July was my last post? Really?

Ah, for all my good intentions, I’m not that great at keeping this up.  Meh.

I just re-read my last post – from July 16, about working as an RN again, and the funny thing is, although I’ve worked 340 hours and almost 3 months, I still feel the same!  Who was crazy enough to give me that title RN?  :-)   I’m still loving it, and there is lots of learning still, finding my way ….meeting up with new skills/new challenges etc.  But the best part is I work with amazing colleagues who are ALWAYS willing to answer my questions and help me figure out what I’m doing.  I’m getting more and more comfortable with the routines, with figuring out who’s on call,  paging doctors, being assertive in asking for what I want for my patients,  and making decisions on my own without second guessing myself or confirming with another RN.   It’s great.  I’m getting enough hours, and even have to ignore phone calls from Staffing if I am tired, or worked enough.  It feels like I’m doing more nights, but that’s okay, I like the pace.   A few more months, and I will think about applying to Maternity!

So much has happened since my last post …a Whistler holiday, going back to school for Martin and the kids,  Behind the Screen presentations, a trip to Winnipeg, Alanna’s 19th birthday (!!!), our 20th wedding anniversary …….

For now, I want to just focus on our wedding anniversary.  20 years is special.  Two decades of being married!!  We’ve gone through a lot, ups and downs, lots of health issues, grief, joy ….just like every other couple.   We’re raising 4 blessings from our Lord …and one of these blessings – our 19 year old daughter, made this anniversary very special for us in 2 ways.  First, we were in Winnipeg and came back the day before our anniversary.  While we were in Winnipeg, Alanna asked us to keep Thursday free.  :-)  Cool?  Okay, we’ll do that.  But FIRST, on our actual anniversary, she left a very special gift on our bed for us.  Those of you who know Alanna know that she is gifted linguistically and has a passion for literacy, poems etc.  She writes extremely well.   This poem was written for us:

I see the show of affection a lot, you know. Even if isn’t blatant. I can see their love for each other rise up in the air like dust, and settle firmly between them.

It’s in the way he listens   ~ patiently hearing every emotion laced through the words, strong and vibrant and binding.

It’s in the way she asks how he’s doing – and you know she really wants to know  ~  the good, the bad and the ugly; all the messes he’s tried to contain.

It’s in the way he makes her laugh    ~   and how his eyes light up when he knows he’s succeeded in brightening a part of her day

It’s in the way she holds her his hand   ~  how her slightest touch will send currents of strength and reassurance flooding in

It’s in the way he serves   ~  going above and beyond what is expected, just to help her out, just to ease her burden

It’s in the hope that she gives  ~  standing as the optimistic one for the both of them, daring to dream when he no longer can

She is his lifeline.  He is her solid ground. They are a unit, each unable to breathe without the other.

And perhaps, one day, they will need to learn how;  how to stand alone, without their heartbeat.

But for now, they are a vision.  Glorious, rare, true.

A love traced with passion, scars, tenderness, truth.

A love that has gained durability over the years.

They are a forever deal.  They have made the vows they spoke come to life in front of my very eyes.

They are what I aspire to achieve.

When I am asked “what do you think is true love” my answer is simple.

I simply point to them.  My parents.


What can I say?  She’s special.  :-)

And then she organized a surprise anniversary get together with our families and close friends – to acknowledge our 20th wedding anniversary.  And yes, she managed to surprise us.  And took care of it all with the help of a few people.  :-)

We are blessed.  So so blessed.   Thank you Father God for 20 years together, for 4 amazing children and every other blessing we have!!!

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Working as an RN again!

Well, it’s real.  Or surreal.  Working as an RN again.   I’ve just completed my first two day shifts.  Wednesday was a true unit orientation, in that I spent time with the Patient Care Coordinator and attended a couple morning meetings with her, hung out with Physio and saw what they do on the floor, did lots of computer work setting up accounts, logins, passwords for various things, figured out where things were,  spent time with the Unit Clerk to look at Order Entry and chart make-up …and re-acquainted myself with paperwork, charting, and things like Narc cupboard codes, Night Cupboard (for meds), Education material for patients and the like.

