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Life

The Price for Responsibility

Get it right as soon as possible.  We are given three things but not the other three needed; as soon as we realize that, we must take responsibility.  I read this in Ayn Rand’s book Atlas Shrugged as it is told by the character John Galt.  I extracted just these three points because I believe they help our understanding of the need to be responsible

We are given a life but not our survival.

We are given a body but not its sustenance.

We are given a mind but not its content.

Ultimately, the mind is the tool for our survival.  We do what we must  and to travel life’s journey successfully, and I believe we must make time to be in the presence of God.  There is no escaping His presence, only denying it.  That is a choice each person carries until death.  Thereafter, we meet our Maker. Keep Reading

Be Encouraged

What does it mean to be encouraged, and when do we get it?

Why is it important, and who are those that offer it?

“IT” is all here, in this blog.

You determine which path to take because the how to be encouraged rests inside one’s personal intent to be so.  Our intentions are birthed in our will.  These thoughts have soaked in my tears for many years  They are now presented as if on the platter I searched to find by observing and absorbing.

An Angel delivering the holiest of gifts designed to bring comfort on a perfectly sized pillow. I purchased it from an astrologer, Bethea.

To be encouraged is to feel lifted in the direction of dreams and visions intended to benefit one and all.  The humble person bears great humility so its fruit takes time to ripen.

Life is in the presence of spirit.  Given the free will to act as we choose, regardless of circumstances, ultimately leads us to a new place.  That place is always at the moment we call now.

As most of you may have already heard “the present is the present.”  ( This is why I love the English language!)

Is one’s Spirit, the Soul, aware of conscious or unconscious acts?  Does the soul give a life to live while one’s heart and mind determine the route to take and to learn and teach to fulfill by one, or more of the myriad of possible purposes?  I am suggesting mean spirited purposes are sadly present.  Humans are not perfect.

How can we find the ultimate good reserved for each one of us to achieve?  What happens when we falter?

To seek our God’s wisdom is the way to the truth and the light; however, the choices in the Garden of the Universe encourage us to navigate, and we do.  We are free to choose our way of being in the presence of any circumstance.  I think it is known as the attitude we carry.  We arrive at knowing moment by moment according  to choices made with attitude at hand.  Hand in hand they direct the route we choose to navigate. Keep Reading

One’s Endurance: a Grateful Immigrant’s Story

Sometimes the “A HA!” moment comes in a quote:

”  Let yourself silently be drawn by the strange pull of what you really love.  It will not lead you astray.” _Rumi

I’ll tell you how the sun rose, —
A ribbon at a time.
The steeples swam in amethyst,
The news like squirrels ran.
The hills untied their bonnets,
The bobolinks begun.
Then I said softly to myself,
“That must have been the sun!” _Emily Dickenson

One’s endurance is measured by the breadths taken day and night to survive rejection.  It is inexplicable to the unbeliever because the life of faith delivers an ever restoring, flowing Holy Spirit.  Without it, I could not have arrived at this moment in time.

I can count my encouragers.  Who are yours?

In this abundantly planted orchard of life, the fruits ripen to be chosen rather than discarded.  In today’s bowl, endurance is at the center; it has an old flavor recognizable for its ancient characteristics.  Its value is as long as the beginning of each day is observed.  It is delightful to the soul, gentle in texture and borders  on honey for sweetness.

I remember the aches clinging to my joints as I gathered a handful of acrylic paints, three preferred brushes, and a trusty folded stool to take along to the gate waiting as a blank canvas on a palette ready to receive the very Spirit in me.  It is in this laboriously searching to create a vessel to renew the luster of words written to welcome each soul that I found respite, consolation, and determination to honor a church whose people chose to invite my father to be their priest.painted in the far away right side…I wish I had taken a close up.  There is a squirrel with a bushy tail in the lower left and two bobolinks in the tree, North American migratory blackbirds.

