Breathe In

And Take Share in Adam’s Atoms Yet Again.

Friday, September 8, 2023

We Walk Short Distances,

But the Atoms from Our Breath Circle the Globe,

in a year.

Isaiah 26:19

Your dead shall live, their corpses shall rise. O dwellers in the dust, awake and sing for joy! For your dew is a radiant dew, and the earth will give birth to those long dead.

Hebrews 12:1

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, and let us run with perseverance the race that is set before us,

Words of Grace For Today

When we breathe in we breathe in atoms that have been breathed in by all creatures who breathe up to about a year before we breathe. When we breathe out, in little more than a year, our expelled atoms will be breathed in by every living creature that breathes in air.

That’s a connection.

That’s a significant reliance.

That’s a dependency.

That’s … scary, considering what we are doing to the air around planet earth!

When we realize that the atoms we breathe in integrate into the bodies we are, which when we die decay back into the earth (one way or another), it is not difficult to acknowledge that when any new life is born or hatched or otherwise begun, it contains part of all who have gone before. So out of the dead rises new life, just not quite like themselves, usually.

This happens almost no matter what we do. Cremation or burial both lead to the same thing, just in different ways on different timelines. If we shipped our body off in a spaceship towards some distant galaxy, only then would our atoms not reenter the life stream on earth.

Laying aside every weight and the sin that clings so closely, as the writer of Hebrews admonishes us to do, is on the opposite end of possible for us; it’s impossible on our own.

This we can only appear to do as the Holy Spirit accomplishes it for us. So we ‘run with perseverance the race’ before us, knowing that even putting one foot in front of the other is a gift from the Holy Spirit. Our place in the race is a rather humble one; God runs us for us.

For that we can be thankful this day, again.

Of course, we always have the choice to stop running. God does leave us freewill. Stopping God’s walking us is something to avoid each day.

But we don’t avoid it, not at all, not at all. So God needs to rescue us many times each day.

Thank God, God does rescue us; also this day, again, and again, and again.


To Speak … Truth

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

When Our Vision Is Narrowed By Worry and Self-Concerns,

Like Not Seeing a Crossing Tracks’ Origin and Destination,

We Miss Other’s Needs, Paths, and Opportunities.

Proverbs 31:8

Speak out for those who cannot speak, for the rights of all the destitute.

Hebrews 13:3

Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them; those who are being tortured, as though you yourselves were being tortured.

Words of Grace For Today

When we know ourselves to be defined by God, our identity not dependent on us ourselves or those around us …

Well then the world seeks us out for the peace we offer,

and we







Remember those in prisons, concrete or imaginary, with bully guards or made of rumours, of body or of spirit, by wars exiled out of home or by poverty kept from surviving healthily if at all,

and to speak

for those who are not given voice to speak and be heard,

for whom the world has no time or compassion

or imagination

of their precious worth

to us all.

So today

we remember and speak

in prayer first

and then

in our actions.

For God remembers us and speaks for us,

with grace

and steadfast love.

Getting It Right

Or Esle!

Thursday, July 27, 2023

Think You Can Find The Right Path?

Fools Alone Think So!

Isaiah 43:11

I, I am the Lord, and besides me there is no saviour.

John 17:3

And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent ….

Words of Grace For Today

I really like this kind of message, so common in scripture and from the lips of so many people:

Get it Right!

OR EXLE. opps


Opps again


So the demands come at us, as foolish as ever a human word can be.

So the the interpretation of God’s communications (revelations) to us are made by humans, and they miss the mark of all God’s Words.

To demand that we get it right is to demand something beyond our abilities.

Stuck in sin, Slaves to sin, unable to free ourselves, sinful by nature, human nature is flawed, Evil will have it’s ways, Boys will be Boys, Women will be manipulative and devious.

It all has many different names and endless permutations in humans history, permutations that each generation repeats many times over.

Knowing Jesus is to know God’s Grace, is to trust that God rescues us when we certainly do not deserve it (for the umpteenth Millionth Billionth Trillionth [infinite] time.)

