To the authors who write these inspirational little stories, and to the friends who brighten our days by sharing them ~






* Randall & Stacey * Jim & Tricia * Dad & Sandy * Johnna, Nancy & Rod Asbury *
* Pam Garza * Rita Dunlap * Richard Wilson * Pam Drennen * Robert McGraw * Gail (Clonch) *
* Cindy Booten * Mary Jane Manley * Linda (Jeffries) Brown * Shelly (Jeffries) Wriston *
* Kimberly Wriston * Christy Filbin * Kim Spears * Lisa (Lopez) Neighbors * Judy (Clonch) *
* Cindy (Dunlap)* Tara (Fragale) Smith * Libby (Williams) Akers *
* Brenda (Hutchinson) Brown * Julia (Glassburn) Harmon * Paul Chinn * Charlie & Kathy Scott *
* John & Nora Bostic * Marsha Kitchen * Betty Borchardt * Charles Thompson *

YOUR mail goes here




A minister passing through his church in the middle of the day, decided to pause by the altar and see who had come to pray. Just then the back door opened, a man came down the aisle, the minister frowned as he saw the man hadn't shaved in a while. His shirt was kinda shabby and his coat was worn and frayed. The man knelt, he bowed his head, then rose and walked away.

In the days that followed, each noon time came this chap, each time he knelt just for a moment, a lunch pail in his lap. Well, the minister's suspicions grew, with robbery a main fear, he decided to stop the man and ask him "What are you doing here?"

The old man, said he worked down the road. Lunch was half an hour. Lunchtime was his prayer time, for finding strength and power. "I stay only moments, see, because the factory is so far away. As I kneel here talking to the Lord, this is kinda what I say:


The minister knelt at the alter, he'd seldom done it before. His cold heart melted, warmed with love, and met with Jesus there. As the tears flowed, in his heart, he repeated old Jim's prayer:


Past noon one day, the minister noticed that old Jim hadn't come. As more days passed without him, he began to worry some. At the factory, he asked about him, learning he was ill. The hospital staff was worried, but he'd given them a thrill.

The week that Jim was with them, brought changes in the ward. The head nurse couldn't understand why Jim was so glad, when no flowers, calls or cards came, not a visitor he had.

The minister stayed by his bed, he voiced the nurse's concern: No friends came to show they cared. He had nowhere to turn. Looking surprised, old Jim spoke up and with a winsome smile;

"The nurse is wrong, she couldn't know, that in here all the while, everday at noon He's here, a dear friend of mine, you see, He sits right down, takes my hand, leans over and says to me:


~ author unknown ~



What If

What if, GOD couldn't take the time to bless us today
because we couldn't take the time to thank Him yesterday?

What if, GOD decided to stop leading us tomorrow
because we didn't follow Him today?

What if, we never saw another flower bloom
because we grumbled when GOD sent the rain?

What if, GOD didn't walk with us today
because we failed to recognize it as His day?

What if, GOD took away the Bible tomorrow
because we would not read it today?

What if, GOD took away His message
because we failed to listen to the messenger?

What if, GOD didn't send His only begotten Son
because He wanted us to be prepared to pay the price for sin.

What if, the door of the church was closed
because we did not open the door of our heart?

What if, GOD stopped loving and caring for us
because we failed to love and care for others?

What if, GOD would not hear us today
because we would not listen to Him yesterday?

What if, GOD answered our prayers
the way we answer His call to service?

What if, GOD met our needs
the way we give His needs in our lives???

What if, GOD just didn't care???

~ ©grandma ~




Like any good mother, when Karen found out that another baby was on the way, she did what she could to help her 3-year-old son, Michael, prepare for a new sibling. They found out that the new baby was going to be a girl, and day after day after day, night after night, Michael sang to his sister in Mommy's tummy. He was building a bond of love with his little sister before even met her.

