Friday, December 28, 2012

Phone Conversation



Child: Dad, we want to talk to Jesus.

Dad: No, no. I'm much too busy. Please leave me alone, for I have work to do. Jesus is just born now. When he grows older, we will see.

(Phone bell ringing - 4 rings)

Jesus: Hello. Did you call me?

Man: Called you? No. Who is this?

Jesus: This is Jesus, I heard your prayers, so I decided to have a chat.

Man: I do indeed pray. It makes me feel good. I am actually busy right now! I am in the middle of something, and my life has become hectic, and I can't find free time, and I'm always rushing.

Jesus: Sure. Activity gets you busy, but productivity gets you result. Activity consumes time, whereas productivity utilizes it.

Man: I understand. Though... I still can't figure it out! Why is life so complicated now.

Jesus: Stop analyzing life! Just live it! You only live once! Analyzing makes life complicated.

Man: Why are we constantly unhappy then

Jesus: Your today is the tomorrow that you worried about yesterday. You are worrying because you are analyzing. Worrying has become your habit. That’s why you are not happy.

Man: But then how can we not worry when there is so much uncertainty?

Jesus: Uncertainty is inevitable, but worrying is optional.

Man: Then, there is so much pain due to uncertainty.

Jesus: Pain is inevitable, but suffering is optional.

Man: If suffering is optional, why do good people always suffer?

Jesus: Diamonds cannot be polished without friction. Can gold be purified without fire? Good people go through trials, but don’t suffer. That experience, makes them better... not bitter.

Man: You are saying this such... experience... is useful?

Jesus: Yes. In every situation, experience is a hard teacher. She gives a test first, but then the lesson after.

Man: Frankly, we are in the midst of so many problems, we don’t know where we are heading.

Jesus: If you look outside you will not know where you are heading. Look inside. Looking outside, you dream. Looking inside, you awaken. Eyes provide sight. Heart provides insight.

Man: Sometimes not succeeding fast seems to hurt more than moving in the right direction. What should I do?

Jesus: Success is a measure as decided by others. Satisfaction is a measure as decided by you. Knowing the road ahead is more satisfying than knowing you rode ahead.


Man: In tough times, how do you stay motivated?

Jesus: Always look at how far you have come rather than how far you have to go. Always count your blessing, not what you are missing.

Man: What surprises you about people?

Jesus: When they suffer they ask, “why me? When they prosper, they never ask “Why me” Everyone wishes to have truth on their side, but few want to be on the side of the truth.

Man: Sometimes I ask, who I am, why am I here. I can’t get the answer.

Jesus: Seek not who you are. Determine who you want to be. Stop looking for a purpose as to why you are here. Create it. Life is not a process of discovery but a process of creation.

Man: How can I get the best out of life?

Jesus: Face your past without regret. Handle your present with confidence. Prepare for the future without fear.

Man: One last question. Sometimes I feel my prayers are not answered.

Jesus: There are no unanswered prayers. At times the answer is NO.

Man: Thank you for this wonderful chat. I am so happy to start the day with a new sense of inspiration.

Jesus: Keep the faith and drop the fear. Don’t believe your doubts and doubt your beliefs. Life is a mystery to solve not a problem to resolve. Life is wonderful if you know how to live.

Man: Thank you so much.

Jesus: You are always welcome. Have a good day my friend. Always remember, God’s Word is the Word for YOU.


Thursday, December 27, 2012

Computer Christmas


'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the shop,
The computers were whirring; they never do stop.
The power was on and the temperature right,
In hopes that the input would feed back that night.

The system was ready, the program was coded,
And memory drums had been carefully loaded;
While adding a Christmasy glow to the scene,
The lights on the console, flashed red, white and green.

When out in the hall there arose such a clatter,
The programmer ran to see what was the matter.
Away to the hallway he flew like a flash,
Forgetting his key in his curious dash.

He stood in the hallway and looked all about,
When the door slammed behind him, and he was locked out.
Then, in the computer room what should appear,
But a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer.

And a little old man, who with scarcely a pause,
Chuckled: "My name is Santa...the last name is Claus."
The computer was startled, confused by the name,
Then it buzzed as it heard the old fellow exclaim:

"This is Dasher and Dancer and Prancer and Vixen,
And Comet and Cupid and Donner and Blitzen."
With all these odd names, it was puzzled anew;
It hummed and it clanked, and a main circuit blew.

