TODAY THE WORDS are ALL YOU CAN EAT BUFFETS. For all of you who know I went on a healthy eating program this past summer, no I am not going through withdrawals, but I did have a humorous thought and wanted to share it with you. There are more restaurants offering these types of buffets and I never see an empty lot at those locations. I now shy away from them as they do present a type of temptation the other restaurants do not seem to possess as much. My thought is why do the all you can eat buffets, whether they are American, Chinese, Mexican, etc. bother with the salad bar? This is such a ridiculous item at an all you can eat bar, don’t you agree? If someone is going to “pig” out, why do they bother with salad? I see females, especially, making a deceptive move to the salad bar and get a plate of salad. Taking it to the table, and walking with a proud stride; most (and there are a few exceptions as some of you are saying right now, “Oh, I eat mostly salad!”) of us get another plate. Then the destruction of any well thought eating plan goes out the window. When most people are on their 2nd or 3rd plate (okay, maybe the 3rd is a dessert plate and that is another blog topic), we cannot be hungry, can we? What purpose does eating until we have to take a nap? We, with the exception of a rare few have committed this atrocity, haven’t we? The funniest part is when I see a plate of “salad” which has a small amount of lettuce and everything else imaginable piled 4 inches high and topped with a cup of salad dressing and I am not talking about oil and vinegar going by and I cannot help but chuckle. Now, for the deeper thought and oh yes, I have a deeper thought on this too……If we condition ourselves to like the idea of all you can eat buffets without exercising any discipline, this mindset can go over into our lives. I am not saying once in a while go for a splurge if you need to do so, but on a regular basis it is destructive to a healthy life. We can be guilty of this splurge in our lives as well in spending or recreation. We begin to believe we can spend “all you can spend” and we can “play all we can play”. I think the only all you can buffet is pray all you can pray; worship all you can worship; love all you can love; give all you can give; and forgive all you can forgive. Amazingly, all of these “all you can” buffets of life don’t add any calories and will not add pounds; they will add rewards and blessings from above. Some food, some play, some treats are good but think about what gives you the most long term rewards. Live life, love life and live life to the fullest by being full of blessings instead of food.
TODAY THE WORDS are 24 HOURS. Do you ever think about why it was decided twenty four hours would make a day? I may overthink things sometimes, but mysteries have always intrigued me with the whys, when, and who, but especially the whys. According to Wikipedia, A sundial is a device that measures time by the position of the Sun. It measures local solar time. Before the coming of the railways in the 1830s and 1840s, local time as displayed on a sundial was used by government and commerce. This may have been the reason due to the division of placement of the sun on the dial. But let us remove ourselves from the historical reason and think about what can happen in 24 hours in our normal daily activity. In any given 24 hours, most of us sleep from 6-8 hours (I understand some of the insomniacs are shaking their heads and would love to experience that many hours, but we are talking averages). We spend about 1 hour (sometimes more) on personal care, such as bathing, styling, dressing, creaming, brushing teeth, etc. When we are among the working class, we usually work 8-10 hours working (or as most bosses say, at least showing up for that many hours; just kidding). So how many hours does that leave us with (taking the max)? Six or Seven hours and what do we do with it? It is those 5, 6, or 7 hours I wonder if we use to the best advantage of life. How many hours do we spend watching TV? How many hours do we spend eating (or overeating)? How many hours do we spend cleaning? How many hours do we read? How many hours do we spend talking about things or people we cannot change? How many hours do we spend with God? How many hours do we spend with our family with quality conversations? If today, you will stop a “minute” and actually be quiet for that length of time, you will be amazed as I was on how long a minute or 60 seconds really is and that brings me to the deeper thought…..If only a minute is a long period of time and we have at least, 5 hours not obligated to work or sleep or personal care, how can we figure out what is the best way to spend our “free time”. Years ago, and I am going to admit this, I never seemed to find time to “devote” to God’s word or prayer. It wasn’t that I couldn’t have found time; I didn’t take the time. Shame on me! Now, living a different life with no added minutes or hours as I still work, still eat, still take care of myself, still watch TV, read, etc. What can happen in 24 hours? It is your day, your time and your way. I try to remember this: If I take time to thank God for what He does for me and others; If I take time to read His Word; and if I take time to use my time wisely for His Purpose; God will find time while seeing about All His Children to help me when I need help. Live life; love life; and live life to the fullest by spending time wisely!
