Month: June 2021

What is D Day?

This will be the first in a new Category of blogs I will write and I will call them The History Files.

My heart aches for the loss of understanding and knowledge of our American history and events that have made us who we are. Loving history and teaching, this is my attempt to bring those two together and help inform or remind the reader of important events in our history.

June 6, 1944

WWII was raging as Hitler’s Nazi’s were advancing through and occupying Western Europe. But the Allied forces of UK, US, Canada and France had something up their sleeves.

Together, the Allies had been planning for years a massive invasion of Normandy, France and as their “D day” approached Operation Bodyguard went into action. This plan was to keep the Germans guessing as to the exact day and location of the suspected invasion.

On that “D day”, morning weather conditions were so bad that the attack had to be pushed back a day.

So, on the morning of June 6, 1944 Operation Overlord, or code name Operation Neptune began the largest seaborne invasion in history. General Dwight D. Eisenhower was the Commander of 156,000 Allied troops, 5,000ships and landing crafts, 50,000 vehicles and 11,000 planes.

Paratroopers began the assault by landing behind enemy lines by the thousands to blow up bridges and roads. At 6:30 AM the beach landings began.

Hitler thought he was ready, but his defenses focused in the wrong place. In 1942, the Germans began construction of the Atlantic Wall, a 2,400 mile network of bunkers, pill boxes, etc. on the French coastline. Normandy was less defendable.

Even tho’ it was less defendable, there were plenty of Nazi soldiers in place along the shores of Normandy to cause the battle to be a bloody one.

Things didn’t go as planned for the Allies. Despite the set backs, the troops pushed forward.

As the tanks carrying soldiers prepared to open their gates in the water, those ramps that were their shields would be dropped and so too would be the soldiers defense from a flurry of bullets. Soldiers, all young, we’re killed instantly. Bodies fell everywhere and those that didn’t had to find a way out, maneuvering those courageous and gruesome sacrifices.

By the end of that day the Allies had taken the beachhead but at a very high price. It is estimated that 4,400 Allied soldiers lost their lives that day with another 9,000 wounded or missing.

This day though, became the turning point for WWII in Europe.

Hero’s abounded that day, and stories, books and movies are written about them. But I would list each and every soldier who prepared and was there that day as a hero.

Eisenhower was told in advance that the paratrooper deaths could reach 75%. Other leaders were well aware of the cost and the soldiers themselves were too.

These men, from the lower in rank and age to the more seasoned professional military minds, all took an oath, and then, their oath took them. Some from this life and some to another phase of this life. They gave their all, not only that day but in the days leading up to and following it.

Just 11 months later, WWII ended in Europe on May 7, 1945 when the Allies accepted the full and unconditional surrender of Nazi Germany. This is called VE Day- Victory in Europe day, when all hostilities in Europe ended.

A few months later, on September 2, 1945 documents were signed on the USS Missouri by the US and Japan that put an official end to WWII.

The importance of what they did for the world cannot and should not be understated. It changed the future of countries as well as families. They won more than battles and wars, they won influence and perception.

The deadliest of all wars had ended, with an estimated 3% of the worlds population having died in it, approximately 60-80 million people. Among them, those young men who bravely and selflessly turned the tide in Europe on the beaches of Omaha, Juno, Hold, Utah, and Sword.

May we carry their tenacity to fight for truth and along with them win the battle for influence and perception.

That is why we remember D Day. every June 6.

Let’s remember our history.

Debbie

What’s the Smallest Thing You Can Think of?

Sunday sermon 6.5.21

Think for a moment, what is the smallest thing that you can think of?

An ant, bacteria, atom?

What’s the largest thing? Go ahead, think it through.

Our sun, our galaxy, something else?

Now, please, think about you, all of you, (que up John Legend singing “All of Me”) your insides, your brain, mind, emotions. Your curves and all your edges…. 🙂

For fact seeking readers, the smallest thing that we (the smart scientist people “we”) know of are Quarks.

Quarks, the building blocks of matter are a billionth of a billionth of a centimeter in diameter. But if you zoom in a billion times more, where units run out of names and keep going 100 million times smaller still – you finally hit bottom. This is where you will find The Planck length; approximately 1.6 x 10 to the negative 35 meters. THIS is the smallest possible length in the universe. The Planck length.

Our brains can’t comprehend these sizes, we overload with the enormity of the smallness.

On the other side- the largest known object in the universe is Hercules-Corona Borealis Great Wall. This is a galactic filament, which is a vast cluster of galaxies bound together by gravity. This guy is a mere 10 billion light years across! Talk about Hercules??!!

Again, our brains explode even trying to comprehend 1 light year, right? But 10 billion of them? Owwie.

Now on to you, my dear. Your physical body with its 11 finely tuned organ systems, 724 trillion cells, 86-100 billion neurons, and about 1 gallon of blood works mostly perfectly almost every day. Consider too your soul, spirit, mind- those intangible parts of you that make you who you are every bit as much as your physical packaging, probably even more.

From the smallest part of you to the largest part of you; from the Planck length to Hercules… Great Wall, where did it all come from?

