Have you ever felt overwhelmed?

In anticipation of this week’s message let me ask you a question, have you ever felt overwhelmed? Have you ever felt anxious about finishing that project on time or paying a bill before the deadline, catching your flight when you’re stuck in traffic or waiting for lab results to the point where you can’t seem to handle the pressure anymore? God knows that we all face a very real temptation to worry about things in our lives but the good news is He hasn’t left us alone. Recently Amazon released a list of the most popular passages in some of its bestselling books, such as The Hunger Games, the Harry Potter series, and Pride and Prejudice. Also released, the most highlighted passage in the Holy Bible. Can you guess what it is? Most people including me expect it to be something like John 3:16, Psalm 23, or the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6:9-13. But, no, it was a less prominent text, but one that’s striking a deep cord in today’s worried world. If you want to find out what it is, have your Bibles ready and listen to the message and I will share it with you. May God bless you as we learn more about Him together and how he helps us when we feel overwhelmed.

Refresh Right

We’re a wonderful church family here in Oakville that lives by the word of God, represents the faith of Christ, serves our community with love and strives to be a voice of hope. Last week I was fortunate to spend the weekend at Camp Frenda with my family and a group of young adults from across the province. There was a group of young people from our Bronte church family who went as well. We enjoyed getting to know one another, playing games and listening to great speakers like Pastors Liz and Orlando Pule from the Ontario Conference. This is a once a year retreat called Refresh right at the start of every new year that gives young people a chance to get away and spend time reconnecting with God and making new friends in the beautiful setting of the Muskoka’s. One of the things that was said in a talk by Pastor Orlando Pule came in the form of a question, he asked, “Is the community around your church a happier place because you’re there? Doesn’t matter how long you’ve been around, are people happy you’re in their community or do they even know you exist?” This is a great challenge for me and to all of us. My dream is that we keep building on what we accomplished in 2018 and make 2019 a year that makes people even happier that we’re in this community! Please join me as we pray together and allow God to give us His vision and use us to make a positive impact in our community this year. Happy 2019!

Last weekend before Christmas

This is the last weekend before Christmas, so I want to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas from our Church family to yours. We hope that you will make memories with your loved ones, that you stay safe, and most importantly, that Jesus fills your heart with joy this season. I’ll leave you with this Christmas quote as a reminder about the true value of Christmas, ‘Once in our world, a stable had something in it that was bigger than our whole world.’ – C.S. Lewis. Merry Christmas and we can’t wait to welcome you to Bronte!”

Pastor’s Post

Even though December may get a little cold, the Christmas season warms our hearts. This time of the year is special to me because since I was small, no matter where my sister and I were going to school, we always spent Christmas at home with family. We ate together, unwrapped gifts (on Christmas Eve, as most Europeans do) and just spent time together as a family. I’m sure that many of you are busy winding down your work and or school, but I do hope you have a great Christmas holiday to look forward to – whatever your tradition is. Tomorrow morning, our members have prepared a very special program about the Christmas story. Even though we don’t believe Jesus was actually born on December 25th, it is a time of year when we can remember that Jesus came as a baby, lived here among us, and became the greatest gift of all, and my hope is that we learn something new that will inspire and challenge us. Many blessings and we can’t wait to give a big welcome to all.”

From the Pastor’s Desk – Jan 13 2018

Good afternoon church family, we made it through our first full week of 2018!

“This second Sabbath of the new year, we wish to warmly welcome you to the Bronte Church family. We hope the year is off to a great start for each of you and that you are tracking well. The year is still ahead of us and it is in this early stage of the year we continue to think about what adjustments or changes we want to make in our lives, new challenges to tackle, old habits to break, new goals to achieve, and different directions to take and paths to pursue. Of greater importance, is our Christian experience and life – Where do want it to go? Where is it going? How will we get there? I posit to you that if our growth has been the same like the last several years of our life, it really has not grown, but rather, plateaued. Do you feel stagnant in your spiritual life? Like it is not going and growing? Well, if you do, there is hope if you really desire to change! We have been given now, today, the present. We can determine that no matter what, we are not going to stay the same. Someone has said, ‘the pain of change is far less than the pain of staying the same.’ The Apostle Paul gives us motivation in his victory speech, ‘Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 3:12-14). To not hinder our progress, there are some things we have to leave behind and let go of, in order that we press forward, onward, and upward! Let’s create a great year with God! Press on!”

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh

Fom the Pastor’s Desk Dec 23 2017

Welcome to the Bronte Church family during this festive season as we celebrate the first Advent of our Lord. As the world gathers to celebrate Christmas with its gifts, merriment, feasting and partying, it is evident that the reason for the season is forgotten. If we take Christ of out of Christmas, we have nothing. It’s just another occasion or festive event and many times empty of purpose and significance. The difference is not the gifts we get or give, but the Gift that was given to us! The prophet Isaiah looked down at our time and He declared in chapter 12 verse 2, ‘Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; He also is become my salvation.’ What a vivid reminder of God’s presence in our lives, especially during this time, as we reflect upon the entrance of the King of Glory, born in a manger in Bethlehem, instead of a throne. What humility and condescension. It is a privilege to gather as a church family and celebrate the gift of God’s love through Jesus Christ. As we reflect upon this festive season, we remember the price that was paid to redeem us from sin. What a wonderful Saviour is Jesus our Lord. Where would we be without Jesus?

