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Showing posts from 2007

New Year Prayer

Last January I mentioned how each year I read the One-Year Bible and try to pray a small prayer every day for the year.

On the inside cover of my Bible I write out the prayer. For 2007 my prayer was Build a stronger servants heart and use me to build your kingdom.

This year I really want God to stretch and grow me. I don't want to live a comfortable church going life. I guess most people would think just going from computer consultant to pastor was a stretch enough... but it's SOOOO easy to simply go with the flow and be comfortable with the ministry going on around here.

So my prayer for 2008 is Use me to do what I could never do without you. I'm looking forward to see what God will do with this one :-)

The Joy and Sorrow of Ministry

Christmas should be a time of great joy for those of us in ministry. We celebrate the greatest gift mankind has ever received. Today we're preparing two services to worship God with joy and gladness the birth of Jesus. It's one of the highlights of ministry for me.

Unfortunately, ministry also has it's sorrows. Before we can celebrate tonight we have to mourn this morning. There's a funeral here at 11am this morning... and this has got to be hard on the family to lose a father and husband at Christmas.

So, if you get a chance, send a prayer out to this family and everyone involved with the funeral this morning. Pray that even in this time of sorrow the love and joy of Jesus will give them a strength and peace they never thought possible.

Alvin and the Chipmunks

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Yesterday we managed to find some time to get away from the Christmas rush and enjoy a good old family movie time. We brought the kids to see Alvin and the Chipmunks. I've always loved the Chipmunk music. I had a bunch of their albums growing up as a kid. So it was a real hoot seeing my kids just love this movie and the music!

This had to be the most fun I've had going to a movie in a long time. There were kids dancing in the aisles and just having a ton of fun. That what movies are all about :-) I had a lot of fun in the movie as well. Was it just me reliving my childhood of listen to the Chipmunk Christmas Song at my grandmother's house? Maybe. Or maybe I just kept expecting Jason Lee to break out into a rant about Lando Calrissian getting to fly the Millenium Falcon (from Chasing Amy - funniest scene in any movie EVER!). If you're looking for some good family fun this Christmas season, I would definitely recommend this movie. Simple story, great laughs, and fun-fil…

A Letter from Jesus

I received this in my Inbox tonight... I just loved it!
Dear Children, It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you've forgotten that I wasn't actually born during this time of the year and that it was someof your predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a time of pagan festival. Although I do appreciate being remembered anytime. How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don't care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth, just Get Along and Love One Another. Now, having said that, let Me go on. If it bothers you that the town in which you live doesn't allow a scene depicting My birth, then just get rid of a couple of Santas and snowmen and put in a small Nativity scene on your own front lawn. If all My followers did that there wouldn'…

The Brain is Mush

This week has been crazy! We had kids concerts at school, ballet recitals, Christmas parties, events at church... and those are just the ones I remember. I've also been studying like crazy for my final exam for my seminary course... I'm going to be writing it tonight. It's a closed book take home exam and it needs to be completely by Wednesday. Thankfully I took a study day today and got a lot of work done on it. Hopefully I'll do alright.

Once this exam is done I'll have to reward myself with a fun filled evening of playing Medal of Honor 2 using my new Wii Zapper!

Last Class of the Semester Tonight

This semester was actually quite tough! Not so much the content of the course... well... okay, maybe it was a tad harder then I was expecting :) Just trying to get through a seminary course with all the ministry start up that goes on in September and October... it just felt like I spent the entire time running to stay caught up with the homework! I actually just started to feel like I was recuperating from the mid term exam last week... and tonight I get the final exam! Thankfully, it's on the New Testament, which I hopefully know better then the Old Testament :)

I think next fall I'll try one of the week long modular courses. Maybe that will be a lot easier to handle then a course every week...

Next semester will come up pretty quick... I'll be taking "Intro to Preaching". That should be fun.

200 Friends on Facebook and Other Ramblings

Last night I hit 200 friends on Facebook. Looking over the list this morning I was pretty blown away by the people there. I've heard from friends from my grade school, my high school, my college, my seminary, my partying days, my family days, my singing and dancing days, and pretty much everything else in between. I was also reflecting on just how every single one of them has in some way shaped who I am today, whether in some very tiny way or by being life long friends... and I gotta say, I'm so thankful to God for each of everyone of you! Without the part you played in my life I wouldn't be the man who I am right now! God ROCKS sending some incredibly different people into my life!

Other things I'm thinking about today:
Tonight is our last session in the Alpha Course. I've really enjoyed being a part of this ministry. I think this was a great experience for everyone involved and will continue to stretch and grow us as a church as we learn to be open to peopl…

Midterm

Last night I received my grade for the midterm on the Old Testament that I did a couple of weeks ago. 79%! Man oh man! I wasn't expecting that at all. I was praying for 60%! I guess the prof was in a good mood when he corrected mine :-)

Next week is already the last class of the semester. I've really enjoyed this class. So now I need to get cracking and start studying for the final exam.

