Tuesday, November 29, 2011

December Message Series

I love preaching during the Christmas season.
This year will be a little different than normal for a number of reasons. I'll be talking about some topics not always covered in traditional circles.
The weeks and titles are laid out as follows:

Dec. 4 - A War Story
Dec. 11 - A Justice Story
Dec. 18 - A Love Story
Dec. 24 - A Never Ending Story (5:00pm)

The as elders we decided to not have a morning service on Sunday, December 25th so families can have that time for themselves. Then for Sunday, January 1st we moved the service start time to 11:00am and will include children in the room from three years and up. I traditionally speak about our vision as a church on this first Sunday of the year and it has been affectionately called the "Walnuts & Rice" message:-). If you don't know what that means maybe you need to be there to find out.
Also knowing there are several individuals wanting to get baptized, I announced last week that we'd do that on the 1st as well.
After the service we're having a good 'ol fashion potluck lunch.
Time together with the Body of Christ over food after a celebratory service. Good stuff:-)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Fun times with the fam

This week for Thanksgiving we had Melissa's sister Marcie, her hubby Michael and their three kids Justice, Audra and Noah over. What a great time together. We love having them
over. There's a long history or friendship because we all went to Moody Bible Institute back in the early 90's. A guy who used to be my classmate has now been my brother-in-law for almost two decades. He's a pastor as well so we have plenty to talk about:-)
Our five days included lots of eating, drinking, game playing, going to the Creation Museum (thus the pic of the large snake) and going out for coffee and a movie.
We head to NJ in June b/c they live near the Jersey Shore. Ahhh, Cape May in the summer. Already looking forward to that:-)

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Day of Generosity Offering Results

Wow! I wondered what the Lord would do through the people of Encounter and He didn't disappoint!
As you can see in the previous blog post, we were very specific to where the funds would go this year. I believe this helped our people be even more generous than previous years. We know the two missionary families and some of our people will be personally involved in the projects in Cruz Blanca, Guatemala.
Normally we have our offering earlier in the service but because we weren't keeping any of the funds we moved it to the end of the service so people could respond to the message.
The total amount given was $8,593.56.
That is the second highest Sunday morning offering in Encounter's history and it totally pays for the mobile classroom and community outreach for next summer's mission trip. We will send the $2,300.00 to Vision Trust as earmarked funds for the trip. The remaining funds blesses our two missionary families in a big way.
Thank-you Encounter Church for giving so generously.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Day of Generosity, Sun. Nov. 20

One Sunday a year, Encounter gives away an entire mornings offering.
We call it the Day of Generosity. This year there are four receipients of the funds.
The first $1,800.00 will go towards the supplies and building of a mobile classroom in Cruz Blanca, Guatemala during our trip next summer (July 10-17, 2012).
The next $500.00 will be used for the rental and supplies for an outdoor community event also in Cruz Blanca next summer.
All remaining funds will be evenly divided between the two missionary families we support as a Thanksgiving/Christmas gift from Encounter. They are Matt & Cheryl Storer, with Vision Trust International and Ryan Janosko, with Campus Crusade for Christ at OSU.
Check out this link on our website to learn more about them:
If you are part of the body of Christ at Encounter Church, ask the Lord what He would like you to give this Sunday.
(If you will not be in the service please send your gift to the church office so it can be included in this offering: 6160 Riverside Dr. Suite #103, Dublin, OH 43017)

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Last LC of 2011

Today was a super time together with our leaders of Encounter.
We small group leaders met at 8:00am to talk about how each of our groups are doing and to get some training from Kyle Mielke, Encounter's small groups coach.
Then at 9:00am everyone else rolled in for coffee, muffins and conversation. Rob Dubois had to break up the awesome connecting everyone was having to start are time with some worship.
Having my buddy Bacho Bordjadze, CRU's director at OSU, as our guest speaker went really well. He's a very intelligent man with the ability to communicate heavy concepts in an easy to understand way. Once he was done speaking we had a short time of open Q & A with the elders and then broke into ministry groups.

Friday, November 11, 2011

LC #4 for 2011

Saturday, November 12 is our last Leadership Community of the year. We've moved our LC's from Eli Pinney Elem. to the home of Matt & Chrissy Jacob's. I like having it in a home. My good friend, Bacho Bordjadze is our guest speaker on Encounter's core value multiply. Bacho is OSU's Campus Crusade for Christ Director and is an excellent speaker.
As a group we will also sing, give some ministry updates, have a Q & A time with the elders, pray, and break into our various ministry groups.
It's 2 1/2 hrs. with some of my favorite people in the world:-)

November Message Series

This Sunday I begin a three week series titled: Poverty In My Own Backyard. With Scripture and exerpts from the book, "When Helping Hurts" by Steve Corbett & Brian Fikkert, we'll look at God's heart towards the poor and Christ-followers response to them.
One thing we may find is that the "them" is also us. We may have more jingle in our pockets but there's more to poverty than just lack of material wealth.


(Day of Generosity)


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

I voted today

Today was the very first time I've ever voted in any election.

When I left Canada to attend school in the US I was 18. Now having lived in the US for almost 20 years and finally becoming an American citizen last month; it was a special moment participating in my civic duty:-)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Great time hang'n with fellow pastors

Today I got to be with about 40 other pastors in our fellowship of churches. We heard a brief story from two guys about how they got into the ministry; talked about church planting; prayed together and had lunch together.
Some great things are happening in our churches across Ohio - being intentional about planting churches is one of them.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Orphan Sunday 2011

This Sunday we are remembering and praying for orphans all around the world and more specifically in Cruz Blanca, Guatemala, where Encounter people have 36 children sponsored.

My good friend and president of Vision Trust International, Matt Storer, is speaking and bringing with him more children for our people to sponsor.

Next summer, Lord willing, we will return to Guatemala and I'm excited Matt is able to make it to our first planning meeting this Saturday night. He is also planning on being on our July 10-17 trip with his daughter Olivia.