The Cracks

That’s how the Light gets in.

Thursday, September 21, 2023

The Light Is Gold,

The Light Is Distant,

The View Mottled.

How Does the Light Reach Us?

Zephaniah 3:7

I said, ‘Surely the city will fear me, it will accept correction; it will not lose sight of all that I have brought upon it.’ But they were the more eager to make all their deeds corrupt.

Luke 19:45-46

Then he entered the temple and began to drive out those who were selling things there; and he said, ‘It is written, “My house shall be a house of prayer”; but you have made it a den of robbers.’

Words of Grace For Today

In all our efforts to have a ‘good’ life, we most of all deny that we have screwed up life tremendously.

We try to pretend that it’s just a little problem, that we did something ‘not quite right.’ When in fact the result is a crack in the foundation of our lives that tears more than the curtain in the temple. It tears apart our own hearts, minds, and souls.

Whenever God gives us ‘temples’ and ‘houses of prayer’ we turn them into ‘dens of robbers’ in so many ways, so many same old, same old ways, that people have used since the beginning of time, all trying to make our own way in life and make it better than it was. The more God gives us the more eager we are to make all our deeds corrupt, trying to cover up our latest corrupt deeds.

What does God do with us, then?!

God uses exactly those cracks in the foundation of our lives to shine the Light of Christ into the foundations of our lives,

to revive us.

God never repairs the cracks, as if they never were. The wounds heal, though the cracks remain, so that the Light can continue to shine in on us

so that we can live and breathe in the Light

even as we turn yet to more corrupt deeds,

also this day.

By God’s Grace alone, though we can breathe.


and bask in the Light,

and give God thanks,

and trust the call to go out to share the Light with all people.

When I Wake Up

I know who I am going to be!

Wednesday, September 20, 2023

The Moon Sets as the Dawn Breaks,

Who Will We Be This Day?

Proverbs 14:26

In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and one’s children will have a refuge.

Romans 8:35

Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will hardship, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

Words of Grace For Today

Knowing who we are is a great start to any day.

Often our confidence in who we are is lost in delusions and dreams unreal.

There is only one identity that we can know of ourselves that will bring us life with each breath and that is …

Yet there is, before we speak of it, so much that would tear us from that identity.

Not least of all is our own drive and dreams to be something worth being.

Through hardships we forge ahead, proving we are worth the breath we breathe.

Through distress we dig deep, proving we are made of goodness.

Through persecution we deny our persecutors their satisfaction, proving we cannot be conquered (even as we sink deeper into the abyss.)

We try to survive through famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword, but then the course of nature claims us in our deaths.

Oh, how futile all our struggles turn out to be. And how foolish our enemies have made themselves out to be, as they sink faster into the abyss with each move made against us!

There is no confidence we can have, about anything, least of all about ourselves that will save us.

We are doomed, all of us.

The one confidence that we have is a confidence given to us, though we do not deserve it, not at all, not at all.

That identity is one given to us by Jesus: we are the bearers and sharers of Jesus’ love for the world and all people ever.

From this love, nothing can separate us,

because God gives it to us each day, each hour, each minute.



Sunday, September 3, 2023

Feeling Abandoned, Alone, Like the Moon, an Aside on a Cold Landscape … Is that us?

Psalm 42:6

My God, my soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.

John 14:18

I will not leave you orphaned; I am coming to you.

Words of Grace For Today

We fear being abandoned by all who love us, of being desperately alone. Like orphans bereft of loving parents, with no one to care for us.

So, remembering God’s promises, we pray always that God will be for us.

God of Paul and Peter, of Jeremiah and David, and of all the saints who have gone before us, guide us as your Church to genuine love for all people, and all creation, passing on to others your bounty of gifts in service to you, who showed us the way of the Cross as your way for all whom the Spirit calls to follow you. O God, You know: Hear us.

God of all the wonders of this planet, remind us that from the beginning of creation, you knit together a world meant for harmony. Protect and restore the wasted places to joy and gladness. O God, You know: See us.

God of all peoples, stir the leaders of nations and towns, militaries and courts, to listen for you. Let your call for justice reach all people and bring deliverance where there is oppression. O God, You know: Guard us.

