Deep, Deep Ocean

It’s about 2 pm on Friday…I think. My body is in the ultimate state of confusion at the moment. It’s been taken to Atlanta and back, then forced to stay up all sorts of odd hours, and then put in situations where it wasn’t allowed to fall asleep (such as driving back forth from the Metroplex). There are forces of exhaustion that are trying to overtake the excitment about the things I saw and heard at the Orange Conference.
My mind is swimming in the ocean of ideas I’ve had since we got back from Atlanta, and it is a deep, deep ocean. I couldn’t even pinpoint exactly what all has been going through my mind. Thoughts are racing about small groups, and Sunday School, and curriculums, and worship, and dreams, and what story I am playing out right now. If I had to pick the best thing I learned from Orange, I would say that I am totally appreciative of the environment that I get to do ministry right now.
Here’s what I mean: I have been in situations that are not conducive at all to collaboration. Staff who are more concerned with their own well being above all else. Teams that are fractured. Ultimately, ministry is hindered. Don’t get me wrong, FBC Athens isn’t a utopia where all the staff members get together 3 times a week to watch Grey’s Anatomy and talk about our feelings. But I do think we have some building blocks that will be an immense help as we try to re-activate the family as a place of discipleship.
First, we have a pastor who is committed to working with families. We don’t have to spend time convincing him that the church has got to do a better job. Second, we have a children’s and student minister that actually like each other. I like Cindy. She’s fun to work with, does a good job, and she can put up with all of the times that I make fun of her. And third, we have a ton of talented people who are ready to do whatever it takes to push ahead into unexplored territory.
Here’s to taking some of the Orange ideas, and actually seeing them fleshed out.

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