The pregnancy progressed normally for Karen, an active member of the Panther Creek United Methodist Church in Morristown, Tennessee. In time, the labor pains came. Soon it was every five minutes.. every three.. every minute. But serious complications arose during delivery and Karen found herself in hours of labor. Would a C-section be required? Finally, after a long struggle, Michael's little sister was born. But she was in very serious condition. With a siren howling in the night, the ambulance rushed the infant to the neonatal intensive care unit at St. Mary's Hospital, Knoxville, Tennessee.

The days inched by. The little girl got worse. The pediatrician had to tell the parents, "There is very little hope. Be prepared for the worst." Karen and her husband contacted a local cemetery about a burial plot.

They had fixed up a special room in their house for their new baby but now they found themselves having to plan for a funeral. Michael, however, kept begging his parents to let him see his sister. "I want to sing to her," he kept saying.

Week two in intensive care looked as if a funeral would come before the week was over. Michael kept nagging about singing to his sister, but kids are never allowed in intensive care. Karen made up her mind, though. She would take Michael whether they liked it or not! If he didn't see his sister right then, he may never see her alive. She dressed him in an oversized scrub suit and marched him into ICU.

He looked like a walking laundry basket. But the head nurse recognized him as a child and bellowed, "Get that kid out of here now! No children are allowed." The mother rose up strong in Karen, and the usually mild- mannered lady glared steel-eyed right into the head nurse's face, her lips a firm line. "He is not leaving until he sings to his sister!"

Karen towed Michael to his sister's bedside. He gazed at the tiny infant losing the battle to live. After a moment, he began to sing. In a pure- hearted voice of a 3-year-old, Michael sang: "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray..." Instantly the baby girl seemed to respond. The pulse rate began to calm down and become steady. "Keep on singing, Michael," encouraged Karen with tears in her eyes. "You never know, dear, how much I love you, Please don't take my sunshine away..."

As Michael sang to his sister, the baby's ragged, strained breathing became as smooth as a kitten's purr. "Keep on singing, sweetheart!!!". "The other night, dear, as I lay sleeping, I dreamed I held you in my arms..." Michael's little sister began to relax as rest, healing rest, seemed to sweep over her. "Keep on singing, Michael." Tears had now conquered the face of the bossy head nurse. Karen glowed. "You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. Please don't, take my sunshine away..."

The next day...the very next day...the little girl was well enough to go home! Woman's Day Magazine called it "The Miracle of a Brother's Song." The medical staff just called it a miracle. Karen called it a miracle of God's love! ..... ~ author unknown ~




Don't undermine your worth
by comparing yourself with others.
It is because we are different
that each of us is special.

Don't set your goals
by what other people deem important.
Only you know
what is best for you.

Don't take for granted the things
closest to your heart.
Cling to them as you would your life,
for without them, life is meaningless.

Don't let your life slip through your fingers
by living in the past or for the future.
By living your life one day at a time,
you live all the days of your life.

Don't give up
when you still have something to give.
Nothing is really over
until the moment you stop trying.

Don't be afraid to admit
that you are less than perfect.
It is this fragile thread
that binds us each together.

Don't be afraid
to encounter risks.
It is by taking chances
that we learn how to be brave.

Don't shut love out of your life
by saying it's impossible to find.
The quickest way to receive love is to give it
The fastest way to lose love is to hold it too tightly
And the best way to keep love is to give it wings.

Don't dismiss your dreams.
To be without dream
is to be without hope
To be without hope
is to be without purpose.

Don't run through life so fast that you forget...
Not only where you've been,
but also where you are going.
Life is not a race,
but a journey to be savored
each step of the way.

Yesterday is History
Tomorrow is a Mystery
And Today ~
Today is a gift;
that's why we call it
"The Present "
~ author unknown ~




Two men, both seriously ill, occupied the same hospital room. One man was allowed to sit up in his bed for an hour each afternoon to help drain the fluid from his lungs. His bed was next to the room's only window. The other man had to spend all his time flat on his back. The men talked for hours on end.

They spoke of their wives and families, their homes, their jobs, their involvement in the military service, where they had been on vacation. And every afternoon when the man in the bed by the window could sit up,
he would pass the time by describing to his room-mate all the things he could see outside the window. The man in the other bed began to live for those one-hour periods where his world would be broadened and enlivened by all the activity and colour of the world outside.

