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Tsawwassen First Nation Ministry

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More than 10 years ago, a group of Korean Christians began a food bank ministry on the Tsawwassen First Nation (TFN) lands as an extension of the Ladner Food Bank. In the past, both Pastor Paul and Pastor Ryan have been involved with this ministry, and several years ago my husband, Garry, and I also became involved.

It may not be generally known, but not all those who live on TFN land are actually band members and many live on a very limited income. For those who are members, often any funds distributed by the band are dispersed in periodic lump sums, leading to a cycle of "feast or famine." Sadly, as with many communities across all ethnicities, the effects of drug and alcohol abuse also play a significant role in the lives of many. Our role at the food bank is to assist with communication between the clients and the mainly Korean-speaking workers, to drive clients home with their food, and generally to be a friend to all who come through the doors. This has led to the opportunity to visit and pray with someone who had been hospitalized, to mourn with the community in times of loss, and to pray with others experiencing health concerns.

There is also an active Sunday night ministry led by Terry and Laura Weatherly, Owen and Lucine White, and Garry and myself. We begin with a church service and end the evening with a shared meal. Several individuals and community groups have graciously supplied meals in the past but it is an ongoing need. If you or your group feel this is something you could assist with, please email our team.

We often have few in number on Sundays but we have been greatly encouraged as we have seen God at work in the hearts of those who do attend. Those who once just filled a seat, are now actively engaged in singing praises to God and participating in prayer requests. We have witnessed instances when they have demonstrated caring among themselves by offering to drive a brother to the hospital to visit his sick sister or taking a meal home to a friend who would otherwise go hungry. In other words, they have begun to love like Jesus, and in doing so, we have become a family.

Posted by Brenda Horwood

Being a Dad

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I have been blessed for many years by having my birthday land on, or near, Father's Day. This year, it falls on Father's Day. For me, and perhaps my children, there tends to be a focused reflection on my dual roles of being human and being a dad. This duality is humbling at best and can be painful to consider when I take the time to meditate on it.

I am a fallen human being. I need so much of God's help navigating through this world and my life. Yet, I am a dad to four children who also need lots of help navigating through their worlds. This duality creates tension. I'm a learner, follower, and disciple of Jesus, and I am a leader and mentor to my children. At times, I don't feel competent in either role. But I love following Jesus and I love being a dad.

Being a dad gives me perspective on a life I have been so blessed to have; yet in my humanity, clearly do not deserve. Being a follower of Jesus, and being a dad, I get a small glimpse of just how much our heavenly Father loves me. He gave me children to love in a way that mirrors His love for me. He also gave me children to help me understand just how much I need my heavenly Father. Being a dad gives me something to protect with my life and love with all of my heart. It is a gift from God.

Being a dad is a responsibility and trust that sits around my shoulders. I cannot carry the responsibility alone very well. I need my Father to carry the load. I need my children to point me to my Father. What an amazing God we have that we get to be dads who get to love like He does and to be loved like only He can. Happy Father's Day, dads! We are most blessed!

Posted by Rick Burdett

Why Should Our Children Listen to Their Father?

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We're getting close to celebrating Father's Day at SDBC. On Father's Day Sunday, we're going to have a special car show in our courtyard with some specialty coffee and other elements for fathers to enjoy after the service. This is a great missional opportunity for us to invite fathers and families out to our service.

Father's Day also provides an opportunity to contemplate on fatherhood. In Proverbs 23:22, it says, "Listen to your father who gave you life." This is a bold statement especially for today's culture in which the authority of the father in a household has been seriously challenged. In a world that seems to have a million voices all vying for your child's attention, it's a lot to ask your child to pay close attention to what you have to say. Why should your child have to listen to you rather than what s/he hears from twitter, instastories, reddit, or snapchat? What benefit is there in paying attention to your words? If we fill our mouths with folly and our tongue only learns to speak junk, there's no benefit for our children to listen to us. That's why the bible teaches fathers to talk about the word of God in their homes (Deut. 6:7). Make this a regular and normal thing in your homes, and your child is bound to benefit from your words because you're speaking life-giving truth. You don't always have to open the bible and have a formal bible study session to talk about the word of God (although we should be doing this as well). In everything that we talk about—whether it's money, relationships, education, sports, hobbies, etc.—we can centre our conversations on the truths of God. It may feel awkward for you to do this at first, but once you do this on a regular basis, it will become normal for your family to bring God into your everyday conversations.

In Joshua 24:15, Joshua boldly claims that his family will serve the LORD. He's making a spiritual decision on behalf of his family. In today's culture, he may be criticized for not asking his children for their opinions first and letting them do whatever they want because it's their lives. We value individuality so much that we criticize communal cultures that value unity of direction more than individualistic preferences. I'm not suggesting that collectivist cultures are superior to individualistic cultures; I recognize that there are strengths and weaknesses to each. However, the bible instructs fathers to lead families in the way of the Lord, and to speak biblical truth to children consistently. We cannot shy away from talking about the word of God with our children.

As we celebrate Father's Day, let us not forget our responsibility as fathers to serve our primary mission field—our home. We are missionaries sent by God into our homes. Our children are entrusted to us so that we may raise them up in the ways of the Lord. Let's engage in this greatest privilege with great joy this week. Happy Father's Day!

Posted by Paul Park

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