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My Wide Blue Seas

Its All About The Journey



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Name~ Hokule'a Kealoha

Short Bio~Hokule'a Kealoha is the Nom De Plume of a writer that formerly lived in Hawaii and is now living a life of adventure on the highways and byways of the American South . I am a Born Again follower of Jesus, as well as a wife, mother of cats and dogs,jeweler, entreprenuer, photographer and pilgrim...

Age~ Old enough to know better

Status~ Newly Single after 13 years of marriage,fur mom to the loving and devoted mini ShihTzu doggie Annabelle, born 6-11-2007 RIP 2-25-09, and the beautiful Abigail born 2-14-09

Hair Color~ natural brown/grey

Mood~ I ALWAYS have a mood, try me...

Loving~ Jesus, Hawaii, my furry friend, Abigail, my Pen Pals, Jewelry ,Blogging ,Writing anything,my Ipod,and being outdoors surrounded by my wonderful natural surroundings

Hating~ Boom Box Cars, Earspray, Abuse of Power,

Reading~
  • Bible


  • Magnificat


  • Link


  • Link


  • Underwired! Louisville's magazine for Women


  • In Store~The Magazine for the American Jeweler



  • Books in Progress...
  • CATECHISM OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH


  • "Link"


  • "Link"





  • Just Finished Reading

  • "Link"


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link




  • Jesus, Divine Mercy ~
    Learn About The Divine Mercy
    I Trust In You~

    My Favorite Past Posts~Relive The Journey!~
    2009~
  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link


  • 2008~
  • Be Thankful


  • Colateral Damage


  • Make Lemonade


  • Home Is Where The Heart Is


  • The Poor With Us


  • Because Its The Hardest Thing I Can Do


  • We Have All Become Victims


  • Lest I Forget


  • The Most Important Words


  • Family Values


  • Familiar Places


  • May Perpetual Light Shine On Them


  • A City In Motion


  • 2007~
  • The Quiet Storm


  • Fellowship of the Cane


  • Like Dead Unremembered: A 9-11 Tribute


  • The Medicine Machine


  • One Giant Leap


  • In The Steps of St. Francis


  • Too Much Information


  • The Un Choice


  • 2006~
  • The Holly and the Ivy


  • The First 9-11, Dec 7,1941


  • Small Moments of Silence


  • Peaches to Winnipeg


  • Dreaming of Hawaii


  • Memorial Day


  • Scattered Values


  • The White Line is the Lifeline for the Nation


  • Warnings of a New Civil War


  • I Will Be True To The Promise I Have Made


  • The Snowy Bloody Day


  • Cats in the Cradle


  • 2005~
  • The Journey


  • Rebirth of a City


  • For Posterity's Sake


  • The New Civil War


  • Every Mother's Son


  • And There You Stayed, Temporarily Lost at Sea


  • The Lone Rider


  • The Bible Is Not the Fourth Member of the Trinity


  • Rome Wasn't Built With Union Labor


  • Happy Birthday Mom ~revised~


  • A Beautiful Noise


  • Even Now


  • The Wearing of the Red


  • Night Ranger


  • The Joyful Traveler


  • Hoiliili "To Gather Up"


  • Ke Makakilo (My Observations)


  • He Giveth Sleep


  • Save The Children


  • 2004~
  • Lux Aeterna


  • December 2004


  • You're Joking, Right?


  • Ground Zero


  • I Am Not A Failure


  • O,To Grace, How Great A Debtor


  • Lost In Translation


  • One Small Step for Man


  • The Rainbow's End


  • Profanity


  • Taps


  • The Journey


  • Makoa's Song


  • No Aloha For The Weakest


  • The Paradoxical Comandments


  • The Time Is Now


  • 2003~
  • When No Fruit Is On The Vine



  • Photobucket
    St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross
    St. Edith Stein~Pray for Us

