Had a great weekend. On Friday, Kathy and I took off to Canmore for a "young" marriage retreat with 12 couples. Though our almost 14 years of marriage don’t quite qualify as "young" anymore (ten of the couples have been married less than four years), we still feel like the pimply-faced squeeks we were back in 1994. We really enjoyed spending time in the pool, checking out the mountains, praying together, and listening to each others’ reflections. We invited Wally and Shirley Fus, a vibrant couple of 40 years, to share with us how to let God continue shaping our lives together. Wally is the pastor of the "Encore" ministries (+55 age group) at Brentview. We also used Paul Stevens’ Marriage Spirituality book to think about how prayer, conversation and sabbath can help our marriages be shaped by God. Kathy and I enjoyed encouraging and being encouraged by the other couples. It was great for us to be away together in such a beautiful location.
This afternoon, back home in the -20 weather, I jumped in the hot tub with Zac and Ben. We had fun picking the icicles off of our heads and staying as submerged in the liquid warmth as possible.
I was sad to have to leave them tonight again… but delighted also to head out to the Hub. Adam Monkman was leading us in the next session of our I AM series: I AM the Good Shepherd. About 50 people braved the frigid weather and huddled together as Adam weaved us through Psalm 23 and Ezekiel 34… reminding us that the Lord Jesus is the only one who can lead us through the disarray of our lives. The Conversion State, Dan Leffelaar’s band also led us in praise. What a pleasure it is to worship with others who want to be shaped by God’s hand.
Here are photos of some of the couples from the weekend (Gillian & Howard, Shauna & Tim, Valerie & Lonnie, Carolyn & Ross, Joel & Laura, Corey & Rae). Please be praying that God will continue to shape their relationships.