Aches and Praise Four Hundred & Eighty Seven

January 7, 2021
Dear friends,

After Karen beat me and our daughter, Bethany, in Monopoly a few days ago, I started reflecting on what I could have done differently. One thing is for sure: I should not have opened my big mouth near the beginning of the game, offering a word (actually quite a few) of advice to my better half. Karen wisely ignored my suggestion to keep her money until she landed on places that were worth more than the first two on the board. She bought several houses early in the game and soon after, when I collected money for passing “Go” I gave it to Karen as part of the rent I owed for landing on her property.

Listening to Ray Ferraro, an analyst with The Sports Network, answer a question on the radio today about the preparation of the Canadian junior hockey team (who were defeated by the American team on Tuesday), I was reminded of how quickly things can change in life. Ray said that if the Canadian squad were to play the Americans again this week, they would be better prepared for adversity. Going into Tuesday’s game undefeated in the tournament, the young athletes were confident that they would emerge victorious. The gold medal was earned by the Americans, who played a tenacious match, surprising many people by the pace that they maintained for sixty minutes.

When we learned last year that a deadly virus was spreading around the world, how many of us thought that we would be wearing a mask and cleaning our hands every time we entered a store for the next year? Of course, we are blessed to be able to go into stores, as some places of business have closed. One man in history who was asked by God to leave his home and begin an adventure that would involve many changes was Abraham. In “The Characters of Christmas,” Daniel Darling writes: “When God called Abraham to leave his family and everything familiar to go to a place he didn’t know, this wasn’t because God was interested in Abraham becoming a wandering muse. God was doing something with Abraham. From this once-pagan man would come a family and from this family a nation … and not just any nation, but a people that would bless ‘all the families on the earth.’”

I thank the Lord for opening my eyes to the truth of His Word nearly 48 years ago. A few months after my high school graduation, I asked God’s forgiveness for my sins and trusted in Christ as my personal Saviour. The Bible declares that people from every nation will worship God in heaven (please see Scripture below). Will you be among them? If you’re not sure that you are a follower of Christ, you can make sure today. Don’t delay!

Scripture for the weekend: “Now when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying:

‘You are worthy to take the scroll, and to open its seals; for You were slain, and have redeemed us to God by Your blood out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, and have made us kings and priests to our God; and we shall reign on the earth.’” Revelation 5:8-10 (NKJV)

Thought for the weekend: “In Genesis 22, a ram was substituted for Isaac, a picture of Christ giving His life for the individual (see Gal. 2:20). At Passover, the lamb was slain for each family (Ex. 12:3). Isaiah states that Jesus died for the nation of Israel (Isa. 53:8; see also John 11:49-52). John affirms that the Lamb died for the whole world! (John 1:29) The more you meditate on the power and scope of Christ’s work on the cross, the more humbled and worshipful you become.” – Warren W. Wiersbe (from “The Wiersbe Bible Commentary,” published by David C Cook, Colorado Springs, CO)


By His grace,