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Hope Breaks Through - Celebrating Together

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Over the last week I have watched my social media feed become more divided and filled with toxicity than I ever wanted to see. Our nation is trying to move forward with a contentious election while certain people are using it to embolden their own evil hatred of others who are different than them. When we gather as a community we have people in the room from all different walks of life and backgrounds. It's a unique opportunity to remind everyone that in Jesus we have the ability to focus on someone who we can have in common. Our politics and the politicians we support will change over time but our King never will.

This weekend was an incredible example of that for Eastern Hills. We saw thousands of people engage in mission and make a difference for thousands more. I can't tell you how incredible it was to watch so many choose to bring hope and help together as a community on mission. I saw so many who chose to channel their energy into the contributions they could make in uncertain times rather than becoming paralyzed with fear or pridefully claiming victory without thinking of others.

This weekend we saw God use the people of Eastern Hills to:

  • Prepare meals for 2600 people through Mountains of Mercy
  • Take 400 tags to go buy gifts for families in need this Christmas
  • Feed and invest in 70 homeless women at Delore's House, one of our regional partners
  • Dedicate dozens of families in all of our services to be supported by us and focused on Jesus
  • Honor the heros that make our nation truly incredible and provide the freedoms for us to love God and love people openly and without fear
  • Celebrate dozens of people to make first-time decisions to follow Jesus with their life and eternity

And I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am for next weekend as we celebrate what God has done through all of our Reach Groups this fall, the parties we threw all around our community, have a soft-opening for our newly remodeled cafe and celebrate baptisms!

If you are a part of Eastern Hills I hope you are encouraged that your engagement in what God is doing here is making a real difference because we are not a building, we are a people on a mission to tell the world that the Gospel is for Everyone!

Posted by Phil EuBank with
in Faith

Fighting Fair Without Wasting Energy

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Visiting NYC this fall, I was reminded that it is important to fight fair while at the same time, not wasting energy to fight when it isn’t necessary.

In Grand Central Station, I saw three men react in anger—shoving a chair into a lady simply because she said the chair was taken.

They didn’t stop there. They continued to fight over the chairs. The lady still had not engaged in their argument—she was never sucked in to the unhealthy conflict but instead, she walked away.

She had a choice. She could have engaged in unhealthy, unnecessary conflict. But she chose a different way.

Devoting our energy to make a difference or healthy conflict is so important. We can ask ourselves the question, “What are we going to devote our energy to?” Better yet, we can pose the question, “What are we allowing ourselves to get pulled in to that is actually wasting energy?”

James, the brother of Jesus, writes as a great reminder to us to let every person be “quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger.” I’d say the lady at Grand Central did just that.

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” That comes from the book of Proverbs, which is loaded with lots of wisdom. It is awesome the way Grand Central Lady handled her situation inevitably turned away wrath. She wasted no energy on pointless conflict.

In case you were wondering, the men walked away, retrieved another chair and scowled under their breath.

Imagine what might have happened had Grand Central Lady not used wisdom and great conflict skills. Anger could have flared in just a few moments.

Take a moment today to consider what good things your energy is being used for and how you can intentionally avoid things that suck us in to unhealthy conflict and wasted energy. What better way could our energy be used?

When good conflict is necessary consider the words of James. He has lots of wisdom to share.

Posted by Robin Kluever with

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