Sunday, 23 October 2016

A Smile A Day - October 24th

25 Ways To Ensure You Can Be Used By God

1. Love your enemy
‘If you see your enemy hungry, go buy him lunch;
   if he’s thirsty, bring him a drink.
Your generosity will surprise him with goodness,
   and God will look after you’ (25:21–22, MSG; see also Romans 12:20).

2. Watch your tongue
‘A north wind brings stormy weather,
   and a gossipy tongue stormy looks’ (Proverbs 25:23, MSG).

If you want to change your actions, start with your thoughts and words. ‘Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly’ (2 Timothy 2:16).

3. Avoid quarreling
‘Better to live on the corner of the roof than to share a house with a quarrelsome wife’ (Proverbs 25:24).

On the same theme Paul writes, ‘Warn them before God against quarreling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen’ (2 Timothy 2:14). He goes on to say, ‘Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servants must not quarrel’ (vv.23–24).

4. Bring good news
‘Like cold water to a weary soul is good news from a distant land’ (Proverbs 25:25). We are so privileged to be able to bring the good news of Jesus. It is like ‘cold water to a weary soul’.

5. Stand your ground
‘Like a muddied spring or a polluted well are the righteous who give way to the wicked’ (v.26). Sometimes it is important to stand your ground.

6. Do not seek honor
If you seek your own honor, you will find that true honor eludes you: ‘It is not good to eat too much honey, nor is it honorable to seek one’s own honor’ (v.27).

7. Be self-controlled
‘A person without self-control is like a house with its doors and windows knocked out’ (v.28, MSG). Don’t try to control others. The only person you should try to control is yourself. Self-control is one of the characteristics that make up the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22–23).

8. Don’t worry about what others say
You do not need to fear bad publicity or slander: ‘Like a fluttering sparrow or a darting swallow, an under served curse does not come to rest’ (Proverbs 26:2).

2 TIMOTHY 2:1-26
9. Pass it on
It is so important to pass on the message and invest in others. There are four stages of investing in others in 2 Timothy 2:2:

What I said
and you heard
entrust to reliable people
who teach others.
10. Endure hardship
Paul uses the analogy of being a soldier (v.4). Soldiers have to endure hardship. He goes on, ‘therefore I endure everything for the sake of the elect, that they too may obtain the salvation that is in Christ Jesus’ (v.10). Paul goes on to say that ‘if we endure, we will also reign with him’ (v.12).

11. Avoid distractions
‘No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs’ (v.4a). Keep a clear focus and avoid distractions that waste time. As a soldier, you need to keep your focus and seek to please your commanding officer (v.4b).

12. Keep to the rules
Paul moves from the analogy of a soldier to that of an athlete: ‘An athlete who refuses to play by the rules will never get anywhere’ (v.5, MSG).

13. Work hard
From the soldier and athlete, Paul moves to the analogy of a farmer: ‘The hardworking farmer should be the first to receive a share of the crops’ (v.6).

14. Meditate on God’s words
Only God can give understanding, but you have your part to play. Paul writes, ‘Reflect on what I am saying, for the Lord will give you insight into all this’ (v.7).

15. Focus on Jesus
‘Remember Jesus Christ, raised from the dead, descended from David. This is my gospel’ (v.8). The gospel is all about Jesus. Salvation ‘is in Christ Jesus’ (v.10).

16. Correctly handle God’s word
‘Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth’ (v.15).

17. Turn away from evil
‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness’ (v.19). Repentance is not a one-off act; it is a continuing attitude. It involves turning away from wickedness (v.19) and fleeing ‘the evil desires of youth’ (v.22a).

18. Be a peacemaker
Paul urges Timothy among other things to ‘pursue... peace’ (v.22). ‘Refuse to get involved in inane discussions; they always end up in fights. God’s servant must not be argumentative’ (v.23, MSG).

Joyce Meyer writes, ‘Strife is bickering, arguing, heated disagreement, and an angry undercurrent. Strife is dangerous and destructive.’ Keeping strife out of our lives ‘requires willingness to constantly communicate and confront issues... ask for the Holy Spirit’s help to be a person who avoids strife and restores peace everywhere you go.’

