The Name Game


Does anyone remember, “The Name Game” song that the singer Shirley Ellis recorded? 

The lyrics were a little strange… ok, a lot strange. They start, “Shirley! Shirley, Shirley, Bo-ber-ley, bo-na-na fanna, Fo-fer-ley, fee fi mo-mer-ley, Shirley!. It’s a catchy little ditty with some fun rhythms and a song where you can supposedly put anyone’s name in the lyric. Try it. I’ll wait. (You can try YouTube if you need help – I did!).

As I was updating a list of prayer needs for our Church newsletter, I realized that there are a lot of names that are common first names. For instance: How many “Linda”s do you know? How about Dianne, Barbara, Susan, Beth, Karen, Mary? And for the men: “David, John, Jack, Bill, Pat, Steve, Charlie? (Side note: my husband is a “Charlie” and we take note of how many tv shows have at least one character with his first name)

Here are some harder-to-find names – see if they are in your circle of friends or family: Adeline, Letitia, Tamara, Philomena, Raveeni. I can say that I know women with those names.

And what about guys? Do you know a, Jerome, Rheaume, Ari, Kwami, Percieval, Clemoth or Scooby? I can tell you that I know a Snoopy (not the cartoon character!) Yes, a family member gave their son that moniker. Names are very important to us.

They identify us to our family, our society and our own self-image. When someone calls your name, you know it’s a clearly defined, directed call. Occasionally, we have to be even more specific because some names are so common. An example in the Bible, is when some people were identified by their parentage: “Simon Bar-Jonah” means, “Simon, son of Jonah”. My Italian friends would often have to qualify their conversations with “Tony’s Pat”, versus “Angelo’s Pat” and for the same family, we’d identify their sisters/cousins as “Vita #1, #2 or #3!

In our family there are four generations of the name “Gordon”. My great-uncle, my Father, my brother and nephew. My Dad was “Gord”, my brother was “Gordie” and my nephew is “Gordie III”. It’s confusing for some folks, but not uncommon for some families.

Were you given a “pet-name” or nickname as a child? Some nicknames we’d like to forget, but often they can simply make it easier to identify which “Bob” or “Debbie” you mean. You’ve probably heard, “Chuck”, Billy, or “Smiley”. In French class we were told that calling someone “Petit chou” was a compliment. It means “Little cabbage”. Well, ummm, ok.

Here’s the thing:

Today, you might think that God has forgotten you or refuses to respond to your prayers. You feel abandoned, alone, insignificant. You wonder, “Does God even hear me? Do I matter to Him?

But I have Good news: God knows you and calls you… by name! He isn’t confused by how many have the same name as yours. He knows you from the inside-out and has a clear idea of who you are, no matter how common your name might be. You’re one-of-a-kind!

In the New Testament book of Ephesians, the Apostle Paul talks about adoption. He says in chapter one, verse four and five,  Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure” (New Living Translation). What an amazing thought, that God decided, “… in advance to adopt us”!

Always loved

Are you feeling neglected? Forgotten? Separated from God? Think you’ve gotten too far away from God to be part of His family? Here’s what God spoke through the prophet Isaiah when Israel had broken their promises to God: “Yet Jerusalem says, “The Lord has deserted us; the Lord has forgotten us.” Never! Can a mother forget her nursing child? Can she feel no love for the child she has borne? But even if that were possible, I would not forget you!”

One of my Professors, Luciano Lombardi, wrote a book entitled, “A New Humanity – a Walk through Ephesians” and in it, he describes the incredible truth that, God has adopted us. He says, “… the adoption papers are all ready”. All the legalities are finalized because Jesus paid for it all with His own life. Now, God’s waiting for you to WANT to be adopted, to sign the papers, to begin your new life in His family“. You are no longer a slave, but a child of God, an heir, part of God’s Royal family, with all the rights and privileges of being a family member. The bible even supports that God has a new name for you (see Rev. 2:17 7).

