Saturday, August 30, 2008

What a bonus!

What a great day today! Today I went with some of the board to have a look at a Southridge Community Church in St. Catharines, to see how they had renovated a school into a functioning church building and to get some thoughts on how to renovate our school. We got some good ideas and insights and we are continuing to move ahead with plans to prepare our new site. The bonus that we got today was that Pastor Jeff took an hour or so to talk to us about their vision and strategies for building their church into what God is calling them to be. I would have to say, that I have been to some great seminars but the info we got today was as helpful as anything else I have learned about building God's Kingdom. It was a great afternoon and I would like to say a big thank you to Pastor Jeff!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Holy Spirit Empowerment!

I was reading in Acts this morning and sort of had a couple of verses just light up for me. I guess that I have probably read Acts hundreds of times, especially the first few chapters but I have never seen it this way before. This was right after the Holy Spirit baptised the Church and they hit the streets.

Acts 2:9-11 Parthians, Medes, and Elamites; Visitors from Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene; Immigrants from Rome, both Jews and proselytes; Even Cretans and Arabs! "They're speaking our languages, describing God's mighty works!"

It seems that the Holy Spirit empowered the church to speak to people within their culture and context, so that they could understand the goodness of God and His mighty works! I know that He has given us that same empowerment for our culture, to communicate in a language that they can understand, the goodness of God and His great love for them. My prayer is that we will not let this gift go to waste but that through the boldness that the Holy Spirit gives we will tell the world!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

What about Bob?

As I have been saying, I think it is really important to invite people to church and maybe even go a step further and bring them. Check out this post by Perry Noble. I think it says it all. Who is the Bob in your life and what are you going to do about Bob?

Have a good one!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Sunday Night Reflections (A little late)

Of this one thing I am sure, God wants us to reach lost people. There is a fire inside of me right now that just keeps getting bigger all the time, and sometimes I feel like it will consume, and that fire is for lost people. I am at the point that I can't tolerate another moment of the same old same old and I hope you all feel the same way.

  1. I think that yesterday was an amazing day.
  2. One man who has been coming to our church for a long time put up his hand to receive Christ.
  3. One of our young men renewed his commitment to live for Jesus as a 100% Christ follower. This may seem small and insignificant but I believe that it is Huge. Because that is what God is calling each of us to do right now, to commit to live as 100% Christ followers. He got it and I hope you did to!
  4. I felt the presence of God in the house and when I was asking the question "What do I still lack?" God was moving in peoples hearts in a big way (People were wiping tears all over the room)
  5. Someone told me yesterday that "I had to make a believer out of them" and when I asked them what they meant by that, they said "I have a hard time believing that we can baptize 100 people in this next eleven months". Here is what I asked him and what I want to ask anyone else who is struggling with that. Do you think that Jesus would want us to accomplish that? (the answer to that question would be yes) and secondly, would you be willing to work along with us at this goal? (The answer to this question should also be yes). So if it is God's will and we will get involved why wouldn't we be allowed to accomplish that. Besides don't you want to set a goal that you can only reach if God helps?
  6. Great time was had by all at Jeremiahs farewell party!

Live life beyond the boundaries of what you think is possible and live within God's limitless boundaries! Have a great day!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Saturday Night at Jubilee

I am stoked! Tomorrow is going to be an awesome day and I just know God wants to do good things through it! I am closing out the series with the story of the rich young ruler and I am feeling God in the house as I am preparing and praying.

I am really excited about a few things right now the first of which is that I feel like a new man, like I have been born again again, because of the way God is moving in my life right now. It seems like every time I open the Bible it is like I have never read the verse before and it all seems new and exciting. I am also really excited because some of our young people have stepped up and used their creative gifts for Jesus and made an advertising video for Youth Camp (Thanks Nathan, Garrett, Jonny, and Dylan) which you will all get to see tomorrow. I am also really excited about our youth camp which is in two weeks (Please pray that our kids will really encounter Jesus on that weekend, so that their lives will be forever changed.)

Nathan, I am sorry I didn't post earlier but I was reading Hebrews 8 with you and I thought this part was really cool!

Hebrews 8:10-12 This new plan I'm making with Israel isn't going to be written on paper, isn't going to be chiseled in stone; This time I'm writing out the plan in them, carving it on the lining of their hearts. I'll be their God, they'll be my people. They won't go to school to learn about me, or buy a book called God in Five Easy Lessons. They'll all get to know me firsthand, the little and the big, the small and the great. They'll get to know me by being kindly forgiven, with the slate of their sins forever wiped clean.

God wants us to live from our hearts and serve Him because we love Him. I'm in!

It is not to late to invite someone for the morning service, especially someone who does not know Christ yet. Come expecting and on time in the morning, because the way you approach the service does make a difference!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Me or Jesus?

I am sitting here preparing for Sunday and we are going to be finishing our series "Me or Jesus?" This series has seriously messed me up. I am so convinced that God wants to do something great through us as a church, but right now He is calling us to Himself. He is calling us to a deep and vibrant relationship with Him. It is all about Jesus, he saved us from an eternity that was hell, but He also gave us a life to live here that is full of purpose and meaning.

When was the last time that you just took your Bible in Your hands and went to a place where you could have some quiet and asked Jesus to speak to you through His word? God wants to connect with us, He wants to have a relationship with us but we need to stop, quiet ourselves, and talk to Him with the expectancy that He will talk to us. I challenge you to take a few minutes today to do just that, spend some time with the one who loves you more than anyone else could.

Psalm 46:10 Be still, and know that I am God! MKJV
Psalm 46:10 "Step out of the traffic! Take a long, loving look at me, your High God. MSG

Monday, August 18, 2008


I am so thankful to God for the call He has placed on my life, and with that the responsibilities. I think that one of the most important things we can do as leaders is to ask ourselves some thought provoking questions. Here are some of the questions I am asking myself at this point.
  1. Is my personal relationship with Jesus growing and vibrant?
  2. Am I leading to build a kingdom for myself, or am I really concerned about lost people?
  3. Am I willing to take risks in order to advance God's kingdom, or am I to interested in being comfortable?
  4. Am I willing to do what God asks me to do even though it will make some people upset with me?
  5. Is my butt really on the line for anything significant, or am I just doing what is expected?
  6. Am I balancing God, family and work properly?
  7. Am I talking about the changes I would like to see or am I taking action to make things change?

I love being part of this House and I take very seriously the responsibility of it, and I will always do my best as a leader to grow and develop so that we can grow and develop. Have a great one!

Monday, Monday....

I just have to get this off my chest. I am really believing God to do great things through us as a church, but the truth is I am wondering if we have enough interest in this as a church to see it through. Here is the deal, we start church at 10 am on Sunday mornings and you could shoot a cannon through the place and not hit anyone, but ten minutes later the place is fairly full. This is a problem on so many levels.
  1. I just wonder what it says to God, about the value we place on being in His house?
  2. I wonder what it says to our kids when most of us will turn up early to watch a movie but when it comes to going to church we can show up whenever.
  3. I wonder what it says to unbelievers who come to Jubilee looking for something that will help them and they see that we don't put any value on the experience ourselves.
  4. I wonder what it says to all the people who have prepared and prayed and are trying to create an atmosphere where God can move and people walk in and disturb the whole thing because they couldn't get here on time.

