So...even more from my last blog up until recently....more good memories!

Tuesday, November 07, 2006
Well...cate and I have been talking and the lord hears our talking I think that is fair, and we've certainly been waiting on Him so I think that counts! At any rate we are pondering planting a 24-7 community here in Hamilton. We have so many people and communities that we love here, HCF and the FRWY most importantly, but there still seems to be something that is unsettled in us and certainly in me. I feel like the 24-7 community that I dream of is just lingering in the shadows of reality waiting for us to call it out. I hope so anyway!
So...I guess our prayer that we are really focussing on right now is praying that the Lord would bring the team. We aren't going to build without a team and so we are praying for the right team to come along. Bring them Lord! Please Lord would you bring people into our path that have the same heart.
Righto - on a more sublime level, I love farms! We went to the royal winter fair yesterday as we do every year - I'll post some pictures later - but I love animals, the farm....
For a while the year before last, I was riding every night after work and learning how to treat, train and take care of my mother in law's horse. I miss that...a lot.

Thursday, November 23, 2006
I love hugs. Phil Togwell - friend from England found this video on You Tube - must admit I was crying too.

Makes me feel like the opening from Love Actually which is one of my favorite movies of all time.

Interesting isn't it - we are created with a need for community, created with a need to belong, and yet the culture does everything it can to keep us apart and seperate. In fact our life in many ways is this hacking away at our ability to trust people enough to let them into community. I wonder if it helps to know that people will let you down as you enter community. Then your expectation moves to hope which seems healthier. I don't know that I want to expect things from people in my community, other than my family - but I might hope for a hug.

Friday, December 29, 2006
more on Christmas and Kindness

So - just a few ramblings. We had an odd Christmas at the Joneses to say the least - all but Catherine were quite ill and so we cancelled all parties and instead watched movies, had toast and honey and actually (other than violent trips to the bathroom, at some points there was a que!) we had a really nice time together. Odd that sickness slowed us down to realise how much we enjoy each other. Especially now our kids are getting older it is really cool to hang out with them! I'll post the picture we sent out this year with our Christmas card.

By accident - one of our charming and budding computer wizards deleted about 4 months of digital pictures including our trip to Washington! So...enjoy the pictures on the blog because those are the only ones we have....thank heaven the one of the Washington memorial is still around!

Kindness - I was thinking again about kindness. One of the things that we have been struck by in 24-7 is the need to go underground so to speak, be incognito. I think this is important because otherwise kindness often is used as bribery in a way. It is quite cool and fashionable these days for church communities to give stuff away or have events for free...but if the authentic heart is lacking it is merely a form of lost leader inviting the consumer in on false pretenses merely so they can get hooked on something else. I witnessed this in a Zellers while shopping for Catherine's present. Some odd tall man with a balding top plate and really long ponytail (this happens often in Hamilton...and Phil no offense my friend - it was much longer hair than yours was!) shoved this pair of tickets into my hand for a draw for 'free jewelry.' Now I am no big fan of jewelry but I am also not an idiot and Catherine has been making the odd comment about getting her a diamond, so intrigued as to what sort of jewelry Zellers could be dishing out - I sidled over to the counter as he was announcing the draw....soon enough I realised...the draw was only to take place after we had witnessed a presentation on some other items that we could purchase at a great discount of course. I figured, being the scam artist that i am...that I would just walk around the perimeter and not bore myself with his fervent sales pitch marked with bad puns and then return for the draw. No dice - the draw was to work like this - listen to the deal, drop half of your ticket in after the deal was pitched, and then, and only then would the draw for free jewelry commence. Aha - it was as I had suspected, an empty gesture of luck at an especially materialistic time of year. I hope our kindness doesn't do that... It strikes me that if we desire to not find ourselves pitching to people we must be willing to be incognito, needing no accolades...or results! Aha now we strike close to the church planters heart...our kindness must flow from an uncompromising trust in the kindness of God. That He is kind to others and loves other more than we. We must throw ourselves at the feet of this awe inspiring God and trust in His strength to reach people, love people and heal people, not our ability to coerce them into our buildings or homes, gain their phone numbers or email. In short we must believe that what God said He will do He will do. Which of course if not to say we should be illusive or untouchable, on the contrary it frees us to be authentically kind.

