Showing posts with label travel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label travel. Show all posts

Thursday, 30 June 2016

Something Supernatural? You're Kidding Me!

I suppose you are wondering if the euphoria of being healed wore off after a few weeks,

Friday, 22 April 2016

The Unknown Messenger

While stooping to fasten his sandals 

So no one could look on his face 
The messenger hid his emotions 
Then accepted the final embrace.

 The apostle with tenderness sent him
 On a journey precarious and hard 
And prayed that he would be kept safely
 In the sheltering arms of the Lord.

 In the city of Rome Paul was impris'ned 
Though his mission was not truly fettered 
The youth was his faithful assistant
 To deliver his wonderful letters. 

The streets of the city were crowded 
And the envoy was jostled by throngs
 The Appian Way lead him outwards 
Til at times he traveled alone. 

In a pouch on his belt was the parchment
 Protected most oft by his arm 
More precious than water or victuals
 He was careful to keep it from harm. 

The cobblestone road lead him at length 
To a bustling harbour and dock 
But sailors must wait on their omens 
They were a timorous lot.

 At last the sea journeys were ended 
And on foot he would travel again 
With Christ as a caring companion 
He never did feel all alone. 

At noon the sun beat without mercy
But night left him feeling the chill 
Though hunger and thirst often hounded 
The mission he vowed to fulfill.

 At eve he lay down in the starlight 
And thought of his Father and Guide 
But if storm clouds would thicken above him 
An inn was the place to reside.

 At last he reached troubled Colossae 
With words from the famed brother Paul 
The scroll was cherished and preserved
 A message for saints then and now.

Marilyn Friesen

Monday, 15 February 2016


The fog was thick like walls around
Impen'tratable and deep
And there was I so sick and sore
And too inclined to weep.

But move I must so slowly walked
With weary feet and mind,
The trail was slanting lower still
But I was feeling blind.

How long I plod this downward trek
I cannot think or say,
I longed to feel a hand in mine ,
A Guide to lead the way.

I dimly knew that God was kind
And won't forsake His own
But demons taunted in that mist
Which made me sigh and groan.

Yet when I felt all hope was gone
And I had lost the road
I weakly said "I'll not give up"
I'll trust in Christ my Lord. 

I'm standing now on Blessings' Peak

(An angel brought me there.)
Rainbows of hope swirl all around
The Lord God answers prayer.

Marilyn Friesen

Thursday, 3 December 2015

Crippled in a Car

Now where shall I start this article? I have spent three glorious weeks travelling and it has been truly a mountaintop experience, but now  have tumbled down into the valley. See that little old lady with a cane? Well that
feels like me. All that driving in a car really crippled me up and I still can’t walk—change that to limp—without discomfort. I told my hubby last night that I felt imprisoned in my own body. Okay, that’s the down side of my experience, but there is a definite UP side. We stopped to see relatives in various places as far flung from each other as Edmonton, Alberta and way down to Oklahoma. We did go further than that though: Mississippi was our goal.
 Do you know what people have in common? A caring attitude.
When we reached Stephen’s sister is Kansas, I pretended to walk normally but didn’t deceive anyone. It wasn’t long before they were hovering over me like I was a beautiful bird with a broken wing.  Did that compassion soon stop? Nope. Because of generous, concerned loved ones, I ended up seeing chiropractors not once but four times before we arrived back home, and once since.
I admit being a little leery of having my bones manipulated, but hey, when you are desperate enough, you’ll do anything right?  To my surprise chiropractic methods have really soared over the last thirty years, and I was introduced to something called an Activator which really helped.  Believe it or not, anyone could have seen the improvement in my walk if there had been a before and after video taken.
No, it wasn’t a magic cure-all but hey, it took years to get into this condition which was caused mainly by an ancient injury, but at least I see light at the top of the valley I have tumbled into.
Oh, by the way, when I started rambling I didn’t really know which way this article was going, but there is one thing I must share with you.

Medical problems in the states aren’t something we Canadians look forward to having, but do you know what? Four of those treatments, plus ointment, plus pills and plus a couple of informative books were all provided anonymously free of charge. Any wonder why I’m feeling a bit teary-eyed?

Friday, 19 December 2014

Jesus' Mother Huddling in the Rain

Now, let’s see. Where did I leave off, last? How often will I have to post to get this done by Christmas? Okay, okay, I’ll step out of the picture so you can immerse yourself into the First Christmas Story.

