Wednesday, May 31, 2006



This is by far the best scene from Napoleon Dynamite... if you have a few minutes and get ready to Dance!

News news news

Two interesting news stories for today. The first is about how Churches in England are using Karaoke to raise their plummeting church attendance (Full article here) It seems like people just aren't interested in singing the way they used to, so Churches are using the HT-300 Hymnal Plus from Hymn Technology Ltd. to take musical accompaniment to a whole new level! This crazy machine says that, "Besides featuring traditional tunes, the machine can blast a disco version of "Amazing Grace" and a jazzy variant of "The Lord's My Shepherd." The machine will play any song in a variety of styles, speeds, and keys, depending on the enthusiasm of the congregation. Users can choose from among 200 preset sound styles ranging from brass band to jazz piano." Wow... who needs a praise and worship band when you have one of these! At the end of the article there is a great line. "Many believe the Hymnal Plus to be the answer to every church's prayers." ... on a totally different note, youth band has now been disbanded, from now on we will only be singing the disco rendition of Amazing Grace....... yikes.

Another cool story that I found is about the Church in Nigeria. Right now it is exploding and, “many theologians say the ‘African century’ of Christianity is under way." It's a pretty interesting story. I'd like to go to one of their monthly services where there are 300,000 people praising God. Now that would be a service... I wonder if they use a HT-300 hymnal plus there...

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Nathan Needs

So I saw this on another blog. A friend of Niki's (Jill) googled "Jill needs" and came up with a whole bunch of things that she needs. So I was thinking, this is a great idea! Instead of thinking and trying to figure out what I need and wasting all that precious brain time and effort, I could just let the internet tell me what I need. So here it is, Nathan Needs....

1) Nathan needs full assistance for all of his personal. care needs
3) Nathan needs the wisdom and energy
4) Nathan needs to leave the classroom to release his tics
5) Nathan needs a sharp-eyed sniper to take out a high-ranking North Vietnamese general.
6) Nathan needs an experienced dachshund owner and a fenced back yard
7) Nathan needs to select, read and make notes in more detail to deepen his understanding
8) Nathan needs a family able to cope with his special medical needs
9) Nathan needs a hamster!
10) Nathan needs to see a psychiatrist.
11) Nathan needs a fund of around £2m
12) Nathan needs a paycheck
13) Nathan needs a pep talk!
14) Nathan needs to stand on Scottish soil and breathe Scottish air
15) Nathan needs to be more assertive in having his voice heard.
16) Nathan needs is a chance to find himself,"
17) Nathan needs to work on his mental strength
18) Nathan needs money for a game
19) Nathan needs to stand naked more often
20) Nathan needs relief!!!!
21) Nathan needs to be occupied, otherwise he would thrash the children of our neighbors

Seriously this is all from the internet I didn't make any of these up., My personal favorite needs that I have (but didn't know I had) are #'s 1, 4, 21. And my favorite need that I acctually have is #14. Well now I know what to do with the rest of my day. Time to work on my needs... maybe I'll start with #17

Monday, May 29, 2006

Our House

So a long time ago now I had some pictures of our house... but it wasn't really our house yet, so I took them down. Well now that we've been living in our house for a month now I guess it's time that you saw the pictures. But they're not on this blog. To see them you'll have to go over to my Beautiful wife's blog. That's right Niki has succumbed and joined the blogging world. So if you want to see a few pictures of our house head over to and see what it looks like.

On her blog Niki has her favorite comment about the house, let me give you mine. "Wow! Niki was right! It does look like a dive from the outside!!" yeah that's our house! Well take a look and check back on Niki's blog from time to time.

Friday, May 26, 2006

Officially a Bad Golfer

So I just got back from a great round of Golf. I shot 79 on nine holes. I would say my average for a par 5 was 11. We also came up with a new term, "Pulling a McCormik" is when you biff it REALLY bad. It also took us over three hours to play those nine holes... yeah.... well in the end though I really liked it. SO if there is anyone with a lot of time on their hands, and wants to look REALLY GOOD give me a call and we can hit up the greens in Gretna!

It was great to relax and talk with these other men who are ministering to the teens in Altona. I know that I learnt a lot, and I have some new stuff to think about. Particularly about burnout and making sure that I take care of myself... I really enjoyed the gold therapy... if only it wasn't so expensive... and I don't mean the green fees... my problem comes from the lost golf balls and broken stick things... oh yeah! Tees!! Oh the joys! But seriously if you want to take me golfing I'm all for it!

