Even the sweetest doggies have to have training (Luna Rose, my daughter’s little “child”

TODAY THE WORDS are PARENTS BEWARE. Note from blogger: This is a re-print from 2013 but I felt worthy to re-post.   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 afraid 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.


Come Close by Guest Blogger Lynn Polk
Text: Mark 2:13-17, Matthew 4:1-11
Recently, I was on my way to Brunswick, Georgia to speak. I struggle with anxiety when driving alone, and I was not looking forward to the drive. The abyss of grey asphalt, and red taillights of stop-and-go traffic unsettle me, and I knew once I made it through that traffic the desolate, dry and brown fields of South Georgia would surround me for miles.

I get nervous to be alone. The stillness tempts me with voices that say I am not a good enough wife, mother, friend, leader. I am haunted by the “what ifs” and “should haves” and silence.

I was driving through down those desolate roads sensing the welling of anxious thoughts, when God came close and met me. As He gently shifted my focus off my self-imposed discouragement and onto His promises of acceptance, forgiveness, and love, the transformed before my eyes. The brown fields became a brilliant bronze, the blue sky glistening against the horizon. The pine trees reminded me that life emerges out of barren land, and the wind whipping around my car prompted me to know the Holy Spirit comforts and transforms our thoughts. The desolate fields and woods came alive when God came close.
The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.
– Psalm 145:18
Levi’s anxious view of the world changed the day Jesus called him to follow. Sinner, come as you are—broken, weary, shamed, and rejected. I see you, accept you, and will call you my friend. Come dine with me. What a beautiful invitation. I wonder if Levi’s world went from black and white to vibrant color that day.
Jesus extends an invitation to come close at any time and to follow Him, no matter our condition. He calls us to come close minute by minute, every day. He heals, He redeems, He saves, He invites, He accepts – He changes us and our perspective, which draws us into greater understanding that He cares about every detail of our life.
There will be dark, desolate days. Even Jesus endured seasons in the wilderness. In those seasons, He fasted and drew close to His heavenly Father. His physical weakness did not succumb to the Tempter’s plan because His Father nourished Him. The enemy has nothing of worth to offer a soul filled with the truth of God’s Word. Amen!
Friend, the Word of God has the same power in your wilderness. Come close and fast with Jesus, cling to Him and His cross when the Tempter tries to steal your true identity. Like Levi who found his true identity in Christ, you are also invited, chosen, known, and loved—just as you are. As you come close to Jesus, the world around you will transform and become more beautiful and radiant because you are changed.
Note from Arline Miller, blog author of Sipping Cups of Inspiration: We are blessed to have Lynn Polk as our guest blogger and who has given us a glimpse into her talent and spirit. Thank you Lynn and may we be blessed to have you 


TODAY THE WORDS are WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? I slept in late this morning, can all of you who know me believe this? When I woke up, it seemed as if I were waiting for the day to slow down and let me catch up. As a normal early riser, this was a change and a thought came while I
was attempting to readjust my plans. I have been asked over and over how to start a blog, how to start writing a book, or how do I create a project from a verbal concept? I “just” do it. I have always been willing to give it a shot even if I don’t have the whole picture; I still have the “big” picture of discovering newly found knowledge.
An author, Oscar Patton has been busier than a bee for the last few years writing several novels and I find his writing so natural. He stepped out of his comfort zone and chose not to wait until he knew how to write and he wrote. The other day in response to my post about his ability to sit the characters next to me, Oscar responded and I wanted to share his words as they are the true inspiration for this blog post. He said:
 Dolly Parton once said, ‘You’d be surprised how much it costs to look this cheap.'”
My friend Arline Lott Miller expressed an interest in my writing style and said it seemed “natural.” A good writer herself, Arline knows natural does not come naturally. Like other artists, I sweat bullets to make it natural. But hard as it can be, writing is worth the effort. It’s the best high I have found. If you want to write or paint or make music or post on FB, don’t wait to start until you know how to do it. You will learn as you go. That’s the beauty of creative effort. I like an analogy I heard somewhere: “I am building this plane while flying it.”   (Oscar Patton, author) 

