Tuesday, December 25, 2007
Charity and I would like to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. We have been so blessed this year, and pray for God's blessings in your lives also.
We hope that you spend time today with family and friends: eating turkey, taking a nap, playing games, laughing, crying etc...
There is so much to remember this year, but most importantly is that Christ our Saviour was born! There were tears shed this morning since this is our first Christmas without my Nana. Someone who I definitely miss. I'm tearing up again so I'm going to stop writing.
To all who read this...we love you. Merry Christmas!
-Ty & Charity
Monday, December 24, 2007
not that I don't enjoy church, but wow did tonight ever leave an impact on my heart. sure every church does their candle light & carols service...but tonight was really something special. maybe it was the fact that Charity played her flute while I was leading the worship team. maybe it was just the fact of seeing our church auditorium packed. maybe it was because my mom and dad came to church tonight. maybe it was just the fact that tonight people gathered because they wanted to...not because it's just what you do on sunday as a Christian to look good.
tonight people came to church because somehow, deep down inside of them there is this twinge that tells them a church is where they should be. some glimmer of hope in our culture that church is still relevant. that the importance of Christ is still there!
tonight was about hope. and wow was it a great night. our candle-lighting song tonight was the song "Go Light Your World" by Chris Rice. So as we sung this song my wife lit the first candle and then walked through the rest of the auditorium to light others' candles. what an awesome sight to see. Have a listen for yourself:
(the video has some random German words at the beginning and end...but since the song is really what I want you to hear...then it shouldn't be a problem!)
what a song! what a night. i pray that for any of you out there who went to a Christmas eve service tonight that you were equally blessed as I was. what an amazing God we serve that he humbled himself to come to earth as a baby! to be our saviour!
Friday, December 21, 2007
This is a Rant!
Last Friday I took our Sr. High students to Bright Nights in Stanley Park. This is where you can board their miniature train to be taken around approximately one million lights all displayed in the trees. This is always a holiday favourite with many families in the Vancouver area. I remember going on this train many times growing up...and even one of my great friends proposed to his now wife on the train. But something was really missing...
I'm sitting here in a coffee shop with pictures of reindeer's throwing snowballs at each other on the windows. There are snowpeople sitting on shelves, while there is a tree tightly put into the corner of the store. But something is really missing..
The malls are decorated with every thing possible to celebrate the holidays. Signs are everywhere wishing us Happy Holidays, teetering on the edge of trying to be culturally sensitive. But I hope to not step foot in another mall until well after the rush of shoppers are gone. Yet something is still missing...
And so I am reminded of a song...a song by a man who asked a very good questions over 30 years ago. "So this is Christmas?" John Lennon penned these words back in the 1971. And I find myself singing this song recently asking the same question. "So this is Christmas?" I haven't found myself all too festive or cheery in these days leading up to December 25th. I don't know why, but this year I've found myself to be far more introspective towards this topic. I've watched way too many news reports on schools no longer even saying the "C" word during the Holidays. They have "winter fest pageants" at their schools now.
And I'm left here wondering what has become of Christmas? Do we blame the media? No...our culture is simply a mirror of what we live out. We've all done this...and even us as Christians who are so afraid of saying the wrong thing. Even if someone finds the words Merry Christmas offensive, I'd hope they rather hear someone saying that then F**K. Get the point?
I think the hardest thing to hear is that people do fine Christmas offensive. What confuses me is that Christmas is about love and hope coming to the world through a little child. Can I ask where the offense is taken? Was it the love part? The hope part? The little child part? I really hope we as followers of Jesus...that child born in a manger 2000 years ago, realize the message we have is far from offensive. It is the greatest story to ever be told...a story that has the power to radically change lives. A story about love, hope, joy, peace; things that our world is so desperately longing for. Again I ask you...where is the offense in those things?
So someone please let me know where Christmas went? Maybe there is still some hope. Maybe under the dim light of candles as we gather on Christmas Eve...maybe somehow through that we'll see where Christmas went...and where we need to go to find it again?
So this is Christmas?
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Here's a little write-up about what an ENFJ looks like:
"ENFJs are people-focused individuals. They live in the world of people possibilities. More so than any other type, they have excellent people skills. They understand and care about people, and have a special talent for bringing out the best in others. ENFJ's main interest in life is giving love, support, and a good time to other people. They are focused on understanding, supporting, and encouraging others. They make things happen for people, and get their best personal satisfaction from this."
It's crazy how accurate that statement is about me! So try this thing for yourself and see what it says about you!
(ht to Marko)
Thursday, December 13, 2007
Case in Point:
Last Wednesday I was hanging out with 3 guys from our bible study. We were sitting outside under the umbrella's and propane heaters and I get this idea:
me: wouldn't it be great if we could roast marshmallow's under these things?
student: that would be kinda fun.
me: maybe even we could make s'mores if we went and got the stuff across the street at Shoppers since it's open 24/7.
student: we're going to go get the stuff.
student: yup...(at this point 2 students are running over to purchase the stuff)
5 minutes later they come back and we "cut down" some twigs from the leafless trees to use as roasting sticks and spend the next half-hour roasting our marshmallow's using Starbucks' propane heaters and made some really delicious s'mores!
And so from that point on we have coined the term "s'morebucking" and it has become our post-Wednesday Bible Study activity!
Thanks Corbin, Nate & Josh for the fun night!
These are the days when I seriously love being in Youth Ministry!
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
I went to the mall this morning to pick up some dollar-store wrapping paper. I ended up getting four of the same rolls for a dollar each. (this is one of those dollar stores where things actually only cost a dollar...not a dollar "or more".)
Anyways, while I was waiting in line there was this elderly lady standing no more than 4 1/2 feet tall at the counter buying bingo dabbers. Now normally this wouldn't be a cause to blog...but when I looked at the brand name of the bingo dabbers they were labeled "OH S**T". Of course without the asterisks.
