Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
April 2, 2007

I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.

I was made weak, that I might learn humbly to obey . . .

I asked for health, that I might do greater things.

I was given infirmity, that I might do better things …

I asked for riches, that I might be happy.

I was given poverty, that I might be wise …

I asked for power, that I might have the praise of men.

I was given weakness, that I might feel the need of God .. .
I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life.

I was given life, that I might enjoy all things …

I got nothing I asked for–but everything I had hoped for.

Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered.

I, among all men, am most richly blessed!

Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author so credit can be given
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
April 5, 2003

We all know the story of the greedy king named Midas. He had a lot of gold and the more he had the more he wanted. He stored all the gold in his vaults and used to spend time every day counting it.

One day while he was counting a stranger came from nowhere and said he would grant him a wish. The king was delighted and said, “I would like everything I touch to turn to gold.” The stranger asked the king, Are you sure?” The king replied, “Yes.” So the stranger said, “Starting tomorrow morning with the sun rays you will get the golden touch.” The king thought he must be dreaming, this couldn’t be true. But the next day when he woke up, he touched the bed, his clothes, and everything turned to gold. He looked out of the window and saw his daughter playing in the garden. He decided to give her a surprise and thought she would be happy. But before he went to the garden he decided to read a book. The moment he touched it, it turned into gold and he couldn’t read it. Then he sat to have breakfast and the moment he touched the fruit and the glass of water, they turned to gold. He was getting hungry and he said to himself, “I can’t eat and drink gold.” Just about that time his daughter came running and he hugged her and she turned into a gold statue. There were no more smiles left.

The king bowed his head and started crying. The stranger who gave the wish came again and asked the king if he was happy with his golden touch. The king said he was the most miserable man. The stranger asked, “What would you rather have, your food and loving daughter or lumps of gold and her golden statue?” The king cried and asked for forgiveness. He said, “I will give up all my gold. Please give me my daughter back because without her I have lost everything wo rth having.” The stranger said to the king, “You have become wiser than before” and he reversed the spell. He got his daughter back in his arms and the king learned a lesson that he never forget for the rest of his life.

Originally posted on Morning Story and Dilbert:

Dilbert

Jeremy was born with a twisted body and a slow mind. At the age of 12 he was still in second grade, seemingly unable to learn. His teacher, Doris Miller, often became exasperated with him. He would squirm in his seat, drool, and make grunting noises. At other times, he spoke clearly and distinctly, as if a spot of light had penetrated the darkness of his brain. Most of the time, however, Jeremy just irritated his teacher.

One day she called his parents and asked them to come in for a consultation.
As the Forresters entered the empty classroom, Doris said to them, “Jeremy really belongs in a special school. It isn’t fair to him to be with younger children who don’t have learning problems. Why, there is a five year gap between his age and that of the other students.”

Mrs. Forrester cried softly into a tissue, while her…

View original 737 more words

Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
April 6, 1994

“Would you be kind enough to read something for me?” asked the old man, as we hid beneath the overpass.

Slowly shaking my seven-year-old head to the affirmative, I watched as he reached down and began rummaging through his dirty old knapsack. I stood, silently watching as the elderly hobo began to remove various items from the brown gunny sack he carried over his shoulder.

“Here it is sonny,” he yelled out with excitement, as he held out both his shaking hands.

“What is that thing? I ain’t never seen no kind of paper card thing like that before and it’s got a stamp on it. It is like a letter?” I inquired.

“It’s called a post card.”

I reached out, took the dirty, wrinkled postcard from his hand and I carefully looked at both sides. Taking my time, I inspected every inch of this strange new item. “Nov 27, 1951” was stamped on the back, covering part of the writing.

Once again, having run away from the orphanage, I had very little choice but to live beneath the railroad overpass. The word about the orphanage was that this was where an abundance of food could always be found. There was a never-ending flow of tramps and hobos almost on an hourly basis.

“Can you please read that to me?”

“Your kinda old mister, don’t you know how to read nothin’?”

Slowly, the old man lowered his eyes to the ground and hung his head. He folded his hands in front of his body and he just stood there, not saying a word.

“I’m sorry if I said something wrong,” I mumbled.

Raising the card, I began to read the large print,

“CARL, GLAD YOU MADE IT TO AMERICA. I KNOW YOU WILL BE A SUCCESS IN SUCH A WONDERFUL PLACE. LOVE MINI”

“Who’s Mini?” I asked the man.

“She’s my sister. She lives in Paris.”

“I know where that is. It’s over the ocean.”

Shaking his head back and forth, I watched as tears slowly rolled down the old man’s dirty cheeks.

“Thank you for the beans mister. It sure was good of you to share,” I said, as I held the post card out toward him.

Reaching out, he took the dirty card and began stuffing it into his torn wool over shirt pocket.

“I can teach you the ABCs, real fast, so you can read all by yourself, if you want.”

“Shaking his head “no,” he turned and walked back over to the large fire barrel and began to warm his hands.