I used my father’s magnifying glass to see “the onion” church so dubbed because of the shape of its steeple.  It is barely visible.  It is painted in the far away right side…I wish I had taken a close up shot.  There is a squirrel with a bushy tail in the lower left and two bobolinks in the tree, North American migratory blackbirds.  Go figure. Keep Reading

BEING the LIGHT

“GOD has given us two hands__one to receive with

 and the other to give with.  We are not cisterns made for hoarding.  We are

channels made for sharing. “

__BILLY GRAHAM

My parents told me the story of a gift brought to me by my God parents, a chocolate bar.  I was five years old, and their visit was due to a special occasion.  My Dad had been ordained to the priesthood.  I remember the table set with food for a crowd.

Our neighbors with their daughter and son were there and I unwrapped chocolate bar, and inhaled the scent with a smile.  I snapped to give each a piece.  One for each parent and one for each friend, two for my Godparents, and two for my parents.  The eight pieces completed the bar.  What about you? asked my father.  Even though some tried to give me a part of their piece, I was perfectly happy to share it all with them.  I don’t remember the incident yet my parents repeated it enough that I certainly lived up to the joy felt in giving.  Perhaps we give what feels so abundantly available simply because there is greater pleasure in seeing the satisfaction in others receiving.

The delight to give is apparent in children.

Pastor Billy Graham was a sort of shepherd who sought God’s flock to deliver the faith, the hope, the love, the wisdom filled Bible. His mission’s message continues to shine like a candle whose flame lights and warms the room in our hearts.  He gave so much for so many to receive.

We all can.

Albert Schweitzer’s life is an inspiration of a man with a complete education dedicated to humanitarian assistance.  By the age of twenty nine he had written three books, he loved Bach’s music, and his exemplary life shines on…  His devotion to his work, just as Pastor Billy Graham’s, inspired others to fulfill their dreams.  Their encouragement was designed to light the way for others.  Their patience moved mountains as their faith the size of a mustard seed, could and would not be snuffed out.  Their mission was charged with divinity.  Their humanity called out to humans; they heard the cries and responded with their love.

Like all of us, both men felt the pangs of rejection; their flame, however, rekindled.

” Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being.  Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.”  __ALBERT SCHWEITZER

The up close image of the angel on the tree trunk as discovered in Bible Study on Maui appeared at a glance.  Look and see the signs all around waiting to be found. God gives us the clues.  Angels sometimes are in being the light.  Sometimes they are humans in the light.  Sometimes they can be recognized and when two meet, the path is lighter, brighter.

” Believers, look up–take courage.  The angels are nearer than you think.”  __BILLY GRAHAM

When I discovered the verse below, I decided it was time to read the Bible with a magnifying glass.  I still hope we can all be star-shine daily.  We can.  We can give from this light within us.

“This light within you produces only what is good and right and true.”  EPHESIANS: 5:9

Please share your thoughts with me…  God bless you.

The Bit I Know…and GREAT LENT

“Great Lent is intended to be a’workshop ‘ where the character of the believer is spiritually uplifted and strengthened; where his life is rededicated to the principles and ideals of the Gospel; where fasting and prayer culminate in deep conviction of life; where apathy and disinterest turn into vigorous activities of faith and good works. ”  __WIKIPEDIA

Even though my father was an Orthodox priest, life distanced me from the life I lived before leaving home.  The tapestry is intricately woven with stories created by choices.  We can all take responsibility for some, maybe most.  The colorful and the shadowed defining moments of our lives,  stand to deliver outcomes we revisit.  In the ancient Orthodox Church, the believers aim to obey the Sacraments, and it is daunting to explain without appearing to be on a mission to convert people to the first Christian Church.

