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Blog

Praying Into the Chaos

by Mark Whited

Being confident of the AUTHORITY Jesus has given us is essential for us to pray with expectancy and power. There are a number of scenes where Jesus liberally gives his authority to others.

Whether it is the sending out of the Twelve in Matthew 10, or the initial giving of the Holy Spirit in Acts 2.  Even seemingly unworthy people, like the Lost Son in Luke 15, is immediately given authority to do family business when his father puts the family ring on his finger.

We need to be reminded of the true authority Jesus has given us as his sons and daughters. It is easy to be forgetful and let various lies or misunderstandings deter us from both living and praying in the authority of Jesus.

In his book, Extreme Prayer*, Greg Pruitt writes: “In the Bible, a person’s name represents his or her nature.  Praying in Jesus’ name doesn’t mean asking for a Ferrari and tacking on the magic words ‘in Jesus’ name.’  It means presenting requests that resonate with Jesus’ character, praying “for his name’s sake” prayers that advance his plans for the earth – in other words, proclaiming Kingdom of God – oriented prayers.”

Pruitt goes on saying, “The Gospel of John records Jesus proclaiming five similar promises about praying in his name. Any promise that Jesus repeated five times just before he died must be vitally important.”  (John 14:13, 14:14, 15:7, 15:16, 16:23-24)

Therefore, we can and must confidently use the authority Jesus has given us in moving his Kingdom forward via prayer and our obedience.

The attached video link is a brief and powerful testimony of a missionary in Uganda whose life was greatly impacted by Christians praying in Jesus’ name.  (recently recorded on-site by Mike Schrage, current ICOM President)

Watch Now

*Excerpted from:
EXTREME PRAYER- The Impossible Prayers God Promises to Answer  
By Greg Pruett – President of Pioneer Bible Translators
Published by Tyndale’ MOMENTUM

Uncategorized

Program Book Advertising

Advertising will open beginning of May!

Advertising in the conference program book is a great way to get your name out there for a small investment. We have ad sizes for all types of budgets ranging from $150 up to $2,500.

Whether you’re promoting a summer program, a trip, selling a book, giving something away, or just want to put your booth number out there for attendees to know you’re at ICOM – placing an ad in the program book is a great idea!

Act Quickly! Spots are limited!

Purchase Your Ad Here

Ad Sizes & Design Specs:

Advertising Offline Form:

Blog

See You In California?

Probably one of the most famous meetings with a missionary occurred when Henry Stanley, a British journalist who was well known for his exploration of Africa, found Scottish missionary and explorer Dr. David Livingstone in what is now present day Tanzania. Livingstone was known to be in Africa, but had not been heard from in over 3 years. Stanley was hired by the New York Herald to try and find Dr. Livingstone. After a treacherous 700 mile trek through tropical forest, Mr. Stanley found Dr. Livingston near Lake Tanganyika. As they approached one another Mr. Stanley uttered the now famous words, “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.”  

There was another significant meeting with a missionary that occurred in March of 1948. While not as famous as the Stanley/Livingstone meeting, its significance cannot be overstated. Pioneering missionary to Southeast Asia, J. Russell Morse, was visiting in the home of preacher John Chase of the Golden West Christian Church in the Los Angeles area. Morse declared the need for missionaries to be able to come together for mutual edification, encouragement and networking. Together they planned a pre-conference meeting just for the purpose at the next North American Christian Convention (NACC). In 1950, that meeting became its own conference separate from the NACC and was to be known for the next 61 years as the National Missionary Convention. In 2011, the name of the meeting was changed to the International Conference on Missions (ICOM). Today, thousands of attendees flock to ICOM every year to be encouraged, equipped, and some even enlisted in God’s kingdom work around the world.

This July, another significant meeting will happen in California as ICOM goes back to where it all started. With a bit of nostalgia, ICOM is planning a pre-conference meeting before the North American Christian Convention which is being held in Anaheim, California. The event will be Monday night and Tuesday morning, July 11th & 12th. It will feature numerous missionaries and mission organizations sharing about what God is doing around the world. It will not only be informative, but also practical as you will walk challenged and more prepared to be a tool God can use in His kingdom work. So plan to come a day early for the NACC and enjoy what is sure to be another “significant meeting” in California!    

You can register for this event by clicking this link: http://theicom.org/anaheim/

Blog

Prayer Focus: Kyrgyz People

Each month, we’ll feature a Heart and Soul90 video post focusing on an unreached people group.  This month the featured people group is the Kyrgyz in Kyrgyzstan.  Graydon Jessup  leads us in prayer for the more than 4 million Kyrgyz people who have not yet heard the Good News of Jesus!

To learn more about the ministry of Heart and Soul90, go to their website.

To learn more about the Kyrgyz people visit the Joshua project website.

Blog

MOBILIZE prayer: Join the Battle

by Mark Whited

Last month we set the stage concerning the need for us as followers of the Lord Almighty to do more than merely care for those who have been left in the ditches by various robbers.  We must have “eyes to see” and also the “will to go” upstream into the chaos, to go after the robbers who are leaving people beaten and shamed in a host of ditches.

This blog is an entryway to train us how to better “pray into the chaos”, by doing spiritual warfare relating to various “sources” of robbers.

INDONESIA is the world’s most populated Muslim nation.  It is a strategic player in the spread of Islam throughout Asia. There are a vast number of unreached people groups on this sprawling country of 250 million people spread over thousands of islands.  The good news is that disciples are making disciples there in a profound way.

In the midst of great resistance, The Church in Indonesia is on a growing trajectory!  Here are two examples of how Indonesian Christians are moving into the chaos.

1 – In 500 cities across these islands, thousands of Indonesian Christians regularly meet for the express purpose of fervently interceding for their country. For the past ten years, they have been faithfully praying for God to work mightily among government leaders, the media, and young adults. In some of these 500 cities, PRAYER TOWERS have been built as a dedicated place for the Christians to pray 24 – 7.  May the spiritual landscape of Indonesia continue to change!

2 – An Indonesian Minister, whose church meets in a soccer stadium in a major city, recently told a friend of mine about one of their most effective evangelism methods:

They train and send out their CHILDREN to pray throughout the city’s government buildings – for the leaders to surrender to Jesus.  

Through the children’s prayers and interactions, a number of local and regional government leaders have become followers of Jesus.  Also, some leaders (who have not yet bowed to Jesus) have become more favorable toward churches, giving them more legitimacy.  (This is not true across the country, but in some cities and regions.)

LET’S join with our brothers and sisters in the Prayer Towers and with the strategic praying children by GOING UPSTREAM to PRAY NOW for Indonesian leaders to surrender to Jesus.


Mark is the 2016 ICOM prayer chairman and is campus minister at the University of Evansville.  His pray blog piece will be featured monthly during 2016.

 

Uncategorized

Anaheim – Night of Missions

Dear Friends,

I am sorry to inform you that ICOM has decided not to hold the “Night of Missions” on Monday night or the workshops on Tuesday morning at this year’s NACC in Anaheim, CA.  We have really put out effort to try and raise an audience for this event through mailings, postcards, emails, face to face meetings, phone calls, etc., but only have thirty registered attendees.  The majority registered are from the Midwest – although that is great, the focus of this event was directed at introducing (and re-introducing) ourselves to the churches on the West Coast.  Of the thirty registered people, only eight were from Southern California, along with two from Oregon.

In trying to be good stewards of the funds entrusted to us, we felt it was wise to cancel this event to prevent spending such a large amount of money (both yours and ours) on such a small crowd of our target group.  We have been discussing this decision for a few weeks and please know it was not an easy one to make. Those of you who have already paid for your registration, we will be refunding those fees this week. Please be looking for that refund and a cancellation email for your records.

Keith Wood and I are still attending the NACC, but the Monday evening and Tuesday morning events will not be taking place. Make sure you stop by the ICOM booth (#826) during the week!  The ICOM Staff has high hopes that our organization and outreach will grow and that in the future we will be able to hold an event on the West Coast! We thank you for your love of the Kingdom and appreciate your understanding!

Yours in Christ,

David Empson

Executive Director, ICOM

 

 

ICOM Events

2017 Global Gathering – New Delhi, India

The 19th Global Gathering of the World Convention of the Churches of Christ and Christian Churches (Independent and Disciples) will take place on January 12-15, 2017. President Ajai Lall of Central India Christian Mission cordially invites you to join believers from around the world to join together in Delhi, India!

ICOM will be present at the Global Gathering, and we would love for you to join us.

All the details are available by clicking here.

World Convention 2017 – Global Gathering 19 from World Convention on Vimeo.

RISE Project

The RISE Project

“Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers…

Seeking opportunities to welcome newcomers is a godly trait, and hospitality is a spiritual gift. With over one million international students and visiting scholars in our country and potentially 85,000 arriving with refugee status in 2016, what is the Lord’s expectation of His Church regarding this opportunity? (These numbers do not include the millions of immigrants who have come to this country with or without documents.)

International students come expecting to learn. They are curious about all things American and want to experience it all, both the good and the bad. They come from the upper class in their societies and in many cases are gifted intellectually and highly connected socially. Research indicates that fifty percent of the world’s future heads of state will attend an American university. Sadly, most of them during four years of study will not spend one evening in a Christian home!

Refugees have another story, one of incredible perseverance and resiliency in the face of unimaginable persecution, trauma, and loss. They were forced to leave their home countries, displaced out of necessity, and separated from their family units. They ache for security and community, a place of belonging in which their many strengths and talents will be welcomed.

The Refugee and International Student Engagement (RISE) Project calls on the Church to mobilize and seize the unique opportunities we have in our own country. Through awareness, education, and implementation, the Church can go and make a difference without a passport or learning a new language! This opportunity is growing larger and greater every year. Our ability to go to the ends of the earth has never been easier.

The RISE Project is an initiative of ICOM (International Conference on Missions) to raise funds, which will enable this awareness, education, and implementation to occur. Imagine a way for churches to quickly find ideas about simple ways to show hospitality to those who have come as students and as new neighbors, to offer companionship, cultural inclusiveness, and even the love of Christ to these special guests!

The goal of RISE is to raise $250,000 to distribute through grants to churches and ministries who are willing to reach out and welcome those who have arrived as refugees or international students. As expert practitioners inform and train us, we hope to start a new conversation about these open doors, to rise up and embrace this sacred opportunity to represent the welcoming heart of Jesus to those who have come so far.

…for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” (Hebrews13:2NIV)

 

 

 

The RISE Project – Traci Harrod from the ICOM on Vimeo.

The RISE Project: Greg Swinney from the ICOM on Vimeo.

