Choose, Again!

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

The Spirit Guides Us

Each New Morning, Noon, and Night

To the Truth

Of God’s Love for Us

1 Samuel 2:7

The Lord makes poor and makes rich; he brings low, he also exalts.

James 2:1

My brothers and sisters, do you with your acts of favouritism really believe in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ?

Words of Grace For Today

While the rich continue to exert a ghastly disproportionate carbon footprint on the environment that everyone needs to sustain life …

While nepotism is exercised openly and in secret the world around usually as a means to ‘buy’ other people’s support and favour …

While last year’s extreme weather events become more normal this year (for every year of the previous decade it seems, and cumulatively so that this year’s normal is really extreme!) resulting in drought, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, drechos, wildfires, ice storms, heat domes, and all kinds of rare weather events that challenge our way of living …

While so many people seek to be exalted in so many different ways, always at the cost of someone else’s basic living …

While today is a gift of 24 hours …

How do we choose to live?

We can jump right out there and compete with everyone in our way while we struggle to get all we want out of life (whatever that may be, and often we have no clue about what we are striving so hard for … even when we name it with words like money, honour, stability, security …).


We can disengage and justify ourselves as living outside the way the world works, self-righteously declaring that we are and/or have it better than everyone else.


We can listen to the Holy Spirit guiding us towards the Truth about us, life, and all creation. Often we say that people cannot bear all the Truth all at once, so we receive glimpses of it through our lives. That may be. Yet Truth is not that hard to come by and not that hard to grasp, if one is willing to face the implications. The implications are drastic to us who have ‘made our way up in the world.’ The Truth reveals that what we think we have accomplished is actually useless and futile. The Truth has less drastic implications for those who subsist. For them it offers what they have never had possible through their own efforts, life abundant. None of us can achieve it through our efforts, it’s that the poor have less opportunity to delude themselves into thinking they have or can achieve it.

The Truth is God created us, filled us with free will to choose to love, and when we choose to not love all of creation, God comes to forgive us, redeem us, renew us, and restore our freedom to choose to love … or to not love. God gives us a free gift, again and again, abundant life, filled with all the love and all the security that is possible on this good earth.

So how do we want to proceed through these next 24 hours?

Life abundant, or futile scrambling and struggling?

Every day God gives us the choice, again.

Striking Fear Into Our Hearts

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Middle of the ‘Night’


The Sun Never Sets,

Our Evil Deeds

Are Never Hidden

From the Light of God

1 Samuel 12:20-21

Samuel said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid; you have done all this evil, yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart; and do not turn aside after useless things that cannot profit or save.’

John 12:26

Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there will my servant be also. Whoever serves me, the Father will honour.

Words of Grace For Today

You have done all this evil!

That is usually preceded by a long list of horrendous things we have done, some are well known and many we have hidden so others would not find out about them, but then someone did. Everything eventually sees the light of day!

You have done all this evil!

That is usually followed by a stiff condemnation and a listing of the ways we will be punished, which hardly ever is exactly proportional to the horrendous things we have done. We would like to say that crime and evil do not pay, but they do. We would like to believe that innocent people are not punished for things they did not do, but there is more evil done punishing innocent people than the evil that innocent people are punished for. It’s just how we ‘get it out of our system’. We humans are always up for a good scapegoating to relieve the pent up pressure on our own guilty consciences. Girard had that right!

You have done all this evil!

Then Samuel plays out for the people God’s grace. There is no punishment list.

There is in the prior verses much more: Samuel, old in age, has come before ‘all of Israel’ and asked them to judge him if he is guilty of any offence, and they have declared that he is not guilty of anything.

Samuel goes on to recount their history, from their cries in Egypt that God answers by sending Moses and Aaron to bring them to the Promised Land, to their wayward worship of and serving other gods, Baal and Astartes, God’s punishments as foreign powers conquered them, and then their request for a king to lead them against their enemies. This is counted by all as a sin, one terrible sin on top of all the others.

Still Samuel tells them that all can be well: if both you and the king who reigns over you will follow the Lord your God, it will be well.

