Saturday, December 12, 2009

Man bag vs lunch mag is there a difference....


I really hate to interrupt the twelve days of Christmas but this was too good not to share....Jussi needed a pencil this morning while studying and set off for his lunch bag. I put lunch in it every day but rarely look in the side pocket, it didn't concern me until today. Now Jussi is a guy that thinks man bags are stupid, even though his son has one, his son in law carries one, he has said he would never carry a man bag. Well his myth is busted..in his lunch bag he sported over nine pairs of ear plugs, a piece of chocolate, a package of croutons, four pens, a highlighter, a Haitian drivers license, work keys, spare glasses, money, Fisherman's friend candies not wrapped...eewww, a tape measure, garbage, a straw, and TWO lip chaps LOL, a clip for a chip bag and a partridge in a pear tree. So HE DOES CARRY A MAN BAG and if he was ever on let's Make a Deal he might actually have had something interesting. Never say never Jussi...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Twelve Days of Christmas




On the seventh day of Christmas my true love gave to me...seven spanish lessons,

six stained glass windows,five sunny days, four Crunchie bars, three steaming lattes, two fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes..

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Twelve Days of Christmas


On the sixth day of Christmas my true love gave to me...
Six stained glass windows,


five sunny days, 4 Crunchie bars,

3 steaming lattes,





two fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes..

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Twelve Days of Christmas


On the Fifth day of Christmas my true love gave to me five days of sun, four Crunchie bars,
three steaming lattes, two fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Twelve Days of Christmas



On the Fourth Day of Christmas my true love gave to me...
Four Crunchie bars,
three steaming lattes,

two fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes.

Twelve Days of Christmas


On the third day of Christmas my true love gave to me...3 steaming lattes, 2 fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes...

Twelve Days of Christmas



On the Second day of Christmas my true love gave to me...
two fuzzy kittens and a pair of blue suede shoes..

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Twelve Days of Christmas


Christmas is upon us and as we celebrate together around the world I have decided to make my own twelve things that I would love for Christmas.
So...day one is normally a Partridge in a Pear tree..for me will be a really great pair of boots and shoes from Paris or Italy or somewhere exceptional and different. You know the kind, that ones that go with only one outfit but that are amazing!

Stay tuned for day two tomorrow...


Disclaimer: Each of these twelve days of Christmas posts will be worldly things and wants, and just for fun...I do understand the true meaning of Christmas and have some dreams for those in the world without a voice..that will be after these fun posts and closer to Christmas when I establish my list of top ten things I will pray for in 2010.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Restoration through HIM


God has used me in the last few days to cry for the lost, love strangers unconditionally and to capture the hurt of those in the sex trade and burn it into my soul like a picture. I have lived a predictable life, a life of status quo, not rich, not poor, working, raising kids, protected by a safety net and in all things family and friends to help me when I was in trouble.
I never had to stand in a food line up, wonder about where I was sleeping, or work a job for the money that in a job that compromised my values. This last weekend I had time to spend with four young women involved in the sex trade. I loved them, with smiles, chats, water, snacks and moments of laughter and reminders that Jesus loved them and so did I. They did not understand how valued they were and that Jesus would meet them and us right where we are. It was so awesome for me to share and have them tell me I was being a mom. God has planted seeds and now I pray for the water"er" and the sun to shine upon them. God has clothed the young women in His protection and now I pray for those that God will put in their path in the next while. Please join in me in praying for all those that work in an industry such as this, and that God will send someone to shine HIS light for restoration, grace, mercy, forgiveness and love. If everyone told two friends to shine and everyone did it, could you imagine the impact...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Pray for us as we go!

A group of ladies from our home church have been give an amazing opportunity. We are traveling to Vancouver to be part of a convention/trade show. The show is called Taboo a 'sex show". I am not telling you this because of sensationalism but because I am asking for prayer support. We are logistically able to be in contact with over 55,000 people that will come through the door during the event.
HE is in control...we are ready to hear YOUR word Lord, to share with hearts you have prepared. We are willing to show love, grace and pray for every person that comes by the booth. We stand in awe at the favor in being able to have a booth and give out bibles at such an event. Please pray for our entire team for spiritual protection for our hearts and minds, and for health and traveling mercies.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Does Anybody See Her

This afternoon in my quiet time I decided to look up every scripture verse about light. That led to verses on grace and mercy, forgiveness and hope. After a few hours flipping back and forth and searching out God's plan for all to receive salvation and for us as Christians to be the lights, I was filled up. I was not necessarily empty before but because of a gift I had received at church I was reminded that we are called to be lights. I wanted to live up to the call. I wanted to learn all that I could about light in the darkness. I read and read and I listened to several versions of This Little Light of Mine. I watched a You Tube video of Michael Smith's "Healing Rain" and read Hebrews 13 verse 2 that talks about entertaining angels remembering Naomi's comment the other night about those who walk in darkness are someone's child or grandchild and I was so burdened. I ached to think of those parents praying for safety and for the Lord to bring home their child, that had all grown up and made choices to live on the street, live the life of a working girl, survive for drugs and the next fix. It breaks my heart for those that live in bondage to drugs, sexual addictions, abuse and unaware or unable to break the chains. I prayed that the Lord would continue to work in me, showing me His children through His eyes and feeling the pain he feels.
A powerful message...
Hebrews 4 from The Message says in verse 12-13 God means what he says. What he says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon's scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God's Word. We can't get away from it—no matter what.

Praise the Lord, God is sure, He is all knowing no one is imperious to His word, we just need to share it. We just need to open our hearts and our eyes to see.. Watch this video as a reminder to "SEE"




Thanks to Casting Crowns for an incredible song!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Happy Birthday Kelsey



Celebrations that last for a week, that is Kelsey's plan. She loves birthdays. She loves all holidays and she is infectious, when she is excited about birthdays everyone is excited. Hope you have a great weekend and fun on Monday! We love ya and we are so proud of the young women you have become. Don't ever lose your zeal for parties and celebrations, your love of life, and your hope in Christ. You are a gift and a friend to all that know you. We will always watch from afar now that you are married but we are still your mom and dad and we will never leave your corner. Whatever you are called to do, where ever you are called to, we will be there cheering you on. Seeing the anointing on your life and all that God has in store is such a gift to us as parents. We are blessed to call you our daughter.
PS yes Nick we loved you longer LOL

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wheelchair Bungee Jumping...Rick Hansen - Hilarious

If you have not had a laugh today, then this is the one...a great example of barriers being broken. Kudos for jumping Rick times two.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Slow drivers...patient and non judging? Not always.


It is one of those things when you are in a hurry that there seems to be someone in front of you, with six more transactions or six more items than allowed and it is frustrating. But the ultimate is ... if you are late because you never left enough time and traffic is holding you up from speeding to catch up the lost time. I am at fault on this one, I dash and it is without fail that the driver all the way down Headquarters is going 76 km instead of the required 80km.hr.
This frustrates me and if doesn't make you crazy then I need to rub elbows and have some of your patience rub off on me. Most days I leave lots of time but if I don't it is almost like God smiles and says okay another teachable moment because my child Colleen, has not got it yet.
As I continue to practice patience I am reminded of how easy it is to judge others. Don't get me wrong, I love all people but sometimes I am the first one to say "Oh please lady just pull off the road and let me go by". and once joked that some elderly drivers (remember once..not now) should have a "O" on their cars to say they are driving slower. In BC young drivers are required to display "N" or a "L" depending on whether they are learning or a newbie. So why not have a designation for others. I am pleased to say the Lord did a work in me and has shown me a whole different side to the slow driver in front of me.
The driver’s behavior: very slow driving. The driver’s intention: safety.
My interpretation would have been that they are doing it because I am late LOL. I know I am self centered.
Thanks goodness for His word:

Proverbs 16:2 "All a man's ways seem innocent to him, but motives are weighed by the LORD."
It is not my job to judge, it is my deal to leave more time. I am at fault in the first place. You see God will worry about his motives and for my motives for being so judgmental. Honestly, I am mad a myself for not leaving enough time, but it makes it easier at the late end to say to whoever that you were behind a slow driver and that is why you are late.

1 Corinthians 4:5 "Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait till the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of men's hearts.

The person is front of me is appointed by the Lord because I am still learning. I know that God will continue to put me through the test again and again. Unless I am conscious of how quick frustration can creep in and my unGodly behaviour of speeding and judging others, I will always struggle with the same issue. I can honestly say I have been working really hard at this one and my commute now for many months has been padded with an extra 10 minutes.
Next time you are held up in traffic, instead of saying, or thinking anything, pray that the driver in front feels safe, pray for their families do whatever it takes to not tailgate!
I am thankful for the Lord's patience and His direction. I am getting it Lord, test me again.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Thankful for our Pastoral Team


It seems like October is once again upon us and it seems like it was only yesterday we were talking about Pastor Appreciation. I wish there was a way we could spread it out, so that all year long, someone is sending notes of appreciation or dropping by with a treat or encouraging word.
In our home church we are very blessed to have such an amazing team of God centered, faith filled, obedient servants. I am sure some days God looks down and sees our team and says "Wow" that team got stacked. (for literary reasons I will omit that He has ordered the steps and made His plans for our church)
I remember being in school and wondering why some teams always seemed to be better and out weighed the other team in either strength, agility, or brains, depending on the contest. It always seemed like I was on the wrong team, I was competitive and wanted to be on the winning team at all costs.