Friday Morning

So here I am stuck in a predicament. Two years ago I was traveling around Alberta with Gil and I came to see the light, and started to publicly announce my allegiance to the Flames. Now I should say that I'm not that much of a bandwagon fan. I have always loved the flames but in 93/94 when the Canucks played for the Stanley Cup I switched allegiance for a few years (what can I say Pavel Bure has always been my favorite player). Well then there were a number of years where I was a silent flames fan, I loved them, but I was scared to speak up. But then in 03/04 season against San Jose, I rediscovered my voice and have since stood against my good friends (most of whom cheer for Vancouver or Edmonton). But now I'm in a bit of trouble. I remember giving Koehn (and others) a hard time when they were cheering for San Jose against the Flames. I thought that we should put our petty differences aside for the sake of National Unity when we are playing against the States..... But now the tables are turned and the Oilers are looking like they could advance to the final..... and, while I like the Oilers more than either Carolina or Buffalo... I just don't think I could handle the harassment and snide remarks from all the Oilers fans I know. I mean realistically with all of the teams out there it could be a year or two before the Flames get another chance... All of this is to say that this morning when I checked the scores, my heart gave a little leap of joy when I saw that the Ducks SMOKED the Oilers last night... 6-3 IN Edmonton.
Well anyway if you can help I'd love your advice, but right now I'm sort of thinking, forget national unity, and lets go Anaheim!!!! Well this will give me a little something to talk with the other youth pastor's in town as we go and hit up the golf course today... yeah that will be nice!

On another note here is my Friday Cartoon

Thursday, May 25, 2006

An Introspective look

So in the last few days there have been a few events that have caused me to look a little more deeply into who I am as a person and the things that make me tick. So here are two new self realizations:

1) I get fixed on an idea.... and then abandon it This realization has come out of the whole dog conversation. My wife being the wiser and more level headed in our relationship, realizes that right now I want a dog. But that in a week, maybe two months I'll be tired of walking it and cleaning up after it, and She'll be the one to take care of it. So right now all I want is a dog, and I talk about it all the time, but once I have it.... well what's the next thing? And as much as I hate to admit it, I guess that she's probably right.... and the dog will probably end up along with the weights in the basement, or the video games that sit in the cupboard... On the other hand, I've kept up with bloging pretty well and I still play guitar... so maybe a puppy can be the changing point that I need :D

2) I rely on experience to make decisions This comes out of an interview that I had with Pastor Ben for a seminary course he's taking called Mentoring Young Adults in Their Search for Meaning, Purpose, and Faith well being the dashing young adult that I am Ben interviewed me for the class. One of the questions was, "Who or what do you trust?" As we dug into this a little I came to the realization that I trust experience. In any decision that I have made so far in my life, I have talked to other people about it. Growing up it was primarily my parents, now it is Niki and the other people around me. I trust their experiences in buying houses, working in churches, things that have worked in youth etc. I also trust to the experiences of other people in my faith. Now I LOVE Donald Miller's writing and speaking, why? I think that it has to do with the way he tells stories from his life. He shares his experiences in his journey of faith, and those sort of become mine, I connect with his feelings and writing and so we have a shared experience, and I trust that. I don't know if this is a bad thing, or not, but it is definitely a part of who I am, and it is interesting to realize that be able to understand myself a little more.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Today's post

Thanks Gil for the slogan,

So last night Niki and I were talking about getting a dog. There are a few Yellow Lab puppies for sale for $25 just out side of town. So what do you know about dogs? yes? no? Anything we should know before we do anything?

Finally who wouldn't want one of these Foam Factory this baby puts out 55 cubic feet of foam in only 3 minutes or 18 cubic feet a minute... youth retreats would never be the same.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Polls, Emo, and a New Blog

So I should apologies I left this poll on for WAY to long but here are the final results. 77% of people would rather Spill red juice on the wedding dress (befor the pics) and 23% would rather say the wrong name at the alter... these must be the 23% of my readers who are not yet married.... what a bad idea, "uh I take you Helga.. !?! I mean Niki, to be my...." …not so smooth. Anyway check out my latest would you rather poll.

Dale has a great post on Boys in Tight pants you can even sign a petition to get boys to stop wearing girls pants... please sign and stop this fashion crime. Of course tight pants and emo are like peanut butter and jelly so if you are wondering all about emo, here is a interesting post on emo kids in Salt Lake City Link Here and if you're not sure what emo is you can read this first, What is Emo??

