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By Trinda Jocelyn I find myself at a time in my life when things are really good. I mean it. I have a husband who loves me, and not the bare minimum kind of love. We live in a beautiful home, and we are surrounded by loads of fabulous family and friends who are there for us, and we are there for them. I have a good job, and freelancing has picked up, showing promise as a full-time gig working from home; a dream I hold onto as I brave up to leap into the entrepreneurial unknown. My husband has a good, stable job with the bonus of job security attached to it. My kids are out of this world amazing. Two of them have jobs and my biggest worry most days is whether they have done their homework, helped with chores, or made it work on time. It is at times unclear to me how I was so blessed. Please – don’t hear life is perfect. We struggle. I struggle. The kids struggle: they are all teenagers after all, and any parent…Read More
By May Thiessen I volunteer with a children’s program each week. Lately we’ve been looking at the teachings of Jesus, and specifically, we’ve been working at memorizing the Beatitudes. I was telling the children that in many ways, Jesus says things that seem to be backward compared to the way we’d normally do or say things. After all, the Beatitudes start, “Happy are the poor (Blessed are the poor in spirit)… Happy are the sad (Blessed are those that mourn)… Happy are you when people pick on you because you want to do what is right (Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness). Isn’t that contrary to what we’d normally think or believe? Jesus continually calls us to think counter to our culture. This makes me think further; in what other ways does Jesus call me to listen to Him instead of to the culture around me? Am I able to listen to His call to me? We were studying from Luke with the children. He has so many teachings there that challenge me: “Love…Read More
By Lisa Gillies Sisterhood, what a beautiful word: connecting, bonding, sharing, encouraging, and so much more. This past February was my first time at the Sister Triangle Retreat; what an honour it was. We learned or were reminded that we might not be okay, and that is, okay. We are enough. To be a light wherever we go, and we may never know what others may be going through, but we can stand together. I was amazed when listening to others share, yes, I understood, I have been there. And the songs that were chosen, how they ministered to so many. For some, it took courage to share, and for that I thank you. I want to thank everyone who helped make this happen. For those who could not make it, I hope next year you can come. Remember, when you are struggling, sometimes you just need to be held by our Loving Father. Your world may not be falling out of place, but falling into place. Through trials, we grow and sometimes there is…Read More
By Katelyn Pippus When I was little, one of my favourite ways to spend an afternoon was playing on the sandstone rock formations outside of Roche Percee, Saskatchewan. The rocks had been weathered and worn over time presenting the perfect spot for a prairie girl to pretend she was a mountain climber. I remember the first time mom and dad took me to the rocks and I got to clamber through the caves. Climbing at the rocks became a fall tradition for my family. Every time we went climbing, dad would show off how he could climb and jump between the rocks that were often more than fifteen feet off the ground. As I got older and more adventurous, dad began to challenge me to climb higher and eventually to take the more difficult routes to the top. Although mom would tease him about showing off, I always admired his fearlessness and his confidence. By the time I was about twelve, I had climbed nearly every inch of the rocks. But there was one route I…Read More
By Sheena Koops I remember Christmas, must have been 1987. My Uncle Jelsing and Auntie Sheena, their three boys, and a tag-along-friend-of-the-family came to the farm for Christmas. The young man, like a brother to my cousins, was Michael Koops from Victoria, BC. This young guy, my cousin, and I walked over the prairie into the Souris Valley, sometimes knee deep in snow, pretending we were on a quest. We watched movies; we sang carols, we played games: my cousins and this tall, dark and handsome friend-of-the-family. In August of 1989, I married that guy. Three daughters later, my Uncle and Auntie consider our girls their granddaughters, because they consider Michael their son. When we heard the news that Uncle Jelsing had passed, Michael immediately made plans to drive to Victoria. He travelled through the night, stopping only twice to catch an hour or two of sleep on the side of the road, mountains on either side, guiding him back to the coast. On my own trip out for the funeral, I travelled with my sister, brother, our dad, and my youngest daughter. Mom flew, arriving just…Read More
