Pepperdine 2011

I was blessed to be able to attend the Pepperdine Bible Lectures last week. Jerry Rushford organized an amazing lectureship where God was certainly glorified. The only thing more beautiful than the scenery was the people. I cannot tell you how many amazing people were there and how many of them encouraged me through the classes and conversations. It was great catching up with so many and meeting so many others. Thanks to everyone who supported our class on ministering to 20s & 30s. I hope it was a blessing to many. Also, I was amazed at how many young guys were speaking out there. It really gives a sense of hope to see God using people young and old to advance His kingdom.

I probably shouldn’t start mentioning names as there were so many who encouraged me this past week but I guess I will anyway. There were three men who really helped me out this week, one young and two slightly past being young: Josh Graves, Randy Harris and Mike Cope. Josh Graves had a tremendous keynote and classes. I had never met Josh and was greatly blessed by how God used him this past week. His sermon on the mount material was accurate and applicable. Randy’s insights and delivery are always great. I was blessed by his classes, his panel discussions, and his new book Soul Work. I would encourage all of you guys to read this book. I read it on the plane on the way back and I think I am going to read it again. He talks a lot about what he learned from his time with hermits…exciting stuff for sure! The two biggest blessings in this book for me were his writing on humility and contemplative prayer. Mike Cope’s final class about what he learned from raising his daughter Megan nearly brought me to tears. I just didn’t see it coming. His class  was like an emotional ambush, in a good way. I am going to have to get a copy of his new book too.

If you haven’t ever been to Pepperdine I would encourage you to make the trip next year!

Handout – Where are all the 20 & 30 Somethings? Pepperdine 2011

In case we run out of copies or people don’t get one, here are the handouts for our 2 sessions at Pepperdine this week.

Download the handouts here

Pepperdine Bible Lectures 2011

The blog will probably be pretty quiet this week. I am going to be heading out for Pepperdine on Monday and I plan on absorbing as much as I can. In all likelihood I will throw some helpful things up via twitter through the week. I am going to be presenting two classes with Eric Brown entitled, “Where have all the 20s & 30s gone?: Practical ministry to a missing generation.” (Thursday and Friday at 8:30)
Thursday –  Who they are, what they value/believe that has contributed to their departure from many congregations (the growing culture gap)
Friday – How to bridge the gap and reach out to this missing generation in ways that are meaningful and effective. It is hard to make disciples of people who don’t know (or even like).

I will also be doing a panel discussion on Thursday at 9:45 called, “Where are we going? A Conversation with Young Ministers on the Changing Nature of Church and Ministry”

If you are going this year I hope to see you there! If you want some good reading this week have a read through the Gospel of John 🙂

Coming to the Pepperdine Bible Lectures? A Preemptive Invitation to Our Class

If you will be in Malibu for the Bible Lectures I want to invite you to the two classes Eric Brown and I will be teaching on “Where are all the 20s & 30s?: Practical Ministry to a Missing Generation.” In my opinion it doesn’t get any more relevant than that, otherwise we would teach on something else! Whenever you are teaching at something like this the natural tendency is to look at the program and see who else is teaching at the same time to see who people will be picking between. Since our lineup of “competition” includes: Jim Martin, Rick Atchley, Joe Beam, Earl Lavender, Phil Ware, Keith Lancaster, Mark Parker, Tim Spivey and Tom Olbricht I figured I better do a preemptive blog strike in order to get the word out on where to do just so you don’t get confused and go to one of those other phenomenal communicators. You know you have already heard all those guys before, right?

So what are we going to be talking about? We are going to spend the first session talking shop on who these 20s & 30s are, their worldview, why the are missing/why we aren’t reaching them, and the reason for the generation gap. I really believe Eric and I have made some credible connections in this material that no one else is making. The second session will be crazy practical covering hands on steps that congregations can take to minister to this group as effectively as possible. This comes from our own ministry to this age. We are still working through a few things but we will share what we have done, why, what has worked, what hasn’t, why, and how to really reach out to this group to meet them where they are rather than just tweaking a few things in order to be more appealing to them. There are many underlying issues to understand (session 1) before you can understand what is meaningful to them and how to go about doing it in a way that reaches them, that is glorifying to God and respectful of scripture (session 2).

Now, we aren’t shooting in the dark here or just reciting things we have heard other people say. We figure anyone coming to this class has read some of the same books we have. This will be fresh, informative and practical. We will also have plenty of handouts for the material and resources we won’t have time to mention. So if you are going to the lectures feel free to stop in. If I don’t see you in the class, I hope to catch you out there!

Session 1 – Thursday at 8:30am (AC 263)

Session 2 – Friday at 8:30 (AC 263)