Of course demanding of others (and maybe ourselves a little) that they get it right, is to play right out of God’s hands into the Devil’s.

Trying to be right.

Never works.

Start with humility: confessing who we are as sinners, trusting God’s mercy and grace to save us and renew life in us. Then accepting that Jesus sends us out to exercise that same mercy and grace for others.

That’s a good minute, a good start to any day, a wonderful way to be all day long, if only we could.

But God has the rest. God is our Saviour.

As of Old

Old is Not for Sissies With Skewed Memories

Sunday, July 9, 2023

Remember Days Without So Many Mosquitoes, Flies, and Wasps?

And No Smoke?

They Were

Freeking Cold!


Jeremiah 30:20

Their children shall be as of old, their congregation shall be established before me; and I will punish all who oppress them.

Philippians 2:1-2

Paul wrote: If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.

Words of Grace For Today

Yearning for things to return to what they were, in the days of old, is understandable and common enough … and wholly misdirected leading often enough to disasters.

Memory of things in the past is an odd kind of thing. Reality may play a part, and we all hope it plays a large part, though we know more and more people live with a perspective of even their recent past (and also then their current days) that is quite disconnected from any reality – rather it is determined more by what they wish it had been and what they wish the current time would be. Most often how we see some more distant past, that is our ‘days of old’ with more of a disconnect from reality and more and more colouring from emotions, wishes, dreams, and (to be honest) games our own memories play on us.

When we wish for a return to ‘the good old days’, or the ‘days of old’, more often than not we want only a slice of the reality of the past and a huge slice of wishes made to exist when they never have in the past.

Some memories are best left in the past as past and not wished for as our future, lest we end up with less a slice of anything good and more and more disasters created as we try to either force things to be a certain way (which almost always goes awry if not for what we try to force, then for so many other things for us, and most often for other people) or we disconnect further and further from reality as we insist that things not only must be a certain way for us, but that they actually are for us – and usually that entails condemning others (though in reality they have done little to nothing to merit our condemnations.)

So how to move into a ‘better’ future for us and others?

Paul often directed his readers in various congregations to trust God’s promises in Christ as he does for the Philippians: if there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.

If we are to accomplish that on our own, just be in full accord and of one mind, then we are bound to fail, and miserably. More disconnect from reality!

When we recognize all that God has given us, sinners that we are, then it becomes not only possible, but blessedly easy. Christ gives us encouragement, consolation from love, sharing with others God’s Spirit, compassion and sympathy, and complete joy.

As we live with and aware of those gifts pouring over us, we need not wish for some ‘days of old.’ Right now is just fine. In fact it’s terrific. It doesn’t get better!

And it never was better!

That doesn’t mean that life now is free of challenges and disappointments. It is that God helps us keep everything in perspective, in the perspective that we are God’s children and God walks with us and protects us.

Each day is, no matter the challenges we face or enemies that pursue us, beyond comparison just plain blessed.

When death comes it too will be a blessing. We will get to go home.




Oh, for the record, keep the smoke and bugs; give me the freeking cold almost any day, as long as I have enough wood to burn in the monster, and … and … and.


The Wonderful Way

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Even When the Way Looks Obvious,

There are Dangers,

and Choices:

Coyote Ahead?

or Take the Other Path?

Micah 6:8

He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

Philippians 2:5

Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus,

Words of Grace For Today

If it were so simple, then we would just have to be humble and walk with God, love giving kindness to all (especially those who certainly do not deserve it, and they are many), and do what is just and right.

Trouble is, even for good people, it is hard to do these things. The ways of the world are everything but these; the pressures to be successful in the ways of the world are intense and unrelenting; even in small daily exchanges humans fudge reality in order to get along with others and to seem to be just a bit (or maybe a lot) better in their own eyes and in others’ eyes than they really are; and, let’s face it, walking with God is not something that is even possible because God goes so many places that we cannot follow since we are just not omnipresent, all powerful, and capable of transcending time and space. Even a tele-transporter or time travelling space ship would not make it possible. It’d be hard to follow God for a stroll on a planet with no breathable air, or – imagine this simply – to the centre of the sun!

