Posted in Christianity, Holidays

Just A Short One

From an undisclosed location somewhere along the eastern shores of a very icy and uninviting Lake Michigan…

Here’s a perspective, for everyone muttering about how the weather has interrupted your plans. Let’s imagine for a moment – since “the season” celebrates the day that the Creator of the Universe entered into HIS world to redeem it – a different perspective. Everybody is making a fuss, all bustling around, stressed out over “their” own parties, and gifting one another.

Maybe this storm, with a major highway shut down, and forbidding conditions, is His way of saying that He’s giving you an opportunity to talk to Him, slow down, to spend some time in His word, and getting to know Him…

But no one is talking to the Guest of Honor? A most peculiar thing.

Hmmm. Maybe we need to think about that for a moment.

If you can possibly spare the time.

Sailing back Into and Out of the Blue,

Your Celestial Nomad,


Posted in Christianity, Holidays

A Sure Word

Very often human words and promises cannot be trusted. How often do we find that they let us down and disappoint us? But when it comes to the promises of God, Scripture is filled with promises on which God delivered. The record stands that He keeps His word.

In this following passage, the promises are both fulfilled (through the incarnation of Christ Jesus), and they have a lasting and ever unfolding increase without end – a promised reign of peace, yet to be seen in its fullness! Since He has delivered on the one, why would He not deliver on the other? This calls for trust in and reliance on Him.

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be upon His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end. He will reign on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish and sustain it with justice and righteousness from that time and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of Hosts will accomplish this.” Isaiah 9:6,7.

May we never forget but hold fast to these promises, no matter what we see this “world system” doing. Or on days when we feel personal doubt and discouragement. I cannot think of a better Word for this Christmas Day, since His word is never empty, always proceeding forward, and always being fruitful!

“For just as rain and snow fall from heaven and do not return without watering the earth, making it bud and sprout, and providing seed to sow and food to eat, so My word that proceeds from My mouth will not return to Me empty, but it will accomplish what I please, and it will prosper where I send it. You will indeed go out with joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.” Isaiah 55:10-12.

With this in mind, I find myself Looking forward to 2019, in spite of what may be unfolding on a natural level here in this world. May our Lord’s supernatural promises, and especially His governance of peace unfold and ever increase in our lives, from this Christmas day and for all days to come!

Posted in Holidays, poetry, Uncategorized

Artificial Christmas Tree

My little fake tree –

it’s the only one for me!

No sticky needles, bugs, or ticks,

and still I get my Christmas kicks!

Only three feet tall –

from the basement I can haul!

Upon it are three strings of light

To make its cozy corner bright.

Yes, it’s oh so small

the cat will not upon it crawl.

She remembers last year when she tried,

down she fell with wounded pride!


Oh Christmas tree!


How greatly do I love thee!



