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Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit


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How Thankful are you?

Image result for Harvest ThanksgivingBy Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

October in Canada (and November in the USA) is that special time of year when farmers harvest their crops of corn, pumpkins, squash, and winter potatoes. Nowadays in our high tech urbanized world we forget where our food comes from. In the old days farmers waited anxiously for a good harvest, knowing that their very future depended on it. Crop failure could mean poverty or even starvation. Much of our early immigration consisted of the victims of European famines, such as the Irish potato famines. There was no Government welfare in those days to buffer a bad crop. As a result, a good crop in the Fall brought heartfelt thanksgiving.

Image result for Harvest ThanksgivingThe farmers felt so grateful that they would take part of their crop and rush into the nearest church to give thanks to the Lord of the Harvest. To celebrate a successful wheat harvest, the grain would be ground into fine flour, made into bread and eaten at the communion service. Children, in particular, enjoy seeing the fruit, flowers and vegetables decorating the church. The whole emphasis of the Harvest Thanksgiving weekend is to say “Thank you, Thank you, Thank you”. The very word “Eucharist” in the Christian Communion Service means “Thank You”.

Thankfulness is the secret to a happy and fulfilled life. Image result for Harvest ThanksgivingIt is so easy to complain, so!, easy to become bitter, so easy to become cynical about life.’ The best antidote for cynicism is thanksgiving. Instead of grumbling about your spouse, try thanking God for them. Instead of complaining about your work, try thanking God that you have a job. instead of resenting your children when they’re noisy, thank God that they are alive and well. This Harvest Thanksgiving, let’s develop an attitude of gratitude. As one poster put it, “Happiness is seeing a sunset and knowing who to thank”.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 

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All we are saying is ‘give peace a chance’

By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

Image result for peaceThe Beatles wrote many songs about love and peace, but ultimately broke up.  President Herbert Hoover once said “Peace is not made at the council tables, or by treaties, but in the hearts of men and women.” Benjamin Franklin said “He who would live in peace and at ease, must not speak all he knows, nor judge all he sees.” All of us want peace. All of us want harmony and understanding and love. The problem with such noble desires is that they conflict with other less noble desires. For example, we all prefer to have things our own way. We don’t want our privacy invaded. We don’t want anyone to infringe upon our rights. Such notions may be well and good until my rights and freedoms becomes your oppression and injustice.
Most of us in today’s society have been raised to deeply value freedom of choice. Some people tend to, live as if there should be no limits whatsoever to their freedoms and choices. Where does one’s freedoms end in a democratic society? Where does my right to swing my fist end? Where your nose begins…  It is so easy for people to get their nose out of joint It is easy for one person or group within this area to offend another person or group. At such times, forgiveness, humility, and active listening are essential to genuine peacemaking.

Image result for prince of peaceThere was a Jewish fellow many years ago who didn’t like all the fighting and bickering that people did. He stood up for peace and love and forgiveness. As a result, even his friends deserted him as he was mocked and lynched by an angry mob. He died because he was a peacemaker. He died at the hands of amateur politicians who saw him as a disturbance. But before he died, he taught the people “Blessed are the peacemakers for they will be called the children of God.”

My prayer for each person reading this article is:
“Make me a channel of your peace …
Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
Where there is injury, pardon.
Where there is doubt, faith.
Where there is despair, hope.
Where there is darkness, light.” (St. Francis of Assisi)

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

The first thing that comes to mind as soon as you say Easter, is eggs. One of the customs most popular with children is hunting Easter eggs. I’ll never forget the fun I had as a school-age boy running around my back yard collecting hidden Easter eggs. My sisters loved to eat their chocolate eggs. I loved to hoard mine. Sometimes I sold my left over eggs to them in exchange for money or comics.

In Italy, many children receive a loaf of rich bread shaped like a crown and studded with coloured Easter egg candies. In some parts of Germany, it is customary for village girls to present their suitors with red eggs at Easter. In Northwestern Europe, peasants have formal egg devouring contests. Others have egg stabbing contests in which they try to smash each other’s Easter egg.

Why this obsession with eggs at Easter? The reason is because eggs hold the germ of new life. Easter represents new life through Jesus’ resurrection. So naturally eggs became the perfect symbol of new life and resurrection for the Christian world. The bright colours painted on the eggs became symbolic of the joy and happiness over Jesus’ return from the grave.

