Wednesday, 29 June 2011

A Life Update - God is always surprising me

It seems like forever since I have written.  It is not that I have nothing to say but more that life is moving so fast I don't even know where to begin! 

 Daniel turned 16 years old last week.  Yep, I am officially old.  We celebrated by hanging out together as a family and going to get ice cream cones at Hewitt's Dairy Bar.  Yum.  We are so proud of Daniel and the young man that he is becoming.  He leaves this Friday to head out west with his Grandma and Grandpa to go to the Canadian National Baptist Convention and then head to Northern Alberta for his first mission trip.  I have told him not to wonder off as this city boy is not used to bears!
Caroline has just finished her bronze star in swimming which she passed with flying colours.  Her goal is to get her NLS when she is 16 and she is well on her way.  I think she wants to guard at Ryerson Camp so she can spend her whole summers there, instead of just a week when we stay there for family camp.   She has made some good friends on our new street so for now she is looking forward to the summer here in the city.  I am looking forward to spending some one on one time with her too.
Liam is thrilled to have school all finished for the year and to have summer beginning.  For the past few months, he has been playing drums for our worship team in Milton.   Liam is still playing with us even though our time in Milton has ended.  He came and played with Jason and I on the street corner in Hamilton this past Saturday.  What fun we had playing and giving out candy instead of asking for money.  We are looking forward to spending some time with Liam this summer, as he accompanies Jason and I to Alabama for a global missions celebration where we will play some music and lead a children's program.
Trinity Joy is so full of life that we can barely keep up!  TJ has been busy this year learning to read and blasting through all her grade 1 school work so she will start grade 2 next year.  She has loved moving and meeting all the new neighbours on our street.  She is still enjoying acting and has been having a great time at auditions and call backs.  In a couple weeks she will be attending a triple threat camp where she gets to sing, dance and act each day for a whole week.  She is off tonight at a birthday party for new friends that she meet on our street.  I asked her if she was nervous because she wouldn't know anyone except her two friends.  Her response was "No way mom, I will have so many friends by the end of the night!"
Trinity Joy
Jason is out tonight shooting a new video with a band he plays with called Before the Flood.  He has been going at the speed of light lately so I don't have new photos of him.  Only this one where he is making fun of his on-screen self at the SBC annual convention.  Honestly, sometimes I think he is the most unlikely missionary there is!  As Caroline says, "He is all him."  We are hoping to play some more on Locke Street this summer and maybe even hit a few open mics at the local venues.  The goal really is to just immerse ourselves in our new community and meet as many people as we can. 
Jason - wondering who made him a poster child?
As for myself, I am getting used to being a city girl.  I like our neighbourhood much more than I thought I would and now I am determined to learn more about our new city.  I have a new buggie cart so I can walk to get my groceries and we just bought a share in a local farm.  It is funny, I used to live closer to the country with farms all around but now I live in a big city and my veggies come each week from a farmer and tomorrow I am going to meet our street's egg man who will deliver each Thursday to our front door.  You would think that in a city with over 500,000 people you wouldn't know your neighbours but they all hang out on their front porches, while the kids play in the street and we see them every night.  Over 20 of our new neighbours came for a BBQ at our house on Sunday.  We had a great time and look forward to getting to know them better. 

So there you have it an official update of what is going on at the McGibbon Zoo which has now moved all the animals to the city.  Yes, it is a big change and change can be scary but change can be good.  So as we look forward to starting summer this week I am a bit shocked that I am not wishing I was back in the familiar, in the ministry that I loved, with my friends who I adore.  I am surprised to find myself looking forward to being here, right where we are.  Hamilton is really not what I expected.  God is always surprising me and I can't wait to see what is around the bend.
Just me

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Church Planting

As I mentioned in my last post,  Jason is in Phoenix, Arizona at the SBC Annual Convention.   Last night,  Jason got a chance to participate in the North American Mission Board Presentation.  He was able to talk a little bit about why we would sell our home, leave a church we love and move our family to a new city.   NAMB created and showed this video about the network of churches we have been involved in over the past ten years and the vision they have to give themselves away to plant other churches.  Lots of great memories.....thanks to all those at NAMB who do so much to help support us in spreading the gospel by telling God's stories.  You all amaze me.

Sunday, 12 June 2011

Sometimes I Love Technology

My husband is away this week at the SBC Annual Convention in Phoenix, Arizona and I am in charge of holding down the fort at home.  I was pretty excited to learn that they are live streaming both the pastors conference and the annual meeting.  Yeah!  So even though I am at home I can experience some of the worship and the great speakers right here in my living room!  This is even better news for me as we are being appointed as North American Mission Board Church Planting Missionaries and Jason will be part of the appointment service on Tuesday at about 7:50pm my time.  So now I will get to see that appointment and feel apart of it.   Sometimes I love technology!

If you are interested you can watch too at this link.  Then click on the icon that says watch the event live on the Internet.

The following is who is speaking and when at the Pastor's Conference....

Session Length: 8:30am-11:30am (Phoenix Time which is 3 hours behind Hamilton time!)

