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Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit


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Growing In Intimacy Through Conflict

By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

I never imagined that we can grow through conflict, that we can discover greater intimacy through facing the conflicts in our lives.  Many of us are conflict-phobic. Through taking a course with my doctoral advisor Dr Paddy Ducklow, I learned that conflict is not something to be avoided but rather to be celebrated.   Many of us have learned from our families of origin to emotionally cut ourselves off whenever anxious situations emerge.  But avoidance and emotional cutoff just make things worse.

It takes courage to face painful situations in our life, courage to listen, and courage to confront.  Dr Ducklow modeled on this course a non-anxious presence that cared but did not get swallowed by people’s issues.  It takes a lot of inner resilience to be able to stay present and calm when the storms of life blow in.

Jesus modeled this by how he acted on a Galilean boat during a storm. Rather than panic, he was totally relaxed and challenged his disciples to have more faith and inner peace.  Then he spoke to the wind and storms, saying ‘Peace.  Be still’.  In the midst of our storms, Jesus is still saying ‘Peace. Be still.’

I first met Paddy Ducklow in 1972 during the Jesus Movement when millions of young people came to a personal faith in Jesus Christ. Paddy at that time was leading the youth ministry at West Vancouver Baptist Church which had between 800 to 1,000 young people attending their Sunday evening service Salt Circus. I remember attending Salt Circus. The place was electric.  Paddy later founded the Burnaby Counselling Group before becoming the Senior Pastor of Burnaby Christian Fellowship.  Wherever Paddy has gone, he has had a lasting impact on the lives of many, helping them to know greater intimacy and peace through Jesus Christ.

In more recent years, Paddy became the Senior Pastor of Capilano Christian Community on the North Shore, before stepping down to become the Professor of Marriage and Family at Carey Theological College on the UBC Campus.  Over two years ago, I began to once again feel the call to do a part-time doctorate.  E-mailing Paddy, I asked his advice as to where I might go to do my doctorate.  Paddy responded, saying that he was being inducted at West Vancouver Baptist Church that very night Feb 26th 2009 as Carey Professor of Marriage and Family.  I attended his induction, during which Paddy gave a hilarious talk on ‘Marriage for Dummies’. God spoke to me that evening, convincing me that I was to ‘step out of the boat’ and move forward on my doctorate.  The exciting thing about the Carey Doctorate is that it is a part-time program designed specifically for full-time pastors.

 In the past two and a half years, I have learned and grown in so many ways at Carey.  Paddy’s own Doctoral Thesis was on how we process conflict.  Paddy is passionate about conflict.  I will be doing my Doctoral project on Strengthening Marriages, particularly looking at couple conflict and family systems theory.  My vision is that many marriages will become more intimate, more life-giving as couples learn to embrace and celebrate the inevitable conflicts in their lives.  I dream of couples who, instead of emotionally cutting off and running, choose to hang in there and learn how to really be present to each other in ways that do not take each out.

Marriages and families are worth fighting for. Marriages and families are building blocks of our very communities.  It is so easy for us to take each other out and then give up on each other.  My prayer for those reading this article is that we will find the strength to be ourselves, to embrace the gift of family and community, to forgive and reconcile at the deepest level.

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

-previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News

-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada

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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More photos from the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider booksigning

(photos, courtesy of Bill Bonikowsky)

It really was an enjoyable evening at House of James in Abbotsford on Friday night. If you haven’t been there lately, you will want to check it out.

House of James now even offers Gelato Italian Ice Cream, good food and good fellowship.

The HAC2 authors with the Owner: Ed Hird, Lando Klassen, Bill Bonikowsky, and Paul Beckingham

Booksigning in a coffeehouse environment with a warm cup of Hot Apple Cider…

Have you ordered your copy yet of a 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider?

The music by the Bonikowsky sons really set the tone for the evening.

Lando Klassen has been faithful in season and out of season.

It was Lando Klassen’s generosity in putting up the money up front that got my book Battle for the Soul of Canada off the ground.  I was able to pay him back in just a few short months because the book sales went so well.

