March 1, 2012

On the Verge...

These last 2 days I've been at the Verge Conference in Austin. I've been to a LOT of conferences, and this one is more of a gathering of pastors, leaders, and thinkers, coming together to hash out how we more effectively and biblically reach the lost, make disciples, and lead the Church. I wanted to share a few highlights of some of the things that have challenged me.

"The God of the Universe came into the neighborhood for 30 years...& no one noticed." Are we willing to love and impact the lives of others without being noticed or elevated? - Alan Hirsch

"80% of all people will act their way into a new way of thinking & behaving. If we can get 17-18(20)% of the people to change, almost everyone else will follow. We must focus on the 20%." - Dave Ferguson

Kevin Peck (Lead Pastor at Austin Stone Community Church) echoed Ferguson's statement today: "Jesus spent time with the few to reach the many. So why do we spend so much time on the many to reach the few?" He went on to challenge that 2 things we know will never change: the message and truth of the Gospel (&) the fact that Jesus has not changed His plan to use discipleship as His method and plan for salvation. We have to return to the place of seeing the value in investing in the few. And to echo Hugh Halter (and a post I wrote last week), we should invest in the few who are hungry to be invested in.

To be honest, I'm not sure anyone challenged me - and dropped a bomb on the room - quite like Jen Hatmaker did. Here are some snapshots of what Jen said:
  • Consumerism is a cancer to building actual missional community
  • If we developed a church bent on feeding the saved, we will continue to reach Christians who want more and more of the same
  • If we're drowning in a sea of consumerism in our church, we have to look at the scaffolding we've built
  • Whatever we want our people to do, we must do first!
My head may explode. More to come....

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