Sunday, November 25, 2007

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...

It's snowing!!

Snow is a necessary part of any Canadian prairie winter. It comes every year without fail and usually sticks around for longer than anyone really wants.

But, by the end of November, all the leaves are gone from the trees and the city just looks brown and dirty.

Now the snow is coming to make everything pretty and it is here just in time for advent.

There is something really great about the snow that comes and make everything seem clean. It reminds me of Isaiah 1:14, which says, "though your sins are as scarlet, I will make them as white as snow."

Seeing the snow come down means a fresh start. It means the grime of the world is wiped out and replaced with a pristine white beauty. In the same way, God takes our grime and dirt and, with his grace, offers us a clean, fresh slate.

Here's to a clean, fresh slate for you this winter!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


Could a Harvard MBA be in my future?

Yesterday I left work early to drive down to Calgary and attend an info session for the Harvard MBA program. I left feeling as though I would really, really like to go to Harvard Business School.

Of course, I am merely average, and most people that get into Harvard are more than merely average. But perhaps if I can up my game, or something, then I will be able to get in. I suppose the first obstacle will be the GMAT (Graduate Management Admissions Test). If I can ace the GMAT, that will definitely improve my odds. Beyond that, if I can step things up at work, then maybe I can get a good reference and some good points to put on the resume.

I don't know why I'm saying this... I imagine it would be all well and good if I got an MBA from any old school. I could secretly apply to Harvard and if I didn't get in (which, to be fair, is a likely outcome) and only got into a good school, then that would still be good.

But I really want to go to Harvard...

Monday, June 11, 2007

Why Rent Controls are STOOPID

Alright, so my intentional misspelling of the word stupid is probably ruining my credibility, but I don't care.

The problem in Alberta right now is NOT that rent is too high. Yes, I know that is a problem, but it is a manifestation of something deeper. Using rent control to solve the housing crisis in Edmonton is like putting a band-aid on a leg to stop the bleeding... when an artery has been gashed.

The problem is that there is not enough housing. And enforcing rent control will actually make this problem WORSE because it will lower the supply of rental housing. There are two causes of this: 1) owners of rental properties will sell them off as condos because the return on their investment isn't as high and real estate is at a premium. 2) People like me, who can stay at home for a few months and wait until the madness subsides, will find it feasible to take a one-bedroom apartment to ourselves rather than sharing a two- or three-bedroom with roommates.

Anyway, my advice to all the people who are experiencing the pain of high rents:

Instead of petitioning the government, ask for subsidies to cover the gaps, because it is a better temporary solution than rent controls.

Friday, May 25, 2007


It is 5:15 p.m. on Friday afternoon and I am sitting in my cubicle, still at work. Of course, as you can tell from this blog being published, I am not actually working, but waiting to get picked up.

Over the course of even the past year, I have had a multitude of dreams regarding my future career path. And every once in a while, I wonder if there is something wrong with this constantly changing vision of my life. But lately, I think I made a decision - the direction is more important than the destination.

A year and a half ago, I wanted to eventually become a CEO, and be a leader in social responsibility. A year ago, I refined that that to becoming a business consultant. And now, as of the last few weeks being in my job, I decided that I want to be a business consultant dealing specifically with strategy, and specializing in social responsibility as strategy.

The reason that I don't think it really matters to I keep changing my focus (and probably will continue to do so for a while!) is that it hasn't changed my direction. On the contrary, in heading down a certain direction, I learn more about myself and my passions and my interests and skill set.

For a long time, it was discouraging to not know where I was going, or how to get there. But over time, I really just kept trusting God for the next step, and He always delivered, even if it wasn't a big picture of the future, the next step was always evident.

It was exactly a month ago that I came to Magna IV, had my interview, and said to my friends, "this is my dream job, I really hope they hire me." I didn't know exactly what it entailed, but I knew it was the right direction.

So, I guess the moral of this long, rambly blog is that sometimes we don't need to see very far down the path to get where we need to go. We only need to know the direction and the next step. Life was never meant to be about the destination, so enjoy the journey.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Frustrations Designed to Provoke Thought

Several frustrations have been on my mind lately, and I need to cleanse my mind and get them out there. Hopefully you can either relate and see hope that you are not alone, OR you can help me get out of this rut I am in.


Does anyone else find it hard to get over the past? We go through these sucky events in our lives, and the consequences of them creep into our present, and suddenly we realize that we are moderately messed up in our view of the world or ourselves or whatever.

So how do we get over it? How do we get past our irrational fears?


For years and years and years, I dreamed of the day I would graduate from university and get a real job. But now that I'm there, even though I do love my job, it doesn't give the type of satisfaction that I was expecting. And my frustration is not with the lack of satisfaction I have from becoming an official "career girl," it is more with the fact that I thought that contentment resided in something outside of God.