    Religion Link List~

  • My Secret is Mine


  • Ignatius Insight-Online Magazine


  • Fr John Corapi SOLT


  • Dr. Scott Hahn St Paul Center


  • Fr. Mitch Pacwa~ Ignatius Productions


  • Link


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  • Political Link List~
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  • Arkansas Link List~
  • Little Portion Hermitage


  • John Michael Talbot website


  • John Michael Talbot Myspace page


  • 1st United Methodist Church Bella Vista


  • Northwest Arkansas Guide



  • Mimi's Cafe


  • Metro Woman Business Directory of NW Arkansas


  • River Grille


  • Link


  • Link


  • Link



  • Interactive Links~

    Live WebCam Feed from the Mauna Lani Resort, Kohalla, Big Island of Hawaii


    Click here for Aloha Joe!Live Hawaiian Music 24/7

    St Damein of Molokai'i,Patron Saint of Hawaii, Pray for us

    St. Damien of Molokai'i, Patron of Hawaii and the Outcasts among us, pray for us....

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    Hawaii Links~ ~
  • For more Hawaii links Click Here


  • Volcano Updates (Pele's Mood Meter)Hawaii Volcano Observatory

  • Hawaii Volcanoes National Park

  • Volcano Watch Archives

  • Mauna Kea Observatory

  • Pacific Tsunami Museum

  • Link

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  • Link


  • Technorotica for Blogging~





    Blogarama - The Blog Directory

    Listed on BlogShares


    Christianity Blog Directory


  • Who Links Here...Click here to see who's linking to this site. Powered by WhoLinksToMe.com

  • Globe of Blogs~Blog search engine

  • The Blog Search Engine

  • stock xchng

  • Photobucket

  • BlogSkins

  • Link


  • Wikipedia



  • Nuzio's Place on the Web


  • Commutefaster.com


  • PING ME!


  • MWBS Wordpress Edition


  • Link


  • Technorotica for Jewelers, and the Jewelry Trade~

  • Gemological Institute of America


  • The Drouhard National Jewelers School


  • The Conner School



  • Link


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  • December 24, 2007

    Litany to the Infant Jesus


    Christmas Cross

    Litany to the Infant Jesus


    Lord, have mercy on us. Christ, have mercy on us.
    Lord, have mercy on us. Jesus, hear us. Jesus, graciously hear us.
    God the Father of Heaven, Have mercy on us.
    God the Son, Redeemer of the world, Have mercy on us.
    God the Holy Spirit, Have mercy on us.
    Holy Trinity, One God, Have mercy on us..

    Infant, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us.
    Infant, true God, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Son of the living God, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Son of the Virgin Mary, have mercy on us.
    Infant, strong in weakness, have mercy on us.
    Infant, powerful in tenderness, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Treasure of grace, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Fountain of love, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Renewer of the heavens, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Repairer of the evils of the earth, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Head of the angels, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Root of the patriarchs, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Speech of the prophets, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Desire of the Gentiles, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Joy of shepherds, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Light of the Magi, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Salvation of infants, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Expectation of the just, have mercy on us.
    Infant, Instructor of the wise, have mercy on us.
    Infant, First-fruit of all saints, have mercy on us.

    Be merciful, spare us, O Infant Jesus.
    Be merciful, graciously hear us, O Infant Jesus.


    From the slavery of the children of Adam, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From the slavery of the devil, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From the evil desires of the flesh, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From the malice of the world, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From the pride of life, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From the inordinate desire of knowing, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From blindness of spirit, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From an evil will, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    From our sins, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most pure Conception, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most humble Nativity, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy tears, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most painful Circumcision, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most glorious Epiphany, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most pious Presentation, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy most divine life, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy poverty, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy many sufferings, Infant Jesus, deliver us.
    Through Thy labors and travels, Infant Jesus, deliver us.

    Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us, O Infant Jesus.
    Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, Graciously hear us, O Infant Jesus.
    Lamb of God, Who takes away the sins of the world, Have mercy on us.

    Jesus, Infant, hear us. Jesus, Infant, graciously hear us.