Let’s think about Oscar’s words, “If you want to write or paint or make music or post on FB, don’t wait to start until you know how to do it. You will learn as you go.” I find these words better than any advice I could give to all those who ask me how did I start. Some of you have heard me say I didn’t even know what a blog was when another friend, Peggy Mercer, a published author herself encouraged me to start one. Both Oscar and Peggy have found their niche in writing, but they both have talents in different fields. I like to think I am flexible in many fields too.
Now for deeper thought….What are you waiting for? Life has a way of passing us by as my morning did not put itself on hold for my inability to wake up early. Instead of saying, I would like to sing; I would like to write; I would like to go back to school; I would like to do charity work; I would like to change my job; I would like to travel more; or I would like to…….just do it.

Today, I am adding a couple of my friends Oscar Patton and Peggy Mercer’s new works. To see how people who do it….do it; check them out.

 Peggy Mercer has touched a subject which many others shy away and we can learn from these stories about mental illness. 

These stories are funny and serious, intro by elite psychiatrist from San Diego…award winning stuff on Amazon now.

                                             Oscar Patton has several novels published and another one on the way.

Young professor Oliver Hardin settles in at Georgia Southeastern College, happy to be home in Satilla County: “Cock-a-doodle-do. This rooster has come home to roost. Bring your mugs, 
The keg is iced down. The pork is on the pit. And the chicks are on the way.” Then, in the year he expects to become a tenured professor, storm clouds gather. Discord among colleagues, a developing romance with a student, the prospect of being fired, a night in jail, a cock fight that turns deadly, and the loss of a close friend force Oliver to see Satilla County in a new light and to re-assess what “home” means.

What Readers Are Saying about Oscar Patton:

Barbara Alves: “Does a superb job of drawing you into the lives of his characters.”
Beth Burke: “Weaves a tale that holds the reader’s interest throughout.”
Laurie Tanner: “Spins a mesmerizing tale.” 

Dan Porter: “Patton’s writing is excellent.”
I hope you enjoyed the post today. We can learn from those who dare to do it!
(c) copyright 2015 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


TODAY THE WORDS are WHAT DO YOU DO WITH LEFTOVERS? This morning was different from a lot of mornings after Valentine’s Day with no candy in the house. It wasn’t because my husband forgot; he remembered actually to not tempt me since I have been blessed to have my diabetes under control. Candy is a no no unless you go with the sugar free and with all of the chemicals in those; I choose to avoid them. Nevertheless, my situation is not the formation of the thought I had but after holidays which are so commercialized with candies and sweets; Christmas, Easter, Halloween, and Valentines Day are the recipient holidays of sugar overload. There are leftover candy and sweets during these holidays and I thought what can and possibly happen to the leftover candy?
I thought back in my life and this is what I want to share about a time in my life when I was not honest to myself about leftovers. Oh, I am not into public confessions as I strongly believe those are matters between a person and Our Higher Power. This is however, a confession of sorts but one we can learn a valuable life lesson. I, as a young woman, was more superficial than I am now and every pound, every inch, and even down to my hair, had to look right. I ate enough salads to become a rabbit. I ate tiny portions and avoided desserts or at least I thought I did as I was deceiving myself. What about the times I made a convenience store run and bought my favorite Snickers and of course a Diet Coke? Oh, yeah, I can assure you there weren’t any leftovers there. What about the time when there were leftovers and in cleaning up, when I ate something left on the plate? I am not embarrassed; I am saying in life there are times when we justify our attempts at losing weight or maintaining it by eating the leftovers but not counting them in the totals. This is not any attempt for any kind of pity or even judgment but a “It is what it is” moment bringing me to the point of the message.
What do we do with leftovers? In life, as in food, we have leftovers. We bring leftovers into new relationships, into careers, and into our faith. Let’s mull over this point. If a past lover, spouse, friend, pastor, church member, co worker “left” a bad memory in our minds or a “leftover“; we have a tendency to chart a new relationship by those leftovers and we repeat the same patterns which can result in failures. 
Now for the deeper thought……If leftovers are not properly stored or thrown out; they begin to smell and stink up our world. If we choose to “indulge” in life; realize that one time might not hurt but if we keep the “bad” food of life around; we may keep indulging. A clean, healthy diet of life is refreshing and has a fresh smell and can restore our health…..SO THROW THE LEFTOVERS OUT by replacing the good things life can offer you.