You know, there are SO many things that we think will complete our lives and give us that ever elusive "happiness." But true contentment only comes from a relationship with God. And it frustrates me that I continually think I am going to find it elsewhere! Because now that I am working, there are so many other FUTURE events that I have my sights set on (getting a car, moving out, getting my MBA - yeah, more school, crazy me) that I still see contentment and happiness as something in the future.

But, as I know in my head, I have everything I need to be content right now. And I've always had it.

The frustration comes from the fact that my heart doesn't always listen to my head on such matters. And as long as I think that happiness and contentment reside somewhere other than now, that is exactly where they will be. Not here, not now. Always tomorrow...

Tuesday, May 01, 2007


So, I usually attempt to refrain from being self-indulgent on my blog, but today I figured I would use this as an outlet for sharing the recent news of the life-changing events of my life.

Last Monday, I wrote the last final exam of my Bachelor of Commerce degree.

Today I accepted a position at an engineering firm as a business planner. My official title is "Management Assistant," and my job will consist of driving along some changes at the firm. I know that is not a great description, but if you are interested in hearing more, just send me an email and I can digress!

Eight years out of high school, I have my first official "real" job!

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Poverty of a Different Kind

Watching "The Corporation" today, I tried to balance my normal infuriating reaction with some semblance of openness toward the message. While there were some things that I still think are way off base, there was one conclusion that I drew from the film:

We, in North America, live in poverty.

It's not the same kind of poverty that you see in places that suffer from disease and malnourishment. Ours is a poverty of spirit. It's a poverty of perpetual hunger for more. Emile Durkheim, a prominent French sociologist, said something to the effect of "a need fulfilled only leads to the desire for more." We live in a culture that is never satisfied... we always want more profits, higher productivity, better cars, bigger houses...

The tragic part of all this is that it comes at the expense of those who live in a more tangible kind of poverty. Corporations in North America benefit from the cheap labour of those who work simply to afford food for their families... and many work for less than that. We can judge the corporations who do that as evil, but who supports them? Who benefits from the lower prices? Or, who seeks after the prestige of certain brands?

The cry of my heart these days is why can I not simply be content. Why must I always want more, need more?

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Next Step...

It's amazing how introspective and nostalgic we become at the end of one stage of our journey. In just 30 days, I will write the last exam of my undergraduate degree, and then I will officially begin my career. I think I've dreamed of this time for pretty much my whole life, but now that it's coming, it just seems scary and suddenly the things I have always seen as frustrating (papers, exams, group projects) become comforting in their familiarity.

Conversely, the things I have always looked forward to, such as moving out of my parents' house, become these overwhelming decisions... should I get a roommate? If I do, who should I live with?

Life seems to be the balance of the unknown and the comforting. Being in Edmonton right now, I almost feel trapped and anxious to leave. But as I talk to people who are off having their adventures in Europe, I hear about a lot of homesickness. So, maybe rather than itching to get out, I should be grateful for all I have here.

My theory on heaven is that it will be a place where we are always having an adventure, but have all the comforts of home. Downhere has a hidden track with the lyrics "remind us that we have not reached home." I've always appreciated that when life is scary, confusing or just plain unpleasant. This is not the end of the journey.

Wow, I don't know how I got there from graduation. I am living in exciting times, but am also really scared because I don't know what my life will look like in a month and a half.

If anyone knows of a management consulting firm looking for a fresh undergraduate lackey to train as a consultant... please let me know!

Tuesday, March 06, 2007


When I was mentally creating this blog post earlier in my head, it was going to be about procrastination. I have a group presentation in just over 2 hours and another group project due tomorrow. As I was working on both of those things earlier (yes, simultaneously, since I'm a multi-tasker), I was going to take a "break" to talk about how bad I am for procrastinating.

But, then, I realized that even if I decided to put off doing those tasks, I was still going to have to do them later. That's the problem with procrastination - it usually creates bigger problems in the long-run and never actually enables you to avoid work.

So then I got to thinking about how we humans are so focussed on the short-term that we often make decisions that seriously hamper our long-terms. I have been thinking about this a lot lately as Switchfoot often examines the tension between living for today and living in light of eternity. To further compound that, in a study on Ephesians 3 last week we talked about how different our lives would look if we could truly live in knowledge of God's power and his ability to do "immeasurably more than all we can ask or imagine."

As you can now see, I chose not to procrastinate in my studies to post a blog. Instead, I worked through it and now that I have finished what I wanted to do, I am posting a blog guilt-free.

Honestly, I can't imagine how much different my life would be if I could get over my myopia and develop long-term vision.

