Mary's Song

Wednesday, November 27, 2002

I have traveled many moonless nights
Cold and weary, with a babe inside
And I wonder what I've done
Holy Father, you have come
And chosen me now
To carry your son

I am waiting in a silent prayer
I am frightened by the load I bear
In a world as cold as stone,
Must I walk this path alone?
Be with me now
Be with me now

Breath of heaven
Hold me together
Be forever near me
Breath of heaven
Breath of heaven
Light up my darkness
Pour over me your holiness
For you are holy

Breath of heaven

Do you wonder as you watch my face
If a wiser one one should have had my place
But I offer all I am
For the mercy of your plan
Help me be strong
Help me be
Help me

Breath of heaven
Hold me together
Be forever near me
Breath of heaven
Breath of heaven
Light up my darkness
Pour over me your holiness
For you are holy

Breath of heaven

(Mary's Song)


Another day

Sunday, November 24, 2002

I am tired tonight. I think I'm off to bed.

Lauralea's been quite sick this weekend, some kind of mean headache and very tired and, oh yes, throwing up. So the kids left her in bed this morning, asleep with a bucket near her head, (If that isn't love) because I was at church early.

Johanna had play practice all day, I guess the production she's in starts in a weeks time. She's in Anne of Green Gables. She'll do well I'm sure of it, and it will be good for her. We got our tickets last night, so we're ready for it.

Been pouring alot of work into some strenuous counselling sessions this weekend too, and am quite exhausted. Counselling is great when the people are honestly willing to move forward, it just consumes alot of energy. I think the situation I've been involved with this weekend will turn out ok, at least it should. God bless em.,

And Montreal won the Grey Cup, YEAH. I was kinda cheering for them, because I thought they were the better team
this year and deserved to win. The biggest problem with the game was the field - a frozen chunk of ice. Made for some goofy slip-ups. But, I'm glad they won. They've lost close ones in the past.

And the Canadian team won tonight's Full Metal Challenge on TLC! Way to give it to those Brits and the Germans guys!
Then, in fine Canadian form, after kicking the Germans car right out of the ring, they got out and shook the Germans hands, congratulating them on such a good game and how well they had done.

We're nothing if not modest, that's for sure.

Then the perfect end to the day, got a call from someone at church who had been honestly hurt by some gossip crap that someone else spoke about them. ...You know your flying over the enemy when you start taking shots to the underbelly ......


Thus ends another day in the life of (Que the Organ music)


Getting it right at the start

Saturday, November 23, 2002

Spending alot of time this weekend praying for and counselling a young couple from church.

It's reminding me how wonderful and how totally crappy it can be to be young. So much seems to ride on each decision we make.

When you're young it's like the early part of a space flight, (Trust me on this one!) You set the direction and if you're off by a degree or two, by the time you travel 100,000 miles, your way off course!

When you set the direction for your life, if you are off a few degrees, it can effect you for years to come.

One bad decision can lead to another which leads to another, each one getting easier to make on the way down the slope, till you're in a gutter someplace!

And one good decision each day leads you to a better and better place, till you look back at a blessed life and see that it's been a run of more good decisions made than of bad decisions made.

Well, may God help us to make the right decisions on the right days and save us from our bad decisions on the bad days.

...and may God help the couple I'm trying to help.



Well, I made it back and spent some time getting caught up at work.

Wednesday night we spent a nice quiet evening at home. We had a friend over and just mellowed out with a good meal, good jazz and some good vino. The simple things often seem to be the best.


En Route

Monday, November 18, 2002

November 16/02 10:04 pm
Calgary Greyhound Bus Terminal
Gate #13

As l write this update, I'm sitting in a Greyhound bus terminal in Calgary Alberta.

The CBC board meetings I was involved in went well. We got a lot accomplished this weekend.

Once or twice a year I need to fly to my meetings. And I have observed that the People in airports are the Beautiful People.

