Happy Canada Day to one and all!
As Christians we gather on Sunday, every Sunday, to celebrate the Resurrection of Our Lord, of course, but, on this day of national thanksgiving, it is right to give thanks to God for the blessings we have as citizens of this amazing nation called Canada. We are richly, wonderfully blessed, and like every blessing it is not for us to claim the blessing as ours alone and try to exclude all others, however we may do that. Cf. Genesis 12.2
After we thank God, we need to be aware of what our First Nations sisters and brothers have contributed to making this country what it is today: Everything they had and pretty much everything they were. There are not Two Founding Nations of Canada; there were scores, if not hundreds, plus the two latecomers. I hope when we all say, je me souviens, that we remember a greater truth than the betrayal and sacrifice of New France (Quebec) by Imperial France in favour of Martinique; may we always remember what all the native peoples of this Turtle Island upon which we live have sacrificed to make Canada and the USA and Mexico possible, and give thanks with very humble hearts.
Here are couple of Bible readings for Canada Day, and for every day. How are we doing in the sight of God? Especially when we consider the poor, the homeless, the prisons full of Aboriginal people, and far too many others in dire straits right here in Winnipeg and across the land?
Isaiah 10.1-2: “Woe to those who decree iniquitous decrees, and the writers who keep writing oppression, to turn aside the needy from justice and to rob the poor of my people of their right, that widows may be their spoil, and that they may make the fatherless their prey!”
Celebrate today and tomorrow, give thanks, absolutely! But, again, think about this verse from Micah, 6.8: “[God] has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Canada is still an experiment, no guarantees. Let’s work together to make sure that it succeeds in the long run.