Writers Strike

Writers unite!

The Writers Guild of America went on strike early in November.

Members felt they deserved more royalty money for material distributed over the Internet and other online distribution methods, such as “video on demand.”

Although I don’t have time to watch a lot of TV, I’m addicted to the dramas CSI - Las Vegas and Criminal Minds.
This fall I added Chuck, a comedy, to my must-see ROTFL
entertainment list. And I have this habit of watching Leno’s monologue before settling in for a night’s rest.

I have to admit, after a summer of reruns, I wasn’t excited about the possibility of having them return. I look forward to seeing fresh episodes of my favorite series.

But, I still support the writers.

They’re not in the spotlight like the actors and directors, so it’s easy to forget how important they are. Writers are the creative foundation for all forms of entertainment.

Your favorite actor wouldn’t have the words to woo his love interest – he wouldn’t even know who to express the words to – without a script in front of him.

It’s easy to assume that the late night talk show host has written his own jokes or monologue. In most cases, not so.

The strike has reminded me of how important we all are, regardless of the job, position, or title we carry.

Do you ever walk into a public restroom and wonder about the person who replaced the toilet paper or the soap in the dispenser? It may seem like trivial type of work – but it sure can be frustrating to find the rolls empty of paper and the dispensers void of soap.

We’re ALL needed.

“Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully” Romans 12: 4-8

God doesn’t judge us – or love us more if we have a more prestigious job than the next person.

We’re all important in His eyes.


Planning for the Future

I’m a planner.

If we give a party, I have the menu figured out weeks in advance.

If I go on a trip, my wardrobe is laid out several days ahead.

My husband is also a planner. Besides having IRAs, we both contribute to retirement plans offered through our employment. We meet with a financial planner several times a year to make sure we’re on the right track with our financial resources so we can live comfortably once we do retire. All of that is important if we want to maintain our independence as we grow older.

The company I work for recently switched to another 401k service provider. That meant attending a meeting, and once again, making decisions and filling out forms as to how I wanted my contributions invested. It can be mind boggling for people like me who don’t fully understand investment strategies.

Focusing on our financial future has prompted me to take inventory.

Inventory of my heavenly treasures.

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal." Matthew 6:19-20

What am I doing to plan for my future in eternity?

Am I investing in what will never disintegrate, fade, or lose value? Like my relationship with my Lord, my family, and my friends? Or helping others, whether they have spiritual, physical, emotional, or financial needs?

God doesn’t reward us with eternal life because of our “good deeds.” That’s a gift for anyone who wants to receive it. But, once we’re with Him in heaven, we'll be rewarded for the kind of life we led on earth.

“Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven…” Matthew 5:12

My 401k will eventually run out – or my children will inherit what’s left.

But, my reward in heaven…that’s forever.


Giving Thanks

Do you look forward to Thanksgiving?

What a great holiday. It’s one of the few times we happily grant ourselves permission to eat whatever we desire, guilt free. A piece of pumpkin pie now and another later? Sure! It’s Thanksgiving.

“Thanksgiving dinners take eighteen hours to prepare. They are consumed in twelve minutes. Half-times take twelve minutes. This is not coincidence.” Erma Bombeck

But, Thanksgiving is more than tables laden with food, football games, and holiday parades.

We set aside a day to not only share a meal with friends and relatives - we come together to share the bond of family. Despite any differences, conflicts with each other, or personal struggles.

My family has much to be thankful for. Our grown children are safe, healthy, happy, and leading productive lives. And we truly enjoy spending time together.

I’m blessed.

But, I don’t give God near the credit that I should. It’s easy to be caught up in schedules and accomplishing the tasks or goals on our lists. And it’s easy to be deceived that blessings come from anywhere else but Him.

“Pride slays thanksgiving, but a humble mind is the soil out of which thanks naturally grow. A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for he never thinks he gets as much as he deserves.” Henry Ward Beecher

Give thanks…and have a blessed Thanksgiving.
Pilgrim Girl

Comfort Food

As we move into the winter months, the air continues to cool. In Seattle, we don’t have to contend with a lot of snow and below zero readings on the thermometer. But our winters are still filled with chilly temperatures, wind, and rain.

There’s nothing better when it’s cold and damp outside than to snuggle inside by a roaring fire and eat comfort food. You know…chili, homemade soups, and grilled cheese sandwiches.

And if you’ve had a bad day and need even more comfort…there’s always pizza, hot buttered popcorn…and CHOCOLATE.