So often, we hear that we ought to be like Jesus, to live as Jesus did, to make decisions as Jesus did. Besides that we simply cannot (sin gets in the way all the time), if we did we’d all end up crucified by the age of 30 or so. Today’s passage is a bit more realistic: let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus. Ah, that is passive. It is to let the Holy Spirit put that mind in us, and let us be as Jesus was, kind, just, and humble.

Now if we let the Holy Spirit work unimpeded in us and through us, then there is hope that we might indeed, do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with our God

One day at a time, one step at a time. God walks with us, so that we can walk humbly with God.

And that walk is a wonderful, and even the most wonderful, way to proceed through life!

Or did you have other plans for today, and the rest of your days, plans that you cannot or will not cancel?



Wednesday, May 17, 2023

When We Are Far From Anyone,

Alone With Dangers All Around,

And Fear Rattles Our Bones,

What ARE We to Do?

Psalm 6:2

Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing; O Lord, heal me, for my bones are shaking with terror.

1 Thessalonians 5:9-10

For God has destined us not for wrath but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep we may live with him.

Words of Grace For Today

Julius dreamed it at first, and then woke, being shook urgently by a young man crying to him, “Come quick! The earth had shook. The rocks are tumbling down. Isera was hit by one and she is not right in her speech. Besides that a runner arrived just now and says that the waters in the mountain lake that feeds our river have risen higher than anyone has seen them and suddenly they have burst loose. They will surely break through the next series of lakes and beaver dams. The runner is gone on to warn others downstream. Everyone’s bones are stricken and shaking with fear. Will we live even another week, or even another day?”

Julius rose, and dressed quickly, praying to himself as he did, that he might have the wisdom to know how to treat Isera, that he might find the words to unshake the bones of the many people who needed to make a plan, to decide how to protect the community and the people.

Julius thought while he walked to see Isera, head injuries always seemed to be dangerous. People who thought nothing bad had happened would be sick for months and years and some would never heal, their abilities to live normal lives gone and their personalities changed dramatically. He noticed that those that seemed somewhat worse at first often healed faster after they rested for days and weeks and sometimes even months, before they tried to return to normal living.

Isera seemed to understand what he said, though her words were all confused, meaning next to nothing. He asked her if she would rest now for days, maybe weeks. Her response was fast and furiously gibberish. So he placed a writing pad (sand in a box) and gave her the writing stick. He asked her only to write “Y” for yes and “N” for no. Would she rest? Her “Y” was a bit messy but it was there. Drink plenty of fluids, walk as little each day as possible. Eat no more than she needed. (Nobody really did, for food was not overabundant, but sometimes people who rested started to eat and eat and eat, so Julius included it in his instructions.)

He asked her if she had pain. “Y”. Is it more than 5 out of 10? “Y” Is it more than 8 out of 10? “Y” Is it 10 out of 10? “N” He pulled some bark out of his healing-pouch. He showed how much to tear off to boil in three cups of water to make tea. “Boil it and then cool it so you can drink all three cups in ten minutes. You can repeat that every two hours, up to six times in a day. But no more six times and not more often than every two hours. Otherwise you will likely get stomach cramps and vomit.” “Y”

He said he would be back to check on her in the morning. He asked her friend to stay with her through the night and wake her every hour or so. No more than each hour and a half. For he had experienced one man who fell asleep and never woke up, and another man who fell asleep, but his wife kept waking him, and he rested and returned to work in the community gardens a few months later.

Then Julius walked outside and asked people to send one person from each household to meet with him in ten minutes. No one needed to be woken up, everyone was woken up by the earth shaking or by someone scared waking them. They gathered. Never had Julius seen so many people crying, screaming at each other, shaking their hands, heads, and some even their whole bodies as they tried to tell each other what dangers lay ahead for them.

Julius called them to order. It took a bit and when they were quiet he asked people who knew to tell in simple, clear terms, what dangers they faced.

