Wednesday, September 28, 2016

PICCO*

Let's talk acronyms. Just when did they become so popular? When did they overtake regular spelling and cause us to live in an abbreviated world? The first real academic acronym I remember is CBD. I think I was taking a class in some type of Geography and CBD was being thrown around here and there. Eventually, I wised up and finally decided to look at the book to figure out it meant Central Business District.
Then, years later, I was at a large conference of church folk and they were talking about the DNC. When I announced that I had had one of those once, a deadly silence filled the room. It seems that the folks were discussing a big loss by the Democratic National Committee and I was talking about a medical procedure!
I have belonged to UMW for years. No, it doesn't mean United Mine Workers. It means, at least to the women I hang with, United Methodist Women. And, I belong to JASNA. The Jane Austen Society of North America. I am a also a  proud P.E.O.
Most of my contemporaries are members of AARP. Our favorite teams play in the NBA, the NCAA, the AL, the NL or the NFL. We all just spent a couple of weeks watching the presentation of the games of IOC. Our favorite TVshows are more acronyms....CSI and NCIS.
So, the bottom line is we are all living in the age of  acronyms, whether we like it or not. Let's see if we can start a new acronym of our own.  Maybe we could be, OAAG (Older Americans Aging Gracefully) or maybe BBBS (Baby Boomers Break Seventy) or OMG is this what getting old is really like?

Oh Lord! Sometime I feel so disconnected to the modern world. As I age, I feel more and more obsolete. Show me how make myself more relevant and useful. Allow me to act like a Christian and share your Gospel with others around me.

*PICCO (Pittsburg Ice Cream Company)

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Canteloupe

If you attend church regularly, you have probably witnessed numerous "Childrens' Sermons." But, for those of who are not familiar with this term, here's a little tutorial.
In many Protestant congregations (I have seen them in Lutheran, United Methodist, and Presbyterian Churches), the pastor or a designated church member calls and gathers the youngest members of the congregation down in front, by the altar, for a little pre-Adult Sermon message. It's always fairly simple and often has several common elements:
  1. Kids know that most questions, asked by the speaker during the short sermon, can be answered by saying God or Jesus.
  2. They often involve a give away......candy, a toy, or something seasonally relevant, like a candy cane or an Easter Egg.
  3. They almost always end in a prayer.
  4. When they are over, it means that someone is going to lead the kiddos out of the boring service to a playground of some sort.
Sermons for children are pretty predictable. We once had a pastor who stopped giving sermons for the kids, because a couple of the kids knew more about The Bible than he did. All he wanted was a "Jesus" anwer to his questions and those kids kept giving him, and the whole congregation, a lesson in Christian Theology. You could almost hear him groan, when the two of them would come tromping down the aisle to sit with him at the front of the church.

Today, as all the kids were gathered around the pastor, she held up a big globe. "What is this?" she asked. A little voice yelled out, "A canteloupe!"
Well, God, you have our attention now!

Dear Lord: We love the surprising way that you teach us to love you and to love each other. Every day is a learning experience. Whether we are old or young, open our hearts and our minds to witness your glory.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Hey, Old Man!

Here are a few more thoughts on aging.
Last week, I wrote about not feeling my age. I still subscribe to that idea. Chronological age isn't logical at all. However, just yesterday, something happened that made me pause to think about the subject of age, yet again.
My husband was having trouble getting the computer to print. He was struggling with the buttons and while he was working, he had as an observer, a child of 6 (and one-half, as she would carefully add), who was closely watching the proceedings. His frustration must have been evident, because the little person to his right pleaded with the computer, "Come on computer, help this old man!"
So, no matter how we view ourselves, how others view us is also relevant.
Remember how old we thought our teachers were? Those folks were really old to us and actually the very oldest of those venerable folks couldn't have been over 65. That's not very old in any one's book.
Years ago a common phrase was, "Don't trust anyone over 40". And, I remember thinking, at the time, that 40 was really ancient. Today a 40 year old is just starting out! Forty is a distant memory and I keep wondering where have all those 70 years gone?
Today, I realized that I really couldn't jump rope anymore. I tried and I just couldn't get in the rhythm. Truthfully, any kind of jumping is a bit beyond my current skill set. But, I can still pitch a mean Wiffle ball and bend to pick up a gently hit grounder.
My new goal, as a senior, is not to worry about the years piling up, but to concentrate on having the best time of my life........right now!

