Be Thankful by Unknown

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don’t know something,
for it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.
Be thankful for your limitations,
because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge,
because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes.
They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you’re tired and weary,
because it means you’ve made a difference.

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who
are also thankful for the setbacks.
Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
and they can become your blessings.

Happy thanksgiving every one! Today I want each of you reading this to think of something you can be thankful for.

Barak and Deborah

Read Judges chapters 4 – 5

I have decided today that I would share a story that is not really well known. We all know the story of the great heroes of faith–Daniel, David, Moses, Joseph and so many more. These men were heralded as great heroes of faith and rightly so, but there is one more man that was also heralded, but we never think of him and gloss over his name. Well, today I have decided to tell his story. We are not glossing over him this time. His name was Barak and his companion was the Prophetess Deborah. Deborah is mentioned in Judges chapters 4 – 5. She was a married women as well as a judge to Israel. She is the only woman judge mentioned. Before you scream sexism, let me explain one simple fact about God–He has never belittled women in the Bible. It’s actually on the contrary, in Psalms He actually speaks of a virtuous woman and how important she is. In Jewish culture it is the woman who decides the religion of the child. He tells numerous stories of women in the Bible who were used of God. Tamar, Ruth, Mary, Rahab and many more women changed the lives of those they encountered and were mentioned in the lineage of Christ. In the very last chapter of the book of Job, Job leaves an inheritance for his daughters and mentions them by name. This was something that was unheard as the men inherited and the women were married off, but not for Job.

Deborah was no different than any of these women. God used her mightily and this is made very clear in Judge 4 – 5. So let’s dive right into their story.

Now, as Israel so often did, they were evil and sinful. Because of this God allowed them to be sold to a Gentile king by the name of Jabin. He had a vast and powerful army and the Israelites cried to God for help as this king treated them so horribly, It was during this time that we meet Deborah, a prophetess who judged Israel. She sat out in the open under a palm tree so that all could see her. Here we see her heart. She did nothing in secret and was a honourable woman. God reveals to her one day the pain of Israel and she calls for a man by the of Barak. Enter Barak and she says to him, “Hasn’t the God of Israel commanded you to gather an army of 10,000 from the Naphtali tribe and go on to mount Tabor? God has promised to go with you and fight for you. Now, I will go to the river of Kishon Sisera, and King Jabin’s captain and all his army I will deliver into your hand.” Barak after hearing all this, looked to Deborah and said, “I will only go if you come with me. If you don’t go, I won’t either.” She said to him, “Of course I will go with you. However, this battle will not be for you honour or glory. The Lord will deliver Sisera into the hand of a woman.” It was then that she got up and went with Barak. (Before I go further, let me mention something God has taught me here. Barak did not choose her because she was a woman or a prophetess, but because he knew God was with her and he needed to have her with him because of this) So Barak went a gathered an army from Kadesh and Naphtali of 10,000 men and Deborah went with him.

Now while Barak and Deborah were putting their plans in place, there was a man who had pitched his tent in Zaanaim near to Kedesh. He had completely severed all ties with his family and tribe, the Kenites. He went to Sisera and exposed where Barak’s was located. Sisera, in response, went and gathered his armies to head for Barak. Then something strange happened.

Deborah told Barak to go up. She told him that God would defeat the armies on Barak’s behalf and give him the victory. Barak then headed out with his army of 10,000. As promised, God delivered the army of Sisera to be defeated. Sisera jumped off his horse and ran for his life. He was pursued by Barak, but somehow managed to escape from him.

While running, he ran into the tent of Jael, a woman married to a Kenite. She invited him in and gave him milk to drink and covered him with her cloak. He asked her to keep watch by the tent door in case anyone should come passed. She remembered what he had asked her, “If anyone asks for me, you tell them I am not here.” Jael, however, had other plans. She took a tent peg (at that time it would’ve been a large metal nail) and a hammer, proceeding to nail it straight through his temple. He was so sound asleep, he didn’t even stir and right there he died. Like Sisera asked, she stood by the tent, keeping watch and when Barak and his army came passed she led him right to where Sisera lay dead, the nail still through his temple. Through this the Israelites had victory over not only Sisera and his armies, but also Jabin, Canaan’s king. After this, the Israelites were a prosperous nation.

And that is where our story ends. Here we see not one heroine, but two. Deborah and Jael both were led by God to work his perfect plan. Barak, too, was used by God.

