Hiking and Hiding.

Love this time of year… can you smell the lilacs from our garden?

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Time for a catch up.

Baptism… Phil and I were privileged to baptize Emily on Easter Sunday. What a joy to see her say yes to Jesus and own her faith. I just love the model of our youth work.  When we arrived in 2010, the twins were 11 and entering into Juice at youth – it was here they were placed into a care group and allocated care group leaders. These same leaders have been with them through their teen years, supporting mentoring, praying – having a lot of fun, adventures and endless YOLO nights. It was no surprise to see one of her leaders sitting on the steps of the baptism pool cheering her on and the others wait to pour out some love and prayers. It’s no surprise – but I acknowledge the awesome blessing that it is. Our youth pastor Joel and his family, our youth staff and interns need our prayers daily as they give so much week in week out to hundreds of youth in our city.

Immigration…the process continues, we are now proving to Canadian government that Phil is the right man for the job!

For the Love…. I am so excited to be part of a launch team for Jen Hatmaker’s new book ‘For the Love’ which is released in August. EVERY LINE brings a ‘yes’ or an ‘amen’ or ‘I wish id have written that’!!! Watch this space over the next months for a review, endless quotes and no doubt a giveaway when the book is released, preorder here.

Until then here’s a few lines to be going on with.

‘Be Kind. Be You. Love Jesus. That’s about it. Everything else will fall into place’

‘If folks don’t recognize God is good by watching His people, then we have tragically derailed’

‘You know that person who does great things for you and says those things that make you feel so good? Try that on others’!

Spring… has sprung and Phil is starting to work on the veggie garden. We are enjoying a weekly hike on Phil’s day off, choosing a different mountain each week. Our Pastor Gary spoke of life on the mountain this week, you can watch it on the The Abbey Facebook page, our Mountain Monday gives us the view and focus to get back down to the valley for real life.

IMG_1392Hiking on Okanagan Mountain – deer, crane, coyote… and the Ogopogo – can you see it?

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Also, I really like hiking and I really, really like my husband.

On Hiding… I will leave you with this thought. Prompted by the 5 minute Friday word prompt ‘HIDE’.

Hiding often comes easy to me, how about you? I am an INFJ character and often overthinking and sensitivity and the familiar villain of fear can cause me to withdraw into my world where I find encouragement in scripture and in God’s presence, and that alone. Yes, my life is hidden with Christ in God and I live that but as you know one of favorite lines is ‘Created for Community’. I think the enemy of our soul wants nothing more than to isolate us in loneliness – hiding away in a world of silence and unreality. This needs us to make a change – stepping out, being vulnerable and honest, inviting people into our imperfect house and world.

I love the idea of community where are arms are wide open, where judgment is abandoned and encouragement is the norm. Community allows light into the dark places, I’m running after true community.

Jen writes ‘and as we witness this beautiful community, we aren’t just observing vulnerability but rather chains breaking, darkness receding, victory rising… when enough bright places are created, the dark has nowhere else to hide.

To do this we have to be seen.

Love, Michelle x

Bethel, Beach and Bond.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bethel.

IMG_2634Bethel music came to Kelowna this week for an evening of worship. We were invited to dinner with the band to share what is happening in Kelowna and to pray with them before the evening. They are a great group of people, serving graciously, living within a culture of honour and genuine worshippers. I love their humble heart and their desire for people to enter into true worship.

We have a lot to be thankful for with Bethel music. For me especially, when I hear their music playing from downstairs in the teenage department!

Hundreds of people packed out the church, worshippers of all denominations. Corporate worship is a heavenly concept and one we are all called to engage in. God loves those who worship in spirit and truth. Not because we sing in a certain way. Or we say particular spiritual words. Or raise our hands at that moment.

No. Worship is a heart response, and when the worshippers gather in all of their styles and expressions – Heaven is released.

We… our cities are changed.

Worshipping together. Let us not forsake it.

Beach.

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Phil and I sat on a deserted beach this week to pray – because that’s what we do.  The still water, dancing with diamonds and our ever present mountains provided an inspiring backdrop as we prayed for our families, church, city, YOU...As much as corporate prayer and worship is essential, so is individual. Investing our lives in prayer and listening to God, changes us and our world.

It needs to be our priority. Let us not forsake it.

Bond. 

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The rather well known British secret service agent made an appearance at our church kickoff this week.

1234114_653672487990977_272162032_nBond. Arriving in style on the 1967 50cc.

I love kickoff and the re-dedication alongside the new. This year will see a house of prayer, pursuing His presence, seeking inner transformation. It all sounds very inward Michelle…We believe that a life of serving and loving and outward living is the true response of  worship, personal prayer and inner transformation.

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1235172_653703914654501_670248027_nBond was challenged by YWAM natives who had taken over the island.

1185175_653676901323869_1021930713_nBaptisms in the lake – loving the joy here.

1239875_653676571323902_1688963978_nGiving Dad a hug after being baptised.

IMG_2739Pastor Steve baptising his wife Candace.

14513_653680687990157_1888150247_nGlen believes that Phil needs to be re-baptised.

1231702_653680721323487_1721902415_n…and there he goes.

1235260_653681641323395_800866601_n‘Mommy, I love church on the beach’

 

Thanks for reading – hope you found some inspiration in there!

Have a blessed week – gotta fly – 007 needs me.

Mx

 

PS. WillowOne, kickoff pics were taken by Chad Perry. Enjoy more of his work here.