 

To donate to The RISE Project

comission_foundation_Color_LogoICOM is partnering with Co:Mission Foundation to facilitate gifts of cash and non-cash assets to The RISE Project Fund. This special account at Co:Mission Foundation will provide professional oversight and management of money earmarked for the RISE Project.

For information about how Co:Mission Foundation can help you make a cash or non-cash gift to The RISE Project Fund, please contact David Duncan, Executive Director at 855.266.4774 or email him at:
dduncan@comissionfoundation.org.

To donate by check,
all checks should be made out to:

Co:Mission Foundation
With The RISE Project Fund in the memo line.

Checks should be mailed to:
Co:Mission Foundation
The RISE Project Fund
2050 Main Street, Suite 400
Irvine, CA 92614

To donate online:

 

 

 

Blog

Prayer Focus: Heart and Soul90

Each month, we’ll feature a Heart and Soul90 video post focusing on an unreached people group.  This month the featured people group is the Hazara people of central Afghanistan.  Graydon Jessup  leads us in prayer for the more than 2 million Hazara people who have not yet heard the Good News of Jesus!

To learn more about the ministry of Heart and Soul90, go to their website.

To learn more about the Hazara people visit the Joshua project website.

ICOM Events

ICOM 2017 – Peoria

The International Conference On Missions is returning to Peoria, Illinois on November 16-19, 2017!

Location: Peoria Civic Center
201 SW Jefferson Ave.
Peoria, IL 61602

President: Enoch Nyador, the first Director of Ghana Christian Mission.

Blog

MOBILIZE prayer: Praying into the Chaos

PRAYING INTO THE CHAOS  by Mark Whited

One of the most well known stories of Jesus is about a man who was beaten, robbed  and left in the ditch.  The story was shocking to all who heard it because the hero was a Samaritan and not one of their own people.

This story has been foundational for disciples of Jesus to care for those who have been left in the ditches from being beaten up in a host of ways physically, emotionally, relationally or spiritually.

However necessary it is for Jesus followers to care for those who have been thrown into ditches, we have another responsibility that is often not pursued and is much harder.

Somebody(s) has to go upstream into the chaos…to go after the robbers!  The Gospel of Jesus is GREATER than any selfishness or false religion or demonic activity that results in hordes of people being thrown into ditches. We have to pray for the hearts of those “robbers”!

For example: Rescuing and restoring those from human trafficking is a “Jesus thing”.  But it is also a “Jesus thing” to target and work diligently to see many disciples making many disciples in those areas where trafficking is prevalent.  With more people being freed by Jesus, there will be fewer wanting to enslave others to work on their farms or fewer having sex outside of marriage.

In the months leading up to ICOM 2016, I want to share stories and a vision of our going upstream into the chaos to pray in Jesus’ authority.  Together, we can pray for greater moves of God and multiplication of disciples in these areas. This will result in fewer robbers and way fewer people left in the ditches.

I invite you, now, or as soon as possible, to simply stop and ask God:

1 – Help me lift my eyes from all the immediate stuff happening around me… to see afresh the power of your Gospel… which is greater than any human or spiritual power.

2 – Help me look above the frenzied activity of my work or mission… to look upstream with your eyes… to see what might be causing chaos or to see a more strategic investment of my time and energy… help me pray for Jesus’ greatness to be made known there and for the courage to obey any next steps.


Mark is the 2016 ICOM prayer chairman and is campus minister at the University of Evansville.  His pray blog piece will be featured monthly during 2016.

Blog

January is: National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention Month

You may not know it, but since 2011, each January has been proclaimed as National Slavery and Human Trafficking Prevention month.  As believers, we feel the call to be the hands and feet of Jesus by fulfilling his call, “to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners” (Isaiah 61:1 – NIV).

At ICOM, it is our calling to help mobilize the body by connecting people to ministries who do this very work.  Please take time to view and share the video: Sarah Rose.  Watch it with your kids, share it with your friends and family, so that you can have a conversation about good, evil and freedom in Jesus.  Do your part to bind up the brokenhearted and proclaim freedom to those in captivity.

To learn more and become part of the solution, check out these ministries that work in the front lines of human trafficking:

Leave a comment to share your story…

Blog

RESET Tour 2: Conforming vs. Transforming

I have been studying the whole process of making disciples for many years and this thought recently came to me.  How much of this is me and how much of this is God? Romans 8:29 (NLT) says that “he (God) chose them (his people) to become like his Son”. The NIV uses the words “conform to the image of his Son.” Before and after my decision to follow Jesus, I need to choose to obey. I need to change my mind and heart and mold my character to conform to become like Jesus.  This is God’s will.  This is how I show God I love him.

Then I read Romans 12:2 – ”Do  not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…”  I can work on the renewing my mind part.  Knowing his Word, worshipping through music, prayer, etc.  But I honestly want to be transformed.  As I look at the verb in the Greek language, the word used for “transformed” is in the passive tense.  This means that this is something that is done to me. I do not control the transforming part… He does.

The meaningful part, to me, is that I still have to grind out a big effort on my own, to choose to conform and to turn away from things that are not godly.  I need to change my focus by not conforming to the standards or logic of this world.  Conforming to the image of the Son of God is only my effort; I will only get out what I put into it.

The beautiful part of it is this, I think “transformed” in the passive tense, is the work of God blessing my diligence to pursue Him.  I cannot do this myself.  I can and have to do my part which is learning to be like Jesus.  But God will transform me.  He will push me at warp speed when I have proven to Him that I love Him enough to submit and obey.  

Over years of ministry, I have talked with many people wanting to become a Christian. Many of them have a hangup about becoming a Christian because they have habits they don’t want to give up. What they don’t realize is that this is where the transformation comes in.  When you start conforming, the Holy Spirit starts transforming.  Before you know it, those habits start to fade away.  But it does necessitate the conforming, seeking His righteousness.

I want to thank Dann Spader for impacting my life through this Reset 2 Tour: Making Disciples.  The teachings about Jesus that I have learned have helped my spiritual life grow!  I love what the Apostle Paul wrote, “Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author/originator and perfecter of our faith.” Heb. 12:2.  

The Reset 2 Tour begins again this May.  To see dates and locations, click on the button below.  Every Reset 2 date features 4 hours of great teaching, lunch and includes a copy of Dann Spader’s book, 4 Chair Discipling!

RegisterNow-Button

Blog

Merry Christmas!

It’s almost Christmas, and we are still hearing stories from ICOM in Richmond.  It’s really weird when you hear of a story that took place at conference – which, coincidentally, has taken you years to organize and plan! And then comes a story from someone who came to ICOM in a rather unusual way like someone forwarding an email saying “You should come to ICOM with me!” We love hearing stories of things that happened during the conference weekend or how people end up hearing of us and coming to ICOM!  We heard a story of people from Pennsylvania who came to ICOM for a specific workshop track.  Upon arriving in Richmond, they were shocked at seeing the thousands of people who had driven or flown from across the globe for the sake of world missions. Here’s the thing: they didn’t even know ICOM existed.   And just today, I learned of that very story.  It always makes me smile whenever someone’s life was touched by the conference.

Many churches have stopped doing Christmas programs these days. My wife, Sherree, and I went to one the other day and it was awesome!  There was a children’s choir, a teen choir, an adult choir and an orchestra, too.  What really got my attention was the incredible smiles of three little girls in the children’s choir, two young ladies in the teen choir, and a couple of folks in the adult choir.  They absolutely owned what they were singing.  They had the mechanical part down.  In fact, one gentleman had his songbook folded up because he knew the music that well.  But the two teenage girls, they were glowing with joy!  That made me smile.

The story of the birth of Jesus is an incredible story that changed the world – and is still changing lives today!  I am sure God smiled at many points throughout the events leading up to that night in the manger.  

Things like:

  • Poor Mary, traveling to Bethlehem from Nazareth…all the while she was about to give birth to a baby. Wow!
  • I wonder if Joseph was frustrated with no room in the inn.
  • I bet God laughed when the angels filled the sky to watching shepherds.  As if to say “Watch this!”
  • The look on King Herod’s face when the wise men entered his palace looking for the one “born King of the Jews.”
  • The patience and response of Simeon and Anna, waiting for God’s promised Messiah.

Until the day I die, I want to live and serve in a way that brings a smile to the face of God. This Christmas season is a great time to show the love of God.  Not just in the manger, but in the flesh.  Give God something to smile about.

Merry Christmas from the ICOM Staff!

       David, Jim, Keith, Emily & Kelsey

 

Information

Housing

2017 Housing Information



Peoria Civic Center – Hotel Map
Click Here to download the Map!

 


ATTENTION: If you recently received a letter from Marriott regarding your reservation in Peoria please read the information below, provided by the hotel in response to the letter and know that NO ACTION IS REQUIRED by anyone who received this letter.

The Peoria Marriott Pere Marquette/Courtyard Peoria Downtown are not changing ownership nor management companies.  Currently, the complex is negotiating with Marriott to maintain the brand name and carry the Marriott flag. Depending on the outcome of the negotiations, the hotel will either continue to as a Marriott brand, continue with an alternate  brand and flag, or operate independently without a brand association. Unfortunately, during these negotiations, Marriott has to follow protocol as though the hotels might become an Independent hotel or change brands which is why many received a letter.   Regardless of the outcome, the hotel(s) will be open and operating during the ICOM 2017 convention and will still offer the same first class product and service.  Once negotiations have been completed and final decisions have been made our staff will alert all our Groups and guests as to the outcome. Rest assured that regardless of the outcome of the brand association, your reservations are and will remain secure throughout this process no action is needed from any individuals with existing reservations.

We apologize for any inconvenience or misunderstanding that the letter may have caused. We understand this has been somewhat challenging and concerning to everyone and a sincere thank you for working with us every step of the way.


Fairfield Inn & Suites – Peoria East

200 Eastlight Court, East Peoria, IL 61611
PHONE: 309-699-4100

ICOM Rates$125.00 and includes complimentary hot breakfast, complimentary WI-FI and airport shuttle.

Reservations:  PHONE ONLY 309-698-3333.  Reservations cannot be made online.
Callers need to tell the reservations agent that they want to book a room for the ICOM Conference.
Rooms must be reserved by October 16, 2017.

 

 

Holiday Inn & Suites East Peoria

101 Holiday Street, East Peoria, IL 61611

ICOM Rates$125.00 and includes complimentary “Grab & Go” Breakfast and complimentary WI-FI

Reservations: Reserve online or call 309-698-3333. Rooms must be reserved by October 16, 2017. *use the Group Code ICM

Reserve Online

 

 

Quality Inns & Suites

4112 N Brandywine Dr, Peoria, IL 61614

ICOM Rates$104.99 and includes Full American Breakfast, complimentary parking and complimentary Wi-Fi

Reservations: Call 309-685-2556. Rooms must be reserved by October 24, 2017. *When calling please reference ICOM 2017 to get the ICOM rate.

