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Tag Archives: Difficulties

So, You Think You Know Me

I often wonder how you come up with the notion that you know me.  Too many times you have said that I am like this or I am like that.  You are only just seeing me but believe that you know what I am all about.  Let me ask you this:  Where were you:

When:  I was a child of 18 months in the early 1960s and survived an infection of spinal meningitis…at a time when the mortality rate was much higher than today.  Thankfully, I don’t remember it but apparently, I had to learn to walk all over.  To this day, I can’t stand cold showers–I was told that I was placed in ice water to battle the fever.  I have discolored and bad teeth attributed to the antibiotics used.  I was truly blessed.

When:  My parents divorced when I was four;

When:  I met my new older sisters; and subsequently, my younger siblings through the years;

When:  I was 9 or 10 — I was introduced to baseball, and I loved it; I was bitten on the finger by a garden snake while picking berries and suffered from acute appendicitis (not related to snake bite);

When:  I was 11 and 12 — I used to lay in my bed with my transistor radio under my pillow, pretending to be asleep but really listening to the evening baseball games; I dreamed of playing ball like Carl Yastrzemski;  I actually played baseball for a while but life took me in a different direction;

When:  I first kissed a girl — on the lips; my first date; getting my driver license and driving my first car;  and my first pickup truck with 3 on the column — it was missing 2nd gear;

When:  I wrestled, boxed a little and competed in gymnastics for a year;

When:  I enlisted in the Navy and left home;  arriving at boot camp; whoa — major life change!

When:  I arrived at the beach, at sundown, in San Diego, CA, on the 4th of July after driving cross-country to my first duty station;

When:  I flew in a helicopter to an aircraft carrier;  thinking all along there wasn’t enough deck for the helo;

When:  I met and fell in love with my first wife;

When:  I was at sea for months at a time — and later was divorced from my first wife;

When:  Iranian Hostage Crisis;

When: I first used a keypunch machine (1977); a computer (1981); my first microwave oven (1986) right after the shuttle Challenger blew up; my first cell phone (1987); I was studying computer programming; and got my first personal computer (1989);

When:  I visited numerous ports-of-call in many foreign countries being exposed to so many different cultures;

When:  I met my second wife;

When:  I was the third person in the world to hold my new born daughter;

When:  at 18 months old, I rushed my daughter to the hospital because she had eaten her grandmother’s blood pressure pill–I drove on the sidewalk to bypass traffic; and, at her bedside, I prayed all night for her recovery — God blessed us;

When:  I visited my mother, who had terminal cancer a few weeks before she died but because of “military operational commitments,” I could not be there when she passed but my brothers were with her;

When:  Desert Shield and Desert Storm;

When:  I got a second divorce; and lost custody of my daughter;

When: I didn’t get promoted, again — I retired from the Navy after 23 1/2 years’ of service;

When:  A heart arterial catheter angiogram;

When:  I was one of the last people to be with my former mother-in-law when she died — we had a rocky start but after her debilitating stroke, I read the Bible to her and we often prayed together in the last few months of her life;  I held her hand for a couple of hours in the hospital room the day she died–shortly after I left the hospital;

When:  I wandered, apparently aimlessly and selfishly, for several years;  searching for “happiness;”

When:  My first wife found me on the internet and after nearly 20 years we got back together;  we’ve been together for 11 years now.  She says she loves me…personally, I think she tolerates me;   😉

When:  My first granddaughter was born; I think I was about the 5th or 6th person to hold her but I was there when she was born;  there are now four grandchildren, two girls and two boys — the youngest is named after my dad and me;

When: My ex-wife unexpectedly died and I flew 3,000 miles to help comfort my daughter and two oldest grandchildren who knew her;

When:  I or my wife were out of work for extended periods of time; since 2006

When:  My mother-in-law had a stroke and came to live with us so we could help care for her; she is 87 now;

When:  five colonoscopies over the past 20 years;

When:  I draw or  paint pictures; or, (still WIP) writing a couple of books;

When:  After nearly 40 years’ as an administrator, I learned to:  publish ebooks, write a blog and build a solar battery bank by watching YouTube videos; It actually works the way it is supposed to– I’m stoked;

When: after many years of God’s prompting, I finally started ministry studies;  its not easy to find time to study, after working all day, as an olderly guy and still be able to spend quality time with my wife — she’s very understanding;

When:  that little boat has been sitting in my driveway for the past 2 years and hasn’t touched a lake yet, since I’ve had her…

These are snippets of my life — soooooooo much more has made the person I am today.  Yet, you think you know me.  You lie to me and tell lies about me; you steal from me; and, call me names when you think I don’t hear you.  I wonder, what is it really?

I know that you don’t really know me, you couldn’t regardless of how you try to portray yourself, especially at your young ages–remember, I was younger once, too.

