Sunday, April 30, 2006
Friday, April 28, 2006
Today I heard from from Val and Sally President of the Foursquare church in the
Philippines. Val has been attending Pastor Terry's youth meetings in Davao.
He's there as the plenary speaker at their national youth conference. The
report is that terry has been received as a gift from God.
It looks as though Terry has been having a bit of fun. He arrived at the opening night and asked who was the guest speaker for that session? He was told it was HIM and furthermore that he needed to 4 messages. As he was preparing he felt the Lord tell him to do an extra message where he would have to rely solely on the Holy Spirit.
It looks as though it worked because he has hit the ball out of the park every time he has preached. We pray for Gods blessing on him Torrey and Andrew as they continue their missionary journey.
Have you ever eaten a 700 dollar taco? Suprisingly they don't even taste that good. Yesterday we came to make a phone call at The spider web and we met a couple who had just eaten one. Actually the taco wasn't that much. It was the night and day at the clinic afterward that was expensive. And then the medicine on top of that. Today I've been writing chapter 11 of my book (I've finished about 140 handwritten pages) I was writing about Josiah finding and reading the lost Torah. How important it was for Israel to read and digest good spiritual food. Like eating bad tacos when we eat the wrong spiritual food we will have to pay a high price. Good lesson for me today.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
Life Launch Team heads to St Vincent (Wed. April 26)
Gord Demchuk is our Northside's Higher Ground Pastor along with Dennis Hixson will be leading a team 10 students on a missions trip to St. Vincent. The team will be building a second floor onto an existing Bible College and Church, leading two youth crusades, and ministering to local churches.
Collision Tour Headed for Canada & US
Rob Buzza, Jen and Tina Wright are taking 7 students across Canada and the US for the month of May. They will be visiting many of Foursquare churches along the 49th parallel encouraging people to meet Jesus through skits, videos, sermons, and worship! Rob and his team gave Northside a taste of their hard work last Sunday as they introduced Prayer from Luke 18. You may recall the key messages that "God helps those who are helpless without Him" and "God helps those who believe He wants to help" and "God helps those who are committed to helping others".
I was reading the story for my devotions today of Mary and Martha. I tend to be like Martha, thinking that I will get rewarded for working harder. But knowing it's really not true. As I was thinking about Martha I noticed something. She was working so hard to please God that she neglected to notice that Jesus was in the house with her. Susan and I were talking yesterday and she was asking where I was. I said I was right there beside her and had been all week. I had never left her side. She said no your body is here but you're somewhere else. Susan refers to my mental absences as being in preacherland. The fact was that my darling wife was in my presence but I was absent. Like Martha I was missing out on the very thing I wanted most out of our vacation. To spend quality time with my wife. I'm trying harder today to be present all the time. There will be a test later on to see if I've really been with her or not.
Monday, April 24, 2006
When we arrived there were 2 little red pills on the bedroom floor. We picked them up and threw them in the garbage. as they were not ours. The next morning there were 2 more on the floor. One in the bedroom and one in the kitchen. I commented about them to Susan and threw them away.
We looked all over to find the source but couldn't find any more. Yet, every morning when we get up or come in from a walk there's always one more on the floor. Good joke by the roaches I'm sure. They keep me smiling.
We are enjoying ourselves immensely and I am still excited about my current book.
Saturday, April 22, 2006
It's amazing to see how some people enjoy their vacation. While here, in Mexico, Susan and I get to chat with many people from both the USA and Canada. I'm fascinated by what others enjoy doing.
Lots of men (young and not so young) like to play golf. I can't count how many guys (more than gals) relish the idea of getting up at some ungodly hour to traipse around one of the many beautiful golf courses here in the Baja for four hours, every morning! Who knows why they would want to waste a good chunk of their day chasing a tiny ball over hill and dale. And when they're not playing golf, they're talking about it.
Then there's the thrill seekers. They love mountain climbing, hiking in the desert, jumping off cliffs, flying in parasails or surfing the breakers. Adrenaline is their high and they move from one dangerous sport to another every day.
I guess golf fanatics and thrill seekers are better than the biggest crowd around these parts--the partiers. They drink beer by the gallons (honestly). Every evening and late into the night they hit the clubs and bars. We rode with a busload of doctors on a medical convention and all they talked about was getting drunk. I was astounded by this.