It’s not a simple day of reckoning for Samuel. The people are still called to account, so Samuel demonstrates God’s power: Is it not the wheat harvest today? I will call upon the Lord, that he may send thunder and rain; and you shall know and see that the wickedness that you have done in the sight of the Lord is great in demanding a king for yourselves.’ So Samuel called upon the Lord, and the Lord sent thunder and rain that day; and all the people greatly feared the Lord and Samuel.

The people, rightly notice God’s power and wrath against them and pray for their lives, not to God, but they ask Samuel to pray for them: All the people said to Samuel, ‘Pray to the Lord your God for your servants, so that we may not die; for we have added to all our sins the evil of demanding a king for ourselves.’

This is where the verse above fits. Samuel begins by telling them not to be afraid. He just struck the fear of God into their hearts and now he tells them not to be afraid. They should serve their God alone, and all will be well, if they and their king serve God alone. Samuel tells them God has an interest in them, so God will not too quickly kill off the sinful people for all their sins, the last being asking for a king to lead them against their enemies.

For the Lord will not cast away his people, for his great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you a people for himself.

To their request that Samuel pray for them, Samuel puts it simply:

Moreover as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you; and I will instruct you in the good and the right way.

And what is that instruction, as if the passages have not been spilling it out in abundance: Only fear the Lord, and serve him faithfully with all your heart; for consider what great things he has done for you.

And it they do not, well then there will be, as they feared, the punishment that they already deserve: But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.

So is God merciful?

Is Samuel right to strike the fear of God into their hearts with rain and thunder on their wheat crops?

The whole scenario plays out that we can avoid God’s wrath by serving God alone. Yet like the Israelis we turn from God in so many ways each day.

God does honour those who serve him.

Thankfully God is merciful to all people who ever lived and will ever live, for we have all at some time in some way turned from serving God alone. Scapegoating innocent people to relieve the conflict in our lives we have created is just one of the ongoing, horrendous sins that is our turning from our God, who has sent us the Spirit of truth, to guide us in all truth.

Ah, but we choose to hide our evil deeds, and our hearts from the truth, for we think we cannot bear the punishment that will follow.

Thankfully God is merciful to all.

Now for today: how can we choose to serve God alone! Well then … on with it!

Tape Measures and Sewer Content

Monday, June 6, 2022

There is No Tape Measure

for the Truly Marvellous Things in Life.

(or the least marvellous.)

1 Chronicles 28:9

My son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve him with single mind and willing heart; for the Lord searches every mind, and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will abandon you for ever.

1 John 4:13

By this we know that we abide in him and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit.

Words of Grace For Today

Were we to measure our lives by any means dependent upon our own abilities, actions, thoughts, beliefs, intentions, or anything that is of us, we would come up with a fools result.

It’s like using a tape measure to figure out how much sewer the whole city of 2 million produces in a day. The tool is not up to the task of the things measured.

One thing we know is our own records are not far off from the sewer contents when it comes to being something we can boast of before God.

To measure our ‘success’ in life (as God might measure us) we simply need to admit we cannot. The only things we know about God and God’s measure of us is what the Holy Spirit gives us as gift. We cannot measure those gifts either. So we come up empty handed trying to measure our success before God.

We can only trust God (trust made possible by the gift given to us by the Spirit) that God does not forsake us, abandon us, or leave us to stand on our own, now in this life, or ever in eternity. God stands by us, walks with us, suffers with us, and does everything to convince us that all is well, all is well, and all manner of things are well, because (and only because) God is gracious with us.

Of course we would prefer to know that we can serve God with a single mind and a willing heart, and that we can seek and find God. That way we are in control of what happens to us and to the world around us. But that’s not how God created us to live. God designed us to live guided by love, grace, faith and hope; and none of that gives us the ability to judge our own ‘success’ in serving God with a single mind and a single heart. It certainly does not give us the ability to accurately judge others.

We try to judge ourselves and we love to judge others. It gives us a sense of control over our lives, control that is not ours to have.

We are only by grace able to live fully when we are guided by God’s love, faith, and hope. That will fill up any day we wish to give over to them, and then some.

Ready or not: Hang on to your hat, it’s another of God’s days for us.


