Thursday, October 25, 2007

On 18 Years Together...

Sunday marked 18 years of marriage for me to Susan. She remains my one true love. To honour her for putting up with me for so long, I wrote an epic poem... part of which I read to her on Sunday night at church. You may not like the fact I read it to her in front of my friends at church, and I assure you that is not something I do every week... but I had some things to say to my flock about my wife.

Here is the poem. I hope you are in some manner encouraged by the thoughts behind the mangled verse!

On 18 Years Together
Poetry is not my strength
Especially when serious
I tend to make my listener’s shout,
“Please stop, Tall Sir, you weary us!”
And this is tied to the fact
That words, to me, are pun-ish
Perhaps you think that I am cracked
I like to think it’s funnish
But enough of me, at least for now,
For I’m out to write of another
A woman, wife, church member, friend
And the very best of mother

I met her back in 85
Me 19 and she 18
When I first saw her, I came alive
And started my long waiting
She had another suitor then
And then another and another
Until my best friend took her out
And I was tempted to think, “Why bother?”

But patience paid her sweet reward
In 1988
When I said, “Um, well, hah-hah... Sue,
Would you go with me on a date?”
She answered, “Yes.” O, sweet word!
A dream come true for me!
I barely believed what I had heard
The Year of Jubilee!

And soon that girl was more than friend
I knew for sure I loved her
Time for courting drew to an end
Marriage is what I preferred
And to my joy, her Dad said, “Yes”
That’s two “yes’s” for those now scoring
But it was that third and final, “Yes”
That sent my heart a-soaring!

The great day came 10 months later
When she walked an aisle
Vows made before our Creator
Then out we went with smiles
To a world unfriendly to couples wed
In purity and love
But with a God who spoke and said,
“Just set your eyes above.”

Thus, 18 years ago, this day
I took to me mine wife
And God has blessed in every way
Through joy and even strife

Now you should know, dear GFC
How much you owe my bride
There’s much to her you do not see
But let me be your guide
Of meals sent and people in
More coffee brewed than Starbucks
A home where guests feel free to grin
And the food is beyond deluxe

A place this pastor wants to be
Even though he’s there all week
Not a home he tries to flee
And “greener pastures” seek
So I am freed to pray and think
To study in the Word
It’s my bride you should thank
If a decent sermon you’ve heard!

And you don’t see the love she gives
When sinned against by me
Nor do you watch just how she lives
Praying for you faithfully
Then sitting here week by week
With 4 kids all alone
While trying to listen to the weak
Words of me as I intone

But I see, Susan, at least in part
And am so glad you said, “Yes”
For when I’m near you, my Dearheart
I feel so deeply blessed
And I want these folks to know
(Yes, that’s partly this poem’s end...
And hope my words and roses show)
You’re still my very best friend.

[end of part one] [part two is private]

Toronto Taxi Fare Finder

Toronto Taxi Fare Finder

It's not perfect, but here is a little tool that is helpful for guesstimating taxi fares between destinations. You just input your start and finish locations and it gives an estimated fare along with tip. I love things like this.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Bruce Springsteen, Bob Kauflin and Leading People...

Bruce Springsteen on Meaning and Purpose | Worship Matters

Bob has a great post here on the difference between self-exaltation and Christ-exaltation. Every person that leads in any aspect of the church's corporate worship ought to read this carefully!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Walter on Not Giving Up in the Middle

Grace Fellowship Church: Walter on Not Giving Up in the Middle:

"The Devil has more than one trick in his bag. Sometimes he will try to fear you into sin, sometimes he will try to lure you into sin, and other times he will just sit back and let you drift into sin.

I wonder if Shem ever got bored? Every day, year after year hammering like a fool on that giant floating barn. Did he ever feel like giving up? Did he ever get tired of the smell of gopher wood? Did he ever question the whole project and say to Noah, “Dad, I’m tired of all this pitch under my nails! Ark schmark! Let’s go to Disneyland!”

Or what of Methuselah? 969 years on earth! The average man works 1/3 of his life. If Methuselah retired at 69, he had to live off his RIF for 900 years! That must have been some good investing! Did he ever start to wonder, “What is this all about anyway?” “I’m 813 years old... let’s see... what HAVEN’T I done?”

Or what of the 7 churches described in the Revelation to John? Most of them had pretty exciting starts! The Ephesian church began with a city riot, for example (Acts 19). But they ran into trouble some 50 years later. Although they are commended for their endurance in some things, they had not endured in all things. They had not endured in their love for God. Now, why was that? I am not sure I know. But I’ve been married as long as Yonge St. and know that if a man is not deliberate, if he doesn’t keep at the little things, the love he has for his wife will wane.

And I would bet a nickel to your dollar that the same is true in the life of a church. After a while, the same old things can seem... well, like the same old things. Another sermon, another prayer meeting, another lunch, another worship service. And if we are not careful, we’ll begin to think of church like some Muslims think of their 32nd wife – not much at all!

Now the Lord in His grace may send along some hailstorm or earthquake to shake things up and wake things up – but I would rather stay at the course than have the Omnipotent flex his arm in order to get our attention!"