Thursday, 23 June 2016

My responsibility?

Quote of the week:

"I brought my children to church but not to Jesus"

I can not give credit to the person who said it but only to who said it to me, my sister.  But as we were discussing that thought, we were just floored.  How close to the truth but yet so far off.  If we think bringing our children to church will guarantee them a relationship with Jesus we are wrong.  But if I introduce my kids to Jesus, they will go to church.

Now I take this one step further, thankful as I am that my children know Jesus personally. To whom am I bringing others?  Am I trying to get my friends and acquaintances to church? Or am I pointing them to Jesus?

When we meet people of different faiths are we arguing over what they believe vs. what we believe? Are we arguing points of theology? Or are we introducing people to Jesus?

Maybe we can't do that because we don't know Jesus.  Maybe we don't know Jesus personally, we have only heard of Him.  Because, to love Him, you need to see Him and know Him. Do we really know the Jesus we want to bring others to? Are we agreeing to a statement of faith while having ourselves lost that personal and intimate relationship with Jesus?

Can I/we say like Job: "My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you" (Job 42:5)

I don't want to bring people to a building or a Statement of Faith, or to Four Spiritual Laws.  I want to draw others to a deep, personal and meaningful relationship with Jesus.  And to do that I must have that kind of relationship with him myself.

....Jesus let me fall in love with you again and again... ...

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Me, Myself and I or Not

I am presently reading (several books) and Julia Middleton's book "Cultural Intelligence" has me pondering many things.   I have shared thoughts from her in a previous post so she should not be new to you.  I want to share a quote, or two, that kind of hit me between the eyes.

"If you can keep your own ego under control, you are more likely to become fascinated by other people."

"You have to respect that other people have a life, that their existence is as important as yours. That they have just as much right to be on this earth as you do."

"The breakthrough is when you discover that you are not the centre of the universe.  We see ourselves as the lead character in a film about ourselves. At best, you are a bit part, and it's the bit part, because they are usually full of character.  The main characters tend to get caught in their role."

Life is about people and relationships, I have always said.  But the above quotes remind me that for it to be so I need to watch where I put myself in that unfolding of those relationships.  I need to see EVERYBODY as part of the play, everybody has a role, even the villains.  I need to constantly remind myself that others are important, others' views have equal weight, and to listen.

I have many relationships that I am so thankful for and that have blessed me.  I hope and pray that they feel the same way.  I want to always be fascinated by people, eager to make new acquaintances, and ready to place myself in a role other than leading lady.

Life is made up of many faces.... .... each one has value and each one deserves respect and love.
Ana and I
Me with Ale, Paty and Claudia
Our Thursday Night Bible Study Friends
Jessy and Ernie

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

Canada - Summer 2016

     One of the great things about being able to come 'home' for a bit (besides seeing the kids, our parents, siblings, etc.) is being able to reconnect with old friends.
     Today was the annual SBC Golf tournament at the Fly-In Golf Course in Steinbach. Having been on faculty at SBC for 13 years, and having studied there many years ago ('75-'79 B.Th.), I had many reasons for wanting to support the cause of SBC and I was looking forward to seeing many folks I hadn't seen for a while. Here are some pics from the day....
Prof. Dr. Patrick Friesen
One of my past students (Donovan) and a co-worker in Student Dev. (Dalen)

With Pres. Rob, and former student, Kellin Friesen

Youth Pastor Mo and Donovan 

With Terry Penner, hockey line mate in college

With Pastor Barry Plett

the other 3 in my foursome - watching a shot...

former student Nathan Knell teeing it up!

Dalen Kroeker hitting a shot

Peter, Lester, and Carl - enjoying a steak lunch after the game
      Although it had been rainy most days the last few weeks, we had an excellent day, with sunshine and no rain! A great round of golf, with good friends, and fellow SBC supporters, a marvellous steak lunch after the game, and some great conversation and camaraderie! What a great day!

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

What Up

So what does one do in Manitoba for three months?

I would say that the biggest thing for me has been being with our kids.  Doing 'normal' family type things, that we miss out on by not being here. Like eating meals together, playing cards, hanging out.

Another side of that has been the joy of my sons asking me to 'do them a favour'' - like drop their truck off for an oil change, check into some thing for them, pick something up or them, etc.  Getting to be "MOM".   No words to describe what that does to this mom's heart.

I just love that part of being back.  Now there are things that I can do without.  There are some things that one just puts up the weather. Like, this up and down weather bites! Lovely mild day, sunshine, etc one day, and cold and rainy the next.  Then add to this that they think it is SO HOT hear that they have the air conditioners cranked to the max.  So cold outside every other day but cold inside ALWAYS with the air conditioners.  Can't seem to warm up.

I might just add another little thing I have noted.  We as Westerners have this idea that we are "all that and a bag of chips".  We think we do everything right.  Although we get frustrated when visiting abroad we just attribute things to it being a foreign country.  Like saying, "It's Mexico, what can you expect?!"  Well I am once again noticing that we don't always do things right.  The construction areas here are driving us crazy with how illogical they are doing things.  I must confess I expect it in Mexico but not here.  Rant over.

Most things are enjoyable, however, but the things that are enjoyable are people things.  Connecting, seeing old friends, hearing their stories and updates, laughing together.  Those things you can't put a price tag on.  You can enjoy those even if the weather bites!
 Ernie got to go for a motorbike ride, which is always a huge rush for him.  His dreams of owning a bike never go away.  This is often a part of our visit with our friends Mel and Margaret.

Margaret and I
Another highlight has been attending weddings that we would have otherwise missed: Our son Mike was groomsmen for his good friend Ryan, and we were privileged to celebrate with them.  The picture is Mike with his co-groomsmen.
Britt and Jason's wedding (nephew's daughter)

Another fun time has been getting together with friends and family to just reconnect and laugh together:
Some of my Penner cousins  
Peter and Jessy - great friends who will be getting married while we are here.
And an extra special blessing, Ernie will officiate their wedding.