Saturday, February 24, 2007


"I've heard that we only use a small part of our brain. Maybe our soul is the same way. And maybe we're half asleep most of our lives, simply reacting to the stimulus our brain receives. Action, true action is rare indeed." - Jon Foreman, lead singer of Switchfoot

Having seen Switchfoot twice in concert over the last week, I've been feeling challenged to conquer the status quo. I think our lives can easily pass by without us really stepping in and doing anything to make them meaningful. We keep thinking that tomorrow is when we are going to change the world, not today. And Tomorrow comes, but when it does, it becomes Today, and yet another excuse not to do anything.

The world needs people who are willing to say, "what's going on is not acceptable." To quasi-quote Bono, "it's not okay that there are children dying of hunger in an age of plenty." But what can we do? I used to think it was enough to care, but I'm starting to wonder if there must be something else.

Awareness is important, too. After all, even if I did decide to do all I could about the AIDS crisis in Africa, on my own, it is not nearly as much as we could collectively accomplish. And if no one knows what is happening, then they can't join in the fight.

Anyway, I am left in the middle of the same struggle I was in when I began writing. What can we do Today about the struggles of the world? How do I prevent my life from merely passing me by... enjoying a career and all the other niceties of life, but never really accomplishing anything of consequence?

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

It's Cold Outside

The wind outside is whistling through the trees and it just sounds like tundra. Kind of what you would expect from such movies as "The Day After Tomorrow." I'm still not sure what makes that blog-worthy, but somehow this snap of bitter cold weather just seems dreary. As I made the long trek from Windsor Car Park to the Business building, my wet hair literally became frozen chunks. Luckily by now, after three days of this, I decided to take advantage of that wonderful invention we Canucks call "the toque."

It's not even THAT cold. I've survived spells of -35, and it's only -18 (but feels like -30).

As I apply for jobs, I'm definitely seeing the appeal of heading for warmer ground. In business we learn that there are always tradeoffs, but I wonder what tradeoff there could possibly be for warmer weather?

Since I know there are relatives that read my blog, I suppose now is a good a time as any to update you on my post-graduation plans. I finish exams on April 23, and then I am done my undergraduate degree! From there, I plan on finding a job in a consulting firm, where they will train me to be a consultant. I'll do that for a few years before heading off to complete my MBA, get my CMC (Certified Management Consultant) and continue consulting. At some point in time I may specialize, but I don't have to worry about that now. I've applied for jobs in Edmonton, Toronto, London (UK), San Francisco, Seattle and LA. Sorry... not Winnipeg. ;-)

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Oh, How We Cheat Ourselves

About a year and a half ago, when I first started Business school, we talked about iPods in all my classes. Being a definite music lover, I started to develop a desire to get my own iPod. When we learned about the different terms for people who adopt products at different stages in my Marketing class, and the term for people who didn't get new products for a while was "laggards," that was the last straw. I decided I needed an iPod.

At the time, Telus had a deal where if you buy a new phone, you can get a new iPod on the same day for $50 off. My phone was starting to wear out, and couldn't keep its charge, so I decided that I would take advantage of the deal. Since I couldn't afford the 30 GB iPod, I figured I would get a nano.

When it got time to actually pay for the iPod, I suddenly realized that it probably wasn't the best use of my money, and didn't buy it.

That Christmas, I got a 30 GB iPod as a gift.

This may seem like a lame story, but I'm retelling it because it represents something that God has been teaching me lately. I'm at a place in my life where I'm getting really close to the next "stage" and I don't know what's coming. As a result, there are so many ways that I try to rush ahead of God and figure out what He's doing. This leaves me feeling discontent and unsatisfied.

God doesn't want me to go out and get only a partial version of what He has for me. He wants me to be patient and let Him give me the very best, in His timing. When we try to rush ahead of God, we only cheat ourselves. But if we are patient, we not only get something that is infinitely better, we also get to be content and hopeful in the meantime.

Wait on God. It's worth it.

Sunday, January 28, 2007


Last night I watched "The Prestige" and it was a highly fascinating movie. Without revealing too much of the plot, the basic gist of the movie is two magicians who were once friends and are now rivals trying to out-do each other and get each other back for past wrongs.

The two magicians have two obsessions: figure out how the other does his illusions and out-do him, and exact revenge for whatever wrong was last commited by the other. In the process of living out these obsessions, the two magicians ruin their families, lives and careers.

Maybe there was something to when God said, "revenge is mine." Maybe in the process of trying to prove ourselves right, we ultimately end up damaging ourselves most of all.

Bono once said something to the effect of, "most of the world believes in karma, but I believe in grace, because I'm utterly dependent on it." I think the essence of that statement speaks a relevant truth: we should be more obsessed with grace than with revenge.

