By Elizabeth Prata
My church generously paid for my admission and the hotel for two nights. We are blessed to have elders who are so approachable and willing to subsidize further learning for their members. They buy boxes of books for the church members to take for free, they pay for scholarships to men’s conferences and other learning opportunities like us 3 ladies going tot he G3. They themselves are great examples of generosity in their sanctifying walk. They trust us, knowing we will not squander this opportunity to learn and grow and will come back refreshed to the edification of ourselves and hopefully the Body. None of this would be possible without their generosity.
When the schedule came out I saw how aggressive it was. You go bang-bang-bang from one session to another all day. I awoke yesterday at 4:30am, arrived at the venue at 7:30, stood in line to get in to the main session for almost an hour, and didn’t return back to the hotel until 9:30 that evening. It was a long day, a day of hard listening and pitched spiritual emotions, and a day of strong sensory input. I had prayed before and during the day for help in the Spirit to last until the end. He helped me 🙂 and I was still vertical at 10pm when I tweeted my thanks to the brethren I’d met that day.
As for the conference itself, it is well planned. Everything went according to schedule with no overruns. People said they would be where they said they’d be and spoke for as long and no more as the schedule indicated. There was a variety of speakers from different denominations and paths, but the joy amongst each other was evident, as was the joy and unity among the people who attended.
I was especially pleased to be with two younger ladies from our church, whose excitement and humility was plain to see, and whose joy in learning strong doctrinal truths was refreshing. I was a proud spiritual mama. At one of the sessions there was a group of about half a dozen young men, from late teens to early 20s, from Grace Community Church, Their joy in the word was so adorable, they sang, laughed, prayed in tears, jostled each other over truths they were delighted to confirm. Folks, the global church might be polluted with cultural garbage and professing people might be falling away at an alarming rate, but the pure ones the Lord has in His hand are beautiful and many.
And the sermons! I love my teaching elders to pieces and they preach at a high level, but these men at G3 have been preaching for decades and their wisdom and depth of knowledge was truly encouraging to see what the Spirit has done in the lives over the long term for the gory of Christ and His Body. About 5500 people were in attendance from all 50 states and 12 other nations. What a JOY!! The global church, I say it again, is alive and well.
The men who preached of course trod on familiar ground in some spots, The Woman at the Well, Psalm 24, Genesis 3, but each one brought out a new and timeless truth that my mind was unknowing of and ready to receive, confirming over and again that the word is truly eternal, living, and timeless. What a tremendous gift the Lord has given us to be able to plumb its depths and yet remain in the shallow end, never coming to a finite end to what we can learn.
I attended a Q&A hosted by Allie Beth Stuckey, Rachel Jankovic, and Martha Peace. These ladies answered 12 questions (maybe more, we left because our driver was getting positively bleary…) I thank them for their concise and articulate contributions to the Q&A at the conference last night. I enjoyed their responses and I’m grateful for them as sisters in the faith speaking truth against culture.
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