Why This Site?


Turn on any Gospel station and hear over and over again the message of redeeming power in the blood of Jesus shed at Calvary's hill. Messengers will quote often from Paul's Epistle to the Romans. Believe. Confess. Receive. Trust for a lifetime. Expect Glory. https://justhappeneduponthis.wordpress.com/2014/08/02/the-choice-2/

But this site will emphasize how approachable Jesus is today, how compassionate and alive with adventure to be shared with us. A dying on a Hill is one thing, but let us go on to a living again in the hearts of believers world-wide. They minister rescue, truth, hope and healing in His glorious Name. They draw daily from Jesus' comfort, shepherding and counsel. Others take notice. The Family grows.

Best wishes...Doug Blair, Waterloo, Ontario...blaredub@gmail.com 






He called me from the crowd, He did

A quiet shaded place

And kindly grabbed my shoulders

And got into my face

And thought it not improper

To stoop down to my plight

And smiled a knowing smile that said

‘Your ears will soon be right’.

For I had never, ever heard

The children’s laugh at play

The happy din of market-place

The lark at break of day

And silenced, never learned to speak

Or utter heart’s desire.

“Quite dumb” they said

The shame of it

Inside would burn like fire.

But Jesus stopped and smiled and sighed

(I read those lips, you know)

A sigh that seemed to grasp all pain

And feel the anguish so.

Then heaven-ward He cast a glimpse

His hands addressed my ears

And precious words gained access

Rang true, amidst my tears.

“Be opened”; what a manly voice 

He spoke those words for me

And loosed my tongue

For cries of joy and thanks



Mark 7: 32-37


Down From the Mountain


You see him, Lord?

You see him?

For years this awful mess.

He scarcely can express himself

Can’t even wash or dress.

His antics get folks going

They fear what might come next.

He roars in hot frustration

Sore lonely and sore vexed.

The doctors see no answer.

Sedation and restraints.

The seizures come so quickly

He thrashes, then he faints.

And I the father helpless

Must stand and watch again

As fear and doubts disable

Your followers, Lord, your men!

Oh won’t you intervene, Sir

And make the darkness flee

And cause the sun to re-appear

For one poor lad, for me?


Mark 9: 17-29




They Left It



She left her water-pot at the well. Went to tell the neighbours about the amazing prophet in town. The One with the nice face.

He left his beggar’s cloak behind at the roadside. Foolish thing for a blind man to do. Discard his insignia for begging. But they had said that the Master wanted to see him. And He had healed others in such a dignified way.

He left his tax-collector’s table. And all that money. The stash going to the Romans. And that other portion going to…Oh well, forget about it.

The two brothers had left their father’s fishing boat and all the nets. Seemed as if that’s all they knew how to do well. Getting out on that water that they loved so. With all her moods, and bounty for the crafty.

She left her men. That little network of devilish play that she had coquettishly woven in the alleys. Rabbis had meant to stone her for the foolishness. And they had the Law behind them. But the Prophet had not allowed it. And she had never encountered One like Him.

He left his books of study. All of those rules and reg’s that had caused so many headaches, arguments and impossible situations. He went under cover of darkness to the Prophet hoping for some answers of substance; and certainly not expecting those answers. A child-like petition and a New Birth posed as the remedy of all remedies.

He had left the secret enclaves of resistance. Weapons and plots under cover. Just waiting for the right moment to set the Romans running. But this Master Strategist had spoken of another battle plan with the strangest of weapons. Peaceful ones. Forgiving ones.

She had left it. The doting Mother’s pre-disposition to worry about a daughter’s plight and to make extra provision. Hers had married the Big Fisherman, and now he seemed to have signed on for the strangest commission with that healing Story Teller. Traveling, inviting with nothing made certain in advance.

All of these people had abandoned something previously thought to be unquestionably theirs.


(“I that speak unto thee am he”)

(painting by james tissot)


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He Is Faithful




There is One

Oh can it be?

Who knows every

Part of me

All my deepest hopes

And fears

All my stumbling

Through the years.

All the times

With rescue armed

Saved my thankless neck

From harm.

Wooed me in

The thick of night

Brought me strength

To stand and fight.

While I hunted

Tinsel charms.

Fled from His

Outreaching arms.

Doubted e’er

A Love so great

One that would not

Leave, forsake.

But in silence

Of a time

I have seen

His paths sublime.

Marveled that

This wayward boy

Still to Him

Is constant joy.

Ever changeless

He will be

Hope and peace

And life for me.


(Hebrews 13: 5,6)






Faithful Little Dog



the children's bread

I’ll not be shaken off, not I

My daughter writhes at home

And I have heard

Your healing power

The greatest ever known

Disciples bar me from your touch

No Jewish blood to show

But Son of David

Lord of life

I will not let you go.

A hopeful “dog”

That’s what you said

The household pet I’m sure

And crumbs that fall

From sacred feast

Will more than prove the cure.

So come now Jesus

Speak the word

And healing now translate

And end this Mother’s heaviness

My daughter’s sorry state.

Matthew 15: 22-28


In Appreciation

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That You Might Be Healed


James 5:

16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

We are going to foul up. Let us not forget the stuff of which we are made. Perhaps there has been a salvation experience. We are still a work in progress. I am not here issuing a licence  to sin and give excuses. I am just stating a fact. Temper, lust, hypocrisy, foul language, convenient variations from truth – the list goes on.

It is of God’s grace that we suffer conviction for the stumbling. A poet has said:

I know not if that sin

Had meant a dropping of salvation.

I only know your smile removed

Was hellish condemnation.

But remember there is confession. To the aggrieved party. To a supportive friend. To God. It need not take a specific format; only that it is sincere and represents a quality decision to do otherwise in the future. Then comes tremendous release. Look at David in Psalms 51 and 32. Then comes renewal in prayer and sweet sleep at day’s end. Virtually a healing has taken place. The waters are settled. Functions flow again without ennui.

Does this healing extend to the body? Of course it does. Doctors everywhere confirm that stress is the greatest enemy to sound health. Pastors would confirm that unforgiveness and duplicity rank a close second and third. This passage also suggests an input of supernatural healing in the sovereign designs of God.

It is interesting to consider the second half of the above verse and the connection. The man who has gone through the wringer of confession and forgiveness stands a righteous man, effectual in prayer and in testimony. According to God there are no nagging and debilitating “yeah buts”. Additionally the individual will have empathy for the stumblings of others. Not judgment.

I must not forget the admonition to “pray for one another”. In the selfless offering of intercession; in the powerful agreement of determined believers on a mission there are often hidden surprises and personal needs met.

I remember a comment in the story of the reunion of brothers Jacob and Esau. The younger had cheated the older out of his birthright, but the time had finally come for an encounter and apology.

Genesis 33:

And Esau said, I have enough, my brother; keep that thou hast unto thyself.

10 And Jacob said, Nay, I pray thee, if now I have found grace in thy sight, then receive my present at my hand: for therefore I have seen thy face, as though I had seen the face of God, and thou wast pleased with me.

