This past week has been filled with inspiration and encouragement as well as a few surprises. Leigh-Ann and I came to MN, dropped our kids off at my parent house on Monday, and then left for a conference on creating options for discipleship in the urban core.
We stayed on a college campus which brought back quite a few memories :). Dorm mattresses…flat carpet…dining hall food…a lot of walking…and a chance to date Leigh-Ann again.
We had a few surprises, such as a raccoon jumping out in the trail in front of us and Leigh-Ann had a wild turkey almost land on her shoulder. We shared a lot of laughs and received a lot of information.
The conference was pretty much amazing.
We heard excellent speakers share on the topics of racism, discipleship, re-distribution, reconciliation, redemption and urban ministry. We also learned the difference between a Latino and Anglo birthday party–you can check it out here: http://www.hlic.org/cot2014
We were moved with the worship and inspired by so much commitment that was exemplified. One pastor from New York who left a career as an electrical engineer to become a pastor of a struggling city church shared with a smile on his face and tears running down his cheeks that this was his reasonable service.
Another pastor from Detroit challenged us to keep the main thing the main thing in the shadow of blighted neighborhoods and angry teenagers.
Another woman with a graduate degree in drama from Yale shared poetically and powerfully about the history and international impact of discrimination on the church.
There are far too many others to describe in this email, however my favorite was an 84 year old, son of a sharecropper, who fired off truth observed from a lifetime of ministry experience. He shared a curriculum for discipleship in an urban context. He was incredibly authentic and brought the house down when he said he didn’t care what any of us thought of him…he said, “I’m 84!”
He also made this point, “Faith is born somewhere between hearing the word and obeying it…obedience makes faith come alive.”
Which brings me to my point…this Sunday Pastor Dave Robinson will be sharing a sermon from 2 Corinthians 4 about the giant of walking by sight.
There is much more to come on this topic of faith, and you will definitely want to be at New Life at10:45am on Sunday to hear more.
I hope you have a great evening!