March 6, 2008

At the Shepherds' Conference in LA

Once again, it's great to have the opportunity to represent Banner and introduce a number of guys, younger guys in particular, to the works of Baxter, Watson, Spurgeon, etc., that Banner makes available ... this time, I'm here in the Los Angeles area at Grace Community Church's Shepherds' Conference. Attendance this year is at their full capacity of about 3,400 or so. Yesterday, it seemed like most of them were in the bookstore at the same time! Twelve hours later, it was clear that our piles of books had gone down significantly, including a number of titles that I was spending my time working to introduce guys to, ones that they may not just naturally be drawn to or have heard much about before.
As for the personal ministry times, indeed, there have been opportunities for a number of substantive conversations, hearing testimonies of how some of these guys came to faith in Christ. The circumstances are different from one guy to the next, but some things are constant in every story ... the intervening power and grace of God, through the instrument of His Word.
I've had some great conversations outside of the conference, too, with guys who clearly don't know Christ ... a young Penn State student in the DC Dulles airport who lives close enough to me back in PA that he already said he'd like to get together back home. Also, I learned that even a broken laptop ought to be viewed positively as an instrument of the Lord providentially at work. That's what took me to a store that fixes laptops here in LA, which got me into the life of a young guy named Chris for three hours the other night. What a great opportunity! "Forgive my frustration, Lord, with not having a machine that worked when I wanted it to. Help me to continually and positively resign my will and my DayTimer to yours. And please use my conversation with Chris as you see fit!"
No matter what you're faced with today, see it from the perspective of our sovereign God at work both in and through you. Broken laptops, interruptions, cars that don't work ... avoid getting angry and frustrated by looking toward the Lord and saying, "Ok, Father, so what I had planned is different from what you desire for today. Help me to go with your plan, and to do so without my usual kicking and screaming!"
:-)
Blessings to you, today, from here in LA.
Steve

4 comments:

Josh Hicks said...

Howdy, Steve. I hope you're having a great time. I'm only able to watch the SC on live feed. Blessings to you as you encounter different folks to the glory of God!

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