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Articles written by joan clayton

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  • Worrying never beneficial

    Joan Clayton

    Of all the things you have ever worried about, tell me something good that came about a result of your worrying. I don’t like to worry. It disturbs my peace. It makes me nervous. It makes me feel bad. What is worry? I define it as “rehearsing calamity,” a meditating on the worse thing that can happen. It brings anxiety and makes every thing uneasy. It disturbs, harasses and annoys. How long could one feel this way and still have good health? Worry causes a multitude of illnesses and disease. Instead of “cardiac thrombo...

  • Faith is only real source of security

    Joan Clayton

    PNT religion columnist Elisha’s servant went out early in the morning and discovered the King’s force had surrounded the city. He rushed to Elisha in a panic. He prayed, “O, my Lord, what shall we do?” The Lord opened the servant’s eyes and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire. “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” This story confirms the fact that we do not see by sight alone. We walk by faith and faith is the victory. If we could see into the... Full story

  • Heaven lies in love

    Joan Clayton

    Journals of life become memories and turn into twilights of love. Before we know it time has gone and we wish we had more moments of love. Love is precious. It can’t be bought and it can’t bring back time. Life is delicious. Just a smile … a handshake and time to say, “I love you!” Anxiety, anger and worry have no room for life. Only those who love open their hearts. We are living life here now. Let’s live and make love memories. Live so every day is a great day. Make every day a “Love day.” Then put that day in your heart....

  • Jesus’ pain excels all

    Joan Clayton

    Think of the most intense pain you have ever had. Jesus’ pain excels every pain known to mankind and more. Would you voluntarily allow the flesh on your back to be torn into shreds? Jesus did. Can you understand a love that would allow nails driven in your hands and feet? Jesus did. The truth of the ages still prevails: “God so loved the world that he gave.” I pray this awesome truth will permeate your soul today and that you realize the depths of such a sacrifice. There...

  • Family unit has great value

    Joan Clayton

    Deuteronomy 24:5 states God’s concerns in establishing a new marriage: “If a man has recently married, he must not be sent to war or have any other duty laid on him. For one year he is to be free to stay at home and bring happiness to the wife he has married.” (NIV) This instruction protected the relationship from outside pressures and allowed time for the marriage to be strengthened. Psalm 128 has been called “The Marriage Prayer.” It was often sung at Israelite weddings: “Blessings on all who reverence and trust the L... Full story

  • Have some heaven on your way there

    Joan Clayton

    Love is so important. Do you know what you can give away and it will always come back to you? It’s a smile. Try it sometime. An encouraging note or letter would only cost the price of a stamp. It could make such a difference in someone’s day. There are so many lonely people in rest homes. Just to see their eyes light up would be worth the trip. I have so many memories and they will always be in a special place in my heart. Glimpses of heaven may be just fleeting moments. It may be just an admiring glance of your husband but...

  • God’s promises calm hearts

    Joan Clayton

    We walk by faith and faith is the victory. Trusting God and believing his promises calm the anxious heart. The Bible is filled with example after example of God’s faithfulness. Noah built an ark by faith. By faith Abraham obeyed God and lived as a stranger in a foreign country. By faith, Moses’ parents hid him for three months after he was born. Later, by faith, Moses led God’s people through the Red Sea on dry ground. Joseph, by faith, when his end was near gave instructions about his bones. He wanted his bones to be taken...

  • Trust in Jesus

    Joan Clayton

    Today is a brand new day. Let’s make it sparkle. Give it a verbal sunshine. Put on a “happy Face. Let the celebration of the gift of life begin in you. Enjoy God’s color of nature. Clap with the trees of the wind. Count the many blessings in your life. God is love. He is our breath and our heartbeat. He is life in abundance. Be aware of God’s wonderful surprises today. With him nothing is just “happenstance.” He gives his children an inner vision. In your inner being, his secrets are revealed. “He that dwelleth in the secret... Full story

  • Life doesn’t get any better

    Joan Clayton

    In the midst of a desperate situation, “throwing in the towel” seems tempting. Depression sets in and the burdened soul thinks “What’s the use?” It seems at that time no one else in the world has ever had a similar problem. Whether it is a bad day, an annoying constant problem or heavier burdens of physical illnesses, financial problems or losing a loved one, the human soul feels weighted down with sorrow. You might even feel you have been put into a boxing arena in the heat of the battle going down for the count. Wrong. God...

