Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Rick Warren & M-4

Today I heard Rick Warren teach/preach live, up close and personal. He was the opening speaker for the Exponential07. I've read "Purpose Driven Life" and read a lot about Rick Warren, often critiquing the mega-model and method. I repent of every snide and critical thing I've ever said about Rick Warren. When he spoke, he opened his heart to us in such a humble and transparent way. No bluster, no bravado, not posturing and posing. He loves Jesus and loves the Word. He spoke about how a "purpose driven life" should be matched with "puposeful use of money." It will take me some time to process the deep stuff God was doing in my heart about me and my non-generous attitudes abour too much. This was one of the best conferences I have ever attended. I did blog a couple of years ago about the National Pastors' Conference being way up there. This is a close tie, if not better (except for the really loud music, but great electric guitar playing).

I drove back to Montecito early because the M-4 (4 churches of Montecito) were holding the first ever (that we knew of in the 100+ year history) combined Thanksgiving service at the historic All Saints-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church. When I arrived early with Jeff Witten from World Vision and Katie Faldo from Peoples Self help Housing, we were bracing ourselves for a typical joint, ecumenical service (maybe 25 people). The choir was excellent, singing "O How Amiable" by R. Vaghan Williams and "Ubi Caritas" by Hurd with flute. But slowly it began to fill, and fill and fill. When the four participating clergy walked out (see below) there were well over 125-50 people from the community there.

After the service we got together and were amazed at the positive, energetic response from the four churches. We packed off 1,000 HIV/AIDS care kits last fall and 800 backpacks in the summer, and we are planning to do more in the next round. Tonight as we left the church, I was grateful for the work and person of Rick Warren and Saddleback, but even more grateful for God allowing me to be part of a community like this.


At 8:58 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Where was Harold Bussell?

At 6:15 AM , Blogger donnjohnson said...

family illness kept him away.


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