The Monday morning session will feature music by the ASPIRE Worship Team, video highlights of God’s activity as well as features on church planting in North America. In addition, there will be a special Ministry Development presentation by one of the ASPIRE partners.
This session will include preaching from church planter Paul Gotthardt, church planter Darrin Patrick, Bartholomew Orr and Gregg Matte.
Paul Gotthardt (8:45am)
Darrin Patrick (9:30am)
Bartholomew Orr (10:15am)
Gregg Matte (11:00am)

Session Length: 1:30pm-4:00pm (Phoenix time)

The Monday afternoon session will feature music by the ASPIRE Worship Team and Choir, video highlights of God’s activity as well as features on church planting in North America.
This session will include preaching from Afshin Ziafat, Ken Whitten and John Piper.
Afshin Ziafat (1:45pm)
Ken Whitten (2:30pm)
John Piper (3:30pm)

Session Length: 6:00pm-8:30pm (Phoenix Time)

The final session of the 2011 Pastors’ Conference will feature music by the ASPIRE Worship Team and Choir, video highlights of God’s activity as well as features on church planting in North America. David Platt will be doing a special appeal for the nations prior to receiving the offering during this session. Following the preaching, Rick Warren will lead us in a special time of commitment and calling for 1000 Pastors/Churches to engage in church planting in the pioneer areas of North America.
This session will include preaching from Louie Giglio and Rick Warren.
Louie Giglio (6:30pm)
Rick Warren (7:40pm)

Friday, 10 June 2011

Feeling Hot Hot Hot!

Okay, so even though spring was a bit of a bust full of rain and down right chilly weather, the last few days have been hot.  Really hot!  I know what my American friends from the south are thinking.  "Oh that silly Canadian girl doesn't know what hot is", but I promise you, if you were here, you would think it was hot too.  We hit a record in Hamilton on Wednesday.  It was 31 degrees Celsius or 87.8 degrees Fahrenheit.  But wait, that is not all we had humidity and LOTS of it.  So factoring that in (which the weatherman loves to do) it was 41 C or 105.8 F!

All this heat prompted the kids to have a water fight on our street with their new friends.  You know who was in the thick of it all.  I have to say that I am really loving the neighbours on our new street.  Everyone knows each other and hangs out on their front porches to watch the kids play.  Very cool. 

Miss TJ ready for action!

Not sure if this is the way to make new friends.....

Only my kids would pose like this.

Front porch fun

A great time was had by all.

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Liam and the Mac Kids Miracle Weekend

It has taken me a week but here are a couple of pics for the Miracle Weekend at Mac Kids.  Liam and Jason were interviewed live on the morning CHCH news.  Pretty good for our first week here!

Mac Kids Miracle Weekend

Liam, Jason, Dr. Singh and Ashley the reporter

They showed excerpts of Liam's documentary during the interview.  Liam was able to talk about how caring all the staff were when he was in the hospital and about how he is doing now.  He talked about playing drums for church and how he wants to go to Alabama with us to meet some friends at another church and play some music.  I guess we will have to let him come now.  Both he and Jason did great jobs and we are very proud of them. 

If you want to know more about Mac Kids please visit their website.   If you live in the area Mac Kids is now a full children's hospital and the emergency room is for kids only.  Good to know in case you need it.  They really do some amazing work.

Thursday, 2 June 2011

Our First Few Days

As I gaze up, there are big puffy white clouds slowly floating in the crystal blue sky over my front porch.  It is an absolutely glorious day and as the cool breeze gently blows and the birds sing, I am amazed that we are now living here in Hamilton.  At this moment, our new street is so peaceful it is hard to believe that we are in the midst of an urban city.  Our covered front porch has already become a favourite place for the kids to work on their school and for us to gather as a family after dinner.  Jason has set up his rocking chair and I am sure his guitar will soon make an appearance.
We made quite a first impression when we arrived on Saturday.  Our truck pulled up, followed by many cars and once everyone got parked they began to systematically carry all of our belongings into our new house.  As we met some of the neighbours they kept asking us in amazement, “Who are all these people?”  It was a wonderful opportunity for us to share that this was our church family.  By 2:30pm we were all moved in and we took a break to eat the wonderful lunch that was prepared again by our church family.  There was so much food that I am surprised any of us were able to move afterwards!   It was during our lunch break that the contractor who had done all the renovations on our house came to pick up some of his tools.  We invited him for lunch and he remarked, “I have never seen so many people or so much food.  They are like an army!”  He could not believe that so many people from our church in another town had come to help us move.  It really was an incredible witness of God’s people working together.  Before dinner these wonderful folks had unpacked my kitchen, set up all our beds, our living room and our dining room table so we would have somewhere to sit, eat and sleep!  We are so thankful for all of the help and for all the wonderful friends that loved us so well!
We are slowly unpacking boxes, getting settled and meeting people in the neighbourhood.  We have already met some great folks and tomorrow morning we will be featured on the city’s morning newscast!  Once again God has given us an opportunity to share on television about Liam’s health journey and our connection to MacKids!  So if you live in the area turn on your TV at about 8:30am and we will be on CHCH Morning Live News!  Not bad for our first week here!
God is good!