Saturday, November 01, 2014

Our Most Effective Spiritual Growth Model by Kingswood's Pulse

Why We Do Pulse, Pulse Groups, & Bands?

We care about spiritual growth in and beyond the classroom and church service doors
We care deeply about holistic Spiritual Growth & Transformation
We care deeply about our student experiences resembling and transferring as closely as possible to their regular church life experiences beyond school.

There's an abundance of research  Consistent Spiritual Growth Model Through The Centuries Of Large Group Meetings & Small Group Meetings and an Intimate Inner Circle.
Bands- (2-4 students) Our Bands function as core accountability and key to spiritual growth, transformation, and vulnerability in deep relationships. [1]

Band Accountability Questions-  There are common accountability themes discussed in weekly groups of this nature including Scripture, Sin, Evangelism, & Prayer.

Groups- (6-8 students) Our Pulse Groups meet semi-regularly on Wednesdays for in-house discussion and serve alongside each other together out in the community and have 1-2 small group leaders that help to facilitate, lead, and pastor this group.

Pulse- (150ish students) Our Large Group Active Gathering around having a Christlike Head, Hands, Heart, & Habits

Monthly Band Accountability Resources (for 6 months)
Month 1 Handout - The Power of Partnership to Overcome Porn
Band Group Accountability Regular Focuses:
Sin (Confession/Transparency/Communication)
Bible (Personal Reading/Discussion)
Evangelism (Prayerful Opportunities/Sharing)
Prayer ()

Why Lack Of Accountability In These Areas Matters:
Pulse Meetings
Pulse Groups

A Monthly Tip On Accountability
·      Why: (it matters in leadership)

·      How: (tos)

·      What: (Curriculum or Not?) 

What is Discipleship?
How do you know when you're a disciple, discipling someone, or have discipled or been discipled?  When are you confident you know how or can do it?

What is Evangelism?

End questions of do I know how or have I done it?  Do I know how to Lead effectively?  Pour In Effectively?  Have I done it?  feel confident I can?
Done it.  Confidently/Willing.  Approved.  (...Called Resilience)

Here is a quote from this Article:

It is not alarmist to say that this problem is everywhere. It’s a grim fact.

Last week I spoke at a high school conference for Christian schools. One of the things I like to do to show the teachers and other adults just how essential it is to provide teens with the truth about pornography is to hold an open forum—let the students write down any and all questions they have about the topic and submit them to be answered. Every time, teachers are shocked by what the students are asking as they realize just how far this menace has spread and how badly it has infected our schools.

At the last conference, for example, I had a fourteen-year-old girl ask me what girls should do when their boyfriends pressure them into anal sex (hugely popular in mainstream porn right now.) I had teen boys asking me how to deal with their masturbation problems. I was asked why porn sites were so addicting. I was asked by one girl why so many boys were demanding oral sex. And I was even asked questions about bestiality in porn, questions I even had a hard time believing teens of that age could be asking. 

The World's Simplest Tools for Making Discipleship
4 Features of a Healthy Mentoring Relationship

Some examples of John Wesley's Band Practices and Beliefs:

Wesley believed that spiritual formation was fostered as persons of the same gender met in small groups of five to eight members. The purpose of the weekly band meeting was for testimony and mutual examination. Particular attention was given to overcoming personal faults and achieving a sense of forgiveness and peace with God.[1]

The idea of a weekly class meeting dates back to 1742.[2]

Wesley’s own spiritual pilgrimage had compelled him to seek and/or establish an atmosphere conducive to the cultivation of the inner life. Although he had been a frequent participant in the Religious Societies, they frustrated him by their lack of opportunity to bare one’s soul, to share ones’ spiritual struggles in a secure and accepting group.[3]

This method of “watching over one another in love” was the foundation, the bedrock, of Wesleyan discipleship. One of the most powerful ways that God’s Spirit moved within the early Methodist movement was through this system of small group accountability and support for holiness of heart and life.[4]

The role of “Class Leader” was not to be taken lightly. A few examples of the expectations of the leaders[5]:

  • ·      Clear and sound religious experience
  • ·      He should aim to make himself a master of theology
  • ·      He should seek to know the spiritual dangers to which his members are specially liable.
  • ·      He should continue faithful, earnest, living to God and urge members to advance in the divine life.

[1] Harper, Steve. Devotional Life in the Wesleyan Tradition: A Workbook. Nashville, TN.: Upper Room, 1995, p. 130.

[2] Watson, David Lowes. Covenant Discipleship: Christian Formation through Mutual Accountability. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 1998, p. 43.

[3] Henderson, D. Michael. John Wesley's Class Meeting: A Model for Making Disciples. Nappanee, IN: Evangel Pub. House, 1997, p. 65.