TODAY THE WORDS are ALL GOD’S CHILDREN. With the passing of a great author and poet,
celebrity, singer, dancer, and actress, we honor Maya Angelou who has died at the age of 86. If any of you do not know her life’s story, please take time to read it. She received honors from so many sources, spoke to thousands and to millions through the media. She is the vessel for one of the most important lessons of God’s use of unlikely messengers. I read the incredible recount of her life and it enlightened me. A mouthy young black child, she was shipped away from home from sassing a white clerk. She was raped at age 7 by her mother’s boyfriend and didn’t speak for years. Think about if if she had never spoken. Poetry, especially the ones sang in the black church, became her love and she wrote poetry from the age of 9. By 17, she was a single mother and by her early 20’s she worked in a strip joint and then ran a brothel. By all counts, she should have been tagged a failure by her life at this point. However, and I am not trying to write an eulogy as she has written her own, great eulogy of success. Here is the deeper thought and why I am referring to the rough times in her life……….If for any times in her life, Maya Angelou (born Marguerite Johnson) had poured herself a pity drink and had not plunged ahead with her forthright ability to not only survive but to give this world her gift on words, salty and pungent at times, but filled with a source of grace that came with a gift of life; this world would have been worse for the loss. I could go on and on about her life, but it is one you owe it to yourself to read but what I found was most interesting was the age of 80 when she found herself engaging into more of God’s presence by studying the healing through prayer. All of the hurt, the pain, the ups and downs, the civil rights movement, her activism, her awards, her presence, her poetry, her speeches, and her work all were the pieces of her life puzzle and once she placed God’s piece into the puzzle, she found completion. When her back was against the wall and her son having his 10th operation on his spine; Maya felt the pressure of life of people using her, expectations running so high, it took a young black preacher’s words to her for her recognition of God’s power when he asked her, “Why have you decided to limit God?” and she thought, “That is exactly what I have been doing.” From then until her death she would answer when asked to speak, “Thank you, thank you, thank you”. What a life, what an example of God seeing our worth when we question his opportunities, you have left us now with a lesson for each of us. No matter what, no matter when, no matter who, God is watching you! RIP Maya Angelou you have sung your song of life with a melody far reaching and so powerful we will never forget.
DAILY FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Psalm 34:18 English Standard Version (ESV)
18 The Lord is near to <span class="crossreference" style="font-size: 0.65em; vertical-align: top;" value="(A)”>the brokenhearted and saves <span class="crossreference" style="font-size: 0.65em; vertical-align: top;" value="(B)”>the crushed in spirit.
(c) copyright 2014 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.
TODAY THE WORDS are LOVE IS YOUR JOY. I don’t know if I need to write anything else but this freestyle prose written by my Mother to me for my birthday 1992 (for those of you who might try to edit it…..don’t you dare.) This is the most beautiful writing from a beautiful, loving Mother who I was blessed to have as mine and with only an 8th grade education. she was wiser beyond some professors. To be loved as we were, to be taught the right way of treating other people and to not have feelings of jealousy and envy is the most wonderful feeling in the world. This means more to me than any blog I could write; any book if it were published; or any award given to me for anything I had accomplished. To know My Mother knew what means the most to me is beyond a Nobel prize. I have kept this close to me and my heart. I printed out the original (which I have in her handwriting) but even I didn’t want to change a word. I am sharing this with all of you for one deeper thought…..If we try as hard in our personal lives to show the ones who matter how much we love them, we also receive blessings from our showering of love. Please do not miss any opportunity to love, receive love, and tell the people you love them every chance you get.
