Parking At Big Valley Church, South of Stettler. Alberta.
by Dick Hunt, Friday, December 6th, 2013.
One of the Churches in which I served in Alberta from 1957 to 1964 was located at the top of the hill above the town. The parking area was on a gentle downward slope above the building. Since I was normally there before the other folks, I was boxed in by the other vehicles. Invariably, with snow and ice on the slope, the drivers above me got stuck and in the process of trying to get away simply dug the rear tires down into a trough. I regularly got in their cars, rocked them back and forth and gently backed them away from the building so I could get them away. They thought I had a secret while all I had was a light foot on the accelerator.
It seems an appropriate time to share the light foot application secret, since it makes the difference between safety and being stuck, or in the ditch, or into another vehicle or a lamp post or a tree. It is just good common sense to match the speed to the conditions and learn to be light on the gas pedal and the brakes. The tendency with many drivers is that when the traction is worst the more they panic and that is when the troubles start.
One Easter Sunday when Ruth and I started off for Vancouver just after noon from Williams Lake, we were flagged down on the highway just before a curve in the road and gently slowed down to find an almost total jam in the road ahead of us. There were vehicles in the ditch and and all over the road. Many of those in the ditch were four wheel drive, the drivers of which were badly overconfident of the safety of their units. We didn’t hit anybody.
The trick is to match the power applied to the driving wheels to the traction beneath the wheels. Likewise, the front wheels can only guide the vehicle when given the opportunity to grip what is beneath them on the road and when the speed is matched to the conditions. The problem is that almost everyone drives too fast and the really bad pile ups are often caused by one driver who is in too much of a hurry. I recall one stormy day just north of Calgary with a strong cross wind from the west blowing across the highway, when one cow decided to walk across the road. The result was a pile up of over 100 cars and some fatalities.
Closer to home, Ruth and I had just visited old friends at a home in Langley City on a Boxing day some years ago and started off to return via Mission after sundown. Within a few moments we were faced with total and unnanounced whiteout conditions. The Police were stopping all vehicles at the Abbotsford exit. We entered the off highway route, but missed the lane and ended up on the road to Sumas, Washington. Ruth watched the road on the right to warn me of the adjacent ditch and in almost total whiteout conditions, we carefully rolled to a stop at the U.S. Border station. We entered the U.S. and spent the night at a nearby hotel. The next morning we made our way home to Maple Ridge under sunny skies.
I realize of course that we often owe our life and safety to the fact that our merciful God is lovingly taking care of us. But we have tried to make His job less difficult by taking care to practice safe driving speeds and light pressure on the pedals. And we drive for the others too.
December 7, 2013
Parking At Big Valley Church, South of Stettler. Alberta.
December 2, 2013
The Four By Fours.;
by Dick Hunt, November 29th, 2013.
When I was a boy, a four by four was a post, 4 inches by 4 inches by whatever length. And it was still a post for my Father too By the time my 21 year old Brother Bill, four years my junior, was employed to manage a “Guest Ranch, in the shadow of Banff International Park, I had to again change my understanding of what a four by four is. It is now what most moderns are familiar with, a four wheeled vehicle with power delivered to all four wheels. That picture entered my mind when Bill discovered that one of the Herd Bulls fell into the Red Deer River which bordered the Ranch property and was afraid to swim the River to get back to the herd. Bill parked the Dodge Four by Four by the River Bank, unreeled the very useful windless cable from the rear end, got on his horse, swam it across the River, attached the cable to the Bull, hollered to one his men to pull the Bull home. The Bull had nothing to do but give in to the pull exherted by the Cable. All was well and Bill followed the Bull home. At that time of his life Bill looked very young to be in a position of authority. But he possessed a lively set of black whiskers and let them grow. That done, he looked suitably mature and when he shifted his growly voice into gear, the work got done according to his plans and desires. He got the Ranch stocked with a breeding herd of Beef Cows, fired most of the crew for the sake of changing the Guest Ranch into a profit making Cattle Ranch. He made plans to produce the Feed grains and Fodder necessary to the operation and his employer let Bill go. He lived to regret his action. No-one in charge!