 

Courtyard Peoria War Memorial Parkway

1928 W War Memorial Drive, Peoria, IL 61614

ICOM Rates$132.00 and includes complimentary WI-FI

Reservations: Call 309-686-1900. Rooms must be reserved by October 16, 2017. *When calling please reference ICOM 2017 to get the ICOM rate.

 

 

Residence Inn

2000 W War Memorial Drive, Peoria, IL 61614

ICOM Rates$139.99 and includes complimentary hot breakfast and complimentary WI-FI

Reservations: Call 309-681-9000. Rooms must be reserved by October 16, 2017. *When calling please reference ICOM 2017 to get the ICOM rate.


Peoria Marriott Pere Marquette – SOLD OUT

501 Main Street, Peoria, IL 61602

ICOM Rates: Standard Room is $124.00 and Suites are $182.00

 

 

 

 

 

 

Courtyard Peoria Downtown – SOLD OUT

533 Main Street, Peoria, IL 61602

ICOM Rates$119.00 and includes Hot Breakfast Buffet and complimentary high-speed internet, complimentary parking, access to the pool and Fitness Center and IHG Rewards Points. All rooms have a microwave, refrigerator, Keurig coffee maker, flat-screen HDTV

 

 

Staybridge Suites – SOLD OUT

300 West Romeo B Garrett Avenue, Peoria, IL 61605

ICOM Rates$159.00 per suite includes Hot Breakfast Buffet, free Wi-Fi, airport shuttle and parking

 

 

Embassy Suites East Peoria – SOLD OUT

100 Conference Center Drive, East Peoria, IL 61611

ICOM Rates$139.00 and includes a made to order breakfast buffet, evening reception featuring beverages and light snacks, complimentary ground-level parking, complimentary internet for all Hilton HHonors members.

Reservations: Reserve online or call 1-800-EMBASSY. Rooms must be reserved by October 24, 2017. *use the Group Code NMC

Reserve Online

Holiday Inns Express East Peoria – Riverfront – SOLD OUT

1100 Bass Pro Drive, Peoria, IL 61611

ICOM Rates$119.00 and includes Hot Breakfast Buffet, complimentary WI-FI, complimentary parking, access to the pool and Fitness Center and IHG Rewards Points. All rooms have a microwave, refrigerator, Keurig coffee maker, flat-screen HDTV

Reservations: Reserve online or call 309-694-9800. Rooms must be reserved by October 15, 2017. *use the Group Code ICM

Reserve Online

Mark Twain Hotel – SOLD OUT

225 NE Adams St, Peoria, IL 61602

ICOM Rates$109.00 and includes complimentary Breakfast, complimentary Wi-Fi available throughout the hotel, Complimentary parking and Complimentary Shuttle service available for Registered Guests.  Shuttle service to and from the Peoria International Airport and within a 5mi. radius of the hotel

Reservations: Call (309) 676-3600 | Toll Free: 866-325-6351Rooms must be reserved by October 14, 2017. *use the Group Code ICOM17

 

 

Information

We Believe

ICOM’s Mission Statement:

ICOM exists to encourage, equip, and enlist new workers for the Harvest.


We believe…

We believe in one God—Father, Son and Holy Spirit
(Matthew 5:16,45; 6:1,4,8,9; James 1:17/John 1:1; 14:9 / Genesis 1:2; John 4:24; 14:16-20; 2 Peter 1:21)

We believe Jesus Created of all things, visible and invisible
(Genesis 1:1; Acts 17:24-28; Hebrews 11:3; John 1:1; Col. 1:15-16)

We believe in Jesus Christ, God’s one and only Son, my one and only Savior
(John 1:14; 1 John 4:9 / John 3:16; 2 Peter 3:18)

Who was born Jesus of Nazareth, both fully human and fully divine, conceived of the Holy Spirit and the virgin Mary
(Matthew 21:11; John 19:19 / John 1:14; Romans 5;15-17; Colossians 2:9; 1 John 1:1 / Matthew 1:18; Luke 1:26-38)

Who suffered and was crucified under Pontius Pilate
(Luke 23:1-46)

Who died and was buried, and Who rose again bodily from the dead on the third day
(Luke 23:44 – 24:8; John 20:24-29; 1 Corinthians 15:3-8)

Who ascended into Heaven and now sits at the right hand of the Father
(Luke 22:69; Acts 1:1-9; Colossians 3:1)

Who will return to earth to judge both the living and the dead
(Matthew 24:36-42; John 14:1-3, Acts 1:10-11; 10:39-42; 1 Peter 4:5)

We believe in the Holy Spirit

Who is an active and operative part of the triune God or godhead.
(John 16:5-15; Acts 1:7-8; Romans 8:26-27)

Who indwells every Christian
(1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19; 2 Timothy 1:14)

We believe in the Bible—God’s Holy Word, Scripture is without error.
(Mark 12:36; John 14:26; 16:12-15; Acts 1:16; 1 Corinthians 2:12-13; 2 Timothy 3:14-16; 2 Peter 1:20-21)

We accept the Bible as the final authority for all matters of faith and practice
(Isaiah 40:8; Matthew 5:18; 24:35; Romans 15:4; Hebrews 4:12)

We believe the Bible teaches that man, created by God, willfully sinned against God and is consequently lost and without hope apart from Jesus Christ
(Acts 4:12; Romans 3:23)

We believe the Bible teaches that salvation—the forgiveness of sins—is only by grace through the blood of Jesus Christ
(Matthew 26:28; Romans 5:9; Ephesians 2:8-9; 1 Peter 1:18-19; 1 John 1:7)

We believe the Bible teaches that one receives God’s grace by putting faith in Christ, repenting of sin, confessing Christ and being immersed into Christ
(Romans 5:1-2 / Luke 24:45-47; Acts 3:19; 17:30; 2 Peter 3:9 / Matthew 10:32; Romans 10:9; Philippians 2:11; 1 John 4:15 / Acts 2:38, Romans 6:1-7; Galatians 3:27; Colossians 2:12; 1 Peter 3:21)

We believe in the Church of Jesus Christ, founded on the Day of Pentecost and consisting of all Christians everywhere
(Matthew 16:13-18; Acts 2:14-47)

We believe the Bible teaches that the Elders are to exercise authority over the local congregation
(Acts 20:28; Philippians 1:1; 1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9; 1 Peter 5:1-4)

Uncategorized

ICOM Staff

Kelsey - ICOM_2015_Color-1329
Kelsey Davis – Administrative Assistant

Kelsey Davis was recently married (September of 2014) to her high school sweetheart Tylor Davis. She joined the ICOM staff that same month as an administrative assistant. She currently resides in Clayton, IN and has attended Hazelwood Christian Church her entire life, where she is also involved in Kidz Town. Kelsey is 22 years old and attended IUPUI for Event Planning. One of her life-long passions has been cheerleading, and she has had the privilege of coaching all-star cheerleading for many years now. She also enjoys spending Tuesday nights feeding the homeless in downtown Indianapolis. In her spare time, Kelsey loves to hang out with her husband, friends and family. She loves to go shopping and ride four wheelers.

Fun Facts About Kelsey

  1. I’m allergic to chocolate and coffee.
  2. I was a cheerleader at Indiana University.
  3. I’m a dog mom to the most adorable little puppy, Tater Tot 🙂

 


Emily - ICOM_2015_Color-1324
Emily Drayne – Operations Administrator

Emily Drayne is an Indiana native living in North Carolina. She is married to her spectacular husband Robby (May of 2015). She lives in Kernersville, NC where they attend First Christian Church. Emily graduated from Kentucky Christian University & has a Bachelor’s degree in History & Biblical Studies. Emily enjoys concerts, sporting events, walks with her dogs, bonfires, hanging out with friends, 3D movies, & lounging with her family. Her favorite teams are the Indianapolis Colts, Kentucky Wildcats and the Clemson Tigers! She is a lover of traveling internationally, bike rides, rainy Saturday afternoons, reading, writing, and singing/playing music. Robby & Emily are dog-parents to two black labs, Tux & Darcy!Emily has been working for ICOM since September of 2011 and started working remotely in May of 2015. It’s been a wild ride so far! She has a heart for world missions and for those serving for the cause of Christ. She loves her job & feels truly blessed to work with such incredibly talented people at ICOM!

Fun Facts About Emily

  1. I am deathly afraid of ladybugs – and most bugs in general
  2. My favorite restaurant is Chipotle…and I get the same thing every time!
  3. One of my favorite things to buy is notebooks, planners, notepads, journals etc.

 


David Empson
David Empson – Executive Director

David Empson is a native of Columbus, Indiana, where he was raised attending the New Hope Christian Church…where he was both baptized and ordained into the Christian ministry. He attended Kentucky Christian College (1977-1981) where he met Sherree Hunt and they married after graduation. David served as a youth minister Illinois, Kentucky and in Indiana from 1981 thru 2001. He  received a Master of Arts from Cincinnati Bible Seminary in Practical Ministries in 1991.During his youth ministry years, David led many student mission trips. This experience led him to be recommended to lead to the student program, creating the Windows of the World Teen Convention for the NMC in 1998. As Windows grew, David became the first full time student director, operating from central Indiana. Upon Walter Birney’s retirement in 2008, David took on the executive director role and moved operations from Copeland, KS to Indiana. That change took place in 2008. David and Sherree have two daughters, Emily Drayne (who also works at ICOM) and Jenny Empson.

Fun Facts About David

  1. My favorite spot is Aspen, CO – the golden Aspens on the mountains are beautiful in the fall!
  2. I love VW Bugs, like the one I had painted with a map of the world for the NMC.
  3. My highest Fitbit total step day was 27,000 at 2014 ICOM in Columbus, OH!

 


David Empson
Sherree Empson

Sherree Empson has been involved with the NMC/ICOM since her husband, David Empson, started with the youth part of the NMC in the late 1990’s. She helped run registration for students during that time and then began to help with the adults as David became the executive director. Sherree was born in Pikeville, KY and graduated from Kentucky Christian College in 1981. She has been a teacher for the past 26 years in Clayton, IN. She has taught K-3 and then became the Reading Coach after receiving her Master’s Degree about 10 years ago. Sherree just retired from teaching this May with hopes of pursuing a ministry related job! Sherree and David have been married for 36 years and live in central Indiana. They have two daughters and a son-in-law, Emily, married to Robby, and Jenny who come with three spunky grand-pups, Tux, Toby and Darcy.