The orphanage matrons had always told me that I was “not the brightest bulb on the tree.” But even considering that; I knew when someone wanted or did not want to talk. Keeping my mouth shut, I walked over to the rusty fifty-five gallon drum and just stood there, not saying a word.

Several minutes later the old man began to sing. It was one of the most beautiful voices I had ever heard. I had listened to many people sing on the little black and white Zenith television at the orphanage; but nothing I had ever heard was as beautiful as the voice coming from the old man.

Hearing something behind me, I turned around and saw two railroad guards, blackjacks in hand, running toward us. All at once they suddenly stopped and began to listen to the singing. I could tell that they too were amazed by such a wonderful and joyous sound. It was like nothing I had ever heard before.

I stood waiting for the two men to begin beating the two of us for hiding beneath the overpass. For almost a minute or two the two guards did not move a muscle. One of the men tapped his blackjack on the stomach of the other guard and motioned with his head, in a backwards direction. The two of them turned and began walking away, heading back toward the railroad yard.

When the old man stopped singing, I looked over at him and said, “You really need to be on television mister. Really you do.”

“I’ll never sing to the public again,” he replied.

“Why not?”

“I was forced to sing for the Germans and I’ll never do that again.”

As he spoke, he began to remove his wool shirt. Laying it on the ground, he rolled up his sleeve and held out his arm. Tattooed on his arm was a long line of somewhat faded numbers.

“Why would you put something like that on your arm? Everyone else I know puts a picture.”

Once again, tears began to roll down the old man’s cheeks. He reached over, picked up his over-shirt and stuffed it into his gunny-sack. Throwing it over his shoulder he began walking down the railroad tracks.

For ten minutes, I stood watching as the old man, who had the most beautiful voice, as he disappeared into the distance.

By Roger Dean Kiser
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
March 1, 2001

I was driving home in a gloomy rainstorm on a cold, March morning in the mountains of my home. Part of me was enjoying the rain thinking that it would clean the slush, salt, and grime that covered my car from weeks of Winter driving and save me a trip to the car wash. Another part of me was keeping a watchful eye on the creeks and rivers hoping that the melting snow and freshly falling rain wouldn’t lead to any flooding.

A deeper part of me, however, was quietly dreaming of the warmer weather and strengthening sunshine to come in the weeks ahead. I knew that they would join with this nourishing rain to turn the yellow grass green, to bring new buds and leaves to the trees, and to cause the million flowers sleeping underground to push their heads through the soil and start the Spring. It would be that glorious time when the whole world comes back to life again and it was all starting with this steady, March shower.

The rains in our own lives can bring mixed blessings as well. Storms of problems and troubles can flood us with stress, strain, and pain. They can make our days seem dark and dreary. They can make our hearts feel heavy and sad. Yet, these same storms can also strengthen our spirits. They can help our souls to grow. They can lead us to learning and wisdom. They can cause our hearts to reach out to God and to each other.

There is a reason why a world with only sunshine and no rain becomes a desert. There is a reason why a life with no problems becomes boring and barren, devoid of both learning and growth. God wants us to grow. God wants us to learn. God wants us to love each other as He loves us. God wants us to embrace His light in both the sunshine and the rain. And God wants us to shine and share our own light as well even on the darkest of days.

Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author so credit can be given
Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
March 30, 2003

I was driving home the other day after taking my son to the sheltered workshop where he works part time. The clouds had parted and the newly freed sun was slowly warming the Earth. The radio was playing and Louis Armstrong was singing, “What a Wonderful World.” I was joining in with my scratchy voice. I rounded a curve and saw the distant mountains alight with golden sunshine. It was so beautiful. In that second the music, the light, and the view came together and filled my heart with peace. I felt like I was where I was meant to be. I felt like I was who I wanted to be. I felt like I was the person God called me to be. I drove on letting that moment of pure peace uplift my spirit and thanked God again for my life here.

I have noticed over the years that as I have gotten older and thankfully wiser those moments of pure peace have become more and more frequent. In my quest for peace I used to feel like I was searching for a treasure. In my soul I was scaling mountains, crossing rivers, and traveling long and far to find that elusive peace. What I finally found when I stopped my searching and striving, though, was that I was carrying that peace inside of me all along.

How do you find peace? The answer I feel is to just love. Love God. Love yourself. Love everyone else. Love nature. Love music. Love animals. Love books. Love learning. Love this world all around you. Love life itself. When you love you find that the storms of life can never break you. When you love you find yourself connected to the very energy that created the universe. When you love you find yourself growing ever closer to God today, tomorrow, and forever. Love is what leads you to your true self. Love is what makes peace your permanent companion. May all of your days here be full of love. May all of your days here be full of peace. May all of your days here carry you one step closer to Heaven.

Author Unknown - Please comment if you know the author so credit can be given

 

Morning Story and Dilbert

Vintage Dilbert
March 27, 2015

I would not consider myself to be a prayer warrior. But, I do pray. Not because I believe in the power of prayer, but because I believe in the power of God. At times, I have prayed big, brave, badass prayers; but for the most part, in tough situations I try to pray “make it count” before I pray “make it better”.

