Costorphine Hill behind Murrayfield from wikipedia

Costorphine Hill in daylight - the beacons are just visible!

A few nights ago I was travelling homeward in the car. As I approached Edinburgh, ahead of me I could see the city lights.

Two in particlular are very familiar to me. They are the red lights that top off two masts high on Corstorphine Hill. This land mark I can see from my home, and at night it is usually the first one I identify as I draw near the city, from whatever direction I aspproach.

Though there was no fog this time, there was no moon either, so even with its massive bulk, the Hill was invisible. Nevertheless, there, proud and bright, were the two red beacons.

Even massive things may pass beyond our vision. The sun goes behind a cloud; a great ocean liner sails over the horizon. But there is no reason for us to suppose that they no longer exist,  simply because we cannot perceive them with our senses. Corstorphine Hill had not crumbled once darkness fell! I could tell that much, because the beacons marked it’s height.

Of course, while it is easier to experience the closeness of God when we are praying or reading the Bible, there are times when God may seem very far away; days when we appear to see nothing of him. But he is still there. We just need to look for the beacons, the events that mark his presence and care.

  • The phone call from friend that came as you were feeling a bit lonely
  • The lost item that turned up just in time
  • The book mark you “just happened” to find in an old volume, and which quoted a Bible verse or motto which helped you see things straight
  • The kind thoughtfulness of a neighbour
  • The simple faith of your child
  • The inspiration of another life
  • The glory of a sunset
  • A safe journey, without incident or harm
  • And so I could go on…

In so many ways, some obvious and some subtle, God indicates his love and care for us. When I realized that knowing God was with me was not necessarily the same as feeling his presence, I began to make an effort to detect God’s beacons every day. There is always something that marks his presence.

Now I don’t need to see the beacons to know he is there. But it’s become a habit and it certainly turns my thoughts Godward in awe and gratitude.

When did you last see a beacon of his presence with you?

Will you join me in looking for at least one, every day, and thanking God for it, however small?

Be Thankful stitched

 “If you learn to appreciate more of what you already have, you’ll find yourself  having more to appreciate.” – Michael Angier

 “Thankfulness and Joyfulness are closely related to each other… ” – Ron Edmondson (

Today, being Thanksgiving in the USA, has made many bloggers consider what they are thankful for.

I’m going to try to be thankful and appreciative every day. Thankful to others, and thankful most of all to God. For in every day, in many ways, the evidence of his love and care are seen – if we look.

One day I was  interrupted before my flat-mate and I left  home on a car journey. It was frustrating, as time was of the essence. But a little while later we came upon and accident that had happened not long before. Had we left on time, that could have been our car crushed by the lorry.

Another time I lost my bank card. I knew it was in the flat, but could I find it? You’ve guessed! It took me hours of sifting through papers, waste bins, laundry and all the rest. I was into cupboards and corners that hadn’t seen the light of day for months (you try anything, however improbable, don’t you?)! Eventually I found the card, but in the search I also came across some very important papers that needed attention and which I had totally forgotten about!

Sometimes it is in the awkward frustrations and downright problems of life that, if we look, we can see the care of God for us. And if it is not immediately obvious where the good is in it all, we can still trust. Because one thing I know, our loving heavenly Father will always be there. He cares about not only the major life-changing things, but about the minutiae of our practical lives. We have a God who cares – and isn’t that something to be thankful about?

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SLICES OF MY LIFE are little slivers of my experiences. I have many interests and this blog is my way of keeping track of what I see and learn. Some of it brings a smile to my face, uplifts and encourages me, or makes me think deeply. I hope you enjoy what you read here as much as I enjoy writing it!