Saturday, August 29, 2015

Saturday and Joplin

This morning, Bob will come by and pick me up and we will go to Joplin to eat at Olive Garden. So we ate at home this morning. I had a bowl of cereal and juice and my first cup of coffee.

I have been watching the weather. It appears Florida will get the Erika hurricane. I hope Scott and Ginger's place on the island will be o.k.

My sheets are in the laundry now. As soon as that finishes I will put them in the dryer and go out on the carport with Missy. She has been pretty patient.

It is supposed to heat up into the 90s next week. That means I will be using my air conditioning more.  My electric bill in this all electric apartment was $101.12 this month and July/August was pretty cool. 

It rained again yesterday so the lawn was not mowed....again.  By Monday it will be three weeks since it was mowed. It was supposed to be mowed Tuesday but the mower was doing another yard first and the belt on his mower broke and they had to order one. It was to have been in on Thursday but it rained Thursday and Friday.  So now the lawn looks like it needs baling.

More later....

I got my bed remade and the laundry finished. I even took Missy out for 45 minutes. She lying here behind me on the daybed now. (getting cat hair all over it) I have some time to kill. Bob won't be by to pick me up until 10:00.

I have been reading a blog of an old friend of mine. He is so wise. If you're interested, you can find it here.

More later...

We got back from Joplin about 3:30. We had a great lunch at Olive Garden and then went to the mall. I bought a new tablecloth at Bed Bath and Beyond.  That gives me three oval tablecloths. They are very hard to find in ovals. I have one beige, one green and now one gold/yellow.  I'd like another one but the one I bought was on sale for $4.99 so I can't complain.

I spent most of the evening trying to get  the e-mail program on the desktop computer fixed but it can only receive mail and not send any out so I will have to either use this one for e-mail or the old 2007 laptop that has Outlook Express on it. Bob came at 6:00 or so and we watched a movie and then I really needed to get my bath and get ready for bed so he left. There is nothing worth watching on TV anymore anyhow. I turn the weather on first thing and then turn to the news.  Then I usually turn on the music. With the Bose system Scott bought for me, it is really entertaining.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Friday At Last

Today I must go to the market. I am out of everything. I was going to go yesterday after breakfast with the Breakfast Club but it poured down rain. Earlier I was going to go on Wednesday but went to Utopia instead and met the exercise group for coffee. When I left there, I didn't have time to shop so I put it off another day.

Today we are simply having hamburgers and french fries for lunch. I will go to the market first thing this morning and take my list.

Another thing I put off was my house cleaning and washing and changing my sheets. I will try to do that today too.  Today is my two hour day at the library.

We are going to Joplin tomorrow. Bob still has his gift card for Olive Garden and we also want to go to the mall to check out TJ Maxx. The last time we were there, I got some great coffee for my Kerig coffee maker. ...and it was cheap.  We will not eat breakfast out in the morning because we want to be prepared for the Olive Garden feast. We want to save our appetite for that.

I slept well last night. I only got up in the night one time and I got right back to sleep after that and slept until 5:00.

More later...

I started  my housework and laundry this morning and got it all done except for my bedding in the laundry and the dusting and vacuuming the two bedrooms. Then Bob texted me and I went up to Utopia and had coffee and a banana nut bread. Then I came home and fixed lunch and went to work. When I got home from work at 3:00. I finished the vacuuming and put the laundry in the dryer. I still have to strip my bed and dust in the morning before we leave for Joplin. I will do my housework on Fridays from now on. I have shorter work days on Friday.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Thursday Again

Another Thursday and I have made a change of plans. Instead of cleaning house this morning, I will wait and do it tomorrow.  Tomorrow afternoon I only work for two hours. Instead, today I will meet Joyce and Marilyn..and perhaps Karan, for breakfast at Eggberts at 9:00. I am doing laundry now but need to go to the market after that breakfast and I don't want to do too much today since Thursday is such a big day at the library. word from the college. 

We will have tuna cakes and fried potatoes for lunch along with a veggie and a coleslaw.  I gave the last of our leftover dessert to Marilyn R yesterday evening. So I will buy some fruit for dessert.

Yesterday afternoon was very busy. I did all my usual work but again, no inventory. That's fine. They will eventually get back to it.

Missy is crying to go outside but it's only 6:45 right now and we will wait until daylight to give it another try. Lately she has wanted to go outside but only stays out about 5 minutes.  It's chilly out there now and she doesn't like that.

I slept a lot better last night. I woke up at 11:30 and realized it was going to be another restless night so when I got up to go to the bathroom, I also took a Benadril tablet. Then I slept straight through until 5:00. Now I'm rested.