So, keeping my general cowardice in prayer in mind, I have a story to tell you.

I’ve waged a long war with illness this winter, and early in January, I lost hearing in my left ear. A course of antibiotics and a bunch of other medicines could not clear it up. Instead, it grew worse, and after a month, my right ear decided that since misery loves company it, too, would start to block up.

Coupled with weeks of coughing, sewer drama, pneumonia, family crises and my daughter coming home with headlice, I was at my wits end. I had agreed to speak at our church’s women’s retreat, as well as at a college ministry function; and with just days to go – I was exhausted and partially deaf. My mom nagged me to go to the doctor. “I don’t have time,” I protested. “What little time I have, I need to prepare for retreat.” But she prevailed on me: I needed a better plan.

One Friday morning, I left my children with the babysitter and escaped to a coffee shop. My agenda for the morning was simple: make an appointment with the doctor, get out of the college speaking engagement, and do some prep work for the retreat. I settled in with a latte at the coffee shop, only to discover I couldn’t connect to the wifi, and so, unable to contact the doctor or the college pastor, I dived into retreat prep.

My passage for study was James 4 and I made steady notes, mentally formulating my talks about our Father who loves us and who invites us to ask him for our heart’s desires. I found myself continuing to James 5, where all of a sudden these verses leapt up at me:

12 But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your “yes” be yes and your “no” be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation.

13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing praise.14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.

Really? Really? This verse, right there, right then, while I was preparing talks about asking our loving Father for big, bold, heartfelt things?

The contrast could not have been clearer. My “wise” plan for coping had been to 1) say no to my commitment, and 2) call a doctor about my illness. But here were two verses that say 1) let your yes remain yes, and 2) ask the elders to pray if you’re sick. Oh, and use oil.

The words simple obedience floated in my mind, and I surrendered in tears. I sent a message to the college pastor, assuring him I’d be there the following Tuesday; and I mentally rehearsed how to phrase my awkward request to the elders.

I spent the afternoon tending to kids and re-checking my daughter for nits. I had a meeting at church later that night, at which several of the elders would be present. Leaving home, I hastily grabbed the tea-tree oil we’d been using for lice treatments and stuffed it into my purse. On the drive over, though, I felt sheepish about the oil, and resolved to just ask them to pray instead. Surely the oil was symbolic, anyway? Simple Obedience came to mind, but I squashed it.

We finished up our meeting, each person speaking clearly and slowly since I’d explained I had lost most of my hearing. When the meeting was over, I sheepishly explained about James and all the coffee-house tears earlier that day, and asked them to pray. They gathered around and laid hands on my shoulders and prayed for God to please heal my ears.

We said our Amens, and things were that strange combination of warm-and-awkward, and someone made a joke that there should have been oil. I threw my face into my palms and confessed, “I actually have oil in my purse but I felt too stupid to bring it out!”

“Well, then let’s use the oil,” someone said, and so – adding to the awkwardness – they gathered around once more and removed my tea tree oil from its ziploc back and wads of paper towel (so holy, I know) – and prayed once more, this time dabbing some of the lice-repellant on my forehead.

Another round of amens brought everything to a close, and I packed up my oil into its plastic bag and made my way to the parking lot. What was that about, Lord? I wondered, pulling my car out into the dark, foggy road.

Thirty seconds later, tiredness caught up with me and I yawned. My left ear crackled and I was suddenly engulfed by a wave of nausea. My vision swam in front of my eyes and I gripped the steering wheel, afraid I would black out. I pulled over, Jesus-take-the-wheel-style, hoping I wouldn’t land in a ditch, and waited for the nausea to pass and my vision to settle down.

I yawned again, and this time my right ear crackled and another wave of nausea washed over me. I closed my eyes, waiting for the horrible swimming sensation to go away. As it ebbed away, I blew my nose and yawned again, trying to shake out the clogged feeling that remained in my ear. With that, my right ear suddenly cleared: and with two ears now open for the first time in six weeks, I realized that the radio was on. I hadn’t been able to hear it before, but now with crystal clarity the beloved voices of Simon & Garfunkel singing these, the first words that drifted into my nearly-restored ears:

Here’s to you, Mrs Robinson,

Jesus loves you more than you will know.

God bless you please, Mrs Robinson,

Heaven holds a place for those who pray.

Hey. hey. hey.

I sat in the car and cried and cried: tears of gratitude and surprise and the overwhelming knowledge of being loved and heard by a Father who cares.

And all of a sudden it made sense: the talks on asking our loving Father boldly for our deep desires, the call to simple obedience, and even the silliness of the oil. Because no matter how old we get or how sophisticated people may think we are, some truths bear repeating: Jesus loves you more than you will know, and heaven holds a place for those who pray.

Posted on March 26, 2015 by Bronwyn Lea      http://t.co/YylftweVYT
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 8,510 other followers

%d bloggers like this: