Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Monday Class Highlights from Lipscomb Summer Celebration

Here are a few of my Monday highlights from Lipscomb Summer Celebration class sessions.

8:10am - "Confident Leadership in Challenging Times" - President Lowry
     Leaders have:
  • a sense of vision
    • This is what separates leadership from management. 
  • a sense of profound credibility
    • This is not developed from your strengths, but from your weaknesses. 
    • This is developed out of who you really are. 
  • an understanding of people and how they work
    • Understand the brain's core functions progression through protection - feelings - analyzation.  
  • persistence
    • Terry Waite - "You can break my body and bend my mind, but you can't take my soul."
  • the ability to collaborate
    • Even God told Moses, "The load is too great, you can't do it alone." (paraphrase of Numbers 11).  
9:10am - "Friendship to Membership to Discipleship" - Buddy Bell
  • God intends churches to be deep AND wide, it's not an either/or thing. 
  • Their church had an unexpected great success with a required three hour membership class/luncheon where they expressly laid out the expectations the elders had for anyone to be members.  These expectations were simple as they expected people to attend worship (Loving God), attend a small group (Loving each other), and participate in at least one ministry (Loving our neighbors). These expectations were a challenge early on, but now five years later, the church is seeing much more health among it's new members. 
12:00pm - Adoption Networking Luncheon - Jason & Megan Thompson
  • There currently exists no major Church of Christ adoption organization.  
  • The stories people shared definitely describe evidence of God's providential working in the lives of the fatherless. 
  • Four recommended resources in the area are Agape, Catholic Charities, Touch of Life, and the Empower to Connect Conference. 
  • One recommended reading resource is The Connected Child
2:00pm - Preacher Lab "Racial Diversity in the church" - David Fleer & Jerry Taylor
  • Fleer and Taylor believe that our still existing racial segregation is a spiritual matter and shows a lack of our understanding of communal salvation.  We tend to
    focus solely on individual salvation.  
  • While our leaders didn't identify resources that are currently integrating multiple races into the leadership models, I pointed to two such resources.  The current public education system and the Concord Street Church of Christ in Orlando, FL.  
  • Our leaders gave one practical strategy of beginning with inviting racial diversity into our homes and at our dinner tables. 
  • I personally noted that the multitude spends quite a bit of time describing the problem and our personal theories why it exists, but the offerings of solutions and practical strategies are far less developed.  Practical strategies and resources of existing successful implementation were the primary questions that remain largely unanswered at this time.
  • What can we do in Washington Church of Christ to be more racially diverse representing better the population of Washington, In and surrounding areas?  These are questions we should be asking in leadership.  
3:00pm - Hospitality - Carl McKelvey
  • Do not underestimate the value of hospitality today. 
  • The greatest hospitality you can show is to your own children and grandchildren in your home as use that hospitality to guide them in a life with Christ. (Josh 1:8 & Deut 6:7)

10:15am - The young lady with the head covering
     I had the blessing of witnessing a discreet but sweet act of humbleness before God from the young lady sitting in front of me during singing.  Before the opening song, she slipped on a small, black, inconspicuous covering over her head. After the closing prayer she subtly removed it.  This was an almost unnoticeable act as she was so careful not to draw attention to herself. It's a far cry from the big ornate church hats that women often adorned in the previous century. I was very thankful to witness this simple act of obedience and humbleness.
     As we left, I asked the young lady if she did that in observation of Paul's writings in 1 Corinthians 11.  When she confirmed my theory, I thanked her for her simple submission.  She in turn thanked me for not treating her like a weirdo and for being willing to talk openly and kindly with her about what has often been the awkward and avoided "elephant" in the room with some people.
     While my wife doesn't practice this herself, we both can appreciate a heart dedicated to honoring God, even if the honoring practice is different from ours.   We also smiled when we found out she was a Hoosier too.  God is good to us.
Here's a short youtube clip I took of this humble act of honoring God.

Ashley and I are taking notes and sharing them here for the primary purpose of benefiting our church family at Washington Church of Christ, yet we won't limit God to just using these insights there.  May they be a blessing to all who read them.  Feel free to ask us questions about anything in our Lipscomb Summer Celebration notes.   

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