Sunday Night Brain Dump

What a week! Man oh man did it ever fly by fast! I had SO many things at the church and around the house I was hoping to accomplish... oh well. Tis the season to be busy like crazy :-)
Two major things I'm working on at the church... First, is I want to find as many people as possible who are passionate about helping people to get connected with other people here at Woodside. I'm leaning towards picking up a web based software tool to help this team track the contact everyone is making with new people at the church. But before I slap down the money I want to make sure I'm not the only person in the building with this passion :-) Second, is the small group ministry... or should I say Home Church ministry. I know it's going to take years to change this ministry... but every baby step in the right direction helps. I'm looking forward to the steps we'll be taking in January.
I'm wondering if I should teach a men's group on The Man in the Mirror? Tha…

I'm finally integrated into this town

Well, I guess it's official. I'm definitely an Elmira resident... I bought my first pair of hockey skates!

Now... I just need to get my hands on a Montreal Canadians jersey to wear when I go skating.

:-)

I wonder if IBM would shut us down if...

I have boxes and boxes of junk which hasn't even been unpacked since we moved here over a year ago... Included in those boxes is everything from my previous life of a Lotus Notes consultant.

Now, somewhere in one of those boxes are old sample CDs of old versions of Lotus Notes... and I'm quite tempted to find those and install it on our server at the church.

Over the last few months I really noticed the lack of tools at my disposal for organizing all the little details of my responsibilities at the church. We've been exploring different software options at the church... but the reality is we can't afford to put that on the budget this year with so many other needs which are of higher importance... and besides, let's be honest, I'd be the only one using it :-)

I've been trying to organize everything with Outlook... and it stinks. It's just too darn limiting... I can't customize anything to meet my preferences or what I need... and I've been try…

Three Things I LOVE about Blogging

Seeing as how I'm at home vegging out today, I've spent a fair bit of time cleaning up my emails, getting caught up in blog reading, and going over old posts from my blog. This has been quite an interesting morning and really got me thinking about why I bother blogging and reading blogs. I came up with three main reasons why I love doing this.
Through blogs I've had the opportunity to meet some great people. I've chatted with so many different people - some with the same interests in technology, some who love the same comics I do, some who believe in Jesus like I do, some who want nothing to do with religion, some who follow complete different forms of spirituality and some from complete different parts of the world - and I've really enjoyed and appreciated every thought and idea that these people bring. How else could I possibly meet so many diverse people?

Blogging has allowed me to LEARN so much more then I could have on my own. There are so many talented pe…

Can't Sleep...

I hate this... lying in bed for almost 2 hours... just thinking and thinking and thinking and thinking and thinking... and not about anything important or life altering... but nothing is getting the brain to stop. So I figured I better get down here on the computer on do a brain dump... maybe that will help :)
I've been struggling this week with just not feeling like I fit in 100% here... Life in small town south western Ontario is VERY different from life in Montreal! It's not that I don't love it... it's just very different... and sometimes I just feel like I can't be completely me because no one around here would really get it. At least I've been reassured by the senior pastor that one of the main reasons they wanted me here is because I am different :)

I really need to find time for some kind of hobby. I haven't touched or painted or even glanced at my Warhammer stuff in nearly a year! Last time I played was the beginning of November 2006 and I p…

The God Debate

Those who know me well know one of my biggest passions is knowing and following the real Jesus. Not the one that we want and not the one that a lot of churches pass on as Jesus... but the real Jesus, God in the flesh, the guy who taught us that our religion is meaningless. It's about love and a right relationship with God and with all people around us.

I really enjoy the teachings of Bruxy Cavey from The Meeting House church. He is doing a fantastic series right now called The God Debate. He has such a great and honest and humbling response to the popular books out now put out by some leading atheists. If you're exploring who Jesus is, or don't think he was real, or you're a Christian trying to grow in your understanding and relationship with Jesus, I would HUGELY recommend you download this and give it a listen. You can download it HERE.

Let me know what you think of it.

Gotta Find an Outlet Somewhere...

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For over 15 years I was part of a FANTASTIC group of people who put on a great show for a great cause. It started with a simple phone call to repay a favor and turned into a life changing experience. The group is The Becket Players and each year they put on a Broadway style musical and a cabaret show to raise money to buy hospital equipment for the Montreal Children's Hospital and other children charities.

And the awesome bonus was meeting my wife there :)

Sure, since Danielle and I had the kids, we've had to scale back on how much we were involved... but there was always a little something that we were doing to continue being a part of it.

However, not being involved in the show this past year since we've moved away was a bit of a drag. And not even being able to work out the schedule to get to Montreal to see it was even worst! We've met some great friends over the years in this group and really miss each of them.

