46

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For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. 

Psalm 91:11

Angels come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Remember that this week and be on the lookout for angels God places in your life….and don’t forget to be an angel to someone else this week. For we are all fighting some kind of battle.

Below are some of the angels God brought to me.

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Grasshopper_1Cardinal_3img_1711deer_2015_2100_0414_cropped6_web100_1310_blog2 grey deer in green woods

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Air “Yoda”

 

 

 

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

52 Bible Verses for a Joy Filled Year – Week 45

Merriam-Webster defines cast as a transitive verb (requiring one or more objects) that means:

1a : to cause to move or send forth by throwing 
Like a fisherman casting a net, that is how we need to cast our cares on the Lord. when we pray – send them forth or throw them to the Lord. Don’t worry, he is an excellent catcher even though we are lousy pitchers.

Cast your cares on the Lord
    and he will sustain you;
he will never let
    the righteous be shaken.

Psalm 55:22 

NIV 

However, unlike a fisherman, don’t haul your cares back in as The Bible does not say anything about taking back your cares once you’ve thrown them to the Lord.

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So spend this week casting and leaving your cares with the Lord. This will leave you feeling peace and joy knowing your cares are in excellent hands.

 

Casting Photo by David Clode on Unsplash

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

Weekend Wisdom From Martin Luther

Weekend Wisdom is making a brief comeback in honor of Martin Luther and the 500th anniversary of the Reformation.

This was his favorite Psalm, one he went to in times of strife and trouble.

Luther

Psalm 46

English Standard Version (ESV)

God Is Our Fortress

To the choirmaster. Of the Sons of Korah. According to Alamoth.[a] A Song.

46 God is our refuge and strength,
    a very present[b] help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
    though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
    though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
    God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
    he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord,
    how he has brought desolations on the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
    he breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
    he burns the chariots with fire.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God.
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth!”
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah

 

Martin Luther’s Most Famous Hymn

Martin Luther wrote hymn’s and this one is his most famous and is based on Psalm 46. Lyrics courtesy of Hymnary.org

Video courtesy of Michel Héroux

1 A mighty fortress is our God,
a bulwark never failing;
our helper he, amid the flood
of mortal ills prevailing.
For still our ancient foe
does seek to work us woe;
his craft and power are great,
and armed with cruel hate,
on earth is not his equal.

2 Did we in our own strength confide,
our striving would be losing,
were not the right Man on our side,
the Man of God’s own choosing.
You ask who that may be?
Christ Jesus, it is he;
Lord Sabaoth his name,
from age to age the same;
and he must win the battle.

3 And though this world, with devils filled,
should threaten to undo us,
we will not fear, for God has willed
his truth to triumph through us.
The prince of darkness grim,
we tremble not for him;
his rage we can endure,
for lo! his doom is sure;
one little word shall fell him.

4 That Word above all earthly powers
no thanks to them abideth;
the Spirit and the gifts are ours
through him who with us sideth.
Let goods and kindred go,
this mortal life also;
the body they may kill:
God’s truth abideth still;
his kingdom is forever!

Psalter Hymnal, (Gray), 1987

 

Resource: For more information about Martin Luther and to see the cities that played a pivotal role in his life, watch Pastor Adam Hamilton’s series on the Reformation at Church of the Resurrection, Leawood Kansas.  (The link takes you to the Sermon section of the website.) He filmed the series in Rome and Germany, which means you get to see Luther’s stomping grounds.

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

 

Growing Up Presbyterian

October 31st was the 500th Anniversary of Martin Luther publishing his 95 Theses, which started the Reformation.

One of the denominations that came out of the Reformation, besides Lutheran, is Presbyterian.

Presbyterianism was especially influenced by the French theologian John Calvin, who is credited with the development of Reformed theology, and the work of John Knox, a Scotsman and a Roman Catholic Priest, who studied with Calvin in Geneva, Switzerland. He brought back Reformed teachings to Scotland.

Wikipedia

I grew up in a Presbyterian church, a descendant of 5 of the founding members and a descendant of a relative who joined shortly after the founding.

 

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Heather of Scotland

 

Every Sunday was a family reunion with grandparents, great grandparents, great aunts, and uncles.  One of the times we got a new minister, Mom was in the middle of introducing him to all our relatives when he asked if there was anyone in the church who was NOT related to our family. Mom laughed and said yes there were people who were not our relatives.