God of steadfast love, show your love and faithfulness to those in despair. Increase their strength, care for all who feel low, keep safe any in the midst of trouble, protect vulnerable people from harm, comfort all who are ill and those who care for them. Today we especially pray for …. O God, You know: Hold us.

God of our hearts, encourage those who offer their gifts and talents in service to your church. Energize this congregation’s leaders, musicians, teachers, greeters, and administrators so they may be transformed in sharing your grace. O God, You know: Call us.

God of all the saints, death is overcome in Christ’s resurrection. We rejoice with the faithful departed (especially). Sustain us in hope until we come at last to our heavenly home. O God, You know: Carry us.

Your mercy is great, O God, and You know us better than we know ourselves. Into your hands, O God, we commend all for whom we pray, in the name of the one who reconciled all creation to himself, Jesus Christ our Savior.

Let it be so also this day.


What Does Life Taste Like, Anyway?

Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Can We Ever Taste The Trees Up Close,

The Cold Fog,

The Distant Shore,

The Clear Moon?

As God’s Works For Us!

Isaiah 63:7

I will recount the gracious deeds of the Lord, the praiseworthy acts of the Lord, because of all that the Lord has done for us, and the great favour to the house of Israel that he has shown them according to his mercy, according to the abundance of his steadfast love.

1 Peter 2:3

if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

Words of Grace For Today

We can observe 93 billion light years of universe, though we estimate the universe is more than 7 trillion light years huge.

Why did God create all this?

Before creation it was only void, emptiness, and we can anthropomorphize that God easily could have been lonely. But lonely for such small creatures so capable of evil as us? Really!

The earth’s diameter is only about 13 km, and it’s circumference is 40,000 km. In other words from here to the opposite side of the earth is only 13 km, straight down through the core and back up. Or we can travel from here to the opposite side and back in about 40,000 km. That’s only 42 billionths of one light year. In other words we live our whole lives within 42 nano seconds of a light-year.

Why would God create the entire universe, just for us to exist? Or did God? Maybe we were an afterthought, or a mistake, or a side-effect. (The juries would then be out on whether we are a good side-effect or a bad side-effect or even a deadly side-effect.)

Like a medication that tastes bad but is supposed to do us good, except it turns our stomach so that we cannot hold it down: Maybe that is the kind of side-effect we are in God’s plans for the universe?


when we have tasted how marvellously good God is to us, forgiving us, loving us, renewing us, and sending us out with a purpose grand enough to take more than all the life we have to give, then

we, small as we are, can do none other than go out

recounting the gracious acts of God for us,

for us all.

So it is we go out also into this day, whatever it may bring.


Even When Stumbling

Wednesday, August 9, 2023

Even In The Darkest Times, God Dwells Among Us Providing What We Need.

Psalm 119:165

Great peace have those who love your law; nothing can make them stumble.

Colossians 3:16

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; teach and admonish one another in all wisdom; and with gratitude in your hearts sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs to God.

Words of Grace For Today


Living fully

Living fully always with thanks

Living fully always with thanks for all God does among us,

Living among us, God chooses to carry us through all life’s challenges.

Living among us is God bringing us gifts beyond our imaginations

Living among us is God healing us of our every ill

Living among us is God sending us out to share

Living among us is God’s Light

Living among us is God

Living among us



Jail Time

Di-Lithium Time

Monday, August 7, 2023

Jail-Time Allows Only Dreams

of Moonlit Nights,

and Much More

Genesis 39:20-21

And Joseph’s master took him and put him into the prison, the place where the king’s prisoners were confined; he remained there in prison. But the Lord was with Joseph and showed him steadfast love; he gave him favour in the sight of the chief jailer.

Acts of the Apostles 16:25

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.

Words of Grace For Today

After a long, hard time in the roiling heat of the di-lithium chamber of climate change there’s nothing quite like waking up to a cool breeze blowing in off the lake. The fresh clean air, after days of smoke. The slight chill against one’s face. The comfort in the long sleeve shirt and durable jeans, a head and neck covering hat, and rubber boots, all so that one can make the morning hike to the lake shore and up the hill (for aerobic exercise) to the reclaimed oil lease, and back to …

back to what is left

after losing


to lies,

jail-time and

a criminal record for crimes that never happened.