God has told us to love one another — he didn’t say, “no matter how difficult your fellow man makes it…”

Matthew 22:35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

You probably don’t even realize that I pray for you daily but that’s okay.  I pray that God will open your spirit, your heart and your mind to the salvation of Christ Jesus, who paid the ultimate price for all of us; who is the way to eternal life.

No, you don’t know me and I don’t really know you even though I’ve been where your are and I know — for many of us, there is freedom when we surrender to the will of God, in the name of Jesus — His only begotten Son.

 

Jay 🙂

 

 

 

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Reaching Out by R.S. Barrett

I was seeking refuge when I reached out to you,

I wonder if you have any idea how difficult that was to do.

Not because it was your voice I sought,

Not because I should not ought,

This enormous flaw I wear like a shield,

Most often to me misery does yield.

Pride! Lift me up and hold me high,

Let not it be revealed that I hold my strength so nigh,

So that others might somehow see,

That I too have yearning, I ache, I need.

And in my quiet desperation, not knowing,

What seed I’d dropped or what it might be sowing,

You gave to me not what I was hoping for,

But instead you reached back with so much more.

R.S. Barrett

 
1 Comment

Posted by on March 14, 2016 in searching, Uncategorized

 

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The Difficulty of Forgiveness

The Difficulty of Forgiveness

How often have we thought ‘what a wonderful feeling it would be to ________ (fill in the blank)…’ the person who has caused us pain?

Who is it that has hurt you?  Was it your dad, mom, sibling, other family member, the neighborhood or school bully, someone outside of your normal surroundings?

How deep is the wound?  Were you devastated?  Is the wound a gash or a paper cut?  Did you think it was healed only to find out it only has a scab that you keep picking at?

Have you really tried to heal but there’s always something stuck in the back of your mind that you can’t shake it?

If you were a child and felt defenseless to the pain that was caused you and now you’re an adult you believe that you can not only defend yourself but you too can inflict some justified hurt in retaliation.  Perhaps that person is in your life everyday and won’t own up to their part in your pain.  Maybe they moved away or maybe they have since died and you can’t strike out against them in the manner in which you feel would give you the most satisfaction.

Don’t you just love it when someone tells you, “forget them…they’re not worth your time or energy;” or maybe, “it’s them, not you, get on with your life…”  Yes, just get on with your life.  But, they never tell you how.  How do you get on with you life when you feel as though you have no life because of your pain?  How do you stand up for yourself in a world where no one seems to really understand?

Family and friends are good to have around but we’ve got to be realistic when it comes to the influence that people have in our lives.  If we are with people who are mentally or physically abusive to us or we feel powerless in an environment where others are being abused, it cannot be good to be there.  Often we seek escape.  Sometimes we escape by leaving and often carry guilt if we left someone behind who was vulnerable to abuse.  But hey, we got out, right?  Sometimes we escape with alcohol, drugs and even to others, or lifestyles that are just as damaging even if alcohol and drugs are not involved.  Sometimes, some of us escape to death.  We often seek love–in all the wrong places.  Sometimes we seek help, most often from other people who may or may not be able to step in, provide sound advice or provide us some other form of assistance; sometimes we seek law enforcement aid, groups, or self-help guides; and then, some of us finally seek God.

Yes, God–often the last resort but the One with the most to offer.  The One who gave His only begotten Son so, if we believe in Him that was innocent, who was crucified to death, overcame death and arose after three days in a glorified body and ascended to be at the right hand of the Heavenly Father until a time that the Father declares and who will return to take the believers, first the dead in Christ and second those who are alive in Christ and will live eternity in Heaven with Him. (see John 3:16)

If we sincerely seek our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus with a true and humble heart, and as the Apostle Paul may have said,  trust Him with all our έντερο (gut), then we shall be forgiven of all of our sins because Jesus, (okay here’s the difficult part to wrap our minds around) Jesus, took every sin, every bad feeling, everything that could ever possibly happen to us that would keep us unholy and not able to even be looked at by God the Father, He took it all upon Himself for each and everyone of us.  What?!!  I know, right?  So there is actually nothing that He doesn’t understand.  Because, as God, He is the only One who can actually hold the weight of it all.  Therefore, when we give up our pain(s) to Him, He truly understands our individual pain(s).  And, by forgiving us of our sins He makes it possible for us to forgive others who have wronged us.

The two main commandments that God has given us that are most important are:  Matthew 22: 37 Jesus replied, “‘You must love the lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39  A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.

Forgiveness toward others who have hurt or wronged us in some way does not come easy but often, forgiveness is not always about releasing the other person, especially when sometimes that person is not around to know that we have forgiven them.  Forgiveness is really about freeing ourselves.  When someone tells us to, “just forget about them…” that’s kind of hard to do if we haven’t forgiven them because the memory of the pain is still eating at us.  Forgiveness is hard but so is living with the hurt and anger the eats away at our insides, our lives and the innocents around us.  Be free neighbors, be free.

