Archive for August, 2009

Come and Gone

Monday, August 31st, 2009

An enjoyable trip to Saskatoon was only interrupted when our son called to say he had missed his flight. 

That was not so bad.  We ended up with a free evening, a good night’s sleep, great exercise on a stationary bike in the morning, continental breakfast at our motel, shopping and then . . . we picked up our son at the airport and headed home.

His arrangements have led him to Regina for the next few days.  Then home, and off again.  Possibly to Edmonton. 

Those plans are still being worked out for now.  We’ll see what comes next.

Blessed are the flexible for they shall not be bent out of shape!!

Thoughts in passing #2

Friday, August 28th, 2009

I was reading today from a devotional called “Men of integrity.”  You can look at the daily thoughts here.  The thought that struck me? 

You didn’t tell a lie, you just left a big hole in the truth. —Helen Thomas (journalist)

Second area of cogitation?  There is a project called “The Nines.”  Read more about it here.  On September 9th a number of church leaders will talk on leadership for nine minutes each.  I’ve registered (it’s free).  Looks like great stuff – goes for about nine hours starting at 9:09 in the morning.

Thoughts in passing

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

An interesting quote from one of my "tours" around facebook!

Harry Robinson had a wonderful metaphor for the church.  It was that of a shepherd maintaining his flock:  he could either build a fence to keep them in, or build a pasture with plenty of water and nourishment to make them want to stay

The other thought comes from an email I received about our upcoming denominational assembly in Turkey in 2010.  W. Ward Gasque (a heavy weight in Biblical Studies) is taking a tour group through Turkey.  That’s good information, but it was the way he signed his name that got to me.

Remember, this is a biblical scholar whom I have read and admire (great textbook on Acts!), but he had no official affiliation with the workings of the Alliance.

Here is his quote in the email sent out.

Since I am a relative newcomer to the Canadian Alliance as far as membership is concerned (though I have been linked with the Alliance as a Staley Distinguished Visiting Lecturer at CBC/CTS, assisting in the education of numerous Alliance pastors and scholars, and, on occasion, preaching), some of you may not know me.  For the past two years I have been honored to serve as the English Ministries Pastor at Richmond Chinese Alliance Church.  As you may or may not be aware, I was a co-founder of Regent College.

There’s more, but it just struck me that a Chinese Alliance church was able to enlist Dr. Gasque’s services.  This is probably based on friendships and other factors.  Nevertheless, I’m wondering if I sometimes overlook people who would love to be coming alongside things that I think God is calling me to just because they may be busy, or currently engaged in their own pursuits, or seemingly out of my league?

Just some thoughts!!

When you feel well

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

Ever had days where your body catches up to the age you once were?

I’ve felt slightly younger than yesterday and certainly no older than tomorrow!  I’ve awoken in the morning and kept going until the evening with no real breaks.  For two or three days I’ve passed the 8 hour work day and headed towards 11 or more hours.  And it has been fun.

These are the days, my friends.  I realize I will soon need to regroup (part of recognizing old age).  But while I’m at it, I’m enjoying the refreshing it brings!

May your days be filled with joy and laughter.  May you walk a line that is easy to see and hard to miss!  May you find God’s pro-vision in all you do as He pro-actively works in your life!

Coming

Tuesday, August 25th, 2009

Our son has been on the high seas.  On a luxury liner serving as a theatre technician.

Today he was able to alert us to his return for a few months.  This Sunday or Monday he will venture on board a plane, probably from L.A., and head back to Saskatchewan.

I look forward to seeing him home.  After our busyness, this will be a new form of activity. 

Soon and very soon we are going to see our son!!

Funeral done

Monday, August 24th, 2009

From morning to evening.

Starting in the morning, I checked over funeral preparations – the building, the people, the program.  This was a tricky funeral in that the deceased and I disagreed (in a friendly but firm way) on some basic theological thoughts.

But we were friends.

Which means I desired to be a support to the family.  And to present comfort but not overlook where the contrasts in our thinking were significant.

In the end, I trust this was well received – that people heard what was said and, if they disagreed, that they did so out of belief and not anger.  That’s the sense I had as we fellowshipped following the service.  May God grant comfort and support to the Chandler family at this time.

john chandler - funeral - August 24, 2009

Family, friends and funerals

Saturday, August 22nd, 2009

At 6:00 Friday night a friend called asking if he could stay overnight.  No brainer!  This morning we joined together for breakfast and a round of talking that circled our friendship, church issues and things that make for fun with a fellow traveler  on the road of life.

At around 10:00 Friday night my sister called for a ride from Kindersley to Rosetown.  Today we delivered her car to her in Rosetown.  There are unexpected times when family gets together – not planned but plugging a hole where the last few weeks have not allowed us to be in contact.

At 2:00 today I attended a funeral for a minister in our town.  He had died of a heart attack this past week.  Just barely a few years older than I!  The funeral was from a tradition other than my denominational affiliation.  I sat reminiscing on God, tradition, funeral attire and the church.

And now, I’ve just put some final touches on a sermon that was completed in fits and starts this week.  Monday will be a funeral for a contact I had made a few years ago.  He was not a church member but his wife requested my participation.  Sometimes the beginning of spiritual awakenings comes through the small things.  I pray in that direction.

May God bless your evening with a sense of his presence and an understanding that the unplanned is often God’s plan.

Quickly they fly

Thursday, August 20th, 2009

That’s the sentiment both my wife and I have had this week.  Every moment seems to have been full, fast and furious.  We’ve done the doctor thing – renewing prescriptions and checking on ailments.  We’ve done the program thing – having committee meetings and planning programs.  We’ve done the funeral thing – dealing with a recent death and comforting family.  We’ve done the clean up thing – taking down decorations and preparing for floor waxing.

In the midst of all this a theme for our youth group was taking shape.  “Prayer”.  Prayer that is more than activity.  Prayer that is deeply embedded with time spent in relationship.  Prayer that is more than a list.

They appear to be opposites. 

In reality they work with each other.  Without prayer there is no effective programming and planning.  Without programming and planning prayers can remain merely dreams and wishes that don’t deal with the hard work of relationship.

So, I’m sitting at home praying that life will slow a bit – and programming to sit down for a few minutes.  I sense that is a direction that I’m being prompted to take!!  Sometimes God is just plain practical if we will listen.

From the bottom to the top

Tuesday, August 18th, 2009

Down the road from the church a new house is being built.  The framing took only a few days.

Now, the roof is being built. 

Not in the usual way.  Usually you would lift up trusses onto the walls.  Then you tie them together.  Finally you place the sheeting over top.

Instead, the trusses are being built on the ground.  You can see them up close!  Then the roof will be lifted up and placed on the walls.

As a group of us talked about this, we wondered what would happen if they are just slightly out in their measurements.  Would their be a way to compensate?  Can you lift and lower until you finally have it right?  Isn’t it easier just to build it in place?

Like armchair quarterbacks we solved the world’s problems – or at least that of building a roof.  Of course, the proof is in the pudding, or is that “in the roof?”

Day off

Monday, August 17th, 2009

The routine of a weekly day off is starting to become a discipline.  Having said that, last week didn’t quite work out.

But today . . . pretty well a day off!

Repainting a door, cutting the grass, and even helping make supper (notice I said helping – I’m not quite up to the chef level yet!) . . . those were all opportunities to do “day off” stuff.  And I enjoyed them.

I also had an afternoon rest (the Sunday version is often called the “evangelical nap”).  Riding my stationary bike gave me some exercise.  Watching some TV was entertainment. 

And now, I write my blog and settle in the for evening wind down time.

May your day end with restfulness, ready for a new day to dawn!