After a long, hard time in the roiling heat of the di-lithium chambers of jail there’s nothing quite like waking up to a free, cool breeze blowing in off the lake.

Seeing the results of one’s own labours to survive one day at a time, and then one season at a time, and then one year at a time, and after 5 years to be able to prepare for the next year’s hard winter, and the next year’s hellishly hot summer. Setting one’s sleep schedule to fit one’s own life instead of a jailer’s schedule. Resting in a bed one has made. Working at a desk that one has made. Knowing that one’s small abode will not get tossed without notice, and without recourse. Eating food that one prepares oneself, food that one’s body tolerates and is nourishing for it. Taking medications that one keeps oneself, at the hour one needs to take them, and always properly in relation to food intake, keeping throat cancer at bay, and not risking the medication ripping a hole in one’s gut. Being able to live a (hopefully safe) distance from actual criminals and unpredictable, violent addicts. Exercising when one chooses, canoeing on the lake when one is able, working and resting as one chooses, reading what and when one chooses, writing and learning as one chooses, exploring the universe (via the Internet).

After a long, hard time in the roiling heat of the di-lithium chambers of hell there’s nothing quite like waking up to the blessed, free, cool breeze blowing in off the lake.

For having learned the hard way (for there is no easy way to learn this) that God is gracious and walks with one,

into and out of every kind of di-lithium chamber the universe can capture one in,

one knows and trusts that every breath, no matter in or out of a di-lithium chamber of any kind, is the most precious gift, a reminder that God gives blessed life

and nothing is more precious,

nor is anything more required

than breath,

and sharing breath with others,

for life to be blessed,


and complete.


Truth Makes Us Sheepish.

Monday, July 24, 2023

Can We Admit

The Dark Would Have Us,


That We Want To Live In The Light?

Psalm 23:3

… he restores my soul. He leads me in right paths for his name’s sake.

John 10:14

I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me,

Words of Grace For Today

There’s not much good about being compared to sheep. Oh, the lambs are cute. Getting up every 2 hours through the nights during the months of lambing season is not at all cute. Stubborn rams and ewes are not anywhere near cute. Helpless and dumb flocks are frustratingly exactly not cute.

So with the 23rd Psalm we start today and any good day with an admission that we are pretty dumb when it comes to living in God’s creation. We go on to admit that we need help and protection from the Evil One. While we are at being humble (always a good start) we can confess our sins and total dependence on God for life itself, for every breath.

Sheep-like we are then. Humble we must be.

God, though, does not see us as useless or dumb or helpless. God leads us in the right paths, not so much for our sake, but for God’s. God wants creation to work (whenever and whatever that will be) as God intends it to work.

At the centre of each of our lives is a ‘soul’, the being of being human, conscious and aware of being alive, of value, of time and future and possibility, of love, hope and faith. Too often our souls rot right out from inside us, dripping on the floor like apples gone bad for way too long, stinky, buggy goo all over our lives.

Then God restores our souls, so that we can also be aware of God’s steadfast love, forgiveness, and renewal of life … life that intends us to live to benefit others.

It’s living to benefit only ourselves that rots our souls out of us.

When we are down and out of soul, in the gutters of creation, far from where God would have us live, we may well cry to God for help.

Always God hears our cries. God knows our voices. And God rescues us, yet again, so that we can know God’s voice: Jesus calling us … calling us to come home, and sending us again to go out into the world to give God’s benefits of life to others. Not simply a sending, but a sendoing.

Good hearty soul time it is then, living for other’s benefit, especially for those who do not deserve it at all … which is who we are every time God comes to rescue us, often with the voice, heart, and hands of other people of God.

Lots of people need what God gives. How can we give some of it today? Each day?

Can we humbly accept that we need others to give it to us, as well, on behalf of God?


& Trouble All This Long Day?

Welcome to the Human Race.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023


Even In The Longest Darkness,

Or The Longest Day!

Psalm 25:17

Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.

John 16:33

I have said this to you, so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!’