Easter became known as the “Sunday of Joy” (Dominica Gaudii). People were so exuberantly joyful over Jesus’ resurrection that they celebrated with dancing, sports, and even joke telling from the pulpit. All labour ceased, all trades were suspended. The Law Courts were closed. Money was given to the poor, slaves were freed. People exchanged the Easter kiss and everyone would greet each other with the phrase “Christ is risen” and the response, “He is risen indeed!” Easter in the old days was a joyful, happy, unforgettable party that changed people’s lives.

Easter Stones
One final symbolism of Easter eggs is based on their resemblance to a small stone. Eggs came to represent in a miniaturized way the stone rolled away from Jesus’ tomb. Easter eggs therefore became a powerful reminder that Jesus burst forth from the tomb on Easter morning.

In Denmark, children have contests with dyed Easter Image result for the White houseeggs, which they roll down hills. The boy or girl whose egg rolls the longest distance without breaking wins his opponent’s egg and keeps his own. The first annual White House Easter Egg Roll began on April 22, 1878 after President Rutherford B. Hayes agreed to open the White House grounds on Easter Monday to children who want to roll Easter eggs. Rolling Stones and rolling eggs are one more way to say ‘He is risen indeed, Alleluia!’

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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Canada and Reconciliation

By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

‘Quebec Sovereignty within 1,000 Days!’, promised the late Premier Bernard Landry in 2002. As someone who lived in Montreal during the time of Expo 67, I love the people and province of Quebec. I love their flair and passion for life, their joie de vivre. Canada would be a much weaker country without our francophone neighbours.

Image may contain: 1 person, standing, outdoor and natureOne day before the infamous 1995 Quebec referendum, David Richardson of African Enterprise spoke in North Vancouver on the topic of Canada and Reconciliation. David was born in Geraldton, Ontario, and, at age 8, went to spend over 40 years of his life in South Africa. David mentioned: “I have lived as a Canadian in a foreign land, and yet in many ways have returned to Canada as a foreigner…a strange paradox that I should feel like that. But I do.” When David came back to Canada, he felt a very clear calling to come back: “I didn’t come back because of Canada or because of South Africa. I came very clearly because the Lord called me to go home…because of lostness. I felt God say ‘I want you to be part of my Church in Canada to deal with the lostness of Canada’.

David sensed that in returning to Canada, he has been given two basic messages to share: 1) The message of reconciliation & 2) The message of accountability. David intuitively feels that Canadian reconciliation can be best lived out by following the pattern of 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and will heal their land.” He emphasized that it is not finally in the hands of the Quebec government or the federal government or the provincial government to bring about the healing of this land. It is in the hands of God’s people. “I don’t think that any of us have any doubt that our land needs healing. We could take a referendum on it if you like, but I don’t think it’s necessary…”

David also draws people to 2 Corinthians 5:18-19 where we as believers have been given both the ministry and the message of reconciliation. That is a directive from God himself to the Christian Church.  We should not be looking to the government to lead the way in reconciliation. That is our job as God’s people.

I don’t believe that there will ever be healing between francophones and anglophones in Canada, until we face our lostness as a nation. We have forgotten who we are. We have forgotten where we came from. We have forgotten how to love and forgive our neighbours as ourselves. Reconciliation with Quebec is not a matter of tolerating each other and using each other economically. Reconciliation is about repenting over how we have so often crushed each other’s culture and treated each other like dirt. Reconciliation is about turning from our endless regional grumbling and learning to fall in love with the amazing gift that God has given us in Canada. Quebec is not a problem to be solved. Quebec is a sibling to be embraced and treasured. Reconciliation is not about mere tolerance; it is about learning to love and embrace one another.

Image result for alpha courseOne of the ways that anglophone and francophone Canadians are beginning to embrace each other is through the remarkable gift of the Alpha Course. As the former National Chair for Alpha Canada, I am thrilled by the growth of Alpha Courses among francophone Canadians. If a person wants to grow spiritually, one of the best ways to do this in one’s heart language. When a francophone learns how to be spiritually intimate en francaise, doors open, life bursts forth, chains come off. I believe that the recovery of francophone culture is a gift from God to reach the heart. And at the end of the day, if you haven’t touched a person’s heart, you haven’t touched them at all.

Francophones are a very spiritual people but many of their hearts have been covered spiritually over by pain and rejection. I believe that as francophone Canada rediscovers its heart, then the rest of Canada will rediscover who we really are as well. All of us in Canada, not just Quebec, need to admit our lostness and our need for genuine reconciliation. The heart of Alpha is reconciliation, reconciliation with our neighbours and most importantly with our Maker. With dozens of Alpha Courses being offered across Canada, you too can choose to be part of the miracle of reconciliation.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the North Shore News.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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Do you love cross-word puzzles?