(Note: A wonderful book has been written by Andrew Murray entitled Confession and Forgiveness)





Jairus, Running, Hoping  (Mark 5: 21-43)

Our little girl was almost gone.
The fever gripped her like a vise.
The eyes attending elsewhere, wan,
The fragile hands as cold as ice.

And I as useless as a child.
Her mother stroking soft the brow.
And something hidden, wanton, wild
Was pressing, choking sweetness now.

I fled the room, a flick'ring thought
Arrested mind and sinking heart.
The Nazarene whom many sought
Could he be called, and life impart?

The doors rushed by as I made haste.
This rabbi now a racing steed.
A father with no time to waste.
Would Jesus rally to our need?

He hears my plea, yet looks so calm,
And joins me in the homeward trek.
Has he the skill? Has he the balm?
To save our lives from total wreck?

But friends advise with words I dread,
To trouble not the Master more.
My little flower, already dead.
My wife distraught upon the floor.

Yet still he comes, quite undeterred,
And takes her hand, and softly sighs
Her little spirit hears the word.
The call of life, "Sweet maid arise."








Still standing.
Beside the main street.
Feeling the pulse
Of spring rains,
The crown of summer,
The testing pull
Of autumn storms.
Children explore
My limbs and shelter.
Adventurers pass,
Out to new possibilities.
Some, retracing steps
In homeward reunion
Or retreat.
Presently a strange din;
One stalwart man
And His entourage.
Onlookers press in,
Curious and hopeful.
What’s this?
Someone scrambles up,
Tugs my extremities,
Scrapes my bark,
Balancing to watch.
Much like the children.
(Generations of them.)
I serve their purpose.
I serve his purpose.
Giving the better view.
And the Master looks up,
My Maker.
Issuing the call:
“Zacchaeus, come down.
I will come to your house.”


(Painting by Tissot)


Luke 19: 1-10




Thirty-three Words

Jesus Teaching By the Shore (Tissot)

The shortest chapter in the Bible is Psalm 117. (Interestingly enough the longest is two doors over, Psalm 119. Both are included in the Grand Hallel recited at the Jewish Passover.)

Does this little contribution do justice in describing God and the fundamental plan of redemption? It says that he is available, merciful, kind, true and everlasting. This is very much like the self-description which the Lord gave to Moses when asked to show the glory of His person (Exodus 34).

And Psalm 117 (KJV) contains 33 words.

Jesus, the Living Word and best revelation of the nature of the Heavenly Father, lived and walked as man for 33 years.

A poem would be appropriate:

Show Us the Father

Have I been so long time with you,
Yet you still misunderstand?
In the simple walks
When I listened
And you went on so.
In the gazing reverently
Together at sunset.
In the common meal
Which went down so well
‘Midst laughter and poking.
In the common cup.
The washings of hand
And conscience.
Have you not seen me
Bless the wayfaring man,
The ailing child,
The fretful mother
With her last farthing?
Chastise the hypocrite?
Warn the self-assured?
Heard me glean wisdom
From the fields, the flocks,
The fishnets, the pearl merchant?
In all, I have heard from my Father;
Seen my Father’s pointing hand;
Represented my Father.
It is just that simple,
That fresh, daily.
I can be, I can say
None other.
Come unto me.
Come unto Him.
Brothers. (33 lines)

Jesus bids the children come (Tissot)

When Love Sees You


Waves Get Nasty


Image by George Richardson


Is it that rough for you, Christian?

Can’t keep your feet on the ground?

Waves pound and noise seems horrific

Dreading the spray and the sound.

Yes now your sea is all boisterous

Can’t hear the call of the Lord

What’s that He said through the darkness?

Chilling the bone with one word:

“Come” you may walk o’er these waters.

“Come” just as you see me do

“Come” they’re all noise and commotion

Trust in my word and pass through.

I will be there on the billows

Waiting to meet you. Rejoice.

Nothing can foil my agenda

If you will just heed my voice.

And you know surely you heard it

Right before waves brought the fear

Trust in my word, don’t desert it

Miracle ground is found here.





Serving, Resting

(I am thankful for a prayer entry in Knocking at God's Door by Oswald Chambers)

"Lord, I thank Thee for the counsel in the text this morning ("And let it be ...that thou shalt do as occasion serves thee; for God is with thee") not to fret myself into conscious usefulness, but just do as the occasion Thou hast engineered shall serve."

Was this not the method of Jesus? There always seemed to be a relaxed manner in the way the Master traveled about and made Himself available to those in need. Many nights were given to prayer and He was able to say that He did and said only as instructed by the Father. But did those prayer times result in specific instruction to be at a certain place at a certain time to work the Father's will? Or, rather, were they simply times to get close to the Father's heart. To hear Him pour in the comfort and encouragement and re-assurance that He was present and His power available.

Such intimacy energized a daily walk in which the Holy Spirit would urge unmistakably, "yes, that one over there is in need, or is ready, or not today but simply a word of direction...". Jesus said that He operated by the "finger of God" (ie. the Holy Spirit)

He was able to go about with the confidence that He was called, clean, covered, committed and capable through God. So may we. 




Two Days at Sychar



She ran to tell them

Of the man who met her at the well

In mid-day’s heat

As if for her alone

He came to tell

That she was through with daily thirst

And shameful gossip-thrust

How did He know

Those desperate years of

License and of lust?

A prophet, true

And one who spoke

Of waters to impart

No mocker He


Contentment for her heart.

So off she ran

“Come see the man

Who knows my every deed

Forgives it all,

The big, the small

And leaves my conscience freed.

Yes drink of Him

The fresh supply of

Spirit without end.”

They came, they heard.

They took His word

And hailed Him as their friend.


John 4: 1-43


Oh brother men, have ye received this blessed gift, with its fresh spontaneousness, its inner hidden blessedness, its eternal timeless essence, its power of entire satisfaction? If not, why not seek forthwith from Him by faith a boon so inexpressibly precious, to have which were to make wildernesses flower and deserts sing? (F. B. Meyer, 1847-1929, The Life of Love: John’s Gospel)






Oh to walk by Galilee
See the crowds and what they see
Hear their laughter; feel their thrill
Learning of the Father’s will.
Hearing tales from where they live
Learning how to pray, forgive
How to walk the second mile
How to make the outcast smile.
Watching sickness turn and flee
Watching sinners saved and free.
This a pilgrim’s frequent wish
Camp with Him, and share His fish.

Then there was that other phase
Shadows came in threatening days
Cold religion sought to snare
Empire muscle everywhere
Politics and schemes of men
Shutting down the love again
Making plans to catch the Son
See His following over-run
See Him shackled, whipped, defamed
Brought to bar with no just claim.
Bring Him to a horrid Hill
All to serve His Father’s will.

Treasured fare to feast upon
Matthew, Mark
And Luke and John.
Take it to my quiet place
Learn His love
And seek His face.
Take to heart the Gospel’s peace
Tell a friend of faith’s release.
Christ is risen
Death’s great loss
Christ within me
Through the Cross.



