Wednesday, 20 June 2012

New Creation

If you are fruitful and you are connected with the Father, and part of new creation, you will never fit back in original creation.

We don't belong to this world. We don't fit in. We can never fit in.

It's just the way it is.

We belong in the house of the Lord forever.

Right now: we belong with God's the Lord's house, with the Lord's people.

One day: we will be with the Lord.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012


This year I've been reading a lot (I know, no big surprise, right?). There are a smattering of different authors and genres, but 2 stand out. I think this year will be my year of biographies and fantasy. It's an interesting combination, isn't it: real life and pure fiction. They seem to balance each other nicely. The biographies I've spoken of frequently (and will write more about as I read more), so today is for the fantasy.

What I've been reading is a lot of Terry Pratchett. I started reading his books a year or so ago (I don't really remember when I started). One of my teachers had borrowed Thud from a mutual friend and was reading it at work. I took it away; the official reason was to keep him focused on work but really so that I'd have something to read. The teacher wasn't much interested in the book (it wasn't his brand of humor) so he didn't object much. I loved it. It made me laugh from the start. When I finished, I believe I lent it to another friend, who also loved it (just so you know: it did eventually make it back to its owner).

If you like British humor and fantasy (or even just British humor) you should really try Terry Pratchett.

Anyway...I read one or two of his books over the course of the following months, but I was reading a lot of other stuff as well. I didn't really get into Pratchett until this year. I've been reading them at a rate of 1 or so a month (borrowing them from a friend (who borrowed them from a friend) or the library). They take place on Discworld, a flat, round world that is carried on the backs of 4 elephants who stand on a giant turtle. There are witches, wizards, heroes (who usually aren't much use), trolls, dwarfs (and Captain Carrot of the Night Watch, who was raised as a dwarf and was fully grown before they told him that he was a human), and an assortment of other people and beings. Oh, and we can't forget DEATH, who shows up frequently. He once adopted a daughter, then got an apprentice who eventually married the daughter. Now DEATH has a granddaughter who inherited many of her grandfather's abilities.

And's remarkably like here (pre-industrial revolution, which is a much better setting for fantasy). Just take all the weirdness of life and people, and magnify it, make metaphors literal, and bring things to their natural conclusion, exaggerate everything, and you'll get close to Discworld. They deal with the same issues we do (hence the frequent appearance of DEATH), only in their own way (it helps that most crime is very organized, with guilds and everything). 

Yes, it's pure escape literature. When I'm reading Terry Pratchett I can't worry about what's happening at work or the school assignments looming before me or the future or anything. I can just relax and laugh.

One word of advice: if you insist on reading Terry Pratchett in public, be prepared for the looks (and slight edging away) from people when you start to laugh suddenly.

Sunday, 10 June 2012

This and That

Sunday School is winding down; there's only one week left. This week we reviewed the past year; next week we'll do a quick review of the Reformation lessons, have a bit of an end-of-year celebration, and finish making welcome signs for the church. Then we're done! I've really enjoyed my kids this year. I'm also really ready for a break.

The summer will be busy, though, with Junior Church responsibilities. I have a couple new teachers to replace the teachers who are changing roles (one will just be our music person; another couple is taking over one of the Sunday School classes to give those teachers a break). I've also recruited a lot of the Junior/Senior high class either as teachers or helpers. This summer will be all about training. We had a short session today so everyone could learn (or be reminded of) what Junior Church is all about and I'll do on-going training with individual teachers over the summer so we're ready to go in the fall. I also need to find time to have a Sunday School meeting to make sure everyone is ready for that.

Work has been up and down. It hasn't been bad (for the most part),

School work...well, I'm behind on the major pre-session assignment, and it will take some steady work and focus to get it done on time. There are a couple other things to get done as well.

Over all...I don't know. I'd like more sleep, less work...wouldn't we all! There are days when I think that everyone wants something from me and I don't have anything left to give. On the other hand...I love what I do; I just wish things were more balanced instead of everything at once!

I have many, many things I want to write about. I'll try to get some of them (one of them?) out this week.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

What I'm Thankful for Today

  1. My Sunday School class. They're usually bright, funny, and great to be around (and I say this after kicking one of them out today...but the rest were angels after that)!
  2. My home. It's small, but it fits me nicely. It's warm, comfortable, and full of books.
  3. The 7 boxes of books that have been donated to the church library over the past 2 Sundays.
  4. The 2 new bookcases that we have in the church library! They're on wheels, so we can move them out of the way if we need to when the library is closed.
  5. The weather has been wonderful lately.
  6. Being surrounded by books.
  7. Friends
  8. Family (I can see nicely framed pictures of my sister's babies from where I'm sitting).
  9. Value Village, where I found the frames for the pictures of the babies.
  10. My church family
  11. The 2 people who are interested in teaching Junior Church as well as the current teachers. It looks like I may have enough people to staff Junior Church and Sunday School in the fall and to give a couple teachers a break.
  12. Spring. Everything is green and alive and there are flowers and it's all so lovely!

Friday, 1 June 2012

What I'm reading

I'm reading more biographies (the Christian Heroes Then and Now series) and enjoying every word of them. The latest have been Gladys Aylward and Brother Andrew. Their lives were amazing. I've read about Brother Andrew before (God's Smuggler...I've read it several times) but not much about Gladys Aylward. The stories all tend to concentrate around her struggles to get to China (the mission agency turned her down, she went alone, and she travelled by train across Russia in the winter) and the journey with the children across the mountains to safety during WWII. It's all exciting stuff, but there was a lot more to her life that I'd like to read about that this book mostly only touches on.

I'm also reading some Terry Pratchett novels for fun and enjoying them just a lot. They're just fun to read and great if you like British humour.

For school I'm reading A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23. It's a really, really good book and I'd recommend it to anyone. It's pretty easy reading, the parts about being a shepherd are very interesting to read, and how Christ is our Shepherd is laid out nicely and is very encouraging to read.

The rest of my reading has to do with bits of commentaries and Bible surveys and the like as I work on the major school assignment.