From what I understand, a parent doesn’t forget that they have given birth to a child. Neither does God.

The One who created you, loves you, has never forgotten you and never will.

He’s simply waiting for you to “sign the adoption papers” and start your life as a member of His family.

Risky business


So, I took the leap last summer and applied to my former college for information on taking Distance Education. I was interested in their “Bachelor of Theology Completion Program”. I had graduated with a three-year diploma many years ago and I always felt as though I hadn’t completed something. For someone like me, that’s a nagging itch that you can’t scratch. After conversations with the School’s Academic department, various phone calls, emails and paperwork, I was given the official welcome to start the 2019 Fall Semester in their Distance Education Program.


The official paper!

Those first weeks in September, proved to be my, “dizzying glance over an unstable cliff’s edge”. It was a fast education in the inadequacies of a “nearly Senior-aged” student, trying to travel the road map of late reentry into academia. I struggled with video clips on plagiarism, researching sites, updating to the more recent formats of “MLA”, comparing costs of text books vs. e-books, the “drop boxes”, “posting to the discussion board”, “mini-quizzes”, “this is the home site, that’s the student site”, “this is the online site” and “your results have been posted” memos. I hadn’t even begun my course!

Once the course did start, I of course, with my somewhat dubious scholastic record, wanted to improve upon my personal academic history. So, I did what anyone in my more advanced age and decades-long experience would do…

I panicked!woman-character-clipart-free

I called my youngest brother and sister-in-law for help (teachers), my niece and her husband (who graduated from the same college, only three years earlier). I connected to a librarian friend, my chiropractor, even my young nephew (16 years old) to explain to me the new apps for formatting bibliographies. I appealed to anyone who was willing to give  me advice and insight into organizing (all in the correct MLA format of course), the myriad of information and scholastic rules, I was sorting through.

In the end, I did well (Whew!), I enjoyed the course study thoroughly, and looked forward to my next stop along the adventure toward my degree. So, when I started into the new Winter Semester, I felt a little more (Ahem) experienced and confident, ready to tackle my new challenges in reading, writing, and studying.

I wasn’t prepared for this one though. As familiar, well-documented and personal as it is, this course is proving to be more than just text book, instruction and information.

This one hits a little too close to home.

How bad can it be, really? The class is called “Personal Leadership Development“. Well, I’ve been a leader for more than 4 decades. I shouldn’t struggle with this. I’ve got experience, education, training, had great mentors – I should be comfortable.

But I’m not.

The assignments call us to “dig deeper” into “being authentic” in our personal, professional and leadership life.  In that way, those we lead and others we come in contact with, can experience freedom to be authentic as well. As well, this course challenges us to share aspects of our emotional, spiritual and leadership growth, personality traits, our calling, accomplishments, spiritual gifts and relationship health. So, why is that a problem?

We have to talk about ourselves. A lot. No surface stuff. Dig deep. REAL deep. Like the people of Newfoundland “digging-out-from-the-“Snowmageddon” last winter, deep.

The issue is: depending on your particular personality type, and other areas of influence in your life, this scholastic exercise can play out in various ways:

It can be a great “selfie-culture” moment, smiling as you capture the fun and excitement of a new friendship forged, revealing aspects of your life with abandon without hesitation, posting it to social media sites with flare and style, shining a bright spotlight on your inner workings and self-discovery;

OR, it can be an exciting front row seat in the exploration of “risky living” within your professional and personal relationships, observing, applying principles, developing strategies, while manifesting the ways you grew into the person you are today;

OR, it can be as fearful as staring at the opening of “the fiery furnace” in front of you while, behind you, is a drooling-at-the-mouth, tapping of the feet, low-throat growling, sniffing of the air, pack of highly motivated, hungry, grizzly bears, ready for their next meal.

I lean towards the last scenario. Greatly. (more of that idea explained in my next post).

How about you? Which one of those scenarios do you gravitate towards? Do you struggle to be “authentic” so others can be the same? Are you a “sharer” or a “cards close-to-the-chest” type?  Is it easy for you, or do your internal boundaries keep you from revealing the depth of who you truly are (professionally, personally, spiritually)?

The terms that my classmates and I used in our discussion posts defining “authenticity” were: “Vulnerable”, “transparent”, “honest”, “genuine” “legitimate” “Truthful” “Bona Fide”. Our discussion with the Professor drew analogies from the life of Jesus Christ:

The Samaritan Woman: (Jesus knew her, spoke truth into her attempts to hide elements of her life, challenged her); the confrontations with the Religious leaders (called them out on their hypocrisy, but revealed His life to the ones who would ultimately lead Him to his death); the relationships with His Followers (living, eating, walking, demonstrating His love-based leadership); His teachings – show us a life lived in true authenticity.

What does “authenticity” look like to you?



It’s been so long since I’ve written, I’m sure there are fluffy little cyber-cobwebs lurking behind my page. If they are anything like my house, they show up magically, in the night, building elaborate little wisps of feathery, clingy strings, daring us to touch them. Like a “wet paint” sign, they dare us to come close and just, just, ever so gingerly, gently, reach out and test whether or not they’re actually there.  Then you end up doing a little shake and shimmy when you find they are stuck like a super-magnet, to your finger, your pants, your coat and may heaven forbid… your face!!! AAAAAHHH!

I wish I didn’t have evidence to prove that cobwebs exist. I find them in places that are sealed shut and have no logical way to allow their existence. Yet, there they are, with their whitish-grey intricate little knittings connected to some small crevice, of a place that looks completely crevice-less.

For Halloween, I don’t do the heinous, human body part, bloody, dead/undead thing.  I keep it simple, and safe for kids. I do pumpkins. and I do cobwebs.  The fake kind of cobwebs, although I have mixed my (alert: pun inserted here…) “mediums”, when wrapping the webs around my posts or the greens outside.  An occasional “webmaster” has already started the weaving process and allows me to unite my efforts with her live ones.

It is quite the show for my neighbours.  One in particular, runs a daycare directly across the street.  They also had two yellow Labrador Retrievers.  Children and Retrievers have taken to sitting in the bay window, curious of the outside comings and goings of our mostly-quiet, little street.  The faces of kids and dogs pressed against the window, watching for street activity, cars, the weather, and of course, the crazy middle-aged lady dancing around like her clothes are on fire!

shallow focus photography of a spiderweb with raindrops

Photo by NastyaSensei on

Ah, cobwebs. They paradoxically, symbolize industry and inactivity. They illustrate the busyness of one little creature and the inactivity of another. Even while we ponder, point, think and repose, the world goes on. But we are more like a cobweb than we think.  We need to be busy – to have purpose. But, we also must find time for rest, for pause, for “Sabbath”.

Technology has made it possible for mountains of information to pass from one person to the next in nano-seconds. Untold millions of ideas and stimuli going out of our little pieces of techno-wizardry (catch the Halloween pun?) each moment, of every single day.  It’s enough to make our brains need a rewiring! I’m learning that efficiency, diligence and work is good but embracing the “pause button”, keeps us connected even in the seemingly crevice-less places.

I guess every cobweb has its’ day.

It’s a season


54ebe06b5fd8f_-_xmas1“Remember the year we…” or “Wasn’t that the time when…”  – words that are included in so many conversations as we near the Christmas season, and the completion of another calendar year.  We all seem to wax nostalgic around certain seasons.  Some people recall the best events:  “We got engaged at Christmas in the year … “ – “That was the holiday we went to Florida and had a blast!”“We had so much snow, school was cancelled!” (That last one is a really good memory).

On the flip side, there are also the difficult memories:  “The last time we had Dad home for Christmas was in ….”; “We said goodbye to so many of our relatives that year.”.  “That was the year _______ lost their job and …”.

As I write this, my Dad is in a retirement home in the city near where I live.  His health deteriorated over the past couple of years, but in particular, this past one. The retirement home is not set up to care for his needs, but it is the only place available to him.