Psalms 56:11 (NLT)

I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? What can mere mortals do to me?

The wounds are often deep and though some are paper cuts, ‪#‎forgiveness‬ is difficult for us. When we surrender our will to the will of our Lord and Savior Christ Jesus, forgiveness becomes familiar.

Matthew 19:26 (NLT)

Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”

 

Listen, for He calls your name.  “Here I am, Lord,” I respond.

Jay 🙂

 
6 Comments

Posted by on March 9, 2016 in forgiveness, salvation, Uncategorized

 

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Don’t Fall For It…

This is going to be short and to the point.

(Disclaimer:  I’m not a stock broker, nor am I a professional or Certified Financial Planner.  This post is based on my personal opinion and not intended to be considered by anyone sane or not, as financial advice; or characterization of anyone in the financial industry.  If you think this is about you, it’s all in your head.)

My wife is interested in her retirement account because of the stock market “correction” of the past week.  Not wanting to be the Mr. Know-It-All guy that I usually think I am, I called the Retirement Planning guy at the bank and left a message with the bank teller asking for him to contact my wife to tell her how he is going to keep her from losing a lot of money in her account.  He calls her but didn’t get her.  He left a voicemail stating that “he’s” not worried about the current downturn and that she shouldn’t worry because her account is not exposed to the Asian stocks…and, besides, she’s only lost about 4%.

Her account is not exposed to Asian stocks but according to my calculator with today’s end-of-day losses, she has lost 8% in the past several days.  Has nothing to do with Asian stocks — it is a panic sell off disguised as a correction.

When the time is right, we will re-evaluate her IRA, and I think, the Retirement Planning guy, too.

Folks, let us not panic during these sell offs, it happens.  In the same consideration, don’t fall for a broker who says, “don’t worry, it will come back.”  Yeah?  You think maybe before we retire?

Be concerned…it’s not his money, yet.

I’m just sayin’

Jay 😮

1 Peter 5:7  Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.

 
1 Comment

Posted by on August 25, 2015 in Communication, Customer Service, stocks

 

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Do You Know Someone Who Suffers Spatial Disorientation?

Storage space  Some common questions in the storage world: “How much is the smallest space?” 5’x5’ … “Can I fit stuff from a 3 bedroom apartment in the smallest one?” Not unless your apartment is a doll house. What? Nevermind.

Yes, the storage world has its moments.

I am quite fascinated with the idea that so many people do not understand space and how much of it is needed to store their “stuff.” I do understand that everyone is not able to figure out space needed, that’s not my point — it really comes down to the bottom line and equating the price of storage to the space required. Just going for the least expensive and understanding that the least expensive is usually the smallest, people ask for the smallest; and are really taken back when they realize that the smallest is usually about the size of a closet or a small walk-in closet. Most people I have found don’t have a relative clue about what a 5’x5’, 5’x15’ or even a 10’x20’ space will hold.

I, in turn, have a pretty good idea about space and what it will hold. I often can fit 5lbs of “stuff” into a 2lb sock, if you know what I mean. Maybe I was born with it or maybe I just learned from experience over the years — I do my best to not make someone feel bad when they do not understand. More is in my head than comes out through my lips.

If someone is in my office, I can use my office as a reference. “Do you need this much room or something larger, or something smaller?” I will ask.  Most people understand. Some still don’t know. Why? Because they do not know exactly what they will be storing. Hmmmm…Often, people do not want to tell me what they have so that I can properly assist them with spatial requirements. Also, people “forget” what they have that needs to be stored. “Oh yeah, I forgot about the dining table, the washer and dryer or the 22 boxes of stuff in the garage.”

If someone is on the phone, I ask them to look at their master bedroom and imagine they will be stacking things from floor to ceiling and everywhere in between…now, do you need a room that large, larger or smaller? Most people understand.

When people visit me, I like to take them out to look at the space they think they will need. Again, most people understand or at least are able to choose between different sizes once they view them.

Occasionally, I have someone who thinks they can fit 10lbs of “stuff” in a 2lb sock all because they are going for prince over need. Two results: 1) I later transfer them to the right size space; 2) the dumpster get full quickly.

Words of advice when searching for a place to store your stuff:  If you suffer from SD (Spatial Disorientation) please, seek the assistance of someone who knows how to stuff a sock, pack a box, a truck or even a room. The person could be a family member, a friend or even a professional. Do yourself a favor, learn and practice specific cognitive strategies such as forming a mental representation of the environment and how stuff will fit into that area.  Do not allow your life to be disrupted because of SD.

