Monthly Archives: July 2003

Bright clouds

Tonight we were in a deacon meeting and coming out of the church there was a bank of clouds off to the west – one of those post card perfect clouds with the sun centered right behind it sending off rays all around. One of those second coming picture sorts of clouds.

I had some shopping to do down at Superstore – had to get supplies both for the office and for home. While I was in doing this it rained – poured.

Meanwhile, the bank of clouds had moved completely to the east. A billowing bank of clouds pillowed up into many layers of bright pink on grey. Stunning! And no camera!

Tomorrow I’m off to Vancouver. To fill my brain with all sorts of useful stuff about orthodontics. I know the course will be good. It’s the second half of a four day course and I’ve already done the first half. So I am looking forward to it – but I will be spending most of my time in beautiful Vancouver in a hotel conference room – 8 to 5, Saturday and Sunday.

Two things I want to do – visit my cousin in Port Coquitlam and eat some seafood, oh yeah, maybe find a good store or two. I have to bring my grandson something ’cause I’ve heard that’s what grandparents do. And I hear there is a bumper crop of cherries in BC this year – maybe a case of cherries for the blog party at Coopers. That would be nice. We could eat ourselves sick!

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Thoughts for Today

Some thoughts for today:
Matthew 9:36
He felt great pity for the crowds that came,
because their problems were so great
and they didn’t know where to go for help.
They were like sheep without a shepherd.

I’m glad my God has pity and has become our shepherd.

Proverbs 2: 7,8
He grants a treasure of good sense to the godly.
He is their sheild,
Protecting those who walk with integrity.
He guards the paths of justice
And protects those who are faithful to him.

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Kieran Visits

We had a visit at my office today from this little guy. Annette and her auntie came by and showed him off to everyone. This picture was taken on Saturday when Kieran was only two days old and still in the hospital. To tell you the truth he hasn’t changed much but he does open his eyes and he is beginning to gain weight again. He was to have his first bath today. I know several friends and relations are checking out this site for the pictures I posted earlier so for them here’s another one.

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Vietnamese Food

Today some of my staff, our summer student and I went to a little Vietnamese restaurant for lunch. We usually don’t have time but today it worked out so that we could do it by ordering ahead. Mmmmn, the barbecue pork and spring rolls on vermicelli was wonderful. Saigon River is a good place to eat.

It is also interesting from a “religious ” point of view. There is a little shrine right down on the floor in front of the cash register. Today there were some oranges and a banana placed in front of it.

It is fun to have a summer student with us again this year. I like going into my teacher mode. Yesterday I got to walk him through a fairly difficult extraction. He’s a good and eager learner. He’ll do well. He’s good with people too.

We also have a “locums” dentist this summer. She spends a few weeks with us each year. Her husband plays for the NHL (Steve Kelly- LA Kings) and they spend their summers up at Christopher Lake. She hasn’t lived long enough in one place in the states to bother getting a license there and she is busy being a mom so we provide her a place to keep her dental skills current. She’s fun to have around the office too.

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Gordon's Wedding

I don’t know if I’ve ever been to a Monday wedding before. I didn’t exactly get to go to the wedding but I did get to the reception. It was very nice. The weddings I have been to lately have been real casual but beautiful affairs. It seemed tonight that these two kids were very much in love. Besides all the love in the air we had a great meal and good friends to share it with. Shared the table with Randall and Lauralea, Grace and Pauline.

On the way home we did what all new grandparents would do – we stopped to visit our grandson and our kids. It is funny to watch Leo and David practically fighting over who gets to hold the little guy. Wonder if they would fight over who gets to change the diaper! The true test of devotion! Annette’s auntie has come to stay with them for a few days and that is good because Annette is feeling a little tired and a bit sore. She needs spoiling for a few days.

While we were there our daughters came in. Rachelle came up from Saskatoon since she has a few days off and all the girls were going to the drive-in. Bruce Almighty and something else are playing. If I didn’t have to work tomorrow, I would have gone with them. I must be one of the only people who hasn’t seen Bruce Almighty and I am beginning to feel sorry for myself. I guess someone has to work so our kids can afford to go to movies! Oh poor old me.

Now I had better call it a night. Leo’s already gone to bed and morning will come too quickly.

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Healing and Wisdom

Healing and Wisdom

These seem to be the themes from my morning readings. Matthew 9 describes a whole chain of similar events – healings – both physical, spiritual and emotional. They all seem to point to Jesus meeting the deepest need of the person he addresses.
The paralyzed man needed forgiveness.
Matthew needed acceptance.
The woman with the hemorrhage needed encouragement.
They needed physical healing as well but got more than that.

I’ve recently started reading though Proverbs as well. The wisdom of this book is sort of scary. Proverbs 1: 20-33 tells how if wisdom is rejected she will laugh at you in times of trouble.
“They rejected my advice (wisdom) and paid no attention when I corrected them. That is why they must eat the bitter fruit of living their own way. They must experience the full terror of the path they have chosen.”

Am I ever glad Jesus is compassionate enough to forgive and rescue us from the results of our own stupidity.

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Growing Up at Last!

Growing and discovering a deeper faith in Christ has surprisingly only fairly recently become one of my highest priorities. I think the change came due to two significant events or rather series of events in my life. I believe God put someone in my path that because of his frank and honest expressions of faith could lead me deeper in mine. And then there were some major problems that I had to face and as I dealt with them had to learn to trust God to handle them for me. The problems are still there but I am beginning to see them from a different perspective and as I get to know God better I am learning to trust him more for help.

Why did it take me so long to see what God could do in my life? I can blame lots of things but mostly they are due to my own self absorption. Depression doesn’t help and neither does a fear of looking bad in the eyes of other Christians. Partly that comes from growing up in a fairly legalistic church that sometimes placed more value on the appearance of faith than on the actual thing. I think in some ways becoming a missionary fed that kind of expectation. The strong Christian community of the mission was a good thing (we didn’t have as many illusions about ourselves) but the expectations when I came back to Canada were overwhelming. The support of a close missionary community was just whipped right out from under my feet and out from under the feet of my struggling kids. It has only taken me about ten years to get back on my feet as far as being at a point where my faith is growing again. My kids have a way to go.

I also had to learn to let go and trust God. Some of my problems were too big for me to even attempt to fix on my own so I finally let go of my distorted views of self respect and told God to take all of me and make whatever he wanted to out of my mess. And he has given me back not a burden of new expectations but joy. I have a new hunger (I don’t know a better word to describe this sensation of desire) to study what he has taught us in the Bible. Prayer has taken on a new urgency as he takes over my problem areas. I talk to him about those and I just enjoy the wonder of being able to talk to him. I want to continue on this journey because it is one of the most fulfilling things I have ever done. It’s almost too good to be true and I don’t want this feeling of wonder as I walk with him to ever end.

So that is why I wrote the following words:

Free Me

I want to go deeper God.
I want to go in
To the Holy of Holies
To the place where you shine
And have my face reflect you.

But, I cower in the dimness outside
The veil that you rent.
Too afraid, too tightly
Clinging to my self.
Chains on my feet.

If I push the torn curtain aside
Take a faltering step
There’ll be no return
To the familiar dark rooms
Where I’ve been.

Held back by my own expectations
All I think I should be
It is hard to imagine
How I would look
Unshackled, free.

Oh! Tear the curtain down Lord!
Erase my sin!
Free me from those tainted laws
That bind my feet,
And bring me deeper in.

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