    Let Us Pray

    O Lord Christ, Thou were pleased so to humble Thyself in Thine incarnate divinity and most sacred humanity as to be born in time and become a little child. Grant that we may acknowledge infinite wisdom in the silence of a child, power in weakness, and majesty in humiliation. Adoring Thy humiliations on earth, may we contemplate Thy glories in Heaven, Who with the Father and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns forever.
    R. Amen.



    Where is Christmas

     
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    Holiday Cheer

    My Christmas tree is still in its carton on my kitchen floor, my mantle is half decorated, and most of my Christmas cards will most likely have to be labled Valentine's Day cards....I have done nothing to improve the national economy, in otherwords no shopping. I have bought no gifts, and neither has Wood. Ive sung few carols, and watched no specials on TV...

    There is little of Christmas in our house...

    Ive sat for many hours thinking and prayed, poured over my business plan and with the notes on the discussions of the job with International. I have spent countless hours with Annabelle or the kitties and Woody. I have worked and worked at my job. I have wondered about the customs and the culture of Christmas, and what I have thought was important in years past.

    I have come to understand that none of it matters

    Family get togethers and not having them... its ok
    Participation in Christmas functions, I want to do this, but not doing it...its ok
    Giving gifts, great to do and I did get some stuff for the Angel Tree,but not having a huge gift list is OK

    I am burned out mentally and wish that I could just run away for a few days...but I am chained to my desk, and my life here. The mental "unpacking" I have been doing is good I think..hey you cant dump out baggage of the mind unless you unpack it and choose to let it go. I had another moment of that tonight at the Candlelight service at the Methodist church. The group that will be leading the contemporary worship had their first outing. I really wanted to be a part of that. I have worked and spent the last year or so helping with the planning... My working nights and now leaving for Louisville eiminated my participation in any of it. I wasnt asked to join in at all, even at the Hospitality level. It hurt a bit.

    Leading worship is a part of my past as well. I found myself defined by that ministry for nearly 7 years. I looked at the young women that were doing that tonight and thought a thought that I have often had... that this is a ministry for the young to the young of their generation and I need to give it up and pray for them and support them in every way that I can... but that wasnt what came out... What I felt was..

    I could have been a part of this if I wasnt working nights... but I needed to work nights because it was the best way to deal with my situation at home and my situation at home would be wonderful if Woody would just be a husband and let me be a wife to him. Why do I have to give up MY LIFE and do everything so his life just stays wonderful and comfortable and...He gets to retire... I get to support him and after 25 years of this he dies leaves me a pauper and says "I dont care about it, I will be dead after all..." Such love leaves me speechless.

    Im doing the business because I cant stay at thisplace. I will one day be obsolete there and I will have to give that up...What value does a desk job give you. A business can be sold for a profit in addition to the money you earn from it. But why must I be concerned about such things when it is the husbands place to do that...I look at these people and their happy lives everything in order... my life is so out of order that people would recoil if they knew what my heart is like.

    I cant stay at thisplace as it is full of men who are ripe for the picking and one day I may pull an Eve and pick some poison fruit.

    I am running away from home and using my half of our net worth to do it. Woody said to me he wants a share in the business. I know that it will end up like Azure Seas. He will get into it and throw his weight around and I will end up losing it like I lost my store... with my name on the loans...

    I want to kick myself..
    If I only had a family...
    If I could turn back the clock.. .


    None of this is productive, but my heart is full of it, of anger and I can perhaps unpack it to the priest when I have to make my full confession in March. I have no one that can talk to about it. I have tried to talk to Woody. He is sorry "that I am so sad... but he cant change anything now..." OK the situation is what it is... I am chained to it and the shackle that chains me to it has rubbed a raw wound into my spirit and it has festered and is bleeding to the point now that I fear that I will never recover.

    He doesnt care... no one around me cares and life just goes on...

    I ask "Where is Christmas?"

