Alvin Sanders – January 29, 2015 Leave a comment

All People blog

In just a few months, from June 16-18, I’ll be at EFCA One in sunny San Diego, Calif. EFCA One is the largest national gathering of EFCA leaders in one place.

Will I see you there?

If you haven’t seen the EFCA One schedule yet, it’s well-planned. There are several compelling deeper learning tracks and our EFCA All People Initiative Team will be leading a track on disciplemaking. The plenary speakers are top-notch Bible expositors. And I know the hot topics panels will energize pastor and leader discussions during the conference and back at home. Also, we will celebrate the retirement of EFCA President Bill Hamel.

Going to San Diego isn’t just about the beautiful scenery and the weather, although both are perks of this destination. We’ve watched God do amazing ministry in this city through the people of the EFCA.

If you haven’t already, put EFCA One on your calendar. You can find the details you’ll need here at www.efcaone.org and registration is now open.

All People – Kansas City

Alvin Sanders – January 27, 2015 Leave a comment

The EFCA exists to glorify God by multiplying transformational churches among all people.

As part of that expression, we encourage all of our churches to get heavily involved in community transformation.

Watch this video and see how Christ Community Church, of Kansas City, is living out its piece of the EFCA mission and making a difference in the community.

All People – Kansas City from EFCA on Vimeo.

Preparing for City Ministry

Alvin Sanders – January 22, 2015 Leave a comment

All People blog

America’s Midwest cities are experiencing a renewal and revitalization of the downtown and urban spaces, as is true across the United States. With this renewal comes an attraction back to the city and an opportunity for the Church to renew our vision of reaching the people living there. This is true for both church planting and existing church ministry.

We desire to discuss, in a peer learning format, how to more effectively accomplish gospel ministry in our cities. If you are involved in ministry in a city of 100,000 to 750,000, have a desire to plant in the city or are intrigued by the possibilities of ministry in the city, then plan to join us at the Central District City Round Table, March 23-25, in St.Louis, Missouri.

I will be hosting, in partnership with the EFCA Central District, but it is not limited to just churches who are part of the district. We will also have Dr. Michael Emerson with us. He is the Allyn & Gladys Cline Professor of Sociology and the academic director of the Kinder Institute for Urban Studies at Rice University. For more information, email Mark Doss (mdoss@efcacentral.org) or Al Frank (afrank@efcacentral.org).

MLK: Then and Now

Alvin Sanders – January 19, 2015 Leave a comment

When we say something is “spiritual,” what are we trying to convey?

At the core of the expression are actions that express only vital concerns, as demonstrated by the fact that we do not label all our actions as spiritual. Spirituality is a response to questions like, who am I and why am I here? It’s about purpose, i.e., engaging the world and emerging with your dignity intact.

All People blogIf we understand this, it is not surprising that the history of Christian racial groups, with vital concerns outside of the Eurocentric norm, would rebel against the status quo, in order for their expression of spirituality to flourish. One clear example can be found in the famous essay of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham City Jail. Dr. King wrote his essay while serving out a sentence for participating in civil rights demonstrations in Birmingham. Continue Reading…

All People blog

The Kulture, led by Brycen Marner (pictured third from the left), is a holistic youth and young-adult ministry in Florissant, Missouri.
(Photo provided by Marner)

The Kulture is an urban culture, youth and young adult outreach in North St. Louis County. The Kulture exists to nurture lasting hope in all areas of life for youth and young adults in its community, through transformational relationships with peers, mentors and Jesus Christ. In an area of St. Louis where the youth are often ignored and/or vilified, God has called the Kulture to minister the hope of Christ. Rather than seeing these young people as projects to be fixed, the Kulture seeks to highlight areas where the image of God is still reflected in their lives, and use those areas as a means to point them to Jesus. The Kulture ministers comprehensively in young people’s lives by caring for their physical, educational, familial and spiritual needs. Continue Reading…

You Go, Girl!

Alvin Sanders – January 6, 2015 1 Comment

All People Blog

Women are lovely, important and wonderfully made in God’s image. There are considerable things to say about women and their substantial contribution to the establishment of the gospel. Many of us can directly trace our faith to a dedicated woman of God.

