Tag Archive | Proverbs

Simplicity is a great word

Frozen thorn

Frozen thorn

Red at Christmas

Colour at Christmas

Both photos used with permission of photographer MeticulousMick   http://meticulousmick.wordpress.com/2014/01/12/iced-thorn/#comment-4712   and  http://meticulousmick.wordpress.com/2014/01/11/colour-at-christmas/

Simplicity is a great word to describe the above photos.  I used to like much busier photographs and art work when I was younger but of late simplicity has been the key for me–simple and peaceful,  just the way I would like my life to be.   When I said that in my comments on one of the photos, the thought occurred to me that it sounded like the beginning of a blog post!  Ideas come from everywhere!

I love the peacefulness of simple art like much of the art of the Impressionists–Monet is a particular favorite of mine.  Depending on my mood, I will usually listen to more peaceful music of all kinds.  I found long ago that the more popular “rock” music of the last few years is mind jittering!  Now when I am in the mood for lively music,  give me that old rock music I grew up with in the 50’s and early 60’s and I’m happy as a clam at high tide!     Sometimes I just enjoy the peacefulness of no music or tv running when I am at home.  that’s not to say I don’t like to be around people.  I certainly do!   I love being in my church, visiting with friends in small groups.  I enjoy going out to eat even if it is by myself, wandering around a book store or a quilt shop (my budget shivers with fright when you let me loose in a place like that!)   A few days ago, one of my granddaughters asked me to go shopping with her while she chose fabrics for a quilt.  That was such fun!  She didn’t “need” me to be there with her–she has a great eye for color – but to be asked to go along and help just made my day!  A simple time of fun with a precious young lady and her Mom.

At one time in my life I thought that to be happy and to live well, I had to amass a lot of “things” as a way of showing others how successful I was in life.  If I didn’t have money in my pocket (which was often) I looked upon me as a failure.  I have to admit I still do like to have nice things and there isn’t anything wrong with that as long as those “things” don’t become the priority in my life–taking it over and keeping me from enjoying real living.

I found a quote which says it well.   “It is the sweet simple things in life which are the real ones after all.”   Laura Ingalls Wilder    When I saw the above photos, sweet and simple were the words that came to mind.  Don’t they just look like they are coated in sugar?  Sweetness and simple beauty in the midst of a stark winter background to remind us of the beauty of simplicity in our lives.

One of my favorite books in the Bible is Philippians.  Philippians 4:13 is a verse I cling to and has helped me through many things in my life, but leading up to that, Philippians 4:12 speaks to me also.

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
(Philippians 4:12) NIV

The first part of the verse is true in my life as in many lives.  I strive for the last part of the verse-learning the secret of being content no matter the situation in my life at any given time.  Contentment –sometimes I feel it; often I do not a clue what real contentment is.  Definitely something to ponder and to work on improving in my life.  Proverbs 15:16
Better a little with the fear of the LORD than great wealth with turmoil.  
  How very true!  After all, we can’t take it with us when we leave this earth so isn’t it better to spend our time learning to be happy and content with less and store up our treasures in heaven instead of on earth?     Lots to ponder on!

I feel like I kind of wandered around with Random Thoughts in this post and I hope it doesn’t bore anyone who reads it.  Perhaps I should change the name of my blog to Elaine’s RAMBLING Random Thoughts!   hahaha

Have a blessed day everyone!  Praying for a simple, happy day for all and for those of  you who are in the snowy areas of  the country, be safe if you are out on the roads.

Be of Good Cheer – Smile!


Before I begin, I must add a disclaimer of sorts.  God does have a sense of humor and friends are often on the same wave length because of it.  I wrote this late last night in my journal,  but didn’t get it typed into the blog.  I awoke this morning and read, as usual, the posts of my friends.  I read my friend Skye’s post first and I started to laugh for two reasons:  The things she wrote were funny some of them, and we had both written on the same subjects, using the same Bible verses from Proverbs as well!  I encourage you to read hers!   http://ohthethingsweshallsee.com/2013/10/04/why-did-the-chicken-only-cross-half-way/    Thank you for the giggles Lord!

I recently read a quote from an unknown source that said “A smile costs nothing but gives much. It takes but a moment, but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.”

That started me thinking about smiles and cheerfulness and how they affect those with whom we come in contact.  I believe that a cheery, sincere smile can say more than a thousand words could ever express.  All of my life, I have been told that “laughter is the best medicine” and one of my favorite things to tell others about smiles vs frowns is that it takes many more muscles to frown than to smile, so why not be lazy and smile!  I am not sure if that is really true, of course, or just one of those “old wives tales”.

I decided to search in the Bible for what God says about smiles and cheerfulness.  Right away I was directed to Proverbs, of course.  In Proverbs 17:22 it says  “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.”   Well that certainly proves the old adage of Laughter is the best medicine!

I was also led to Proverbs 15:13, 15:15   13A merry heart maketh a cheerful countenance: but by sorrow of the heart the spirit is broken and “15 All the days of the afflicted are evil: but he that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast.”   Two more good reasons to smile – who wants to have a broken spirit and who doesn’t enjoy a feast?

I decided to continue my search and found several (don’t worry, I won’t add all of them – lol).  I particularly liked what Christ says in John 16:33.  33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.   So he is telling us here that being cheerful is a very good thing; it will help us in those trying times.  Again is he saying laughter is the best medicine? I believe he is.

About a year ago, i had some conversations with others regarding what happens when we smile at another person, at a stranger.  Many of us were in agreement that most people would smile back.  I decided to test that hypothesis while traveling on vacation.  Best place to test it?  Airports!  I found that a few ignored me; a few frowned at me as if they were wondering what my ulterior motive might be to smile!  I didn’t think I needed a motive to smile at anyone.  i was very pleasantly surprised to find, however, that my hypothesis was correct.  At least 75% of the people flashed a smile right back and their eyes brightened!  Try it and see what happens!

So what does all of this have to do with anything? It shows us that smiling is a wonderful thing.  By smiling, we may have just made someone’s day a whole lot better!  Who knows? You may be the first person who smiled at them today or perhaps the only smile they will get all day.  I believe you have just may have raised their self-esteem a bit because you just gave them the message that they are worthwhile!  They are worth a smile from a stranger.  That can go a long way.  We will usually never know how far reaching that smile is but that is not important.  We will feel good just because we smiled.