Weekend Wisdom

Happy Birthday Grandma!

My grandma collected poems from magazines and newspapers which she put in photo albums. I never knew this until last year. Mom and I were sorting through books as we cleaned a small bookshelf she was giving me. Besides the bookshelf, I also brought grandma’s book of poetry home with me.

So in honor of her birthday, here is one of the poems in the photo album.

Grandma’s Favorite Flower


From one birthday to another God will gladly give

To everyone who seeks Him and tries each day to live

A little bit more closely to God and to each other

Seeing everyone who passes as a neighbor, friend or brother.

Not only joy and happiness but the faith to meet each trial,

Not with fear and doubting but with an inner smile.

For we know life’s never measured by how many years we live,

But by the kindly things we do and the happiness we give.

Helen Steiner Rice

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to inspire widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s currently using those skills as a virtual logistics contact center representative. She’s also managed call center teams, co-facilitated a grief support group, and helped small businesses with various writing assignments. Michele is a bookworm, and a lover of history, music, chocolate, red roses, and golden retrievers. She is also the amateur photographer behind the blog OgleOhio.com.

40 Days of Joy



 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel”(which means “God with us”).

Matthew 1:23 (NIV)

In his Christmas Eve message Pastor Don mentioned Immanuel means “God with us.”

The key word being


God is not a visitor

He is with you as you read this post and with me as I write it.  He will be with Rommie and me tonight as we sleep. 

We will sleep well knowing He is there.

Will you?


“No matter how steep the mountain, the Lord is going to climb it with you.”

Helen Steiner Rice

40 Days of Joy

“It’s Hard!”

This holiday season, I have heard grieving people say:

“It’s hard.”

Over and over and over and over etc….

Bad Mantra

Yes getting through the holidays without your spouse is hard, but I beg of you please don’t make it your mantra! 

Whether it is your mantra for the holidays or for life in general, do not keep repeating “It’s Hard.”

It is fine to acknowledge the holidays are hard but the more you repeat “It’s hard” the greater the risk of a self-fulfilling prophecy. 


Acknowledge life is hard or the holiday season is hard – once.  Then repeat this scripture:

The joy of the Lord is your strength.

Nehemiah 8:10

Feel free to replace “your” with “my” if you want.  Focusing on a positive phrase will help you find joyful moments. 

There will still be difficult times but tackle them head on don’t sit around and just cry “It’s hard, it’s hard” Just take a deep breath or two and repeat scripture or other positive phrase. 


Another way of not focusing on the holidays being hard is to count your blessings.  Write them down in a journal or say them over and over. Counting your blessings will help you focus on something other than what is wrong.  It is a great attitude shifter.

Get Help

If necessary talk to a pastor, counselor, or participate in a support group.  A strong person seeks and gets help.  A weak person focuses on the negative and tries to deal with the holidays and/or life alone.

Know & Realize

Focus on His joy being your strength during troubling times.

Realize He is always there for you with very broad shoulders and long arms to wrap around you. Take advantage of His presence, letting it bring you comfort and joy.


No matter how steep the mountain, the Lord is going to climb it with you.

Helen Steiner Rice