Last Stand, Forever Secure

Saturday 31 December 2022

As Sentinels

Against All That Would Do Us Harm,

God Stands

Day and Night

By Us!

Zechariah 9:8

Then I will encamp at my house as a guard, so that no one shall march to and fro; no oppressor shall again overrun them, for now I have seen with my own eyes.

Romans 8:31-32

What then are we to say about these things? If God is for us, who is against us? He who did not withhold his own Son, but gave him up for all of us, will he not with him also give us everything else?

Words of Grace For Today

Looking back at the year bygones and all

I wonder

what will become of


all daze?

looking at the weather

or not to travel on gravel

to the bench the Judge wants order

is not something possible in this world

ways I’ve decided are not to be trusted

thoughts one cannot know so much

is out of my hands

Oi vey! my hands are sore

no more.

So we look to a new year, just like the last,

Knowing that God not only walks with us,

but is encamped with us, protected as a guard the doorways,

to the camp and our lives,

so that those set on destroying us

devil and all

will not prevail

not even in the new year.

We will continue to enjoy God’s blessings beyond imagination,

given to us, not earned, signs of God’s grace for others to see that God is gracious to all people,

blessing that cannot be bought with money or time:

love, hope, peace, joy, faith, fullness of life, and purpose.

Sabbath Solution

Friday 30 December 2022

Eugen Berthold Friedrich Brecht,

known professionally as Bertolt Brecht,

was a German theatre practitioner, playwright, and poet.

Exodus 20:9-10

For six days you shall labour and do all your work. But the seventh day is a sabbath to the Lord your God; you shall not do any work—you, your son or your daughter, your male or female slave, your livestock, or the alien resident in your towns.

Mark 2:27

Then he said to them, ‘The sabbath was made for humankind, and not humankind for the sabbath;’

Words of Grace For Today

Give me a break!

It is all too common that humans turn things around backwards, inside out, and upside down in order to have their way with other people, usually to control them as a means of holding power, so to speak.

It’s not new. The Sabbath for humans, or humans to serve the Sabbath?

The government to serve the people, or the people to serve the government?

“Die Lösung” ([diː ˈløːzʊŋ], “The Solution”) is a famous satirical German poem by Bertolt Brecht about the East German uprising of 1953. Written in mid-1953, it is critical of the government and was not published at the time. It was first published in 1959 in the West German newspaper Die Welt.

Die Lösung

Nach dem Aufstand des 17. Juni

Ließ der Sekretär des Schriftstellerverbands

In der Stalinallee Flugblätter verteilen

Auf denen zu lesen war, daß das Volk

Das Vertrauen der Regierung verscherzt habe

Und es nur durch verdoppelte Arbeit

zurückerobern könne. Wäre es da

Nicht doch einfacher, die Regierung

Löste das Volk auf und

Wählte ein anderes?


The Solution

After the uprising of the 17th of June

The Secretary of the Writers’ Union

Had leaflets distributed on the Stalinallee

Which stated that the people

Had squandered the confidence of the government

And could only win it back

By redoubled work [quotas]. Would it not in that case

Be simpler for the government

To dissolve the people

And elect another?

(from Wikipedia)


Thursday 29 December 2022

Whether By Night

Or By Day,

The Beauty Is God’s,

The Pollution

From Making Power for Our Insatiable Striving to Control Our World

is Ours

Numbers 23:19

God is not a human being, that he should lie, or a mortal, that he should change his mind. Has he promised, and will he not do it? Has he spoken, and will he not fulfil it?

2 Corinthians 1:19

For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, whom we proclaimed among you, Silvanus and Timothy and I, was not ‘Yes and No’; but in him it is always ‘Yes.’

Words of Grace For Today

God is not human, vacillating with first this Word and then later a contrary Word, always indecision reflected as the inability to know and control what is to come. Rather God is Omniscient and All Powerful so that God’s Words and Promises are sure, to be trusted, and thus

we are to live accordingly.

Or else!


Not really. Not really at all, at all.

For God did become human, in Jesus, and in him Paul says all things are always Yes – not vacillating between Yes and No. Paul asserts this when he was caught out by having told the Corinthians of his plans to return to Corinth and then his actually not returning by choice or due to things beyond his control. Paul wants to reestablish his trustworthiness to the Corinthians by pointing out that Paul is, like Jesus, always trustworthy, though not in this case! And, if we are honest, it is never the case for any human.

Though some people intentionally lie and are very predictable in that they will do you harm if it is to their advantage, there is not a person ever who can know the future and control it, try as many may.

So we are left vacillating between our yes’s and our no’s and seem to be untrustworthy and out of control. That chaos evil people take advantage of, manipulating others’ destruction and their advantage.

And that is just how it is,


Not at all, not at all.

For God’s Word is sure, and while we must not comply with God’s Word, and in fact are woefully incapable of doing so consistently,

By God’s grace and by God’s grace alone, we get to live according to God’s Word, not that it ‘works to our advantage’

but in order that we are examples of how God works with woeful sinners like us, like you, like us all.

