Archive for August, 2009

Beneficial Memories

August 31, 2009

My good friend, prayer partner, and a well-loved member of my church met her death many years ago when a driver under the influence of alcohol lost control and ran into her. Accepting her death was hard for all who … (read more)

Empty Shell

August 30, 2009

We live across from an elementary school. Come the end of June, the playground goes quiet, the parking lot empty, and the flag comes down from the flagpole. The building then becomes an empty shell for the next two months. … (read more)

Top Table

August 29, 2009

In Scotland, at wedding feasts, there is always what is called the "top table". Seated at it are the prominent members of the wedding party: the bride and groom, the best man and chief bridesmaid, the bride's parents, the groom's … (read more)

All Things Considered

August 28, 2009

We've worked our way through boring, impersonal, trivial, and accepting prayers, and wonder how much worse our prayer life can get. Our prayer life slackens. Where are we going wrong? Habakkuk's prayer may revitalize ours. He demands God make Himself … (read more)

Supernatural

August 27, 2009

I love the sci-fi films, books, and programs. I do love a good story. As a young man, I read Douglas Adams, Arthur C. Clarke, Isaac Asimov, John Wyndham, etc. — good, harmless stimulation for the brain. Now that the … (read more)

Fountain Of Life

August 26, 2009

My dad wrote many books about our hometown of Glasgow, Scotland. He used to go around the city taking photographs of buildings, monuments, and sculptures that he felt were important because of their history. He also wanted native Glaswegians to … (read more)

What's On The Roof?

August 25, 2009

The noise — a dim sound — continued to combine itself within the format of my dreams, until my subconscious gradually nudged me into wakefulness. Glancing at the bedside clock, I noted the hour: 4:15 a.m. The noise had now … (read more)

Look More Closely

August 24, 2009

Having a father who was a gardener and loved to be outside planting and working the soil has left a deep impression on my life. Recently, as I was cutting the lawn, a co-worker passed by and stopped to chat. … (read more)

At What Point Are We Satisfied?

August 23, 2009

At the beginning of August here in British Columbia, Canada, we are setting record temperatures, while experiencing the longest straight stretch of a heat wave for only the third time since 1880. While in parts of our province, wildfires are … (read more)

In Church

August 22, 2009

There I was — sitting in church. I confess I was zoning as the minister talked. (You've never done that, have you?) Then, something Pastor Pete said grabbed my attention. (Was it the Holy Spirit moving? — Probably!) He … (read more)

The Chair

August 21, 2009

I did not know what I would do with the chair, but I distinctly felt that God wanted me to purchase it. It had been donated by one of our local artists, and the sale price would be given as … (read more)

Wildfires In Kelowna

August 20, 2009

You may have watched pictures of the wildfires that once again swept the Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada, area in late July, reminding us of the devastating fires of August 2003, when 239 homes burned to the ground. This time, again, … (read more)

I Am A Child Of God

August 19, 2009

We have a TV program currently showing called, "Who Do You Think You Are?" It deals with celebrities researching their backgrounds as far back as grandparents and great-grandparents, and also visiting the countries of their ancestors. The results vary, according … (read more)

As God Wills

August 18, 2009

Not too long ago, I was speaking with an elderly person. This individual was telling me the story of an old gentleman in excellent health, who committed suicide. He left a note telling his friends and family that he was … (read more)

Starry-Eyed

August 17, 2009

I love looking at the stars. When I was a kid and things were bad at home, I used to sit up late at night, look out of my bedroom window, and count the stars. It was very therapeutic. It … (read more)

Heart Condition

August 16, 2009

In these times, we are well taught and warned to care for our hearts by partaking of a healthy diet with adequate exercise. Many of us can be seen throughout supermarkets diligently reading labels to know the contents of foods, … (read more)

Among The Gods

August 15, 2009

I never tire of watching Cecil B. DeMille's The Ten Commandments, especially during the Passover and Easter season. My favourite line in the movie is not heard until the end when Pharaoh, played by Yul Brynner, referring to the God … (read more)

Picturing the Psalms

August 14, 2009

I regularly suffer from insomnia, so the chances are that you'll find me reading, writing, or drawing late at night. I do this to keep my mind occupied and to weary my eyes so that eventually, I will fall asleep. … (read more)

The Guard

August 13, 2009

As a prison guards, there is one thing which we must do constantly — and that is to watch. Day or night, it doesn't matter. When we are on duty, no more than fifteen minutes may pass without a visual … (read more)

The Answer Is No

August 12, 2009

In my early years of office work, one of my (long-forgotten) bosses had a sign above his desk which said, "What part of no don't you understand?!" At the time, it was quite frightening, but now, in retrospect, it's somewhat … (read more)

When God Says No

August 11, 2009

Sometimes God says "No." Over the years, I have pleaded to God for the healing of others, the mending of broken relationships, and the ability to overcome my problems immediately, only to discover that God isn't going to do what … (read more)

Elk In The Yard

August 10, 2009

I always knew when there were elk in the yard. My young daughter would be standing silent, still as a statue, watching out the window. Truly, elk are magnificent creatures. A grown male, resplendent with a mature antler rack, is … (read more)

Daddy

August 9, 2009

I have been busy, and I will be for quite a while yet, with a major renovation project. So, I get sucked in by the doing, focused on the job. Quiet times are fast and fleeting. Okay, so that also … (read more)

Weak Witnesses

August 8, 2009

In the end, salvation is the most important event in the church. We tend to get caught up with dogmas and decisions, interpretations and issues, business meetings and ecclesiastical meanderings that don't bring one single person into the kingdom of … (read more)

The Campfire

August 7, 2009

On a four-family camping trip during the summer, a feature of every evening was a campfire. We gathered around it, talking and making s'mores (roasted marshmallows and chocolate between graham crackers — each one tastes so good we always want … (read more)

Forgetting

August 6, 2009

Our staid, turn-of-the-nineteenth-century, Presbyterian sanctuary had been miraculously transformed into a "television game show studio" for our week-long running of the summer Vacation Bible School (VBS) program, "Studio Go" by Standard Publications. In the "audience", the children were careening around … (read more)

Seeing Jesus

August 5, 2009

This is one of my favourite verses from the Bible, because it encapsulates the work of the church. Congregations can get caught up in building programs, financial campaigns, and missional projects, but in the end, if no one comes to … (read more)

Have I Got Talent?

August 4, 2009

I skimmed over Matthew's parable of the talents this morning, knowing the parable's content, yet I gained a new insight. As someone who has sympathised with the poor chap who was given a single talent as a reluctant servant, I … (read more)

As Little Children

August 3, 2009

The class was discussing argumentation, and I mentioned that bias is often encountered when trying to persuade others to accept one's point of view. "Are bias and prejudice the same thing?" a student asked. Caught off guard, I read the … (read more)

Bounty

August 2, 2009

One of my all-time favourite movies is Mutiny on the Bounty, starring Marlon Brando and Trevor Howard. My dad took me to it when it was first released in Britain. I was six years old at the time, and although … (read more)

Form Of Godliness

August 1, 2009

Although I have not read the book, The Narcissism Epidemic: Living in the Age of Entitlement by Jean Twenge and Keith Campbell, I did read an excerpt from the volume which was circulating via the Internet. The article explains a … (read more)

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