They Just look good, like they've got life together. Clothing Looking sharp, hair in it's rightful place, smooth. Tanned skin, drawn tightly over well defined muscles. Happening kind of people, you know?

Well, the opposite of an airport, is a Bus Depot.

The poorly dressed, smelly people. People with pale white skin, with deep etches of life marking it. people who have been stuck in a grinder yet somehow, come out still alive.

Then there's the regular people, Looking for a cheap ride to another city, for a multitude of reasons.

Two boys (teens for sure) sit behind me. They are trying to Decide where to go. The one wants to go to Montreal. His buddy is less than impressed with that idea. I guess his French isn't so great.

Across from me sits a girl, cross legged in her chair. Her long brown hair flows out from under a green and orange toque. With her small glasses, she reminds me of my daughter. If I was a swearing guy, I'd swear that her backpack is bigger than she is.

I send up a prayer for her.
I send up a prayer for my daughter and her future travels.

On my right is a row of "TV" Chairs. Each chair has a Black+ white TV on it that plays 15 minutes for a quarter.

The first chair hosts an Alberta farm boy. Complete with cowboy boots and a farm Implement Dealer cap on his head. He carries his bag, his knapsack and his full size pillow in a blue checked pillowcase with him as he walks over to the machine and buys a Pepsi. Rightly warned, he trusts no one in the city.

Chair number two hosts a guy, a bit older than I. Leather Jacket, nice haircut, eight year old glasses, looking for a cheap ride to his hometown.

Chair number three hosts a 19 something girl, rings on four of five fingers. Very fashion sensitive, nice leatherette coat with a fake fur trim, reading a fashion rag.

I watch her as a 23 year old redhead, her exact opposite, approaches and asks it she can have seat number four.

Number 3 says sure, and as number four gets settled, number 3 roles her eyes toward heaven and lets loose a small scowl.

People are interesting creatures to watch when they think no one is watching. Lauralea always reminds the kids that Character is what you do when you think no one is watching. I think she's right.

But, my bus is leaving. Hope I'm able to sleep.

So, that's the news from gate #13, Calgary Bus Depot



I'm Leavin on a Greyhound...

Wednesday, November 13, 2002

Tomorrow bright and early I hop a greyhound for Calgary for CBC Board meetings. I'm looking forward to it. It always stretches my thinking and broadens my perspective. Sometimes working in a local church I tend to get a bit to focused on our issues and needs. Working with the larger body pulls me back and helps me look at things in a fresh way.

Anyway, I don't have to preach or lead the service on Sunday, so that will be nice, especially as my bus will get into Prince Albert at 10:50 Sunday morning. (Hmm, 2.5 minutes travel to home, 5 minutes to shower shave and dress, then 2.5 minutes travel time to church. Sounds doable.)

The Bus leaves Saturday night around 11 pm and travels all night. I don't mind, as long as "LARGE GARLIC BREATH MAN" doesn't try to sit beside me. It'll also give me some good reading time which I've gotten backed up on lately.

So, send up a prayer for wisdom, discernment, and for Lauralea and the kids. She has a busy weekend up too.

Should I bring you something from Ikea?



So, thanks to Jordon Cooper, i was able to discover just what kind of theologian I am.

Ahh, finally, the answer to one of life's pressing questions.

And thanks to Mr. Henderson for helping me find out this nugget ... of truth?

"It is the chiefest point of happiness that a man is willing to be what he is."

You are Desiderius Erasmus!

You have great love for others and will do just about anything to show it to them. You are tolerant
and avoid confrontations, so people generally are drawn to you. You are more quiet and reserved in
front of strangers, but around some people you open up. When things get tough, you like to meditate
alone. Unfortunately you often get things like "what a pansy," or "you're such a liberal."

What theologian are you?

A creation of Henderson


Please Sir, may we have some more?

Tuesday, November 12, 2002

We had a really good day at Gateway on Sunday. Course I am biased, but hey, deal with it.

I always love it when God arrives in new ways and colours I've never noticed before. He did that on Sunday.

