Thursday, 5 March 2015

Apple Crisp by Susan L.

  It's community lunch today at the centre. My co-worker is going to heat up some broccoli and cheddar soup that was in the freezer. There's heaps of buns in there as well thanks to a donation. We have two large bags of apples from the Good Food Box order so I volunteered to make an apple crisp today. The apples are rather small so it'll mean a good amount of peeling. It might be prudent to bring my own peeler. The ones at the centre are fairly new so they don't work the best and well, every cook has their own preference.
  There's something heartwarming about the smell of cinnamon and apples baking. It creates an aura of comfort and home. It sets the tummy rumbling in anticipation. Mmmmm...can't wait! I know the soup will be delicious. It always is.
  My co-worker used to be a chef. Talk about being spoiled! And even though I've done my own share of cooking over the years, she has taught me a thing or two. Like taking the time to roast the bones being used to make soup stock. This adds a mountain of flavour.
  I've learned more than cooking from her. She has modeled the fundamentals of peer support from the moment I walked in the door as a visitor. I've learned from the best.
  Learning how to do peer support has helped me be a better Christian. It's an exercise in grace, patience and compassion. Taking the time to be there for another person is all peer support is. Just being there to listen, or hold a hand, cry together or to have a laugh is the one of the greatest gifts we can give another person.
  It's even better than apples and cinnamon.
  "For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Jesus Christ our Lord." Rom 8:38-39

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

In Jesus' Name I Pray by Susan L.

  I am going to offer a warning like the news stations did. The contents of this blog may be disturbing to some readers.
  To have the former Provincial Deputy Minister of Education charged with owning child pornography and being charged with other offenses related to the exploitation of young children is appalling. Praise God that no one, at this point, has come forward as a result of his personal behaviour.
  If there is anyone who has been impacted directly by him, I pray the courage of a lion will fill your heart so you can speak up. A grave abuse of authority has taken place. You did nothing wrong. And that applies to anyone and everyone whose childhood was cut short.
  However, those who produced the images that he shared have done a tremendous amount of damage to these exploited children...unimaginable damage.
  So. How not to judge and condemn these men and women who do such things to children...I don't know if I can do it, my Lord.
  Yes, I understand that 99.9% of the time, such offenders have themselves been exploited. Help me, Lord, find compassion for them as well. It's a sad comment about how long this type of behaviour has ridden the undercurrents of our society. The sins of seven generations...Help me, Lord to pray for these broken people, that they may turn aside from the path they have chosen.
  Babylon...the internet...where anything and everything is available with a single keystroke.
  How can we stop this? How can we make it right? How do we save these children?
  Bless the brave police who have made it their job to infiltrate these dark and secret societies. Bless them for their determination to end the exploitation of children. Lord, be with them and comfort them as they witness horrific things far beyond the scope of anything we could possibly imagine. Thank You, Lord, we have these knights of righteousness doing battle on our behalf.
  "These will make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb will overcome them, for He is Lord of lords, King of kings; and those who are with Him are called, chosen and faithful." Rev 17:14

Tuesday, 3 March 2015

No Idea Whatsoever by Susan L.

  It appears that the worst of the bronchitis has been licked. I'm feeling much better. Woo-hoo!!
  It took fifteen minutes of write and delete to come up with that gem. It's one of those mornings when the subject matter of the day's blog fails to materialize.
  Watching the wildlife flutter and scamper through my front yard has me somewhat distracted. A small flock of bluejays, a trio of mourning doves, a pair of cardinals, a sprinkling of chick-a-dees and a squirrel have blessed me with their appearance. The squirrel is a good sign. It has to be warmer out there seeing as he or she decided to leave its nest. That's another Woo-hoo!
  It must've been a hard, long haul for these little creatures. Although the squirrel still looks rather plump. If it's the same one I saw in the fall, it started the winter with copious rolls of fat on its small frame: furry love handles. Good thing. It must've needed all its reserves.
  I wonder if the little songbirds hunker down together in a clump, sharing body heat on bitter winter nights. They must be even more grateful for the warmer temperatures than I am.
  I haven't heard the great horned owl this year. He normally sings his own mournful woo-hoo in the long, frigid nights of January and February. Perhaps he has moved on to the great forest in the sky.
  Do animals go to heaven? I believe they do. They have a spirit, a life force, given to them by God at the moment of their creation. Just like us. Only we humans have souls as well.
  Can you see it? Flocks of brilliantly shimmering, bejeweled birds swooping over the Throne of God. Their sweet voices joined with ours as we sing, "Praises to God Most High! Halleluiah! The Creator of all Creation!"
  "Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold I make all things new." Rev 21:5