Praise the Lord I have grown up and love to surround myself with all kinds of people and have no desire to see a win. Now I am content to be one of the team and overjoyed at the team I and we (Jussi and I) are on.
May we continue to realize the potential of the team and God's purpose for each of you. As we step into another fall and plan our strategies for the coming year don't forget encouragement, thankfulness, honor, and praise. Each of us has a different team at work and at school, at church and at the arena or playing field, but all of us have the opportunity to be a blessing to others. So as a way to bless your pastors all year long, be a team builder and bless someone in your life each and every day. It won't be long before you see them blessing someone else and so on, and so on...

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

UGANDA IT IS!

Many have asked us about God's leading in our lives recently so I thought it was time to share. We have been watching God work and sat fascinated watching and not participating as He was putting things in order for us to serve overseas again. We thought that God would give us a passion for a people group and show us His will. Secretly we prayed it would be going back to Haiti, but He had other plans.
Years ago God showed both Jussi and I, Africa. We talked about it and thought it was maybe after Haiti and years down the road once we were ready. The funny part we never really understood or took a moment to define ready. This last summer after searching many organizations in Haiti and other parts of the world, we decided that for now we were supposed to be here in North America.
As we carried on with life in NA we were settled to stay here but had an urgency that we could not put a label on. We knew, we knew, we knew, that missions would be in our future but tried to dispel the hunger we felt and worked on being content here at home.
It was during this time that God was putting the proverbial ducks in a row, and not showing us the map or the destination. We shared at church on a Sunday as requested by our Pastor that God was calling us to Africa but we didn't know where or when. He had shown us a passion for child soldiers and the rehabilitation that was taking place, but we had more questions than answers.
So we stood before our church family and shared that we were burdened, we were seeking His will, and we were ready to go. It was this public declaration that started our journey to Uganda. Within 24 hours of declaring our "YES" to whenever, whatever, and where ever, God showed us Uganda.
A land locked country in Eastern Africa, surrounded by three of the countries we had been burdened for, Sudan, Rwanda, and Congo.
Our step of faith has been confirmed and our future now becomes an open book. We are excited to see what God has for us and will be intentionally seeking God's appointed place for us in Uganda.

Some of asked when, and our answer is still whenever He makes it clear. We hope to make a trip in the spring to seek His mininstries for us.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Happy 50th Mom and Dad


This weekend we are celebrating my parents 50th wedding anniversary. It is going to be great to have my brothers and their families and our three kids and grandkids home for at least one night.
My parents married at the United Church in Courtenay, on October 3, 1959. Their reception was at the Native Sons Hall and their wedding colors were green and yellow. Most of the wedding party were contacted and tracked down so it will be a great time for my parents to see family and friends. We have also invited the lady that threw mom's bridal shower. School friends, friends from Port Hardy and from the valley, lots of family, all together Saturday afternoon to celebrate.
Entertainment is typical Yrjana fashion, Nick is singing, and Jussi and Colleen will resurrect the Evolution of Dance.
Thanks to Gill and Ruthie for helping get it ALL together.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Christian or Hamburger.....mmm foor for thought.


Going to church does not make you a Christian anymore than going to McDonalds makes you a hamburger. Food for thought!

A 2007 survey identified the following five typical categories:

  • Active Christians: Committed to attending church, Bible reading, and sharing their faith that salvation comes through Jesus Christ. They also accept leadership positions in their church.
  • Professing Christians: Are also committed to "accepting Christ as Savior and Lord" as the key to being a Christian, but focus on personal relationships with God and Jesus more than on church, Bible reading or sharing faith
  • Liturgical Christians: High level of spiritual activity, mainly expressed by attending and recognizing the authority of the church, and by serving in it or in the community.
  • Private Christians: Believe in God and in doing good things, but not within a church context. In the American survey, this was the largest and youngest segment.
  • Cultural Christians: Do not view Jesus as essential to salvation. They are the least likely to align their beliefs or practices with biblical teachings or to attend church. They favor a universality theology that sees many ways to God.[4
I want to be known as an active Christian. I am thrilled that God gives us opportunities to share in regular day to day chats with others in our workplaces and schools. I like the joke above though, because being a Christian is not just about going to church on Sunday, it is so much more.

It is about reaping what we sow, which can be bounty and blessings, it is about sharing and encouraging our gifts within the church. It is about worship, praise, evangelism and prayer, and the power that God can unleash in ; when you say "YES" to be an active member of the army of God.
I challenge everyone as we kick-off the new ministry year...get involved. As you see all the different ministries look and pray where God would have you. There is a place for everyone. Churches around the country are looking for servants, check your home church, look for your place. You will be blessed more than you wildly can imagine!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

This Saturday BE A KINGDOM BUILDER!