I don't think Elmira will ever completely feel li…

Brain Dump

Man oh man what a crazy week! Thankfully I was able to spend ALL day yesterday and all afternoon today just completely vegging out with the family! That certainly did the body good!
I'm never going to McDonald's again. I finally saw the film Super Size Me... and I was just floored with it. I probably go twice a week... and that's just got to stop.Vegging out with my wife and kids this weekend has been great. I'm just crazy in love with them!I want to continue to just be crazy in love with God too! I NEVER want to become a typical, sit in my pew Christian. Whether I'm a pastor to the end of my days or not... I want to continually be challenged and stretched and pushed to the limit so that I need to rely on God just to survive it! I want everyone to know me as a guy who loves God and loves his neighbour as himself. Since that's supposed to be the greatest commandment that's how I want to be judged.Thursday I wrote my seminary midterm exam. It was on …

I hate Internet Explorer!!

ARRGGHHH!!! Since my last Windows Update Internet Explorer is gone crazy on me. I can't click links in my emails... can't open additional tabs... it keeps telling me that the popup blocker is on. Then I go in the settings and see that it's turned off...

I'm done fighting with this stupid thing. I'm going back to Firefox.

If only I could get my hands on a free Notes client... then I'd get rid of this Outlook thingy as well :)

Captain America Rocks!!

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I gotta admit... sometimes I'm pretty clueless as to what is going on around me. I never buy the newest technology, and I never catch the cool TV show as it premieres. Sometimes it takes a big news flash to open my eyes to some cool stuff right in front of me... and this is definitely the case with the Captain America comic series! It took killing Cap to get to pick up an issue. And boy am I ever glad I did!

I've never read anything with Captain America before. It wasn't until reading Civil War that Cap even came on my radar. I guess it's just the Canadian in me that just assumed that the character wouldn't be relatable if I wasn't American, or if I wasn't a war story nut. Civil War changed my perspective of the character. Sure, he's all American. But he's all that is great about the US. His morals, his values, his respect for others. His love of liberty and equality for all. His role in Marvel's Civil War was great and really gave me an …

ReGroup Small Group DVD

I picked up a copy of this ressource a couple of weeks ago. I'm very impressed and excited about this training... I'm hoping that this will be a part of our kick-off in January.

201 and Brain Dump

This post is my 201st entry on this blog. Gee... I wonder where my head will be after another 200 posts :)

Here's a bit of a brain dump this morning.
Danielle's mom is doing great after her surgery! Turns out they did SIX bypasses! She should be home tomorrow. She'll need 24/7 monitoring for the next two weeks so we're working out our schedules to accommodate that.I think I'm coming down with a cold. Darn it. I can't be sick this week. I REALLY need to be studying on my midterm and a running nose won't help that.I have the greatest wife in the world! With all that she is doing to help her mom she wanted to be a part in helping me dealing with my stresses (which, to be honest, I was trying to keep from her to help her dealing with her mom).I'm so happy that Danielle and I are in a small group together again. It's been years since we've been in a group together... I was in a men's group and she in a ladies group. Those were great for b…

Why Do I Think Too Much??

I'm sitting in my office at the church... the first service is about to end... and my mind is racing on everything and not much of it is on trying to meet with God this morning. I really hate Sundays like this... when I'm more concerned with the ministry then spending some great time with God. This is happening more and more and I'm really not having a time of worshipping God on Sundays... all I do is wonder and worry about the people he keeps sending here to Woodside.

I end up just looking around and wondering if we're really making a difference in people's lives... or are we just playing church? I see so many new faces and wonder if they'll ever get connected here or will they be gone next week and never seen again? I wonder about all the young dads (and there are TONS of them)... will they be godly husbands and fathers or will they become the statistic of another failed marriage? Are people truly growing in a meaningful relationship with God and each ot…

Lotusphere Church Service

Christopher Byrne posted on his blog that IBM should make available services for people of different faiths during their big Lotusphere conference at Disney World. He was VERY kind enough suggest I could help put that together.

Lotusphere was always the highlight of my career... and probably one of the things I miss the most of my life of a computer consultant. Not that I would dream in a million years that this would actually happen, but it's a very nice thought. :-)

Operation Going Great

Just got a call from my wife Danielle. Her mom's bypass surgery is done and the doctor said it went great. Danielle will be able to go and see her in about an hour. The doc said that the next 24 hours are the real test... bleeding needs to stop and ensure that the heart keeps beating... so don't stop praying yet!

[Big sigh of relief] I'm not a fan of medical procedures... so this update was a nice big relief. I'm so glad everything went well!

What Would Jesus Buy?

I just stumbled on this movie trailer for "What Would Jesus Buy?". At first I couldn't figure out of this was a real guy or not... pretty interesting and I definitely want to see this. Looks fun and could be a good reminder of not letting our shopping addiction make us go crazy this Christmas :-)

Praying for my monther-in-law

My mother-in-law, Joyce, is having a quadruple bypass surgery tomorrow morning. She's been in the hospital since Friday.