  • Is anything changed by worry?

    Joan Clayton

    Worry is like a rocking chair…something to do, but where does it get you? As a beginning teacher I wanted everything to be perfect and it caused me a lot of anxiety. My first superintendent compared me to the man who was a chronic worrier. When shown the fallacy of his worry, the man replied, “But worry did some good. Look at all the things that never happened to me because I worried about it!” Someone has said that worry is the interest you pay on a loan that can never be paid off. There is not one sparrow that falls that...

  • Let freedom ring through this day

    Joan Clayton

    Throughout the history of this nation men and women have made tremendous sacrifices to maintain freedom. Life without freedom is a life of every type of tyranny. Freedom is the most precious gift a country can possess and it comes with a price. This is our America and we want our freedom. We love our lifestyle. We honor those who gave their time and lives to preserve our way of life. Whenever I see “Old Glory” I want to salute it. I love the red, white and blue and I don’t appreciate any disrespect to our flag or any other...

  • Family trip full of miracles

    Joan Clayton

    I have been staying with my son in Fort Worth. I want to thank you for the many prayers you have prayed. Lance is getting better. He is able to laugh and love. He still has a long battle of fighting cancer ahead of him, but with your prayers he will get there. Thank you so much! Please keep praying. He is my miracle and I’m holding on to it. My youngest son, Lane, and his wife were bringing me back home from Fort Worth when we stopped at Clarendon for ice cream. As we placed our order, we noticed quite a few framed photos o...

  • Praise keeps your priorities straight

    Joan Clayton

    Has America taken God’s many blessings for granted? Has complaining, criticizing and negativity taken over our country. Could it be the little foxes have spoiled the grapes? The Israelites in the wilderness certainly did their share of ailments and it took 40 years to take the Promised Land. True praise comes through the heart, not just when we get into trouble, but from a loving trusting fellowship with our heavenly Father. Praising God keeps all of us going. Praising God releases tension to the believer and causes a new p... Full story

  • Family bond stronger than anything

    Joan Clayton

    The bond of a family is strong and full of love. None ran deeper nor stronger than the one I witnessed between my husband of 64 years and our three sons. This Father's Day will be their first since Emmitt's passing and the following illustrates their strong bond of love. “Dear Boys, It seems only yesterday I cuddled you in my arms. What tiny bundles of love … when I held you for the first time, I knew it was love at first sight. The tiny chubby hands and feet, the angelic radiance in your little round faces, the unc...

  • You can be happy too!

    Joan Clayton

    Every day is a gift wrapped in God's love. His present to us is tied securely with ribbons of joy. What we find in our gift and how we use it is up to us. The choice is ours. We can see a beautiful sunrise and we can see beautiful sunsets. I like to see the twilight and the birds that settle down with a song. It seems God is putting nature to bed. I like to hear it all. There are so many things to see, to say and share with others. Time fleets at night or day. Today is the time to live, love, laugh and be happy. Everyone want...

  • Someday comes too fast

    Joan Clayton

    Remember those wonderful childhood dreams … "When I grow up I'm going to be…" As a little girl I dreamed of my knight in shining armor sweeping me away on that beautiful white charger. That "someday" finally came for me. My tall dark and handsome knight married me. We talked of having children "someday." That "someday'" came. Mark, our first born, blessed our home. Then Lance, our middle son brought more joy! Then Lane, our youngest, completed our family. The someday seemed too far off for the boys. Those happy, loving day...

  • In a place of joy forever

    Joan Clayton

    Our house will be 5O years old in June. I guess you could say we are the antiques of 18th Street. We thought we were building our house in the country. It was just a pasture all around us then. Our boys had lots of room to kick footballs and bat baseballs. At night the howls of coyotes seemed mighty close. Other visitors liked to come too. Skunks, snakes, a bat, a wolf and even a monkey wanted to visit. The boys tried to catch them all. In those 50 years, we've had to replace the roof three times, fix the plumbing more times...

