The Secret of the Bended Knee

Have you ever watched a bird sleeping on its perch and never falling off? How does it manage to do this?

The secret is the tendons of the bird’s legs. They are so constructed that when the leg is bent at the knee, the claws contract and grip like a steel trap. The claws refuse to let go until the knees are unbent again. The bended knee gives the bird the ability to hold on to his perch so tightly.

Isn’t this also the secret of the holding power of the Christian? Daniel found this to be true. Surrounded by a pagan environment, tempted to compromise with evil, urged to weaken his grip on God, he refused to let go. He held firm when others faltered because he was a man of prayer. He knew the power of the bended knee.

From sleeping birds we can learn the secret of holding things which are most precious to us– honesty, purity, thoughtfulness, honor, character That secret is the knee bent in prayer, seeking to get a firmer grip on those values which make life worth living. When we hold firmly to God in prayer, we can rest assured he will hold tightly to us.

— Rollin S. Burhans

The Perfect Church

I think that I shall never see
A church that’s all it ought to be;
A church whose members never stray
Beyond the straight and narrow way.

A church that has no empty pews;
Whose pastor never has the blues;
A church whose deacons always deak,
And none are proud, and all are meek.

Where gossips never peddle lies
Or make complaints or criticize.
Where all are always sweet and kind
And all to others’ faults are blind.

Such perfect churches there may be,
But none of them is known to me;
But still I’ll work and pray and plan
To make our church the best I can.

— Church Bulletin Bits #1

Don’t Stay Away from Church

Don’t stay away from church:

  • Because you are poor. There is no admission charge.
  • Because it rains. Most of us go to work in the rain.
  • Because it’s hot. It’s sometimes hot at your house too.
  • Because no one invited you. People go many other places without being asked.
  • Because you have little children. We have a well-supervised nursery and other facilities for children.
  • Because you don’t like the pastor. He’s human just as you are.
  • Because there are hypocrites at church. You associate with hypocrites every day.
  • Because you have guests in your home. They will admire your loyalty if you bring them along.
  • Because you need a little weekend vacation occasionally. No one can take a vacation from God.
  • Because your clothes are not expensive. Our church is not a fashion show.
  • Because our church standards are too high. Are they any higher than the Biblical standards for a church?

— Church Bulletin Bits #1

The Price of Eggs

A woman passed by a man who was selling eggs on the sidewalk. She asked him, “how much are you selling the eggs for?” The old seller replied, “25 cents an egg, Madam.” She said to him, “I will take 6 eggs for $1.25 or I will leave.” The old seller replied, “Come take them at the price you want. Maybe, this is a good beginning because I have not been able to sell even a single egg today.”

She took the eggs and walked away feeling she had won. She got into her fancy car and went to a posh restaurant with her friend. There, she and her friend ordered whatever they liked. They ate a little and left a lot of what they ordered. Then she went to pay the bill. The bill cost her $45.00. She gave $50.00 and told the owner of the restaurant to keep the change.

This incident might have seemed quite normal to the owner but, very painful to the poor egg seller.

The point is, why do we always show we have the power when we buy from the needy ones? And why do we get generous to those who do not even need, our generosity?

I once read somewhere:

“My father used to buy simple goods from poor people at high prices, even though he did not need them. Sometimes he even used to pay extra for them. I got concerned by this act and asked him why does he do so? Then my father replied, “It is a charity wrapped with dignity, my Child.”

— Source Unknown

Source: Source Unknown

Additional source information unavailable.

If you have any information regarding the source of this material, please contact the Website Editor: Rev. Chris Fulgham . Thank you.

Something To Laugh About

Jimmy: “How old is your little brother?”

Johnny: “He’s one year old.”

Jimmy: “Huh, I’ve got a dog that’s one year old and he can walk twice as well as your brother.”

Johnny: “Sure, cause you dog has twice as many legs.”

— Boy’s Life

Source: Boy's Life (1921)

Author unknown. Originally printed in Think and Grin column of February 1921 issue of Boy's Life magazine.

Additional source information unavailable.

If you have any information regarding the source of this material, please contact the Website Editor: Rev. Chris Fulgham . Thank you.

Art 101

When I was 34 years old and the mother of three children, I took Art 101 at Motlow State Community College in Tennessee. One day our instructor announced that the project we had done on the first day of class was to be included in the notebook that would be a major part of our grade. “May I do another project?” I asked somewhat anxiously. “I just don’t have the first one anymore.”

The instructor asked what had happened to it. Somewhat embarrassed, I replied, “It’s on my mother’s fridge.”

— Author Unknown

Source: Jane Barrett (2012)

Although the original author is unknown, this story was submitted by Jane Barrett to the book Chicken Soup for the Mother's Soul: Stories to Open the Hearts and Rekindle the Spirits of Mothers. Written by Jack Canfield et. al.

Canfield, J., Hansen, M., Hawthorne, J., & Shimoff, M. (2012). Chicken Soup for the Mother's Soul: Stories to Open the Hearts and Rekindle the Spirits of Mothers. New York: Simon & Schuster.