Also I would like to welcome Ben into the blogging world. Ben was the newbie pastor in the church here before I came along. I'm looking forward to some very interesting conversation from his posts. So make sure you check it out (no pressure Ben).

Friday, May 19, 2006

Ten Things I HATE about commandments

Got this from Mark's blog, pretty funny... just watch for the f-bomb at the end


Well not too much to write today. I'm also done my sermon about David at En-Gedi, so far it has been very interesting. The theme is GOD VISION!! The Super power anyone can have... or as the bulletin says "Seeing through the eyes of God." but I like the super power thing better.

Well a week ago I wrote a post about A Little Beef of mine. Well it was sparked over at Dan King’s blog and has brought about a very interesting conversation on Fair Trade. It's a little long to write about here but I have found it very interesting so go and check out Dan King's Blog read the comments, maybe join in and see what is going on (I can’t believe we’ve been talking about this for a week already) Personally I have really enjoyed the conversation and have learnt a lot... I think that is why I like bloging. There is something about entering into a conversation with people I have never met and learning from each other. Bloging is so cool.

Anyway Niki is off this weekend for a scrap booking convention with the pastor's wives, so I'm batching it... It'll be a sweet time of playing vids and eating all that greasy food I know I shouldn't eat.... yeah it’ll be good!

<- (What not to do as a youth pastor)

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Western Thinking

"The character of a man is not a variable thing, but it follows in certain grooves cut long ago in youth." - Louis L'Amour Trouble Shooter pg. 100

So I've gotten back on a old Western kick (many apologies to my wife) but I came across this quote and it got me thinking about something I read on Mark Oestreicher's blog

"As to the openness of children: Barna Research claims that the overwhelming majority of Christ-followers date their “conversion” prior to 14 years old; indeed, after 14 years old the likelihood of conversion drops drastically....When we combine the “responsiveness” data presented by Barna (and confirmed by thousands of observations by the writers of this letter) and the unique capacity for spiritual development among young teens, we see an extremely narrow opportunity for life-long impact. Working with young teens offers us the opportunity for preventive ministry, whereas ministry to older teens must often be corrective."

I wonder if maybe old Louis was on to something??

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Neat Site

For all of you who are looking for some fun stuff to put on your blog, check out the Generator Blog

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

2 Cool Sites

Here's a cool site that I got off Gil, Library Thing lets you catalogue all your books and then rate them. It's a pretty cool way of finding out what other people are reading and what is on their shelf. So fill it in and then I can go and see what I need to read. There is so little time and so many books, so what should I be reading? Check out My Library for a few of my Fav's.

Another cool site is Last FM you download a program that runs in your WMP or itunes and then it lets people know what you have been listening to during the last week (or Days) check out my "ipod" down at the links. Or click on it to see what I've been listening to today....

Monday, May 15, 2006

King of the Hill Church

My favorite quote has to be. "You gotta be right with God to go to my church, we're hardcore." It's hard know how to respond to this one.... it's so funny, and true... and yet at the same time very sad. Pull out the popcorn and watch for a bit.

My Weekend

So I had quite the interesting weekend. It started off with taking Friday afternoon off and hitting up as many garage sales as I could with Niki (got some pretty good finds, including Dumb and Dumber on DVD… so if you want a good copy on VHS let me know) then we got into the car and drove three hours to Jessica Lake Lodge. Niki knew we were going somewhere, but the destination was a surprise, so the drive consisted of me ducking Niki's head down every time we came close to a road sign that might have our destination on it. Along the way Niki completely lost her sense of direction, which made for some really fun conversations. It was a good time and a very nice place. We spent the night relaxing in the hot tub and just relaxing away from work and home. It was a great way to celebrate one year.

On Saturday we left and drove to Winnipeg where were did some shopping and such. And then another interesting thing happened. We were sitting at a stop light minding our own business when what do I see standing on the boulevard? A homeless man with a sign that said, "Can't work. I would rather beg than starve." So I quickly looked away thinking, "Man why does he have to be here? What should I do? What does God require?" The money in my wallet was sitting pretty heavy, and I knew that I had a couple bucks that I could easily to without. So I gave it too him, and told him to buy a sandwich. Now I know that we shouldn't give money to people out begging on the street... or at least that's what I've always been told. And I probably should have offered to buy him a meal instead of just giving him a few bucks. But the thing I kept thinking about was this line from a Derek Webb song that says, "Poverty, it's so hard to see, when it's 20 miles across town." It is so easy to forget all about the poor, until you meet them. And I knew that I had to do something.... it wasn't much but it was a start for me. One other thing stuck out to me about this experience, was looking in my rearview mirror and seeing the look of disgust in the eyes of the lady in the car behind me as I gave the man money. It was so clearly a look that said, "Why are you giving him money to make my city look so trashy?" Maybe I made a mistake... but I'd rather be the naive fool who gives freely than the stuck up prick who wouldn't help the helpless. Another song I was thinking about was The Train Song by Listener. Take a listen, great words and message... even if you’re not a fan of rap... give this song a try.