That left Bill free to manage a large Ranch of 48 sections away east of Calgary. I was able, with the help of an old timer to build him a new House to replace the old one which had burnt down the fall before. That set Bill on the look out for a pretty young Ranch born Gal, Lee. Bill had by that time acquired a four passenger Aeronca Sedan Aircraft which needed a complete overhall and installation of a rebuilt 145 H.P. Continental Motor. With the back seat removed, they flew off to Chicago with the new motor in the rear space, and honeymooned in that City while the plane was fully serviced. Then it was back home to the Ranch where they lived for a number of years. They were joined in due course by four daughters and one son. But wherever they lived, Bill and Lee his wife made a great success of what they attempted. That Ranch was sold and they moved to the original Ribstone Hereford Ranch where our Father Ranched successfully for many years and where we all grew up and learned how to live and be merry and Married and to succeed at what we attempted. Bill pioneered the making of pit silage for harvesting, and the crops that were used were widened to include corn etc. They brought in new breeding stock from France, a specie called Charolaise which produced great beef with the fat beautifully marbled throughout the lean meat and he became successively President of the B.C., then the Canadian and finally the World Charolaise Associations. They traveled widely and with great value to the whole Beef Cattle Industry. Sadly, Bill contracted Lou Gherigs Disease and lived only three years after the Diagnosis. He died at the age of 71 at height of his career. Sorely missed.
October 19, 2013
by Dick Hunt, Thursday, October 17th.2013.
I have written recently to share an account of a youth work and study weekend at a summer camp south west of Calgary in May of 1958. There were 45 youth from 15 to 20 years of age attending and I had a staff of four adults to help me. Our agenda was to dismantle the old camp buildings infested with Carpenter Ants, which dated from the second world war and to engage in Bible Study and Worship fellowship at regular intervals, under my leadership. Most of the young people were there to learn and share the Christian Faith with the exception of five young fellows who openly said they were there to cause dissention.
But we proceedeed as planned with good progress and the attitude of the young people was positive for the most part. I was teaching progressively the passage from St. Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians, chapter six for the Bible Study and the Book of Common Prayer for the worship sessions. What was left standing of the Kitchen and dining area served for our food preparation with lot’s of volunteers and we had no difficulty with unsuitable behaviour between boys and girls. For the evening Bible studies we had a log Campfire circle beside the Sheep River at full spring flood. During the first evening study a lovely and artistic young Chinese girl, jumped up from her log and leaped and danced around the Campfire, saying, I’m free, I’m free, I’m free from Sin. And she was a Budhist. She had met Jesus!
That was a turning point in the weekend. The work proceeded well. On the Sunday afternoon, we had the use of an old log Church (picture above) near the camp for a Communion Service. I had never been in that Church before, but was instantly struck by a black silk banner across the space before the Altar, with the Words, “I Am Thy Shield and Exceeding Great Reward” (Genesis 15:1) in Gold Print. I immediately scrapped the sermon I had prepared and God gave me a new one, based on the words on the banner. Out of that service there were 17 young people who committed their lives to Christ as Saviour, three of whom trained for the Ministry and were ordained. All five of the mischief makers came to Christ. The girl who was so thrilled to know her sins were taken away was enthralled and had come from my home Parish with seven others. My friend Alex who drove four of the kids from our home Parish with the intention of going fishing, never wet a fly and helped us all weekend, saying, “that is the best thing I ever did!” When we arrived home in the evening, all eight of our youth decided to go in the Church and thank God for the blessing they had received before going home to their parents. Then when they got home some parents poured cold water on their enthusiasm, saying, “oh ya’, we have seen this happen before. You will get over it”. And some of them did, one of them to the extent of making a bad marriage and taking her own life. So sad! Just when they should have rejoiced, some totally failed in their role as parents. New Christians need gentle and loving care to nurture them in their new life. That is the great strength of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, the Follow up.
October 15, 2013
What Makes This Day Special, Even Memorable?
by Dick Hunt, Monday, October 14th, 2013.
