Showing posts from December, 2006

California Here I Come!

I just finished booking a trip to Lake Forest, California!

Lake Forest is the home of Saddleback Church where Rick Warren is the Senior Pastor. Warren is also the author of several books, including the best seller The Purpose Driven Life.

On February 20th to the 22nd, Saddleback is hosting the Purpose Driven Small Groups Conference. Being the pastor who is responsible for the small group ministry, and the fact that our church uses a lot of the Saddleback material in our ministries, this was a natural fit for me to head off for this conference.

It's a bit of a drag that I'll be going alone but hopefully I learn of others who are going as well and be able to hook up there. Hmmm... I wonder how I can get the pastor community to be as big and fun as the Lotus Notes one...

So this is great! Back to having a conference in the middle of winter AND this one is also very close to Disneyland. So it should feel very similar to Lotusphere but without the bloggers and the late night parties :)

Going to Feel This in the Morning...

This afternoon I went and played squash. I used to play quite a lot in College but I haven't been on a court in at least 12 years. Needless to say, I was pretty rusty.

During my sermon last week I made reference to the importance of walking along side someone to help you grow spiritually and used an example of going to the gym. Working out and exercising is so much easier when you have someone to go with. I then mentioned that the reason I don't have a six-pack of abs is because I'm lazy and don't have someone dragging me to the gym :)

Well... one of the congregation members called me on this one and invited me to play squash. He's a pilot with Air Canada. His schedule is not a regular 9-to-5-weekends-off life so he's always looking for other to play with. Guest what? A pastor isn't a 9-to-5-weekend-off profession either I said I'd love to go.

I had a real blast! I had forgotten how much fun playing squash is. Sure, he probably was going easy on …

The Proud Montrealer

Yes I know... I don't like hockey. So what's with me in a Montreal Canadians shirt? Well, you'll have to come out to our Christmas Eve service to find out :)

The services will be at 5:15pm and 7:00pm at Woodside Bible Fellowship, 200 Barnswallow Drive, Elmira, Ontario. Hope to see you then.

Sermon Link Available

We had some technical difficulties this past week which slowed down the posting of the sermons online. It's all fixed now.

Feel free to check out my last sermon at this link. Let me know what you think.


Today I received my acceptance letter for Heritage Theological Seminary. I'll be starting there in January. Registration is on the 5th .

I applied for their Diploma of Pastoral Studies & Leadership. Doing this part time means I should complete the program in about 7 years.

Originally, I was only planning on starting school next September. I had thought that it would be best to give myself the time to get used to the new role here at the church and to get better settled into life in Elmira. After thinking more about this I decided I would be a lot smarter to get the schooling as a regular part of my life earlier rather then later. This will make it a part of my regular routine much sooner since I don't really have a regular routine yet :)

I'm really looking forward to starting this program.

My First Sermon Here

Yesterday I gave my first sermon here at Woodside.

I have to admit that I was a tad more nervous then normal. I'm usually quite comfortable with speaking in public. I was having some head games going on in my skull since this would be the first time preaching as a pastor and not just as a volunteer. Lots of prayer, quiet time and a wonderful, quiet date-night with my wife Saturday worked out all the nerves.

I'm pretty upfront with the fact that I've never considered myself to be a teaching teacher... I'm not the guy that you bring in for deep expository preaching. That's just not my style. I believe that my gifting is in lifting up and encouraging people. So my sermons reflect that. I want people to leave one of my sermons with some simple take aways that they can hopefully incorporate into their lives as they continue to grow in a meaningful relationship with God and with each other.

The audio version should be online shortly. Once it is I'll add a link here. Fee…

Never Had a Sermon Finished on Thursday Before

This week I'm starting a new schedule here at the church. I'm now taking Fridays off. Sounds like nice executive hours... but now that I work at a church Sunday is a work day :) In order to get some semblance of a weekend I either wanted Monday or Friday off. Monday isn't working anymore since I just started up a new Men's Bible Study last week.

The good thing of taking off Friday is it has forced me to finish all the prep work for my sermon before I start my "weekend". So instead of stressing over it right up to the last minute it's done 2 days early. Sweet.

Now, here's hoping that I won't get the urge to rewrite it on Saturday night :)

For anyone interested you can check out my notes here. I'll have the audio link by Tuesday.

A Different Pace of Life

With two months under my belt in this new life outside the computer biz I'm still adjusting to the completely different pace this brings.

Losing my 1.5 hour commute to work each way has been awesome! And living 45 seconds from work is a big plus as well! Now, the alarm goes off at the time that I used to be standing outside freezing at the bus stop. Breakfast each morning with the family is wonderful... it did take a bit of getting used to at first. For years, I was always all alone in the mornings. It was quiet with everyone else still in bed. Now it's fast and furious as we get Cameron off to school and prepare Samantha for preschool. Being home for lunch is another great blessing. I'm already seeing the effects that less McDonald's and fast food at lunch is having on my waist line.

Some parts of my brain are still wired with a business mentality. Last week I went for dinner with Pastor Brian Bartlett from Grandview Baptist Church. Brian is a super guy and I really enj…