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Fields of Blessings on Father’s Day

On Father’s Day we take the time

To turn our thoughts to dad

Thank him for the home he gave

For all the things we had.

We think about the fleeting years

Too quickly, gone for good

It seems like only yesterday

I’d go back if I could.

A time when dad was always there

No matter what the weather

Always strong when things went wrong

He held our lives together.

He strived so hard from day to day

And never once complained

With steady hands, he worked the land

And kept the family name.

He taught us that hard work pays off

You reap just what you sow

He said that if you tend your crops

Your field will overflow.

My harvest has been bountiful

He taught me how to give

In his firm and steadfast way

He taught me how to live.

Dad dwells among the angels now

He left us much too soon

He glides across a golden field

Above the harvest moon.

I see him in the fields of grain

He rides upon the wind

When my path is beaten down

He picks me up again.

Copyright © 2003 Marilyn Ferguson


My best friend in the whole wide world is Grandpa
There’s no one who means more to me than Grandpa.
No matter if I’m still a lad,
If I’ve been good or I’ve been bad,
The one I want beside me is my Grandpa.

Nobody understands me like my Grandpa.
Nobody hugs me quite as good as Grandpa.
If I fall down and stub my toe--
Something I did not long ago--
The one I want to comfort me is Grandpa.

When I grow up I want to be like Grandpa.
The smartest man in all the world is Grandpa.
He’s read about a billion books
‘bout Indians and small town crooks.
Nobody tells a story like my Grandpa.

No one can catch a fish quite like my Grandpa.
Nobody makes their fishing lures like Grandpa.
No matter if we’re on a pier
Or in a boat; I have no fear.
I’m safe as I can be beside my Grandpa.

One day when I was talking to my Grandpa,
He took my hand and asked, “Do you love Grandpa?”
I promised him I always would,
And be the boy I know I should
And I’d grow up to be just like my Grandpa.

Mariane Holbrook

© Used with permission

The Secret of Life

Take time to Think.
It is the source of Power.

Take time to Play.
It is the secret to perpetual Youth.

Take time to be Friendly.
It is the road to Happiness.

Take time to Work.
It is the price of Success.

Take time to Pray.
It is the greatest power on Earth.

Take time to Love and be Loved.
It is the way of God.

~ Author Unknown ~

Pass on the secret. . .
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Old Glory

Hello! Remember Me?
Some call me Old Glory, others call me the Star Spangled Banner, but whatever they call me, I am your Flag - the Flag of the United States of America...

There has been something that has been bothering me, so I thought that I might talk it over with you here today. I remember some time ago that people were lined up on both sides of the street for a parade. A high school band was behind me and, naturally, I was leading the parade. When your Daddy saw me coming along waving in the breeze, he immediately removed his hat and placed it so that his right hand was directly over his heart.

And you - I remember you.
Standing there as straight as a soldier, you didn't have any hat, but you were giving me the right salute. Remember, they taught you in school to place your right hand over your heart, and little sister, not to be outdone, was saluting the same as you.

There were some soldiers home on leave and they were standing at attention giving the military salute. Oh, I was very proud as I came down your street that day.

Now, I may sound as if I am a little conceited, Well I am! I have a right to be, because I represent you, the people of the United States of America.

But what happened? I am still the same old flag. Oh, I have a couple more stars added since you were a boy. A lot more stars added since the beginning of this country, and lot more blood shed since that patriotic day so long ago.

Now I don't feel a proud as I used to. When I come down your street, some people just stand there with their hands in their pockets and give me a small glance and then look away. I see children running around and shouting. They don't seem to know who I am.

Is it a sin to be patriotic anymore? Have some people forgotten what I stand for? Have they forgotten all the battlefields where men have fought and died to keep this nation free? When you salute me you are actually saluting them!

Take a look at the memorial rolls some time. Look at the names of those who never came back. Some of them were friends and relatives of yours. That's whom you are saluting, not me!

Well, it won't be long until I'll be coming down your street again. So, when you see me, stand straight, place your hand over your heart and you'll see me waving back-- that's my salute to you. And then I will know you remember who I am...
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Historic U.S. flag returns to Tennessee

By KRISTIN M. HALL, Associated Press Writer Wed Jun 14, 3:55 AM ET

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - When the first U.S. flag known as Old Glory was last flown prominently here, the nation was embroiled in the Civil War.

