While most of our students have been enjoying some snow days at home, I’ve had the chance to join our grade 8 students in Ottawa along with Mrs. Flokstra, Mr. Jarvis, and a few of our parents. The last few days have made me thankful for protection, peacefulness, and pancakes. Let me explain to you how these all connect.
On Tuesday morning, we congregated at the school uncertain of what the day held with the impending storm on the horizon. After much prayer, we set out on our journey. No sooner had we left that we needed to change buses due to an issue with the window defroster. Despite this set back, we began navigating our way through the snow. When we pulled over at the On Route just outside of Port Hope, I overheard a lady maligning the fact that two tour buses were on the road with teenagers and were asking for problems. What she didn’t realize was that God was with us and allowing us to get ahead of the storm. By the time we pulled over for lunch outside of Brockville, there was no snow and smooth driving. We were protected from start to finish and were on time for every activity that had been scheduled for the day.
The snow did arrive in Ottawa in the evening and left quite a covering by the time we woke up on Wednesday morning. As we walked on Parliament Hill and navigated our way through the surrounding streets and Rideau Locks, I was struck by the peacefulness that came after the storm. Aside from a few people plowing and shovelling snow from the paths, there was a calm that had settled along with a fresh, white blanket of snow. The chaos of the night before had been replaced by beauty and stillness, in a similar manner to what God leaves behind after He has calmed our personal storms of life.
Finally, we had the opportunity to cross the border into Quebec to experience a traditional French “Cabane á Sucre” or “Sugar Shack” meal. As a longstanding way of bringing family and friends together to celebrate the final days of winter and arrival of spring, our students took part in the sharing of local comfort foods, folk music and dance. As a Trinity community, we broke bread (along with pancakes drenched in pure maple syrup) and made memories that this group will cherish for many years. It was particularly special for me to share some of my French Canadian heritage with our students.
These are only a few snapshots from our trip; however, I hope that they have given you a glimpse into the many things that we are experiencing and learning together, We thank God for his faithfulness during this adventure.