Tuesday, November 23, 2010

10 boys and Giving Thanks

We've been doing a monthly event with the Club Awesome kids and this month was all about Thanksgiving. We gather the kids, play games and do special projects together. This month, after telling the story of Squanto, we made some makeshift Native American head pieces.

Then we watched the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving Special...

...and ate a Snoopy style Thanksgiving dinner complete with toast, popcorn, jelly beans and pretzels!

Awesome having Alexa and Julie coming out to help lead...

And after some basketball,

We assumed the "thankful" position, which Aaron says is with your legs out, head back and hands behind your head...kinda looking up wistfully.

We gave thanks for food, Jesus, friends, popcorn, basketball, hot chocolate and our time together. A great day!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

November's song of the month - Burning Bushes (Live)

Well, here you go folks, it's November's song of the month. This is a new song I shared at my 40th birthday concert on November 4th at my church. This was a surprise party...I learned about it as it was announced at church 4 days before the event. It was great fun and one of the best birthday presents I have ever received.

I was thinking to post the whole concert but it's 45 minutes long and that would considerably affect the quality of audio I could post. If you want the whole thing, let me know and maybe I can get you one in the mail.

You can listen right here by clicking the player or if you're reading on facebook and/or want to download, subscribe to future posts or whatever, go to our podcast site - cwhitler.podbean.com

No explanation needed here...I tell the song's story right there in the track. Enjoy!

Monday, November 15, 2010

At a soup kitchen in Winnipeg.

It was the second dusting of snow last week in Winnipeg. The YWAM Discipleship Training School students and I went to the soup kitchen to talk to folks and help out as best we could. Some of us cleaned up tables, some of us made coffee. The building was quite full. This was the only "game in town" as it was Remembrance Day. 300 plus people filed in to get a warm meal and a warm spot for a few minutes over lunch.

A volunteer and a "client" were talking. The volunteer was a middle aged man (a bigger man wearing plain but newer clothes) talking to the other who was homeless with that kind of classic homeless look. His beard and hair were overgrown, his clothes were a bit weathered.

The two spoke to one another for about 20 minutes and the last bit went something like this.

"I just want to encourage you that if God is calling you to something, you can do it and it's not a hardship. Obedience brings a blessing."

"Yeah, I know. It's hard for me to trust God with all of it."

"Just yield to him and he'll meet you in your obedience."

"Thanks, I kinda needed to hear that today."

"I'll pray for you. God has good things in store for you. You have something special bubbling up from you...like a contagious joy. God's going to use you, I know it."

"Thank you"

"Can I just pray for you right now?"

"Uh, sure, I can use all I can get!"

And I let this homeless brother pray over me one of the simplest, most beautiful blessings I have ever received. Roy blessed me in Jesus name, recommended some good books to me and encouraged me with a timely word. What do you do with that? Say thanks. I want to be like Roy.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Chiara House

I (Chris) am in Winnipeg this week teaching on evangelism at YWAM's Justice Discipleship Training School. This team is attempting some ground breaking stuff. Not only are they a part of our international mission, they are an intentional community in a needy part of the city. Not just that but they have also partnered with a regional Mennonite denomination to plant and facilitate a church here in their neighborhood called Little Flowers Community. And now, not only that but they are attempting, as a small determined congregation (with lots of partnership from other churches), to open a community building to provide affordable housing and supportive connection in their neighborhood.

This is Chiara House (you can read more about it HERE). Like "Little Flowers" which is a reference to St. Francis and the community that formed around God's work in his life, "Chiara" is the Italian form of "Claire" who was an intricate part of Francis' story. It also happens to mean "clear" or "bright".

I got to walk through it's nine apartments today with Jamie and the others on the board and listen in on the dream for this place. I got the feeling like I was peeking in on a great story in the works. Speaking of work...

...it needs a little. But I think these guys, with a few miracles (the ordinary and extra-ordinary kind), are up to it. Pray for Jamie and Kim, the little congregation here and all the pieces that have to come together to make Chiara House a reality. Here's a little video. And if you're reading this on facebook, go here to watch...http://chiarahouse.ca/about/

Chiara House from Camps with Meaning on Vimeo.