It is Thanksgiving Day. It is the day that we had turkey and all the trimmings with some family people around the table with us. As for me and by the circumstances of the natural functions of family growth, a significant number of dear Children, Spouses, Grandchildren, Great Grandchildren and In-Laws are dear to us all. And it is also and very importantly for me, the 69th Anniversary of the day when Ruth Brandon and Dick Hunt pledged our lifelong allegiance and precious minutes, days, months years and decades to each other, “in the Presence of God and of the Congregation in St. Stephen’s Anglican Church in Calgary at eight o’clock in the evening on a Saturday 1944. The officiating Priest was Edward (Ted) Maddocks, a Prince among men who became our Mentor and fast friend.
We caught a late train to Banff, were met by prior arrangement by taxi and to a Motel where, very tired, we tumbled into bed for a good night sleep. In the morning, we walked to “St. George’s in the Pines” Anglican Church where we had our Communion, then to the Motel for breakfast. Having met a fine Lady after the service who operated a Motel, we changed Motels for our lovely five day stay in that lovely sunny Autumn atmosphere, just thanking God for bringing us together in such harmony and adoration for what has been a marvellous marriage for very nearly 69 years. God be Thanked and Praised.
Only now, I do not have the physical presence of the Girl of my constant delight. But I have the memories of the marvellous experience of our time together, through the adventures of raising four Children, of being a part of the nurturing of more than a dozen Grandchildren, great Grandchildren and a number of “significant others”.We met during my time in the R.C.A.F. in Calgary in the closing days of 1943 when I read a sign in my Station which said Service personell were welcome to attend social evenings at St. Stephen’s Church on Mondays, and I rode the street cars and buses to attend. The girl at the door welcomed me and she was so lovely! We danced together to “Life In The Finland Woods” and the Blue Danube Waltz and it was, quite literally, love at first sight. We walked many miles together on the evenings when I was free of Air Force duties and never kissed or embraced until the magic evening when we realized we were deeply in love. We became engaged on April first , 1944, a leap year. We went by bus to the Ranch where I was born and raised that spring on a weekend when I had a brief leave of absence, and my family welcomed Ruth as the soon to be second Ruth Hunt in the family. We were married on October 14th and for a few months lived on in Calgary until I was honourably discharged to go back into Agriculture. For several years Ruth was a Ranchers wife and full member of the clan. Then in 1953 I became a Lay Reader in our Church and Community, then studied for the Ministry and was Ordained in 1957. And Ruth was my dedicated and lovely sweetheart all her days, to March 27th this year when she went home to be with the Lord.
October 7, 2013
October 3, 2013
Hunting Season; Bull Moose in Prairie Creek.
by Dick Hunt, October 2nd, 2013.
Back in the early sixties in east central Alberta, my friend, Jack Armstrong, and I decided to take a little break and go fishing. We borrowed a small, home built camping trailer and drove west of Red Deer to an area called Rocky Mountain House and on to Prairie Creek which reputably yielded Rainbow Trout for the fly fishing fraternity. Arriving in the evening, we made supper over a campfire and turned in for the night. Next morning after a bit of breakfast we baited our hooks and began casting for trout. Not many minutes later, there was a splashing just in front of us and a large bull moose appeared just off the bank of the creek. He shook his splendid rack of Antlers, snorted and tried to see us, just in the thick trees in which we were standing. It is said that Moose are not good at seeing but are very good at sensing ones presence in other ways. He knew we were there. Jack and I chose a tree each which we were ready to climb to avoid an attack which appeared very imminent, when to our great relief the Moose turned and splashed away from us without looking back. On another occasion, Ruth and I were driving south of Prince George on the way back to Maple Ridge when a large Cow Moose suddenly came up out of the deep ditch on our left and skidded to a stop almost directly in front of us. The squeal of our tires had caused her to stop and I was able to pass in front of her with only spare inches between her nose and the ditch on our right. It all happened in a trice and left me shaky,but with a very grateful sense of awe at the intervention of God who was looking after us. Praise God!
When we were living in Williams Lake for nine years, I had responsibility for the “Cariboo Lakes Mission” which included 100- Mile House, Canim Lakes and Bosk Mountain Mines. One of the families I worked wth had a young daughter who used to walk quite a distance to school when the weather permitted. She recalled that on that back road she had been able to count up to 50 Moose on the way to and from school in one day. She was probably in more danger from hunters in the fall than from the Moose. ( Is the plural of Moose, Meeces?). This morning, a friend told me that her Husband and some friends had bagged a Moose on their trip west of Prince George and were bringing home a good supply of Moose Meat for the freezers.