Now, more than 140 years after the flag became a legend when it was flown atop the state Capitol to celebrate the capture of the city from Confederate forces in 1862, the flag has returned to Tennessee.

Old Glory is on display at an eight-month-long exhibit at the Tennessee State Museum, where visitors can learn about the flag's origins and the efforts of its owner William Driver to keep it safe during wartime.

The 182-year-old homemade flag is on a rare loan from the
Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of American History and had to be carefully shipped and displayed because of its fragile condition.

"This loan was an exception because of its local ties to Nashville," said Suzanne Thomassen-Krauss, a senior textile conservator at the museum in Washington. "It's probably the last time it will be loaned out."

The 10-foot-by-17-foot flag has to rest horizontally to keep stress off the very fine and thinning fabric. The blue background has become almost translucent and the edges are tattered and torn.

Driver, a sea captain from New England, came up with the nickname when he was given the flag by a group of women who had sewn it in Salem, Mass., in 1824, said Dan Pomeroy, the state museum's chief curator.

Driver, who used the flag for years on his merchant ship, retired to Nashville in 1837 and regularly flew the flag at his home for federal holidays and his birthday, Thomassen-Krauss said.

"After the election of 1860, the time of the secession crisis, the flag was not a welcome site in Nashville," Pomeroy said.

Driver, a staunch Union supporter, had his daughter disassemble the flag so it could be hidden in a comforter and kept secure. He was concerned that it would be seized, Thomassen-Kraus said.

He didn't bring it out again until Nashville became the first Confederate city captured by Union forces.

"It became a sensation in the North — the story of this old man who hid the flag from the Confederates and then raised it on the Capitol building after its capture," Pomeroy said.

"But it was hardly a heroic image in the South," Pomeroy said.

As Old Glory's fame spread, the nickname soon became a term of affection for the Union flag.

Driver's daughter gave the flag to President Warren G. Harding as a gift in 1922, and it was put in federal repository at the Smithsonian, Thomassen-Krauss said.

The flag is on display until November along with dozens of artifacts from the state's collection, including pictures of Driver, photos of his Nashville home, letters and ship logs.


On the Net:
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Commentary: What's your favorite color?
by Sementha Mathews
347th Wing Public Affairs
11/20/01 - MOODY AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. (AFPN) -- "Mommy, what's your favorite color?" asked my 8-year-old daughter, Noelani, while coloring another picture to add to the collage on my kitchen cabinets.

"I don't have a favorite, I like them all," is my usual reply since she began asking me a thousand times ago. Usually, she anticipates my answer and just smiles an "I thought you'd say that" smile.

Today, she placed her crayon down for a moment, shocked that I had finally changed my mind.

"Red, white and blue," I responded this time. "Yes, I believe that's my favorite color."

"But that's three colors, Mommy," she said. Technically, she was right. But how can you separate one from the others?

Since the Continental Congress' decision on June 14, 1777, the colors have proudly been those of our beloved American flag. Although no one knows with absolute certainty, many historians believe Congressman Francis Hopkinson actually designed the flag, and Betsy Ross, a Philadelphia seamstress, sewed the first one together.

Nevertheless, the "Old Red, White and Blue" has become a proud symbol of this great nation.

The symbolic colors of the flag were explained in a book published by the House of Representatives in 1989 entitled "Our Flag."

White signifies purity and innocence; red signifies hardiness and valor; and blue signifies vigilance, perseverance and justice.

Francis Scott Key, whose words gave birth to "The Star-Spangled Banner," our national anthem, is said to have penned his famous words while witnessing the British attack on Fort McHenry, Md., during the War of 1812, and the flag flying victoriously in the distance. The conclusion of the third verse states, "And the Star-Spangled Banner in triumph doth wave, o'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave."

Who could not adore those colors -- red, white and blue? Though separate in their boldness of hue, they unite in a pattern of stars and stripes universally known for this country and its people. It's the color of freedom. It's the color of bravery. It's the color of victory.

I love them so much. I have decorated almost everything I own in them, from my screen saver to my T-shirt. I have the flag displayed in front of my home, one hanging in every window, and one on my car antenna. I'm wearing a flag pin on my collar. Even my daughter's shoelaces display the flag colors wherever she goes.

Apparently, I'm not the only one who favors the colors. A recent trip to Florida took me through some backcountry roads, in some cases in the middle of what seemed like nowhere, where I was delighted to see my favorite color on almost every door and mailbox.