The window overlooked a park with a lovely lake. Ducks and swans played on the water while children sailed their model boats. Young lovers walked arm in arm amidst flowers of every colour of the rainbow. Grand old trees graced the landscape, and a fine view of the city skyline could be seen in the distance. As the man by the window described all this in exquisite detail, the man on the other side of the room would close his eyes and imagine the picturesque scene.

One warm afternoon the man by the window described a parade passing by. Although the other man couldn't hear the band he could see it in his mind's eye as the gentleman by the window portrayed it with descriptive words.

Then unexpectedly, a sinister thought entered his mind. Why should the other man alone experience all the pleasures of seeing everything while he himself never got to see anything? It didn't seem fair. At first thought the man felt ashamed. But as the days passed and he missed seeing more sights, his envy eroded into resentment and soon turned him sour.

He began to brood and he found himself unable to sleep. He should be by that window that thought, and only that thought now controlled his life.

Late one night as he lay staring at the ceiling, the man by the window began to cough. He was choking on the fluid in his lungs. The other man watched in the dimly lit room as the struggling man by the window groped for the button to call for help. Listening from across the room he never moved, never pushed his own button which would have brought the nurse running in.

In less than five minutes the coughing and choking stopped, along with that the sound of breathing. Now there was only silence -- deathly silence.

The following morning the day nurse arrived to bring water for their baths. When she found the lifeless body of the man by the window, she was saddened and called the hospital attendants to take it away.

As soon as it seemed appropriate, the other man asked if he could be moved next to the window. The nurse was happy to make the switch, and after making sure he was comfortable, she left him alone.

Slowly, painfully, he propped himself up on one elbow to take his first look at the world outside. Finally, he would have the joy of seeing it all himself. He strained to slowly turn to look out the window beside the bed.

It faced a blank wall.

Epilogue. . . . You can interpret the story in any way you like. But one moral stands out: There is tremendous happiness in making others happy, despite our own situations. Shared grief is half the sorrow, but happiness when shared, is doubled. If you want to feel rich, just count all of the things you have that money can't buy. ~ author unknown ~



Life's Simple Things

If your wants and needs are simple
They'll know no bounds or measure
It's the simple little things in life
That bring the greatest pleasure

The sun shining warmly on your face
A puppy dog wagging his tail
An hour away from life's rat race
A balmy lake on which to sail

The pure simplicity of a child
A fluffy kitten purring
A country picnic just for two
A rose's soft alluring

An anticipated bubble bath
Catching A glimpse of a falling star
A slow walk down memory lane
The smell of a brand new car

This is only a small sample
Of the treasures that we store...
Of life's greatest little things,
Each day we add so many more.

~ author unknown ~



Attitude Is Everything

Joey was the kind of guy you love to hate. He was always in a good mood, and always had something positive to say. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would reply, "If I were any better, I would be twins!"

He was a unique manager because he had several waiters who had followed him around from restaurant to restaurant. The reason the waiters followed Joey was because of his attitude. He was a natural motivator. If an employee was having a bad day, Joey was there telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation.

Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Joey and asked him, "I don't get it! You can't be a positive person all the time. How do you do it?"

Joey replied, "Each morning I wake up and say to myself, Joey, you have two choices today. You can choose to be in a good mood or you can choose to be in a bad mood. I choose to be in a good mood. Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. I choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I choose the positive side of life."

"Yeah, right, it's not that easy," I protested.

"Yes it is," Joey said. "Life is about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is a choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. The bottom line: It's your choice how you live life."

I reflected on what Joey said. Soon thereafter, I left the restaurant industry to start my own business. We lost touch, but I often thought about him when I made a choice about life instead of reacting to it.

Several years later, I heard that Joey did something you are never supposed to do in a restaurant business: he left the back door open one morning and was held up at gunpoint by three armed robbers. While trying to open the safe, his hand, shaking from nervousness, slipped off the combination. The robbers panicked and shot him. Luckily, Joey was found relatively quickly and was rushed to the local trauma center. After 18 hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Joey was released from the hospital with fragments of the bullets still in his body. I saw Joey about six months after the accident. When I asked him how he was, he replied, "If I were any better, I would be twins! Wanna see my scars?"