Today was all about patient care and getting back into a routine …. yay!!  I started with two patients, but a KPU BSN student had one of them.  The other patient my mentor had was completely independent, so she took care of her, and then we had an empty bed – waiting for a post-op knee patient to arrive …. so at the end of the day, I had two patients – woot!  One patient post op day 1 after a major abdominal surgery, with PCA for pain management, IV, foley catheter, multiple dressings, a drain and the need to get her up and moving for the day.  Lovely, Christian lady.   And then by 5:30 pm, my second patient arrived – with similar issues, except with knee surgery.

It was overwhelming, and exciting, and  daunting and interesting.  Sometimes I would be shocked to see me sign something with RN behind my name.  Who was crazy enough to give me that RN title back?? :-)    I felt mostly in control (hahaha …. control? who am I kidding?), and other times a bit stressed …thinking, “I only have 2 patients, how am I supposed to do 4?”.       I start two night  shifts tomorrow night – and expect to have three patients the first night, and  four the  final night.   And then, that’s it –  unit orientation is over.  I’ll be on my own after that.

On my own ….and hoping and praying for shifts to come my way.  I don’t have any senority, so I’m not sure how many pre-booked shifts I’m going to get.  I pray that I’ll get some pre-booked so I can plan my days etc accordingly, instead of last minute nights!!   If you’re reading this, and you’re a Believer – would you be open to petitioning God that pre-booked shifts would be offered to me soon?

In the meantime, I’m so thankful to be working as an RN again.  A dream come true!!

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How long?

Is anyone else just as sad/angry/hopeless/concerned about the state of our world, and the dominion Satan seems to have over it?  It’s just so ….depressing.  The depths of depravity humanity can go to.   If you’ve been on Facebook recently, you probably have some idea of what I’m referring to.  Planned Parenthood.  Abortion. Selling of baby parts.  Oh. My. God …and I mean it as a prayer.  Oh my God, what is this world coming to?  How long, O Lord?

The Almighty God.  The Maker of the Universe.  Holy.  Perfect.  Father. Looking at His Creation – people, His children … and watching them spit in His face, doing everything to deny His existence, doing what they can to ….. do what??   Wait, so many don’t even acknowledge His existence.  Therefore, what God requires of His people doesn’t matter.  So, why does this bother me so much?   The blatant disregard for life.  From one end to the other.  It’s  disheartening that our society can’t even see how an unborn baby is …well, a human baby.  A life.  To be protected, cherished and loved.  That selling aborted baby’s body parts is ….acceptable?  Really?   Have we stooped so low?  

Where are we going as a society?  Where will it stop?  All in the name of ….science, or progression, or equality, or …..you name it.  We have gone so far from the 10 commandments that were the basis of our entire law system.  How can we get back to what is right?  What’s God honouring?  Are we so far gone that God has given our nation over to the depravity?

Case in point:  a letter to the editor in the Langley Times today had a man writing about how the fact that TWU lost their appeal in Ontario for the Law School it wants, is good.  Called Christianity and it’s values and beliefs as  rooted in “ancient folklore”.  And then, he goes on to say, and I quote:  “It is ridiculous and suicidal for any modern society to fund those very organizations which promote the repression of others, from gays to women, and consign them to the role of second-class citizens.”    The problem with this is it’s so not true, and based on inaccurate information, and made to sound normal, and good, and right.    I’ve been a Christian all my life, and I’m a woman, and certainly don’t feel repressed or living as a second – class citizen.   The Church is also misunderstood when it comes to the whole gay movements, but I’m not going to get into that here.  The sad part is – this man’s opinion is politically correct, and will receive nods of approval from many others – without ANY regard for the Christians in question.  Or Christian’s “human rights and dignity”.

What’s the answer?  I do not know.  I shudder …and can only pray that we can raise another generation of God-fearing, courageous men and women who aren’t afraid to stand up for the Truth.


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On my way!

