Category Archives: Random Blog Stuff

Moving the blog.

I really love this blog.  I’ve enjoyed it as a place to discuss and dream.  In this place new friends have met old, stories have been shared and people have connected.  I really have enjoyed my time on wordpress.com.

That said I’ve felt a prodding lately.  Opportunities have come my way that I’ve sadly had to pass up. I was feeling a little constrained in terms of design and personalization and wanted more from the blog.  I kept feeling like it was time to move but wasn’t listening to those feelings.  I was ignoring that urge and just kept plugging along.  Until now that is.  I’ve finally decided to listen.

I’ve found a host, I’m taking the leap and I’m going to build the site I feel is right for me.  At first you won’t notice a difference, the domain name will remain the same and the format will be as well but as time passes and I get a little more comfortable I’ll be able to personalize it, I’ll be able to make it more of what I think it should be and I’m excited about that possibility.

That being said I’m absolutely terrified.  I’m terrified of failure, of having made the wrong decision.  I worry about losing all of my followers and you are lovely people, I don’t want to lose you.  I wonder if I’m misinterpreting this prodding and have gone off in a direction I shouldn’t go.

Ultimately I cannot live a life in fear, I must take that leap of faith and I think now is the time.  When we are frozen in fear we are frozen in place and that is never a good thing.  Without movement there is no growth, without growth there is no opportunity.

If you have subscribed through email I should be able to keep that going.   I hope so anyways!  If you have subscribed through wordpress.com we may lose touch for a while.  I hope you come over to my site http://ministrytomotherhood.com and visit.  I’ll have a subscription service set up or you can catch my RSS feed through your reader so we can reconnect.

It’s time to make the move.  It’s time to act in faith knowing that what comes next will be another interesting adventure…

Conversations between my husband and I about the Higgs boson

I should begin by saying that my husband studied Physics in his undergraduate years.  This makes him infinitely more knowledgeable than me when it comes to science in general but physics in particular.  Imagine my delight when I discovered that scientists had made a great discovery in the field of particle physics before he did.  Here are some of the conversations from today…

Before Breakfast:

Becky: Did you know they’ve discovered the Higgs boson particle?
Alvin: They discovered it, when?
Becky: Last night/today.  I knew something about Physics before you!
Alvin: Do you even know what the Higgs boson particle is?

Over Lunch:
After much reading on my part… 

Becky: So this Higgs boson particle hasn’t been seen but they know it’s there?
Alvin: Hints of it have been seen?
Becky: Hints of it?  So it hasn’t been seen…
Alvin: It’s not really a particle per se, it’s more of a field
Becky: So it’s a giant force field holding us together?  Something would need to be holding that force field in place.  There has to be something making it all happen.
Alvin: Strings.
Becky: Strings?  Really?  Who controls said strings?
Alvin: The hands of God.
Becky: Ahhh.

Slightly later during lunch:

Becky: So if this force field is what holds us all together imagine if you could find a way to break the rules of the particle.  You could create a transporter just like Star Trek.
Alvin: No you couldn’t.
Becky: Yes you could.  You’d just have to figure out how to break the field, send the particles to another place and put them all back together again.
Alvin: I guess in theory it’s a beginning.
Becky: I guess the hard part would be keeping people alive.  They’d likely be dead when they got there.
Alvin: Probably would.
Becky: I guess that’s why I’m not in charge of designing transporters…

Later again:

Becky: You could say that Jesus was the one time that God decided it would be okay to allow part of himself to be confined by the Higgs boson force field.
Alvin: Huh?
Becky: Well he lived within it for a set period of time.
Alvin: I think that theory would tick off the Evangelicals and the Scientists…

A letter to the bunny.

Dear Bunny,

I’ve been attempting to co-exist with you for many months now.  I understand that you require a place to live and am happy to let you live in my backyard rent free.  There are however some rules that were explained to you when you moved in that you seem to have forgotten.  I’ve written them here as a bit of a refresher for you.

