Archive for July, 2009

Distracted By Stillness

July 31, 2009

With summer here, the stormy winter and chilly evenings of past months have quickly been forgotten. One morning, however, my heart felt like a lingering storm. Numerous needs — my own and others' — were crashing in on me, like … (read more)

Adding Life

July 30, 2009

One of the saddest experiences that I ever had took place in a psychiatric ward in Scotland. I was stationed there for six months as part of my seminary training. The ward was locked because it was full of deeply … (read more)

Gourmand Or Gourmet

July 29, 2009

A recovering alcoholic once told me that he ate a bunch of chocolate bars because he couldn't get his hands on a bottle of whiskey. Then, he said that he had to stop overeating because it gave him the same … (read more)

When The Lion Roars

July 28, 2009

Recently, while on vacation, my husband and I visited the zoo in Cape May, New Jersey, USA. As we walked through the beautiful park, I was in awe of the wonders of God's creation. Magnificent exotic birds, nature, and wildlife … (read more)

The Lost Summer

July 27, 2009

There was a time in my childhood when my siblings and I were all fostered out to our aunts and uncles. It was during a summer, and my mother had been taken in to the local lunatic asylum. My dad … (read more)

The White Cat

July 26, 2009

We are used to seeing animals come onto our property. We have a large yard and a pasture. One day, there was a totally white cat, which we had never seen before, sitting near our birdfeeder. It was intensely watching … (read more)

Looking To Jesus

July 25, 2009

Before moving to Delaware, USA, ten years ago, I attended a Bible study in Pennsylvania with Christians from various backgrounds and denominations. This unique ministry was called "Jesus Focus", and began in 1974 at a time when many churches failed … (read more)

Archery

July 24, 2009

I've only tried archery once in my life, which was during a summer Scout camp in the Western Highlands of Scotland. I signed up for the archery course in order to get a new merit badge for my troop. From … (read more)

The Buttercups Are In Bloom!

July 23, 2009

Today, in a driving rain, Princess and I walked quickly down the tar and chipped roadway. She was looking for "her spot". When she found it, I had the time to savour our surroundings. The buttercups were in bloom! Even … (read more)

Prayer Changes Us

July 22, 2009

My neighbour's face was pale, haggard, and tear-stained as she told me that she hadn't slept all night. She had received very upsetting news; she was worried, afraid, and despairing. "It's hopeless," said Sally, "and there's nothing I can do … (read more)

Fallow Ground

July 21, 2009

It's called "crop rotation" or "fallow ground" back in Scotland. That's when a farmer allows the land to rest for a year and refresh all the nutrients in the soil. In times of hardship and economic crisis, it's a hard … (read more)

Summer Sandals

July 20, 2009

It's finally summer. Hurrah! Like many, I brought out my brand-new sandals bought last year at a closeout. How I rejoiced in cool comfort! Then, "flip flopping" along, out to the garden I went. How good it felt to dig … (read more)

Costly Perfume

July 19, 2009

I have a favourite cologne. It's kept in a decorative glass container. Each time I've used it, it brings back memories of times past: special occasions, dinners with friends, dress-up times. I've had this cologne for years. It is not … (read more)

Go!

July 18, 2009

I love the old Western movies, especially the ones that have wagons heading over the Oregon Trail. Those early pioneers of the west must have been amongst the bravest of souls on earth. To cross the wide Mississippi River and … (read more)

The Worst/Best Moment Of My Life

July 17, 2009

It began with a typical Sunday afternoon in 1959 when I was 12 years old. We had company, and the house was bustling with noisy children playing and adults talking, women's voices in concert with the men's. At some point … (read more)

Salt And Summer

July 16, 2009

Summer has hit! It sizzles. It scorches. It bakes. It fries eggs on asphalt! It's summer! That's why I've been out in the garden digging and weeding. That's why I've been walking behind my power mower, pushing it up and … (read more)

Keep The Faith

July 15, 2009

Keeping the faith requires a lot of hard work, especially in our society. In contrast to fifty years ago, churches are faced with fierce competition for people to do other things on Sunday mornings and Wednesday nights. Weekly worship and … (read more)

I Heard The Voice Of Jesus Say

July 14, 2009

There's that wonderful hymn entitled "I heard the voice of Jesus say" that periodically punctuates worship services. The hymn deals with themes of weariness and rest in the God who provides abundantly for His people. A place of rest, a … (read more)

Offering To God

July 13, 2009

For her seventieth birthday, my wife wanted to go to Las Vegas to see the sights and to take in the Cirque du Soleil show at the Mirage. I was recovering from a very recent right shoulder replacement, which prompted … (read more)

Waiting At The Waters

July 12, 2009

I'm sitting here at the weir in Montreat, North Carolina, USA, having my morning coffee. The sound of the water falling over the small dam is very peaceful, and reminds me of Psalm 42. As the water cascades, I feel … (read more)

Don't Be A Sucker

July 11, 2009

My tomato plants are in the garden. Apart from some watering and fertilizing, I trust the results to God, who provides the warm sun and the rain. Yet as I watch the plants growing, I am aware of suckers. I'm … (read more)

July 10, 1509

July 10, 2009

Today, July 10, 2009, is the 500th anniversary of the birth of John Calvin. As I write this on the eve of the anniversary, 60 volumes of Calvin's works stand in front of me on the desk in my study, … (read more)

Faithful Feet

July 9, 2009

My mom's feet looked awful, and she sadly knew it. Over the years, rheumatism and arthritis crippled her. Her toes were all bent and misshapen, and she was in constant agony, especially when she had to walk. It was heartbreaking … (read more)

Gifts

July 8, 2009

When we think of gifts for women, we probably think of flowers, candy, etc. But what about a hand plough? Or maybe a wheelbarrow? I know a woman who got these last two as gifts. A hand plough as a … (read more)

Strawberries

July 7, 2009

Have you ever observed the tiny little seeds on a strawberry? They are so small that we hardly notice that they are there as we eat the berries. Yet for people who suffer from what is called diverticulitis, these tiny … (read more)

Lampposts

July 6, 2009

Throughout this week, I've been at Montreat College with our senior high youth for their annual conference. It's about my tenth visit, and as usual, our church's teenagers are great witnesses to our congregation and faith. Our Youth Director, Becca … (read more)

From The Ancient Ruins

July 5, 2009

During the summer of 1976 and soon after graduating high school, I had the opportunity to travel abroad. Being a young teenager at the time, I did not fully appreciate the significance of many historical places. Of all the interesting … (read more)

A Dab Of This And That

July 4, 2009

On May 9, 2009, Lauretta Balderston described her mother's bread-making techniques. In her devotional, Just A Pinch , she wrote: God takes our efforts, even when all we have is a pinch of faith, and uses them for His … (read more)

Marvellous Mysteries

July 3, 2009

When I was growing up, one of my favourite television programs was called The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau. I marvelled at the voyages of this famous deep sea diver, who travelled the oceans on his ship The Calypso. Each … (read more)

The Tea Flower

July 2, 2009

Some time ago, I received a parcel delivered by express. In the parcel, I found a clear glass teapot, a tubular insert with tiny slits in the side, a clear glass top, and two small tins marked "Tea Flower". Not … (read more)

Meeting A Friend For The First Time

July 1, 2009

The other day, I had a chance to meet another of the Daily devotional writers. We have corresponded by e-mail many times, and over the years have become friends. I had a chance to be close to her area of … (read more)

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