LifeServe Conference in Loveland, CO ~ 9/30-10/2

2 10 2009

So I’ve ventured out to Colorado, for the LifeServe conference, all on my lonesome. Seriously now. This is a huge deal for me to go somewhere on my own, especially where there is no one in particular that I’m meeting. I’m secretly (but no longer secretly) petrified of the thought of going places on my own. I think I’ve only ever been to one movie by myself in my entire life. And I guess I went to Trinity Lutheran College (then LBI) not knowing anyone. I also visited Fuller Theological Seminary in Pasadena,CA on my own. Ventured to a few youth ministry network meetings and PResbyterian Christian educator. Met my original playgroup people online and met them at a mall. But for all of these (except Fuller) I had spoken with or emailed/twittered, with someone that I would meet up with where-ever I was going. Not here. Just paid the money, bought the plane ticket and showed up. Gutsy for me. I’m sure there are several single women thinking I’m spoiled. ‘Tis true. I just haven’t been given the opportunity I guess. And I’ve probably usually avoided it if I was.Anyways, I really felt a deep desire to attend this conference and where the spirit leads I shall follow. So I did.

It is a conference that I didn’t really learn about until a little under a month ago and nobody else I know had ever heard of it. I ended up hitch hiking one night (not intentionally) because I had to register at a hotel next to the conference hotel (Embassy Suites was booked when I finally registered so I’m staying at the Holiday Inn Express. The bummer – there is no taxi/cab, bus or shuttle service here – except for Mainly, I discovered because it is the first of it’s kind. LifeServe is sponsored by Group Publishing, Church Volunteer Central, and the Externally Focused Network.

So far I’m the only conference participant I know from Seattle. I’ve met a few folks from Oregon, the Kid Check rep from Boise (a former exec. pastor of a Church in Seattle, who recognized me from Twitter and the Northwest Ministry Conference). also there is a World Vision rep here from the Federal Way,WA office. So we chatted a little bit.

Most people seem to be from megachurches that either have worship congregations sizes of 1000+ people or church plants with 50 or less members that are spurred off the megachurches. I’ve met a handful of others in churches 300 members or less. Our Lake City Presbyterian is in the 150 worshiping attendance zone. The great thing is every church, no matter what the size can always benefit from this conference in the sense that there are lay (volunteer/non-ordained) folks to invite into ministry who need to be embraced, equipped, empowered, and encouraged. That is what this conference is about… equipping ourselves to equip others. That is what I’ve been wanting to work on lately when it comes to professional development for my Faith Formation ministry. (Coordinating ministries for children, youth, adults, and families).

I love it because there is finally a conference for me and what I do. It is not just for children’s ministers, not just for youth pastors, not just for people equipping Sunday school teachers… it is for everyone who is involved in equipping volunteer leaders for ministry.. and that is my role. I do get to teach and I go on retreats with youth, but primarily I am around to engage others in taking ownership of these ministries at LCPC.

In addition to equipping the conference is about Externally focused ministry – this means equipping children,youth, and adults to live a life of ministry… not just serving one another in the church but serving neighbors in their community. Did you know that when you volunteer for something outside the church because you are passionate that you are ministering to others? If you are sharing love to better others, and especially because you know you are loved by Jesus and have compassion for others then that is your ministry.

There is SO much more I want to blog about — speakers, workshops, other ministers I’ve been meeting up with for meals etc. I’m glad God brought me here. My brain is very tired though and I must sleep. More to come. 🙂

~L

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