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Not So Macho



I’m oh so afraid to be broken

All teary-eyed, cringing and spent

And troubles arrive by the bus-load

I know now just what a friend meant

He told me how pain proves a blessing

And shows “self-sufficient” a lie

I’ve yanked and I’ve pulled at these problems

It’s time to give prayer a try.

I don’t really know what is proper

Except that I pour out my heart

And God if you’re really that caring

You’ll bear with this faltering start.

But something has clicked deep inside me

And words seem to flow like a spring

And somehow I know you are present

And willing to bear everything.

As if no one else were sufficient

Or knew what exactly I meant

You counsel to think upon Jesus

And doors open as I repent.




Do You Know?


Do you know what you possess? Do you really get it?


Has the concept and power of blood covenant gotten deep into your consciousness? You share the bread and the wine. You reflect on the tears of Gethsemane and the shame and anguish of Golgotha.


Had you seen the blood flowing and mingling with the earth. Had you smelled it. Had you heard the moans of the sympathizers. The janglings of Roman contraption. The mockings of the callous. You would be incapable of forgetting a single detail.

This was the definitive blood covenant. My precious Son and I agreeing, one with the other, that all of our power, resources, blessing and protection would accrue to those in the family line, now and forever.You have simply stepped forward to respond to the call of my Son; His Good News; to seek out His family; to grow in family likeness. His genes, if you will, have been deposited in you.


I am constrained to bless. I will honour my word.


When I see you, I see Jesus, and I can only love. I remember that blood.

You may truly sing along with the saints:

“Oh, the blood that gives me strength From day to day; It will never lose its power.”







Disciple’s Distress


How can I help

When your guts are a-seething

When every which way

Holds disaster at end

And all thinking hampered

By urgent needs pressing

And no clear decision

Of consulting a friend

So you hold inside

Sensing faith has the answers

Perhaps this a trial

To assess your core worth

But God has not authored

These knotholes of menace

The panic or put-downs

Or larders of dearth

Look for a life- buoy

Or signal of promise

Some friend with connection

Or prayer’s honest yield

And stay not alone

Lest an imbalance threaten

But reach out for people

And hope’s sunny field.

Not a Day More


You have been a church member for as long as you can remember. Parents before you.

Attendance may have waivered from time to time, but you still see the process as valuable. You have read a couple of the Gospels. Frequently in Psalms and Proverbs. Perhaps Pastor’s sermon has provoked a little additional study. You try your best to live a good life.

But all this talk about “salvation” that you hear coming from the evangelicals just leaves you cold. Didn’t you get baptized? Didn’t you attend confirmation; take the pledge? What is all this panic?

Jesus said in John 9 that He had come into the world that they that see not might see. He bestows spiritual vision. Gives glimpses of the holiness of God and the inadequacy of self-righteousness. You must pray for this vision while you are still breathing. You must give yourself over more to considerations of the Eternal.

A good help will be found in the reading of Romans 10. At first reading you might hear yourself asking, “Is that all there is to this?” Pray for illumination. Read it again. The Gospel words of promise are timeless. Believe. Submit. Confess. Be done with men’s foolish efforts for righteousness sake.

The threshold of entrance has been made surprisingly simple. Simple to you, but enormously costly to Jesus and the Father. But with the transformation of new birth comes new comprehension, new loyalty, new purpose, new zeal for the things of Christ. In short order you will acknowledge your blindness of bygone days. You will have become a citizen of Heaven.






Open Hands


Hang On, It’s Brief



There’s a mess

Of mean misfortune

And you bear it.

And you tell yourself

The devil has his day

And you cite the

Holy promises at prayer-time

Saying patience will

Dispel the gloom away.

But the years

They come and go

And still the hurting

And you’re tempted

To besmirch the Father’s grace.

“Surely, faith had brought

The blessing, had you used it.”

And the pitty-party puddle

Bears your face.

But the stamina He gave

You, wins another

Who has faced the bitter test

This Life’s not fair.

And he’s just passed over

Singing of a Brother

Both, in Heaven now,

Rejoicing for God’s care.

Yes that care may use

The suffering for a ransom

And Friend, Jesus knew

Such suffering for a night.

And He waits with open arms

And endless blessing.

Oh yes, eternity’s

A long time to be right.




(Colossians 1: 24 and 2 Corinthians 1: 6 and Philippians 3: 10-12)


Faithful ones, you can preach, you can serve, you can spend, you can work, you can pray, you can uplift…you can suffer. They are all currencies, if used in the Spirit of Christ. (Doug)






Two Kinds of Lost



Imagine a sinking ship in the darkness. Life-boats have been dispatched onto the cruel waves. Survivors huddle together in the cold, and the noise of the ship’s creaking death-descent drowns out all voices. A man has been tardy in the evacuation response and he remains on deck alone. His cries cannot be heard. He has missed the opportunity of rescue. He is lost to his associates and he is lost to any hope. A most tragic wrap-up to life’s journey.

This seems a fitting metaphor for the one who dies without hope in Christ.

Over the years I have often come across an arresting piece of scripture in the first chapter of Ephesians:

        6. To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

      1. In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace.

It would appear here that the individual has been “lost” in the collective. A process of grace worked out entirely by God has caused the believer to be accepted in the beloved. All sin-debt has been paid. The holiest of blood-lettings has accomplished the transaction.

And that word “beloved” is a tender reference to Christ, who took obedience to the will of His Father all the way to a self-offered death by crucifixion. We have been incorporated into the beloved, osmosed if you will. God never looks upon the believers without seeing the finished work of His delightful Son. The favour that He extends toward Jesus, He now extends toward us. We call upon His name, His authority, His mercy, help, wisdom and guidance. We are told in Romans 8 that we are joint heirs with Jesus.

The challenge in the whole picture is to eradicate, to “lose” self and the desire to have one’s own way. Think of all the unfortunate references to self: self-righteousness, self-vindication, self-absorption, self-seeking, self-serving, self-important, self-indulgent, self-opinionated, self-reliant, self-satisfied.

Jesus in His earth-walk for us showed the path to victory and contentment:

For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me. (John 6: 38)

A wonderful book has been written by Roy Hession entitled The Calvary Road (1950). In it he explores this process of self-emptying as the threshold to revival, both personal and corporate. He explores Paul’s words “Not I but Christ”. He gives the image of the proud, erect, stubborn “I”. This is contrasted to a submitted, stooped, attentive “I” turned into a “C”. Indeed our glorious Saviour condescended, stooped and submitted all the way to His Cross. And how glorious were the results. And how amazing the out-flow of resurrection power.



Just give you some stories

Let pictures run wild

Appeal to the hopeful

Appeal to the child

With something original

A puzzle or song

To keep up the interest

To coax you along.

My Father is awesome

Beyond all men’s ken 

And I use these mysteries

To draw you again.

Some must have the answer

Some shrug off and whine

A test in the challenge

Faith’s hunger to find.

And hungry go further

Til full Kingdom comes

And God makes His dwelling

In satisfied homes.