What Awaits Us?

How Shall We Proceed?

Wednesday 28 December 2022

As Time Moves On, As Seasons Come to an End, As Canoeing Ended and the Snows Began, So On This Day What Comes to an End?

Psalms 42:12

Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my help and my God.

2 Corinthians 3:12

Since, then, we have such a hope, we act with great boldness,

Words of Grace For Today


Looking where?

Looking back, forward, in depth, inward, to the stars?

In the in between time we look where it counts:

to God

for hope,

and love,

and life,

and purpose,

and direction, also for this day.

Though hope is based on nothing tangible, and while living based on nothing tangible is foolhardy,

nevertheless we proceed with boldness in everything we do,

for our hope is based on what is not tangible, but what is infallible, and the source of the only security available to any human in life: God’s Word.

So let the day bring what it will, we will hope

to respond with the same Grace God shows us each day.


that is a good ending to any year, day, moment, and even life, if that is what awaits us.

Mystery of Between Time

Tuesday 27 December 2022

In All That Is,

We Find Ourselves

In The Between

Jeremiah 31:28

And just as I have watched over them to pluck up and break down, to overthrow, destroy, and bring evil, so I will watch over them to build and to plant, says the Lord.

James 5:7

Be patient, therefore, beloved, until the coming of the Lord. The farmer waits for the precious crop from the earth, being patient with it until it receives the early and the late rains.

Words of Grace For Today

This is the time outside of time,

as it were.

Between Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, a week of extra-ordinary time.

Time to contemplate the wonder of Christmas, Jesus born as one of us, giving us a clear story of God with us.

Time to remember who we are, and whose we are, and what wondrous, loving, and gracious things God has done for us great sinners to make us saints.

Time to remember the stories that make us live as we do, humble, generous, loving, and bringing wondrous news to all people: that God is for us!

God, the judge of all able to destroy all evil, relents and graciously moves us to plant and build today for a future for all people.

God provides this time for us to wait, again, for a new beginning, just as we sleep at night each night, waiting and trusting that God will forgive us that day’s sins and create in us clean hearts for the start of each new day, and each new year.

Time between,

Time between us being irrational people caught by emotions that confuse and mislead us, between that and rational minds that have no room for wonder and grace, and between all that (and more that we humans are in our feeble ways) and

the miracle that is God knowing us completely, choosing us, forgiving us, renewing us, calling and sending us out to share God’s Good News, the story of Jesus for us, and then God walking with us come what may.


Time between

Time between the mundane and the mystery,

Time to be miracles of God’s making, living with emotions and using rational thought, and surrendering both to the mystery that is life, and God for us in this life.

God Works Not With Perfect

but with us.

Monday 26 December 2022

We’d Like to Think We Are Perfect

And Others Make the Pollution For God to Deal With!

But If We Look Up Close and Are Honest

We Are Also So Broken,

and Only By Grace Do We Live,

But Oh How We Live

Blessed By God’s Grace.

First Kings 8:66

On the eighth day he sent the people away; and they blessed the king, and went to their tents, joyful and in good spirits because of all the goodness that the Lord had shown to his servant David and to his people Israel.

Luke 2:16-17

So they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the child lying in the manger. When they saw this, they made known what had been told them about this child;

Words of Grace For Today

God Speaks,

Things Happen,

Unexpected, Inexplicable, Wondrous Things.

God Acts,

which is the same as God speaking!

And we are astounded (if we care to notice at all) how God works in and among and for the poor, the outcasts, the lowest of the lowest, and the least remarkable people on earth to carry a message of Grace, Love, and Peace,

from God to us all.

Like shepherds, we get to go

to go out

to go out and tell the world

what great goodness, mercy, and blessings God has shown us




broken and sinful


Well, Whadaya Know?

Sunday 25 December 2022

Fresh Christmas Snow Covers the Ground

as Grey Covers the Skies,

Yet Bright is Christ’s Light This Day.

Joshua 24:23

He said, ‘Then put away the foreign gods that are among you, and incline your hearts to the Lord, the God of Israel.’

John 1:18

No one has ever seen God. It is God the only Son, who is close to the Father’s heart, who has made him known.

Words of Grace For Today

Lots of ways to orient one’s life,

only one is a living God, born among us to poor parents, from a most unabashedly scandalous pregnancy, and heralded by the lowest of the lowest of society.

Thus it is we are thought to be fools, and yet we continue as servants to the poor, the sick, the needy, the imprisoned. We continue to humbly begin our ways in the world remembering not our own greatness, but God’s in dealing with our great sins. We continue to live in a peace from out of time and place while conflicts storm around us. We continue to effect change, not through power, might, and force, but through humility, compassion, love, and forgiveness.

We continue.

We continue to live life to it’s fullest, sharing that fullness with all we encounter.

The snow may be fresh, but our orientation in life is as old as the universe: it is God-given from the beginning

and the Word

was made



live among us.

