Petawawa Church Plant

The MCF is partnering with a new church plant in Petawawa.  Several months ago the MCF President, Gerry Potter, met with Pastor Tim Roddick and his team to learn about Tim’s vision to plant a church in Petawawa.  Of the cultural groups in the Petawawa area, the military community is the largest and it is Tim’s and his team’s desire to bring Jesus to them.  The MCF is excited at the potential for seeing lives changed through the ministry of Tim and his team.   They hosted prayer nights on 25 May, 29 June, 27 July and 31 August in preparation for planting the new church.   Praise God for continued support in prayer.

Here are some news from Tim and Stephanie Roddick.

Another month has passed, and we’re another month closer to the launch of weekly worship services in Petawawa!  Actually… we’re no longer talking months… now, we’re talking days… 29 days to be exact!

Attached is a copy of the most recent Petawawa Newsletter #6; however, we expect much to happen in the weeks ahead, and have additionally created a ‘blog’ where we will regularly post articles and announcements in the weeks ahead. We’ve already added a bunch of content, so please check it out when you have a moment… Trailheadbaptist

Tim and Stephanie Roddick

Trailhead Baptist Church

Praying through God Names

When you speak about God what name or names do you call Him by? Do you use different names when you pray, when you offer praise, or even when you sing to Him? Does your need dictate the name you use? Does your spiritual or emotional state affect how you connect with Him?


The names we use for God reveal much about His character and nature and can be helpful as we pray.  Below are prayers linked to His names.  

Week 1 – 3 to 9 Oct-2

(The names and their explanations were taken from various scholarly sources and are considered legitimate).

Look what I can do!

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In the late 1990’s a comedy show introduced an attention seeking man-child character named Stuart who always seemed to be bumping heads with adults.  His overprotective mother’s love blinded her to his acts of disobedience or outright inappropriate behaviour.  However, when caught or confronted with improper conduct, Stuart would pause, the scene would go quite, and he would shout “look what I can do.”  This was followed by some gesture aimed at distracting everyone.  What is our response to being confronted when a misdeed or act of disobedience is revealed?  Do we try to misdirect attention away from us and place it on something or someone else?  Do we offer an excuse?  If we follow either of those paths we could cause a distraction but we would only be fooling ourselves and our human companions.

When we fail God will always catch us because nothing is hidden from Him. Yet, in these situations, we often fear the reaction of our friends and not that of God.  Their scorn or anger can only last a limited time yet God’s disappointment could last an eternity.  God understands we are prone to temptation and have exploitable weaknesses.  When we fail He shouts to us “Look what I can do” and offers forgiveness when we repent, mercy when we fall prey and grace to overcome the pull of the evil one.  He doesn’t want us to try to distract Him or even ourselves from our sinful nature by resting on our good deeds, acts of discipleship or attempts at loving Him.  He wants us to come to Him, in all circumstances and accept His mercy and grace so that we will be His man/woman-child.

We should not fear getting caught by God but should rejoice that He is there to catch us.  His love for us in not blind to the struggles we face and He will not turn from us.  His spirit will guide and strengthen us and His truth will direct and save us, but only if we desire.  He offers the same to our family and friends, if they desire.  He offers the same to our military brothers and sisters who are serving abroad or at home, are resting in retirement, or are suffering from physical or physiological injuries, but only if they desire. Instead of trying to hide from, ignore or be broken by our weaknesses, God offers mercy, grace and hope to those who desire.  

Will you pray and desire God’s grace and mercy and ask that His Spirit help you realize what that means?  Will you pray on behalf of someone who does not know God’s offer and ask God to use you or someone else to share that truth about what He wants to do?  Will you shout “look what God can do” for the lost, the broken and even the saved?   

Keith’s Perspective on the Book of John

The writer
Keith Magee

Some time ago I met Keith Magee, a former member of the Royal Canadian Navy. Keith served in the Navy as a “Rating” (radio communications) from 1965 to 1970. After his service Keith went on to study mechanical engineering and to get married. A few years later Keith became the youngest teacher at the BC Institute of Technology. Keith was responsible  for preparing students in overland conveyor design intended for the Tumbler Ridge coal mines. At that time, both the department head and a fellow instructor were Christians. These two individuals would openly share Christ with Keith, and within a few months Keith brought a Bible to his office and started reading it in his off-hours. Bill (Department Head) and Gary (fellow instructor) always seemed to be close at hand to answer Keith’s questions. Within four months (Dec 28, 1983) Keith confessed his sins, repented, and accepted Jesus as his personal Saviour and Lord. Keith joined the local Baptist Church, and was baptized within the year.