If you know someone who suffers from SD, please for our sake, help them, guide them, teach them.

“So, a 5’x5’, can I fit a 3 bedroom house in that?” Not unless it folds up like George Jetson’s car… What? Nevermind.

Jay 🙂

 

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We Live in an Ambiguous Society

Disclaimer: The following is an opinion diatribe…read at your own interest.
Wha?

Wha?

If bald is beautiful, why is hair restoration so important?

Vagueness seems to be common place in our society. Why?

Political Correctness, not wanting to hurt others’ feelings, personal and mental sensitivity; not being able to see past one side of a situation or object; or perhaps, we lack the ability to express or describe something for fear of all those things. Moreover, I think the answer is actually within us, personally, because we’re afraid. Yes, afraid of how we will be perceived.

Take the blunt person. How many times have we complained that person is a bully, contrary, argumentative or that they’re just a(n) (smart)ass? We often hear that he or she is just mean, not to mention the vulgarities used to describe them. Do we ever take into consideration of what they are telling us, regardless of how it is delivered?

Then there is the meek person, the person who doesn’t make themselves clear because they are afraid of how they will be perceived. And then, we call them weak, timid, shy and often make fun of them or just dismiss their views altogether.

How about the uninformed person? They speak to be involved even though they do not have a grasp of the facts of a situation, person or object. We are quick to describe them as a village idiot and also ignore them.

The gamers, liars, performers, politicians…just to single out a few, all bring up negative views in our minds but yet, we are reluctant to describe them as they truly are [perceived].

Think about how many times we denounce violent behavior but do nothing to stop it because the solution often requires, yes, violence.  How can we coexist with people who literally want to kill us?

Our personal standards of what is right and wrong, our own filters and barriers, our fears, fears of rejections, retaliation, or of being ostracized, often dictate how we describe the world around us.

I enjoy when people like me but I don’t care if they do. I really mean it. I am somewhat of an extrovert because my life has ran the course from here to there, so many “new” environments and places—personally as well as employment. I wasn’t raised to be meek but I have learned to tone down my bluntness; and I am now more reluctant to fight at the drop of a word—argue maybe but not fight.

In the midst of the destruction of our society, as we have known it, dialogue is so beneficial. However, when one group seems to have all the answers, for everyone regardless of our differences, no matter which side of the situation we are on, we will find the enslaved and oppressed on the other side. I do not say this about a particular group of peoples based on color, ethnicity or religion. I say this based on a free people of this country, the United States of America, which for at least the past decade has been anything but united.

It is ideology that is changing our way of life and regardless of the ambiguity of our situation, it appears ambivalence is a driving force. One size does not fit all, in spite of what “they” tell us.

No, violence is often not the answer but when survival is at stake, sometime we must defend ourselves. But what will be the reasons behind our fight? Will it be so that we can have more and someone else have less? Will it be so that we can be recognized for ourselves, our individual ways of life(styles)? Will it be for our religious freedoms and whether ours will be the dominate one? Will it be for our children, so that if there is a future, it will be a good and prosperous time for them?

Or, will it be for our freedom? Freedom from tyranny brought on by those that seemingly know what is better for us as a “society” regardless of what is better for us as individuals of a nation.  Regardless of what we really want?

I would hope that we cast our ambivalence aside and make a stand for our individual freedom over a society of leeches. When someone receives, it has to come from somewhere. Are we as a hard-working people going to let them take it (whatever the “it” is) from us without some kind of stand? I would hope not.

Open dialogue is good – intimidation is not. Do not allow yourselves to be intimidated anymore. Speak up before they tell you your speech is no longer free. Don’t be vague, tell us how you really feel about something. Ambiguity may be killing you.

I can’t see the top of my head, in your opinion, am I bald, yet?

Jay 🙂

 

 

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Brian Is A Medical Anomaly…

Well, ladies and gentlemen, the news is in…Brian’s cancer results are back from the Mayo Clinic.

The doctors diagnosed him with adult osteosarcoma (the adult part is sometimes questionable).  And apparently, they told him that the type he acquired is so rare that the Mayo Clinic has only seen 15 cases where the more common type is about 1,500 cases per year.

Okay, so here’s the good news — Brian will not need chemotherapy and the doctors believe that he is clear of the cancer.  They will continue to monitor him every 3 months instead of the normal 6 months, as a precaution.

Brian won’t be able to work for a while because he is still getting that new knee up to speed but it is coming along nicely and the doctors are pleased with his progress.  And thin boy needs to put back on a few pounds.  One step at a time, one day at a time.

I would like to thank everyone for their prayers and well wishes.  I truly believe in the power of prayer.

Best wishes to you all from me and my daughter’s family.

Jay 🙂

 
6 Comments

Posted by on March 25, 2015 in cancer, family relations

 

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