By Brittany Carter, Impact12 blogger
The Day of Outreach is an Impact Movement national conference tradition. Each year this afternoon of service provides conferees with an opportunity to give action to the faith that they have been developing and working through, challenging young believers to ask and the answer the question, “Do I really believe this?” We live in a culture where two main approaches define how we manage knowledge: intense pride produced from thinking we know everything or trepidation produced from being convinced we know nothing at all. We either walk around with an exaggerated confidence or constantly second guess ourselves. Neither of these are God’s desire for us. At Impact12, we were not been confronted with complex intellectual material that is questionable and up for debate. Rather we were confronted with the enduring truths of the infallible words of a God who cannot lie!
As we allowed those truths to shine light into the darkest places in our hearts and speak into the depths of our spirits, we felt the conviction and responsibility do what Christ did – make them available to everyone. Packed into yellow school buses and equipped with boxes of donated food, we were sent to various neighborhoods in the New Orleans community on December 31st and connected with local churches that knew those neighborhoods best. We ate, communed, and prayed with the church members before partnering with them to engage in both street and door-to-door evangelism. It was the finest and most effective example of indigenous ministry that I’ve ever seen.
When we returned to the conference that night, we split into small groups where we were able to process the experience of sharing our faith (some of us for the very first time) in an intimate setting. People recounted stories of being invited into homes and consoling weeping women who felt God tugging at their hearts, praying with young brothers on the street who were unsure of their faith, and the joy of being able to meet the material needs of the community with food as they were also opening the door for God to meet spiritual needs.
“It’s crazy how so many of us came here for different agendas – some for boys, some for food, some for New Orleans – and now, we’re all on the same agenda,” said the young woman sitting to my left. Even in her brevity, she summed up how everyone felt with such precision. Today we realized that the truth of the Gospel supersedes it all. It overwhelms our base desires. It re-directs our selfish ambition. As is the supernatural nature of God-centered service, when we reached out to others, the Lord reached out and pulled us back to Him.
The Key to Being the Mission in Action: Fitness
By Brittany Carter, Impact12 blogger
Timotheus Pope doesn’t want to mislead you. He’s not a pastor. He’s the director of a Christian sports camp and it shows. His no nonsense, fast-paced, ultra inspirational delivery are components that I’m sure have driven many a legendary athlete to greatness and, on Saturday night, December 29th, it was used to encourage hundreds of Impact conferees to strive for spiritual, mental, and moral fitness.
His deep reverence for the Lord was immediately challenging and sobering. “God saved you and is worthy of your worship. But, to be honest, He would be worthy of your worship even if He didn’t save you.” His numerous articulations about God’s sovereignty and omnipotence were both humorous and matter-of-fact. There was something about Mr. Pope’s desire to, as he puts it, “not just be acquainted with God’s works but His ways” that stirred something up in me. He invoked a competitive edge in my spirit that I only feel when I meet someone truly exceptional. It goes something like…“Dag, I wanna love God like THAT!!”
For me, the highlight of the message was how clear the need to have a heart that is softened toward God at all times became. As Mr. Pope took us through Jeremiah 44, he showed us how being spiritually unfit wasn’t a state of passivity or inertia, but conscious choice. The inhabitants of Judah had gone rogue and stopped filtering things through their understanding of God’s word. Aren’t we all prone to this kind of hardening? In our flesh, isn’t this our reflexive response when get restless or frustrated and things aren’t going our way? It is only with a deliberate softening of our hearts that we can begin to look for God in every place and in anything. By the end of the evening session, I realized that this is where Mr. Pope’s passion that so captivated me had come from.
The key to being the mission in action is framing everything by our relationship with God. Having eyes and ears that look and listen for Him everywhere. Developing a Biblical understanding which fully grasps the idea that the Bible can cut to our souls and speak into our hearts because God’s Word is more than good. It’s true. No, Mr. Pope certainly did not disappoint during his first time ministering at the Impact Conference. His obedience to the Holy Spirit was so palpable. I hope to hear from him again (and again) in years to come.
We have VERY SPECIAL REGISTRATION NEWS for the upcoming Impact13 national conference: Register now through January 14, 2013 and pay ONLY $199 for the entire conference! This is a special deal for EVERYONE (Impact12 conferees, Impact12 conference workers, those who couldn’t attend Impact12 and everybody else), all you need to do is register with your $75 non-refundable and non-transferable deposit and you can secure the $199 rate for Impact13 in Atlanta 12.28.13-1.1.14! Register now and spread the word!!!
Ever considered what it takes to make an Impact national conference happen? I’d like to share a recipe that’s been tried and true since 1991. The results are always delicious and a sweet aroma to the Lord:
- The creativity of God the Father
- The salvation of God the Son
- The power of God the Holy Spirit
- 5,000+ cups of prayer and fasting
- Faithful group of 6 to 8 people who comprise the conference leadership team
- 180 to 200 dedicated and willing conference workers
- 10,000+ promo cards
- 3 to 10 promo videos
- Banging conference web site, registration site and social media networks
- 50+ churches from across the nation
- College and high school students
- Growing network of alumni, marketplace professionals and ministry leaders
- A “turn’t up” praise and worship team of singers and musicians
- 6 hours of life changing evangelism and service through the Day of Outreach
- Annointed main session and seminar speakers accurately dividing and teaching The Word of God
- Cutting edge programming shaped in prayer to the Lord and led by his Spirt
- 2 to 3 straight fire music concerts that are unforgettable
- 60+ hours of fellowship, community and connection that strengthen one’s journey in Christ
- Unlimited cups of love, patience, kindness, meekness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self control
1. Get a bowl and combine the creativity of the Father, the salvation of the Son and the power of the Holy Spirit together with the 5,000+ cups of prayer and fasting continually from January through December of the specified conference year. If you need more cups of prayer and fasting, feel free to add them.
2. Get another bowl and combine the conference leadership team together in January, adding the conference workers in the mix by June.
3. Divide up the postcards, promo videos, web sites and social media networks into a container, launching and releasing them strategically from January through November.
4. With your hands in a third bowl, mix the churches, college and high school students, alumni, professionals and church leaders together and add to the container that has the promo materials.
5. On December 28th, take the remaining ingredients, mix them into the first bowl, then add the contents of bowls two and three to the entire mixture.
6. Pour into an incredibly large pan sprayed with olive oil, put into the oven at the temperature God deems best, bake for 4 days and on January 1st, the final product will be good and ready: PEOPLE FOREVER CHANGED BY THE GOSPEL AND EQUIPPED TO SERVE GOD WITH THEIR LIVES.
7. Repeat recipe annually.