    I am not alone in the asking. So many of the people that I know are just weary to the pits of their souls. A friend is spending his last Christmas with his family. His wife filed for divorce and they will tell the children after the holiday. My neighbor is so overwelmed with depression and just the feeling of disconnect that she cant pull together a holiday spirit. The sad thing is that we are all Christians and this should be the most joyous time of year. It seems to be insted a time of dread and discomfort. The expectations have gotten too high and let down is starting sometime before Thanksgiving

    At the risk of being sooooo gloomy. The weather is beautiful and I am glad to be alive. I wish that there were a better way for me. Nothing about my life is ever simple. I knew that once we left Hawaii and started living a "normal" life that these things would surface and we would have to deal with them. I just never realized that I would be the one wrestling alone.

    It is past midnight Dec 24 and I am watching a short version of a Benediction, where the priest chants the Litany of the Sacred Heart...my favorite title in the prayer is..."Heart of Jesus, Burning Furnace of Charity" I know that right now I am deep in that burning furnace, being prepared for a future holiness that is beyond me.. truly that will be the greatest Christmas gift that I have ever received beyond my salvation. I need to keep trusting and as Pastor David said tonight...Try to let go of these things of the past that hold you down...I am trying to do that and move beyond the suffering... and in doing so find Christmas anew, and find the joy of My Lord once more.

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    December 23, 2007

    Luke 1:26-56 Mary's Hope

     
    Winter Solstece near Lowell AR
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    In the sixth month of Elizabeth's pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee,
    to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David.
    Gabriel appeared to her and said, "Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you!"
    Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean.
    "Don't be frightened, Mary," the angel told her, "for God has decided to bless you!
    You will become pregnant and have a son, and you are to name him Jesus.
    He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David.
    And he will reign over Israel[fn5] forever; his Kingdom will never end!"
    Mary asked the angel, "But how can I have a baby? I am a virgin."
    The angel replied, "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby born to you will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God.
    What's more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she's already in her sixth month.
    For nothing is impossible with God."
    Mary responded, "I am the Lord's servant, and I am willing to accept whatever he wants. May everything you have said come true." And then the angel left.
    A few days later Mary hurried to the hill country of Judea, to the town
    where Zechariah lived. She entered the house and greeted Elizabeth.
    At the sound of Mary's greeting, Elizabeth's child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.
    Elizabeth gave a glad cry and exclaimed to Mary, "You are blessed by God above all other women, and your child is blessed.
    What an honor this is, that the mother of my Lord should visit me!
    When you came in and greeted me, my baby jumped for joy the instant I heard your voice!
    You are blessed, because you believed that the Lord would do what he said."
    Mary responded, "Oh, how I praise the Lord.
    How I rejoice in God my Savior!
    For he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and now generation after generation will call me blessed.
    For he, the Mighty One, is holy, and he has done great things for me.
    His mercy goes on from generation to generation, to all who fear him.
    His mighty arm does tremendous things! How he scatters the proud and haughty ones!
    He has taken princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
    He has satisfied the hungry with good things and sent the rich away with empty hands.
    And how he has helped his servant Israel! He has not forgotten his promise to be merciful.
    For he promised our ancestors-Abraham and his children- to be merciful to them forever."
    Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back to her own home.

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    December 21, 2007

    Looking At The Options

     
    Winter Oaks Near Lowell AR
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    Started 12-14-07

    I miss the walks that I used to take in the mornings at "thisplace". It was a way to clear my head and to sort out my thoughts. I havent had such walks in months with my broken foot and now the weather. Today was a day like the one in this photo. Sullen grey with a storm front coming in.

    Sullen is my mental state too. I am far from the joyous person that I thought that I would be, decisions made and future assured. Yesterday I was confronted with an alternate future.

