TODAY THE WORDS are “MAY I SPEAK?” Yesterday on the blog, with it topic, I received good responses on my FB page with both sides of the coin showing up and it excited me enough to write on this topic, “May I speak?” this morning. As most of you who know me, realize that I go back to my childhood for some of life’s lessons. This doesn’t mean I am childish, and I certainly did not realize I was in a life lesson at the time. I was very conservative as a child and I was not one to put my opinions out there on a regular basis. I was more open with my family and my closest friends but shy around people I didn’t know. There were so many times if the older Arline spirit had been present, I would have expressed more about certain subjects. I missed opportunities, some may have been good and some may have been bad ones. Do you remember the classmates that always stated their opinions? Some of them went on to great professions using that decisive trait while most of the ones who found their voices later, lost some important time. I found mine, probably to the regret of some, but nevertheless, I learned to speak up for issues and matters important to me, my family, friends, and the country. No, I am not a politician and never had the desire to be one, even though I would like to see some people whom I know have the ability to change things get on the platform of life and change a lot of current policies. A voice without sound makes no impact, so speak up on subjects you feel strongly. Everyone may or may not agree with you and that is permissible too. When I present a subject, I am open to discussion. Now for the deeper thought…..There are times when we ask God to help us with things we could handle on our own. I have learned God needs to be in every aspect of our lives and it seems as if we take that knowledge as God wants to handle everything for us. That can be a door to “soul laziness”. God wants us to help ourselves as well as others. He wants us to be strong and dedicated to a life of goodness. Boy, do I think we overwork Our God. God will be there for us in the big issues of life; God is there for those moments when our feet will not take us any farther; but let’s give Our Maker a break sometime. Speak up, speak with love and grace, act on issues we need to express our beliefs, and by all means, pray when you reach a point you need to say, “God, what’s that and have You got this?”.

Hezekiah 6:1

God helps those who help themselves!”
(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


Even the sweetest puppy has to be trained. Photo of Luna Rose, my daughter’s “child”.

TODAY THE WORDS are PARENTS BEWARE.  Normally, as I place my fingers on the keyboard, I don’t have a clue as to the subject but this morning is different as a sensitive subject has presented itself and I feel deeply this should be the topic this morning. Hopefully, if there are young parents reading this, it can be beneficial to all parents. I am borrowing a post from a friend from FB and I thought her words were so heartfelt and could be instrumental for parents. I know she would not mind me using her words and then we will go to the deeper thought. Here is her post:
 As a parent, it is your job to empower your children by placing responsibilities and expectations. To just hand them everything they need and/or want is actually doing them more harm. As parents we love our kids and never want to say no or see them do without so we tend to just give in. If our children never learn how to be responsible they will never be responsible adults. They will think that it is everyone else’s responsibility to provide for them. They will always blame others no matter how wrong they may be. They will never be responsible enough to hold a steady, dependable job. So think long and hard about what type of adult you want your child to be. Let them learn that if you want something bad enough, you have to work for it. Teach them they are responsible for their actions and that every action has a consequence, some good, some bad. Nothing in life is free but air. Jesus even expected the widows to gleam fields for what they need…are any of children better than the expectations of Christ? Written by Sonya Bivins Lott
Now for the deeper thought…..Parents beware of loving your children into a failure. Encouragement and love have to accompanied with responsibility and love as Sonya so perfectly stated. Take a minute and slow down and do not be aftraid of losing your children. My parents disciplined me and even though they are gone now from this earth, I love and miss them every day, but importantly, I respected them. They taught me to work; they taught me to be respectful; they taught me to respect others’ things; they taught me to respect the law; they taught me love; they taught me duty; and most importantly they taught me to be the best I could be. Were they perfect parents? The world might say no as they told me no plenty of times…..do I think they were perfect parents for me? YES!

1 John 3:7-8
Little children, let no one lead you astray. He who does righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous. He who sins is of the devil, for the devil has been sinning from the beginning. To this end the Son of God was revealed, that he might destroy the works of the devil.

