Popular Posts

If you are looking for a good place to start at Points Of View, try some of our most popular posts below.  You can also search the full archives by keyword, or see the latest posts at the start.

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September 11, 2016

DEPRESSION: MY STORY by BROCK HARRISON

Just write, Harrison. For the love of God, write. This speech needs to be locked in a week and you don’t even have an outline. So write. Like you’ve done a thousand times before. Baby is crying again. Ignore. She’ll get her. You’ve got to get this done. Oh yeah, and it’s got to be good. There will be 1,000 people with deep pockets at this thing. So make it compelling. And funny. And smart. Some inspiration would be good, too. Why can’t I do this? Just write one word. One stinkin’ word. Nothing. Heart pounds. Head spins. Muscles seize. This isn’t going to get done. Walk away. Lie down. Have I lost it? Will I get back? What if…

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July 15, 2016

FOR TALIYAH AND THE WORLD

My day ended with with thoughts of 5 year-old Taliyah Marsman on my mind. I’d listened to Ryan Jesperson and Andrew Grose field texts and phone calls from irate listeners on an unscheduled 630 CHED radio program in response to the terrorist killings in Nice, France and the discovery of Taliyah’s body. A Pastor And The Death Penalty All Albertans held their collective breath as we waited with hope that Taliyah, missing for four days, would turn up somewhere safe with a caregiver. We took a collective punch to the gut with the discovery of her body and the 1st degree murder charges laid against the suspect. Then the calls flooded in for the death penalty to be re-instated for…

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June 5, 2016

3 WORDS TO LIVE BY

Words ultimately matter. Plain and simple. Less Is More As a pastor/teacher/writer I am constantly learning. My biggest lesson of the past twelve months? “Less is more.” It’s been a challenging lesson to learn but this trilogy of words is now a guiding light for me. They got me thinking – what else can be said that is meaningful, true and wise in three words? I asked associates, writers and social media friends to share three words they live by. Read through them. Who said them? Made you smile? Got a favorite? Post a comment. 3 Words To Live By I need coffee. Nothing is impossible. Never ever quit. Ideals. Action. Altruism. Eat more sushi. Make a difference. Be a…

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March 9, 2016

10 MYTH-BUSTERS ABOUT INTROVERTS

The most misunderstood person on the planet is an introvert. The reason you don’t hear much about that from us is because we are introverts. Silent no more. I’m coming out of my shell to explode ten myths about introverts. MYTH #1 – Introverts don’t like to talk. Not true at all. I am a preacher. Some people say I talk too much. I don’t like to talk unless I have something to say. Introverts hate small talk. I default to the serious all the time  – or talking family,  church, writing, Jesus or  football. Get an introvert talking about something they are interested in and they won’t stop talking for minutes. MYTH #2 – Introverts don’t know how to…

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August 8, 2015

Amanda’s Story: Now Is My Time

“Pastor Bob, if there is ever any way my story is able to help, I would love to save someone many unnecessary years of agony.” Amanda knows agony.  Its a painful part of her past and a redemptive part of her future. Amanda explained to me why obeying Jesus and being baptized was so important to her. This was a determined and deeply emotional choice for her. We talked on Thursday and she was baptized the following Sunday. Amanda’s Story Amanda’s story is what our invitation at North Pointe to “come as you are” is all about. “I was raised in an abusive home by an alcoholic father and suffered abuse for many years from him. My teenage years were…

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June 3, 2015

RISKY FAITH: RISING INTOLERANCE FOR CHRISTIANITY

A 65-year old man “became” a woman and everyone from the President of the United States to ESPN applauded this as “courageous.” Freedom of speech has its obvious liabilities but until recently, to say the least, free speech was tolerated. Anyone who expressed contrary opinions about this story were instantly demonized and dehumanized. If the commentator had any association with Christianity they were not only dismissed as deluded but derided as oppressively intolerant. Increasingly, Christianity is not tolerated because of the need for greater tolerance. Intolerance for Tolerance The word ‘tolerant’ as it is used today, seldom, if ever, includes opposing arguments or competing worldviews. Being tolerant used to mean, “I may disagree with you completely, but I will treat…