If you take the time to think about times when others have hurt you, I'm sure that things will come to mind. But, if you think about the times when you have hurt others, it probably is a much longer list. So, when you think about revenge and justice, maybe it's not such a good thing...

Maybe you are more utterly dependent on grace than you realize.

Monday, January 22, 2007


Do you ever think that maybe the person you lie to most is yourself?

This thought is the culmination of various random conversations I've had over the past little while.

- A debate about the Christian music industry.
- A discussion board topic in which Christians started an argument with those who didn't share their faith.
- A discussion about the roots of Christianity.
- Reading the lyrics from the song of a guy who sent me a message through mySpace.

The final one was the clincher. I can't remember the artist's name, and I didn't read the lyrics thoroughly, but the gist was that the artist was doubting if there was a God because of the hurt he'd experienced.

For me, God has always been a given. I really have been going to church since before I was born. (Since my mom went, and I was inside her.) Growing up in Sunday School, they don't really expose you to atheistic views. And all through the years, I was a devout church-goer, youth-group-attender.

That's my background. And, just to set the record straight, I absolutely believe in God, and I believe the Bible is God's Words to me.

But I don't think it ends there. I think that being real with ourselves and real with God should be an ongoing part of our lives. God never intended for us to read the whole Bible, believe that He exists and then go on with our lives, blindly trusting Him.

Abraham had a child with his wife's maidservant because He didn't think God would provide him with a son through his wife. But he kept talking to God, and eventually his wife became pregnant. Abraham was called the "father of many nations" and is an epic character in the Bible.

Jacob wrestled with God. Can you believe that someone had the nerve to wrestle with God? Guess what happened... God changed his name to Israel, and he became the father of the very nation that still exists to this day.

Peter denied Jesus. When Jesus needed him most, he told everyone that he didn't know Jesus. Fifty or so days later, he was risking his life preaching to over 2000 people.

These are just a few of the stories of people who lived lives of examined faith. They struggled and wrestled and screwed up, but God rewarded them for having the courage to do so.

One of the things that bothers me most about Christians today is that we accept what we know, pocket it into our minds, and go on with our lives. We're afraid to hurt, afraid to doubt, afraid to question.

But God wants us to be honest. Sometimes we can honestly say that things are hunky dory. But sometimes they aren't.

Be real with yourself. Be real with God.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Why Does Nobody Tell Them?

Tonight was the season premiere of American Idol.

It's not a show that I've ever really followed, but I find the auditions to be incredibly amusing. And usually I miss them, but today, because it was supposed to be a Gilmore Girls night, I found myself at the TV and lucked out.

Tonight I learned something about truth - it's a good thing. There were a great many people who found themselves on national TV tonight who probably wished that someone would have told them.

Take, for example, the juggling/dancing/trying to sing boy. He sang a very off-key rendition of some very old Michael W Smith song WHILE doing the juggling sticks thing. His voice was awful. Did no one hear him sing? Was there no one in his life who had the heart to tell him maybe he should stick with something else?

Then there was the Wizard of Oz girl. She had a poster of the Yellow Brick Road and did some weird lion thing. Did no one see her making the poster? A sibling? Parent? Roommate? Was there no one in her life who could tell her that she should just sing a normal song?

And finally, one of my personal favourites, an American Idol superfan. She was a vocal performance major in college, and for her song, she chose to sing "Under Pressure." Yes, the song by Queen and David Bowie. Why, oh why, did no one suggest an alternative?

There is no way to determine why each of these people managed to get on TV to make embarassments of themselves. Perhaps they had some filtering people in their lives and simply chose to ignore them. Maybe we should look inwardly and see if there is anything that is turning off those filters in our own lives.

Tonight I have no answers. Just questions.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Head Over Heels

Head Over Heels (In This Life)

Head over here and take me
Head over heels and aching
When I told you I was yours
I was yours

In this life, you’re the one place I call home
In this life, you’re the feeling I belong
In this life, you’re the flower and the thorn
You’re everything that’s fair in love and war

I’m coming down like a gunshot
In all these battles I’ve fought
You’re the mark I’m aiming for
I was yours

Head over heels

In this life I’m stubborn to the core
In this life I’ve been burning after more
We both know what these open arms are for
You’re everything that’s fair

In this life, you’re my only one


These are the lyrics from the song Head Over Heels from the latest album by Switchfoot, Oh! Gravity.

They are taken directly from

Monday, January 08, 2007


Ever since a telemarketer pulled me from the middle of my REM sleep this morning, I've felt tired.

There are about 85 minutes until the official start of my very last semester of school. Instead of relishing in the freedom of 85 minutes with no textbook readings, assignments, studying or group projects, I have an extra curricular project which I must scramble to finish.


Maybe I'm not so much tired as I am wishing I could find out how my dream ended.

Stupid telemarketers.