Coming home

All-American action hero, G.I. Joe

For those following this blog for the first time four days ago my wife, Karen, drove me to the Englehart & District Hospital ER because of an allergic reaction to a chemical called Vitrol, which was needed to deal with toxins from raw sewage backup in the basement of our home. We came home yesterday to a home without the presence of any of the particulates from the Vitrol. A hydroxyl generator in our basement for three and a half days  took the presence of the chemical away. Hallejuah!

As I prayed about all we experienced, I thought about what it is like for all of us coming home. I am reminded of memories of home for me as a child in the small town of Thornbury, near Collingwood, Ontario. The aroma of my Mom’s apple cinnamon pie wafting through the air. The sweet taste of apples freshly picked from an apple tree. The make-believe game I would play with a cardboard box fashioned into a TV, where all of the neighbour kids would play a character from a TV show. I enjoyed playing TV heroes like the Lone Ranger.Now, I am really dating myself:) I counted among my most valued toys my All-American G.I. Joe action doll .

When I would pull the string on my G.I. Joe, he would offer words of reassurance. In my fantasy world I created to escape from the abuse of my father, G.I. Joe was my constant companion. With G.I. Joe by my side, I could never get hurt. The fantasy though never matched the painful reality of my abuse.

Even with the horrific abuse from my schizo affective father, home still holds for me memories of  belonging and feeling so deeply loved by my mother, brother and two sisters. Whenever I was beaten up or ridiculed by my father, I knew that I could come home to the loving arms of my mother. When my mom sang How Great Thou Art or Amazing Grace, I felt her love for God and me flow through her beautiful voice. How I so much miss those special times of singing with mom and my sister, Val.

I feel in ways I can’t yet fully describe to you that God will soon call me to go home again. I long to see family and friends of long ago. I so much miss my connection with them. Phone calls help, but they never replace the joy and love you receive falling into the loving arms of those who are dear, who are special to your heart.

The image of a fall scene that my mom painted as a landscape painting comes to my mind. Mom paints the birch tree in such a way that it looks like it is going to fall out of the picture. The leaves of crimson, orange and yellow fill the picture with a light, grace and captivating beauty that defies accurate human description, because I believe the Holy Spirit was with my mom as she painted. Whenever I remember that picture that sadly got lost in one of our moves, I come home again.

Home. That place of love, of belonging and feeling needed and valued can be the gift of all of us. Many of us come from dysfunctional families, but as I reflect upon the abuse of my schizo affective father, I know deep in my heart he loved me.

The home we once knew changes with time. Friends and family move away. People die. Yet, home is always there in one form or another to come back to, that place in our hearts where we feel appreciated and valued, where an inner warmth comes flooding our spirit as we think of all that home means to us.

There’s a song that is dear to my heart called Softly and Tenderly. It speaks of a different kind of coming home — a coming home to God. Perhaps, you are angry at God. You feel in your time of greatest need He has abandoned you. While our experiences are different many of you have written to me of your own feelings of abandonment , rejection and abuse. I have been there. There have been years when I did not feel the living and active presence of God in my life. I knew He was there, but my anger with God over all of the circumstances of my life with abuse, poverty and medical challenges made me feel like God was an absentee father, who really didn’t care about me or my situation.

As I have now been in counselling for over two years for the abuse I experienced from my schizo affective father and all the people who have misjudged me in my life and receiving more support for the many medicines I need for my auto immune conditions, a beautiful and healing truth is emerging. No matter what I have experienced or the hurtful things I have said to others as a result of these conditions, God forgives me. I ran away from Him at times, but I always knew I had God to come home to.

Whatever circumstance you find yourself in, God is with you through them. He hears your pain and your anger. He hears your frustration. He feels your deepest anxieties.

We are all sinners saved by God’s amazing grace. We can all come home to Him. Remember that unique fall scene I told you about that my mom painted? No matter how hard she tried, she could never duplicate that effect of the birch tree looking like it would fall out of the picture. I think when mom painted that picture it was the healing home God created for her in her heart and mind.

I lost my mom three days before Christmas 1992 after three heart attacks. The Lord took her home at age 57 because she couldn’t heal here from the awful, spirit-crushing experiences of her abuse.

