Monday, March 23, 2015

GOOD STUFF...

 
  "Go into the world and do well. 
      But more importantly, go into the world and do good."  
Minor Myers Jr.
 
Nothing new that we're not 'cookie cutter' people...we're individuals which translates to 'existing as a distinct entity; separate'.  We're fortunate in that respect...right? 
 
Different strokes for different folks.  I don't necessarily need to be a clone of you; nor you cloned like me!  Oh boy...wouldn't that be double trouble?
 
Michael and I went to China...we surely hadn't that in our tool box.  When we visited an exhibition hall at Abilene Christian University we were looking for books concerning gerontology.  We had decided we would work in that field...that would be a good fit for the two of us.  Oops, what we failed to do was talk it over with God...never thought of doing that.  In other words, we were not thinking...period.
 
In one day Gerontology became 'teaching English in China'.  You've gotta' be kidding, God.  No?  NO!  Loud and clear, we couldn't help but hear that.  Well...well, what d'ya know?
 
There are multitudes of people with plans for something they decided they could/would do...only to have a greater power change the whole thing.  Could be a few were on His track from the get-go...you never know.  
 
Truthfully there are some life changes that would terrify me...they really would.  Like what?  Well, like moving/working in the 'war-torn' areas of Africa...Muslim countries...jumping out of airplanes!
 
There are people who have those terrific 'brave-hearts'...heroes, heroines all.  All of us know of some. 
 
I've a wonderful neighbor who is one of those...she established an organization to help orphans in a region of Africa that has been and remains ravaged by horrible conflict...and there are so many children left without anyone or anything.  
 
She's there now, trying to convince their government to lighten restrictions on American adoptions...slowly, ever so slowly things seem to be inching forward.  She goes there often; she's been there now for a month and will be there three more weeks...easy?   Hot, hot...mosquito ridden, limited transportation and now? Chicken pox among the children.  To me it would seem miserable choosing to live like that; she does what I've no intention of doing...yet she does good.  I believe it has to do with God and His ideas.
 
Here's another instance~  I keep up with some who have just gotten settled in a Muslin country...they can't even mention the country or the city.

They are some of the few who are there doing what Michael and I did in China...teaching English and some 'quiet' things...we did it in a Communist country...they are doing it in a Muslim country!  Where they are would scare the livin' daylights out of me...honestly it would.  They are doing what I've no intention of doing...but they do good.  I believe it has to do with God and His ideas.
 
These are just two samples of heroic people...called by God to do something...something important that they do good. 
 
This is not to say everyone should step forward and volunteer to do similar things...remember, we aren't 'cookie cutters'.  But we are given talents...talents to be used...given by a loving Father to His children for His purposes.  Every single one of us...every one! 
 
How M and I ended up working with Chinese instead of with older people is a real story in itself.  While we answered positively and became involved it entailed many, what some might call drastic, changes!  Were they all easy?  Oh, you don't want to know about the inner struggles...but guess what?  Everything worked out amazingly; we never could have orchestrated it ourselves.  Wow!  We were doing something not many wanted to do...I believe it has to do with God and His ideas!
 
 
  "Go into the world and do well. 
      But more importantly, go into the world and do good."  
Minor Myers Jr.
 
Hey, your world could be next door or right around the corner...anywhere. 
Never know. God might even surprise you with one of His ideas!
Whatever...do good...do good...do good.  That's good.
 
From my heart...to yours,
Vasca

Sunday, March 1, 2015

N SYNC...


Not so long ago I wore a watch...I have several.  I like them but my cell phone sort of took the place of my watches.  Seems I never wear one these days.  M's stopped running and out of habit he continued to wear it anyway; but now he's weaned himself from it.  Seems sort of sad.
 
However...we're tied to a couple of clocks because they have sentimental value and ties.  Incidentally, they don't run on batteries...if we don't wind...they don't run.  Some things take a bit of extra time...just a tad...they're worth it.
 
The closest to our hearts is one that has been in M's family 111 years.  It came from Michael's paternal grandfather, Henry Polkenhorn Beall.  Don't ask where the Polkenhorn came from 'cause we don't have a clue!  We were certainly never tempted to give that name to any of our sons.  He was really a fascinating man, feisty as could be and quite the entrepreneur in the late 1800's and early 1900's. 
 
