Saturday, December 31, 2005

Welcome to a New World

Wow, that's about all I have to say. God has been hard at work in my life, even over the Holidays. It's amazing what a bit of off-time can do for you, when you really just want to spend some time to recuperate, and reflect. That's exactly what I've been doing, and God has been guiding my every step.

I've really been pondering a lot of things in my head. My own faith, what that really means, what the core of my faith is, what is malleable, and what really needs to stick firm. These are just a few of the things that I've been juggling around, so you can imagine what it's like to be inside of my head!

Yet the old analogy of a tunnel doesn't really work in this instance. It's more like I'm on a journey, and God is there every step of the way with me. I recently had a conversation with a lady that I've known for awhile. It was an odd conversation because she is very much searching for the meaning of her life. She doesn't talk about it often, but it's a constant thing on her mind. So we had a good chat about her beliefs, about what was important to her, and where she was. It's interesting that the simple phrase of "I don't know" can really get through to someone. In this case, she grew up in a very conservative home, where it was just a matter of "God wanted it that way."

That just doesn't jive with the way she thinks.

How do you explain pain and suffering in the light of an all-loving God. There are answers, and they are completely legitimate, but when push comes to shove, we can never truly understand the sheer scale of that destruction, except to know that Jesus hurt with them. That is where our conversation shifted to, Jesus. How did he react? What were his comments? Jesus wept. Jesus was left alone by his own Father. He knows what it's like to feel completely and utterly alone. He understands.

God is good.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Caring for Your Introvert

Caring for Your Introvert

This was an interesting read. Something to give everyone a bit of perspective on others!

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year!

Just wanted to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year... I'll look forward to hearing from you all come early January, once I get back into the swing of things for the 2nd half of my internship!

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Carys is blogging!

m ,,,,,,111111111111111111110mj bbgb gbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbg j mmmmmmym
,,,,,,,,,,,,///////3ooooooooooooooooooooooooooookkkkkkkkghhn ..,/M" [[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[[=\ n ,m

so there you have it... the words of a Christmas crazed 11 month old named Carys! Oh so cute!

Thursday, December 22, 2005

Home for Christmas

Well, the first part of it is over. I'm back in Edmonton now, and home for the holidays! A chance to unwind, relax, and just enjoy the company of family! Everyone else is driving out here tomorrow, and will get here tomorrow night, so I have a day where I can just veg and not have to worry about a whole lot.

Before I left this morning, we finalized next semester's calendar up to March, and I got the poster done, so that it can be printed and mailed out sometime next week. Just laying down the plans so that come January, we have a plan from which we can build off of. Makes everybodies life easier.

Life is good :)

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Almost done James!

So I've been working on my Distance Education Course pretty steadily over the past few days. The work has paid off. I'm nearly done the whole course, and all I have standing in my way now is a short presentation, a 1 page write-up of that presentation, the final exam, reading through James 5 times, and reading through the commentary. I figure I should be able to be completely done the whole course by Christmas! One less thing to worry about!

Other than that, work is continuing in my secret project. Soon enough I'll be able to reveal exactly what it was that I've been working on. I had a little technical difficulties, but they seemed to have ironed themselves out.

Tomorrow will involve the finishing touches on next semester's youth planning, some graphical work, a little bit more of James stuff, and then heading home for the holidays. I'm super excited for us all to be together again, and I don't think I've been this excited in years! It's going to be a good first Christmas for Miss. Carys!

Tuesday, December 20, 2005


I finished watching Saving Private Ryan last night, and the ending really made an impact on me, more than I remember it making the first or second time around. After battling all through Europe to find Private James Francis Ryan, the captain dies just before reinforcements arrive, and it's at that moment in time you can see in Ryan's eyes that he knows that he is the reason this man is dead.

The look in his eyes speaks a million words. Suddenly the weight of war is upon his shoulders, and he doesn't know how to cope. The captains last words were to Ryan, and he says, "Earn this." Referring of course to Ryan's life. It was paid with the death of at least 5 other soldiers, and the Captain never considered him unworthy.

Today in my devotions, David Roper challenged me to think of life as a gift from God. I'm crafted for a very specific purpose. Am I earning that?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Cool Weekend!

Well, what a weekend. Friday night kicked off with the youth Christmas banquet. For which I shaved! I know, the world rejoices. I got all dressed up into my suit, etc. We had a good time all in all. Bryce was constantly on the prowl for things to put into my drink, and that's completely dangerous when they give you Hershey Kisses, a large turkey dinner and a full complement of napkins, cutlery, etc. Kinda scary!

After that, we had a LAN party here at the church. Sadly, as I get older, I can no longer stay up all night, so I went to bed at about 5 or 6. However, before I went to bed, I established and defended my crown as the undesputed kind of the Apache in Desert Combat. No one could touch me all night long. I was mobile death. Surprisingly, the network came together quite nicely and easily, and everything went smoothly throughout the night, once we got all the computers up and running. We had a fun night, and all was good.

Sunday morning we showed the video I had prepared, and everything went over really well! Slowly getting the formula down for communicating with all of the different generations, and a few parents said thank-you for showing the pictures of their kids. It was good fun! I also had to pray that morning, which was a little different. It's funny how you take the normal things for granted. I learned that if I'm going to pray like that again, until I get used to it, I need to write down in detailed form what I'm going to pray for, not just try to wing it! Lessons learned!

I'm heading home for Christmas on Thursday. T-Minus 6 days!

Friday, December 16, 2005

The Lion, the Witch, and the Great Insult

The Lion, the Witch, and the Great Insult

This is really an interesting take on our world. Completely true, in and of itself, and offers a piercing look into the depths our sin. "We don't need you God, we can do it on our own." Now that is where we meet people, and begin to show them what Christ does do in our lives.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Crazy Go Nuts

Alright, so I haven't been all that busy. But it has been a full two days! Yesterday, Ashleigh and I went out for coffee! Good to talk to someone else who is at the same place as you when you look forward in your lives. It's neat to see how God is moving in my generation to prepare people for ministry in our new world, even while it is in the midst of change.

In Ashleigh's case, she has a real desire to walk people through their problems... beginning to end. Not just talk to them once, and then drop them. But be there for the long-term and minister to the lost, the broken, and the types of people that most won't even touch today. And as she's been here at Prairie, God's been building in her a desire to do ministry here, not overseas as she originally intended.

That fits pretty well into my own model. As I look forward, the goals are to have a church that is accepting to all, and works with all. Accepting them for who they are and walking along the journey that is the Christian faith with them. Prodding them here and there, but also realizing that we all start at different places, and because of that, we have to have different expectations of everyone. It'll be interesting to see how that plays out in a real-world church.

On a less serious note... over the past two nights, I've been involved in... two parties! Two nightes ago, I was a 'internet pirate' for the Discover program's semester party. They were all dressed up as authentic pirates, and it was totally awesome. It was good fun, and there were some wicked good costumes. One girl, Jaqueline had the full outfit going on, it was pretty incredible!

Last night was the church staff party. We met at the harvest house for dinner, and it was good laughs all around. Here's 21 year-old Stephen hanging out with 40+ people! Whodathunkit? Good thing I can still appreciate my dad's sense of humour (the secret it out!).

For dinner, I had a 16oz steak... or should I say I tried to have one. The Harvest House is known for their large portions, and this one must have at least been a 20oz steak. I finished half of it last night, and the other half at lunch today! It's was VERY good, but I thought I was going to explode after eating it! Good times.

We went from there to Kevin's house, where we had a rousing game of Catch Phrase. You have one piece that you pass around, and it has words inside of it. You have to get other people to say the word by describing it, singing, dancing, just about anything but saying that word! It lead to some pretty hilarious moments! Highly recommended!

All in all, it's been a good past couple of days. Tomorrow: Red Deer. We're working on forward planning for the next three months, and we need to get the Youth Christmas Banquet program worked out.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Holy Toblerone

Alright, so here I am sitting in my office. I just got in, so I was checking out all the new things on the net, like my crazy cousin Val commenting on my blog, when Lynn walks in... accompanied by a HUGE Toblerone bar. You know, the 750g type. I'm still in sugar shock from just the THOUGHT of eating this thing. I love toberone, don't get me wrong, but this thing will last me for 6 months. Totally awesome.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

On the DL

So... I'm working on a project. It has nothing to do with work. Everything to do with Christmas. Keep it on the DL.

More on that after Dec 25th :D

Friday, December 09, 2005

The Return of Links!

So I got bored, and decided that I would put in a few links to some different blogs. Notably my two cousins! I just stumbled upon them here in the past few days, and I figured why not include them. So props to Bonnie and Val!

Also, I included a link to the RSS feed for the blog. So if you're more into the RSS kind of a thing (Gmail just started supporting it), that option is there for you. :D


Hello, and welcome to Friday. Today we will be preparing for the weekend and making sure that we're not stressing out Sunday morning. Some of the tasks that this includes are preparing for the Junior High Sunday School class, the 2-4 year old children's church, and generally making sure that we are mentally sane.

Alternatively, we need to make sure that our James course continues with the recent progress, meaning some time in the Library, as well as reading an journalling on our thoughts. The goal is to have this finished by Christmas, so make sure that you keep working on it!

Finally, there are some smaller tasks, like confirming your preaching appointment on the 15th of January in Big Valley, setting up coffee with someone who really just needs to chat, finding a hotel that is suitable for the youth sponsor retreat in early January, and goofing off.

As we read this morning, it's important to just be patient and let God work in your life. This means clinging close to Him, and trusting that He ultimately knows what is best for us. If we ask for strength in the midst of trial, He promises to always give it to us. So the question is... do we?

Good luck :D

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Funny How it Fits the Mood

I'm working through In Quietness and Confidence by David Roper, and it's funny how the devotionals just fit whatever mood you're in at that given moment. In my case, that's pretty pensive. It's just a day where I'm into thought, and not saying a whole lot, but just enjoying what God has to teach me.

That's exactly what the devotional was about today. Sometimes it's better to keep your mouth shut so that you can hear what other people, and God, have to say. It's amazing what He'll teach you when you don't say a word. Just listen, and somewhere out of that silence comes a small whisper in the form of a good book, music, someone else's words, or perhaps just your own thoughts. It's in those moments that you really grow.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Youth Retreat

Alright, so just as promised here is the update from the youth retreat! It was an awesome weekend, and we did a ton of crazy things such as....