Sunday, June 5, 2022

Is this Your Lost Camper?

What’s It Doing In My Yard?

The VIN of the Lost/Stolen/Misplaced and Unlicensed Motor Home

Psalm 73:26

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion for ever.

Romans 8:23-24

Not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies. For in hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what is seen?

Words of Grace For Today

There is every cause to groan at the developments of the previous days …

besides the reasons of every day: death is a’coming as our bodies give up life; we may be adopted and redeemed, but our bodies still have so many demands and limits and … well life, as one gets older and older, does not seem to get better, in fact, quite the opposite. Our bodies are not the only things that wear out. Machines that we rely on do as well. While our bodies are covered under the provincial health care plan, and we may have supplementary insurance, our machines cost lots of money to have someone qualified fix them.

So our machines get cobbled back together again and again, and pretty soon it’s a marvel that they work at all.

Our bodies get health care, such as it is, if a doctor will even care at all about you. All of that costs lots of money that comes out of our pockets as taxes, supposedly more if we have and make more money, though it seems not to work out that way. Even with the best health care, though, our bodies still slowly and sometimes quite quickly decay as if pulled back to be dust.

We can rejoice that with all this decay, God is our strength and portion forever, and that even our bodies will be adopted fully and redeemed fully and renewed, better than in our first life. We wait. We wait for God to keep the promise that our bodies will be redeemed and renewed. There is no proof available that this redemption and renewal will happen. So much of what we observe and experience points in exactly the opposite direction. So we are given hope. Hope alone. Hope in what is not obvious or not seen or sometimes apparently simply not possible.

Hope is hope when it anticipates what is not seen or proven or provable.

God gives us plenty, even when in the previous days someone parks a 40 foot old motor home in my yard from across our campers where I live. This motor home has no license plate, is a mess inside as much as is obvious through the door’s window. It has all the signs of being stolen and dumped here, out of sight and in my way. The yard is used as a dumping ground.

Now that stupidity is a cause for so much groaning. When will it stop!

God gives us hope that even things like this will be resolved, since redeemed is a bit much to hope for.

The Measure

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

Each Day Begins

With God

Having Filled Us

According to

The Measure of Christ.

Psalm 106:4

Remember me, O Lord, when you show favour to your people; help me when you deliver them.

Ephesians 4:7

Each of us was given grace according to the measure of Christ’s gift.

Words of Grace For Today

Our hope is always that today, yes finally today, we will be saved, at least me and mine. God teaches us patience through life as we suffer, pray for deliverance, and the suffering continues and increases, until in old age we are more than ready to give up the mortal frame and the suffering that goes with it, to go home where there is no more crying, weeping, death, and suffering.

Until we reach that point we learn to endure.

We learn to pray, if Lord you do not save me today, at least Remember me, O Lord, when you show favour to your people; help me when you deliver them.

We learn to trust that we are given what we need to make it through this day. The suffering may go on, and there is nothing we can do about it. We can learn to live the days we have, grateful for all God gives us. The measure we receive is not exactly what we want (thank God, or it would sink us from all consideration that we might need God, yet alone need to be thankful for life and all that is in it!) The measure we receive is given grace according to the measure of Christ’s gift.

That measure is simple: what does God need to give us so that we will share all we have and are with those who are truly poor and needy.

Ah, that measure.

The measure of self-sacrificial love, not just for the people we think are good, but for the people that are truly evil.

Yes, that measure.

Simple. And so difficult to embrace. Impossible to embrace if we do not first know to be grateful in all things for everything God gives us.

So we pray, teach us, God, to be thankful, and prodigiously generous and gracious with all people.

That’s a full day for any of us.

For that God gives us the full measure, 24 hours, until our last day. For now, we give thanks, and move into the day.

How Do We Boast? By Grace …

Monday, May 30, 2022

The Golden Years of Life,

Start When One Is Yet Young,

As One Realizes Everything Good

Comes as a Gift from God.

The Sun Sets

to Remind Us

of God’s Golden


Psalm 40:17

As for me, I am poor and needy, but the Lord takes thought for me. You are my help and my deliverer; do not delay, O my God.