By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

Some people love cross-word puzzles. Others get cross at the mention of them. One of the puzzles that fascinates me is how often the cross is planted at the crossroads of everyday conversation. Everywhere I look, I find cross-words. Lawyers cross-examine their witnesses. Children sit cross-legged in gym classes. Thieves double-cross each other at a moment’s notice. Referees penalize hockey players for ‘cross-checking each other.’ Political and military leaders warn their enemies against ‘crossing the line’. Since the infamous 9/ 11, I have crossed the border many different times. Courageous soldiers are awarded with the Victoria Cross.

Families going through great turmoil are described as bearing their cross. The term ‘excruciating’ comes directly from the Latin term for cross (crucis or crux). The crux of Easter which we are celebrating on March 31st is the mystery of the cross, the mystery of how Life double-crossed Death, and brought good out of evil. There was no more excruciating way to die than in the unspeakable agony of the Good Friday cross.

Good Friday was the most evil day in human history. Yet the Good Friday cross functioned like a cosmic vacuum cleaner sucking all the evil, sickness, pain, and hatred into itself and then imploding it into oblivion. Pontius Pilate the Roman Governor in Israel cross-examined Jesus and could find no fault in him. Pilate forced Jesus to carry his own cross to the Calvary hill. After shoving eight-inch spikes into Jesus’ wrists and ankles, Pilate ordered the nailing of a sign at the top of Jesus’ cross which said ‘King of the Jews’.

Image result for Crossword puzzlesJesus wasn’t cross at Judas who betrayed him with a kiss. He wasn’t cross at Peter who denied him three times. He wasn’t cross at his other disciples who all ran for their lives. He wasn’t even cross at the Roman soldiers who took great delight in torturing and humiliating him before his final execution. Instead Jesus cried out from the cross: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing”. The heart of the Cross is forgiveness, forgiving the unthinkable, forgiving the unforgivable.

Our government leaders, our business leaders, and our labour leaders all struggle daily with making crucial decisions. The term ‘crucial’ is another cross-word term, coming from the French word’ cruciale’ for ‘cross’. Medical doctors describe the cross-shaped anatomy of the knee as the crucial ligaments of the knee joint. Everywhere we look in life, we come across the Cross. Life at the core of its being is cruciform, cross-shaped in its genetic structure, its social structure, its scientific structure. Dr. E. Stanley Jones of the United Christian Ashram taught that our genes, our biochemistry, our very DNA are designed by our Creator to work on the basis of the Cross, on the basis of sacrificial love. The heart of the cross is laying down one’s life in servant love for others. Slowly but surely, people are beginning to discover that Life either goes the way of the Cross, or the way of self-destruction.

RMS Titanic 3.jpgYou may have heard how the band on the sinking ship Titanic played ‘Nearer My God to Thee..Even though it be a Cross’. Dr. ES Jones knew an author on the Titanic who plunged into the icy sea with a precious manuscript that he had been writing for years. He saw a child in the water –the manuscript or the child? He dropped the manuscript and swam to the child. It was dead. He found another child, alive, held it up, tried to get into a lifeboat, but the boat was too full. He grasped a nail on the side of the lifeboat. It pierced his hand, and there he hung by that nail, saving the little child. That author sacrificed his precious manuscript to go the way of the cross. His nail-scarred hand brought life to a precious little one.

Image result for cross

Only the servant leadership of the Cross has the authority to truly transform our hurting world. We are at a crossroads in our modern culture. My cross-word prayer for those reading this article is that we may choose to carry our crosses, like Jesus, as servant leaders in a broken world.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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Dale Lang an Inspiring Canadian

By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

Image may contain: sky, outdoor and natureDale Lang became a Hot Air Balloon Pilot in 1974 and then ran his own full time Balloon Business in Calgary until 1984. During that time Dale had the privilege of winning the first Canadian National Hot Air Balloon Championship in 1979, and then co-piloting the first balloon over the North Pole in 1980.

Since Dale’s son Jason was killed on April 28th 1999 in a copycat Columbine-style High School shooting, Dale Lang has chosen to ensure that Jason’s life and death makes a lasting difference for other Canadian young people and adults. Jason Lang died when he was shot by a 14-year-old boy at W.R. Myers High School in Taber, Alta.

