Blame God!


Tuesday, October 31, 2023

It Must Be God’s Fault,

All the Dead Trees in Threes,

And Ice In Our Way,

And Dirt In the Sand,


Isaiah 64:5

You meet those who gladly do right, those who remember you in your ways. But you were angry, and we sinned; because you hid yourself we transgressed.

Luke 15:21-22

Then the son said to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” But the father said to his slaves, “Quickly, bring out a robe—the best one—and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet.

Words of Grace For Today

It is all too easy to blame someone else for what we do wrong. Why not blame God for everything that we do wrong and all that is wrong, when we are at it?

Well, because it is not the truth.

And it obscures our ability to see God’s abundant mercy and generous gifts that we receive, leaving us in the eternal darkness where the Evil One plays havoc with everyone and everything.

Confession, even made late after so much of life is wasted in the dark playground of the Devil, is God’s gift to us, a ticket to freedom to live in the Light again.

We tell stories of God’s forgiveness of the most grievous sinners, as Jesus told the parable of the great sinner son, who finally comes to his senses and returns home to his father, from whom he has taken his inheritance and squandered it on wasteful living, begging (for he has no rights left at all, not at all) to work for his father as a servant.

The father’s response is exactly what God’s is for all us great sinners who return begging God for mercy and the freedom to serve in God’s farm yards, lest we have only the pigs’ feed to keep us from starving.

God is gracious and merciful, abounding in steadfast love …

most evident when we are everything but.

Getting Around to


Monday, October 30, 2023

On Our Own, We Allow So Much To Block Us From Seeing,

Yet Alone Being the Light of Christ.

Isaiah 32:17

The effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust for ever.

1 John 2:29

If you know that he is righteous, you may be sure that everyone who does right has been born of him.

Words of Grace For Today

Life, seems for many, a struggle to see how much they can ‘get ahead’ of others, or how much they can have for themselves.

Doing things right goes out the window along with truth every morning, if they were even in the building at all.

God offers another way.

Following Jesus offers a way to not ‘get ahead’ and take everything one can get, depriving others of the necessities of life. Instead, following Jesus’ example we give God thanks for all that we receive from God, and then use it to give those same blessings to others. Always doing things right is just a beginning. We go beyond that to do what is best for others.

Sometimes that means we sacrifice some of ourselves, some of our life.

Always it means we freely surrender any claim or right to ‘possess’ anything for ourselves. We are always stewards of God’s blessings, blessings intended for everyone.

And when that is how we live, then righteousness prevails, peace, quietness, and trust grow and lasts … forever and ever.

Thanks alone we give to God for working in us, for on our own we could not even start to follow Jesus, nor grow righteousness in our midst.


Or Freedom

Sunday, October 29, 2023

The Path Following Jesus is Narrow,

and Leads Us

to the Light of Life.

Isaiah 57:11

Whom did you dread and fear so that you lied, and did not remember me or give me a thought? Have I not kept silent and closed my eyes, and so you do not fear me?

Romans 8:15

For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’

Words of Grace For Today

Fear grows out of many different kinds of circumstances. Perhaps the worst is real fear from people and circumstances that will kill or maim one’s loved ones.

In slavery everything about one’s life circumstance is determined by an other. Today things may be quite tolerable. That holds no promise for tomorrow.

That can drive one to real fear.

Being a slave to sin, a slave to the Evil One, is as high as the stakes can get, for not only is life here on earth at risk, but all life, after death and eternally, as well as life of one’s spirit, which normally can thrive even as one’s body does not.

This slavery is a valid, urgent, and critical reason to run through life in fear.

Caught in that slavery, as we all are born into it, leads to to no end of absolutely terrible things we do to try to deny that slavery, or to counter it’s effects on us and our loved ones. All our efforts are in vain, but the Devil has many ways of getting us to hide that truth from ourselves.

This is not that for which God created us to live, that we would run ourselves and others ragged out of fear, lying and deceiving even ourselves about the reality of life in God’s creation.

Hard to get that message across to us thick-headed humans, God sent Jesus, God’s own Son, to teach, heal, and guide us, and to be an example of love, even love so profound that one sacrifices oneself so that others can live, and live well.

Adopted into Jesus’ disciples we are at baptism, and then …

well life goes on and unfortunately so many of us forget all God has done for us, and we allow the Devil to consume us with fear,

and we lie

to ourselves and others

and destroy others and ourselves and those we love


it seems that nothing is better than before God adopted us in baptism as God’s own children.

Thank God, God knew we’d do that, and planned for that, so that Jesus’ forgiveness applies to us anew each day, each hour, each minute, freeing us once again from that fear and all fear that would drive us back into the Devil’s devious and destructive hands.

So we are free.

Free to follow Jesus’ example of

being slaves to God’s Will for us,

that we would love one another as God loves us,

even to sacrifice ourselves so that others will live, and live well,

live abundantly,

and joyfully.

Many have done this for us, so we live abundantly,

and can joyfully give all God has given us so others may live abundantly and joyfully.

For this we were created and given even this day.



Saturday, October 28, 2023

Looking to the Future: Do We See Doom or Hope!

Isaiah 38:17

Surely it was for my welfare that I had great bitterness; but you have held back my life from the pit of destruction, for you have cast all my sins behind your back.

1 John 3:19-20

And by this we will know that we are from the truth and will reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.

Words of Grace For Today

How we see the world around us and our lives in it is the result of many choices we make in response to what happens around us and to us.

In ‘HOMƎLAND’ the TV series, the challenges of deciphering deception, love, and despair never resolves in any episode. Instead (no matter what answers are revealed) the persistent looming doom ends each episode and season and we are left craving a resolution, so we return to more of the same. The beginning setting is not great. The end is still not great. Evil prevails like onions still present no matter how many layers we peel back to ‘see’ what is happening. Always people die along the way.

In ‘Star Trek, PICARD’, we see the old heroes of past series of Star Trek play again against all odds, against old and new enemies that would do them in. Each episode may or may not resolve some challenge, but within a few episodes (though wider threats continue) each ‘life or death’ situation is resolved, and as always our heroes live on (or at least most of them!) What we know, even before we start watching, is that no matter the evil that threatens life on earth and in the Federation, at the end, because humans and aliens can and do work together, the goodness of life will prevail. Not all challenges to goodness will be eradicated. Life remains filled with loss, death, and sorrow, but in the balance the goodness of life is restored and celebrated.

How do we play out our days?

How will we play out this ‘today’ and our many ‘todays’ to come?

As we trust that God is greater than our hearts, and that God has put our sins behind God’s back, to allow us to move on, the greatest evils are not eliminated from life for us, but they have no power over our ‘todays’.

Our hearts may continue to condemn us, and convince us that tomorrow will be worse, that ‘hell is other people’, but God is greater and God promises in so many ways that our lives are good and will be filled with goodness, and that other people (damned good sinners that they may be) are not ‘hell’, but rather God’s choice for love, life, and joy …

also for us


So today, let God’s Will be for us, as well.


or Despair?

Friday, October 27, 2023

A drab morning, snow falling, making wood collecting more difficult.

Or delight in the cool that makes working outside a bit easier

than with countless bugs looking for a meal from your skin?

Psalm 27:1

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

Philippians 4:13

I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Words of Grace For Today

Courage is hard to come by when one is down and out, beaten again and again by enemies, lies, deceptions, and others’ greed.

At times one has to agree with Thomas Hobbes when he said about life being ‘solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short’.

God answers that and all our other despairing with a simple reassurance: God is with us through it all.

Like walking in a sunset alone, still unable to do anything but despair how tough life is, ‘going it alone’ is always a recipe for struggles without end.

Like walking in a sunset with a loved one, the experience grows beyond itself to convince you two that life is a wonderful, marvellous adventure, with promise unending of things good and better.

So God walking with us through it all, turns life inside out with joy, delights, and hope.

And when God walks with us, we need not be overcome with fear of yet another enemy taking more of life from us, for even if that does happen, God will show us how to find joy and delight in all that life is for us.

Today, as the snow falls again, and then hard cold of winter is coming, the joy is in the warmth provided by a hot fire in the wood stove, held close by many insulated tarps. It may not be much, but it is as much a home as I have, and in it I find endless delight even as the challenges never cease to more than fully occupy my days.

So what will we see today? The enemies efforts or God’s Grace and delights for us?


Listening and Speaking To Breath

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Like Smoke From the Fire,

Always Present, Always Needed,

The Holy Spirit’s Breath Voices the Word of Christ

Each and Every Day.

Isaiah 50:4

The Lord God has given me the tongue of a teacher, that I may know how to sustain the weary with a word. Morning by morning he wakens— wakens my ear to listen as those who are taught.

Acts of the Apostles 16:14

A certain woman named Lydia, a worshipper of God, was listening to us; she was from the city of Thyatira and a dealer in purple cloth. The Lord opened her heart to listen eagerly to what was said by Paul.

Words of Grace For Today

In desperate times and circumstances we hope,

we all hope,

for we can only hope,

that someone will have a word to sustain us through our weariness.

We hope that someone has listened to the Word of Jesus, well enough, to understand how to provide a word that sustains us.


when others are caught in desperate times and circumstances they hope,

they all hope,

for they can only hope,

that someone, like us, will have listened well enough to the Word of Jesus that we will have a word to sustain them through their weariness.

Do we have ears to hear, and hearts to listen, and minds like Christs to understand?