Fun Facts About Sherree

  1. I love to read ‘til 1 in the morning.
  2. I love to relax next to the water – lakes, oceans or rivers.
  3. I sing all day long. I always makes up a little “ditty” for family vacations

 


Vicki Hacker
Vicki Hacker – Administrative Assistant

Vicki Hacker is excited to join the ICOM team.  Her passion is serving and encouraging people. She married Clay Hacker in 1982 in Danville, IL and moved to California.  There they attended Christ Church of the Valley in Covina, CA.   In 1988, they moved to Plainfield, IN and now reside in Eminence, IN.   Clay and Vicki have three sons:  Kyle (29); Jared (27) and Wade (25). Her favorite past time is spending time with her family and friends.   She also enjoys biking, hiking, and gardening.  Clay and Vicki attend Plainfield Christian Church.

Fun Facts About Vicki

  1. I enjoy shooting hoops and playing pickleball.
  2. My favorite vacation spot is South Haven, Michigan.
  3. I like to laugh until I cry with my friends and family!

 


Teddy Haubner
Teddy Haubner – Student Director

Teddy Haubner is an honest leader with vision and drive in fulfilling what God has called him to do. He is passionate and committed to helping bring others to Christ. Teddy’s upbringing, education, experiences, talent, and heart have brought him to be a growing believer, successful leader, and shepherd to others. Teddy grew up as a missionary child in Brazil, South America, where his parents, Earl and RuthAnne Haubner, continue to lead Central Brasil Mission. Teddy’s perspective in building God’s Kingdom has been greatly impacted through missions; from planting churches, speaking two languages, traveling to camps, conferences, and supporting churches, reaching diverse cultures, to making personal sacrifices.In 2000, Teddy married his best friend and ministry partner, Jeri Rae (Gilliland). Teddy has three children; step-son Keenan (1999), daughter Brianna (2007), and son Brady (2009). Their family pet is a cocker spaniel, Lego, (2004) named after one of the family’s favorite things to do together. Teddy likes things to be clean and organized. He believes that the expectations of his standards should be met, not lower his standards to meet the expectations. Health and fitness, for his whole family, is important to him. Teddy is proud to be a ‘Mac’ man and keeping up-to-date with the latest technology. Most of all, Teddy enjoys soccer; watching, playing, and coaching.

Fun Facts About Teddy

  1. I have a black belt in karate.
  2. I once tried out for Menudo and got beat by Ricky Martin.
  3. I once was bald.

 


ICOM Corporate Officers

IMG_0693

Pictured from left to right: John Caldwell, Curt Nordhielm, Gayla Congdon, Ben Simms & David Empson

 


Blog

Church On Fire – Following Up

by Aaron Saufley

Back in the spring of this year (2015), I saw multiple reports from different sources on persecution of Christians in three different regions of the world.  I knew persecution was increasing, but I did some research just to check.  What I discovered shocked me:  persecution of Christians is at its highest level in the history of the church.  Christians are being persecuted in more places and in more violent ways than ever before.

From that research, I had an idea—my church needs to know this.  We need to raise awareness, start praying, and send some financial support to an organization that helps the persecuted.  

God, however, wasn’t satisfied with this.

At the prodding of the Holy Spirit, I called two college buddies to gage their interest.  They both said yes immediately.  We decided to set up a Facebook page and invite other Christians to join us.  Several other college friends said they would also do a message series with us.  And ‘Church on Fire’ was born.

One of those Christians who joined the Facebook group was Keith Wood, who graciously offered ICOM’s help in spreading the world.  They sent their first email out in August, and our Facebook group exploded with requests to join.

Most of us did the series at the same time—the first four weeks of November, immediately following ICOM.  A few churches did the series before this time, and there are some churches that will do the series in 2016. We aren’t completely sure how many churches did this with us.  Our best guess is somewhere between 30-70.  Church from all across North America raised awareness of our suffering family.

Here’s what we learned:

  • Unity is powerful.  We split tasks up between several of the early adopters—message outlines, small group material, graphics, and illustrations.  Through the Facebook page, we gave each other ideas for messages.  There was a palpable sense that God was in this venture, and he was uniting his church around the plight of persecuted Christians.
  • Creativity helped reinforce the message.  Several churches did an underground church experience—they scrapped all of the “extras” (video, audio, chairs, even lights) to try to recreate what it is like for many Christians meeting secretly around the world.  Some churches created prayer walls with maps of where the persecution is the hottest.  Other churches gave out info cards with the names of countries where persecution occurs so that their people could pray for the persecuted church.  Facebook pages were updated with resources for further information and ways to support the persecuted church.  My church got together with another church across town to do a night of worship and prayer for the persecuted church.
  • Churches are, for the most part, ignorant of the level of persecution.  I heard so many in my church say, “I didn’t know it was this bad.”  Other preachers reported the same.  However…
  • Churches are, when challenged, prepared to pray, give, and maybe even go.  I’m proud of the guys that participated in this series.  It was an uncomfortable topic that some weren’t sure if their churches would accept.  We found out otherwise.  The churches that participated opened their hearts to their persecuted family.  Christians flooded heaven with prayer, and some took up special offerings to go to organizations that support persecuted Christians.  There are several who are considering going to Pakistan in 2017 to personally encourage the Christians there.  As a result of the series, several churches are increasing their missions giving.  Several churches saw multiple baptisms that resulted from the series.  From half a planet away, the persecuted church was inspiring discipleship—even as we did what we could to help them.
  • We cannot forget.  Now that we’re several weeks out from the series, it’s tempting to get swept up in the busyness of the holidays and planning for 2016.  We must keep this issue before our people through a variety of means:  social media, prayer lists, video, future message series, etc.

Persecution did not end with the series.  Neither must our resolve to love and support our persecuted brothers and sisters throughout the world.

If your church would like to do the ‘Church on Fire’ series, here is the link to the resources:  Church on Fire Resources.

Here are some resources for learning more about persecution throughout the world, along with ways to support persecuted Christians:

Voice of the Martyrs:  http://www.persecution.com/

Open Doors USA:  https://www.opendoorsusa.org/


Aaron is the preaching minister at the Friends in Fellowship Christian Church in Winterville, North Carolina and is a content provider on the Plaid Dad Blog. You can follow him on Twitter @AaronSaufley.

 

Blog

2016 ICOM – MOBILIZE: Disciples Making Disciples

by Mike Schrage

The theme for ICOM 2016 is “MOBILIZE: Disciples Making Disciples.” When I looked up the word, mobilize, in an online dictionary, the three big ideas were:

  1. To call up reservists for active duty.
  2. To encourage people to act in a concerted way.
  3. To make something capable of movement again.

This word beautifully and powerfully illustrates for us, the Church, how we are being called into active duty with Jesus. In order to receive the blessing of spiritual freedom, we must move together to redeem the time and to reach those who are still outside His Kingdom. Our fellowship with like-minded followers of Christ should equip us to love our communities. If we are currently in a space of apathy, complacency, or immobilization, we need to figure out how to rally ourselves to go into the world for the sake of God’s honor and the salvation of others!

ICOM 2016 “MOBILIZE: Disciples Making Disciples” hopes to do just that next year! From now until November 17, 2016, I will have the honor of sharing more on this blog. I hope to ignite and excite all of us to reach our full potential in Christ for His purposes. Please join me in reading, praying, giving, and going to this cause.

mo·bi·lize

ˈmōbəˌlīz

verb

  1. (of a country or its government) prepare and organize (troops) for active service.

“the government mobilized regular forces, reservists, and militia”
synonyms: marshal, deploy, muster, rally, call up, assemble, mass, organize, prepare

“the government mobilized the troops”

  • organize and encourage (people) to act in a concerted way in order to bring about a particular political objective.

“he used the press to mobilize support for his party”
synonyms: generate, arouse, awaken, excite, incite, provoke, foment, prompt, stimulate, stir up, galvanize, encourage, inspire, whip up; literaryenkindle

“mobilizing support for the party”

  • bring (resources) into use in order to achieve a particular goal.

“at sea we will mobilize any amount of resources to undertake a rescue”

2. make (something) movable or capable of movement.

“doing yoga stretches to mobilize compacted joints”

  • make (a substance) able to be transported by or as a liquid.

“acid rain mobilizes the aluminum in forest soils”

 


Mike SchrageMike Schrage leads Good News Productions, Intl. and is the president of the 2016 International Conference On Missions which will be held in Lexington, KY on November 17-20, 2016. 

Find out more at www.theicom.org.

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Watch Online

If you are unable to make it to the 2015 ICOM conference, we will be broadcasting each session live online. Use this link to be directed to the viewing site.

Blog

Church on Fire part 2 – A Sermon Series…

I’m excited about the theme for this year’s ICOM: “The Away Team.” As a football fan, I know the advantage that the home team usually has during a game: their own fans, their own field, maybe a little edge with the officials. For centuries, the church has been the “home team” in North American culture. We’ve enjoyed privileged status and influence, but now we find those things eroding. Many of us are trying to figure out how to cope with this cultural shift. How do we continue to have voice in our society? How do we handle changes in how the culture views faith, marriage, and the sanctity of life? We’re not used to being the away team.

As I thought about this on Friday, this thought hit me:

The persecuted church has never been the home team.

In the Middle East, northern and central Africa, Indonesia, China, North Korea, India and other places where persecution is the strongest, the church has nearly always been the minority. And now, as has always been the case, the persecuted church isn’t worried about a statue of the Ten Commandments being torn down or a non-believer with a blog making fun of them. They worry about their survival. They worry about the lives of their friends and families. And in some of these places, such as Iraq—where the church has been present since the late first century—they worry that, with their deaths, the faith will die out completely.

We must remember them. We must support them. We must pray for them.

We must do these things because God is at work—refining the faith of the persecuted, strengthening the faith of the suffering, and converting hundreds and thousands to Christ through their example.

This is what Church on Fire is about.

In just a few weeks, churches all across North America will unite to raise awareness and encourage practical support of the persecuted church around the world through this Church on Fire series. As we approach the launch of the series on November 1, please pray for the following:

  1. For the persecuted church—that God will grant them the strength to endure, and that, somehow, he will let them know that we love them and support them.
  2. For the persecutors—that God will use the example of the suffering church to draw them to Jesus.
  3. For the church in North America—that we will see beyond ourselves and not trivialize the suffering of people we cannot see because of the separation of geography and culture, and that we will stand firm with them.
  4. For the frontline workers who are helping the persecuted church—some of the most dangerous work in the world is being done by aid workers in areas where persecution is the most severe.
  5. For people coming to our churches who do not yet know Christ, that God will use the examples of the persecuted Christians to draw these people to Jesus.
  6. For the preachers and church staff preparing for this series, as Church on Fire will be very intense, emotionally draining.