So, this past week I began my new career as a returning RN in Fraser Health.  I had to start with Regional Fraser Health orientation, along with Acute Nursing orientation.  Boy, what a difference from 1994 when I first started working.  Back then, there was 0 orientation.  None. Nada. Zilch.  I did my final practicum at Richmond Hospital on a med-surg floor, and when I was close to finishing up, I knocked on the Unit Manager’s door (her name was Jean if I recall correctly!) and told her I was interested in working as a casual.  She hired me pretty darn quickly, because I was working the week after I graduated – before writing my RN exam.  And that was that.  No orientation.

This orientation is unbelievable in comparison!

Monday morning.  Heading to New Westminster – the Royal City – to start orientation at Royal Columbian Hospital.  I had it all mapped out, and knew I needed to get off at Exit 40 – Brunette Ave.  That exit has changed – and as luck would have it, I was behind a big truck, and missed the exit.  GAH!  So I carried on, and got off at the next exit – Gaglardi Way – not having a clue where to go.  I kept up with the flow – and turned off a side street, turned on my Data and GPS, and lo and behold, it took me straight to RCH within 8 minutes, so I wasn’t even late!  Woot!!     (Martin’s joke later was:  ‘if you miss the Brunette exit, is that a blonde moment?” )  Anyways – found the building I was scheduled to be in – the old Sheraton building.  In a lecture room.  With no air conditioning.  It was brutal!!  The morning was all general Fraser Health ….boring stuff, sorry to say.  Who and what FH is, how many hospitals, how many employees, how many surgeries, changes etc etc etc.  Hard to stay awake in that hot, stuff room!!  Thankfully, we got a break half way through.  Did learn some important things – like how to access the online New Employee Orientation 4 hour module (which I can do at home and get paid for!), what FHpulse is, and how to get to it,  how we should be using the Occupational Health Nurse at the Provincial Call Centre, and how to call in sick with EARL.

Then things got more specific:  how FH colour codes precautions for patients (contact, airborne, droplets), info on C-diff and MRSA, and Infectious Processes etc.   After lunch, it really became nursing specific. Whew!  Started off with Nursing Practice and the Health Professions Act, our scope, competency and RN initiated management.  (that’s definitely a big and welcome change from 20 years ago).    We covered Medications  – aka, safe medication administration, the 7 rights, and appropriate documentation,  Looked at Care Sensitive Adverse Events, and how to do Patient Safety and Learning System reports.  We covered MOST (Medical Orders for Scope of Treatment), Code Blue process, and Blood transfusions and specific policies and protocols.   By 4 pm I was exhausted.

Tuesday morning – this time I did NOT miss Brunette exit :-), but had to deal with traffic backed up to the Port Mann, due to an accident past Gaglardi Way.  Day 2 I was supposed to start at 9:45 a.m. instead of 8 a.m.   The first 1 and 45 was for IV initiation.  I understood that I wasn’t booked in, as it was a full session. I spoke with the gal in charge, and explained that I hadn’t received an alternative date, and that I was working on a surgical floor, and she told me to come anyways.  Fabulous – because my original nursing program, as well as the Refresher course did not really cover this.  Back when I worked in Richmond Hospital, there was an IV team, so I didn’t really get to do that either.  So it was a GREAT morning session.  Thankfully we were also in a bigger room with better airflow, so it wasn’t crazy muggy.   Covered communication (SBAR and CHAT), and Documentation.  This has really changed too over the years, so it was great to really soak that in.     We also covered pain management, which really was boring for me, since I have spent many years dealing with pain management in many aspects of life!, Skin and Wound care, Diabetes care,  management, and protocols, as well as the Older Adult — as the presenter said, unless you work in Peds or Maternity, we’re all working with the older population.

And back again, Wednesday morning at 8 a.m.  Easiest drive in. Way more comfortable now with traversing RCH.  Sad it was my last day!  We started with Sepsis focusing on early detection and interventions and saw an incredibly sad video of a young 20 – something woman, who had multiple amputations after going into septic shock after a routine surgery.  Important info!!  Covered TIA and Stroke care/management, Alcohol withdrawal and the CIWA protocol, Chest tubes and care of pneumothorax and pleural effusion, and finally CVC (central venous line) care — which was super important as I have next to no knowledge of this,  Very interesting, and very hands on!!  Really got educated on how to identify what type of CVC (subclavian, jugular, femoral), whether it’s a valved or non valved CVC, open or closed ….PICC lines, and care and maintenance. We practiced changing caps, flushing and dressing changes.  And we also looked at IVAD (implanted venous access device) access and maintenance.

