So to begin…. tbis weekend marks the beginning of Wendy’s new appointment! She’s now on the 7th floor with me so that’s great. Her role is really interesting and she’ll be doing lots of detail work which is one of her real strengths.
This also marks the beginning of our 9th year at THQ. Four appointments for me, three for Wendy.
We’ve never lived in one house so long! Seven years in Calgary was our longest.
Susan had posted this photo and I really liked it – it shows the grandkids playing and really gives you an idea how they are growing up! No little kids…they’re developing in many ways. I took that to zoom in a bit on Rachel who’s in the middle of swinging from one bar to another. I remember when you had to hold her to do this!
Sunday morning Wendy and I did the installation service at Agincourt Corps…okay community church… and how happy we are to welcome the Allens. We’re off to a good start and their strength to build trust and relationship will be a great plus for our congregation and work.
It’s a long weekend but we didn’t go to the trailer…for the first time ever, we were too tired! So relaxing in the backyard was a welcome change. And of course, it was nice and warm. While spring seemed too cool and too wet finally the heat of summer rewards our patience!
Summer also brings one of our favourite things to do – do some gardening and here comes the first tomato of the season. I can hardly wait for others. Fresh tomatoes are the best.
Six years ago this weekend we were at the trailer and so were Jason, Susan and Rachel. Here is that little girl with an ice cream cone. I’m looking forward to buying her a few more this summer! She’s soon going to be with us for two weeks along with Ted and Beth!
And yes it was even my turn, with the grass cut and trimmed to sit and enjoy the sun. Is there anything nicer than having a place to relax, to be able to be quiet, to be able to turn off the phone, the screens, the agenda – even for a few hours and recharge. That was this weekend.
In these days of retreat, we’ve been sharing stories. We’re all men here and we’re building a community of trust so the stories have been characterized by honest reflections, a deep personal journey and a sense that God is in the room speaking through each other. I have rarely had this kind of experience, sadly, and so I am enjoying every moment.
These men are from various parts of the country and from a number of different backgrounds and denominational frameworks. Some I know, some are becoming new friends.
As I’ve been listening to them, listening to The Word and to God, I am feeling a sense that God has done great work in our lives (Wendy and I) and that we are enjoying the fruits of many years of faithful and diligent service. We are past the years of early marriage, discovering parenthood, endeavouring to make a contribution to ministry and are enjoying time to reflect and look towards the current season.
Today Mark Buchanan joined us and talked about the contrast of being large or small – choosing to step over mountains or being lost in the lawn. It was interesting and I was amazed at how he took the Scripture and our imaginations to make us really think about our place in the world and our ambitions. He’s on later tonight – I will be taking notes.
Of course, the scenery here is spectacular. So I’ve included some shots below for you to see. If you pray, would you pray for this group of ten leaders?
Lots of people buy new Bibles – well not as many as I would like – but lots do. I had one particular Bible that I really treasured. It was the Bible that I used as a corps officer in Ottawa and Calgary. I studied using it, read for inspiration and just worked to understand and communicate it. I marked it up, stuck tabs in it and over time even recorded events of our lives at certain chapters and verses.
But it’s been falling apart for some time and so I’ve been debating what to do with it as I wanted to preserve all those notes! When we were in California I went looking for another Bible I could begin to transfer notes.
I really treasure my Bible and love revisiting the notes and comments that I’ve added along the way. Occasionally as a corps officer, someone would comment to me after a Sunday service, “you’ve preached on that before, I have some notes in my Bible”. So I know I’m not the only one who likes doing this!
Are you a note taker – a note maker?