Archive for March, 2006

She was a truck driver!!

Thursday, March 30th, 2006

Monday at 2:00 is the funeral for Mary Muir – here at the Alliance Church.

Mary was a truck driver in her young age – in fact at 22 (1962) she had a piece written about her in the Vancouver Province.  The columnist mentions that she took particular interest in down and out women – those from skid row who needed someone to care for them.  She would bring them to church and lead them to know Jesus.

No wonder Mary ended up in the caring profession in the years that followed.  One of her areas of work was addictions counselling.  She was a great listener.  And confidential to the end.  She would sit with people for hours as they worked through their physical pain from withdrawal.  She was loyal.

Two nights ago over fifteen friends dropped in to see her, even though she was pretty well in a comatose state.  No one can say that her quiet, comforting and caring spirit has not reaped its benefits.  I could wish to die that well!

Wednesday night at 10:50 she was listening to her three friends sing familiar hymns of God and heaven.  She slipped from this world of song to the next of angelic hosts welcoming her with music beyond compare.

Mary – enjoy your new life!!

The Old becomes New!

Wednesday, March 29th, 2006

One of my sisters just bought a piano that looks just the same as our old piano.  As kids we would  bang, caress and generally blow the guts out of the piano.  It sat in various rooms, a testament to my mother’s desire that we would all have some musical training.  We all sang – four part harmony the result!!  I was employed as a music director.  Others in the family have put their hand to shaping music for the upcoming generation.

Now, another sister has bought a dog that looks just the same as our old dog.  A Bichon with fluffy white fur and bright eyes.  My deceased brother became the dog handler.  In older age my parents found him a great companion.

My next question was whether we should buy a new dining room table (we inherited the old one).  The old table creaks and groans and tips at the most inopportune times.  I’ve suggested that we get one that is stable and pristine. 

To which my sister replied:   “But then it wouldn’t be the same, now would it?? “

Spring Visitation!

Tuesday, March 28th, 2006

Some seasons just lend themselves to getting out again!!

This week Jill and I have booked in a number of “touch base” times with people.  Over the winter we tend to hibernate sometimes.  The weather is bleak and home fires beckon.

But now, the sun invites us out and so we are off to see various people.  From hospital visits to home cooked meals, easter egg painting to senior citizen complex discussions.  All give me a new perspective on this season in our community.

We are awakening once again! 

I was told to check out the pine trees.  They create a special “yellow blossom” this time of year.  I took a picture but didn’t find the golden beams other than in the sun!  Perhaps tomorrow I’ll happen upon another tree and find that the blossoms of spring have truly sprung.

Ukrainian Easter Eggs: my creativity blossoms??

Monday, March 27th, 2006

Making Ukrainian Easter Eggs could never be simpler!

That’s what I told myself as I placed wax upon wax upon dye layer upon dye layer.  In the end the result was – shall I say – spectacular.  At least it was a spectacle!

Our friend Wayne Gibson had invited us out to meet Joyce Richards.  She lives just outside a town called Unity (great name!).  There on her farm she taught us how to decorate Easter eggs. 

Patient and encouraging, she coaxed us along until the final result was seen after almost four hours.  I could hardly believe how tiring it was to concentrate and focus.  I’m sure I’ll have eye strain tonight — I already took my Ibuprofen!



Fun things

Sunday, March 26th, 2006

The things we do for fun!  Yes, pastors actually do have fun!

Yesterday we were at a reception — a young couple from our church who were married two weeks ago and 1,000 kilometers away. 

The groom’s parents decided we needed a reception here. 

So, in amongst perogies and cabbage rolls, grandma’s guitar and harmonica playing and  a lot of “fellowship” and laughter, we relaxed and enjoyed just being “home with the family.”

Family Portrait – Blair and Karen Kornelson, Rachel and Curtis Kornelson

There’s a story behind this!!

The next couple getting married in July!  Arlin and Laura

Life keeps happening!

Saturday, March 25th, 2006

This is an unusual week. 