Now, I'm not a fan of gambling to begin with so I'm not going to try to sound in support of bingo...but why in our culture do we have to take something as innocent as an inanimate object meant to put a circle of ink on a piece of paper and then write a profanity across the front. I don't know if this grand-ma knew what was written on the front or not (she might just have bought the first dabber she saw.) But none the less, there it was written on the dabber.
Now I'll be the first to say that I have used a profane word at some point in the recent past, and that I am in no way trying to be hypocritical...but why as a culture do we allow these things to be printed on labels etc...in plain sight of children! Is there any wonder why our culture seems to be in moral decay? Not simply because of bingo dabbers...but because of an exodus away from the teachings of the Bible.
Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of one's life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by human beings, but no one can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison.
With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God's likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. (James 3:5-9)So may we all be challenged by these words today. I know that I am not the only one out there who may need to swallow hard these words from Scripture! And please, if you're ever buying a bingo dabber...try to get one that is a little less profane!
Thursday, December 06, 2007
It was one of those days today where I just had to realize that my agenda is not as important as God's agenda. Twice today we had people walk through our church door in search of some help (shelter, food, etc...) with temperatures getting colder, and stomach's getting even more hungry we see many people walking through our church doors. and why not...aren't we as followers of Christ told to take care of the poor?
He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honors God. (Prov. 14:31)
Even here in Walnut Grove (a very upper-middle class town) we see so many people broke, lost, hungry, and searching for help. It overwhelms my heart that God has called me to a place where I am not just a Youth Pastor but someone called to offer help and hope to these people.
It's hard when I hear stories of some people taking our gift cards and re-selling them outside the grocery store for half of their face value...but does that mean I stop giving them out? It's tough because I know many of the people I give them to do use them legitimately. I just have to trust God that what I am doing is right...and to not worry what they do with them.
So today, please pray for Randy and his son, and the two nameless ladies who dropped by today for some help. May they find more than help this Christmas...may they find hope. And we are those that God has entrusted to share the hope...the hope of Jesus.
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
At around 10:45am a man named Barry walked through the front doors of our church and asked to speak with a Pastor. Seeing as I'm the only Pastor right now he walked into my office where we were just finishing our weekly staff meeting with our secretary and one of our elders.
Barry obviously has been hurt by people and the church in the past. He spoke about how Christians are the only group of people who would shoot their own wounded. How we don't honestly and authentically care for the poor, neglected, hurting, outcast etc... He mentioned that he hadn't stepped foot in a church in 10 years and likely won't step back into a church for another 10 years. But how amazing that God brought him into my church for 15 minutes. What guts that must have taken him to do that!
Barry continued to share for a few more minutes and then Tom (the elder from staff meeting) and I prayed for him. We gave him our business cards so that he'd have our phone numbers to call us back. He didn't want to give us any of his contact information...so we just said we really hope to meet again and grab a coffee together.
This may be wacky theology...but it's in those moments where I am reminded of "Emmanuel" God With Us. That sometimes these hurting, lonely people that walk through my church door open my eyes and heart to the very fact that God is in the hurting, lonely people...and that God is with us.
"Whatever you do for the least of these...you have done for me" Matt. 25:40
I hope I get to see Barry again soon. I hope that our conversation has warmed his heart to see that if anything he has found two new friends that care for him, love him, and who desire nothing more than for him to re-discover Jesus...Emmanuel...God With Us.
Saturday, December 01, 2007
Tonight was great. More talk about rest. About honouring the Sabbath and keeping it holy. If we're still supposed to obey the 10 Commandments why is it that we so often forget the one about keep the Sabbath... It is so amazing to see how God has weaved that thread through so much of what has been shared today.
So you'll probably hear more from me about this idea of keeping the Sabbath. But for right now I'm going to finish this blog post and then head off to bed. First I'll have to walk 5 blocks in the cold & snow. Someone invent human teleportation for me!
Life is good.
Two great things so far from his morning.
1) It started snowing again!
2) I had a great coffee with Marv Penner.
Man is it great sometimes to just sit down with godly people and share openly where your life is at. It was only 30 minutes, but the depth of conversation was so life-impacting. Pray for Marv and his wife Lois. They could really use a fresh breath of God is their lives right now. And nothing beats having such a great guy speak wise words into your heart. Thanks buddy!
Another great thing that I found this morning was a Starbucks that serves breakfast sandwiches! No doubt for me where I'm grabbing breakfast tomorrow morning! WOO HOO.
Well I figure at some point I should go sit down in the general session and learn something.
Thanks for reading...
Friday, November 30, 2007
This weekend for me is reflected well in this verse. These words spoken by Jesus are very timely to me right now. I have taken the words of Marko seriously so far by skipping sessions, concerts, seminar and having necessary conversations with people who have played a significant role in my faith journey.
I went to Jon Imbeau's "Spirit Filled Ministry" session (the one I did in fact go to) and was blown away at the great stuff he was sharing! So true, that my life needs to be spirit filled...to even think that my ministry will go anywhere. Even more than that...my students need to have lives filled with the power of the Holy Spirit...to dream their dreams...and to see them accomplished.
I got to spend time tonight talking to my wife tonight. I definitely miss her, and can't wait to see her again on Sunday! I LOVE YOU BABE!
I hope for anyone who is reading this that you're taking time his weekend to discover where you fit in God's story. As God continue to write His story...we are included in that. How cool. Anyways, it's after midnight and I need to get some sleep.
More to come...
I've really enjoyed spending the past 2 days with Matt Wilks in the Critical Concerns Course called "Students who share in the mission of God." This has been a great time hearing about God's story and how we as youth workers, can share with our students God's story and how they fit into it. If you want the notes for this course I've typed them all up and would be happy to email them to you. Just leave me a message.
These youth workers around me have really been a blessing through being so honest and authentic with where they are at. You can hear from their stories, and see it in their faces how in love with God they are, and how much they love their students.
God I pray for these youth workers that you show them how they can engage in your story throughout this weekend. I pray that when they travel home and spend time with their students that lives are changed...and that in everything that we do we show Jesus and how He gives us life and life to its fullest.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
I got news today that my buddy Darian (who's been the driving force in seeing the CYWC come to fruition) went into the hospital last night for an appendectomy. Yikes! I am praying for him, and that he will get well enough to join his crew and all the youth pastors/leaders who are here this weekend. So pray for Darian!
I really feel that for myself this weekend God is calling me to just soak it all in. To take time to have coffee with old friends (already lining one up this weekend with Marv Penner), to engage in great conversations, and to just rest in God's presence. This is going to be a great weekend!
More updates to come...
I made it. I got the wifi access code and we're up and running.
Today as been awesome so far. I learned about some guy who bought a really awesome Bubble Tea that had a picture of Pikachu on it holding his straw! He seemed really excited about it.
I think this is the theme of things to come for this weekend...TOTAL RANDOMNESS.
I ran into Marko today and apparently I'm no longer the only blogger for this conference! YEAH. And it's great to see so many friends that I haven't seen in forever! I can't wait to have some great conversations.
Anyways, time to head back into my critical concerns course.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Starting tomorrow and lasting until Sunday I'll be surrounded by 899 other youth pastors/leaders etc...oh you just know this is going to be great!
I'm really excited about seeing so many friends from all over the country who are coming out here for the conference. I'll be crashing in some church basement in Vancouver with my good friend Jeff from the church I interned at in Lethbridge! Some good friends from Lethbridge are also speaking/presenting at this conference...so I'm looking forward to sitting in their sessions and heckling them!
Knowing that Youth Specialties is partnering with Candafire to make this thing happen is really great. One thing I want to see is how "Canadian" this conference will be. So much of my life and the lives of students is heavily influences by American culture. And by reading Marko's blog I know that this issue has been forefront in the discussions surrounding this conference! I am grateful to these Godly men for ensuring that what we get as a conference isn't some cheap, watered-down NYWC, but rather our own, prayerfully planned CYWC. It is great to see how many Canadians with obvious God-given talent will be speaking at this conference. And to have Starfield & Thousand Foot Krutch perform as well...WOO HOO.
So I will be blogging from the conference...giving you all updates as to what I'm learning, and what other crazy things are going on when you cram 900+ people into a convention room for 4 days!
Tuesday, November 20, 2007
what a great opportunity! you simply visit www.freerice.com and by correctly associating the word given with its definition you donate 10 grains of rice. you can play as long as you like. today i donated 200 grains.
what a great thing to do when you've got a few minutes at home, or to send to all your friends. i'm going to send this to my students to challenge them that we can all make a difference! even if it's something as simple as this.
so see how well you do with the vocabulary! and donate some rice.
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Yup, either this guy has a powerful message to bring to us...or he's a nut-job. Either way, I laughed hysterically at the trailer on their site. Especially the part where he exercises the demon's from the Victoria's Secret Cash Register!
So head on over to their site, and waste a few minutes of your day! I especially enjoy the fact that their title writing is in the "Disney" font...I enjoy the symbolism there!
Official Site: What Would Jesus Buy Movie
YouTube: Interview on Glenn Beck
God Save Christmas...or at least save us from this wacko!
Tuesday, November 06, 2007
This cartoon is #203 and is titled The Morning Jesus Came To Preach. The entire site had me in hysterics. Many of these cartoons are fitting (though somewhat satirical) commentaries on today evangelical church culture.
Many of them are no-holds-barred call outs from a generation who is growing apart from mainstream means of "doing church." For anyone who is a leader in a church, these comics are worth the read. For many people who find it hard to step into a typical church you may echo with the satire used.
Either way...they stir up and create conversation. I like conversation.
Friday, November 02, 2007
This is going to be one of those "lightbulb moments" for me this weekend. I have the privilege of taking 14 Jr. High students over to Camp Qwanoes for their 1st ever retreat weekend.
Amidst the fear, apprehension, body tremors, lack-of-sleep, energy drinks, wedgies, and wrestling matches, God is going to rock the lives of these 14 students this weekend--and I get the joy of being there to see these image bearers of God experience a weekend unlike they've never experienced before.
Last weekend I was over at Qwanoes and fell ill with tonsillitis and a fever of 102. I'm still drugging myself up, and don't expect a relapse into my comatosed state like last weekend.
Jr. High ministry is something that you know you're called into. It's a joy to see these when these students have "God Moments" where something new clicks and it rocks their often naive and parent-centered-faith beyond what they've grown up hearing or have been taught by parents. These weekends can be milestone moments in a young persons life...and something that I am blessed to be apart of.
So pray for our students this weekend. Pray for sleep (praise God that we get 1 extra hour because of Daylight Savings Time!), pray for our speaker to really open God's word up to these kids and rock their socks, and pray for us as leaders to know how to best come alongside these students in this very precarious part of their faith journey.
I'll be home Sunday,
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
...is that sometimes you just need to take a break
...is that sometimes you just need to start anew
...is that sometimes your wife and real-life friends are more important than reading blogs
...is that sometimes when i feel like i'm being pulled in a thousand different directions, it's actually God trying to draw me closer to him with one hand while i'm still trying to hold onto the world with the other
so i guess you could say that i'm back. i don't know. a lot has been going on in my life since i last wrote. the death of my nana was a big deal for me...and in some ways how do you follow up to something like that?
to any of my readers i welcome you back. sorry for such an abrupt end to my blogging. this time around i think i'm going to take a deeper look into life and try to write about what actually has meaning for me.
the time spent these past few months with my wife has been amazing. the time with close friends has been irreplaceable, and through this all i still feel like God is drawing me closer to him with one hand while i'm still trying to hold onto the world with the other.
Tuesday, July 24, 2007
It's always one of those tough things to hear. My dad called me about 30 minutes ago to tell me that my Nana (Grand-ma) had passed away peacefully in her sleep. I've always had a special connection with my Nana, and especially in these past few years.
Charity and I have had the privilege of getting out to see her twice in the past few weeks. These have been amazing times of praying together as a couple for Nana, and praying with Nana as well. Only in these past few years have I seen my Nana's faith really flourish, but it's been amazing to share about our faith together (me being the grand-son/pastor in the family).
