Emergent Generation Investment

A key characteristic of the Faith Avenue is cross-generational care. Within your church community you may be having conversations about investing in or pouring into young people. What do we mean by investing? By Cara Garrity, Development Coordinator When considering cross-generational care, it is important to first ask what good care looks like. It is consistent across all generations that wholeness is found only in Christ, so care is intimately linked to our lifelong journey of becoming in Christ—our pathway of discipleship. Good care, then, looks like discipleship. A fundamental question we must ask is “how will we be a community of discipleship for this generation?” I believe that this is the foundation of healthy expressions... Read the article

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Congregations: Mission Outposts or Banks

Churches are channels through which resources flow from Jesus to others via mission. By Randy Bloom, Board of Directors Vice Chair In Matthew 6:21, Jesus made the statement: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be.” I’d like to juxtapose this passage with a parable in Matthew 25:14-20 where we are told: “He who had received the one talent went and dug in the ground and hid his master's money.” Jesus continued to explain the end result (“reward”) of the actions of the servant in question. A reasonable conclusion we can draw is that the servant’s heart was not where it should have been. He was fearful and faithless, so he buried his treasure. This was an indication his heart was not set on “higher”... Read the article

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The Greatest of Forces

Christ’s love for us compels us to share our faith in him in our love for one another. By Rod Matthews, retired Mission Developer Your husband is in the hospital in critical condition after an accident at work. Will he survive? You have to get there fast. You jump in the car and take off, completely oblivious to the speed limit signs on the highway. Your mind, your concern, your love is focused on the man you love in a hospital bed. It’s the flashing blue lights behind you that bring you back to reality. You pull over, anxious, upset, annoyed, kicking and excusing yourself, in a state of near panic. The friendly policeman ambles up and asks why you were speeding. The reason pours out, with tears, angst, urgency, apologies and... Read the article

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GCI Celebration Watch Party

The Denominational Celebration is the perfect time for your local congregation to be encouraged, inspired, and challenged. Hosting a watch party is a great way to gather together and participate in the Celebration locally, reflecting and discerning the vision to which God has called your unique congregation. #gcichurchhacks Check out this month’s church hack in the link below for ideas and information on hosting your own watch party. https://resources.gci.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/2021-CH6-Watch-Party.pdf Read the article

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Intergenerational Ministry

Young, middle-aged, and old can grow and learn together, blessing our faith forward churches and communities. By Daphne Sydney, Australasia Superintendent One of the greatest joys of attending or visiting one of our GCI congregations is fellowshipping with a mix of ages from the young to the well experienced in years, from infants to octogenarians. It’s especially joyful to see two and sometimes three generations gathering together to worship, to learn and to fellowship with one another. Where else would we have such a privilege to mix and mingle with a group of people of all ages? Church is a wonderful community where all ages are welcomed to fellowship and grow together with an intentional engagement of the generations, none too... Read the article

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Fresh Perspective on Connect Groups

You might be surprised at how easy it would be to start a connect group. By Mike Rasmussen, North America and Caribbean Superintendent For several years now, my wife Juli has been thinking and talking about hosting a Ladies Wine Night for our neighbors in Surrey Hills. My wife is an introvert and a nurturer, so the very thought both excites her and scares her to death. Over the years, Juli and I have had the privilege of hosting several small groups, and it works out well because she is the planner and loves to prepare food for our guests, while I feel more comfortable teaching and leading a group and then cleaning up afterwards. During COVID, we began to strategize how we could bring our neighbors together and start building... Read the article

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Facilitator Postures

With our focus on healthy leaders, it’s important to consider three healthy leadership postures for connect group facilitators By Elizabeth Mullins, Love Avenue Champion A healthy church has healthy leaders, multiple connect groups (planned or in place), and healthy group facilitators. A healthy connect group will primarily be rooted in the one square mile around our church location and will include friends and coworkers from the neighborhood. We hope to be gathering a diverse group of people, and that can feel daunting! When differences arise among members of our connect groups, what is a healthy posture in the facilitator? Let’s consider three postures healthy facilitators can model and cultivate: belonging, curiosity, and... Read the article

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Fitly Framed Together

What if you were able to recognize the different voices in your congregation and help equip them for works of service? By Jeff Broadnax, East U.S. Regional Director Worship teams are re-taking the stage. Seating areas are emerging once again and now we get to see what life will be like once we come back together in full capacity. What would happen in your congregation if every member came and said, “Pastor, in order for us to operate at our healthiest level as a congregation, I need to allow the Lord to use my voice and my gifting to help. I want to do my part.” I know, your heart just skipped a beat, right? That is what we all dream about and pray for. We long for that day when Paul’s message in Ephesians 4 takes up full... Read the article

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Church Hack: Stages of Faith Discipleship

Discipleship is a life-long journey and not a one-time event. As the Holy Spirit guides us into a deeper understanding of who God is, the development of our faith often follows through similar stages. This Church Hack outlines the stages of faith and can be a helpful tool in identifying the challenges and beliefs about God that members of your connect group are working through. #gcichurchhacks https://resources.gci.org/.../2021-CH5-Stages-of-Faith.pdf Read the article

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Denominational Celebration Watch Parties

Here is information on how to register and set up your Denominational Celebration watch party. Before you do anything else, register for the GCI Denominational Celebration. Individual and watch party registrations are available. If you would like to make the Celebration a local church retreat, we have developed a guide on how to host a watch party. Check it out at this link. Read the article

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