Last day of the Echo Conference. Went up with three Bethel staffers (communications, family/downtown campus and worship/downtown campus). Since there’s so much stuff packed into a the days, breaking up the blogging into sections is the only way to go.
Not as much to report for the last day. The morning started with roundtable discussions focused on 8-10 subjects. Most of them were technical in nature, so I hung out and talked with some friends. Breakout session was kinda’ the same deal, nothing of interest. I called my wife and kids, worked a little, and waited for the final worship session.
Worship was led by Robbie Seay and Watermark’s guy, Jon Abel. It was a good set. Robbie’s stuff was great and I dug hearing Jon sing live. They ended with a song called “This Is Not The End” that had some really great verses. Thinking it may be one of Jon’s songs?
The speaker was Matt Chandler. This was my first time to see him live. He did a great job as always, but he’s a pretty unique figure in the Evangelical world. Here are a few things I noticed.
- Chandler says a lot of great stuff. He also says a lot of normal stuff that’s pretty standard and yet 3,000 people applaud or sigh or give an “amen.” Kinda’ weird to see in person.
- He was the only main session speaker to actually open God’s Word and read from it. Jon Acuff quickly referenced a passage and Donald Miller might have said “in the Bible,” but Matt Chandler is the only guy who read from it. In my book, he wins.
- As his message drew to a close, I realized that he had approached the notion of the Gospel in every day life (and ministry) in a way I’d never heard before. This is going to sound awful, but listen to very many Reformed worship leaders and speakers, and you get the sense that “The Gospel” is an easy answer to them. They give a lot of information about the Gospel – what it is, what it does – but Chandler came from a completely different perspective. He used his gift to paint a very clear picture about what happens in the absence of the Gospel. In fact, I’d say he used the bulk of his creativity helping us identify our proneness to drift from God instead of trying to convince what the Gospel was.
We hit Twisted Root for lunch on the way out. Not my idea, believe it or not. (Of course, I didn’t mind going!) Thanks for following these this week. On Monday, I’ll do a broader recap of what worked and didn’t when applied to my little world.