How To Be Perfectly Miserable

If your goal is to be miserable most of the time, the following ten actions will help you reach a state of misery in record time.

  1. Think about yourself. Talk about yourself. Drop “I” as much as possible into every conversation.
  2. Pay close attention to what people think and say about you.
  3. Expect to be appreciated.
  4. Cultivate suspicion, jealousy, and envy.
  5. Be sensitive to slights. Never forgive a criticism.
  6. Trust nobody but yourself.
  7. Insist upon special consideration.
  8. Demand that everyone agree with your views and opinions on everything.
  9. Shirk your duties and responsibilities if you can.
  10. Do as little as possible for other people.

— Source Unknown

Source: Source Unknown

Additional source information unavailable.

If you have any information regarding the source of this material, please contact the Website Editor: Rev. Chris Fulgham . Thank you.

Act As If

One of the greatest lessons I’ve learned in my life is to act as if I’m already the person that I long to be. By acting as if, I’m already where I want to be, or have what I want to have. I create a tension between what is and what can be. The law of cause and effect will eventually move me where I desire to be.

This concept works in both small and large ways in our lives. When I was a young, recently divorced woman, I had to support two small children. I needed a job that would provide a living wage. Creating a clear picture in my mind of what I wanted, I started to act as if. I dressed as I would dress if I already had such a job (even though I’d just begun to look). I talked as I would talk if I already had such a job. I acted as if. Within two weeks, a friend of mine told me she knew someone who needed a secretary. I interviewed and got the job with no previous experience.

Then I needed a car for the commute. I asked God and acted as if. Two days later, my new employer announced they had a company car that could be used by a car pool (and there were three of us commuting from my town).

Just the beginning … ! soon became the assistant director, then the executive director, the editor of the trade magazine. the head of the collective bargaining unit, the creator of a new cooperative organizational structure, and the holder of a reputation for being able to do the impossible.

To those who don’t know the simple rule Act as If, all of this looked impossible–but for me, it’s what I chose and God provided. A friend who is a priest once told me to “let go and know there is God.” I am constantly surprised by how loving and caring my God is.

Limited thinking is the only thing that can block all the good waiting in store for us. That’s why I practice having a bigger belief. I act as if and tap into the infinite source of good. He always gives me what I need and desire, and so much more!

— Sue Dyer

Source: Sue Dyer (1999)

A story by Sue Dyer in the book Chocolate for a Woman's Spirit: 77 Stories of Inspiration to Lift Your Heart and Sooth Your Soul. Written by Kay Allenbaugh.

Allenbaugh, K. (1999). Chocolate for a Woman's Spirit: 77 Stories of Inspiration to Lift Your Heart and Sooth Your Soul. New York: Simon & Schuster.

“It” Happened to Me

Well, “it” had to happen. It happens to a lot of people. Why should I be any different? Why should I like it any better (or less) than they do? What is this big event? In a matter of weeks, I would be having my sixtieth birthday! That’s right, the big six-zero, six times ten, two times thirty.

As I recall, turning what some have termed “the big four-oh” was not very traumatic for me–kind of like “I’ve made it this far and I don’t feel any different.”

Turning “over the hill,” fifty, was yet another story. Oh, I was OK with my new status in life. I received my obligatory AARP membership -application-part of the traditional initiation into the early senior citizen set. And I also began to discover some newfound wisdom associated with my introduction into the silver-haired crowd. I found myself thinking, been there, done that, a lot more often than in the past.

I was content until recently, when a couple of my rapier-tongued offspring reminded me, “Mom, you’re more than a half century old,” in a tone not unlike comparing me (their mother) to being two days older than dirt.

Not wanting to succumb to negative feelings that I had, indeed, been around a long time, I decided to focus on the bright side of being a senior citizen, the most obvious plus being-I am still here! After six decades, this old gal is still kicking, and that’s an accomplishment in itself.

So now that “it” happened, I’m confronted with what it means. Being sixty does carry with it some responsibilities. You can’t sit life out in your rocker.

I have begun to realize that I am the matriarch of the family, the leader of the tribe, the spokeswoman of our clan, and the upbeat one that those in the succeeding generation will hopefully seek out for sage advice. These new responsibilities are exciting and even a bit intimidating.

The trick, as I see it, is how to be a leader when people do not want to be led, a spokeswoman to others who do not wish to be spoken to, and a wisdom keeper when they are not ready to hear the message. So, now that “it” happened to me, I will try to lead when I can and speak when I should-without using my extended status in life for pushing my views on others.

To think it only took me sixty years to learn this! Some may ask what my thought may be at seventy. All I can say is, let me get back to you on that.

— Kay P. Giordano

Source: Kay P. Giordano (1999)

A story by Kay P. Giordano in the book Chocolate for a Woman's Spirit: 77 Stories of Inspiration to Lift Your Heart and Sooth Your Soul. Written by Kay Allenbaugh.

Allenbaugh, K. (1999). Chocolate for a Woman's Spirit: 77 Stories of Inspiration to Lift Your Heart and Sooth Your Soul. New York: Simon & Schuster.