By Mary Muirhead Caller: (cheerfully penitent) I’m sorry I haven’t called to arrange this sooner, but things have been kinda crazy around here. . . . Receiver: (with acceptance) We can still get it done. I’ll have to make some adjustments to the schedule, move things around, but I’m sure Overheard on My Phone or “She hasn’t got back to me.” Caller: (cheerfully penitent) I’m sorry I haven’t called to arrange this sooner, but things have been kinda crazy around here . . . . Receiver: (with acceptance) We can still get it done. I’ll have to make some changes, move things around, but I’m sure we can still make it work. We’ll do it next Friday at 2:30. OK? Caller: (guiltily) Thank you. Sorry to be an inconvenience to you and the others, but I had contacted Ms So-and-So and (in an exasperated or perhaps injured tone), she hasn’t got back to me. . . . . Sounds like me! I’m not repeating a real call – but it is the sort of phone call, complete with excuses, that I have made too often in my life, for whatever…Read More
By Sara Pippus An empty canvas sits in my closet. It’s wrapped in clear plastic, as pristine as the day I bought it several months ago. The canvas is blank and white. It is standing next to several others- let’s not talk about how many. I have brushes, oils and acrylics, a travel easel, and some great antique jars that will hold the water for washing up. A ladder with years of patina is stashed in the shed in my yard that reminds me, each time I open the door, of my good intentions for some day. The plan is to turn it into an easel to use at home. All of this because I want to paint. To create. My life is like that. I am a dreamer that constantly feels like my dreams far exceed anything I actually do. Inventions swirl around my brain. Most often, I don’t take myself very seriously or I get told to get my head out of the clouds. Lately, I’ve been thinking about all my best efforts…Read More
By Jen Wallace For the past year, I have been working towards getting my black belt in judo; I am not quite there. I have had my brown belt for 14 years and I thought it was time. I needed to start training with a black belt goal as my focus. I have to schedule my practicing and I cannot do it alone. My head sensei, the club instructor, also needs to see that I am ready. One of our instructors quotes Bobby Robson, an athlete who said, “Practice makes permanent.” Being in training is not easy and neither is good practice. There are other things that vie for my attention, some worthwhile and some worthless. There are obstacles and even my own lack of desire at times affects my training. I also need to practice the right techniques and not ingrain the wrong ones. I have to keep my goal in sight. It helps that I have verbalized it to people and that I have now also put it in writing. But more important…Read More
By Janelle Ross I love Genesis; I really do. Honestly, I could preach a thousand sermons from those in the beginning pages. I mean, that first verse… In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Wow. Like, wow. So, first He made time because all of a sudden there is a beginning where before there had only been… timelessness… and then He made stuff where there had not been any stuff before. Time where there hadn’t been time, and stuff where there hadn’t been stuff. Followed by the details, redefining and refining the expanse into diverse spaces, then filling those spaces with life. (I sometimes wonder if, when Eternity frees us from the bonds of time, we will be able to see creation unfold. It would be like the greatest IMAX movie ever.) Then, family. A man and a woman to inhabit the beautiful place, making it, truly, a home. Walking and talking with God, naked and unashamed, the way Home Sweet Home was meant to be. Humanity enjoying full and completely-satisfying relationships…Read More
By Trinda Jocelyn I find myself at a time in my life when things are really good. I mean it. I have a husband who loves me, and not the bare minimum kind of love. We live in a beautiful home and we are surrounded by loads of fabulous family and friends who are there for us and we are there for them. I have a good job and freelancing has picked up, showing promise as a full-time gig working from home; a dream I hold onto as I brave up to take the leap into the entrepreneurial unknown. My husband has a good, stable job with the bonus of job security attached to it. My kids are out of this world amazing. Two of them have jobs and my biggest worry most days is whether they have done their homework, helped with chores, or made it to work on time. It is at times unclear to me how I am so blessed. Please – don’t hear life is perfect. We struggle. I struggle. The…Read More