It searched in its memory core, trying to "think";
Then the multi-line printer went out on the blink.
Unable to do its electronic job,
It said in a voice that was almost a sob:

"Your eyes - how they twinkle - your dimples so merry...
Your cheeks so like roses, your nose like a cherry,
Your smile - all these things, I've been programmed to know,
And at data-recall, I am more than so-so;"

"But your name and your address (computers can't lie),
Are things that I just cannot identify.
You've a jolly old face and a little round belly,
That shakes when you laugh like a bowlful of jelly."

"My scanners can see you, but still I insist,
Since you're not in my program, you cannot exist!"
Old Santa just chuckled a merry "ho, ho,"
And sat down to type out a quick word or so.

The keyboard clack-clattered, its sound sharp and clean,
As Santa fed this "data" to the machine:
"Kids everywhere know me; I come every year;
The presents I bring add to everyone's cheer;

But you won't get anything - that's plain to see;
Too bad your programmers forgot about me."
Then he faced the machine and said with a shrug,
"Merry Christmas to all," as he pulled out its plug

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Miracle of Christmas



Every single day, we are way too busy running around doing things.  Every day, there are special moments and we seldom realize them.  I for one, today, realized, my Christmas Miracles are happening and I just realized it.

There are hopes and tears, singing and dancing.  It is but surely, one worthy to to be shared with others.  And today's story is one worthy to be called my Christmas Miracle.

While listening to Christmas songs today, I came across this one by Neil Sedaka.


All my life
I've been a kind of lonely man
Searching high and low
Looking for my way
Then all at once
I saw you right in front of me
I knew right then and there
My lonely days were through

You're just a rose
That shimmers in the sun
And now I know
My life has just begun
You are the sweetest thing
That could ever, ever be
And you're a miracle to me

You fill my life
With tenderness and harmony
I never thought
That I'd be laughing once again
You fill the room
With something warm and wonderful
I can't imagine life
Without your precious love

You're just a rose
That shimmers in the sun
And now I know
My life has just begun
You are the sweetest thing
That could ever, ever be
And you're a miracle to me

Rivers bend rivers flow
Till the end of time
They keep flowing
Through eternity
Take me there
Sail away
Take me to the sea
You're a river that flows inside of me

You're just a rose
That shimmers in the sun
And now I know
My life has just begun
You are the sweetest thing
That I could ever, ever see
And you're a miracle to me



Credits: Neil Sedaka

A Miracle

Christmas at Gas Station



The old man sat in his gas station on a cold Christmas Eve. He hadn’t been anywhere in years since his wife had passed away. It was just another day to him. He didn’t hate Christmas, just couldn’t find a reason to celebrate. He was sitting there looking at the snow that had been falling for the last hour and wondering what it was all about when the door opened and a homeless man stepped through.

Instead of throwing the man out, Old George as he was known by his customers, told the man to come and sit by the heater and warm up. “Thank you, but I don’t mean to intrude,” said the stranger. “I see you’re busy, I’ll just go.”

“Not without something hot in your belly.” George said.

He turned and opened a wide mouth Thermos and handed it to the stranger. “It ain’t much, but it’s hot and tasty. Stew … Made it myself. When you’re done, there’s coffee and it’s fresh.”

Just at that moment he heard the “ding” of the driveway bell. “Excuse me, be right back,” George said. There in the driveway was an old ’53 Chevy. Steam was rolling out of the front.. The driver was panicked. “Mister can you help me!” said the driver, with a deep Spanish accent. “My wife is with child and my car is broken.” George opened the hood. It was bad. The block looked cracked from the cold, the car was dead.

“You ain’t going in this thing,” George said as he turned away.

“But Mister, please help …” The door of the office closed behind George as he went inside. He went to the office wall and got the keys to his old truck, and went back outside. He walked around the building, opened the garage, started the truck and drove it around to where the couple was waiting. “Here, take my truck,” he said. “She ain’t the best thing you ever looked at, but she runs real good.”

George helped put the woman in the truck and watched as it sped off into the night. He turned and walked back inside the office. “Glad I gave ‘em the truck, their tires were shot too. That ‘ol truck has brand new .” George thought he was talking to the stranger, but the man had gone. The Thermos was on the desk, empty, with a used coffee cup beside it. “Well, at least he got something in his belly,” George thought.

George went back outside to see if the old Chevy would start. It cranked slowly, but it started. He pulled it into the garage where the truck had been. He thought he would tinker with it for something to do. Christmas Eve meant no customers. He discovered the block hadn’t cracked, it was just the bottom hose on the radiator. “Well, shoot, I can fix this,” he said to himself. So he put a new one on.

“Those tires ain’t gonna get ‘em through the winter either.” He took the snow treads off of his wife’s old Lincoln. They were like new and he wasn’t going to drive the car anyway.