More later....I met Marilyn, Joyce and Karan for breakfast this morning and we had a good visit. It poured down raining so I took off my shoes and carried them under my umbrella and also took a paper towel to dry my feet.  We are going to do this every Thursday morning at 9:00. We will call it the Breakfast Club. I recall my mom listened to a radio program called that when I was a child. She turned it on every morning. Now I have to go take my meds.

I was going to go to the market this morning after breakfast but not in this rain so I will make do with what I have. 

So more even later...after work.

Dinner worked out fine.  I used my last potato and boiled it and then fried it. I fixed the tuna cakes without milk this time. We had broccoli and Bob brought a new coleslaw. We had no dessert.

It was kind of a boring day at work this afternoon.  I did quite a lot of shelf reading.  I only work two hours tomorrow afternoon.  I will put away the DVDs as usual and then spend the rest of the time removing those little green labels from the new fiction that is no longer that "new". 

Katy hired a woman this afternoon to take Joy's place. I hope she works out. I think her name is Sandra. She knew me but I could not remember where I knew her from. It's been awhile.

Bob came over for awhile this evening and watched the news with me. He left at 7:30 and I took my bath and put my PJs on. I wanted to finish my blog here before bedtime..

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Sunday's Sermon

“Purify Your Heart”
August 30th

Mark 7:1-8
Theme: "That Which Defiles"

Scripture Reading: Mark 7: 1 -8, 14-15, 21-23

7 The Pharisees and some of the teachers of the law who had come from Jerusalem gathered around Jesus  and saw some of his disciples eating food with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed.  (The Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they give their hands a ceremonial washing, holding to the tradition of the elders.  When they come from the marketplace they do not eat unless they wash. And they observe many other traditions, such as the washing of cups, pitchers and kettles.)

So the Pharisees and teachers of the law asked Jesus, “Why don’t your disciples live according to the tradition of the elders instead of eating their food with defiled hands?”

He replied, “Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written:

“‘These people honor me with their lips,
    but their hearts are far from me.
 They worship me in vain;
    their teachings are merely human rules.’
You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to human traditions.”

Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen to me, everyone, and understand this.  Nothing outside a person can defile them by going into them. Rather, it is what comes out of a person that defiles them.”

 21 For it is from within, out of a person’s heart, that evil thoughts come—sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and defile a person.”

Today’s text can provide for a very good conversation on hypocrisy, tradition, and inclusion. First, when the scribes and Pharisees accused the disciples of eating with unwashed, or “defiled” hands, Jesus asked them to examine the state of their hearts. It is “the things that come out that are what defile” (v. 15), he said, not what goes into a person. 

It is important to note Jesus did not condemn Judaism or its traditions in this scripture text. Jesus, would have been an observant Jew himself, and would have known and followed these customs when possible. He did not criticize the importance of traditions, but was concerned about the spirit in which traditions were enforced, missing the greater point of reverence in relationship with God.

The poor, and Jesus’ disciples were poor, would have had very little opportunity to wash before eating. But the elders were not thinking of that…they were simply judging them as “defiled” or unclean. 

This leaves us, as Christians, with a similar question. Do we judge others because of what we “think” they should be doing when we lack sincerity within ourselves? Jesus continued to demonstrate in this text an ability to cut right to the heart of things and challenge us with what matters most. The depth and quality of what is going on within, in the state of our spiritual lives, makes a difference as we live out our faith in a complex world….and it is not easy. I know I struggle with this. 

One of our members named Leon encountered a homeless man who spent his life in a shelter. From time to time, the member had provided this man with food. One night, the man was too late to get to stay in a shelter. They were full. The man asked Leon if he would let him sleep on his couch for just one night. Leon did that. When I talked to him, they were enjoying spaghetti and the man was going to spend the night. That’s very hard to do in today’s world. I could not ask a strange man to stay at my house for even a night. I would be wary of such an action in today’s world. There was a time, in the not too distant past, when that was not a concern and Bob and I let a stranger who was hitchhiking to Texas stay overnight in our extra bedroom. 

There is also a more nuanced conversation happening in today’s text about inclusion and exclusion. “Unclean” also refers to Gentiles, who were excluded from the Jewish community because they did not follow Jewish customs. Similarly, it was often the poor who were not able to follow tradition in a strict manner due to a lack of proper resources. Jesus stood on the side of the oppressed and marginalized when he criticized tradition for the sake of tradition which missed the point and excluded others with whom God desired to be in relationship. Tradition is not inherently bad, but when it hinders one’s ability to be in right relationship with others, strict adherence deserves a serious evaluation. 

It can be easy for us today to criticize the Pharisees’ response and neglect the ways we can be just as harsh in our judgment and criticism, often without meaning to be. Consider parents with small children who are making a lot of noise in church. Though some may think worship requires of us a silent respect, (and I tend to be one of those) this passage may cause one to pause and first consider what worship really means before making a remark or taking a possibly offensive course of action. Maybe the disruption in routine gives opportunity to rediscover a deeper meaning to worship that may have been missing, and to give thanks for diversity of age and opportunities for loving mentorship.