The Louisiana Purchase Exposition (dubbed the St. Louis World's Fair)took place in St. Louis in 1904.  Henry decided he and his wife (Pearl) should make the trip from Oklahoma and have a look.  The Fair was really something extraordinary!  Of course, some things don't change so naturally there were many things to spend your money on...gifts to buy!  Henry spied this beautiful little Seth Thomas clock and bought it for Pearl.
 
Later on the clock ended up with M's mother.  One day as she and I were talking she said she was going to get rid of the clock...she really never liked it.  WHAT???  I couldn't believe she was going to dump it...she said "Well, you wouldn't want it either."  Wrong, wrong!
 
The clock wasn't running but we were and took it with us around the world; precious clock.  While living on post at Ft. Sill we had an open house and a guest took us aside to ask about the clock.  It seemed he collected clocks and enjoyed working on them so he asked if he could take our clock and tinker with it.  We knew him from church so we knew he was 'reliable'.  You know how church people are, right?
 
We ran into him later that evening and he surprised us with "I have your clock running'. A couple of weeks later he said we could pick it up...he had polished the wood, cleaned all the parts (they were all original) and he wouldn't let us pay him anything.  He so enjoyed working with that clock; he gave us a lecture filled with advice, "You better not ever sell that little clock"...we haven't, we won't and it's still running, keeps perfect time. And it sounds nice when it chimes.  We’re happy it lives with us.
 
The other clock is not nearly so old or sentimental...it just has some good memories in it.  Michael always admired ship's clocks...guess that was because he was a water transportation specialist in the military and was always around water and ships!  He finally bought us one when he was in Germany...keeps perfect time and if I would use Brasso on it?  It would shine but it's sort of old, crusty and comfortable...like the two of us. 
One is in the living room, one is in the kitchen.  You know how we spend our mornings, right?  Of course, in our back tri-purpose room...drinking coffee, having breakfast with M reading to me for a couple of hours!  Ah, God is so good.
 
The last several mornings I've noticed both clocks striking/ringing at exactly the same time...they're in sync.  And you know what?  That was/is the most pleasant sound; a comfortable feeling.
 
The Seth Thomas chimes/strikes on the hour, one strike on the half-hour; the ship's clock rings bells. When those clocks are in sync both of us notice; it’s a good moment and brings smiles!
 
So, what is all this stuff with the clocks?  
 
Well, it caused me to think about how pleasant it is to be in sync...and not just with those two clocks but with people.
 
Teddy Roosevelt said, "The most important ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people."
 
My point is…when things are in sync, it seems so much better. 
 
Honestly? For me…for Michael…together is our favorite place to be.
 
From my heart...to yours,
Vasca

 

Friday, February 27, 2015

WAKE UP...

"Every day someone wakes up feeling unappreciated, 
unloved &/or unworthy.
They won't tell you.
They still smile through the pain."
Anonymous
 
Have you ever felt that way...Unappreciated?  Unloved?  Unworthy?
 
I have but that seems long ago...hopefully I've overcome those feelings.  Takes work, right?  
 
Is it due to loneliness or could it be sorrow?  I don't know; for me it was just a general unhappiness with something I didn't understand; perhaps I didn't want to understand.  Whatever the reason, it happened.  Sadly enough, I wasn't the only one affected which made matters worse.  Happy ending anyway...just took a painfully long while.
 
Okay, that's in the past; things became better with time.  I forgave myself, I was forgiven and hopefully the dark things were forgotten, as they should be.  Life is better.  
 
I wonder though how many are caught in that trap...waking up every day feeling somewhat worthless; unloved, unappreciated?  
 
Something else, how many are suffering tragedies in their lives that are tearing them apart?  It's sometimes difficult to know exactly what to say...I read this today:
 
“The best thing you can say to someone going through a tragic loss is not that
"It's going to be alright"
It is: "Hold on tight because this is going
to hurt like you cannot imagine".”
 
Somehow life continues...the clock keeps ticking...time passes.

Watching, reading, listening to the news might make one wonder; how can we survive when the world seems drowning in evil, dissension and hatred?  At times it seems almost impossible to keep our heads above water but we must do it. 


Basically I am a very happy person but being happy may be more difficult for some than others; might try this. 
Wake up,
do your best,
sleep and
repeat.

Someone looked at it like this with 7 rules:
Never hate
Don't worry,
Live simple,
Expect a little,
Give a lot,
Always smile,
And keep in touch with GOD.


Put those together w/emphasis on the last & things might be better, you think?
From my grateful heart...to yours,
Vasca