While I don’t have all the details of my grandparents’ life, I do have a rich understanding of my history. And the knowledge that I am part of a continuing story that affirms that God is faithful, in times of peace and prosperity but also amid times of turmoil and uncertainty.
Last December I visited New York City for the first time. As NYC is known for its extravagant Christmas celebrations, my sisters and I planned to see all the iconic New York decorations and window displays. We started the weekend off with the Christmas Spectacular by the Radio City Rockettes. Most of the dazzling scenes were, as expected, full of stories about presents and Santa Claus. Then, as the show drew to a close, I was completely surprised by the closing act. As wise men and camels marched across the stage, the chorus burst into a powerful rendition of “Hark the Herald Angels Sing,” filling that infamous Radio City Music Hall with the words “Glory to the newborn King.” The beautiful nativity scene that came to life onstage was mesmerizing.
Do visitors to Canada see our shame? Did your Canadian history classes include the darker moments as well as the victorious? For many, the stained stories of our country’s past were never discussed in the classroom and we need to re-educate ourselves. But first we need to recognize what prejudices we bring with us.
In the Scriptures, there are many instances where prayer was answered with a resounding “yes.” Hannah received the child she prayed for. Elijah called out to God and brought a widow’s son back to life.
But what about when God says no? Why are some healed from life-threatening diseases and not others? Did we not have enough faith? Did we not pray properly?
Unlike Christmas, birthdays and anniversaries, Thanksgiving is not often thought of as a “trigger” time for those who are grieving. I didn’t fully realize how hard Thanksgiving was for me until my pastor asked me during a meeting to plan the Thanksgiving service. My first reaction was complete panic, then, holding back tears, I spat out: “No, sorry, I can’t do that service.”
Sometimes the simplest thing can trigger a memory. The other day a song played on the radio, one that Tim always asked our friend Rebecca to sing at karaoke. As the first verse started on the radio, so did the tears. I could remember Tim clearly, sipping his beer and nodding along to the beat of the song. That’s the way many of our memories are now, coated with a bittersweet glaze.
Tim had an unmistakeable laugh, one you could hear in a crowded hall and recognize right away. He was a storyteller, a loud-mouth and a prankster. He was a pain at times but we loved him like a brother.
Goats. Gratitude. And giving back. That’s what Ken Goud’s initiative “Food for Food” is all about.
Amos and Adi are antsy. Gertie gets giddy. Urma is unctuous. Who are these capricious characters? They are some of the cows found in Look at Those Cows! An ABC Book of Cattle, illustrated by artist Julia Veenstra and written by her daughter Rachel Cuthill.
Gufwan and Rice saw an aspect of polio that was not being addressed – support for its survivors.
How do we address food waste? When I was a child, I had a dream of creating a system of equal global sharing of food resources. I understand now that this cannot be so simple. When looking at the inequalities in the distribution of resource, the problem can seem overwhelming.
This past month, as I held my six-month old baby and watched as vaccines were injected into her leg, I understood that moment of doubt and fear that many parents experience. But I choose to take the advice of my physicians and God’s provision through modern medicine, as I have learned to greatly rely on both in my journey through motherhood.
“It’s never a questioning of its value,” said Vanderkooij. “We recognize CAP as one of the ways that we, as a church community, walk together and bear each other’s burdens.”