Or consider a minister who does not follow the ritual of Communion preparation in the exact way we are used to. Will we allow this departure from tradition to negatively impact a sacrament of reconciliation meant to draw us closer to God and one another? Or will we offer grace and live into the deeper meaning of our ritual in the first place?

I recall the time I was presiding at communion a couple of years ago, and asked Johnna, who is a teacher, but also one of our pastors, to help serve. That was against tradition and it violated the man made “rules” the church has made.  But was it all that important? 

Several years ago, before our church adopted “open” communion, I was at a Theology Colloquy at Graceland University and we had a special communion service. We all sat in a circle and meditated. At some period in the service, when prompted by God’s spirit, we were to get up and offer to serve the communion to another. When I felt prompted, I offered it to Bob Mesle. He refused it. That was because he had decided not to receive the communion until it could be offered to all Christians.  I decided that was a worthy response so from then on, I too refused to take it. Others must have followed suit, because it wasn’t too long after that that the church opened their communion to all Christians. 

Today’s text reminds us purity of heart is more important than getting the rituals of faith exactly right. May we continue to grow into the kind of disciples who honor God with our lips and also our hearts!

Central Ideas:
So once again, what matters most is what Jesus taught. It is what is within people, the state of their hearts, where positive and negative intentions grow. That is what is important. We miss the point of our traditions when they are used to exclude or judge others instead of drawing us closer to others and God. Purity of heart is more important than strict adherence to tradition.

We are advised to: "Courageously challenge cultural, political, and religious trends that are contrary to the reconciling and restoring purposes of God." 163:2b

So let us ask ourselves, “How does this council influence or speak to our behavior as a disciple?” Or does it?

Wednesday and Hump Day Again

Yesterday afternoon at work was very busy. I did a number of things. I started, as usual, with putting away dozens of DVDs in the machines that store them and then filing their boxes in the revolving DVD cases.  That took until 3:00. Then the revolving cases were so full that I had to move some of the empty boxes into some space I created last week on some empty shelves under the new videos in the middle case. That helped the last group but when I put away yesterday's I ran out of room again. So I did a lot of shifting to make some space. I don't know how long that will help.

After I finished that project, Elaine wanted me to pull some new library cards from the sheets they come in for her.  Then I put away the new fiction books. After that I filed cards for Sara. Then I cleaned two DVDs and filed them afterward.

Then I bound up all the rest of the 2014 magazines for the book and magazine sale in September.  We will sell those by the bundle. I finally finished at 4:50 and since I had come in at 12:50, I left and went home. What a day!

When I got home I had my yogurt and a couple of cookies and sat down and took off my shoes to rest. Bob came over at 6:00 to watch the news with me and a couple of old Big Bang Theory programs. Then we walked over to Braums for an ice cream cone. He bought this time. We also walked on to Orchelons to look for Missy's cat food. Since she is 12, going on 13, I feed her Iams for seniors. They didn't have it.  I will look at Wal Mart today.

When I got back home, and after Bob left and I took my bath and sat with Missy in the recliner until bedtime.

Today, I will not do much here at home until time to start lunch. Maybe I will read again. I need to stay off my feet. For lunch we will have chicken and mashed potatoes and gravy with a veggie and a coleslaw salad. I still have one serving of cherry pie cake for our dessert.

I got up at 4:30 this morning after a fitful night of sleep.  Part of the problem is my back. I have been having problems with it since I am on my feet for four hours in the afternoons.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Another Busy Tuesday

This will be  a busy day.

If you read yesterdays blog, you know just how busy.

I neglected to mention that I want to leave for Independence early so I can drop off the stuff I have in my car at the church for the rummage sale next month. Then the first thing I do when I get to Independence, is take the cakes in to the First Christian Church there. Then I will go to my hair appointment and after that I will have Bob drop me off at Juanita's so I can balance her checkbook.

I slept fitfully last night. I don't know for sure but it might be that serving of cherry pie cake that Bob and I had before he left last night. We also had a glass of wine.  Whatever....I woke up twice and the second time I had trouble getting back to sleep. Finally I just got up at 4:45.

I talked to Cox, my TV source last night. The weather channel was tearing and skipping. They have it fixed now though. They told me while was talking to them about the channel problem, that beginning in November I will begin losing the analog stations that I still have and will have to get them to send me a new mini box to even receive them. They are going all digital by January 1st. That box will be free for the first year and then I will be charged $1.99 a month to have it. At the present, I pay $8.50 a month for this old type box. He assured me there were no new price raises planned in the future.  Yeah! I believe that. They've had a raise in cost each year lately.

More later....

