Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
October 23, 2015

Twas’ 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38
When 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven’s gate.
Their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air.
They could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there.

They were filled with such joy; they didn’t know what to say.
They remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.
“Where are we?” asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse.
“This is heaven” declared a small boy. “We’re spending Christmas at God’s house”.

When what to their wondering eyes did appear,
But Jesus, their savior, the children gathered near.

He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same.
Then He opened His arms and He called them by name.
And in that moment was joy, that only heaven can bring,
Those children all flew into the arms of their King…

And as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace,
One small girl turned and looked at Jesus’ face.
And as if He could read all the questions she had,
He gently whispered to her, “I’ll take care of mom and dad.

Then He looked down on earth, the world far below…
He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe…
Then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,
“Let My power and presence re-enter this land!

“May this country be delivered from the hands of fools”
“I’m taking back this nation. I’m taking back the schools!
“Then He and the children stood up without a sound.
“Come now my children let me show you around.

“Excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran…
All displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.
And I heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight,
In the midst of this darkness, “I am still the Light.”

 by Cameo Smith
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
October 16, 2015

Man: God, can I ask You a question?

God: Sure

Man: Promise You won’t get mad …

God: I promise

Man: Why did You let so much stuff happen to me today?

God: What do u mean?

Man: Well, I woke up late

God: Yes

Man: My car took forever to start

God: Okay

Man: at lunch they made my sandwich wrong & I had to wait

God: Hmm

Man: On the way home, my phone went DEAD, just as I picked up a call

God: All right

Man: And on top of it all, when I got home I just wanted to soak my
feet in my new foot massager & relax. BUT it wouldn’t work!!! Nothing
went right today! Why did You do that?

God: Let me see, the death angel was at your bed this morning & I had
to send one of My Angels to battle him for your life. I let you sleep
through that .

Man (humbled): OH

GOD: I didn’t let your car start because there was a drunk driver on
your route that would have hit you if you were on the road.

Man: (ashamed)

God: The first person who made your sandwich today was sick & I didn’t
want you to catch what they have, I knew you couldn’t afford to miss

Man (embarrassed): Okay

God: Your phone went dead because the person that was calling was
going to give false witness about what you said on that call, I didn’t
even let you talk to them so you would be covered.

Man (softly): I see God

God: Oh and that foot mas-sager, it had a shortage that was going to
throw out all of the power in your house tonight. I didn’t think you
wanted to be in the dark.

Man: I’m Sorry God

God: Don’t be sorry,  just learn to Trust Me…. in All things , the Good
& the bad.

Man: I will trust You.

God: And don’t doubt that My plan for your day is Always Better than your plan.

Man: I won’t God. And let me just tell you God, Thank You for Everything today.

God: You’re welcome child. It was just another day being your God and
looking after My Children…

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Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
October 14, 2004

A woman who died found herself standing outside the Pearly Gates, being greeted by St. Peter.

She asked him, “Oh, is this place what I really think it is? It’s so beautiful. Did I really make it to Heaven?”

To which St. Peter replied, “Yes, my dear, these are the Gates to Heaven. But you must do one more thing before you can enter.”

The woman was very excited, and asked of St. Peter what she must do to pass through the gates.

“Spell a word,” St. Peter replied. “What word?” she asked.

“Love,” answered St. Peter.  The woman promptly replied, “L-o-v-e.”

St. Peter congratulated her on her good fortune to have made it to Heaven, and asked her if she would mind taking his place at the gates for a few minutes while he went to the bathroom.

“I’d be honored,” she said, “but what should I do if someone comes while you are gone?”

St. Peter reassured her, and instructed the woman to simply have any newcomers to the Pearly Gates to spell a word as she had done.

So the woman is left sitting in St. Peter’s chair and watching the beautiful angels soaring around her when a man approaches the gates. She realizes it is her husband.

“What happened?” she cried, “Why are you here?”

Her husband stared at her for a moment, then said, “I was so drunk when I left your funeral, I was in an accident. And now I am here. Did I really make it to Heaven?”

To which the woman replied, “Not yet. You must spell a word first.”

“What word?” he asked.

The woman responded, “Czechoslovakia.”

Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author
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Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
October 3, 2015

The pastor of the church I attended as a young man was a distinguished, dignified and always impeccably dressed man who also happened to have a warm and compassionate heart. He was so formal and well-groomed that newcomers would expect this tall, handsome man with a PhD from an Ivy League school serving a large, affluent suburban church to be cold and distant. But he wasn’t; he was warm and sincere.

Then I had one lesson in how he remained that way.

I signed on to serve as Scripture reader, and on the first Sunday sat on a chair behind the pastor’s podium. It was rather large, semi-circular pulpit with a chair directly behind it. The pastor entered and sat down. He was, as always, impeccably dressed: blue pinstriped business suit, silk tie carefully knotted, starched white shirt with cufflinks, and on his feet, black shoes polished like mirrors. This was not a man who wore a Rolex or drove a Porsche. But he was always careful to dress well, from his pocket handkerchief to his tiepin.

Then, just before the sermon, I watched the pastor reach down and untie both of his expensive leather dress shoes. He slid his feet out of them, and then reached under the cuffs of his tailored suit. He pulled off his black dress socks as well. I was completely bewildered. He then pushed both shoes and socks to the side and stood up for his sermon. No one else knew it, but our dignified, dapper, classy pastor preached his sermon barefoot, in his tailored suit and silk tie.

When the sermon was over, he unobtrusively pulled on both shoes and socks, and left the podium.

I said nothing and just assumed he had reasons of his own. Perhaps his feet hurt? I forgot about it, especially as it did not happen again for the next few Sundays.

Then, two months later, I noticed the pastor sliding his feet out of a pair of spit-polished tasseled loafers, followed again by the socks. I was again confused and slightly amused by the contrast between the fancy business suit and the soles of his bare feet which appeared when he leaned forward with enthusiasm.

After the service ended, I went up to the still barefoot minister and respectfully asked why he did this.

The pastor looked slightly embarrassed, picked up the shoes and socks and told me a story from his student years:

“My seminary professor told me I was a fine preacher, but that I had one fault. I was too arrogant. Too proud. I remembered that. And I remember my roots, too.”

He then told me that he had grown up as a janitor’s son and took his shoes off when he visited his Dad. Those were his roots. In the years since, he had earned several degrees and his gifts had brought him to this church. He was successful and praised, but he never wanted to forget where he came from.

“Whenever I start getting too proud and smug, I look down at my shiny Brooks Brothers shoes and fancy socks and realize it’s time to take off my “successful well-dressed suit-and-tie pastor” feet and put on the feet of a janitor’s boy. It keeps me humble. It’s hard to be smug when I’m barefoot.”

And with that the pastor grinned, put on his Italian tasseled shoes and socks and left the pulpit.

by: Ken Wells © 2004
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
September 14, 1994

Courtesy wasn’t really optional in my childhood home. I grew up with two sisters just older than me. If I wasn’t courteous to them, they would slug me.

Yes, I saw the irony (even though in those days I thought “irony” was a shirt that needed a lot of pressing). And no, I didn’t say anything about it. That would’ve been rude.

And – let’s face it – painful.

Kathy, my youngest sister, had a strange fascination with my eating habits. She felt it was her duty to point out to our mother that I was taking more than my share of mashed potatoes, or that I was hiding my parsnips under pieces of fat from the roast beef. And whenever we traveled and Dad bought hamburgers for us to eat on the way, Kathy would intentionally wait until after I had hungrily wolfed mine down before she would start eating hers. And then she would torment me with the deliberately long, slow, luxurious mastication of her hamburger.

I thought that was rude. She said it was just good manners.

And then she stuck her bun-and-burger-and-special-sauce-covered tongue out at me.

Wanda Lynne, on the other hand, was anxious to make me a kind and courteous Lothario. Never mind that I was still years away from actually dating. Wanda Lynne wanted to make sure I would treat the girls I dated better than the boys she was dating were treating her – at least, that was my theory. So she made me open doors for her and help her into her chair at dinner. And when we walked up the hill to church she taught me to walk on the inside closest to the road. She said it was courteous for me to do this so if a car came by and splashed water or snow it would hit me before it hit the girl I was with. But I always thought she was secretly hoping an inattentive driver would come along and pick me off.

