Knotty Musings

Ideas, philosophies, and evil plots to take over the world through love hatched here.

I Am Enough

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.

There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people
won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.

We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine,

we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically
liberates others." ~ Marianne Williamson

Remove the Nots

Remove the Nots

Friday, December 24, 2010

In our hearts, in our homes, a special night,0,3825143.column

In our hearts, in our homes, a special night

John Kass

December 24, 2010


For all the children who should be loved always, but especially on this wondrous night, with our arms around them and a long goodnight kiss on the temple, a kiss more precious than anything wrapped up in a box.

For all the parents who linger in the doorways of those bedrooms, watching those sleeping shapes.

For all the babies who aren't loved enough and may grow up with a hard crust around their hearts because someone neglected to plant those kisses and give those hugs.

For every couple that adopts a child and saves a life. For all the young mothers who saved the life they carried by giving that child up for adoption.

For all those who've lost their children. For the children who've lost their moms and dads.

And for the crazy uncles who will drink too much, and put on the red suit and dance outside alone in the cold, before sneaking in to surprise the laughing kids. For the wise aunts who make sure the coffee is strong, so the crazy uncles can sober up.

For all the men and women and children of all the church choirs of the world, practicing for months, gathering on weeknights in the empty churches, so that on this night they may carry us with their harmonies.

And for their voices that gently invite us to humble ourselves, so we may ask for help to begin scraping away any bitterness that has taken root.

For all the friends, relatives and neighbors who haven't waited for one night to build what is important. All year they've been building it, and they show up on a Thursday afternoon in June, or on a cool morning in November, just to see if you're OK.

So tonight is theirs, and tomorrow too, because they are family, by friendship and by blood, by the acts of family.

For those who are far away and can't make it home this year. For those who've been distant in other ways, worrying that they've been gone too long, wondering if it is too late to open that door.

But tonight is the night of new hope.

The door is always open.

Just reach for it and see.

For the old guys at the end of the bar, nursing their drinks, half-watching the TV and grateful there is a warm place to sit and hear the laughter.

For the old women alone in their rooms, awake in bed, remembering these nights past and the laughter of children, nights when it wasn't so still, when there was so much to do and a houseful of hungry guests to feed.

For the young parents who are stressed and overwhelmed, with the kids and the bills and the shopping. For the dads and moms who've been out of work, and are desperate for a job and are afraid.

For everyone on the night shift, and those who work tomorrow. For police, firefighters and paramedics who rush into danger to help us. And for the souls of Chicago firefighters Corey Ankum and Edward Stringer, who were killed this week.

For everyone in a hospital praying for dignity and relief without shame or suffering. For the physicians who care for them. For those nurses who enter the room, pull up a chair and listen to quiet confessions.

For those of the clergy who have struggled with belief, yet find it again, and are renewed.

And for every sailor on every ship tonight, especially those on watch on the bridge, looking out into cold black water, remembering brightly lit rooms.

For our young president and his wife and their little girls. For all our leaders. For the members of the U.S. military who protect us with their bodies and their lives. And the members of the intelligence services and the Foreign Service who put themselves at risk for this country. For all their loved ones, waiting for them.

For our great nation that faces difficult days ahead, and for our countrymen who've already faced many difficult days, and see more coming and never quit.

To those of you I've offended with my thoughtless and clumsy words and shrill tone on bad days. I'm sorry.

And for those who've given this column a chance, visiting with me four mornings a week, and those who've written or called or sent e-mail. My wife and I can't ever properly express our thanks. But tonight we'll thank you, once again.

And for everyone who has kept hold of what is truly important about this special night.

It is the message brought by that perfect child born in a manger in Bethlehem, the child who came to light the world.

He is the gift.

And it is all about love.

So I hope that it comes to you, and comforts you, and remains.

From my wife, Betty, and our boys, from my mother and my brothers and their wives and children, from all of us to all of you and yours.

Merry Christmas.

"My Christmas wish for you"

"My Christmas wish for you"
By Bob Perks
First of all I wish you a spirit filled holiday season.
May those who love you and those you love be near
you. May God Bless and protect you in your travels
and bring you safely home again. May you NOT get
everything you want so that you grow in reaching
further than you thought you could to get those things
worth working hard for.
Be an observer this holiday. Participate, too. But take
30 minutes in the middle of a holiday gathering and
watch those around you. See the smiles? Hear the
forgiving voice of love? See how for the first time
in much too long a time two forever enemies bow
their heads in unity giving thanks to a single God?
Watch in the kitchen when everyone shares the
responsibilities. The end result of cooperation is
Watch in the living room as generations gather
around the tree and share in each others joy while
opening presents. See the adults crawl on the
floor as they stoop down to play once more as a child.
Note the sparkle in the eye of the littlest one who has
no idea what this is all about but what ever it is it
makes me giggle.
Watch how everyone laughs for the hundredth time at
the same family stories that the old folks have told
year after year.
See the look of satisfaction on the face of grandpa and
grandma as they proudly scan the room knowing that
they did their very best to raise such a great family.
And if you look closely enough you will see the spirits
of those family members who are no longer of this world.
They live on in each of you who loved them dearly.
Stop for thirty minutes. Soak up the memories. Hold
them close to your heart for times when things seem
so desperate and lost.
These moments are the true gifts of Christmas.
They are proof that this world can be loving, kind,
forgiving, compassionate and without prejudice if we
truly will it to be.
If you should be spending this holiday by yourself for
what ever reason please know that you are never alone.
God is celebrating there with you in the quiet moments
of this day. You are His precious gift to the
Know too, I swear to you, that at a single point in
my Christmas celebration I will stop what I am doing and
think of you. I will ask God to bless you in a special way.
At that very moment you will feel it and know that I kept
my promise.
You are loved.
Bob Perks
P.O. Box 1702
Shavertown, Pa. 18708
Contact Bob

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

In A Child's Eyes

There is something magical about seeing things through the eyes of a child. Wonder, awe, curiosity, joy and chaos reign!