Jesus did not say come unto a group or a program or a rule book or a meditative posture. He said come unto Him, and volunteer to take on His yoke and learn of Him. In so doing we would find rest for our souls. (Matthew 11)

Come – Get into the vicinity of His story, His prayer agenda and His record of service. Read those Gospels. Talk about them enthusiastically with friends of the faith. Have nothing in your hands to trust as a safety net. Be reverent and expectant. Ask for the part that you are to play.

Take – It is being offered freely. There are no pre-requisites.

My Yoke – It is a loving discipline and a mind-set that Jesus accepted without qualification or wavering. His yoke (the ethic of the Sermon on the Mount). One becomes visibly bonded to a fellow labourer, and cannot stray away without a conscious removal of the bond. And oh what a strong and capable partner is shouldering the load with us!

Rest – The Letter to the Hebrews tells us that this is the objective of faith, the high plateau of trusting and obeying, the immovable rock of security and belonging. Nothing to fear. No path followed with clear conscience ends in disaster.

Souls – The real struggles occur in the soul realm of the will, intellect and emotions. Have you ever had a sleepless night where you can’t seem to shut off the brain from wandering, silly and troublesome thoughts? Focus on Jesus in prayer and simple conversation. Equilibrium is restored and hope for tomorrow.

Burden Light – This is the part that baffles the un-churched. They see the Gospel as restrictive and as robbing liberty. No fun they say. Made to be pawns of priest-craft and blind trust. Antiquated concepts of sin and self-control. Oh but let them discover the comfort and wisdom of “jumping” when the King of all the Ages says “jump”, or of standing still and waiting at His command, while things get sorted out. This is a lesson that He will take into His own hands. No exposition by a third party can cut it.

And to whom has all of this been addressed by the Master? The labouring and heavy-laden. Are you a candidate?






Sons of Thunder


He doesn’t seem to hurry. Yet He has told us that many villages must be visited during his allotted time. Allotted? Does that mean that he foresees some abrupt end to this marvelous circuit?

He leaves us most nights, from  hospitable quaint home or makeshift roadside camp. It would seem that prayer is so very much more important to him than sleep. But the following day no signs of lagging or fatigue. The crowds never let up. They press in smiling; straining to hear or watch. Becoming almost rude in their eagerness

At the most unpredictable times he will step off to the side, seat himself upon a wagon or boulder and tell one of his stories. Straight out of where they live. Challenging them to forgive, to share, to seek no haughty posture, to approach the Almighty as a father, involved and merciful and in the commonplace.

He knows the prophets, but does not swing such knowledge around as a hammer of condemnation or of authority. The bunch of us try to clear the way for him, village to village. To organize the people into manageable audiences. To keep the children’s noise at a distance. But he will not countenance the splitting off of the little ones; neither does he have any reservation that his messages are beyond them. They scramble for place in his lap, at his feet, within reach of those hands of comfort and healing, under that gaze so approving and hopeful.

There have been times when we have felt the need to apply a firm hand. He is worthy of great respect, but so often he demonstrates that it is the farthest thing from his mind. Not like any of the other rabbis. Strangely, in such a posture, he tells all that the Kingdom of God has come. Not like a thunderstorm; rather like the early morning dew.

Thunder. I had my day on that one. I can hardly understand what came over me and my brother. Something ignorant, imperious and indignant. Back there, one of the villages of the Samaritans. Completely rejected our offer to visit. Imagine! Making light of the Master, the God-sent mission , the Good News! At that moment, seemed like time for the rod. Like time for vindication and reprisal. Like time for fire from heaven upon the contemptuous.

A short while earlier, three of us had been up on the Mount, dazed by the visit of holy men of old, hearing in our stupor the voice of God Himself, “My beloved Son. Hear him”. I still don’t know what it all meant.

Jesus had called James and me the Sons of Thunder. He had said that our outburst was of a spirit completely different from His. We felt His disappointment. What can be done? What are our chances? He is so far beyond us.







Explore the Mysteries

Oh how we should love the mysteries unlocked in the Gospels! The condescending love and self-revealing of the Godhead. But only when we are ready and in the right attitude of heart.

The mystery of the Kingdom of God
The mystery of the reconciliation of Jew and Gentile 
The mystery of the indwelling Christ
The mystery of godliness
The mystery of the rapture of the Church

I would like to say a little on the third one above. For so many years I was into religious exercise, seasons and the 'imitation" of Christ. Fat chance in that! But then I was told by an obedient messenger about the possibility of having the Spirit of Christ come to dwell inside me for the asking. This was perhaps the most exciting prospect arising out of the New Birth. And I for a time balked at the idea of "born again" experience. The educators were against it; the media; the trend-setters; the liberal church.

But I reached the bottom of my barrel, and through sad experience, gave up on the systems of the world and of self-important men.

Imagine! The Christian life was to be a matter of impartation rather than imitation. The shutters were pulled back. The windows were opened. The enormous capability, cleansing and compassion of Jesus allowed inside. Take a moment and read the third chapter of Paul's letter to the Colossians. There we see the supernatural transition from old man to new; the change of raiment and of disposition.

Go for it. Explore the mystery.







Babe’s Skin



All I could do

When others departed

Stop and consider

What just had been done

Look at my skin

Once ravaged and pitted

Look at my fingers

(I’d lost more than one)

“Leper” they called me

And fled from my presence

“Leper” the stigma

Of sad weeping shell

Lonely the life

Deemed God’s hot displeasure

Friendless and homeless

My own private hell

Jesus had seen us

All ten in our sad plight

Sent to the priests

To declare all things healed

Cleansed just like babes

From a dreadful contagion

Nine still in darkness

To one Grace revealed

How could I not thank

The calm Galilean

Sharing a kindness

That opened my soul

Joyful in transport

I cling to His next words:

“Happy for you friend

Now every whit whole.”



Luke 17: 12-19







The “To-Do List”





In so many places in the New Covenant we are shown what to believe; the pegs upon which to hang resolutely our deepest hopes. Romans 10 says much about this.

But what to do?

The other day I was impressed with the commands of Matthew 25. Jesus is approaching His departure. Quite naturally He would want His last words to  His friends to have significant lasting impact. The setting is the Mount of Olives and all the disciples are present.

He gives three images:

1. A group of ten virgins await the night-time arrival of the bridegroom for a great celebration.

2. A departing King dispenses resources to three of His servants that they might occupy in His absence.

3. A King has returned to a throne of judgment to separate with grave finality those who have lived to please Him (sheep) from those who have not (goats).

We are still in that period of waiting for the Glorious Return. We are told here never to allow our sense of expectancy and readiness (lamp-oil) to run low. There have been talents invested in us that we are to put to profitable use in the agenda of the Kingdom. He knows our capabilities. It is the quality not quantity of our response that matters. There will be an accounting that will disclose the real leanings of the heart toward our Great Employer. Jesus reminds us of His “brethren” in need – the hungry, the thirsty, the poorly clothed, the awkward lonely stranger, the sick and the imprisoned. That is the list of mercy targets, just as in the days of His earth walk. That is where His family is to be found, ourselves included.