Years later I went away to college, and I remembered the things my sisters had taught me. I assumed that was the way that grown up people act, and as an 18-year-old college freshman I wanted more than anything else to act like a grown up. So as I walked into the university library for the first time, I noticed an older woman – probably at least a junior – walking behind me, and I held the door open for her.

“What’s the matter?” she asked, glaring at me. “Do you think that because I’m a woman I’m not strong enough to open a door for myself?”

I was stunned … and speechless.

She rolled her eyes and shook her head. “Freshmen,” she muttered, brushing past me.

I stood there for a moment. My face was flushed and warm from embarrassment. I decided that there would be no more door opening or chair holding or closest-to-the-traffic walking for me. And if I wanted to eat the last of the mashed potatoes in the cafeteria, so be it!

As I stood there, however, another upperclassman approached the library door, her arms overloaded with textbooks. Instinctively I reached to open the door for her. I grimaced as soon as I realized what I had done, and I braced myself for the muttered invective that was sure to follow. Instead, I received a warm smile and a look of relief.

“Thanks!” she said brightly. “It’s nice to see we still have a few gentlemen around here!”

Of course, if I were REALLY a gentleman I would have offered to help her with her books. But I was still a little gun-shy, and I didn’t want to press my luck. Even so, I decided that the good feeling I got from performing an act of simple courtesy was worth the possibility of bluster. To do otherwise would be to go against a lifetime of training – not to mention rendering meaningless countless sisterly slugs. Three years later I met a beautiful freshman who actually appreciated my courtesy to her, and for 35 years we’ve been trying to out-nice each other.

I’ve been thinking about this lately, especially since September is National Courtesy Month. And I’ve noticed that while the world in which we live can be dark and sometimes foreboding, courtesy and kindness bring pleasant, refreshing light to our lives whether we are the giver, the receiver or just an interested observer. A teenager stands to give an elderly man her seat on a crowded bus. A motorist slows to allow another vehicle to merge onto the freeway smoothly and safely. A shopper with a week’s worth of groceries in his cart allows someone with only a few items to go ahead of him in the check out line. Such simple courtesies don’t necessarily change our lives, but they can certainly change the way we feel about them.

Even without the slugging.

 Author - Joseph B. Walker 
   Copyright © 2012 
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
September 12, 2011

Bernard Mears had arrived in America in his mother’s arms.

He was two years old in 1878. The Mears family were all hard workers and made a place for themselves in the land of opportunity.

Bernie was smart and wanted to be his own boss. When Bernie was 25 he took a wife. Bernie had saved some money and decided on a dry goods and grocery store combined.

He and Marie found an empty building to rent and proceeded to fill it with inventory. There was an apartment upstairs. They were not blessed with children, so the two of them worked side by side to become established and build a trade.

Marie had a knack for arranging the merchandise to appeal to customers and Bernie didn’t mind the long hours. He was happy, life was good.

The business thrived until the great depression hit the entire country. No one had money to purchase pretty things or even food. In 1930, Marie had a heart attack and left Bernie alone.

Following Marie’s death, which Bernie felt was brought about from worry about the store, he lost interest in everything. He was keeping odd hours of opening and closing the store. He had few customers and did not make them feel welcome. Bernie wandered about the store, dusting a bit and sweeping the floor. His inventory remained almost the same, as nothing much was sold. After awhile, he stopped sweeping and dusting.

The grocery part still had canned foods but little else. Bernie was loosing weight and not eating much once his fresh meats and cheeses were depleted. A deep depression set in. He had lost Marie, his true love, and now his business seemed lost as well. Why did he want to live?

A few houses down the street lived a family who had also fallen on hard times. They seldom had three square meals a day. Julie, the youngest girl was fourteen. Julie worried about Mr. Mears getting so thin. At meal time, she would take a portion of their meager meal to Bernie. She would stay and talk to him, dusting and cleaning.

After several months Bernie began to improve. He still had no customers to speak of, but from what he had left in the store, he would sack a few cans to take to Julie’s family.

In early spring, Julie saw her father planting a garden. This gave her an idea. She suggested to Bernie to make a garden in the big space beside the store, which they had once thought would become a parking lot, and sell the produce really cheap in the store. It would help the neighbors and also Bernie to have money for new merchandise. They would plant half the garden space now and half in three weeks giving them fresh produce for a long time.