I still have a letter that mom wrote when I was nineteen beginning my training to be a minister. Here’s what she said. It is a letter to God.

Lord, You know how much I love my son. He has poor eye sight and his health is not the best, but from the time he was born I saw something special in him, a light, Your light in him. He has been such a loving son to me, but I know I was only looking after him for You.

Lord, I give him back to You. I know he will touch many lives while he is here.

Please watch over him. 

Your child,


Mom through that act of love understood and accepted that I was called to always have my spiritual home with God. Perhaps, something I have shared will bring you back fully home to the Father.

While home changes our spiritual home of being with God never changes. Please come home to Him today.

About Dr. Kevin Osborne B.A., B.Th., M.A., M.Div., Psy.D. Ph.D. and Th.D. Candidate

I enjoy spending time with people just having a coffee or talking about life, philosophy, religion, politics or sharing a favorite joke or story. We learn from one another as we interact and share our joys, challenges and even our times of sadness. I enjoy reading, writing, singing and sharing in the blessing of community whether that is one on one or in groups. I'm married and am powned by two kitties named Sir William of Lounge a.k.a. Sir Lounge a Lot and Princess Catherine of Chaos a.k.a. Her Royal Highness Catherine of Englehart. Two years ago I completed my Doctorate in Psychology (Psy.D.) through St. James the Elder University. On Sept. 26th 2020, I graduated with a Master of Divinity degree from Canadian Christian Theological Seminary. These journeys were started over 20 years ago. In 1997 I received a Bachelor of Theology degree from Canada Christian College & Graduate School. Between working and studying it took 13 years to finish it. Let us pray for and reach out to each other with kindness, love and an embracing compassion. We can working together be servants with two open hands to those in need so that hate, indifference and inequality would lose and love will win. The peace and abounding joy of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

Posted on January 22, 2014, in Evangelism and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Kevin and Karen Welcome home my friends. I pray that you will sleep in peace tonight with God. Thank you so much for a beautiful word. Thank you the words of healing that you share. I am forwarding this to those I know need to come home! Thank you for your prayers… Kevin, once again my lungs are in trouble and I am once again on major meds and really getting frustrated with insurance bureaucrats. For the last 5 years I have had to have medications prior authorized but this year due to the American Care Act these medications are now being declined and I can not afford the off the wall prices. One of the medications the insurance company insists that there is a generic med for it (there is in nebulizer but not in inhaler).this is requiring me to TRUST 100% in God and to be honest this is not my best. I can trust God in a lot of areas but when it comes to things like rejections of medications or finances it gets really gets hard. But over the last 24 hours I am hearing in my devotional time that despite what I see in the natural God is God and still in control… So, please pray that God will help me in this situation and also that I will trust even if I don’t know how… Thank you for your prayers. God bless you… Sandy

    • Hi Sandy

      Karen and I have been and will be continuing to pray for you. You are facing the injustice of a system that has no compassion, no understanding for those who suffer from chronic health conditions. I am praying that God visits His divine justice, which always includes the availability of His mercy, on those who have failed you. But you and I know we serve a God who never fails us, hears the deepest yearning of our hearts, that soul-crushing pain we call out to Him in the hour of our distress.

      Sandy, none of us can change a cold heart devoid of compassion, filled with a judgement towards those perceived to be weak. I feel a strength today not of my own to write to you. Sandy, God wants you to know right now that He loves you with a love that no human-being on this earth could ever adequately explain. He hears you as you cry out to Him, as you suffer, as it feels you can’t go on one more step. The God of your heart and life stands with you through the pain, through that seemingly endless suffering you are experiencing.

      For the season I am here, I will fight for people like you. Though the Enemy will fire his arrows of doubt and discouragement, even as he attacks me in my health, I will fight with my last breath for people like you. I will speak loud and strong that this injustice of those who ask only for a hand up needs to end.

      You know it says in the Bible that anyone who harms any of God’s children, it would be better for that person that a millstone be hung around their neck and be cast into the sea, know that Christ means it. Those who have denied you the help you need will face the wrath of a holy God. Leave them to God and ask that they would change their wicked ways.

      The difficult call for you and me is to forgive those who have judged us, those who have hurt us, those who have made us suffer a thousand indignities to our heart, mind, body and soul.