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh

From the Pastor’s Desk – Dec 16 2017

Good day all,

“Welcome to God’s house at Bronte as we study, worship, and fellowship today. We are truly experiencing a shift in the weather and it’s beginning to feel and look more like Christmas and the festive season that closes another year. I got up one morning over the past week and saw the first of fluffy stuff. The white snow carpeted the landscape and gave such lighted reflection during the day and right into the dusk of the evening. As I went out to clear the snow on the driveway, I looked a little closer at the snow and saw how unique and beautiful (though frigidly cold) it was. I like the snow… sometimes from a distance, sometimes through the window, sometimes walking on it and through it… but what is fascinating is that the snow keeps its bright white colour. Scientists even tell us that every snowflake is unlike another and each has its own unique design. The colour of snow is such a vivid and visual reminder of what God desires for us, to do through us, with us, and in us. Our God invites us, ‘Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool…’ (Isaiah 1:18). What a God who gives us an audience with Him, and because of His mercy and grace we have access and the privilege to His power to cleanse and cover us. My prayer is, ‘Lord, make me whiter than snow’ and I need it that today, tomorrow, and always.”

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh

 

From the Pastor’s Desk – December 9 2017

We can’t wait to welcome to the Bronte church family where we will meet again to study, worship, and fellowship. We look forward to your presence with us and hope that you will receive a rich blessing and your experience today will be an uplifting one. We continue with part II of dealing with discouragement. We have all tried to avoid the big “D” word, but at some point or another in our lives, we have all experienced discouragement; perhaps you may be in such a moment as you read this. Discouragement is part of the human condition that we all encounter when we going through the vicissitudes of life. There are four “F” factors that may precipitate discouragement and I will share more in the sermon this week, but will briefly introduce them now: fatigue, frustration, failure, and fear. Each element has a way of overwhelming, overpowering, limiting, and paralyzing a person.  What we need to do is realize is that our perception is not always actually our reality, but it can become our reality because of the lens through which we view life. God speaks to Isaiah and to us in chapter 40:10 reminding us, “fear not and be not dismayed… I will uphold you with My righteous right hand…” We can all have courage and confidence that our God will uphold us up no matter we face, and He will see us through. How encouraging it is to know that His hand is upon us, and that we have nothing to fear when God is there. Be encouraged, be blessed, and behold your God – today and always!

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh

From the Pastor’s Desk – Dec 2nd 2017

Welcome to our Bronte Church family as we gather this first Sabbath of the last month in 2017! Are you excited? Anxious? In shock? As the year draws to a close, it is a time of reflection for many, anticipation for some, and anxiety for others. Our outlook depends on where we are in life, what is happening, and our mind-set. Sometimes our attitude loses altitude; as days pass, we may experience highs and lows, troughs and crests, and mountains and valleys. We have the choice to soar above the clouds, stay clouded by the clouds, or fly below the clouds which loom over us. We often get down and discouraged when things do not work out the way we want, plan, or intend. However, it is at these moments in our lives we must ask ourselves, is this my reality or just a perception of what is going on in my life? The Apostle Paul knew about these feelings all too well when he found himself in a dark, dingy, and depressing dungeon, witnessing to his faith in Philippi. He said, ‘Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice… Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known unto God. And the peace of God… will keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4:4-7). This peace breaks the bondage of discouragement because we know that we can do ‘all things through Christ who gives us strength’ (Philippians 4:13). Each day, let us find something specific to thank God for, and focus on positively changing, overcoming obstacles, and living better. By this, our attitude will gain altitude and shape the attitude of our faith!

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh

From the Pastor’s Desk – Nov 25 2017

“Will we have the opportunity to welcome you to our Bronte family, this last Sabbath of November, as we conclude our theme on the Reformation and its impact on our spiritual life and Christianity? Our guest speaker, Pastor Casey will give us a final challenge as we deeply reflect on the “Morningstar” of the Reformation. A pertinent excerpt from The Great Controversy further enlightens us. “The influence of this one man (Martin Luther), who dared to think and act for himself in religious matters, was to affect the church and the world, not only in his own time, but in all future generations. His firmness and fidelity would strengthen all, to the close of time, who should pass through a similar experience. The power and majesty of God stood forth above the counsel of men, above the mighty power of Satan” (p. 166). What are we willing to address or stand up for where our faith and our God are concerned? Do we mind or care about it enough that we would dare to be different? May our faith continuously stand firm and be fortified by God’s Word in these closing times of earth’s history as we strive to overcome the world (1 John 5:3-4) Let us walk hand-in hand with God, move away from the world, draw close into His loving arms, stand up for Him, kneel down to Him, take our place under Him, feel Him watch over us, see Him work around us, and allow Him to work in us and through us! ”

– Pastor Daniel D. Saugh