Then, there's Susan and I. Thank God we think alike--there are many couples who go their separate ways while here--the spouse goes to play golf while his wife sits by the pool and reads.
For us, life while on vacation is pretty easy. We both lead busy lives while at home. I spend most of my days with people and Susan spends most of her time with family. When we come here to Mexico, I like to be quiet and not talk with too many other guests. Susan is much more social than I am and has made some very strong bonds with some of the regular women here.
Typically our day goes like this:
We get up and have breakfast (pancakes, or cereal, or bacon and eggs and coffee) on the balcony overlooking the ocean. Then we head off to the poolside where I write and Susan reads until about 1:00 or so. It's always hot and sunny. Then we go back to our second floor condo and make lunch. Again we sit and relax on the balcony while we eat.
After lunch, it's back to the poolside. Susan will often sit in the water and talk
while I continue my writing about one chapter a day. Around 5 PM we go back to our balcony and have a frappacino and relax (resting from our busy day). Then we go for a walk before we come back and make dinner.
Usually I cook or we make it together, then I clean up. We spend the evening talking, watching TV or just resting. Many (those golfers or adrenaline junkies) would look at us as boring, but we love our vacations.
In a couple of days, we may head to Cabo San Lucas to see what excitement we can stir up.
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
We arrived via Alaska Air on Tuesday then we headed for Costco to load up our fridge. Both of us would rather eat our own cooking than brave the foreign foods in the many restaurants around. We can usually eat well, snacks and all, for under $300.00. Our chicken, pasta and salad last night was superb.
Today we hung around the poolside and started a challenging task of cooking our pale flesh to a golden pink. The sky was clear and hot, by noon I gave birth to my first born child.
Of course I've never had a baby and I wasn't even in the room when our babies were delivered. Both Kelly and Kristy were born before husbands were allowed to be with their wives. Thank God! Actually there were some forward thinking doctors back then who were advocating partnership at birth, but I was well content with partnership at conception.
Anyway, this baby is a book. And my goal was to write the children's story I told to the Grade 2 class at Nestor Elementary School. So, in about 3 hours it was finished. Some deliveries are easier than others.
To find a fax machine is a difficult process around here. Susan and I finally had to drive to town to send the first draft to my secretary, Linda Kennedy, to type. Thankfully a professional illustrator, Jenny Kirby, has offered to draw the pictures for the book. She'll be starting her part of the project this week.
Then we came back to begin the birth process of Dancing with the King. I've had this one in my craw for at least 3 years and can hardly contain the excitement as I write. My goal is to write 10 pages a day for these 2 weeks. So day number 1 was successful.
Now it is dinner time and I can almost smell the fresh salmon cooking. What a life!
And here are our grandchildren all dressed for Easter Sunday:
Thankfully the rain held off long enough to snap a few pictures!
Susan and I will be be away for 2 weeks and I hope to write the first draft of a new book during this time. I'll let you know how it goes.
Monday, April 17, 2006
Currently, all stores are in the greater Vancouver area:
Celebration Christian Store
10249 King George Highway
Surrey, BC, V3T 2W6
House of James
2743 Emerson Street
Abbotsford, BC, V2T 4H8
Pilgrim Book & Bible
Vancouver, BC, V5R 5H5
Seraphim Christian Books & Supplies
5471 No. 3 Road
Richmond, BC, V6X 2C7
Gaffney Christian Supplies
6910 King George Highway
Surrey, BC, V3W 4Z9
If you are a bookseller, whether ABA or CBA, and would like to carry my books, please contact Sarah Clayton at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 604-341-4559.
Thanks Sarah for all your hard work!
Sunday, April 16, 2006
So when our girls, Kelly and Kristy were young, we followed suit. Susan always made a big deal of their new dresses. They looked so cute and we were very proud (I know that we should have been very humbled on Easter, but they were beautiful!) of both Kelly and Kristy.
Now the girls do the same thing with their 6 children. Today, they’ll all be in their places at church for Easter Sunday Service with hair slicked, new clothes and shoes, and ready to meet with our God.