An irenic look by Dr Paul Beckingham and Ed Hird, co-authors for the book 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider.

Lando really believes in the power of books, and has given HAC2 a strong endorsement. I would recommend that you contact House of James online to purchase ‘A 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider’ by clicking on ’2nd Cup’.  Lando and House of James deserve our customer support.

Alternately you can dial into Amazon  either in the USA or Canada and order a copy.

Why not order your copy right now before you forget about it? Just click here.  A Second Cup of Hot Apple Cider is a remarkably well-produced books with many stories that will inspire you and often leave you in grateful tears.

Rev. Ed Hird

-award-winning author  of the book ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’

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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2 Cups of Hot Apple Cider at House of James Abbotsford

Last night we had so much fun at House of James Abbotsford. If you have never been there, you will want to drop in. In an age when many Christian and mainstream bookstores are closing, House of James has morphed into a fresh entity, involving a coffeehouse, extensive music department, excellent food, and friendly relaxed atmosphere where you can just hang out while picking up a new book.

Some of people’s most favorite coffee shops would be Starbucks, Tim Hortons, and Bean around the World. The coffee is only half of the appeal. The other half is the atmosphere, the relaxed welcoming place to just be, the sense of community and connectedness that people are longing for. House of James Abbotsford is tapping into the holistic model. It is more than a bookstore, more than a coffeehouse, more than a music store. It is a place to be, to be yourself, to meet God.

Lando Klassen birthed House of James as a coffeehouse in 1973 during the Jesus Movement. All the essential DNA were there when it got off the ground: coffee, music, books, fellowship. Over the years,  House of James has morphed into a cutting-edge expression of the future of Christian bookstores.  Last night we did not just do a classic booksigning; we did a music concert with food and conversation and laughter.  Each of the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider author had an opportunity to share from their portion of the book and from their life story. Dr Paul Beckingham and Bill Bonikowsky were hilarious and very insightful.   Fittingly I even drank a delicious 2nd cup of Hot Apple Cider before the evening was over.  My wife Janice and I shared from our chapter in 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider about our thirty-four years of marriage, and the principles that we have learned about life and love.

Dr Paul Beckingham is a military chaplain and former theological professor at Carey Theological College. He has been featured in both the first and second Cup of Hot Apple Cider books. Paul’s award-winning book Walking Towards Hope tells the story of how he recovered from brain injury while serving as a missionary in Kenya. Dr JI Packer comments: “My guess is that you have never read anything like this narrative before. My amazement is that it exists at all. My plea is: Don’t miss it! I covet for you what it gave to me.”  Dr Eugene Peterson, author of ‘The Message’ translation says that “Paul Beckingham’s Walking Towards Hope is a compelling and rigorously honest account of unimaginable suffering forged detail-by-excruciating-detail in Kenya and Vancouver into a whole and holy life. The magnificence of the story itself is matched by the magnificen ce of the writing, language, unblemished by cliches, luminous as an icon.”

Bill Bonikowsky, a long-term Alpha Canada staff member and former YFC leader, told an unforgettable story of a neighbour’s cat that became trapped in his floorboards during a bathroom renovation. Bill is such a gracious, humble, and encouraging person. It is a privilege to be featured in a book with him, especially one with an initial print run of 45,000 copies.

We were very pleased to have, at the booksigning, Steve Almond, the publisher of the new Christian ‘Light’ magazine,  which has filled a huge hole left by the closing of BC Christian news. Steve is passionate about doing a new thing, something that will help impact the local Christian community in Greater Vancouver/Vancouver Island.

I would recommend that you contact House of James online to purchase ‘A 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider’ by clicking on ‘2nd Cup’.

Alternately you can dial into Amazon  either in the USA or Canada and order a copy.  It is a remarkably well-produced books with many stories that will inspire you and often leave you in grateful tears.

