Tag Archives: church

We Can’t Make Our Children Join Us!

In today’s world, many of us who are long time church members despair at the lack of interest our children show towards church. We brought them to Sunday School as children. They’ve seen our example. Yet they reject it all. We tried to sow the seeds of faith but they didn’t take root. What can we do?

We know the value the church community has for us. Our church family celebrates with us when good things happen, cries with us in our pain and supports us as we step into the world trying new things. Some people think the church is a social club.

Yet the church is so much more than a social club. We gather together in faith. Sunday morning worship and bible study lead us to think about what we believe, to grow in our spirituality. As we gather together we are safe to face the challenge of living, to ask the questions that whirl round in our heads. As we share our resources and our gifts we can reach out beyond the church walls, and the boundaries of our community and country to make a difference in the world. Building a personal relationship with God, we learn that we are never alone, abandoned. God is always with us. We can experience God in others. Of course we want all of that and so much more for our children. And so we lament their refusal to join us.

As I have thought about this, I heard God’s voice speaking in my heart. “Jan, what is Christian faith. I answered, “Following the “Way of Christ.” Then came the question, “What does that mean?”

I remembered that Jesus said, “Love the Lord your God, with all your heart, and soul and strength and love your neighbor as yourself. These are the two greatest commandments.”

Jesus’ Way, has TWO prongs. Our children may not be willing to accept the first prong of Jesus’ way. They are not claiming faith in God in any form but when we look closely, they are living that second prong of Jesus’ “Way” sometimes even better than we do.

My one son, who has rejected religion in any form, lives the attributes of Jesus. He is kind and loving. He is accepting – of people of every race, color and faith. He cares about the environment, particularly the animals. He volunteers at animal shelters. He’s a committed vegetarian. In most of the places he and his family have lived, they have volunteered at orphanages as well. He shares what he has generously with others. Oh yes, he lives the “way of Christ,” better than many who profess Christianity in any of its forms.

I’m sure if each one of you look carefully at your children you will see that they too live the “way of Christ”. Some of the seeds of faith have taken root and blossomed beautifully. Yes, they haven’t accepted it all. Maybe they never will. Still they are, and always will be God’s beloved children. God is with them, caring for them. As Christians our job is not to change them or judge them. Our job is to love them, and to live the “way of Christ” ourselves. God will take care of the rest.

I take this one step further. Because every person in the world is God’s beloved child, regardless of faith or non-faith, our job is to love them. Our job is to be the best we can be on the path we follow. God will take care of the rest. And I am grateful.

Arrival in Joburg – Days 3,4,5

It’s Tuesday morning. I have three days to catch up. Our flight Friday night was excellent. I know that because neither Tom nor I slept at all. This time Tom had an aisle seat, praise God, and I was right next to him. We read, watched movies. I wrote up Day 2.

We chose to be the last off the plane. It meant we had lots of time to gather our stuff and hobble down the skinny aisle. Waiting for us as we stepped off was not one wheelchair, but two. I gladly appropriated the second one and collapsed into it for a long ride. Our wheelchair angels kindly stopped for a bathroom break along the way.

Luggage came through quickly. With our baggage in hand, they wheeled us to Dave and Joanne. After big hugs all around and a Canadian money tip for our angels, (all we had at the moment. They gave us huge smiles.  Probably was more than usual when exchanged for African Rand), we loaded into the car and drove to Dave’s. The weather of course was lovely – warm and sunny. We sat and talked on their patio for about an hour, then sank into bed. I slept two hours, Tom a little more.

Once awake, Dave made us a delicious supper. This is a vegetarian household. One of the blessings in that is both Dave and Joanne are excellent cooks. We managed to stay awake until ten.

Sunday morning was great. We started with Dave’s hearty breakfast.

Back home we had searched out on Google, the closest church. Dave and Joanne were busy that morning so Dave summoned an Uber driver to ferry us to All Saints Anglican Church. As you can see from the pictures, the architecture is a little different from home and quite beautiful. Inside everything was familiar except for the rows of clear glass picture windows that looked out on their parklike grounds. Being at Sunday worship grounded us. Anastasia, their new priest is a gracious and an excellent speaker. The highlight came at the end of the service. Anastasia invited one of the more senior members of the congregation to lead us in an African praise and blessing. The people’s voices came alive as they sang.

