Saturday, November 29, 2008

Renovation Update - Almost there!

The floor is laid.  Well, mostly.  The beautiful laminate flooring is finished, but we still have ceramic tile to lay where the wood stove will be located, plus at the back door entrance.  

We still have to build the steps and lay laminate flooring on them.  We have to finish moving the corner shelves for the television and dvd player.  

This is the rest of the list:

  • install trim around the windows.
  • finish the spot over the library door.
  • brick a wall (that's for Matthew)
  • install the chimney & wood stove
  • touch up paint in a few spots
  • build desks for the kids
  • set up the computers
  • hang the chalkboard
  • bring in books, etc., that are under the tarp outside 
  • move the fish tank
  • hang some pictures
We are so close to being done.  I am beginning to get excited, because this room is going to be my favourite room in the whole house.  After all, my husband built it, and my sons and daughters renovated it.  There's been a lot of labour and a lot of love poured into our "Great Room".  It will be functional, family oriented, and a great place in which to welcome folks and demonstrate love to them.  We plan to use this room for co-op homeschool, for Bible studies, for entertaining, and for family gatherings.

I honestly can hardly wait.  As soon as everything is brought back in, I will be able to post some pictures so you can share in our joy.  Meanwhile, I will update this list so you can watch the progress.

You can check my previous post, Reno List, to see what we've done lately.

This verse is applicable as we near the end of this long project:

Galatians 6:9  And let us not be weary in well doing: 
for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gordon the Great! In Memoriam

Every family reunion has one. Someone who is the life of the party, who thinks up the great games and tells hilarious jokes.

Every time we would pile all of the kids into the van and head to Springbank Park in London for our family reunion, a voice would pipe up from the back seat, "Oh, I hope Uncle Gordie is there!"

He was the one who wore the "bucket hat" and teased all of the kids, big and small. He was the one who coined the phrase, "The Thundering Herd", in reference to our gang of kids. We'll always say it's part of the family vernacular: "Here comes the Thundering Herd!"

A few years ago little Tiana asked Uncle Gordie, "Can I use your camera?" I gasped, thinking this little one was going to mess up Great Uncle's camera. He chuckled, and said, "Sure!" He showed her how to use it, and she traipsed merrily around the group, snapping pictures of everyone.

A few weeks later, in the mail came a great big envelope for Tiana. Uncle Gordie had sent the pictures. There was commentary along with them - "the girls are so pretty," Gordie said, "but Daniel is the prettiest!" Daniel will never live THAT one down.

One of the pictures was of Uncle Gordie, but the top of his head was missing. Tiana hadn't aimed the camera correctly. "I'll get you for that," he warned.

Tiana wrote back to thank him, and from that time forward she enjoyed a penpal relationship with "Mean Uncle Gordie". He classified himself that way, but we all knew better. He loved the kids and only pretended to be mean.

Great Uncle Gordie was a GREAT UNCLE...lots of fun, caring, personable, and full of laughter.

We'll miss him.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Handel's Messiah

Last night four of our daughters and their music teacher and I went to see (and hear!) Handel's Messiah, performed on traditional instruments by gifted musicians and sung by the Georgetown Bach Chorale. Instead of a piano, Ron Greidanus used a harpsichord. The cello was made in the 1700's. The flyer stated, "Tonight's performance takes an historic approach as Handel might have performed it himself. Fast tempi, clear articulation, gut strings, wooden oboe, valveless trumpet, and choir and orchestra being led from the harpsichord; it is through these elements that you will be transported back in time..."

Eclectecon wrote 'The conductor/harpsichordist is Ron Greidanus. He played a Chopin piano concerto when I was playing French horn in the Blyth Festival Orchestra, and I had the pleasure of conducting that orchestra when Ron performed a Bach piano concerto. He was raised just north of Clinton and despite his late start in music, he developed a terrific reputation for his knowledge and talent. The "orchestra" for this performance of Messiah is 2 violins, a viola, a cello, a bass, a baroque (valveless) trumpet which was played extremely well, and tympani (in addition to Ron on the harpsichord).'