Last week when we got together myself, Charity, and Nana all took turns praying. It was truly a moment that I have frozen in time. She was my last surviving grand-parent, so this is definitely something very different for me now, but none the less I am happy that she is no longer in pain.
Please be in prayer for my family as we process the loss of a great woman. Many people were impacted by her life. Through her cries to Jesus in our last time praying together and the final conversations we had about putting our lives in Jesus' hands, I know that she is now with Jesus in Heaven. This is something that is truly comforting. To know that I will see my Nana again.
This event puts the finiteness of our lives into clear view. That we are not here very long, and that God is calling us to himself, and we need to make the choice to live our lives fully for Him, or face the unpleasant consequences of a life eternally separated from God.
I'll see you again Nana...
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
So this past weekend my parent's treated Charity and I, along with my brother Terry and his wife Alisha to a get-away weekend in Whistler. We stayed at a 2 million dollar house overlooking the 14th Fairway of Nicholas North golf course! The house was amazing and had a sweet hot tub on the main level deck.
Charity and I had Friday off so we took our time getting up to Whistler. We stopped at Park Royal mall to do some shopping and eat lunch at one of Charity's favourite food-court restaurants: Edo's. They have one in Lethbridge, but only in Richmond & West Vancouver out here...so she rarely gets to eat at one. Needless to say she was quite happy.
The drive up was great...clear sunny skies, sunroof open...awesome. Saturday morning we got up and the 5 of us (Charity went to the Spa) went on the ZipTrek adventure! OH MY GOSH, this thing was awesome. So awesome that I HAD to capture this video for you to see. This was me going down on the highest zipline that they had on our trip.
I totally want to go back! They have 2 options for the zip lines. We did "Bear" but there is one called "Eagle" which has zip lines that are even steeper and faster! But at $100 bucks a pop I'm gonna need to save up some cash.
The rest of the weekend was quite relaxing. We ate great food, played games, spent the later evenings in the hot tub...just wonderful. It was a great weekend with the family. We haven't done a "Family Vacation" since before I left for college.
I hope you enjoyed the video,
Friday, June 29, 2007
WOO HOO. This has been a 6 month process that I am thrilled to see come to completion! I owe a great amount of thanks to Alex for mentoring me and my wife for encouraging me through this process.
Thursday, June 28, 2007
Truth be known, this isn't my first time doing this. I tried this process about 6 months after starting here at the church, but didn't have a good result. Because of this, since January I have been chatting theology with a good buddy of mine twice a month over coffee. Needless to say this has been a HUGE blessings to me, and I really feel confident going into tomorrow's meeting.
If I pass, then I am "officially" recognized as a Pastor in the Fellowship of Evangelical Baptist Churches, and am then granted the ability to marry people. So it's a pretty big deal. So please say a prayer for me...and good or bad I will update this tomorrow morning before noon to let you know how I did.
Saturday, June 16, 2007
Well it seems to me that the running joke with most of my students and friends is to be reminded that I'm now closer to 30 than I am to 20.
So today I was supposed to go paintballing with the men from my church, but it's pouring rain today...so since I was the one in charge I guess my morning is going to be spent calling everyone and canceling.
But the good news out of this is that Charity and I will be able to head out tonight to Chilliwack to hang out with our friends Nate and Kristie (Nate's b-day was on the 14th). Then tomorrow night we're off to my parent's house for dinner. We're heading to the Korean BBQ House (only if it's raining) PRAY FOR RAIN! mmmm...Korean BBQ!
Charity is at work today...keeping us out of the poor house. Or probably earning back the money that she spent on my gift. Either way...it kinda sucks that she's gone for the day...but oh well. I'll see her at 2:30, since she only works a short day today.
Enough of my rambling. Time to get calling people!
Sunday, June 10, 2007
The one thing that really is a draw back on an Alaskan cruise is the fact that when your on your "at sea" days you really can't just sit by the pool and soak up the sun...mainly because it was never sunny and never above 12 degrees the entire trip! So you go a little stir crazy not having the outdoors to enjoy. You end up sitting around a table talking, playing games, and eating. The good thing is as I reflect back on this cruise...I certainly did get to relax A LOT! This was a very good stress-relieving vacation.
Charity and I got to take a historic train ride while in Skagway. It was a little boring, but still had some great views of the mountains and rugged terrain of Alaska. During part of the trip you actually enter back into BC. This was fun to be back in my home province...all-be-it for only a few minutes. The ports-of-call are very heavily focused on jewelry shopping...so make sure if you go to have a high credit card limit. This does detract from the trip...since you really take the cruise to "get away" from a consumer driven lifestyle. One of my highlights though was getting to eat 20 ounces of Alaskan King Crab Legs! Oh man were these delicious!If you've ever watched the show "Deadliest Catch" on the Discovery Channel you'll know how HUGE these crabs can get. Simply put...if you ever get the chance to eat some of these...do it! They were amazing. The really dissapointing elements of the trip were
1) Icy Straight Point: Our first port of call...should really be re-named "Icy Straight Point-less". There was so little to do in this small town...and really could have been left off the itinerary.
2) Hubbard Glacier: The fog rolled in...and the inlet was too frozen still to even get remotely close. So all we could see was a small portion of the glacier from a distance. I would assume on a clear day in August you'd have a much better time there.
It was a good time...and Charity and I really loved spending so much of it with her parents who came on the cruise with us. I highly recommend taking a cruise with other people...it really makes it a lot more fun! I don't know if we'll take another Alaskan Cruise...next time I think we'll try to go some place a little sunnier & warmer!
Head over to my facebook site if you want to see more pictures.
Saturday, June 02, 2007
We're outta here! I'll post pics from the cruise when I return! I hope you all have a great week.
Please pray for safety in our travels...and that Charity and I will be able to have a really refreshing, relaxing, and rejuvenating holiday.