      Yes, Sandy, God is still in control. He is there right now where you are. He called me to reach out to you in your pain. Hold on to Him and don’t let go. Don’t let the harbingers of hate, cruelty and a seething indifference win. God will win. The Enemy will lose. God will win. The Enemy will lose.

      I urge you to bring together people like you into a holy force. Flood the office of your local member of congress with emails. Email the office of President Obama. Tell him you’re praying for him, that you support his call for universal health care.

      The word I get from the Holy Spirit is pray for all government leaders. Pray that those who oppose health care for those in need will have changed hearts. Only God can change a cold heart. Only He can turn what the Enemy means for evil and destruction into good, into God’s divine purpose.

      Get a social worker to advocate for you if you don’t have one already. Ask others to step in and be your advocate when you have no strength left in you to do it yourself. Have others write editorials in newspapers and online calling your politicians who oppose health care to account. Find out what members of congress and the senate vote against health care and have their names published for the world to see.

      If a teenager named Malala Yousafzai can call us to change the world through the power of one book, one pen and one teacher, then that should inspire all of us to be instruments of change in our communities and in our world.

      Gandhi called all of us to be the change we wish to see in the world. So, you, yes you can be that instrument of change as you do community organizing, rallying others to hold your elected officials to account for their failure to help people like you. Keep on shouting as loud as you can and praying for their souls, because politicians everywhere are losing their identity, losing the reason they were called to serve.

      We need to pray for our politicians that they will stay true to the reason God called them into politics. They need to stop playing the game of compromise, stop bowing to lobbyists who oppose them, and feel the wind of what is right and true beating against their faces.Let none of us forget that they are people too, who face the temptation of power and human accolades.

      Keep shining your light for Christ. Seek Him and be open with Him.

      I offer this prayer.

      Almighty God, I bring your child Sandy before Your holy throne of grace. Lord, I thank You and I praise You, that after experiencing a severe life-threatening reaction to a cleaning sanitizer sprayed near where Karen and I were having our seventh wedding anniversary dinner, that even in my exhaustion, even as there is pain in all of my fingers from inflammation as I write this message to Sandy, even as there is unrelenting pain throughout my body, that You oh God, gave me a strength not of my own to reach out to Sandy in the depths of her suffering.

      Lord, I ask that right now this very moment You would come to Sandy in the valley of her suffering. Lord, I pray for healing of Sandy’s lungs in accordance with Your holy and perfect will. We don’t always understand you, Lord. But we do love You.

      Hear your wounded child as she calls out to You. Hear her in only the way that no mortal being can.

      Bring all the people to Sandy who can give her all the help she needs.

      Give her strength not of her own to fight against all of the injustice in her life.

      Give her a greater forgiveness of all those who have harmed her in body, mind, spirit and emotions.

      I ask that You would send her divine protection in her hour of great need.

      Let her cast every concern, every heartache upon You, oh God, our rock, our fortress and our redeemer.

      Now, may the peace of our Lord which passes all human understanding be with you now and forvermore. Amen.

      • Thank you Kevin for such powerful statements of grace and love. Thank you for your prayers… I am praising God for His timing of such. I am very grateful that while we have never met f2f we are part of the same family (the family of God). Thank you again for your prayers.. May God bless you this day!!!!

      • Hi Sandy

        Glad the Lord called me to be there for you in your time of need.

        I receive your enthusiastic blessing with a grateful heart to God and you.


      • Hi Kevin,

        Wanted to give you and Karen a praise God moment. Thank you for your prayers. Yesterday I received notification that both medicines previous denied are now covered. (wish you could see me do the happy thank you Jesus happy dance)… Anyhow.. I am so grateful for your heart and your prayers… Blessings to you this day in Him… Sandy

      • Sandy, praise God from whom all blessings flow! Kevin doing Irish jig smiling to our Lord. God is at work in your life. I believe He heard all our prayers to Him and said enough is enough of this stupidity for Sandy. I’m stepping in. When the Lord chooses to do His work not even the darkness can win.

