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Owning Baptism

How do you and your congregation decide when to say “yes” to out-of-ordinary requests for baptism? Recently a family who live in another country requested our elders to baptize their eight-month old baby.

Pastors
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I Do, God Helping Me

I admit I wasn't taking this as seriously as I should have been. Greg called one day saying my name was up for nomination to deacon. Would I prayerfully consider keeping my name in the ring? I went through the common process of debating the time constraints and responsibilities with the opportunity for church leadership. You know...

Deacons
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Intergenerational Involvement in Five Verses Per Sunday

What if you could find five people in your congregation, perhaps each representing a different decade (one child, one teen, one thirty-something, one fifty-something, one-eighty something)to tell you what single Psalm verse best expresses the praise and thanks that they personally long to offer God.   The results are likely to be inspiring. Someone might choose a verse from Psalm 150, another a verse from Psalm 30, another a verse from Psalm 63. 

Worship
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Spiritual Leadership

Upon moving to Ontario, Canada to begin my ministry with Youth Unlimited I was asked to join a book reading/discussion on J. Oswald Sanders' book Spiritual Leadership. I was a little hesitant at first since I find myself often critical of self help books but this one surprised me in many ways.

Youth Ministry
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Counter-Cultural Leadership

Henry Nouwen once argued that the three greatest temptations for Christian leaders are to be a) relevant, b) spectacular, and c) powerful (In the Name of Jesus: Reflections on Christian Leadership, Crossroads, 1987). 

Worship
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Prayer

If you’re a doer like me, you’ll find it easier to check things off the list than be still to pause for prayer. Like Martha in the kitchen, nothing that we do is as important as the relationship we’re cultivating with God.

PrayerChildren's Ministry
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Just-in-Time Learning

In our just in time culture, just in time learning has come to work of elders. Very few churches have a program of preparation in which people are enrolled prior to their call to be an elder. Which means most elders start the work of eldership feeling unprepared for the challenge of the work. Learning needs to happen on many fronts. Just by reading this, you are seeking information and encouragement for the challenges you face.

Elders
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How in the World Do I Start a Blogpost?

I have never written a blogpost before and had to be told what it was. I'm still not sure. But what I am sure about is that I believe this idea of "Network" is a pretty good one. So I'll learn what it takes to be a guide for this "Pastors" section. I won't be alone, I hope. I am looking forward to other colleagues, interested persons, perhaps aspiring pastors to help make this little website helpful, informative and participatory for our callings as pastors.

Pastors
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Sidelines: A Spouse's Perspective

At the end of a beautiful farewell evening at our church for my husband, who was the Youth Pastor, a woman came up to me and said "You worked just as hard as he did all these years, because you were the one who had to give him up every night and take care of your family on your own!" Her comment blessed me so much!

Youth Ministry
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Not What It Always Seems To Be

My van looks better on the outside than it did on the inside. This got me thinking about some of the youth that I worked with. They said the right things and some even did Profession of Faith. But in all reality, their faith in Jesus Christ was not as good as what the outside made it appear.

Youth Ministry
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Urbana 2009

The Triennial Urbana Missions Convention gathered about 17,000 people, mostly college students, for information and inspiration about missions. The CRC was well represented with more than 50 taking advantage of our travel grant and quite a few others who didn't hear about it. We also had three booths. CRWM, Calvin Seminary and World Renew were there. In addition the new Mideast peace and reconciliation of CRWM called Hope Equals made its debut. Hundreds of interested convention goers visited. In addition, Ruth Padilla DeBorst, CRWM missionary in Costa Rica, was one of the plenary speakers...
Global Mission
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Drama With Kids

Some of my favorite Sunday school story times are ones that allow kids to take center stage. When a story engages our imaginations, it sticks with us long after the lesson. There are three things I keep in mind each time I tell a story with partners.

Children's Ministry
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Neither Pity Nor Reverence

Most people with disabilities that I know don't want to be pitied. But neither do they want to be reverenced as if they were paragons of virtue or models of triumph of the human spirit. Way too many journalists who feature stories about people living with disabilities frame their stories in the "reverence" light. "Here's Joe who lives with X disability, but look at all he has done! What determination. What spirit. What an example for all of us!" If I lived with a disability...

Disability Concerns
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Just Like That...

Bad news never announces that it is coming.  Bam...just like that....it's there.  I've been occupying the office of Safe Church Ministry for 15 years.

Safe Church
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Goodbye Generation

Goodbye Generation is a book that captures the voice of today's young adults and their unbiased view of the church, God, spirituality, and more.

Youth Ministry
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A Piece of Encouragement

Leading Sunday school kids can be challenging but we know that every week some of the puzzle pieces are heading out the door with our kids. A song lyric, a glimpse of God, a Scripture verse ... we trust that God is at work, putting those pieces together.

Children's Ministry
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Christmas Themed Tips for Your Website

It's Christmas time, which means its time for family, food, presents, lights, trees, and a chance to reflect on how one birth changed the world forever. However, it also means seeing Christmas Decorations in stores as early as August. It seems that there is no end to what you can buy that is Christmas themed.

Church Communications
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'Mission' ?

What is the first image that comes into your mind when you hear the word "Mission?"Do you picture a rescue mission for homeless people in a decaying neighborhood, or a 19th century missionary in a pith helmet and khaki shorts?  Perhaps you think of a mission statement which your church labored to produce and now is struggling to implement (or has forgotten about).

Global Mission
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Oh My Aching Comfort Zone!

Oh my aching comfort zone! This morning my file folder ripped and a bunch of stuff filed out onto the floor. There was an article by Plantinga on how do we know if we are REALLY -- I mean REALLY -- real followers of Jesus. What it comes down to is whether I'm willing to pay the COST. Do my "good deeds" COST me something? 

Deacons

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