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summer 2009 ministry

the ‘official’ announcement went on monday about my summer 2009 ministry plans.camp medley sign

i’ll be taken a leave, of sorts (still doing some of my current work, at a distance), and serving as assistant director at camp medley.  i’ve spend a few weeks over the past two summers as chaplain – amazing to see the lives of so many be transformed by the gospel.

i’ve had a few meetings with the director, elizabeth harding.  so far, everything seems to be falling into place for the summer.  we have a great team, who i am looking forward to serving with, some new names for me and the camp.

i have no doubt that it will be busy and crazy – but i live for those moments.  especially when in the middle of chaos, you hear Father’s voice reminding you that he is in complete control and we just need to trust.  i am often humbled by the awe-some opportunity that people have when they work at the christian summer camp.  throughout the summer, we are given the opportunity each week to model the lifestyle that jesus demonstrated for us, to be an example of christian community (both shining and flawed) all while full of joy and excitement.  i have left the past two summers feeling physically exhausted but re-energized by the transformation of campers after sharing the good news of jesus wliz hardingith them.

i am looking forward with anticipation to serving with a great team and continuing to work with liz (shown at right) in planning for this opportunity.

if you’re in the maritimes, you might know of some kids or teens looking for a great week at camp.  check it out.

back to school

a few weeks ago, i received my acceptance letter to start the courses for my master’s degree.  i’ve gone back and forth for the past few years about whether or not i should do this.  i was trying to find a place where i could study and continue working – without needing to add to my student loan debt.

i applied to st stephen’s university and will begin, technically in the fall, studying through the modular program.  i say ‘technically’ because i’ve already ordered the text books, and since i have to read 16 books before the first module in october, i’ll need to start now.

hilary is also starting a similar program, focusing on worship leadership.

i’m looking forward to it.

reflecting back on the last week

i’m enjoying some time with friends in northern saskatchewan…i remember enjoying living here. the flight out here gave me some time to think back on a week that had one kick after another.

for almost two years, i’ve been working on an equipping conference for the maritimes – essentially to bless, equip and encourage the leaders of the maritime churches (and at the same time, promote our ministry). we were finally able to book tony campolo to come as the keynote speaker, had a great planning team in place, workshop/conversation leaders…the whole works.

then the doors get shut. the joy (read: challenge/frustration) of working for a non-profit christian ministry is that we rely on donations from individuals who share the same passion and commitment we do. as the new calendar started to unfold and the current economic climate began to take notice, our support began to decrease. why? because the people supporting began to be more conservative in their giving.

when the time came where we’d need to start spending the money (room bookings, pr materials, etc…), it became a question of ‘do we invest in a conference and hope that people will come?’ or ‘do make sure that ministry costs can be covered for the next month or two?’. i began talking with some folks around who would be interested in coming…despite their excitement, they couldn’t justify the costs for them to come to such an event (travel, meals, accommodations, registration).

we prayed…and listened…prayed some more…i thought about bartering with God…listened more. every time i phoned or emailed one of the leaders it was like another kick to the gut. the conference is canceled.

i don’t doubt that we made the right decision. and i choose to believe that somehow God will use all the labours to his glory. i choose to believe that…and waiting expectingly.

a confession

i was in a hardware store recently, looking for two screws to put up a shelf.  walking through the store, i found a few more items that i needed and then headed to the nail and screw aisle.

i caught myself preparing to open a small package of screws and was prepared to put the two i needed in my pocket and walk-out.  after all, i only needed the two and there were no containers of lose nails to purchase from.  how much would two screws put them out?

in the end, i pulled myself from the brink of crossing the shoplifting line and bought a small package for $3.00 – which has way more screws that i need!

another day of walking that thin line between upstanding citizen and amature shoplifter.