Wow! What a conference, when I finally get my head around everything I’ve heard over the past few days I’ll update this entry with some thoughts. For now some photos!
The church in Europe is alive
This might sound a funny thing to say, but so often I hear that church and Christianity are dying out. But, as I stood in one of the largest arenas in the country, with passionate Christians of all ages (though a clear majority younger) who believe in Jesus, in the importance of the Bible and the church, I saw passion and as I looked around I saw hope for the world which needs Jesus.
I love the Bible!
There were some incredibly creative presentations of Scripture before and during every session. It really reminded me just how much I love the Bible; especially Elijah. Elijah has always resonated with me and the use of sound/lights/pyrotechnics to create the hurricane, earthquake and fire of 1 Kings 19:11-13 was an incredible way to start the conference.
The Seventh Hand
Jentzen Franklin brought a couple of amazing words to the conference, but his reflection on Ezekiel 43 blew my mind. The basic take home point – I bring my bit but I need God’s hand to bless it. God created us and we reflect him through our creativity.
I am a leader…
I’ve got to be honest, I am often told that I’m a leader in my job and I shy away or flat out deny it. However, I was reminded many, many times that I am a leader. Gary Clarke and Craig Groeschel spoke on leadership during an incredible Thursday afternoon session. Still, I was thinking, “well that’s for others, not me”. That was until Carl Lentz stood up on Friday night and addressed the “leaders in the room who are still hiding”. Ok, got the message.
I like being able to sing loudly and without anyone hearing!
The music of Hillsong is internationally renown, and I love the mixture of reflective, theological lyrics and eclectic worship sounds. Now, I love singing loudly and putting everything into it! This doesn’t always work when stood in my normal Sunday church, I’m not in the habit of putting others off their worship, and so being in an environment that is noisy enough to let myself go is really refreshing.
Always have a notebook and a spare pen. Then make space.
The first time I went to Hillsong Conference I really wanted to focus on the speakers and be fully immersed so I thought to have a pen and paper would get in the way. I was wrong. With twenty or so speakers in three days, there is far too much to process during the short amount of time. Writing things down and finding some space afterwards has been a hugely important in what I take away.
There are many phenomenal people, doing lots of phenomenal work!
There were a few sessions where lots of speakers had shorter and more interactive slots and it worked amazingly. The ways the thoughts aligned, the messages people brought and the way they shared what they were doing. I was also really impressed with the work that Hillsong and Compassion are doing together changing lives of island communities for the better.
I need these times
We all need times to give and times to be filled up. Pretty sure I’ve preached that myself a few times over the years. Yet, I really noticed this year what an important and good rhythm attending Hillsong conference has been for me.
There is more.
Every year conference gets better. Next year’s conference is entitled “There is more.” I’m already signed up! You can sign up here.