Sept 16th 2019
So we are officially in the first week of November.
The clock has moved back an hour, we are having less daylight in 24 hours but we are no less busy. A very special day, “Remembrance Day” is just around the corner. It is a day of contemplation, appreciation and gratefulness. Contemplation involves taking time out of our busy schedule to ponder why we even celebrate a “Remembrance Day”. If it were not for the many men & women in our wonderful country of Canada who selflessly gave of themselves, many the supreme sacrifice of death, fighting for the freedoms that we enjoy today, our lives could be so different.
This is a difficult day for so many.
Memories are stirred once again as relatives grieve, afresh, the loss of loved ones, family & friends. Those that have fought selflessly for love of our country and never returned. Appreciation for those that have given of themselves, yesterday, and still the many doing so today. Appreciation that they were able to look ahead and not just think about the day in which they were living. They were selfless in that they wanted a great future for those who would need this freedom up the road…those like you and me. And then there is gratefulness. Grateful is more than contemplation or appreciation. It is an action word. We must express our gratefulness.
Take time to tell a vet, those in active duty still today, that you are so grateful for them.
Thank them from the bottom of your heart for what they have done and are still doing. Teach your children and grandchildren what “Remembrance Day” is all about. Why not teach them to memorize the poem, “In Flanders Field” written by one of our very own, Canadian Physician Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae. He wrote this poem on May 3, 1915, after presiding over the funeral of friend and fellow soldier, Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, who died in the Second Battle of Ypres. Attend a Remembrance Day service in your community, if at all possible. Pray for the families who lost loved ones and pray for those in active duty to day. Pray for wisdom for those leading our military. Pray for peace for their families. Wear the poppy proudly. Why not consider a donation to the War Veterans of Canada.
Be active in your gratefulness.
We have so much to contemplate, to appreciate, to be grateful for…to Remember. Last but not least, take time to give thanks to our Saviour, Jesus Christ, for the blessings we have in living in this wonderful country of Canada.
Easter weekend is over
Good Friday has come and gone so quickly. Just the one calendar day set aside to remember the unfathomable price that Jesus paid for the sin of all mankind. And then, Easter Sunday…that day of celebration when we shout to the fact that HE is not longer in the grave. Christ no longer has to suffer. The price has been paid and HE is alive and well. Alive to make a difference in individual lives who will open up to do life with our wonderful Saviour. Yet for many, this Easter weekend, meant nothing more than Easter egg hunts, lots of shopping for gifts, preparation for large family gatherings, and now that it is over, a breath of air. The busyness of the weekend, leaves many exhausted and now calls for relaxation, time to get back into the routine of life.
For you and I
As believers, the reality of this past weekend lives on in our lives every day of the year. We rest in the reality that the price Christ paid, and the reality that HE is alive, gives us both hope and peace. Hope for ALL mankind. Hope in knowing that we can trust in an unchanging God who loves us more than any words can say. A God who is concerned with all that concerns us. And then there is peace. The world cries out for peace. As Christians, we can be confident in the knowledge that when the storms of life surround us, and the situation dictates that we should be falling apart, a peace that passes all understanding is ours (Philippians 4:7). It is not something we can conjure up, but something that comes from God himself…the chastisement of our peace was upon Him (Isaiah 53:5). Another interpretation… “He took the punishment by which we have peace”. How many times have I heard someone say, especially when in a crisis, “I can’t explain it, I don’t understand it, but I have such a peace despite what I am dealing with right now.” Christ paid the price for this. His death, His resurrection made this possible.
It is quite clear
the death & resurrection of our Lord, is an amazing gift to us and we are blessed to reap the benefits every day of our lives. Of course, in order to do this, we must accept this gift. We must accept the finished work of Jesus Christ, invite Him into our lives, to forgive us of our sins, and begin to do life with Him as our master & Lord. We can certainly have no one any greater as our leader, experience no greater love than that which was demonstrated at Calvary and no greater certainty than the fact that Christ will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5). He will be with us to the very end.(Matthew 28:20)
April 14th 2019
An Unchanging God
We are now in one of the most special times of the year. The calendar has named the Sunday before Easter, Palm Sunday. It was a time of excitement and celebration for the folk in Jerusalem. With only a few days left before He was to be crucified, Jesus was riding into Jerusalem on a donkey, one that had never been ridden before. The people shouted and threw palm branches in the ground, making a carpet of greenery for the Messiah! What an extraordinary day for all!
