Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

The Voice of Wisdom

If you recall Hans Christian Andersen’s tail of The Emperor’s New Clothes, it is a story about a man and his entire country being scammed by two con artists. The scam is that the emperor is sold some clothing that foolish people cannot see. Everyone in the kingdom has heard about this magical fabric and doesn’t want to admit they can’t see it, so they pretend they can. It is a lie that only works based on our human desire to be known as competent. The risk of confronting these two scammers about their lie is that they could be called a fool.

Have you ever been in one of these situations where you knew that what was being said as the Gospel Truth was really no truth at all? It is a dodgy place to be in (especially if you don’t like conflict). We are exposed to cons, or illusions, all the time. In a consumer driven culture there is no end to the tales people will spin in order to sell their products.

(thank you infomercials)

Illusions are not just limited to people in sales. We are pretty good at creating our own illusions.
We convince ourselves that we are one of the few people on the planet that can actually handle high doses of fructose corn syrup without any negative health effects.

Or that people we work with really are all laughing at us when we are not around.

Or that this really is the year the Vancouver Canucks will win the Stanley Cup. (Okay, that one might be delusion)

In the story about the Emperor, nobody could escape the anxiety they felt about appearing foolish long enough to say anything about their leader’s nudity. Nobody, that is, except for a child. Jesus told his disciples that in order to enter the Kingdom of God they must become like children. (Matt. 18:3) What are some childlike questions that come to your mind about the life you live? Might the voice of Wisdom be present in those questions?   

Thursday, 23 October 2014

"Create a Rhythm" - Event for Parents

On Sunday, November 16 parents of preschool children (ages Babies to 4 year olds) are invited to come and experience the Create A Rhythm Event from Orange. No one has more potential to influence a child spiritually than a mom or dad. However maybe you don't know where to start or what to say. Maybe you worry about what to do or about finding time to do it! Well this event will equip Preschool parents to put simple daily habits in place that will impact your child's faith for a lifetime. Based on Deuteronomy 6, this event illustrates to parents that no extra time is needed in order to create a rhythm in our homes enabling you to shape your child's faith. Make sure you don't miss this opportunity! The event will take place from 3:00 - 4:30pm at the church. Child Care will be provided. Please RSVP to Natasha Ewaskow - natasha@fbccranbrook.org

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

FBC's Third Annual Fishing Day

Sunny day, good friends......and co-operative fish - who could want anything more? We had a great time at the church's 3rd annual "Learn to Fish" day at the Kootenay Trout Hatchery. Over 50 of us enjoyed the beauty of God's creation and our time together - the youngest was in utero and the oldest was, well, pretty old.  Some people (won't say who but their initials are Natasha Ewaskow and Hope Ewaskow) even caught their first fish while others got their first up-close look/feel of a fish. 
Note: If anyone would like to go to the pond in smaller numbers (say 2 or 3 :-) please give me a call and we'll make that happen.  Tight lines!  Laird Siemens

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Back In Time

Just wanted to let you know that our Sunday Worship Service start time is moving back to 10:30am. You are still welcome to come at 10:00am and stake out a good seat or visit . . . or even pray.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Clearing the Road

So on July 12th a group of us headed out for an adventure. A number of avalanches had come down across a back country road that leads to some great hikes in the area, so we thought it might be a good idea to clear some of the debris. Here are some pictures from that adventure.

Log jam on the road... one of many.
Still about 3 ft of snow under that mess but at least the trees are out of the way.

The happy crew

We even got into shoveling some snow... in July!

Thursday, 10 July 2014


On Sunday June 22 the kids in Jr. Church learned about encouragement and in response made card posters with candy and chocolate bars to encourage our striking teachers at 6 Cranbrook schools. My girls and I had the blessing of dropping them off the following week on behalf of FBC kids. My kids loved dropping them off and the teachers were very appreciative.

On Sunday, June 8 Mill Creek Baptist Camp staff came to share with our congregation and our kids about camp. The kids had the extra pleasure of playing games, singing songs and acting out a bible story with the staff. Here are some pictures!

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Summer Service Time

During the summer months FBC Cranbrook changes its service start time from 10:30am to 10:00am. Starting July 6th

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Subterranean Lives

What do we do with the subterranean parts of our lives? Like a city’s infrastructure we have this stuff going on below the surface that never stops but is rarely visible. It is good and bad, joyous and sad, it is our internal world.
With constant stimulation and a need to project this persona of having it all together . . . all the time, when do I get a chance to take stock of what is going on under the surface of my life? 

I shuffle the stuff I don’t know how to let out or haven’t developed a vocabulary to express. I put these unprocessed feelings on something like an internal subway that races around inside me. My passengers seem to board the train just fine but, like the guests of the notorious Hotel California, they never seem to find the appropriate stop to get off the train at. 

A song by Leif Vollebekk has inspired this thought process here with his song When the Subway ComesAbove the Ground. It has led me to ask what would it look like if the subway carrying my internal struggles were to surface?  Would it be like in those movie scenes where a character just finally unleashes everything they have been thinking and keeping hidden away in this dramatic monologue in a less than ideal setting. That sounds mortifying! Perhaps it could happen by just having a regular place where the subway is intentionally directed to the surface. 

This has been an exercise for me to find answers to the question “how might a person be known?”
Do you wonder about this question? Do you fear or look forward to the subway coming above the ground? Would love to hear your thoughts.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

"Hey FBC preschool and elementary kids! This Sunday (June 15) is your Year-End Party and it is going to ROCK! Come on out to my Soda Shop and have some sweet treats and play some fun games from the 1950's!" It's a Rock n' Roll Soda Shop Party! I'll be 'All Shook Up' if you can't make it!"