... tobogganing down this huge hill on crazy carpets and tubes! It was a total blast! And I know that I was still feeling the effects on Monday, which means it must have been fun.

We had a total of 19 kids along with us, and with 9 youth sponsors it meant that we could just relax and enjoy ourselves, rather than worry about what was going on around us. The kids were a huge delight to be with, and there weren't really any issues that arose.

Friday night, I spoke and just set the platform for the rest of the weekend and Kevin and I spoke about Relationships and the importance of them in our lives. I included a lot of fictional examples in there, but I threw in some ones of my own from junior high and the story of a young friend that I have that has come to know God in the past year.

Saturday was really the meat and potatoes of the retreat. Breakfast was at 9 AM, and as all the food was out at REBC, it was fantastic. Kevin spoke that morning on the Biblical basis for relationships, really going over Proverbs and other examples in the Bible of relationships. He laid a good foundation that we could build off of.

That afternoon, we went tobogganing, played some card games. And really just enjoyed ourselves. There were numerous different games that were going on. Some poker, some egyptian war, and a few other games that I forget the name to. It was a good time to just talk about what was going on, enjoy ourselves, and get to know each other a little better!

That night, we gathered around the fireside room for the nightly chat. We had a skit, which involved a 'used teenager lot' and "Honest Al" talking about youth like they were cars, and then was shocked when someone would 'USE' a car! I think it really set the stage. From there I talked about relationships in their lives. Friends that were a huge help to me during my high school years, and I also talked about Sarah, and how I really didn't do her justice in our friendship. I thought it went really well.

That night, we played some fun games. Charades, Jeopardy, and Wink (which turned out to be a group favourite) dominated the night, and the kids had a blast! Three of the Junior High Boys built a fort out of the chairs we had downstairs, and so I crawled in there with them and we were joking around. Then I had to get out, so I just stood up, and the whole thing collapsed!

All in all, the whole weekend was a success. It was awesome to see God working in the group to bond them together throughout the weekend, and I'm excited to see what He'll be doing in the next few weeks from the progress that was started there. It was tiring... but it was totally worth it!

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

My Day

Alright, so I promised the youth retreat low-down... Tomorrow... Morning. You have my word!

Today didn't really consist of much. Showing up late for staff meeting after sleeping in (purposefully this time), and then reading for the rest of the day. I found some good resources for ministry related things, and I'll be looking over a lot of that in the next few days as we look ahead for planning.

I spent most of the afternoon just reading through some of "A New Kind of Christian." Some interesting stuff that I'm in the process of ... well processing. It's pretty thought provoking.

Other than that, I think some glow plugs need to be replaced on the Jetta, so I'll be looking around at that in the next little while. Paul and I are going to work on that and a few other things over Christmas. Nothing like a little brother bonding time over a hard hunk of metal! Booya!

Monday, December 05, 2005

The Youth Retreat

It's sitting at -18 outside right now, and I've finished writing all of my e-mails that I wanted to today, and I'm still waiting for the car to warm up. So I guess it's time to write a note as per what happened this weekend! I think I'll start today by giving rules for anyone who attempts to plan a youth retreat, and give you the recap tomorrow when I have a little more time.

Rule #1 - Always plan far ahead of time

Don't leave the messages and devotionals until the last day. This is never a good thing, as it will generally leave you without dinner, and stressed out. If you can plan to have your messages and devotionals done at least a week ahead of time, then you can leave the last week to touch-ups and minor details.

Rule #2 - Don't have another major message to give before the youth retreat

In my case, that meant teaching the gr 5 religious education class. Things may go well, but it takes up almost a whole day when what you really want to be doing is working on the youth retreat.

Rule #3 - Know your limits

Don't commit to doing more than you are physically, emotionally, or spiritually able to do. There are people that are willing to help. Let them. If someone wants to help you do something, give them a job to do! That's less for you to do.

Rule #4 - Take a deep breathe

It's guaranteed that if you are seeking after God's will, there will be some serious attacks. That means that you need to take a deep breathe a lot of the time and lean on God. Your patience and abilities are not enough to do that job, we all recognize that. So remember instead that you could have never gotten this far on your own, and give the credit where it deserves to be... God.

Rule #5 - Have some good friends

People that are removed from the situation, but that love you dearly are your best friends. They will pray for you, help you, love you when you need it. Being on the planning end can be very lonely, and having someone like this can really help you through the rough patches when you're ready to give up (thanks dad!).

Rule #6 - Remember that it's a retreat

This means that when you actually get out there, if you've done Rule #1, you should be relaxing just as much as everyone else. You do have responsibilities, but take some time to throw yourself down a hill on a crazy carpet, and while you're at it, try to bowl someone over!

Rule #7 - God

This is the most important of them all. Don't even try to go it alone. You need to be spending even more time with God before a retreat when things get hectic than before. Satan is going to come on strong, so don that armour soldier and fight with what God gives you. He's there with you every step of the way, and you need His strength, not your own, to get through this. Don't forget that.

Friday, December 02, 2005

T-Minus 7 hours

Here we are, approaching the youth retreat. I've still got one sermon, four devotionals, and a schedule to make. It's going to be a wild day :)

Thursday, December 01, 2005

What a Day!

