Monday, January 31, 2005


Who Is That Bearded Man?

The setting is Beacon Bible Camp in Uranium City (note the logo on the jacket). The lake is free of ice but I still have my winter fur! Although I have matured a lot since then I still need God's deeper work of shaving me every now and then (more now than then) to make me more like His Son and less like the "old man." It's often painful, but always liberating. Some day I shall be like Him for I shall see Him as He is. (I John 3:3) What a day that will be! Posted by Hello

Saturday, January 29, 2005


"Captain Ron" practicing another kind of marksmanship. The rifle is Grandpa Smith's. So was the haircut. Ron asked him for "the shave." This picture was taken about six years ago on "Eight Mile Road" behind Grandpa's (now Sherry and Andy's) home. The tatoo is a styalized cross Ron designed himself. Posted by Hello


Parent's Day with the Wolves

Last night and today was the Grande Prairie Regional College "Wolves" basketball team's last home games. It was also parents' weekend and that included several perks! First of all we Moms ana Dads got in free to the games. Then last night their mascot, the wolf, would throw a T-shirt into the crowd every time the home team made a point. I wound up with two T-shirts, one for Colleen and one for me! At half time certain parents were called into action. As "Captain Ron's" Dad, I competed against two other Dads in a free throw contest. My first shot hit both the backboard and the hoop. Pretty good Eh! (How can you tell I'm Canadian?) Well, both other men got their first shot and I was out but in the end each of us received a computer game just for participating.

The game? Both the women and the men won hard fought victories.

Then this morning we went to a parents breakfast at the college. It was an excellent meal and an enjoyable time with the teams and their parents.

This afternoon saw two verry close games. The women were tied with only a few seconds left. The GPRC made a three-point shot! The men's game took forever to play the last minute. The Wolves were up by two points. Both teams got free throws. The two coaches were calling time outs every chance they could. The King's College (Edmonton) Eagles missed their shots. But with only 10 seconds left, the Wolves made one shot and were able to run out the clock without the Eagles coming back to score. It was a clean sweep for the Wolves. The reward. They are no longer in last place! The Eagles are.

To top off the weekend, we parents were then invited to a local parent's home where we enjoyed barbequed burgers and friendly conversation. Parenting has its rewards. This is just one of them.

Sunday, January 23, 2005


Sunset On The Farm

This sunset picture was taken by Colleen several years ago. It is in the farm yard where I grew up. I helped build those cowboy gates not long before I left the farm. Colleen and I were living in a little 8 X 32 trailer and my Dad offered us a nice new double-wide if we could come into the operation with him and my brother Bill who is still there. I loved the farm and I loved farming (still do) but I said "No!" to my Dad.

Why? I was quite sure God was calling me into the pastoral ministry. We soon went back to Caronport where I worked on a dairy farm. The timing was perfect to take another year of training there at Briercrest Bible College. And about three years later we moved back to the farm for the summer. From the farm we flew to Uranium City to candidate. Then we worked on the farm for about two months, seeding the crop on land my twin brother had just bought. Then on Aug 1, 1975 we flew back to Uranium City where we pastored for six years, almost to the day. (More about Uranium City later)

Now some 25 years later we have transitioned out of the pasatoral ministry. So, it seems, the sun is setting on that era of our lives as we serve our Lord in somewhat different area of ministry. (More about that on a later Blog too.) Posted by Hello


Hockey Night in Sexsmith

Tonight was the night! With the NHL still in lockout there is no "Hockey Night in Canada." That's the TV presentation of NHL games every Satarday night during hockey season that's been going ever since we Canadians had television.

But tonight was a very special hockey night right here in little old Sexsmith. No, it had nothing to do with the world's laragest hockey tournament going on right now in Edmonton. But it had everything to do with the social and athletletic events of Peace River Bible Institute, the Collenge where we live and where I work. You see, tonight was one of two staff-student hockey games each year.

So I dug out my equipment and headed down to the local Arena. There I met up with several fellow staff and faculty members (and a few of their sons) to take on the "Dynamos," PRBI's "B" team. I was the oldest person the ice, being the only one in his fifties. There were three in their mid fourties. We played short shifts and that helped this aging (and somewhat out of shape) body quite a bit.

Early in the third period the score was tied at 3 apiece. Then the Dynamos got two quick goals and had a commanding lead. I was playing defence (always) and I was out of position, giving an opponent to make the goal from close range. However we fought back and got one and then another goal, tying the game at 5-5. Then with only one minute and fourty-five seconds to go, we got goal number 6! But the Dynamos did not give up either! they played hard, and there were several scrambles in front of our net, but we (and especially our goalie) managed to keep the puck out of our net.

The three most important things about this game were: 1) No one got hurt; 2) We had fun, and 3) We won!

Saturday, January 01, 2005


Topical New Year in the "Great White North."

We bundled up in several layers of clothing to venture out into the -30 degree night on our way to a tropical paradice! You see, our church had rented the huge indoor pool in Grande Prairie for New Year's Eve. When we arrived the place was abuzz with friendly and familiar faces of all ages. So off we went, my Mini Eskimo grandson and I, to get wet and get into the action. I spent a couple of hours with him as he slid down the slide, rode foam rafts and splashed around in the water. I enjoyed splashing around too (that's about all I can do). Except my splashing was usually aimed at some innocent passer-by who did not remain so innocent. I learned that people are reluctant to splash you back if the life-guard is standing directly behind you! After Grandpa had a couple of warm-ups in the hot tub, Mini Eskimo was ready to dry off too!

Our time in the pool reminded me of some winter nights back in the Yukon. As a family, we'd go out to Takaini Hot Springs (about 15 minutes away) and soak in their naturally heated outdoor pool. The covered runway from the change rooms to the pool was a little chilly but the pool was lovely. It was rather unique to be sitting in hot water with snow banks around you and ice-fog overhead. And yes, our wet hair would freeze-dry on top too!

Back in Grande Prairie, after a few snacks later we were ready to head on home. It was time for Mini Eskimo's meds. But before we tucked ourselves into bed the New Year arrived. So we all exchanged hugs and kisses before heading off for a long winter's nap.

I thank God for a good year in 2004. We all survived, and the Lord has prospered and blessed us in many ways. Wabbit has very successfully survived the Christmas rush at Wal-Mart and things are going well for me here on Campus. Captain Ron continues to do well at both basketball and college. After almost two years oversees, Jon will be returning from Taiwan some time in 2005, Lord willing. And we got to welcome in the new year with Little Exkimo and Mini Eskimo!
But most of all I thank God for His Son who is the same loving, caring, and reassuring Saviour, "yesterday, today, and forever."

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