Conference Thoughts

I'm in the second day of The Gospel Coalition. It’s been great. If you are thinking it’s weird that a Methodist would attend this primarily Reformed event, you'd be right: it is weird. (I did hang out with a seminary classmate and fellow UM pastor and one other UM pastor here so I'm not alone.) If you're wondering why I would come to worship and learn with this bunch, I've been trying to articulate why I'm drawn to this crowd and it comes down to this – when I hear or read these people I almost always am drawn to both worship Jesus and desire Jesus. My heart cannot say that about 97% of what I read in my own tradition. I experience this when I read Wesley but very few others after him have inspired such devotion to Jesus. That leaves me with two items to develop and write about for the future 1. How to encourage theology inspired doxology in our tribe and 2. How to encourage people to write in such a way as to inspire these potential authors.

I have received so much at this conference, including free books(!!!), but the very best thing has been meeting some people I've only previously known on-line. This post by Steve McCoy sums up most of what I've been thinking. I have spent time with two pastors from my area who I have met before. I got to tell Jared Wilson that God is using his Gospel Wakefulness talks in a powerful way in my heart and meet his lovely wife who is genuinely sweet, a rare quality. I also got to overhear Jared’s friend, Ray Ortlund, tell a man “You really need to get to know Jared Wilson if you're interested in this.” and then give the blog address to this dude which I know was a beautiful compliment that Jared didn’t get to hear but I did and teared up. I got to meet the aforementioned Steve McCoy and Joe Thorn who are going to be the Matthau and Lemon of the church one day. Oh, and I got to eat dinner at the same table as my favorite productivity blogger, Matt Perman.

I'll have more to write when I return, but that’s what I find spinning around in my head and heart and I'm grateful to God for the opportunity to be here.