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


Even on an old tree, new leaves grow. ALM

TODAY THE WORDS are TURNING OVER A NEW LEAF. In the last few years, I haven’t heard this phrase as much as I heard it earlier in my life, but here it is as the topic for today. Going back in history, even as far back as the 1500’s, this phrase represented a new start, fresh and new beginnings, etc. This has two possible origins: 1) In the spring, when a new leaf came on the plant, it was fresh and fragrant and implied new growth; 2) In reading, pages used to be referred as a leaf and when someone had finished a “leaf” or page, they turned over a new leaf. Both possible origins depict a new beginning or a fresh start. In life, there are times when we have finished a certain period in our lives and we want to take on something new and it is a good idea to “turn over a new leaf”. This can be giving up old habits which can be unhealthy or morally depriving to us. We find it hard to change or flip over our leaf in life as old habits die hard and it takes effort and dedication to make the turning possible. I can feel some of you going directly in your thoughts of how many diets have I tried; how many times have I said I would give up smoking; how many times have I thought of changing careers; and/or how many times have I said I am going to start exercising or walking? We think more about turning over a new leaf more than we actually turn or change. We ponder, we stall, and we walk around the leaf that needs turning hoping it will turn on its own, right? Are you with me on this? I know it is true for me and for a lot of my family and friends. I hear conversations a lot of the time about “thinking about” and not much “turning over a new leaf”. I also have personal knowledge of this stall tactic (hmmmm, okay I am guilty).  Now, for the deeper thought….Turning over a new leaf in our faith and life by rededicating or dedicating our life to being the best we can be to God, ourselves (yes, this is part of turning over a new leaf) and especially others. When we speak to others, let it be with God’s love; when we give, give with a willing heart without expectations; when we love, love as Our Maker loves us; and when we die, may we die with grace and humility giving thanks to God for being present in our lives. Our family tree will blossom with new growth, fragrance, and deeper roots.
Jeremiah 17:8     
He is like a tree planted by water, that sends out its roots by the stream, and does not fear when heat comes, for its leaves remain green, and is not anxious in the year of drought, for it does not cease to bear fruit.”

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.



Arline Miller, blog author of Sipping Cups of Inspiration

TODAY THE WORDS are WHAT’S IN A NAME? With me writing over 200 posts on the blog, I thought it might be a good idea to tell all of the viewers a little about myself and don’t worry, there will be a life lesson in this one too. Let me start by telling you how I came about my first name, Arline. My father, Arlie told my Mother, who was expecting me the fourth child and apparently the last, he wanted one child to be named after him. At that time, there were two famous ladies, Arlene Dahl, an actress and Arlene Francis, singer and actress (notice the difference in spelling from my name). Mom agreed that if it were a girl, it would be Arlene and if a boy, Arlie. No wonder I am a different type as the nurse hearing that the child was going to be named after Daddy, when I came out a girl, she put my name on the birth certificate, Arline, therefore starting the dilemma. When I see my classmates writing Arlene, I just smile as I went through school as Arlene as Mom taught me to spell it. When I started doing  legal things, I noticed on my birth certificate my name was actually Arline so I changed the spelling. What happened was people misspelled my name and I would have to repeat it over and over. Even when I spelled it out, they wrote Arlene. Now this may seem trivial to you, but I know every one reading this post and having an unusual spelling is right here with me on this. What I found out, and this may be irrelevant to you is people remember you more if your name is spelled differently and it has served me well by being Arline. Now for the deeper thought…..my name which is different is important to me, not for business or marketing; it is because I was named after my Father who loved us and I have always been proud to have been Daddy’s girl. I learned so much from both of my parents and I am proud to have been their child, the baby, as the only time my Mom would usually call me Arline was when I was doing something wrong. I smile and think sometime, they could have named me Juanelle, my dear sister’s name which is not only misspelled all of the time, no one usually pronounces it correctly (the stories I can tell about her name). What is in a name? Think of the name God and what magnificent power comes from calling His Name. We are a product of our name as it reflects a result of a person’s life. Do you smile when you say certain people’s name or do you cringe? There is a lot in a name and if we give it our best, someone will say good things when they mention your name.  Live life, love life and live life to the fullest and listen for your name to be called in Heaven!
Proverbs 22:1  King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)
A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches, and loving favour rather than silver and gold

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.




