Archive for May, 2008

After a round of golf!

Saturday, May 31st, 2008

Yesterday I went a full nine holes of golf. All on foot. In the midst of gale force winds.

The score was not my best. The first time on my new knees. Best excuse I can think of!

When I arrived home I evaluated whether I should head out for more golf today. My mind said, “Maybe”. My body said “Give your head a shake!”

So I did. Phoned the golf enthusiasts. Said I would have to be a wimp. Backed out.

But today, my body is feeling healing power! Or is that just rest I needed?

Whichever, I feel refreshed. I’m listening to acappella music and kicking back! Good night all!!

What, just playing around?

Thursday, May 29th, 2008

For the last few days I’ve spent time learning a WordPress. Not only for this blog, but also for a church website that I’ve been working on.

So, today, I invite you to visit the Kindersley Alliance church website found at www.kindersleyalliance.com. This is just a skeleton (a start). Be sure to give comments so the site can be improved.

Any time you put something new out there, you risk your neck. Well, I know you won’t chop it off! But if you want to get close with a sharp blade, I won’t complain. We want to have a site that is attractive, and gives some basic information.

Thanks!!

Gas Prices on the way up, . . . again

Wednesday, May 28th, 2008

So, we are in to Saskatoon today — a two hour drive.  As we enter Saskatoon we notice gas prices are at $1.299 per litre.  As we leave, they are now at $1.359 per litre.

The joy of electronics let’s a flip of the switch change prices on pumps and signs.  Unfortunately, for us travelers there is no flip of a switch on our gas tanks.  The car doesn’t automatically get better mileage as the prices go higher.

I can see a number of people looking for cars with better mileage.  And the prices on “gas savers” going up, while “gas guzzlers” go down in price.  Maybe I can finally get that 1/2 ton truck I’ve been waiting for!!

Priming for lawns

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008

Lsat night we visited a friend to mow her lawn. Her lawn mower was not working well. In fact, it would sputter to life and then die.

Down the street another friend had a lawn mower. We asked to borrow it. He came with his truck and the mower. As I began to mow, my friend asked if this neighbour knew anything about motors. He wasn’t sure he wanted to get into completely stripping a motor down and rebuilding it. But, he would look and see what could be done. We heard the motor cough and go, cough and go, cough and go! The possible problem was found, probably some air in the gas line.

All that needed to be done was to keep priming the motor until things kept running. I had tried priming the motor just once or twice and things just quit. But sometimes we need to constantly keep priming a situation until things get back to normal.

The lawn is done, a certain equilibrium has returned and the next time the lawn needs mowed I expect the mower will work.

Meeting machinery

Monday, May 26th, 2008

Today we had a church membership meeting. We discussed two issues. One was an almost rubber stamp type of thing. The other had many facets, any one of which could derail civil communication and end in endless discussion and perhaps acrimony.

Our chair (not the nice blue ones we have, but the chairperson!) carefully steered us through. He pointed out that we needed to deal with a present, and very distinct, motion. He was careful to not let other issues distract us. Much like I had learned in a coaching session earlier in the week – whenever another issue arises, plan to deal with it but leave it for another time.

Now, although there were definitely two sides that came to the table, we met in the middle. Not the compromising middle that is tepid and insipid (let’s add apathetic and apologetic). Rather, the radical middle that recognized differences but wanted to try an option that could be vital and visionary.

Sometimes machinery in the right operator’s hands works. Thanks, John!!

Whether there is weather

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

We were outside today, working on our grass patches that didn’t make the winter.  Our anxiety has been that the next rain will come before the seed is planted.  The rain’s nourishment of the seed is vital.

So, we’ve watched the weather channel, listened to the news and gone online.  All indications were that rain was imminent.  I’m looking out the window on an evening sky with a few clouds.  But no imminent rain.

So, whether there is weather, I’m never sure.  Only God knows, and I guess that’s not a bad thing!!

The notion of sin

Saturday, May 24th, 2008

A quote every once in a while just hits you on the forehead.  This is a short quote from USA Today at Easter time called "Has the notion of sin been lost".  The article has previously been talking about merely helping people change without them recognizing the root of sin as a problem in their lives.