*Feel free to dress in 1950's garb! The party will take place during the morning service. Kids will be dismissed as usual. Contact Natasha for more information.

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

A Blessing in Garbage?

“A blessing from Jesus in this garbage dump of a situation.” This is a funny line that has stuck with me from some movie I watched. I was thinking about it today after reading about the mess that campers out at Koocanusa left behind this past Victoria Day weekend. 

Where are the blessings in this situation?
If the land out at Koocanusa was personified, what do you think it would be saying, thinking, doing right now? “What happened!?” “Why would people do this to me?” “Did I do something to deserve this?” “I can’t let anyone see me like this.” “I have to be strong.” “I’m a failure.” “I can never let humans be here again.” The land might choose to swallow and bury the mess. These might be some ways the land reacts to this atrocity.
A lot of us have situations that have happened in our lives that kind of resemble this scene. Some part of us that we care about and value for its simple beauty has been tainted and trashed and left in ruins. We might have had some of the same reactions the land has had in our story above. There is something worth noticing from the news report on Koocanusa. A community is getting together to take positive action to restore the site as best they can, and also to prevent this from happening again. I think that is a blessing found in this garbage dump of a situation. I think that it might be a key for us to understand where we might find a blessing in those messed up situations of our own lives. Who were the people that came to be with us and helped us work through guilt and shame and anger? Jesus leads such a community. Do we dare to trust him with the restoration of our broken lives.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

It's time to think about SUMMER CAMP!!

Our church supports Mill Creek Baptist Camp in Pincher Creek and sends many kids each year to have the best week of their summer!

Registration is open for campers going into Grades 2 to 12 as well as College & Career, Adults with Special Needs (Cornerstone) and Family Camp.

Check out the website and register today! www.millcreekcamp.org

Financial assistance is available through the campership program.

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Recognizing the Hope

“As they walked on the road, Jesus joined them … but their eyes were kept from recognizing him.”

This little section of the Gospel of Luke has always captured my imagination. I think to myself, “Wouldn’t it be awesome if Jesus showed up and explained the scriptures to me!” Just imagine not having to worry about if your doctrine was correct or if you are using the right translation.
Today I was identifying with the Emmaus pair because they were struggling with a situation where things didn’t go the way they thought they would. I don’t know about you but a lot of times I have  problems in life where things have not gone the way I thought they should have. I have spent time trying to understand what went wrong and how I might be able to fix it. I have often times tried to make some sort of Red Green duct tape adaptation to the situation in order to try and make it okay. This story helps me see that there is a different way to approach my disappointments… go for a walk and listen to Jesus. I know that might be oversimplifying things, but I am just trying to convey the idea of getting to spots in life where we can be open to hearing a different interpretation of what has happened in our life. To hear and know God’s voice and respond to it.

Thursday, 1 May 2014


By Tyler Birkam
To be honest the class with the kids started a little rocky.  Maybe it was the Easter candy but manners and ability to focus for just a second were a bit in short supply....about five minutes in I considered just scrapping the 'plan' and having a random 'do-what-you-want' play day.  But we kept going and started reading the scripture verses for the week, which was the last supper and the empty tomb.  I had contemplated these verses leading up to Sunday and found it odd in some ways that Jesus betrayal and crucifixion were left out of the listed verses.  As you might guess, I wondered if it would be good to read through Jesus betrayal and death, or if that was too much for the kids....as well as too long of a story to tell.  I decided to give it a shot, thinking it was important for the kids to start and keep hearing our full Christian story (that does include death and injustice) but to definitely balance the death in the story with the hope of resurrection. 

I was truly amazed and touched.  We read through the last supper, betrayal in the garden, trial and crucifixion, three days of mourning and the resurrection.  It took about 10 minutes and there was not a peep in the room as the kids were gripped by the story.  Joanne and I both commented later that the change in the kids was striking and how the power of 'our story' completely drew them in and captured their attention.  The kids wanted to keep reading and I think we could have done another 10 minutes.  So great to know we are part of a really good story that captures the imaginations of young and old, and has been doing so for thousands of years.   

Thursday, 3 April 2014

Easter Services at FBC

Easter Weekend
There are many things to do on a long weekend, especially around Easter. Included here are many of the opportunities you will have to engage with the wonder of the Passion weekend.

Tenebrae Service
Tenebrae, or “Service of Shadows” is one of the oldest traditions of the Christian church for the commemoration of the passion and death of Christ. As the Passion story unfolds through the readings and music, the darkness increases, until with the death of Jesus only one light is left burning. This is not necessarily a cheerful service, as it is an entering into the story of our Lord Christ on the night he was betrayed. It helps us appreciate more gloriously the explosion of light that is Easter. This service will take place Thursday evening at 7:00pm in the downstairs auditorium. 
Good Friday Service
There will be a joint service at Knox Presbyterian Church at 11am. Sheryl Metzgner will be bringing the message.

Easter Sunrise Service

Our Easter sunrise service will be at  Katharine and Karl Nimmert`s residence in the Gold Creek area. The address is 3181 - 49th Street South.  The service will start at 7:15 am (15 minutes earlier than last year due to Easter being later this year.) Hot chocolate and hot cross buns will be supplied after the 30 minute service. Please bring lawn chairs and blankets if needed. This was a very meaningful service last year and we expect the same.  Please contact Laird if there are any questions.

Resurrection Celebration Service

We will of course be rejoicing with great hallelujahs on Easter morning during our regular timed service. (10:30 in case you were wondering) Come early for hot cross buns and coffee