TODAY THE WORDS are I SHALL REMEMBER YOU.  This holiday especially, even though some of us still work on this day while others get to relax and enjoy celebration, is one for all of us, no matter where or what we do on this day, to take more than a few seconds and whisper to all fallen  soldiers worldwide, not just America “I shall remember you”. I would like to step outside the USA boundaries and give us something to ponder on this Memorial Day. A soldier is a soldier! A soldier is also a son or daughter of parents and when they came into this world, the entire world lit up in the same parents eyes. God sees beyond nationality, ethnicity, social circles, wealth or poverty, and God tells us to love all people. With this in mind, God doesn’t agree with mistreating others and does not agree with evil in any form, shape, or religion. This may cause confusion to many. When a soldier gets an order it is an order and he will fight, he will save lives, he will rescue and/or destroy. He is not carrying out his personal feelings sometimes but is being a true soldier. So many times, in the heat of the battle, opposing soldiers have found themselves in a predicament and did a valorous deed and actually assisted his “enemy”. What is hard for all of us to understand is that war is the enemy, not the actual soldier. What is harder to understand; the soldier has to and will respond to enemy fire or combat without seeing the soldier as a human being. War, in any form, is a tragedy for so many and cannot be taken lightly. If, we as God’s people, can figure out a way to avoid war and share love for all mankind; we can say, “I shall remember” and remember how we were able to lie down like that lamb and the lion together (technically not the way it is actually stated as you will see below) in God’s love. Happy Memorial Day to all members of the military, family and friends of those who have sacrificed and paid the highest price so that we can look around today and enjoy God’s beauty and freedom to breathe a sigh of relief and peace.
Isaiah 11:6  King James Bible (Cambridge Ed.)The wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them.

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.



TODAY THE WORDS are TOY SOLDIERS.  How many times have you picked up a toy soldier and really gave any thought as to what it actually represents? Probably, like me, not many times have any of us visualized the representation right in our hands. A toy soldier is not very big, no more than 3 inches or less and they come in bright colors or a muted green and come with a lot of them in a bag. Boys and some girls have played with them and knocked them down “killing” them. The kids would then pick them up at the end of the battle and either start a new war or put them in the bag for a future battle. A game of pretend enemies with usually the best of friends taking sides and a lot of “bang, you are dead” was heard. Children are innocent and learn from others and many people don’t see any harm in playing war or even violent video games but now for the deeper thought…..War is real and deadly……Soldiers can’t be stood up again in the real war games and lives are taken or forever changed by injuries. As Memorial Day is fast approaching, my mind went to the toy soldier and it felt sad as if I had a soldier in my hands and wondered if he was alive or dead. Do we as humans try as hard as we should to avoid war? Are we so wrapped up in proving a point that we do the same as precious, innocent children do when they play toy soldiers and kill without thought and reality that some one’s son; some one’s husband; some one’s daughter; some one’s wife; and some one’s brother or sister can or will be killed. Soldiers face death on a daily basis if sent to a military zone. I can remember my brother Joe, who served two terms in Vietnam, and who retired after 21 years in the Army, when he said to me in reference to how the soldiers got booed at the airport by Americans, “Sis, a soldier doesn’t ask why, they are told where!” In other words a soldier obeys commands from a superior officer and is not in a defining position; he is in an obedient position. That tells me in order to protect us a soldier responds to an order. We should respect this demeanor and honor their willingness to serve. If there are opposing positions to a certain engagement, it should be brought to higher officials. Tomorrow, and every day, thank a soldier for our freedom which we value. Thank God for the highest protection of our life as God gives us every breath we take.