On Sunday morning Niki and I are sleeping in, enjoying a nice Sunday morning when the phone rings, and Pastor Ben is on the other end sounding very sick.... to make a long story short I end up preaching at a old folks home on 2 hours notice... Thank goodness for Sermon Central I just went in searched grandparents and read someone else’s sermon.... but I learnt a lot about the importance of grandparents... pretty cool. In the evening Niki and I decided that we should return a video game I was borrowing from one of our youth so we got on our bikes and rode across town to the Barkman's. As we approached the house we were like "Oh NO! it's supper time! And it's mothers day." We could see all the cars in the driveway, but we had come this far, so we decided to do what we had come to do. Walking up to the door Niki and I were like, "This is sort of awkward, crashing a mothers day party... Oh well! It's the Barkman's" And are we ever glad we knocked, we were invited in and we got to spend the rest of the evening in some great fellowship.... I think we might just have to crash father's day as well. It was really a great time. So that is pretty much the way my weekend went. Lots of lessons, and lots of laughs. Just the way I like them…. Oh I forgot one thing. After we were at the Barkman’s Niki and I were sitting around, I was playing vids and Niki was cleaning, when our doorbell rang, When I went to answer the person was gone, but there was a Oreo and Smartie flurry at our door, So thanks to our mystery guest… it tasted awesome!

Friday, May 12, 2006

One YEAR!!!!

Well that's not really how I feel at all.... but it's funny! This weekend is our first wedding anniversary... It's hard to believe that it has already been a year. It seems liks just yesterday I was picking up Jon and Brad and driving to HB. So much has happened since we got married. We've worked at camp, moved three times, started a new job.... and so much more… that I can't remember. Looking back at the last year I must say that God has been so good to us. I am so amazed at how he lavishes His love upon His children. And I don't just mean in a physical, "He gave us stuff" sort of way. God has been so good. Living with Niki has been by far my most favorite part of the last year. Our house is a pretty rocking place and I have so much fun with her. I remember being a little nervous about this whole getting married thing, and having to share a place with someone. In the past I was better friends with my roommates when we didn't have to share a room (right Keith) but living with my wife has been a much better experience (whew!). So today I sit back and remember our one year, and look forward to the many years still to come.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Ninja Text


A Little Beef

Just wanted to set the record straight on something. There seems to be this idea that Starbucks is a fair trade coffee place. And for a long time I too thought this was the case. But in doing a little research I discovered a little fact that is worth noting. In 2004 less than one percent of the coffee sold at Starbucks was certified fair trade coffee. Now, in 2006, it is getting closer to the 2.2% mark. To me this still sounds like it is a long way from all their coffee being fair trade.

Now to be fair I need to put this in perspective with other coffee shops. Tim Hortons, and Second Cup (the other two giant coffee chains in Canada) are both WELL below 1% and aren't really making much of an effort to improve on that. While on the other hand Starbucks is always trying to improve, and currently sells 20% of all the fair trade Coffee in America. They also buy most of their coffee for double the normal selling rate.... however, it's not technically fair trade!

Does it really matter? Probably not. If you like coffee and you have a strong social conscience Starbucks is probably the best place to buy a cup of coffee (besides your local MCC). My beef is that Starbucks gives the impression that they are a fair trade company when they’re not… and I don’t like it when people pretend to be something their not.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


You Are Fozzie Bear

"Wocka! Wocka!"
You're the life of the party, and you love making people crack up.
If only your routine didn't always bomb!
You may find more groans than laughs, but always keep the jokes coming.

Deep Thoughts...again

These sort of come out of our Bible Study group on Sunday. We were talking about funny stories and Jack Handy came up, so I thought I'd put a few more on the blog.

When you're riding in a time machine way far into the future, don't stick your elbow out the window, or it'll turn into a fossil.