Sunday afternoon is the traditional Easter egg hunt for the kids, but of course it’s been raining so hard this weekend that we’ll do it in doors this year. After church we’ll be going to Tom and Kelly’s home to eat our Easter lunch. Turkey and ham are on the menu today with all the trimmings. Susan loves to cook for the family. She feels like it’s her privilege, but one day, hopefully, the girls will relieve her.
Susan’s mom will be there of course, as will Joanne Wolf (mom’s dear friend, my former Bible College teacher and my family’s pastor). After lunch and the dessert, both our daughters and their families will go to their respective in-laws for Easter dinner (and more treats). Susan and I will have an early evening to be home and relax. I’m already looking forward to that!
Saturday, April 15, 2006
We are very thankful that in only 3 weeks Susan was able to get her doctor’s recommendation and approval by the government for a senior’s subsidy. It was rather amazing how quickly it all came together. Mom got a brand new suite with an alcove for her bed and a good sized living room with kitchen, etc. She loves it. Susan and I bought a new entertainment center for her tv, chairs, bed, towels, bedspread, pictures, and lamps and we threw a lot of her older stuff away. Of course we kept the things that were special to mom.
By the time we left last evening I think Mom was pretty tickled with her beautiful new decorated rooms. Several of the ladies came to greet her and take her to the communal lunch and dinner. Mom can still make breakfast for herself.
Transitions are always difficult. Twenty years ago, 6 years after Susan’s dad died, we sold Mom’s home and moved her to a senior’s independent highrise by the Kingsway Foursquare Church. She still goes to church on Sunday, counts the offering on Monday, and folds bulletins on Friday. You can’t keep a good woman down!
I think Mom had her apprehensions and fears about this new transition, but she’s a sweetheart and takes it all with a smile. Today I know she’s happy and will be well cared for if anything were to happen. Susan prayed that she could get it all done before we go away on vacation on Tuesday, so we thank the Lord it all worked out. We took the time to pray with Mom before we left and blessed her new home.
Susan’s had a very busy and stressful 3 weeks, but our kids were all there to help their Gram in her move today. They didn’t leave until it was all done. (The other residents were probably happy by that time to say “goodbye” to our six energetic grandchildren!)
Thank you Lord for Good Fridays, especially this one.
Thursday, April 13, 2006
Here's something you can do as a family on Saturday just before bedtime. Younger children are always amazed by what they find in the oven Easter morning:
(by Wanda Long)
1 cup whole pecans
1 teaspoon vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch of salt
1 cup sugar
Preheat the oven to 300 (this is important-don't wait until you're half-done with the recipe).
Place the pecans in the baggie and let the kids beat them with the wooden spoon to break them into pieces. Explain that after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by the Roman soldiers.
Read John 19:1-3
Put the vinegar into a mixing bowl. Let each child smell the vinegar. Explain that when Jesus was on the cross and he became thirsty, He was offered vinegar to drink.
Read John 19:28-30
Add the egg whites to the vinegar. The eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life so that we could have life.
Read John 10:10-11
Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand and let them taste it. Put the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sin.
Read Luke 23:27
So far the ingredients are not very appetizing. Add 1 cup of sugar. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him.
Read Psalm 34:8 and John 3:16
Beat the egg whites with a mixer on high speed for 12 to 15 minutes, until stiff peaks form. Explain that the color white represents the purity in god's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus.
Read Isa. 1:18 and John 3:1-3
Fold in the broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons onto a wax paper cookie sheet. Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus body was laid to rest.
Read Matt. 27:57-60
Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven off.
Give each child a piece of tape and seal the door. Explain that Jesus tomb was sealed.
Read Matt. 27:65-66
Go to bed. Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight and that Jesus’ followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed.
Read John 16:20-22
On Easter morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie. Notice the cracked surface and take a bite. The cookies are hollow! ON THE FIRST EASTER Jesus’ followers were amazed to find His tomb empty.
Read Matt. 28: 1-9
* * * * *
If you don't have a home church or you're wondering what Easter is all about, why not consider visiting us this Sunday? Our fabulous choir, under the direction of Maureen Reid, will be performing. We'd love to meet you. For service times, please visit our website or call 604-942-7711 (Port Coquitlam) or 604-484-8907 (Coquitlam).
