Thursday, December 15, 2016

It's All About the Context

It’s getting close to Christmas.  Here where we live we just had the worst snow storm in a decade.  A snow storm here in a place where it almost never snows.  Now it is cold, well below freezing, and we have lots of snow on the ground.  People in other parts of Canada laugh at us because we declare “Snowmagedon” when temperatures hit freezing and a few snow flakes fall.  No sympathy at all!

How we feel about things is all about context.  Our context here is that it rains a lot and almost never snows.  The temperature is almost always above freezing.  Snow and cold are not normal so we don’t know what to do when we get winter weather which is normal in the rest of Canada.  Context is important in our lives.  Most people live pretty insulated lives, making their own decisions, doing what they want, trying to make the best of things.  Christmas is a time when I am reminded that there is a lot bigger context than my own life.  There is a God who formed the universe.  There is a Saviour who was born in Bethlehem.  He came to earth to die as a sacrifice, to die for me, to restore my relationship with God.  When I accepted that relationship which was offered to me through Jesus my context instantly changed.  Life is no longer about just me, but about how God want’s to use me to help others. 

For me, Christmas truly is about Jesus’ birth, the gift of salvation he offered me and which I received.  Christmas is about family, all of us together in Jesus, loving one another, loving our Saviour and serving Him.  Christmas is about Joy.  Merry Christmas.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

In the Storm

The wind is wild today.  Some places near us it is blowing over 100 kilometres per hour.  Power is out in many places, trees are down across the roads.  I just heard from staff at the mountain where we ski and they said all the chairlifts are closed today because it is too windy to operate.  The crazy thing is that outside it is fairly bright, the sun shining through a layer of very thin clouds. It looks great outside at first glance, then you realize it’s so windy you don’t want to be outdoors.

Life sometimes gets this way.  All around everyone is going about their normal routine, all appears well, but your life is in turmoil.  At first glace people think you are fine, but when they stop and talk they notice something isn’t right.  Life can be like a whirlwind.  Events happen, good and bad, and leave us reeling, trying to catch our breath, not knowing what to do.  When those violent winds of pressure and change come into my life, that’s when I am glad for the close friends who are always around to help.  When things get tough I can count on them.  More importantly, I can always go to Jesus and always count on Him to be there for me.  My Lord will always help and will send others into my life to help, no matter the problem.

It’s windy today so I am hunkered down indoors, waiting for the storm to pass.  I’ll ski tomorrow when it is calm.  In the storms of life I will hunker down with Jesus and the friends He sends to help me.  Storms pass, calm returns, life goes on.  Thank you Jesus.