It almost felt like nursing school condensed into 2.5 days of intensity!  But, so glad I was able to do this.   Thursday afternoon I did a 4 hour computer training session – learning the ins and outs of Meditech, entering orders, and accessing patient information. This I did at Surrey hospital — which took almost as long to get to!

Phew!!!   Next up?  My LMH unit orientation next week.   I have two day shifts booked – Wednesday and Thursday, and two night shifts  – Friday and Saturday.

And the best part of all this?  I get paid!!

Very excited to start.  THANK YOU to all who have loved and supported me through this journey – from thinking about whether or not to try apply to the Graduate Nurse Refresher program back in 2013, to applying to the CRNBC for this privilege after being out for 17 years, to getting permission, to getting in to Kwantlen’s program, to starting my Pharmacology course in January 2014, to the Theory course in April 2014, to the Skills portion in October 2014, and starting my preceptorship in February 2015 …. to getting hired at LMH after my interview in June 2015.  God is good – and so are all of you!!

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Concussions …and what we’re learning

Everyone, including us, seems to think that a concussion is a “knock to the head” – resulting in a bruised brain.  But it’s so much more complex than that.

Everyone knows what the symptoms are.  Here’s a list of symptoms from the Mayo Clinic website:

Signs and symptoms of a concussion may include:

  • Headache or a feeling of pressure in the head
  • Temporary loss of consciousness
  • Confusion or feeling as if in a fog
  • Amnesia surrounding the traumatic event
  • Dizziness or “seeing stars”
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Slurred speech
  • Delayed response to questions
  • Appearing dazed
  • Fatigue

What most people don’t realize is how different people can have different symptoms, that show up at different times in response to different stimuli.   And because it’s an “invisible” injury, most people don’t appreciate what a concussed individual is dealing with.

Since Braden has suffered two concussions recently, I’d like to clear up a few things.  Yes, our non-athletic kid has had all kinds of injuries and surgeries etc.  Hernia repair, two hip surgeries, and now 2 concussions.

First a bit of history:  (and this is in a nut-shell!) Friday March 13, while playing soccer during lunchtime, he got hit in the face/side of the head at close range by one of his buddies.  Wham. Knocked him out cold – according to the kids there he was out for approx 30 seconds, so not long, but long enough that when he came to, he had zero recollection of what happened and how he got there.  Amnesia.  He was dizzy, nauseous and his vision was hazy/blurred.   A visit to the ER, a CT scan to rule out any internal bleeding, and a diagnosis of concussion.  Sent home with strict instructions to do nothing until vision returned to normal.  Lay in a dark, calm room.  Do nothing.  In about 5 days his vision returned to normal, but a persistent headache set in.   We let him return to normal activities – probably too soon in retrospect.  Went back to school once spring break was over.  He experienced some concentration issues, moodiness, irritability, and fatigue.  But we figured it would take time.   Enter Monday April 27th.  Scorekeeping in the gym for his PE class. Sitting in the bleachers!!!!  Got hit on the same side of the head AGAIN.  No loss of consciousness, but it did affect his vision and headache immediately.  He went to work that afternoon, and experienced visual and auditory hallucinations.  What followed that week was nothing short of concerning — confusion, inability to speak coherent sentences, irritability +++, down mood, extreme fatigue and worsening headaches.   He was not himself AT ALL.

We pulled him off all activities again, and I made an appt for him to be seen by the Fraser Health Concussion clinic.   They helped us see what a concussion actually was (a brain that is chemically/neurologically messed up) – and that the brain has a hard time taking all the sensory input and making sense of it all.   We received a “protocol” to follow, and a referral to GF Strong Rehab Concussion Centre for the school issue.  We had a fantastic school liason who was our strongest advocate and educated staff about his needs and limitations.

But still his headaches persisted ~ even with following protocol, half days at school, reduced time on electronics etc.

