Pivot, Pivot, Pivot!


Happy New Year, Leaders!


In the mid-’90s, a television show swept across North America. With its popularity, Thursday night TV became “must-see TV” as a show about six friends captured the hearts of those who watched. Last year NBC launched their own streaming platform and removed Friends from Netflix in the USA, and fans young and old spoke out, hoping to save the show from going to another paid streaming platform. On February 25, 1999, one of the most famous episodes aired on television, and the episode was titled “The One with the Cop.” This episode became famous not because of the police officer but because of the scene where Ross, Rachel and Chandler tried to move a couch into Ross’ apartment. The problem was that the couch was too big for the stairs, but Ross was sure he could direct Rachel and Chandler with his master plan to get the couch up the stairs. As they try to maneuver the couch around the corner, Ross continues to yell “PIVOT, PIVOT, PIVOT” until the couch is completely stuck. At that point, Chandler and Rachel lose their patience and give up on the project.

We are heading into the third year of this pandemic, and I don’t know about you, but I had hoped that we would be out of this pandemic and back to doing more of our ministry in a hybrid format with both online and in-person classes and training. It seems like life is a lot like Ross trying to get his couch up the stairs. There are moments it looks like the reality we knew before Covid-19 is almost here, but then another pivot back into lockdown restrictions. It can be very frustrating as a leader to plan for the ministry year without knowing what the next few weeks will be like for our students. Some classes in Canada have not been able to switch to the online format and have not met been able to meet for Bible study since the early weeks of 2019. We have received letters and emails from some students asking for pen pals or prayer partners in order to stay connected with other believers while in isolation.

As we start the New Year, I want you to know that we are praying for you on a regular basis. We know that it is a big commitment to lead Precept Bible Studies, prepare the lessons, and communicate with your students each week — all, or mostly, from the other end of a screen. Thank you for continuing to pivot during this pandemic. Please know that we are here to support you.

I look forward to connecting with you on our monthly Leader Connect Zoom calls and hope you join us. I also want to encourage you to check out our new podcast episodes on Philippians as we look at how to have joy amid trials.

Finally, I would like to address the cost of shipping for 2022. As you may know, the media continues to talk about the cost of inflation, rising prices for almost anything we consume. Gas prices continue to increase, and Canada Post has again increased its shipping rates for 2022. We continue to monitor the prices in the hopes that we can find alternative carriers to lower the cost of shipping. Precept Ministries Canada has no control over the shipping costs that you see on our website. Those are the fees that come directly from Canada Post. If you encourage your students to order the books for your class directly from us, you may hear that it is costly to order and ship one book. I would encourage you, if possible, to order the materials as you would have pre-pandemic. It is much easier for our ministry team to look at cost comparisons with other carriers to lower the cost of shipping. We do notice that single book orders are expensive to ship. This may also allow you to have a pickup program where you can see your students face to face to encourage them before seeing them online. Some leaders have asked about PDF downloads for our Precept Upon Precept books. This is not an option for Precept Ministries in Canada as we must follow the copyright rules laid out by the publisher of the Precept materials in the USA. The USA ministry continues to discuss digital options, but there is no indication of when this will happen.

If the cost of shipping becomes a hindrance to any of your students participating in a weekly Bible study, I encourage you to reach out to me directly at [email protected].

Serving Him and You,

Mark Sheldrake, National Director 

Check out upcoming online Training Workshops for you to establish yourself in His Word and make disciples. 


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