Romans 5:1-5

Therefore, since we are justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have obtained access to this grace in which we stand; and we boast in our hope of sharing the glory of God. And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us.

Words of Grace For Today

Most of the people who have ever lived on earth have been quite truthfully able to say: I am poor and needy.

Even I can say that, homeless and so far in debt I will never be out of it before I die.


But, in comparison to most the people who have ever lived on earth, I still enjoy a standard of living and honest expectation of a life which far exceeds what most people have had at the best of times in their lives.

Those that are poor and needy, on a relative scale to all the people who have ever lived, are truly poor and needing for, please, even one day’s good nourishment at a time, and an expectation that they will survive the coming week’s weather, challenges, and … well you name it.

We might learn to be a bit more appreciative, for God has provided for us in abundance, enough that we can share it with others.

Some of us have even stepped out of the normal routine of life to extend help to others and been caught by dishonest accusations and claims about us that have caused us to suffer. Others of us suffer failing health, or the loss of a loved one, or … well you name it. There are more than enough ways to suffer to go around and come back around many times over.

In our suffering, can we with Paul say that our suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not disappoint us, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit that has been given to us?

I am not so sure it works that way very often, though to have that expectation is to change how our suffering affects us. We minimize it and live in the hope that God will walk with us, suffer with us, not abandon us, and help us endure with character that produces hope by way of God’s love poured into us in such great quantities that it spills out around us wherever we go.

While we (many of us, anyway) enjoy an extraordinary standard of living, it is not due to our great merits or abilities to earn such distinction or to better ourselves and our circumstances. Almost everything that determines our standard of living is given to us, by when and where and to whom we were born.

We can boast only that by grace we enjoy life, for God gives everyone the chance to enjoy life, if only a short bit of time.

We can boast only in God’s grace.

God’s grace is for us and

for all people.

Today, how are we going to be grateful for all we have received, and for all we can share … especially with those who are truly poor and needy?

Foolhardy or Courageous?

Friday, May 27, 2022

More Often Than Not,

The Challenges We Face Are Unseen,

Like the Mosquitoes on the Lake


the Wasps Nesting

in That Tree

1 Samuel 17:37

David said, ‘The Lord, who saved me from the paw of the lion and from the paw of the bear, will save me from the hand of this Philistine.’ So Saul said to David, ‘Go, and may the Lord be with you!’

1 Peter 4:11

Whoever speaks must do so as one speaking the very words of God; whoever serves must do so with the strength that God supplies, so that God may be glorified in all things through Jesus Christ. To him belong the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Words of Grace For Today

Going into battle with nothing more than trust in God is wholly foolhardy.

David has brought provisions from their father to his brothers who serve in Saul’s army, now facing the Philistines. He hears of Goliath’s challenge. He witnesses the Israelis cowering in fear. He speaks up that facing such an enemy and putting him to defeat would surely win the king’s favour.

That just gets his brothers angry with him for his seeming foolishness.

David’s words reach Saul’s ears, he is summon, and David offers to be the one to fight Goliath. Saul rebukes him. David is just a boy. Then the verse above is David’s response. He has faced down lions and bears. Certainly he can face down one man. Saul, with few other options, sends David as a last hope, or rather as a meaningless sacrifice to let Goliath demonstrate his battle powers.

Saul dresses David in Saul’s own armour, and David takes it off because he cannot move in it. Instead he takes staff and 5 smooth stones from the wadi.

The rest is history.

Goliath falls. David rises to become the celebrated king of Israel.

Most of us, fortunately, will not have to go into battle, nor serve as king. Instead our battles will be less fatal by all appearances. Our callings will be varied, and God sends us out to be as courageous (not to be confused with foolhardy) as David in what we do.

Most of all, just as David relies fully on the little skills he has and the great faith that he has in God, so we are to rely on our God-given skills and more so on the great faith God gives us.

It is our attitude of gratitude (for God saving us and giving us renewed life each day) more than anything else that will carry us through adversity.

God did not create us all so that we can seek our own glory. God created, redeems, and renews us so that all people will know how great God’s mercy is, how abundant God’s grace is, and how beautifully unconditional God’s love for us is.