We're praying that the surgery goes well and it's a speedy recovery. If you're the praying type we'd appreciate you join us on this one :-)

October Referers

Here's some of the search engine referers that brought people to this blog. Some make perfect sense... no big shockers this month... except for the fact that traffic has really been going up. And the #1 search is still people looking for information on having a partry for their pastor! Guess October being pastor appreciation month might have had something to do with that :-)

pastor birthday pastor's birthday party ideas fall of the necromancer pastor drews blog how to get a passport folder more then meets the eye may parker in coma amazing spiderman experiencing christ together studies career change for pastors kevin presseault canada culture pace of life elmira ontario transformers pumpkin carving theme party for a pastor pastor's bodyguard party ideas for pastors "brian bartlett" baptist planning pastors birthday transformers sermon "monster machines" elmira woodside woodside church, elmira, might machines open minded christia…

It's a "Yes"

The vote for the building expansion is done. 80% of the votes where YES to move forward with the project. Tomorrow the fun begins :-)

Now, I have a year of stewardship campaign and a year of construction to get a couple of the major ministries fully organized: small groups, welcome and evangelism. Yup, going to be very fun!

Tonight is the big vote

At tonight's congregational meeting we'll be voting on whether or not to continue with our plans to construction a big addition to our church building.

I'm really curious as to how this is going to play out. The response, whether yes or no, will really shape the ministry for years to come. Monday will be a really fun day :-)

If you're a member of Woodside make sure you get out to this vote. And if you're not a member come out as well. This is a great opportunity to learn more about what God is doing in and around Woodside... and may just get you excited enough to jump on in and be involved!

Pumpkins

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Here are this year's pumpkins I made with the kids (okay, I did most of the work. At least they sat with me the entire time this year!) Turned out pretty OK. I think Cinderella is going to need a stronger candle to make sure I can get more light coming out the small details...

Click the image for a larger version.

What's In a Name?

For the next few days I'm putting a lot of energy into our small group ministry. As we continue to move forward as a church I firmly believe that the best way that we'll be able to live out our mission of "Helping people grow in a meaningful relationship with God and each other" is to have a healthy, vibrant, growing, organic small group ministry.

The first thing I'm looking at is the name of the ministry... this may sound dumb, but I think there's something to this... Small groups are known by so many different names in different churches: small groups, care groups, home church, Fellowship groups, life groups, etc, etc... I think the name reflects the nature and the purpose of the group. If I was joining a Fellowship Group I would expect to hang out with friends and eat cake. If I was joining a Care Group I would expect to find care and support for struggles that I'm going through in my life. So, if I already have a large network of friends I wouldn&#…

Zombie Pumpkins!

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For the last 2 years I've been into trying to make our Halloween pumpkins a little more fun then just the traditional pumpkin face. The first year I used a Boba Fett template from the Star Wars official website. Last year I found this really cool site, Zombie Pumpkins! This site is FANTASTIC if you're looking for some great pumpkin ideas!

This year I'll be making two pumpkins... each one chosen by one my kids. Here are sample pictures of what I'm hoping to accomplish.


I'll post the final results of them tomorrow...

Bad EBay Bad!

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ARRGGHHH! This weekend I was bidding on an item on EBay. It was four trade paperback volumes of the New Avengers comic. Since I have volume 5 this would have been a perfect item to win. I was winning the auction right up to the last hour. I figured I had put in a good enough high bid to get it...

Well, I was outbid. Now normally this wouldn't be a big deal... but the outbid notice only arrived in my Inbox 2.5 hours after the close of the auction! There was more then enough time to receive the notice then make another bid...

Oh well. I guess this is God's way of telling me I need to not be so cheap and that I should support my local comic book store :-)

I guess Volume 1 will have to be my celebration present after writing my seminary mid-term next week :-)

I Miss This!

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Last Saturday evening we went to the home of a couple from our church for dinner. We brought the kids with us. We had a wonderful evening of getting to know each other better while the kids played away downstairs with a huge box of LEGO (always a hit with my kids).

Around 9:30 we realized how late it was getting and that we should get the kids home to bed. We called them up to us to give them the "five minute warning" before we were going to leave. They came and sat up with us for those five minutes...

Well... three minutes later they were fast asleep on our laps! My kids haven't slept on my lap since there were tiny babies... and even then they didn't do it often. We sat there for another hour... because we were enjoying the company but also because we were loving the snuggle time.

Man, I wish they could stay this cute forever!

Our Visit to The Meeting House

This morning my family and I drove down to Oakville, Ontario in order to visit The Meeting House, the church for people not into church.