As he was working, he heard shots being fired. He ran outside and beside a police car an officer lay on the cold ground. Bleeding from the left shoulder, the officer moaned, “Please help me.”

George helped the officer inside as he remembered the training he had received in the Army as a medic. He knew the wound needed attention. “Pressure to stop the bleeding,” he thought. The uniform company had been there that morning and had left clean shop towels. He used those and duct tape to bind the wound. “Hey, they say duct tape can fix anythin’,” he said, trying to make the policeman feel at ease.

“Something for pain,” George thought. All he had was the pills he used for his back. “These ought to work.” He put some water in a cup and gave the policeman the pills. “You hang in there, I’m going to get you an ambulance.”

The phone was dead. “Maybe I can get one of your buddies on that there talk box out in your car.” He went out only to find that a bullet had gone into the dashboard destroying the two way radio.

He went back in to find the policeman sitting up. “Thanks,” said the officer. “You could have left me there. The guy that shot me is still in the area.”

George sat down beside him, “I would never leave an injured man in the Army and I ain’t gonna leave you.” George pulled back the bandage to check for bleeding. “Looks worse than what it is. Bullet passed right through ‘ya. Good thing it missed the important stuff though. I think with time your gonna be right as rain.”

George got up and poured a cup of coffee. “How do you take it?” he asked.

“None for me,” said the officer..

“Oh, yer gonna drink this. Best in the city. Too bad I ain’t got no donuts.” The officer laughed and winced at the same time.

The front door of the office flew open. In burst a young man with a gun. “Give me all your cash! Do it now!” the young man yelled. His hand was shaking and George could tell that he had never done anything like this before.

“That’s the guy that shot me!” exclaimed the officer.

“Son, why are you doing this?” asked George, “You need to put the cannon away. Somebody else might get hurt.”

The young man was confused. “Shut up old man, or I’ll shoot you, too. Now give me the cash!”

The cop was reaching for his gun. “Put that thing away,” George said to the cop, “we got one too many in here now.”

He turned his attention to the young man. “Son, it’s Christmas Eve. If you need money, well then, here. It ain’t much but it’s all I got. Now put that pea shooter away.”

George pulled $150 out of his pocket and handed it to the young man, reaching for the barrel of the gun at the same time. The young man released his grip on the gun, fell to his knees and began to cry. “I’m not very good at this am I? All I wanted was to buy something for my wife and son,” he went on. “I’ve lost my job, my rent is due, my car got repossessed last week.”

George handed the gun to the cop. “Son, we all get in a bit of squeeze now and then. The road gets hard sometimes, but we make it through the best we can.”

He got the young man to his feet, and sat him down on a chair across from the cop. “Sometimes we do stupid things.” George handed the young man a cup of coffee. “Bein’ stupid is one of the things that makes us human. Comin’ in here with a gun ain’t the answer. Now sit there and get warm and we’ll sort this thing out.”

The young man had stopped crying. He looked over to the cop. “Sorry I shot you. It just went off. I’m sorry officer.”

“Shut up and drink your coffee ” the cop said.

George could hear the sounds of sirens outside. A police car and an ambulance skidded to a halt. Two cops came through the door, guns drawn. “Chuck! You ok?” one of the cops asked the wounded officer.

“Not bad for a guy who took a bullet. How did you find me?”

“GPS locator in the car. Best thing since sliced bread. Who did this?” the other cop asked as he approached the young man.

Chuck answered him, “I don’t know. The guy ran off into the dark. Just dropped his gun and ran.”

George and the young man both looked puzzled at each other.

“That guy work here?” the wounded cop continued.

“Yep,” George said, “just hired him this morning. Boy lost his job.”

The paramedics came in and loaded Chuck onto the stretcher. The young man leaned over the wounded cop and whispered, “Why?”

Chuck just said, “Merry Christmas boy … and you too, George, and thanks for everything.”

“Well, looks like you got one doozy of a break there. That ought to solve some of your problems.”

George went into the back room and came out with a box. He pulled out a ring box. “Here you go, something for the little woman. I don’t think Martha would mind. She said it would come in handy some day.”

The young man looked inside to see the biggest diamond ring he ever saw. “I can’t take this,” said the young man. “It means something to you.”

“And now it means something to you,” replied George. “I got my memories. That’s all I need.”

George reached into the box again. An airplane, a car and a truck appeared next. They were toys that the oil company had left for him to sell. “Here’s something for that little man of yours.”

The young man began to cry again as he handed back the $150 that the old man had handed him earlier.

