• Lent is a Time to Listen

    Blog | Sheryl Giesbrecht | March 24, 2021

    “Say what?” “Can you hear me now?” These familiar jingles have been used in popular commercials to get our attention. The catch phrases invite us to listen in. Hearing is what we do in response to an audible voice, startling noise or soothing music. According to Google, ‘to hear means to perceive with the ear the sound made by someone or something.

  • True Grit

    Blog | Gilbert Camacho | March 16, 2021

    Do you remember the “Old Westerns” from television and movies years ago?  People seemed kinder, and more civil.  The “Good Guys” wore white, and those wearing black were usually trouble.  Roy Rogers, Alan Ladd, Gary Cooper, and John Wayne epitomized men with values.  They defended those abused and exploited, tipped their hats to the ladies, and left their guns outside at church.  When facing trouble, they were determined and dedicated; they showed “True Grit.” 

  • Connect and Disconnect

    Blog | Christine Vogelsang | March 11, 2021

    “Someone forgot to shower today!”

    The class halted our small group discussions and stared at the one person who dared say out loud what everyone else was thinking. This wasn’t the first time my high school ESL class was startled by a comment from this girl. In fact, the other girls in the class, all immigrants from Hispanic cultures couldn’t understand the bold way this young lady spoke and acted. Finally a few of them approached me one day expressing their puzzlement over this classmate who used an “unusual dialect” and behaved so strangely.

  • 4 Questions to Ask when you Face Conflict

    Blog | Charles Stone | March 05, 2021

    Everybody faces conflict. It’s nothing new. From the cosmic conflict between Lucifer and God before creation to the conflicts in the early church to the conflicts Jesus often faced with the Jewish legalists, it’s a given in life. Conflict is not sin in itself, but sin can cause it and we can sin in how we respond to it. Wise leaders, however, know how to manage conflict when it comes. 4 good questions arise from Acts 15 in the account of the early church’s conflict with those who believed that non-Jews (Gentiles) could become Christians, but only after they first became Jews.

  • Peace, Be Still

    Blog | Jayson Naidoo | March 02, 2021

    As we approach 2021 and look back, reflect, learn, and move forward - let us have the peace of God in our hearts despite what is going on around us. Today - I want to encourage us to remember Who is in our boats. 

    Peace, Be Still!

  • Little Things Can Become a Big Deal

    Blog | Sheryl Giesbrecht | February 23, 2021

    It was a beautiful Friday morning, the perfect day for an invigorating run. My four-legged running partner and I started out slow, warming up, as we began to sync our stride to our usual even tandem. Our gait seemed to drag, my standard poodle, Sorrel, wasn’t keeping up with me as she usually did, so I stopped to find out why. Closely inspecting all her paws, I concluded her right front paw was sore. On the return home, she continued to favor the foot, not putting her full weight on it. Days later, I observed her listless, with no appetite, and saw something wedged in between her paw pads.

  • “Only” or “The Only One”

    Blog | Christine Vogelsang | February 18, 2021

    “Look at that road sign for the next exit. Iota! Why would you name a town that? A speck? A tiny bit? Don’t they have any feelings of importance?”

    “Apparently not one iota,” my husband laughed.

    I looked up that Louisiana town and found out it had a population of less than 2,000. Okay, maybe it was a tiny town, but certainly the people in that town shouldn’t feel unimportant, insignificant.

    A character in the popular series Downton Abbey once chided a woman: “Why would you say, ‘It’s only me’? I always feel that greeting betrays such a lack of self worth.”

  • The L.A.S.T. Chance

    Blog | Gilbert Camacho | February 16, 2021

    I had an urge for a milkshake. This was no ordinary urge; like a sailor being lured onto the rocks by the sirens, it made me turn the car around. I headed to Rita’s, driven by my inner voice.  Rita’s is a nation-wide franchise specializing in Italian ice, gelatos, and custards; and they make a mean milkshake.  After parking, I walked to the window and placed my order.  While I waited, my eyes drifted to a sign intended for the cashier (called a Treat Team Member).  I had been to Rita’s many times before but never noticed the sign which read: 

  • Lessons Learned from Lockdowns

    Blog | Kim Rider | February 10, 2021

    The past year presented us with a myriad of challenges, changes, and adjustments. Many of us learned how to work from home, school from home, and stay at home. We became more dependent on online information, delivery services, and online shopping. Our conversations started including phrases like social distancing and personal protective equipment. We experienced a range of emotions – fear, anxiety, anger, frustration, exhaustion, and being overwhelmed. As time went on, we learned new schedules, new rules, and new ways of doing things.

  • Beware of the Snare

    Blog | Sheryl Giesbrecht | January 28, 2021

    Ever felt stuck? Maybe you’ve struggled with an annoying habit or irritating addiction? You wonder how you can break loose. Yes, I get it. For decades, I was unaware I was caught up in a trap expertly designed for me by the enemy. For twenty years, I was hung up by a series of rejections that happened in my childhood. I believed the hurtful lies and owned the labels that had been spoken over me when I was bullied in my ballet class. I didn’t know I was misled. I was naïve about the tricks, traps, and snares that entangled me.