    12-21-2007

    That Future was one where I would have moved into a position with "thisplace" and from there assended into management. For nearly 2 years I have waited for this position in The International group to open up. I saw the posting on our teams web page and my heart sank....Here it was and I am going to leave. So I boldly asked to have the chance to audition for it....and while surprised the managers here said yes and that they really wanted me to stay on...

    the last few weeks at "thisplace" have been a marvel. Once I told them I would be moving on in March... the red carpet has been rolled out. I got a superlative review and a raise that is, as far as I know the tops of what they give people...all since I said I wouldnt be seeking a new position once my account pulls out in March. i am told that everything that is comming to me has been earned, but my gut tells me to be wary and suspicious

    I interviewed for the position this week. I know the Vice President of the International Division, from my days working freight in Los Angeles, at a firm that was eventually bought out by Walmart to become their Logistics arm with offices in 127 countries. The General Mgr is a local boy and a Beliver... I was so excited by the prospect of this... doing something that I loved once, not having to leave home for 6-8 months, making a lot more money as I would get a promotion with getting this desk. Staying with the Familiar... getting to be involved at Church, leading worship again....

    Well the interview went well but there are issues. This desk has had four people in it already and they FIRE the rejects. This is not the way the company normally does business and that bothered me. I was told that while things in the freight biz have changed in the 12 years since I last did this, things hadnt changed much here and the processes are still manual and that there is a lot of data entry, a lot of, well, everything. And that I had to be up to the work get it dont no one would be able to help and I, well, just had to do it, and if I didnt I would get fired...

    We talked about the good old days...and as I sold myself as the perfect account rep, I remembered back...the scary old building in the worst part of LA... the paperwork sometimes stacks of it three and four feet high on tissue thin rice paper, thousands of pages. The hundreds of Customs documents that I had a support clerk type. Some of this sort of drugery is being done by brokers, but there was still the massive amounts of data entry that they expected me to do now in 2007, where is EDI when you need it? They arent at the point where they are using yet...Turth is that they cant afford the computer systems that it takes to run this operation the way it could run... "Well," I thought, "Everything needs a chance to grow.."

    I had a dream over last weekend, that I was still living in my little house in the industrial section of Downey california...500 yards from a railroad crossing where some evenings, from the chair I loved to sit in every chance I got on the little front porch, I could see accorss the way, on the trains moving past me, the rail containers that I had loaded that day, now loaded rail cars bound for points east... At night, the sound of empty rail containers rumbling would wake me. They rattled as they were pulled over those same tracks and made the sharp turn around the corner to yet another transloading firm, one I was to work for eventually. I saw myself getting up and driving into downtown LA where I would watch my freight being unloaded...touching it,caring about it like one would care about a child... supervising the fragile computers from Japan, the sweaters and High end clothing from Hong Kong and Leather Jackets from Korea, and shoes from China being unloaded and reloaded back into aircraft,rail or over the road containers, bound for the East, to places I never thought that I would see in this life, but have now. Chicago, New York, Charlotte,even Bentonville, Arkansas...who would have thought that I live there now...

    I was happy then. I had a "trade" I was proud of. I was fufilled in my ministry at my church, and I was a dutiful daughter to my parents, spending time with them, with no one in my life that thought that was "excessive". My life was very full and I was satisfied with that. Or so I thought...

    I have realized in recent weeks that much of my pain and difficulty in life right now is due to an innate desire to turn back the clock, to November 18, 1995. I have called that the last happy and innocent day of my life. It was the day I married Woody. Nothing was the same after that. Our marriage was stillborn upon delivery that night... When I returned from the wedding trip, my accounts had failed and left the firm I was working for, my church had split and I was the target of rumor and gossip as I was asked to leave the ministry.My health failed and within six weeks I was so ill that I couldnt function. I was dying of a broken heart. I know this now.

    Everyday brought new agonies...the gossip got very ugly,friends stopped calling. my one friend that really stuck by me dropped dead of heart failure at age 49. I was devestated. I was not able to find a place where I could worship in peace. Years later in Hawaii a friend, also a Calvary Chapel pastor knew of the incident...It followed me to other denominations in the area. I couldnt work, and my body was covered with hives the size of dinner plates that reoccured every 8 hours. And Woody dispised me. Sometimes there would be days were all we could talk about together was the hurts inflicted by others that only made my life worse... like picking at sores until the fester and scar...I have come to realize that my life is one huge scar.