The list is clear. The opportunities come forth surprisingly. The Spirit of Christ within responds as in the age-old Gospel way.


(above image – the widow’s mite)







Not a Time for Lessons



Search the scriptures; for in them you think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. (John 5: 39, 40)

They do it all over the continent every Sunday morning. Open their Bibles or  gaze upon the overhead screen. Try to glean the import of magic words. These are the words of God and they contain pathways to victory, purpose and satisfaction. Let us look at the original languages. Let us compare parallel passages. Let us look for the promise here and the fulfillment over yonder.  Isn’t it all wonderfully convincing and cohesive? Didn’t Pastor put an interesting spin on his life illustrations?

But where is Jesus in all of this learning? Where is the sense of His loyalty, compassion and coaching? Are we simply receiving knowledge when that which our Lord yearns to impart is life itself. His Life. His Authority. His Understanding. His closeness to the Heavenly Father.

It can all be missed, although the supposed worshipper has memorized a boatload of Bible verses, and sounds ever so sanctified.

Better for the entire gathering to quiet themselves and meditate upon a single vignette from the Gospel tales of Jesus’ kindness and care. Sing a song in worship of that Great Heart. Utter a corporate prayer crying out for His visitation and input. Repent of the scores of shortcomings cluttering the record of the past week. In short it is time to get real and to live in Him. We must not opt out for a comfortable grasp of “Christian living” when the target is intended to be Christ Himself.


Leave behind all the gadgets and intellectual pride. Stop seeing Bible knowledge as the objective. Our commission is clearly laid out in 2 Corinthians 5 and 6, and it takes supernatural input. Ambassadors of reconciliation. Different from this world.

The KIng has seats close to His throne and available for those who are broken, hungry, expectant and humble. His life will be actualized in them and in their yielding. Other lives will be changed as a consequence, and other dark places lightened.

Not simply another lesson.


painting by James Tissot




Wedding Feast (matthew 22: 1-15)


His tales have become even stranger.
His parables more probing yet.
His instruments wooing and cutting.
His imagery hard to forget.

And now in the City he meets them;
Those rabbis of learning and law,
Who seek to portray him as rebel,
Who seek to uncover some flaw.

Just where will this dialogue take him?
Oh where will this sparring match lead?
Pray not that a jail cell awaits him.
Pray not that he suffer and bleed.

But Jesus has set an agenda,
And now is the time for the test.
To see if the Jews will accept him
And his kingdom-call as the best.

Today’s tale was set at a wedding.
A King was to marry his son.
And friends of the family invited
To share in the joy, every one.

But all of them made their excuses.
Yes all of them had other plans.
The guest list was proving pathetic.
Their love for their Lord but a sham.

The King was aggrieved by their rebuff,
His messengers battered and slain.
His army dispatched to wreak vengeance
On those who had caused him such pain.

Then servants were sent to the country,
(The highway and byway and field.)
To call for the good, bad and ugly;
The King’s wedding feast MUST be filled!

Now here’s where the parable leaves us.
The ugly invited to dine?
To feast at a sumptuous table?
To sample the finest of wine?

And doubtless the rabbis are rabid.
A King sitting next to unclean!
Some beggars who jumped at the invite!
Some wasted and wandering and lean!

Yes, what kind of King seeks the lowly
And calls them to witness his child
In marriage, the best of life’s pleasures,
And makes them his friends? This is wild!

It must be a strange kind of kingdom,
Where Court and the plain-folk are one.
Where Royalty waits on the ragged.
And both find delight in the Son.






Do you dare measure

The limits of Jerusalem

Scope of her reaching

Or gleaming of her light?

You with the rod

Of heartless feet

And inches

Tallies and tokens

To gauge her worth aright?

Pointless this plan

To weigh the sum of mercy

Sobs of relief

Or joy of family found

Words of Messiah

That promise constant keeping

Purpose and plenty

To all on Holy Ground.

Better you view

A single act of kindness

Savour the smell

Of Jesus drawing near.

Tend to the marvel

Of widows’ love rekindled.

Delight in laughter

Of children freed from fear.

(Zechariah 2: 1-5)




Mission Song

Strange it seems

And back with every morning

The song, the plumes

Like none I've ever seen

It takes my breath

Blue flashing from the jungle

And shines with joy

Like something from a dream.

Though days seem long

And men out to the forest

To harvest teak for ships so far away

And women cook

And tend their little babies

While I a wandering pup

Face one more pointless day.

That bird comes back

With all its eastern mystery

And says to me:

“I spend most days alone

But you affirm and seek me

In the morning

Just as you wish

They'd come and seek

God's throne.

I have been placed here

With exquisite purpose

And so have you

Dear preacher, doctor Friend

So shine and sing

And brighten up this forest

And realize Christ works you

To His brilliant end.”











But sanctify the Lord God in your heart and be ready always to give an answer to the man who asks the reason for the hope that is within you with meekness and fear.

The apostle Peter said that, and certainly he was filled with the passion for seeing people enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.

But wait until they ask. Until then it will be your "being" that has effect and not your "answering". Many will say that the passing on of scripture will not come back void.

But Jesus said that His disciples were becoming "fishers of men". The fisherman looks for many signs in the water, the wind and sun and structure. He knows the characteristics of the fish likely to be around. He doesn't just throw the net indiscriminately.

And then when the question gets asked and the Spirit within says to you 'Yes this is the green light', you must proceed humbly and respectfully. This is the birthing of another Brother or Sister in the faith.









YouTube Video



Waves of Salvation





More Than My Necessary Food




What will you show me today
Where will you take me
Which promise or warning?
Only for my good, of course.
Tough bargains sometimes
But eventually off comes
The hard casing, that
The heart of love might show.
You have birthed me, earthed me
Mirthed me and worthed me.
Such a God, such a Father
Such a Word of confidence and hope.
I eat it up gladly.
Following the footsteps of
My Elder Brother.
He too would read and meditate
Before the coming of
The happy crowds
The needy crowds
The curious crowds.
Before the harsh inquisition
The Via Dolorosa
The bloodied perch
Between two malefactors.
But He knew the end of your Book
And so do I.
And I feast with saints.
Gift, and gifts happily received.









So glad that I could do it
In fleeting gasps of pain
With arms outstretched
On Roman beams
And clouds begun to rain.
The One beside me
Shows no hate
His Mother down below
And eye meets eye
As oft before
They held each other so.
But this is not a common crowd
The holy men preside
And urge the rabble's
Thirst for blood
Most likely they had lied.
"A King", they mock,
"And is your Court
A bloodied perch and crown?"
Oh Saviour, time to save yourself
Display your power
Come down!
But death is part
And parcel yet
You have your Father's word
And you beseeched the darkening sky
And He most surely heard.
And I with scarce the breath to spare
And justly here for crime
Turn to you King
And gladly sing
Your pardon, Kingdom mine.
Luke 23: 43






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YouTube Video




YouTube Video


YouTube Video





A Son to His Father




Yes, Father.
I have sought your face.
I have heard your voice.
I have found your will.
I have delighted in following.
As a youngster at home.
In the carpenter’s shop.
As the Romans came to town and went.
At the Jordan with John.
Stretched in the wilderness.
In the teeming curious crowds.
Alone, and seeking in night hours.
With the sick.
With the cynical.
When challenged as to my service.
When challenged as to the Kingdom.
When disappointed by friends.
When weary of their ambition.
In Gethsemane.
Troubled and sore amazed.
Telling the Governor the truth.
Enduring the pain,
As one wretched thief
Acknowledged our plan,
And you seemed removed.