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April 8, 2015

HOW TO BE YOUR PASTOR’S MVP

Every pastor needs an MVP (Most Valuable Partner) or a whole tribe of them. MVP’s will walk a mile in – not on – their pastor’s shoes. MVP’s know pastors are people first and pastors second. 3 Things I Know For Sure 1. People overwhelmingly love their pastors. 2. People often don’t express their love for their pastors. Church goers are more likely not to say anything about their pastors than express their love for them. 3. Critics often drown out those who love their pastors. Negative people tend to be relatively loud but in the distinct minority. As a consequence, pastors often feel like critics represent the majority. Most of the time, the vast majority of people are very…

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September 7, 2014

THEY CALL ME PASTOR

Being a pastor is not something to which I aspired. It certainly wasn’t a childhood dream. By nurture, I’m a people person. By nature, I’m a loner. (My teenage ambition was to be a hermit. Really) I’m like a turtle on a fence post. When you see a turtle on a fence post you know it didn’t get there on its own – someone put it there. My fence post is a platform of genuine love for the people God has entrusted to my care. CONNECTIONS Like most pastors, the most common connections with people happen… on a Sunday in the foyer of our ministry campus, preaching/teaching, praying, supporting volunteers, meeting for a plethora of purposes, participating in community outreaches,…

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September 3, 2014

PTSD AND ME: CPL CRAIG SILVERSON’S STORY

My friend Craig Silverson is a Canadian veteran of Afghanistan and a brother in the faith. I admire his courage. You can follow Craig on Twitter at @CraigSilverson and on his website FAITHPLATOON.COM We reached our objective shortly after 1100 hrs and dismounted from our vehicle. We proceeded on foot. Moral was good and that’s always a bonus. Everything seemed familiar. Nothing that we hadn’t already done before. Routine. This would change in a fraction of a second. With tremendous speed, a streak appeared overhead. Immediately I felt tension in my chest and all sound was removed. I braced for the concussion. Nothing. They say you never hear the one that gets you. I knew I was alive. I quickly…

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August 13, 2014

3 THINGS I LEARNED FROM A MARATHON MOMMA

You become what you are committed to. Commitment may develop you or it may destroy but it most certainly will define you. When you talk about commitment think of Mount Hiei, Japan – home to the “Tendai” or  “Marathon Monks.” The Tendai are required to run “The Kaihogo” – that’s why they are known as the “Marathon Monks.” Incredible Commitment “The Kaihogyo” is a 1,000-day running challenge the monks undertake over seven years. In the 7th year they must run two full marathons, everyday, for 100 consecutive days, wearing only paper shoes. (See below for full details of the seven year Challenge) The sheer volume of running is incredible but there is one final aspect that makes The Kaihogyo unlike…

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August 3, 2014

THE ONE THING THAT CHANGES EVERYTHING

Without this ONE thing even the smallest tasks feel impossible. Without this ONE thing couples give up on their marriage, parents give up on their teens, leaders give up on their people, people give up on their future. You can live for 40 days without food, about 3 days without water, and about 8 minutes without air. You don’t want to go a single second without this ONE thing. The World Of Sports I’ve coached football long enough to know that spectacular fourth quarter turnarounds happen. “All it takes is one break! All we need is one play! We’re one turnover away from a comeback! There’s time on the clock so we’ve still got a chance!” Its late in the…

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June 29, 2014

3 LESSONS ABOUT COURAGE FROM A CANADIAN HERO NAMED TERRY

Terry Fox passed away at the age of twenty two on June 28, 1981, but not before he ran into the hearts of millions of Canadians like me. I’ve run a marathon – I know how it feels to push yourself beyond what you feel is possible. Terry ran a marathon everyday. For 143 days. On one good leg and one artificial one made of fiberglass and steel. After eighteen months and running over 5,000 km to prepare, Terry started his coast-to-coast run in St. John’s, Newfoundland on April 12, 1980…with very little fanfare. He Ran Until He Couldn’t He ran against 40 mile-an-hour winds, …through 38C days with high humidity, …when he was run off the road. …through the…