As I'm sipping "ice tea" on the lido deck I'll be sure to be thinking of you all. Well...ok...that's a lie!
-Tyler & Charity
Wednesday, May 30, 2007
This Saturday Charity and I (along with her parents) are setting sail on what most people tell us is the most spectacular cruise you'll ever take!
We're going north to ALASKA!!! Woo Hoo. The ship that you see is our ship...the Serenade of the Seas. It's a fairly new ship (built in 2003) which has a rock climbing wall, mini-golf, and indoor solarium swimming pool. We've been looking forward to this cruise for months, and we can't believe it's almost time to leave.
We leave out of Vancouver which I am incredibly excited about. I can't wait to see the city from the water, and to travel underneath the Lions Gate Bridge! Needless to say I'll have my camera ready with a full charge on the batteries. The ports that we'll visit are:
June 4: Icy Straight Point
June 5: Hubbard Glacier
June 6: Skagway
June 7: Juneau
So I'll make sure that I take lots of pictures...but don't expect much communication from me while I'm on the cruise. Priority #1 is to RELAX.
We started to pack last night--and then ironically enough--my iron broke! (If you really know me you'll realize how comical this statement is). So after work we have to go buy a new one since you can't bring irons on board and they don't have them in your staterooms either...so you have to pre-iron all of your shirts, khakis, etc...
So anyways, have a great week...and I'll post LOTS of pictures when we return.
Sunday, May 27, 2007
Thanks Corey for all the great memories! Too bad I never caught you dancing!
Wednesday, May 23, 2007
So my good buddy Corey is venturing into his own means of employment. He just launched CE Studios Inc.
Their mission statement is:
CE Studios will help your organization innovate for the future to create consistent and compelling experiences.
To learn more about the company head over to their website, and to keep up to date with Corey and CE Studios Inc. take a few minutes to read his blog. Some of the work CE Studios has done can be found here.
Theirs my shameless plug Corey!
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
Yet thankfully this hasn't stopped many creative people from building some of the most amazing churches in the world.
Here are just a few:
If you want to see more of these amazing churches than click here:
Doesn't this sure make you and your church re-think it's current/future building plan eh?
(ht to marko)
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Needless to say there is going to be lots of catching up, laughing, crying...and I'll be playing the role of "tour guide" as we take them around Langley, Vancouver and beyond...
So I don't know if I'm going to get around to posting much on my blog for the next 10 days. But I'll try to do my best to all my faithful blog readers out there. I hope everyone is getting outside and enjoying this magnificent sunshine that we're being blessed with. Go for a walk, or a bike ride, play boccie ball, do something!
Have a great weekend,
Friday, May 04, 2007
Well after last night's horrific loss to Anaheim, down came the car flags off my Vibe. Another season is over. I have to say it was a heck of a lot more exciting than last year's disaster! I never would have imagined it'd be this much of an improvement...but now I hope that next year is even better!
Well at least the Vancouver Giants start in the WHL Finals tonight! Time to jump on the band-wagon, and hope they can win this series and the Memorial Cup! Now wouldn't that be nice!
Go Giants Go!
Wednesday, May 02, 2007
Tuesday, May 01, 2007
Our Father, who art in GM Place
Hockey be thy name.
Thy will be done, the cup be won
On ice, as well as in the stands.
Give us this day, our hockey sticks,
And forgive us our penalties,
As we forgive those who cross-check against us,
Lead us not into elimination,
But deliver us to victory.
In the name of the fans, Lord Stanley,
In the name of the Canuck's
I found this on Canucks.com in their forums...and figured I had to post it!
GO CANUCKS GO
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
For the past 2 years our denomination provides Pastor's & Spouses with a free night's stay prior to our annual convention. So we packed our bags and headed up for a great night of connecting with other friends in the Fellowship, and of course soaking in the hot springs!
What was even more amazing was during dinner in the ballroom they broadcast the Canucks game 7 through a projector onto a huge screen! So Charity and I and another 200 or so pastor's & their wives got to celebrate the victory together while waiving our white cloth napkin's in the air!
It was a great night, and something we both really enjoyed. So now these past 2 days I've been attending our annual convention in Cloverdale. This again is a great time to connect with other Youth Pastor's who are spread out through BC.
That's all for now:
Friday, April 20, 2007
As of 10:30am today...Charity is ALL DONE her classes at SFU.
So if you get the chance give her a call and congratulate her!
...and Charity if you're reading this I want you to know how incredibly proud of you I am that you've worked this hard to get this far. I can't wait to be able to spend so much more time with you now! No more "I can't go out 'cause of homework" nights! I Love You!!!
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
This is a project that my good friend Corey, who works for Arrow Leadership, has been working on.
This project is looking to identify, profile, celebrate, equip and encourage 35 key young Canadian leaders under 35, to invest in their lives and strengthen their leadership potential.
You have until May 31st to nominate someone for this project. So take some time to look over the site and if you know of someone who is making a serious difference for the Kingdom then get off your butt and nominate them!
Here's a little blurb from their home page:
P.S. I'll be flattered if you nominate me (wink-wink...nudge-nudge!!!)
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Today I dusted off my clubs and headed over to Redwoods to shake the rust off me. It's been a good 4-5 months since I've golfed so I figured what better time than on such a gorgeous Tuesday afternoon?
150 balls later and I'm quite pleased with myself. Definitely a few stray shots...but many that weren't half bad! Then some good time practicing my chipping & putting and I was done.
I can't wait to get out to the courses and really golf. It'll probably be another good month before I feel ready...but that's why I love having a day off on Monday! So if anyone's looking for a golfing buddy let me know. I'm game... and I've got some sweet 2 for 1 coupons in my Entertainment book!
Saturday, April 07, 2007
Here's what's been going on:
Friday April 6th:
10pm - Good Friday Service @ CLA. It was nice for Charity and I to simply "attend" a church service. Sometimes anonymity is a nice thing.