We have learned over time what affects his headaches negatively.  And it’s not the same for all kids.  He has a huge problem with one on one conversation/concentration, and with large groups of people/noise.   Some things, like playing Xbox don’t negatively affect him because that relaxes him, releases endorphins.  He does experience an increase in headache afterwards, but not during.   Which makes it challenging for him to back off and allow his brain to rest.     Conversation with a group of friends – you know, when they just are hanging around and chatting ….he can handle that, although not necessarily able to follow conversations entirely.   Church or school assemblies are tough.  He did both recently – he attended the year end school assembly (with noise cancelling headphones) and experienced an increase in headache, and just last Sunday made it through the second service at church (also with noise cancelling headphones!) – but his headache went from a 2/3 to an 8 out of 10.  Not good!!

Sometimes he looks fine, and is his “old” self, joking, teasing siblings, etc etc. Other times you can see it all over him.   Some classes he’s fine, other’s he’s not.  For instance, Socials/Bible/Digital Media – classes he does well in, don’t require as much concentration and he can cope with.  Math and french?  Well let’s just say, he can’t do them right now. Even had a panic attack in math class. Experienced a huge increase in headache, inability to think straight …

Recently met up with a lady who’s 15 year old daughter has suffered several concussions, and they’ve been seeing specialists at the Advanced Concussion Clinic in Vancouver.  Guess what?   The dark room, no activity, rest and nap …. NOT helping the brain rest or recover.   Sigh.  I learned a lot from Monika and her daughter and what they’re learning too.   It has to do with how the brain receives signals – especially through the tracking of the eyes – and that a brain injury needs exercise to recover.   And patience.  And a recognition that his symptoms are real,  even if we can’t see it.

So, if you see him acting normally, it’s likely that he is either masking what he’s feeling or actually having a good day.  And if he has a good hour or good day today, it may not be so tomorrow.  Concussions can take months to recover from – especially when you consider it’s actually a brain injury.  Not a bruise.  Not just a knock to the head.   Symptoms can go away for a while, and then come back again.   It takes a lot for a brain to heal and start functioning normally again.  And it’s not easy for a teenager to take “brain breaks”, close the eyes, do deep breathing …. heck, it’s hard for adults.

We really want to take him to the Advanced Concussion clinic …but I kinda need a job first.  It’s a private clinic, and will cost close to $600 by the time we’re done.   I will take donations! :-)

If you remember, please pray for him.  Having hip surgery was easier – crutches and staples in the skin are very physical.   People can see and appreciate how long the healing takes.   But a concussion – and for him, a double whammy …. is invisible and people simply don’t understand.

Thanks for reading!



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New approach ~ further thoughts

I really enjoyed reading all the comments that my previous blog post “Time for a new approach?” generated, both on the blog site itself, and on facebook. It got me thinking a bit further, and I’d like to tackle a few other things that came up along the way.

One thing that came up from multiple people was the truth that dealing with the “heart” issues of children begins in the home. I don’t doubt that or disagree with it. It MUST be in the home. After all, as parents, we are given the God-given responsibility to train up our children. We make some pretty serious vows at their baptism – in front of God and the congregation. As parents, we set the example. I like how a commenter put it – if we’re talking trash, not praying, etc …we can’t really expect anything different from our children. And certainly, we are responsible to guide them and direct them through life and the vast array of choices ahead of them.

I listened to a Focus on the Family broadcast while out for a walk today. The speaker there really stressed that we can lay a good foundation for our children, but at the end of the day, THEY are responsible for their choices, for the friends they choose, for the crowd they run with, for the faith they’ve been taught. This comes down to parenting the heart issues, not behaviour modification. It shouldn’t be about “don’t do this, don’t do that, do this, do that ….. or else”. It should be about raising kids to LOVE God and to want to live for him. It’s about grace and mercy when they mess up – because face it, we ALL mess up, from the baby to the 100 year old. It’s the difference between parenting with grace and legalism.

When we as parents embark on this journey, we ultimately start making decisions about how to do this thing. How we’re going to teach them, train them, guide them. And two of the very biggest choices we make are church and school.