While teaching at BCIT the Lord led Keith to a writing ministry as a means of sharing his faith with the student body. Open evangelism by instructors was forbidden, but in written form, posted to the student notice board, it was tolerated as long as management was uninformed as to who was posting it. With the agreement of his Department Head (Bill) and his fellow Christian instructor (Gary) Keith’s writing ministry began. It quickly gained an audience with students and staff alike. As it was his custom to arrive early, as quickly as the copy was taken away he reposted it. The three amigos had the privilege of praying with many of the students, leading them to Christ. (These early writings were also used in Church and Intermediate Care Bible studies, as well as street evangelism and discipleship.) After ten years the mine wasn’t producing the metallurgical grade coal intended and was shut down by the government of the day; this also included the BCIT program Keith was involved in. It was well timed. Keith felt the Lord calling him into ministry. Given his age, Keith was too old, with far too many family responsibilities to begin in the lowest rung in church ministry. So not knowing where the Lord would take him, Keith returned to school, using his engineering training and experience to pay the bills. It was during his master’s program that his program (and later thesis) supervisor told Keith that he needed to narrow his interests and become involved in a compulsory work program. Chaplaincy was the head of his list. Keith called the local major hospital asking to speak with the chaplain, who turned out to be very accommodating and they became lifelong friends. The immediate need was in Palliative Care (end stage cancer), so the chaplain encouraged Keith to fulfill this role. With great trepidation Keith stepped into these shoes and the Lord greatly blessed his efforts. Keith graduated from his doctorate studies (2004) in the field of Hospice and Palliative Care. Keith continued as a counsellor in Palliative Care and medical crisis until his own health started failing in 2007. Keith still has a small private practice and he fills his days with Christian writing. Keith attends and is a member of Eagle Ridge Bible Fellowship.

I had an opportunity to read some of Keith’s material and I found his approach to the Scriptures refreshing as I hope you will as well. We will post Keith’s expositional survey/commentary of the book of John in a series. Please enjoy and let us know your thoughts.

The Book of John –  “Prologue

Devote yourselves to prayer

MCF - ANTON - 2015-09-18 (1)What do you think would be the greatest gift you could give someone?  If they suffered from chronic pain would you want to offer them healing?  If their marriage had fallen apart would you want them to feel loved?  If they were undergoing troubles at work would you like to release them from that stress? If they had suicidal thoughts would you like to give them hope?  What would be the greatest gift you would like to receive?  Would you like family harmony?  Would you like financial stability i.e. a job that helps you meet your daily needs?  Would you want peace and calmness in your busy world? Would you like to know that your family, friends and neighbours were followers of Jesus?

Do you know that God offers all those gifts and many more?  He wants to bless our lives, and offer comfort and hope.  He wants us to experience heaven on earth.  God loves when we speak to Him directly and He is also pleased if we ask on behalf of someone else.  Prayers are the means by which God offers His love to this world.  As we pray we connect to His will and He connects to us.  He uses our prayer to change us so that we can affect the world around us.  He uses our prayers to answer our needs and the needs of those we pray for.  God wants us to pray as individuals but because He created us to live in community, He expects and allows us to pray for each other.

There is no other way to do God’s work without prayer.  There is no way to receive the Holy Spirit’s guiding and comforting presence in our lives without prayer.  There is no way to enjoy the encouragement, strength, and peace offered by God without prayer.  There is no way to survive the difficult, challenging and even painful experiences that life offers without prayer. Without prayer, there is no way to be used by God to share His hope and love to a broken world.

We want to pray with you and want you to pray for us.  If you have a request for yourself or for someone, please share with us and we will ensure others get on board and pray.  Requests can be sent to or from our website.  

See God

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We are often told that we live in an evil world. To protect our family, friends and colleagues we are encouraged to pray for them. To protect ourselves, we are guided to avoid the evil. Have you asked yourself what is the evil that we need protection against and do you wonder if our understanding affects our perspective on how we share the gospel to others?