2pm-10pm: I went to the Vancouver Auto Show with my brother for the day! We haven't spent time as just the two of us for ever. It was a great time to check out all the cars, and then go out for dinner at the Shark Club afterwards. We both agreed that Dodge really didn't bring their A-Game to the show...not bringing in crucial parts of their fleet. Saturn on the other hand was a total shocker! I have to say that we are both big fans of the Saturn Sky Roadster. My bro is 6 feet and I'm 6'2" and we fit well into it...and really enjoyed its overall look & features.
Charity and Alisha (my bro's wife) were able to spend the day together as well. It was definately something we wish we could do more of...but find it tough living an hour apart.
Saturday April 7th:
This morning our church had our annual Children's Easter Celebration. We brought in a great ventriloquist and puppeteer from the Okanagan who made kids & parents laugh uncontrollably. This was an event I was looking forward to...and we had about 100 people show up! What a great turnout! We had a huge Easter Egg Hunt...and a hot dog lunch afterwards. Definitely a good morning.
I am watching the Canucks vs. San Jose game. With a win they clinch their division! GO CANUCKS!
Easter Church Service @ 10am and then Charity and I head into Ladner for dinner with my parents and my brother & sister-in-law.
...as for Monday & Tuesday (which I have both days off) I don't know yet what I'll be doing. But I guarantee you I'll be sleeping in!
Have a great Easter...
He is Risen!
Thursday, April 05, 2007
I think this is a first for us. But hey...that's what makes marriage fun! Sometimes a little spontaneity is a good thing!
Anyways...with stomach's full we'll be heading off to bed soon.
Monday, April 02, 2007
Sunday, April 01, 2007
Thursday, March 29, 2007
anyone? help? how do I process this? is this the inevitable future of the contemporary christian music industry? If it is...I'm done.
some of you are already asking me how I stumbled across this? it was purely innocent I swear! I was just checking out YourMusicZone.com and this was the "featured artist."
my mind is trying to process this...and make a decision as to how to I feel. something in me really feels bad for this 14 year old guy in the band...that either his life is going to be forever tortured by high-school bullies--or on the flip side that he's an absolute stud! feel free to weigh in on this one!
other parts of me are wondering if this cookie-cutter, pre-processed, uber-generic music is beneficial for younger tweens? some will agree, some with dis-agree. all I know is that I find it hard to see where the "talent" lies in this. I use that term loosely...but sadly this is the case in much of today's contemporary christian music.
anyways...this is something totally random to post today. it's definitely not going to get the highest amount of comments either. oh well. sometimes things are just simply random.
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
read slowly. pause between verses. soak it in.
Awake, my soul, and with the sun
thy daily course of duty run.
Cast off dull sloth, and joyful rise
to pay thy morning sacrifice.
All praise to thee, who safe hast kept
and hast refreshed me while I slept!
Grant, Lord, when I from death shall wake,
I may of endless life partake.
All praise to thee, my God, this night
for all the blessings of the light.
Keep me, oh keep me, King of Kings,
beneath Thine own almighty wings.
Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow.
Praise Him, all creatures here below.
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host.
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
words written by Thomas Ken (17th century Anglican priest). this is where we get our "doxology song". I just read this on Marko's blog and really let the power of these words soak in. I hope this blesses you this morning as much as it blessed me.
Monday, March 26, 2007
Yesterday was great! Charity and I went down to Crescent Beach in White Rock for the afternoon. We walked along the beach, grabbed drinks at the Wired Monk, and then again walked back to our car.
It was so nice to see that bright shinny thing in the sky again. It's been too long!
So today there is no way that I am going to sit inside all day on my DAY OFF...so I'm now debating what to do. I might zip down to Redwoods and get myself back in shape driving some golf balls...but there is no way that I'm staying cooped up inside on a day like today!
So if you've got the chance...even if it's on your lunch break, go play outside!
Saturday, March 24, 2007
I just got back from an awesome night of music over at the Wired Monk. As per usual Jeremy Pue did a great job. I was totally blown away by the addition of his friend Sylvia on the violin. As well a good friend of Jer's- Drew McKay -played a sweet set of tunes. If you missed the show you better have had a good excuse.
Thanks to Amelia for getting there early enough so I didn't have to stand the entire night! That place was definitely packed beyond fire code I am sure! It was sweet. Zach, if you are reading this--thanks for coming too man!
Anyways, time to get ready for bed.
Friday, March 23, 2007
I wanted to drop into a store called Urban Outfitters that just opened up on Granville St. I'd been eyeing this shirt for a while (first saw it when I was in T.O. back in December)...and so we found it (needless to say with some sticker shock!) Yes, I did buy it...but just as an FYI this store ain't all that cheap...but it has really unique stuff in there! So save your pennies!
After walking around downtown with our umbrella's keeping us dry, we grabbed burgers at BK, and then got into our car to head down to see Andrew & Marie Haak and their baby boy Josiah for the first time!
It was so great to not have any commitments this week so we could do this! It's been on our to-do list for sometime, and we were so thrilled to spend a good chunk of time with the Haak's.
So that was my day yesterday. A nice day to spend with my wifey, and with great friends. Speaking of friends...
This Saturday night @ 7pm my buddy Jeremy Pue is playing a free show at the Wired Monk coffee shop in Walnut Grove. Do the right thing by going to see him...he's great!
Tuesday, March 20, 2007
It's one of those times in my life where I am left without much to say. So many of my friends seem to be going through so much right now...Matt is moving to
So what have I been doing? This past weekend I went to
God really spoke through this weekend into my life and my youth leaders. We always need times of having someone pouring into our hearts...since much of our job is to pour ourselves into the lives of students. We all left feeling convicted, challenged, refreshed, empowered etc...
Well now it's spring break for my students. This means I won't be in the office much this week. My schedule is already filling up fast with coffee's, lunches, meetings. Geez. Youth Pastors don't get a break over Spring Break...that's for sure. I'm looking forward to my lunch with my buddy Matt Davies on Wednesday. He's been over in
Charity and I are excited that we're finally able to get to see baby Josiah Haak on Thursday night. We've been wanting to get downtown to see him for a while now...so this is great!
