Looking forward to the end of Covid and the beginning of renewed Sunday services at church. Online church is a great alternative but does not hold the same ambiance, for sure. I take heart in the following scripture that reminds me where I like to spend a Sunday; at this beautiful old church, 115 St. Andrew’s Road, Scarborough.
“I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” Genesis 28:15.
Who of us hasn’t known fear at some point in our lives? Some fears can be paralyzing while others can prompt us to take action. Sometimes it’s helpful to know another’s take on fear as we will read in the following quotes on the subject. Happy Saturday.
The only thing we have to fear is…fear itself…Franklin D. Roosevelt
Do the thing you fear, and the death of fear is certain. Mark Twain
He who overcomes his fears will truly be free. Aristotle
Don’t be afraid to fail. Be afraid not to try. Michael Jordan
He who fears he will suffer, already suffers because he fears. Michel De Montaigne
For the thing which I greatly feared is come upon me…Job 3:25
Courage is fear that has said its prayers. Dorothy Bernard
Should we still be looking out only for number one? Maybe the time has come to give a little thought to our fellow humans, whether they be family, friends, presidents, or the grocery store clerk.
What does it take to look out for others? A simple phone call to see if there is a need to be addressed; a well timed visit, following all health protocols of course; and a heartfelt prayer here and there when all else fails…or even when it doesn’t.
Scripture speaks to this growing concern in our world today. Perhaps we should take its advice to be sure that we are looking out for each other.
Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4
Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.1 Corinthians 10:24
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32
Therefore encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11
This is a short chapter from my book My Precious Life. It just goes to show how sometimes our wishes do come true, one way or another. Happy Saturday.
Give Me a Break
I was overwhelmed trying to balance home, family, work and extra curricular activities. I prayed night and day to get a break from it all. I needed a rest.
While shopping one evening I spied a book titled Slow Me Down Lord. I promptly bought it, enjoyed reading it and made that my daily prayer.
Not long afterwards I slipped on the lunchroom floor at work and landed flat on my back. The pain! X-rays showed a fractured tailbone. Treatment? Stay off my feet and complete rest for two weeks! Doctor’s orders…or God’s?
As I settled into recuperation, a pile of good books at hand, I chuckled to God, “I asked you to slow me down, Lord, not put me out of commission.”
Two weeks of complete rest and relaxation renewed my spirit but the pain lingered for months.
Be careful what you pray for; God is always ready to answer….His way.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest….”Matthew 11:28
People all over the world die every day. But when it hits close to home death becomes different; personal, sadder, even poignant.
It happened to me this week. Two of my very close friends died within three days. One was a friend of fifty years and the other’s friendship entwined my life for sixty years.
I will miss these ladies and their enduring friendship very much to say the least. But I take comfort in the fact that they are now truly home. Yes, I do believe in life after death.
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25,26
I also take comfort in knowing that my loss is God’s gain. And that’s the upside of grief.
When you hear the name Sandpiper, do you think of the bird or the singing trio who began their career in the mid-sixties? This morning I am thinking of the the three young men who released this song in 1970. It seems to fit this Saturday morning for me because it brings back a memory of my wedding day, May 8,1954. Even though it may be afternoon in other parts of the world it is still morning here in Canada. Happy Saturday.
Every day is a new day if we get to live it. Being thankful for each new day is one of the best ways to show God our appreciation for it. I like to start my day with this lovely little prayer: “God, grant me the grace to live this day in your strength.” This way, no matter what the day holds, I feel empowered to meet it without further thought. Here are some messages from scripture on the subject.
This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24
A new day will dawn on us from above because our God is loving and merciful. Luke 1:78
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22,23
Have you ever wondered how you got mired in a certain way of thinking without giving it any thought?
It came to me one morning back in the eighties, when a scripture I had read or heard somewhere popped into my mind. “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind….” (Romans 12:2). I actually stopped what I was doing at the time and thought about what that might mean. And so I tried it. It meant monitoring the daily words that inhabited my mind, and choosing only the ones that could enhance my life rather than degrade it.
This is not a one-time exercise. It is an ongoing challenge, sorting thoughts, changing the words to speak, goofing up, and going back to the drawing board.
For instance, have you ever said to yourself, “I’m going to give so-and-so a piece of mind!” Well, you can bet your bottom dollar that that piece of your mind is not going to be a good piece.
In Isaiah 55:8 God said: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts…” Too bad, eh?
Our pastor recently mentioned a quote by Winston Churchill which made me think of the battle we are fighting in today’s world.
“Never was so much owed by so many to so few” was a wartime speech made by the British prime minister, Winston Churchill, in August 1940. He was referring to the pilots of the Royal Air Force, who fought so fiercely in the Battle of Britain. They were sorely outnumbered.
To me, this applies to all the front line workers who are too few for the too many who are suffering from the corona virus. Doctors, nurses, all medical and scientific personnel waging war against the battle of Covid, to save lives while risking their own.
As the RAF crews experienced victory in the past, may those on this new frontier experience the same victorious outcome as new battling words are spoken: “Mask up, keep a distance, wash your hands.”
When I hear or read the words of those who speak from the heart as well as the intellect, it always gives me pause to ponder and reflect. Following are words spoken by a President, a Civil Rights Leader, and a Poet. Each put their thoughts forward for the rest of us to think about. Pastor Duncan’s Sunday sermon included reference to these people and the power of their words and I can’t help but share it.
“Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country.” John F. Kennedy, U.S. President
“I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.” Martin Luther King Jr. Minister and Social Rights activist.
“We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms to one another” Amanda Gordon, Poet. Amanda recited these stirring words at President Biden’s inauguration.
Blessed are they who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Jesus in Sermon on the Mount
To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: Ecclesiastes 3:1
Today I am going to delve deeper into the power of words.