  • Each day is one day closer to Jesus

    Joan Clayton PNT religion columnist

    Have you ever returned to the home of your childhood and find it to be almost unrecognizable? You had remembered it so vividly but now it looks so different? My grandmother lived by the highway in a small town. Every time we pass her house I can almost smell baked gingerbread with a glass of cold fresh milk. I can almost see her flower garden and hear her singing those grand old church hymns. Even the initials on her tree carved by my sweetheart are gone. Have you met someone recently that you knew many years ago and barely...

  • I will never forget you

    Joan Clayton

    Editor's note: Joan Clayton's husband, Emmitt, died on Wednesday. She pays tribute with Emmitt's first-person account of his life. "Please take care of my son." I well remember at 4 years old my mother's dying prayer. I guess you could say I grew myself up. Having an alcoholic dad didn't help. Many times an aunt or a neighbor invited me to eat, and did I ever eat. I worked my way through high school doing odd jobs I could find and God always provided. Whenever I felt discouraged I remembered mother's prayer. Because of those... Full story

  • Those who have Jesus are millionaires

    Joan Clayton

    If you could have anything in the world, what would you ask for? Riches? Fortune? Fame? To be happy is one of life's pursuits and yet, for many, it seems almost unobtainable. Some pursue happiness with an unrelenting resolve, and just about the time it can be grasped, it suddenly eludes them, and the cycle begins again. One of the happiest people I have ever met was a 93-years-young wonderful soul in the rest home. She held me close the day I had to enter my two aunts in the nursing home where she resides. My tears were...

  • With Jesus we win

    Joan Clayton

    If we stop to think about it, we are blessed, even a tiny complaint is most inappropriate. With so many blessings surrounding me, how dare I be thankless. A grateful heart is a loving heart. My happiness is not in fortune, fame, possessions or any other substitute. These temporary things can be taken away in an instant. The real blessings are your husband, children, family and friends. These are the things to love each day with joy. Every day you and I are leaving memories and those we leave behind will remember what we left.... Full story

  • God-fearing people try to do right

    Joan Clayton

    It seems bad news is presented every day. Seldom do we hear about good things, but on any given day, we have more blessings than problems. Despite all of the bad news there are many great things about this country I can name. Reams of paper would be required if you added your list to mine. So the next time you feel down about all of the negatives, think about the overwhelming positives surrounding us. I find them just waiting to be appreciated. One never misses something until it is taken away. Here are some of the many,...

  • Let's reach the finish line

    Joan Clayton

    "Thud!" There it goes again. What is that noise I keep hearing? Imagine my surprise to see a bird hitting our window pane. I watched in utter amazement. Every few seconds that same little bird hit the same pane, batting his little bird brain with what I imagined a big "ouch!" You surely are a slow learner," I thought to myself. "How many blows does it take for you to learn?" Then a painful impression came to me about my brain. That little bird is only going by when he can see and doesn't realize insanity is doing the same thi...

  • Victory over sin, death, and the grave

    Joan Clayton

    Many thoughts come to mind when I think of Easter. I call the upcoming celebration "Resurrection Day." I think of the great sacrifice Jesus made for you and me. I think of the pain, the shame, the agony he endured. He came to give us "life and to give it more abundantly." (John 10:10) How many of us have "real life?" To be lifeless in our minds, spirits and hearts is a wasted life. That's why Jesus came … to heal the broken hearted. If you are heartsick today Jesus is the Great Cardiologist. He performs heart transplants all...

  • The heart of the Christian faith

    Joan Clayton

    On Easter Sunday Christians all over the world will witness their faith that Jesus of Nazareth was raised from the dead. This is the heart of the Christian faith. Jesus did not remain in the grave like all others. His tomb is empty! Imagine you are Jesus. You look down and see the hopelessness of mankind. Every imaginable kind of sin abounds. You know the only way to save the people. It has to be. You experience every pain and agony ever known to man. You take the sins of the world. Worst of all you are completely alone. You...

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