The Father Sees

"In love I designed you, all of the details,
Woven from My heart, I will not forget you.
Don't think the dark could hide you where I can't get to you
So know you are... Seen."1
Lyrics by Anastasya Laverdiere
Worship leader for Alberta's Olympic Faith retreat

Home is where the heart is

You and I, and our brothers and sisters in Christ around the globe, were not meant to feel at home in this world. Not really. Not completely. For we don't really belong here. Even though we are purposely planted in our various delegated and different 'soils and toils,' fulfilling ministries and roles that are intentionally chosen for us before the foundation of the world, this world is not our real home.

China - The Battle is Real

"Within the shadow of Thy throne, still may we dwell secure.
Sufficient is Thine arm alone, and our defence is sure."

~ Isaac Watts

I was stunned when I received the news that someone I knew had been killed. Even in this work, where I am inundated with reports of persecution and martyrdoms from around the world on a daily basis, the news hit hard. This was a man I had met, shook hands with, talked with, and prayed with. At the end of our meeting we said “goodbye” and went our separate ways -- I to the relative safety of Canada and he to a country known for its anti-Christian persecution.

"Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds
of wickedness, to undo the straps of the yoke, to let
the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke?"
~ Isaiah 58:6 ESV

It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so this time my words will be few -- allowing the images to speak directly to your heart.

Happy New Year!

The Babe of Bethlehem

"Because of the Lord's great love we are not
consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are
new every morning; great is Your faithfulness."

Lamentations 3:22-23 NIVUK

Man with his head down

The prophet Jeremiah, in and around 600 BC, so lamented the Babylonian decimation of the once beautiful city of Jerusalem that he devoted an entire book of the Bible called Lamentations. In his writings, Jeremiah describes his anguish, except for one sequence of verses in chapter 3 (vs. 19-24), where he interjects God's "hope" into the midst of despair. The Lord's mercies bring newness into Jeremiah's world, while also proclaiming His act of salvation. This provision echoes the reconstructive realities and promises of God which, I would add, as Isaiah foretells below, are not just for "every morning," but every moment of each day, as we reach out for the salvation of the Lord who was born at Christmas to save us all forever.

Holding Fast to Christ

Dear Friends,

I was recently challenged by the Apostle Paul's instructions to Timothy, his protégé in the faith.

"Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses." 1 Timothy 6:12 ESV

I immediately thought of those that we, here at VOMC, have been called to serve; our persecuted brothers and sisters. They are engaged in the good fight of faith by pursuing the Lord and His righteousness despite great opposition. These believers don't strive for or hold onto this life -- with all its distractions and pleasures. Rather, they hold fast to Christ and His eternal promises that are of more worth than earthly pleasures. In doing so, they leave a legacy of God's faithfulness for all who bear witness to their pursuit of godliness.