That’s something to start the day with: knowing that we, whatever we are called to be and do, do it all as God’s people.

Small gods or …?

Wednesday, May 25, 2022

God Created It All,

The Good,

The Bad,

The Ugly.

Which Are We Going To Be Today?

1 Chronicles 29:11

Yours, O Lord, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all.

1 Timothy 2:5-6

For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human, who gave himself a ransom for all — this was attested at the right time.

Words of Grace For Today

Today, as in many times before, most people pick and choose what they accept as ‘god’ for themselves. The other options in other times is for people to accept blindly what others have chosen to declare as ‘god’ for others (usually in order to control them better, and rarely to provide a better life for people), or people can take all that others say about ‘god’ and just declare they refuse to accept any of it.

Most everyone claims that, with their choice of ‘god’s’ attributes, they worship the one, true ‘god’, and all other people are just plain wrong in their false beliefs. Through history this has gotten more wars started, people killed, and the attributes claimed for ‘god’ to be wholly undermined by the people’s thoughts, words, and deeds.

When we start with the declarations like 1 Chronicles provides: Yours, O Lord, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all then what should, and at best, follows, is our humble confession that we simply cannot know God enough to choose God’s attributes at all. It’s not only above our pay grade, the kind of knowledge that such choices require belong to a completely different kind of existence that begins outside of creation itself.

And we are mere creatures in this, God’s creation.

So how can we know anything about God at all?

Only as God chooses to reveal God’s attributes and attitudes towards us, can we know anything about God at all.

Jesus, as fully God, born as a full human, living and ministering to all kinds of people (especially the poor, the ill, and the outcasts), dying on a cross crucified on false charges (brought by the religious leaders of the day), being buried in a rock tomb, and rising from the dead on the third day, … Jesus is God’s clearest revelation to us: God loves us, sacrifices everything to let us know that we do not need to sacrifice others, certainly not to please God, and that we are forgiven, as are our enemies and our lives are given to us so that we can be God’s love and forgiveness for all other people.

Now that’s a good beginning to giving God attributes that are fitting.

It is a beginning which places God for us, and beyond our control, and involved in our lives, and wishing and doing everything possible to give us the ability to love and live and choose to:

1) love God above all else

2) love our neighbours

3) love ourselves

4) love even our enemies,

and to do so humbly.

The problem we all run into when we choose ‘god’s’ attributes to accept is that our ‘god’ ends up to be a small ‘god’, a ‘god’ that can do only what we want ‘god’ to do.

Small ‘gods’ lead us right to the Devil’s doorstep, and fuel great arguments for refusing to accept that God even exists. Everyone’s lives would be so much better if we could all refuse to accept all small ‘gods’, and begin each day with a similar declaration as in Chronicles.

In short it might go like this: God is greater than anything I can know. I am just clay enlivened by God’s spirit. God’s first and foremost attitude towards me, and all people, is love. God asks first and foremost that I love God, all people, and even myself. Thank you, God, for everything that gives me life. Now there’s a day to live, work to do, gracious things to say, people to love, forgiveness to beg for, and courage to be Christ’s voice, feet, and hands for all people. Never a slow day, thank you, God, for everything.

Well, what are we waiting for. Sun is up. Day is begun. Onward into the fray.

Love always leaves us feeling a bit frayed. It’s not cheap. It like life is precious.


Monday, May 23, 2022

This Way Is Blocked.

How To Break Through?

Zechariah 13:9

And I will put this third into the fire, refine them as one refines silver, and test them as gold is tested.
They will call on my name, and I will answer them.
I will say, ‘They are my people’; and they will say, ‘The Lord is our God.’

1 Peter 1:6-7

In this you rejoice, even if now for a little while you have had to suffer various trials, so that the genuineness of your faith—being more precious than gold that, though perishable, is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honour when Jesus Christ is revealed.

Words of Grace For Today

This world does provide an ample sample of suffering for anyone who chooses to live ‘eyes wide open’. While some may say it is ‘now for a little while’, the suffering never seems anything like ‘little’ to those who are caught in it.