  1. Parsley is off limits.  We’ve cultivated our lawn to be a rabbit’s paradise. Filled with clover {and lots of it} you’re more than welcome to eat that. Unfortunately the parsley is mine, you have to stop eating it before I get the chance.
  2. While I would prefer that you stay away from the strawberries as well my primary issue with your consumption of said berries is the fact that you don’t actually like them.  Taking my berries, eating a piece and throwing the rest on the ground is wasteful.  I would enjoy eating my berries {again I point you to the clover if you are hungry}.
  3. Finally I’d like to remind you that there is an absolute buffet of clover for you to eat in the yard proper.  Please eat it.  Encourage your children to eat it.  I’ve seen you all lazily lying in the grass.  It’s time to start pulling your weight around here if you wish to stay.

Sincerely,

A frustrated gardener

Monday, Monday.

Today was not a stellar day in terms of accomplishments for me.  I’m usually a zombie on Mondays due to having been in the pulpit on Sunday but today was particularly challenging.  I did however have some interesting moments.

One interesting moment was pulling up the bulletin outline for the church I’m working at on Sunday and discovering that they have a statement of faith following the sermon from ‘Living Faith’ the PCC’s little green book on faith.   I am not sure if I’ve looked at Living Faith since I was a student at this church so it was fun to dive back in.  The copy I used was given to me when I was confirmed at 12.  I can’t believe it was that long ago and that I’m so old now that 12 seems so young to me.  Where did the time go?

Sensibly following the read through of Living Faith I gave up on work.  My focus was just not there.  Anything I wrote down would likely have to be redone so I headed out to the grocery store to grab some corn tortillas and cucumbers.  On the way home I drove by the lake.  It was beautiful.  The combination of wind and waves is something I thrive on.  It was a perfect scene.

Following dinner my son and I goofed around with my iphone and took photos of one another.   His way of taking pictures was laughing at me when he saw my face through the screen and this was one we caught.  I think it might be my new social media picture.  I read this week that my picture should be clear and recognizable which mine currently is not.

There are worse ways to spend a day I suppose.  Other activities involved crayons and tickles.  We also had lots of laughs.

How did you spend your Monday?

The Dishwasher and the Pea

This morning after my shower I moved into the kitchen to begin making breakfast.  When I entered the kitchen I found my husband lying half inside the dishwasher.  I was a little concerned as this is highly unusual behavior for him. I’m usually up hours before he is.  Asking him why he was hanging out inside our dishwasher he reminded me that I had asked for his help regarding it’s lack of cleaning power.  He had gotten up early to clean it out for me.  He’s a good man.

As I was assembling the necessary ingredients for our morning oatmeal and he was cleaning out dishwasher parts we had lovely conversation and chatted about many things.  Imagine my surprise when in the midst of it all he cried out ‘a pea!’. It would seem that a pea, one lonely green pea had gotten stuck in one of the jets, preventing the water from getting everywhere it needed to be.

This one pea.  This tiny pea prevented a large, capable machine from doing it’s job.  It’s pretty incredible when you think about it.  Something so small, so seemingly innocent can wreak havoc on whatever it’s involved with if it’s in the wrong place, in the wrong position.

The pea got me thinking.  How many of us accidentally become the pea when we think we are part of the dishwasher?  I know I sound crazy but hear me out.  In every organization we all play a role.  Some of us a leaders while others follow. Some organize and others dream.  Each one of us has gifts that are given to us to be used and shared.  We each have a role to play.

Sometimes we find ourselves stepping out of our role and becoming a block to others.  We become the pea.  Many times we think we can do everything and so take on more than we can handle.  Sometimes we believe we have the answer and when others don’t agree we put up road blocks to prevent others from moving forward in the direction they feel is right.  These actions are often unintentional, they’re subconscious. Regardless, they have an impact.  Sometimes they prevent the entire operation from working.  It’s important to see where we are the ‘pea’ in our lives and find ways of helping others achieve and succeed instead of blocking them.

Are you the pea?
Are there peas in your life?

How an iPhone comes to power

This is the story of a girl who longed for the one thing she could never have. Well that’s not technically true, she could have had one but she refused to pay for it…

On Friday the last person to ever use a Palm Pre Phone ceased using it.  I should know as that person was me.  I had really been fighting getting a new phone.  My phone didn’t always charge, wouldn’t get messages for a few days and often disconnected from towers.  Regardless I persevered as I hate paying money for cellphones.   I sometimes wonder if there is a chip inside them which causes them to self destruct six months before your contract ends but enough with the conspiracy theories.