“And what are you supposed to buy Christmas dinner with? You keep that too,” George said. “Now git home to your family.”

The young man turned with tears streaming down his face. “I’ll be here in the morning for work, if that job offer is still good.”

“Nope. I’m closed Christmas day,” George said. “See ya the day after.”

George turned around to find that the stranger had returned. “Where’d you come from? I thought you left?”

“I have been here. I have always been here,” said the stranger. “You say you don’t celebrate Christmas. Why?”

“Well, after my wife passed away, I just couldn't see what all the bother was. Puttin’ up a tree and all seemed a waste of a good pine tree. Bakin’ cookies like I used to with Martha just wasn’t the same by myself and besides I was gettin’ a little chubby.”

The stranger put his hand on George’s shoulder. “But you do celebrate the holiday, George. You gave me food and drink and warmed me when I was cold and hungry. The woman with child will bear a son and he will become a great doctor.

The policeman you helped will go on to save 19 people from being killed by terrorists. The young man who tried to rob you will make you a rich man and not take any for himself. “That is the spirit of the season and you keep it as good as any man.”

George was taken aback by all this stranger had said. “And how do you know all this?” asked the old man.

“Trust me, George. I have the inside track on this sort of thing. And when your days are done you will be with Martha again.”

The stranger moved toward the door. “If you will excuse me, George, I have to go now. I have to go home where there is a big celebration planned.”

George watched as the old leather jacket and the torn pants that the stranger was wearing turned into a white robe. A golden light began to fill the room.

“You see, George … it’s My birthday. Merry Christmas.”

George fell to his knees and replied, “Happy Birthday, Lord Jesus”

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Words of wisdom about Angels




"If a man is not rising upwards to be an angel, depend upon it, he is sinking downwards to be a devil."
- Samuel Taylor Coleridge

"Make friends with the angels, who though invisible are always with you. Often invoke them, constantly praise them, and make good use of their help and assistance in all your temporal and spiritual affairs."
- St. Francis De Sales

"You don't have to be an angel, just be someone who can give."
- Patti LaBelle

"If instead of a gem, or even a flower, we should cast the gift of a loving thought into the heart of a friend, that would be giving as the angels give."
- George MacDonald

"Sometimes we are like an angel with one wing, and we necessarily need the other wing of a similar angel to keep flying."
- M. K. Soni

"Pay attention to your dreams - God's angels often speak directly to our hearts when we are asleep."
- Eileen Elias Freeman

"If you can't hear the angels, try quieting the static of worry."
- Terri Guillemets

"If there is anything that keeps the mind open to angel visits, and repels the ministry of ill, it is human love."
- Nathaniel Parker Willis

"The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone."
- George Elliot


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Christmas Angel Quotes



”Good news from heaven the angels bring;
Glad tidings to the earth they sing:
To us this day a child is given,
To crown us with the joy of heaven.”
– Martin Luther

”Love came down at Christmas.
Love all lovely, love divine.
Love was born at Christmas.
Stars and angels gave the sign.”
- Christina Rossetti

"The earth has grown old with its burden of care.
But at Christmas it always is young.
The heart of the jewel burns lustrous and fair
And its soul full of music breaks the air
When the song of angels is sung.”
– Phillips Brooks

“While shepherds watch'd their flocks by night
All seated on the ground
The Angel of the Lord came down
And Glory shone around.”
– Nahum Tate

”A song was heard at Christmas
To wake the midnight sky:
A savior's birth, and peace on earth
And praise to God on high.
The angels sang at Christmas
With all the hosts above,
And still we sing the newborn King
His glory and his love.”
– Timothy Dudley-Smith

“Late on a sleepy, star-spangled night, those angels peeled back the sky just like you would tear open a sparkling Christmas present. Then, with light and joy pouring out of Heaven like water through a broken dam, they began to shout and sing the message that baby Jesus had been born. The world had a Savior! The angels called it 'Good News,' and it was.”
– Larry Libby

“So here comes Gabriel again, and what he says is 'Good tidings of great joy ... for all people." ...That's why the shepherds are first: they represent all the nameless, all the working stiffs, the great wheeling population of the whole world.”
- Walter Wangerin Jr.