There was Vacation Bible School every Summer which meant singing Onward Christian Soldiers and marching in place. Sunday School meant watching the preacher’s son climb out the window and take off in a Southwestwardly direction.

During church, my family would sit in the front pew. The seating order was Paternal Grandpa, Paternal Grandma, Dad, Mom, Me and Sister. This way Grandma and Mom could elbow Dad when he fell asleep during the sermon.

The pews were a light wood with cushioning. Even the holders for the little communion glasses were wooden. This is where the adults put their little glass cup after drinking the juice during communion. My sister and I LOVED the sound the glasses made when adults put their glasses in the holder. It was a loud clankity clank that was music to our ears.

Speaking Of Music

Every Sunday I would eagerly scan the bulletin to see if we were singing my favorite hymn Holy, Holy, Holy. Yes, this was back in the day when we used hymnals. (This article explains why we should still be using them. )

If we were singing Sweet Hour of Prayer my sister and I would sit with our maternal grandparents because grandma’s friends could not sing on key. There were about a dozen women all singing the song with gusto and all singing in a different key. For some reason, their off-key singing was most notable during Sweet Hour of Prayer. My sister and I thought it was funny, but grandma did not.

Membership

In order to be a member, everyone in my Sunday School class had to have a one-on-one meeting with the minister before standing in front of the congregation and admitting we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior. That one-on-one meeting was terrifying. I imagine the terror I felt that day is only a small bit of the terror I will feel when standing before God one day.

I think we also went through some kind of class or curriculum but I do not remember. It was the meeting with the minister I remember the most.

College

Then I went off to college and eventually quit going to church, except when I was home. Even though I quit going to church, I never quit believing in God, Jesus the Holy Ghost. or true meaning of Christmas and Easter.

I Am A Brainiac

Presbyterians tend to be cerebral and can never have enough knowledge. That is me. Give me books so I can keep reading and learning about any subject, not just Christianity.  However, what I read and learn stays in my brain and does not make its way down to my heart, which is bad because

A good man produces good deeds from a good heart. And an evil man produces evil deeds from his hidden wickedness. Whatever is in the heart overflows into speech.

Luke 6:45

TLB

The One Scripture

The one scripture I had memorized since childhood was:

16 For God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son so that anyone who believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 

John 3:16

TLB

I am not sure if it was parents, grandparents or the church who drilled this into my brain – probably a combination of all three.

Today

I’ve been a member the Reformed Church in America for many years. I chose the Reformed church because the theology was the same and the church is located within 10 minutes of my house. (The town I live in does not have a Presbyterian church.)

The Reformed Church in America (RCA) is a mainline Reformed Protestant denomination in Canada and the United States. It has about 223,675 members, with the total declining in recent decades. From its beginning in 1628 until 1819, it was the North American branch of the Dutch Reformed Church. In 1819 it incorporated as the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church. The current name was chosen in 1867.

Wikipedia 

However, I work Friday – Tuesday (since August) so no church for me – at least not in person.

Now I watch or listen to sermons online.

 

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Tulips

 

Change It? 

Would I change my Presbyterian upbringing – no. There are too many fond memories etched into my brain and heart.

Thank You

Thank you, God, for the Presbyterian Church, the wonderful Christian education I got and the beautiful memories I have of that season of my life.

Speaking Of Sweet Hour of Prayer

By the way, what shape would your family, your city, your county, your state, our country, our world be in if we call spent an hour in sweet prayer?

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

 

Our November Project

Good Morning Sunshine!

Hopefully, everyone had a safe and wonderful Halloween. Mine was uneventful as I had to work 11 – 8 yesterday, missing Halloween.

Now on to November and our new project – digging deeper into the Bible.

This project is courtesy of The Songs of JESUS: A Year of Daily Devotions in the Psalms by Timothy Keller with Kathy Keller.

The idea came from this morning’s devotion:

In his darkest moments, when he is being forsaken (Matthew 26:-31), betrayed (Matthew 26:53-56), and killed (Matthew 27:46) – he quotes scripture. 

If Jesus can quote scripture because it was so engraved upon his heart, mind, and soul then why can’t we?

The scripture Jesus quoted when he hung on the cross and was the opening line of Psalm 22

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

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So I challenge us to dig deeper into God’s word this month and write scripture verses on your heart.

Resources

Digging Deeper With God – a blog by my friend Christine Drews

31 Bible Verses to Write on Your Heart – Liz Curtis Higgs (non-affiliate link)

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

 

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