May 14, 2014 — by Keith Hill

"The Talk"

The-Talk

It's time to talk about...


We know we need to, but we just don’t want to. So we put it off, and hope someone else will take care of it (our spouse, the church Youth Director, etc.). I’m talking about “the talk”—the proverbial conversation about sex that parents know they must have with their children.

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May 12, 2014 — by Anna Kent

Unleashing The Ministry Gifts of Women, Men, and Every Ethnic Group

It's one of our core values


Do you ever have a moment when someone says something and you think, “Well, that’s the craziest thing I’ve ever heard!” This happened to me when I went on a walk in my neighborhood recently. I greeted some neighbors as we passed on the street, and one of them said, “I just saw your dog running down the street.” Really? That’s crazy, I thought, because I just left my house two minutes ago and my dog was safely inside wearing his collar which keeps him inside our electronic fence. Or, it’s happened when someone said, “Wow, I love those red pants you’re wearing.” And as I looked down at my khaki pants, I thought, that’s crazy, because I’m pretty sure these pants are khaki.

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May 4, 2014 — by Bill Young

What Does Healthy, Cross-Cultural Missions Look Like?

Asking the hard questions


Are we living in the day when the US church no longer has a place in mission, other than to send money? Should we just support nationals who can do the work better anyway? Or is the US church "the hope of the world" in mission? Are we the ones who know best what needs to be done, and how? What is our role in God’s mission in the world today?

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May 1, 2014 — by Dana Allin

In Pursuit of God's Mission For The Church

Reorienting our goal as the Church


Reorienting Church Goals This coming Sunday, I have the privilege of preaching at First Presbyterian Church of Colorado Springs and I plan on using Acts 1:1-8. My title for the sermon is, “God’s Mission has a Church.” I believe we often reverse the relationship between mission and church.

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April 9, 2014 — by Keith Hill

Stepping Back To Gain A Broader View

Wading through the details


Do any of you (besides me) ever get lost in the weeds of this denomination building business? I serve on the Ministry and Assimilation Team (M.A.T.) in the East Central Presbytery, and there are so many pieces to put into place. Some days, it can be very wearisome.

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April 3, 2014 — by John Terech

"Synergistic Integration"

Seeing the synergy


synergistic_integration


In my new role, here at ECO as Director of Operations, I really didn’t know what to expect when I hit the road for some serious business travel. Hotel and airline life are not exactly glamorous, but they do certainly have their own culture. Often, all the travel time allows you to read a lot and this can be rewarding especially when you read something or see something that strikes a chord and makes you think, “This could certainly apply to what we are doing today!” And what we are doing at ECO, as we build a denomination, is trying to keep up with what God is already doing in our midst.

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March 12, 2014 — by Rev. Mateen Elass

Going With The Flow Of The Spirit

Bible_verse

Leaving space for God to work


What’s the right formula for detailed, advanced planning versus spontaneous, “go with the flow of the Spirit” when it comes to ministry? I certainly don’t know, but I do know when both dovetail harmoniously, breathtaking things happen.

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March 4, 2014 — by Anna Kent

And There Was Joy: Lessons From Nehemiah

joy-of-the-Lord-strength

Joy admist the weeping


Lately, I've been hanging out with my biblical boyfriend, Nehemiah. His name keeps popping up in various circles, but I've especially enjoyed spending time with him during a small group bible study. So often, Nehemiah gets examined during a church's capital campaign or in terms of leadership development. I can certainly understand why. The theme of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem and the prayerful actions Nehemiah carries out show us the way to follow and honor God and give us an amazing portrait of faithful, wise leadership.

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February 20, 2014 — by Dana Allin

Discovering Our God-Given Gifts For Ministry


What I missed in the passage


Nine years ago, when I was the candidate for the pastor position at Indian River Presbyterian Church, I preached on Ephesians 4:11-16. I’ve always seen this passage the closest thing we can find in Scripture for a pastor’s job description. In fact, it is the only time the word pastor is used in the Bible and, even then, it is often translated as shepherd.

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February 5, 2014 — by Rev. Mateen Elass

Love For The Lost

searching for georgieSearching for Georgie


Our family loves Labrador retrievers. We presently have two female, yellow labs, Geordie and Haley, ages six and four. And last Saturday, I lost one.

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January 27, 2014 — by Dana Allin

Five Focuses For A New Year

2014 goalsJanuary marks the two-year anniversary of ECO. We launched in January 2012, accepted our first congregation in May 2012, and now have over 108 member churches and two new churches in the process of being planted. Praise God for the ongoing story of ECO! A few weeks ago in the ECO newsletter, I shared five focus areas for ECO as we grow into 2014. In case you missed it, I wanted to share it again here to keep us focused as we live into our mission in the new year.

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