The image often referred to in scripture, as in these two passages, is that through our suffering our faith is refined, and it becomes more precious. This may be a great philosophical perspective on other’s suffering, though I’m not sure it helps those who suffer now. Yet it is repeated, and repeated, and repeated … as if the repetition would help or that the writers and thinkers just cannot come up with something more helpful.

Maybe there is nothing helpful!

That would, of course, depend on one’s perspective of towards what end, what goal, what value, those who suffer will be helped.

If the end, goal, and value is to not suffer, then there seems (as history well attests to what we humans are capable and eager to do to others) to be no shortage or end to suffering.

What if the end, the goal, and the value is something else than ending suffering?!

What if it the end, goal and value is how one lives, when one is in the midst of suffering, when one is free from suffering, and in fact in all circumstances of life?

Say (given the scriptural witness to this) that the end, goal and value is that we humans live in a love with God, and therefore we love all people, even our enemies and ourselves (which is usually the most difficult kind of love, since we know how little we deserve love.)

This first long weekend of the summer the crowds returned to the random camping area, first dribbling in on Wednesday already to secure a campsite for themselves and their group, most often a group using at least 2 camping units and numerous tents, trucks, cars, and noisy cycles, quads and side-by-sides. By Friday night all but the chilly spots along the lake (all well within 30 metres of the water) were overfilled, most bursting with drink, drugs, and loud music though a few had children and kept a quieter presence.

My nights’ sleep was more than once disrupted by the throbbing base of a piece of ‘music’ that spoke to a visceral, instinctual encounter with nature (having nothing to do with the peaceful nature that surrounds this lake until it is so disrupted by humans trying to escape reality.)

Saturday the kicker came. I made my usual walk along the high road and immediately saw something was wrong. A camping unit sat in the trees where no vehicle had ever sat before. A family had moved in two shorter, older campers, parked them on and on each side of the road easement that forms the border between crown and private land. The easement is only a trail passable by careful off road driving of something more robust than a 4×4 truck. They camped on each side and across the road that is the only way to bring in a camping unit to this end of the random camping area and into the private land where I rent and camp. There is another lower, closer to the lake roadway, with tight turns, many roots and holes where stumps have been removed that exits in the lake side of the random camping area. There everyone sees me coming and going, and it’s impossible to bring water in and out since the rough road spills more water than not. In other words they were blocking my roadway out and back in.

The father said they were not completely set up yet, claimed they (with weed and alcohol in hand) that they wanted to camp away from the noise and partying of the other campers because of the children with them, and refused to consider moving to other established camping sites that were still available where they could fit both their campers.

The threats voiced towards me, the belligerence and profanity, the open threats, and the orders to leave belied … well it belied a fear in them. And an animal that is caught in fear can be unpredictable and destructive. I could well be caught in their unpredictable violence that certainly more than bubbled to the surface of one young man.

I returned a second time later, after continuing to work on the writing due that evening, as I had been before this unwelcomed surprise. I asked how long they would be there. The young man, bursting with profanity and incomprehensible challenges, came so close to striking me that I was shocked. Another man, broken with age, a long grey beard, challenged me as well. Because neither would engage in a meaningful exchange of words I turned to the father who had come around one of the campers to join the ‘not conversation’ and said they would be there until tomorrow.

Tomorrow has come and gone and they camp still there in the way, promising to vacate the roadway if I need to use it, but blocking it from all practical use.

The real threat they pose to me is, since they can see when I come and go, they and others have clear opportunity to come up to my camp and ransack it or sabotage pieces of essential equipment, loaned to me to help me survive year around here, or worse.

How to put an end to this?!

Remove them from the face of the earth? That method has been tried so often in history and the results are ugly and never successful, or if they appear to be successful the backlash is worse than than the problem one sought to solve.

Ignore them and let them block my roadway, and the roadway for others. Another family came in last night to a site along that lower, lakeside road … and busted up the awning on a tree. The road is not wide enough, the turns too tight, and the holes tip a camper into trees one is trying to avoid. Ignoring them campers blocking the roadway is a passable solution, and really the only option for now. The danger is that they will stay with whole summer, or that others will move in when they leave, and the block will continue, and the danger that comes with it.