It was really incredible to listen and watch the musicians perform. Ron, amazingly, kept on playing the harpsichord as he nodded or turned his head slightly to direct a musician or a singer. The first violinist was astounding. She sat perched on the edge of her seat, and dove into the music with fervency. On the rare occasion she could grab a moment's rest, she let her arm hang by her side...I'm sure it needed time to recuperate.

The cello, played by Keri McGonigle, was beautiful to listen to. Keri was fascinating to watch as her fingers moved up and down, incredibly fast, coaxing beauty from the instrument.

Again, the double bass, played by Natalie Kremerer, gave us a beautiful sound and a feast for the eyes.

Lenard Whiting, a tenor from the Toronto area, had a trained voice that began low and slow then built in intensity, filling the room. I found myself looking ahead in the program to see when his next song would be sung. He'll be back to sing Bach's St. Matthew Passion in April, and I for one don't want to miss it.

I listened to the words of the Messiah, and it struck me that perhaps some of the singers and other performers do not know this Messiah, Jesus, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The message was plain for those whose eyes are open. It's sad to think that someone could sing these words with power and grace, yet miss the Messiah, the Christ of whom they sing. I pray that the Lord will touch the hearts of those who hear this magnificent oratorio.

Notice the synopsis below shows the three sections: Part one introduces the coming of Christ and the Nativity. Part two reflects on Christ's pain and suffering and sacrifice. Part three describes His resurrection and the final judgment.

Handel's Messiah
George Frederic Handel (1695-1759)

Part I - The Coming of Christ and the Nativity

(1) Overture
(2) Comfort Ye
Isaiah 40:1-3
1. Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. 2. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned. . . .
3. The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.

(3) Every Valley
Isaiah 40:4
4.Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill made low, the crooked straight, and the rough places plain.

(4) And the Glory of the Lord
Isaiah 40:5
5. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together:for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

(5) Thus saith the Lord
Haggai 2:6,7
6. Thus saith the Lord of Hosts; Yet once, a little while and I will shake the heavens, and the earth, and the sea, and the dry land; 7. And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come
Malachi 3:1 1. The Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple, even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in:Behold, He shall come, saith the Lord of Hosts.

(6) But who may abide the Day of His Coming?
Malachi 3:2
2. But who may abide the day of His coming? and who shall stand when He appeareth? For He is like a refiner's fire.

(7) And He shall Purify
Malachi 3:3
3. And He shall purify the sons of Levi. . . that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness.

(8) Behold A Virgin Shall Conceive
Isaiah 7:14 (Matthew 1:23)
Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call his name EMMANUEL, God with us.

(9) O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion
Isaiah 40:9
9. O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion, get thee up into the high mountain; O thou that tellest good tidings to Jerusalem, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, and be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!
Isaiah 60:1
1. Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.

(10) For behold, darkness shall cover the earth
Isaiah 60:2,3
2. For, behold, darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people; but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee. 3. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of thy rising.

(11) The people that walked in darkness
Isaiah 9:2 (Matthew 3:16)
2. The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: and they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.

For unto Us a Child is born
Isaiah 9:6
6. For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.

(13) Pastoral Symphony
(14) There were shepherds abiding in the field
Luke 2:8
8. There were shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flocks by night.
Luke 2:9
9. And lo! the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.

(15) And the Angel said unto them
Luke 2:10,11
10. And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

(16) And suddenly there was with the Angel
Luke 2:13
13. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

(17) Glory to God
Luke 2:14
14. Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

(18) Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion
Zechariah 9:9,10 (Matthew 21:5)
9. Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee. He is the righteous Savior. . 10. . . And he shall speak peace unto the heathen.

(19) Then shall the eyes of the blind
Isaiah 35:5,6
5. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. 6. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb shall sing.