My intent is to invite you to meet my understanding about the misunderstandings of Christianity even among Christians.  Since I am not a theologian, please excuse my seemingly shallow though heartfelt observation.  It all begins with the realization that all humans are flawed.  We love one another despite our hurtful ways that cause the chaos we certainly witness in our present society.  Despite the phenomenal technological and scientific progress, humanity is in the process of revisiting the history being denied to be taught as it truly happened even at the fall of the Roman Empire.  Humans have souls in progress and yet due to unknown forces, be they evil or good, we join together in disagreements as well as in agreements with others.  We surrender to survive.  Our minds hold the tools for our survival, and our hearts align with whatever we consciously and unconsciously choose to believe.  The concessions we make along the way through the years have all to do with our upbringing.  Therefore, parents and guardians bare a huge responsibility. Keep Reading

FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE

Isn’t it funny how we meet people seemingly accidentally and then discover life would never have been the same without them ?  Jeannette sat alone in church, and one Sunday, I made it a point to join her.  We sang out of tune at St. John’s Episcopal Church in Keokea on Maui.  We chatted and I invited her for tea and lunch to be company for my Mom.  The two cocooned on the couch and spoke one or the other always smiling and nodding.  I wasn’t quite sure they understood any words as Jeannette tried to remember the French and my Mom would slide into Romanian yet they still cordially carried on like two birds in flight from tree to shrub and twig to fence.  The household seemed livelier as Jeannette came along in rides to the stores, and stayed to help me in the kitchen.  She insisted on holding my cutting board as I chopped peppers, onions, and carrots galore.  We meshed in stirring, mashing, and pouring while doting on my Mom with a little of this and that.  We found laughter in the fridge, on the stove, and over the table.  Little by little we said it all and she was there to dry my tears and understood what I could not.  She was the HOPE I wished in life for a friend.  She said I was the FAITH she needed to hear from a friend.  Her story carved a statue in marble.  Her strength dissolved iron.  Her gentleness feathered a breeze.

Even now that she departed, I wish to be nearer—she was a lady of poise galore.  Sometimes, I stop and sense her presence, perhaps it’s just the memory.  Ours was a friendship born in prayer.  I HOPE as she hoped.

Alike I had become friends with Cindy whom I visited at Upcountry Legends, her store.  She called my little guys “the group” and somehow from the start we cinched a friendship in conversation about God.  Yeah, the island attracts all kinds of people.  We met to talk about everything God related.  She gave me  a book that sits on my shelf A PARENTHESIS IN ETERNITY, by JOEL S. GOLDSTEIN.  Of its entire content which I love, her note on the cover is best and filled with her LOVE …and that is Cindy’s story.  Petit and smart even as a child, she still walks on clouds as her mother appropriately reminded the family.  She was born and raised in New York City, and used her daughter’s name for the shoe store: Taryn.  I honestly don’t know how she sold anything as she mostly spoke to everyone of God.  We cannot exhaust the topic and this is where Jeannette joined the party.  We three nested our lives in resolving the craters of sadness by refusing to stay stuck in the “mucks.”  We mastered the art of finding the best in the moment.  Our dearest Cindy was the one among us who as a child prayed to God for wisdom.  I was stumped and ashamed as I prayed for pretty knees.   Keep Reading

WELCOME to Be Star-Shine Daily

This blog as it is called for short articles addressing the writer’s points of interests, is much like an artist’s palette.  Initially I had hoped to have twelve categories to address specific topics readers could tap into and ask questions.  However, it has been designed with a name that does cover my heart’s intent.  I may be tweaking the four categories in time.  This is new to me, and I am literally like a kindergartner in a canvas playground with buckets of colorful paints ready to be used with just a few whispering brushes.

Since there are quotes that have transported me from heart beat to heart beat and from breadth to breadth, I can assure you I am grateful for their sustenance.  We are nurtured in different ways in life, and without brothers and sisters, books seemed to always be there to tell me something written by someone who cared enough to pour out nuggets.  Many of them have helped me keep my chin up and my back straight resolutely sure of how to perceive the mysteries of life.

” There is a pleasure, in the pathless woods.

There is rapture on the shore.

There is society where none intrudes

By the deep sea, and music in its roar.

I love not man less.

I love Nature more.”  Woodlands__Lord Byron

We live such fragile lives from the moment we are conceived, and the best in us is the love.  The star light from our soul eagerly shines from birth and somewhere along the way we are the stars that aim to fulfill our ultimate best.  I  thank God for sending us His Son, Jesus, and for my extraordinary good fortune in life to have honored  His wisdom.

I welcome your comments and questions and promise to answer, even if in a story.  God bless you and thank you for visiting my site.