I have mentioned in other stories that we used to supply board and room to a number of High School Teachers in Williams Lake. One Saturday in the fall, they decided to go Moose hunting and travelled east to try their luck. When they spotted a likely area, they decided to go their separate ways and gather again at a certain hour. One of their number was considered to be quite unable to shoot a Moose, even if he did see one and they laughed him off into his own choice of terrain. At the “certain hour” they all met back at the site and found their “uncertain friend” sitting on a log with a big grin on his face. He asked them where their moose was and they had to admit that they had not even seen one. Then he casually stood up and said, “Then you can help me to load mine on the trailer for the trip home”. He wore his grin for days. And gave us meat!
September 9, 2013
What A Lovely Day This Has Been.
by Dick Hunt, September 8th, 2013.
But not all people have enjoyed the peace and love and caring that we have been able to share together. The world is for many a very dangerous and threatening place. In so many places, people with the same longings for safety and caring and sharing is not normal at all. The world is in a paroxism of fear and hunger and agony for many millions of people. We are the favoured ones, here on the North American Continent, enjoying a measure of safety and comfort denied many of the people of this tortured planet. Christians and Jews in so many lands are being slaughtered simply because they are Christians and Jews and cannot escape into regions of peace and security. And in many countries, many Islamists are intent on wiping out those who disagree with their particular brand of Islam.
It is with deep sorrow that I feel I must share the pain of multitudes of people who are caught in the web of hatred and greed and frightful anger that causes people to destroy one another in such aweful ways. But we cannot ignore what is going on and we need to first of all be thankful to God for the peace that we sometimes take for granted as if we deserve to be so deeply loved. And secondly we need to pray for Peace in the rest of the world, from our hearts.
It was so happy a day to be able to be guests of Wendy and visit with so many old friends in the Village we are priviledged to call home. We were welcomed so warmly and able to share great memories and make new friends and catch up on personal activities. We are so deeply blessed by being together to share and care and renew our love for each other. It was so good to see Gerry and Anna Spinney again and so many others who have made our lives so richly precious in this great village we have called home. We were royally fed and cared for and spoiled by the love we soaked up. Thank you Wendy and friends.
What blessings we are able to enjoy and then share with our friends, back and forth. There are so many privileges for us to enjoy and share and mainly in great safety compared with much of the world. Over the years, Ruth and I were able to travel and see a good part of the world and we always felt greatly blessed to be able to do so. Even the Mediteranean region, Greece, Turkey, Israel, Egypt, most of Europe. To China, Australia, New Zealand, Hawaii most of North America from the Arctic to Mexico. What a great delight it was to share so much together. And now Ruth got Home before me. God be praised.
August 20, 2013
A Birthday Party And A Trio of Visitors.
by Dick Hunt, Monday August 19th, 2013.
I went to a birthday party across the lane last Saturday afternoon and it was very pleasant. Then at 3:30 I had three visitors from White Rock. We were very good friends with two of them on Mayne Island. They sold our property there for us when we moved here. They brought along a 94 year old man who used to to be an active member of St. Mary’s Church, Sapperton and we really hit it off. We talked Shaklee constantly while they were here and Donna is going to self Sponsor them on Monday, when they are home. We sponsored them years ago but they didn’t follow it up. This time they really will, as they have now brought with them their pains and aches and declining health. Just one of the pains is arthritis and I was able to show them that Alfalfa tablets, (Shaklee Brand) contains a very strong natural Anti Inflamatory ingredient. They also know that our Cedar Cottage on Mayne Island caused my severe Asthma problem and necesitated my use of 2 inhalers, four times a day when we moved here. Alfalfa Tablets (Shaklee) quickly healed me of both those problems. I have not needed inhalers at all now for more than 20 years and my Arthritis in my hands and wrists is no longer a problem at all. (I am 93 years of age.)