(20) He shall feed his flock like a shepherd
Isaiah 40:11
11. He shall feed his flock like a shepherd; and he shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.
Matthew 11:28, 29 28. Come unto [Him], all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and [He shall]give you rest. 29. Take [his] yoke upon you, and learn of [Him]; for [he is] meek and lowly of heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

(21) His yoke is easy
Matthew 11:30
30. [His] yoke is easy, and [his]burden is light.

Part II Christ's Pain, Suffering and Sacrifice

(22) Behold the lamb of God
John 1:29
29.Behold the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world.

(23) He was despised
Isaiah 53:3

3. He is despised and rejected of men: a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief. . . Isaiah 50:6 [He]gave [His] back to the smiters, and [His] cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: [He] hid not [His] face from shame and spitting.
(24) Surely He hath borne our griefs
Isaiah 53:4,5

4. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows. . . . 5. . . He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities:the chastisement of our peace was upon him,
(25) And with His stripes we are healed
Isaiah 53:5b

5. and with His stripes we are healed
(26) All we like sheep have gone astray
Isaiah 53:6

6. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
(27) All they that see him laugh him to scorn
Psalm 22:7

7. All they that see [him]laugh [him] to scorn: they shoot out their lips, they shake their heads, saying:
(28) He trusted in God
Psalm 22:8 (Matthew 27:43)

8. He trusted [in God] that he would deliver him:let him deliver him, if he delight in him.
(29) Thy rebuke hath broken His heart
Psalm 69:20

20. [Thy] rebuke hath broken [his] heart; [He is] full of heaviness. [He]looked for some to have pity [on Him], but there was none; neither found [He] any to comfort [Him].

(30) Behold, and see if there be any sorrow
Lamentations 1:12

12. Behold, and see if there be any sorrow like unto [his] sorrow. . .
(31) He was cut off out of the land of the living
Isaiah 53:8b

8. he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of [Thy] people was He stricken.
(32) But Thou didst not leave His soul in hell
Psalm 16:10 (Acts 2:27)

10. [But] thou [didst] not leave [his] soul in hell; neither [didst]thou suffer Thy Holy One to see corruption.
(33) Lift up your heads, O ye gates
Psalm 24:7-10

7. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. 8. Who is the King of Glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. 9. Lift up your heads, O ye gates; and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of Glory shall come in. 10. Who is the King of Glory? The Lord of Hosts, He is the King of Glory.
(34) Unto which of the angels said He at any time
Hebrews 1:5 (Psalm 2:7)

5. For unto which of the angels said He at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee?
(35) Let all the angels of God worship Him
Hebrews 1:6b

6. "Let all the angels of God worship Him."
(36) Thou art gone up on high
Psalm 68:18 (Ephesians 4:8)

18. Thou art gone up on high, Thou hast led captivity captive, and received gifts for men; yea, even for Thine enemies, that the Lord God might dwell among them.
(37) The Lord gave the word
Psalm 68:11

11. The Lord gave the word: great was the company of [the preachers].
(38) How beautiful are the feet
Romans 10:15 (Isaiah 52:7)

15. How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
(39) Their sound is gone out
Romans 10:18 (Psalm 19:4)

18. their sound is gone out into all lands, and their words unto the ends of the world.
(40) Why do the nations so furiously rage together?
Psalm 2:1,2 (Acts 4:25-26)

1. Why do the heathen rage, and why do the people imagine a vain thing? 2. The kings of the earth rise up, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord, and against His Anointed,
(41) Let us break their bonds asunder
Psalm 2:3

3. Let us break their bonds asunder, and cast away their yokes from us.
(42) He that dwelleth in heaven
Psalm 2:4

4. He that dwelleth in the heavens shall laugh them to scorn; the Lord shall have them in derision.
(43) Thou shalt break them
Psalm 2:9

9. Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; Thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.
(44) Hallelujah
Revelation 19:6

6. Hallelujah! for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth. Revelation 11:15 15. . . the kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of His Christ: and He shall reign for ever and ever. Revelation 19:16 16. . . . KING OF KINGS, LORD OF LORDS.