Dale’s courageous act of forgiving his son’s killer has inspired many across Canada to come and personally hear Dale Lang. Three hundred and sixty-eight business people flocked to a downtown Vancouver business luncheon to hear Dale.  Dale spoke passionately on the absolute priority of learning to forgive, and of treasuring our teens one day at a time. Dale who has told his story to nearly 200 high school audiences since that fateful day, said he will keep it up as long as he is making a difference. One Grade 12 student in London, Ontario, after hearing Dale, responded by writing “There is no one in Canada who can bring such an important message about forgiveness”. The Anglican Journal newspaper said that ‘the Rev. Dale Lang may be the best-known Anglican priest in Canada.’

Dale commented: “But as someone who had been a follower of Jesus Christ for 22 years, forgiveness was the only response that I could give. I didn’t think about it, my wife and I didn’t sit down and talk about it, it was a response out of our faith. We did it because it was the way we understood who Jesus is. And we did that and it had a significant impact on people in the country. I can’t explain except to say that people just are not used to forgiveness.”

Image may contain: sky and outdoor“At the end of the day, the whole point that I’m making is that we have to be compassionate people who actually care about others, even the people who are tough for us to like,” Mr. Lang said to the Globe and Mail newspaper before addressing the Education Safety Association of Ontario’s annual conference in Toronto. “If everywhere I speak one person’s life is changed for the positive, I’ll keep on going.”

“Ironically, one of the things that’s so sad is that Jason didn’t like bullying, and often tried to befriend kids who were picked on,” Mr. Lang said. “He was a good kid, and we miss him.”

When Dale tries to help his audience understand “the value of other people,” he said high school students listen with “incredible intensity” and he gets a lot of positive feedback. Perhaps the most rewarding instance was a recent talk in London, Ont.

“The principal told me that the biggest bully in the school approached him and said he wanted to get the bullied kids together to talk about how they feel,” Rev. Lang said to the Ottawa Citizen Newspaper.

Because his son was an innocent victim of an angry bullied boy, Rev. Lang has a deep personal interest in minimizing bullying everywhere. “Since Jason’s death, I’ve had people come to me — some of them senior citizens — and tell me about being bullied in grade school. They’ll tell me they can still see the faces of the bullies,” he said. “It made me realize how profoundly bullying can affect people.”

Jason Lang was in many ways a typical teen, according to his dad. He enjoyed sports and had bought his first car – a 1983 Camaro – three days before he died. The very morning of Jason’s death, his father Dale had helped him learn how to drive the five-speed Camaro. “On the last day of Jason’s life, he and I were the best of friends,” said Mr. Lang. “I hope you understand how thankful I am that April 28, 1999, was not a day we argued.

People have asked him how he has responded so gracefully to the tragedy. “If it wasn’t for the grace of God in my life, I think I would be a very angry man,” he said to the Ottawa Citizen. “When I share my story, I talk about the initial anger — and the pain. But you don’t have to live with the anger. We prayed and we forgave the boy. That was very healing for our family.”

Two years before Jason’s death, I was privileged to lead a Renewal Mission retreat for Dale Lang and the wonderful parish of St. Theodore’s in Taber, Alberta. Dale Lang came to BC to speak on forgiveness at the BC Christian Ashram retreat.

In the days following the first fatal high school shooting in Canada in 20 years, shock and disbelief gripped all of us as Canadians. Tragedy can so easily crush us, embitter us, and turn us desperately inward. Dale Lang chose to respond to the death of his 17-year-old son Jason, by turning outward and living for others. Everything about Dale inspires hope in others. Dale proves that life is stronger than death, love is stronger than hate, forgiveness is stronger than revenge. My prayer for those reading this article is that Dale Lang’s example of forgiveness in the face of tragedy may inspire great healing in the lives of our families and friends.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca 


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Remembering the Courageous Astronauts

By Rev. Dr. Ed Hird
Countless numbers of us in Canada and around the world were deeply touched by the loss of the crew of the Space Shuttle Columbia. The astronauts were doctors, scientists, pilots, women, men, wives, husbands, fathers and mothers, from many races and cultures. We gave thanks for these courageous explorers who ‘pushed the envelope’, risking their lives to discover more about the amazing universe that we live in.

“In the skies today we saw destruction and tragedy,” President Bush said on the day of the tragedy. “Yet farther than we can see there is comfort and hope. In the words of the prophet Isaiah, ‘Lift your eyes and look to the heavens. Who created all these? He who brings out the starry hosts one by one and calls them each by name. Because of his great power and mighty strength, not one of them is missing.’ The same Creator who names the stars also knows the names of the seven souls we mourn today. The crew of the shuttle Columbia did not return safely to Earth; yet we can pray that all are safely home.”

On a typical Sunday, you might have found astronauts Rick Husband and Michael Anderson worshiping at 5,000-strong Grace Community Church in Houston, Texas.