People I am a good natured guy and I am pretty relaxed most of the time but this has got to change. We are talking about saving people from hell here and this one thing does make a huge difference! Please step up to the plate in this area, I am begging you!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Thursday Night Reflections

What a great night! Levi started youth tonight (I am now officially old) so I am really excited about that! I am praying that God will really touch him and that he will encounter God as a young man, and that from that encounter he would become a die hard Christ follower. Here are a few of my thoughts on the night.
  1. We have two great couples giving their lives and time investing in the next generation and I want to thank them publicly Thank you Steve, Sarah, Steve and Melinda. You are my heroes!
  2. God is working in our young people and they are responding with a big YES! I am really excited about what I see God doing in their hearts and I think that they could possibly be some of the greatest kids I know.
  3. I still can't get calmed down about that whole nine out of ten people not knowing God and I am committed to raising up a church that will change those stats for our region, a church that really does care about the things God cares about.
  4. I think that we are having an AHA moment as a church.
  5. I am so excited to be leading our young people right now, I just love being around young, passionate people who don't understand the words "It can't be done"

I would really appreciate your prayers as we head into our youth camp in three weeks. I am asking the Lord to really touch the heart of our kids. I am also praying that they will understand how significant they are in God's plan to reach the world. So please pray for them and also for Kathryn Fleming as she prepares to speak. Dream big dreams and pray prayers that are so big only God can answer them!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Camel's needles and other random thoughts.

Matthew 19:24 I repeat: it is much harder for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle."

I don't know about you but I have always thought that God was maybe putting rich people at a bit of a disadvantage in this verse. Did you know that most people in Canada would rank in the top 10% income earners in the world, and that because of that Jesus is talking directly to us in this verse? You thought He was just talking to the guy in the Porshe eh?

Well we all know that God has made a way so that all people can enter His kingdom so He could not have possibly meant that they actually had to go through the eye of a sewing needle. This is what Bible scholars believed that Jesus was talking about. coming into Jerusalem there were two gates that were referred to as the eye of the needle, and if you wanted to take a camel through those gates you would have to unload the camel, carry the stuff through the gate and then the camel would have to go on it's knees and crawl through the gate where it would then be reloaded.

So for us, as the rich of this world, to enter God's kingdom (His way of doing things) we have to be

  1. Willing to unload our stuff,
  2. Send it all into the Kingdom first and
  3. With humility in our hearts get on our knees in submission to God enter His kingdom.

Are you willing to give God your stuff and trust Him to reload you in the kingdom? I'm just asking.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

God Time...

This morning I was reading in Nehemiah in my God time, and I am always amazed at the new things you can learn each time you read God's Word. Here are a few of the things I noticed in Chapter one and two.
  1. Nehemiah always prayed before he acted on something. 1:4-11, 2:4,
  2. Nehemiah obviously had a close relationship with the king, because the king noticed that Nehemiah was not himself and wanted to do something to help him feel better. This proves the fact that relationships have the ability to win people over. 2:2-4
  3. Nehemiah was prepared before he told everyone what was going on. This shows the importance of leaders having a plan and knowing the cost before telling everyone about their plans. 2:11-16

I would encourage you to spend some time with God today and see what He has to say to you . Also start thinking about who you can invite to church this weekend, maybe you can even invite them for lunch. Please pray that God will make a way for the people who are being invited to come, and that God will touch their lives and yours during the service. Last but not least prepare yourself to serve God in the service, whether that is on a team or just by being fully engaged in the service.

One other thing I want to tell you all about is that this weekend we are going to be giving you an opportunity to get involved on a team, so that you can become more of a part of what God is doing at Jubilee.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Inspired to believe God for the impossible!

Man am I stoked this morning! I am so thankful to God about what he is doing in people's lives and also in my own! I have had a few conversations with people about the message yesterday and as I have been praying that He would do, He is messing people up. I know that we often look around us and we judge who God can use and who we think He can't use, and maybe today you are thinking that God couldn't possibly use you, but that is the farthest from the truth! God is using me and that is a miracle so God can use anybody.
Yesterday I challenged you all to believe God with me that we could baptize 100 people in the next eleven and a half months, and I want to call on all the crazy radical people out there that God is honoured when we set goals that we can't do without Him. Let's walk this thing out, let's not let go of it, let's carry it through to completion. Here is a little bit of something to rattle your cage Baptism
Hopefully that will inspire you to!