It is in THAT vein, that I write concerned about how we are doing things. Church and school is an extension of the home. Therefore, we really shouldn’t be lackadaisical or dismissive of what is happening there with our kids. We need to be vitally involved and heavily invested in what’s going on there.

Here in the the Fraser valley, our schools have a great and good emphasis on the faith of our kids. But I daresay it doesn’t feel like the priority. There is a lot to be said for how we view academics and sports …and a lot more to be said for how we should incorporate a Biblical worldview — not just in Bible class, but in every class. But let’s START in Bible class. After all, it’s a Christian school.

In a conversation a while back, one mom stated that she felt like we don’t set the bar high enough for our youth. I totally agree. When it comes to the youth and their choices, their activities …. I often hear statements like:

~ they’re just kids
~ we were young once, and we’re fine now
~ just let them have their fun
~ who cares if they drink alcohol as minors? as long as they’re safe
~ let them sow their “wild oats” – get it out of their system

Why is this okay? Why are not a bit alarmed at this attitude? I’m not suggesting that our goal is :  curb all bad behaviour – far from it.   I AM suggesting that perhaps we can create more an atmosphere of Christian living if there’s more of an emphasis on engaging the youth in what matters to them.

Why is Stepping Stones camp such a success? Because they engage the kids in what matters to them. But often those kids, who have such transforming weeks, come back into the normalcy of life, and they can’t keep it up because it’s not our culture.

Again, I suggest: let’s look at HOW we are doing Catechism. This is a plea to ALL pastors: PLEASE don’t make it ANOTHER classroom with homework, worksheets and tests. It should be about reaching their HEARTS and teaching them how to live for Christ in the culture, in their lives ….and no, I’m not suggesting that head knowledge doesn’t matter. It absolutely does.   But is memorizing the catechism crucial for changing hearts and challenging kids to live for Christ day to day?  It didn’t in my day, and I don’t think it does now.   Is learning the catechism important to our knowledge of good doctrine?  Absolutely.  But let’s not forget – we hear it every Sunday too.

How about Youth groups? Where is the leadership?  Where is the positive peer environment that makes it NOT okay to drink on the weekends, smoke pot, have sex with your current partner …where kids don’t dare say anything to their peers for fear of being labeled a jerk or a “holier – than – thou” person?   Why do PARENTS allow drinking among teens in high school?   How come it can be so difficult for kids to live for Christ every day?

Bible classes for teens? No more title pages!! Let’s make it about the heart and what matters …. delving into proving that Christ lived, looking at how He changes lives, looking at the culture and challenging our youth to take a stand – creating positive peer environments! Look at apologetics, and teach the youth how to defend their faith.  Study Scripture using the wisdom of Biblical scholars like Ravi Zacharias, RC Sproul ….. let’s challenge our kids!

I don’t claim to have all the answers. All I know is that the status quo should not remain the status quo. We need to AND can do better.

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Time for a new approach?

I love our church.  I love our schools.  I love the Reformed faith, our heritage, and everything I’ve learned to cherish and love.  I’m grateful for being raised in the Christian faith, for Christian education and for having the freedom to do this.  I’m absolutely thrilled that my kids get to go to the same schools I did, and to know the love of Jesus Christ, to be  educated in the truths of the Word, to know the Creeds and Confessions as well as the Bible stories both Old and New Testament.

Do you sense a big BUT?

There’s something that has bothered me all my adult life.  We are very focused on head knowledge.  We try to make sure our children know all the important stories, all about Jesus’ life in the Gospels, Paul’s missionary journeys in Acts, we try to make sure that Church History is taught – that kids know all about the Reformation and the important men and women there, and finally, there is a heavy emphasis on learning the Catechism. And all this is good. Important. There is nothing wrong with this.  Not at all.  

But are we paying enough attention in our churches and schools to our children’s hearts? Are we showing them what a personal relationship with Jesus Christ looks like?  Are we demonstrating what commitment means?  What a Christian lifestyle is about?

Now, I know there are aspects of this in both our churches and schools.  And I know, it starts in the home.  There are many great things being done for our kids – there is Gems and Cadets.  There is Youth Light.  And I don’t want to give the idea that I believe there is NO heart involved.  There are amazing teachers, leaders, elders and pastors.

