arrived in sydney (via san francisco and aukland) late thursday morning. it’s thursday evening as i’m writing this, which is weird, as it’s only wednesday night in the u.s.
i’ll try to post impressions each day while i’m here.
i met up with the lifeteen folk at the hotel. man, they are just such wonderful people. i feel like there are some similarities in the journey they’ve been on over the last few years, and the journey ys and i have been on. we had to figure out how to move beyond a wonderful and charismatic founder, and so did they. we were often perceived as arrogant (and often were), and had to move to more of a place of humility and serving youth workers, rather than thinking we had the answer to everything and were god’s gift to youth ministry; lifeteen has gone through the same kind of change. but the thing is, when i’m around these people, i’m blown away by their humility, graciousness and love. i aspire to be more like them. god’s spirit is so evident in their lives, in every conversation. i often feel like a spiritual lightweight around them. this is good — it puts me in a learning posture, open to what god can teach me and do in me.
we walked down to the sydney harbor and had lunch at an outdoor spot. thousands of teenagers from around the world are everywhere, and it’s just so cool. the pope was arriving by boat in sydney harbor around that time, but we didn’t stay for that, as we had to head back for the load in and sound check for the lifeteen worship night tonite (it’s a eucharistic adoration — i blogged about being a part of one of these at the lifeteen conference a few weeks back). my friend matt maher is leading worship, and lifeteen’s president, randy raus, is speaking. the event is in an arena that holds 10,000, and it’s sold out. should be an amazing evening, as 10,000 teens from around the world worship god together. i’m pumped to be here, and it’s cool to not have a role, so i just get to participate.