I mentor a 9 yr old named Asiana and she is amazing. Smart, creative, funny and loving. I like to do big outings as a group with her siblings so that we can avoid sibling rivalry and all of the kids get to have fun so we look for low cost or free activities to do together. This past Sunday was the Wells Fargo Family Fun Day with free admission to various museums, cultural sites and the Omaha Police Department horse barn. The kids had their faces painted, decorated cowboy hats, saw the horses and had cocoa and cookies at the horse barn, checked out the antique locomotives at the Durham, stared in wonder at the tree - all 85 feet of it - and sang Christmas songs. It was a great time.

I am going to take these pictures and make up prints and frame the family one for them for Christmas.

I knew that the mentoring experience would touch at least one life but it has truly amazing to share with this child and her family. I am so blessed.

Monday, December 6, 2010

"The Biggest Gift of All!"

"The Biggest Gift of All!"

By Bob Perks

"What happened to it?," the child asked.

"What happened to what?" someone replied.

"My gift for Mom and Dad. It was the smallest and it
got lost," he sadly replied.

It happens that way. It seems that when it comes to
gift giving we feel the need to out do each other. The
bigger the box, the more money we spend, the more
love expressed.

It's simply not true. It's all a lie and we know it.

"Oh, you didn't have to..."

Yes they did. The world demands it of us. You know
you would have felt rejected, ignored and overlooked
if they didn't give you something.

"I have to get a gift for Joe. He gave me something
last year."

"I'm only sending cards to people who sent them
to me."

How sad. Gift giving has become a matching game.
Or worst yet, a competition.

So it was on this Christmas morning.

"I can't believe all of the presents!" someone said.
"This is even more than last year!" the oldest child
"I guess Santa out did himself this year," Dad said.
"You must have been really good!" said Mom.
"Wait before you open them, let's get a picture of it all.
We can compare it to last year's gifts," said Dad.

Then the reds and greens of fancy Christmas paper flew
across the room. The bows and ribbons were crushed
among the efforts to make get to the gifts.

The youngest child was lost at times in the rush to find
his own Santa's treasures but managed to survive somehow.

"Don't forget the gifts we got for each other!" one child yelled.

The youngest child stopped what he was doing. He
wanted to watch his parents when they opened his special gift.
But it was no where to be found.

"What happened to it?," the child asked.
"What happened to what?" someone replied.
"My gift for Mom and Dad. It was the smallest and it got lost,"
he sadly replied.

The others were too busy to help him find it. They already
began clearing away the paper and he feared they had
tossed it in the garbage.

"You need to get bigger gifts. You don't lose big gifts," his
older sister said laughing.
"But it was the biggest gift of all," the child replied.
He sat down in frustration and began to cry.

"Is this it?" his brother asked as he held the little box in his
hand. "I almost stepped on it."
"That's the biggest gift of all?" the sister said mockingly.
"What a joke!"
"It is! It is!" he shouted back. "You'll see!"

Then, grabbing it from his brother's hand he straightened
out the bow and handed it to Mom.

"Daddy, come here. This is for you, too," he said while sniffling
away his tears.

Everyone stopped what they were doing to see what he had given.
Perhaps just out of curiosity, maybe just to laugh.
Carefully Mom unwrapped the gift and opened the box.

"Oh, my!" she said as she slowly sat down on the couch.
"What? What is it?" someone said.
Then Dad sat down next to her to share the special moment.
"Oh, I see." he said. Looking at his wife he humbly said, "It is
indeed the biggest gift."

Then Mom reached in, pulled out the gift and placed it on her hand.

It was the Christ Child in the cradle.

Dad glanced over to look at their manger now buried beneath
the all too many gifts.

"Clear away those things," he asked of his oldest child.

The dimly lit star attached to the manger shown down on the
spot where the Christ Child would normally be.

"But he took it from..." his sister began to say until Mom
interrupted her.

"He took it from the story of Christmas. The real reason we should be celebrating," she said.

The small child was standing next to the tree. The white lights
sparkled off the warm streams of tears that ran down his face.

Quietly he explained..."Every year we think about how to give the
biggest gift. I thought that this year I would give the best gift anyone
could ever give. The pastor at Bible school asked us to think about
the greatest gift of all. Then I thought about Jesus and knew that I
could not ever out give God. So my gift to you and Dad was the
Biggest gift of all...ever!"

Suddenly it was silent. Mom glanced around the room and humbly
said, "I am ashamed. We had forgotten the meaning of it all."
Then motioning to her son she said, "Come here. You were right.
The Littlest One was indeed the Biggest Gift of all!"
"I wish you enough!"
Bob Perks
I encourage you to share my stories but
I do ask that you keep my name and contact
information with my work.
P.O. Box 1702
Shavertown, Pa. 18708
Contact Bob

"I Wish You enough!"
2001 Bob Perks
I wish you enough sun to keep your attitude bright.
I wish you enough rain to appreciate the sun more.
I wish you enough happiness to keep your spirit alive.
I wish you enough pain so that the smallest joys in life appear
much bigger.
I wish you enough gain to satisfy your wanting.
I wish you enough loss to appreciate all that you possess.
I wish you enough "Hello's" to get you through the final "Goodbye."