Category - Canadian content

10 Predictions About the Future Church and Shifting Attendance Patterns

Really interesting stuff here. This is actually part 4 in a 5 part series on why people are attending church less often from Carey Nieuwhof. I would encourage you to go to his site and hear the rest of this series.

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“In all things love”

“In the things we agree on Unity, in the things we disagree on Liberty, but in all things Love”

Can I just encourage people (speaking mostly to the Christian community) who are having discussions on the new Sex Education Curriculum to do so with respect, thoughtfulness and in all that we do …love.

If someone has a differing opinion than you on this topics it does not automatically mean that

  1. they are not a Christian
  2. they are (all pulled from blog comments on a number of sites today) stupid, ignorant, crazy, bull headed (my favourite), bad parents, crazy liberals,  …

It is really discouraging to see all of the vile comments all over social media as people are discussing something.

I wonder how many people will never set foot inside a church due to the comments they read.

I think the one really good thing in all of this discussion is it is forcing all of us parents to think through how we are talking about these topics with our kids in our own homes.

It is challenging the churches and youth workers to evaluate how we can come alongside parents and support then in these tough conversations.

Please remember in all things Love …



Canadian Truth.Teller: Leanne Cabral

Hi, I am Leanne Cabral, a speaker who ignites and equips parents to make their invisible faith visible, so that they can intentionally point their kids to Jesus and build a legacy of faith.

My passion is equipping parents, helping them navigate this seemly huge assignment of passing faith onto their children. This passion grew out of my own journey as I sought to understand, on a really practical level, the task we as parents have been charged with; passing faith onto the next generation. You see, I come from a history of faith, I was raised on the mission field, my father was a pastor, I grew up in the church and I love Jesus, yet I felt overwhelmed by this assignment. I desperately wanted to do it well, but no one was telling me how. You see, I think we all understand passing our faith onto our kids in theory, but the “how” conversation, I was so hungry for, seemed to be missing.

I absolutely believe that parents desperately want to be all that God has called them to be. The truth is, Christian families are in crisis. The odds of our children walking with the Lord are not in our favour…It is reported that 80% of our kids walk away from faith at 18, and that there is less than 10% of faith talk in Christian homes outside of prayer. As parents, we understand passing faith to our kids in theory, but no one is breaking it down for us in a way that is tangible and practically applicable in our homes.

Though this journey began as a personal quest to better understand how to do/live this, it quickly became clear how desperate other families are for this information too. So with the Lord’s prompting, I have created a series of talks called Bringing Faith Home, to practically and tangibly equip parents to pass faith on to their children.

These talks set parents up with practical tools to pass faith on to the next 
generation. They are simple, applicable and absolutely do-able in a world where so many things are vying for our attention. It is my hope that after parents engage in these talks, they walk away empowered,, embraced, equipped and excited… understanding that this magnificent task, has been broken down into manageable bite size pieces. Our task as parents is to faithfully point our kids to Jesus; my passion is to equip them.

These talks have brought freedom, direction and intentionality to many families and I would love to share them with you and your faith community!

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I also have a talk called “Hearing God” –  “Be embraced by love, hope and direction, wherever you are on your journey, by learning to recognize God’s voice for yourself.”

For more information click here or click the screenshot below.

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“Here I am” vs. “There you are” – Which kind of person are you?

Over the past few years I have been taking a little personal survey after being together with anyone where a conversation was had. This could be at school, church, conferences, going to the movies with friends, and other get togethers you can think of. What I am watching is how conversations go. My wife (Dawn) is a master question asker kind of person. She would pepper you with tons of questions if you are together on all areas of life, faith, family and other. She is genuinely interested in what is going on with people. What is weird to me is when people are not interested back.

How many times in the past year have you been together with someone and after you were with them you realize that they did not ask a single question about you, your family, your children, your job, your hopes, your dreams … basically anything at all about you?

For me I find this is around 50% of all of my conversations. It is like we seem to be losing the art of conversation. In my mind sometimes while people are talking I have the desire to say “Enough of about you lets talk a little about me!” I have yet to use that 🙂

Now my first response is to call people Narcissist’s.

Narcissism is the pursuit of gratification from vanity or egotistic admiration of one’s own attributes. The term originated from the Greek mythology, where the young Narcissus fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water.

Calling people names does not solve anything and it also does not give anyone the benefit of the doubt. I sometimes wonder

  1. Have people been raised by parents who have taught them they are the only thing that matters?
  2. Are people just that bad at conversation that all they can talk about is themselves?
  3. Do people just not care about each other?
  4. Are people just Narcissists today in society?

I remember from reading a number of John Maxwell’s books that he always talks about “adding value” to people. The idea is that if you are going to spend any time from a few moments to a long conversation that goal is going to be to add value to that person’s life through your conversation.

When you begin a conversation with someone ask yourself which of these people you are going to be:

  1. Here I Am type of person – Is it all about you. What you can tell the other person about your life etc
  2. There you Are type of person – When you see someone you are thinking of how you can find out more about them. What is going on with their life, family etc. How can you “add value” to them in this conversation.

The truth is that all conversations should end up being a little of both of these. If someones ask you how school is going the next question you would usually ask back is “How is school going for you?” For people who struggle in conversation, you can just take any question someone has asked you and ask that same question back to them.