19. Be kind to everyone
‘The Lord’s servant… must be kind to everyone’ (v.24). Everyone includes everyone – not just your friends, or the people you like, but all the people you come into contact with during the day (especially those who are often unappreciated, such as the person on the supermarket checkout, the person driving the bus, the person on reception, the person who helps you on the phone…).

20. Learn to teach
‘The Lord’s servants must be… able to teach’ and ‘opponents must be gently instructed’ (vv.24–25). Teaching is a specialist ministry but it is also the task of every Christian. A key characteristic is gentleness. ‘God’s servant must... [be] a gentle listener and a teacher who keeps cool, working firmly but patiently with those who refuse to obey’ (vv.24–25, MSG).

21. Don’t be resentful
‘The Lord’s servant must… not [be] resentful’ (v.24). Resentment poisons relationships.

JEREMIAH 49:7-50:10
22. Hear the word of the Lord
Jeremiah was greatly used by God because as he said, ‘I have heard a message from the Lord’ (49:14).

23. Allow God to speak through you
Jeremiah not only heard the word of the Lord, he was prepared to speak it out and God spoke through him. ‘This is the word the Lord spoke through Jeremiah…’ (50:1).

24. Walk closely with the Lord
Jeremiah foretold of the days when ‘the people of Israel and the people of Judah together will go in tears to seek the Lord their God’ (v.4).

This is the type of relationship God wants us to have with him – bound together, walking closely with him all the time (Jeremiah 50:5). ‘Hold tight to God’ (v.5, MSG).

25. Find rest in the Lord
‘My people have been lost sheep; their shepherds have led them astray and caused them to roam on the mountains. They wandered over mountain and hill and forgot their own resting place’ (v.6). The Lord is described as your ‘own resting place’ (v.6), the place where you find rest for your soul (see also 6:16).

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Tea can soothe, restore and refresh

According to the Tea Association of the U.S.A. Inc., the number of Americans who will drink tea today is over 158 million, about half of the U.S. population. And, the trend of increased consumer purchases of tea is expected to continue over the next five years.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics ( tells us that ever since 2737 B.C., when Chinese legend says leaves from an overhanging Camellia sinensis plant (an evergreen shrub native to East and South Asia) fell into Emperor Shennong’s cup of boiling water, tea has been recognized by cultures around the world for its capacity to soothe, restore and refresh.
Far from being a fictitious promise, tea has been lauded for an array of potential health benefits — from reducing cancer and heart disease risk, improving dental health and boosting weight loss.
Tea and heart health
The strongest evidence is on the side of heart health, attributed to the antioxidant effects in tea. Studies that looked at the relationship of black tea intake and heart health reported decreased incidence of heart attack, whereas drinking green tea was associated with lower total cholesterol, LDL and triglycerides, and higher HDL (the “good” cholesterol) levels.
Support for tea’s cancer prevention benefits is less compelling. It has been suggested that polyphenol compounds — particularly catechins — in tea may play a role in preventing cancer. However, studies related to black tea and different types of cancers have been extremely limited or conflicting.
In 2010, Japanese researchers reported at least one cup of green tea per day was associated with significantly decreased odds for tooth loss. Other studies have suggested tea may lower the pH of the tooth surface, suppressing the growth of periodontal bacteria. A more likely reason for tea’s anticariogenic effect is its fluoride content. Tea usually is brewed with fluoridated water and the tea plant naturally accumulates fluoride from the soil.
Tea and caffeine
The caffeine content of tea varies widely depending on the kind of tea used and the way in which it is brewed. Typical levels for tea are less than half that of coffee, ranging from 20 to 90 milligrams per 8 ounces (compared to 50 to 120 milligrams in coffee).