Romans 12:2 ESV 

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. 

(c) copyright 2015 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.



From my heart to yours, Sipping Cups of Inspiration wishes all of you who have shown your love to me and the blog A VERY HAPPY VALENTINES DAY. please take a few minutes and call someone who needs to hear “I Love You”. It does the heart good!!


TODAY THE WORDS are COULD YOU REPEAT THE QUESTION?  This morning I wrote on Facebook the following “How are we to know all of the answers? We don’t even know all of the questions. I don’t think it is a multiple choice quiz.” Sometimes, when my mind starts spinning, a topic for the blog comes through so here we go.

In school, how many of us used to like multiple choice and true or false exams? I used to think I had a fifty-fifty chance on true or false but in reality you have a fifty-fifty chance of getting it wrong as well. Multiple choice gave more dilemma when the “C” choice said none of the above and “D” choice said all of the above. Oh boy, now we were thick in it having to go through each one and agreeing or disagreeing if all or none applied. I used to sweat out tests, even if I knew the material backwards and forwards and I seemed to always over-think the subject matter. I challenged; I pondered; I tried to think past the immediate and went to the what ifs. Does any of this ring a bell with you?

I would seem surprised when I made a high grade (not boasting here but a point is coming). I expected to have gotten answers wrong when I knew deep down they were right. I doubted myself and though I made high grades throughout my school years and even through career licensing, certifications, profile tests, etc., there was always a fear of not getting it right. This is where my train of thought for the blog is going….The fear of not getting it right.

We go through life; and life is an exam in itself. We learn things and habits; customs as well from our parents and family along with the circle of friends. We try new adventures, skills, topics, and talent progression and sometimes we get it right; many times we have to keep trying until we master a skill or develop a talent to the highest level possible.There are the times in our lives it seems like a multiple choice exam with several possible answers or ways to go. Then there is the “all of the above” or “none of the above” and we see this in marriages and/or relationships. How do we know the right answer or is there a right or wrong answer?

Now for the deeper thought….. In this present day, most of us “Google” anything we want more information about and with a little time, we have an answer to what we are searching. In our faith, we have The Holy Word but how many times do we pick it up and find the answer? If we are not sure, do we go into prayer to seek peace and comfort to accept the answers we have found? As I said it the beginning, How are we to know all of the answers? We don’t even know all of the questions. I don’t think it is a multiple choice quiz.” The first study tool is to know without a shadow of a doubt, God has the answers and it may be “All of the above” or “None of the above.”


1 John 5:14-15 ESV / 223 helpful votes

And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.

(c) copyright 2014 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


TODAY THE WORDS are LET ME BE ME. When I woke this morning, I had a thought going through my head which led me to this blog. Today, when you are out and about and even if you are home, pay attention to the people you see. While you are observing, it will come to you how different we are from each other. I am not talking about differences in races, ethnic groups, etc. I am talking how different we are in each body. I know, there can be family resemblance but this allows uniqueness. Two people might resemble someone but usually their personalities are different.
I feel we “tag” people too easily and this might be restraining to our persona.
LET ME BE ME is a good way for us to start declaring our uniqueness in life but also understanding “If we are different; we can be the same in caring about each other; loving each other; and having a belief it is okay for people to think, act, and believe differently from us.” 

Here is a thought to show we are made to be different: If a person is scared of the water; they should not be forced to participate in water sports. However, if they are driving down the road and the car swerves off the road and into the water; how happy do you think they would be if someone, who loves to swim and knows how to rescue a person who is trapped in a vehicle, is the first to come on the scene?

Here is another one: If a person has a fear of heights, claustrophobia, eating disorders, depression, etc. had NO one who didn’t have these fears or if they had experienced any of these fears and had overcome them? The best counselors, trainers, therapists, etc. are those who have dealt with the same fears and can help others. We are unique in ourselves and it other words “we are who we are by what we have survived”. 