“The simple shepherds heard the voice of an angel and found their lamb;
The wise men saw the light of a star and found their wisdom.”
– Fulton J. Sheen

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Christmas Angels



Here's what those Christmas Angels remind us every Christmas:

To seek the best in ourselves at all times no matter who is watching or not watching. Integrity is a virtue they wish to remind us to practice at all times

They act as role models to help and give to others. They constantly remind us to help and give without expectation of anything in return

Angels remind us to 'lighten up' in our lives and have a little fun. They know that families who laugh together stay together. Laughter is healing and those Christmas angels love to see the lighter side of life

No matter whether you believe or do not believe in Angels, they certainly add to the magic, fun and joy associated with the celebrations and festivities of Christmas

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Sunday, December 23, 2012

Merry Christmas


Once upon a time... there were few shepherds and few wise men. It is the story of Christmas who found it.

The Shepherds: They were social nobodies, yet God sent them a supernatural birth announcement through the angels. They believed God's Word, searched in faith to find Jesus, and they did. They found Christmas.

The Wise Men: These guys were pagans from another culture. They studied the stars for insight. God spoke to them right where they were in life. They stepped out in faith to follow a star that appeared in the sky, understanding it meant the birth of a special King. They found Christmas when they found Jesus.

The shepherds found Christmas because they believed the Word of God. The wise men found Christmas because they sought Jesus.

The question: Do you believe? Believe it fully to experience the miracle of Christmas. 

May the spirit of Christmas
And the echo of the carols
And the lights of Christmas Tree
Bring happiness and Joy
into your life and home
Wishing you a blessed Christmas.

Merry Christmas!



Credits: RFTH

The Tablecloth



Sharing miracles is one of the greatest blessings we human have in this journey.  Here is one that never tires of being told.

The brand new pastor and his wife, newly assigned to their first ministry, to reopen a church in suburban Brooklyn, arrived in early October excited about their opportunities. When they saw their church, it was very run down and needed much work. They set a goal to have everything done in time to have their first service on Christmas Eve.

They worked hard, repairing pews, plastering walls, painting, etc, and on December 18 were ahead of schedule and just about finished. On December 19 a terrible tempest – a driving rainstorm hit the area and lasted for two days.

On the 21st, the pastor went over to the church. His heart sank when he saw that the roof had leaked, causing a large area of plaster about 20 feet by 8 feet to fall off the front wall of the sanctuary just behind the pulpit, beginning about head high.

The pastor cleaned up the mess on the floor, and not knowing what else to do but postpone the Christmas Eve service, headed home. On the way he noticed that a local business was having a flea market type sale for charity so he stopped in.

One of the items was a beautiful, handmade, ivory colored, crocheted tablecloth with exquisite work, fine colors and a Cross embroidered right in the center. It was just the right size to cover up the hole in the front wall. He bought it and headed back to the church.
….
By this time it had started to snow. An older woman running from the opposite direction was trying to catch the bus.. She missed it. The pastor invited her to wait in the warm church for the next bus 45 minutes later.

She sat in a pew and paid no attention to the pastor while he got a ladder, hangers, etc., to put up the tablecloth as a wall tapestry. The pastor could hardly believe how beautiful it looked and it covered up the entire problem area.

Then he noticed the woman walking down the center aisle. Her face was like a sheet.. “Pastor,” she asked, “where did you get that tablecloth?” The pastor explained. The woman asked him to check the lower right corner to see if the initials, EBG were crocheted into it there. They were. These were the initials of the woman, and she had made this tablecloth 35 years before, in Austria.

The woman could hardly believe it as the pastor told how he had just gotten the Tablecloth. The woman explained that before the war she and her husband were well-to-do people in Austria. When the Nazis came, she was forced to leave. Her husband was going to follow her the next week. He was captured, sent to prison and never saw her husband or her home again.

The pastor wanted to give her the tablecloth; but she made the pastor keep it for the church. The pastor insisted on driving her home, that was the least he could do.. She lived on the other side of Staten Island and was only in Brooklyn for the day for a housecleaning job.

What a wonderful service they had on Christmas Eve. The church was almost full. The music and the spirit were great. At the end of the service, the pastor and his wife greeted everyone at the door and many said that they would return. One older man, whom the pastor recognized from the neighborhood continued to sit in one of the pews and stare, and the pastor wondered why he wasn’t leaving.

The man asked him where he got the tablecloth on the front wall because it was identical to one that his wife had made years ago when they lived in Austria before the war and how could there be two tablecloths so much alike? He told the pastor how the Nazis came, how he forced his wife to flee for her safety and he was supposed to follow her, but he was arrested and put in a prison.. He never saw his wife or his home again all the 35 years in between.

The pastor asked him if he would allow him to take him for a little ride. They drove to Staten Island and to the same house where the pastor had taken the woman three days earlier. He helped the man climb the three flights of stairs to the woman’s apartment, knocked on the door and he saw the greatest Christmas reunion he could ever imagine.

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