Decluttering for the New Year

One of the most wonderful things about doing ministry these days is there are literally thousands of resources available to us.

One of the most challenging things about doing ministry these days is that there are literally thousands of resources to choose from.

Discerning what the best resource for your people at a particular time in the life of a congregation can be tricky.  Periodically, we want to share with you resources that other CBOQ churches have used.

One example is the “Simplify” series based on the book, Simplify: ten practices to unclutter your soul by Bill Hybels.  Mississauga City Baptist Church did this series as a church-wide initiative in the fall of 2015.  Here is how Pastor Sheldon Dyck responded to a few questions about their experience of the series.

Would we recommend this book/series to another church?

Yes! It was great to make this both a small group series and sermon series in our church this fall. People enjoyed the practical content in the series, and the real life topics and discussions. The word “Simplify” resonated with people who live overscheduled, exhausted lives.

Would you provide a brief description of the series?

The series helps us to make the next step to eradicate clutter from our inner world and to live life with fresh purpose and energy. Bill Hybels reminds us that the first step to move forward in this fulfilled life is not to consider what you want to get done, but rather to decide who you want to become.

If you were to do this series again, what would you do differently?

If we did the series again, I would want to offer some supplementary materials to the study guide. The participant guide had great group discussion questions, but lacked a central Scripture passage that guided us through the discussion. It was suggested in the study guide that this could serve as a four week series or an eight week series. So in our church, some groups chose to meet every other week, while others met weekly. For those who met weekly, it would have been nice to have the video series also divided more neatly into the two sessions.

Sheldon stated that, “This is now the second year we have run a church wide campaign with our sermon series and small group focus being aligned. Last year, we studied “Who is this Man?” by John Ortberg. Both series have helped us in the bigger picture of a full orbed discipleship.”

One participant in the process remarked that harmonizing small group and sermon topics was very helpful, and that even an inexperienced leader can chair the small group discussions well.

If you are interested in learning more about the Simplify series you can go to

Bernice at Read On Bookstore has the book available for $15 and Participant Guides available for $10.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.