There’s still time for your church to join us. Please go to the links below to join the Church on Fire Facebook group and to download all the materials for the series.

Finally, we’re also having a Church on Fire meet and greet at ICOM. We will be on the first floor in E10D of the Greater Richmond Convention Center from 8:30pm-9:30pm on Friday, October 30th.

Join our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ChurchOnFireSeries/

Download Church on Fire materials and resources by clicking here.

Because Jesus lives,

Aaron Saufley
Preaching Minister
Friends in Fellowship Christian Church, Winterville NC

Students Info

SICOM Schedule

SICOM students are encouraged to stay at the Clarion Hotel in Lexington. Details can be found on our housing page.

 

Registration is currently closed. If you have not registered yet, you can still register onsite at the SICOM Registration Desk! Hope to see you there!

 

Students will be divided into groups. Each color coded group will follow it’s own schedule during SICOM.

sicomschedules

 

Blog

Church on Fire – a sermon series on the…

Every Sunday, Christians in North America gather for worship (if you’re reading this, the chances are pretty good you’re one of them).  We sing.  We pray.  We give.  We listen to a message.  With rare exception, we do this without thinking someone would do harm to us.

Yet, around the world, it’s estimated that nearly 322 Christians die each month simply because they believe in Jesus.  That’s nearly 11 every day.  That means next Sunday, when you go home from church, it’s likely that someone in the world went to church and did not make it home.

Persecution is now truly global.  Christians are being persecuted all over Africa, the Middle East, in much of Asia, in several Pacific island nations, and in central and South America.

Most of us, before reading this post, did not know this.  We knew that persecution happened, but we did not know the extent.  The time has come to end our ignorance.

The writer of Hebrews tells us this in Hebrews 13:3, “Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.” This is why “Church on Fire” is happening—because God has called us to remember and support those suffering in the fires of persecution.  

In November, churches all around North America (from sizes ranging from twelve to well over 1,000) will join together to both raise awareness of our suffering brothers and sisters around the world and to practically support those in harm’s way.  They will do this through a message series, small groups, viewing the film “Love Costs Everything,” prayer services, and financially supporting Central India Christian Mission’s persecution fund and/or another ministry of your choice serving the persecuted church.  

In the coming weeks, ICOM will post materials on their website for the “Church on Fire” series:  message outlines, small group material, graphics, music suggestions, and other items to participate in the series.  I want to encourage you to change what you’re doing in November and join together with the churches who are doing this series.  If you already have something planned, change it.  This is an opportunity for the church to unite, for Christians to be challenged, and most importantly for our persecuted family to be encouraged.

Let’s join together to let them know that they are not alone.

Because Jesus lives,

Aaron Saufley
Preaching Minister
Friends in Fellowship Christian Church, Winterville NC

For more information, you can join our Facebook group at https://www.facebook.com/groups/ChurchOnFireSeries/

 

To download all your Church on Fire materials click here:
Church on Fire materials

Information

About ICOM

About ICOM

Mission Statement:

The International Conference on Missions exists to Encourage, Equip and Enlist workers for the Harvest.

History:

Known as the National Missionary Convention until 2011, the International Conference On Missions has been serving missionaries and the Great Commission since 1948.  In March of 1948, J. Russell Morse was in the home of John T. Chase for dinner, and asked, “Why isn’t there a gathering for missionaries?” He went on to express the need for a time where missionaries can talk shop, fellowship and encourage each other.  So in 1948, the day prior to the NACC started, a few dozen missionaries got together.  That practice continued for several years growing to a few hundred people. Then in 1954, the National Missionary Convention was formed, as it’s own conference.

The NMC grew from several hundred to sometimes a few thousand.  It became big enough that, after many years with volunteer presidents, in 1966 Walter Birney was designated the first director while preaching in Copeland, Kansas.  Mr. Birney would stay in this role for 43 years.  Walter and his wife, Iva Lou, worked tirelessly while planning conventions all over the country.   Iva Lou retired in 2008 while Walter retired in 2009.

In 1998, David Empson became a volunteer student director, while maintaining a full-time youth ministry at the Hazelwood Christian Church in Clayton, Indiana.  The Windows of the World teen convention was created to meet inside the National Missionary Convention, drawing from the strengths of the adult program while offering “hands-on programming” for students.  In 2001, David joined the NMC staff full-time from an office graciously made available by Hazelwood Christian Church.

In 2007, during the transition time, Jim Chamberlin was hired to succeed David as the student director.  Other staff members have since joined to what makes up the current staff members.

In 2010, Fran Anderson was hired to help determine the advantages of changing the name of the National Missionary Convention.  The NMC had grown over the past several years close to 11,000 attendees in Indianapolis in 2006.  It was felt that the name no longer described what the NMC had grown to become for the following reasons:

  • It was no longer “national” since there were twenty plus countries represented every year.  It had become international.
  • The word “convention” gives the idea that there would be delegates and issues to vote on with some kind of authority to make decisions. That has never been the case. We are a conference.
  • It was very apparent that this was no longer a gathering for “only” missionaries; rather, the conference had become for those who love being on mission.

International + conference + on mission = ICOM.

After holding nine focus groups, it was decided to change the name and was announced in Atlanta, 2011, during the last National Missionary Convention, that the NMC would be called the “International Conference On Missions”.  The name change was well received.

Information

Pre-Con Events

Join us for 2016 ICOM Pre-con!

We are so excited to be offering seven pre-con events this year at ICOM in Lexington, KY!   Be sure to head to conference early to join in the excitement!  Pre-con events will begin on Wednesday, November 16 and continue on Thursday, November 17.

Check out the variety of pre-con events we will be offering below:


For Missionaries Only (FMO)
Wed 5 – 9 pm & Thurs 8 am – 12 pm

This Pre-Con is a time for missionaries to minister to other missionaries.  We pray that this will be a time of personal and spiritual healing and growth for each one.  Sponsored by ICOM.  NO registration cost.  Led by Margaret and Paul Pennington.

Free Wednesday night hotel stay! (Reimbursement after forms submitted to ICOM)

Free Wednesday night dinner (sponsored by Kairos) & Thursday morning continental breakfast!


Community Health Evangelism (CHE)
Wed 9 am – 4 pm & Thurs 9 am – 3 pm

This seminar includes small-group interaction, problem solving, and self-discovery, while increasing understanding of the CHE process.  Sponsored by FAME.  $30 registration fee.  Led by Bill Warren, Terry Dalrymple & Bryan Benz.


Standards of Excellence In Short-Term Missions (SOE)
Wed 6 pm – 9 pm & Thurs 9 am – 5 pm

The Standards Introductory Workshop is an 8-10 hour seminar designed to help adoptive members understand how they can incorporate and achieve competence in all Seven Standards. It also provides a review of how to form and manage a Peer Review process, should a member organization desire to pursue full accreditation. The workshops are taught by experienced SOE trainers (usually two). They are interactive, use case studies and small group discussions. MISTM-grid theory and the supporting principles behind the standards are reviewed.


Muvement Seminar  

4 Chair Seminar
Thurs 10 am – 3 pm

This Pre-Con builds upon the material from the 4 Chair Discipling book by Dann Spader, shared during ICOM’s Reset 2 Tour, calling American Churches to disciple the way Jesus discipled. This is the first step in step in the Muvement Series. Dann Spader will begin this session  and then Randy Nash will teach the bulk of this seminar, having been trained and certified to do so.We will look at how Jesus built a movement of multiplying disciples.

Sponsored by Reset.  $55 registration fee.

Metamorphosis
Thurs 9 am – 5 pm

(You must have previously completed the 4 Chair Seminar to attend) This will be from 9 am to 5 pm on Thursday.  As we have travelled the nation proclaiming that we should disciple as Jesus discipled, many attenders liked the idea, but wanted to quickly move to the “how to” conversation. This is that “how to”. Kevin Boll has been working with congregations for many years about how to structure your church organization to make disciples who make disciples. This seminar builds on top of the 4 Chair principles. You will need to have attended the 4 Chair seminar before you attend this seminar.

$55 Registration fee.


Mobilizing Your Church for International Student Outreach
Thurs 9 am – 3:30 pm

Come learn about how we can reach foreign college students for Jesus Christ and challenge them to serve His Kingdom.  Sponsored by Crossroads International. $10 registration fee.  Led by Greg Swinney.


Disciple Making Movements
Wed 8 am – 5 pm & Thurs 8 am – 5 pm

This Pre-Con will equip you to make reproducing disciples among the unreached peoples of the world (international focus).  Led by Eric Derry.  $35 registration fee (Limited to 36 people).


Mission Trainers
Thurs 9 am – 3 pm

This Forum is a gathering of those who train workers for field service, whether as professors, counselors, or mobilizers.  $25 registration fee (payable upon arrival).   Email Doug Priest, Executive Director of CMF, for more information and registration.  DougPriest@cmfi.org

 

*Attention MK teens! Join Jessi Vance and Mosaik for a special program designed just for you throughout pre-cons and conference!  Mosaik will provide MK teens with training, debriefing, and spiritual development throughout this time.  Meet Jessi and her team at Pre-Con check-in Wednesday evening.
*Complementary child care will be provided from 6pm – 9pm on Wednesday and 9am – 12pm on Thursday.   
*Registration check-in will be located at the High St. entrance of the convention center.  It will be open from 7:30 am – 6:30 pm on Wednesday and 7:30 am – 10:00 am on Thursday.
*Questions about any of the Pre-Con events can be emailed to Kelsey Davis, Kelsey@theicom.org.
Blog

Meet the VEF, our host for ICOM in Richmond

 

The Virginia Evangelizing Fellowship, in collaboration with the Eastern Christian Conference, is playing host to ICOM in Richmond, Virginia Oct. 29 – Nov. 1. Tim Cole, the Executive Director of the VEF, shared this profile with us about who they are and what the VEF does in the Mid-Atlantic region:

The VEF is known in our region primarily as a strong force for church planting, but that only tells half our story. We’ve planted over 80 churches since our founding in the 1930’s. Since 1990 we’ve planted 31 projects around Virginia and in the adjoining states of North Carolina, Maryland, West Virginia and Tennessee. Those newer projects have celebrated more than 1000 baptisms in the past two years alone and have grown to average over 300 in attendance per plant each Sunday. We’re really proud of the work they do transforming lives and communities in our region.