21st Chisleu
December 6th

First light, if you can call it that, I heard a wind come up during the night, and by morning the clouds had blotted out the sun. The Geshem, (latter rains) descended upon us with a vengeance, we were miserable even before Balaam’s saddlebags
were properly repacked. Yosef and I  had donned our thick woolen cloaks,
but it was impossible for me to hang on to the donkey’s reins without
rain trickling up my sleeves. That was so uncomfortable.

We slogged along silently, going uphill most of the way, or so seemed. I noticed that our fellow travelers were not calling out to each other so exuberantly, anymore. The clouds still look thick and dark towards our destination.

Saturday, 13 December 2014

The First Christmas Story (continued)

20th Chisleu
December 16th

20th Chisleu
December 16th
Traveling has not been so bad after all. I didn’t realize how beautiful much
of this country is. The olive gardens and fields are such a bright green
at this time of year. I can always anticipate a splendid view over the
next hill, which makes all the climbing worth it. We have traveled one
day’s journey, we stopped a little while ago. I think the monotonous
plodding of the donkey relaxes me. I suppose if I was not used to riding
donkey, I would be more stiff and sore, but that is our main means of travel..

All around us little campfires are brightening up the evening scene.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

After Grandma is Buried, We'll Go

The Christmas Story from Mary's Viewpoint
19th  Chisleu
December 15th

Because of one delay after another we were not able to go to the city of David to be taxed as soon as we had planned to. The most tragic is that my Mimi , grandma, went to be with her fathers.

She was so dear to me. I couldn’t bear to leave her when she was so low, but she passed away, so we will sadly depart after the funeral.

This will be all for now, for I want to take one last look at her calm, still face before we follow the bier to the grave site.

20th  Chisleu
December 16th

I am not feeling very brave today even though the stars are
twinkling brightly in the otherwise black, early morning sky. Yosef is
loading Balaam, our donkey.

Somewhere, far, far away in a place called Bethlehem the stars are also shining, I suppose, but the track is so rough and dark between here and there.

There are treacherous mountains just furlongs from the road we must take, and who know what kinds of animals might come prowling around at night.

It will take us many days to get there, and this is happening so close to when the baby is expected to arrive! I have never been far from home except for the
time I went to see Aunt Elisheva, and I dread this journey!

At least this time I will have Yosef with me! What a consolation! My deepest fear is for the Baby because I am so near the end. Oh, if only it would have
worked out to leave earlier! Will He be all right?

I know we will not be traveling alone but that is not much of a

Cousin Abigail, who used to be my dearest friend, will be
in the company, but she has been cool and aloof since my condition
was revealed. I will add, however that that is—maybe? easier to handle than the
scathing remarks Shoshoni made to Tamara at the marketplace. I think
she knew I could have heard her!
My sister Hanalei claims Shoshoni has always been jealous of me,
but why? I am not that special! Some have called me sweet and pretty
but she is beautiful and sophisticated! Besides her father is a prosperous
 merchant and we are so poor.

It has been such a trial how the villagers have shunned me the last
while, and whispered behind their hands.

I am so lonely for the merry prattle we aant’ats used to share when we met at the well each morning, but now everyone just falls silent or walks slowly away while
my eyes dolefully follow them. Oh well, it could be so much worse.

For some reason, and I am not sure why, it has not made that great of a difference that Yosef married me. Is it because of Yaakov? I probably shouldn’t have written that, yet I do know that someone is spreading rumors that Yosef is not the father. Obviously I am too far along for it to have happened since we were betrothed…

“They” have been saying that I was overtaken by a Roman soldier. They do ravage careless maidens at will especially while in a drunken stupor.

Of course that is so impossible! My parents would never let their daughters be alone if they had to be out at night!

My aleichem(neighbors), could be making cutting remarks to my face but most of them don’t.

 I mentioned Shoshoni, but really most of them don’t say so very much . . . in my presence, at least. Sometimes I fear that the Little One I care about so deeply may have to suffer much worse persecution than I, and oh how I yearn to protect Him!

Why do such thoughts come to me? Most people are confident  that the Mashiach will be a glorious King and will rule with a scepter of gold. If that is the whole
truth, why would a poor talitha like me be asked to be His mother?
It is confusing. I am so inadequate for such a privilege, and awesome

I wish Imma could come along to Bethlehem. It would be such a
comfort. But, on the other hand, maybe it is better that she is not able.
She tends to worry so.

“Be sure to keep warm, and do not let yourself get too tired.”
She has told me that countless times, or so it seems. How can I
keep from getting tired? I am worn out already, and we have not even
begun! Imma is scurrying towards me with a nicely wrapped parcel of
food for the journey. I really must go assist her.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Too Much Startling News

An excerpt from Mary’s Diary. Part of my pre-Christmas series. J

Marcheshvan 7th
November 28th

We have heard such startling news! Everyone of King David’s line
will have to trudge off to Bethlehem to be taxed.