Matthew 24:6-7     
And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places.
(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


Thomas Kincaide’s rendition of Footprints in the Sand

TODAY THE WORDS are THE NEXT STEP.  This subject is not particularly meant for the next step in a project, but is meant for the discussion of how difficult taking another step when faced with adversity or sickness. For everyone who is blessed with good health, this may not have the impact as the ones who are struggling today. Let us take this subject back to an infant for simplicity’s sake. The parents are determined that their child will be the one to walk at an early age so there is a powerful effort for  the baby to take its first steps. We ooh and aw at their efforts right before the plop on the floor. What I want to remind everyone is the look on the baby’s face when they are standing, sometimes wobbly to take that next step. If you could read their mind, what do you think is running through that sweet mind? Fear? Excitement, Joy? It is probably all of the above emotions combined into one scary excited moment. Let us move on into life further down the road and the step into marriage, and here those feelings come again with that walk down the aisle. Life goes on and the steps get even quicker and for most, many years pass. We age, we have worked for many years, and we start slowing down a little. The next step is probably harder as we start experiencing the normal difficulties of life with losing people we love and we have to step on in life without that loved one(s). We have to deal with difficult steps with changes in work; places we live; relationship changes; and health issues, and so forth. This is when the next step takes a more complex anxiety to most and a lot of hesitation comes with each next step. It is not the same as the infant’s first step as it is usually not inclusive of excitement. I remember when my Mother expressed to me, “I have to be careful and walk a little slower as I don’t want to fall”. By this action, she managed to be independent longer and it was a wise thing, but also filled with the knowledge the next step could be dangerous. Now for the deeper thought……we are only a few steps from leaving this earth, that is a promise unless the rapture happens prior to our death….we don’t know how many next steps we have. Because of the unknown amount of steps, we don’t want to lose the chance of making the next step into glory. We need to walk in the path of Our God, giving Him the praise for the ability to make each step with us! Step High and Wise in Life!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.



TODAY THE WORDS are ICING ON THE CAKE. On a recent trip home to celebrate Easter, we took some beautifully decorated cupcakes for the children and this morning a thought about the cupcakes came running through my mind so I thought I would share it with you. I watched how the children ate the cupcakes in different approaches. Jonas ate his with cake and icing together and it seems similar to how people go at life; taking it all in at once and not separating priority to any one thing. The girls that were visiting ate their cupcakes differently (this brought to mind it is not gender that separates things by priority or preference). One of the girls ate hers slower than Jonas but ate cake with icing and the other one ate icing only and then asked for another one. She and Nolan, who ate the icing only are the “people of life” not the children that I am focusing on today. As an observer of many things and especially people, I have seen this same habit in so many people. When given the whole gambit of life to taste and savor with an opportunity to combine duties or opportunities (which I like to refer) they choose only the “icing”. When I look at couples sometimes, I see only one of the couple taking on a lot of responsibilities while the other one seems to eat “the icing” while leaving the responsibilites to the other one, who may or may not prefer to eat the whole cupcake of life; they have no choice by the inactions of the one who sits by, and eats the icing (or choosing only the responisibilities or events they enjoy). The easiest relationships are the ones where both participants are eating their fair share of life’s responsibilities and then enjoy the icing together. My parents both worked hard, but my Dad was brought up to think that housework was woman’s work. I am telling it like it is with no intent to disrespect my Dad as he worked hard. It put a lot more stress on my Mom who could not rest when she got home. Tensions can come when one person only wants the icing if you are following this thought. Life is hard but is easier when both spouses, or even parent and child share responsibilities. In work and community, this thought applies too. People who are selfish in their thinking and choose only the icing put a lot more strain on the person who recognizes the need to do all things in life. Today, when the icing looks delicious and it is tempting to eat only the sweeter; add some cake into the mouth of life and it may surprise you how well it tastes together.
1 Peter 4:10     

As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.



