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Anxiety and the pastor

  • First time in a lead pastor role
  • Labouring to coax a stiff church to lean outward, seek renewal and step up in faith
  • Woman, pastor, wife and mom
  • Younger than all the board members and reminded of it, frequently
  • Life anxiety that just won’t end, even after prayer and a Bible verse
  • Taking up a pastorate in a congregation that “has history”
  • Serving, and suffering, under a bullying board or senior leader

It is quite likely that at least one, and perhaps several, of these situations sound familiar to you. Perhaps it was a time of life or ministry that was particularly challenging, stirring up an inner distress that you couldn’t shake. Perhaps it is that unwelcome, uninvited, but constant companion of anxiety that has long been part of your life.

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Ministry leadership during a pandemic

Who would have known that words like “self-isolate” and “social distancing” would become part of our vocabulary in the way that they have? It has not only become part of our vocabulary; we are living it out. I couldn’t have imagined that it would have felt wrong to shake a person’s hand while standing close enough to touch them. Even more so, that it would be a global experience!

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“In a little while”: Waiting with anticipation

“In a little while you will see me no more, and then after a little while you will see me . . . because I’m going to the Father.” (John 16:16-17)

The phrase “in a little while” invokes childhood memories of anticipated but delayed celebrations or events.

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Navigating gender identity and sexuality in your ministry

One of the very complex and difficult topics that we are increasingly hearing about on our call-in line concerns the subject of homosexuality, same-sex attraction and gender dysphoria.

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Purposeful waiting for a prodigal

“Purposeful waiting.” It sounds like a nice title for a fictional story. A little bit like a Hallmark movie. We can most likely dictate what will happen at the end when we’re only ten minutes into the movie.

There is a child that runs away, physically, mentally or spiritually – or perhaps all the above. They may not just run away but also run into a life of sin, self-pleasing and rebellion against God.

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20 things I’d tell my younger self in 2020

Well January is upon us, and it’s not just a new year but an entirely new decade! I’m not sure how that happened so fast. I woke up one morning and discovered, to my shock, that I was approaching my mid-60s with almost 40 years of pastoring behind me.

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Expectancy in the Christmas story

“The Word became flesh and blood and moved into the neighborhood.” (John 1:14, as paraphrased in The Message)

Christmas, for me, carries a wonderfully heightened sense of expectation. Childhood Christmases were marked by family memories, traditions, great food and quality time spent together.

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Book review: Didn’t See It Coming

“Who knows really what corrodes the soul to the point where it disintegrates?”

This quote is taken from Carey Nieuwhof’s latest book Didn’t See It Coming. In it, Nieuwhof describes the “seven greatest challenges that no one expects and everyone experiences.” The seven challenges are: cynicism, compromise, disconnection, irrelevance, pride, burnout and emptiness.

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Spiritual disciplines devotionals: A video series

Amidst our busy lives, it can be a struggle to find deep rest away from the noise and distractions that surround us. We hope you’ll be encouraged by this series of short devotional videos that help you discover ways you can experience rest and grow in your faith. The videos were created by Merrie Eizenga, […]

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Stories of Clergy Appreciation

Our dear friend, H.B. London, who has now gone home to be with the Lord, initiated Clergy Appreciation Month through Focus on the Family many years ago.

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