This little bit of history demonstrates to us that if you allow God to work through you, He will grant, not just you, but everyone you touch with His words, victory. I hope that, as you read the story of Deborah, Jael and Barak, you will be inspired to be brave and take the world by storm. Nothing can stop you from touching the stars, if God is lifting you up to them.

If you continue onto the next chapter 5, you will see that after this great victory all Deborah and Barak did, for a whole chapter, was praise God. When God uses you, don’t forget to praise Him and let the whole world know what He has done just like Barak and Deborah.

I hope this boosts your Monday. Be bold. Be brave. Believe. That’s all you need to know.

God bless all of you, my precious avids. Have a lovely Monday😉📚

Monday by Annie McLaughin

Monday was terrible.
Horrific.
I spent the day sulking on my lonesome and went home ready to erupt.
I could feel the slight tingle of tears threatening their way through my eyelids
Ready to pour over the second they perched open
But due to my lack of sleep last night
I doubt I could even build up the strength to open my glossy eyes
Even if I wanted to

In a weird sense
I enjoyed the mere thought of Monday being able to make me cry
I almost laughed
Or screamed
Or both

A year ago today
Everyday was a Monday to me
Everyday went horribly
Everyday made me come home crying and lock myself in my room
I was so used to that constant repetitive torture
That Monday appeared to be no different than any other day
Monday was just… It.
Tuesday was “it”
Wednesday was “it”
Thursday was “it”
Friday was “it”
Even Saturday and Sunday were “it”

But now, today
Monday is distinct
In a horrifyingly gruesome way
And this tear-jerking unsatisfying Monday gave me hope

Monday made me cry
Tuesday did not
Wednesday did not
Thursday did not
Friday did not
Not even Saturday or Sunday made me cry
Only Monday made me cry
Only Monday

Just as Monday made 7 billion other humans cry
On this torturous inescapable earth
It also made me cry

And that gave me hope that maybe I really am normal
Or I can be
Or I will be

Because Monday is unbearable for everyone
And Monday is unbearable for me
And the rest of the week is alright for most people
And it was alright for me
And Saturday and Sunday are fun for most people
And Saturday and Sunday were fun for me

Somewhere
Deep inside my clouded, muddy mind
I caught a glimpse of hope
That maybe
There is hope for me
Maybe I am cured
Maybe I can be
Maybe I will be

Sandwiches

Yesterday,
I went to the deli
and ordered a grilled cheese on a roll.
The rest of that day was delicious.
Warm melted Swiss cheese.

Today,
I went to the deli
and ordered a chicken cutlet on a hero
with nothing on it.
The rest of my day was regular;
no sauce or anything extra needed.

The next day,
I went to the deli
And ordered a turkey, egg, and cheese
on a roll.
I tasted ketchup and mayonnaise
along with everything else.
I could have changed it,
but instead threw it away
disgusted and frustrated.
The rest of my day was not what I ordered.

The day after that,
I went to the deli
and ordered a tuna on whole wheat bread.
I received it on a hero
which I didn’t want because
I wasn’t that hungry.
So I decided to share
one half of my sandwich
with a homeless man
considering I had no one else
to share my sandwich with.

The day after that,
I went to the deli
and got a PB n J.
I bit into my sandwich
and tasted no jelly.
Not sweet,
but not a big deal for me either.
I went about the rest of my day
tasting peanut butter and bread.

I love this poem since it demonstrates how something as small as a sandwich can turn your whole day around. Small things can affect you more than you realize, but that all depends on you. I’ve been there myself as have we all.

God bless you all today. Have a great weekend all my darling avidReaders! 🥰👧

On a Park Bench

Lonely Man Sitting on a Bench by istockphotos.com

He sits alone and stares out over the pond, wondering how his life got to this point. Why is he sitting here alone? He had so many friends, but none could sit here by him in these cold, lonely hours. Fair weather friends. That’s what they call them, isn’t it? Why do we have so many fair weather friends, yet so little that stick with you through it all? He knew that all those that laughed with them, wouldn’t always cry with him when tears need be shed. Those that cried with him, he valued as gold and jewels. All those fair weather friends could not compare to one friend that stuck with him through the good and bad. Those were the only friends he needed when he thought of it.

