A Coward’s Stance

Like the sound of thunder vibrating the heavens
     The solitary rooster crowed.
It was magnified inside my ears,
vibrating my mind,
rumbling my soul.
A crow from the rooster and
three times you were betrayed
by my heart and my mouth.
You were right.
A lion’s roar,
     My loyalty I pledged
with you I was strong,
my convictions were incorruptible.
I was prepared for the
mighty sea of adversity.
But a coward’s stance,
I was like a dry leaf hanging on an
Olive tree in the winter’s wind.
I cumbled without you near.
I pulled my cape over my head
hiding my face from you.
Because of my betrayal,
My heart twists and burns
while it still beats.  Warm
bitter tears slide over my lips and beard.
These tears will not cleanse my soul.
To ease the pain,
     I search for a silver blade to cut out
my lying tongue or to cease the
life fluid in my body.
I fall to the ground and my heart spills upon
the sandy soil, my tongue next to it.
But I have a coward’s stance,
     The sword is too brave an act for me.
I scoop up my troubled heart and
replace my lying tongue then
slithered away into the dark night
too weak to look over my shoulder.
You knew me,
    Yet you loved me,
forgave me, and used
my coward’s heart for
 Your glory.

By Debora Shelford Hobbs

PERSEVERE – Your Day Will Come

Brushing my teeth, I stared at the 8 year old face in the mirror and wondered Why do those guys constantly torture me?  The weekend went way too fast and now I have to head out to the bus stop and take it from them for the millionth time.  I wish it were summer.

“Mom, I don’t feel like going out to the bus stop.  I’m going to watch from the window and head out as soon as I see it.” 
“OK” said Mom, “But don’t miss the bus, I don’t have time to drive you to school.” 
Settling on the couch facing the window I lean back and close my eyes; the dream returns.  I’m a University of Washington football player.  The ball is pressed tightly against my side; running with all my might, I’m cutting, juking, and breaking tackles all the way to the end zone to thousands of cheers and screams from adoring fans… The bus pulls up.  With a sigh, I reluctantly pick up my back pack and head for the front door.  “Bye Mom, I love you” 
“I love you too Cody, have a wonderful day.” I waited just long enough to be certain the bullies were on the bus and then I ran.  Extending my hand into the closing door just in the nick of time I hopped up the steps.  Taking my seat in the front near the bus driver, we made eye contact and said,  “Good morning.”  She knew about the bullies and that it had been going on for many months. She looked at me with kindness and said for the umpteenth time,
“Don’t worry Cody, one day things will be different. Your day will come.” 

The boys that harassed me were two sets of brothers.  It was just them and me at the bus stop each day.  Why was I their target? Was it because I was alone and they had support or was it because they had more money than we did?  Whatever it was, they loved picking on me at the bus stop and on the bus.  It was the bus driver’s idea for me to sit near her to discourage their incessant poison.  Sometimes I felt like I was always in a battle and I had to always be on guard and it went on far too long.

Fast Forward 9 years:

Grabbing my gear bag, I headed for the front door.  “Bye Mom and Dad, I’m heading out.” 
“OK sweetheart, God Bless you tonight and good luck. We’ll be there cheering.”
Turning the key in the ignition, my old Junker starts to rumble and I head to school.  Focusing on the task at hand and visualizing success, I’m stunned that this will be my last high school football game.  All the years of hard work and sacrifice paid off.  I accomplished my goals and led the league in rushing, touchdowns, and have set the tackle record at my school. Next fall I will be wearing the Huskies purple and gold.  “Where did time go?  It just seems like yesterday that I was that little boy at the bus stop. 

In the locker room we gear up and are unusually quiet thinking about the series of “lasts” we are experiencing as high school seniors.  It’s a mixed bag of excitement about the future and nostalgia about the past.  I pull my number “48” jersey over my head for the last time…ever.  Looking around the locker room at the familiar faces, I think to myself These guys have been my teammates in countless games and comrades in pranks and parties. I love ‘em and am going to miss ‘em.

Last out of the locker room, with helmet in hand I dash to the bus. Flying up the steps I extend my hand in to the closing door just in the nick of time. I grab a seat toward the front and breathe a big sigh as I settle in… just then the bus driver turns around.  She looks straight into my eyes, smiles, and nods her head.  The knowing in her eyes brought the words rushing back into my heart….. “Don’t worry Cody, one day things will be different.  Your day will come.”


