Archive for January, 2018

The Insulation

January 31, 2018

People were thrilled when we finally got a much-needed dump of snow over a three-day period. It had been so cold and all our previous snow had melted during a warm period, leaving the ground exposed before the temperature dropped almost …( read more )

For Such A Time As This

January 30, 2018

PART ONE – December 17, 2017 Last March, we faced a difficult annual meeting for our First Presbyterian Church in Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada. The elders appointed me as their representative to give the bad news to the congregation: …( read more )

Can You Live With It?

January 29, 2018

My mind was passively ruminating over a besetting annoyance. Suddenly, my meandering thoughts were intercepted by a pointed question: Can you live with it? It occurred to me, *Well, yes, I can live with it. Why not? It's not stopping me …( read more )

At Wits' End

January 28, 2018

One of my most difficult challenges was raising a son with autism. Many times, I was at my wits' end. Until recently, I was unaware that the expression, "at wits' end" originated in the Bible. It literally means to "have wisdom swallowed …( read more )

Short Story

January 27, 2018

I've always been a short person, so I know how Zacchaeus must have felt when he couldn't see above the crowd to catch a glimpse of Jesus. I've been in more than a few places and situations where I have struggled to see what's happening — …( read more )

Reassessment

January 26, 2018

Until recently, my husband and I have been playing cards with two other ladies. We tried to play once a week. Sometimes, it worked out, while at other times, life got in the way, especially as we grew elderly. We would rotate to each of …( read more )

Touched By Jesus

January 25, 2018

Most of us older people who are used to the traditional way of reformed worship are happy with that style. We are handed a bulletin as we enter church; we read the announcements; and as soon as the service starts, we follow the order of …( read more )

Distractions

January 24, 2018

This morning, from the moment that I got up and prepared to sit down for my devotional time with God, so many things have come to distract me that I was sure that it had to be the enemy. It couldn't be simply coincidence. Before I …( read more )

Walking In The Valley

January 23, 2018

My story has a "happy ending"; not all do. There are no easy or trite answers in the dark, obscure valleys which comprise parts of our lives. Although it took years before I saw this time in my life through eyes of faith, I do now …( read more )

Fire And Blood

January 22, 2018

A story passed down from 1916 in our family is of my grandfather yelling to my grandmother, in a frantic moment when their farm house was on fire with no hope of it being saved, "If you go into that house one more time, I'll not go in. Our …( read more )

It's A Miracle!

January 21, 2018

Do you believe in miracles? When you awoke this morning, did you consciously realize that you were breathing and your heart was beating? Our blood circulates; we blink and swallow instinctively; our hair and nails grow. We're alive! It's …( read more )

Choose To Be Positive

January 20, 2018

In 1948, a friend introduced me to his younger sister. In 1956, I married her. From the time we first met, I was impressed by how positive she was. I was all the more impressed when I learned that in 1937, living in Trail, British …( read more )

When Life Is More Than I Can Handle

January 19, 2018

"God won't put more on you than you can handle." Many a well-meaning Christian has made this statement — or some form of it — to someone who's going through a tough time. To a woman who has miscarried. To a man who has watched his …( read more )

Dancing In The Dark

January 18, 2018

The other evening, my daughter hurried into the house from a meeting. She was calling me to come quickly and look. Getting up and going out onto the front stoop to see what was happening, I experienced the northern lights for the first …( read more )

Still Minding The Gap

January 17, 2018

When I was a boy aged eleven to sixteen, at the beginning and end of each term for the five years that I was away at school, I used to have to cross over London from Morden to Kings Cross on the Northern Line, changing tube trains and …( read more )

Know Who Is God!

January 16, 2018

Have you ever been assigned a responsibility, and then others took over? They wanted to run the show, and you were pushed aside. You felt sad and frustrated because you could not do what you were assigned to do. You could not be who you …( read more )

Never-Ending Story

January 15, 2018

I never knew my great-grandfather, Andrew Stuart, but I heard some stories about him from my dad. A hundred years ago, my great-grandfather was in the Royal Scots Guards who were fighting in the trenches of World War I. He was wounded a …( read more )

Rescued By God's Helicopter

January 14, 2018

Perhaps you have heard the story of the person hanging from a cliff waiting to be rescued. He has a vision of God's hand reaching down from heaven and lifting him to safety. So, when a helicopter appears, he sends it away. After he falls …( read more )

Listen To Him

January 13, 2018

I always have the radio on when I am in what I call my office, even though it has actually become more of a study. In our area in southern Ontario, Canada, there is a radio station which plays only classical music. In December, they played …( read more )

Virus

January 12, 2018

Fighting a virus, especially the influenza virus, is something that I do not want to experience again. I can't remember the last time that I was so sick. When I first contracted the virus, it attacked me overnight. I woke up and could …( read more )

You Made My Day

January 11, 2018

One morning in November, a lady brought me a lovely cyclamen plant, and it made my day. It was such an encouragement to see someone and have a chat, since I had been housebound for what seemed like forever. Days dragged by when I could …( read more )

In His Rest

January 10, 2018

In all the busyness of today, we can lose sight of what is important. For myself, I know that sometimes, it is the end of the day before I realize that I was so busy with things, I did not spend as much time with Jesus as I should have. …( read more )

Do To Others

January 9, 2018

At a picnic this past summer, I left my wide-brimmed, white cotton hat on a lawn chair to save my seat while going through the food line. When I returned with my loaded paper plate, someone was sitting on my hat! Shutting my mouth, I …( read more )

Keep Your Eyes On The Prize

January 8, 2018

Recently, some of my family participated in a run to raise funds for breast cancer research. This type of run is not to prove who is fastest. Some take part in wheelchairs, some walk supported by another. The prize is that each person …( read more )

Flawed But Functional

January 7, 2018

Sin had ensnared another victim. I listened as the newscaster gave a piecemeal report. The leaders of a noted megachurch were meeting behind closed doors. The pastor had planted the church sixteen years previously on a college campus. …( read more )

My Own Epiphany

January 6, 2018

Have you ever experienced an epiphany, an "aha!" moment, when a captivating notion suddenly dawned? Maybe an old assumption came alive with new vitality, as if emerging through the foggy layers of your mind. Perhaps you found yourself …( read more )

Coming And Going

January 5, 2018

Seasons in life are just as real as seasons in nature. Yes, some seasons are quick, while some are much longer, and at times, we wish that they would just move on. For me, the season was fall, with winter looming in the not-too-distant …( read more )

The Difficult Chew

January 4, 2018

My young granddaughter, who is just learning to feed herself, sometimes chokes on her food. When this happens, she coughs until she dislodges the morsel from her throat. Sometimes, she re-chews and swallows it successfully, and other …( read more )

The Legacy

January 3, 2018

When my wife and I retired and returned to the home in which I grew up, one of the projects that I was determined to start was having a vegetable garden. Throughout my working life, I have always had flower beds surrounding the houses in …( read more )

Resolving Conflict

January 2, 2018

Where I live, there's a lot of discontent and divisions currently taking place between families and friends. We have become so polarized about our opinions and ideas that it is very difficult to actually have a conversation without …( read more )

An (Un)known Future

January 1, 2018

In the summer of this year, it will be 70 years since our parents left the Netherlands for an uncertain future in Canada. We crossed the ocean in a troop ship, and after ten days at sea, we arrived in Quebec City on July 29th, 1948. At …( read more )

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