The Thing About Light and Momentary

They are words that can be tremendously encouraging or tremendously discouraging. Said at the wrong time or in the wrong spirit they can compound hurt, but said at the right time and in the right spirit they can be a cool drink on a hot day, a soothing balm on a sore wound. They are the words “light and momentary.” As the Apostle suffered physically and spiritually, as he spoke of the outer self wasting away, he proclaimed “this light …

The Harder Our Earth, the Sweeter Our Heaven

The man who lives in the Swiss Alps is probably not terribly impressed when he visits North America and strolls through the Adirondacks or the Smokies. The woman who has spent her life snorkeling along the Great Barrier Reef is probably not too enthusiastic about snorkeling off the East Coast of Canada. The person who has grown up on the beaches of Maui is probably not going to break the bank to vacation on the beaches of Lake Superior. There …

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Why Do Billionaires Want to Live Forever?

Why is it that billionaires always seem to want to live forever? Why is it that the 1% of the 1% almost always seem to veer from their core businesses into attempts to prolong their lives indefinitely? Amazon’s Jeff Bezos is invested in Altos Labs which is attempting a kind of “biological reprogramming” to extend lifespans. Google’s Sergey Brin and Larry Page were instrumental in launching a business called “Calico” which is carrying out studies that may eradicate all disease. …

Sorrowful Departures and Joyful Arrivals

Like most major airports, Toronto’s Pearson International divides the arrivals area from the departures so that one is a level above the other. I have passed through both of them hundreds of times and have made this observation: The upper level is a place of sorrow while the lower level is a place of celebration. The upstairs departures area is distinguished by family members weeping and saying farewell, the downstairs arrivals area by family members waving and hugging and crying …

When the Best Part Is the Door

If you have ever visited Wittenberg, Germany and have taken the time to tour its famous Castle Church, you may have made the same observation I did: The best part of the building is its doors. Castle Church is, of course, the spot where Martin Luther chose to post his Ninety-Five Theses. Centuries later, King Frederick William IV chose to commemorate the event by commissioning a beautiful set of bronze doors inscribed with Luther’s words. And, though they’ve been refurbished …

The Music of Heaven

One quiet evening many years ago, I was sitting on the screened-in porch of our old family cottage when I heard the music of bagpipes. Curious, I followed the sound, which me led as far as I could go, down to the shore of the lake.  Somewhere across the water, I could hear the piper playing. The evening was quiet and the lake was still, and the sound carried so well that I could hear every haunting note with perfect …

A Heart That Is Free, A Step That Is Light

The great general had led his troops to a hard-fought but resounding triumph on the field of battle. With the enemy army now vanquished and scattered, he rallied his regiments to press on toward the capital where they would secure the final victory. And though the men marched briskly, he urged them to still greater speed. In their haste, they began to toss aside whatever was superfluous, whatever was redundant, whatever was unnecessary. Soon the road was littered with all …

I Knew It!

Do you ever wonder what it’s like to enter heaven? Do you ever wonder what you will see first, what you will hear first, what you will feel and experience first? Do you ever wonder what your very first thought will be after you’ve fallen asleep in this world to awaken in the next? I’m sure you do. We all do. We all wonder what’s just beyond the great chasm that separates life from death, earth from heaven, here from …

Have You Tasted Heaven?

A touching story from long ago tells of a young boy who lived in the distant reaches of the vast Canadian prairies. His family was impoverished, and parents and children alike had to labor day and night to prove their homestead claim. There was little time for anything beyond work, little money for anything beyond the barest essentials. They lived a harsh, rugged, hand-to-mouth existence. A day came when that boy’s father dispatched him to town to fetch supplies, so …

Homesick

My thoughts these days turn often to heaven. In those moments when I hover between asleep and awake, in those moments when I bow my head to pray, in those moments when I lift my voice to sing, my mind turns often to that place and to its people. My father made the journey there not too long ago and my son trailed close behind him. The two key men in my life—the one in whose footsteps I followed and …