Archive for November, 2020

God's Inspired Word

November 30, 2020

Back in 1866, when the founding fathers of Confederation were discussing naming Canada, Sir Samuel Leonard Tilley was reading the Bible one morning. While reading Psalm 72, he was inspired by the words of today's verse. His suggestion …( read more )

The Prophets' Candle

November 29, 2020

I've discovered an Advent wreath tradition where the first candle to be lit is "The Prophets' Candle". That got me thinking: All Advent themes must get their flame from "The Prophets' Candle". Otherwise it's impossible to grasp the true …( read more )

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes

November 28, 2020

Nothing warms my heart more than watching our youth pastor gathering his flock at the front of our church for story time and prayer. The platform comes to life with the flutter of waving hands signalling their parents until they have made …( read more )

Game Changer

November 27, 2020

As I have written elsewhere , I have a yearly dialogue with the tax department. Year-on-year, they seem unable to join up the dots between our income and their rules. This year was no different. In COVID-19 times, it was more troublesome …( read more )

Thankful In All Circumstances

November 26, 2020

Recently, I came across the story of Martin Rinkart, a Lutheran minister, who came to the German city of Eilenburg in 1637 near the beginning of the Thirty Years' War. Because the city was walled, it became overcrowded with refugees from …( read more )

My Shadow

November 25, 2020

The other day, I was walking from south to north on the rooftop terrace of the residence where I live. In front of me, I saw a very clear shadow. Every step I took forward, my shadow moved with me. As I turned and walked east, the shadow …( read more )

The Gift

November 24, 2020

I grew up in a family that had the funds for necessities, but nothing for extras. For our birthdays, we never received a gift; we had only a cake. Mother wrapped coins and placed them in between layers of the cake. Each of us always hoped …( read more )

The Munchables

November 23, 2020

When I was nervous or trying to complete school assignments, I chewed pencils so fervently that my parents feared that I would develop lead poisoning (even though pencil lead is made of graphite). When my young granddaughter began chewing …( read more )

Creatures On Alert

November 22, 2020

During our evenings, my husband and I have enjoyed watching nature shows on television. We marvel over the professional, hi-tech motion photography depicting the world of wildlife. Recently, however, I felt the need for a break. It was …( read more )

Brothers And Sisters In Christ

November 21, 2020

Many, many years ago in the Netherlands, before big-box stores and supermarkets, different merchants delivered goods from door to door. On certain days of the week, they would come down the streets to do just that. The milkman came daily, …( read more )

Be Not Swordless

November 20, 2020

Once upon a time, I taught chemistry in a particular high school, and — glory to God — I was a vessel through which many of the high school children received Jesus. On a certain day, one of my female students opened up to me and …( read more )

Pandemic Post

November 19, 2020

Throughout this pandemic, I have been collecting British stamps. I am doing this for two reasons: firstly, I'm gathering them in several albums to give to my grandson in years to come. I hope that he appreciates the stamps as something …( read more )

Hemmed In

November 18, 2020

The fence was there for a purpose — not just for looks. The first house that I lived in on my own was situated on two acres of land just outside of town. Gardening and farming had always been in my blood — I suppose because both of my …( read more )

A Hole In My Heart

November 17, 2020

My older brother and I shared a common bit of philosophy. We agreed that any years granted us beyond a certain given age would simply be icing on the cake, and death at any point thereafter should not be viewed as a great tragedy. We felt …( read more )

Black-And-White Photographs

November 16, 2020

I once took a class in black-and-white photography at a local art school. Our first assignment was to take interesting photos to develop in the school photo lab. I spent happy hours photographing the Rideau Canal locks here in Ottawa, and …( read more )

Our Need For Hope

November 15, 2020

What kind of sin steals a carefree childhood and spirals it into a world of alienation, shame, and secrecy? An evil that defies the very hope that Christ stands for, leaving hopelessness in its wake. Could it harm a child growing up in a …( read more )

Isolated

November 14, 2020

Recently, I stepped onto my balcony and looked down just as a toddler ran into his father's arms. The youngster registered a big smile as his loving parent picked him up and gave him a big hug. This was so encouraging because I had just …( read more )

Drains

November 13, 2020

We have had a blocked drain. As a school caretaker for awhile, back in the mists of time, one of the things that I had to do was unblock the drains. So, with my past experience and with my usual optimism and presumption, I set about …( read more )

Who Are "Corona People", Anyway?

November 12, 2020

My husband Solomon is Nigerian and I am British. Although we have been living in Germany long enough to become acclimatized to the German culture and language, we still enjoy connecting with our cultural and linguistic roots when the …( read more )

Pleasure Or Duty?

November 11, 2020

"During those horrific wartime days, did you view your role as pleasure or duty?" That question never entered my aunt's mind during World War II while she was hiding Jews on the fifth-floor tuberculosis ward of the Dutch hospital that she …( read more )

The Child

November 10, 2020

Our congregation consists of fifteen to eighteen worshippers, the majority seventy years and older. Two of our members, however, are only one and three years of age. They can be loud at times and somewhat disruptive, yet no one seems to …( read more )

Foundation And Building Materials

November 9, 2020

At the side of our farm house, there were two majestic silver maple trees that were as high as the peak of the roof. Their shade covered the veranda through the hot days of summer. Each summer, we had many different songbirds that helped …( read more )

Axonopus Compressus

November 8, 2020

Recently, the Lord drew my attention to this species of grass. The common name for it is carpet grass. It is often used as permanent pasture or groundcover, but mostly, it is planted in lawns. This is what I heard in my spirit: Look at …( read more )

Club Benefits

November 7, 2020

We had the clubhouse. All we needed was members. My cousin and his family lived next door to my maternal grandparents on a large farm. The closest neighbours belonged to another race, and because of the culture, neither he nor his …( read more )

The Morning Drive

November 6, 2020

It was a chilly Monday morning. After two days of anger at a particular situation in the media, I was on my way to work. I'd be useless at my job as a church secretary with all this mess in my heart. I needed to spend some time in the …( read more )

The Wind Storm

November 5, 2020

In western North America this past summer, wildfires devastated nearly four million acres of forests, burned 8,200 structures, and killed 31 people. One day, our weather forecasters warned that high winds were likely to exacerbate these …( read more )

God Desires To Bless And Heal

November 4, 2020

In 1984, my wife Dana had headaches so bad that some days she could not walk upstairs to the bedroom. These headaches came and went for about two years until the pain was so extreme that she had tests done to see if she had brain cancer. …( read more )

The Crickets

November 3, 2020

Traditionally, a chorus of crickets entertains us during balmy summer evenings, while we sit in our outside retreats after a long day. They are very noisy, but as the crickets begin their song, I enjoy their chirps. These loud crickets, …( read more )

Give Me Some Old Time Religion

November 2, 2020

When I was a child, the Reverend Bailey was a strong shepherd who taught with conviction and skill. He preached the fear of the Lord: Sunday mornings at church found me snuggled as close as humanly possible to my mother's side while he …( read more )

The Day Of Rest

November 1, 2020

On a gloriously sunny, cool Sunday in October, I made my way to the Rideau Falls here in Ottawa, the place where the Rideau River tumbles into the Ottawa River, surrounded by parkland and memorial gardens. The week's demands had made my …( read more )

 



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