Amid the Chaos …

Saturday 24 December 2022

Stepping Down,

Stepping Out,

Living In The Light!

Zechariah 9:10

He will cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the warhorse from Jerusalem; and the battle-bow shall be cut off, and he shall command peace to the nations; his dominion shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.

Luke 2:14

Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace among those whom he favours!

Words of Grace For Today

As the nations wage war, as conflicts consume lives from billions to one single person by another, and as the Devil plays in God’s good creation:

God comes and commands that there be peace among all nations and for all people, for God favours us all.

The sun rises shining bright, lightening hearts and minds in these short days and lately these cloudy days.

The temperature rises to above -20⁰.

And small successes provide music worth listening to this season, blessed music that is not Xmas musak.

Christ is born this evening (we celebrate again the event of more than 2000 years ago.)

And there is cause to celebrate life in all it’s chaotic complications, time to pray for those close and far, and even for those who are bent on destroying me to cover their lies and injustice, and time to rest in God’s peace that permeates all.

What else would one do on Christmas Eve




if one is not caught in the manufactured celebrations and all the pain that go with them?

It’s too unbelievable to not be true?

Friday 23 December 2022

Even at -39⁰ the morning







Psalms 21:13

Be exalted, O Lord, in your strength! We will sing and praise your power.

1 Timothy 3:16

Without any doubt, the mystery of our religion is great: He was revealed in flesh, vindicated in spirit, seen by angels, proclaimed among Gentiles, believed in throughout the world, taken up in glory.

Words of Grace For Today

There are stories that are just too unbelievable to be made up. My ex, a bunch of women, the cops, and the courts gave me such a story. If I had not been so lied about I would never believe what happened, being kicked out of apartments for no good reason except someone was trying to frame me, being arrested, tried, convicted and sent to prison for crimes that never happened (yet alone were committed by me!), and financially sent into debt so far I’ll never see my way clear in this lifetime.

That’s the evil done to me.

Then there is the rest of the story, of people quietly acknowledging what they saw happening as corrupt and unjust, of life criminals going out of their way to protect me from real harm in jail (while guards and other inmates certainly sought to kill me – without getting caught), of opportunities and circumstances that provided me enough to survive on, and the skills to better and better protect myself from the elements and the ever-present criminals, … and from the on-going lies others tell about me which are then used in court over and over again, even though anyone with half a mind knows what is said are lies, yet again.

And the mystery, not that I can survive in spite of it all, which is substantial enough, but that God has blessed me, walked with me in very visible, tangible and life-giving ways, and protected me from all harm that would do me in.

Jesus’ story is like that, too. Every story of God making things happen in spite of evil people working to ‘get ahead’ is like that, too.

There are countless stories like mine. People are dealt with unjustly by people intentionally doing evil. And God providing a better life for them in the midst of all that evil.

Makes one stop and contemplate, how Advent calls bring us to prepare, and Xmas culture lays great expectations on us, and yet God reaches into our lives and brings to us each Christmas (in spite of all the things we do to avoid noticing God at work) the wonder and awe of God being everything for us, even as a young infant child born in poverty.

Thank God for that, again.

And again this day, we stop to wonder in awe, and give God thanks for the simplest things that show us God walks with us.

Just Plain Soaking Wet In …

Thursday 15 December 2022

Ah, we think we are so free,

so high on creation


we tumble

into the powder all wet

with God’s blessings.

Psalms 133:1-3

How very good and pleasant it is when kindred live together in unity! It is like the precious oil on the head, running down upon the beard, on the beard of Aaron, running down over the collar of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon, which falls on the mountains of Zion. For there the Lord ordained his blessing, life for evermore.

Romans 12:4-5

For as in one body we have many members, and not all the members have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually we are members one of another.

Words of Grace For Today

Wherever and however we live, we live among other people, sometimes with other people, many times in spite of other people who would do us in given the smallest opportunity.

It is a witness to God’s grace given to us, which sustains us each day, when we work to live in harmony with all people, even those so misguided people who think our demise is their gain.

For this God created all of us, to live among and with all sorts of people with different abilities, characteristics, habits, viewpoints, faiths, colours, genders, and everything, including kinds of brains (from neurodiverse to super intelligent to average to simple) … even to mystics and on to profoundly spiritually blind.

It’s a challenge at best. Our demise at it’s worst.

And when we recognize we can only succeed by God’s Grace, it is the sweetest blessing in all the universe, a blessing that God pours out freely on us all.

Some of us just put on supposedly impenetrable ‘raincoats’ to shed God’s blessings so that we can go our own ways.

Even then God’s blessing bounce and splatter everywhere, soaking us all also from the bottom up, underneath all ‘protection’ we don.

So it is, we, God’s children, often in spite of ourselves, live in an uneven harmony, singing an odd tune to God’s melody, tripping all too often as we dance through life.

Where to today? To which melody?

Soaking in God’s blessings regardless!