Words of Grace For Today

I’m sure that to the many first century Christians who were persecuted and killed for their faith the statement that ‘Jesus had conquered the world’ rang pretty empty. As it has for so many persecuted Christians since,

Even to this day.

Truer to so many hearts are the Psalmist’s words, “Relieve the troubles of my heart, and bring me out of my distress.” and in the German the translation include, “The anxieties of my heart are great!”

Troubles are one thing that is common to most humans. And the most destructive response is fear run wild become panic.

In panic we are unable to do anything wise.

Thus Jesus’ words are most helpful, “I have said this to you so that you may have peace!”

Peace is the beginning of coping with any situation, even the most dire and even those that are sure to result in great suffering and even our deaths.


May it permeate from God’s Spirit to our spirits and into our bones, muscles and minds,

Also this long summer equinox day, with all it’s inevitable troubles.

God’s Face

Shown and Not Hidden

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Even in the Deepest Darkness


in the Thickest Fog,

Like This Moon on a Wintry Morning,

God Does Not Hide From Us.

Ezekiel 39:29

… and I will never again hide my face from them, when I pour out my spirit upon the house of Israel, says the Lord God.

Romans 8:16

… it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God, ….

Words of Grace For Today

When God shows God’s face …

Ancient times knew that when one saw God’s face, that was the last thing one would see. One died, and quickly.

God visits Moses, calling him to lead God’s people from slavery to freedom. God hides in a burning bush that is not consumed. Moses is convinced it is God.

Moses climbs Mount Sinai and God shows God’s face to Moses giving him the ten commandments, twice since the people have put up a golden calf to worship. Moses has disappeared up the holy mountain. That’s where God is, and surely Moses has seen God and … of course died. So the people move on, insisting Aaron make a godlet for them from their most precious gold. Moses sees this and throws the stone tables of the ten commandments down, breaking them on the rocks. After the people’s sins are dealt with, Moses climbs the mountain again, and chisels a new set of the same ten commandments.

Moses sees God, twice. And Moses’ face shows it: he has turned ashen white from the exposure.

So when God promises to never hide God’s face from the Israelites again, after God returns to them, is that a promise or a threat?

Will the people turn ashed white from the exposure, or die?

Or …

is something else afoot?

Will God show God’s face and bless the people?

When God’s Spirit gives witness, to our spirits (the German translation interprets the genitive ‘our spirits’ as ‘to our spirits’, instead of the English which interprets it ‘with our spirits’, the ‘to’ makes better sense), then we can know that we are God’s children and …

children need not fear seeing their parent, not if the parent is a good parent as God is.

So …

We can give God thanks and praise that God is with us, and does not hide God’s face from us, children of God that we are.



Thursday, June 1, 2023

Looking Up,

and Seeing

the Star

Above the Setting Moon.

Isaiah 25:8

… he will swallow up death for ever. Then the Lord God will wipe away the tears from all faces, and the disgrace of his people he will take away from all the earth, for the Lord has spoken.

Philippians 3:10-11

I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

Words of Grace For Today

I want to know …

Such yearning.

Such yearning that changes the taste and scents of each day, each hour, each minute.

I want to know … but what do we want to know?

So much of life is filled with yearning for the comforts (or things towards comforts) and pleasures that this life offers only with such wiffs, and then they are taken from us, often destroying our ability to yearn with clarity for what will bring health and life.

I want to know … Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings.

Now that is something unlike other yearnings, for it is not for comforts or improvements or anything quickly withering into the evening fog. This yearning to know Christ, the power of his resurrection and (then comes the key to it all – the all that is life and death and existence itself) the sharing of Christ’s sufferings.

That is the key to life: to know Christ by sharing in his suffering. His sufferings were unearned, but offered in order that others might live, and live free and abundantly.

This yearning takes us outside ourselves and extends all that we are toward giving to others; giving everything we can to as many other people as we can so that more and more people will know the power of Christ’s resurrection in their own lives (the hope that moves us beyond living waiting for death).

This yearning is to see that God with a word, has wiped away our tears and disgrace, and the tears and disgrace of all people, and replaced it with the joy and thanksgiving of living fuelled by the power of Christ: self-sacrificial, unconditional love for all people.

May that be our days, and this day. Our hours, and this hour.