Now for the deeper thought…….I like being me! Can I be better than I am? Of course, and every day I ask God for help in developing the good and taking or minimizing the bad. I LAUGH AT SOME OF THE SILLY HABITS I POSSESS. We can disagree with each other. I find changes come after a healthy discussion of different views. No one person has the answers and most of the time it is some good thoughts from me and some great thoughts from you. If we allow the freedom, we want to “BE ME” but “YOU CAN BE YOU“.we all can be US

Romans 14:1-4 ESV 

As for the one who is weak in faith, welcome him, but not to quarrel over opinions. One person believes he may eat anything, while the weak person eats only vegetables. Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand. 
(c) copyright 2014 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


TODAY THE WORDS are WHEN IS ENOUGH NOT ENOUGH? I read the article below and was so touched by the persistence of Brent and the amazing will to not only live with so many obstacles but to display magnificent showmanship and talent; I wanted to post this story for all to read. I am not trying to steal another writer’s thunder but we should share beautiful stories of love. Definitely, Brent and Hugin both realize sometimes enough is never enough to fold the towel. They keep on keeping on. After you read the story, I will share my deeper thought with you. 

MEET THE ACCOMPLISHED DRESSAGE STALLION “HUGIN”, AGE 29, BLIND FOR 15 YEARS AND A SURVIVOR OF THREE BROKEN LEGS: When Danish dressage trainer Bent Branderup first met the 2-year-old Knabstrupper stallion named Hugin in 1988, he recognized something special in him. Together they trained in classical dressage and in 1991, Hugin proved Bent correct in his assessment when the horse was named Premium Champion Stallion of the Year in Denmark. Then catastrophe struck . . . Hugin was critically injured in a breeding accident, fracturing both rear femurs and a front splint bone. Most owners would have accepted the veterinarian’s recommendation of humane euthanasia, but not Bent Branderup. He worked through the many years of healing with Hugin, gradually introducing dressage work to stretch and build muscle to support the injured bones. Against all odds, Hugin made a complete recovery, and back to full-time dressage training they went.

Almost unbelievably, tragedy struck yet again in 1996 when Hugin lost his vision completely, in both eyes. But, as you may have already guessed, Bent did not give up on the stallion. They continued training, using dressage to rebuild Hugin’s confidence in himself and the world he could no longer see . . . and to this day Hugin and Bent still enjoy their dressage work, always perfecting movements and working toward an ever-higher goal.

Hugin never recovered his sight, but with the eyes of his companion Bent guiding the way, the horse has surpassed all expectations of living a fulfilled life. By anyone’s standards, Hugin has accomplished the impossible dream. And Hugin is not the only one fulfilled by the experience. Bent says “Through Hugin, I learned not to use the horse for dressage, but to use dressage for the horse.”

Watch this heartwarming video of Bent and Hugin performing haute ecole in-hand, on Hugin’s 25th birthday! http://youtu.be/PDIPPQVw8dA

Now for the deeper thought……As I read this story, I was reminded of story after story of individuals as well as animals, who in life was dealt the joker card and suffered from disabilities and sicknesses, and who never felt enough is enough to throw in the towel. Those same great people or animals found their way as Hugin and his trainer did with Dressage. They forged ahead in spite of any obstacles and this is the lesson we can gain from this story. Enough is never enough until we reach the end of our journey. When we have been blessed with normalcy, we should never complain about “sniffles”, minor injuries or surgeries, minor setbacks in jobs, love, or a squabble with another. I say “Hugin” up and forge ahead in life using your faith and belief….YOU CAN DO THIS! Live life, love life, and live life to the fullest by deciding Enough is never Enough!


