Happy Canada D’Eh?

Happy Canada Day!  What a great holiday to take time and celebrate what an amazing nation we live in!  I love all the flags displayed on lawns and stores, the BBQs, the parades, the fireworks and all the other festivities that accompany this fun-filled weekend.  It’s a fabulous way to kick off the summer with a bang!

The other day I was reading a great article online from CNN.com.  It was called “10 things Canada does better than anywhere else.”  I enjoyed reading this article, but do you think you could guess what the number one thing was?  It was apologize.

As I continued to read the other nine things, my mind kept wondering back to the top thing.  I remember others on different television shows poking fun of Canadians for being too apologetic.  Is this really a bad thing?  Or is it a good thing?

In all honesty, that isn’t important in the grand scheme of life at all.  People can apologize all they want, Canadians or not.  The important part of any apology is forgiveness.  Having a loving and forgiving heart is what I would like Canadians to be famous for.  Keeping an open and loving heart and not letting bitterness, envy, anger, jealousy, or evil into our hearts should be our first priority.  Keep judgment free from our minds and that we could all just love one another.

There are so many people that get their panties in a knot over the craziest of things, and I used to be one of them.  When I was younger I let every little thing bother me.  I would hold grudges towards people who hurt me, my family or my friends.  I wasted so much energy with negative emotions that it was draining on me and my health.  I let societal views sway my beliefs of people and their motives.

It’s hard being a loving and forgiving person.  Probably the hardest thing I’ve encountered.  Some days I feel negative emotions and memories sneaking back in my brain and pictures of certain things flashing before my eyes.  My imagination playing tricks on me.  I envision scenes of certain things that have broken my heart, and I have a feeling overtake my body for a second, until I sit and remind myself that it is just the evil in me trying to sneak its way in to torture me.  Some days, when there are mass shooting and horrible things like that are going on in the world, it makes my brain start wondering what makes people do that, but I don’t know these people’s stories, so I try to kick judgment out of my head.

Many times I have to sit in prayer for a while and ask for strength to forget about the past, and only look forward and not to form opinions of others that I only see glimpses into their stories. I can’t change the past so I only want to look forward, and not at what might have hurt, upset or disappointed me.  Whether the person is a great Canadian and has apologized or not, you still have to forgive those that hurt you.  God wants us to love one another, and harboring these emotions towards God’s children is not the kind of heart God wants us to have.

It is written in 1 John 4:20, “If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.”  Even if you think you are a loving person, but still have negative feelings against others, you are not as loving as God would like to see you.

I love that Canadians are seen as apologetic, but my wish is that we could all live happily as a nation.  No matter the color of our skin, our religious background, our race, our language, or whatever else that might make you different from another person.  We are all creatures of God whether we agree or disagree with what they say or do.   Let forgiveness and brotherly love be your focus this Canada Day, and maybe Canada can also become famous for this someday!

Enjoy the festivities of the great day that recognizes this great nation and let brotherly love fill your day, summer and the rest of your year!