Thursday, May 14, 2009

China Earthquake - 2008

About a year ago, there was a terrible earthquake in China. One of the reporters who went there to investigate further into the cause of the earthquake, and to interview the mother of one of the children who died, encountered animosity and even violence from the authorities, which was caught on video... you can read/see the video about it on the Financial Times World News website.

It's so sad to think of the incredible amount of oppression and intervention of the government on every part of the life of the Chinese people, and even on outsiders! We know of it, but often forget about it - they live such a different life, so totally unfamiliar to us.

We can be so thankful for the freedoms that we have here in North America! Sometimes it seems as if we're slowly giving up our freedom in other less noticeable ways (but perhaps more sinister?) - take for example the new driver's license: it's got a radio chip and barcode in it that can be tracked through some sort of magnetized code (I don't understand it completely). You can read a little bit about it on The Toronto Star's website. The U.S. is also starting to issue these new "enhanced" drivers licenses (click here or here to read more).

Sign of the times? who knows...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Valley of Vision

Thou incomprehensible but prayer-hearing God,

Known, but beyond knowledge,

revealed, but unrevealed,

my wants and welfare draw me to thee,

for thou hast never said, ‘Seek ye me in vain’.

To thee I come in my difficulties, necessities, distresses;

possess me with thyself,

with a spirit of grace and supplication,

with a prayerful attitude of mind,

with access into warmth of fellowship,

so that in the ordinary concerns of life

my thoughts and desires may rise to thee,

and in habitual devotion I may find a resource that will

soothe my sorrows, sanctify my successes,

and qualify me in all ways for dealings with my fellow men.

I bless thee that thou hast made me capable

of knowing thee, the author of all being,

of resembling thee, the perfection of all excellency,

of enjoying thee, the source of all happiness.

O God, attend me in every part of my arduous and trying pilgrimage;

I need the same counsel, defence, comfort I found at my beginning.

Let my religion be more obvious to my conscience,

more perceptible to those around.

While Jesus is representing me in heaven, may I reflect him on earth,

While he pleads my cause, may I show forth his praise.

Continue the gentleness of thy goodness towards me,

And whether I wake or sleep, let thy presence go with me,

thy blessing attend me.

Thou hast led me on and I have found thy promises true,

I have been sorrowful, but thou hast been my help,

fearful, but thou hast delivered me,

despairing, but thou hast lifted me up.

Thy vows are ever upon me,

And I praise thee, O God.

--Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions, God Enjoyed