Day 3 – #NYWC Atlanta

Saturday is always a challenge. You begin to get really tired. We stayed up to 2:30AM and then I had spiritual direction at 8:00AM. But today was very beneficial. Spiritual direction is when someone prayerfully listens to you and then will offer advice on how to approach your situation from a perspective of spiritual growth. This is only a one hour session but today God truly spoke to me through my director. I left feeling a sense of peace, calm, and a different way of thinking about how to see how God is working and leading me in my life.

We went to the big room and heard three speakers. I loved Shaun King and his honesty about losing three jobs in 18 months. I loved his thoughts about not placing your identity in what you do but who you are in Jesus.

Dr. Robert Epstein spoke at the end of that session. His book Youth 2.0 is amazing. I read it last year via a recommendation of Marko. A couple of reflections about his talk:

  1. His book is better than his presentation.
  2. Going last I was tired and this made his presentation more difficult to listen to.
  3. He is an academic so his presentation reflected that. I wished they would have limited his talk time to 15 minutes and increased his interview time. I think he would have been more engaging this way and could be helped to present his study in more student minister friendly format.

Later that day I went to a counselor. I did this to talk about some heart issues I have been having. I was unsure of this but I am glad I did this. I had the perfect person to talk to and help give me wisdom and advice on how to handle a few situations.

YS did a session like this a few years ago and although I applaud their attempt to introduce various topics it is almost too much in one setting.

Finally we skipped the main session to sit down and talk. It is great to share life and process what is going on in our hearts, faith, and life. We talked about how we were never really allowed to process doubts we have about God and faith. This has been a theme of the conference, that doubt unexpressed is toxic. I think so many of us as Christians and as ministers still have doubts and rarely feel that we have a safe place where we can ask those questions. We are talking about where and how we can provide ourselves with an opportunity to dialogue our faith. We thought about starting our own doubters club where we could meet periodically and ask questions in a safe environment.


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