In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps. Proverbs 16:9

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


This past Saturday, my whole dorm went to Toronto to go shopping! Now normally I don't like shopping but I think I am gaining a new found appreciation of it. Or maybe my appreciation has been supressed all these years due to the lack of good stores in Lethbridge's mall (yes that is singular, only because no one actually goes to the other places we have claimed to be malls) and it was just waiting to awaken when I had the opportunity to choose from hundreds of stores. Who knows? It is great that I am realizing this when my bank account has the singular purpose of paying tuition. Oh well, at least I can look.

After we went shopping for a while, we took the subway downtown and started to look for a place to go for supper. Or so I thought. As I was walking down the street, admiring all the old buildings, I was viciously blindfolded and tackled to the ground by an unknown stranger who proceeded to take my purse. Ok that didn't happen, but I was blindfolded by my RA, Kira, as a surprise for my half birthday since we won't be together for my actual birthday. After walking down the street for a while and people laughing at me, they took the blindfold off and I was in the Royal Ontario Museum! Now you may think that this is the worst birthday surprise in the world and for you it probably would be. But for me, it was fantastic. I love museums. I am slighlty nerdy, but you can't call me that.

The only reason we were able to go to the museum was because it was free for the last 45 minutes. Poor Dutch college students are great at finding bargains. There wasn't very much time to look around but I still managed to look at some great exhibits on European style, Egypt and Asia.

After the museum we went to a place called the Fox and the Fiddle for supper. It wasn't very nice and the food wasn't that great, but once again it was cheap. We just decided to look past the food smears on the menu.

All in all it was an affordably great time.

Monday, January 14, 2008


I had my International Relations class today and I don't think I have ever heard that many large or convoluted terms used in such a short time before. Neo-liberal Institutionalism? Functional Integration? Transnationalism and Complex Interdependence? If you want to poke needles in your eyes just reading those words, try three hours of it.

Despite this rather discouraging class that made me feel like I was studying Greek rather than political science, I am really looking forward to learning more in this class. After we master (or probably misconstrue in my case) political theory, we are going to be looking at global issues such as AIDS, global warming, terrorism and poverty and how the international community has either effectively or in most cases, ineffectively dealt with the issues at hand.

Examining these topics is a constant reminder of the crooked and depraved nature of humanity and the world in which we live. God’s perfect intentions for creation have been so destroyed that it often seems we can only ask ourselves “Where is God?” It is easy to feel hopeless and pessimistic about the state in which the world currently lies.

It is understandable that in the midst of so many global crises, Christians may find themselves under this overarching sense of despair. However, this attitude prevents a true understanding of our God. He is a redemptive God that is not constrained by the injustice of this world. It may not always be obvious why injustice occurs, but we have to remove God from our boxes and recognize that he is beyond our limited comprehension of the world. Christianity is fundamentally hopeful and a better day is coming. The sooner we recognize this, the sooner we will see the hope that is present today in the midst of darkness, small manifestations of the glory that is to come. God does not confine his promise of hope to the future but allows us to catch glimpses of it each day.

I believe that as Christians we need to be a more hope-filled people. Too often we focus on the negativities of the world, filling us with cynicism and preventing us from recognizing tangible opportunities for change. By prescribing to this outlook, we are failing to live up to our potential in modeling Christ to the world. We cannot accurately portray the good news of Jesus if we don’t believe that there is in fact goodness in the news. Instead of only adding to the darkness with our pessimism, we must renew our sense of hope so as to bring light to the shadows.

It is for these reasons that I am glad I am taking International Relations here at Redeemer. There is a recognition that God is control of every area of life and though we may not understand his plans, he is the Lord in both joy and sorrow. Even as I learn about the troubles of our times, I am confident that I will be reminded of the hope of God that will always remain.