Monthly Archives: April 2010

Saturday at Anglin Lake

It is Saturday morning and I sit in my cabin looking out of my wide window that overlooks the trees and the lake and once again I marvel at the wonder of creation and the creator. This place where I am staying attempts to preserve the natural ecology of this spot. There are no manmade beaches. The lake lapping up to the roots of trees cause the slow erosion around them tipping them towards it till they bow to the might of the water. The falling of the trees and the natural process of decay that follows provides cover for nesting birds and shelter for the fingerling fish from their ever present predators.

The lake ice is gone early this year and the loons have returned. Perhaps if it were not so snowy I would see them swimming by. I wonder what they think of this late spring snow and the wisdom of their early return?

The snow is still falling – or is it rain? It won’t last. The weatherman is promising temperatures back up to the mid-teens by the end of the week. But this weather provides me with a perfect atmosphere for study mixed with short walks. Last night the fire in the stove warmed this place up quickly. I slept well and late.

This is a good place to renew my connections with the God who is. Nature tends to do this for me. It is a good place in which to study the complex relationship God has had with his people throughout history. The story is so old and was written to a people we hardly can understand from the context of our own culture. I am learning that studying these stories is a complex affair. There is Ancient Near Eastern archaeology to consider, other ancient stories that demonstrate similar ways of telling the stories of origins, battle reports and history. Still, there is a continuous thread that weaves through these ancient stories that teaches us about our sovereign Lord, his covenant with those who he chose as his people through whom to bring his blessing to the world and his requirements of all to love him and live in ways that honour him. It is the history of my own faith and it causes me to wonder at the ways of God.

So, I think now it is time for a fresh cup of coffee, then back to the books. Since I have no internet here, this won’t get posted till Sunday. That’s OK. I needed a break from the internet for a few days.

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Filed under Day to Day, Studying, Travels

The coming weekend

This weekend I am going to the lake for a bit of a quiet retreat. I will have one whole day of solitude, something I haven’t had in a long while. I think studying has taken its toll on my life. I guess it is bound to do that and although I am learning a lot, it is hard to just take time to be.

This weekend, I want to spend some time just walking and being quiet. I want to sit with God and let him bring some poetry and some natural beauty back into my life.

Of course I will cart along my books and keep on reading for my course which ends in a few more weeks but I don’t think it will totally occupy my mind. I hope.

A lot of my free time has been spent these days in booking accommodation for our Europe trip. The internet makes this simpler – at least the choices of where to stay can be checked out on line- but it also takes a lot of time and trust that what I see is what we’ll get. I am beginning to get excited about this vacation coming up.

So, I likely won’t be back to this space till Sunday or Monday. May your weekend be as nice as I anticipate mine to be.

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Comfort

We never seem to be free of struggles – for jobs, for safety, for our economic situations – for life itself.   It just is hard at times and way beyond our control. 

I tend to want to fix things but there are times when nothing will really repair the broken situations.

So, I guess we learn to make the best of bad situations and go on with life. 

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

– Matthew 5:4

At least I don’t have to go it all alone – and that is something I am trying very hard to hang on to right now.

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What kind of weather?

I will not put up any pictures of snow.  I will pretend this is not happening and maybe it will go away?

The roads around Saskatoon are just about impassable from what we heard from an employee on her way to Moose Jaw for a night at the spa.  Last we talked to her she was on the side of the road somewhere south of Dundurn.  And yet the roads are clear at Davidson.  And the roads here are not that bad either. 

Leo was scheduled to go star gazing with the mother-in-law this evening.  The Astronomical Society puts on a weekend but not tonight I guess.  The stars did not show up. 

But I will still curl up in a cozy corner and read or see what is on TV.  My head does not really feel like reading OT tonight.  I am hoping that by the end of this weekend I will have fought off this cold.

Oh, yeah, I got my final mark in Greek back today.  I did well and I am glad that it is done for now.

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Filed under Day to Day, Family, Studying

A Happy Easter to all

Christ has risen. We spent the day celebrating from the sunrise service to church to home and a big family gathering.

Now I am sitting here listening to the kids banter about the Amazing Race in the living room while outside the grandboys and grandtomboy are playing in the yard. The baby is babbling away in her mom’s arms. The contented aftermath of a good Easter spent together, too much good food and good family times.

We had another guy join our table today too, Miquel from Columbia. He was invited to join us at church this morning by Yaounde and when he was about to protest that he couldn’t come and interrupt our family dinner, Massa told him that they wanted him to come, that we were his family and he wanted him to feel welcome. And we found that Miquel doesn’t have a lot of friends that he hangs out with. I’m glad he joined us. I do love having a full table.

And Christian made it home in time to eat leftovers. He spent the last day in Provost. If you look up the history of that place you may discover why it was less than a good time. I guess they had guys in white sheets not so far in the past in that town and he ran across some interesting comments that mostly made him confine his time to his room. They probably won’t play that town again.

But now I am rather tired. I’ve eaten enough that I should go for about a four hour walk but have no energy left.

Tomorrow.

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Filed under Easter, Family

Holy Saturday

Today has been a busy day, full of good things and sad things and not much studying.

Since the midterm is done and I have almost caught up on my reading for the Old Testament class it feels as if I have gotten some of my life back this weekend. So today was filled instead with grandkids, some yard work, a memorial service, the never ending grocery shopping and a visit to my Aunt up at Mt. St. Joes.

Sara is home for the weekend too and I hear her down in the kitchen mixing up some carrot cake cupcakes. I will need to get the house organized for tomorrow’s Sunrise service on the river bank tonight too. The sun is up early – 6:30 am. I will get out of bed and make coffee and then the service will begin.

So, I suppose I should get a move on. Watched Julie and Julia last night. Better not let blogging take over although there is not much risk of this becoming a book.

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Filed under Day to Day, Easter, Family

Good Friday

Today Leo and I took part in something a little different.  We went on the Outdoor Way of the Cross that is put on by the Catholic parishes and the Ministerial Association.  It took place at 14 stations around the downtown core in our city. 

Just so you get an idea, I’ll give you the locations and the theme of our prayers for each of the stations. 

1. Jesus is Condemned to Death – Power and decision makers – out side city hall.

2. Jesus carries his cross – Homelessness – outside the Salvation Army

3. Jesus falls for the first time – For those suffering from addictions – outside the Liquor Board Store.

4. Jesus meets his mother – for those in poverty – outside the food bank

5. Simon of Cyrene helps Jesus carry his cross – Christian unity – steps of the Presbyterian Church

6. Veronica wipes the face of Jesus – healing of relationships – outside the Friendship Centre

7. Jesus falls the second time – for refugees and immigrants – outside the Multicultural Centre

8. Jesus meets the women of Jerusalem – better distribution of world’s wealth – cul de sac out side the Gateway Mall

9. Jesus falls a third time – for those who are unemployed – in front of the Federal Building (employment office)

10. Jesus is stripped of his clothes – trust in God – the bank corner

11. Jesus is nailed to the cross – Youth – outside the Margo Fournier Centre (youth centre)

12. Jesus dies on the cross –Justice system – outside the court house

13. The body of Jesus is taken down from the cross – Environmental stewardship – outside the Forestry Centre

14. Jesus is laid in the tomb – peace in the world – at the Cenotaph by City Hall.

Some of the best parts of the experience? Walking around to places that have been part of the downtown for years and seeing them and what they represent in the light of the cross.  Also the group walking was so ecumenical and so multicultural.  It was a beautiful day and by the end of the walk I think we had actually increased in size to well over 100.

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Filed under church, Easter, prayer