Part III His Resurrection and the Final Judgment

(45) I know that my redeemer liveth
Job 19:25, 26
25. I know that my redeemer liveth, and that He shall stand on the latter day upon the earth: 26. And though worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God. 1Corinthians 15:20
20. [For] now is Christ risen from the dead. . . the firstfruits of them that [sleep].

(46) Since by man came death
1Corinthians 15:21,22
21. Since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. 22. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.

(47) Behold I tell you a mystery
1Corinthians 15:51,52
51. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep; but we shall all be changed, 52. In a moment, in a twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet;

(48) The trumpet shall sound
1Corinthians 15:52b-53
52. the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. 53. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.

(49) Then shall be brought to pass
1Corinthians 15:54b (Isaiah 25:8)
54. then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, 'Death is swallowed up in victory.'
(50) O death where is thy sting?
1Corinthians 15:55-56 (Hosea 13:14)
55. O death, where is thy sting? O grave where is thy victory? 56. The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.

(51) But thanks be to God
1 Corinthians 15:57 57. But thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

(52) If God be for us
Romans 8:31, 33, 34
31. If God be for us, who can be against us? 33. Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. 34. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is at the right hand of God, who makes intercession for us.

(53) Worthy is the Lamb
Revelation 5:12, 13
12. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing. 13. . . . Blessing, and honour, glory and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever. Amen.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Reno List

We are getting there. This is what is left to be done on our great room, which is a combination Family Room and Learning Centre.

· Paint all trim
· Trim under lights
· Trim windows
ü Paint 1 x 2’s
üPut up 1 x 2’s over lines in ceiling
· Paint the two cabinets (wall colour)
ü Get chimney inspected (it didn't pass.  :( ) 
· Put down flagstone base
· Install wood stove
üBrick up the window
üPaint the brick wall
· Move TV corner
· Paint shelves
· Put up shelves
üFinish my desk
· Build kids’ desks
üInstall my computer
· Install kids’ computers
· Hang chalkboard
· Install tile by doors
üInstall laminate flooring
· Install steps
üSet up furniture
üBring home the massive ottoman
· Rejoice!

When that is all accomplished, I will be able to move the stuff from my kitchen and have a kitchen again. Oh, the joy!

Thursday, November 06, 2008

YES!! Amy's got it right!

I am thrilled that Amy has tackled the issue of the great divide between Patriarchy and those who disagree with it. She writes with wisdom and candour.

I am a member of the Patriarch's Wives, and have developed relationships with many women in that group over a number of years. We share our lives with one another (to a certain extent - nobody shares online what is known in real life by those closest to you) and we pray for one another.

The women I know on that group are from varied backgrounds. They seek to serve the Lord and their families. They share recipes and ideas about life as they seek to walk humbly with their God. What that looks like varies from family to family. There are no "cookie-cutter" Patriarchalists. In fact, many of the members would not describe their families as such. It's just a group we belong to.

I have visited many a blog and website written by sincere, thinking, Christian women who have been burned by "Patriarchy". I appreciate their position, and I know that what they have experienced is real hurt. They want to help those "stuck" in Patriarchy to flee from the prison in which they are trapped, yet they don't have the whole story.

I have known families that have been dysfunctional, where the Father/husband was a tyrant to both his wife and his children. That kind of Patriarchal family is dead wrong...certainly not full of grace and truth.

Amy's open letter says exactly what I would say, had I the readership she enjoys. I tried very hard to express similar thoughts on some blogs, but was shut down quickly. I have definitely expressed this on the Patriarchs' Wives board.

We are sisters in Christ. We need to learn to love one another with grace. What does love look like? Sometimes it looks tough: exhort one another, rebuke one another, pray for one another. But when our opinions are expressed with grace and truth, with a sincere heart, they are edifying to our sisters. And that's what pleases the Lord.