I declined to see his wounds, but did ask him what had gone through his mind as the robbery took place. "The first thing that went through my mind was that I should have locked the back door," Joey replied. "Then, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live, or I could choose to die. I chose to live."

Did you lose consciousness?" I asked. Joey continued, "The paramedics were great. They kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the emergency room and I saw the expressions on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read, 'He's a dead man', I knew I needed to take action."

"What did you do?" I asked.

"Well there was a big, burly nurse shouting questions at me," said Joey. "She asked me if I was allergic to anything. Yes, I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply....I took a deep breath and yelled, "BULLETS!" Over their laughter, I told them, I am choosing to live. Operate on me as if I am alive, not dead."

Joey lived thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day we have the choice to live fully. Attitude, after all, is everything! (Either you control it, or it controls you.)
~ author unknown ~



Sin will take you farther than you intended to go.

It will keep you longer than you intended to stay.

And it will cost you more than you ever intended to pay.



Your Dash

I read of a man who stood to speak
At the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
From the beginning ... to the end.
He noted that first came her date of birth
And spoke the following date with tears,
But he said what mattered most of all
Was the dash between those years. (1900-1970)

For that dash represents all the time
That she spent alive on earth....
And now only those who loved her
Know what that little line is worth.
For it matters not, how much we own;
The cars...the house...the cash.
What matters is how we live and love
And how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard...
Are there things you'd like to change?
For you never know how much time is left.
That can still be rearranged.
If we could just slow down enough
To consider what's true and real,
And always try to understand
The way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger,
And show appreciation more
And love the people in our lives
Like we've never loved before.
If we treat each other with respect,
And more often wear a smile...
Remembering that this special dash
Might only last a little while.

So, when your eulogy's being read
With your life's action's to rehash...
Would you be proud of the things they say
About how you spent your dash?
~ author unknown ~



Things Aren't Always What They Seem...

Two traveling angels stopped to spend the night in the home of a wealthy family. The family was rude and refused to let the angels stay in the mansion's guest room. Instead the angels were given a space in the cold basement.

As they made their bed on the hard floor, the older angel saw a hole in the wall and repaired it. When the younger angel asked why, the older angel replied, "Things aren't always what they seem..."

The next night the pair came to rest at the house of a very poor, but very hospitable farmer and his wife. After sharing what little food they had the couple let the angels sleep in their bed where they could have a good night's rest. When the sun came up the next morning the angels found the farmer and his wife in tears. Their only cow, whose milk had been their sole income, lay dead in the field.

The younger angel was infuriated and asked the older angel "how could you have let this happen! The first man had everything, yet you helped him. The second family had little but was willing to share everything, and you let their cow die. Things aren't always what they seem...", the older angel replied.

"When we stayed in the basement of the mansion, I noticed there was gold stored in that hole in the wall. Since the owner was so obsessed with greed and unwilling to share his good fortune, I sealed the wall so he would never find it. Things aren't always what they seem. Last night as we slept in the farmer's bed, the angel of death came for his wife. I told him to take the cow instead. Things aren't always what they seem."

Sometimes this is exactly what happens when things don't turnout the way we think they should. If you have faith in God, just trust that every outcome is always to your advantage. You might not realize it until much later, but things do happen for a reason. ~ author unknown ~

Justice - When you get what you deserve
Mercy - When you don't get what you deserve
Grace - When you get what you don't deserve



Heaven's Grocery Store

I was walking down life's highway a long time ago. One day I saw a sign that read, "HEAVEN'S GROCERY STORE". As I got a little closer, the door opened wide, and then I found myself standing inside. I saw a host of ANGELS. They were standing everywhere. One handed me a basket and said, "My Child, shop with care". Everything a human needed was in that grocery store. And if you couldn't carry all, you could come back the next day for more.