And maybe...just maybe we'll get to have a date on Friday night. Our first Friday night in a long time that we can spend together without having paper due or tests on the horizon! It's really nice to know that there's a light at the end of the tunnel when it comes to Charity's schooling.
And then the first week of June we celebrate all of this with our Alaskan Cruise. Anyways, this post is more random than anything...so I'm gonna stop now.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
I think this one falls under the subject "those random moments in youth ministry."
Today I got an email from one of my students- Chris, simple telling me "Happy Pi Day." Apparently this is actually a big deal...so off to the Google races I go to investigate this further.
Wikipedia even has a whole page devoted to this! Pi Day happens every year on March 14 at 1:59:26 p.m. Yup, the nerds of this world have united to create a simply head scratching holiday!
So, as I sit here sipping on an Irish Cream latte...thinking to myself "this post was a total waste of my time", I realize that no...it wasn't...the people who spend their days counting Pi to its infinite digits...those people are wasting their time!
UPDATE: I just had this site sent to me by Chris' dad...(turn your speakers up!)
So HAPPY PI DAY.
Monday, March 12, 2007
The title says it all. This past weekend our youth ministry went up to Manning Park for our 2nd annual "Snow Jam Winter Retreat." There were 14 of us in total (9 students, 4 leaders, & my buddy Jeremy who was our guest speaker).
The whole weekend was just amazing. The weather totally cooperated, and we were able to enjoy a great day on the hill Saturday. The roads were clear both ways for driving, and of course...God showed up and did some amazing work this weekend. I'm reminded of why I love what I do on these weekends. Spending this much time doing life together is what makes youth ministry all worth while.
There will be tons of great memories from this weekend. Quoting lines such as "There ain't nothing skinny about momma" from "Open Season'', gradually clearing out all the families and small kids from the public pool once we arrived, a great day of skiing/snowboarding, and hearing great messages from Jeremy that challenged all of us in our faith journeys.
Today I slept in until 10:30am! Sleep is much needed after these weekends. Especially since we got the shaft from the "new" daylight savings time happening Sunday morning! UGH. Do you know what loosing an hour of sleep does to teenagers? NOT GOOD!
Anyways, as I reflect on this weekend all the stress that happened leading up to it--it has all washed away, and I now thank God for a great weekend of youth ministry.
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
I found this site (hyper-linked pic) today on Marko's blog and was quick to begin reading the stories from it. This site was created by two guys from Fuller Seminary doing some research for a class they're in.
This site contains letters from ordinary people who have since moved on from the church, and/or their Christian faith. The letters are heart-felt, and contain raw emotion.
I know that for many of us we may have things that we dislike about the current state of "our church" and/or "the church" and this site definitely allows for anonymous voices to share their thoughts. Take some time to read through these letters, and ponder what these people are saying.
I think that there is a lot to learn from this (especially those of us currently in church leadership). With an ever increasing group of 20 & 30 somethings leaving the church, this may come as a timely wake-up-call for leaders to recognize the problems, and to move towards way of healing the pain. We really need to pray that God would allow these letter writers to find healthy churches to belong to...but most importantly to re-discover Jesus.
I'm very interested to see how this site develops. I know I'll be in prayer for these writers, and I encourage you to do likewise.
Thursday, March 01, 2007
It seems like God has placed this song on my heart today as I hear stories from many of my close friends who are going through various trials. Many of these trials are heart-wrenching to hear about...themes of confusion, hopelessness, pain, desperation, un-rest...etc. All I wish is that God would answer your prayers...wrap his arms of love around you...and carry you through this.
What a Great Song!!!
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
yup. I left the Croatian Cultural Centre around 11pm last night absolutely drenched in sweat (some my own...much more from others).
Last night marked the start date of Switchfoot's Canadian tour. It's been a while since these guys have done a full out Canadian tour and I know many of my friends are eager to see them in the city nearest to them. Last night's show was simply spectacular.
They kicked off the show with Oh Gravity and the music didn't stop for another 2 hours. Being general admission I was able to squeeze myself all the way to the front basically. You could call it "front row" but there were really no "rows". Gasping for air and dying for water I staked my claim on my one square foot of floor space that would be my home for the show.
Half way through the show Switchfoot played "Life & Love & Why" as their requested song that was voted on by fans prior to the show. Great to hear that song again! The whole set list is somewhat of a blur to me otherwise I'd post it for you. But they did not dissapoint with many great favorites like "Dare you to Move" We Were Meant to Live". For their encore, Tim came out with only his acoustic and played "24" followed by the band joining them and rocking out to "We are One Tonight."
Sorry, but I didn't bring my camera this time, 'cause I just wanted to enjoy the evening and not have to worry about an expensive camera wrapped around my wrist. So take my word for it, this was a great evening. You missed out if you were thinking of going.
P.S. Andrew...you missed a good one, but obviously God saw more important things for you to be doing (eg.) spending time with your new baby boy! Next time man...you and me we'll hit up a show together!
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Well today is Valentine's Day. The day when every male is frantically purchasing roses from a road side vendor to bring home to his loved one.
Charity and I on the other hand are getting to go downtown to the Hyatt Regency Hotel Ballroom for a Black Tie Formal Dinner Gala Evening.
The Reason: My dad is being inaugurated as the President of Skal. So tonight Charity and I are getting all dressed up fancy-like and meeting my parents, brother & sister-in-law, and others down there for dinner, drinks, and dancing. It's not often that we get the chance to dress up in our fancy clothes and go for a nice evening...so we're really excited.
I hope all of you who have a special someone are planning something nice tonight. And for all you hopeless males out there...Wal-Mart is open late for your convenience!
Monday, February 05, 2007
After years of using this really old, outdated, virtually useless website (if you can call it a website), www.nwlb.2ya.com (click and go to it...and please laugh...laugh until you cry), we now have one that we can be far more proud of.
