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29 October 2009

Story09: Day 2

Day 2 of the Story Conference has definitely been more workshop than conference.

More intentional in offering presentations focused on a specific aspect of our "stories" and how they fit into the greater "Story."

Quick Summaries:

  • Skye Jethani: Summarized the difference between teaching and preaching - suggested that it may be more appropriate to preach on the vision of Christianity vs. all the practical life application stuff - which tends to reinforce the understanding that God is the way to fix everything about your life here and now.
  • Thomas Fluharty: AMAZING story from an illustrator that draws/paints for top magazines in the country. He shared his salvation story - very encouraging.
  • John MacMurray: Nature photographer/theologian that helped paint the picture of the Trinity and how nature is the "natural" overflow of the beauty that exists in heaven. Interesting thought that nature is the one thing that people understand to be beautiful no matter what their background.
  • Tony Morgan: Stepped in as a guest speaker since the speaker in his slot was unable to make it to the conference. LOVED hearing from my boss (from a few years ago) about leadership principles to keep us from Killing Cockroaches instead of doing what God designed us to do.
  • Ron Martoia: Transformational architect - painted the picture that the Bible has been inaccurately called our "owners manual" when it might be better viewed as a: Classic, Score or Script. Suggested that the stories of the Bible may be better suited for round table conversations with a wiki approach to understanding the cultural relevance. Radical and interesting but the potential for misuse is definitely there (my thoughts).
  • Phil Cooke & Dawn Baldwin: Interesting discussion on branding in the church world. Presenters had thoughts - but also took numerous questions from the audience on branding dilemmas currently being experienced. Good discussion as to why the cross is used as an iconic symbol for the Christian faith.
  • Brad Abare & Michael Buckingham: 8 Lessons in NOT sucking:
    1. Find your soul: Hershey PA example. Know your internal DNA and allow it to guide you as you interact with your community.
    2. Connect the dots: Work on your flow, and connect it for people so the experience matches the promotion.
    3. Stop dwelling in what doesn't exist: Tell people what has been done and what you are doing - not what's coming up.
    4. Don't just say "NO!": Bad ideas are often springboards to good ideas. Ask questions and talk through it. You may find something amazing in the thing you were going to toss out.
    5. Your vision shouldn't need glasses or contacts: Vision is key to the to the inner workings of any organization. No vision leads to stumbling and bumbling.
    6. Just bringing the "pretty" is not enough: Don't elevate "art" over the story. Use words AND imagery to tell a compelling story.
    7. Don't get too familiar with the story: Familiarity decreases passion. How do we stay "in love" with Jesus and the Story?
    8. Don't discount yourself or people's abilities: We were created to be creative. Creativity is in everyone - just in different ways.
It has been a great three days of teaching, preaching, and the arts. Now to head home and rest.