My husband collapsed to the floor in our home in February this year.  Charlie was scheduled for his pre-op the next day, in preparation for surgery on his heart (two valve replacements and a quintuple bi-pass) the following week.  That night, on Valentines Day, my love, my husband, was dying,  but kept alive through the intervention of a team of Emergency Service Workers, our local Emergency room Doctors, nurses and staff, the Critical Care team of the Hamilton General Hospital… and the miraculous power of God.

Right now, a dear friend is warring against her second bout of the cancer that has robbed her of her energy, health and family relationships.  Another precious friend, yesterday,  walked through the loss of her sister who, after a sudden collapse while alone in her home, was in hospital. Her sister left her pain and disease behind yesterday afternoon.

A couple from my church, were separated from living together, when the husband had a car accident that left his back broken in numerous places and his neck as well.  His wife is enduring the struggle of Parkinson’s Disease and she recently was brought into a long-term care home while her husband continues his care at the hospital.

Just because holiday seasons repeat every year, doesn’t mean that every year’s holiday is a celebration.  But… it is a season.  Pain. Grief. Loneliness. N

eeds. Separation. They ignore calendar schedules and plans.


With the personal challenges we’v

e had this year, I am learning that “There’ll be a season for joy and weeping in everything our God is Faithful…”.  (“Faithfulness” ).

My Mother (who is staying in our home now, commented that, if we look back, we can’t fathom how we made it through the challenges we’ve faced in these three-hundred and sixty-plus days.  But we both agreed:  because people prayed for us, because we relied on the Word of the Eternal God, even when we were tired, weepy, weary, sad, depressed and heartbroken, we knew God’s Presence was with us.

Is it simple?  Yes, and no.  Trust is an action of the heart and mind.  I CHOSE to trust that God would help us in the midst of all the “mess” that we were wading through.  I kept trusting.  When I was crying in the darkness, I’d believe that eventually I would stop crying because “God would wipe away all our tears.“.  When I didn’t know what to do, I trusted in the God who said He was faithful “to do that which He had promised”.  If I needed to get our perspective in the right place, I’d crank up the worship playlist on my phone and get on my treadmill, singing and crying and walking until God’s Spirit could fill my mind and heart with more of the God who loves me.  When my heart was heavy with fatigue and emotionally drained, I’d remember that God is always “Working all things together for our good…”.   Have I got it all together?  No way. I keep having to repeat each action weekly… daily… sometimes hourly and minute by minute.

Trust. Pray. Worship. Wait.


Seems to me, that’s what the world was experiencing on the very edge of the night Christ was born: a longing for peace, for healing, for relationship, for fulfillment of promises, for the grief to subside.  And then… breakthrough! It does come.

Christ comes.

May you experience His Presence giving you hope for in the needs, the pain, grief, hurt, loneliness,  through this “season”.  Hear the angels’ message again:

Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Saviour—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!”

(Luke 2:10-11)3a5bb1797082551522fc23895ebad63e--christmas-angels-christmas-images

Singing the favourites with the Spectacular people


Every week, on Tuesday mornings, I travel to a quaint little place that is the home for some pretty spectacular people. I first stop to pick up a couple of special church ladies to take with me. When we arrive at our destination, we push on a little buzzer, and identify ourselves. A Voice from somewhere inside the brick edifice suddenly asks “Who is it?” and after I identify myself, the door magically opens and they release us to enter into the hallowed halls of the Parkview Retirement Home.

img1Parkview has seen a radical transition in the past few years, including renovations to their building (it looks like a cozy little hotel now), staff changes, change in ownership (Ko and Helene Tamminga and family) and a slight name change. It’s transformation is the result of answered prayers and the heart and hard work of the Tamminga family.  It didn’t have the most stellar reputation when I first began my weekly pilgrimage, but now it has come alive with cleanliness, beauty, warmth and welcome.