Nothing quite like preparing for a youth retreat! There's always something more to do, and I think no matter how much preparing you've done, you'll always end up winging some portion of it. I'm personally really looking forward to this retreat. It's going to be a blast. Our theme? Relationships.

I've got two messages during the weekend, first of all laying the foundation for the weekend by outlining the state of relationships in the world. My plan of attack for this is more of a shotgun approach. I'm going to throw a lot of different scenarios at the kids, and hope that they hit where they are at. That's really up to the Holy Spirit.

From there, I'm going to move onto my own life, and the effect that relationships have had on my life, and finally finishing on the state of culture at large. Hm... Scratch that. I'm starting with the culture at large and moving in from there. I think that will focus it a lot more.

The second message will focus on their relationships, where they are at, and it will follow Kevin's Biblical basis of Relationships. Part of me can only do so much preparing for this. I will have my outline, but it will really be determined by where the atmosphere of the retreat is at! At this point, I can only really offer it up to God and hope that he'll take it from there.

So here are a few things that I've got to do over the next 24 hours. Prepare my second message. Preparing the devotional material for the weekend (Morning and Night, I think), Prepare the schedule, get my desk cleaned (gotta leave a good impression!), get my powerpoints done for both messages. Go to Karate tonight, as well as Soccer.

It's a mad, mad world! Good thing that I'm not in control!

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Meaningless, Everything is Meaningless

I was reading through my devotions this morning, through Jeremiah 2:1-19. And as I read through In Quietness and Confidence by David Roper, it just became more and more clear to me. Roper in and of himself expands upon the whole subject quite nicely. Talking about how no matter how well you build your cistern, it's always going to leak. No matter how many hours you put, how much money, or how much planning you put in, it will always leak.

We live in a world that is desperate for more... and more... and more! Yet God clearly says throughout the Bible, it'll never be enough. No matter how much you'll gain, no matter what heights you may attain, it'll never be what you are truly looking for. We must come to the living stream. The one thing that can truly fulfill us.

That's what Jesus meant when he told the Samaritan woman that she would never thirst again. I can make you happy, I can fill that void that is within your soul. The one that everyone around you feels, that you are all so actively seeking out, I am that answer. It's a scary thought, because it means turning our backs on everything that we've held so dear. Instead, we do an about face and run straight for God, and run away from this world.

He may lead us into riches, He may lead us into power, but more often than not, we aren't called to that kind of a life. We are called into being His hands and feet to everyone. To do the small acts that build up over time to cause a revolution. That's challenging.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

A Good Day

Today was a good day (as if that wasn't already obvious), It's chilly outside, but I didn't spend most of my day outside! I was busy for the whole day, with staff meeting this morning, praying with Kevin in the early afternoon, and working on Religious Education all afternoon! It kept me busy, and I was quite happy to be that way.

Tomorrow, I teach the grade 5 class again, and this time I have to get them through the story of Joseph, through the ten plagues, and across the Red Sea! Run Israelites Run! I'm not quite sure if I'll be able to get through all that material in one class, but I'll give it my best shot, and gosh darnit, I'm going to enjoy doing it!

All the students are Prairie are stressed out of their minds as they finish up their semester, so it's kinda nice to be apart from that. I took Bethany out to lunch because she is getting sick and hasn't been getting her sleep (hm... connected somehow?). It was good times! (this whole paragraph was for you Lorelei :D)

Tonight... Dinner, Board Meeting, Futsal! Go go gadget Stephen!

Saturday, November 26, 2005

Six Years, and Many More Lessons

Today has been six years since my mom passed away. I never quite know how I feel on a day like this, I just sort of have to take it as it comes. Perhaps it should be a bigger deal than it is, perhaps it should be less. It's not something I can ever really know.
I've learned so much in the past six years, and I often wish that I could just talk with my mom about what is going on in my life. Get her opinion on things that are in my head, as I prepare for ministry, who I am... all of those things. What is it that she would say as I'm not on my internship? What would be the most important part of what I am doing? Would she be happy with who I am? Inadequacies and all.
It's not often that a decision comes up where I don't wonder what my mom would say, what kind of advice she would give. A sort of check and balance of sorts, but one that I can't say I'm terribly informed on. It's funny to think how young I was when she passed away, only 15 years old. Yet that single event forced me to have to grow up so quickly. Suddenly I needed to make a lot of my own choices, ask for money when I needed to go get clothes, and consider who my friends really were. Dad was there to watch over me, but in a lot of ways, that's how my mom was involved in my life. Dad took (and takes!) care of my physical needs, but mom was the one who really watched over my emotional ones.
Because of that, perhaps I'm grown up more in some ways than I should be. But perhaps it's nothing more than calusses that have formed, covering up the immaturity that is underneath. God has slowly been peeling them off, sometimes one at a time, sometimes a few at a time, and showing me what's underneath. Holds me when I can't do it myself, and applauds me while he watches me get up and run. He picks me up and comforts me when I fall, and pushes me forward to keep me going.
Perhaps because of all of this, adulthood is not really adulthood, it's merely a different stage of childhood, where you realize that while you now make all of your own choices, and can express things in much bigger words, your still just as dependant on your Father as you were to begin with. Faith like a child. Puts a different perspective on it for me.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


Here are the pictures... :D Like I said... fairy tales... Bethel Youth Group, and camera's = fun times.
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Tuesday, November 22, 2005

I'm not suddenly busy... honest!