This is a true story. Even though it’s about a boy persevering and becoming a young man we can all learn from the message.   Many times life is frustrating and we don’t feel good about ourselves. Our dreams seem ridiculously far off, even dead. 
But …no matter what… “persevere and be patient”, DON’T GIVE UP, because “your day will come.”

 By Rhonda Shelford Jansen 


Dyslexic – My Son and I

A sonnet

When I was eight, like you are now, I cried
at the thought of capturing the letters,
numbers and words swirling inside
my head.  My desire was to do better.

To be like the girl who sat perfectly still.
Slender A shaped nose pointed straight ahead.
It all made sense inside her head.  My will
was not enough to sit still while she read.

When you practice your spelling words, you cry.
When it’s time to read, you throw a tantrum
because the words spin and jump, appearing to fly.
You try so hard for success; yet it does not come.

I know your struggle; I know you are very smart.
Never give up; it will take all your heart.

 By Debora Shelford Hobbs

Rhonda Jansen


Some people are born to write; others find their way to the pen very slowly. The latter is my story.  My english composition professor would be quite shocked to know that I write at all, since my forte’ was run-on sentences that never got to the point.  Don’t let that scare you away though, I’m nearly cured.

I began writing about the experiences in my life and what I learned from them, when struggles piled up then wore me down time and time again.  I began to search for the “whys” and began to grasp for hope like a drowning man grasping for a life ring.  Now it’s time to share what I’ve been learning with the hope that others can find encouragement in the words written out of the troubled moments in my life.  There is always a diamond buried beneath the rubbish in which we find ourselves swimming.  The hard part is getting our eyes off the trouble and refocusing on finding that diamond.

I am married to an Alaskan crab and salmon fisherman and have three children; all graduated from college and in careers and one with a wife and kids. 

Statistics: Majored in accounting at the University of Washington; An artist that specializes in watercolors and boat/fishing scenes; Illustrated a book about fishing accidents in Alaskan waters; illustrated a children’s book; Spent years as a community organizer and started a few non-profits along the way. Lastly I am a recorder of the lessons of life.

To view some of my artwork click on the link: 




Debora Shelford Hobbs

I was born with the heart of a writer; I was also born with dyslexia.  So, while my heart beat with the passion to write, my mind told me I could not.  This inner struggle has been crippling at times keeping me from reaching past self inflicted boundaries.  In the best of situations my insecurities presented themselves as a warm, pesky voice whispering doubt in my ear.  I choose now, with the help of God, family, and friends to face my fear head on and to write with courage, strength, and honesty.   I will be writing about the joys and struggles of raising three boys, of being married, and of my own internal search of hope, peace, and healthy relationships.

Poetry is a word picture that lets your mind see what the eye does not and it has always been within me.   It is natural for me to understand feelings like joyful, happy, excited, unhappy, frustrated, or agony in colors, or thunder storms, and on occasions as thick dark nimbostratus clouds.    I was in the third grade when I wrote my first poem, it was about the pilgrims, and to my great delight was published in the local paper.  This started my lifelong love affair with writing poetry; some good, some not so good, and some just simply terrible.  Only on rare occasions have I shared my poetry with others, these occasions usually came under the direct request of an instructor in college.   Now, I am pointing my face into the wind of doubt and sharing my poetry and stories with you.  I hope you will find them inspiring, encouraging, entertaining, thought provoking, and maybe even funny.

About the Blog

Welcome to our blog.

We are two sisters that have separately experienced many trials in our lives.  From those experiences we are posting stories, insights, lessons learned, and poetry. 

We address the fact that much trouble is encountered along the road of life but we are not alone in our struggles, hurts, and disappointments.  We want to convey that the Lord is an endless well of hope and have found in our lives that hope is the best antidepressant known to man.  

As much as we dread trials, if walked through with faith and perseverance they can transform us into something beautiful, something good, something far beyond anything we can imagine.
After all, that is why the Lord allows us to go through hard times …to refine us until we are pure as gold.

We hope you’re encouraged by the words and pray that you find good in the pain, loss, and trials that you experience. 

The Lord God be with you and may He shine down upon you and give you peace.

All entries are based on our personal experiences and personal insights.  They are for each reader to consider only.        The entries are in no way intended to be a final authority or offer a complete analysis of any particular situation.