Conferences. You love them or hate them. But regardless, there is always something you can walk away with. A nugget. A gem. An “oh” that makes you sit for a minute and think about it. That happened at the D6 Family Conference in Louisville, KY… a few times (which, buy the way, is a beautiful drive up from Nashville at the first of fall.)
This conference was so Christ focused and so encouraging, without teaching all about gimmicks and ways to improve whatever might need improving, that I would HIGHLY encourage you to go next year.
From some of the main speakers at D6, here are a few things you can put in your pocket, log away, and store up for both working in the Church and raising a family.
Emerson Eggerichs: known author and speaker on the topics of male/female relationships and family dynamics. He developed the Love and Respect Conference. Here’s his little gold nugget from his talk.
- Talking of raising small children and our capacity to “lose it” with them, he told us to remember that we are keepers of little people with little spirits. It’s our responsibility to keep them well and safe. Little people. Little spirits. That is a precious thought.
Lysa TerKeurst from Proverbs 31 Ministries talked about finding “us” in the rush of life.
- Maintaining who we are in the midst of it all in Christ is of vital importance. When your children fail, a good bit of advice is to hold them close before you hold them accountable. The danger is to snap (which we do) and to bite them with the obvious issue. Her encouragement is for us to be close to them before we have to hold them accountable.
- Something else she said that was beautiful in regard to letting God be God to our kids is to also “be brave enough to let God write the testimony of your children.” Such an amazing thought.
- According to Fowler, “the average church child will spend as much time in media consumption in two days, as he or she will get in church in an entire year.” Find out how he knows at this informative download at Awana.
Tony Evans joined us Thursday night with some plenty of wonderful things to take to heart. He is a best-selling author and frequent speaker at Bible conferences. He is the senior pastor of Oak Cliff Bible Fellowship, and the president of The Urban Alternative. Here are a few of his words.
- Raise your children in such a way that they adopt a divine standard of righteousness.
- God created family to replicate the image of God.
- Family is the advancement of His Kingdom for the replication of His Kingdom and Image.
- The next generation can plug into us in such a way that the Master is duplicated in them.
- Raising your children around the dinner table is of utmost importance.
- And finally, he asks us, “What kind of stamp will you put on your kids and the nation?”
Kyle Idleman of Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, KY came Friday morning. Not only did he impress us with his ability to say all the books of the BIble in one breath, but also gave us some breakdown insight to Luke 9:23 about denying ourselves to follow Jesus and not to ever forget our primary message is the Gospel of Jesus.
- That Gospel is ultimately an invitation that needs to be accepted.
- The idea of passionate pursuit of Jesus in the words “come after” in Luke 9, were more often used in talking about a young man coming after a woman. Those of us who want to follow Jesus can think of it in these terms. To passionately pursue Him.
- When a father came to talk to Kyle about a wayward daughter, the father said something that stuck with Kyle, and with us. He said, “We raised her in church, but we didn’t raise her in Christ.” The church is no replacement for the relationship with Jesus that we can lead our kids in.
- When talking about the phrase “deny yourself” Kyle said, “You can’t say yes to Jesus without saying no to yourself.” Ouch. Toes.
- And finally the word “follow”. He boiled it down to it being all or nothing. We sometimes like to balance this life, family and spiritual lives, but Jesus calls us to abandon everything. It IS all or nothing.
Sissy Goff and David Thomas, with Daystar in Nashville, gave us amazing parenting tips.
Sissy started with these:
- Discipline is an extended and carefully managed event, not a sudden, spontaneous personal reaction to the behavior.
- Moms tend to be too emotional and use too many words. (what? us?…no.)
- Help your kids self-regulate. Meaning, give them a choice and then accelerate consequences. Like, “You can get your homework done before bed, or you give me your phone.” If homework isn’t done, you get the phone. Which means…
- Follow through.
- Let the consequences and one liners (“Try that again.” “I love you to much to argue.” “When we both take a few minutes, then we talk.”) do the teaching.
- Move on from the crisis and help them move on as well.
David followed up with Being a Balanced Parent:
- Balance support: too much support limits growth.
- Balance emotions: emotionally charged moments = mistakes.
- Time outs aren’t just for toddlers. Many times parents need to be okay with just taking 10-15 minutes to calm down. Go walk outside. Sit in your room and take a breather. Both parties should do this.
And finally, Brian Housman, author and speaker, gave us a lot to think about as leaders and our own desires for those “15 minutes of fame.”
- This generation has core values of Image, Achievement, Fame and Popularity. The whole nation was changed with the coming of “American Idol”. Each kid was then told they could be famous. With the pop culture that has YouTube and Vine, kids search for those “followers” to make them feel seen, noticed, and accepted.
- We adults have also fed that need with our own pushes of our Facebook pages, Instagram, and things like Linked In. We too want to be seen and noticed. He is saying that we can buy into it too. Yes. Yes we can.
He talked about the Fame Tipping Point and how to know when you have tipped over from a truly humble approach to the world and the name of Jesus, to our own need for fame. He said “There should be a tension there.” Here’s a few ways to know if you have tipped the wrong way.
- When your public image has outgrown your private character.
- When you expect people who know you in private to treat you like those who only know you in public.
- When self-promotion has passed gospel promotion. If it can’t be about Jesus then it’s not about anything.
With these powerful reminders and teachings we were left feeling charged, empowered, loved, and encouraged to keep doing what we are doing, and work to do things for God’s Kingdom as we lead our churches and our families.