That was more than I was thinking of posting...well I'll pop it up anyway.

posted by chris jones at 1:09 PM 0 Comments
Monday, December 11, 2006
God's kindness
My friend Brian in Ibiza has been blogging on God's kindness. Well a few months ago I think now, you'll have to check his blog history. Interesting though I have just been floored by the kindness of God, his compassion. The Lord is so compassionate, why aren't we? I rarely have compassion for people. I was reading again Brennan Manning's Ruthless Trust. This book is one of a handful of books that I would say has changed my life in some way. At any rate he quotes a French writer who comments 'to know all is to forgive all.' When we are compassionate and kind we care about the 'others' story before we comment on it. We also begin to relise that all the postmodernist out there are actually right, that we can not hope to 'know the other' it is an impossibility and so we have two options, disdan or kindness and compassion. Interesting too that the one who actually does know all (who IS the absolute truth....different postmodern post on that perhaps later..but interesting) is the one who forgives all. Amazing.

posted by chris jones at 6:51 AM 1 Comments
Sunday, December 10, 2006
short update
So....been a while.
Short of work right now, and by short I mean....none.
Upsetting because I still find myself busy or procarastinating. I think when I am less busy I get almost nothing done and when I am busy I am much more efficient.

I am trying to renew a bit of my mind which still has a hang up about what failure or percieved failure in this life means. I used to think (and still do in the deep recesses of my mind...when i am not beating them down) that if things were'nt working well, if work or family wasn't all going tickety boo it was because I was out of God's will and that if I just did a few things to get back in his will - a little prayer time, bit of a fast and maybe some tithing - that everything would sort itself out. Do you think that is true? I wonder. I don't like it and don't believe it - but it seems to be what a lot of people believe the bible to be saying. remember that oft quoted saying which I certainly can't find in the bible ' the Lord helps those who help themselves.' I kind of think that is a crock of crap - the Lord helps those who can't help themselves. Isn' t that the wonder of the gospel?

Right - well in more mundane news - I found a great new pub - or new to me (website seems to be down right now....) went for lunch and darts with Caleb today - It was great.

Saturday, November 04, 2006
So...great link on Dan's blog regarding youth ministry and entertainment - I wish some of the parents that I spent hours arguing with when I was working in youth work would look at this!

Here's a blurb and check Dan's blog for the link (interesting side note - I know some html, and am very familiar with web apps etc...running Parabola for so long. I'm also an early adopter - I have a Blackberry, Tungsten W I love all the gadgets, however for some reason I just can't get motivated to change my blog - insert html tags my blog!) Sorry guys!)

"But in recent years churches have begun offering their young people a style of religious instruction grounded in Bible study and teachings about the doctrines of their denomination. Their conversion has been sparked by the recognition that sugarcoated Christianity, popular in the 1980s and early '90s, has caused growing numbers of kids to turn away not just from attending youth-fellowship activities but also from practicing their faith at all"

I would say not so much doctrine...not sure how that floats, but definitely authentic representation of what we are about. Reality man. It is where it is at.

Other things....Pernell said something to me last night that I have been really pondering...I feel like I am always griping about work, not feeling like I know what I am doing. I know it is because I haven't really comitted to anything in my heart and so comitting to something in vocation is hard. I want desperately to get past that...but how does one do that? At the same time, perhaps even more importantly I want to be full od joy whatever circumstance I find myself in, not optimisim..but realy joy. At any rate - Pernell made the observation that I am all about helping people and leading people and the jobs that I do right now don't really get me doing either. I think I'v ealwasy known that, but the clarity of the statement has me floored. what the hell do I do?! I guess look for work in a segment of society that allows me to do those things? But then the reality of the number of mouths in my family comes back to haunt my decision making....

I can't sort it out.

By the way - I love taking my son Josiah to hockey practice - i feel like a Canadian Dad - although I am a crappy hockey player. If we were going to rugby practice, that would be something else.

Hmmm....which reminds me..September of next year - I would like to be in Wales watching Wales play Austrailia in a World cup match....that would be nice...!

Sunday, October 22, 2006
the cottage

I know I've been silent of the last two weeks - I 've actually been where Southern Ontarians call 'up North' even though it is still more South than most of Canada! Parry Sound. Nice beautiful quentisential Muskoka Lake building a beautiful custom Timberframe cottage. I am only on the job for two weeks because that is about the length of time it takes for my five awesome kids to drive my wife I am home now and thought I would post this picture of the jobsite - it is a joining of 5 pictures so some of the perspectives are kind of off..but you'll get the idea.