Ephesians 1.18-19 says, “That the eyes of your understanding may be enlightened to know the immeasurable greatness of God’s power.”

We could say it this way- that our eyes would be open to fully understand God’s OMNIPOTENCE.

Omnipotence- all powerful. That describes the creator of the universe.

Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.”

Genesis 1:27, “God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; make and female he created them.”

Omnipotence. All powerful.

God saw to every detail of the Planck length, Hercules… and YOU, created it and called it forth at creation. He is omnipotent. Nothing to small for his attention nothing too big.

And yet, He is so much more.

He is Omnibeneveleant, which means he is all loving. 1 John 4:8, “God IS love”.

Psalm 86:15, “You, God are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.” God’s love never runs out on us and He keeps no record of our failings. His love for us is eternal and unrestrained.

He is Omniscient, too! That means he is all knowing. He knows everything, about everything and everyone, including me and you. There’s nothing he has yet to learn or uncover or discover. He already knows about it all, from the smallest to the largest. He knows inside you, inside me, inside the galaxy, inside the known and unknown universe . He knows it all.

And to top it all off, he is Omnipresent. God is literally everywhere. He is all present all the time! He is the great I AM. Not I was, or I will be, but I am. I am present, I am now. I am everywhere, present.

Psalm 139 asks where can we run from His presence or where can we hide. If we go up to Hercules in that galaxy cluster, he’s there. If we go down, into that smallest quark and even into the Planck length, he is there, too.

But my friend, as wonderful and grandiose each of this qualities of our God is, hear this…

“ When our hearts make us feel guilty and remind us of our failures, we know that GOD IS MUCH GREATER and more merciful than our conscience and he knows everything there is to know about us.”

1 John 3:20

Dear one, when our conscience accuses us, and holds us to task; when our memory is only of our failure and shortcomings, God knows already AND HE IS GREATER and more merciful than our conscience. He loves, He is compassionate, He is gracious, He abounds in love for you.

He is with you and nothing you do will drive him away.

His power is more than you need in every situation of your life and heart, and he stands within your reach whenever you call out for him.

How could this omnipotent, omnipresent, omnibeneveleant, omniscient God take notice of me, care to assist me, love me, empower me? He manages the smallest measurements of the Planck and beyond the Hercules Borealis, yet he loves me!

Incomprehensible, unbelievable, head shaking awe… never forget who he is and how he cares for the smallest thing that you can think of.

Go with God.

Debbie

Daily Growth

What’s growing that we can see and what’s growing that we cannot see? What is it that demonstrates positive growth and which things bring negative growth?

Yesterday my husband had an emergency gall bladder surgery in which they removed it. After 2 days of excruciating pain, an urgent care visit and 3:00 AM emergency run, it was finally concluded that his gallbladder was enlarged and infected. It had been growing daily.

One of the questions he was asked was, “What did you last eat?” His response, “A taquito and salad”. To which the doctor said, “That’ll do it!”

Do what, I’m thinking.

Come to find out the gallbladder’s bile helps to process and breakdown fatty foods. (I thought salads were good for you… oh… you mean taquitos are fatty??!) 🙂

Obviously, 1 taquito is not going to cause a gallbladder to become inflamed and start screaming for attention. But what had been growing daily just might.

Den & I reconsidered our “retired eating habits” and determined to reshape them, albeit if that had been done earlier he still may have his gallbladder. Humph.

Whether we see it or not, growth is natural, and that means growth of negative things as well as positive things.

One of our dear friends has a luscious garden and was sharing this same idea with us as she proudly described the daily growth of her beans, cucumbers, and squash. From small, fingernail sized stubs they grow daily into large, nutrient rich, foods.

The garden takes intentional attention, effort and time to assure that daily growth. Just as a healthy, nutritious diet requires similar attention, effort and time.

Inattention, lack of effort, or intentional ignoring of issues in our life, will lead to an infection with painful side effects. They will just keep growing daily, building up, becoming bigger and bigger until…..

There are issues in and pressing upon our life & there are events that have occurred in our past, that have been planted within us. These seeds will grow daily, starting as hidden within the soil of our heart. Then as they begin to sprout and we notice them, the actions we take will determine their fruitfulness.

Should those sprouting attitudes be of bitterness, anger, pain or hurt, they will grow daily if unattended. Until one day you have an infection that spills over into every conversation and each relationship. Overflowing from that wounded heart is an inflamed sickness that must be removed, or it could be terminal. It will grow daily until it explodes and releases poison that kills everything inside and every relationship.

But should those sprouting attitudes be on the positive side, peace, understanding, self-control, love, what blooms and grows is fruit that sustains your life and the lives of those around you.

Much is growing daily inside of you. Much is building up and perhaps even sprouting out. Give careful attention to it, tend it, uproot or cut it out as needed. Pay attention, lest the poison of infection within you cause pain and sickness.

Feed and water regularity those positive seeds. Take the time and energy needed to see your daily growth be nourishing, vibrant and beautiful.

Remember, whether positive or negative, daily growth IS happening.

Cheers,

Debbie