        The testimony of my life is that the Lord makes a way where there appears to be no way. My schizo affective father tries to drown me as a toddler by letting me fall of a dock and not rescue me initially when he was in one of his manic rages. The Lord snaps him back to sanity for that moment and he pulled me out of the water. At age 8 the Holy Spirit spoke to my mom’s heart to refuse me permission to go with my cousin in an oil can barrel boat. My cousin Paul drowned when the oil can barrel boat with his brother Stephen capsized. At age 17 I have a flu where my body temperature went to 105 degrees farenheit. I’m not expected to live through the night. God saves me from death. I am not expected to live past being a young man because of my auto immune conditions and allergies. God said to my spirit, “I’m not finished with you yet, Kevin.”

        At age 37 I nearly die from an asthma attack complicated with bronchitis while I was a missionary teaching as an Assistant Professor of E.S.L. at Kwandong University in Kangnung, South Korea. Dr. Park, Head of internal medicine said if the ambulance was five minutes later I would have died or have experienced brain damage. God hears the prayers of two faithful young Korean Christians, who visit me in the hospital. A week later I’m released from the hospital still weak but I’m alive!

        I have numerous bouts with bronchitis, three bouts with pneumonia (one bi-lateral). Numerous ER visits for asthma and allergy attacks. I experience a a combined total of months of hospitalizations. I am intubated eight times for allergic reactions from 2009-2010.

        In 2012 God starts to heal the swelling in the back of my throat. God just keeps improving His singing voice for His glory.

        Below, is a sample of that for you. Use the spiritual warfare song and all the songs as my gift to you. When God opens the door in His time for the production of a music CD, I want to send you one as a gift that I will put my signature and an inspiring message on just for you. I will also be giving one to the ER doctor in North Bay, Ontario, who saved my life from an allergic reaction in 2012 as well to all of my supportive friends. The friends who helped me with covering the costs of medications and when needs where presented. Thank God for supportive and caring friends. They are a gift from God to be cherished. I always pray that God blesses them ten fold for helping Karen and I at a critical point of need.

        Please pray that God will bless the counselling ministry I will be starting within hopefully a month. I will be offering sessions in office here in Englehart as well as Skype and on the phone. Karen says I’ll be so busy with referrals from friends, colleagues and pastors, that I’ll need to turn people away. I will not refuse anyone counselling because they can’t afford it. I believe in the Biblical principle that as you have been given to, you should then give as God calls. His blessings will follow.

        I’m also praying that God sends a team of people from a seminary or Christian university to train people to become Christian counsellors. I’m in discussion with some schools concerning this. There are only a handful of Christian counsellors in all of northern Ontario. The Enemy cannot be allowed this continued victory over people’s lives with counselling that has no spiritual component.

        Tell others about the miracle God has wrought in your life. Give Him the glory and I believe even greater blessings are ahead for you.

        I’m just so overjoyed to be a part of your journey!


      • Kevin, thank you for such a marvelous gift. I was moved to tears. Through God your ministry as counselor is going to cause healing in many lives and it will be successful. Not as the world deems but as God deems. He is so proud of you! When we have been wounded and have walked through the healing journey we are ambassadors to helping other’s heal. It also acts I think as a thank You God for pulling me out of the mire and yuck. Help me to help others. I will definitely be praying for your continued success in ministry. I also will cherish the gift that you have given and will give. I listened to some of it today and have to go back and listen to it completely (and without the interruption of tv or phone as I live with an aging parent that does not like to wear the hearing aide and so it is noisy here all day).

        We share very many things in stories. I was quite amazed by all that you have experienced and overcame and were protected from at a very early age. Seems that when the enemy knows that a child will transform the world he tries to go after them really early. I was truly amazed at how much we both have been through! What a mighty God who we serve. Oh Kevin and Karen thank you for allowing me just a glimpse into the journey you are on. God is so pleased with both of you!

        Kevin, here is my personal email address if you would please remove once you have it. If you need anything specific prayed for I will be honored to pray for anything you have desire of.

        Thank you for sharing your journey with so many people but also for sharing it with me. God is faithful and I am so glad that I have a brother and sister in Ontario that pray for me and I them. Cause we surely do need to be have each others backs in prayer! I am working on writing my story because I desire others to experience the same God that I have experienced the same freedom that I have experienced and the same loving arms that I have. Kevin n Karen thank you for your prayers… Blessings to you both this day..Sandy

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