God’s word can be comfort food for our souls.

The Bible assures us that God desires to be our comfort.

I have seen his ways, but I will heal him; I will guide him and restore comfort to him. Isaiah 57:18

As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you. Isaiah 66:13

Then maidens will dance and be glad, young men and old as well. I will turn their mourning into gladness; I will give them comfort and joy instead of sorrow. Jeremiah 31:13

Having a bad day?
A bad week?
A bad year?

Savor God’s warm, wonderful comfort.


The Light

The clocks have been turned back.

We’ve said goodbye to daylight savings time until spring returns.

I dread the duration of daylight growing shorter.

I’m NOT a morning person. Just ask my husband. He’s Mr. Happy at four-thirty am. That’s why he’s at work by five-thirty. I’m NOT a morning person. You’ll NEVER find me at work at that time.

If the sun’s rays are filling the bedroom, I’m more apt to rise and shine. But, if the room is dark and feels like two in the morning, forget it. When the alarm goes off, I’d rather crawl deeper under the covers than put my feet on the floor with a single bound.

It’s also difficult to leave my job at the end of the day, knowing the city has already been shrouded in darkness for at least an hour. It feels like time has sped ahead of reality.

Energy levels and moods pick up when our world if full of light. For many people, energy wanes when evening arrives. Some experience different levels of depression if they don’t receive enough sunshine.

Hmmm…there seems to be a correlation here.

Light = people experiencing greater energy and positive attitudes.
Darkness = people experiencing a decrease in energy and a greater chance of having a negative outlook.

Kind of similar to our relationship with God.

If we run from Him, our lives may feel like we’re covered by darkness. Bogged down, heavy, and without purpose.

But, when we run to Him, His light shines on and through us. We not only experience heightened energy—we experience peace, hope, and joy.

Striving to share His light,

Willing to Sell Your Name?

Names are important.

Surnames identify people who are related. They tell a lot about the family’s heritage. For instance, someone with the last name of Johnson has Scandinavian ancestors, while someone with the name of Martinez is probably Mexican. A surname is usually inherited and, while it may be changed, some form of it is usually retained.

Given names are chosen by the parents the majority of the time. A name is usually not given lightly. It represents thoughts and feelings that may be significant to the parents.

A name may be associated with an identifiable person or couple. If someone mentions Brad and Angelina, everyone knows who’s being referred to. If you disliked someone in fifth grade because he was mean, it’s not likely you’ll name your son after him.

Parents spend hours discussing names when expecting the arrival of a child. I can’t imagine my daughters using any other names than what they were given at birth.

A person’s name is attached to them. If someone in the entertainment business uses a different name, it doesn’t necessarily change things for people who have known them. If my friend Tina changed her name to Mary, she’d still always be Tina to me.

The other day I listened to a discussion on the radio. It pertained to a survey in which people were asked what it would take for them to relinquish and be willing to sell their name.

One of the announcers said she would have to be paid 10 million dollars. Survey results showed that most would sell their name for $100,000.

What would it take for you to sell your name and use another?


Beware of the "Golden Compass"

Although I don’t write fantasy, I appreciate the creativity. I’ve always enjoyed reading books and watching movies that have the ability to transport me to other worlds and introduce me to interesting characters and creatures.

So I’ve been intrigued by the children’s movie, The Golden Compass, which is being released in December and stars Nicole Kidman.

However, I was disturbed and disappointed to discover the following information.

The Golden Compass is written by Phillip Pullman, an atheist with a hidden agenda.

The movie is based on the first of a trilogy of books for children called His Dark Materials. The hope is that if children and parents are drawn into this softer, watered down version of the first book, they’ll be enticed to purchase the trilogy.

Pullman is very open about the purpose of these works. His Dark Materials was written to lead children toward anti-Christian beliefs.

In the first book, The Golden Compass, the church is in the business of kidnapping children and conducting some rather unpleasant experiments on them.

In the end of the last book, after the children kill God, everyone can do as they please.

I have no problem with an atheist speaking or writing about his beliefs – or non-beliefs. He should have the same rights and privileges that I have. The movie may even prove to not be dangerous in itself. I haven’t seen it, so I can’t judge that piece of work.

But at the same time, I think it’s important that we’re aware of what children could possibly be exposed to.

To read more information on this man, his books, and the movie…

Click here: Urban Legends Reference Pages: The Golden Compass

Take Care,

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