I had received a phone call, just a brief few months after becoming the Lead Pastor at Life Quest Community Church, from a woman who’d seen our church sign as she’d waited in the drive-through at the Tim Horton’s across the road from our church. She identified herself and asked me “Does your church accept anyone?”. My simple reply: “Yes”.  She proceeded to ask if I’d come and do some music and/or ministry to the people at the Home. Her qualifier was that the people there were “from all backgrounds and faiths, so would I be “ok” with doing something for everyone?”. My simple reply again “Yes”. I suggested perhaps a mix of music would help break down barriers, and perhaps we could just come and see if she was ok with what I’d do?” That was almost 10 years ago.

On a typical Tuesday, we will join with Rose, Dorothy #1 and Dorothy #2, Carl, Franco, Marg #1, Marg #2, Mary, Martha, (so Biblical), Marilyn, Teddie, Colleen, Eileen, Janet, Heidi and Vonda. In their ranks are veterans, choir members, retired professionals, homemakers, business people, woodworkers, and musicians. We will pray together and then we will ask them to suggest a song. We’ve compiled songs from all the requests they’ve had through the years.

We will sing Teddie’s favourite: “O Danny Boy”, or one of Carl’s favourites: “Church in the Wildwood”. Franco, our Italian friend, gets in on the fun with, “That’s Amore!”. We will sing our hearts out on “This Land is Your Land”, “I’ll Fly Away”, “In the Garden”, “Don’t Sit Under the Apple Tree”, and “White Cliffs of Dover”. We even get in on the “Sister Act” by singing “My God”!

We laugh, pray, tell stories, listen to memories being recalled and occasionally cry. It started me to wondering… what songs are my fellow retirement home friends going to request when we’re living together in our senior years? Have you thought about it?

If I am privileged to live a long life, I can imagine what the requests from my fellow retirees may be: “Hey, could you play “Soon and Very Soon” or “It won’t be Long”, by Andrae Crouch? ( a little intentional ironic commentary) or “Do you know “The Great Adventure” by Steven Curtis Chapman?”. I think someone will still ask for a song that Bill and Gloria Gaither wrote, because, well, let’s face it, they seem to write and live forever!

Perhaps someone will ask for a tune from Rez Band, Randy Stonehill, Larry Norman (“I Wish We’d all been Ready“), U2 (Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For…cuz I can’t remember where I put it) Simon and Garfunkel (“Sounds of Silence”), Garth Brooks, Paul McCartney, Amy Grant, Stevie Wonder or … Justin Bieber!!!!???? Perish the thought!

By the time I’m in the throes of a retirement home, there’s a good chance technology will have made the need for “live music” events like “sing-a-longs” at retirement homes, obsolete. (Remember when every church had an organ, a grand piano and hymn books? Or when, if you wanted to hear a song from the radio again, you went to a “Record Store”, bought the album, and played it over and over again on your stereo record player? … -insert 8-track player, cassette player, cd here …). So don’t get too attached to the “spirit of reminiscing”!

But… until my turn comes, I will weekly gather my little church ladies, travel the roads in my city to arrive at Parkview and wait on “the Voice” from their hallowed halls, making the door magically open to let us come in,  and share in an hour of toe-tapping, laughing, smiling, clapping and singing, with some really spectacular people.

“laugh, and the whole world laughs with you…


It’s taken fifty-plus years – but today is the day!  Over the past number of weeks, Charlie, my hunk ‘ o’ love, and I, dug, scraped, tamped, reinforced and laid out all the necessary components for… a pool.  Nothing fancy.  Nothing too big.  Just one of those bulbous, blue, rubber-like vinyl pools that are supposed to go up real easy.

What perhaps you might not know, is that my brothers and I love water.  When I was a pre-schooler, and playing in the bathtub at our little home in Burlington, Ontario, I would pretend to swim.  I would imagine splashing about in the lake near our city, or travelling to the East Coast of Canada to frolic in the briny water.  Yes – a pre-schooler.  It’s in my genetic code.  My Dad is from New Brunswick and grew up next to the Restigouche River. My Mother is from central Newfoundland, where the mighty salmon is King and the salt of the great north Atlantic is in the very breath of the air and fibre of the land.

