Today I’m heading across the street (384 Talbot Ave) to participate in a conference with 25,000 young adults in Kansas City! No, I haven’t left the friendly Manitoba area code but, thanks to internet technology and a borrowed sound system from Winnipeg Centre Vineyard – I’ll join with some friends (and anyone else interested) for worship and inspiration.
A number of years ago I went to Willow Creek for their Leadership Summit and I thought that I could never repeat that experience without being there live – I was wrong. Over the last decade I’ve attended the Leadership Summit by videocast several times and had a God-encountering time. Last year, we did the same with OneThing – the annual young adults conference from International House of Prayer (IHOP.org).
The conference by video is a great way to take in this experience – here’s a list of things I’m looking forward to starting at 2pm!
1. The teaching is solidly Jesus focused – this isn’t a “How to” conference, it’s a “Who to” conference. Many of our friends who don’t share our faith, have few problems with our Jesus, it’s the way we don’t follow him that causes many of the problems.
2. We get the whole conference experience! We’ll stand when they stand, pray when they pray, take offerings and have a prayer ministry team on site. Often, the first minute or 2 are uncomfortable but then we get into it and have a great experience.
3. There will be time for everyone to get prayed for. A few years ago, a friend of mine encouraged me to get prayed for as often as I can – weekly isn’t too often but many of us have gone a lot longer. This past month I met a pastor at a Christmas party who shared his exhaustion. When I offered to pray for him he got so excited that he went, loudly, calling for his wife so they could both prayed for. If it’s been a while, come, you’ll get some!
4. It takes longer to get the courage to go for prayer than it does to get to the front of the conference floor. With 25,000 people in a big room, it can take a long time to get to the front – camping out early and pushing through. In our setting, you can get to front in 10 seconds or less.
5. Watching with friends away from your living room removes many distractions. The web link is free and available to everyone – watch at home if must, but leave all your chores and comforts behind so you can concentrate and hear the Spirit more clearly.
6. It’s family friendly – bring your kids and play on the floor. My kids get dragged along to lots of things, this included. If you’re not sure what your kids will do, join us and they’ll be in good company.
7. Many people get spirited on New Years Eve, we get Holy Spirited! The apostle Paul encouraged us to not be filled with wine but to be filled with the Holy Spirit. It’s not a scary proposition, it’s the right of every believer to enjoy the closeness of the Holy Spirit. He wants us to know what he thinks of us, he wants to know where we can join him in his work.
8. The conversations before and after the sessions help me to commit to what I felt God inviting me to. I’m not interested in believing something that I won’t follow through on. If I believe it, I want to do it. If God is speaking to me, I want to listen and follow. Talking to others about it helps move things from my head to my heart and from my heart to my hands and feet.
9. It’s free! Two words that warm the heart of every Manitoban.
I hope you’ll consider joining us for any or all of the sessions. The conference starts at 2pm Wednesday December 28th and goes through to midnight on New Years Eve (we’ll have a pizza party). All sessions are at 9am, 2pm and 7pm.
What’s your experience with video conferencing and the OneThing conference? Anyone been onsite at Kansas City for this? I’d love to hear about your experience.