Up to one funeral a week.  That’s not bad. 

This week I attended two funerals, both for young people — attached in some way to individuals in the congregation.  We sat with a lady who is looking at only a short time left in this earthly journey.  A pastor friend of mine had a sever heart attack.  My wife had a stressful trip that was in less than ideal weather conditions.  Others are suffering from cancer, stress and daily burdens.  That’s without dealing with marital and financial issues.  And my calendar also contains other events!

All of these are usual, but not all at once.

Add to that the fact that I deal daily with my own personal transformation issues — part of living in a world that would rather I be conformed to the status quo rather than changing to be more like God.

The interesting thing — I am refreshed. 

As though God put me here just for such a time as this??

Salt Saskatchewan

Thursday, March 23rd, 2006

Well, my wife is back!

Here’s the scenario.  For almost a year she has gone without a haircut.  Her perm has lasted the year, but of course things grow out!  In the meantime we have moved.  She wanted to go back to the old hairdresser at least one more time.  Just to get instructions for a new hairdresser.

Then, of course, our daughter lives in the area and a friend volunteered to put her up overnight.  The scene is now set.

Except for the scene of the morning she is to leave.   After the worst of winter – the warmest winter ever – spring arrived on March 20.  On the second day of spring, Wednesday, the worst roads appear!  Snow is blowing and the salt is not able to melt it fast enough.  Instead snow begins to pile up and form a layer of ice.

Sheer ice for the first 100 kilometers.  No faster than 80 kilometers and more often 50 kilometers.  For the metrically challenged — no faster than 50 miles per hour with some stretches at 30 miles per hour.

White knuckles and strained eyes were the order of the day for almost 2 hours.

Today, Thursday, the intrepid adventurer headed back. 

Actually we used to drive an Intrepid – now it’s a Concorde – well actually its a combination of an Intrepid and a Concorde – we call it a Contrepid.  

No problem.  Set the cruise control on the Contrepid.  In no time she was home without encountering ice or snow.

The car, though, was a sight to see.  Salt had been liberaly sprinkled for the last few days.  All over the road.  Thick.  White.

And the car was white! 

We hit the car wash immediately. 

Please understand.  I was born on the prairies back when the winter was very cold and the spring came literally overnight.  Salt was not needed.

But I’m beginning to believe in global warming.  The curse of Toronto with melting and freezing has come our way.  So salt is eating up the roads and the cars.

Oh, for the days of -40 degrees.

Did I really say that??

Hot worship 2

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2006

This is where the internet is great.

Got back a note from the creator of HOT WORSHIP!  Not the first time he has had someone make a comment on the name of the website.

Jotted him a quick email!  The site ( is actually quite helpful – in fact, one of the better resource sites for people doing worship in local churches.  Check it out if you haven’t already!

Speak a word – and you may think it disappears – but be sure the sound waves carry through the ether (or is that “internet”)!

Hot Worship!

Tuesday, March 21st, 2006

Web sites names are great!  And blog names somewhat descriptive.  Try out “it’s a crazy old world” podcast with Greg DeLong, or “espirita“, Shauna Archer’s blog.  Randall Friesen has his “brown spot” blog.  You can find all sorts of pictures at “Flickr”  — one of those names that no one can spell, but everyone remembers!

This one sounds like an oxymoron.  Two words that somehow don’t seem to go together!

Hot Worship! 

Now, I’ve heard of inspiring worship, Christian worship, contemporary worship, traditional worship, blended worship and even worship from the heart.

But, where does “hot” worship originate from?

New blogger – new perspectives

Monday, March 20th, 2006

I love when someone you know takes up blogging.  One of the administrative assistants, Shauna Archer,  at our district office has just taken up blogging.  Got a great little quote off her!

Gandhi’s views on the greatest spiritual perils of our modern time are:

Wealth without Work
Pleasure without Conscience
Science without Humanity
Knowledge without Character
Politics without Principle
Commerce without Morality
Worship without Sacrifice