I am looking at our teenagers though, for the most part.  They come into high school having had 7 years (if you count K) in elementary school learning Bible stories as mentioned above, as well as Church History.  That then continues in High School …all over again.   They start attending Catechism classes in Grade 8 (for most churches) – and it’s basically just another (school) class with tests, homework and memorization.  Kids mostly find it drudgery.  Most kids do not look forward to this eagerly.  It’s seen as another “gotta do it”.  They attend Catechism for 6 years – doing all the Lord’s Days over and over, sometimes taking a side trip in to the Belgic Confession or the Canons of Dordt.  And then, yes, they “graduate” in year 5 or 6 doing Profession of Faith, and then it’s over.

And I know that kids are the same throughout generations.  Their brains haven’t evolved to be smarter, or more focused, or less of those things.  Kids are the same.  And if what we went through was good enough for us, what’s wrong with it today?  Our kids will be fine …they’ll mature, because, hey, we did.  Right?  Kids will be kids.  So, let’s just let everything be status quo.

But why not consider changing things up a bit?  Thinking outside the box?  Let’s think about this …. most of us are blessed enough to be raised in the the church, and then be blessed enough to raise our kids the same way.  Our children are, for the most part, raised on Bible stories, Bible songs ….at home, in VBS, in Story Hour, Little Lambs …and then through Elementary school.   As they grow, many of the stories they know from the Bible are further explained in sermons off the pulpit.   So, why not change the focus in High School?  What about changing the focus to living the Christian faith?

I would love to see our high school kids being taught via the Bible curriculum, what the Christian life looks like.   What about studying the book “The Case for Christ”.  “The Case for Faith” by Lee Strobel.    What about Randy Alcorn’s book “Heaven”?   What about looking at books written by RC Sproul?  Piper?  Delving into teen – life related books – taking our culture and making it make sense?

Church related Catechism classes – maybe we could see Grades 8 and 9 being taken through the Catechism for a good grasp on it — but then spending the remaining years on Apologetics?  Teaching our kids perhaps, how to defend the faith?  Teaching them what it is to witness to the world?   Showing kids what it means to be on fire for Christ? Excited to live their lives day by day “Coram Deo“?

Why all this?   Well, what is a common refrain I hear among adults today?  “I don’t know how to explain the Gospel” “I can’t witness/evangelize…I’m not good at that“.

Shouldn’t we try to change that with the next generation?  The next leaders, shakers and movers?

Shouldn’t we be concerned that some of our kids are doing Profession of Faith because the rest of their peers are, or because it’s expected now?  Because they can’t wait to be done Catechism classes and move on?   That perhaps when they do Profession of Faith they actually are NOT committed to Christ?     Shouldn’t we be concerned that it IS a fact that kids know exactly what we want to hear, know what to say in an interview with Consistory prior to Profession of Faith, just because it’s head knowledge …and knowing their lifestyle choices don’t match up?    That, after doing Profession of Faith, these minors are drinking alcohol,  sleeping with their boy/girl friends and not caring one bit?    I can hear some of you now:  “It’s no different than when we were kids.  And they’re just kids. They’ll grow out of it. It’s not a big deal”.    REALLY?   Can you picture saying that to the face of our Father in Heaven?  No?  I wonder why …..

We NEED to consider a better way to train up our children in the way they should go.  I truly believe we can do a better job.  It’s a shame when Highschool kids ASKED to be taught apologetics in Grade 12 Bible, but were denied, and instead spent time colouring title pages.

It will mean serious curriculum review.  It will mean CHANGE in the way we do Catechism,  in the way we look at how we get kids ready for Profession of Faith, it may mean better communication between pastors and elders, school teachers and friends.  It may mean re-looking what’s being “taught” in Gems, Cadets, Youth Light …. looking at more mentorship.

The children and youth ARE our future – our church’s future.  Isn’t it worth a discussion?  With friends?  With elders?  With pastors?  With youth leaders?  

REQUEST:  Before you fire off a response -either for or against, I ask that you take at least 24 hours to think about this first.  Please keep all comments respectful and fair. No attacking, or comments will be deleted.

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