Relationships (Elfchen Series #116)

Building Up


Sharing grace

People needing others

Serving each with love



Plugging In


Fruitful friendships

Iron sharpens iron

Refining faith of another


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Joining Together


Eternal commandment

Coming from Jesus

Caring for one another


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Need for Community

From Galatians 6:2:  “Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”

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Created with purpose

Breathing with His desires

Divine God stirs up grace

Planting what life requires


Need for community

Designing faith’s pathway

Communion joins many

Tasting Savior’s buffet


Encouragement in Christ

Sharing in Spirit’s love

Saints gathering as one

Feeling joy from above


Fellowship’s lasting bonds

Confessing sins, repent

Prayer lifts others up

Witnessing God’s intent


Blueprint for believers

Bearing life’s overloads

Love shared with each other

Transforming faith’s crossroads



From James 5:16:  “Therefore confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed.  The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective.”

Small Town America

Main Street in Virginia City, Montana (population 169).

Cherishing small towns

America’s gift

Community pride

Life never adrift


Welcoming Main Street

Absent traffic lights

Community hub

Unique stores excite


People greet with “hello”

Strangers become friends

Community loves

Caring’s dividends


Close-knit neighborhoods

Immaculate yards

Community joy

Beauty fills postcards


Town’s crowning jewel

School engages minds

Community guides

Students’ daily grind


White wood-framed churches

God’s daily footprint

Community prays

Town’s faithful blueprint


First Lutheran Church in Circle, Montana (population 591).

Hottest News

When one stops at this small town’s Conoco station, the news is the hottest brand going! (courtesy of Pinterest)

The fabric of a small town in strengthened by how people stay connected with one another.  Long before the Internet and cable, people actually talked face-to-face.

Billy owns and operates a small service station on the corner of Main Street and the highway which passes through town.  Years ago, he took over the operation from his father.  Assisting him a few hours each day is Duane, a retired highway patrol trooper.

Billy and Duane run a station without too many frills.  They stick pretty much to selling gas, changing worn-out batteries, rotating and balancing tires, and light service and maintenance of cars and trucks.

Anyone who just happens to drop in can usually find a seat on the generous and wide window ledge inside as well as a comfortable bench outside.

The “Conoco” station has been here for many years so everyone knows about Billy and his business.  People depend on him for many of their automotive needs, but the special folks drop in for an even more important reason.

Many people think the original CNN (Cable News Network) was founded in 1980 by media mogul Ted Turner.  Billy likes to think otherwise.

A small sign on the bulletin board identifies this station as a site for CNN.  For the “hottest brand going” in local news, one needs to stop by CNN (Conoco News Network), which is years older than the other CNN.       

Locals stop in to catch up on the latest news and more.  Sometimes a visitor just might hear a bit of innocent gossip or the sharing of a story or two (but watch out for the really “tall” tales).

On the busiest of days, Billy and Duane always have a free minute to share and gather news.  The day always goes faster with conversation while a car or truck goes up on the hoist every half hour.

Joe stops by this morning.  He is a colorful cowboy-type who worked on the big dam construction project back in the 1930s.  His stories are legendary.  But be warned, he just might take one on a hunt for pocket gophers.

Another regular happens to be Pete, a retired teacher.  Later in the morning, he stops by on his way to the post office.  In a small town, everything is within a short distance.

In the early afternoon, Flint rides up on his fine-looking quarter horse.  The duo has been out for a ride, and both need a quick water break.  Even at CNN, news can be delivered by “Pony Express.”

Flint and his horse rest a spell after their ride. (courtesy of Pinterest)

Jane Addams Quotes

As democracy modifies our conception of life, it constantly raises the value and function of each member of the community, however humble he may be.

Action indeed is the sole medium of expression for ethics.

American activist Jane Addams (1860-1935) was the second woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize in 1931.  Her accomplishments are many as she labored as a reformer, social worker, and author.  She was a timeless voice for world peace and women’s suffrage.

Feeling Alone (Elfchen Series #76)



Distress signals

Caseloads now overwhelming

Crushing beleaguered, overworked staff


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Rural communities

Lacking hospital space

Where will patients go?


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Stark reality

Tomorrow’s prognosis cloudy

Rolling up sleeves today


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Cherished Treasures

From Mark 10:14:16:  “‘Let the little children come to me; do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of God belongs.  Truly I tell you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God as a little child will never enter it.’  And He took them up in His arms, laid His hands on them, and blessed them.”

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Our children and grandchildren

Grace fills their nurturing love

For generations to come

With God calling out with love


Young, innocent, and fragile

Our youth require constant love

Their welfare rests in our hands

With God sending lasting love


Our decisions beg wisdom

Cherished treasures need our love

Number “One” priority

With God shielding through His love


Unselfish, humble adults

Time to step forward with love

Our angry wrangling at rest

With God moving hearts with love


Common sense should always lead

Precious children seek our love

Misplaced actions now buried

With God dispatching His love


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From 1 Corinthians 13:11-13:  “When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways.  For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known.  And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.”

As a community, we are called by God to provide for the health, safety, and welfare of our children and grandchildren.  There can be no greater calling when we are encouraged by the love and grace of our Heavenly Father.

Spirit at Work (Elfchen Series #67)



True foundation

Times of trouble

Witness Scripture’s divine promises


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In faith

Keep His commandments

Come to know God


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By God

Sharing our abundance

Walking together with others


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