Yet, in no time, the mood was set to change. The same ones celebrating Jesus,would soon be roaring for the authorities to do away with this Jesus, crucify Him.
People can change so quickly
One minute you can be the greatest person in their world, but in what seems like an instant, you are the worst. How can this be? It is both hurtful and even devastating at times. We must always remember that there is but one constant in our lives. “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8.
In Malachi 3:6, God says,” For I am the Lord, I change not.” Our focus cannot be on things or people. It must stay on Jesus if we are to live a life of victory in a world that is forever changing. Our happiness or joy cannot depend on the world around us but on the true & living Word. No one can take that from us.
Take time to reminisce today and in the upcoming week
Give Jesus thanks for keeping His promise to you. He is with you today. No matter what your circumstance He will love you and care for you. Be a strong voice of praise to our precious Saviour remembering the long journey, to the
cross,He took for you. Don’t be as the folk in Jerusalem that day who one moment sang His praises and the next wanted Him dead. He is a wonderful Saviour who never changes...worthy of all our praise.
April 23rd 2019
Hard to believe that we just passed the halfway mark in the wonderful month of September!
I call it wonderful because the mornings can be crisp, great for walking and yet many times summer appears again around noon. It is a month of changes. School is back in, flowers are beginning to lose their colourfulness, leaves are beginning to show the beauty of magnificent colour, retail stores are putting a clearance on summer products and hoping for an early consumption of winter necessities. Life brings lots of changes too...ones that we cannot stop. Many parents have shed a tear as their babies started school for the first time. Where did time go?
One thing we can be assured of is that God does not change.
His amazing, indescribable love for you and I never fades. My husband and I have been reading the book of Ezekiel in our devotions. It always causes me to shake my head in wonderment at how God’s people can stray so far from Him, with all the knowing of how good He has been to them. But what is so amazing is that no matter how far they have drifted, God still longs for his people to call out to Him. In recognizing their sin, followed by true repentance, God’s heart is forever soft towards His people. He quickly forgives. His desire is only for good when it comes to us.
How about you today?
Is there something that you need to get right with God. Life is too important & too short for you to have anything separate you from the one who loves you beyond words. His thoughts, His plans & purposes are the best that you will ever find.
Take time to talk to God today.
Tell Him you love Him and enjoy His goodness & mercy that will chase you down!
Sept 16th 2019
Dec 15th 2018
Real JOY & PEACE this Christmas Season…
Many Christmas cards, carols, tree ornaments, colourful gift wrap wish your friends and loved ones all the joy and peace of this wonderful Christmas season. In a world of craziness, busyness and sadly, anxiety, for so many, there is very little that folk would desire any more than joy in their own lives and that of their loved ones. And what about peace? After a hectic day at the workplace, all the added appointments of this busy season…the school concerts, work parties, family gatherings, there is very little, more precious than walking into your home, kicking off your shoes and settling into the quietness of a familiar and warm environment. However, it only takes a few minutes when reality hits. Still more baking, still more gift buying and yes, the wrapping. No matter how hard one tries, where is the joy, where is the peace that everyone, everything is wishing for this Christmas.
Once again, I truly believe, in order to experience the wonderful gifts of joy and peace in our own life, we have to “do life on purpose” instead of just letting it happen. It is a must that we look outside of ourselves and on purpose, begin to look at how we can help someone else, how can we bring joy or peace to the life of another. We have all heard the saying, “It is in giving that we truly receive.” Well, this is much more that a saying…it is the truth. Amidst the craziness, that we allow the Christmas season to bring into our life, the greatest joy and peace will be ours when we reach out to someone else. Maybe that single mom or dad, who would be thrilled with the delivery of that pretty Christmas tin, full of lovely decorated shortbread cookies. The lonely senior, sitting alone in the rocking chair, by her fireplace, overjoyed by a friendly visit, sharing a delicious cup of tea. What about the neighbour, just out of the hospital, she might love help getting a few Christmas decorations up and maybe, a pot of warm chicken soup. Speaking of soup, your local soup kitchen, charity that feeds the hungry, can always use an extra set of hands during this busy season. Your local church family, would also be a great place to start. I am sure there are many needs. Why not include your children on these ventures, they will learn life lessons that will go with them forever.
The bottom line is that if we are not careful, this wonderful season will consume us. IT will be all about us and ours. When life is all abut us, we will never experience the joy & peace that we are meant to experience. However, when we “on purpose” switch our focus, on doing for others, we will experience joy & peace that money cannot buy. After all, isn’t that what Christmas is really about. God so loved this world, He so loved you and I, that “on purpose” He selflessly gave His only Son, Jesus. This was and still is, the greatest gift ever! Because of this awesome gift, you and I can experience joy and peace that is priceless. If we truly believe in Jesus, this wonderful gift, accept this wonderful gift as our own, we will not only experience life now but for all eternity. We must remember, however, this will not just happen…we have to make it happen, on purpose.
Dec 30th 2018
Christmas is Over...Or is it?
Christmas is over as far as the calendar goes. Within the next few day, trees, lights, ornaments, wrapping paper & cards will be tucked away for another year....time flies. For some, “yah” is the word. Time to get back to normality, whatever that really is. For others, there comes a sense of loneliness or could I say, emptiness. Family visiting from afar, leave, heading back to their normal. The festivities are over and the welcomed distractions of the holiday bring back the old, buried feelings of emptiness. So how can you get past both of those scenarios. First, remember each day is a gift...one that you should embrace & celebrate each day.
The fact that Christ came gives hope for every day...hope for the one breathing a sigh of relief & the one wishing Christmas would never end. The greatest way to fix the holiday “blah’s” is to make sure that each day is not about you (only) but that in each day you focus on what brings year around joy & fulfillment...reaching out to someone who needs your encouragement, someone who needs the gifts that God has given you, to give them hope for their tomorrows. This is truly one way that every day can be just like Christmas...year round...without the holiday stress. Why not give it a try!
Jan 31st 2019
So we find ourselves on the final day of the first month of 2019!
Hard to believe and yes, I can truly say, “Where has the month gone?” I don’t know about where you live, but here, in the southern part of our province, January has brought a mixture of snow, rain, wind and lots of cold! Lots of changes from day to day, week to week. I was thinking of this in relation to life. Life is full of changes and even in the month that we are finishing there were lots of changes…days when the workload was really heavy, days when it was a bit lighter(although I can’t think of too many of those). There were days when I felt like I could tackle the world and then times when I felt the weight of the world on top of me. Days when I woke really early, ready to take on my day, other days that I really wanted to pull the covers over my head, stay where it was nice and warm, and focus on nothing difficult. Yes, life, days are full of ups & down, bright & dark spots but one thing that I could always remind myself is that God never changes, He is the “Stable” in my life. Hebrews 13:8 clearly tells us that, “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.” He is faithful. Lamentations 3:23 also tells me. “Great is His faithfulness, His mercies begin afresh every morning!” I find these two verses very comforting to me in a changing world, whether in my own life or on the big scale of things. The bottom line is that I need that stability in my life. I need someone so much bigger than me that I can have confidence in. Circumstances, weather, political upheavals, do not change God. My uncertainty can rest in the certainty that He is unchangeable. He is God….He will never change from being who He is!
How about you?
Are you able to rest in a wonderful God who loves you more than words could ever express. He loves you so much that He spread His arms on a rugged cross, died a cruel death so you and I could have the most intimate of relationships with Him. Take time to get to know Him today. Make sure you have a regular time each day, devoted to Him alone. A time of prayer, communication with Him, and time to read His Word, the Bible. Without knowing Him, you can never realize just how wonderful He truly is…just how assuring it is to have that “Stable” One in your life! Jesus Christ, the only One who is the same yesterday, today & forever!
February is often referred to as “Love Month”
It is a time for Valentine’s, cards, flowers and of course, lots of chocolate! It is a time when kids make valentine’s in their art classes and parents find themselves making heart shaped cookies so their children can share them with their classmates. Many marriage proposals are made on Valentine’s Day….the young man, nervously, asking his sweetheart, if she will stay by his side forever.
Well, marriage was God’s idea from the very beginning.
He performed the very first wedding in the magnificent Garden of Eden. Marriage is meant to be a warm, secure, loving place to share your dreams, ideas, plans, concerns, hurts and yes, even your apprehensions with your one and only. The sad part is that so many couples who plan a wedding after, the “yes, I will marry you,” spend more time, more money, more planning for the wedding than they do on the marriage. The wedding is one day only…and the marriage is to be a life time. I see a bit of a problem here, wouldn’t you agree? Marriage and the love you share with your spouse is to be continually worked on. There will never be a time when you have arrived and have all the answers…have it all worked out. But let me say, the result of all the work, is well worth it! The Bible tells us in Psalm 90:17, “And may the Lord our God show us His approval and make our efforts successful. Yes, make our efforts successful!”
Let me encourage you today!
Take time to roll up your sleeves, if needs be, and work on your marriage. This will determine what kind of a relationship you and your spouse will have. It really is up to each one of us. As we do the necessary, daily work, we can pray…God bless the work I am doing to keep my marriage great and to better it each and every day. Why not give it a try today, and every day, throughout this “love month” of February?
Feb 04th 2019
Feb 15th 2019
So we are still in the “Love Month”
Past the wonderful Valentine’s Day where I hope everyone enjoyed a sweet treat or a warm hug. The Bible makes it so plain in 1 Corinthians 13:13, that the greatest of all things, whether, faith or hope, love rules. Love is a powerful word that we often throw around very freely…like I love ice-cream, I love that movie, I just love the smell of those flowers. However, when we truly love another person, it has to include another very powerful element. Actually, I really do not think that one can exist outside of the other. It is a necessary part of love. It may not be the easiest at times to implement but love is not true love without it. Still wondering what it is? Forgiveness, one of the most powerful things we can give another and give ourselves. You see if we truly love someone, we WILL forgive when they have wronged or hurt us. There is not an individual that has not been hurt or disappointed at some time in life. As a matter of fact, it can happen when we are very young. Before we can even put the feelings in words, we may have been hurt. Think of that young boy or girl at the playground. The one that all the other kids do not want to play with. The one who is left out of the game. You bet they are terribly hurt. Their young feelings are so real. They feel rejection and of course, hurt.
Love reaches beyond the barriers of hurt, disappointment, anger, rejection.
Love says, “In spite of all that, I choose to forgive.” You see, if not for anyone else, we need to forgive for our selves. True forgiveness sets us free again to laugh, dream and move on with our lives. Unforgiveness will hamper us in many areas of our life. You may ask, “Does forgiveness mean that I have to be best friend or best buddies again with that individual who hurt me?” The answer is an absolute “no”. It also, does not mean that we have not been hurt. It does mean, however, that we harbour no ill towards that person anymore. This may take a bit of time and you may find yourself having to release that hurt many times before you can truly say, “I know I have found forgiveness”.
Forgiveness is a choice.
It is a part of doing “life on purpose”. The Lord’s prayer, in Matthew 6, asks that God will forgive us of our sins as we forgive those that have sinned against us. We don’t forget…yet we live as though we do. Someone once said that we need to love as if we have never been hurt. I think that is a good motto to live by! Choose to be that person who truly loves…that individual who forgives.
Nov 29th 2018
We have all heard the saying…”Tis the Season”. My question is, “Tis the Season” for what in your life? Is it the season for peace & joy as many of the renowned carols tell us or would it be fair to say…
Tis the season for frustration?”
“Tis the season for loneliness?
“Tis the season for exhaustion?”
“Tis the season for endless baking?”
“Tis the season for debt?”
There are many demands on our lives as women, every day of the year, but Christmas seems to be a time when there can be more demands than ever. So, we are soon to enter December and what can make this year different for you and your family, than past years…..I am confident that this can be determined by only one person….YOU. And this can happen only one way… “Doing Life ON Purpose”. Not living by the line of that song…whatever will be, will be…but by you making life happen the way you want it to be, each and every day. Now this is not easy and I certainly know that many things come our way that take us by surprise. It was not in our schedule, like a call from the school to pick up your child as they are sick, or your company is down-sizing and your job, you thought was a forever thing, is terminating in a couple of months. Yes, some things are beyond our control. However, even when these things take place, we can still plan on taking control of the circumstance, and do life on purpose. If you don’t, time can take you down a pathway, that may not be the best for your body, mind, spirit or for your relationships.
Let me give you a small example. Going to the gym has never been my favourite thing. I can honestly say, that I love seeing the gym in my rear view mirror. Oh, the joy of knowing the workout is finished for the day. But I purposefully changed my thinking about going. Instead of regretting the time it takes…I thank God that I have the health & well-being to be able to go. How many would love to work out but do not have the health to do so. Therefore, when I take that journey from the changing room to the elliptical, I do it “on purpose”, thankful for the ability to do so. In the next couple of weeks leading up to Christmas, we will look at some ways that you can do Christmas “on purpose’ this year. I believe it can be life changing. After all, isn’t that what Christmas is all about…God, “on purpose” sent His precious Son, Jesus, to earth so we could better understand who He really is…a Gift that will last forever, as long as we open it and accept it as our own!