Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Thankful Tuesdays!

Have you ever wondered why God made flowers?   

 Sure they are pretty... and we love looking at them, but why are they here? 

God made flowers to make us happy.  Nothing else has as many jobs as a little flower. We use them to make medicines; we use them to make teas, to decorate our homes, to decorate our foods. 

Flowers can say:

“I love you”, “I’m sorry” “Please forgive me” “You’re wonderful” “Feel Better” “Bon Voyage”
“Farewell”  “Our Sympathies”  “Happy Birthday”  “Happy Mother’s Day”  “Congratulations”
“Merry Christmas”  And so many other emotions, are all covered, by simply giving flowers.

Flowers are universal.  They come in all shapes, sizes, and colours and grow everywhere.

Every race, uses flowers in one form or another. Even Animals love the flowers.

Flowers grow all over the world, in every climate.  

Poets speak of flowers in every language. 
Perhaps Flowers will be the catalyst that brings this world together in PEACE.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Thankful Tuesdays!

    In my last "Thankful Tuesday" post, I spoke of a miracle that God had for me.  This week, I want to relay a little bit of what happened yesterday, Monday Aug 8, a miracle for a stranger.

   I went in to a small variety store, to pick up a few items, and in the process found a wallet.  Although this wallet did not contain a lot of money, it did hold a few ID items, and a few personal items, and I knew that the person who had lost it, would appreciate it being returned. 
   Usually when you find something like that, you would think to turn it into the store owner.  My immediate feeling was to NOT give it to the shopkeeper, for whatever reason, but rather, return it to the owner personally.  Upon returning to the car, I told Gary of what I had found, and set about looking through the wallet, to find a phone number or an address of the owner.  We found an address, and wrote a brief note, in case the person was not home.  We drove to the address and sure enough no one was home, so I left the note in between the doors, and Gary and I headed home.
   We had not been home for more than 15 or 20 minutes and the owner contacted us.  Through our phone conversation, we discovered she was also a Christian, and was thrilled to know that her wallet had been located and was intact.  We offered to drive to her home to bring the wallet to her.
   In meeting her, we hugged, and sat on her porch to chat.  We had a good chat, and she kept saying it was wonderful how God had brought us into her life.  And her into ours!
  Now for the Miracle part.... she lost her wallet on or about JUNE 6th.... and we found it on August 8.  It was MEANT for us to find it, and to connect with her.  God wanted us to meet.   Imagine if you will, how many people had been through that particular store, and no one had found it.... or if they did see it, did nothing to return it. It was simply divine intervention. 

  God works in mysterious ways.  I don't know why God wanted us to meet her...YET... but I am sure his reason is a valid one.  Perhaps she will help us.... or we will help her.  Either way... God wanted us to met, and so we trust he will lead us  all down the path he wants us to walk.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Thankful Tuesdays!


    The Empire Sandy was one of 1,464 Empire ships built or acquired for war service by the British Government.[1] Built in England in 1943 as a deep sea tugboat,[1] she was tasked with Royal Navy work and salvaging merchant ships damaged in the Battle of the Atlantic and other naval engagements during the Second World War. She served in the North Atlantic Ocean from Iceland to Sierra Leone, Mediterranean Sea, Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal during World War II.
In 1948 she was bare-boat chartered by Risdon Beazley who renamed her Ashford,[1] together with their Bustler class tug Twyford Ashford entered the rescue towage market.[2] Ashford was handed back to the Admialty in 1952. She was then sold to a Canadian firm, Great Lakes Paper Company, renamed Chris M[1] (after Chris Michels, a senior employee of Great Lakes Paper) and came to the Canadian Great Lakes where she spent fifteen years towing timber rafts for Lake Superior logging companies. In the early 1970s the aged ship was to be sold for scrap, but the steel hull was still in very good condition and she was bought by Nautical Adventures Co. for a possible conversion. They completely rebuilt the Chris M as a three masted schooner in the style of the 1880s and she assumed her original name the Empire Sandy .
    Empire Sandy began serving the Great Lakes as a tall ship in 1982 based in Toronto, Canada. The 200-foot (61 m) long schooner offers sailings for the public, chartered tours, including weddings and other events, on Lake Ontario, Lake Erie and along the St. Lawrence Seaway. Licensed by Transport Canada to carry 275 passengers, she is Canada's largest schooner. Visitors are usually welcome onboard during the day.
Empire Sandy is believed to be the last Empire ship built during World War II to be still sailing. She began serving the Great Lakes as a cruise ship in 1982, and continues to this day.

   Yesterday Aug 1st, 2011 Gary and I took our 3rd cruise, upon the tall ship (schooner) "Empire Sandy" at Canal Days.  It is a 2 hour cruise, on Lake Erie, and is a wonderful experience.  The first time we rode on the ship, in 2008, we spoke with the Captain, and learned a little of her history.  The (female) captain, was a little more detailed in her information than the above prargraphs pulled from Wikipedia, and I would like to share that with you.  The "Empire Sandy" was present as a tugboat, at the Normandy Beach campaign in a support role. 

   Some of you know that I am of Dutch Heritage.  My Grandfather "Opa Joost Ruitenschild"  was a Luitenant ter Zee 1ste klasse or a Luitenant Commander in the Royal Dutch Navy.   I never met my Grandfather, he was killed in a car accident, while travelling home from Amsterdam 2 days after the war ended.  My Mother was 10 Years old when he passed.  His history was passed along to us, via our grandmother(Oma Kitty) and my mother, for we all knew of "Opa Joost" and his involvement with the Normandy campaign. 

Kitty and Joost Ruitenschild on their wedding day.

    Opa Joost was asked to orchestrate the Normandy Campaign, as he knew the waters in that area better than anyone.  The "Empire Sandy" as a tugboat, was present at this campaign in a support role, I know that the possibility that he stood on the deck of her, is extremely likely.
So... each time I stand on deck of that ship I am standing in a complete circle of history... not only public history.. but personal family history.  I feel so close to my Opa Joost, when aboard this tall ship.

It is amazing how something that happened across the ocean from me, before I was even born, has come now to fulfil the circle of life, for me and my desire to know more of my grandfather's story. 

Isn't God amazing?  He knew I would appreciate this connection and he made it happen for me, without my even knowing it was happening.  God works miracles everyday and we are completely unaware when and where they will happen. 

Thank you God for this miracle in my life.