TODAY THE WORDS are ABANDON SHIP. Ahoy mates, let’s talk about the phrase “Abandon Ship”. With all of the talk about some cruise ships having all of the passengers getting sick, it may be a phrase we see more often. In history, a captain would give the order for crew and passengers to leave a ship that was sinking for their safety. Life boats were loaded with as many people who could fit into them. You can imagine the turmoil during the “abandonment” period with a lot of pushing and shoving. People who are in fear of their lives are sometimes less than courteous to state an understatement. Sometimes, people would fall into the water and face drowning or sharks; others would be huddled together in the life boats. Families have been separated and some members lost in the dark waters. The Captain was the last one to “abandon ship” if he didn’t stay on board and vow to go down with the ship. This is worthy of some deeper thought….how tempting would it be to get a good seat on the life boat instead of stay with the ship and suffer death? We are traveling on the sea of life in a vessel surrounded by family, friends, acquaintances, business associates, spiritual associates, etc. We tour the ship and explore the cabins, look at the skies above and the water below, we eat, and we sleep. Some days are better than others and some days are full of stormy weather; others are clear, sunny days. The winds of life have an effect on our days, blowing and sometimes tossing us around and we lose footing. We have to grab a rail and hold on! Do we realize that if the order to abandon the ship, are we prepared to face death? I am not trying to be morbid but we will, at some time, face death or abandonment of the ship during our lifetime. It is time to think about that Captain of the ship (God) as he will stand and stay and will stay with us throughout our life. He doesn’t take His Glory and Power lightly and is there for the sunny days, the treacherous storms, and if we go down, He reaches in the dark waters and He will lift us up into the life boat of safety. We might get wet, we might get cold, and we might even get scarred but Our Captain doesn’t abandon us!
Good Sailing through life and count on the Great Universal Captain of Eternity to make your trip fantastic!
In Honor and Memory of All Fallen Soldiers on Memorial Day
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 here, 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. My heart has been lifted seeing so many tributes to all of the fallen in Vietnam now. If there are opposing positions to a certain engagement, it should be brought to higher officials. Tomorrow, and every day, thank a live soldier for our freedom which we value, he or she may be someone we honor on a future Memorial Day. Thank God for the highest protection of our life as God gives us every breath we take.
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
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.
DAILY FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Isaiah 11:6King 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.
ENLIGHTENMENT (photo courtesy of thecostariconews.com)
TODAY THE WORD is ENLIGHTENING. We can find the meaning of enlightening as: 1) give (someone) greater knowledge and understanding about a subject or situation. 2) give (someone) spiritual knowledge or insight 3) shed light on (an object) with synonyms as: inform, tell, make aware, open someone’s eyes, notify, illuminate, apprise, brief, update, bring up to date (source Google). With this formal definition we can take it a step farther in our thought process. I see as a synonym “open someone’s eyes” and this brought this topic to light. We live in a world which is triggered to alter the truth in any given situation by each person’s interpretation whether it is reflective in politics, social media, religion, advertisement, etc. How many times have you watched a commercial and had to have whatever it was making your mouth water from expectation only to find it was mostly hype when the desired item wasn’t even close to what you expected.
I have covered the false expectations of beauty from all of the air brushed, photo shopped beautiful women and we normal, non airbrushed, and non photo shopped women are expected to compete with this image. But hold on, the miracle wrinkle removers, magic diets, fat removers, instant lifts are there for us to believe we are going to be just like those beauties in 10 days, right?? This is the time in life when we have to be enlightened; we have to deal with reality; we need knowledge; we need to be brought up to date; and we need to be illuminated with the truth. I somehow don’t have a problem with the truth. The human body and spirit are in a living process starting with little knowledge but strong and usually healthy bodies. As we live and grow; we gain knowledge and enlightenment in varied aspects according to our interests and education as well as life environments. However, at the same time we are gaining knowledge and experience; we are placing a lot of toil on our bodies. We expose ourselves to outside environments, lights, technology, microwaves, chemicals, additives, non healthy foods, medications, alcohol beverages (for some), and other contributing factors to the body downfall. With this will come health issues, wrinkles, weight gain, and lack of physical strength. When we see people of certain ages either dancing, weight lifting, running marathons, swimming, or exercising; we as average humans are intrigued by their abilities. Here is my deeper thought…Enlightening means apprising ourselves and accepting what we cannot change; change what we are capable of changing; opening our own eyes to reality and be comfortable in our own skin; and ask others who are capable to show us how to improve our lives and bodies; and get real with the fact; we are getting older. Enlighten life by enlightening ourselves with the best truth in this life, God’s Word and Promise.