Senior pastor Steve Riggle said “Rick” and “Mike” were men who “fervently lived for God.” He says they’re in the Lord’s hands now.

The Rev. Riggle said that “Rick Husband was a guy who, first, absolutely loved God, and second, loved his family, and third, loved flying. He loved being an astronaut. But it was in that order…” “Rick”, said Rev. Riggle, “was a guy who knew how to have a good time and how to joke and at the same time he was absolutely serious about the mission and what his responsibilities were. He was a real leader: he was the right guy to have as commander of this mission. He was a gatherer, he was a guy who knew how to release the crew: to let each member of the team do what they were supposed to do, and it’s just a great loss.”

Image result for rick husbandShuttle commander Rick Husband, in a pre-recorded videotape before he went into space, said: “If I ended up at the end of my life having been an astronaut but having sacrificed my family along the way or living my life in a way that didn’t glorify God, then I would look back on it with great regret and having become an astronaut would not really have mattered all that much,” Husband said on the video. “And I finally came to realize that what really meant the most to me was to try and live my life the way God wanted me to and to try and be a good husband to Evelyn and to be a good father to my children.”

Payload Commander Michael Anderson said on the videotape. “We have had a lot of challenges. Rick and I both feel we were put on this mission for a reason and we have tried to meet all those challenges with prayer.”

Prior to the Columbia Shuttle space disaster, mission commander Rick Husband played a CD in orbit called “Rise Up and Praise Him.” During the fated shuttle mission Husband aired the CD on which he was recorded singing a solo with his church choir, “Before the Throne of God Above.” Rick signed all of his photographs with Scripture, Proverbs 3:5-6, ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding’.

The spouses of the crew each were able to pick a song for them to wake up to one of the mornings they’re in space. Rick’s wife selected “God of Wonders” sung by a Christian artist and personal friend Steve Green. Rick communicated with Mission Control after the song was played. The conversation went something like this: Mission Control – “Good morning. That song was for Rick. It was ‘God of Wonders’ by Steve Green.” Rick – “Good morning. Thank you. We can really appreciate the lyrics of that song up here. We look out the window and see that God truly is a God of wonders!”

Steve Green also shared part of an e-mail he received from Rick, transmitted from outer space! Rick wrote about how overwhelming it was to see God’s vast creation from space. He said he had never cried while exercising before, but peddling on the bike and looking out the window at God’s incredible creation brought tears to his eyes.

Rick made 34 devotionals, by video, before he left on the Columbia. There were 17 for his daughter and 17 for his son, one for each day he was to be gone. So each day his daughter and son had their own “devotion with Dad” by video. What treasures they will be to his children! Rick Husband left a note with his wife Evelyn in case he died. “Tell them about Jesus,” it said. “He means everything to me.” My prayer is that all of us reading this article may be equally so devoted to our spouses, our children, and our Lord.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird, BSW, MDiv, DMin

-an article previously published in the Deep Cove Crier.

for better for worse-Click to check out our newest marriage book For Better For Worse: discovering the keys to a lasting relationship on Amazon. You can even read the first two chapters for free to see if the book speaks to you.

 

-The sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit is available online with Amazon.com in both paperback and ebook form.  Dr. JI Packer wrote the foreword, saying “I heartily commend what he has written.” The book focuses on strengthening a new generation of healthy leaders. Drawing on examples from Titus’ healthy leadership in the pirate island of Crete, it shows how we can embrace a holistically healthy life.

In Canada, Amazon.ca has the book available in paperback and ebook. It is also posted on Amazon UK (paperback and ebook), Amazon France (paperback and ebook), and Amazon Germany (paperback and ebook).

Restoring Health is also available online on Barnes and Noble in both paperback and Nook/ebook form.  Nook gives a sample of the book to read online.

Indigo also offers the paperback and the Kobo ebook version.  You can also obtain it through ITunes as an IBook.

To receive a signed copy within North America, just send a $20 cheque (USD/CAN) to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5, Canada.

– In order to obtain a signed copy of the prequel book Battle for the Soul of Canada, please send a $18.50 cheque to ED HIRD, 102 – 15168 19th Avenue, Surrey, BC, V4A 0A5. For mailing the book to the USA, please send $20.00 USD.  This can also be done by PAYPAL using the e-mail ed_hird@telus.net . Be sure to list your mailing address. The Battle for the Soul of Canada e-book can be obtained for $4.99 CDN/USD.

-Click to purchase the Companion Bible Study by Jan Cox (for the Battle of the Soul of Canada) in both paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com and Amazon.ca