We had a great morning... we managed to get there nice and early so that was perfect. I was worried that we'd be rushed. We actually got there 30 minutes before the service so that gave us time to find out where we needed to bring my daughter and get some information about the church.

I was a tad surprised on the lack of any type of welcome team or greeters... I would have imagined that if anyone had a strong welcome team this would be the place. I guess this area is really the weak point of all churches :) Luckily the place was very well laid out and information was easy to find. The atmosphere was very laid back. The children's area was excellent.

I really enjoyed Bruxy's message this morning. It was a great reminder and challenge for me personally on this importance of living a life where we don't live above our means so we coul…

Blog Archives

I've been blogging since April 2004. Back in my computer days I was hosting my blog with a provider who does IBM Lotus Notes hosting since that was the platform that I specialised in. A few months before I left the computer biz I decided to shut down that blog and move on to this one... I just wished that there was a way I could have imported those blog entries into this one.

I was just checking out some Google referrers that I've received in the last few days and found that the old blog is still around... when I closed the account they never actually deleted it from their server. The full archive of all my old posts can be found at this link.

Now I'm wondering if there's a way that I could get them into Facebook... that may work... since I can't figure out how to get them here.

Who Pastors the Pastor?

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This is a question that I've been asking myself long and hard over the past few months...

One of my responsibilities as stated on my job description is "He shall pay close attention to his personal spiritual life, family, and service by maintaining a vibrant and maturing faith in Jesus Christ. Careful attention must be given to personal characteristics of integrity, vision, discernment, compassion, and humour."Now, this is something that I would hold myself to even if it wasn't a part of the job :) That's just the kind of man that I want to be. My personal spiritual life and my growing love of God and of people is of the utmost importance to me. I want to grow in this every day of my life.

I knew right away when I first became a Christian that I needed to surround myself with more mature men. Guys who have walked with God a lot longer then I have. Guys who have been married longer then I've been alive. Guys who have raised their kids. Guys whose love for God an…

Go Visit Another Church this Weekend!

Last night my wife Danielle and I went to participate in an evening worship service at another church. No, we're not unhappy with the services here :) Two main reasons why we went. First, I'd like to be able to find a really loud rocking worship service to go to every month. I just really like loud music... it speaks to me. Second reason is I really want to make sure that I'm doing good spiritually. Sundays mornings have a tendency to become work days... I have a lot of hallway meetings and I spend too much time during the service critiquing it and wondering how others are doing spiritual. This obvious gets in the way of my own worship time with God...

Anyways... we headed out around 5:50, a tad later then I wanted to since I had no real clue where we were going. I wanted to be able to get there early and check things out. Well, we got there at 6:26, four minutes before the service was supposed to start. Being rushed like this got me frazzled and already I was ner…

I LOVE THIS SHOW!!

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Just finished watching the first season of Battlestar Galatica on Friday. Man oh man! I just love this show! I can't believe I haven't gotten in to this one before.

Of course the only problem is... now I have to get my hands on the second season DVD set! I was looking at a few stores yesterday... and I just couldn't bring myself to slap down $65 for only 10 episodes. Maybe I'll check out Ebay later today to see if I can find them cheaper.

As a side note... what's with the cylons having a glowing back when they're making love??? That seems like a pretty big give away that someone is a cylon! When they are completely organic why put lights in them. That just seems dumb. You'd think just a simple cat-scan whould show that they have lights in their spins. That's really the only nit picking that I can do with this show. Everything else is just perfect.

Kim Phuc

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This weekend we had the privilege of having Kim Phuc join us for our service on Sunday and to share her story with the community on Saturday evening.

If you're not aware of who Kim is, she is the young girl in this photo who is running down the street naked after her village was napalmed during the Vietnam war. Her clothes were burned right off her back as the napalm burned her flesh. This photo brought the reality of war to so many around the world. Her story of faith and forgiveness is such a powerful testimony of God's forgiveness and the power that can come from God when we truly do "love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us"! Kim now travels the world speaking on behalf of children who are the innocent victims of war. War sucks. Period. And it sucks even more when you hear these personal stories of how these children suffer because of it. Kim's story of forgiveness in this darkest of situations is such a light to those who could never imagine…

Yesterday's Sermon

My sermon on the Greatest Commandment is now online at our church's website. You can download it directly by clicking this link.

This was a hard message for me to give considering the crazy few weeks I've had here at the church... God really worked a number on me over this one. It's so easy to get caught up in the day to day of the church, especially for those of us who work in full time ministry. God really reminded me this week that it's not about our sacrifices and our offerings... but all about loving God and loving our neighbor.

End of Week Brain Dump

Almost the weekend! I love taking Fridays off. Makes for a great weekend not having to worry about Sunday morning right up till the last minute :) This week was great as I've been working on this sermon on the Greatest Commandment. This is definitely a "getting back to basics" kind of sermon... but, man oh man, did I ever need to get back to basics this week!

