I will attempt to sum up a very full last week. First let me just say that it is a tremendous blessing to serve the Lord with Harvest Bible Chapel. I flew home back to Calgary just over a week ago. In my time in Calgary I had meeting after meeting lined up for my 4 days back. It was so encouraging talking with the folks back home about Harvest Bible Chapel Calgary. I met with Pastors, family and old friends. The body of Christ is so great. Whether we have just seen someone or whether it has been years since we have seen one another there is such a great bond that we share as brothers and sisters in the Lord. Meeting after meeting I witnessed the Lord's hand in each. It is also very humbling to see the lengths that some people will sacrifice in order to be a part of what the Lord is doing with us. Some people drove 2 hours one way just to support us. Others sacrificed their time and money. I am convinced more than ever that the Lord is at work and that it is His desire that H.B.C. comes to Calgary. We had our open house on Sunday night and we had a great turn out. The result of that meeting is that there is now 19 adults and 16 children who have expressed their desire to be a part of the core team. They will be part of the team that will be responsible for launching Harvest Bible Chapel Calgary in September 2010. Wow! Very cool!
I flew back to Chicago after getting 2 hours of sleep on Sunday night. Once I arrived I got see my girls for an hour or so and then I was off to a night with the Harvest Bible Fellowship. Senior Pastors with Harvest Bible Chapel from all over the U.S. and Canada met for a few days. The first night we a great time of fellowship getting to know one another over some pizza and then we had a great time of conversation around a campfire. I learn so much as I listen to these godly men wrestling through Biblical issues.
Tuesday we examined the different elements that make up a Harvest church. It was greatly encouraging to think through ministry and think about how God wants His church to operate. We discussed in detail the 4 pillars and how they are seen pragmatically in the church. Also great to think through the importance of assimilation and small groups (discipleship). The day was very enriching. Tuesday evening all the pastors hopped on a bus and we went to downtown Chicago and enjoyed a night of fellowship together over some ribs. I was really blessed by learning how God is working in different cities in the U.S. and Canada. What a blessing to be a part of the fellowship.
Wednesday morning we discussed a variety of issues that Pastors encounter...things like preaching, how to have a high impact service and a variety of other issues. Wednesday we discussed the process of choosing elders. We had a great discussion and I was really reminded of the gravity of the position of being an elder. The rest of the week we have continued learning more about preaching.
To say the least we have had a full week. Tough to break things down much further without feeling I will have you snoozing by the time that you finish reading this blog. I will close for now and Lord willing I will have my next post before too long.
Praise God from whom all blessings flow!