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{Straight From the Heart}   *A Change for the Better*  2/22/01


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This past weekend, Caleb and I went to the Pet Store to get him a pet.
Mommy told us we could get him whatever he we came home
with a cute, cuddly....SNAKE!!  Yes, the Powers' are now proud
owners of a Garter Snake.  It took Caleb over and hour to decide as he
looked at hamsters, guinea pigs, rats, mice, ferrets, rabbits, lizards, frogs,
scorpions, tarantulas, frogs, and snakes.  "Daddy, it's just so hard to decide!"
But decide he did!  And oh how Mommy loves the new addition to the family!
Have a great day everyone and thank you for being an integral part of the
Straight From the Heart family!



By Al Batt

Growing up on a farm, I would often find myself seated on an old tractor, pulling some form of tillage equipment across a darkening field.  It was a time that required concentration, yet demanded daydreaming. I enjoyed the work more when it allowed me to watch the birds. There were days when I would see a Killdeer run ahead of the tractor.  This beautiful little bird that named herself, was worried that the beast that was the tractor would destroy her nest. Calling the Killdeer's nest a nest is to use the term very loosely.   It is little more than a slight scrape in the soil. She lays her eggs on the ground in an open spot where they blend extremely well into the landscape.  As the tractor and I roared nearer to the bird's nest, the mama Killdeer drooped a wing feigning a terrible injury.  She hoped that this performance would lead me away from her nest and her precious eggs.  Why would any beast intent on doing a dastardly deed, as the tractor and equipment apparently were, want to bother with some measly eggs when it could easily prey upon a broken-winged and delicious looking bird like her?  I always carried a few tile flags on the tractor with me--short pieces of stiff wire with red, plastic flags attached.  I would shut the tractor off, dismount and head in the opposite direction of the Killdeer and her dramatic acting.  I could tell when I would be getting close to the nest, as the bird would abandon her broken wing routine and flutter at me.  Sometimes I would find the nest; sometimes I would not.  When I did find one, I would mark it with a flag and make sure to drive around it with the tractor.  The nest was such a tiny speck in the field that its loss in the row had no real impact on the crop.  I felt so good after I had found and marked a nest.  It gave me great pleasure to look back and see the tiny, red flag flapping in the breeze.  Was I changing the world for the better?  Probably not.  Was I changing the future of the entire Killdeer species?  Not likely.  What I was doing was changing myself.  I was doing a good thing for a tiny creature that was somewhat dependent on the kind acts of humans. In a small way, I was demonstrating to the world that I cared. The love of birds and nature cannot help but make you a better person.

Al Batt,  ©1999

Send Al an email and let him know what you thought of his story!
Al lives on a farm in Minnesota with his wife, Gail.  Al is a writer, a newspaper columnist, a radio personality, a speaker and a storyteller. 

Al Batt
RR1 Box 56A
Hartland, MN 56042


In Memory of Baby Martin

From a loving friend in the Lord, Debby Adler

Beautiful Baby glow from above
How do you know that your mama loves you?
Tearstained eyes: broken, shattered, withered.

Souls connected even for a few weeks
Waiting for our eyes to meet
Looking, Longing, Waiting.

Dreams of you for a future,
Seeking His face; Seeking His guidance,
Wondering, Feeling, Bonding.

An addition to our family,
God's gift in our storms, what a blessing,
Anticipation, Amazement, Awe.

Then one day a glass shatters
and our lives as we know come crumbling
Halted, Shock, Torn.

Tears start to well-up in our souls
for the life of yours that was to be.
Frustrated, Angry, Turmoil.

Your life which was supposed to be
was cut short and was not meant to be.
Gone to His arms, Oh beautiful for you, And How sad for me.

My Baby you'll always be
in my heart of hearts I'll always remember
Love, Purity, Peace

In our Savior's Loving Arms
so tucked in perfect harmony,
Singing, whole, Pure.