The flip side of our story is the spectrum of services we provide to the 240+ existing churches around Virginia to help them accomplish their mission. The past decade has seen the development of programs like:

  • A Guest Services Seminar and training to help churches keep their guests coming back.
  • A Comprehensive Facilities Evaluation that provides churches with a fresh perspective on their most used ministry tool.
  • Fusion Groups: Peer learning communities of 4-5 ministers who covenant together for a 2-year journey to become better pastors together. We’ll have 24 of these groups active the Fall.
  • One-on-one Ministry Coaching from our team of trained, certified Ministry Coaches.
  • A regular schedule of Leadership Seminars and Retreats that raise the bar of leadership within our churches.
  • No-interest loans to help churches purchase property, make repairs or otherwise enhance their ministry.
  • Media and Branding Services that help churches design modern, relevant websites, logos, custom brochures and signage to enhance the graphic communication to their community.

All of these programs together along with the new churches we plant help us ambitiously accomplish our mission, Pursuing Kingdom Growth, through an environment of partnership and synergy among all the churches in Virginia.

 

Information

ICOM Kids Zone

 

Children’s programming for Nursery thru 5th grade.

Thursday – 7:00 – 8:30 p
Friday & Sat – 9:00 – 11:45 a
2:00 – 5:00 p
7:00 – 8:30 p
No programming on Sunday

Kids zone

Information

Future Conference Dates

ICOM 2017

November 16-19, 2017 – Peoria IL • Enoch Nyador

ICOM 2018

November 15-18, 2018 – Cincinnati OH

ICOM 2019

November 15-18, 2019 – Kansas City, MO

ICOM 2020

Indianapolis, IN

ICOM 2021

Richmond, VA
Students Info

CIY Engage to offer a free SICOM pre-con!

CIY Engage 1400x600

The CIY Engage pre-con will take place on Friday, October 29, from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon and 2:00 – 5:00 pm.  There is no cost to attend, but please indicate your attendance when you register for SICOM or by emailing Jim Chamberlin at jim@theicom.org.

Here’s what the CIY Engage pre-con will feature:

10-12- IJM Experience: Students will have an opportunity through a role-playing activity to see what a member of the IJM staff goes through to try to bring about justice. They will interview witnesses/victims/potential perpetrators and will take their information gained and turn it into a legal argument that they will present before a judge. The team with the most compelling argument wins.

2-5: Engage Kingdom Worker Training: In 3, one hour segments, students will learn about the roles that identity, justice, and spiritual disciplines (with an emphasis on evangelism) play in being Kingdom workers. Through group activities, discussions, and video content, students will get a glimpse at how these three areas can equip them to live as Kingdom workers beyond the event. (This is a glimpse into the new ENGAGE programming being launched in 2016. While this gives a one hour snapshot of each training, the actual event will give the students 6 hours focused on one of the topics)

Please note: lunch is on your own.

About SICOM & CIY Engage:
SICOM, the Student International Conference On Missions, welcomes Engage, the missions arm of Christ In Youth (CIY), into a strategic partnership to broaden students’ hands-on experiences into Kingdom Worker training.   SICOM has a 16-year history of bringing missions and students together in a unique hands-on service conference dating back to when it was Windows of the World (2000-2011).  Christ In Youth has been a leader in youth ministry since its founding in 1968. CIY serves more than 70,000 students each year with more than 100 events nationwide, designed to amplify Christ’s call on student lives to become Kingdom workers. CIY’s Engage, now under the leadership of Rachel (Oblon) Grindle, seeks to help Kingdom workers engage people by connecting with missional leaders, global Kingdom works and cultural intelligence. Beginning with the 2015 SICOM in Richmond, VA, Engage and SICOM will work together to train students to become Kingdom Workers who engage as we seek to make Jesus famous.

As part of the International Conference On Missions that takes place this October 29 – November 1, 2015 at the Greater Richmond Convention Center, the partnership between ICOM and the Virginia Evangelizing Fellowship combined with this new venture with Engage and SICOM have the potential to make the 2015 ICOM/SICOM a pivotal year in missions, in church planting and in local churches.

For more information, www.ciy.com/engage.

Information

Reset Tour

The International Conference On Missions presents RESET Tour 2 – The Disciple Making Tour

 

Registration Is Now OPEN!
Click the button to register for the 4 Chair Discipling and Metamorphosis Seminars!

Register For Reset 2

 

Due to low registrations – we are cancelling 3 stops on the Reset Tour:
Lincoln, IL  ~  Joplin, MO  ~  Lexington, KY

We will still proceed with Plainfield, IN, Columbus, OH and Council Bluffs, IA.

If you are currently registered for one of the seminars that has been cancelled, we will refund your money unless you’d like to go to one of the other seminars that is remaining open. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. If you have any questions, please email david@theicom.org or emily@theicom.org.”

 


 

Status of Reset 2: The Disciple Making Tour

Reset2June 7, 2016

The second Reset 2 Tour: The Disciple Making Tour is done and in the books; but oh, what a tour we had!  The first tour had 239 attendees in 10 stops. Following that tour, we asked one question: What largely exponential and irreversible changes have taken place in the North American Church community that are both uncertain and important to finishing the task of world evangelism?  

The #1 answer?  We are not effectively making disciples.  

The second tour drew in 450 attendees in 9 cities.  We shared that maybe we need to reexamine how we are making disciples. So we introduced the idea that Jesus modeled for us how to make disciples, who would in turn make more disciples.  Dann Spader, of Global Youth Initiative, shared with us what he has been teaching at the Southeast Christian Church (and for 35 years), that:

  • Jesus gave us an example of how to make disciples, the way he did it.
  • Jesus lived his life with an intention to create a movement of disciple making.

What are the NEXT STEPS?  

At this point, we are spreading our wings a little bit.  Dann has been amazing to work with on the last two Reset tours, but the response we have received and the direction we need to go is much bigger than Dann can give on his own.  We plan to continue sharing the 4 Chair seminar, but we need to move forward on implementing the ideas into life application. So, here are the next steps:


In 2017

Our plans are to have a tour that will share both the 4 Chair and the Metamorphosis material in the spring. We also want to repeat the same two workshops & pre-con sessions at ICOM in Peoria that are being given this year in Lexington.

2017 Metamorphosis Seminar Dates & Locations:

  • Wednesday, April 26th – Plainfield Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN – 8:30am – 4:30pm
  • Monday, May 1st – First Christian Church, Council Bluffs, IA – 8:30am – 4:30pm

2017 4 Chair Discipling Seminar Dates & Locations:

  • Tuesday, April 25th – Worthington Christian Church, Columbus, OH – 10:00am – 2:00pm
  • Wednesday, April 26th -Plainfield Christian Church, Indianapolis, IN – 10:00am – 2:00pm
  • Monday, May 1st – First Christian Church, Council Bluffs, IA – 10:00am – 2:00pm

Cost: $60

We have no sponsor to underwrite the expenses for this tour as we have had in the past. Price includes materials, lunch, & funds for group traveling.

Click the button to register for the 4 Chair Discipling and Metamorphosis Seminars!

Register For Reset 2

 


In 2018

Our plans are to hold our first event that will be for staff, elders and ministry leaders to come and learn about how other Christian Churches are implementing this new philosophy into the fabric of their churches.  This will begin in the spring of 2018. With this being our first time branching out into this kind of plan, we still have many ideas in the works! We will have more details to come on this later!

Information

Cancellation Policy

ALL EXHIBIT REGISTRATIONS ARE PENDING UNTIL APPROVED BY INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MISSIONS. Full payment is due at the time of this registration.

CANCELLATION (REFUND) POLICY FOR REGISTRATION & EVENTS
Cancellations received on or before the date 15 days prior to the first day of an annual conference will be refunded the full amount less a 10% fee. There are no refunds for registrations or events from that time on.

All cancellations must be sent in writing via fax, e-mail or regular mail to the conference registrar. Please fax or email cancellations, if possible, and expect confirmation within two days. If necessary to cancel by USPS, please allow sufficient time for a response.

ICOM is not responsible for problems beyond our control such as weather conditions, campus conditions, etc. No refunds will be given in these situations. The final decision on refunds rests with the ICOM director and business manager.

CANCELLATION (REFUND) POLICY FOR EXHIBITS
All cancellations are charged a 10% fee. Cancellations received on or before the date 60 days prior to the first day of an annual conference are refunded the full amount less a 10% fee. A written cancellation must be received or postmarked by Sept.15, 2014 and confirmed by ICOM that notification has been received. Refunds after Sept. 15, 2014 are given only if cancelled spaces are resold.

CANCELLATION (REFUND) POLICY FOR ADVERTISING
All cancellations are charged a 10% fee. A written cancellation must be received or postmarked by August 31 and confirmed by ICOM that notification has been received. No refunds are given for cancellations postmarked on/after September 1.

Back To Exhibitor Registration
Information

Register

Register for ICOM 2017 in Peoria!


Individual Registration

ICOM Registration   –     Register By Mail

Registration Prices: 
Individual: $40 ~ Family: $80 ~ College Student: $10

Forgot to register your kids online?  No worries!
Register them here:

KidZone Registration


Church / College Wide Registration

CC-Wide OFFLINE Registration
CC-Wide ONLINE Registration

 


SICOM Registration

Register Your Group For SICOM   –    SICOM - Flyer


MK Registration

MK Registration


 

Information

Intern Exchange

 

 

intern-exchangeThe International Conference on Missions strives to involve as many college students and young adults with mission work as possible! Our Intern Exchange is an outstanding place for missionaries and college students/young adults to meet and form lasting relationships and ultimately work together on the field. Many opportunities within the Exchange fit a variety of needs. Want to learn more? Please contact Emily at the ICOM office: Emily@theicom.org or 317-539-4231.

Click here to see 90+ Missions Opportunities Worldwide!

 

Uncategorized

2016 Meals And Events

Meals for 2016 ICOM

Catered by Hyatt Regency

Meal & Event Tickets are bought during the registration process. If you have not registered & need to buy meals, you can do so while you register online for ICOM. If you have registered, you can use your confirmation email to login and add the option of buying a meal or call the offices for assistance.

This year the meals are true “all you can eat” buffet meals instead of all you can get on one plate.  This is reflected in the pricing.  The same breakfast is $24.00 in the Hyatt restaurant and lunch $29.00.

