Saturday morning we were up early to go hear Doug Fields and Bo Bashers talk about youth ministry at an event sponsored by the Church Communication Network. It was great–CCN does these simulcasts from the Bay Area and they want a live studio audience. If you show up, you get in for free! There were probably twenty people in the audience.
It was interesting to see how well Doug worked the audience. He’s a real master at connecting with people. Before the satellite broadcast began he learned most everyone’s name, where the lead youth pastors were sitting, and made small talk with several people. He remembered names and called on people directly during his teaching. I was challenged to get better at that.
Side note: I don’t think Doug really liked me. He didn’t dislike me, either. It was just a weird vibe. Maybe it’s because I wasn’t dressed like a youth pastor; I mean, my shirt had buttons and everything! It might also have been related to the fact that when Paula and I showed up one of the directors asked us to sit in the center of the front row because everyone else was hanging back. His first impression of us walking out was probably that we were some sort of weird groupies: we were dressed up and sitting in the center of the front row. And then we gave him weird responses: he asked all the youth pastors to raise their hands (and we didn’t) and then he asked all the other church staff to raise their hands (we didn’t). I think we confused him.
Still, it was great material.
After that we drove up to Tehama, CA. It’s way north, and pretty remote. We were to speak at the local Assembly of God church Sunday morning, so the pastor put us up in a hotel overnight.
I have to say that Tehama AG has the nicest church building that we’ve been in so far. It’s the oldest AG church structure in America (built back in the 1800s) and it’s the oldest church in Northern California. Simply gorgeous.
After the morning service we drove down to Cupertino to speak at Abundant Life Assembly of God’s missions banquet. That was fun.
Then we came home. It was a long weekend (with over 500 miles on the car), but it was great!