    One of the things I was taught early in my Christian walk is that when things are going badly...when you cease hering the Voice of God... you should go back to the last time you did think you were doing God's will and start from there. I realized that I have been trying to do that. But its wrong as I know that God has been guiding and I have been following all of the time. Its me that is flailing about in the dwelling in the past and not looking forward

    Three weeks ago they played a film version of Mitch Alboms "For One More Day" the Lead character, Chick, is filled with pain and regreat and yet when giving a chance to recover a vestage of his former glory as a baseball player, he tells the father that had demanded so much yet abandoned him as a child, and had pushed him to fufill his own dreams of being a baseball player...."Dad stop it...Im done with that, you want me to go back to a place where I have already been...." The whole thing riveted me as I realized that was what I have been trying to do and need to try to stop.

    You cant go back to a place that you already have been

    I was upstairs at the Night Dispatch Christmas party, which is just across the hall from International. I slipped out and went into the office. I looked at the desks and saw the desk of the woman that would be leaving on maternity leave and not comming back. My future desk...I saw the piles of vessel files each with mutiple shipments in them. All of the handwriting...listing the different processes, just as I used to write on my files years ago. Our roots are the same. The people that trained her were trained by the same people that trained me. I closed my eyes and saw the files of documents in my hands those many years ago. I could hear the sounds of voices yelling at me that I needed to redo something or that I had an hour to get a document back from customs...or that shipments were late and ads were running for the goods in a week. I remembered a horrible afternoon when I had made a mistake and allowed a shipment to be loaded on an eastbound truck that didnt have customs clearence on it and how I crept down the stiars to the ladies room and how I knelt down on the filthy floor and prayed that God would do a miracle and he did by sending that customs document back to me signed off later that afternoon. I have worked many double and triple shifts and felt threatened with the lose of my livelihood if I didnt perform perfectly...

    I dont want to go back to that, there is no need to go back to that. I am at a much better place and I really need to embrace it. I let the International group know that I am withdrawing my name from consideration. This news led to a conference in HR where I told them that I felt threatened and over burdened even before I have the job, even before they know what I can do they are bossing me. That is horrible

    I realized that I had cold feet about starting my new venture and I realized that my cold feet about leaving thisplace and starting my own business has more to do with money than nerve. I am at a tough place in the business plan, crunching numbers and seeing how it will all work. I have figured out that I need about 25,000 more, so I am looking for a Salie Mea loan to fill some of that gap. It will pay for my training and my expenses while in Louisville, and leave me more money for startup

    Everyone fears the unknown. I am very normal in this experience. And I have the experience to know that the start up of a new business is never easy. Im glad that I weighed all of my options and that I am staying the course. I have also closed the door on this chapter in my life and will from now on try to look forward and live in the now.

    This pondering and planning has crimped all of my activities this Season. If you want to check out some of my best writing ever check out the month of december 2004 in the archives. I wrote some great Christmas posts there. Its ok to wax nostalgic, just dont dwell in it. It is my hope to begin to write more in 2008, and to experience a burst of creative energy...

