Wednesday, July 22, 2015

BOOK REVIEW: SHIFTING STATS SHAKING THE CHURCH

Margaret Mead was attributed with saying, 

"Never believe that a few caring people can't change the world. For indeed, that's all who ever have."


In an age when the Canadian church may feel dwarfed by contrary voices and philosophies, more than a few caring churches are responding to their communities with life changing words and deeds. 

World Vision commissioned two journalists Patricia Paddey and Karen Stiller to report on 40 Canadian churches involved in community transformation. What you will read will encourage a more positive view of the Canadian church. This is really a small sample of the innovation and compassionate ministry taking place in our communities. 

Statistics may point to a diminishing church in Canadian culture, but she is a dark horse passionately running to the finish line. The church is not dying, she is changing. The Lord of the Church is making sure of that.

____________________________________


"Book has been provided courtesy of Graf-Martin Communications and World Vision Canada in exchange for an honest review."



Monday, July 13, 2015

URBAN CRYING

I have pastored in Windsor at New Song Church for 21 years since launching it. I am thoroughly convinced of the need and place for churches in our city core. I love Windsor deeply.

This past week I have been in Toronto involved with Mission Canada work. On Sunday mornings this month I am leading worship at the Pan Am Athletes Village Chapel service. I have been trailing Ejay Tupe through the downtown as he tells stories and pastors his street flock. I am meeting with pastors present and past who have invested their lives in this city. I am facilitating a team of University students from Texas helping Church In The City do a kids camp.

The strangest thing happens to me every time I get to walk the streets of another city...

I get all emotional and teary. I run into pockets of poverty and feel like I'm home. I marvel at the human silos filled with people whose money and power lift them above the chaos and perpetual street drama. My senses are filled with the sheer magnitude of humanity. 

Windsor, Toronto, Ottawa, Montreal, Saskatoon, Edmonton... I feel at home in every city and dream about God's People making more of the city they live in. 

This is not some kind of lame romanticism. The very best and the very worst of the human condition is here. I walk these streets with one ear to the ground and one to Heaven. I'm hearing whispers... 

Oh Jesus... what do you want to say to the church in our cities? What do you applaud in us and what are you trying to tell us to change in ourselves? As you wept for Jerusalem, let the contagion of your tears be in our eyes. 

Teach us to love the city like you do.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

GOD HONOURS GOOD CHOICES




1 Kings 3:10-14

10 The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this.

11 So God said to him, "Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor have asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice,

12 I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.

13 Moreover, I will give you what you have not asked for-both riches and so-so that in your lifetime you will have no equal among kings.

14 And if you walk in my ways and obey my statutes and commands as David your father did, I will give you a long life." 



When we please God, He is very pleased! It is His nature to give us more than we ask for.  God valued the humility and selfless prayer of Solomon and gave him many bonuses.

In this world, it is sometimes difficult to be noticed or valued.  God takes great notice of those who honour Him and pray according to His desires and purposes. He not only rewards Solomon, he also gives him incentives to stay true.

Let’s think about what we’re saying when we pray and ask, “What does God want?”  That is sometimes different than what I want.  God help us to know the difference and pray according to His will.


James 1:
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.


Wisdom is the ability to take knowledge and apply it to life’s situations.  You don’t have to have all the knowledge in order to be wise.  But wisdom will cause you to seek appropriate knowledge.

Pastor Ed Robinson said something that I have been musing on for days. He said, “I started out with knowledge and the Lord gave me wisdom. That led to my surrender which in turn opened up more knowledge and wisdom.”

How about you? Have you found wisdom that empowers your surrender?



Blog Archive