This Saturday do not miss 5K FunRun for Ghana. You can make a difference in the life of child! Join us by walking or running 100% of all $15 registration monies will be sent to Ghana to help with school supplies, food and uniforms. If it is too much physically, come down and cheer on the runners and support the concession. This is a day to sow into a life far removed from yours but connected by the Kingdom. Registerations and donations accepted at the church office. Northgate Foursquare 250 334 2727

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Following God's Heart


It is exciting to see people walking out what God has planned for their lives, but even more exciting when it is your family. Jason and Kelsey have an amazing youth ministry, they have great friends and are surrounded by family. That is why it is so thrilling for Jussi and I to see them walk out God's stirrings in their hearts and leave all that. As Jason prepares for life as a full time student in bible college and Kelsey a new job, and the opportunities for more education.

It makes us sad that they will be moving away but now we will have both Nick and Kelsey in Vancouver; a city we love to visit!
As they prepare their hearts for leaving and for leaving their ministries, we can only cover them in prayer. They have poured into the youth of our church and community and the youth can tell stories of the importance of Jay and Kels in their lives. It will be just as difficult for them to leave the youth as it will be for some of the youth to see them go.
To see a nation changed for Christ and mentor the next generation will be a calling that follows them, and we are excited to see how God will do just that!

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." - Jeremiah 29:11

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Curveballs


One would think today's posting is about baseball but it is about life. Some days I think life would be boring if everything was easy and the same, but then other days I see curveballs coming my way and I want to duck.

God calls us to catch the curve balls or at least take a swing at them. I am not a baseball player but I am one of God's children so I should have some skill and or bounce effect when it comes to curve balls. But do I?

Today as I was working on changing over our email address I realized how many people we had met along the way in Haiti and friends of Haiti. Prayer supporters, Starfish Kids parents and the list was endless.

Curveballs have a distinct spin or drop at the end that makes them somewhat harder to hit. It was near the end of 46 pages of inputting email addresses that I realized today's curveball. I had sent over 200 emails with a link connecting to the wrong email address. Now if you mail it to one person you can easily let them know you made a mistake, but over 200...I was panicked. I took a deep breath contemplating and praying that I would not react in stress and frustration. I was thankful that God was in control of the game today because I needed to touch base with many people and didn't need the enemy trying for a foulball.
That is the beauty of taking time to pray for the little things, like cyber space issues. God desires to be there for us and give us strength when we feel like we are failures. Today I was able to correct the emails, after they had been sent. Thanks to God and Yahoo. I tried to not let the enemy get in and mess with mind... (well maybe for a short time) God was in my park today and I hit the curveball! Relationships are important to me, and keeping in touch with people, so praise the LORD it was fixed without resending. I am thankful I could praise him in the valley when things were not going my way and that He proved He had my back by fixing it, and answering my prayers. I am thankful for email and the ability to keep up with friends! Yeah God!

Monday, August 31, 2009

who am i..in the great world of peeps


It is exciting to see God walking in the lives of so many people in our church family. We were blessed with the stories and testimonies that were shared at church, stories of seeking the will of God for change, to make a difference, to restore, reveal, build and unite. It was exciting because we can see how each of us is so interconnected. I know that if we could nail down the absolute scope of what God is calling us (Jussi and I) to do, we would wave flags of I can't. But that is the beauty of it, God can! It is through Him that we are united with a group of believers, and together we can.
Who I Am in Christ!
I am accepted (chosen)..John 15 v 16
You didn't choose me, remember; I chose you...

I am secure.
.
.2 Tim. 1 v 6 -7
For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. 7For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline.

I am significant..
Matthew 5 14
4"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

I have a bookmark, long since tattered and torn, back and forth to the mission field and each time I take it down I am drawn to different verses.
I don't remember exactly how it came to me, but if you ever question who you are in Christ, check it out. I do often. Freedom in Christ, Your identity and Satan's lies! www.ficm.org

A final word from His word...2nd Timothy 3 16
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17so that the man (people, men women, teens, and children) of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Be thankful we don't need to write the book, that has been done for us, in many different translations and languages. How cool is that..the biggest selling book of all time!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Twitter and Facebook - Calling you into Missions

I read an interesting article on Twitter and using it for the advancement of the Kingdom and specifically in regards to missions. I have a twitter account but I will be honest, I only signed up to enter for a free camera LOL. So I am not a fun twitter person. I can't get my head around telling people about my every move. That and the fact I live in Merville and lead a rather dull life, free from city excitement, daily work ups and downs, I couldn't for the life of me, think who would want to read my posts.
...weeding in the garden, I hate weeding...or taking the dog out for a walk, saw a really cool, cloud formation....feels like rain. So I was intrigued how I could encourage others into missions through technology.

I am a person that encourages and can touch base with friends on Facebook, but I am working on updating my status, for over a year, I never updated it , and then maybe once a month, down to once a week, and now I am trying harder. Do you really care what I am thinking?
Twitter seemed like one more thing to do on the computer, then I read this post! (it has been paraphrased for length)

Who Is God Calling out from Your Tribe?

In your mind's eye, look out over your church, your Facebook friend list, your friends from work. See their faces, their lives. Dream about their futures. Who might God be calling to take some new steps of obedience to the Great Commission?

Ask God how he might want you to envision, equip, and encourage them on their journeys. Ask him to show you.

1. You know your tribe best.

I'd totally love to talk to your people and tell them cool stuff they could do to join in God's purposes. But let's face it, you know them way better than I do. And while I'm hanging out with my family a month from now, you'll still be living life with your peeps, walking through trials, celebrating success, and building authority in relationship.

2. No invitation, no RSVP. (My FAVE)

I have a hunch, that people tend to do what they're invited to do. While God certainly can call a person entirely by putting an idea in their heart and mind, most often he calls through others and through the communities we've linked up with.

If so, a key prayer for mobilizers is, "God, help me understand what you're asking of us, both corporately and individually. Give me eyes to see where you're taking us." Then as God unveils his purposes, find good ways to pass them along. www.calebresources.org

So maybe I need to make the effort on Twitter. I will keep you posted. I love my tribe, you guys are the best! So for newest Twitter post...off to town and do some things for the Step into Action Fun Run!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

God’s strength is perfected in our weakness.


My morning devotions are rekindling our passion for missions, although we never doubted that God had a call on our lives, lately we are reminded daily, during Sunday sermons, and everytime we turn the radio on...we are getting it Lord.
Today I had Judges 6 v 14 written down on a sticky note. I was not sure what it was a reference to, so I thought before throwing it away I should Google the verse.
(thanks to http://www.word-on-the-web.co.uk/studies/week287.htm)

Judges 6 v 14-16 The LORD turned to Gideon and said, “Go with your strength and save Israel from the Midianites. I am the one who is sending you.” But Gideon answered, “Lord, how can I save Israel? My family group is the weakest in Manasseh, and I am the least important member of my family.” The LORD answered him, “I will be with you... Gideon’s response to his mighty commission tells us a lot about the man, but also probably tells us a lot about ourselves as well. How would you respond to God, if he appeared to you and gave you the task he gave Gideon? Would your response be, “I’ll get right on with it; you chose wisely in me Lord, I’m the prefect candidate”? Or are you more likely to react like Gideon, who said, “You don’t mean me do you? Don’t you know my background? Aren’t you aware of my circumstances? Can’t you see how weak and pathetic I am?” Gideon’s perspective was distorted; he only saw himself through his own eyes. Eyes that only had one view of the world, a world where God’s people were defeated and dejected and feeling deserted, resorting to hiding in caves. It is like Gideon saw his world through a pair of glasses that were blurred, tinted and scratched by his experiences of life. Wouldn’t it be great if, when you became a Christian, God gave you a new set of lenses to wear that would let you see everything the way God sees it? Life would take on new meaning and everything would be much clearer! However faith isn’t that simple. The truth behind this story is that we put much less value on our lives than God does. We have a limited view of who we are or what we can achieve for him. Gideon thought he was useless and inadequate; God thought he was a mighty warrior. Who was right in the end? The Lord of course!
Gideon wasn’t the only one who felt inadequate. Jussi reminded me yesterday of how God spoke to Moses, and told him to lead the Israelites out of Egypt . But, Moses said to God, “Why me? Send someone else. Then there was Jeremiah, when God told him that He had appointed him as a prophet to the nations, who said to the Lord, “I am only a child.” We, Jussi and I have made excuses and have not fully believed that He can use us in the same mighty and powerful way that He used Gideon, Moses and Jeremiah.

Allowing Jesus to be the center of our self esteem...WOW. He sees much more in us than we see ourselves. God has said to every believer; He has called us, He has anointed us, He has set His seal of approval on us, and He has sent us in His name.

“The Lord is with you mighty warrior, go in His strength!” Go into all the world and preach the good news, for the Lord has promised, “I will be with you, even to the end of the age.”

I get it Lord! I really do! We do! Jussi and I know we are called, give us the vision, direct us, guide us and show us your way!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

...take my life and make it for YOUR glory.



Today Pastor Scott preached an amazing sermon about sacrifice. If you were not there you need to get the DVD. Outstanding scriptural examples to the lessons of faith. I know the story of Abraham and Issac (Genesis 22:1-19) and comes to me every now and then when I consider a sacrifice I need to make. It never takes the ache of wonder I feel for Abraham, how he must have felt, what he told family members as he walked away with the child. I can only imagine the faith he had that God was in control and he needed to be obedient to Him. It certainly puts a whole new spin on "my" sacrifices. mine were in no way in the same league.

I was challenged by the sacrifice is ...part of the sermon.
To re cap in case you missed it here is what it isn't!

It isn't a sacrifice if...you give what you have to give (Mark 12 v 41-44)
It isn't a sacrifice if...you give what we don't need or want (Malachi 1 7-10)
It isn't a sacrifice if...you stop doing things you are not supposed to be doing

But IT IS a sacrifice when...we willingly chose to put our trust completely in God and set aside the legitimate use of our resources, hopes, plans and ambitions to the will and service of God. Ouch!
So the next time I think I am making sacrifices I will be sure to remember today's lesson. Meanwhile I will pray that God will direct and guide in the way He has for me.

I heard a new song today...loved the lyrics..
...Take my life and let it be
all for You and for Your glory
Take my life and let it be Yours
Glory to God Glory to God Glory to God Forever

My prayer for me and for all of you..

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Looking for the Open Door Northgate Leadership Conference 2009


It is exciting to us to be part of our Northgate family pursuing the word of God, especially when it comes to leadership. Today was a great day, and as we came together from 3 campuses to learn and to seek, one thing was clear, being a Sunday church person was easy, being a follower of Christ was way harder.
It was evident to us that stepping out the boat was a step of faith, but we had done that before, and the blessings were overwhelmingly in our favor. Haiti is for us a memory that can be retrieved in an instant. We have Haitian friends we talk to via email and we ache for our family in Christ as they struggle with day to day life. It was a time of faith building and learning.

It is the learning curve that maybe what God has for us is right around the corner or maybe years away that seems hard. We feel called, we know that God has called us out of our comfort zone, but when and where are still up in the air. Have you walked through a hallway and all the doors are closed and you are looking for the open door, that was promised would be there, and you can't seem to find it. It is like being in a maze and trying to make sense of the door numbers or the colors, the bottom line is, there an answer and when we get to the right spot, we will see the door.
Now I don't know about you but when I am in long hallways looking for a certain room I am ansty, impatient and somewhat on edge. Ever try and find a consulate, medical or law office is a huge building full of long hallways, full of a maze of doors? This is what it feels like for us as we wait for God to show us the door. Even if it was open a crack, Jussi says we would see it. But where is it?
I loved the analogy we heard today of the pony in the hole (had to be there) basically, when you are stuck, shake it off, step it up, and make it happen.
Another fave, tell God to BRING IT ON, and be prepared for what and when he tells you to do.
So the deal is....we are still waiting to see the open door, and we are ready to tell God to Bring It On.... who knows where this is going to go...for the affirmation that it is okay to have a healthy discontent...we give our yes.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Lot 's wife was a pillar of salt by day, but a ball of fire by night. and other funny things kids say

If you know the Bible - even a little - you'll find this hilarious!
It comes from elementary school. Kids were asked questions about the Old & New Testaments. The following statements about the Bible were written by the children. they have not been retouched or corrected(i.e.incorrect spelling has been left in.)

1. In the first book of the bible, Guinessis, God got tired of
creating the world, so he took the Sabbath off.

2. Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree. Noah's
wife was called Joan of Ark. Noah built an ark, which the animals come on in pears.

3. Lot 's wife was a pillar of salt by day, but a ball of fire by
night.

4. The Jews were a proud people and throughout history they had trouble with the unsympathetic Genitals.

5. Samson was a strongman who let himself be led astray by a Jezebel like Delilah.

6. Samson slayed the Philistines with the axe of the Apostles.

7. Moses led the Hebrews to the Red Sea , where they made unleavened bread which is bread without any ingredients,

8. The Egyptians were all drowned in the dessert. Afterwards, Moses went up on Mount Cyanide to get the ten amendments.

9. The first commandment was when Eve told Adam to eat the apple.

10. the seventh commandment is thou shalt not admit adultery.

11. Moses died before he ever reaches Canada . Then Joshua led the Hebrews in the battle of Geritol.

12. The greatest miracle in the Bible is when Joshua told his son to stand still and he obeyed him.

13. David was a Hebrew king skilled at playing the liar. He fought with the Finklesteins, a race of people who lived in Biblical times.

14. Solomon, one of David's sons, had 300 wives and 700 porcupines.

15. When Mary heard that she was the mother of Jesus, she sang the Magna Carta.

16. When the three wise guys from the east side arrived, the found Jesus in the manager.

17. Jesus was born because Mary had an immaculate contraption.

18. St. John the blacksmith dumped water on his head.

19. Jesus enunciated the Golden Rule, which says to do one to others before they do one to you. He also explained, a man doth not live by sweat alone.

20. It was a miracle when Jesus rose from the dead and managed to get the tombstone off the entrance.

21. The people who followed the lord were called the 12 decibels.

22. The epistles were the wives of the apostles.

23. One of the opossums was St. Matthew who was also a taximan.

24. St. Paul cavorted to Christianity. He preached holy acrimony, which is another name for marriage.

25. Christians have only one spouse. This is called monotony.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sharing the burdens of my heart!

Just loving the heat these last few weeks as summer goes into full swing. I am thankful for a cool house at night and that cooking although important has been easier as everyone seems to be, not as hungry. The days are longer, we have family here from Alberta and life is fun and full of laughter.
For all of those who are not handling the heat I will pray for you, and those that work outside in the heat that God will give you restoration and replenish your stores, so working is not so difficult.
I love seeing the children at Lewis Park, tubing the river, and running around building sand castles at the beach. I love summer get-togethers and camping.

Please remember as we eat all the great summer fare, berries, fresh veggies, and BBQ's with friends, to pray for all those with not enough to eat.
Committing to carry the burden of the dad's and mom's here in the valley and around the world that do not know how they will feed their children today.
Be thankful for all we have and join with me today as we celebrate God's provision in our lives and call in abundance in places we have never seen and believe in faith that today they will be blessed. To our Christian brothers and sisters around the world may you share the good news today and shine the light of hope in someone life.
1 Thessalonians 1:3 (The Message)
Every time we think of you, we thank God for you. Day and night you're in our prayers as we call to mind your work of faith, your labor of love, and your patience of hope in following our Master, Jesus Christ, before God our Father. It is clear to us, friends, that God not only loves you very much but also has put his hand on you for something special.
From my burdened heart for the lost, the hungry and the weary.

link:http://www.joyfultoons.com/toons.html

Friday, July 24, 2009

God's Goodness and Blessings











It has been six weeks or so since we have both been working. We have had tons to do and so it has been great to get the gardens and farm cleaned up and organized. It has been a testimony to God's provision. We have wanted for nothing. Our family is different from many, in that we are ALL really close and we can't find a word to say how blessed we really are.
Where would be without Jesus in our lives. Each day we would "worry" and quite honestly feel "inadequate" because job hunting was different for people that had done one occupation for the last twenty years and over forty.

It was the worrying that brought us to the realization that we were forgetting the single biggest gift we had learned from our time in Haiti "faith". God had grown us in faith as we needed to lean on Him. Faith was our cornerstone, daily as we struggled with missing family and trying to learn a new language, adapt to living with a large group of people, having visitors (strangers) in our home all the time; it seemed we always came back to faith. Faith to step out had brought us to Haiti, faith brought our finances in, faith had kept us going on tough days, faith was what we learned and saw first hand in our Haitian brothers and sisters. Faith, faith, faith, large as life, for huge things and for little things.

So as we sat and applied for jobs and considered change, the Holy Spirit convicted us to stop worrying. We prayed for the Lord to work in us, and no sooner then we had asked the Lord revealed the importance of His goodness, grace, His provision, the blessings of family, and living a faith filled life.
Don't you hate it when you get so caught up in survival mode, that you forget
to trust in the Lord, have faith bigger than a mustard seed, and lose sleep because you worry.

A week ago we shared the grief of losing a baby with our daughter Kelsey and Jason. God had created a miracle for our family and they were expecting in Feb of 2010. We had celebrated the anticipated arrival of our Olympic baby. God called the baby home last week, before we could hold her and celebrate her birth. It was a sad time for everyone, we all need to continue to lift up Kelsey and Jason in prayer. It was a time of saddness, mourning and reflection. From all the families we are thankful for the prayers.
Jussi and I have realized how important our family is in times of crisis, how we need to have faith that God is in control, and how blessed we are to have such an amazing church family too.
We realized that work pays the bills, it doesn't run our lives. So thankfully we continue to LIVE life, Jussi is back to work, and once again the Lord has provided.
I was Holy Spirit directed to Psalm 13 this last week...
...verses5-6 I've thrown myself headlong into your arms—
I'm celebrating your rescue.
I'm singing at the top of my lungs,
I'm so full of answered prayers.
The Message

In Memory of baby Jada Grace, we look forward to meeting you in Heaven one day!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Considering Change


So you ever wonder when to consider change? Strange thing is when Jussi and I have been looking for work, we realized that we are in an age bracket where change can be a serious consideration.
There are books after books about mid life career changes. I know funny thing to blog about but if you are not looking for work, you don't realize how many people are unemployed in our age bracket. Apparently we are the beginning of a ten year age span that are being discriminated against. That too was funny for us, we thought we had so much experience, but after looking on line at all the job bank jobs, the overwhelming number of employers wanted people with under 5 years of experience. I guess us old guys are set in our ways.
Also if you ever wonder why people are leaving Ontario and Quebec, just check out the wages for tradesman etc. The journeyman in Alberta can make in some cases over $30 or $40 more per hour. Jussi even found a job paying $86.30 per hour. Even with taxes you would be making $2000.00 a week.
So it comes down to the questions of mid life career changes, getting more education, and considering working elsewhere. If Jussi could be anything in the world I would guess it would be a pilot or a scientist, if I could be anything I suppose a travel writer/photographer, or possibly a community outreach nurse. Funny how things change as we age.....
Today think about what you are doing for a living and pray a prayer of thanks that you are doing what you love. We both love our jobs and would be happy to continue to stay in the same professions, but it was fun to consider change. Kind of like winning 32 million, fun to consider the spending ops.
This could be a whole new blog posting, what would you do with 32 million?

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Reason... the good the bad or the ugly


reason |ˈrēzən|
noun
1 a cause, explanation, or justification for an action or event :
• good or obvious cause to do something :
2 the power of the mind to think, understand, and form judgments by a process of logic : there is a close connection between reason and emotion.
• what is right, practical, or possible; common sense : people are willing, within reason,
• ( one's reason) one's sanity : she is in danger of losing her reason.

Okay so I was trying to understand the word reason and why we use reasons for not engaging in evangelism and or missions and to explain the whys or why nots of our situations.
Now the last part of the definition is particularly interesting because I think I have been in danger of losing my reason many times. This would not be the time to yell an AMEN while reading. I understand the words as they are broken down...
danger...scary, be careful, warn your children
losing...sad, bottom of the pack..never feels good to lose
reason...cause, process of logic, the connection between emotion and reason Am I losing my sanity? Yeah I know, not the first time I have questioned it, but as I try and grapple with the message this morning of change, I realize that perhaps it is easier to disconnect between practical and common sense, and go with the insanity plea.

Then BAM or BANG or whatever verb you want to use hit me. Slow but nevertheless it hit me. It was my connection with emotion and reason that has consumed me. I ache for the mission field, I understand outside the door of my house is the mission field. But that doesn't feed me or quench the thirst I have for Haiti. I yearn for direction and for the process of taking the next step. My emotions about missions is so strong I think maybe I lose my process of logic. Yes I understand the need for finances, medical issues and all things in our lives to be stable, but I want to ROCK THE BOAT!

I know the good or obvious cause to do something. I realize that God has been placing other people groups on our hearts and as we center our lives on Him, He will reveal His plan for our future. Which brings me my next word crisis...what exactly is patience and can I twist the words of Webster to make it take less time for me. Okay, okay, I know I have already been reminded today that patience is a virtue. But like the commercial I could say "it is not my forte".
I am all about stepping out of the boat, living by faith and rocking it a bit along the way. I will keep you posted. Thanks to all those that read and to those that encourage me to babble on.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thankful for Tucker


After worrying for the Millar family at the loss of Bentley overnight, I realized how much we care for our dog Tucker. He is smart and gentle and does funny things to make us laugh. He is excellent with the grandkids and no matter how down I am feeling or tired, he is there to provide a pick me up. I am praising the Lord that Bentley has been found. I am thankful for Tucker that we were given a chance to be his people. To all the dog people out there, I pray you don't have to go through a scare. When you read this, look over at the pooch in your house and smile, I am!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Living in a tree rather than within the trees...

This morning I realized how much housework consumes time. I love being outside and being in the garden is my happy place, so being inside is painful for me. For years we have been blessed with a great house and lots of room for extra kids, potlucks and summer fun. Now as Jussi and I share the same space that was once full of laughter and extra smiling faces, it seems big. This is not empty nest syndrome, we are not sad or feeling empty, just realizing if the house is empty it still needs to be cleaned and requires upkeep. LOL.

Not that this is a eureka moment it just never occurred to us that the space we didn't use would need cleaning. So I the cleaner majority, think Jussi's idea of living in a treehouse might just be simpler. I am sure 300 sq ft, would be easy to keep clean, but the trade off would be not being able to have great parties and summer BBQ's, and we love having people over! On second thought maybe a great weekend retreat in the treehouse. I can escape the housework, and still have a great house to have people over. Now to find some plans...building a treehouse would be right up Jussi's alley. While he is busy building I can plan a summer party. YEAH!