And I don't know what it was ...

We have an excellent, way above average worship group who led us in some songs. The readings and prayers were, as we usually would do them, and the Message was, well a regular message, i thought.

But God was all over the place.

It was sweet but convicting, loving but challenging, and yes, God did seem to be all over the place. It was the kind of day we want to see happen every day. We want people to enter that space and, regardless of who leads and what music is played, people experience Jesus. That they leave feeling that they have met with the Living God.

I want lost, hurting people to be able to come week by week and, even if they don't enter into any activity, find themselves being healed, and set free, and celebrating life in Christ.

This is my passion for Gateway, that the lost and broken can come and find wholeness and healing.

and you know, I think it's beginning to happen.

And, as for Twilight Zone moments, as we were singing the last song, "It is Well With My Soul" I suddenly felt something tap me on the back. I turned around thinking it was an usher with a late announcement, but no one was there.

Hmm. Probably a couple of Angels jostling for room as they lifted their hands to the sky, worshipping their God.

Thank you Father.
May we have some more please?


Perilous crossings

I don't usually use the daily devotional called "Our Daily Bread," but this morning I checked it out and it was encouraging.

November 12, 2002
Dangerous Crossings

Read: Psalm 77:16-20
Your way was in the sea, Your path in the great waters, and Your footsteps were not known. ?Psalm 77:19

I don't wade in swift streams anymore. The bottom's too slippery, the current's too strong, and my old legs aren't what they used to be.

So many challenges that I once took on readily are now too difficult for me. Like the psalmist, I lose sleep sometimes, wondering how I can negotiate them (Psalm 77:1-4).

Then I remember the "works of the Lord," His "wonders of old" (v.11). His "way was in the sea, [His] path in the great waters," though He left no footprints behind (v.19).

That's the way it is with God. Although you can't see Him, He is surely there. Unseen, He leads His people "like a flock" (v.20). He does not fear the currents and storms of life, for His strength and courage are infinite.

And there's more: The Shepherd leads us through the help of other people. He led Israel "by the hand of Moses and Aaron" (v.20). He leads us in the wise counsel of a father or mother, in the strong grip of a godly friend, in the loving encouragement of a caring husband or wife, in the gentle touch of a young child.

Good hands are reaching out to us. Our Lord is a tough and tender Shepherd who leads through perilous crossings to the other side. Have you put your hand in His? ?David Roper

God tells us to burden Him with what burdens us.

Just a good reminder, and a good start to the day.


Old friends

Thursday, November 07, 2002

Got an encouraging note today from C & B. It was good to hear from old friends from a long (It seems long!) time ago.

I bet the girls are just as cute as ever. I think I can still say cute!


I cook, therefore I get sick

Tuesday, November 05, 2002

Where's My Head...

Yesterday, in a fit of inspiration from watching a Jamie Oliver Cooks Live Marathon, i offered to cook supper for the family.

Salad: good, with a red/purple lettuce, tomatoes, and cheese, and a creme dill/cucumber dressing.
Bread: good, with garlic and melted cheese on it.
Potatoes: Very good, baby potatoes, cooked till just firm, extra virgin olive oil, fresh dill, and a lemon squeezed over the whole works.
Meat: starts to fall apart... fried smokies, two choices, cheese and regular.
Dessert: good come back, new Mandarin oranges.

Well, by 9pm I was sick. But, no one else seemed to be, so that's a good thing.

Today's been a bit cloudy in my head and gut, but, well, Lauralea is cooking again so it should get better real quick.

Meanwhile, tomorrow I'm off to a town called Norquay for a pastors meeting. I think it's about 4 hours away from here, and the van's been acting up sooo... we'll see. I think I'm off around 7am and back around 7pm. Then off to parent teacher interviews at Johanna's school.

...ya know, the instructions said that the smokies were already cooked, so all they needed was boiling. Maybe I shudda tried that.

Your Fearless Eater.

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