Alright, two sermons, three devotionals, a sunday school lesson, a small group session, games time, 24 or so parents to phone, 2 1/2 minute video to make. Yup, I've got a few things to do over the next little while. This is on top of Karate, Soccer, and James. Life is awesome, it just keeps me busy! Time to start utilitizing the daytime hours!

Challenges, in the personal sense

So I was reading through My Utmost for His Highest this morning, and this is the article for the day:

Shallow and Profound

“Whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Beware of allowing yourself to think that the shallow aspects of life are not ordained by God; they are ordained by Him equally as much as the profound. We sometimes refuse to be shallow, not out of our deep devotion to God but because we wish to impress other people with the fact that we are not shallow. This is a sure sign of spiritual pride. We must be careful, for this is how contempt for others is produced in our lives. And it causes us to be a walking rebuke to other people because they are more shallow than we are. Beware of posing as a profound person—God became a baby.

To be shallow is not a sign of being sinful, nor is shallowness an indication that there is no depth to your life at all—the ocean has a shore. Even the shallow things of life, such as eating and drinking, walking and talking, are ordained by God. These are all things our Lord did. He did them as the Son of God, and He said, “A disciple is not above his teacher …” (Matthew 10:24).

We are safeguarded by the shallow things of life. We have to live the surface, commonsense life in a commonsense way. Then when God gives us the deeper things, they are obviously separated from the shallow concerns. Never show the depth of your life to anyone but God. We are so nauseatingly serious, so desperately interested in our own character and reputation, we refuse to behave like Christians in the shallow concerns of life.

Make a determination to take no one seriously except God. You may find that the first person you must be the most critical with, as being the greatest fraud you have ever known, is yourself.

Funny how it's the small things that challenge you the most. Take no one seriously, don't be afraid to be shallow. How counter-culture is that today? We are challenged by the world to lie to everyone around us, be something more than what we are, and put on a good face. The strongest, and the deepest survive. You would never want to admit that at any particular moment you are shallow.

God forbid that you just want to enjoy a day with some friends without some depth to that. An interesting observation. More on that later, it's time for lunch.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

Lots to write about

Wow... what a weekend. Where to start. Right, the beginning. Let's start at the beginning.

Friday was sort of a hodge-podge of a day. In the morning I didn't have much to do, and wasn't expecting much to do in the afternoon, but as we looked at DISH (Digital Image Scavenger Hunt) that night, it seemed like we were going to need a camera, and I needed to run into Red Deer to exchange a fender part for my Jetta. So rather than asking Bethany to head in with me Saturday morning (which I found out she wouldn't be able to go) we went in Friday afternoon.

After dinner, we booted it back to Three Hills, and I dropped her off pretty much RIGHT at 7. When I pulled up to the church, Kevin was on the phone... calling... ME! We had a great night at DISH. Nothing like fairy tales, camera's and a bunch of youth running around town to excite things! Pictures early this week when I get them!

Saturday consisted of me slacking off. It was good times. About noonish, I got ahold of Jon, and we drove into Calgary to go see a movie, eat, and go to the volleyball games. We ended up doing all of them, just not in that order! We got lost, so we stopped and ate, then went to the volleyball games, we went to a movie with myself, Jon and Becky. It was pretty good, and thought provoking.

Today was just busy. Sunday school this morning was pretty adlib, because I finished the material last week, and forgot that I'd done that, so I had to pull a quick one and form a lesson on the spot. We ended up talking about Luke 14, where Jesus is at a Pharisee's house, and ultimately about putting yourself last. Worked out pretty well.

Afternoon involved Open Dorms, so I went up to Bethany's room to take a look at some pictures, play UFO (or XCOM as she calls it), and throw a ball at each other. It was good times. And then Fusion tonight!

Things that I've learned? Girls are fun and confusing at the same time. Lord of War is a thought provoking movie, but I don't think I'd want to see it again. Always plan your lessons ahead of time. And phoning is very important in youth ministry! Gotta have that contact. Guess what I'm doing this next week? If you guessed phoning, go eat some skittles!

Thursday, November 17, 2005


How well does this describe me, anyways? haha

Wolf - Independant, strong-willed and often misunderstood. Few people truly understand you. Your extremely attached to the significant few you love and respect. You often find yourself as a loner, but you eagerly seek the comfort of your packmates.

What Is Your Animal Personality?
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Joy Williams - We

She's independent and beautiful
Wish I could be like her
She's got the girls and the boys
So wrapped around her finger
Rumor is, she's some kind of dream
Nobody knows she cries herself to sleep

We are not that different from each other
We just want somebody to discover
Who we really are when we drop our guard
That love has gotta start with you and me

He's on the top of the social scene
He's stylish, cool and clever
He's gotta cool attitude that screams
He's got it all together
You'd think he's addicted to himself
But he wishes he could be someone else

We are not that different from each other
We just want somebody to discover
Who we really are when we drop our guard
That love has gotta start with you and me

Gotta come together
You know you never ever have to be alone
You gotta hand to hold

We are not that different from each other
We just want somebody to discover
Who we really are when we drop our guard
That love has gotta start with you and me

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Ah... Wednesdays

What a way to wake up! Yesterday, I was awoken by the phone ringing, and then realizing I was late... for staff meeting. Quickly jumping out of bed, having a record-setting shower, and rushing out the door were par for that morning. And I did make it to the meeting, just not on time!

