My father-in-law will not let me come home for Christmas.
My daughter Emily is telling me to take it off.
This is a guest post from the Eric Derksen, President of Vanguard college and newest family to North Pointe. (When I had coffee with Eric I realized you can take the man out of Jet country but you can’t take the Jets completely out of the man.)
My name is Eric Derksen and I am a disciple of Jesus.
I am also a husband and a father, and now serve as the President of Vanguard College in Edmonton, Alberta – the home of the Oilers.
Our move to Edmonton was a new start for us. God’s call brought our family out of a comfortable environment in Winnipeg to a city where we knew only a handful of people.
Candace and I know God called us here, but we keep communicating to our children that God called them here for His purpose in their life too. Part of the journey meant connecting with a new church, engaging in ministry, and putting down social and spiritual roots.
FINDING A NEW CHURCH
We encouraged our children to participate in finding a church in a city with many great churches!
So, how did we end up at North Pointe? We began with our values for ministry.
We want a church that talks a lot about Jesus and has new believers in the mix.
We want a church with a heart for missions and with a mission to their community.
We want a church that takes the Bible very seriously and worships God with freedom.
We want a church that accepts responsibility for the changing demographics of our nation, and for every generation.
We want a church that has a sound and biblical approach to adversity and suffering in life.
TRUTH AND FAMILY
Our value is not balance – it is truth. There is another factor that may seem trite, but is not.
North Pointe feels a lot like the church family we left behind us and that is important as we start life over again.
We are discovering these things at North Pointe. Our children feel welcomed and are intentionally connected. The teaching encourages and motivates us.
All beginnings are hard, but God, through the friends we are making, the friends our children are making, through ministry colleagues and connections, and through our engagement at North Pointe, is making this new beginning great for us as a family.
We want our children to see God answer prayer for them in this new beginning. We want their faith to be strengthened. We want them to have the courage to step out in faith when God calls them to a new beginning, and to do so without fear. We have opportunity to doubt and be skeptical, and we have to fight against these things. God is faithful and good.
VISION FOR VANGUARD
I am an advocate for those God is calling to serve in His Kingdom. Our students will be pastors, worship leaders, missionaries, engineers, nurses, teachers, or business leaders: all called to ministry. I long to see our students empowered by the Spirit to carry the simple and effective message of Jesus Christ from the streets of Edmonton, to the farthest reaches of the globe.
APPLICATION: Welcoming new people to North Pointe is a role for the entire North Pointe family. Please leave a comment for Eric.
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