This website launched yesterday at our church's AGM...and I'm grateful that this church can communicate in a language congruent with 21st century culture. I believe it's useless to operate a website unless you USE IT to communicate to your community and culture. So with the launch will come more changes, updates, additions, expansions, and I'm sure a wide variety of both positive and negative feedback.
So for all my nerd friends out there...let me know your thoughts on the site. Realize that I'm not the webmaster...and I don't have God-like capabilities to just go and change things instantly. (even though that'd be a cool ability to possess). I want to know if you're looking at this website for the first time, which is the true case for most people, then tell me your feedback on:
1) what you like
2) what you dis-like
3) found easy to navigate through?
4) found cumbersome/awkward?
7) anything else...
I want to make this site something that our church can be proud of, and use as a clear communication tool for the gospel to our community around us and to our current church people too.
Friday, February 02, 2007
I went to the doctor's yesterday and was told that I have Strep Throat! So painful that I can barely eat & drink anything because it hurts so bad to swallow. So I'm on some anti-biotics, and hopefully this will clear up soon...'cause for some reason I have this HUGE craving right now for some real authentic enchiladas. Don't ask why...but they sound so good right now, and there's no way that I could eat them with my throat the way it is.
So yeah...I'm even home sick from church this morning. First time EVER in the 2 1/2 years of being at NWLB. So Charity is there sticking up for me and receiving pity from everyone! Yup, hopefully I can be back at work on Tuesday... 'cause I'm starting to get really behind.
Ugh. I rarely get sick...in fact the last time I can remember ironically was just over a year ago at this same time.
Stupid Flu...or whatever is trying to take control of my body. Charity and I were supposed to go on a date tonight...that's not going to happen now.
In a pleasant turn for good...my Palm FINALLY came back yesterday. YEAH. It's been one month without it...and man did that suck.
Well, I can barely stare at this monitor as I type this, so I'm going to lay down.
Wanting to be healthy again,
Saturday, January 27, 2007
Simply amazing. Chances are you have never heard of these 4 guys from Portland Oregon, but I have to say you are really missing out.
Now before I go any further let me tell you what genre of music they are....A Capella. Yup, no instruments, just the sound of 4 incredible voices. Yet some of the most amazing music that I've heard in a long time.
Rescue is performing this weekend at Missions Fest, and our youth group had the privilege, and I mean it when I say privilege of hearing them perform. Simply awe-inspiring. Their vocal talents are unlike anything I've heard in a LONG time. These guys had totally captured the attention of every one of my students...as well as hundreds more that were there last night.
Ask any of the students who were there last night what their favorite part was and they'll say the Vocal Percussionist Demo. Brandon Bell, did a drum solo, beat boxed, and performed tons of more "sounds" I guess you could call them. The performance left us speechless. We were cheering like crazy at the end. It was phenomenal.
I highly recommended you check out their website & myspace.
And please click on "Vocal Percussion Demo" on both sites...they're both different, but each are simply amazing in their own right. They'll leave you just jaw-dropped at the end.
These guys have totally changed my outlook on A Capella music. Listen to as much as possible on their sites, and if you like 'em you can order their CD's off the main website.
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
A news report from Australia says that we Canadians pay actually the LEAST for our iPod's compared to other countries around the world.
They used a 2gb Nano as their test iPod, and on avg. Canadians pay $144.20 USD (test was done using US currency) compared with Brazil where they pay $327.71 USD for the same product!
So be grateful you don't live down in Brazil the next time you're looking to purchase an iPod.
Woot for Canada!
Thursday, January 18, 2007
I have been an avid Palm user for quite some time now. It began with the old school Palm IIIxe, then moved up in the world to the Palm Tungsten E, and now I am the owner of the amazing Palm T|X.
I have always been pleased with my Palm products...until now. SIX months after receiving my T|X from my wife & family for my B-day it ceased to turn on/off. The button was totally fried. So, I go to Palm's website, and find out that I have to pay to ship it back to them for service (even though it's still under warranty!). So $20 bucks later, I shipped it to Palm in Toronto on Jan. 3rd.
Their website states this:
Send in our original palmOne device at your own expense to a designated palmOne repair center; using the instructions sent to you in the order confirmation email. Once your device is received by palmOne repair center, a new or reconditioned palmOne device, at palmOne's sole discretion, will be sent to you within 7 business days.
So...after seeing online that my order should be sent back to me on Jan. 10th I was quite happy. NOPE. After a few days I check my Service Order...and find out it's delayed until Jan. 18th. So today...eager to see that my palm is coming back to me...I find out it's now delayed even further until Jan 23rd.
So today I call Palm. Not only do they not have a complaint department, all they are willing to do is note that I have called and they simply offer a formalized apology saying "I'm sorry, but there's nothing that we can do about this right now." Even though their website "states" maybe even could be interpreted as "guarantee's" that you'll receive either your palm repaired or a new one in 7 days...this means NOTHING.
So here I sit...without a $400 dollar PDA, that is somewhere in Toronto...and all I want is for it's speedy return to me. Some of you naysayers will tell me that I should just go back to the days of a pen and paper...but I will hear nothing of the sort.
So I pray that you never have this kind of problem with your Palm. They are great devices, and I've never had a problem until now...but man, this company SUCKS THE BIG ONE when it comes to customer service.
Wednesday, January 10, 2007
Looks like the storage availability of this will be 4gb or 8gb...so not the greatest if you're a die-hard iPod user who's currently has the 80gb version...but this thing is simply amazing. Touch screen everything... widescreen video capability... bluetooth headset... oh man! Well I guess this gives me 11 months to beg for this for next Christmas!
Cost for this wont be cheap either. Reports have the 4gb set at $499 & the 8gb @ $599 USD. And for all my Canadian friends who are Telus Mobility subscribers...looks like you'll be outta luck. Canada's "The Gazette" newspaper reports that Rogers Wireless will be the Canadian carrier for the iphone since they're the only Canadian wireless company that uses GSM.
Anyways, time to get back to reality.... If I spend much more time looking at this thing...I'm gonna short-circuit my laptop keyboard.
trying oh-so-hard not to covet: