Monday, October 20, 2008

Willow Group Life Highlights

I was so busy at the Willow Group Life Conference this week that I didn't get the time to blog. For whatever it's worth, my teammate Will Johnston blogged every session he attended. Very copious notes. You can check them out here.

Here were some of the highlights for me:
  • Hanging out with some of the brightest minds in small group ministry to compare notes on what's working, what's not working, and where we want to experiment. Thanks, Bill Search. And thanks for Simple Small Groups.
  • "Stop looking for best practices to implement and start praying bold prayers." - Bill Donahue.
  • Dinner with Laura Crosby from the Upper Room Community. Really amazing Italian food!
  • The arrival of my team-- I love those guys! Thanks Juliet, Leslie, Will, John, and Kim!
  • Walking into the Willow auditorium for mic check and feeling like I was entering the Colosseum to be tossed to the lions.
  • Lighting a pickle on stage.
  • Throwing moonpies at the breakout session. Sorry for hitting that light, Willow.
  • Bill Willits telling me he was proud of me after the main session. Wow. C'mon, you're one of my heroes, dude! And while I'm talking about heroes and encouragement, thanks to Rex Minor, Alan Danielson, Alan Pace, Russ Robinson, Dave Auda, Bill Donahue, Greg Bowman, and Dave Treat.
  • Meeting Frank Chiapperino, Cynthia Ware, and Mark Howell face to face. And seeing Mac Lake again.
  • Two girls running up to me on Thursday night, "You were in Steel Magnolias!" Whoa, worlds colliding.
  • Will Miller, Will Miller, Will Miller. I love you.
  • Eating pizza with my team at Giordano's and almost falling asleep from exhaustion.
  • Hanging out with the team from Bluefish.tv.
  • Eating Steak and Shake with my team and feeling so glad everything was over. It's all about food.
  • Miles McPherson. Whoa. 'Nuff said.
  • "Let me tell you what will kill your ministry and your small group, keeping it to yourself. Worry about pushing people, transparency, being transparent. Let me tell you what won’t kill your ministry. Doing exactly what God told you to do."- Miles McPherson

5 Comments:

At 12:00 PM, OpenID stevecorn said...

Question Heather - in your last quote you said that Miles said transparency will kill your small group ministry. This is opposite of what I've always thought and learned in other places. I thought small groups was the place people should feel like they can be vulnerable and transparent? Can you explain?

 
At 12:41 PM, Blogger Heather Z said...

I think he was saying that transparency is what we NEED to do. I think he's saying that keeping it to yourself will kill the group. We need to instead be concerned about pushing people, being transparent, but not keeping it there. We need to take the growth that comes from transparency and use that as a launching pad to reach out to others in our community that are hurting from the same things that have hurt us.

For whatever its worth, inappropriate transparency too early in the life of a group CAN kill community. I think the leader has to set the bar for the level of transparency that happens in groups.

 
At 1:28 PM, Blogger Roy said...

I just want to take a moment and encourage you, I greatly enjoyed your pre-conference session and the humor and the tempo of your session in the main room. Thank you for turning me on to the thing that are happening at NCC. Also the short cut to Will's notes

 
At 2:57 PM, Blogger Raquel Jarabek said...

Just thought I'd let you know that we are part of the Upper Room in Edina, MN. We decided to that 'our' community. We talked with Laura Crosby recently and she told us that her daughter goes to NCC. It was nice that you were able to have lunch with her. We are so excited and encouraged to be part of a great community serving Christ together in the Minneapolis area.

 
At 3:40 PM, Anonymous Rick said...

Heather, you were awesome at the conference, and the pickle thing was very cool too, although you did have some technical difficulties with that.

 

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