Monthly Archives: February 2014

I was watching the television show Shark Tank the other night and was reminded of how true the principle is that great leadership mostly boils down to how influential you are.  The product that popped up for the “sharks” to evaluate was a big hit and all of the entrepreneurs wanted a piece of the pie.  One by one, they went through their virtual roll-a-dex about what they had to offer in terms of their connections.  They hardly even mentioned their own knowledge in a particular subject (probably because they didn’t have much), but what they understood is that what they had to sell was a high commodity…their influence to sway the right people to invest in the right product and then take their cut.

So many times in leadership we get confused by DOING more instead of gaining influence.  We probably get our focus on “doing” because it is much easier to learn something ourselves to build our repertoire rather than connect enough people together to create an infrastructure of skill.

As leaders there are certain things that we simply must do, but right on the other side of the word “must”, lies a long list of things that we shouldn’t be doing.  Everything on that list is a glaring reminder of where we are lacking in our leadership influence.

It’s not always a fun conversation to have with yourself, but that’s my challenge for you today as a leader.  What are you DOING in your leadership that is robbing someone else of being involved in a great organization?  What can you let go of to create a deeper and broader team around you?  How about relating this to parenting…how are you releasing responsibility to your kids to help them grow and have ownership?  Maybe you just “want it done right, so you’ll do it yourself”?  How can you let go of some of what you are DOING to take a more managerial role of BEING in the framework that God has given you?

No snowstorm this Sunday, so we were back in business!  I hope you enjoyed the snow while it lasted, but I am thankful it has come and gone!

Sunday was great!  Chris preached at Battle Ground on the church being united, Jim preached at the Deaf Church on being rooted in love and our new Battle Ground youth pastor, Mat Marbrey, preached at Hazel Dell on the love of Christ.  He’ll be heading to speak at Battle Ground this Sunday, so if you haven’t met him and Janel, you can this week.

We could not be more excited about the youth ministry launch on March 6.  Tell a teenager you know about it and invite them to be a part.  Hangout hour will start at 6:30 pm and the main youth group will start at 7:00 pm.  Everyone is welcome to be a part!

We have baptism dates coming up if you’d like to be baptized – March 16 at Hazel Dell and March 23 at Battle Ground.  You can sign up at

We have the best volunteers on the planet!  We’ve had lots of last minute cancellations because of the flu this year, but people just step up and make it happen every time.  I love the heart of our people to make room for those people who are far from God.  LOVE IT!

Simply Worship is TONIGHT at the Hazel Dell Campus – 811 NE 88th Circle, Vancouver, WA 98665.  It starts at 6:30 pm and lasts for one amazing hour.  Such a precious time to meet with Jesus, so make sure you are a part!  Kids up to 5 have childcare and we encourage our older kids to join us!

Thank you for your faithful giving!  We were behind this month due to Snowmeggedon, but we had a good offering this week and are back on track.  I know it is a step of faith to give your resources to God (P.S.  They are all His anyway), but I am so impressed by people who live in that kind of faith.  He never fails!

Small groups have kicked and are kicking off!  Once again the snow bumped our plans around, so some groups started on time and some groups didn’t.  You can still sign up online at  We’d love to have you!

I hope your week is abundantly blessed!



Small groups are kicking off this week and I am so excited!  (Side note: it’s not too late to sign up…it’s worth it!)  Our group started and as I looked around the room there were so many incredible moments.

  • Three people in the group were invited to North Creek Church by three other people in the group.  Now they are walking side-by-side learning about Jesus together.
  • There were two people in our group that I don’t know very well…new opportunities for friendships are what life is all about.  I can already tell you multiple things I am interested in about each of them and I cannot wait to find out more!
  • I love having new faces, but I also understand that longevity at a church is a precious gift.  Some of the relationship in that room go back almost a decade already.
  • We talked a little about our religious history and we have every story possible from our pasts: being raised in an atheist home, a former Mormon, a lot of Catholic backgrounds, raised in a Christian church…  One person in our group said it best, “I tried another path, but in the end, I just wanted more Jesus.”  Hmmm…sums up my life mission as well.
  • Mark and I have cried deep tears of pain with several people in our group.  It’s one of my greatest treasures in life to have walked alongside people during difficult times and watch Jesus triumph in the end.  He ALWAYS comes through for people even when you think there is NO WAY that a situation can possibly be used for good.  He is faithful.
  • We ate together and enjoyed company.  I think Bible study is SO valuable…we plan on learning about Jesus in this semester, but I also know that God highly values community.  Don’t underestimate the power of just putting yourself in a room with other people on the same page as you.  It is never a waste of time.
  • Our kids hung out.  One young man in our group has been my daughter’s friend for her whole life.  Another girl just celebrated one year of attending North Creek after my daughter invited her to be a part.  They are developing godly friendships that honor Jesus.

So, those are just some of the amazing nuggets of awesomeness that come out of community.  We all have such busy lives, but I want to challenge you to make small groups and/or community a priority in your walk with Jesus. It never ceases to amaze me what I learn from other people!

Congrats to our Seahawks!  It was a pretty fun watching our home team dominate the game.

Small Groups opened for registration on Sunday.  You can register at for some great groups!  They kick off on the week of February 9, but one of our groups, Learning Sign Language, starts early, so check that one out right away.  It’s going to be a wonderful semester of growing in our relationships with other people and with Jesus.

We are in countdown mode to the launch of our youth ministry in Battle Ground on March 6.  We have an AMAZING team headed by Mat and Janell Marbrey.  If you’d like to be involved, you can email them at or  If you know of a teenager in the Battle Ground area, let them know we are starting soon!

We are in the middle of our series Who Do You Think You Are on the book of Ephesians.  I really love Ephesians, so I am thoroughly enjoying this series.  I encourage you to pick up the Bible and read Ephesians over the next week.  It’s an easy read because it’s short, but PACKED with things to grow your life.  Pick something that you struggle with and ask God to help you change.

Our new building in Hazel Dell has been incredible.  I cannot express how nice it has been to have warm, clean facilities that accommodate our families so well.  THANK YOU to those of you who give month after month to North Creek.  The lives impacted by Jesus are directly connected to your sacrifice.  It does not go unnoticed and it does not go unappreciated.

Our Deaf Church has been growing and is doing well.  If you know of someone who is deaf, let them know about a great church!

Over at Battle Ground our young adults are stealing the show.  We had 5 recent graduates on the worship team on Sunday and one leading Tiny Town.  I love that our graduates feel like this is THEIR church and there is a place for them.  You just aren’t too young to use your gifts for Jesus!  Jessica Yonko is leading a small group just for young adults, so jump on in and get to know some people your age who love Jesus.

Our KidCity girls had a day out at G6 Airpark on Saturday.  It was a ton of fun and a good way for our girls from both campuses to know each other.  If you are missing events, etc., send me and email at and I’ll get you on the email list.

Did I mention that you can sign up for a small group at  Yeah, go do that.

I love, love, love our church!  Loving Jesus is an amazing decision and so is finding a great church to be a part of!  Be blessed!