After church, we were welcomed, loved and fed, coffee, tea  and sandwiches. At one point, I looked out the window of the spacious reception area and spied a special visitor. A spectacular peacock had come to worship.

We didn’t have to call Uber to get home, because one of the congregation offered us a ride.  We were invited back  for our second Sunday. As always happens back home,Tom was told he was needed to help with the singing.  We will see what is on the agenda. A lot will happen between now and then.

We slept Sunday afternoon and enjoyed one of my favorite meals. Jo laid out a huge wooden tray filled with cheeses and sauces and crackers and bread and fruit and …..  We watched a little tennis with her while we ate.

Jenna stopped studying long enough to join us for supper. She is in the midst of her final exams. She’s in the International Baccalaureat program and a top student. Already she’s been awarded a scholarship to come to Queen’s in Kingston next year and study Kinesiology. We are delighted to have her back in Canada.

Monday was a quiet day. Jet lag had set in,V in earnest. We slept til ten, had a slow yoghurt breakfast. In the afternoon, Tom and I walked to a strip mall to the bank machine to fill our pockets with South African Rand. Problem: Back home in Canada I had been given the names of two banks that would accept our debit card. Neither bank was represented in the four machines available. We walked back to Dave’s. A Google search revealed the friendly Scotia Bank representative had given us the names of one bank in Senegal and one in Australia. Google told us to use Absa bank in Johannesburg. By this time, Dave was home from school and drove me back to the mall. My hip has been doing a lot of complaining.

The driver, Victor, for the next day’s excursion, arrived to check out Dave’s car and get his instructions. Victor is the father of a colleague of Dave and Joanne, a Phys. Ed instructor at the International School. He is also a retired driver for government celebrities coming to South Africa.crazy tourists. We will be in good, experienced hands.

That finished, Jenna, Jo and I slipped away to shop for a grad dress for Jenna. Of course, I had a grand time with that. It’s always a pleasure to take one of my granddaughters shopping. Once the dress was chosen and purchased, we relaxed at a restaurant for supper. I had crushed sweet potato and pine nuts on a delicious tangy white sauce and vegetarian falafels with avocado dip. Totally yummy.

We returned home to pack and get to bed early. Departure this morning was 5:30 a.m.

Angels, I didn’t mention our angels. Well, Dave, Jo and Jenna are certainly filling that role. It felt as if we attended a church full of angels on Sunday, especially the generous woman who drove us home. In some ways, Tom and I were visiting angels there as well. I did bring a couple of my books as gifts.

This morning we’re driving into the sunrise. The grasses covering the land alongside the highway are dipped in gold. This 3 day adventure to Lesotho and into the Drakensberg mountains to hear the Drakensberg boys choir has begun. The air is misty. The moon is nearly full. We are truly blessed.

That’s it for this morning.

Hypocrites

It’s Advent and I have been out selling books at church craft sales. For me, it’s a struggle to sit behind a table, try to catch someone’s eye and say hello. I’m not a salesperson, but I do want people to read what I have written. Very often, people glance at my table, read the signs and keep right on walking. I can only think that they see the words “anchored in faith” and make the judgment – Don’t look at those books. They’ll be selling religion.”

One of the biggest heartaches for me as a Christian is the judgment of today’s world that all Christians are fanatics and hypocrites. As I talked with the people who had the courage to stop at my table anyway, I heard stories of difficulties experienced with “religious people”. One man said, “I used to be involved with a church, but the people weren’t helpful. They said they were being followers of Jesus’ way, but they weren’t. They spoke the words, but they didn’t live them. I didn’t leave God, I just left religion and the church.” He walked away his mind closed to my message of God’s peace and love because, in his mind, all church people are hypocrites.

Today, it is widely believed that church people should be able to totally live as Jesus taught. They should always be compassionate; never judge; always accept everyone. The list of “should” goes on and on. Christians should be perfect. When we’re not, our message is thrown away.

My suggestion, “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water.”

Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. 32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.” (Luke 5:31NIV) Christianity is a life journey. As Christians, we go astray at times, some of us further than others. We get tired; we are grumpy at times. We are passionate; we get lost in our enthusiasm and overwhelm others. We have all the temptations to greed, violence, whatever and we make bad choices.  We are not perfect.

What we have learned through experience is that together, we can more often make good choices. Together we can encourage one another. Together we are stronger, more able to live that unconditional love that Jesus taught. Together, we learn and grow in our understanding of Jesus’ message. Our religious rituals help us on the journey. Being church people helps us live the faith. Christmas is a perfect example. As we gather this Christmas, to hear once again the story of the baby born in difficult circumstances to ordinary parents, our hearts will soar at the peace, hope, joy, and love that fills our souls. Once again, we will be renewed and drawn back to the journey of a life of Christian love.

Why Bring Your Child to Church?

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“I know what I can do to help my classmate,” said five-year-old Indigo to her parents. They had read the school’s note about her classmate’s mother who was in a Toronto hospital, after being seriously hurt in a car accident. “I’ll ask my church family to help me. They like to help people and they don’t want people to be sad.” The following Sunday morning at Keene United Church, little Indigo took the microphone and confidently asked us to join her in raising money to help her classmate’s family with gas and parking for the endless trips to Toronto. That morning, Indigo collected $360 plus a mountain of prayer.

Of course, the Spirit of generosity in our church family is important, but I tell you this story for another reason. Today many parents invest money and time for their children’s participation in sports in order for them to learn teamwork, self-esteem, leadership skills and benefit from the physical exercise. Occasionally one of them is good enough to be drafted for the big leagues or earn a university scholarship.

Indigo’s mom brings her to church because she knows within her church family, Indigo will learn those same values and so much more. Already, Indigo knows when she hurts, her church family cares. Already at the age of five, Indigo knows she can depend on her church family to help her when she wants to help others. Already, Indigo has soaked in the knowledge that she is accepted as God’s precious child in her church home.

As the years go by, Indigo will more deeply understand the strength that comes from being welcomed and loved just as God created her. She will remember that she didn’t have to “make the team” at church. She’s been a part of the team from her very beginning. Through our teaching and example, Indigo will have gained confidence in God’s free gift of forgiveness, discovered the wisdom and comfort the Bible offers her and accepted the assurance that comes from knowing that she is never alone. God is with her always.

Why bring your child to church? The church family offers love, acceptance, assurance, strength, confidence – these are values all parents want for their children. We hope Indigo will cherish belonging to the Keene United Church family for a lifetime. The gift of faith in God is hers to enjoy for always. Already, she has learned a “way of life” that has empowered her to help others.

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1)

 

Faith Is a Risky Business.

WOW!!!!
WOW!!!!

Our granddaughter scampered up trees like a squirrel when she was about ten. She appeared to have no fear. As she flitted from one limb to the next, she’d call to me. “Come, join me Grandma. I can see a beautiful horse running free in a whole field of wild flowers. The creek looks like a snake crawling down the side of the hill.”

Afraid of heights, I answered, “No thank you.” I remember wishing she had just a wee dab of healthy fear.

When we have been part of a church family all our lives, we are comfortable. Like my granddaughter, we lose touch with the “risk”. We’ve experienced the caring support of our church family. We know the congregation and have participated in most of the activities. We’d like everyone to be part of such a wonderful group

We forget that just stepping into the church building can be frightening, risky. We forget that some have had difficult past experiences with the church that make coming to worship feel like climbing a cliff. We forget there are those with no church experience. They’ve heard that church membership requires commitment, time and money. Their question is, “Why would I take that risk?”

Church membership is a risky business for sure, and… well worth the risk. As members, we need to take our cue from my granddaughter’s attitude to tree climbing. We need to issue a passionate happy invitation. “Come join us. This is fun. There is support, comfort, friendship here. You’ll love the music. There’s a special place for you because you are God’s beloved child. Here, you’ll learn that the gift of God’s forgiveness is free. Here, you’ll experience acceptance. Here, you’ll be challenged to think for yourself. Here, you can discuss and learn and grow in faith. Come, join us, church membership is great. Take the risk.”

“All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people.”  (Acts 2:44-47)

 

 

Sunday, God’s Day of Worship, Rest and Fun #travel #friends #Calgary Zoo #God’s Presence

October 4

Wild Rose United Church Welcomes You

Meditation area
Meditation area
Wild Rose Meditation area from another angle.
Wild Rose Meditation area from another angle.

 

What a fabulous day. We started with the four of us attending worship at Wild Rose United church, another of our United Churches that is flying on God’s Spirit. Filled with friendly people, adults, teens and children who greeted us warmly. The service itself was informal and lively. One member told us her faith story. The teens provided opening music, lit the Christ candle, and music during the offering. The theme was Broken yet Blessed. The service was followed by lunch. A great introduction for the four of us to Wild Rose UC. Outside is a beautiful meditation area (see picture) but this morning it was too chilly at 1 degree Celsius to enjoy using it.

This afternoon, I connected with my friend and colleague Rev. Jennifer Ferguson. We had a delightful time catching up on each other’s lives. Friendship is precious. Although we see each other once every 2 or 3 years, we always just pick up where we left off as if the time between didn’t exist.

Tonight Will and Claudia took us to “Illuminasia”, a Chinese lantern and garden festival at the Calgary Zoo. Tonight the entertainment and displays featured the Japanese culture. The lanterns, some of which took three artists, three days to produce were amazing. They featured wild animals, flowers, butterflies, dragonflies, and more. The Japanese displays and activities were interesting and fun. We had a grand evening.

 

Entrance Lanterns greeted us.
Entrance Lanterns greeted us.
Wire forms covered with rayon type material and lights inside.
Wire forms covered with rayon type material and lights inside.

Every day I look for God’s presence. Although I realize that God is with me every step of the way, the special time today took place at “Illuminasia”. I was enjoying the display of fans and umbrellas, I complimented a young girl (approx.. age 5) on her beautiful kimono and asked to take a picture. Her mother offered to take one of me with her. Another little girl came running over to join the picture. Afterward, I asked if I could post the picture on Face book. The one mother said a tentative no, and then added but of course many people would post it anyway. I shook my head and said, “No, if you don’t want it posted, I won’t post it.” At that point she smiled, took my hand and said, “thank you, so much.” The second mother piped up with, “but you can post my picture.” So you have a picture of me with the two beautiful Mom’s in their Japanese kimonos. I’m not sure why this felt like God’s presence had touched us, but I certainly felt the Spirit there with me, smiling and saying, “Thank you, Janet, thank you so much for caring for my children.”

Two Mom's and a Grandma
Two Mom’s and a Grandma

Family – Biological and Church #travel #family #church

October 2&3 Day 35

Balzac United Church
Balzac United Church

Yesterday and today have been mostly family days. We’ve totally enjoyed Claudia and Will. It’s great to be here.

Balzac UC - a place to worship, a place to gather
Balzac UC – a place to worship, a place to gather

I’ve managed to do some driving here in Calgary. Calgary side streets are set up as a maze to keep people from taking short cuts through residential areas. It makes driving interesting.

I drove out to Balzac United Church, which is one of our rural United Churches that is flying on God’s Spirit. Located about twenty minutes out of Calgary, this little church sits within a few hundred meters of a major artery out of Calgary. There is no town or village of Balzac. The United Church and Anglican Church, next door neighbours, along with the UC hall across a busy road, are all that is left of a once busy railway stop. Everyone drives to Balzac United. It draws members from the south of Calgary Airdrie in the north, as well as the surrounding farms. Young families, and seniors gather to worship, work, and play together. A few years ago they added a big addition. As you can see from the pictures, one side of the sanctuary opens into a lovely meeting room. Behind the meeting room is a two story building with washrooms, small meeting rooms, a nursery. Upstairs is a large Sunday School room. I liked the idea of going upstairs for Sunday School instead of down into a basement room.

Neighbouring Balzac Anglican Church
Neighbouring Balzac Anglican Church

Today, Tom and I actually did some shopping. With the exception of grocery stores, this was only the third time we’ve managed to enjoy the stores. We also joined Will and Claudia and their friends Lydia and Jeff for lunch at Nash, a new Calgary restaurant. Tonight Claudia and Tom shared their music as they jammed on their guitars. What a lovely way to spend the evening.

God’s Majesty #travel #church #Creation

September 30  Day 32

Kicking Horse Pass Canyon Bridge - picture from Wickipedia website
Kicking Horse Pass Canyon Bridge – picture from Wickipedia website

This didn’t capture the depth of the canyon

magnificent 3

Today we drove back through “Kicking Horse Pass”.  Coming out to Vancouver, evening was approaching as we drove through this section of the TransCanada highway. We were so focused on getting to the town of Golden before dark, we did not appreciate what we were seeing. Also today every detail, every tree, rock, and snow patch is glistening in the glorious sunshine. I took pictures but my little camera cannot see the height nor the depth around us. The highest point of the pass is 5,390 ft. We looked way down over the guardrail to the valley bottom below and way up to snowcapped Mount Hunter. My heart filled with the majesty and wonder of it all.

magnificent

Every little while we saw workmen, cranes, giant excavators almost hanging off the side of this mountain. My mind slipped back to pictures of the people who built the railroad through this pass. The hardship and risk they undertook to unite Canada from sea to sea.

The sun shone on the snow, bounced off the rocks, sparkled and danced over the evergreens and brilliant yellow poplars. Wow! Yes, there is a God, guaranteed. All the science in the world can never explain the beauty of this world. As Tom said, every bend in the road yields another treasure. I’ve seen this place in movies, on TV, in books but nothing can compare with being here. I worked hard at restraining my tongue. My natural impulse was to keep saying, “Wow, look Tom, see that.” We do want to get home in one piece. He does have to look at the road occasionally.

Clear cut scar - very little growing years later
Clear cut scar – very little growing years later

Further along we saw the scars left by clear cut logging, patches of barrenness in the middle of this rugged beauty.

Animal Bridge for smart animals and safe drivers.
Animal Bridge for smart animals and safe drivers.

Every once in a while we passed a bicycle. Now that’s an accomplishment. This was the most gorgeous day for driving we’ve had. Along the highway right of way we saw miles of high fences which help the animals find their special safe crossings. These wild life bridges are a relative of the salmon ladders built to help salmon get around dams.

Downtown Banff
Downtown Banff
Banff park - buffalo sculpture
Banff park – buffalo sculpture
Banff park - crackers and cheese for picnic lunch
Banff park – crackers and cheese for picnic lunch

When we got to Banff we were ready for a break. We checked out the United Church but is wasn’t open on Wednesdays. Further along, St. George’s in the Pines Anglican Church had a neat sign, “Come in and Pray.” So we did. We stepped into a beautiful, quiet, dimly lit sanctuary and gave thanks to God for this fabulous journey. We stopped by the church office to talk with the administrator. “The rector is only here on Thurs.,” she said. She took our info. We walked to the park for a picnic lunch on this sunny warm fall day. A grade one class, some teenagers, tourist families, everyone was enjoying the day, just like us.

Canmore Downtown
Canmore Downtown
Canmore United
Canmore United

Next stop Canmore. Another beautiful tourist mountain town. On the main street we found a local dairy selling yummy, chocolate peanut butter ice cream.  Tom virtuously declined the indulgence. I, on the other hand, enjoyed every lick.

By the time we got to Calgary we were out of the mountains. Golden grass covered the parched, flat ground. This too is beautiful. Son Will and partner Claudia welcomed us with love. They prepared a scrumptious vegetarian dinner. It’s so good to be with family once again. Thank you God for a fabulous day.

We’ve Started Home! #travel #church #ice cream

September 29   Day 31

Without little Alex to visit with, we slept in till 7:30 this morning. Both of us would much rather have enjoyed Alex than extra sleep.

Mount Paul UC - a busy place
Mount Paul UC – a busy place

After breakfast we visited two very different United Churches here in Kamloops. The short journey to  Mount Paul Pastoral Charge required a winding trip down the mountain from the hotel into Kamloops and across the North Thompson River. The mouthwatering aroma of possibly home made soup welcomed me when I opened the door of the church. Straight ahead I could see a small army of Grandma’s, hard at work in the kitchen. Down the hall, I found the thrift store. Three more seniors, busy sorting used clothing greeted me. One said, “This is our bag day. You get to fill a bag with anything you want, except jewelry, for the paltry sum of $2.00.” A second woman lifted up a baby’s cuddly lion’s costume. “Any little ones in your house,” she asked. This church, obviously manned by seniors runs a soup kitchen twice a week, and a thrift shop and the list went on. “Yes we’re busy,” they said. “We even have day care here.”

Kamloops United Church, God's Doing New Things Here
Kamloops United Church, God’s Doing New Things Here

I thought, Gone are the days when small churches were locked six days a week and opened up on Sunday morning for four hours. The churches in towns and cities across the west that I have visited are beehives of outreach. When I arrived at Kamloops United (my second church of the morning), I found a billboard announcing condominiums for sale with only six left. “Come inside and talk to the sales people,” the sign said, it’s arrow pointing to the door marked church office. Once inside, I asked the administrative secretary, “what’s happening here.”