I like building - but I even still can't shake the feeling like there is something else I am supposed to be doing with my life. It gets under my skin and makes me grumpy. I just don't know what that something is - I am assuming that when the Lord wants me to know - He'll let me know, everything right now seems to not work when I try and make it work so I am crying UNcle and waiting for Him to make it clear.
Frustrating all the things that are in my head. Probably post more on this later...

Here's the pic ?

Friday, October 13, 2006
Been away building a custom cottage for a company called Timmerman Timberworks. Incredible guys, good friends and great craftsmen - makes me nervous doing work for them! What if I screw it up. Went up with my crew on Tuesday and we'll go up again on Monday for another week. This week was a little tricky, getting back into the swing of things, made a few mistakes that I had to correct. When I worked at the shop i remember my uncle saying "you always know if someone has made a mistake because they are working faster than ever!" well that was true of me. There was another guy on the job, more experienced than I, and he kept saying, "do it this way, that way..." annoying beacuse even though he might have been right, there is more than one way to skin a cat! At any rate, I was getting frustrated and I remember reading Brennan Manning and him saying something like, "it is impossible to insult one who knows that their identity is Abba's child." I guess i still have a ways to go to understanding my identity!
I'll try and take some pictures of the job to post soon.

posted by chris jones at 6:45 PM 1 Comments
Saturday, October 07, 2006
American Military

Just going through my images from Washington - I took a couple cool pictures of the Iwa Jima memorial. The memorial is basedon a real picture taken during world War II in Japan. Marines putting a flag on top of a mountain. Three of the men in the memorial statue died on the island during the war, I think they were all 22, at least all in their 20's.
Wierd moments there, we asked the kids what the statue made them feel - bravery, pride, things you might expect. I think it's odd because those were the same feelings I had, but I am mostly a pacifist...although I have so few soapboxes these days...basically I know nothing. I love the line in the movie Rudy when he asks the priest what the deal is with God....the priest responds by saying "son in 46 years of theological study I am only sure of 2 things.. there is a God, and I am not Him."
So all that to say, any thoughts on the memorial, war in general etc...?

posted by chris jones at 8:10 PM 1 Comments
Friday, October 06, 2006

OK - so one more tonight...just keeping you up to speed....

Loved Washington - not too big a fan of American politics in general, but some of the memorials were incredible and I was moved to tears at the Lincoln memorial. They have the gettysburg address on the left and his second inagural address on the right - both incredible. Then downstairs you can see the emancipation proclamation and some video of Martin Luther King Jr. address from the memorial. Incredible, that is a cool heritage. Even while being annoyed by the current american political scene, it did spur me on to think again about going into politics...I wonder.

We also loved Old Georgetown - we found this great little pub called Martins that has served all the presidents since it opened. The Kennedy's got engaged there and a KGB spy ran operations out of there in the 50's!

posted by chris jones at 8:18 PM 1 Comments
Alright - I can't join youtube for some freakin reason - so you'll have to go there yourself and look up OK Go and check out the video with the treadmills - so hilarious. This is music video at it's best -
here we go again is the name of the song I think.....

posted by chris jones at 8:17 PM 0 Comments

So...we've just come back from Washington on a family trip - Catherine was there to go to a career counselling center that I has been to before. www.ability
At any rate - more posting to come on that, but I couldn't resist getting this picture of the washington memorial which in general is a pretty lame memorial...he really got shafted so to speak...grin.....

posted by chris jones at 7:39 PM 1 Comments
new beginnings
Odd how blogs have become this cathartic way of re-inventing oneself in public. It seems to me that in general we bloggers (and I include myself as a previous blogger) are looking for a way to express ourselves out loud in front of everyone - it would be interesting to figure out whether or not we continue to blog if no one reads...and in that case, why not just keep a journal! At any rate, my previous blogs were just that, a way to express who I wanted you to think I was.....this time I think I'll try and drop the facade. I'm a bit of a blog lurker - I read loads of my friends blogs and I really like to keep up on their lives, travels, thoughts I think that's what I am going to try to do here, in a light hearted way. Sure it will likely get theoretical sometimes, but mostly I'd just like to try and fill friends in on life as jones.

happy reading!

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