Great Expectations

My name is Mark Smith. I'm a guy who loves Jesus, His Word, and His Church. I am filled with Great Expectations for what the future will ultimately bring - Matthew 24:14.

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Location: Sudbury, Ontario, Canada

My favourite verse is Psalm 16:11, my other favourite verse is Acts 20:24, my other favourite verse is Habakkuk 3:17-19, and my other favourite verse is Matthew 24:14.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

3 Families

Families are great. Averil and I have three of them. The Smiths, The Bibbys, and The Lansings. We had a great time with the Smiths for a week of Christmas: playing games, laughing, hanging out, eating, etc. Great time. Now we're having a great time with the Bibbys: a second Christmas, more games, laughs, and food. The Bibbys are taking great care of us now that we are "homeless" for a little while. The Lansings are also taking great care of us. For example, when Pastor Jack and I decided to move some big stuff today, Averil suggested that I call a couple people and both were immediately up for dropping whatever they were doing and coming to help. And Chris was in the office and happy to help too. Thanks Jack, Chris, Josh, and Matt for helping move all the big stuff today - and for actually lifting most of the big stuff yourselves. Who knew that a fridge that big could seem small and easy to carry, so much so that you can answer your cell phone while doing it? And who knew that saying, "I'm carrying a fridge right now" could sound so casual and get you off the phone with your mother-in-law so quickly?

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Sunday, December 21, 2008

One Solitary Life

Averil and I drove to Windsor on Saturday to avoid the bad weather that was on the way for Southern Ontario on Sunday. The result was that I missed church at Lansing on Sunday which I'm sad about because I love our church and really miss everything when I'm not there. But church in Windsor was good and I got in on their potluck Christmas lunch afterward. One thing I really liked about being here was getting to hear my Dad preach again and, in particular, being reminded in his sermon about the poem One Solitary Life.

He was born in an obscure village, the child of a peasant. He grew up in another village, where he worked in a carpenter shop until he was 30. Then, for three years, he was an itinerant preacher.

He never wrote a book. He never held an office. He never had a family or owned a home. He didn't go to college. He never lived in a big city. He never traveled 200 miles from the place where he was born. He did none of the things that usually accompany greatness. He had no credentials but himself.

He was only 33 when the tide of public opinion turned against him. His friends ran away. One of them denied him. He was turned over to his enemies and went through the mockery of a trial. He was nailed to a cross between two thieves. While he was dying, his executioners gambled for his garments, the only property he had on earth. When he was dead, he was laid in a borrowed grave, through the pity of a friend.

Twenty centuries have come and gone, and today he is the central figure of the human race. I am well within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched, all the navies that ever sailed, all the parliaments that ever sat, all the kings that ever reigned--put together--have not affected the life of man on this earth as much as that one, solitary life.

Check out the movie version online here.
(or at

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

My Pilgrimage

I was inspired just now by this video clip from John Piper to go on a spiritual pilgrimage to Romans 5:1-11. Way better than visiting Mecca or Kapilavastu, or anywhere else like that. What a trip! What a sacred place.

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Friday, December 12, 2008

The Purpose of Christmas

I'm pretty certain that the person I bought The Purpose of Christmas for does not read my blog or have Facebook so it should be safe to post this. The book arrived in the mail from a couple days ago and when I looked at it, was I ever impressed! I still feel so dumb that I used to ignorantly criticize nearly everything about Rick Warren. This next book of his, as the others, is excellent. I wish I'd bought a dozen copies to give away and next Christmas I certainly will. It looks so attractive, with beautiful pictures of Christmas (maybe I'm just a sucker for picture and the message is clear and straight forward with interesting other stories and stuff. Excellent book. I'm so glad Rick wrote it.


Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Over Enthusiastic Kissing

I didn't know there was such thing! But apparently there is. I read a BCC story here of a girl who went deaf in one ear due to her boyfriend's passionate kiss. Oh how many jokes could be made....



Christ be with me,
Christ within me,
Christ behind me,
Christ before me,
Christ beside me,
Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ in quiet,
Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger

Friday, December 05, 2008

Have a Laugh

Kari sent me this funny video today. Enjoy.

(Once this blog translates into facebook I don't think you can see the video but you can go here to view it:

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Exercise Comic

As I was putting together the booklet I've been working on for the next Training Session at church I came across this comic, which I ended up putting on the title page. It works.

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Monday, December 01, 2008

C.S. Lewis Quote

C. S. Lewis: “I do not believe one can settle how much we ought to give. I am afraid the only safe rule is to give more than we can spare. In other words, if our expenditure on comforts, luxuries, amusement, etc., is up to the standard common among those with the same income as our own, we are probably giving away too little. If our giving does not at all pinch or hamper us, I should say it is too small. There ought to be things we should like to do and cannot because our commitment to giving excludes them.”

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