Today, like each day, the Word of Christ is all around us. Will we listen as the wind-breath of the Spirit speaks to us?

Like Yeast

Just a Little Yeast

Wednesday, October 25, 2023

What little light can we add

to the ‘crescent moon’ light of other’s struggles,

so that the Light of Christ shines

brightly for them as well,

and for us?

Psalm 22:26-28

The poor shall eat and be satisfied; those who seek him shall praise the Lord. May your hearts live for ever! All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord; and all the families of the nations shall worship before him. For dominion belongs to the Lord, and he rules over the nations.

Matthew 13:33

He told them another parable: ‘The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed in with three measures of flour until all of it was leavened.’

Words of Grace For Today

This news came Monday in the CBC newsletter brief:

N.W.T. coastal communities walloped by weekend storm

October 23 , 2023 • 04:44 PM CDT

It was a weekend to remember for people in some of the N.W.T.’s coastal communities, as a storm system brought high winds and massive, crashing waves — and people scrambled to save boats and cabins from washing away.

I read news like this, disasters that others struggle through, with a huge bit of distance in my mind and heart, until

I realize that some day for some reason news like that will be reported about this area, and I will be the one to struggle to survive through it.

The Psalmist repeats a promise often reflected in scriptures, that God will look after the poor, hungry, thirsty, and the desperate.

Matthew reports Jesus’ words on how God works for the people: God works through the little works of our hearts and hands, giving aid to those in need. Just a little from one person inspires another to do something as well, and that inspires another, until the help is sufficient.

Today, how can my small capacity (not so deep in poverty as months past when I had $69 a month to live on!) to help others to bring to them what they need.

I’m not sure that those in the affected N.W.T. communities still need anything I can deliver, nor that I can deliver anything to Ukraine or Gaza or Israel or any of the other distant places where people hope against hope to survive another day, another night.

There are those who struggle just as hard living not far from us, maybe without real shelter, without anything to call ‘home.’

How can I help them?

What can I do today to help them?

What I have to give is not much more than words, yet who can I inspire with a word today, as I get water, visit the library, pickup at the food bank, stop at a store where I cannot afford what I really need?

What can any of us do this day? And every ‘this day’ to come?


God’s Work

Monday, October 23, 2023

The Cold and Hard of Winter Approaches.

Is That A Curse or a Wonderful Blessing?

Daniel 6:27

He delivers and rescues, he works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth; for he has saved Daniel from the power of the lions.

Ephesians 1:22

And he has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for the church….

Words of Grace For Today

God certainly delivers.

And I would not take it away from Daniel, being rescued from being eaten by lions,

I’d just like to have been delivered from the ‘lions’ of today that consume other people with lies, deceptions, and greed.


of course,

the paradise I live in now may well be God’s rescue,


that is

how it is for us:

we miss that God

is at work for us

because …

well all sorts of reasons.

Today, time again to notice God’s work for us.


Making Things Right

Sunday, October 22, 2023

When the neighbour fills in the wetlands,

taking away a carbon sink and water purifier,

how does one make it right?

Leviticus 19:17

You shall not hate in your heart anyone of your kin; you shall reprove your neighbour, or you will incur guilt yourself.

Galatians 6:1

My friends, if anyone is detected in a transgression, you who have received the Spirit should restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness. Take care that you yourselves are not tempted.

Words of Grace For Today

It is more difficult than it sounds:

making all things right with someone who has done you wrong.



we have done God plenty of wrong,



though we certainly do not deserve it

makes all things right with us,


to spend the effort to

gently make all things right with those that do us wrong.

A little sounding task, that can take a whole life’s effort.

That’s what today is all about.

Each day’s today.

Anxiety Run


Saturday, October 21, 2023

The Ice is Coming!! The Ice is Coming!!

The Cold Hard Ice Days of Winter are Coming!!!

Jeremiah 17:7-8

Blessed are those who trust in the Lord, whose trust is the Lord. They shall be like a tree planted by water, sending out its roots by the stream. It shall not fear when heat comes, and its leaves shall stay green; in the year of drought it is not anxious, and it does not cease to bear fruit.

Galatians 5:22-23

By contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things.

Words of Grace For Today

To live a life filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control requires first that one is not anxious.

The gift of faith provides a foundation of living free of anxiety.

Free from being locked up in worry and concern for what might have been, what might be, and will certainly come to be.

So we breathe easy, deep, slow, calming

to start each day


as we start to take on each new challenge,

trusting that God will be with us, guide us, and save us,

so that the worst

that can befall us is that

we get to come home to Jesus,

with all the wonder that that will provide.

Breathe, and get ready to be filled with and giving everyone love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

There’s no law against such things, except the law that lets anxiety run wild.