“Great is thy faithfulness, Great is thy faithfulness, Morning by morning new mercies I see…”

For no reason I could think of, this was the song I was humming to myself as I set out for my early walk with the dogs on a recent rainy, windy, November morning.

Heading out in the early light on such a morning, before some of the houses on our street even have their lights on, one could wonder, “Why?” What and where are the new mercies?

Yet, in the company of two large and enthusiastic canine companions, it is hard to not share at least a little in their sense that each day is a wonderful adventure. As one of the other early morning walkers said, emerging out of the blowing drizzle with his enthusiastic lab pup, “Every day is great!”

And so I walked along, grateful to be reminded by my wet and happy dogs, that life is good, that this very day is a part of life to be savoured and enjoyed.

A recent chapel service at the General Council Office was led by colleagues from EDGE. As we arrived, we were invited to reflect on the question, “What is the song God is calling your heart to sing?”

Joshua, who did the reflection, started with a conversation about rap music, a genre I admit to having had no interest in, possibly even a mild aversion to, previously. When I heard Joshua talk about it, about the origins of people finding their voices and communicating messages that the world needs to hear, and about how that made Joshua feel, and how he was grateful for a church where we can experience the holy in different ways, I found my mind and heart newly opened. It may still not be my ultimate musical taste, but I will henceforth hear it with respect.

I hope that from now on, when I hear rap music, I will remember the challenge that Joshua left us with in that chapel service: “Look for God in unexpected places, because he is there....”

 — Nora Sanders is General Secretary of The United Church of Canada. 

This message was originally sent to subscribers to the General Secretary's letter, "Note from Nora." Subscribe here.