The family and I spent most of last week in Malibu, CA where we attended the 2012 Pepperdine Bible Lectures. The classes and keynotes I took in were excellent (MP3s, CDs, and DVDs are available for purchase here), but the time spent fellowshipping with people I don’t get to see all that often is what I enjoy the most about these types of events, and much of my time was spent doing just that.
My parents, Jim & Geraldine Woodell, were able to make the trek over from Arkansas. They enjoyed spending time with Airiel and I, and also got to spend lots of time loving on grandbabies they don’t get to see as often as others.
Gary & Zoe Lambrecht – ministers from mine and Airiel’s former church home in Tampa – made time to spend with us. Gary & Zoe have had a tremendous impact on Airiel and I spiritually – we love them as family, and were glad to be with them in Malibu.
I was also able to see friends like Tim Spivey, Tyler Ellis, Josh & Tiffany Parish, Rex Butts and many others (if I failed to mention you please do not be offended). Additionally, I briefly met several people face to face that I’ve known from a distance for a while, but hadn’t yet met in person – Fate Hagood, Matthew Morine, John Mark Hicks, Darin Campbell and others.
Overall the fellowship was good.
The class Airiel and I taught went very well, and we were encouraged by the fact that the room ran out of seats and people had to sit in the entryway to listen.
It was encouraging because people didn’t come to see us – they came because they were passionate about the topic of reaching a generation of young people that most churches are not having great success reaching. Knowing that there are people ready and willing to address this problem gives me great hope for the future, and I look forward to teaching further on this topic at other events similar to the PBLs. Several appointments are already on the calendar this year and next.
Additionally, Matt Dabbs has invited me to write a guest post or two for his blog as part of Kingdom Living’s “How to Reach a Lost Generation” series. You can find all of the current posts in that series here. I encourage you to read them and share your thoughts. I will be getting my own thoughts together to share there soon.
Special thanks to Jerry Rushford for inviting Airiel and I to teach this year at the PBLs. Even though I’m kind of a new guy when it comes to faith and church culture when compared to my peers, I can see what a great impact the Pepperdine Bible Lectures have had over the years, and will no-doubt continue to have under the direction of Mike Cope.
The theme for the 2013 PBLs has already been announced – I’m sure it will be great.
To view a few pictures from this year’s event, check out The Christian Chronicle’s story here.
Thanks again to everyone who made this year’s event happen – you are making a difference in the Kingdom!