That afternoon, Kevin, Lynn and I went into Calgary. Lynn is off to the east coast for some meetings, and Kevin and I were dropping him off, and then doing some planning. As it turned out, we spent all afternoon in Calgary, but got some good planning done for the youth retreat... now just to work on DISH for this Friday!

Last but not least... soccer last night was both great and brutual at the same time! Richard worked us hard, so much so that I could barely get up this morning! That's the good part, but we also were practicing till almost midnight. Not a biggy, but after such a hard workout, I was dead, and I'm preaching today again! Oh well, everything worked out fine in the end.

Today: Preaching in an hour... planning.

Monday, November 14, 2005

What a Weekend!

One of the things I've had to learn over the past few months is that a weekend is not necessarily a rest for a pastor. In fact, the weekends are by far the busiest time for me! If it's not youth on Friday, it's Sunday School preparation, or Fusion, or Small Groups... or a sermon!

This past weekend, I found out saturday morning (after the half-day of prayer) that my 5 minute devotional was now a 12-15 minute sermon! Not anyone's fault but my own, and not asking the right questions ahead of time. So I spent all day Saturday working on that sermon (Psalm 34:1-7) and getting it ready to go. Then I had to get my Sunday School lesson.

I put in a full day on Saturday! But have no fears, it all worked out quite well. I got all the research done, and a 4 page outline done, with illustrations. Sunday involved Sunday School, and then the main service, then I had to preach at 4ish, and went over to a family's house for dinner (VERY good), and finally to the Church for Fusion. Oh... and then to a pastor's meeting at Kevin and Teri's, but that was a lot more relaxing than it sounds.

It was a good weekend, and I slacked off today! This week: Planning for D.I.S.H (Digitial Image Scavenger Hunt), Planning for the youth retreat (Decemeber 2-4th), getting the new body piece on my car painted, and fixing what is left! It's going to be a good week.

Internet Service to Put Classic TV on Home Computer - New York Times

Internet Service to Put Classic TV on Home Computer - New York Times

Totally off topic... but this is where the world is heading. Free, less ad's, all of the content. Nice work WB... time to expand that into your current programming!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Not much on the home front

Didn't do a whole lot today. Made a powerpoint for the day of prayer tomorrow, screwed up fixing something in my car, and then Kevin fixed it.... Don't let his post fool you, he's good at fixing things! :)

Students are out tonight, so I'll have to hunt down something to do. Sometimes being in Three Hills really sucks! :D If you're bored, give me a call.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Fix it up!

I'm back from Edmonton! I went up their last night, as Kevin said to drop off the old alternator and spend a night at my dad's! It was a lot of fun, and good to be home for a little bit. Spent most of the morning just running around Edmonton and picking some things up. I got new snowboard boots, since I couldn't find my old ones, and parts for my Jetta.

I'm at the place where I can finally start to fix some of the parts that were run down or broken when I got it. So I'll be working on my car this weekend, putting those parts in, and pulling out the old ones! It's good times.

Yesterday's class went well. Got through all the material that I wanted to, which was the big thing. But I had fun doing it as well! Just like at camp, you have to forget that you're an adult and have some fun with the kids. (EWWWWWW!!!!! Adam and Eve were naked! EWWWWWWW!!!!!) So life is just good right now. Maybe I'll go snowboarding tomorrow, but I don't know if that's the wisest choice if they are leaving tonight, I'll have to do some thinking about it!
Stephen (I call him Steve) is away for a part of the day. He taking his old dead VW alternator to his dad so that he can get a credit for it. We attempted to take the alternator off ourselves (I was sure we could manage...I saw my brother-in-law do it once and it didn't look too hard). We got the belt off alright, exercising teamwork like we're supposed to. But the next phase didn't go as smooth. While he looked for a specific wrench size I worked on the top mounting bolt. It was set in pretty good so I had to lean on it... We ended up towing the car to a local shop where they were able to cut out the broken piece of bolt I left behind. Steve demonstrated his typical, unflappable character. Forgave me graciously for busting the bolt and we moved along.
Sometimes life is like the bolt. Things that have been set and left for a long time become difficult to change, arduous to work with. One of the things I am learning from Steve is to think in new ways. He has a way of bringing out better thinking from my old set mind. Proverbs 27:17 says, "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." That's the way I think this internship process is working. I may have more experience, and I hope some of the stuff I've stumbled through in the past helps him out; I also am benefiting from our time together!

He did a really good job teaching yesterday, I was quite proud of him. It's hard to tell when he's nervous...Some people have a funny laugh when they get anxious, Steve's is funny all the time! Some people talk a lot when they get nervous, Steve...Well let's just say if that's a nervous reaction he should get help! I wasn't sure if he was nervous about teaching his first grade 4-5 lesson or not, but he was well prepared and the kids ate his lesson up. Wherever he ends up I think working with that age group should be something he's involved in regularly.

Our next tasks are planning the youth retreat in early December and around the corner is our scavenger hunt we do digitally. We need a great theme to capture the kids' interest...It'll be fun to collaborate on those items, and I'll let you know what we come up with... At least if I can actually figure out how to do this!