Bible Study Breakfast, sponsored by Logos Bible Software

Friday Breakfast, $17

Selection of Chilled Juices
House baked breakfast pastries
Farm fresh scrambled eggs
Pork Sausage and Smoked Bacon
Baked hash browned casserole
Torrefazione Italia Regular and Decaffeinated Coffees, Tazo Hot Tea and Ice Water

 


Saturday Breakfast, $17

Selection of Chilled Juices
Farm Fresh Scrambled Eggs
Smoked Bacon
Buttermilk Biscuits with Sausage Gravy
Torrefazione Italia Regular and Decaffeinated Coffees, Tazo Hot Tea

 


 

 

Meet our breakfast speaker, Monte Cox

M Cox picMonte Cox and his wife Beth planted churches among the Kalenjin if Western Kenya from 1982-1992. Since then he has taught Bible and Missions at Harding University in Searcy, AR where he now serves as Dean of the College of Bible and Ministry.  He is also a shepherd and the Preaching Minister for the Downtown Church of Christ in Searcy.  Dr. Cox earned the Ph.D. in Intercultural Studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, IL in 1999.  He and Beth have three grown children and two grandchildren.

 

 


Lunch with Missionaries, sponsored by Boise Bible College

This year’s program will include music from Patricio Curinao, a gifted musician from Chile on both Friday and Saturday.

Friday Lunch With Missionaries. $22

Warm Rolls and Butter
Bluegrass Mixed Green Salad
Spring Mix, Julienned Carrots, Cucumbers, Shredded Red Cabbage and Tomato Served with (2)
Choices of Dressing
Southern Fried Chicken Breast with Country Gravy
Blackened Pork Loin with Peach Chutney
Country Green Beans with Ham & Onions
Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Assorted Fruit Cobblers
Torrefazione Italia Regular and Decaffeinated Coffees, Iced Tea, Tazo Hot Tea and Ice Water


Saturday Lunch with Missionaries, $22

Warm Rolls and Butter
Salad Bar with assorted Toppings & Dressings
Basil Marinated Tomato Salad
Herb Grilled Chicken with Fennel, Tomatoes & Crispy Capers
Sliced Sirloin of Beef with Rosemary Mushroom Sauce
Roasted Zucchini & Yellow Squash
Rosemary Red Potatoes
Tiramisu
Torrefazione Italia Regular and Decaffeinated Coffees, Iced Tea, Tazo Hot Tea and Ice Water

Missionary Speakers

 Friday  Saturday
 Stateside Missionaries the Springers Jeff  Vanderlaan
 Veteran Missionaries Scott LaRue Georges Carillet
 New Recruits Luke Swain  Isaac & Sally Tandy
National Laminda Ubhayawansha Mandy Castillo Garcia
Missionary Kid Sian Vines Jordan Derry

Common Ground: Ladies Onlyks7, $10 

Saturday, 3 – 4:30 pm

Taking it to the Streets: Mobilizing the gospel to the sexually exploited
Featuring Karolyn Schrage

Cyber-crime is on the rise, pornography consumerism has hit an all-time high! STD rates are at epidemic proportions!  300,000 U.S. teens become victims of sex trafficking every year.  An innovative strategic response is needed to take the message of “life” directly into the darkest regions of our world.

Are we ready to be mobilized into action as “gospel-whispers” of hope?

 

Information

2017 Exhibitor Information

Peoria Civic Center, Peoria, IL


MK Registration

 


Exhibitor Registration is Now Open!

2017 Booths: SOLD OUT!

View Exhibitor Map

To view the exhibitor map, click the button above.
A list of exhibitors will be shown along the left side of the page. Click on an organization in the list to view their booth  on the map. You can also click on a booth in the map to display the organization information for that booth.

Exhibitor Waiting List

Exhibit Space Type

9′ x 10′ Booths: Price:
Non-Profit $350.00
Non-Profit Sales (add)  $100.00
Commercial $600.00
Prim Path (add) $100.00

ALL EXHIBIT REGISTRATIONS ARE PENDING UNTIL APPROVED BY INTERNATIONAL CONFERENCE ON MISSIONS.

Full payment is due at the time of this registration. CANCELLATION POLICY – CLICK HERE


2017 Exhibitor Documents & Floor-plan

FLOOR PLAN: To view and/or print a floor-plan for reference, click here. 

EXHIBITOR PACKET:  To view and/or print an exhibitor packet click here.

PEORIA FLAG & DECORATING SERVICE PACKET:  To view and/or print the packet click here.

Uncategorized

2016 Schedule

Download the full program here

2016 Schedule

2016 International Conference On Missions – November 17-20, 2016 in Lexington, Kentucky

Wednesday, November 16th

7:30 am – 6:30 pm – All Pre-Con Registration Open

8:00 am – 5:00 pm – Disciple Making Movements

9:00 am – 4:00 pm – Community Health Evangelism (CHE)

12:00 pm – 5:00 pm – Exhibitor Move-In

5:00 pm – 9:00 pm – For Missionaries Only Dinner & Program (FMO)

6:00 pm – 9:00 pm – Standards of Excellence in Short-Term Missions (SOE)

Thursday, November 17th

7:30 am – 10:00 am – All Pre-Con Registration Open

8:00 am – 5:00 pm – Exhibitor Move In

8:00 am – 9:00 am – For Missionaries Only Continental Breakfast

9:00 am – 12:00 pm – For Missionaries Only Program

9:00 am – 5:00 pm – Metamorphosis

8:00 am – 5:00 pm – Disciple Making Movements

9:00 am – 3:00 pm – Mission Trainers

9:00 am – 3:00 pm – Community Health Evangelism (CHE)

9:00 am – 3:30 pm – Mobilizing Your Church for International Student Outreach

9:00 am – 5:00 pm – Standards of Excellence in Short-Term Missions (SOE)

10:00 am – 3:00 pm – Muvement Seminar: 4 Chair Discipling

3:00 pm – 7:00 pm – ICOM Store/Info Desk Open

3:00 pm – 7:00 pm – ICOM Registration Opens in Convention Center

5:00 pm – 10:00 pm – Exhibit Hall Opens to Public

7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – Opening Main Session

8:45 pm – 10:00 pm – President’s Reception

10:00 pm – Exhibit Hall Closes

Friday, November 18th

7:30 am – 8:30 am – Bible Study Breakfast

8:00 am – ICOM Registration & Exhibit Hall Opens

8:00 am – 10:00 pm – ICOM Store/Info Desk Open

8:30 am – Exhibit Hall Opens

9:00 am – 10:00 am – Workshop Period 1

10:30 am – 11:45 am – Morning Main Session

Noon to 2:00 pm – Break for Lunch & Lunch with Missionaries

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Workshop Period 2

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm – Workshop Period 3

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Break for Dinner

7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – Evening Main Session

8:45 pm – 10:00 pm – Visit Exhibit Hall & College Receptions

10:00 pm – Exhibit Hall Closes

Saturday, November 19th

7:30 am – 8:30 am – Bible Study Breakfast

8:00 am – ICOM Registration & Exhibit Hall Opens

8:00 am – 10:00 pm – ICOM Store/Info Desk Open

8:30 am – Exhibit Hall Opens

9:00 am – 10:00 am – Workshop Period 4

10:30 am – 11:45 am – Morning Main Session

Noon to 2:00 pm – Break for Lunch & Lunch with Missionaries

2:00 pm – 3:00 pm – Workshop Period 5

3:00 pm – 4:30 pm – Common Ground: Ladies Only!

4:00 pm – 5:00 pm – Workshop Period 6

5:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Break for Dinner

7:00 pm – 8:30 pm – Evening Main Session

8:45 pm – 10:00 pm – Visit Exhibit Hall & College Receptions

10:00 pm – Exhibit Hall Closes – Optional Tear Down for Exhibitors

Sunday, November 20tht

8:00 am – 11:30 am – ICOM Store/Info Desk Open

9:00 am – 11:00 am – Morning Main Session

11:00 am – ICOM Ends – Tear Down for Exhibitors Begins

 

Exhibit hall open all day except for during the ICOM main sessions
ICOM Registration open all day except for during the evening main sessions

Blog

The Wala Girls

In 2011, there were 8 of us. One of us was single, seven of us were moms and wives, six of whom were stay-at-Screen Shot 2015-05-21 at 1.43.55 PMhome moms. We had 21 children between us, two of us home-schooled, three of us had never had passports, and one of us had never been on an airplane. But, God called us to Africa and this is our story:

We were simply a group of friends from Blue Ridge Church of Christ in Fishersville, VA, studying the Bible together. We felt a sense of urgency and realized the Spirit was leading us to do more, not only in our community, but in our world. So…We met. We prayed. We fasted. We found ourselves training for a trip, destination unknown…just Africa and the unreached on our hearts . We decided to send two from our group to ICOM, knowing it was a place for missions opportunities.

Upon arrival to ICOM, we found ourselves seated behind five men, all of whom were wearing black t-shirts with a yellow outline of Africa. As soon as the session was over, we met those men and asked about their shirts. They turned around and imprinted on their chests was “prayforthewala.com”. “Who are the Wala?” we asked.  They invited us to their booth to share more. We marched ourselves to a small booth called Next Generation Ministries International (NGMI) where we met with John Latimer, founder of NGMI, along with two board members and two of their African pastors.

We asked these five men if they would ever consider taking eight women to Africa. They all laughed and said, “Sure!” Little did they realize, we were serious. You see, they were at ICOM recruiting prayer partners, not people to actually visit their ministry. God had other plans. Less than a year later, in August 2012, we eight women, along with John and his cohorts, stepped off of a plane, in Ghana, West Africa. We traveled North to the city of Wa and soon found ourselves standing in a village surrounded by the Wala people.  This was the people group that we had spent nine months praying for since going to ICOM.  

Screen Shot 2015-05-21 at 1.44.03 PMWe loved the Wala before we even met them. And now that we had met them, we were sold. We felt an immediate God-given responsibility to help spread the Gospel to these people. Since that very first encounter with the Wala, BRCC’s involvement with NGMI has evolved into a relational ministry, with regional pastors and workers to help John Latimer train and encourage them to reach further north among other unreached peoples. Seven trips have been completed, 19 individuals have invested by going, our church has given over $60,000 in quarterly and one-time support, and countless individuals are committed to praying for NGMI and the Wala people. We are in this for the long-haul!

So, this year when you visit ICOM, come see booths #1220 and #1222 as NGMI has extended the invitation to BRCC to share booth space to display the power of partnership between a non-profit organization and a stateside local church.

Thank you, ICOM, for bringing BRCC, NGMI, and the Wala together.

Sincerely,

Christy Imler, Shasta Reeves, Stephanie Ballew, Katie Campbell, Lara Hoke, Michelle Godby,

Steph Saufley  (Most affectionately known as “The Wala Girls”)

Blog

Reset

pogo“We have seen the enemy.  And the enemy is us”.  