Sunday Night Reflections

Oh man, am I tired. The three hour time change has fully taken hold not to mention the mental toll of all the info we took in this week. Anyway here are my thoughts on the day.

  1. I don't think that I have ever spent more time preparing for a message then I did for the one I preached today, nor have I ever felt as confident that God would use what I said to work in the hearts of His people as I felt today.
  2. I really felt that the service was effective as a whole and that we were all made to feel a little uncomfortable with the status quo.
  3. I am begging God that we would all be impacted to really live our lives with a passion to reach out to lost people.
  4. I got to spend time with some of our volunteer staff tonight and I am so blessed to get to build a great house along side of a bunch of people that I really love to be with.
  5. I just want to remind you all that church is first a person you meet before it is a place you go. So be the kind of people that would attract others to Jesus and to the church!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Ready to make a difference!

I am so stoked! As I was cutting my grass today I was thinking about the incredible love of God and how thankful I am that He loves me(personally). Sometimes I can be such a bone head and sometimes I can be so judgemental and opinionated but God looks past that and loves me any way. I don't think He wants me to remain the same but His grace is always shown whenever I ask Him to forgive me and honestly turn toward Him! I just want to tell the world!

This has been an incredible week of growth and challenge and once again I thank God for the people in my life. I am really looking forward to the service tomorrow and I really believe that it is an important moment for us as a church. Please remember to pray and come expecting God to do great things! Don't forget it is Cafe Sunday so don't rush out after the service instead take some time to be with us!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Wednesday at Team Church

Hi everyone! It has been an amazing week, and God has really been good to Kristine and I. First of all we have been hanging out with Steve and Beth Fleming (they are amazing friends and mentors to us) all week and have learned so much from them. Kevin and Sheila Gerald are an amazing couple and they have been so kind to us, and have helped us so much to understand our roles better. Sheila spent some time talking to Kristine tonight and showed that she genuinely cares about us and the house that God has called us to build. I also have been able to spend some time with Paul Scanlon (The pastor from England that preached the message on others) and I feel very blessed to have had that opportunity. We have met so many great pastors here from all over the world and I just know that God is giving us these great connections so that we can build His kingdom. I thank God for this amazing experience and feel that what He has been speaking to me for the past couple months was confirmed and clarified this week.

I do life with some of the greatest people in the world and I am looking forward to getting home and seeing you all again. I am so excited about what God is doing in all of our lives right now. We had nine visitors in church again on Sunday! I ask you all to believe with me and work together to see 100 baptisms in the next eleven and a half months. I know that seems like a lot but I believe that God would be glorified by it and that His kingdom would be advanced.

I will catch up on some of the conference highlights later this week but today I want to remind you to start praying for the weekend service. Also I want you to start thinking who you could invite I have a few people I am going to talk to. Also come to the service prayed up and ready to serve, with an attitude of expectancy! I am so happy that I get to do life with you!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Monday at Team Church

Man, I prayed in the morning service a couple weeks ago that God would give us an encounter like Isaiah Had where in Chapter 6 He said woe is me I am undone. God is messing me up, I am undone. As I have been writing on this blog, God has been really stirring something in my heart that I think is huge, and that something is a deep passion and concern for those that have not yet connected with Jesus. well this week is not helping me shake that stirring, in fact it is stirring it up even more. I am sitting here and I just can't wait to see what God is going to do through us to help these people meet Jesus. Anyway, here are a few highlights of tonight.

  1. Kevin Gerald opened with this, God touched our lives and said, tag your it, and left us to pass on the good news to others. Who have you touched with your life? Who are you going to touch?
  2. Craig Groeshel was up next and He went right at it with a challenge to all of us to believe God for great things. some of the major points were as follows.
  3. We all dream positive dreams, but without some sort of action and a plan, we will never achieve the dreams we have. Without a vision people perish.
  4. From Acts 20:21- 24 he taught 4 things we could expect in walking into God's vision for our life. First Spirit's Prompting in verse 21 it says that Paul was compelled by the spirit. Secondly we would encounter Certain Uncertainty in verse 22b it says that Paul was going, not knowing what would happen. The third thing that we would encounter was Predictable Resistance it says in verse 23 that prison and hardship awaited Paul. so first we would sense the Spirit prompting us to do something then as we stepped out to do it we will have that feeling of uncertainty followed by resistance and if we would persevere then God would give us Uncommon Clarity.
  5. He closed with this prayer that was prayed by Sir Francis Drake in 1577

Disturb us Lord

When when we are to well pleased with ourselves.

When our dreams come true

Because we have dreamed to little

When we arrived safely

Because we sailed to closely to shore.

It is my prayer that as a church we will dream, dreams so big that only God can accomplish them. That we would pray prayers that would make God smile because we need Him or we have no hope. That our hearts would break for the things that break the heart of God. i pray that we would be a church that makes a difference.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Sunday Night Reflections

Just had dinner with the Flemings, the Geralds, and the Scanlons. I feel like it was the best Christmas ever and it is only August. I am so amazed at the blessing of God in my life and I just feel that His hand is upon us as a church. The people that He has brought into my life are just amazing. We got to Hang out with Steve and Beth all day (They are such a God send to Kristine and I) then tonight I was sitting beside Paul Scanlon at dinner and right across from Kevin Gerald. I think I am going to faint. Any way here are some of my thoughts for today.
  1. God is really in love with People and we should be to.
  2. The question is not, can God love people who sin? It is, can we love them?
  3. The church should exist for those who are not yet reached.
  4. Including all people in our circle of love as a church will mess with our routine
  5. Our routine needs to be messed with.
  6. God is really in love with people and we should be to.
  7. And last but not least, God is in love with people and we should be to. (did I say that already?)

Here are some questions I am asking myself.

  1. How do we become a church that is inclusive for all?
  2. How serious are we, really about reaching the unchurched?
  3. What price am I willing to pay to see God's dreams fulfilled?
  4. Who else is there that is willing to pay the price with us?
  5. God do you still make dreams come true?

I am so excited about what God is doing in my heart and life right now and I just know that as a church we are standing at the edge of something great. Please pray that Kristine and I will learn what we need to learn to go to the next level in our life and leadership.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Team Church Conference

Good Morning! We arrived in Seattle safely last night just in time to take in the evening service here with Paul Scanlon. Wow, when God gets on you about something He just keeps going at it, doesn't He? Here are a few of the highlights. He was teaching out of these verses.

Mat 21:28 "Tell me what you think of this story: A man had two sons. He went up to the first and said, 'Son, go out for the day and work in the vineyard.'
Mat 21:29 "The son answered, 'I don't want to.' Later on he thought better of it and went.
Mat 21:30 "The father gave the same command to the second son. He answered, 'Sure, glad to.' But he never went.
Mat 21:31 "Which of the two sons did what the father asked?" They said, "The first." Jesus said, "Yes, and I tell you that crooks and whores are going to precede you into God's kingdom. MSG

  1. Some people seem to be saying a big Yes to God and end up saying No.
  2. Some people seem to be saying a big No to God and end up saying Yes.
  3. Everyone should get the opportunity to give God a big Yes or a big No.
  4. Some of the people that you have been spending so much time getting to say yes (They seem like the kind of people that would say yes) will end up saying no. Some of the people that you would never ask (They seem like they don't need , don't want, or don't deserve God) will end up saying a huge YES to God (most of us know someone like this that did)
  5. Invite everyone!
  6. Be a likable person (get rid of your nastiness, or arrogance) it gives a person a better chance of accepting your message.
  7. Be compassion driven, rather than comfort driven (we generally want to reach out to people that are like us ) God wants us to reach everyone!
  8. The church is a person you meet before it is a place you go.

I will post as much as I can through this week and I will finish my "Thinking Big" post soon also. We are praying that God is doing great things at Jubilee this morning!