Bridge Events

At the Bridge, we're not all work and no play!  We enjoy socializing and doing things together.  Sometimes it's small, like a game night or a movie, other times it might be something bigger, like a concert or a trip.  Check below for what we've got coming up next!


Ice Skating

An honest church leader once told me, "you're not a leader." I didn't quite appreciate his honesty at that moment but after I got over the initial defensive reaction to the comment, I started on a journey that has lasted until now, seeking an answer to the question: what truly makes someone a leader? Before that comment, I had always seen myself as the guy upfront or behind the scenes leading something. I thought back to Pathfinders, being high school class pastor, leading an English language institute in South Korea, and serving as Student Association president on my university campus. I also thought of the time I founded and operated a non-profit organization (Dream Kids Inc.), and led multiple churches and teams on various projects successfully. Is that not being a leader?

Still, to this day those few words, "you're not a leader" echo in my mind. If I'm being honest, there is some truth to it. What I've learned over the years is that leadership doesn't come easy for me, it's hard work. While leadership may not come easy it is still demanded of me. Therefore I need to look for opportunities to stretch and develop my leadership skills. I've come to realize that being an effective leader benefits so many areas of my life: as a husband, father, mentor, member of my community, and a leader in church. The list goes on and on.

In observing those who are effective leaders I've learned that they don't rest on their success. They are constantly being challenged. They read about leadership, attend workshops on leadership, and are consistently seeking ways to hone their skills as leaders. The best leaders are humble enough to have their world rocked by a speaker or thought that may challenge their own thinking or practices.

That's why I can't urge you enough to attend the Global Leadership Summit on August 10-11, which you will be able to attend locally right at our church. This is an annual leadership development conference hosted by the Willow Creek Association. For me it is the premier leadership event in the country designed to both inspire and equip any leader of any generation. Willow has been organizing the Summit since 1992 and it now serves 170,000 leaders representing more than 14,000 churches.

Here are 7 reasons I'm attending and why I believe you should too:

  • Everyone Leads Something: Your family, team, church group, you name it - they all require a leader. Something I learned from a previous summit is that YOU may very well be the most challenging person you'll ever lead. Everyone leads something, including yourself. Whoever we lead will have a better chance of reaching their God-given potential as we become better leaders.
  • Personal Renewal: Leadership takes its toll. This summit is for renewal and restoration. You'll come away with new energy ready to take your organization, family, or team to the next level. You can't help but get the sense that every faculty member (speaker) at the Summit is invested in your renewal. You'll know that from the moment they start speaking.
  • Recapture Vision: Again, from a past Summit I learned that "vision leaks" which means as leaders we have to recapture and recast vision constantly. The summit always stirs up vision, allowing leaders to have renewed conviction about what they're doing and why they're doing it.
  • Networking: Connecting with other local leaders is powerful. Those you connect with could become allies and partners. It's an opportunity for more conversation that may stretch you or affirm you. Can't say enough  about how much I personally enjoy meeting other leaders and finding out what their teams are doing and how they are fulfilling their God-given mission.
  • It Will Disturb You: There's a good chance you'll hear something you don't like. Get over it. The summit is designed to challenge leaders to think differently and not just the way they've always done things. The "disequilibrium" of the summit keeps it provocative and compelling for leaders ready to grow, stretch and become more effective at leading. 
  • See Excellence on Display: The summit is done extremely well. It's not perfect, but it is intentional, well thought out, and executed to the glory of God. As a leader I appreciate churches that don't hold back in hosting an event that will leave a lasting impression on hundreds of thousands of people. You'll hear world class thought leaders speak, and the music, interviews, and videos are exceptional.
  • Because of Bill: From what I can tell Bill Hybels (sr. pastor/chairman of WCA) was put on this planet to help other leaders. He's helped me and countless millions of pastors. I love his saying, "The local church is the hope of the world! But in order for it to reach it's redemptive potential it must be well led." I think he's right on, and I don't think you'll find anyone more qualified to lead you through 2 days of leadership development.

And, if you attend theBridge at the Forest Lake Seventh-day Adventist and would like to register for The Global Leadership Summit for our special member rate of $89, please enter the priority code you received from the Church Bulletin in the box below and click Register before July 11!

I hope to see you there,

Pastor Bernie