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    December 16, 2007

    Luke 1:1-25,57-80 ~ The Forerunner

    winter trees Lake Norwood Bella Vista AR

    Most honorable Theophilus: Many people have written accounts about the events that took place among us.
    They used as their source material the reports circulating among us from the early disciples and other eyewitnesses of what God has done in fulfillment of his promises.
    Having carefully investigated all of these accounts from the beginning, I have decided to write a careful summary for you,
    to reassure you of the truth of all you were taught.
    It all begins with a Jewish priest, Zechariah, who lived when Herod was king of Judea. Zechariah was a member of the priestly order of Abijah. His wife, Elizabeth, was also from the priestly line of Aaron.
    Zechariah and Elizabeth were righteous in God's eyes, careful to obey all of the Lord's commandments and regulations.
    They had no children because Elizabeth was barren, and now they were both very old.
    One day Zechariah was serving God in the Temple, for his order was on duty that week.
    As was the custom of the priests, he was chosen by lot to enter the sanctuary and burn incense in the Lord's presence.
    While the incense was being burned, a great crowd stood outside, praying.
    Zechariah was in the sanctuary when an angel of the Lord appeared, standing to the right of the incense altar.
    Zechariah was overwhelmed with fear.
    But the angel said, "Don't be afraid, Zechariah! For God has heard your prayer, and your wife, Elizabeth, will bear you a son! And you are to name him John.
    You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice with you at his birth,
    for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. He must never touch wine or hard liquor, and he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth.
    And he will persuade many Israelites to turn to the Lord their God.
    He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah, the prophet of old. He will precede the coming of the Lord, preparing the people for his arrival. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and he will change disobedient minds to accept godly wisdom."
    Zechariah said to the angel, "How can I know this will happen? I'm an old man now, and my wife is also well along in years."
    Then the angel said, "I am Gabriel! I stand in the very presence of God. It was he who sent me to bring you this good news!
    And now, since you didn't believe what I said, you won't be able to speak until the child is born. For my words will certainly come true at the proper time."
    Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah to come out, wondering why he was taking so long.
    When he finally did come out, he couldn't speak to them. Then they realized from his gestures that he must have seen a vision in the Temple sanctuary.
    He stayed at the Temple until his term of service was over, and then he returned home.
    Soon afterward his wife, Elizabeth, became pregnant and went into seclusion for five months.
    "How kind the Lord is!" she exclaimed. "He has taken away my disgrace of having no children!"
    Now it was time for Elizabeth's baby to be born, and it was a boy.
    The word spread quickly to her neighbors and relatives that the Lord had been very kind to her, and everyone rejoiced with her.
    When the baby was eight days old, all the relatives and friends came for the circumcision ceremony. They wanted to name him Zechariah, after his father.
    But Elizabeth said, "No! His name is John!"
    "What?" they exclaimed. "There is no one in all your family by that name."
    So they asked the baby's father, communicating to him by making gestures.
    He motioned for a writing tablet, and to everyone's surprise he wrote, "His name is John!"
    Instantly Zechariah could speak again, and he began praising God.
    Wonder fell upon the whole neighborhood, and the news of what had happened spread throughout the Judean hills.
    Everyone who heard about it reflected on these events and asked, "I wonder what this child will turn out to be? For the hand of the Lord is surely upon him in a special way."
    Then his father, Zechariah, was filled with the Holy Spirit and gave this prophecy:
    "Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has visited his people and redeemed them.
    He has sent us a mighty Savior from the royal line of his servant David,
    just as he promised through his holy prophets long ago.
    Now we will be saved from our enemies and from all who hate us.
    He has been merciful to our ancestors by remembering his sacred covenant with them,
    the covenant he gave to our ancestor Abraham.
    We have been rescued from our enemies, so we can serve God without fear,
    in holiness and righteousness forever.
    "And you, my little son, will be called the prophet of the Most High, because you will prepare the way for the Lord.
    You will tell his people how to find salvation through forgiveness of their sins.
    Because of God's tender mercy, the light from heaven is about to break upon us,
    to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, and to guide us to the path of peace."
    John grew up and became strong in spirit. Then he lived out in the wilderness until he began his public ministry to Israel.



    December 14, 2007

    The Icy Morning

    frozen tree limb in my yard in Bella Vista AR

    started 12-10-2007

    We are in the midst of an Ice storm. Annabelle I snuggled together out on the porch, watching the rain freeze on the iced tree limbs. Layer upon layer, like dipping beeswax candles. I have seen no wildlife, no birds or squirrels...I wonder what the animals do in times like this. Every night as I drive home after midnight from "thisplace" I see a lovely heard of deer feeding at the turnoff from hwy 340 down towards lake Avalon, They swing their heads up to look at me, big beautiful eyes...they graze among the lighted Christmas deer on this lady's lawn, like Santa's reindeer on vacation free to do as they like prior to the big night...