Posted in Holidays, Observations, Uncategorized

Post Mother’s Day Homesickness

It’s more than we might imagine. I was pointed to a new word today – “Hiraeth”. It is a Welsh word defined as homesickness for home, land or place – somewhere to which you can probably not return, or even someplace of the imagination which never was. It could be a place you’ve dreamed of visiting, but circumstances or finances won’t permit it. There are feelings of grieving, yearning, and nostalgia regarding a lost place, something you cherish.
Awhile back I wrote the following in a Facebook “note”, while feeling the pinch of post Christmas holiday melancholia. However, Mother’s Day especially evokes hiraeth for me probably more than any other holiday, since home and mom are part and parcel of the same place in the heart. And when they both leave your life, this is always accompanied by a sense of wishing that you could somehow sit with Mom in that home of the past. There are questions you never had the chance to ask her, and you find yourself wishing like crazy that you could.
A House Is Not Just a House / “Note” from January 4, 2014 Revised
Looking at some of the holiday posts on the Internet over the last several days, I realize how ambivalent a lot of people are feeling this time of year about family visits and the like. Some may have wished they were not participating in the gatherings they were invited to; others found it difficult to pull away when their all too brief visit came to its end.
There are pictures of small groups gathered around as they happily open presents, but the feeling behind the images is that one another’s presence means far more than all the presents. Those who had the opportunity to enjoy each others’ company are blessed far more than they can imagine. Some are not so fortunate, but spent the time in isolation or cut off from everyone they really care about. Either their families have moved away, they may be in assisted living facilities, or they might be the last survivor of a generation of their peers.
Whatever the reason, being alone is no way to spend any holiday.
Then there are the pictures of houses – one’s own or other dwellings of interest – everything from the stately looking, comfortable two story [or more] dwellings to the cozy log cabin out in the wilderness, with a plume of smoke coming from a fireplace chimney. You can almost smell the scent of the red-hot logs in the hearth and hear the crackling fire. In front of the fireplace a large shaggy dog naps comfortably as he dreams of being fed from the table when the long awaited dinner is finally served.
These many images (and I’m sure you can come up with a few of your own) are evocative of that place called home. And there is no place like home!
This reminds me of the home where I grew up. It was a large, gray, frame two story house with five bedrooms in a formerly thriving and safe neighborhood. Dad grew vegetables and fruit in his half acre garden, and Mom loved flowers of all kinds, which thrived beautifully under her gentle touch in colorful beds all over the yard. I loved the old swing, the sandbox, the snowball bush, the walnut tree, and especially the plum trees and daffodils! Dad kept the place up and loved to do so, as conscientious dads usually do. He and Mom always made me feel safe inside that old house!
We didn’t have a lot in the way of this world’s goods, but we had a lot of love and we never looked at ourselves as poor. It was a warm loving home where I grew up with two brothers who were quite a bit older than I, but there was no distance in the relationship due to that at all. They were my first baby sitters, faithful guardians and friends.
I had two favorite places in that old house. One was at the little landing at the top of the small staircase that led to the big staircase going to the second floor. The other was the front porch. That was screened in, so the most pleasant memories were of sitting or playing happily there in the summer, where you could smell the rain and hear the thunder out on Lake Michigan, a few miles off, when the storms blew in. I liked to read there. My favorite book was a space yarn called Rip Foster Rides The Gray Planet. I read it at least five times!
Holidays were spent with extended family gathered for a big feast on Christmas day, but my favorite was Christmas Eve, when we had our immediate family Christmas celebration. It was a big deal to bring home a bag of nuts, candy, and fruit which were passed out in the church basement to all the kids after the Christmas Eve service.
Somehow that memory sticks with me more than any other. Why a bag of fairly ordinary goodies could seem so magical, I cannot say, but it was. Maybe it was because it was the signal that other presents were on the way!
Occasionally I drive past that old house where all my childhood memories still reside, but I must remember to have a box of tissues with me, since the current occupants have let this formerly comfortable, noble, warm, “hugging” home go into a very deteriorated state. It is heart breaking. I want to walk up to the door and ask, “Why do you let things go like this? This was a loving home, and it’s well over a hundred years old. If you can’t respect it, why did you move into it? I grew up here and I wish I could rescue this place from you!” My heart aches, but the look of the place says, “Do not come any closer!”
Driving past, I look at that old gnarled mulberry tree beside the driveway. At least they left that where it was. My eyes fill with tears.
Houses are living things, like our bodies. If there is a healthy, happy soul inside our bodies, the body reflects the inner condition more often than not, if in no other way than a twinkle in the eye. LIkewise a house is very much a reflection of the people who inhabit it. If they value it and cherish it, it will faithfully serve them with warmth and shelter. It will embody all the happy memories and the love that is shared there. It exudes warmth and fond memories to any who approach it. It will not deteriorate as quickly with good attitudes inside it!
Or not. You can go past any house and basically “read” its “vibes”.
Houses left empty deteriorate rather quickly because there is no life inside them. They are just like ghostly wooden or brick cadavers in a sense. Nothing animates them, and there is a sad feeling that comes from them, as they “expire”. No house deserves to die alone and in dire condition.
I sometimes imagine that houses have a certain consciousness about these things. They seem to want to hold and love a family and to make their people feel safe and happy. They know why they were created, why they came into existence. However, they also deserve the reciprocity of loving people, who will cherish and care for them to the end –
just like human beings.
Epilogue Monday May 14, 2018
I have this sense of emptiness whenever I drive past my childhood home. It is in ruins (along with the neighborhood), uncared for by people who may themselves be empty shells. “Hiraeth” also hits me really hard when I visit places that had extremely happy memories connected to them, places of significance and feeling. Yet now they have changed so much that they are just about unrecognizable. Or it’s just that, in the world of the here and now, possibilities limit them to a memory.
If I thought a “bucket list” was a realistic thing for me, foremost on that list would be the rescue and reclamation of my special places. It would be a little bit of heaven on earth to have them back again.
Posted in Christianity, Holidays, Observations, Uncategorized

Thoughts Post Earth Day

Wonderings among wandering thoughts, or wandering among wondering thoughts (?) while gazing up at the criss crossing tic tac toe patterns in the sky, and considering the many forms taken by warfare:

The best way to honor and support our troops might be to bring them all home from these foreign “theaters” of bloodshed and death. Are they defending our freedoms, or that of an exclusive handful of megalomaniacs who pillage other countries?

Tell your kids and grandkids not to sign up. To whom are the powers that be making these blood sacrifices of our young people in the flowering of their youth?

In my “several decades” on this earth, there have been maybe 5, if that, where “we” have not been involved in some conflict “over there.” Few of us actually recall what peace looks like. And during the years when all the hippies were singing, “All we are saying is give peace a chance,” I too had swallowed another flavor of Kool Aid and was wearing a uniform during the Viet Nam years.

Standing military ready to defend the home front? Sure. No question that this is a sensible idea.

But this continual conflict to make sure the agenda of the military industrial complex keeps globally advancing was not what I thought I’d signed up for. How many of the children of the rich and powerful do you see on the front lines? Few if any. Because their kids are far too important to be cannon fodder. But they don’t bat an eyelash at sending ours to defend their interests. Even civilian casualties are looked upon as merely “acceptable collateral damage.”

An evolving species? You’ve got to be kidding me! It’s more like 21st century cavemen with fancier upscale clubs and spears. And as Einstein said, “I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.”

Back to square 1?

It makes you wonder – is the abundance we enjoy in the USA at the expense of other nations with a gun held to the heads of their leaders by international corporate interests? I would like to believe that this is not the case. I love my country, but I do have some questions.

For this day let us pray! – “And He will judge between the nations, And will render decisions for many peoples; And they will hammer their swords into plowshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, And never again will they learn war.” (Isaiah 2:4)

“He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth; He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two; He burns the chariots with fire.” (Psalm 46:9)

“There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace, On the throne of David and over his kingdom, To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness From then on and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will accomplish this.” (Isaiah 9:7)

“And the wolf will dwell with the lamb, And the leopard will lie down with the young goat, And the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; And a little boy will lead them.” (Isaiah 11:6)

“And the work of righteousness will be peace, And the service of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever.” (Isaiah 32:17)

“Put your sword back in its place, Jesus said to him. “For all who draw the sword will die by the sword.” (Matthew 26:52)

“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)

“The nations were enraged, and Your wrath has come. The time has come to judge the dead, and to reward Your servants, the prophets and saints, and those who fear Your name, both small and great, and to destroy those who destroy the earth.” (Revelation 11:18)



Hope you’ve had a great Earth Day.