On Friday after finding my phone dead while sitting in the charger and discovering that the only place my phone would charge was in the car while I was driving I knew I needed to do something.  My phone was antiquated, unreliable and I do have a need for some connection with the outside world.  After making this decision I got the best news ever, my cell phone company decided that morning that I was eligible for an upgrade and I should just come in.

I did not rush in immediately.  There were other, more pressing things on my list of stuff to do.  My Gran and I needed to get our grocery shopping done.  We absolutely had to enjoy iced chai lattes while talking about our upcoming plans for my cousin’s wedding.  These things were of the utmost importance but once my day with Gran was done I marched my little family into the cell phone store and came out with an iPhone.

Friday was a glorious day that fed into a marvelous weekend {technologically speaking}.  I used my cell phone everywhere.  I unhooked my Nano from the car stereo and used my phone in its place.  I checked stats from basement while watching Game of Thrones.   I took pictures on Instagram.  We marveled at how slow and outdated the old phone was and contemplated selling my old iPod as I no longer had a need for it, after all my phone does everything right?

My phone does almost everything it seems.  It can schedule me, connect me, chronicle my life and even help me with work.  It can entertain me, sing to me and even become a book.  The thing my phone does not do is check the pockets of my shorts before I throw them into the wash.   Remember how I unhooked my nano and put my phone into the car stereo system?  I tucked that nano into my pocket and because it’s so small, forgot about it.

As a result my nano is currently sitting in a bag of rice on my desk and my prayers of thanksgiving to God for convincing the cell phone company to cut me a break have now turned to desperate cries for the life of my beloved nano.  My iPhone seduced me into thinking it was the only piece of technology that mattered.  It’s glittery features and quick upload speeds distracted me from other, equally important things.

It’s often the way in life, isn’t it?  When we move on to bigger and better things we forget the people and places we’ve left behind.  We really shouldn’t as they helped shape us into who we have become.  But I digress as that’s really a story for another day.

I present to you now a picture from my new iPhone.  The first of many to come I’m sure…

What if life were more like theatre?

I’ve found my voice again.  It took a little 2 year old who loves music and wants to sing everything but I sing my way through life again and I love it.  As such I was extremely entertained by the opening of the Tony Awards Ceremony this year.

What if life were more like theatre?

I would love that intermission when life places you in precarious situations and perhaps the ability to call in that understudy.  What about you?

My garden and a bunny got me to thinking…

This past weekend my family and I travelled up to see my brother and sister graduate from University in Sault Ste. Marie.  It was a wonderful weekend, we had so much fun and I’m so proud of them both.

Of course while I was away there was a heat wave here at home.  My garden sprung to life while I was away and so today I thought I would check out the progress in the clear light of day as we got home fairly late last night.  The change was phenomenal.

My clematis was gorgeous and in full bloom

My tomatoes exploded

My herbs were happy

…and the bunny was happy.

This bunny is one of a family of bunnies.  I know what you’re thinking.  Bunnies aren’t good because they eat your strawberries.  You weren’t thinking that?  I was.  They eat my strawberries!  Nevertheless they are in our yard this year more than any other and I discovered why.  While we were away this happened to my grass:

A patch of clover decided to multiply while we were away.  We’ve been battling this clover for a while but it’s gotten out of hand lately.  My husband has been working hard and removing it.  He is constantly outside digging it up, spraying some kind of natural iron compound on it, yelling at it and giving it the look.  So far nothing has worked.

The bunnies love clover.  They come into the yard and eat away all day.  It’s paradise for them.  Unbeknownst to us we’ve created a perfect paradise for bunnies free of dogs, quiet and removed from traffic with plenty of their favorite foods.

As I stood outside marveling at the determination of the clover to survive and the never ending stream of bunnies which seem to find their way into my yard I got to thinking.  Lately I’ve read quite a number of blogs by people in their thirties who are searching for a church and desperate to find a place where they fit in.  They long to find an environment they feel comfortable in.  They long to find a place that offers community, is recognizable to them and doesn’t exist simply for themselves.