So here's a bit of a brain dump... hopefully this will clear the head and get me to really relax this weekend!
Our friends Dave and Kim are coming to visit us from Montreal this weekend! YAY! Can't wait to see them. They should be here before lunch tomorrow. We're so looking forward to hanging with them.Oktoberfest is in full swing here in Kitchener. We're hoping to find some family-friendly events on the weekend. Don't really feel like bringing my six and four year old to a good old fashion drink fest :)I hope the rain that they're forecasting doesn't show up. This Saturday is …

Heading Out to Vote

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Today is the Ontario provincial elections.

I've always really enjoyed politics. I guess I'm just one of those guys who LOVES to talk about the two subjects that we're brought up to believe we're not supposed to talk about: religion and politics :)

Since moving to Ontario last year I really haven't been following what's been going on in our political scene here. Shame on me! I'm definitely going to have to do something about that. I would really like to start volunteering for one of the candidates... I wonder if they still need volunteers throughout the term or if it's really just during the election campaigns...

Anyways, I'm heading out shortly to meet my wife at the school where we're voting. So, all you Ontario residents out there (yes both of you!) get out there and vote. It's one of the greatest gifts we have in this country - the other is health care! :)

Did He Really Mean "The Greatest"?

This Sunday I'm continuing in our preaching series on the book of Mark. I'll be going over Mark 12:28-34 where Jesus talks about the greatest commandment.

I'm really just in the beginning stages of the sermon. I would like to be look at the following three questions:
Why even ask the question?What did Jesus' answer mean for the people then?What does Jesus' answer mean for us today?I'd like to be able to pull out the themes of man's tendency to worship the way God works instead of God himself and man's tendency to create the complex out of the simple. Both of these are from books that really hit me hard this summer, The End of Religion by BruxyCavey and Simple Church by Thom Rainer & Eric Geiger.I'm really looking forward to getting into this. It should be a lot of fun to put together and go over this topic. I'm always amazed at how when I have a topic to preach on it seems like it's a message just for me to remember and work on in my …

Thor Returns

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By far one of my favorite comics right now is the new new Thor series with story by J.Michael Straczynski and art by Olivier Coipel.

I just picked up issue number 3 today and just loved it. This new series is a fantastic way to be introduced to this classic character. I love when you can pick up a new title of an old character and not be required to have tons of previous knowledge in order to enjoy the book.

The story so far is simple yet interesting. Thor, the Norse god of thunder, was dead. As our all the Norse gods. And now Thor is back and has begun a search for the other gods who are lost among humanity. In this new issue he finds the first of the missing Asgardians... but not before confronting Iron Man. Normally this should have been a happy reunion between former Avengers and friends... but Thor is none too happy about the fact that Iron Man created a clone of Thor during the Civil War.

The art is stunning. Every page is beautiful. It's no surprise that issue 1 and 2…

Imagine

Tonight we had a meeting at the church to present an update on our church's building expansion project, entitled the Imagine Campaign. This has been quite exciting over the last few months to start seeing this come together and it was great tonight to finally share the building plans with the congregation.

The Image Campaign team has been doing an awesome job with this and really need a big pat on the back for all their work!

I haven't played a part in the actual planning of the new building... My role has been to evaluate our current ministry needs in the areas of Adult Ministries (which includes adult evangelism) and look at our future needs and what would be required of the facilities if we went forward with the construction of a building addition.

The huge reality of my current ministry is that space is limited. Very limited. Even the greatest idea for a new ministry would be very hard pressed to find a single day in the week when adequate space could be found in the churc…

September Referers

Lots of interesting search results which are bringing people to my blog. Here are some of the highlights for the months of September.
Woodside Church Elmira Ontario: Got TONS of those this month. Guess I should put a link to the church's actual website on my blog so people can find that more easily. Here it is: www.woodsidechurch.ca"how do I get booked as a pastor": Good question... I'm still trying to figure out how it happened to me :)novels about pastors: My favorite is "They Call Me Pastor: How to Love the Ones You Lead" by H.B. London Jr.I am thinking of pulling my son from french immersion: DON'T DO IT! Having a second language is a wonderful opportunity in life. I'm so glad my parents did it for me!And it starts with me: You're right... it does!Courses I need to be a pastor: You need courses??? :)newbie pastor: Yup. That's me.Pastor birthday party ideas: Still getting tons of hits on that one. Make sure you check out my…

Reading Like the Wind

I'm behind on my reading for school... but at least I'm back into it and should be caught up by next week, which, by the way, I have to have read from Genesis to Esther in the Old Testament. Being off for Thanksgiving will be a big help with that!

I'm also making my way through a few other books. I'm re-reading Simple Church with the rest of the staff here at Woodside. We read a chapter a week and then go over the discussion questions together during our weekly staff meetings. We just started last week and the discussions were pretty interesting.