I had a ride home from Church yesterday with a good friend and he had just read my recent story of our visit to Nashville and the meeting there of five thousand Shaklee members from seven countries. That sparked his attention and he revealed that he was vitally interested in improving his health and also his income. He stayed awhile when we arrived at my suite and we talked a good deal about how he could accomplish better health.
I led him through the Shaklee Catalogue and answered his many questions. I also showed him how he could improve his shaky income, while helping his friends and soon to be friends to do the same. The Shaklee marketing plan makes it impossible to produce a competitor because all work together and if someone does not share the opportunity, he/she just fails to accomplish the goals they set for themsleves and they quit. In Nashville, it quickly caught my attention that at least 2 thirds of the attendees (around 5,000 people were there) were women and most of them relatively young, very healthy and eager to share their great success with Shaklee. And they were so friendly and positive. I was the eldest active Shaklee Member there and they showered me with good will and Birthday wishes. My son Tim and his wife Elaine looked after me wonderfully well in the midst of all the full time activity.
There was never a dull moment. It was a total learning experience. So now we want to share what we have learned with anyone who is looking for new light near the end of their tunnel or their life, or their inability to feel the best they can be. That has not been a new thing for me. Along with Ruth and the many friends we have enjoyed over the years, that has always been our motivation and goal. The big and impressive difference is the many marvelous and fully effective and safe additions to the Product line over the years. And the ever improving marketing plan which makes it possible for more and more people to build a personal Business and help many others to do the same. Shaklee does the book keeping, transfers the monthly Bonuses earned, electronically to our account and keeps us right up to date on all the new opportunities and data that keep us reaching out to others. What a marvelous Company!
August 12, 2013
How To Share What we Believe In.
by Dick Hunt, August 12th, 2013.
I listen. I ask questions. When something clicks between me and my one on ones in conversations, I share what I have found to be of great value in Shaklee products which would be the answer to the needs of my friends. For example, this morning I was visiting with a man around 50 years of age and that gave us a base topic to chew on. In the course of time he said, he was trying to find a way of boosting his energy level. I told him of the trips Ruth and I had made over the years to visit family and friends in Alberta where we were both born and raised. Over 40 years, either by Motor Home or by car, we made the trip twice a year, that is 80 round trips. From 1978 to about six years ago when Ruth’s Alzheimer’s intervened, we left home around six AM having had a breakfast of Shaklee Soy Protein in milk and our ever growing options of the many Shaklee Nutritional supplements being developed year after year. We carried water, coffee, sandwiches and stopped only for gasoline and natures calls’, with me at the wheel for up to 11 hours. We arrived with energy to spare in every case, to enable us to visit with the folks northwest of Calgary, before bedtime. The same coming home.
Shaklee Soy Protein provides energy for long periods of time and levels our blood sugar throughout the day so we don’t suffer highs and lows. It is easy to assimilate into our blood stream and the Shaklee brand easily eclipses all other brands for purity, bioavailability, natures balance and complete protein for all our cells.
I have no doubt whatsoever that after the grueling tests we have given Shaklee products over the years, with never a glitch or disappointment, we are right in our determination to share them with full confidence as widely as possible. I know of no better way to promote optimum health, vigor and lasting energy than with Shaklee products and consistent use. For example, Shaklee “Mental Acuity Tablets” undoubtedly stimulate my ability to recall details to include in my stories, going back many years and with great detail. I have lost count of the number of two page stories, letter size and close typed I have in my data bank and blog, but they number over two thousand. And more each week.
My blood tests reveal perfection on every test, as do blood pressure, cholesterol, pulse, heart beat, lungs, to my Doctors’ full approval. His comment to me is, “keep on using Shaklee Supplements and you know where I am if you need me”. I celebrated my 93rd birthday on August 4th, in Nashville Tennessee, at the Shaklee International Convention with thousands of happy, healthy Shaklee members present. I am not on any Medical Prescriptions. I pay my dues for the National Health plan, even pay taxes on my supplements but cost the Government next to nothing. Shaklee cleaning products are wonderfully kind to the environment and to the health of all people who use them in their daily lives. Nothing beats a toxic free home and putting the right stuff in our mouths day by day. And there is a great way to earn a significant income while sharing Shaklee for the benefit of all who give it a try.