[4] Watson, Kevin M. A Blueprint for Discipleship: Wesley's General Rules as a Guide for Christian Living. Nashville, TN: Discipleship Resources, 2009, p. 106.

[5] Watson, David Lowes. The Early Methodist Class Meeting. Nashville: Discipleship Resources, 1985, p. 103, 104.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies Test (Part 12):

  1. What is a beaver tail?
  2. When do you stop for a pedestrian crossing the road?  If gonna hit them/ when in crosswalk/ when thinking about crosswalk/ 20 yards from
  3. Do you say, "I'm sorry" when: you physically run into somebody/ when somebody runs in to you/ when you almost run into each other
  4. Are we corn pops an oval or circle shape?
  5. What is a double double?
  6. True/ False: Roll-up month is practically a holiday.
  7. What is Roll-up month?
  8. What is a donair?
  9. What is Poutine?
  10. How do you phoenitically pronounce sorry: s-ully/ soar- ee / saw-ree/ su-dee?
  11. True/False: Although considered polite and apologetic, any Atlantic Canadian pedestrian reserves the right to get upset and give an angry stare or gesture at any driver that drives across the crosswalk while they are walking in it and consider the driver a jerk, even if it doesn't disrupt their walking speed or directly endanger them at all.
  12. Y/N: Does Canada celebrate their own Thanksgiving?
  13. Does Canada have two extra time zones in North America east of the US's (EST) including one half hour time zone change?

Monday, September 22, 2014

Sometimes I Question God's Voice

…when I’m not sure I want to listen.   

Saturday I just drove to McDonalds to get a coffee (and only coffee).  

As I waited in my car to order, 
a chocolate milkshake and a chicken sandwich somehow got added to the order in my head.  Right as this was happening, the verse that says, “Man does not live on bread alone…” came into my mind. 

So I prayerfully asked God, “God are you my center?” to which I heard, “No.”  I asked, “Well then how can I rely on You to be my center today?”  To which I heard, “Don’t eat today.”  Here is where I sometimes question God's voice and whether this was really of Him.
An important detail is that I had committed to be fasting from food Saturday, so the voice wasn't random.

The current predicament was this: I'm questioning whether the request is truly of God to order what I want and tell myself that it wasn’t that big of a deal.  We do this as humans.  I’ve done this.  I question it, I do what I want, then I shrug this not listening off as no big deal or nothing I could be certain of so that it was okay.,-65.5293591,3a,75y,60.91h,92.98t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sXGInSHlSF9qRAz3T7hw2hg!2e0
 The real hidden danger here is this:
A mistrust in God is the path to Hell. 

It hit me recently, that the fruit Adam & Eve ate that led to their death was “pleasing to the eye and good for food…”  
It was probably a better food choice than my McDonald’s order, yet it wasn’t good to eat.  Why?

I know what God’s voice sounds like in my life.  
Yet I can also be tempted to question it (especially when I want differently and the request sounds uncomfortable). 
Or I question whether I hear His voice if I keep questioning how He spoke to me in the past when I didn't listen and don't want to admit it.
But unless or until this voice in my head says something completely contrary to the Bible or His love, I need to respond and act accordingly.  I need to obey, if I want to grow closer to God by hearing and trusting Him more clearly.

When you hear what you believe to be God speaking in your head or spirit, you will be tempted to question whether it’s truly God or whether disobeying is really that big of a deal… IT IS!   

We are to live out of trust in God's words rather than question and live contrary to His requests; Even when they are less black and white like whether to eat or not.  Follow God’s voice.  Don’t give into the temptation to question God's voice… to question whether it's God talking or belittle what He is asking to the point of you not having to obey when you're a little unsure.

I’m not talking about having no room to ask and wrestle through your honest doubts & hard questions.  I think God desires for us to be real with Him.   

I’m talking about the moments He is speaking to you and you're questioning whether He is speaking to you so that you don’t have to respond or can do differently.  One is a discussion and dialogue with God about how life works, the other is questioning a request from God speaking to you so that you don’t have to listen.

If you question and don't act… the more you question and don't act… the less you will trust God.  The more you will become contrary or an enemy to God and His work.

Drinking coffee versus adding a chicken sandwich and chocolate milkshake....
It may sound like I’m making a big deal out of nothing.
I believe a chicken sandwich and milkshake from McDonald’s can be the goodness of God… It's accessible, I have the money, it reflects the goodness of God providing.  But in this case, not listening to God's voice would’ve been me trading trust in God's voice for disobedience and a mistrust in what I think I hear Him saying.