Bob and I stopped at the church and left the things Marilyn R donated for our rummage sale. Then we went on to Independence and took the cakes to the First Christian Church. Then I took him over to his sister, Betty's, house and dropped him off. I went on to my hair appointment and then to Juanita's house to balance her checkbook. I went back to pick Bob up afterward and we went to Big Cheese to have lunch. I took him home after that and came back home to check on Missy.  Now it's time for me to go to work.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Monday and Back to Work

I slept pretty well last night although I awoke at 3:30 and never did get back to sleep. Finally at 4:45, I just got up. I put my laundry in and have that going right now in the dryer.

I always dread Mondays at the library since all those DVDs come back in.  It takes me from 12:50 until 2:30 to get them into the machines and then I have to get the empty boxes on the shelves. It's a mess. It makes me almost ill to imagine what the weekends at those homes must be like. I can just see most of the parents setting their children down in front on the TV and letting them just sit there all weekend watching one DVD after the other instead of playing outside with their friends or reading or even playing educational games. They are allowed five DVDs each and sometimes the family leaves on Friday with 15 DVDs for their children.... plus their own.  They should be doing things with their children and giving them some training. Children don't learn manners or how to deal with relationships by osmosis. They have to be taught. And the parents, not teachers, should have that responsibility.

And the noise.....well I've said plenty about the noise in the past.  After working with that problem for months...since last is better. They know if they get really loud, I will come into that teen room and tell them to quiet their is a library, after all...not a recreation center.  People come there to read or study and even to use the computers. No one can even concentrate with all that noise. And, unfortunately, many of the adults are just as bad. I have been known to quiet them down too when I was trying to concentrate on the inventory or when it just got unbearable.

Oh well....I just have until next September 30th 2016...unless the college eventually does call me in for an interview and Aime moves me there.

Today we will have our swiss steak for lunch...with boiled potatoes, a veggie and a salad. And now I have all that dessert I fixed for the meeting last night.  So we should be fixed for lunch.

More later....

The lunch went well. I took some of that cherry pie cake dessert over to Marilyn. I sent the rest of the swiss steak home with Bob.

When I got to work there was a huge pile of DVDs to be put away. I spent from 12:50 until 3:00 getting those into the machines and the boxes into the shelves.  Then I put away the new Fiction and did the filing for Sarah.  Finally Adrian asked me to bundle up all the 2014 magazines so we could put them into the book sale on September 11th and 12th. The library is participating in the 100 mile sale that goes on that weekend.  Our church is also participating.

I got about half to two thirds of the magazines bundled. I will try to finish today.

Bob will go to Independence with me in the morning and while I get my hair done and balance Juanita's checkbook, he will go visit his sister, Betty. Afterward, we will eat at Big Cheese again.

Then I will drop him off at his home and go on to work.

That's the plan.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Sunday Again and Living the Questions Group

I slept pretty well last night. Especially after the rain began this morning. I slept until 6:00, which is unusual. Now there is thunder and lightening so Missy will not want to go out. That's good. I will just relax. Bob texted me this morning that he had his pumpkin bread in the oven. We take turns taking dessert breads to the Church School classes at church to drink with coffee or tea. The great granddaughters love it. Of course, son-in-law, John, does too. He is so good with the girls.

The trip yesterday really wiped me out. I don't know why exactly. It was good to see so many people from the mission center that I know from church reunion (camp).  We had a nice lunch at Chili's with six of us. Leslie bought mine. I had taken money for my lunch but she picked up my ticket. What a gal!

This morning Bob came over to read the newspaper.  Afterward, I will put it on Marilyn's mailbox so she can read it.

More later....

After church six of us went out to El Peublito for lunch. Afterward I came home and worked on my newsletters and then baked my cherry pie cake for the meeting tonight at my apartment.  When I went to pick up Gary, I noticed that Bob had called. I had forgotten to put the sound back up on my phone and did not hear it ring. I heard his message though and it appears he is not feeling well at all. I stopped by his apartment and it seems he ate too much at lunch and it did did not agree with him. So he was not coming to the meeting. I called Bobby to tell him I had left the door unlocked and that I had gone to pick up Gary. It worked out fine though because after Gary and I got back to the apartment,  none of them had arrived yet. Bobby and Karan had stopped by to pick up David, their pastor, who wanted to attend.

So we ended up with only six. Richard and Mona and Ramie did not come and  Marilyn and Lorie got home from their reunion but were too tired to try to come.  That's understandable. If they had made it I would have been surprised. We started back with the "Saving Jesus" DVD and had a nice discussion afterward. They all left shortly after 9:00 and I cleaned up, took my bath and put everything away before I went to bed.  I have lots of dessert left.  I will share some of it with Marilyn R later this morning when she is up. I almost asked her to attend the meeting but wasn't too sure how many to expect. We generally have ten or so. My apartment can handle just about ten.