Sunday, May 26, 2019

Light With a Purpose


I find old houses fascinating. Whether I’m out for a leisurely drive or a walk, I enjoy seeing lamps in windows.

Hand-painted globe lamps are beautiful
On one vacation, we were walking a heritage section of town. It was daylight, yet I stopped to admire an old brick house with one window facing the walkway.

The curtains had been pulled back and in the center was a beautiful hand-painted globe lamp. How I would have enjoyed seeing those pink roses in their evening glow.

Light has been important to us since man first discovered the value of fire. But people continued to experiment until fire became tamed in candles, wick lamps and lanterns.

Thomas Edison experimented endlessly to create a light bulb, gigantic in size. Imagine how intrigued he would be with today’s choices in LED lighting.

Reading scripture is a bright idea
Cartoonists cleverly use a light bulb to indicate a bright idea. The nice thing is we don’t have to understand the principles of electricity to enjoy lights of all kinds.

Psalm 119:130 NKJV) says, “The entrance of Your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.” No one has to be highly educated to read the Bible. It’s available to everyone.

When you read it, or even listen to it, God’s light shines into your heart and mind.

I can hear people saying, “I don’t even know where to start.”

Here's an idea. Look toward the center of your Bible for the Book of Proverbs. A lot of people read one chapter a day, matching their chapter number to each day’s date.

Take time to think about how you can apply what you read to your life. 

Proverbs can be your daytime LED, or your nightlight. The choice is yours.

Sunday, May 19, 2019

Blog? Why Bother?


Person-to-Person Connections
I have found it’s harder to write a blog than I thought, because I want to write, not just journal. That means editing and rewrites, so why bother?

Three good reasons come to mind:

     1) I enjoy writing
     2) It allows me to share inspirational thoughts
     3) Sharing personal stories can encourage others

I want to be a bright spot in your day, so I try to keep things short. This makes is easy for New Day by Darlis to be read on a cell phone as well as a computer.

During years of employment, business writing needed to be clear and concise. I was well-trained in factual, no-nonsense communication.

Writing is Creative Communication
In retirement I have pursued a variety of classes. The first was on writing stories for children. I enjoyed that, but I think the most fascinating genre is memoir.  Part of that is the challenge to write creative nonfiction.

It was hard to wrap my head around that, but when I caught on memoir became even more fun. Instead of “just the facts, Ma’am,” facts are shared in a story-kind-of way.

"Snail Mail" is Another Connection
I’ve been writing inspirational short stories for five years. I put many of them into a book called REFLECTIONS: Inspirational Stories from Everyday Life. It was self-published and is available from

As I continue my weekly blog, I also write cards and letters of encouragement to people who come to mind. I’ve always enjoyed being an encourager.

A writer’s magazine shared this reminder: A word fitly spoken (or written) is like apples of gold in settings of silver (Proverbs 25:11 NKJV).

I would love to give you something so beautiful.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

A Level Playing Field


I enjoy sending and receiving greeting cards. Now and then I search through racks to replenish my card file.

That's what I was doing when I noticed this message: Each person is given the gift of time on this earth to live, to love, and to leave a legacy. I've emphasized the words I pondered.
A Library Legacy

Is life really that fair? Some people are so rich they keep houses available in various places, should they decide to drop in for a few weeks. Others are so poor they don't even have food on a regular basis.

Some are able to leave monumental buildings in their name. I'm thinking of Rockefeller Center/New York and the Getty Museum/Los Angeles, California. Even as a child in the mid-west, I enjoyed the legacy of a Carnegie Library.

But do you have to be rich to leave a legacy? No. Consider Mother Theresa and her ministries around the world to "the poorest of the poor."
A Baby is Born into Time

No matter who we are or where we live, this message is true: At birth there is a level playing field . . . the gift of time . . . to love.

Even if we don't receive love, we can choose to love. It's not about loving pizza or Paris or material things. It's about how we choose to love people.

The most level playing field and longest-lasting legacy is this . . . relationships . . . how you choose to relate to people. Generosity of heart and spirit encourages others and memories of your kindness and concern live on after you die.
Love In Action is Personal

Of course, hatred and animosity can live on, too. How's this for clarity? "A good and honest life is a blessed memorial; a wicked life leaves a rotten stench" (The Message, Proverbs 10:7).

Consider it a blessing to be able to make your own choices. You've heard that Rome wasn't built in a day and neither is a legacy of love.

What do you want yours to be? Never thought about it? No problem. Just give it some thought, then get into action.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Potato Bake and Birthday Bash


Celebrate Your Day

My family was not big on birthday celebrations. I'd say you don't miss what you don't know, but one birthday got my full attention.

At age sixty-four I was diagnosed with breast cancer. I spent most of that year recovering from surgery, chemo, and radiation. When my sixty-fifth birthday rolled around, I thought it was a good time to celebrate my recovery.

I collaborated with a friend, and this is what we decided to do:
Baked Potato & Toppings Buffet

1) Invite the ladies of the church and ask them to wear their brightest colors
2) Have a baked potato and toppings buffet
3) Instead of gifts, ask them to bring donations for the local food bank
4) Decorate with balloons and photos of me at younger ages
5) Serve cake and ice cream for dessert
6) Have some entertainment and door prizes

The birthday bash was a cooperative effort. One lady rode with me to keep the helium-filled balloons under control. A husband/wife team prepared the potato buffet. A trio of ladies kindly agreed to sing some songs, and another lady handled the door prizes. 
Non-Perishable Items Were Needed

As food items were brought, it was fun to watch the up-front display grow. The church custodian was surprised at the load in his small pickup. After the delivery, he hurried back to share the food bank's positive response.

This was a win-win-win birthday. Not only is it still a happy memory for me, it was enjoyed by those who participated and it helped meet a basic human need.

You've probably heard the phrase, love your neighbor as yourself. James 2:8 calls it "the royal law." Jesus was once asked, "Who is my neighbor?" 

He replied with the story of The Good Samaritan (Luke 10:29-37). Read it and you'll learn your neighbor is anyone in need.

I helped with a potato bake and birthday bash. You may have a better idea. Just do it!