The same can be said of:
-The fruit that was "pleasing to the eye and good for food" from the tree of knowledge of good and evil
-The meal traded to Jacob for Esau’s birthright
-The bread Jesus could’ve eaten from stone in response to the devil's questioning

Listen to God's voice and don't question when He's whispering or telling you to do what's uncomfortable, like giving up the good accessible things in this world.

I just got coffee this morning and passed on the food.  Thanks God. 

“Satan will try to convince you that obedience carries much too high a price, but he will never tell you the cost of not obeying God.”[i]

[i][i] Henry Blackaby & Richard Blackaby, Experiencing God: Day-By-Day (Nashville: TN, Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1997),140.


Friday, September 19, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies (Part 10): A Few Church Options in Atlantic Canada

  1. Moncton Wesleyan 
  2. Kings Valley Wesleyan
  3. Crosspoint Wesleyan
  4. Corbett Avenue Wesleyan
  5. Sussex Wesleyan
  6. Deep Water
  7. Island Wesleyan - PEI
  8. Atlantic Community Church
  9. Hillside Baptist
  10. Hillside Wesleyan

Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies (Part 9): Religion

Here are some images to help you grasp the religious state of Canada and Sussex, NB:

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies (Part 8): Places to Visit

Places To Visit:

1.      Fundy National Park - this park is one of the most beautiful and breathtaking places in Canada. The Bay of Fundy houses the highest tides in the world and what a sight to see! 
2.     Prince Edward Island - the red dirt, potatoes, Anne of Green Gables, and the beautiful beaches are just a few of the well known and beautiful sights of this unique island in the Maritimes.
3.      Covered Bridges - covered bridges are a historical and fairly common sight, especially in New Brunswick (home to 61 covered bridges). There's even a chip company named after them!
4.      The Tidal Bore - this natural phenomena can be seen in the city of Moncton, NB 
5.      Magnetic Hill - this "gravity hill" is an optical illusion that will have you confused as you go backwards up a hill in neutral. 
6.      The Hopewell Rocks - this world-renown sight has been sculpted by the highest tides in the world.
7.   Halifax Waterfront - walk the waterfront and see the beautiful harbour.
8.   Peggy's Cove - visit the picturesque lighthouse and dip your toes in the water.
9.   St. Martin's Sea Caves - walk the beach and explore the magnificent sea caves.
10. Kouchibouguac National Park - this beautiful park has 25km of sand dunes to appreciate as well as barrier island, salt marshes and much more.
11. The Cabbot Trail - this trail is a scenic roadway that takes you around the beautiful Cape Breton. It is one of the most famous drives in Canada and the sights will not disappoint you!

What places would you recommend in the Maritimes?

The photo above was taken at Dixon Falls, one of the many beautiful trails in Fundy National Park.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies (Part 7): Atlantic Canadian Universities

*These are approximates as university numbers flux regularly.

School Name Population Location

1.  Dalhousie University 18,564 Halifax, NS

2.  Memorial University of NL 18,464 St. Johns, NL

3.  University of New Brunswick 8,300 Fredericton, NB

4. Saint Mary's 7,740 Halifax, NS

5.  University de Moncton 5,673 Moncton, NB

6.  St. Francis Xavier University 5,168 Antigonish, NS

7.  UPEI 4,388 Charlottetown, PEI

8. Acadia 4,358 Wolfville, NS

9.  Mount Saint Vincent  3,859 Halifax, NS

10.  Cape Breton University 3,140 Sydney, NS

11.  UNBSJ 2,550 Saint John, NB

12.  Mount Allison 2,530 Sackville, NB

13.  St. Thomas 2,346 Fredericton, NB

Monday, September 15, 2014

The Canadian Maritimes For Dummies (Part 6): Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons Canada Statistics
  • First Tim Hortons restaurant opened in 1964 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
  • The first U.S. restaurant opened in 1984 in Tonawanda, New York.
  • In 2008, the 500th U.S. restaurant opens in Detroit, MI.
  • In December of 2011, Tim Hortons opened its 4,000th restaurant.
  • Tim Horton, an NHL player, was a partner in the company until his tragic death in 1974.
  • The very first Timbit was introduced to its customers in 1976.
  • Tim Hortons began its annual Roll Up The Rim contest in 1986 and more than 31 million prizes have been distributed.
  • Only 56 percent of Canadians can roll their r’s similar to the company’s commercial.
  • Approximately two billion Tim Horton's coffees are sold every single year (as of 2011).
  • Despite having a population of just 64,128, the city of Moncton, New Brunswick, has a staggering 22 full-sized Tim Hortons franchises. That equates to 1 restaurant for every 2,915 residents.
  • Tim Hortons INC. total revenue in 2012 - $3.2 million.