Good Lord, I am thankful for the life I have. My blessings are many. Help me to age gracefully and graciously. Show me how to help others and to follow your teachings. I want to live many more years, doing what you want me to do.



Saturday, September 10, 2016

....is the new 40!

Here comes another birthday. With the passing of this particular birthday, I will formally be classified as old. And the problem is, I don't feel old. Maybe, if you would see me on the street, you might say, "Gee, she's old." But, although I might look old, I don't feel old.
Old age is relative. Many of the folks I work with are in their late 80s and even late 90s. They are  considered really old, but most of them don't behave like old people. Shoot, they are just young folks in old people's bodies. They think young and they talk young. They have opinions and they aren't afraid to voice them. Age has made them bold!
Old age is a state of mind. Just because your birth certificate dates you as old, it doesn't mean you have to really be old. Thinking young keeps you happy and moving.
Old age isn't for the weak. It takes a whole lifetime of hard work to reach old age. The weak folks never make it.
Old age is great. Well, there are some "not so good days", but it's still a blessing to wake up and keep on trucking. There is so much to do and the clock is ticking.
I want to make the most of the days that I have remaining, and I hope there are a whole bunch of them.

Great God: I feel blessed. I have so much to be thankful for. Thank you for the life I lead. Let me do your work and allow me the grace to show others how thankful I am for your steadfast love.

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Play it again, Jerry Lee Lewis!

My sister called last week to ask me if we were anticipating any tornadoes, here in the heartland, during the month of September. Springtime, I assured her, not autumn, was the time of bad weather in Missouri. We are bound to have at least a couple of tornado warnings and quite a few tornado watches, but they almost always happen in the Spring.
My sister and all of her immediate family live in Southern California and she's planning a trip to see us this month. So, she was sincerely concerned. Tornadoes don't ofter happen in California. And, according to my wise, much older sister, they rarely have rain, let alone lightning and thunder.
Years ago, I asked her what it felt like to be in an earthquake. She said it was a sense of movement underneath your feet. Sort of like a shaking sidewalk.
Earthquakes happen in California. Tornadoes occur in Missouri.

This morning we were awakened, in Missouri, by an earthquake, and it sure felt like someone was shaking the house. It was a surprise to all of us, especially those of us who have never felt one before.
Isn't life amazing?

Good God: We are thankful that no one was hurt by this earthquake. It surprised us. It was an experience. We give thanks for all of life's events and we thank You for being our rock and constant in good and bad times.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Sweet treats

The grand girls and I had an fun outing last weekend. We visited a little store where I had planned to buy them to ice cream sandwiches. I thought it would be fun to let them choose from the nice selection of prepackaged ice cream treats, in the store's freezer. The oldest grand girl chose a generic ice cream sandwich and the youngest one decided on a name-brand square item. We sat down at a cute little ice cream parlor set of table and chairs and proceeded to enjoy our ice cream.
The sticky chocolate cookie covering the ice cream sandwich, produced a great deal of finger licking by grand girl #1. She quoted her Grandpa, while doing her licking. Grandy says, "Ice cream sandwiches make fingers taste great!" She is, after all, a very neat eater.
Younger grand girl dove into her treat. But, there were no soggy cookies on her ice cream square. Instead, her ice cream was completely covered with a thin coat of hardened chocolate. She carefully removed the coating from her ice cream, piece by piece, until all that was left was a blob of melting goo. She really loves chocolate.
After we cleaned up the fingers, faces and table, we headed home.
We were full and happy. A great time was had by all.

Dearest Lord: Life is full of surprises. Most of the time it isn't what we expect at all. Help us learn how to enjoy our surprises. Remind us to remember to lick our fingers and occasionally just eat the chocolate coatings in life.
You are a great teacher. Life is full of amazing blessings.