First, I got some PATIENCE. LOVE was in the same row. Further down was UNDERSTANDING; you need that everywhere you go. I got a box or two of WISDOM, a bag or two of FAITH. I just couldn't miss the HOLY GHOST, for it was all over the place. I stopped to get some STRENGTH and COURAGE to help me run this race. By then my basket was getting full, but I remembered I needed some GRACE. I didn't forget SALVATION, for SALVATION was free. So I tried to get enough of that to save both you and me.

Then I started up to the counter to pay my grocery bill. For I thought I had everything to do the MASTER'S will. As I went up the aisle, I saw PRAYER; and I just had to put that in, for I knew when I stepped outside, I would run into sin. PEACE and JOY were plentiful; they were last on the shelf. SONG and PRAISE were hanging near, so I just helped myself.

Then I said to the angel, "Now, how much do I owe?" He smiled again and said, "MY CHILD, GOD PAID YOUR BILL A LONG, LONG TIME AGO."

This blessing came from Venezuela and was written by Saul Anthony Lavoid, a missionary from South America. It has been around the world 9 times and has now been brought to you. ....... ~ author unknown ~



Your Best Friend

You say: "It's impossible" ~
God says: All things are possible
(Luke 18:27)

You say: "I'm too tired" ~
God says: I will give you rest
(Matthew 11:28-30)

You say: "Nobody really loves me" ~
God says: I love you
(John 3:16 & John 13:34)

You say: "I can't go on" ~
God says: My grace is sufficient
(II Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)

You say: "I can't figure things out" ~
God says: I will direct your steps
(Proverbs 3:5-6)

You say: "I can't do it" ~
God says: You can do all things
(Philippians 4:13)

You say: "I'm not able" ~
God says: I am able
(II Corinthians 9:8)

You say:  "It's not worth it" ~
God says: It will be worth it
(Roman 8:28)

You say:  "I can't forgive myself" ~
God says:  I FORGIVE YOU
(I John1:9 & Romans 8:1)

You say:  "I can't manage" ~
God says: I will supply all your needs
(Philippians 4:19)

You say:  "I'm afraid" ~
God says: I have not given you a spirit of fear
(II Timothy 1:7)

You say: "I'm always worried and frustrated" ~
God says: Cast all your cares on ME
(I Peter 5:7)

You say: "I don't have enough faith" ~
God says: I've given everyone a measure of faith
(Romans 12:3)

You say:  "I'm not smart enough" ~
God says:  I give you wisdom
(I Corinthians 1:30)

You say:  "I feel all alone" ~
God says:  I will never leave you or forsake you
(Hebrews 13:5)
~ author unknown ~



Fold Your Wings

Fold your wings, Little Bird,
And mold yourself to me without a word.
Tuck your head against my chest.
It strengthens me to give you rest.
You've worked hard against the wind,
But now your trust I must defend.

Your Friends at school turned against you.
You've not a clue of what to do,
But still are anxious to be right
And would really rather not fight.
Listen children while Mother sings:

Fold your wings, Little Bird,
And mold yourself to me without a word.
Tuck your head against my chest.
It strengthens me to give you rest.
You've worked hard against the wind,
But now your trust I must defend.

At last this working day is through
And eager, I come home to you.
There you greet me with weary tears
Our children's fighting rings your ears
Still you listen when I sing:

Fold your wings, Little Bird,
And mold yourself to me without a word.
Tuck your head against my chest.
It strengthens me to give you rest.
You've worked hard against the wind,
But now your trust I must defend.

When all is quiet within our nest
With the knowledge I tried my best
To love others as You ask
I kneel before You and this task
Then listen to You, my Lord, as you sing:

Fold your wings, Little Bird,
And mold yourself to me without a word.
Tuck your head against my chest.
It strengthens me to give you rest.
You've worked hard against the wind,
But now your trust I must defend.
~ (c) 10/9/97 by David Smith ~





Life is changed, not taken away.
To live in hearts we leave behind is not to die.

Page updated: 10-27-09
Site Designed, Created, Maintained by:
Mom ~ December 07, 1999
©Marilyn Jeffries, Reflection of the Echo, 1974-2009
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