Where one day we will meet
before our Savior's Precious Throne.
Blessing, Honor, Glory

Just wait my Baby you'll see
I'll be the one smiling with tears and longing to see
Your loveliness, Your Beauty of what you are to me!

Debby Adler

Send Debby an email and let her know what you thought of her poem!
Debby Adler resides in Janesville Wisconsin.  She has been married for 9
years, loves to bake, sing, and write from her heart about life's experiences. 
She is a mom to Caleb age 3 after 4 years of infertility and one miscarriage. 
Her passion is to minister to other women that are hurting from the same
experiences.  She is a secretary for a church in Janesville and continues to
seek God and His guidance to fulfill other passions in her life.

From:  (Stephanie)

Please put my brother in law on prayer requests. He is only 26. He is scheduled for major surgery Friday morning at Vanderbilt Hospital in Nashville. It will be an 8 hour surgery-removing rectum, colon, and large intestine. He will have a pouch placed inside of him. But will have to wear a colostomy bag (this was his other choice besides major surgery) for a while until his insides heal.

He has really struggled with ulcerative colitis this past year. But it has gotten the best of him. Please pray for his wife as well.  They've only been married for a year and a half.
Their names are Craig and Mandy and their  email address is

Thanks and God Bless You-
From: (Shirley Lendborg)

Dear Michael, Would you please have everyone pray for our son, David. he
is going through divorce. He is a Christian and is terribly
depressed. Please lift him and his two daughters in prayer. Thank you Love
in Christ, Shirley
From: "claw2" ( Sharon Beibleheimer)

To all of you from across the world I'd like to thank you for your
prayers. I died on the operating table a few times but I came back
renewed and with hope to face the challenges that may come next.
I do have some vices though that I have to give up. I drink too much not a
drunkard but 4-5 week and I'm praying to lose that habit in order to live longer because of my heart disease and I truly believe in the power of prayer so please
bow your heads and plead for a cure.
Sharon Beibleheimer

Thought For The Day:

"Whatever you dislike in another person take care to correct in yourself."--Sprat

Verse for the Day:

"Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother's eye and pay no
attention to the plank in your own eye?" --Matthew 7:3

Kid's Thought For The Day:

While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, a
young mother used to take her four-year-old daughter on her afternoon rounds.
She was unfailingly intrigued by the various appliances of old age, particularly the
canes, walkers and wheelchairs.  One day the mother found her staring at a pair
of false teeth soaking in a glass. As she braced herself for the inevitable
barrage of questions, her daughter merely turned and whispered,
"The tooth fairy will never believe this!"

Parent's Thought For The Day:

"As a mother, my job is to take care of the possible and trust God with the
impossible." -- Ruth Bell Graham

Coach's Thought For The Day:

"Success is how high you bounce when you hit bottom." --General George Patton

Deep Thought For The Day:

"People tell me I'm indecisive.......but I don't know about that."

\_\  /  
/_/  \    "For I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but
\_\/\ \   Christ lives in me.  The life I live in the body I live for the Son
   \_\/   of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20 

The copyrights to the stories that appear in SFTH are owned by the
authors and are used with their permission.  This email may be forwarded
in its entirety, but please do not cut and paste the stories to be used
elsewhere unless you have contacted, and been given permission,
by the individual writer.  Thanks!

Video Imagery (Michael's Video Production Business.)

"I thought of you first after my family sat down to watch the video we gave
them. They loved it, to say the least!  Within thirty seconds my mom was
crying and my dad did too.  They said it was the best Christmas gift we could
have given them!!  You did such a beautiful job!  They were so surprised and so
touched---they really, really, really loved it.  Thanks for helping to make it so
special to us all.  My mom mentioned how the songs were perfect for the
video too!  Thanks again!"
Kelli-- College Station, TX

Let me make you a video from your pictures or home movies!
Check out the web page for Michael's video production business!

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