- Pastor Kevin

Wednesday, November 09, 2005


Narrative Form? Check
Notes? Check
The Fall to the Tower of Babel? Check
Biblically correct? Check
Fill-in sheet so the kinetic learners can follow along? Check
Stephen? Check
Game at the end? Check
Breathing? .................................... Check!

Time to go teach the grade 5 class. Funny how teenagers are easy peasy, but the elementary age are mysterious to me. Oh well, time to forget I'm 21 and go have fun!

Stephen and Grade 5's!

Alright, so I've been preparing all morning for my Relgious Education class this afternoon. I'm taking about 60 some grade 5ers from The Fall through to the Tower of Babel. Just to recap, that is the pinnacle of human debauchery! God casts us out of the Garden of Eden, Cain kills Abel, and is cast out his land and profession. It continues with the entire world being corrupt except for Noah, and God completely wiping us out. But wait! We're not done yet, let's build a tower up to God! Oh... he destroyed that too. Hm....

It should be a fair bit of fun, actually, because despite God disciplining us on a regular basis, He is extraordinarily faithful to our kind, and preserving and redeeming us. It's amazing how many chances He gives us to repent our sins, and how many times we try to pretend like it never happened. Yet He knows.

I'll post later to let you know how it all went!

Monday, November 07, 2005

Learning about Youth Ministry

I was going to post something especially for my sister. Naturally, she'd be rolling her eyes, and saying such wonderful things such as 'Oh Brother' and other such beautiful insights. And being the bright lady that she is... it would have been about girls! haha, but I thought a second time about it, and instead I'll talk a little bit about what I've seen over the past week.

It was last thursday that I posted about being in chapel. I still continue to be amazed by it, and am still reflecting about it. It was incredible to be a part of that and just watch teens worship, when they are lead by other teens. We got back Friday night, ready to have a good night in the Gym, and what's funny... no one showed up.

Part of doing ministry in Three Hills is having to make amends for being put under by something else going on in town. In this case: Volleyball Tournament. There will be nights when things will go awesome, and nights when you won't have anyone show up, and you just have to take it as it comes.

What's particularly odd about the whole thing is that come Sunday Night for Fusion, we had an incredible turnout, with kids that came to particpate. The same set that the kids did for Thursday, they did Sunday night, and it went over well again. It was a different environment than previous weeks, and I'm not quite sure what the difference was. Perhaps it was because it was just youth leading worship, perhaps it was the time that got put into preparing it. Perhaps it was the prayer before? Perhaps....

Just some thoughts about youth ministries, and the different ups and downs. Tonight I've got Karate, and then hanging out with friends tonight. Back to the office tomorrow with staff meeting, and then lunch with one of the kids. I'm looking forward to that.

Sunday, November 06, 2005


This one is for my impatient sister... who doesn't realize that I was at a conference all day friday and saturday, and that I work today! I've only go this time because we set up early!

I've been at the Volunteer Revolution conference over the past few days, and I've learned quite a bit. Yet it's funny how all of these revolutionary concepts all seemed to be a part of my youth group.

Most of the conference focussed on helping people find where they truly belong based on what they enjoy, and how God has gifted them. Sounds pretty simple, eh? Yet it apparently is a huge deal. Finding place where people can serve, and helping them discover their gifts is really the big pusher. How can we help people discover their gifts in a non-threatening way. It was really quite good. More on it as I digest what I read and look over the notes.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Resilience of Youth

I had the opportunity this morning to go to the PHS chapel and participate in that. We had some youth from our group leading worship, and who I know have been working extremely hard at preparing for it. One of the joys of working with youth, is that I get to go to a chapel, worship with a few hundred of them, and call it work. Life doesn't get much better than that.

They did a phenomenal job of leading the worship, and it truly showed through their attitudes. They didn't lead worship by trying to get everyone else to engage, but by doing it themselves. It amazes me that even without any real training or a wealth of experience, how right they get it. It was an awesome experience!

They also asked me to lead communion, which was a first for me, and it was a HUGE honour. It was neat to see their reactions as I had the chance to challenge them in their realization of what communion really is. The thought that went into all of it, and how honest and open they are. It's days like this that really just blow my mind. God rocks! :D

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

I Love My Father!

You know, there are times when someone just really blesses the socks off of you. It may be a card of encouragement, a good chat, or someone doing something for you. In this case, it was my Father, who went out of his way to help me. 3 hours out of his way, to be more exact. And I couldn't be more appreciative of it. Thanks Dad! :D

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

The Desk of an Intern

So... as promised, here is my desk! That huge monstrosity is the 27" monitor that will be going in the sanctuary, but that I am currently enjoying! Apparently it has an 8ms responce time, but if you watch TV on it, there's a bit of ghosting on sports shows, etc. Not bad for an LCD though.

I've been cleaning my desk today, and I'm teaching the grade 5 religious ed class tomorrow. Good old Noah's Ark! Time to get cracking on that. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 30, 2005

To those who don't know: Comments

Howdy! Just in case you didn't know... you can always leave me comments about what I post about. Have something to add? Can you relate? Just want to leave me a silly message? Click on the comments link that is right below this post (it's in lime green) and then leave me a message.