    Its beautiful and I know that it wont last which is a relief to me. But while it does I shall gaze upon it and be glad that I have shelter and heat.It could be worse we could be like this gal who emailed me from Oaklahoma...I work with her at "thisplace"

    This is part of an email a friend of mine sent me this morning that I thought I would share because I don’t think we realize how bad it is – she lives in Tulsa (she slept in her office last night as her home is without power and the city cut the gas when the trees started falling…..) :.


    I was grateful to have somewhere warm...hotels didn't have any power, gas stations are either sold out of gas if they have power or closed if they don't, no grocery stores have power...basically the entire town has no power until tomorrow at the earliest...we only have power because we are so close to St Francis...nursing homes had to dump as they had no power, so they sent all their folks to the hospitals which were running on back up generators...heck even Wal-Mart has no power...they need 2500 gallons of gas for the generator and everything here is sold out!

    good thing I got those granola bars as it's about all there will be to eat today...no fast food, no grocery stores, and no convenience stores open...this is even worse than last year


    I hope to be able to get home tonight if it stays above freezing...but then I still have to come into work early because we don't have water either...no elec at the treatment plant either




    We have freight and trucks scattered all over the place, I will not tell a driver he or she must press on in dangerous weather. Nothing can replace a life. The freight that my account generates is plactic bottles and soda cans... A 53 foot plate van (a semi trailer that has only a framework and metal skin no wooden inside wall, that is what is used to hual these empty containers, so you can get more inside) is like a giant sail...an airplane without wings and they lift off the highway when the wind is strong enough and the tractor is moving fast enough. my average load weight is only 12000 lbs gross. Nothing really and the trailer swings behind the tractor like a pendulum at the slightest provacation, and a slippery black iced road is the worst sort.

    12-14-2007

    So far nothing major here, the Ozarks seem to push the worst of this sort of weather away from here. We are expecting snow tonight and a frezzing weekend. Maybe I can get some Christmas things done that I have been putting off

    My Forest in its winter garb, Bella Vista AR



    December 09, 2007

    Isaiah 9: 1-7 The Advent Journey Continues

     
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    Christmas Pointsetta, First United Methodist Church, Bella Vista AR


    For to Us a Child Is Born

    But there will be no gloom for her who was in anguish. In the former time he brought into contempt the land of Zebulun and the land of Naphtali, but in the latter time he has made glorious the way of the sea, the land beyond the Jordan, Galilee of the nations.

    The people who walked in darkness
    have seen a great light;
    those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness,
    on them has light shined.
    You have multiplied the nation;
    you have increased its joy;
    they rejoice before you
    as with joy at the harvest,
    as they are glad when they divide the spoil.
    For the yoke of his burden,
    and the staff for his shoulder,
    the rod of his oppressor,
    you have broken as on the day of Midian.
    For every boot of the tramping warrior in battle tumult
    and every garment rolled in blood
    will be burned as fuel for the fire.
    For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given;
    and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
    and his name shall be called
    Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
    Of the increase of his government and of peace
    there will be no end,
    on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
    to establish it and to uphold it
    with justice and with righteousness
    from this time forth and forevermore.
    The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.

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    December 02, 2007

    Isaiah 2: 1-4 The Advent Journey Begins

    Winter Trees Bella Vista AR

    The First Sunday in Advent

    Isaiah 2:1-4

    The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.

    It shall come to pass in the latter days
    that the mountain of the house of the Lord
    shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
    and shall be lifted up above the hills;
    and all the nations shall flow to it,


    and many peoples shall come, and say:
    “Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
    to the house of the God of Jacob,
    that he may teach us his ways
    and that we may walk in his paths.”
    For out of Zion shall go the law,
    and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.


    He shall judge between the nations,
    and shall decide disputes for many peoples;
    and they shall beat their swords into plowshares,
    and their spears into pruning hooks;
    nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
    neither shall they learn war anymore.

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