TODAY THE WORDS are “I’M GONNA”.  I may be “gonna” step on some toes this morning, but I am only chastising myself too. When life presents us with opportunities to do something good for others as well as ourselves, I feel we sometimes say, “I’m gonna” and we really do mean to do something but we allow other distractions to keep us from doing what we need to do. Procrastination can be a demon, folks and we justify ourselves by the normal excuses of I work, we have animals to take care, the yards, our hobbies, our friends, and even sometimes church (I tred lightly here as I am not referring to the good work being done in churches but the extra curricular activities). I will talk from my heart and “if the shoe fits” as Momma would say; you can read this with “shame on Arline” and take all of this with a grain of salt. I have always worked very hard and I am not complaining; I have been blessed to be able to work. Because of that work, I have said many times, I need to get some rest and usually it does help me keep working. At the same time, when I should have visited more people and showed them love; I rested. When I could have done more giving, loving, and caring gestures; I used one of the many reasons stated above and now for the deeper thought……I missed out on a lot of great opportunities to feel good, and to know I had done something pleasing to Our God. God affords us these opportunities, not only for the person who will appreciate the gesture immensely; He wants to give us a “feel good” feeling. If you will take a second and remember when you reached out and touched another person’s heart the wonderful, warm feeling you received. That’s right, YOU! When we say, “I’m gonna” we rob ourselves and not only the other person God is trying to arrange benefits and blessings for both of us. I have tried in the last few years to get over the “I’m gonna” and say “I am”. I haven’t gotten to the point that I don’t say I need a little rest as I am getting a little older but now, trying to go and do with a loving heart and I get a blessing too. Last night, I received such a blessing from not only seeing one of our grandsons “graduate” from Pre-school and visit precious family members who are going through a difficult time. My advice to me and others is don’t cheat yourself out of God’s blessings. The saying “it is better to give than receive” is really interpreted as “when you give, you will receive”.
Acts 20:35          
In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


Photo courtesy of Jenny Arey who loves God and life.

TODAY THE WORD is CHIRPING. I awoke this morning by the grace of God to have a lot of heaviness around my heart and then I heard God’s alarm clock go off when the birds outside started chirping. They were loud this morning and it gave my heart a jolt and I want to share my thoughts on why I think the birds chirp so much in the morning time. I am sure that Scientists and Ornithologists would probably have a scientific reason why birds chirp so loudly in the morning, but my thoughts go to the heart and not science. As this morning, my heart felt heavy due to personal reasons. I knew this is going to be a day that I need to lean on God’s strength and be steadfast in my faith and beliefs. I think there are times in everyone’s life this heaviness occurs and it is human to be a little down trodden. I don’t feel this as a weakness, just acknowledgement of how much we get our strength from Our Maker and our strength doesn’t come from us being super heroes. God recognizes those moments in us and if we ask Him for strength at these times, God comes through and lifts our spirits up through His Grace. He comforts and makes whatever pain we are feeling lesson in its strength. Now, for the deeper thought of the birds chirping……God is sending us a signal to awake, become aware of how much we need to go to prayer and talk with Our God. The birds are like the angels trumpeting their trumpets in the sky, it is a call for action. We can choose to lie there, mulling in sadness or we can arise, give thanks that we can get up, and find scripture to meet our needs, and pray for strength, grace, forgiveness, comfort, or whatever our needs are on this particular day. Do you find it amazing that a verse or verses in the scripture will appear and be so pertinent and right on with what is needed to sustain us? Just like the birds chirping, the scriptures chirp out a message to call us to action. Birds come in all sizes and colors. Their chirps are sometimes melodic and sometimes a loud blast of sound. This is also a sign for all of us to heed as God sometimes whispers in our ears and sometimes, it sounds like a blast. I have had the whispers and I can remember with all of my heart and mind the time I received a blast. There is no denying when the “blast from God” comes in our lives and I “moved”. When the birds chirp, remember God is calling you to action. If they get louder, go ahead and “get up”. God is wanting to talk to you and we should listen!
Psalm 104:12     

Beside them the birds of the heavens dwell; they sing among the branches.

(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.

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