But the plan was sovereign.
I sit again at your side.
We have glorious fellowship.
We hear from the family.
We delight to bless.
And oh, dear Father,
They are coming.
Your sons, daughters to the feast.






The One Thief’s Confession: a paraphrase

I am finished and I know it. Done violence to the peace, order and truth of this place. Getting my just deserts.

But the Fellow beside me looks nothing like a bad actor. Doesn’t even register hate as they nail and jeer. Takes it all manfully.

Some buzz has been spread that He is a king. I believe it. These Romans are bullies and frauds. The priests and ritualists nothing better, except they use scrolls instead of swords.

I spoke up for him over the taunts of the other guy; said that if He was ushering in a Kingdom, I wanted to go. If only He could be mightily merciful on that account…on my account.

He said that it was a done deal. Before I could reckon the time I would be with Him in Paradise.

He appeared relieved that only one, even the likes of me, would speak favourably of Him at this horrible time.*


(* salvation in a nutshell, and you thought that you had to swim the widest sea…)






Your Heart


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(Image: Jesus is the Ark for our journey.)

He built an ark

And others thought him crazy

They mocked the task

Of mallet, bit and plane.

The family chose

To honour Noah’s wishes

And life for them

Would never be the same.

He had that look

Of one who had touched Glory

He grieved at lust

And wickedness around.

The laughter and

The night-times filled with excess

No thought of God

Or deluge

Obliterating ground.

He heard a Voice

That grieved at the creation

A landscape raped

By men without restraint

Though words had come

For reverent moderation

There was but one

Devoted, tuned-in saint.

And his the charge

To gather all the creatures

To ply in peace

The fearful waves forewarned.

And come they did

By rank to fill

The sturdy vessel

Days before the dreaded storm.

The family shut.

The Ark complete.

But still no moisture.

And camps of revelry

All burning fires of hate.

For seven days

A simple trust

Would judge the nations

Ere God released

Disaster’s dreadful weight.

Now was the Ark

Sufficient for the purpose

And did it bear

The weeks with no “land-ho”?

What God says stands

A certain fount of rescue.

And mercy

Every child of faith will know.

(Luke 17: 26, 27 and Hebrews 11: 7)






The Simplest Letter



(In his senior years administering some churches in Asia Minor, John the Beloved wrote a glorious letter of assurance.)


‘I have handled Light and Love

Basked in His perfect instruction

Saw Him put flesh on

Righteousness and brotherly kindness

Felt a fortunate, thankful heart bursting.

And I have His nature; His Spirit.

By this I have escaped the world

Its lusts, striving and fear.

It lies in wickedness

But that wickedness

Bows before the anointing

His anointing, liberally shared


Tweaking the nose of anti-Christ

Of denial and darkness.

And all of the other idols

Lose their pull.

Friends you may have

All of this as well

Directly from Him.

His Story (Word).

His identification (Water)

His cleansing (Blood).

The Son of God sent


As Saviour of the world.’










It's a Living Word we're given

And it lives in each one's sphere

And it shows its rule in happenings

And in friendships held most dear.

Though it speaks of ancient Abraham

And of Joseph behind bars

It will grab the timeless human hope

And offer it the stars.

It will sing in David's loneliness

And soothe in Job's dread pain

And will walk our Christ up Calvary

Till the grave gives up the slain.

It is one more blessed circle

Like the sun or seasons round

First a Garden's shameful folly

Last a Garden's Grace re-found.

As a child holds up the eye-glass

And its colours mix and move

So the scriptures' application

Always love and mercy prove.

And the fragments' vivid colours

Share a multitude of views

Though each piece of glass is constant

Ever true to our Good News.

There's an orange for flesh and folly

There's a blue for Heaven's call

There's a red for sin's blood ransom

And a black for Eden's Fall.

There's a green for new life budding

And a violet regal throne

And a golden treasured harvest

Made by Jesus' pain His own.  






Let's Understand This...


The Lord was having dinner
His departure close at hand
And the format echoed Moses'
Tortured trek to Promised Land
And the blood that worked Passover
Now was in a cup Christ raised
His a Life of selfless giving
Coming ages thanked and praised.
And a promise now so strangely
To dear friends who scarcely knew
That the Spirit's help was coming
More than meet to see life through.
His a power of conviction
Touching both the good and grim
Citing sin and righteous victory
Filling judgment to the brim.
Yes to judge the Prince of Darkness
Who has held sway o'er this place
Jesus came and Jesus conquered
Though it seemed all sad disgrace.
Wicked men would raise Him cross-wise
And would jeer at all He said
But an empty tomb endorsed Life
And brought ceaseless joy instead.
Can you hear this?
"Prince of Darkness."
And you thought this World was kind
But it blinks at so much suffering
That Love's Gospel brings to mind.

John 16: 8-11



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There’s a myth going round

That with teaching

You will grow

(Once you know)

Into Christ.

And the lectures pile

Higher and deeper

To inspect and dissect

Mercy’s price.

But the head

Can be led

By strange fashion

And the head

Can be fed

Nasty pride.

If you want

To delve into His Passion

You must venture

Much deeper inside.

You must soak

In those Gospels

In reverence.

You must pray

For His purpose

Each day.

And the Christ like the dew

Comes to visit.

And the Christ

Becomes you

And will stay.

It is all about

Being His prisoner

One in bonds to

The Love that He’ll share.

And He feeds

And He feeds

By His Spirit.

You become Christendom

In His care.






Romans 8: Just a Fraction


Can’t be done

Save in the Spirit

Works that bless a Holy God.
Strains to strive
In mortal measure
Miss the Way that Jesus trod.
Pumped in prayer
From last night’s waiting
Waiting for the Season’s Word
Cleared the slate
Of pointless fretting
That the One Voice might be heard.
Heard, and then
The surge of power
Fresh with Throne Room’s vital force
Makes the day
And heals the heartache
All the Spirit’s work, of course.
In such power
The Great Commission
And the ethic of our Christ
Heals the wan
And saves the sorrowful
Freely, without coin or price.






10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you. (1 Peter 5: 10)

I get the first two points. Our faith puts us on solid footing, a trustworthy rock of revelation. We are stablished in God’s constancy and sovereign will. (Psalm 40)

Then all the means of grace strengthen us in our faith childhood and adolescence (Bible study, prayer, meditation, worship, exchange with fellow believers, chastening trials and temptations, suffering, giving of our means and service, the Lord’s Supper).

