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Showing posts from February, 2008

FOR or OF

I watched part of a video of John Wimber last night and he said that at one point he realised he was working for God instead of doing the work of God. Those two little words started ruminating in my inner being while I was driving downtown: "for" and "of."

FOR is when you thrust part of who you are towards someone, hoping for a response or a change or an interaction or at the very least some acknowledgement. FOR is an attempt to connect, wanting to set things in motion, to make things better for yourself and others.

OF is different because it stems from an identity, the essence of someone or something, and the very nature of the person's character makes the action or word an extension of the being - effortless, natural, pure, and part of the whole. The action cannot be separated from the essence; if one IS love then one will naturally love. The action does not change depending on the response. The action happens because it is the very nature of their character.

I …

catamarans and other things

We arrived home from Cuba at 2 am Tuesday morning. After unpacking and picking up all my messages and emails and reminding the cats they did not own the house, I finally fell asleep after 4 am. The alarm went off at 8:30 the next day and I was amazed I made it through a French class and some office work and a movie without nodding off. Now that I have explained my blog silence and elicited your pity for my sleep deprivation, here are some random thoughts from my time away. 1. Catamaran rides are more fun on a really windy day. Though I loved the calm days for floating in the ocean, everything being calm all the time makes you sleepy and lethargic. Wind and waves get you somewhere. Some turbulence is good and necessary and don't freak out if you get soaked!
2. For some reason, nudists like to stand when at the beach. And read books while standing. 3. Machetes are awesome tools in the hand of an experienced wielder! They can slice open a green coconut at the perfect angle, giving yo…

forget it

We are leaving for Cuba tomorrow. I have packed almost every stitch of summer clothing I own into a suitcase (it just doesn't take up that much room, you know), eaten most of the food in the refrigerator, told the cats what is expected of them while we are gone (eat and sleep and try not to overfill the litter nor scratch the cat sitter), and picked out four books to savour while sitting in the sun or shade.

For a week we will forget about the house issue, the mound of emails piling up at Dean's work, and where to place that pesky French pronoun "en." There are some things it is important to remember, but there are also things that one needs to forget.

On Wednesday night at home group one of the guys asked the question, "What are God's conditions for getting into heaven and how can you lose your salvation?" and then timed us as we answered. It was interesting to see how succinctly we could articulate the basics of redemption. Not surprisingly, each one ha…

run fast

sooo I used to be a filmaker. no, seriously, it's true! Here are some of the titles I worked on that did not get nominated for any awards but certainly merited consideration, in my opinion:1. How To Replace a Windshield in Your Motorhome2. Who Says You Can't Take It With You (30 second promo on how you need a motorhome if you are an outdoorsy guy or at least dressed like one)3. Great Trek 3 (some youth retreat in Banff...this actually aired on local television)4. President's Message (um, not president of the USA or any other country, but of the local manufacturer I worked for. I managed to set the shot up so it looked like he was hiding behind a tree, unintentionally of course.)5. Mercy Street (music video starring one of my favourite friends and stellar artist, Dan. Included fake blood and all. Don't worry, we washed it out of the alleyway as much as we could.)Well, as you can see by the video above, I am back in business, home alone and without proper supervision. On…

just around the corner?

I am trying hard to have a positive attitude, but today has been a pretty shitty day. I listened to professionals tell me how bad things are with my house and how uncooperative people might be in working things out and how incredibly long this restoration process might take and even then things might not be totally put back and we might be out thousands of dollars and oh yeah it might be a good idea to hire a lawyer. I missed breakfast for this?
I opened my bible to Isaiah for some encouragement and it said...Do what's right and do it in the right way, For salvation is just around the corner, my setting-things-right is about to go into action. (from Isaiah 56 The Message)So here I live, in the day or week or month or year before salvation and setting things right. And I don't care for this place much at all. Partly because pre-salvation feels pretty much like no salvation. But mostly because when things are kicked out from under me, I realise just how much I have built my life …

the cut

I sliced into my thumb on Wednesday while cutting onions and found it a bit challenging trying to stop the bleeding, disinfect it with hydrogen peroxide and wrap it up tightly enough to keep the flap of loose skin in place all with only one hand to work with. Nevertheless I got it taken care of and it is healing nicely, though gross to look at (which can be useful in its own way).

In my French class on Thursday we were taking a unit on health and a nurse in the class mentioned that hydrogen peroxide is no longer recommended for treating cuts. Huh? When did this change take place? I held up my bandaged thumb in class and said that I had used it the previous day to clean my wound. She informed us that the solution, while being an excellent germ killer, has been found to also be damaging to fragile, healing skin. Needless to say, I have left the lid on the peroxide and am only cleaning it with a gentle water bath when needed. Mostly I just keep it covered and protected. And the cut is cl…

re-store

Jacques and Pierre came to see me yesterday. Jacques is a foundation specialist. He is kind and quick yet thorough and endearingly shaped like a pear. Pierre is his very French, mostly silent, but keenly observant assistant. In short order, Jacques' experienced eyes picked out several things inside and outside my home that told him that one side of the house has sunk several inches over the past 3 years and it will continue to sag unevenly unless the foundation is reinforced. He gave me the name of a colleague who was equipped for a job of this size and wished me a good day and left. So there it was, confirmed. I now officially have foundation issues.

I was feeling slightly overwhelmed with the news and the giant wrench this was putting in the plans to sell our house for a reasonable profit and move downtown into a cool loft space. So I asked God, "Why? Why did we buy this house? Why is this happening to us?" And very quickly I heard a reply, "This is what restorers…

that sinking feeling

We are trying to sell our house. It is not going as I had hoped. Many of the people who have walked through our home have noted that the floor is uneven in a basement room, and mention that our stairs are off as well. What? I never noticed this and I LIVE HERE! And there is the problem. Because I live in the place, I see it day in and day out, and I do not notice small changes. We get used to what we live with and assume it is normal. Our eyes and attitudes and actions adjust and embrace the crooked as the new straight. It takes the objective eye of someone who is outside the situation to notice that things are askew.

The first reaction when someone points out that things are off in ones home (or life) is denial. Surely not! Hey, everything is fine! I would know if something was not right. I am here 24/7. I can't be that blind! Um, yes I could be that oblivious, especially regarding something that I have grown so accustomed to that I assume it is normal when in fact, it could be on…

the unlikely mentor

I am tired today. I stayed up till 2:15 am this morning writing on my fiction blog (check out the second link on the right side to read the first 22 chapters of my novel - don't worry, they are really short chapters; I try to add at least one a week). It is an exercise that does not always come easy. Like any skill, it demands that I devote myself to it in order to see results and improvement. Some days it is fun and exciting and other days it is just plain hard work and I have to fight for every word.

I found an interview with John Grisham, one of my favourite authors, on a website this week and was inspired to hear about how he approaches writing. After watching the short talk, I felt like I had just attended a master class. We all need teachers and mentors to point us in the right direction and call the good stuff to life in us. So many of the young pastors I have worked with have expressed a longing for a mentor and many of them have floundered, somewhat lost because that one …