Well after finally getting into the room and cranking the AC up, I caught up on some email, took a shower to wash the air travel off of me, and took a nap. I had a headache. My alarm went off and I got up read to go to the Journey Bible Class at Granger. The headache was still there. And all I’d had to eat for the day was a muffin at 4:30am and cheese & crackers with Reese’s Pbutter cups at the airport. But I found some popcorn in the lobby as I left.
Without any wheels yet, I walked to the church. It is only a half mile. I kept looking for a BIG church building I’d see from a distance. But I didn’t. Which was cool. But the parking lot was filling and people were all filing in towards the front door. As I got there, immediately on my right was Connection Cafe, a little coffee bar and then some seating on the right as well. A nice lady w/ a nametag was saying to everyone at once, “I know it doesn’t look normal, but adults are taking the kids to their rooms!” I don’t think I looked lost, but anyway.
There were lots of people w/o being crowded.
I went to Bob Laurent‘s class he was teaching. It was on The Radical Jesus [I’ll post the notes in the next entry]. At first I didn’t clue into who Bob Laurent is. But he spoke at a youth weekend I was a part of back in 1990. I liked him a lot back then, and 18 years later I still liked his teaching. He’s pretty passionate. And there were LOTS of people there. Bob said 900. And I think with a big shift in what Granger’s mid week events used to be, that’s a pretty significant number.
But first impressions of Granger Community Church was A+. Now I can’t wait for Innovate tomorrow. I’m back in the hotel after stopping by Target for some toiletries and by Moe’s for some supper! Now I’m full and typing while watching John and Kate plus 8.
I’m sitting in the lobby of the hotel. I can’t get in just yet. The guy behind the counter says he sees the rooms blocked out for us, but can’t view the individual reservations. Merissa who made the reservations isn’t here yet, but I called her and she won’t have any different info for him because she doesn’t have the confirmation number. So, I’m sitting in the lobby. Wondering if I should try to walk over to Notre Dame vs paying $12 for a taxi ride there.
Granger Community Church is just about a half mile down the road, so I could walk down there and check it out. There are actually some going on tonight. I might give one of those a go to check out some of the changes that GCC is undergoing. Or I might go to bed early since I probably got 3 hours of sleep and have been on planes or rushing to them all day.
I got up at 4. Showered. Ate a muffin. Left for Tupelo. Flew to Memphis for a 37 minute layover. That means I rushed around to my next gate. Then I flew to Detroit. There I had another 37 minute layover. Interesting. But then I flew to South Bend and got a taxi to this hotel. So I could use some time on a bed infront of ESPN or something like that. And you can’t beat this wifi either.
But I know I won’t do that. I’m travelling, baby! Can’t be still for too long.
OH, and if things look different now and then, it’s because I’m trying out some new themes around the ole blog.
I had a friend that went last year and raved about it. And I read a few blogs of folks who had attended, and they said it was exceptional. My friend actually said, “It’s better than anything I’ve been to at Northpoint…” Those were some big words there.
So what am I looking forward to?
I’m looking forward to hearing Mark Beeson teach. He’s a gifted communicator and has pushed his church in so many creative ways. [I still find it interesting that he’s in a very “innovative” church, yet still preaches with a coat and tie each week. But hey, seems to be working for him!]
I’m looking forward to hearing Shawn Wood talk of their creative process of finding the sweet spot of who God created his church to be and who they are not. That way they are not trying to be a huge buffet of ministries, but being dang good at what they’re created to do.
Getting to hear Tim Stevens speak about recognizing and using culture to communicate the life changing truths of Jesus.
Attending the Granger Film Festival where churches bring their best vids from the last year or so for a competition.
Hearing Rob Wegner speak his heart about missions and how to impact the local community for The Kingdom.
To be able to hear Kathy Guy speak on the small group strategies of GCC and how it makes a difference in their people. Might even get to grab lunch w/ her at some point.
Steven Furtick will tell the stories of how his church has had a wild growth as it’s barely 2 years old. And the struggles and processes they’ve gone trough. And I want to see his weird hair in person.
Plus, I hope to be able to walk around the campus of Notre Dame while I’m there too.
And there will be some good companions from The Orchard in Tupelo to be with.
I will have frequent updates and maybe some pics/video of stuff while I’m there. I’ll “take you along” so to speak.
Last year a friend went to a conference in Granger, Indiana. Yeah, Granger. Never heard of it?
Anyhow, It was called Innovate and was at Granger Community Church. I’d kept up with the church for a little while because I read the blogs of some of the staffmembers. It’s a great church. Very creative. Very missional. And making a big impact on their communities.
Last night I came across it again. Innovate08. I knew it was coming soon. But it had slipped my mind. And if I was to go to a conference I’d like for it to have something specifically related to my area of ministry. But when looking at Tim’s blog he mentioned how it’s possible to grab lunch w/ key staff members to pique their minds about things, and when I saw that there was a BreakOut session specifically about Small Groups…I began to really think about it.
Turns out that there’s already a group of people I know from The Orchard in Tupelo heading up there! How crazy is that? So, I’m looking through details, but I’m really hoping to make it!