Through reduction comes added value. Less is often (most of the time!) more. Such a statement is quite strange today. More information, more options in food and goods of the daily life, more options, also when it comes to conferences and holidays. The list could go one. And when we listen to people around us, we realise that this style of life causes stress for most. To choose is exhausting and to cope with a lot as well.
A very rich General Assembly lies behind us. Rich in relationships, friends we met and new acquaintances we made. There was also great input by speakers from the Jubilee Centre about the R-Factor (Relational Factor). And there were many stories from National EAs, member organisations and staff. Many of these stories related to aspects of what was being taught by our speakers.
As a regular conference participant I am asking myself: what have I taken away? And if I have taken something away what will I do with it? What will I allow it to do with me? How will it have an effect on my life and how will it help me to glorify God more?
Sometimes I wonder how much money gets spent on conferences and I am asking myself: what is the outcome? When you ask people, they will often tell you first about the relationships which they have been able to deepen or strike up. And secondly, they might tell you about content.
Most interestingly, what flows in a conversation or differently said through relationships leads to deeper impact. A brilliant speech, with brilliant ideas, needs generally a relationship to process it in order to take root. In a trust relationship, a new idea is far more likely to be adopted. Shared from the stage, without that relationship, it takes longer or might not happen.
However, relationships need time. They need a common story, good communication, clear information. They flourish when power is marked by parity, participation, respect and fairness and when a common purpose is established.
In the above paragraph I have just shared with you part of a session given by the Jubilee Centre. In that session we heard about struggles organisations face and how they can be tackled with these various relational aspects.
I will stop here and think some more about this. And I would encourage you to stop here for a few moments as well. Think what has profoundly impressed you at a conference you attended. Allow it also to impact you by giving it some thought, better even talk with somebody about it and decide on your next step. Do not just go to the next conference without having done this.
I wish you discernment and good decisions to stay true to what God has given you, the important and the often little which is the essence of his abundance. Less is more!
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