Birthdays Are For Giving

June 30, 2017
by Valerie Dunn

2 Chronicles 20:6 – O Lord, God of our fathers, are you not God in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations. In your hand are power and might, so that none is able to withstand you. (ESV)

Birthdays have always been important to me. When I was a child, birthday parties were few, so as I grew up, I have always tried to get involved in a party somehow.

Maybe that's why I am so enthusiastic about Canada's 150th birthday party. This year, there are events across the country and especially on Canada Day, July 1. Even if you do not live in Canada, you may have heard of our year-long party. We haven't been exactly quiet about it!

To me, birthdays involve gifts. I feel blessed to live in a country where its Charter of Rights and Freedoms, enacted in 1982, opens with this statement: "Whereas Canada is founded upon principles that recognize the supremacy of God and the rule of law…".

That means honouring the rights of each individual, whatever their country of origin, their religion or lack of one, their gender, their skin colour, and much more. I believe that as God has blessed us so richly and as we recognize His supremacy in the Charter, we honour God as we offer a birthday gift at this time of celebration.

I wasn't born in Canada, but I grew up in Toronto, Ontario, and experienced many good things. Now is a good time to pay it forward by doing something to help someone else to experience the blessings that I have.

In many parts of the world, women are denied an active role in their society, whereas I had the privilege of starting and running my own business and doing the work that I love. So my gift to honour Canada's birthday is to support an organization that provides funds to women in the third world who want to start small businesses.

A high school student was a refugee from Syria last year. This year, she played a major role in her school's project to help children in the Middle East.

A family was re-united with a lost pet by an animal rescue group. Now they help the group rescue and find homes for animals.

I am grateful that I can worship as I wish without fear. Are you? Every church has needs.

Find the political party that matches your views. Volunteer to help their candidate get elected, or donate funds.

Is health care a priority? Hospitals and associations that are working to eliminate a specific disease all need volunteers and donations.

Education? Maybe you came from a background where educational opportunities were limited. Volunteer at your local school, and literacy groups need people to teach others reading skills, one on one.

Were you an immigrant who benefitted from classes in English as a second language? Maybe a neighbour needs help to practice his English.

These can be gifts to the supreme God that we honour, and for Canadians, our country. Happy 150th birthday, Canada!

Romans 8:28 – And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (ESV)

Prayer: Dear Lord, each of us has been truly blessed by You. Help us to recognize that. Show us how we can honour Your supremacy and thank You by helping others, perhaps in ways that we have not considered before. Amen.

About the author:

Valerie Dunn <valerie.dunn@bell.net>

Toronto, Ontario, Canada


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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Good one, Thank you!!!


    I’ve visited, and indeed you have a beautiful country. Thanks for sharing.


    Thanks, Valerie, for sharing this devotional. Happy 150th birthday, Canada. Blessings.


    Blessings received are multiplied when we share them. Thank you for sharing one of your gifts.


    Praise God.
    Blessings.


    Thank you Valerie.
    Happy Canada Day!


    Excellent word today Valerie!
    Blessings.


    Excellent Valerie
    Happy birthday CANADA.


    Loved your devotion today! Thank you! And may you have a wonderful Canada Day as well!
    (Ont)


    Rejoicing with you. Happy birthday to your dear Country Extend our kind help to our friends.
    (Nigeria)


    Hi Valerie, Thanks so much for today’s devotional. Yesterday I wrote my sermon for Sunday based on Luke 12:48 which has a similar message. I really liked your idea of paying it forward. Keep up the good work. Blessings to you.


    Dear Valerie
    Such an awesome devotional! So very appropriate for celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday. There are a lot of things to be thankful for, and with that in mind, we therefore should pay it forward. Thanks be to God!


    Thank you for today’s devotional Valerie, very appropriate coming up to Canada Day. We are all immigrants to this beautiful land unless we are of First Nations Heritage….and in so saying, here in BC at least, we say Happy Canada’s 150 “Plus” Day……..in honour of the First Nations who were the first people to inhabit this part of the world.
    Enjoy your Canada 150 Plus weekend!!


    Great devotional dear sister. It is thought provoking even for me a French Canadian.
    I am so grateful that God chose for me to be born in a war free country where, as a woman I can live a free life. Able to enjoy freedom of speech and everything else.
    May God bless you on this Day! And lest keep on giving forward.


    Dear Valerie;
    I presume you are the One and only Valerie… I had the pleasure of camping with. You were an amazing ‘full of fun Christian’ then, and your devotional today, is icing on the cake. What a splendid message, at such an appropriate time in our life.
    Many of we campers, like you, are involved in our church. One day we must, by the Grace of God, reunite, remembering those golden days of glory!!
    Blessings.


    Greetings Valerie, and Blessings from the Holy Spirit, Jesus and Jehovah.
    I read your Devotional carefully and thoughtfully. I agree with most of your Ideals, but I am fearful about some elements in our society. There is a rapidly growing group who are very comfortable with terrorizing, and demoralizing every other sector of society. Hopefully, Jehovah has a plan to remedy this, or the world is in dire straits.
    Live and love in the peace and joy of Christ!


    Hello dear Valerie,
    Hope all is well with you and yours in Canada. I got the chance to read about subject story and it filled me with unconditional love for my original country, Sudan, in a way you can never imagine. You have a lovely country, a wonderful government, and a smart prime minister. Hope you had a very happy Canada Independence Day with your family and friends.
    Wishing you the best in your writing career.
    (Saudi Arabia)

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