I nearly finished that Star Wars book I picked up months ago! It's nice to just read a book for fun and geek out with it. Gotta make sure I do that more often.

Crazy Week...

This morning I'm exhausted! I've barely slept all week... brain is spinning with so much going on. Here's an early morning brain dump as I get ready to enjoy my day off.
My mother-in-law is going in for a heart test this morning. Can't remember what it's called but it's when they go in with a camera to check her artery blockage... depending on the results she may need a bypass surgery which they would do today. So I'm praying for her.I spent WAY too much time this week dealing with stuff that I would have thought that I shouldn't have to deal with. Because of that I'm days behind in my work and will probably have to work a chunk of today and tomorrow which is supposed to be my time off. I don't mind working extra hours... but when it's because I was distracted with stuff that bums me out a tad...If I could change one thing about how we do Sunday morning I would love to get rid of announcements! I'd love to see Sunday being about wo…

Feeling a Little Crabby Today

It's not too often that I feel crabby... but today is turning into one of those days. And I'm not sure why. Guess I'm just dealing with a lot of different stuff right now... I'm behind on my school reading and I'm behind on work stuff. And I don't like that and that bugs me!

Guess I need to give myself some of that grace that God so freely gives me... That or chocolate cheese cake! That could help too :)

Mind just writting about feeling crabby is already starting to help me feel better. Funny how that works.

Tired

Man I'm tired this morning! We had a great whirlwind weekend... and I spent the day painting my office yesterday.

Today is our official one year anniversary of living in Elmira. We're going to celebrate with some mini-put and dinner out :) We'll be heading out as soon as my son finishes his Christmas concert rehearsal.

One Year Ago Today

Exactly one year ago today I packed up the last of our belongs to get ready for the movers. Then on September 21st, 2006 we left Montreal for our new lives here in Elmira, Ontario.

So hard to believe that it's a already been a year! And what an INCREDIBLE years it's been! As I think back on all that has been going on in our family and work this past year I'm just amazed on how it has all played out. Let's face it. A complete career change can be a scary thing... especially when you have a young family that you're supporting. But God has been so good in all of this and I can't even imaging doing life any differently!

Here are a few of this past year's highlights:
I sure don't miss paying Quebec taxes!! I took quite a big pay cut going from computer consulting into ministry and my actual bi-weekly pay is identical to before! I make a lot less but my cash in hand is the same. All that extra money went straight to taxes... and I find that our public s…

The Force Unleashed on Wii!!

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This is just FANTASTIC news for the umber Star Wars geek that I am!

Lucasarts annouced that the next Star Wars video game, The Force Unleashed, will be available for the Nintendo Wii. Not only that, but players will be using the Wii remote as their lightsaber and the nunchuck for movement and using the force!

In this game, players take on the role of Darth Vader's secret apprentice where you will assist Vader in destroying the remaining Jedi Knights. The Wii version will also have a head-to-head mode so you can determine amoung your friends and family who truely is the greatest Jedi.

I'm going to be SOOOOO all over this game. I really hope that it will have an online component as well.

I Should be Doing Homework But...

... I just don't feel like it...

It's only 8:30pm but everyone in the house is already sound asleep... maybe I should do some laundry... or some cleaning... or go online and pay the bills... NAW! I'd like to watch the Jays game... but that means they'd lose :) Nothing else on TV but Beauty and the Geek and if I waste a single minute on that show you all have permission to beat me senseless!

Guess I'll get the books out and read a few chapters for school... but first, here's a brain dump before getting to it.
I'm really glad to be back in school. This "Biblical Introduction" course is great. Every church should teach this stuff to all of their congregations!My arms and chest are slowly starting to stiffen up. I started a new exercise program using my brother-in-law's bowflex which we set up in our garage. What a great workout! I'm sure the arms will be sore tomorrow.Our entire staff will be reading the book Simple Church as our staff deve…

Open Minded Christian for Sale

Drew Marshall, host of one of Canada's most listened to spiritual talk shows, is auctioning himself off on EBay.

Here's a blurb from the EBay listing:
This is about dialogue, NOT debate. It's been my experience that even the phrase, "Open Minded Christian" has been a bit of an anomaly, especially in the North American evangelical scene. The Drew Marshall Show is attempting to model for the Christian community, healthy dialogue NOT debate. Over the years, "Evangelical Christians" have been known more for what they're against than what they're for. Subsequently, the Evangelical community has gained the reputation of shoving their agenda down the throats of others. They're certainly not known for being open-minded listeners who genuinely care about others, despite whatever contrary world view that person might have. It's our feeling at The Drew Marshall Show that "Jesus people" should love others enough to shut up & listen! Only…

Pastor Birthday Party

OK... for some odd reason I get over 10 search engine referrers a week on "Pastor Birthday Party". So... since so many of you are finding this site looking for information on having a birthday party for your Pastor let me give you a top ten list to consider when organizing the party. This list is really just my opinions and not in a particular order so keep that in mind... I'm no expert, but this is the kind of party I would want to go to :)

Don't have it on a Saturday night. If your pastor needs to preach on Sunday then Saturday could be a bad choice for a birthday party.
Don't have it in the church banquet hall! He works there all week. Get him out the church building!
Don't let anyone talk to him about ANYTHING ministry related! No comments about his last sermon. No ministry ideas. Nothing. As soon as you do that the pastor's mind switches back into "work mode" and makes it harder to simply relax and enjoy his party. If necessary have two men as…

Iron Man Trailer!

