Sunday, 24 June 2007

Time to Fly

I know that I have been created to "fly", if I use the analogy of a bird. I have spent long enough time in the nest. It was quite comfortable in the nest. I knew the routines; what was expected of me; what roles I was to fulfill. I don't like change. I am most comfortable when things are peaceful; others are doing their part and I am doing mine.

God allowed me to be pushed from the nest, but instead of flying right away, I fell to the ground and my wings were broken. Time has passed and the Lord has healed my broken wings. I have been challenged to discover what God is doing around me. I can only see that when I fly. It is easy to build another nest; there are plenty of materials at my disposal. Yet that is not what God has called me to do. It wasn't a matter of changing nests, but rather that I am to fly.

My husband Dan wrote a song that ties in with this theme.

On The Wings Of An Eagle (Dan Antonio - September 20,2005)

On the wings of an eagle you will fly
Let the wind of My Spirit lift you high
Above the storm where the sun always shines
On the wings of an eagle you will fly

Cast your cares on Me
Your pain and sorrows too
Disappointment and broken dreams
I've a plan and purpose for you

I don't see you thru the eyes of sin
I see you thru a heart of love
You are beautiful and precious in My sight
You're My child, My heart's delight

"Have you never heard or understood? Don't you know that the Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth? He never grows faint or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to those who are tired and worn out; he offers strength to the weak. Even youths will become exhausted, and young men will give up. But those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. they will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint." Isaiah 40: 28 - 31 (NLT)

Thursday, 14 June 2007

An Evening Boat Ride

There are benefits to living close to a river. We are a five minute drive from the Holland River, which runs into Lake Simcoe. We recently purchased a used 14 foot Legend aluminium boat. My husband, Dan, and our two sons have gone fishing quite regularly since acquiring this boat. They have found a dynamite fishing spot near the mouth of the river and the lake. They have caught several large pike and even some nice bass; but they had to throw them back since bass weren't in season.

I had not yet taken a boat ride, but Dan had promised to take me out after work. Tonight was the night. I had only been on the river once before, in the winter when we had walked on the ice. There are so many twists and turns. We saw osprey, blue herons and cormorants. As we headed out from town we passed yachts; sea planes; houseboats; and other types of water craft. There is a little community there.

As we were going up the river I felt like we were far from civilization. It reminded me of times when we have been at a cottage or camping. There is a sense of freedom on the water. It takes about 20 minutes to get from town to the mouth of the river. We had just enough time to go there and back before the sun was beginning to set.

As we were boating I had a deep sense of satisfaction. At that moment in time I was completely content. Thankfulness to God welled up in my spirit. I was thankful for the Lord blessing us with this boat; I was thankful for my husband taking me on this boat ride to show me what he and the boys experienced and where they fished.

We will probably fish there sometime. I have my fishing licence; but I only enjoy fishing when the fish are actually biting! I usually take along a book to occupy me when I get tired of the process and the fish aren't biting. I am looking forward to trying out the dynamite fishing spot; if I go by past results I should be able to catch something worthwhile too!

Saturday, 9 June 2007

A Day At The ROM

My mother and I are members of the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) in Toronto. As members, we were invited to preview the new addition. I must admit that I went with some scepticism regarding the shape of the new addition. I was pleasantly surprised by the different elements on each level. There was great thought and care in the planning; incorporating the old with the new; the placement of windows; and displays in the stairways.

When I go to the ROM, or any such institution of man, I know that I need to be discerning and not accept everything as absolute truth. I can appreciate the diversity of our cultures; the wonder in creation; the creativity of man. I view all of life through a Biblical worldview. This was very evident to me during this particular visit.

After we had toured the main part of the new addition we enquired about any special exhibits. There were three that we viewed; glass paperweights; Japanese painted scrolls; and burial finds from Peru.

The Japanese painted scrolls were very well done; there was a lot of detail; they often portrayed stories. They focused on the courtesans and their assignations. These were beautiful Japanese women, who were high class prostitutes that lived and worked in a closed community. The men of the upper class would come and the courtesans would parade in their beautiful kimonos; then each man would go to the house of assignation to meet with his chosen courtesan. While we were viewing this display a docent was describing one such scroll to her friend. We asked if we could join in to hear as well and she agreed. The docent said that 60% of the population of Edo were men; they had a country home with their wives and families and they came to the city for business. It all sounded very cultured and proper. Yet when my mom asked if there was any incident of disease since we have STD's and AIDS today, it stripped away the mask to reveal the true nature of these interactions. The docent admitted that the women had a ten year contract, but many often died before they could complete their term. For the most part there was no overt reference to the type of interactions that these scrolls represented. Wealthy men would have these scrolls in their homes and they would bring them out to show their guests. From a cultural point of view this was an excellent exhibit to portray a particular aspect of ancient Japanese culture. Yet, as a Christian, I felt uncomfortable with the interactions they represented.

When we viewed the archaeological finds from ancient Peru I was saddened and grieved. A burial site of a king had been discovered. Along with the king there were other bodies found. They were a couple of young virgin women and youth who had been sacrificed; ceremonially killed. I know that this was a key archaeological find since many such sites had been vandalised over the years and this one was intact. It was interesting to see the objects, but I could not view this exhibit from a detached perspective.

"This is what the Lord says: 'Let not the wise man boast of his wisdom or the strong man boast of his strength or the rich man boast of his riches, but let him who boasts boast about this: that he understands and knows me, that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,' declares the Lord." Jeremiah 9: 23-24 (NIV)
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