September 11th is a day in which we reflect on an act that resulted on the death of many innocent people both on that day and the days to follow. Those who committed this act felt their target was a hub of evil and have justified their action based on their interpretation of evil. So, is evil a specific country or a culture? Many condemn the hedonistic nature of society suggesting our pleasure is not at the heart of God’s plan for us. So, is evil found in the vacation spots of the world where we laugh and play in the sun? Is it at the athletic arenas where we cheer on our favourite team? Is evil in our neighbourhoods where people avoid church on Sunday mornings to mow the lawn, read a book, or maybe watch TV. Our perspective of evil could even suggest that all activity that does not bring honour to God is evil. We could then easily conclude that all those who do not follow Jesus are part of the world and therefore evil. We may even convince ourselves to avoid them and take refuge in our Christian communities, surrounding ourselves with those who love God and us. However, if we avoid those around us who do not follow Jesus how will we take the gospel to our family, friends and colleagues and make disciples of all nations?

Viktor Frankl wrote the book Man’s Search for Meaning and in it he shares some of his experiences in a Nazi prison camp. One evening a prisoner came running from the compound into the building where he was eating and cried for them to rush out in the small yard to see the beauty of the sunset. Tired as they were, they went out and stood in hushed silence watching the brilliant hues of the evening sky running the spectrum from red to steel blue. In fact, the rays of the sun on the muddy water standing in puddles on the ground looked beautiful. After several undisturbed minutes a prisoner said, “How beautiful the world could be.”

When God finished creating the world He said it was very good. He put humanity into the world to experience this goodness. Evil originated from one who exists to destroy God’s desire for humanity and as he started to have an influence on the world, Jesus was sent. Jesus did not run from the world but everyday He immersed Himself in the lives of the people in it. He shared the hope that God intended the world to be very good and a new world was possible. Understating the evil in the world is very important especially if we are to reflect Christ like behaviour. We can overcome evil and take back what was given to us one neighbourhood at a time.

We do not have to fear evil because the power of the Holy Spirit is available to enlighten, protect and strengthen us. We must pray daily for the salvation of our communities but before we step out into them, we must heed the guidance of Ephesians 6:10-18 and prepare ourselves. We need to share what we know about God’s intentions so that others can experience the very good of this world. We need to recruit followers. We will win God’s approval when we win others to Christ and to His church.

Waiting for Eternity



Praying for others is a gift given to Christians so as to participate in the heaven on earth experience. Scripture shares that we can, and should, pray for each other, but how often do we ration our prayers because of our own limited expectations. We pray for the salvation of people we know who do not profess to be followers of Jesus. We specifically ask that they are saved from an eternity in hell and given an eternity in heaven and this is the right thing to do. However, when we pray, do we consider what we want for them while they are waiting for eternity?

Next time you are in a prayer gathering, listen as believers pray. We will ask God to release our unchurched family and friends from their earthly struggles such as health issues, financial or martial difficulties. However, do we pray that these same people find the truth to live the “tranquil, quiet and dignified godliness life?” (1Timothy 2:2b). Do we pray that the lost are changed by God and receive the fruit of the Holy Spirit so that they experience “love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness” (Galatians 5:22-23)? Do we pray that they are given the strength and wisdom to endure the struggles? After all, Christians are not promised an exception from troubles. They however are promised to be comforted and strengthened through them.

Jesus taught us to pray for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven. In the garden He showed us that His will included His creation living in harmony. His relationship as the harmonized Trinity is the role model for the way we live with God, with ourselves, with others around us, and with nature. God says this harmony can occur on earth while we wait for the gift of eternity with Him. So, why would we not actually want more for the lost and for ourselves while we wait for Jesus to come back?

Praying for salvation is wonderful. Praying to be released from troubles is acceptable. Praying to live as God desires while we wait is necessary. Next time you go before your Father in heaven, please bring your lost friends before Him but don’t forget to also ask that the Holy Spirit nudge, comfort and support them so they can experience and spread the hope that comes with walking with God.

PS – don’t forget to ask the same for yourself.

CLICK – I sense God

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Recently I spent some time with my great niece Isabella, whom I have only seen 3 times in her 6 years on this earth.  We talked about silly things, ate some ice cream, sang a few children songs, made burping and other noises, and basically had fun.  I asked her if I could take a picture of us together so I’d remember and we snapped a few selfies (no pouty lips).  Since she did not have a camera, I asked how she would remember me. She put her hands in front of her face, as if holding a camera, and then said “click”.  She then told me that she now had a picture of me in her head and when she wanted to think about me she would bring my picture into her mind and remember.

