October 13, 2011 – Joel Windle
(a weekly e-letter to Sunnyside Wesleyan Church’s Downtown Congregation)
“In him we live and move and have our being.”
..and then on the sixth try, my laptop actually started. for a long while now, something called an “update” has been needing to happen and i kept saying no. i know a virus when i see one. however by another totally unrelated coincidence, nothing was working this morning. i had it going once in ‘safe mode’ but everything looked huge and rectangled. like my computer had suddenly become a piet mondrian.
google chrome? is that you?
i was considering packing it in and giving myself the day off, but a last-ditch effort of repeatedly mashing the power button and spilling just enough of my morning coffee into the keyboard to wake up the c-drive, i’m back in business. but i need another coffee. i feel shortchanged on my last.
i sincerely hope that everyone had a relaxing and enjoyable thanksgiving. i know a lot of people traveled and a lot of people hosted. i also know that some didn’t have either option. what i like about this day on the calendar is that we can all participate in it because we all have much to be grateful for. we sometimes have to dig a little deeper to see how blessed we truly are and find all the reasons why God deserves our thanks, but those are the times when days like thanksgiving are the most meaningful.
i also found it curious that i had no idea what the origins of this day were. in fact if you ask anyone, they’ll likely give you a good answer for why americans celebrate columbus day, or why americans celebrate thanksgiving. it turns out canada’s tradition is rooted in homecoming rather than harvest.
so one 16th century day a handsome chap named martin frobisher (we’ll call him frobie) decided to take a stab at finding a northern passage to the pacific. (like you do i guess.) frobie didn’t have the advantages that you and i have, namely looking at a map and saying, “yo frobes, probably not a good plan.” he figured this out the hard way, and completely failed in his attempt. but our frobie had his head on straight.
might have had something to do with his cartwheel ruff.
when frobie got home to his frobette and littling froblings, he realized he should be grateful simply for being alive. in 1578 he threw a party in newfoundland to give thanks. i like this, because my understanding of why we celebrated thanksgiving was more about harvest. we give thanks for how much we have but eating a good deal of it all in one go. frobie’s story inspired me to be thankful for the much more important things that i have a tendency to overlook. frobie failed, came home and celebrated. and he was an explorer, this wasn’t just a whimsical camping trip, this was his life. and he came back home unsuccessful. but he came back.
i think God wants to give us his perspective on life. and i think if we can strike out at something, something big, something important, if we can lose something dear to us, if we can fall on hard times and still be thankful enough in the midst of it all to celebrate what we do have, then we can know that God is at work in our heart. and that’s good testimony.
i was going to tell you another story involving the windle household and an obscene amount of potatoes, but i don’t want to give you too much to read. i am, however, finished my mug of jo. so. if you wanted to swap thanksgiving stories or feel like chatting about the meaning of life and nothing in particular, send me a note and we’ll go for coffee. my treat.
see you sunday.
Sunnyside Wesleyan Church is a multi-site church: one church in two locations. For more information, please visit our website: www.sunnysidechurch.ca.
The Downtown location is at the Alumni Auditorium in the Jock Turcot University Centre on the University of Ottawa campus. The service time is Sunday at 10 a.m. (Map)
The Grosvenor location is at 58 Grosvenor Ave. The summer service time is 10 a.m. (Map)
Services in both locations usually last about 75 minutes.
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Baptism Group with Ellen meets Sunday @ 12:30. Ellen: firstname.lastname@example.org
Love & Respect Conference: Nov. 18th & 19th (the cost is 35.00 per person before Nov. 7th)
Photos for the Dec. 2011 Church Directory will be take Oct. 16th, 23rd, & 30th
Missions Night on October 30th @Grosvenor Site
There are Opportunities to Serve @the Downtown Site. Please see Joel.
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