Unfortunately they are struggling to find a place that they recognize as church and I’m not really surprised.  Church as most of us practice it today is unrecognizable to most people in their thirties.  There is no organization that they belong to, no place they go where people behave as the church does. Meetings are held at coffee houses or at a round table.  Gatherings are informal and relationship is the primary focus.  People come to church expecting to find relationship and connection but do not see it because we do not present it in a way they understand or can connect with.

My backyard is an accidental paradise for the bunnies.  A safe haven from the storms of the world.  A place where they are fed, nourished, protected and given rest.  Maybe we need to create an intentional paradise for the people of this world.  Maybe we should be creating safe places for people to escape the storms of this world. We should feed them, nourish them, protect them, empower them and allow them to be.

If we did that imagine what a ministry that would be, what opportunities we would have to serve others in our world. I’d love to know what you think.  What would your paradise look like? What do you need in a church?

And then there was silence.

At present I am unoccupied on Sundays.  It’s a glorious thing.  There is nothing forcing me anywhere at any specific time.  I can go anywhere I want, to any church I want or even not to church if I’m so inclined.  I’m currently on a three week break and I’m really enjoying it.  I was a little burnt out, tired of always being the cheerleader and I needed some time alone.

As a serious introvert I do need time away.  I need quiet time in the day to relax and unwind.  When I’m working I often loose that time as I keep X. company during the day, visit with my husband at night and manage to cram work in.   On top of that I am apparently an empath {or at least my husband jokingly calls me that} and I have a tendency to feel the feelings of the people around me.  This can be a good and a bad thing at times.

Usually I have barriers in place to keep myself happy and at peace.  Lately it’s just all gotten to be too much.  Every church I went to had some type of anxiety, fear, worry or hesitation.  So many voices.  So many questions.  So many demands. I know it’s the way things are but it was wearing me down so I took a break.  And then there was silence…

The silence has been wonderful.  With the voices gone, I’ve sunk into life.  I’ve felt God’s presence.  I’ve embraced comfortable jeans, watched movies with my husband and dug in my garden.  I’ve prayed and prayed.  I’ve read and debated.  I’ve sat in silence and marveled at the world around me.   The anxiety and fear are not present here.   There is no worry or hesitation.  In my house there is peace.

I love peace.

Feeling peace is incredible.  It doesn’t mean there aren’t moments of passion or heated debate.  It doesn’t mean there aren’t questions or moments of wonder.  It just means that through it all you know things are ok, God is there and will continue to be there. I wish the church could feel this peace, could embrace God’s presence and feel peace as it walks through this time of transition.

I will continue to enjoy my time.  I will watch my brother and sister graduate, enjoy picnics in the park and maybe take in a show or two.  The time will pass to quickly and soon I will be back to work.  Until then I’ll exist in the silence, I will embrace the gift of time that God has given me.

_______________________________________________________

I’d love to know how you recharge when you’re feeling overwhelmed?  Leave a comment below…

Annoying…

Annoying.  My son loves that word.

Breakfast is ‘annoying’ as it takes time away from play.
Getting dressed is ‘annoying’ as it takes time away from play.
Going potty is ‘annoying’ as it takes time away from play.

Are you noticing a theme here?  My son loves to play.  He likes to engage with the world and really be present in the moment.  Things that distract or take away from his experience are not acceptable.  He rejects that which does not belong. There’s much we could learn from this.  We should really engage with the world and be present in the moment.  We should reject that which distracts us from our calling or purpose and turn away from things that lead us in the wrong direction.

What distracts you?  What tears you away?  For some it’s a cell phone or an iPad.  For others it’s work and overtime.  We are told by society that we must be accessible at any time, in any moment just in case.  We are told that work is what makes us.  That what we do defines us.

I would argue that it’s what we don’t do that defines us.  Like X. we need to reject the things that don’t belong and start to prioritize.  Our faith and our families should come first.  Can we disconnect from things that are ‘annoying’ long enough to enjoy the life we’re living right now?

Find some time today to disconnect from that which is ‘annoying’ in your life.  Use that extra time to enjoy things that bring you bliss and connect you with God and others.  You only get one shot at life.  Don’t waste on things that are annoying…