You don't have to be a blogger member, and you can still leave me your name so I know who to blame! So what are you waiting for? Comment away!

Saturday, October 29, 2005


I was travelling back from my Futsal game in Edmonton today (we won 11-6 vs. Taylor), and I got stuck (read: chose to go) in the girls van. We had a lot of good conversations about a wide variety of topics. It was interesting to sit with a lot of people who are of the same age, and who also have their own opinions about the church, and different topics that are bound to come up when you talk about those things.

Because I've been involved in ministry in the past few months, a lot of what has been going through my head has to do with my own paradigm and what kind of ministry I really am looking towards. Do I want to pastor in a huge church with a food court, and tons of resources, or in a small church, where there are maybe two pastors, and I've got to be a lot more creative on small resources? Or do neither of those models fit where I'm going?

Am I looking for a church that is radically different from what we say today. Less service focused, and more relation-based? What would that look like? How could I foster open, accepting, and honest relationships in my congregation? Where do I start in my own life, I have so much to learn, so much to change. Yet I have to remember that it's a journey, not an instant cup of coffee.

Thoughts to consider. Father carry me through.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Babe the Pig

Just for those of you that were wondering what I've been up to over the past little while. We ran a youth event this past friday that I've been video editing for. Kevin and I put together a murder mystery and had the whole thing worked out for Friday night.

Work back with me... to a dark and stormy night. It's pitch black outside, but in drives a car in a hurry to an old barnyard. Out steps a man of tall stature and strolls into the barn. Only to find... BABE THE PIG!

The premise was a mall hunt, where we had parents and college kids hiding in the Chinook Centre in Calgary. Each missing person had a clue towards the mystery, and we brought them together at the end of the night.

As it turns out, finding the people was a little too hard, and no one figured out exactly what the mystery was (including the college kids, who had all of the clues). But I think that's better when push comes to shove. I'd rather have it harder than too easy, it's just a shame that they couldn't find all the clues. The next time we have a mall hunt, I know I'll have a better base to build off of, so that we can find a good balance.

Everyone had fun! Too bad I couldn't have been there. Recap video will be shown Sunday at church! I just finished burning the DVD. Posted by Picasa

The Cutest Thing Ever

This is Carys. Carys is sleeping. Carys is cute. Carys is also my neice! Put all those together, and you have an Uncle that is completely in love. I got back from the CCU Fairs not that long ago, and on Wednesday, I had a chance to spend some time with her, and with my Sister (thanks Lorelei!).

I'm telling you, there has to be some kind of a law against being this cute. It'll be fun to watch her grow up. Posted by Picasa

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Video Editing on a HUGE screen.

It's a fair bit of fun... I'm video editing on a 27" LCD! The church has some new monitors for Powerpoint in the back of the sanctuary, and until they get mounted, I have one attached to my computer. 27" of widescreen goodness. You can't really complain about that! It says to sit at least 27" back... I think I am... I think! ;)

Making a video for Sunday morning, we want to raise awareness of our youth group in the main congregation. Nothing like watching some youth act out a pig getting killed! I'll post pictures soon.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

The Last Day

It's been a fun past couple of days, but it's going to be good to get to see some family, and then head on back to Three Hills. Seems like it was a bit stressful when I was gone, so I'm glad that I get to go back and help out! Time to start working on some vision, and promotion of the youth group in the church so that parents and families as a whole can see what we are doing in the youth group!

Tonight we are in Burnaby, and it's the last event, then I go straight from there to Lorelei and Orlando's. Time to take pictures of Baby Carys! It's funny to think that soon she won't be a baby any longer, and she'll be just Carys. She'll be cute one way or another!

Monday, October 24, 2005

Busy... and Good

Tonight was insane! We were so busy! But it was good to talk to a lot of students who were really searching for God's will in their lives. In that sense, it's been an awesome trip. It's been really good to get out from the norm, and hang out with people about my own age, and just enjoy their presence.

God has just been blessing me with the people I'm with, and the students I'm meeting. I'm really looking forward to taking some of this enthusiasm back to Bethel with me!

On the Road Again

So I've been on the road for the past couple of days. Been very good to just get away, but also to remember what I did over the summer. Sorta puts a perspective on where you are at in life. I've had a lot of good conversations about Prairie, but also about where different people are in their walk with God. It's been refreshing.

I've also really been enjoying talking with people my own age! One of the biggest frustrations of being in Three Hills is being surrounded by young adults, but not really getting to know any of them because they are all attending the college and really busy.

Tomorrow, the end of the tour, family, and Carys... :D

Friday, October 21, 2005


These are the memories! Travelling back from Tom and Leah's wedding... stopping for McDonalds. April and Keren, say cheese... in the middle of a lineup! The looks on people's faces made it all worthwhile. Posted by Picasa

Keeping Track

Alright, so I got to thinking about my internship... as usual! :) I need some way to track all that I go through, and what better way to do that then place it on the World Wide Web where the whole world can read about my mishaps! Who knows, by the end of it, maybe even Kevin will have a Blog that is solely devoted to all the things I do wrong! I'm sure it would make a good book too. We could turn it into a multi-million dollar business.

As it stand right now, I'm learning lots... finished video editing a 12 minute movie for tonight's game! And I won't even get to be there... tis a shame!

More soon!