Dear Wife (And Mother of Young Kids)

An open letter to my Wife.

I don’t express my gratitude enough to my wife. Instead, I find we just keep going from day to day assuming the other person is doing what they have to do to make the family work. Mother’s Day is always a good reminder to make sure we realize and actually say how grateful we are for their selfless efforts. This is an open letter I wrote, with my wife in mind:

dear wife with young kids

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Homelessness: People Without Options

The ABCs of our Responsibility

A recent study was was released showing the increase in homelessness in St. John’s, NL. On one day, in particular, there were at least 166 who did not have a place to call home. In a city the size of St. John’s, they are ‘sobering numbers’.  This post is based on my experience in Toronto, but the truth of our responsibility remains.

homeless-people-without-options

I ask myself: what would become of me if I received a series of unfortunate events? What if I lost my job…couldn’t make my financial obligations…lost my home and car…and my life completely changed? What would happen?

More than likely, I would have options. With so many family members and friends, that care about me, they wouldn’t let unfortunate events spiral out of control. I have options.

But what if I didn’t have options? What would happen then?

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5 Ways Discipleship Begins BEFORE Salvation

Journeying with Jesus

I always thought discipleship flowed out of a salvation. You learn about Jesus, experience grace, make a commitment to accept and serve Jesus, and then discipleship begins as we follow after Jesus.

Ways Discipleship Begins Before Belief

Then I read the gospels.

Jesus called his disciples, and they followed, but it says nothing about them believing. Absolutely nothing. That doesn’t necessarily prove that they didn’t; however, later in the story, we learn about their journey of belief. It wasn’t until much later in their journey of discipleship, did they fully understand and believe.

Everyone from Peter to Judas, portrayed signs of confusion and disbelief of who Jesus actually was. It’s not until the very end, when they witness the risen Saviour, and empowerment of the Spirit, that they reach a powerful turning point. And the transformation is amazing — Peter goes from denying he even knew Jesus, to preaching in front of thousands.

So what can we learn from the disciple’s journey? Let me give you 5 ways discipleship begins before salvation:

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5 Benefits of Small Town Living [Guest Post]

Sabryna Anstey: From City to Community

When I applied for the Children’s Pastor position in Glenwood, Newfoundland, I didn’t even know where Glenwood was. I just knew that there was a need in this community and I felt a call to fill that need.

Small Town Benefits

Moving from Paradise (20,000 people) to Glenwood (800 people) was one of the hardest things I have ever had to do. Not just for me but for my husband as well. I was fresh out of university, newly married, and had just started to get settled into my first apartment and new friendships. We are all called to something, but when God calls you to a place you’ve never been, a place with a population of 800 people, I can guarantee there is a struggle in your spirit.

During this time of struggle I couldn’t help but remember the part of 1 Samuel 15:22 that says “…obedience is better than sacrifice.” I was obeying a call that was completely out of my comfort zone and I was being thrown into the deep end.

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Planning a Communion Meal

Tips and Ideas to Help

Since our ministry began, I’ve asked myself some serious questions.  One of them — what constitutes a ‘church service’?  What I’ve learned, is that we tend to allow our tradition, and not scripture, to answer that question.  The Bible never describes a ‘church service’ as people reverently sitting in sanctuary pews, while singing hymns and listening to a well-dressed pastor.  Can a ‘church service’ look like that?  Sure!  But it’s not what actually defines a ‘church service’.

Planning A Communion Meal

The Underground Church

A number of years ago, I had the privilege of being a part of a short-term missions team.  I’ll never forget experiencing an underground youth group.  Yes, they sang songs.  Yes, they heard from God’s Word.  But other than that, the ‘service’ looked NOTHING like what the average North American would call a ‘church service.’

It was full of community, unity, friendship, authentic connection, love, and selflessness.  Their goal wasn’t to serve themselves and welcome Jesus to ‘their service’, their goal was to celebrate Jesus through their community and serve Jesus.

A ‘church #service’ is about #Communion together as we celebrate Jesus. #unity #community #Acts2 Click To TweetWhat did I learn?  A ‘church service’ is about communion together as we celebrate Jesus.  Outside of the basics, the format doesn’t really matter.  The only fundamentals we know of, include teaching the Word, breaking of bread, fellowship, and prayer (Acts 2:42).

So, what if we planned a service around one of the most significant aspects of our faith?  What if Holy Communion was actually the focus of our service?  What if we didn’t just ‘partake’ together, but actually ate together, like Jesus’ and his disciples did during the Last Supper?  (Check out What Happens During Communion? for more.)

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