So, all our growing up years, first as young children, in Burlington, then living in different parsonages because of my Dad’s profession as a minister, the one thing we always hoped for, was a pool.  It didn’t have to be fancy, just something we could play in, cool off in, or exercise off, the stress of the day.  Then, fantastically, finally, when my parents accepted the ministry call to a church in Niagara Falls, a miracle occurred.  To us, it was like the deliverance of the children of Israel from Pharaoh, or the multiplication of the loaves and fishes for the famished and hungry.  There – in the backyard of the parsonage – not shiny – not new – our own miracle.  In the backyard, with stairs leading up to the landing, on the edge of glory, lay… a water basin, also known as, an above-ground pool!!

To put things into perspective:  We moved into the parsonage just days before Christmas.  My brothers were both attending college/university that year. Being in Canada, we would have to wait until after the Spring Thaw and the first warm days of spring before we could even remotely venture into the glorious water that awaited us.

At the end of the post-graduate year, my brothers returned home, anxious to try out the promised cool, refreshing, healing waters of our first truly, genuine, family-sized pool.  It was a beautiful, unusually warm Spring that year, and my parents had gone to their cottage for a brief respite.  Consequently, we had my Grandma come and stay with us for the duration of their vacation.  I was home for lunch visiting with my Grandma when my brothers made their way out of bed and deciding to be decadent, make it a true “welcome home” “welcome to summer” occasion.  They tried (and failed) to cook steaks on a make-shift grill in the back of the property.  When it failed to light, they tossed gasoline… yes – gasoline – on the sticks they’d rounded up.  This attempt made the two of them smell like the back of a grease-monkey’s work rag, so they gave up and decided to initiate the pool.

My Grandma and I sat at the dining room table facing the backyard, watching, talking and laughing as my siblings shivered and dunked each other. My youngest brother Dave, quickly felt the cold of the water and hopped out, but my middle brother, Gord, who never minded swimming in cold water, decided to splash around by himself.  Shortly afterwards, we heard Dave, frantically yelling out to us.  We looked out the window, only to see Gord standing in the centre of the pool, hands on his hips, a look of disbelief on his face, and water flowing like a river out through the newly formed hole in the side of the frame.  Appropriately, the water poured out so rapidly and under such pressure, that it formed its own version of the great Horseshoe Falls! To say that our hopes were dashed that day, is a gross understatement.

Perhaps now you can understand my great yearning – longing- passion– to have my own pool.  Being in a semi-country part of our area, we are on a well water system.  This meant that we needed to call for water to be brought in.  The water hauler, “Barry” came to the rescue.

The moment of truth was here. Will the pool leak?  Will I have to run around and support the walls?  Is the water going to pour out the side?  I was nervous and excited and hopeful that we would be splashing around in our little piece of heaven soon.

Barry told me to hold on to the water pipe atop the pool ladder, as he turned on the water source.  No problem.  Then, as the pool started to fill, he lifted up a couple of sections that were wrinkled.  No problem.  I suggested that where the ladder was sitting in an awkward position.  “Let’s move it up a bit.  First gush of water over me and Barry.  As the pool began to slowly rise with the pressure of the water, we noticed that it was tilting ever so slightly to the left.  No problem.  The pool was 98% full.  Barry told me to hold on to the water pipe while he left to shut off the water source.  I didn’t quite get there in time.  Second gush of water all over me.  After the water was off.  We could see that the water was reeaallly high on the left side.  But… no problem I assured Barry.  I’ll ask my husband, and we’ll take away the bricks we put as a safeguard on the south side, which was obviously a little higher than the other sides.

