general sessions

we don’t tell the general session speakers at the national youth workers conventions what to speak about. all we tell them is that we don’t want it to be ‘training’ — we want them to speak to the youth workers soul. so it’s amazing when multiple sessions seem to fit together like they were planned.

frankly, if we’d tried to plan this, it wouldn’t be such a beautiful fit. clearly, it’s a god-planning thing.

like this:

session 1, friday afternoon: kenda dean talked about learning theology from our students, allowing god to speak to us through our students. i don’t know that she mentioned ‘humility’, but it was a clear theme.

[i missed efrem smith’s message friday night.]

session 3, saturday morning: matthew barnett talked about god defining success for us, and our only commitment being to bless those around us. it was a talk about humility and being broken of arrogance.

session 4, saturday evening: mike pilavachi talked about being humbled.

session 5, sunday morning: shane claiborne talked about living out our faith completely, giving everything we have in the pursuit of loving others.

[i missed philip yancey’s talk this afternoon.]

session 7, monday morning (later today): i’m talking about arrogance and humility in youth ministry.

a mainline united methodist ivy league professor, an assemblies of god pastor, a british charismatic anglican youth ministry leader, an urban missionary, and me. somehow all bringing different perspectives on the same theme. i just love that. it’s got god fingerprints all over it.

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6 thoughts on “general sessions”

  1. I can not think another place in God’s creation other than heaven where so many different POVs are spotlighted.

  2. it’s so funny that you say that. i was just writing up my thoughts on the general session speakers and said the exact same thing. i personally felt like god was targeting me personally or something.
    the sum of their messages just tore me to bits. during lunch (with some youth workers i met at the soul shaper retreat) after one session i must have looked really overwhelmed, cause one of them said “dude, are you ok?” and i “no, not really!”

    thanks for the conference this year. like always, it really messed my life up pretty bad, in a way that only god can.

  3. Thanks for a wonderful conference! It was the first time I ever went to a YS event. I confess I came into the conference a bit beaten down by life with a heart getting hardened. Each session in a different way was like God taking a hammer to chip away. God’s fingerprints indeed!

  4. Just home – took an extra day to enjoy the beach – no one here can believe I actually swam in the ocean yesterday.

    Thank Jeannie for a great time of prayer!

    Mostly, thank you for summing up in the closing session what God had been speaking to me for the previous couple of days. I have been struggling with an issue of something a lot of people have been affirming in my life but unfortunately not the leadership of the church. The volunteers I brought with me told me the same thing others have been saying. What I realized while at the convention is that I can get upset at what the elders don’t see or I can live a life of humility and trust that God knows what is best and when his time is. It is not easy but I have much more peace than if I try to win my “rights.”

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