Dr Paul Beckingham speaking at the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider book-signing

Bill Bonikowsky, author, speaking at the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider book-signing

Lando Klassen, House of James bookstore owner, speaks at the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider book-signing evening

Ed and Janice Hird speaking about their marriage chapter in 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider

Tim Bonikowsky playing at the 2nd Cup of Hot Apple Cider booksigning

Dr Paul Beckingham is well worth listening to, a remarkable survivor and thriver.

Rev. Dr. Ed Hird

-award-winning author  of the book ‘Battle for the Soul of Canada’

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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Pastor Bob Birch on Father’s Day

By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird 

Each Father’s Day we remember and give thanks for the fathers that have impacted our lives. Pastor Bob Birch is one of those fathers that has made me a stronger person, a more prayerful person, and a more hopeful person.

I still vividly remember Bob Birch in his mid-eighties leading a Good Friday Cross Walk procession down Lonsdale, carrying a huge cross on his shoulders. I had the privilege of interviewing Bob four years ago right before his death.   He passed away just three weeks short of his 100th birthday.  Perhaps his longevity comes in part from his passion for prayer-walking.  Bob loved to prayerfully hike up the North Shore mountains. Fittingly for Pastor Bob’s retirement, he was given a pair of walking boots.

As a father of spiritual renewal throughout BC and Canada, Pastor Bob has raised up many spiritual sons and daughters.  In 1966, he went down to hear the Rev Dennis Bennett, an Anglican priest in Seattle, Washington.  Pastor Bob was deeply transformed by an outpouring of the Holy Spirit.  He described this new experience of praying in the Spirit as ‘this very sacred gift, of intimate spiritual communion with God’. His life story is loving recounted by Bev Carson in the biography ‘Pastor Bob’. 

One of the unexpected consequences of the spiritual encounter was that hundreds of hippies began to be attracted to Pastor Bob at St Margaret’s Church near the PNE.  They knew that he could help them in getting off drugs and putting their lives back together. His wife Margaret noted that Bob was ‘kind but firm’ in establishing healthy boundaries.  As a result, said Margaret, there are now ‘outstanding young people all over the world, proclaiming the Lord’.

Without healthy father figures, it is easy to default to cynicism and detachment. Bob Birch lived his life in a way that motivated others to strive for excellence.  Bob motivated me to seek first God’s Kingdom in every area of my life.  Bob showed me that prayer is not an optional extra, but rather is at the heart of a healthy, vibrant life.

Bob was someone who deeply cared. He was willing to get involved even when it was messy or awkward.  Healthy fathers are willing to be there in good times and in tough times.  Healthy fathers are willing to go the distance when others disappear.

Fatherhood is costly. Fatherhood is time-consuming. Fatherhood is worth it.  I thank God for all the fathers who sacrificially make a difference in the lives of their families. I thank God for Pastor Bob Birch who was willing to pay the price of being a father for many. Happy Father’s Day!

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

-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada

-previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News and the Light Magazine

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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The early days of the Jesus Movement in Vancouver (1972)

In 1972, we had a Resurrection Coalition at the Stanley Park Easter Be-In

We gave out free food, had rock concerts, and shared the love of Jesus with many young people on drugs. While there, I saw my first beach baptisms at 2nd Beach, a trademark of the Jesus Movement.

We became involved in IVCF at UBC which at the time had the largest involvement of any Campus club with over 250 students each Thursday lunch. Dr John Ross was the Dean of St Andrew’s Presbyterian Hall and taught with the Arts One program. He taught me about systems thinking, that there is no such thing as a simple thing, and to watch out for reductionist terms like just, merely, only, simply, etc…

Arts One was an introductory combined course which I took giving me credit for 1st year English, 1st year History, and 1st year Philosophy. It was a very ‘hippy-dippy’ course with a lot of granola thrown in. But it allowed me to thinking very creatively, shaped by Dr John Ross.

One of the life-changing experiences that I had in the early days of my Christian life was going on a Missions trip to Peachland with our youth group from Sonlite Coffee House at Trinity Baptist in Vancouver. We invited everyone door-to-door in Peachland to come to a musical that we were putting on. This flyer was given to each person that we visited. Len Sawatsky, our Youth Pastor, was attending Regent College, having previously been part of the Christian World Liberation Front in Berkley California.