2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV 

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 

(c) copyright 2014 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


TODAY THE WORDS are SOME WORDS ARE WORTH REPEATING. I looked over the old posts and found the following one as the most popular blog post I have written out of nearly 700 separate blog posts. This post has almost been viewed 4000 times so I felt it worthy to post it again. We now have six grandsons and they are growing up so fast. One of our grandsons, Nolan has started wrestling and has won 2 of his matches. His Dad sent a video of Nolan wrestling and giving it his all. All Nana did was cry and I thought now that is silly; but I cried anyway. I hope you enjoy the message again. Here is the re-post.
TODAY THE WORDS are OUT OF THE MOUTHS OF BABES. This topic is inspired by two of our five grandsons visiting us this weekend. We, as adults, try to express ourselves in a tactful way while children call it as they see it. There is a sense of innocent air when a child is in your presence and it is refreshing for a change. It is a lesson to all of us grown up kids, who some are more grown up than others to remember; innocence is a good thing. If a child likes something he or she is eating, the words yum or yummy; if they don’t, they express that dislike as much. Adventures and new things are expressed with eyes wide open, smiles on their faces and they truly enjoy life at its best. They don’t have any trouble telling grown ups if they are not ready to do things; they express when they are ready. Statements like Abram and Nolan were saying, “We don’t like spiders but we would go on spaceships” shows the broad spectrum of their imagination. It is easy for them to say I love Nana; I love Granddaddy but either of us may go up or down on the scale of love and we may score 100 or 500 at any given time. We work hard to get the 500 I can assure you and there is fierce competition between Nana and Granddaddy. 

Now for the deeper thought…..Innocence is sometimes lost in the adult world and I may not be advocating that we become children and say what always comes to our mind. Children can say things and it is looked at humorously, but what comes out of adult mouths should reflect others’ reaction to what we say. We should however be honest with our thoughts and intentions. Deceit is not healthy for young or old. Remember, children learn from adults and if they hear things which are not true or honest, they learn fast and therefore, innocence may be lost. God loves pureness, truthfulness, innocence, and most importantly, love. All parents, all grandparents, stop for a moment, and close your eyes…..think of one of the precious little ones who says openly and honestly, “I love you Nana Five Hundred” ! Love is wonderful with life thrown in; Life is wonderful with love thrown in! Some words are worth repeating!

Matthew 19:14          
But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
(c) copyright 2013 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission.


I am not trying to pick a fight this morning; those days are long gone and my life is peaceful as a life can be in this crazy world. I am going back to a different time in life when it was safer to shout out what you thought to another person that was a smart-alecky (as that is what we called someone who thought they were all that and a bag of chips). I had two brothers and they had a lot of friends who would come to our house or my brothers would go to their houses to play, tumble, touch football play, or wrestle in the yards. 

We never played in the house; yards were our playgrounds and we were lucky if we had a swing set. We didn’t have one, but we didn’t care as life was fun and we made the best of what we had. I do remember hearing the young boys holler (for all you city slickers, that is yelling) out to anyone brave enough to say something “smart” (we are not meaning educated), “Ya think ya something?” and the war of words and an occasional fight would ensue. Those were the days when there were not weapons but a hard fist in someone’s face got the message sent. If someone jumped one of the friends; all of the friends jumped into the brawl. 

Here is what I think was really going on, now that I am a lot older and wiser. It wasn’t about being

mean; it was about being “real” and accepting what was a reality; we were not wealthy but not the poorest and we made the most of what we had. Uppity or arrogant people were not tolerated; if you came as yourself and didn’t put on “airs”, you were accepted and all was good. I wrote a quote this morning and it seems appropriate to relay my message this morning, ” When we begin to think we are all that; we begin to diminish what we truly are. “. God made everyone of us and there is no need for any of us to become arrogant or think we are better than anyone else. Any talents are inserted into us by God and not really anything we have inserted. If we accomplish some great feat; we are blessed to have been given the abilities to accomplish this very thing. 

Now for the deeper thought…There are mornings I would love to be quiet and not write. God reminds me this is not for me; it is for others to see the lessons I had to learn and am still learning; that I am not anybody special but I am special to Him. In life, live life; love life; and live life to the fullest! Give thanks for every breath, every sigh, and even every tear as you are alive by the Grace of God!

1 Samuel 2:3                 
Talk no more so very proudly, let not arrogance come from your mouth; for the Lord is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed. 

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

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