First Stroke

Greetings, hapless readers. For some time I toyed with the idea of becoming a blogger and was even urged to do so by people who call me their friend. I’m not sure if they were truly  seeking to encourage me, or if they are the perpetrators of a sadistic conspiracy. Time will tell. Today (12 April 2012) I wrote my 100th post, so I guess that’s a milestone of some kind.

This blog contains the random thoughts of an ordinary man, arranged topically so you can disregard them in a more orderly fashion. It will feature a broad range of posts reflecting the people I love and the things I enjoy: the Bible, theology, politics, photography, travel, family, food and the outdoors.

I have no idea how often I will post to my blog or how long I–or you–will be able to endure. But let’s give it a go, shall we?

Four hundred years ago, French Voyageurs paddled up the magnificent Ottawa River–called the Kitchissippi by the Algonquin–into Canada’s interior and forged a thriving economy in the fur trade. Little did they realize that the Ottawa Valley would one day embrace the capital city of the second-largest country on the planet.

Traveling upstream can be grueling, but it has its benefits. For followers of Jesus Christ, life is an upstream proposition–with heaven awaiting us at the end of the journey.

The river is fraught with challenges: sharp bends hiding what is ahead; strong currents testing the traveler’s endurance; swift rapids threatening to capsize the vessel and suck it into deadly hydraulics; arduous portages through dense undergrowth or over rough terrain; hidden rocks spelling disaster if not navigated skillfully.

But it is also filled with rewards: breathtaking vistas; crisp, misty mornings; the scampering and bounding of startled animals; the whisper of the wind in the pines; the twilight call of the loon; the sizzle of fresh-caught fish in the pan; deep, quiet pools reflecting a riot of autumn colour.

My hope is that you enjoy traveling with me and those I love. Keep in mind that we’re headed upstream, but we’re propelled by God’s steadfast love and amazing grace.

…Underneath me, all around me / Is the current of Thy love; / Leading onward, leading homeward, / To my glorious rest above.

Hymn excerpt from, “O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus”, by S. Trevor Francis (1834-1925). Copyright by Pickering and Inglis, Ltd., Glasgow.

The image above was photographed in Nova Scotia in the fall of 2007. The cover photo for this blog was taken on Taylor Lake in Gatineau Park, Quebec, in August, 2013.

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