Monday, May 28, 2007

Jill and Trevor just got engaged Friday evening, May 25. AWESOME!!! Wishing them God's blessings on the wedding and cross-continental move next year. I'm so, so, so happy for them! Woohooo!!!!!

Funny thing is, May 25 was also the day Terry and I got engaged - one year ago! It's hard to believe it's been a year already, but it's definitely been the happiest year yet, and the Lord willing this will be an even happier one! Wow, less than two months to go.

Well, I have to run - today is Memorial Day and after seeing my brother Nathanael march in the parade as a Cub Scout, we're going to a picnic with the pack. (Btw, from what I hear our Memorial Day is similar to the Aussie ANZAC Day.) Hope you are all well and thanks for your prayers and support for us.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Cornelius Van Til

Dear friends & family,

I have been meaning to post for a while. Here is just a short one.

As I am sitting in my study (yes it is done!) I decided I needed to return to listen to an old friend: Cornelius Van Til. I have a CD with the works of Van Til and among those works are several of his lectures and sermons. I have listened to these lectures and sermons several times; it was my habit to listen to them over breakfast while I was interning in Chilliwack British Columbia.

There are marvelously helpful thing in these lectures. It was in one of these lectures I finally found concrete evidence of how Van Til pushes the antithesis further then anyone else in the Neo-Calvinistic school of thinking (he went so far as to say the antithesis applies to numbers, and in so doing he goes at least one step beyond Abraham Kuyper). But what I truly enjoy in them is that I find him easy to understand. I know, I know, "Van Til is not easy to understand!" many say, and that is true for most. However I find his Christian philosophical techno speak soothing and familiar.

So why post about Van Til?

In the ministry you need to know how to rest, relax, feed, and refresh yourself. You must primarily do this through prayer and the reading of God's Word (and it is real temptation and danger not too), but secondarily everyone, especially pastors, should have particular authors that help relax, refresh, and feed them. Martyn Lloyd-Jones had a Puritan named Richard Sibbes. A friend of mine has Robert Murray McCheyene, another has John Owen, another has George Whitefield, and the list could go on. Each one of the Lord's people has individual struggles in their Christian walk and it is a marvelous idea to have a friend (an old dead author) who you can learn from and be once again be directed to Christ in greater depths.

My two greatest helpers, as far speaking to my soul consistently, have been Augustine and Luther. In times past it has been Thomas Boston and Thomas Shepard. Geerhardus Vos is never far from me but usually for redemptive historical testing on my exegesis and Van Til is actually further into the background testing my epistemology.

Who do you read, besides the Spirit inspired Word, for rest, relaxations, refreshment, and feeding?

Love through Christ,

Friday, May 11, 2007

The following is my week in pictures. Enjoy!

5.4.07 - Here is the view out the back porch of our house in the morning - I love it in the spring when this tree is in bloom! By now, the pink blossoms are already replaced with vivid green leaves.There is a curious squirrel on the back porch. He was too cute for me to resist snapping a picture.It was also my last day of student teachers. We had a good day and I took pictures with some of my students. Here's one class - we are outside because right when we were taking the picture there was a fire drill!The other teachers I eat with at lunch threw a good-bye party for me. They even had sandwiches catered in! It was very thoughtful.5.7.07 The first thing I managed to do was bang my toe against the wall on Monday morning. It has been seriously bruised and I had to stay off of it most of this week. It is now okay to walk on, but it still looks funny!I had a ton of grading to do after I finished my student teaching - I had let it pile up a little so I paid for it with hours of work. I had three assignments and a test to grade for my 96 students. Unfortunately, I am a meticulous grader....My dear sister Joanna, however, knew how to cheer me up. Having finished her college semester, she was home and spent some time making a lovely and scrumptious lunch for us.I did dishes too. My sister Esther wanted to take a picture of me doing the dishes....5.11.07 Today was graduation day. Here I am by the landmark Arch at the Ramapo College of NJ.Dad and Mom both came, which was really nice. It was a long event, and we all got quite sunburnt.
Several of my siblings (L-R Peter, me, Joanna, Lydia) and Grandpa came too!
Even my good friend Jill managed to come! And then tonight, I sang with the Cheneniah Choir in their spring performance. I also played the flute with a little arrangement of Psalm 42 with my brothers Dan and Pete on piano and clarinet respectively, with our good friend Jeff on trumpet.That's about it. I'm exhausted, but it's been a good week. Hopefully, now that school's done I'll be posting more. Thanks to all of you who have been praying for me and Terry. It has been such a blessing. God be with you all!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The Office

Dear friends and family,

The following pictures are of my garage and office. The pictures are arranged in a before and answer sequence and they are ordered as if you walked in the back door of the garage from the barbecue (patio) in the back of our home. I neglected to take pictures of what the garage looked like before anything was done to it at all.

The garage originally was a two stall garage. The first thing that was done was the dividing of the two stalls and then putting in the bath room ("Toilet," as we say here in Oz) in the stall that will become my office.

This is the stall of the garage that will hold the car. The second stall, the office, is on the other side of the left wall. The far right wall (which is not pictured is all red brick).

Snazzy, eh? (for all the Canadians)

To get to the toilet you turn left from the back door of the garage.

After you turn left you can walk straight through the door in from of you and go into the toilet, or you can right and go through the door into my office.

The door is in the extreme left of this picture.
I also have a great window, which I hope to put my desk under.

The book shelves are absolutely marvelous.
I can actually have almost all my books with me in the same room!

You can see the garage door (the "Roller Door" as it is called here) through the sliding glass doors. Having both doors gives me the luxury of more or less light, privacy, fresh air, and double security. Plus if someone accidentally pulls too far into my drive way they bang my roller door and not my glass door.

Here is a very rough sketch of the layout of the office and the garage.
The back entrance to the garage, which I forgot to label, would be at the extreme left of the
page, in front of the car.
When I reflect on all the hard work many different people in my congregation have done I am humbled, encourage, and amazed at the faithfulness of the Lord their love and commitment to their Pastor.
Thank you all very much!