Nationals 2012

In case you’re new to my blog or just terribly unobservant, I’d like to start by letting you know that I’ve spent the last week in Memphis, Tennessee, attending the Free Will Baptist National Convention. And it has been a very fun, fulfilling experience. The conference was a good learning experience for me, and I was reminded of why I fell in love with ministry in the first place.

My main job at the conference was to run technology for the children’s services. I helped Karen with her music by displaying the lyrics on the screen and sometimes helping lead the motions. I helped make Little Billie’s awesome stories a little more impactful by adding backgrounds and sound effects. And I made text slides to go along with Johnny’s preaching. I love being able to use my passion for technology to make an already wonderful children’s ministry program even better. Plus, I got to work with the kids, dance around, and sing with them. It was a ton of fun.

I also ran music and computer at Karen’s children’s choir practices. Having been in charge of the children’s choir last year, I knew what a challenge Karen was up against. She knew it, too, since she’s been doing children’s worship as long as I’ve been alive and has directed the children’s choir before. But the kids were willing to learn, and Karen turned them into an awesome choir. They had fun and got to sing about God in front of the entire conference. It truly was something special.

Johnny, Gail, and Karen were all asked to give seminars about children’s ministry this year. I helped them prepare presentations to go along with the seminars. They went really well, except that Karen’s seminar was moved to a different time and she ended up not being able to give it.

This year’s conference offered me a completely new challenge, too. I was asked to be a judge in the Dramatic Duo competition. I’ve done media for children’s services before, so I was pretty prepared for that, but judging was something I had never done before. I was really nervous, but I ended up enjoying it. The kids all did great in their performances, and the only hard thing about scoring was finding things they hadn’t earned full credit for. If I had been able to, I would have given them all 100’s.

I always love going to the National each year, but this one was especially enjoyable. I got to push my creativity and tech skills to the limit by facing new, more complicated problems than I had come up against before, and I was able to overcome those obstacles to make something great and help spread God’s love to children. That’s what I love about ministry. I am able to take a piece of myself, share it with others, and show them God’s love in the process. It doesn’t get better than that.

I am so grateful for the opportunity I was given to go to the National and work. I would like to publicly thank all involved, and I’d especially like to thank my good friend Mason (the other half of The Dream Team) for putting up with me all week. It was an amazing experience, and I can’t wait to see everyone at the National in Tampa, Florida, next year!