I'm not sure if my Blackberry will work while I'm away, but I will try and keep my blog updated.
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
But a couple of days ago I opened the mail with anticipation because one of the first books that I wrote, Life Centre, has been reprinted.
Thanks to a Chinese couple in our church, I’ve been lined up with a printer in China. So in good faith, I emailed the revised text and cover to this Chinese printer (who knows where). I received in the envelope a couple of sample copies from the 5,000 they’ve printed. Wow! They look awesome. Now the books will have to be shipped across the Pacific in a container. They should arrive in a couple of months.
But the thing I liked most was the fact that this book (the subtitle is a primer on spiritual alignment) is being printed in Communist China. My next project is to get the book translated into Chinese. Pray for success!
Sunday, April 09, 2006
If you've read my previous posts, you'll know I've spent the last couple of days in Courtenay. I've been teaching a bright class of Master’s Commission students. My assignment has been to teach the entire Old Testament in about 15 hours (Wednesday and Thursday this week, and Wednesday next week).
I’ve had a great time interacting with both the students and pastors of our Courtenay Foursquare Church. We managed to get through, with admirable enthusiasm, the first 5 books of the Old Testament over these past 2 days, so that only leaves 34 more books for next week! We’re going to make it. The students have read both Red Thread I and 2, and I use my Penteteuch and Old Testament syllabuses as notes for them to keep.
I love the concept of Courtenay’s Pacific Master’s Commission. It’s different from Bible College in that the students live with families in the church and serve in the church throughout the week. The practical experience has a mutual benefit to both the students and the church. Here’s what they write on their web page:
“Pacific Master’s Commission (PMC) is a training ground for ministry focusing on providing an atmosphere where students can meet ‘face to face’ with God. PMC is not only for those who desire full time ministry, but also for those who desire to pursue Jesus and then make Him known to the world.
After 9 months, you will have received
- ‘Hands on’ ministry experience
- Biblical training (transferable to Pacific Life Bible College)
Leadership and Mentoring opportunities
- Practical skills to be used in your community and local church
- Experience in a wider range of ministry opportunities than you knew existed
- A lifetime worth of recreation playing hard in the Comox Valley"
I'm looking forward to my trip back to the island next week.
Friday, April 07, 2006
One of my favourite times of the year is Wee College graduation. Our daughter Kristy is the President of our fifty plus Wee College student body. The Freshmen are five, Sophomores are six and the Grads are seven years old.
By the time they finish their three-year course the children have memorized well over a hundred verses. They can quote entire chapters of the Bible, know all the major divisions and books of the Bible and have learned to apply the Word in their young lives. Do you see why I love it?
Last Saturday we had about three hundred people (parents, aunts, uncles and grandparents) clapping and cheering for our kids as they spouted their Bible knowledge.
Thank God for the cast of parents and young adults who work alongside Kristy to teach our children how to treasure the Word of God deep in their hearts. That Bible truth will protect them from evil, light the path before them, bring them comfort, hope and healing as needed, and serve to correct and discipline them over and over along the path that God has specially designed for each of them.
You’ll notice in the picture to the right, two special scholars. They are my darling grandchildren—Madeline and Maxwell. I’m hardly a proud papa!
It is easy for me to imagine the wonderful adults they, and the other students, will grow up to become because of their hard work at Wee College.
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Yesterday, in Courtenay (that's a town on Vancouver Island for those of you surfing through from out of the area), I had dinner with a delightful couple, Lloyd and Marie from the Courtenay Foursquare Church. They have a passion to work with people who are ready to come out of addictions and dysfunctions.
I listened to my new friends share their excitement and gratitude to God for the strong work of hope and freedom he’d done in their lives, and their desire to see the same in others. I was inspired as we talked, with their big God-sized vision.
Lloyd and Marie are going to be using my Higher Ground 12 Step Manual (she’s already read it through several times) so I responded that we would be happy to serve them in any way we can. God loves to see people set free, but he also jumps up and down with joy when he sees people with his passion, find their purpose and go for it. What a happy evening we spent together!
It s Palm Sunday this weekend, so I'd better get back to work.
P.S. Do your children like to colour? Thru-the-Bible Coloring Pages (for Ages 4-8) has a Palm Sunday image you can print out.