Exponential Top 6 (and Bottom 1)
#6: Vince Antonucci talking about greeters.
Who has designated greeters when you walk in? Walmart does. Do greeters who have to be friendly really make anyone feel welcome? It’s important to have friendly people available for people who want to engage (and I’d add it would be good if we’re all friendly toward people we haven’t seen before), but greeter as a job is a little weird. Instead, think about the places where you feel welcome. Why? What can you learn from that?
#5: Dave Gibbons and his vision of a large woman.
Dave Gibbons was sharing about the way the Holy Spirit sometimes breaks in when we learn to listen to him. He was in a cab, wanting to keep to himself, when God started giving him visions to engage the cab driver. One of the first things he saw was a very large woman. He hesitantly asked the cab driver, “I don’t know how to say this, but is there a large woman in your life?” It was good hearing a story of how God used Dave during a time where he really didn’t want to say anything. It’s worth being obedient to God.
#4: Danielle Strickland
I’d never heard her speak before, but she was awesome. I was deeply struck by her challenge to really see people. Not to stereotype them or think we know them, but to view every person as a unique person who is loved by God and is likely to surprise us if we get to know them. It seems simple, but the more I consider what it takes to really see people like that, the more I am convinced it is an immense challenge. (She was really funny too, which is always an added bonus.)
#3: Michael Frost and the questionable life.
Michael shared about what it means to live a missional life (and some of the ways that word has become misused). He said that for those who are not gifted supernaturally as evangelists, we should be living lives so deeply influenced by the values of the kingdom of God that we are regularly questioned about why we are the way we are (living a questionable life). And when that happens we need to be able to talk about Jesus like he matters. He has a free ebook that talks about this and outlines five practices of truly missional people.
I can’t find the spoken word he did at Exponential online, but here’s one from another conference.
#1: Oscar Muriu.
I have failed to be influenced by non-Western Christians, but Mr. Muriu’s talk helped me understand in no uncertain terms that I need to be. He was someone outside the incessant consumerism and individualism I swim in and he spoke like it. “Is what you’re living for worth Christ dying for?” And he backed that up with twenty minutes of biblical, Spirit-filled conviction and exhortation. Powerful. Powerful. I just hope I and many others who were there do more with it than clapping for him when he was done.
#-1: Not adjusting the program.
After Mr. Muriu’s powerful and convicting talk, they went right into a skit that was supposed to be funny about photo-bombing. I wish someone would have had the wisdom/courage to change the program and skip it. I know that would be immensely hard with all the planning and all the people it takes to pull off a program like this one. I also know I probably wouldn’t have the guts to call an audible in that situation, but I hope I can become the kind of person who would.