That includes Yosef and me, since we are both descendants of
David; One of us is through Solomon, and the other by a more obscure son by the name of Nathan.

I wonder how that will work with my pregnancy getting so near its completion.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Christmas From Mary's Viewpoint

I dumped way too many pages on all you busy people last time, but I hope this will be more manageable.  The pages are crowded together, not like they’d be in the book to make it more compact.  Enjoy!

14th Sivan
June 4th

Yosef has not warmly greeted me for many days. I might as well say
it like it really is; we haven’t even exchanged more than two words. He
is polite, but I have seen him treat strangers with more cordiality than
he has bestowed on me! I feel ill with despair.

15th  Sivan
Somehow, something, must have leaked out at home, because my younger
sisters don’t treat me so sweetly any more. Dorcas and Naomi give me
troubled looks as if they cannot quite understand what has changed
with me. They are not as spontaneous with their hugs as in former days,
or am I just imagining it?

Hanalei and I used to be as close as burrs in sheep’s wool but now she is somewhat reserved in my presence.

 Imma had thought she was old enough to share in our secret, but from the way she is acting we wonder. Perhaps Hana is concerned about how her friends will react when they find out her older sister is expecting a riba, (child), before the wedding. 

Maybe she is afraid this will lessen her own chances of finding a nice, respectable husband. She had been telling me how much she admires Caleb bar-Reuven, for some time now.

Dear old Abba has been quiet and unsmiling  since our discussion.
I wonder so often what he is really thinking. I wish he would not
council with Yaakov so much since Yosef’s father is so perturbed with me.

Now that Father is so distant, Imma waits until he is out of the
house to show her loving sympathy. It is then that the tears, the soothing
healing tears, flow freely, and we can talk.

Naturally Imma does not feel ill as I do, so she is still quite optimistic
about it all. I know she does not consider my story a fantasy like Abba,
Yosef and his family appear to.

What would I do without my mother to lean on; to comfort me? Imma is touched that a daughter of hers would be considered worthy to be the mother of the son of  Adonai , our Almighty God, but is deeply concerned that Yosef is considering getting divorce papers written out.

Isn’t it strange that two such conflicting emotions can dwell in the same heart?
Being thrilled yet at the same time deeply concerned seem so opposite from each other.

 Imma feels for me, and I am glad she is praying that things will work out somehow.

We have whispered together about how dreadful it would be to be identified as an unwed mother. I do not believe Yosef would ever have me stoned, but would
not the stony disapproval of our community be almost harder to bear?

I know that every day I am growing a little rounder, and someday the
sacred secret will be revealed. But unfortunately, or is it fortunately, I
will be far away by then, for Abba insists that I must go, and for who knows how long?

2nd Tammuz
June 22nd

We have arrived at Zechariah’s home. The trip was long and
tiresome, but not as dreadful as I feared.

Zechariah’s stone house is situated in a serenely beautiful valley.
It is a spacious dwelling with many archways and pillars.

It even has marble floors. That is such a contrast to our own dirt floor! Oh, well, I love our little home just as much, if not more, because that’s where my family dwells.

I was so enthralled with the cooling fountain in their courtyard, though, as
well as all the exotic flowers and plants surrounding it. It was such a
refreshing change after trudging through the wilderness for so long.

It is very strange to have a room all to myself, and such a soft, high
bed! Yet I will miss having my sisters snuggling down close beside me.

What a blessing it was to be enfolded in Elisheva’s warm embrace!
She seemed so happy to see me. It was like an unexpectedly warm and
balmy breeze in frigid weather.

We had such a meaningful visit right after I arrived that I did not even remember how exhausted I had been feeling ’til a long time later.

To my amazement she knew immediately that I was carrying Yahweh’s son. The baby leaped within her, and then do you know what?—Elisheva started to prophecy like the patriarchs of old! I have never heard anyone do that before!

It thrilled me right to my toes when she said, nay, almost shouted

“Mary’am, you are very blessed among women! The baby you are
carrying is very blessed indeed! How can I be so fortunate that the
mother of our Lord would come, and visit me? As soon as you called
out, the babe knew who you were, and leaped within me!”

What a shiver of awe ran down my back!

She told me I would be blessed for believing. Can you imagine the comfort that was after the despondent atmosphere at home? She also reminded me that all that
the angel told me would come true.

Perhaps if Abba could have heard her faith, and enthusiastic response to my pregnancy, he would have believed, also.