I’ve had the privilege of speaking at many Christian universities over the years. One of the things I always try to work into my message is a direct challenge to the young women in the audience. That message is this: Get a bigger vision for your life than trying to get your “M.R.S.” degree.

As a father of two daughters, my wife and I are very sensitive to the constant messages they receive, including that their worth is determined by what some male thinks about them. When my wife talks about fashion, she tells them to pick out clothing that is honoring toward God, not what some boy thinks looks sexy. I tell them not to operate on the assumption that you are going to get married one day because God may have something great that requires you to stay single.  Continue Reading…

A New Year’s Resolution

Alex Mandes – December 31, 2014 5 Comments

All People blog

I am from Laredo, Texas and barely graduated from high school, but when I put my faith in Christ there was no turning back. I told all of my friends about Jesus and generally made a nuisance of myself. Many of my friends said, “Leave Alex alone, he is going through a fad.”

I was struck with a passionate love for Jesus and the thought that it might just be a fad gripped me with fear. I remember laying in my bed at night asking Jesus to not leave me, even if I tried to leave Him.

Then, I read the parable of the sower in Mark 4. I had my answer and I had a choice to make. What soil did I choose to be, shallow and rocky or rich and productive? I know many dispute that these soils are all descriptive of believers, but I believe that at least several of them are, and they describe believers I see every day. Some are shallow, some are spotty, and some are productive. As a young believer, I was struck that I had a choice and I made a New Year’s resolution that has stuck with me for 39 years.

We can’t live the life of power and excitement we see the disciples living without spending time with Jesus, who is the Word of God! I chose, and ask you to choose, that relationship with Him.  Continue Reading…

Peace on Earth, Good Will to ALL PEOPLE

Alex Mandes – December 25, 2014 Leave a comment

All People blog

Maybe I’ve been watching too many Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel, but I have hope that there can be peace on earth and good will to all people.

There are all kinds of reasons I shouldn’t have that hope. I will not even recite current events here in America or around the world. There are always all kinds of reasons to say, “bah humbug.” It is easy to be constantly discouraged.

So why have hope and peace?

  • It is NOT because of the $2.00 per gallon of gas in some parts of Texas.
  • It is NOT because I have amazing grandchildren.
  • It is NOT because of good health, home and weather in San Antonio.
  • It is NOT because my football team, the University of Texas Longhorns, going 6-6 (which is actually great cause it shakes off all of the T-shirt fans).
  • It is IN SPITE of the San Antonio Spurs off of to a bad start (they always recover anyway).
  • It is IN SPITE of an economy with many people out of work.
  • It is IN SPITE of a stock market that is booming and then busting.
  • It is BECAUSE God rules in heaven.
  • It is BECAUSE God once sent His Son Jesus as a baby.
  • It is BECAUSE Jesus, in three years of ministry, accomplished what no mere man ever could.
  • It is BECAUSE this Jesus will come back!

I believe it because the Bible says that there can be, “Peace on earth and good will toward all men!” The angels sang/said it to the shepherds on the night Jesus was born (Luke 2:14 NKJV).  Continue Reading…

All People blog

If you pay attention to politics, you know that one of the biggest issues our country faces is balancing the budget. The National Association of Evangelicals believes that budgets are moral documents and, in partnership with others, has put together a statement on why we need to protect programs for the poor. Here are eight principles they have outlined:  Continue Reading…

Renewing Our Minds

M. Troy Smith – December 18, 2014 Leave a comment

All People blog

For many of us, it is common place to respond and react to situations without considering how our responses and reactions stand in light of God’s Word.

This is simply because, for so long, we have carried these habits and traits with us and see nothing wrong with them; even if it causes friction within our current context. In order to shed these undesirable and unbecoming characteristics, as we’ve been commanded (Ephesians 4:22-24), there must be a renewing of the mind (Romans 12:3; Ephesians 4:23).

This is a frequently talked about concept, often quoted by way of Scripture, but seldom carried out in most believers’ lives. This is why so many within Christianity today are frustrated, fruitless and experiencing little victory in their lives. The principle of renewing your mind is first to be understood as a continual command. This cannot be something that is done in spurts, or determined to do sporadically. It has to be an ongoing discipline that is carried out by prayer, meditation and careful study of the Scriptures (Psalm 119:11; Colossians 1:28, 3:10, 16; Philippians 4:8).  Continue Reading…