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The trailer for the new Iron Man movie is online. You can check it out here.

Iron Man in one of the comics I've started reading a lot since Civil War. I wasn't much of a fan as a kid but he's really growing on me.

The movie really looks true to the comic. Which is always a good thing in my books! This movie could be as good as the first Spider-Man. Maybe that's just geeky wishful thinking... but one can hope right? :)

No More Babies at Home

This morning my baby girl Samantha started school.

She's been so excited about starting school for the last two weeks. This morning I could see that she was starting to get nervous about it... so I let her put her stuff kitty cat in her bag to only take out during recess. That changed her mood instantly :)

Her big brother was super cool making sure he left space for her on the bus beside him. He even told his best friend that he can't sit beside him because he wants to help his sister. Man! Their mom is really raising them well! :)

So, now both our kids are in school... it's a bit of an odd feeling. Both sad and happy... Sad that they won't be home when I come home for lunch... and happy that they won't be there when I come home for lunch and can have some nice parent time. Does that make me a bad dad?? :)

Brain Dump

My brain hurts today...
Where do I begin??? I have so much work to get down in so many different areas of ministry that it's hard to even figure out what to tackle first. Adult Sunday School, Welcome Team, Small Groups, Alpha, Women's Ministry, Men's Ministry, and other regular day to day stuff need my input and time... I'm working in a "what's-due-today" mode... I can't think further then tonight... and that drives me a little nuts since I still have so many big picture things to get organized.I dropped one of my classes; Hermeneutics. 25% of my grade is actually due the very first week of the course. I needed to learn the entire Greek alphabet. I had to be able to recite it, recognize all the characters and sound them out. With the kick-off of the ministry year happening this week as well there was NO WAY I was going to be able to get this done. So I'll take this course next September and actually learn the Greek stuff next summer and have it mem…

Back to School

This morning I'm heading back to class.

I'm taking two courses at Heritage Seminary this semester. Sure. Two classes may be a bit much for a guy with a young family and who works full time at the church... but I REALLY needed to get these two classes finished. I'm taking "Hermeneutics" and "Biblical Introduction". These are the two pre-reqs for my Diploma in Pastor Studies and they are only offered in the Fall semester... so if I don't take them now then I stuck having to wait until next year.

This way I'll get the two pre-reqs finished then I can go back to taking just one class a semester. The beauty will be in the summer when I could take two or maybe even three classes since they are only a week long (9am-4pm for five days). This would allow me to finish my diploma in as little as 4-5 years. Much better then the original ten years I was planning on.

July and August Referers

I haven't had much of a chance to look at how people found my blog over the last couple of months... so here's a quick list of some of the more interesting ones!


bad 90's boy bands
new clone wars television series trailer
pastor happy
Spending quiet time with God will bring quiet rest from God
windy takeoffs
mars hill podcasts are so quiet
Evan almighty negative
marvel civil war Paperback
fun things to do at the pastor's birthday party
marvel comics pumpkin carving
Tranformers sermon
marvel ultimate alliance costume gallery
craziness at saddleback church
RAMBLINGS OF A FIRST TIME PASTOR
didn't get my birth certificate back when applying for passport
blue jays newbie
experiencing christ together
drew marshall
Happy birthday, Pastor
bruxy cavey
manga messiah

More Then Meets the Eye

Just finished the first draft for my next article. This is the first draft and will probably be cleaned up a little bit more before sending it to the newspaper later this week.
More Then Meets the Eye
By Kevin Presseault

Hard to believe that summer is over.

I love summer time. Playing outside with the kids. The beautiful weather. Blue Jays games. Summer is great. One of my favorite things about summer is the Hollywood blockbuster movies which hit the theaters. I just love going to the movies. Ever since I was a little kid spending my paper route money, I love grabbing a big bag of popcorn and enjoying some fun, exciting movies.

By far my favorite movie this summer was Transformers. In case you didn’t see it I’ll try not to spoil the ending for you here. This movie is based on the toys which first appeared in the 1980s. I never had any of the toys growing up but I sure did want them! If you’re not familiar with the story behind Transformers it’s actually quite simple. The Trans…