But this third one, being settled? Think of a stormy lake surface being made calm. Gone are the doubts, fears and cross-purposes. A condition of rest prevails. Assignments are accomplished with greater efficiency. Onlookers are attracted by this strange resource of calm and confidence. The work of the Kingdom goes on with surprising efficiency.

This was always something about Jesus’ earth walk that amazed and attracted me; His obvious calm, moderation and control, every day, every waking hour.

Is this achievable? Not in my own power or resolve. But then, that is not the entire story for the child of God.

And that calm, settled lake surface reflects then Son.

Power in Peter's Estimation

image by Ron DiCianni

They have lived ordeals
Mostly in quiet corners
Stumped by the harshness
Of a world for winners
Trim, muscular, popular
Monstrously self-absorbed
They have found rescue
On knees of broken supplication
Have heard words from the Risen One
Have stood up again
Assured of protection, counsel
From the Highest
And a promised abode
In righteousness and peace.
They are no longer
Terrified by public opinion
Peculiar people Peter said
Out on a limb
Of adventure and loving it
Persecuted because clean
Begotten again through
Words of power
And not by any natural means
They are called out of darkness
Into marvelous light
Peter said.
Strangely transformed to
A royal priesthood
A holy nation.
Yet now they go about
The simple jobs and households
Helping where prepared
By unlikely instruments
Kept by the power of God
Unto salvation
Ready to be revealed 
In the last time
Wherein they rule and reign
With every conceivable virtue
For equity, harmony and joy.
Christ their's without end.

(Note: One of my favourite journeys passes right through Peter's First Epistle.)




Living Ready


He was standing near me at the counter. Checking me out periodically. Familiar face? Yeah, an acquaintance from a storefront church downtown years ago. He joined me for coffee, and we got up to date, mutual acquaintances, new developments.

He remembered that I had preached occasionally at that place, and he found it necessary to present his religious hardware. Why, I wondered. Out came the plastic wrapped bundle of tracts.

What are those, I asked.

Oh, I give them out on the Main Street sometimes.

Oh so you’re into scattershot tract distribution?

He chuckled at my choice of words.

We then went on to have a discussion about how and when to use such materials.

I suggested that all of our mentors give the impression that we are to be great combine harvesters for Jesus in the Salvation Crop. The truth is we are more like little Ruth gleaning over in some small corner of the field, quietly as legitimate opportunity arises. This was an image instilled in me years ago back in Chatham by Laura, a friend of the family and mighty intercessor. She put the convincing dance of Pentecost into our lives.


Let us get a realistic hold on the part for us to play in Christian service:

Live clean. Culture a compassionate ear and an un-aroused temper. Honour the Lord with the most hallowed and kingly place in your inner man. Be ready always to give a gentle answer to the one who asks for the reason for the hope that is in you by Jesus Christ. Do not waiver from the non-negotiables in the Good News.

If more people would simply do this, as united brothers and sisters in Christ, how great would be the yield in our neighbourhoods, workplaces, schools and markets?









Many’s the thing that steels a man

Brings to the higher plain

Some of it breathing loveliness

Some of it washed in pain

Things that were not commendable

Things he would have erased

But they are each a messenger

Drawing to Jesus’ face.

Such is the man by Grace renewed

Such is God’s “normal” heart

Deaf to the words of fashion’s craze

Set from the world apart.

And he will wonder of a time

Which is the wiser track

‘Til in some prayerful niche sublime

Jesus will call him back.

Back to embrace the One True Friend

Pearl of great price revealed

Pathways beneath His noble gaze

Leave the saint strong and “steeled”.


(Matthew 13: 44-46)







Consumer Christians


They see dividends. Get out of hell free. Get relief from guilt. Get a healing. Get relationships back in shape. Get a family friendly environment to raise the kids. Get the satisfaction of doing one’s duty. Get a prophetic fix on the future. Get abundant life.

But listen to the faith giants. Paul said that he was constrained (as if in a vise) on account of the love of Christ. Peter when challenged about his fidelity responded, “Lord where else would I go? You hold the keys.” They had met unadulterated courage, compassion, honesty and righteousness in the Master, and had made a quality decision never again to look elsewhere for the lodestar in life. They spoke of being bondservants. They delighted in passing on the Good News.

In Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians, there had been a challenge to his ministry credentials. He responded with an odd sort of “bragging” in the eleventh chapter. He would glory in his infirmities, deprivations and persecutions. Inferentially he was saying that his Elder Brother was so attractive as a man’s man and leader that the setbacks seemed of little account. With every challenge he felt himself growing in the fellowship of His sufferings and in the compassion and spiritual power of Jesus. No other life-purpose could measure up.

So forget about the “getting” of this or that. Simply get Christ in increasing measure.






Dialogue Through the Clouds

I don’t feel much like praying right now Sir.

Fred that is precisely when you must pray. Breakthrough comes no other way to a child of Mine.

Things are such a mess. I just need some time to myself Sir. You know, to work through this.

Fred, my Spirit works it through, not you.

Sir, I have made some really bad decisions lately, particularly with things as tough as they are.

Fred I know all about that. I was there…and yes sometimes shaking my head. But I cut my kids slack when needed. And never let go.

Sir I am afraid to let it out; to let You or any other know the full picture right now. It would be too confusing and mortifying. I might really lose it.

Fred I watched my Son hang before the mockers, naked and vulnerable. He did this so that one day you could dispense His honest love, Our honest love without reserve or concern for self. And experience the joy. Capice?

OK Dad we’ve been here before haven’t we. Thanks for that. I love You. I must love You.

 Intimate Knowledge?



Still the Age of Christ’s humiliation

Still the kiss of betrayal

From those who mouth “Master, Master”.

Vain repetition for prayer

In spite of His warnings.

Broken sufferers

Passed by on the other side.

Supposed warriors, builders

Side-tracked by “business is business”

By “this will never sell”

By “don’t get carried away with it all”

And He deserves so much more

His touch renews

His smile is sunrise

His visit awakens

His words the only platform

Of honest hope.

The Way, the Truth, the Life


And the Agenda moves forward

Quietly, humbly



To the parting of the skies

The arrival of the King triumphant

The filling of the earth

With the knowledge of

The glory of the Lord

As waters cover the sea.

Habakkuk 2: 14






At the Cross


You Will Notice...


You will notice that this site contains nothing about so-called Christian lifestyle, prosperity, healing of relationships, healthy parenting, strategies for forgiveness or control of troublesome thoughts. Such topics occupy so many pulpits and bear little life-changing effect.

I will always say, "Get Jesus in increasing measure into your consciousness and you will make the right decisions and go in the right directions. His Spirit is infectious. His life enters into you and manifests itself in blessing."