He was watching the ducks as they glided along the water. He felt a kind of calmness settle over his mind and soul as he watched them. They seemed to be isolated from the rest of the world as they glided. He leaned forward with his chin in his hands and quietly watched on in envy. If only his own life were as simple. He had responsibilities. He had a job, a house and car to maintain. He had his parents, his debts and so much more that he didn’t want to think about. The higher he climbed up the ladder, the more he realized that it only brought on more loneliness and depression. He missed his days when he worked in the mailroom. He had friends then. They would work hard, but laugh harder. They ate lunch together. They laughed about work and they spoke of their dreams and ambitions. Stephanie dreamed of being a graphic novelist. Peter wanted to be a veterinarian. Mark had ambitions to be a top salesman. None had their dreams filled and now he sat where he had wanted to be. His ambitions had taken over and now he realized that his success had cost him the joy he had once felt amongst his mailroom friends. Where were they? He wondered as a jogger went passed him. He had jogged once when he was a young college student, now he had time for nothing, but work. He was 45 and successful, but there was a great gulf between the man he was and the man he had dreamed he would be. He thought being rich and successful would make him happy. His penthouse apartment felt empty and cold. When he had first moved in, he thought this was it–he had made it. No. He had been wrong. He was 45, unmarried and no time for any kind of social life. Every chance he got, he would make plans with his friends and they would visit for as long as they could, but those were rare occasions that he leapt at. Most of the time he spent alone in his ivory tower working and dreaming of days gone by.

When he was a young boy he had played in the streets of his home town with the other neighbourhood boys. By all accounts he had been a free-spirited, loving child. Fiercely independent and adventurous, but somewhere along the way he had forgotten about that little boy. Why is that? Why do grown-ups lose that freedom as they go along? Why do they allow themselves to be held captive by the world? All these thoughts rushed through his mind. He let his head fall back and he stared at the clouds–the vast expanse. Birds were in the sky in their triangle flight path. Migration. How he envied the birds! How he wished he, too, could fly to happier places! He closed his eyes and let the cool breeze ruffle his short-cropped hair. He could’ve stayed that for hours. He wished he could, but the real world was always knocking, waiting.

He felt his phone vibrating and looked down. A message from work. He looked back to the ducks and took one last glance around the park. He got up from the bench, but not to go to work. Instead he would book a trip to anywhere and get lost in the same adventure he longed for all those years. The world could wait for him. He had to get away and be who we wanted to be without people around him. He went home and looked around, got out his laptop, booked the earliest flight to Europe and left his phone on his desk. He threw some clothes in a backpack and left. How long he’d be gone, he didn’t know nor did he really care.

If you’ve ever wished you could run away, you will understand how our protagonist feels. Wishing to disappear–to lose yourself in the crowd.

Have a blessed day all of you darling avidReaders📚

Against Dying by Kaveh Akbar

if the body is just a parable

about the body if breath

is a leash to hold the mind

then staying alive should be

easier than it is most sick

things become dead things

at twenty-four my liver was

already covered in fatty

rot my mother filled a tiny

coffin with picture frames

I spent the year drinking

from test tubes weeping

wherever I went somehow

it happened wellness crept

into me like a roach nibbling

through an eardrum for

a time the half minutes

of fire in my brainstem

made me want to pull out

my spine but even those

have become bearable so

how shall I live now

in the unexpected present

I spent so long in a lover’s

quarrel with my flesh

the peace seems over-

cautious too-polite I say

stop being cold or make

that blue bluer and it does

we speak to each other

in this code where every word

means obey I sit under

a poplar tree with a thermos

of chamomile feeling

useless as an oath against

dying I put a sugar cube

on my tongue and

swallow it like a pill

Have a great day all my darling avidReaders! I know I haven’t released a proper article since last week, my mind’s been kind of all over the place and writing just didn’t come to me. I also don’t want to write just to post weekly and I post something that’s rubbish. I’ve also been busy working on my next book. If you follow me on my socials, you will see I just finished releasing the last chapter of my book “Stranger” on Patreon. I’m now busy with the next one, Idyllic. It’s been very busy over here with work, too.

And Then There Were None

Ten Little Sailor Boys went out to dine,
One choked his little self, and then there were nine.
Nine Little Sailor Boys sat up very late,
One overslept himself, and then there were eight.
Eight Little Sailor Boys traveling in Devon,
One stayed there, and then there were seven.
Seven Little Sailor Boys chopping up sticks,
One chopped himself in halves, and then there were six.
Six Little Sailor Boys playing with a hive,
A bumblebee stung one, and then there were five.
Five Little Sailor boys going in for law,
One got in Chancery, and then there were four.
Four Little Sailor Boys going out to sea,
A red herring swallowed one, and then there were three.
Three Little Sailor Boys walking in the zoo,
A big bear hugged one, and then there were two.
Two Little Sailor Boys sitting in the sun,
One got frizzled up, and then there was one.
One Little Sailor Boy left all alone,
He went and hung himself, and then there were none.