Process: Over the next week try and be very mindful of what type of person you are being: Here I am or There you Are

Take Away:
Below is a great article with some more thoughts on this topic. Enjoy

80+ questions to go through while you are dating

In my talk on dating I tell people that there is so much more to dating then just going out to a movie. There is a ton of stuff to learn about each other as you decide whether this person is a compatible partner for you as you begin to look towards your future … and marriage. This is a list of about 80+ questions that I think you should go through before you get married. Now please do not go out and start asking these questions on the first date. I had someone email me after one of my dating talks. On the way home from the conference he went to my website and found the questions below which are also on my website. He then turned to his brand new girlfriend and randomly pointed at one of the questions to ask her. It was a really tough question

“Is there anything in your past that I should be aware of?”

I had warned people not to just randomly ask questions because you do not know what you will get as an answer. He told me he pestered (his word) his girlfriend for 30 minutes on the bus ride to answer. She finally got angry and looked at him and said “You want to really know?” Her boyfriend smiling said “Yes”. Her response ” I was sexually abused by my uncle for many years growing up.” Probably not the answer he was looking for. This opened up a ton of conversations for them and a few months later I heard they were doing well.

As you start dating someone these are some great questions to guide you as you learn about each other. You can also just google “questions for dating couples” and find 1000’s more.

If you have any other questions you think should be added to my list please let me know. Enjoy!

What are your future financial goals?
How will you achieve those goals?
What kinds of debt do you have presently? Credit Cards/ Lines of Credit? School?
What kind of investments do you have?
What problems do you see in your partner in how they deal with money?
Will you move into a house? If so how will you pay for that?
Do you tithe? How much? To who do you give your money?
Do you also give any offerings when you feel led to give?
Do you pay credit cards off at the end of each month?
Who will pay the bills? Handle the money?
Are you going to pool your money or lead separate financial lives?
What is your attitude with borrowing money to buy things before you actually have the money?
Will you have a large wedding or will you use that money for a large down payment?
What questions do you have about money after this conversation?

What behaviour is appropriate for those who are going to practice sexual abstinence before marriage?
Will you get tested for S.T.D’s (S.T.I’s) together?
How do you presently feel about sex? Scared? Frustrated? Ready to Go?
Have you ever had any negative sexual experiences? Abuse? Rape? Former partner?
How important is sex on your honeymoon night?
Where do you lack information dealing with sex?
Can you talk freely about sex?
What questions do you have about sex after this conversation?

Religious Background
Will you go to church as a couple? If so which one?
How were you brought up? In the church? Fringe church? Non-Practicing Christian?
Are you a non-practicing Christian?
What is your parent’s religious background now?
What place does religion play in your life? Does your life reflect your answer?
What is the religious background of your boyfriend or girlfriend?
What are the differences in your beliefs?
How important do you think your faith will play in your future? Marriage?
Do you want a church wedding?
Do you want a Christian Marriage? Do you even know what this is?
Do you think it is important for you to go to church as a family? When you have children?
What are the differences in your beliefs?
Do you presently pray for each other? Together?
What questions do you have about religious background after this conversation?

When did you begin dating?
How many people have you seriously dated?
What does dating even mean to you?
If you have dated before how did your relationships break-up? Why did they fall apart?
What were the strong points in those relationships?
What were the weaknesses or conflicts in those relationships?
Is there anything in your past your boyfriend or girlfriend should be away of?
If your past boyfriend or girlfriend listed your negative qualities, what would they say?
What questions do you have about dating do you have after this conversation?

Family Background
Was your family ever divorced, separated, widowed?
Are your parents still alive?
How was your parent’s marriage? Happy? Rocky? Abusive?
How is your relationship with your mother and father?
What was your childhood like?
What are your parent’s opinions on who you are dating?
What are some family traditions that might affect your relationship later in life? Week
long Christian get-togethers? Vacations? Cottage?
What questions do you have about family background after this conversation?

Do you want any? 1? 2? 5?
How long will you wait?
Will someone stay home with the kids or will they be in daycare? If someone will stay
home – who?
If you want kids but are unable to, what will you do?
What are your feelings about adoption? Medical testing? In-vitro fertilizations?
How much should the man be involved in raising the children?
What kind of home do you want your children growing up in? Values? Rules?
What do you think your children will teach you?
What questions do you have about children after this conversation?

Professional Goals
What will you do?
Where will you live?
What comes with the job you have chosen? Travel?
What is one person’s job wants them to move but yours does not?
Consistent salary or commission?
What questions do you have about professional goals after this conversation?

Personal Growth
What books have you read lately?
What are your strengths, weaknesses?
What strengths could you be working more on?
What courses or seminars have you attended last year? Why?
What questions do you have about Personal Growth after this conversation?

Personal Health
What are your thoughts about each other’s physical health?
What first attracted you to each other?
Do you exercise regularly?
What exercise do you like to do together? Separately?
What turns you off sexually about the other person?
How do you feel about alcohol?
How do you feel about smoking?
What questions do you have about Personal Health after this conversation?

Christmas Season Sabbatical: Social Media and Blog!

I am going to be taking a break from all Social Media including my blog. I think it is important to have some time during the year where I stop, reflect, and try and be present in my regular life by shutting down everything in my online world. I am going to be off blogging and all Social Media from Thursday Dec 18th, 2014 until Jan 1st, 2015.

Anyone want to join me in this break?

I hope you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.