NEO Team Update


04
Apr 2019
NEO Team Update 4-4-19

We are making plans for you to attend our annual conferences and assembly,  what we call ADVANCE, on June 1 – 3! Why should you attend? At the 2019 NEO Advance, we will address the big issues: Why do we exist? How do we behave? What do we do? How will we succeed? We hope you will leave Advance clearer about our mission and more confident about our future. We are planning sessions to help you learn practices and approaches that will strengthen your skills as a leader in your congregation. We trust you will feel more connected, more deeply interwoven into the fabric of Nazarene witness. We are confident you will feel inspired, encouraged and challenged to a deeper commitment to Christ. Check out the latest schedule for 2019 Advance. Dr. Mark Bane is one of our Keynote Speakers for Advance 2019 We have invited Mark Bane to......

Read More


21
Mar 2019
NEO Team Update 3-21-19

Getting a Team to Self-Destruct by Eric Geiger A team that fights with itself wastes an incredible amount of time and energy. When a team or church or group fights, everyone loses. Energy is stewarded away from what is most important and given to tearing one another apart. Instead of rallying in the same direction around the same mission and values, time is diverted toward backbiting, politics and watching your back. Thus, a team that is divided will rarely accomplish the mission they say they have embraced. Their lack of trust slows them down and corrupts their culture. A lack of trust will crush the effectiveness of a team. Here is an example from the sports world. Hang with me if you are not a sports fan because it is a great example… Kobe Bryant is known as one of the most ruthless competitors to play basketball. Not only was he......

Read More


28
Feb 2019
NEO Team Update 2-28-19

Should You Invite People to Church? Perhaps we should stop encouraging people to just invite friends and neighbors to church.  When delivered without intentionality, these generic invitations become just as flat and shallow as the following exchange with the checker at the grocery store: “How are you and how was your weekend?” “I’m fine and it was great. How was yours?” “Mine was great as well. Thanks.” How many times have you had exactly this exchange or something similar to it?  This is the epitome of platitude – words with no substance. Generic invitations to church can end up being just as emptily received and responded to. Imagine instead, that you were tuned in to the upcoming sermon topics. And, similarly, you were tuned into the relationships you have with the non-Christians in your life. Tuned in to the extent that you could actually recognize specific sermon topics that would......

Read More


14
Feb 2019
NEO Team Update 2-14-19

Rolling a Large Stone Up a Steep Hill The work of reaching out to our world is hard.  Let’s be honest, although every biblical Christian in the world declares that sharing the message of God’s love is a priority, most of us have a hard time keeping this on the front burner.  Keeping our focus off ourselves and on those outside of God’s family is like rolling a large stone up a steep hill. This might sound a little fatalistic, but it is true. Few things we do as Jesus’ followers are harder than keeping our hearts revved up for evangelism. It has been said that vision leaks.  When it comes to evangelism, it would seem there is a bigger hole than in most areas.  We can be fired up and committed to share God’s message of love with others, and a month later, our evangelist prayers and efforts......

Read More


31
Jan 2019
NEO Team Update 1-31-19

Dear NEO Family, You probably could use some good news, couldn’t you! I invite you to read this team update for some exciting news about what God is doing in NEO! The Mustard Seed is at it again!  At our Advance last June, I told you about the curriculum, Raising Highly Capable Kids, which I felt could be a tool for us to impact our communities and build relationships outside the church. Raising Highly Capable Kids is a 13-week curriculum that is based on the Search Institute’s 40 Developmental Assets. Search Institute has undertaken decades of research with more than 5 million children and found there are 40 building blocks every child needs to grow and mature. And the more of these Assets a child has in her life, the more likely she is to engage in healthy behaviors while veering away from those that are unhealthy. No one......

Read More


03
Jan 2019
NEO Team Update 1-3-19

Dear NEO Family, I have told a few friends in recent days that my life feels a little out of sync right now. The last two months have included the death of my dad and all the upheaval that such an event brings, a long vacation to celebrate our 40th Wedding Anniversary, and the holiday season. I have been looking forward to a new year and a time to get back into a “flow”. In the midst of this uneasiness, twice in the last 24 hours I have been challenged to make room in my heart for God to write his story. I think it is a message God has for me as I begin 2019. And maybe it is a message for you as well. Jeffrey Johnson, my friend and the District Superintendent in South Texas, wrote beautifully on this topic to his pastors. I share his words......

Read More


20
Dec 2018
NEO Team Update 12-20-18

May your Christmas be blessed with peace, joy, hope and love!   From your NEO District Office Staff,   Dr. Dave and Gloria McKellips, Marla Shepherd and Sharon Gunter Electronic Version Hard Copy NEO November Reports I WANT TO CELEBRATE…11/2018 Steve Brown, Cleveland. . . We had great revival services with the Wrights filled with the presence of Holy Spirit. Cary Tipton, Mannford Grace Family Worship Center. . . Nearly 300 attended our Trunk or Treat Wednesday night activity! We felt blessed as we took our first communion together as a church family this month. Yalmi & Norma Izaguirre, Tulsa Regency Iglesia. . . God is blessing us with the commitment to pray in our congregation, and each Saturday we pray together. Austin Troyer, Tahlequah. . . Our young adult small group is really doing well. We meet at the local coffee shop. We do not have many there, but we......

Read More


19
Nov 2018
NEO Team Update 11-19-18

How Can You Tell If A Church Is On Offense Or Defense? By Karl Vaters   There are two types of churches. Those on offense and those on defense. In recent years, I’ve been in hundreds of rooms with thousands of pastors from both types of churches.   Churches on offense are not different from churches on defense in any external way. They and their pastors struggle with the same challenges of facility, finances and attendance. They’re in rural communities, suburbs and inner cities. They come from all denominational (and nondenominational) traditions. But a room full of pastors on offense is a joyous, hopeful place, while a room full of pastors on defense feels sad and hopeless. The difference is so stark you can almost literally smell it in the air. So what makes the difference?   The Difference Between Defense And Offense   Churches on defense talk about the......

Read More


09
Nov 2018
NEO Team Update 11-8-18

Dear NEO Family, Words cannot express how much your expressions of love and prayer have meant to me and our family as we deal with the loss of my Dad. Your stories and words of concern have led to many tears of joy and gratitude. My thanksgiving is not only for the wonderful father I have had and his impact on so many, but also for the privilege of sharing this journey with all of you. THANK YOU just hardly seems adequate. We love you and consider it a joy to be on this journey together. We will celebrate Dad’s home going this SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10, at 10:30 AM; Tulsa Central Church of the Nazarene. Much of who I am – The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly – is because of the influence of my dad. He taught me to live a life marked by faith in Jesus Christ,......

Read More


05
Nov 2018
11-5-18

We will celebrate the home going of Rev. Harold Monroe McKellips (aka “Pastor Dad”) this SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 10, at 10:30 AM; Tulsa Central Church of the Nazarene. In lieu of flowers, any who would like to give a gift in memory of Rev. Harold M. McKellips are encouraged to give to either the NEO District Pastors’ Fund or to Collective Humanity. The pastors’ fund is one that he gave to while he was living. It provides help with counseling for pastors and their families and assistance in times of need. Collective Humanity is a nonprofit organization founded to empower marginalized communities around the world to rise above poverty through dignified economic opportunities....

Read More