Who cares about conferences !?

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Recently I spent  some time with someone who wanted to talk to me because he was concerned about a conference he had been to. The conference hadn't been up to scratch, according to this guy, and though there were some good sessions he was disappointed. He felt the same about last year's conference and wondered whether I would write a letter as he had done. I thankfully hadn't been at the conference but when I told him I couldn't care less there was some surprise.

I've not been to a full conference this year but hope to get to one in the autumn. The issue is this isn't it; say you spend 3 days at a conference and you get 3 good sessions my personal view is that's very good. I know others go to conferences for different reasons but I want to hear preaching that encourages me to keep plugging away at preaching and teaching the Bible. If  I can take the material of the conference speaker and flesh it out into a series for my congregation all the better. I enjoy the banter amongst brothers and  being with people who understand the ministry. A good, undisturbed night's sleep would probably be the biggest bonus at the moment. Occasionally we are inspired by a conference address that lives long in the memory but that doesn't happen all that often.
Most of us are on conferences for 3 or 4 days a year. It's like the children who live for summer camps, they spend their lives counting down to the next one and then always return saying it wasn't as good as last year.
I propose a sabbatical from conferences; a whole year in the UK without conferences. Let's see what would happen. I'm not saying conferences are bad things but there is a sense in which they are just not important. They are servants of the servants of the local church. My one other proposal would be that the  money you are saving not going to conferences you could give towards our church building fund (come on you know you want to!)
Posted August 25, 2012 @ 3:08 AM by Paul Levy

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