The events of Sept. 11 have made us, as a people, more patriotic than I can remember, and the colors, seemingly "in" again, are displayed on anything imaginable ... including my kitchen cabinet.

"You know what, Mommy?" my daughter said, proudly displaying for me her newest masterpiece: the American flag. "That's my favorite color too!" (Courtesy Air Combat Command News Service)
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* * * Four Important Things To KNOW: #1) For ALL (Americans, Muslims, Jews, Catholics, Hindus, Buddhist, Asians, Presbyterians, Europeans, Baptist, Brazilians, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc.) have sinned & fall short of the glory of God. #2) For the wages of above (see #1) are DEATH (Hell, eternal separation from God, & damnation) but the Gift (free & at no charge to you) of God (Creator, Jehovah, & Trinity) is Eternal Life (Heaven) through (in union with) Jesus Christ (God, Lord, 2nd Person of The Trinity, Messiah, Prince of Peace & Savior of the World). #3) For God so greatly loved & dearly prized the world (Americans, Muslims, Jews, Catholics, Hindus, Buddhist, Asians, Presbyterians, Europeans, Baptist, Brazilians, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc.) that He even gave up His only begotten (unique) Son, that whosoever (anyone, anywhere, anytime - while still living) believes (trust in, relies on, clings to, depends completely on) Him shall have eternal (everlasting) life (heaven). #4) Jesus said: "I am THE WAY, THE TRUTH, & THE LIFE. No one (male/female - American, Muslim, Jew, Catholic, Hindu, Buddhist, Asian, Presbyterian, European, Baptist, Brazilian, Mormons, Methodist, French, etc. ) comes (arrives) to the Father (with GOD in Heaven) EXCEPT BY (through) ME (no other name). *** This wonderful loving GOD gives you the choice - - - (Rev. 3:20) {Please note that church membership, baptism, doing good things, etc. are not requirements for becoming a Christian - however they are great afterwards!!!} *** Jesus said, "Wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction (Hell, damnation, eternal punishment), and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life (Heaven, eternal happiness, forever with God), and only a few find it.

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But these are written so that you may
believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the
Son of God, and that by believing in
Him you will have life. Jn 20:31

Seek the Lord while He may be found;
call on Him while He is near. Let the
wicked forsake his way and the evil
man his thoughts. Let him turn to the
Lord, and He will have mercy on him,
and to our God, for He will freely
pardon. "For My thoughts are not
your thoughts, neither are your ways
My ways," declares the Lord. "As the
heavens are higher than the earth, so
are My ways higher than your ways
and My thoughts than your thoughts.
As the rain and the snow come down
from heaven, and do not return to it
without watering the earth and making
it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed
for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is My word that goes out from My
mouth: It will not return to Me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire and
achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
You will go out in joy and be led forth
in peace; the mountains and hills will
burst into song before you, and all the
trees of the field will clap their hands.
Instead of the thornbush will grow the
pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle
will grow. This will be for the Lord's
renown, for an everlasting sign, which
will not be destroyed." Is 55

O Lord, you have searched me and you
know me. You know when I sit and when
I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.
You discern my going out and my lying
down; you are familiar with all my ways.
Before a word is on my tongue you know
it completely, O Lord. You hem me in -
behind and before; you have laid your
hand upon me. Such knowledge is too
wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain.

Where can I go from your Spirit? Where
can I flee from your presence? If I go up
to the heavens, you are there; if I make
my bed in the depths, you are there.

If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.

If I say, "Surely the darkness will hide
me and the light become night around
me," even the darkness will not be dark
to you; the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you. For you
created my inmost being; you knit me
together in my mother's womb. I praise
you because I am fearfully and wonderfully
made; your works are wonderful, I know
that full well. My frame was not hidden
from you when I was made in the secret
place. When I was woven together in the
depths of the earth, your eyes saw my
unformed body. All the days ordained
for me were written in your book before
one of them came to be.

How precious to me are your thoughts,
O God! How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would
outnumber the grains of sand. When
I awake, I am still with you. Search me,
O God, and know my heart; test me
and know my anxious thoughts. See
if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.
Ps 139

But indeed for this purpose I have raised you up,
that I may show My power in you, and that My
Name may be declared in all the earth. Ex 9:16

When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of Glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.

Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small:
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.
- - Isaac Watts

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