In about 4 weeks I will be in sunny Southern California. As someone from the chilly northeast this excites me. Why I am excited may surprise you. Yes this winter was brutal, but I am most excited about being at The Gathering again this year because of my experience at the conference last year and what David C. Cook is trying to accomplish in this event.
There are many conference that talk about the need for family ministry and this emphasis is well founded. The family in America needs every ounce of prayer, strength and support we can give it. What I appreciated about The Gathering was the way they tackle the family ministry problem. They come at it from the standpoint of spiritual formation. That the gospel is transformational in nature. What families need more than anything is a deep understanding of the grace of God despite the dysfunction that we bring to the table.
When you come to The Gathering you will hear about the grand narrative of scripture that tells over and over again that we are dysfunctional but are redeemed and made right because of Christ’s life, death and resurrection. What kids and families need from us is not more programing or slick events they need us to point them to Jesus over and over again. Families need the hope that only the Gospel provides. I love how Paul describes this hope in Romans 5.
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
In Christ we have a hope that does not disappoint. So many families have experienced disappointment that has lead them to hopelessness. The good news tells us We Can’t but Christ did on our behalf. I am excited to sit to listen and learn. To be encouraged to press into the inexhaustible richness of God’s grace. As a pastor, as a parent as a sinner saved by grace through faith nothing is sweeter.
I hope to see you there. Because every family needs that gospel and every pastor wants a free ticket to The Gathering. In fact David C. Cook has cleared me to give a ticket away. So waste no time enter below.