Julie prayed hard as they placed the seeds in the ground. When the seeds sprouted, Julie looked anxiously at the rows and there were no empty spots. They all came up and produced the best crop of vegetables Bernie had ever seen. Julie gave another prayer of thanks.

You might say those two had the idea for the first Dollar Store as they reduced the prices until nothing in the store cost more than a dollar with many items a penny or nickel. They soon became well known in the community for having the best prices and finest produce in town. They also extended credit to their neighbors and accepted various items as trade for merchandise.

The two of them worked hard throughout the 1930s and made a very successful business. Julie earned a salary. As the economy picked up, so did sales at the store.

Bernie was now in his 66th year. Julie was doing most of the work while Bernie clerked a bit and kept books. They had hired a man to plant and tend the garden.

One afternoon when Bernie closed his ledger, he smiled at Julie.

“We are now knee deep in black ink, Julie. Our hard work has paid off. Please give me a dollar bill.”

Julie had no idea why he wanted a dollar, but pulled one from her purse and gave it to him. Bernie smiled.

“Julie, you now own this store. I have given it much thought, and since my parents have passed and my sister married well, there is no one I want to leave it to, or who deserves it more. You saved me and the store years ago. As soon as the paperwork to transfer title to you is complete, I plan on going out and seeing the rest of this great country.”

Julie thanked him and added that she would always keep the name of Mears Family Store, and he could come back when he wanted to.

A few days later, Bernie packed and loaded his car and left among many tears and good luck wishes from the neighbors. Many postcards, letters and phone calls would be forthcoming over the years. Bernie would meet many interesting people in his travels, and view wondrous things.

Julie sighed, wiped her hands on the big white butcher apron she wore and went back to work. She sat down at Bernie’s big desk and thought to herself, who would ever imagine a Jewish man, a part Indian girl and a few seeds would have survived the worst this country could throw at them and come out on top?

We truly reap what we sow.

 Author - Clara Wersterfer, Copyright © 2008 
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
September 10, 2010

Mary and her husband Jim had a dog named “Lucky.” Lucky was a real character. Whenever Mary and Jim had company come for a weekend visit they would warn their friends to not leave their luggage open because Lucky would help himself to whatever struck his fancy. Inevitably, someone would forget and something would come up missing.

Mary or Jim would go to Lucky’s toy box in the basement and there the treasure would be, amid all of Lucky’s other favorite toys. Lucky always stashed his finds in his toy box and he was very particular that his toys stay in the box.

It happened that Mary found out she had breast cancer. Something told her she was going to die of this disease….in fact, she was just sure it was fatal.

She scheduled the double mastectomy, fear riding her shoulders. The night before she was to go to the hospital she cuddled with Lucky. A thought struck her…. what would happen to Lucky? Although the three-year-old dog liked Jim, he was Mary’s dog through and through. If I die, Lucky will be abandoned, Mary thought. He won’t understand that I didn’t want to leave him. The thought made her sadder than thinking of her own death.

The double mastectomy was harder on Mary than her doctors had anticipated and Mary was hospitalized for over two weeks. Jim took Lucky for his evening walk faithfully, but the little dog just drooped, whining and miserable.

Finally the day came for Mary to leave the hospital. When she arrived home, Mary was so exhausted she couldn’t even make it up the steps to her bedroom. Jim made his wife comfortable on the couch and left her to nap. Lucky stood watching Mary but he didn’t come to her when she called. It made Mary sad but sleep soon overcame her and she dozed.

When Mary woke for a second she couldn’t understand what was wrong. She couldn’t move her head and her body felt heavy and hot. But panic soon gave way to laughter when Mary realized the problem. She was covered, literally blanketed, with every treasure Lucky owned! While she had slept, the sorrowing dog had made trip after trip to the basement bringing his beloved mistress all his favorite things in life. He had covered her with his love.

Mary forgot about dying. Instead she and Lucky began living again, walking further and further together every day. It’s been 12 years now and Mary is still cancer-free. Lucky? He still steals treasures and stashes them in his toy box but Mary remains his greatest treasure.

Remember . . . live every day to the fullest. Each minute is a blessing from God. And never forget…. the people who make a difference in our lives are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care for us.

If you see someone without a smile today give them one of yours! Live simply. Love seriously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.

Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author
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