She grinned and said, “Big changes. We used to have a gym and now there are condo’s under construction. It will be lovely when finished. We’ve already done the renovations to this part.” She pointed out the almost circular sanctuary with chairs instead of pews. Down that hall are Sunday school rooms, and a kitchen. When the apartments are built we’ll have the church office on the ground floor along with our thrift shop. This church right in the center of town is stepping out with new ideas and yet is still caring for the community in traditional ways as well.

Rev. Bruce was there. We had a good conversation. He bought all three books – I’ve started calling it my $40 package deal. (Dipping Your Toes, Fireweed and Spectacular Stella)

St. Paul's Anglican Church - Welcomed on the church steps.
St. Paul’s Anglican Church – Welcomed on the church steps.

After Kamloops UC I walked up the street to St. Paul’s Anglican. I introduced myself to Verna who was sitting on the steps. “The church is locked,” she said.

“Your minister isn’t here?” I questioned.

“We don’t have a minister, only an interim,” Verna answered. “I’m a church warden . Maybe I can help you.”

“Yes, you can,” I declared and sat down on the sidewalk beside her. We had a great conversation. I showed her my books and explained about them.

“I’ll buy ‘Dipping Your Toes’ ,” she said. God must have wanted you to come today. I’d like Fireweed but I can’t afford two books. Have you any information on these that I can bring to the meeting tonight.

Sure do,” I said, and handed her my info package. We talked a bit more and her husband arrived to take her home. Thank you God, I said as I walked back to the car.

2015-04-26 23.59.35

Camera Close up showing Glacier

Picture through front windshield - camera on closeup
Picture through front windshield – camera on closeup

Tom returned from visiting his mother’s cousin who is in hospital in Kamloops. We had crackers and cheese for lunch in the car and headed off east, thinking we might get to Lake Louise. Once again the drive was absolutely breath taking. For me, believing in a loving Creator is easy when we journey among these mountains, some of them so high they are snow-capped. We stopped a few times, once for ice cream at the Sicamous dairy.  Wonderful treat but we’re still both Kawartha Dairy fans.

Fabulous Ice Cream at Dutchman's Dairy in Sicamous
Fabulous Ice Cream at Dutchman’s Dairy in Sicamous

We arrived in Golden at 6:30. The sun was dropping fast. We had gained an hour so we moved our watches to 7:30. “Let’s forget Lake Louise and stay here,” I suggested. Tom immediately agreed. Neither of us want to be driving through the mountains in the dark. Besides the animals that might be wanting to share the road, we’d miss the scenery. We’re settled into the Ramada Inn – the same room we had two weeks ago and the same price. We’ve had another excellent meal at “The Bear’s Den” and enjoyed the hot tub.

It seems that God is a part of every visit I make to a church. Whether or not they buy books, I feel the joy of the Spirit with each encounter. This is truly a blessed journey.

 

 

A Church on the Move! #travel #church #refugees #family

September 27   Day 29   A Church on the Move.

This morning we returned to St. Andrews-Wesley United Church for Sunday worship. God’s Spirit filled that sanctuary in a very tangible way. Fabulous music poured forth from the organ and gospel choir. Today, they presented Bibles to all the children who were in grade 4. Today they were having a special congregational family meeting to discern how they were going to help in the world refugee crisis. Today the Very Rev. Dr. Gary Paterson spoke about his experience as Moderator over the last three years. Once again I heard God say, “I am doing a new thing.” Our United Church is on the move. Yes, we’ve struggled over the last ten years, but there are glimpses, “tiny green shoots of new life” , bursting forth across this land. New life for our church is beginning. Tom and I experienced it first-hand this morning.

As we were walking back to our condo after church, we talked with two women, one from Windsor and one from London. We shared our experiences of the church service and of Vancouver. When we said goodbye at the corner, I gave them each one of my cards and suggested they check out my books. God continually gives me an opportunity to promote my books.

Tom spent the afternoon with Alex and Bonnie and of course had a wonderful time. I ran errands with our 23 year old grandson, Chris. He’s great company, a wonderful young man. We had lunch together and shared ideas and opinions. At supper time, Bonnie, Boris, Alex, Tom, Chris and I gathered around the table in Bonnie’s apartment for a family dinner. Before and after supper, Chris played with his toddler cousin. Alex laughed and laughed as he and Chris made funny noises, played catch, and built with the duplo blocks. Tom and I are so blessed to have a blended family that is full of love. Oh yes, God was definitely present with us tonight sharing our joy.