One of the early positive influences in my Christian life was going to Keats Camp on Keats Island. God was powerfully moving on Keats among the campers. Many  were turning their lives to Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.

 The Keats Camp leadership knew how to have fun and how to share the good news in a way that youth could relate to. Keats continues to still have a powerful impact on hundreds of young people in BC. You may have noticed that David Bentall, a leadership trainer, is in the picture on the right side.

Terry Winters was a remarkable evangelist and communicator who God raised up through Granville Chapel. Terry (before he died from a heart attack) developed a most effective and sensitive TV program in which he had Dr Michael Green and others speak regularly. I remember phoning Terry up several times and saying ‘Thank you’ for not embarrassing us on your TV show. “Thank you for being so sensitive and real.”

 

I fondly remember Terry speaking to young people at Keats Camp. One of the key young people at St Matthias gave his life to Christ when Terry spoke at our Sonlite Coffee House at Trinity Baptist (49th & Granville). Hundreds of youth gave their lives to Christ at the Sonlite Coffee House during the Jesus Movement. There was such a remarkable hunger for the Gospel

 

I almost gave my life to Christ at a Terry Winter banquet at the Bentall Towers, but one of the youth had an anxiety attack and our whole youth group left early before I heard Terry share the gospel. Ironically the youth group forgot to pick me up for our Monday Night meeting the next week, but I was so determined that I biked there on my Peugot to 39th and Main Street where Len Sawatsky the youth pastor lived. On the way, because I can be directionally challenged, I went to the wrong location (730 E. 39th Ave). Looking closer, I noticed that 7:30 referred to the time of the meeting, not the address. Half an hour later and soaked by the rain, I biked to Len Sawatsky’s house, was wonderfully welcomed by Len and the youth, and ended up giving my life to Christ that night. It was a Damascus Road experience. The youth asked me if I knew Jesus. I replied that whatever they had, I wanted. Len took me to his kitchen, pulled out a Four Spiritual Laws booklet, and led me to Christ. It was a profound spiritual breakthrough that radically changed the direction of the rest of my life.

Once I came to faith in Christ, I discovered that there were actually Christians everywhere, right under my nose. One of these people was my own GP Dr Goertzen who attended 10th Alliance Church. While going for a checkup, we discussed my coming to faith. He took out a prescription form and wrote “Dr Francis Schaeffer: Escape From Reason”. This was a wonderful tip that encouraged me to begin thinking theologically about the meaning of my faith and how our culture has abandoned its faith in reason. Forty-two years later I am still excited in having completed my Doctorate about growing in my faith. I want to be a life-long learner until the day Jesus takes me home.

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.

– You can learn more about the Jesus Movement in the sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit which 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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God has been faithful in the past 30+ years….

Christmas 1979

Christmas has always been a special time for both the Hird & Cline families. Nana Allen was with us until the Spring of 1982

Looking at this photo from thirty years ago, I fondly remember my beloved maternal Grandmother Nana Allen (on the 2nd right). She was an amazing inspiration in my life. I would likely not be an Anglican priest today without her inspiration and prayers. My mother Lorna is on Nana’s right. Mom also knew that I would become an Anglican priest. She is an amazing listener, putting up with my lostness and self-pity throughout those painful teenage years. To the left of Nana is dear Vera, my mother-in-law who passed away eleven years ago from cancer. What a prayer warrior she was. How we still miss her. She chose me as a future son-in-law well before my wife Janice clued in. 😉

 

On the far left is my dear father Ted whom I love more every year. He will be turning 87 this year, and is more vital than many people thirty years his age. He is always learning and growing. His Christian faith is always deepening. I want to be like my dad when I grow up. 😉

 

On my Dad’s right is my twin brother Edward Allen Hird 😉 As we were all part of a Christian Rock Band ‘Morning Star’, we had the customary longer hair, though I was sure that mine was short compared to others. Don Robinson my brother-in-law is on my right, just behind my beautiful wife Janice.  Don was the mastermind behind our Christian Concert Production agency ‘Living Stone Productions’ which put on an amazing number of outreach concerts.  We were only university students then. Looking back, I am amazed at all that was accomplished. But during the Jesus Movement, we didn’t know any better. So we just went ahead and God supplied.

