Tag Archives: Blog

Pastors Help Pastors Reach New Heights of Wholeness, Wellness

Tom Pelt and Jonathan Absher hiking in Colorado.

By Carl Stagner

At 14,000 feet, the views are breathtaking, but so is the air. Lower levels of oxygen—considered “thin” air—combined with unpredictable weather and potentially hazardous trail conditions, can pose health risks, at minimum, to even the most avid athlete. Hiking alone is not recommended at such altitudes, though many insist on doing so. Church of God pastors Tom Pelt and Jonathan Absher have reveled in the mountaintop experience among Colorado’s highest peaks and have recognized the vivid parallels to ministry. In an effort to see pastors minister at their peak, they’ve championed the holistic health vital to the daily climb. Without reinventing the wheel, but with intentionality and a genuine love for fellow pastors, they’ve taken specific strides in recent years to come alongside pastors, pull them out of isolation into community, and help them reach new heights of wholeness and wellness. Continue reading

Unexpected Journeys Lead Pastor to Niche in Teaching, Blogging

Scott Beha

By Carl Stagner

Southridge Church is a thriving Church of God congregation nestled in South Charleston, West Virginia. On Easter Sunday, they rejoiced to welcome over 700 for worship, an all-time high. Already this year, the church has celebrated the baptism of 20 believers. Eighteen months ago, small-group participation had declined to about 60; since then, the number of participants has topped 200. Outreach into a women’s recovery center has brought more than 150 additional guests, many of whom have since been saved and baptized. A strong partnership with an elementary school has helped the church make major strides in the advancement of the kingdom, even as the school permitted the church to host an Easter egg hunt for students during the school day! Lead executive pastor Michael Coker and lead teaching pastor Scott Beha are thrilled to be a part of Southridge during such an exciting time in the church’s history. But Scott wouldn’t have been there to experience it firsthand, except for a series of unexpected journeys that also helped him find a God-ordained niche in teaching and blogging. Continue reading

Pointing West: Reflections on Project Imagine

By Bob Moss

A frequent inquiry about Project Imagine is in regard to its objective. “What is the desired outcome?” we are asked. Simply said, we are seeking to recommend new systems of collaboration and cooperation among our wide-ranging group of ministries. We want to see the Church of God function as a movement. Continue reading

Masterpieces: Exposing Lies, Offering Truth to Teen Girls

lilies_stock_FORWEB

By Carl Stagner

Somewhere there’s a teenage girl burying her head in her hands, exhausted by her quest for acceptance. There’s a young woman sliding a thin metal object across her wrist, attempting to dull the sharper pain resident in her soul. There’s a daughter of the Most High God sending a text to a man she met online, desperate for somebody to love that which she loathes. Two Church of God girls have said, Enough is enough! In the final semester of their senior year in high school, Abby Crump and Amanda Gifford of Mooresville Church of God in Indiana have started a ministry to help girls understand who they are in God’s eyes. Continue reading

Standing Victorious: Missionary Chronicles Cancer Struggle, Healing

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Photo: Tim and Colleen Stevenson

By Carl Stagner

“You have cancer”—three words no one ever wants to hear from a doctor. In February 2014, a blank stare spread across Colleen Stevenson’s face as a doctor in Uganda uttered these same three words. Once the initial shock wears off, many new cancer patients like Colleen are left to wrestle with feelings of disbelief, dismay, and disillusionment. Along with her husband Tim, the Church of God missionary has certainly had to climb her fair share of mountains over the past thirty years of service in and around Uganda. Never before, however, has her journey been marked by a mountain so massive, so steep. But by God’s amazing grace, the view on the other side is nothing short of spectacular. Continue reading

Our Stories: Blog Shares Stories of Faith, Life in the Church of God

By Gwynne Watkins

Several young pastors in the Church of God contribute to a blog called Belong. The following blog post provides an introduction to an ongoing series of posts that share stories of faith and life experiences in the Church of God. These stories can be found at www.mthaley.org/belong.—Ed.

In the initial post on this blog, David Aukerman wrote these words:David Aukerman

We have so much in common, and yet we love our differences. We share a common theological heritage, but we don’t always agree with each other. Continue reading