It filled me with such a deep joy to know that Jehovah has regarded
the low estate of me, His quiet, unassuming talithathat I clasped my
hands in wonder, and magnified His Holy Name.

Future generations will call me Banoah, (blessed),  and indeed they are surely right. Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of aant’at would gladly trade places with me.

 The Mighty One has done marvelous things; holy is His name!

 Somehow sense that when He reigns, He will not only show mercy to those our generation that fear him, but will extend mercy for generations come! I cannot comprehend it! It is so amazing!

Under His guidance, I just know that wrongs will be righted, those that we call powerful will be of no more value than the poor in spirit; the hungry will be satisfied, but the rich will go away empty.

How can I know these things? I simply don’t know. It does seem like a spirit of prophecy descended upon me also, and I am eagerly waiting to see what it means.

 As you may well know, my despondency has been lifted up, carried away on wings of joy!

I just know these are going to be pleasant, meaningful months
helping Elisheva. I am really looking forward to it! Surely we will have many inspirational visits. I really need them to help me to grow into the role Adonai, ordained for me.

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Losing Altitude--In Africa

Ho, hum, what happened here? I thought I had sent off a post about landing in Johannesburg but where is it? Then this morning before coming to the library, I wrote one introducing y'all to our first trip into the African back lands---and it vanished! Well, it's time to hustle out another one! 
Here goes!! Maybe I'll even get two written!

As the plane loses altitude  and the African landscape rolls out before us, I am enjoying a very African looking sunrise. If you ask me why it looked more African than any other sunrise I can only say because the colors so closely resembled one in a picture I checked out in my online research.

After landing in Johannesburg we had to (guess what?!) go through customs again. There weren't as many blacks as you might have expected but many that I thought had a distinctly Africaan (Dutch?)  look. Not that that made them much easier to understand.

There was a bewildering array of exotic looking souvenirs that we scurried past on our way to our next flight.

As we hurried through the airport the gift shops were like a kaledoscopic blur

The plane that took us to Tate was the smallest I've been on in in a long, long time. I had an opportunity to chat with a man who regularly flew back and forth between Mozambique and South Africa because he worked in the recently developing coal mines.

Now I was sorry for trying to protect my son's brand new computer by squeezing it into a suitcase without completely removing the box. Those customs officers quickly got wise to the fact that it was a Brand New Laptop and wanted to levy a seriously hefty duty tax on it. With all the dilly-dallying and delays our son and the missionary finally were able to get through and help with the language problem. I understand that they wanted to charge us the equivalent of a week, or was it a month's wages for that tiny piece of wires and, and well whatever. There was a woman there that was willing to pay 200 Metcash for that slim, sleek looking piece of technology, but 'we' swallowed our ire ad paid the duty. I looked and listened carefully, but never once heard any remonstrance that I should have packed the laptop differently. Thank you!

The temperature was pleasantly comfortable when we landed, and would you believe we didn't hit a serious heat wave until we got back home to northern  Alberta?

Monday, 14 July 2014

"Goodnight" In the Air!

Part of the Trip to Africa series as found on my
Our next flight was three hours longer than the first one and was also an over-nighter. I’m really not great at falling asleep even at home, and this was no exception. How my legs did ache! Out of desperation I would get up and walk around once in a while. It is a marvel to behold how readily some folks zonked off. There were those that were snoozing with their chin almost on their chests. Did I envy them? Well, maybe a little, but I did wonder how their necks would feel when they woke up. One sweet, young teenager leaned over to talk to me as I trudged past. Our conversation was about this long: “You can’t sleep? I can’t either!” But it was a friendly connection in a sea of shadowed faces. On a different plane one man was asleep even before takeoff and slumbered almost constantly until he had to drag himself off the plane many hours later. Oh, to keep the record straight, I did fall asleep for a few seconds, not minutes on the flight from London to Johannesburg. On the way home I even slept longer!

There were others that were prowling around in the dark. One businessman (?) was doing knee bends to aid circulation and he and I got to chatting. These late night vigils gave me opportunity to exchanged smiles and a few words with more than one gentle-faced woman clothed in Middle Eastern attire.
I felt sorry for one Chinese couple, though. Off and on all during a certain flight their toddler was fussing. I wanted so much to go help them, but that just Isn’t Done and besides they may have not even known English. I saw “Daddy” in the back with a child but could offer little more than a sympathetic smile. When daylight arrived, I discovered that it wasn’t one, but two toddlers that were having an unhappy flight. They were identical twins!

Maybe that’s enough for now. I feel ready for a nap!