The Rev. Michael Horton, professor of theology at Westminster Seminary in Escondido, Calif., calls this "moral therapy."

"It’s changing your lifestyle to receive God’s favor," Horton says. "It’s not heaven in the hereafter but happiness here and now. But it is still up to you to make it happen."

He finds sad truth in an old newspaper headline he once saw: " ‘To hell with sin when being good is enough.’ That’s the drift of American preaching today in a lot of churches. People know what sin is; they just don’t believe in it anymore. We mix up happiness and holiness, and God is no longer the reference point."

In other words, he asks, if you can solve your problems or sins yourself, what difference does it make that Christ was crucified?

People have to see themselves as sinners — ultimately alienated from God and unable to save themselves — for Christ’s sacrifice to be essential, Horton says. "(The apostle) Paul didn’t see Easter as therapy."

When least expected

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

Recently I was sitting with my father.  We were chatting about life.  In general and specific.

As I listened to some difficult experiences, I suddenly became rather emotional.  Now, I’m not one to let on. And perhaps my father didn’t notice.

But I noticed.  It was unexpected. . . definitely uncalled from my emotional memory banks.  I’m still processing this and other emotions that have surfaced to the light in the last while.  This is unlike the emotions that came in surgery recovery.  Those were uncontrolled – other than as the side effect of drugs.

Now, these emotions are related to events, and people, and things that rightly deserve notice.  But now the notice is deeper than previously.  In the past excess emotion has scared me.  This is not of that sort – I sense a peace with these feelings.  And as I say, I’m still processing this – and I sense leaning into another day will not hurt.

So, for this day – may you also sense peace and protection.  May God’s presence somehow overtake you when you least expect.  And may you continue on to understand the fear of God that leads to great wisdom and understanding.

Oh, for the old Fargo

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

Funny the things you remember from your childhood.

We had a picture of an old truck of my father’s, taken around 1959. A rabbit stands in the backyard of a Saskatoon house. The Fargo truck reflects light off the snow.

At least that’s how I remember it.

Then, maybe a decade ago – almost – my parents were having their 50th Anniversary. As a family we were on an island, at a retreat centre, celebrating. We drove the island roads, which were not many. On one sideroad, there was another Fargo truck. Mom and dad posed by the front grill, leaning on the truck bumper. That picture sits framed in our front hallway.

So, to my surprise, as our local pastor’s network retreated in Herschel, there was another Fargo truck. If you’ve never seen one, look below. There is something about the cab of the truck that still intrigues me years later. Maybe this is a style that could return without too much problem!!

fargo truck

A new day

Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

It’s been an early morning and I’ve been listening to two sermons from Andy Stanley in a CD series called “Starting Point – find you place in the story.” One sermon is on grace, the other on Spirit. Both are right where I’m at.

Growing up in a church background, I’ve heard terms such as “Spirit filled life”, and “law and grace”. In another day and age, with a society that still had a Christian memory, those terms were defined with now archaic (but true) language. People “got it”, and “lived it”. But, the old sermons are not being listened to by a present generation. The Christian classics are stored on shelves and not in this generations’ hearts. Words and their definitions have changed. So, we need to find a way to communicate with them truths about the Christian life that are timeless.

Perhaps its my age, recent life experience and a heart cry that I can’t drown out. In my journey and strugglings, I’m seeking to come closer to an understanding of “the deeper Christian life” that I can pass on to others in our “Post Christian Age”.

Right now I’m working my way on this “redefinition road” through sin, law and grace, and into ways to speak of the Spirit filled life. I’m understanding more fully what giving God control of my life is about. I’m trying to put into practice the concept that God is first and the good life is second. And if I have God, then all the rest is just additives!! As I study God’s words (the Scriptures) and I pay attention to His promptings (pay attention means more than just listening to His Spirit – doing comes in here!!), I’m changing.

And truth written in a person’s life is a primary point of speaking to this generation. Then all the books written, songs sung, videos created and truth expounded have impact!!

OK, so that’s a start for the day. Any thoughts??

BTW, if you need a first cup of coffee before you can figure out what I just wrote – drink up and come back – this blog entry will still be here!!