This is a famous quote from the cartoon, Pogo.  It was used for an Earth Day emphasis back in 1971.  The cartoon pictures Pogo and his friend looking around, where they are standing, at all the trash everywhere.  The cartoon shows the realization that they are the ones who caused the litter, hence, they did it.  They are the enemy.

In 2012, ICOM led a nationwide tour asking questions to provoke conversations about what is keeping us from completing the Great Commission.  In 10 cities across the United States, the most stated response was a cultural problem.   The Church in America is struggling and we cannot keep our focus of reaching the lost.  For many years, the Church in America has been a world leader in sending missionaries all over the world.  Our nation is changing in ways that are affecting our ability to stay strong in reaching the world with the good news of Jesus.  To discover that we are contributing to the problem instead of the solution makes me think, “we are the enemy”.  

The Reset Tour taught us many things that as people spoke out across the nation, we were thrilled to see their observations.  Conclusions from the data came out in statements like:

  • Prayer must be a priority.
  • We need to learn to collaborate, to strategize how we can work smarter and more efficiently.

Other points were made that were surprising:

  • We need to find new funding models.  This came from an idea of a question that popped up; what happens when the US churches cannot give anymore?
  • We need to learn how to do short term missions better.
  • We do not have a handle on recognizing that people of other religions are not the enemy of Jesus.  We just have not learned how to love them yet.

The bottom line came down to making disciples.  The Church has focused more on making

converts and less on walking how Jesus walked.  For years, even decades, many members of all kinds of churches have sat in church and not only have they not matured in Christ, but they have rarely even shared their faith with anyone.  

The Church needs to rethink how we make disciples.  Someone once said, “sitting in church doesn’t make me more of a Christian than sitting in McDonald’s makes me more like a Big Mac.”  I know this is a cliché, but this has been our typical mode of operation.  This must change if we want to become a leader in sending out disciples again!

Check out the book, “4 Chair Discipling” by Dann Spader.  We are launching a Reset 2 Tour in which we hope to show and tell about how Jesus made disciples.  We will have an ICOM Pre-Con devoted to this idea of making disciples in Richmond called the “Muvement Seminar.” It will be held all day Thursday and is only a $25 fee for the full day (which includes a copy of Dann’s book!). Check the 2015 Sneak Peek & the ICOM website for more details! www.theicom.org  

Blog

David & Jim in India – Pt 2

After a great (I mean really stellar) night’s sleep (okay, face it…when you’ve operated on 3-4 hours of bad sleep while traveling for 40-ish hours…any bed for 8 hours seems like heaven), we were up for an early breakfast with Jeevan.  After breakfast we headed straight to the village Dudhya where we met Pastor Edwin Joseph and then were greeted by 40-50 believers in a room about 10’ x 12’ in size.  We were welcomed with leis and eager handshakes.  Dave shared the same message as last night to an audience of men, women and children.  Again, such a humbling experience to be among God’s people in a far away land.

ICOM in India

After Dave’s message we prayed with the small congregation and then took dozens of pictures.  We hopped back in the car and headed back to Indore.  Quick note: if you’re ever in Indore, let me recommend the Effotel!  Such a very nice, tidy place with a great staff!  I would stay there again in a heartbeat.

We had a little down time, so we caught up on email.  Brother Daniel Manorath (CICM) met up with us and we visited for a few minutes until Pastor Edwin arrived.  Pastor Edwin has begun four works in Indore and three surrounding villages with several hundred in attendance each week.  He came to the hotel at the request of Jeevan to share his testimony with us. I will share a brief recap of his story, but we will have a full-length video on the ICOM site (at some point after we get back to Indiana).  Brother Daniel provided the translation to his story that was at once both heart rending and inspiring.

Pastor Edwin’s story: Edwin Joseph came from a high-caste family of long-standing Hindu belief and practice.  He shared that after graduating from the university, he became involved in a political party which involved a great deal of partying.  He then went to medical school.  When he finished, he became a very successful doctor.  Part of his success entailed practicing medicine on the fringes of both Indian law and acceptable Indian society.  He performed abortions, treated STD’s and other sexual issues (often done in secret because of stigma), and prescribed medications for profit.  It was extremely lucrative and he became a very wealthy man.

Heart change: The change came when he was performing a late-term (8 mos. gestation) abortion on a 13 year-old girl.  Uh yeah…you read that correctly: a 13 year-old girl!  When the baby girl was delivered she was still alive.  As he held her in his hands, she opened her eyes and looked right at him.  As her life slipped from her tiny body he was deeply moved in his soul that this was wrong!  He suddenly realize that his whole life was wrong and he was heartbroken in a way that he could not explain.  It was then the Holy Spirit stepped in…Dr. Edwin’s nephew had become a Christian and took him to an evangelistic meeting.  Soon after he contacted Central India Christian Mission for correspondence courses on becoming a Christian and growing in Christ.  Our own Brother and host, Jeevan, oversees the discipling of these Christians from all over India.

It was through all this that led Dr. Edwin to become Pastor Edwin.  He said he had to leave medicine behind him.  His family was very angry because they wondered how they would live without the great wealth that his practice provided.  But soon his life-change became undeniable, and his wife and children joined him in this new faith in Christ Jesus.  Coincidentally, after leaving medicine he still had considerable wealth in liquid form (cash, gold, etc.).  While traveling from northern India, the suitcase that held all his “loot” was stolen from the top of a bus (where baggage is often stowed while traveling).  I know what you’re thinking, “Up on the roof?  What’s up with that!?!?”  

But his answer to it was simple, “That money was the fruit of a life rooted in sin.  I gave up that life, and God will provide our needs from now on.  I would rather not have food than to live off of the table of the Devil.”

ICOM in India
Pictured left to right: Pastor Edwin Joseph sharing his testimony through our translator Brother Daniel Manorath.

Can I just tell you how amazed at his faith we were? And we felt so humbled to be in the presence of a man who truly surrendered everything to his Lord and Savior! Wow. There are really no words…We prayed over Pastor Edwin and he left us to carry on with his day.

Have you ever had one of those moments when you feel the presence of the Holy Spirit is overwhelming in the room? That was this hour spent listening to Edwin. I’m still moved 12 hours later thinking of the life-changing work of our God in the lives of saints who surrender all. It was a true riches to rags story. And he wouldn’t change a thing! The irony that this man who had everything now needs a few hundred dollars for a scooter to allow him to travel between villages sharing the Gospel message of His Lord and Savior who gave him life and purpose.

The rest of the day has been pretty mundane. Head to the airport, wait on a flight that was eventually cancelled, take a much later flight to Mumbai with a late-night transfer back to Delhi for a full day tomorrow. You would think that we’d be beyond exhausted, but oddly enough I continue to bask in the glow from being in the presence of one of my new heroes. He wasn’t much to look at by Indian standards, but the light that burst from him was undeniable. It kind of reminds me of another man. A man who Rich Mullins (by way of the prophet Isaiah) called, “A man of no reputation.” I think you know who I mean…

So here’s to tomorrow! I can’t wait to see what He will bring to us tomorrow…
Blessings,

Jim & David

P.S. –  Now do you see why we do what we do?  Let’s make Jesus famous!

Blog

Why We Need To Think Like The Away Team

Many changes have taken place in our culture over the decades.  The church has lost Home field advantage.  It’s time to think like the “away” team.

Let me sustain what I mean:  In the 1950’s, people generally believed in a Creator God, the notion of sin, and in the truth that Jesus is God’s Son.  When people hear the gospel, many were ready to respond.

By the 1970’s the culture had become more liberal.  Moral positions once held by society at large began to be challenged and then crumble.

By the 1990’s, people were hardening against Christianity.  It was harder to get them to come to a crusade, or a special service, or to hear a visiting evangelist.  A number of objections to Christianity had to be removed before the gospel could even gain a hearing.  Author John Tice describes four of these objections: Christians are weird; Christianity is untrue; Christianity is irrelevant; and Christianity is intolerant.  Sometimes, though, if a Christian could adequately respond to these objections and provide answers to their intellectual issues, people would then sometimes be willing to give the gospel a hearing.

Today people are on a totally different path.  Our culture is now defined by tolerance and permissiveness.  People no longer engage with faith in order to accept or reject it.  They simply reject it out of hand.  The church is now the visiting team in our society.  The crowd is not cheering for us.  A new game plan is needed.

I’m excited about our Away Team theme!  The gospel never changes, but paradigms, approaches, and methods do.  In Richmond this fall, we will begin to look at a new playbook that reflects the changes in our world.  Welcome to the Away Team.

– Jim Tune, president of 2015 ICOM

 

Blog

David & Jim in India – Part 1

David & I left on Monday evening from Indianapolis, for a pretty amazing trip: Indiana to India to Ireland to Indiana again.  Sounds amazing, and it is!

First, it’s hard to leave our homes, our families and our wives for 12 days.  With that in mind, the first 36 hours went something like this: fly from Indy to Detroit (flight delayed for over an hour because of celebs on private planes tying up air traffic…thanks, Mitt!), Detroit to London, 10-hour layover in London, London to Delhi, and finally Delhi to Indore.  That was about 36 hours with little sleep, no shower and a whole lot of jet lag.

When we got to Indore, we found out that one of us was preaching at 7 p.m.  We shouldn’t have been shocked, but we were.  After showers and a brief nap, we drove about 15 minutes to a new church in Indore.  David preached a fantastic Gospel message to a group of about 250 brothers, sisters, kids and many ‘seekers’, that was well received. Jeevan Massey, our host with Central India Christian Mission, translated and commented afterward how the message touched him.  Right at the conclusion of David’s message, it began to rain and blow.  That was our cue to leave, but it was an amazing night with people of like faith!  We finally got a great night’s rest and woke up ready for a new day.

This morning we were up early, each got to FaceTime with our wives, ate breakfast at the hotel with Givan and then headed to a village about 20 minutes outside of town, for a meeting with 40-50 believers in a room that was roughly 10’ x 12’.

Can I say what an honor it was to be in the presence of God’s people so far away from home?

The hospitality shown to us has been humbling, and we have been most blessed by the fine people of Indore!  This afternoon, we fly back to Delhi in anticipation of meeting the next couple of days with ministers and church leaders from around India to plan the World Convention of the Christian Churches and Churches of Christ, which is set for January 2017 in Delhi.

Check back tomorrow for more about India!

Blessings,

Jim & David

big_ben
Big Ben and Parliament – London

Yep...we’re in London!
Yep…we’re in London!
David preaching to congregation in Indore, M.P. Wednesday night!
David preaching to congregation in Indore, M.P. Wednesday night!
Panorama of Indore at night from the roof of our hotel.
Panorama of Indore at night from the roof of our hotel.