Or I can reframe my mind about what constitutes a danger, and trust beyond reasonable trust, that though so many will know my comings and goings my camp will not be damaged (again, for the theft and sabotage has already happened more than a few times.)

Or I can work to build some trust with these fearful people, ameliorate their fear, and defuse their under-the-surface anger so that they are less unpredictable, and less likely to vent on me or my camp.

Which is the raw, unfaithful response?

Which is the immature faith response?

Which is the ‘refined gold’ response?

Which provides for ‘us’ and ‘them’ that which every soul yearns for: to be heard, to be treasured, to be encouraged, to be welcomed and accepted just as one is?

May God provide the ‘fire’ needed to refine our faith, so that in all we think, say, and do others will hear us rejoicing and calling on God’s name saying ‘The Lord is our God’, so that the Spirit may reveal with our praise, Jesus Christ’ glory and honour … and love for all people, those that threaten us and that part of us that lives in fear.

May God provide, through us, that every soul will b be heard, be treasured, be encouraged, be welcomed and accepted just as one is!

Enduring Less Than 30 Meters

Sunday, May 22, 2022

From on the Water,

the Sun Rises


Over the Campers Parked Within 5 Metres

of the Protected Water.

Job 10:12

You have granted me life and steadfast love, and your care has preserved my spirit.

James 5:11

Indeed we call blessed those who showed endurance. You have heard of the endurance of Job, and you have seen the purpose of the Lord, how the Lord is compassionate and merciful.

Words of Grace For Today

Job showed great endurance, suffering greater losses and illness and pain than most of us care to imagine. Endurance is a gift from God, as it is fueled by faith, as Job’s demonstrated.

What are we to do when the earth and it’s fragile systems cannot endure the onslaught we have brought against her?

In Canada the law has sought to protect bodies of water and the fragile ecosystems on their shores by proscribing camping within 30 meters of a body of water and driving through any waterway.

Here the area used by many campers each summer is a random camping area, which used to be a municipal campground decades ago before it was handed back over to the province to ‘care for’ as Crown Land. Signs ask that people respect the land, not cut down trees for firewood (logs already on the ground can be used for firewood), stay no longer than 14 days, and take out with them everything they bring in.

Still many leave garbage, unbelievable garbage behind, stay months on end (it’s supposedly their right!) and they hack down living trees and worse scar trees so that in a few years they will die, and generally show great disrespect for the land, tearing it up with motorized deep tread tires among many other things. What no sign says is that camping is prohibited within 30 metres of the shoreline, and scores of campers dig up the sand to park within 10 meters of the shore everything from subcompact cars with tents to 50 foot 5th wheel campers.

This first long weekend, the start of the camping season for many, is certainly no exception. Only noteworthy is that there are ‘only’ ten vehicles parked within 20 meters of the shore, and only two larger camper units within 10 metres. That will change, for the worse … or for the better … as the summer progresses?

One can only hope.

And trust that as the Lord is compassionate and merciful so too will the enforcement officers first be clear with what is legal and what is not, and then be compassionate and merciful, but not afraid to ban people who cannot seem to learn to camp responsibly and respectfully.

Now excessive noise from partying and quads or side-by-sides that do not have sufficient mufflers are another problem, as is the public drinking, that is the drinking of alcoholic beverages anywhere other than in one’s own camping area, which begins to beg the question if there are ten units parked around one campfire, is all that drinking still at each person’s campsite? Stretch it far enough and anyone can drink anywhere in the whole random camping area. Or rather, that is how far it is stretched and tolerated by any enforcement persons I’ve ever witnessed out here. Some of the partiers are off-duty enforcement officers.

So we will endure, for the damage is not to us, but to the land … as long as God keeps the craziness of these ‘illegal’ campers at a great distance from us. After all, compassionate and merciful as God calls us also to be does not mean that we need to be ignorant, naive, or stupid about other’s stupidities, does it?

We pray the earth will endure, for generations and generations to come, so that they can enjoy the beauty of such a camping area.

This day will be marvellous, a wonder to behold, in spite of the disrespect so plentiful here.