 

On Don’s right is my other brother-in-law John Cline who is a good friend and a Baptist Pastor in Edmonton. John is a deeply pastoral person who loves Jesus, and is a great credit to our family.  To the direct right of John is his father, my father-in-law Rev David Cline who is turning 88. What an inspiration David has been through the years. What courage he has shown in standing up to false teaching. What kindness he exhibits to hurting and broken people. Without David and Vera, we would not be active today in the wonderful Christian Ashram retreat movement. Thank God for loving, faithful family, including Nana Allen and Vera Cline who have since been promoted to Glory. I am truly grateful for the gift of family.

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.

– You can learn more in the sequel book Restoring Health: body, mind and spirit which 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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. . . And a Happy New Year!!

 By the Rev. Dr. Ed Hird 

Every January we get to grapple with the implications of the second half of that familiar Christmas Greeting: “…and a Happy New Year!”  Alexander Pope said in 1733: “Hope springs eternal in the human breast.” Pope suffered from childhood tuberculosis that left him hunched over, reaching a height of only 4 feet 6 inches. But he never let this steal his hopefulness and his joyfulness.

“Happy” comes from the old Norse word “Happ”, which means chance, luck, or lot.  Happiness is just that which happens to you by chance occurrence.  Many people are desperately trying to be happy.  But happiness, by definition, is haphazard, arbitrary, and temporary.  As a teenager, I tried to be happy, and to make my personal happiness the purpose of my life.  What I discovered is that chasing after the elusive goal of happiness is guaranteed to make one unhappier than ever.

Rather than aiming for temporary happiness, I have learned to value the more lasting quality of joy.  Joy has such depth that I have found that I can be joyful when unpleasant unhappy things happen haphazardly to me. Simon Peter taught that it is possible to be joyful with an unspeakable joy.  Joy is described in the Concise Oxford Dictionary as a “vivid emotion of pleasure, gladness, thing that causes delight”.  What causes gladness and delight in your life? The birth of a baby? Graduating from High School or University?  Attending your son or daughter’s wedding?

I have found that joy is a choice.  I can choose to rejoice always, even in the midst of great suffering and setbacks. James, Jesus’ brother, said that we should count it all joy when we face challenges. It is not easy to be joyful in all circumstances.  The good book teaches that joy is a fruit of God’s Holy Spirit.  When the Christmas angels turned up at the Bethlehem manger, they proclaimed glad tidings of great joy for all people.  Jesus, right before his crucifixion, said that he wanted His joy to be inside of us, and our joy to be full.   In other words, he wants us to be inwardly joyful: full of joy, overflowing with joy.  Without the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit, this is impossible.  Joy needs to be like an artesian well springing up from within.  It can’t be artificially produced or induced.

All of us need more joy in our lives. Joy is the secret of a genuinely happy New Year.  Joy keeps the stresses and pressures of life from burying us before we are dead.  Thirty-nine years ago in January 1972, at age 17, I encountered a joy that changed me from the inside out.  This joy was so joyful that it made me full of joy! Without trying, I developed a smile that wouldn’t go away.  I really became a different person, so much so that my friends at High School noticed the difference.  Some even wanted in on the action.

My parents initially were a bit worried.  Having a joyful, peaceful teenager in their family took a little getting used to.  But eventually they too saw a permanent change in their son that made them joyful too.  There is something about an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ that connects us deeply to the gift of joy.  No wonder that C.S. Lewis, the atheist turned believer, entitled his autobiography “Surprised by Joy”. My New Year’s prayer for those reading this article is that joy may spill into all of our lives in surprising and life-changing ways.

 

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

-previously published in the Deep Cove Crier/North Shore News

-award-winning author of the book Battle for the Soul of Canada

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.