From one of my favourite mystery novels. If you want a good read or enjoy mini-series then watch Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None. It really is a good read and made a great mini-series!

Have a great day all my darling avidReaders! God bless you today!

Coloured Rainbows

Rainbows

Dare to dream of coloured rainbows

and fine “castles in the air” –

and a Sun that shines so brightly

making cloudy days seem rare!

When you aim to find a purpose

then your life becomes worthwhile.

You will dazzle those about you –

when you show your own true style!

Our dreams are not for keeping –

simply borrowed for a while;

to console us in adversity

and teach us how to smile!

Dream again of coloured rainbows

and of bluebirds flying high.

You will overcome the obstacles

once you decide to try!

Have a blessed day all my darling avidReaders🥰😇

A CIRCLE OF FRIENDSHIP

Poems of Encouragement by Roslyn (Ros) Mansell

A circle of friendship…

is bound together,

by sharing good moments

and Life’s stormy weather:

And should you feel lonely…

you needn’t pretend;

surrender your false pride

and lean on a friend.

A circle of friendship…

is a growing delight;

it helps dispel sadness,

as it lets in the ‘light.’

A circle of friendship…

warms you in its glow;

take that warmth with you

and feel the ‘love’ grow.

You stand in a circle…

with hands reaching out;

the giving of yourself,

is what friendship’s about!

Have a great Monday all my darling avidReaders. 👧🐰 God bless all of you.

The Boogeyman

You wake up in a sweat. You smell like fear and the thing under your bed knows it. You leap out of your bed and look around in the dark frantically searching for any sign of life. It’s just you, but what was that noise? It’s coming from the closet. You throw the doors open and see nothing but clothes. Again you hear it–scratching as though something were trying to claw its way out of hell. You run for the window–perhaps someone is outside? A cat maybe? You hope and the closer you get, the louder the noise. You see nothing out the window, but still the scratching is there and it’s deafeningly loud. What is that? Terror takes over your body and you’re frozen. Something slowly and gently strokes your leg and you feel drops of sweat fall onto my clothes. What is it? What does it want? Will I ever escape? You can’t run to hide or get out of here! “Someone help!” You scream, but your mouth is closed. It can’t open! You start into an outright panic. Your chest is heaving and your body pains as you try to move your legs. The hand has now tightened its grip on your ankle. You want to cry out, but your mouth is stuck shut tight. You begin to feel like you will never breathe again. Suddenly there are two hands pulling at you–dragging you. You try to fight to get out of their grip, but they grip tighter and drag you. Down you go, deeper and deeper under your bed. The darkness–the great engulfing darkness. It is only once you are deep within this darkness that you realize something you hadn’t before–it is you. The vile, dark part of you. The part you never knew you had. It’s dragging you. Down. Down.

Fear. Panic. Horror. Shock. All pulse through veins as you realize that within is a darker evil than you even knew. A part of you that remained hidden until the darkness fell and you begin to fear the demon inside. You put it under your head, but you can no longer remember when. For years he waited, grew. Darker and darker. Stronger and stronger. Until one night, he caught you. In your fear, he caught you.

You are now staring at him face-to-face. He smiles a sickening smile at you as you try to get away. How do you run away from your own evil–can you? The darkness deep within–can you escape your darkness? Staring down your own wickedness is a hard thing. You know that now. All those years of righteous deeds you’d thought you’d done; they all amounted to this thing under your bed. When did your righteousness become this demon under your bed? You can’t tell. When….when….when….You ask over and over. There is no answer. You can never know where it began, because you never thought of it as evil when you first let this demon under your bed. Now it is too late–he has come for you.

Hello all my darling avidReaders. I know the above is bleak and dark. I found it appropriate for Friday the 13th.

I wanted to tell you something. If this resonated with you in any way and you want to talk further, you know where to find my socials. DM me on Instagram or FB and just talk to me. I won’t judge you or get irritated and ignore you. I am never too busy for any of you.

God bless all of you, my darling avidReaders!💖 Have a lovely weekend. Happy Triskaidekaphobia day!