It came out that the earthquake had done a little damage to a few houses. Aftershocks had come as well, some almost as strong as the first, also adding to the damage.

So Julius listed that for them: 1. Earthquake.

Then someone mentioned the water that would wipe out their community before the sun rose. Julius asked how this was known, and paused to write

2. Flood.

It turned out nobody knew how bad or dangerous the water coming at them would actually be. Everybody agreed with Julius that they needed more information. Then someone cried a bit and reminded them of Isera. The falling rocks could hurt any of them out working near the cliffs. Julius wrote

3. Falling Rocks.

Then someone blubbered that this was doing them no good, they needed to run away to safety. That brought cries and screams as fear ran through nearly everyone there. Even Julius could feel the panic racing around the crowd. That’s when Julius remembered what someone had said about fear being the only real enemy. Julius stopped and called for silence for a minute, asked everyone to breathe deeply for a short while. Then he wrote

4. Fear! Most of all Fear!

He asked if their list were complete, was anything missing? When there was no response from the people, now quieted, Julius asked for volunteers to be the runners to get information up river. Three were chosen and sent to gather supplies and be off. Julius said it would be days, maybe weeks before the runners would return and in the meantime they should start packing and move to their hunting camp up in the hills, off to the side of the plateau that protected their community. That would also keep anyone else from being hurt by falling stones coming down the cliffs to the plateau.

More often than anything else Julius kept repeating, “We can deal with any danger if we have time. We have time. There is no need to be afraid. There is every reason to decide clearly and act carefully and quickly. We will be alright! The only danger that will do us in is fear itself!”

We will be alright.

We will be alright.

That is the promise God gives us all.

We will be alright.

We will be alright, for Jesus walks with us.

Great Works

In A Single Day

For Everyone.

Friday, May 5, 2023

Finding Our Way,

Our Wondrously Blessed Way

Through Each Day.

Zechariah 3:9

For on the stone that I have set before Joshua, on a single stone with seven facets, I will engrave its inscription, says the Lord of hosts, and I will remove the guilt of this land in a single day.

1 John 2:2

… and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

Words of Grace For Today

It is a great challenge to forgive someone who has done great damage to one’s self.

Consider the murder of one’s loved ones.

Consider the foreign ruler who with no just cause invades one’s country and decimates one’s community and livelihood and security … and peace.

Consider the liar who spreads lies and those who believe and retell such lies, until one’s reputation is destroyed and one’s way of life has become impossible leaving one living in the street or bush.

Consider the corrupt police who kill people without recourse. Or the corrupt judge who sentences innocent people to jail and makes decisions that are not even supported by the lies brought as ‘evidence’ to court.

The people so traumatized and ruined by such evil doings is nothing new. It goes back to the beginning of human times. It will continue until there are no more humans to do such things to others. One such new story really is of no interest to most people, since the injustices only can continue to happen when and because almost all people accept these injustices as ‘part of the woodwork’ of life, tolerated as long as they are not directed against them, or protested against (but only by marginalized people, to whom people simply do not listen to.)

God knows all these stories, from the beginning of time to the end of time. God knows such evil destroys not only the victims but the perpetrators. The best of life is still possible for the victims, if they are able to forgive the perpetrators (which is not to simply tolerate that such injustices continue, far from it.) The best of life is only possible for the perpetrators, if they recognize they are forgiven and are on that basis able to amend their lives.

So God provides all that for us, makes it possible.

God forgives everyone, from the beginning of time to the end of time. God makes it possible for us to forgive as well, especially to forgive ourselves. And God makes it possible for us to amend our lives so that we can live lives blessed to be blessings for others.

God accomplishes this again and again in a single day for us all.

What will we do in a single day to forgive the perpetrators who have destroyed our lives, to amend our lives, to share this abundant life with others, and to give God thanks for making a blessed life possible for us?

Getting Changed

Into Saints

Friday, April 28, 2023

Where Will God Send Us Today?

First Kings 20:11

The king of Israel answered, ‘Tell him: One who puts on armour should not brag like one who takes it off.’