DAILY FEATURED BIBLE VERSE: Ephesians 1:18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, (c) copyright 2014 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.
TODAY THE WORDS are IS COMPETITION GOOD FOR US? This morning on a news station they were headlining schools are suggesting keeping competition down to a minimum. As I am writing this post, the segment hasn’t been shown and it allowed me some time to turn this over to my thought process. I understand both sides of this coin since we have seen the good and the bad of competition with children. We grew up in a world of competition, starting with brothers and sisters in friendly neighborhood games. I don’t remember any negative results from our friendly, out to beat your behind competitions. We played, we won, we lost; and mostly, we laughed and argued. Of course our arguments were more like bickering instead of a real argument. We didn’t try to throw down a bat since our equipment was limited and our uniforms were whatever our play clothes were that particular day. I don’t remember feeling left out; I felt part of a neighborhood team. Oh, yeah and we played with mixed teams of boys and girls with no thoughts of equality, only feminist or male chauvinists views might have been spoken like “she’s a girl or he acts like a girl”, but we didn’t care; we wanted to play and importantly we wanted to win. If it was tug of war; we tugged with all of our might. If we were playing baseball; we played, we ran, we hit, we missed, we scored and we lost or we won. That was how it was and I think still should be. We put a lot of emphasis now on how the children are dressed; what equipment and if it is the best; what designer shoes they are wearing. It is more of a fashion show than it is real sports. Then we have “the parents” showing poor sportsmanship by yelling at a small boy or girl because “their” child didn’t hit the ball but it had to be how the other child pitched it and on and on. My thought about competition….when we played, our parents were in the home or working and we kids played without adult supervision and worked it out between us kids. Maybe the deciding factor is we need to take the parents out of the competition as they don’t allow the kids to be kids and to learn how to play with others; or we put the parents out on the field again to re-learn to compete fairly. After all, it is only a game! Now for the deeper thought….you knew it was coming! Playing fair in life is one of the most important exercise and lesson we can learn. It is acceptable to want to participate in friendly competition if we keep it friendly. Love sports, love competition, love to win; but love God and our fellow person more than anything else. Better to lose here on earth and win a spot on God’s eternal team!
Luna shows how special effects can change her look
TODAY THE WORD is BELIEVABLE OR NOT. When watching TV or seeing a post on Facebook, I have noticed we have become a “print shop, special effects, cut and paste” world and that presents a unique time in life…..what do we find believable? We have begun to react when we see a natural picture how much better it would look photo shopped instead of seeing it naturally. We have discussed how models and celebrities are air brushed and probably most of us women who watch our weight (or watch it grow) would love to see ourselves air brushed. We see the naturally cute little girls made up to look like 20 year old ladies and somehow, as cute as they are, it is not natural and I hope their expectation on how they are going to look is not distorted. The effects of how those retouched photos can be a negative effect on young teenagers and lead to eating disorders have been discussed over and over and I somehow agree, but then again, who doesn’t know they are airbrushed? We see imaginary creatures walk and talk and I will go back to the movie E.T and tell you, I was fascinated! I can watch E. T. now after all the years and tear up, so they captured me. While we should realize a lot of things today have the look of authenticity but are fake in reality. I think a good rule of thumb should be as the old phrase says, “If it looks too good to be true, it usually is.” Now, I feel we need to add, “If it sounds too bad to be true; it may not be true.” With the doctoring of pictures and the inability to monitor the internet, we are at a time to research and look into situations ourselves. Now, for the deeper thought……We are limited in our thought process if we are given distorted or airbrushed pictures or words and we have to rely on some device more powerful than any earthly equipment to know what is right and what is wrong and that device is God’s direction. It is better than any compass, far surpassing any technology known to man, and it is our own built-in soul radar. God has asked us to check it by praying and meditating, fasting, and having the faith in Him to keep us safe from all harm. Can I tell by watching, reading and even seeing worldly events which have been airbrushed for deceit, Not hardly but can I depend on doing the right thing by listening to the 100% truthful nature of Our Maker? Oh yes! Live life, love life, and live life to the fullest with a pure heart.
DAILY FEATURED BIBLE VERSE: Proverbs 6:16-19 There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.
(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.