Brother Lawrence, a 17th Century lay brother, like Isabella, suggested that if we wish to remember something that pleases us we need to intentionally put them in our mind daily.  In his writings “The practice of the presence of God”  Lawrence suggests we should bring God to the forefront of our thoughts as often as possible so that we can talk with Him, praise and worship Him, and experience His comfort all our waking hours.  He seemed to have perfected the idea of praying without ceasing as He once said “The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer”.  Two questions probably come to mind as you think about Lawrence’s suggestion: WHY and HOW.

WHY.? Lawrence realized that throughout the day we are bombarded with temptations and distractions that keep us from loving God and His creation as He desires.  To combat this he chose to focus on God.  He also knew that as a follower the Holy Spirit would be with Him to comfort, guide, and encourage Him and so He also choose to call on and rely on Him.  He felt if we could keep God in our minds as we go about the day we will experience joy and possibly change the world around us.  He was not naïve to suggest we would never be troubled but does say it will be easier to go through them with God in our thoughts.

HOW?  Well, Lawrence did not find a cross and put his hands in front of his face like a camera and go CLICK so that he could recall that image throughout the day.  He went to scripture to see God and remembered His words, actions and love.  He did not kneel in prayer for 12 hours a day, nor did he hide in a corner muttering prayers to himself such that all others side stepped around him whenever they saw him.  He sought God in solitude, in worship, and basically in all that was around Him.  He had intentional private time of prayer, reflection and study but also reflected and prayed while he worked.  As he scrubbed the kitchen pots of their grime, he prayed God would cleanse the souls of those he knew.

Brother Lawrence is really no different than you or I.  He recognized that we all do not connect the same with God but strongly encouraged all to find our way to connect and keep God close.  He suggested back then, and I suggest it applies today, that many followers are fooled by the idea that they can say a few prayers and read a few lines of scripture each day and then love God and our neighbours with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.  He would suggest that in is him time, not unlike today, many act as if they can get up from their 90 minutes or so of worship and then have compassion for their lost family, neighbours and colleagues.  God chooses to be with those who believe and wants us to remember that image and bring it to our minds daily.  The image of a loving, caring God wanting to spend eternity with those who believe.

Brothers and sisters, for your sake, will you intentionally make God part of your thoughts throughout the day.  At first it will be difficult to try to think about Him all day but I can assure you that the experience is unique and when you begin, you will want more.  Start as soon as you open your eyes and acknowledge His existence. When you commute to work or wherever, think about a bible story with people in it, then imagine where those you see in front of you fit into that story.  Do they need your prayers, a kind word or even a smile?  Start small but start.

When you bring God to your mind throughout your day, you will be blessed by the change that will come over. CLICK – can you sense God?

Simple Conversations

Have you even wondered where James (the gospel writer and brother of Jesus) was during Jesus’ earthly ministry? Was he one of the brothers mentioned in Matthew 12:47 where we read “Your mother and brothers are standing outside, wanting to speak to you.” Was he one of the family who comes to take Him away because they had thought “He is out of his mind” (Mark 3:21 b.) Did James hear Jesus say “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” and know that he pointed to His disciples and say “Here are my mother and my brothers. For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother” (from Matthew 12:48-50). Did he hear those words and take them as a rebuke and then shut himself off from Jesus and the truths He had to share?

In the books of Acts we read James is a leader in the church and not just a leader but apparently the leader of the church in Jerusalem. What affected James such that when we read about the first gathering to address church matters, James is the one who responds with direction and authority? Paul offers a hint in 1 Corinthians 15:3–7 where he records that after Jesus’ resurrection He visits James? There is no record of what was said between them but that simple conversation and encounter appears to have changed James forever. What wonderful act of reconciliation took place during that meeting, for James to recognize what Jesus spoke about and what was the truth?

There is power in the name of Jesus and even the most seemingly insignificant encounter can be life changing. Once someone meets Jesus and recognizes what He offers, their life changes. Once someone chooses to follow Him, Jesus awakens them to a different perspective of the world and guides them to His kingdom. Jesus did not promise that His followers would have a life or ease and luxury but shared that we will have a strengthener and encourager with us as we go through life. He said that He would be with us during difficult times when life seem to be going poorly. But more importantly, Jesus said He will be with us so that we could live life fully and so we could become loving and compassionate and see the world around us and change it; especially for those in need.

When we pray for our family, our neighbours and our colleagues, we should pray they have an encounter with Jesus. We know that Jesus will initiate a life changing transformation in them. We should pray that they have a simple conversation with Jesus so that he can speak truth into their life. We should also pray that we can be part of this simple conversation so we also can continue to be changed.