Saturday, May 06, 2006

Random Thoughts

It's been a crazy week, so I apologize for being slow at posting this week. I've been out of pocket Monday through Thursday of this week in Dallas and Waco. Monday night, I was on a panel for our church called Frontline, where we did some equipping on how to use the DaVinci Code to help start spiritual conversations and move to the gospel. Afterwards, I took off with a couple other staff guys and we drove to Dallas to join the rest of the staff for the Texas Large Church forum - a two day time of discussions with staffs from other large churches in Texas. It was an interesting time of learning for me. I was able to catch up with a lot of buddies from DTS that I hadn't seen in a while who are on staff a different churches around the metroplex (Fellowship North, Stonebriar, Irving Bible, etc.). It was really great to see them. The forum splits up the staffs according to the areas they lead (all the junior high pastors together, small groups pastors together, etc.) to facilitate learning between churches. I started in the Leadership Development forum on Tuesday (which was too large a category to foster a whole lot of learning - none of the other churches are doing church planting, so I didn't really have peers at the other churches to learn from). But on Wednesday, our pastor invited me into the discussion group with the other senior pastors. A few general observations about what God taught me through the process...

1) While all senior leaders share similar gift mixes (good communicators, strong leaders, team builders, love people), they don't all share those gift mixes in the same order. In other words, I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of "A" gifts among the senior pastors of these churches - some felt like preaching was their "A" gift, others felt like leadership was their "A" gift, and so on.

2) All the senior pastors of these churches had different personalities. Again, I was encouraged by the fact that they were all real people with real struggles and real successes. But I was also encouraged by the diversity of the group; it was a good reminder to me of how the Holy Spirit uses all kinds of people in His Kingdom.

3) Training up leaders to replace ourselves and working with other churches are crucial components to seeing the influence of the gospel spread beyond the four walls of our individual church. Part of our struggle as independent, autonomous churches is our tendency to never truly collaborate with other like-minded churches.

Wednesday afternoon, I had an awesome time of catching up with former students and families in Ovilla - it was great to see how they are growing and being used by God in many different ways. I met with a couple that I am marrying in June to do final ceremony plans with them - I love doing ceremonies for students who went through our True Love Waits program and actually made it until marriage. Their wedding will be an awesome time of celebrating the goodness of God and challenging others to follow their example.

Thursday, I caught up with Barie at the farm in Waco (H&R), where we had some down time with the kids and I did some final sermon prep for Sunday; I'm preaching at HCBC Pflugerville tomorrow, and I would appreciate your prayers. I presented my sermon outline to the elders at PF on Friday morning at their regular meeting, and all went well, so I'm excited to share this message with the people at church tomorrow.

Song recommendation of the week - My Jesus by Todd Agnew - powerful message.

Interesting book I'm into this week - Confessions of a Reformission Rev by Driscoll - the story of how Mars Hill Church in Seattle got started and grew to where it is today. Favorite chapter title: Jesus, Our Offering was $137 and I Want to use It to Buy Bullets.

Have a great weekend - I'm off to play some golf this afternoon with a friend from the church - first round of golf in four months - can't wait!


Anonymous said...

Sounds like you had an interesting and busy week...Looking forward to seeing you and family on Sunday.
Would just anyone understand the book by Driscoll? Sounds intesting.
Love, Mom

Brent said...

Let's see...performing wedding ceremonies of students who went through True Love Waits. Very cool and I'm right there with you on how exciting that is...

Not to mention the whole idea of "replacing yourself." Keith, I'm all of sudden very thankful for the time we had together at TLC.