Jes' Talkin



I's here agin
An ah have so few woids
But it's the gittin togetha
Most mattas
Ah believe.
And You has the time
Always has the time
Lookin down from
Brilliance an Glory
Settin aside those angels' songs
Jes to consider ma squallin
Or ma pleadin
Ma thankin or my
Plain ole wonda.
Dis ole man
Done had many a hard job
Often cruel or stupid orders
From tha Man.
A spell in the joint
An keen ears an
A much sharpened shiv
Afta dark
Jes ta raise up the odds.
An a wife and two chillen
Hardly knew me afta
The twelve year stint.
But you knows me
You stick in dere fo me.
And you brought 
Some good folks
Crosst ma path
Prayin and heppin
An smilin folks.
Ah can almose smell
Yo Spirit on em.
Second chances and singin.
Clean woik now.
Ah sketches a little as well
Scenes of pain, hope or joy
Two of em sittin
Up now on the library wall
Folks considerin
Provin dis ole man
Sees an thinks
Feels an releases
Fatha you have ma devotion
Such as tis.
An ma good repote.
I love Ya
Gwine stop now ta
Read Psalm one-oh-seven.




john 9

Many remember the disgraceful parade

The Hill and the thieves

The strange cry at departure

And they called it done

And they called it weak

And they called it misguided.

But I arose

King David’s words

Rejoiced in me

The angels collected with welcome

The Father’s embrace

Warmed these Cross-stretched arms

Finished…accomplished…no loose ends

And I am seated

In Heavenly places

With full realization of

Conditions of my flock

They bleat and I see

They struggle with the everyday

And I relate

Commiserate, compassionate


Lights that shine

In a darkening world

A declining world

Father and I work out

The response, the reward,

The rescue, the recompense

And yes, there is the return.

Another procession

Another parade

But this one all victory

All vitalizing, vindicating

Just as promised.

In unfailing Word.


(Doug has dreamed of both parades with equal respect and longing.)



Ripped by the Passion


Has it ripped you?

That look on His face

As the mother caught

A glimpse

And they yanked Him away.


The momentum

Of prosecution

Sweeps over Goodness;

The chains, the sweat,

The martial pace.


A rude woodwork

Lades His shoulders.

Streets once rejoicing

At the message

Now curse and scrape.


But has it ripped you?

Seeing many falls

And lashings.

The Peacemaker

Inciting matchless hate.


And friends stare mutely

But dare not step up.

Even the governor

Flinches at this task.

God’s will be done.


It ripped Him…God

To see a Son so

Badly shamed, pained,

Rebuked and drained,

As per Plan.


That target hill on

Which salvation stands.

The spikes that butcher

Feet and hands.

The ridiculous crown.


But show me, Man.

It rips and rocks you.

Or else REMOVE!

Another broken reed,

Christ’s worth to prove.






And I awoke

And saw a crowd of singers

Loudly rehearsing

The victories of their King.

Crutches and prosthetics


New skin formed over

Past troubles

Vision twenty-twenty

And hearing right on key.

The celebration embodying

My journey’s hope

Of family and forgiveness

Of danger’s dwindling snarl.

The inner Spring given voice

Now free from any reticence

From past stumblings

Shame or confusion.

This was the real

Behind the screen of struggle

Inequity and clamour.

This was Heaven.

And Jesus arrived…





YouTube Video

YouTube Video





Come Into the Ark (Jesus)

Powerful sermon by Robert Murray M'Cheyne






Some Gospel ebooks by Doug



Jesus and the Women



Men with Men



Dusty Old Prophets



Many Prodigals, Many Returns



 Second Crop



Down Through the Conduit



 Back to the Well



 From the Bursting Heart










The Thomas in Us

I am afraid to risk

I am afraid to die

Afraid to love and serve

Afraid to trust

To dream.

But you might show me the proofs

Give me a way full of rules

Help me to stand apart from my “twin”

And his worldly bent.

I can’t have it all

Not really

The spiritual and the relational

The daily pointing

Of God’s “finger”.

Hearing His thoughts

Doing His works.

But you tried Rabbi

And they killed you.

Convention, common sense

Could never bow down

Before your carpenter trappings

And claim “My Lord and my God”.

Could I?

Hebrews 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;

15 And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage.






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Acts 10: 38 


There is a huge victory cry in this passage. God anointed Jesus Christ with power and the Holy Ghost, and He went around doing good and healing all who were oppressed of the Devil, for God was with Him.

Here is a wonderful illustration of Trinity in perfect accord. Here is a frank statement on the limitations accepted by Jesus in the incarnation. He was not some freakish hybrid demi-god as in other myths. He was “us” for 33 years, and the anointing and the welcome place for the presence of God made all the difference.

Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians tells us much about the operation of the Spirit and about His sovereignty. One day He empowers. The next day He does something differently. Indeed no individual should presume to enjoy a life-long gifting of the Spirit in a particular manner of service. It is as the Spirit wills in order to best complement the complete operation of the Body of Christ.

In Acts 10 the New Life, the forgiveness, the water baptism, the baptism in the Holy Ghost, the anointing of the Spirit had all come to the Gentiles in Cornelius’ house.

The Spirit still comes to us with similar enabling, comfort, illumination and guidance. If He did it for and with Jesus, will we not see similar moves of compassion and power, if yielded in all humility and hope?



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Examining Paul the Apostle


In the Spirit of Malachi


The crickets have stopped

The chill has come on

The night sky it sparkles

Will be a clear dawn

And sleep has escaped me

The people, their pain

The scores at the River

Repenting again

So long they have waited

For Israel’s King

In shame and oppression

Oh let freedom ring

And maybe tomorrow

His light will appear

As Heaven comes closer

Relieving all fear

Oh Lord God, Jehovah

I pray for the peace

For hearts tired of wandering

Forgiveness, release

And is it your purpose

This wilderness man

Who cries in the desert

Proclaiming your Plan

To ready the people

For full and free Grace

Oh come now Messiah

Traverse time and space.





Looking for Norm


A little help offered here in assessing the common strains of the Christian life. But even that term is misleading. We are not talking characteristics, ethics or codes. We are really in search of the impartation of the very life and love of Jesus into our inmost being, for the asking in beggarly fashion.

Unity of Heart

The believer desires to live a life entirely pleasing to his Lord and Saviour. But isn't perfection an unattainable goal? Remember that you have been adopted by an all-loving Father. He expects that there will be stages of growth and certain possible attainments with each. Even the inadvertent stumbling of His child brings on the smiles. So what is this unity of heart, this un-compromised, unmixed dedication?




Yes Lord

Oh yes Lord

You comfort and feed us

You heal as you lead us

You strengthen and steel us

In time you reveal us

As vessels of mercy

Oh Lord let the world see

As judgment comes nearer

And Jesus’ truth clearer

May we be your envoys

Distributing faith’s joys.







Thanks for the visit. Make contact through my email if you wish.   (blaredub@gmail.com)


Doug and Hilary Blair




Stunning Invitation

Took me by surprise

The realization

You really did care

Didn’t just send me on my way.

The tests no longer lonely

Though they still come.

The road no longer pointless

The future without fear.

So what has happened

Changing it all?

Took a long look

At a kind man on a Cross

In the jeering crowd

My face appeared.

But on the other side

Of an empty tomb

He came to me

He really did.

Said that He and the Father

Had known me

Had loved me

From before ever I was.

I took Him up

On the stunning invitation.


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