A good way to threaten somebody is to light a stick of dynamite. Then you call the guy and hold the burning fuse up to the phone. "Hear that?" you say. "That's dynamite, baby."

Maybe in order to understand mankind, we have to look at the word itself: "Mankind". Basically, it's made up of two separate words - "mank" and "ind". What do these words mean ? It's a mystery, and that's why so is mankind.

- Deep thoughts by Jack Handy

Friday, May 05, 2006

Donald Miller

So here is just a great sermon by one of my favorite authors go and listen to Donald Miller at Mars Hill. Take the link and then go to April 23rd and download it. It is worth the listen... although you might want to skip the first 10 minutes and skip the Mars Hill announcements.

My favorite quote from the sermon.
Don was speaking to group of young people in a secular college, when he finished a girl stood up and said. “You talked about only briefly looking into other religions and then landed in Christianity how did you make a objective search.”

This was Don’s response,

“We need to agree that you are coming to the table with a Presupposition, and that is that Christianity is a religious or philosophical system. It isn’t. It isn’t a religious or philosophical system. It’s called a religious and philosophical system it’s been treated as a religious or philosophical system, but essential I’m not a Christian because I cognitively subscribe to certain ideas. I‘m a Christian because I know a deity, A being, this is a relational system., I’m a Christina because I have a relationship with Jesus and through Jesus I have relationship with god. It’s very different than subscribing to a series of ideas.

So essentially your question sounds to me like,
Don you are telling me you are in love with your wife, and yet you do not sleep with hundreds of other women to try to find a greater love. You see the difference. Love in a relational sense is exclusive. Intimate love in is exclusive. And so Jesus isn’t saying that God wants to be worshiped, and be your only choice, although that is true, but He wants love. “If we are going to love each other it’s only me, you can’t be with other guys.”
If a woman says this at the alter we say yes, yes. We don’t say oh she’s really controlling…..”

You’ll have to listen to the rest. It is actually really funny, and deeply profound. Essentially typical Donald Miller.
Also today if you'd like, you can go down to the links and see what I've been listening to this week... although I am a little confused, I didn't think I listened to Kelly Clarkson so much. YIKES!! Anyway check it out and see what I listen to.

And now for some funny Pictures.

Thursday, May 04, 2006


So Last night was a night of great expectations, and great disappointment. Needless to say all the talk at youth last night was our great hopes of watching an Oilers, flames series. 7 games double over time, battle of Alberta.... what could be better... after that I don't think I would even be interested in the Stanley Cup. So at nine we closed the Hub, kicked everyone out and went to a youth's to watch the last half of the second and the third...... what a disgusting game.... as much as it pains me to say, Calgary deserved to lose. I can sum up the reason they lost in two words, "NO HEART." Well I guess they can break out the golf clubs and go and join Vancouver working on their drive..... Oh well, always next year.... Now comes to dilemma, do I cheer for

Ottawa (yuck) or the

Oilers (the arch enemy)... well I'm open to suggestions... but I'm learning towards the Oilers... the underdog/at least they have some heart.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Hopes and Dreams

I think I've mentioned this before, but just in case you don't know Altona has a growing population of Refugees/immigrants that are moving into our beautiful town. Of course moving into a new country/town brings all sorts of interesting challenges and needs. Well God has been working and two of the pastor's wives (Cindy and Val) felt that they needed to do something to help. So last night was the first of a six week program called "Hopes and Dreams" The idea is that volunteers from the church will come and help these new people learn English, practice conversation/writing/reading/math/driving.... basically help them adjust to a new culture, and make some friends while they do it. As the youth pastor, I went to check it out, get to know some of the youth that have moved here with their families. Also we are hoping to get a number of our youth involved to help out with Childcare and tutoring (for you Saskatoon people, it is similar to Open Door). Except for the fact that it adds another night out during the week it was an AWESOME TIME!!! It was great to meet new people and to listen to them. And I even discovered that I can’t multiply 195X365 without a calculator... I guess being a tutor isn’t for me.
Now here is the highlight of my night. A Muslim man was asking Pastor Gary and I if the cross came from up or down. Well Gary and I had no idea what he was asking... maybe from up? since they had to put it into the ground??? who knows. So Gary asked him what he thought. The answer? Both! The cross is six sided. The cross is for the people in the North and South, for the people in the West and for the people in the East. The Cross is for people who are up and for people who are down..... hmmmm...... I guess that would be thinking outside of the box. It was very awesome to be there and to take part in that night, and I'm looking forward to next Tuesday.