Was going through some old stuff today and came across this hat.  It was from the publication I started almost 37 years ago.  I started Manitoba Farm Express in 1980.  Over the years as I stayed things changed.
I went from starting the paper for someone else to owning it and then selling it the company I work for today.  The publication has changed from Farm Express to FarmLIFE and now is in both Saskatchewan and Manitoba

Although I miss my old career of doing hockey play by play it has been a great ride in the publication business for 36.5 years.  I am grateful to my customers, the advertiser who have supported me all these years and I owe them so much.
Not sure when retirement will take place...Would kind of like to get to 40 years with the publication which would then take me over 1000 in the number of issues produced

A Smile A Day - October 23rd

Friday, 21 October 2016

Health / IBS Fibromyalgia Drug Shows Promise in Treating IBS Pain

The medication could ease stomach pain for people with irritable bowel syndrome who aren't helped by current treatment options.

According to a small, preliminary study, a drug that's typically prescribed for fibromyalgia might also relieve pain related to irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)—the common GI disorder estimated to affect as many as 15% of adults. There's not enough evidence to recommend pregabalin (sold under the brand name Lyrica) to IBS patients yet, says the lead investigator, but she hopes her research will prompt further studies on the topic.
There is considerable overlap when it comes to fibromyalgia and IBS, says Yuri Saito-Loftus, MD, a gastroenterologist at the Mayo Clinic. Many patients experience both conditions together, and both involve pain of some sort.
Previous studies, mostly in animals, have suggested that pregabalin—which is also used to treat seizure disorders and diabetic nerve pain—could decrease visceral hypersensitivity, a sensation of pain within the internal organs that’s common in bowel disorders. So Dr. Saito-Loftus asked Pfizer, the drug’s parent company, to fund a small study to determine whether it may help people with IBS.
“Treatment options for managing abdominal pain—particularly moderate to severe pain—are limited to antispasmodics and neuromodulators such as tricyclic antidepressants,” Dr. Saito-Loftus told Health. “But if patients don't respond to those agents, there were few proven alternatives.”

For the study, Dr. Saito-Loftus and her colleagues recruited 85 people with IBS, ages 18 to 70, all of whom reported high levels of abdominal pain. The participants took either pregabalin or a placebo for 12 weeks. Those who took the drug reported improvements in pain management, compared to those who didn’t take it.
Preliminary data also showed improvement in other IBS symptoms, including bloating and diarrhea. (Pfizer provided funds, medication, and placebo pills, but had no direct involvement in the study's design or implementation.)
Dr. Saito-Loftus cautions that, because the study was so small, the results are not definitive. She also says that—as with any drug—there would be pros and cons to consider if pregabalin were shown to be an effective IBS treatment.
“Neurological side effects such as sleepiness and feeling funny or dizzy are known side effects of pregabalin,” she says. This isn’t surprising, she adds, since the drug is known to target nerve cells.
Cost could also be a factor for patients. Lyrica, which received a 9.4% price hike earlier this year, won’t be available as a generic drug in the United States until at least December 2018.
Dr. Saito-Loftus presented her research this week at the annual meeting of the American College of Gastroenterology in Las Vegas and it has not yet been published in a peer-reviewed medical journal, a key step for confirming new results. She says she doesn’t have set plans to do a larger study, but will be reaching out to Pfizer to gauge the company's interest.
At another annual meeting of gastroenterologists held this week—UEG Week in Vienna, Austria—researchers presented other research that may also one day help IBS patients better manage their symptoms. Their study was on a dietary treatment.
A low-FODMAP diet—which involves restricting carbohydrates such as wheat, barley, onions, legumes, and many fruits—has been shown to relieve IBS symptoms in about half of patients who try it. But there is currently know way to know who will respond and who won’t.

Now, researchers from the University of Gothenburg in Sweden say that fecal samples of patients who are helped by a low-FODMAP diet have a different bacterial composition than samples of those who aren’t. Testing people, they say, could potentially predict who will benefit.
"Being able to predict if a patient is unlikely to respond to a low-FODMAP diet means that other therapies could be discussed earlier,” said lead investigator and doctoral student Sean Bennet in a press release, “and these patients could be spared a demanding diet that might have no effect on, or even worsen, their symptoms."

A Smile A Day - October 22nd