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June 22, 2014

WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT TO DO

The queue had stretched out of the Bosnian bakery and onto the street. Starving, war-shattered survivors were lining up for their daily bread. It was 4pm, May 27th, 1992 – one month into the siege of Sarajevo. Suddenly a mortar shell fell directly into the middle of the bread line, obliterating 22 lives. A hundred yards away lived a 37-year-old man – Vedran Smajlovic. Before the war he had been the principal cellist of the Sarajevo Opera Company. When he saw the massacre outside his window, he rushed to the scene and was overcome with grief at the carnage. Driven by anguish, he decided to take action. He did the only thing he could do. He made beautiful music. Beautiful…

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June 18, 2014

ARE YOU BUSY LIKE JESUS?

There’s been lots of buzz about “busy” being bad. “Simplify your life.” “Learn to say, ‘No’.” “Don’t settle for busy.” Busy, Not Bad I try to follow Jesus’ example in my life. Jesus was VERY busy. Oh yes he was. For example, when his cousin and friend John the Baptist had just been beheaded, Jesus tried to go to an isolated place to mourn, but the crowds beat him there. What did he do? He got busy healing their sick – one at a time – and then he served them all dinner. Only then, in the evening, did he get a chance to be alone. Even that was interrupted. He ends up taking a short-cut – straight across a…

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February 23, 2014

WHAT CHRISTIANS TEND TO GET WRONG ABOUT DEPRESSION

Depression is personal to me. My cousin died by suicide. She was depressed following her divorce. She never recovered from the rejection and grief. As a pastor I’ve grieved with too many families whose loved one ended their life because they could find no other way to stop their internal pain. Those who suffer from depression may feel like the least understood people on the planet. Too often there is a stigma associated with depression in the Church. I have to take responsibility to end that stigma. Brock’s Story In November of 2013, I was going about my life as a new dad and speechwriter for the leader of a political party when it hit me. It presented innocuously enough…

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January 26, 2014

10 IRRESISTIBLE ASPECTS OF JERUSALEM

In January 2014, I sat in Row B at IMAX for a one-of-a-kind, 3D immersion into parts of Jerusalem and the Holy Land that most tourists and pilgrims never see. I was hooked. Over the past three decades I’ve always declined invitations to lead a tour to Israel. Not that I don’t revere “the Holy Land” but I never felt compelled to travel there. Now, Jerusalem had become irresistible. Within a week of viewing the film we booked a tour to Israel and Jordan with International Tours. We’re going back again in March 2019 and you could join us. 10 Irresistible Things About Israel and Jerusalem 1. Jerusalem, not Toronto, is the center of the Universe. Jerusalem lies close to…

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January 19, 2014

11 IMAGES THAT WILL MAKE YOU THINK

It will take you 60 seconds and it may be the best minute of your day. Look at each picture. Read each caption. See what they can do for your outlook on life. Let me know which one is your favorite. 1. A platoon of Marines shaved their heads in support of the niece of one of the Marines who has cancer. 2. Perfect definition of friendship. 3. The compassion of children is an unbelievable thing. 4. Haircuts for the homeless by an 82 year old. 5. Learning empathy in life’s kindergarten. 6. Eight years of rigorous training…a Championship football game…or saving the life a stranger? 7. After he went to war two separate times and lost all 4 limbs,…

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November 25, 2013

16 Profound Statements You Need to Hear

16 profound statements you need to hear. There is something in one or all of them for you. They take less than 60 seconds to read but their influence can have unlimited potential in your life. 1. “No word from God will ever fail.” Gabriel 2. “With man this is impossible, but not with God; all things are possible with God.” Jesus 3. The happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more. 4. “You’re here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept.” Jesus 5. Life is like photography. You need the negatives to develop. 6. I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I’ve lost…