Sunday, February 28, 2010

Olympic Celebrations!

Before I write more about Catholicism I'd like to dedicate at least a couple posts to the Olympics. Here is the first:

8 years ago - I was in San Francisco, USA at this time of the year. I was on a missions trip with Columbia Bible College during reading break. At that time I didn't care too much about the Olympics, but I do get passionate about sport if others I'm with are passionate. So while we were down in the States, the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City were happening and the majority of our group was desperate to watch the final game of Men's Hockey between Canada and the USA.

We managed to find a small pizzeria that had a big screen TV and they were willing to have the game on for us. There was probably 20 of us Canadians packed in this US establishment with maybe 3-5 randoms. And we were loud! We cheered wildly and had an absolute blast, especially with the Canadian gold medal victory.

4 years ago - I didn't watch any of the Olympics. I'm not really sure why. I have a love/hate relationship with the Olympics that I'll get into later. It doesn't matter though, both Canada and the US were knocked out of the hockey competition early in the quarterfinals.

2 weeks ago - I realized the gold medal game would be happening today, Feb 28. I remembered how much fun I had 8 years ago and decided I wanted to find an excellent group of people I could party with if Canada made it that far. I was pretty excited about it.

1 week ago - I was talking with Pastor Dave about the ECU Service at the local hospital. Every 2 months our youth group goes to the Extended Care Unit of the hospital and leads the Sunday service for them. Well as I was talking with Dave, I realized it was our turn to lead the service on Feb 28. Today. THE DAY OF THE BIG GAME!!!!! The ECU service starts at 2:30. This meant I would miss the last few minutes of the game.

4 hours ago - I was throwing myself a bit of a pity party. I had to prepare for the service so that meant no celebrating with other people. I sat in my office playing guitar while watching the game on my computer. Only 3 other youth volunteered to help me out. I knew it would be slim pickings. I was so disappointed I wouldn't be able to watch the final minutes of the game.

2 hours ago - The score was 2-1 for Canada. I didn't have a chance to grab lunch after church, so I went to McD's 20 mins before the service started. The third period had just started and I watched the game as I ate my official Olympic Big Mac. I didn't have time to stay and watch the last 3 minutes of the game. I had to go the hospital.

I was hoping some of the staff would be watching the game so we could find out the final score, but I wasn't sure. Much to my surprise, all the people there were watching the game on the big screen! The lady asked me if it was okay that we continue watching the game and put off singing till later. I said of course! Well, as you all know, with less than a minute left USA scored and tied up the game, sending it into overtime! The service would be postponed even longer, haha!

Well, my heart was racing all through overtime, until Crosby scored the game-winning goal. Everyone cheered and we started singing Oh Canada. By this point it was too late to have the church service, but we did have a chance just to sit and chat with the people there.

It was then that I realized, this was a way better hockey party than one I would have planned to have gone to. Who would have guessed I would have watched the gold medal game with a bunch of elderly people, most of whom can't even communicate well. And it was a blast! I feel bad for all those youth who missed out on such a great experience. Sure they had their own parties. But none could have compared to this one!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

How I Am Not A Catholic - Part One

My sister, Jackie, wrote 3 posts titled, "How I Became a Catholic." I encourage you to read them if you haven't already. They describe her journey from Protestantland to Catholicworld. I got to witness this transformation and it caused me to ask many questions (for myself) as it was happening. But I did not make the same decision she made. I would like to share why that is, but definitely not as an attack against Jackie or Catholics. I fully support Jackie in her decision. So here I go...

End of Part One

Monday, February 22, 2010

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Look at this. My second post of this new blogging commitment and I'm already a day late. I probably would have kept putting it off but Jackie and Amy both commented about it.

With the help of Amy I've discovered there are two sides to me. One is organized, strategic and efficient. The other is messy, forgets where he puts things, and procrastinates. Can you guess which one I am right now?

Two weeks ago I was on the ball, and I was on the ball for a long time. But then it started coming apart, which doesn't surprise me. I kept thinking, "When is this all going to crash?" I had lasted an unusually long amount of time under control, but alas here I am back where I started.

And I hate it! I'm so sick of it, uggh! I can't tolerate this behaviour any longer, it's driving me mad. I feel good when I'm organized, but yet I sabotage it and fall into this pattern of avoiding everything. So I will fight you! You must not be allowed to ruin my life any longer, Mr. Hyde!

I get so overwhelmed when there are many things to do, and there are always many things to do in my job. Not to mention maintaining my suite and being in a relationship. And all my 500+ friends and family. It's hard to know when to draw the line, and my problem is I don't take the time to draw the line. I just do what's easiest, but then the hard things get harder, making me more prone to avoid them until I ultimately cannot avoid them.

Such is life. I won't let it bog me down any longer. Anyone got any advice?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Another Season

Lent is upon us once again. Today is Ash Wednesday. Those who know me well, know I have developed a long list of things I fast from over the Lenten season. This year, however, I have decided to try something new. Rather than give stuff up, I will take something on.

When I went to New Zealand two years ago I challenged myself each day to ask someone new if I could pray for them. I was there for 7 days. I asked 0 people. It was actually quite a crushing blow to my spiritual side.

I will be leaving for Italy on March 14. I wanted to try this challenge again. Except this time, I thought it would be a good idea if I started early, and if I had the accountability of my friends to keep me to it. So for this season of Lent I will be asking someone new everyday if I can pray for them.

I will be writing a journal describing how this journey goes for me. I already know it will have a significant impact on my spirituality. I know because those 7 days where I did nothing left me empty and discouraged. This will push me to see people in a different light, to change my prayer focus from being me-focus, and to better practice the presence of God (among other as yet unknown experiences).

This is also another season of blogging for me. I realize without a commitment, I get nothing accomplished. So I hereby recommit to posting two blogs a week, on Wednesday and Sunday, from now until Easter Sunday.

May this season of Lent break you down to complete dependence on God and his Word.

Monday, February 08, 2010

My LIfe: A 2nd Update

My life at a glance...

I'm nearing the middle of my 5th year at Cedar Park Church. I'd say for the first time I actually feel like I have a workable plan for structuring this ministry right.

A year ago I began hanging out with a Miss Amy Hales. We are now currently an "item". We're not getting married anytime soon, so stop asking please.

I love spinach now.

I am hovering around 210 lbs. Not too happy about that.

My dad passed away in Dec from esophageal cancer. It's been an emotional experience, but very healthy for me and my family (for the most part I think).

The contract on my phone is ending soon. I believe it might just be time to get an iPhone.

My dentist had me coming every 4 months for a cleaning to improve my gums. Today I was graduated to 6 months!!!

I'm currently rocking a soul patch while growing out my bangs. My goal is to shave the soul patch and become a Justin Bieber look-a-like.

Actually I think it's time for the beard to make a comeback.

Twisted my ankle last March and it's still bothering me.

Since my last update I have traveled to Sacramento, Campbell River, Quadra Island, Victoria, Malibu, Disneyland, Medford, Atlanta, and Edmonton (multiple time :S). My next destinations include Italy, Montreal, Ontario, and the Northern States.