Ephesians 4:23

… and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds

Words of Grace For Today

When warriors go to war, armour is a good thing to put on. When one no longer needs to fight, one can begin the struggle to make peace last. That’s the challenge of God’s holy people.

We don’t start out that way though, or rather we may start out that way but we all get lost early on in life. Instead we work to fight for ourselves and our own. God has other plans for us.

God chooses to transform us from fighters for our own interests into peacemakers, caregivers, life sustain-ers, bearers of words that inspire and give life abundant, actors of forgiveness and grace and mercy, and whatever God gives us to do.

God chooses and we are transformed in our hearts & minds, no longer striving to be good or good enough for God, Accepting who we are, sinners needing rescuing & acknowledging who God is, and then living out for others what God has done for us: loved us, forgiven us, freed us to be now sinner-saints,

We look the same on the outside, but in our hearts & minds, God has transformed us, as God intended at our creations, made us beautiful like colourful butterflies, precious, holy servants, God’s people. God sends us out, volun-tells us to care for God’s precious creation & the creatures in it, including our neighbours, all of them, of all kinds.

Each day there’s the work of love to do, serving others, even if it takes away our very breath, in awe & wonder as God brings us home, to the place Jesus prepares for us.

Boldy Go

Where Many Have Gone Before

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

We May See Only A Faint Track,

But Many Saints

Have Gone Before Us.

Zephaniah 3:15

The Lord has taken away the judgments against you, he has turned away your enemies. The king of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst; you shall fear disaster no more.

2 Timothy 1:7

for God did not give us a spirit of cowardice, but rather a spirit of power and of love and of self-discipline.

Words of Grace For Today

When God takes God’s judgments away from us, turning away our enemies that ‘howl at the door’ for our demise, and

God walks with us each day, no matter the challenges we face, nor the taunts from our enemies,

Not only then do we need not fear disaster, we are free to imagine and work each day towards the day when we and our neighbours will live lives abundant with blessings.

Of course, we’ve been living lives blessed by God all along. It’s just under attack by our enemies and so close to death as we have been forced to walk for years, it is nearly impossible to always remember God’s blessings, and to be those who put cowardice behind us. Even so, for years we’ve not forgotten that God walks with us, for God makes God’s self visible and tangible in so many and various ways.

So that our spirits have never faltered from the power of weakness in love and self-discipline.

Now as the rains begin to fall, bringing life from the earth once again, after a long, cold, snowy winter, we see new opportunities for the months ahead, opportunities to bring life abundant to more and more people

with a word of grace.

As the day begins, what direction will you take, towards God’s blessings for yourself, or from God’s blessings towards others’ in need?

Enjoy and trust the freedom God’s presence in your midst provides. Be bold to go where so many saints have gone before.

Did You Find

Your Way To A New Day?

Friday, April 14, 2023

Late to the Day’s Beginning,

As the Light is Already Bright and White,

But Still A Good Beginning.

Jeremiah 23:5

The days are surely coming, says the Lord, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land.

Hebrews 2:14-15

Since, therefore, the children share flesh and blood, he himself likewise shared the same things, so that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by the fear of death.

Words of Grace For Today

The dream of justice for the people, justice based on truth and righteousness, is as old as the hills.

And in these days it surely has not been accomplished, as tyrants and despots rule in many lands across the earth, and even in democracies, which give the appearance of some sort of justice, special interests (and international corporations with profits greater than many governments) corrupt the processes that are designed to be (or at least look to be) just.

Money gets its way, so to speak, and everyone suffers.

That hope for a just government is not what Jesus came to provide, as much as we hope that some day it yet will be accomplished.

Jesus came to free us from fear of death. That fear is what lies underneath almost all injustices, but to be free we have to allow God to work that freedom for us and in us. It is not something we simply choose, or can accomplish on our own. It is a gift. It is only a gift.

What we get to do with that gift is find the beginning of each day and the end of each day as God intends us to find them: free from fear of death, free from fear of guilt, and free from fear of God’s judgment (since God works with mercy for us.)

Did you find the beginning of this day?