“Thanks Barry”.  “Bye”. Then off to change out of my wet clothes – laugh the whole time at what a spectacle I must have looked like, fighting a “pvc pipe” of pressurized water spraying out all over me – call Charlie to share the laugh and tell him it’s done.  Then… like a slow-motion bad dream, I look outside… The “Horseshoe Falls” have transplanted themselves in my backyard!  Quickly, I run out and begin to pull out the bricks I can reach, water recedes back, and the pool slumps down in defeat, a lesser shape of its former glory.

“I have a dream…” that I will one day enjoy the cool, refreshing, glistening, inviting water of my own pool.  I will swim and play with abandon.  I will exercise with graceful strokes across the radius of my blue gem with health and life surging through my joints.  I will share restful moments of quiet enjoyment grinning blissfully across the watery expanse at my wonderful husband.  I will share the joy of the St. George artesian spring water in my pool, with my loved ones. I will baptize members of my congregation with glowing face and misty eyes.

Yes, I will.

One day.

Perhaps, but not today.

Just ordinary


I realized the other day why I have procrastinated at adding another post: I’m not that interesting. Yup, just an ordinary girl, with a regular, simple life. I don’t live in a big city. I don’t know lots of “in” people. I definitely don’t have a wealth of knowledge that the world is craving for. So why would I even attempt to write a “blog”?

Well, I guess – as uninteresting as my life may seem to some – I do like to stay involved, aware and alert to the culture and people in my world. This doesn’t mean that I condone or champion their opinions or causes, but it does mean that I care about their unique perspective, personalities and experiences.

For instance – I have a dear friend who has one green eye and one blue eye. She’s stunningly beautiful even at an age when people judge you by the number of years you’ve lived – she’s a head-turner for many a male species. But – she’s also smart, incredibly creative (her ability to decorate and choose colours is beyond most designers), and she’s a woman who has endured horrific life experiences, walked through spiritual, emotional and physical challenges… and yet retains a grace and dignity that others would envy. Now there’s an interesting lady!

Except, my friend would tell you that she doesn’t think she’s all that extraordinary either.

I however, “beg to differ”. When I think of the people throughout my life, the stories, experiences, tragedies overcome, graces developed, creative projects, the loves, the joys… I’m so grateful. I get to know, love, listen and learn from these “Wonders of Creation”.

I think that’s one of the most gratifying things about being a Pastor. People.  God loves them, and he put a love in my heart for them too.

I met with a Pastor/evangelist/trucker/Ministry leader (interesting person alert!) a couple of days ago.  His life experiences are so varied and he’s so great at story-telling, that as he related an experience he had sharing his faith, I could have spent several hours listening to him.

And you – there’s a good chance you and I know each other.  I’m grateful to in some way discovered the unique “you”.  Maybe together we’ll be thankful, laugh, remember and share some of the ways God made you so interesting!

So, I think I’ll tell you more in the future, about the courageous, phenomenal, one-of-a-kind people that make up my life – and how they make it, well,  – not ordinary!

Can we meet?


"Come let us reason together"

“Come let us reason together”

I found this picture  from the downloads of wallpaper for my cell phone.  There’s something so intriguing about it.  I don’t know the artist (my apologies), but I like the picture.

First there are the two hands upon which the smaller figures stand.

Then, there are those two robe-clad figures.

All amidst a shadowing of multi-hued orange, yellows, reds… it’s full of light.

What comes to mind for me, is the words from the prophet Isaiah, chapter 1:18, “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:though your sins are like scarlet,they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson,they shall become like wool.”

I just think that everyday, all around the world, in the remotest places, in the most populated places, in high-rises and little tents, people are battling the pain of family discord, political anger, unforgiveness, bitterness of soul, separation and loneliness.

When we look at the great loss of life in recent days in Syria, Ukraine and Philippines, it’s like we all just want to plead for a sense of peace and reasoning!

As depicted in the Artist’s work, the two strong hands of the Lord are reaching out pointing people to reconciliation, undergirded by His strength and direction. There’s healing to be found, if we’d just extend our hand.