By Elizabeth Prata
*Podcast player at bottom. Some photos of the event and the city of Atlanta, here
I arrived home from three days in Atlanta for the G3 Conference. The three G’s stand for Gospel-Grace-Glory. The emphasis is on Reformed expositional preaching from some of the most credible men in the faith, doctrinally solid worship music, and fellowship. The aim and goal of the conference founder and organizer, Josh Buice, and his congregation at Pray’s Mill Baptist Church in Douglasville GA is to bring back the teaching and reignition to our local churches, which are the most important. ‘Conferences are nice, they are good, but the local church is paramount,’ Buice said.
It’s very hard to describe the event in emotional terms. I can offer you the schedule, which is aggressive. They keep us moving. It’s morning till night, and they start on time. I can list the speakers, ones like John MacArthur, Paul Washer, Voddie Baucham, Conrad Mbewe, Steve Lawson, James White, and many, many others of that caliber. I can tell you of the luxurious hotel attached the venue we stayed in with city views and valet parking; and of the venue itself, also very nice especially if you’re going to spend 9-10 hours a day in it. It was a joy to meet so many Twitter and Facebook friends. I enjoyed our conversations, whether they were long and deep, or were short hello’s and quick hugs as we passed each other among the exhibitor booths.
But how do I articulate the convictions of conscience from the preaching of the scriptures, the tears for the lost we mourned, the concern for missionaries we heard in reports, the skill of the preachers bringing us to the throne and back, to the depths of the pigpen of our sin and back, the glories of the Triune God exalted? How do I encapsulate the awe we felt for God in lifting up these men preach for decades, one of whom recently went to jail for the privilege of bringing the Gospel to his congregation? How do I tell of the joy of 6500 voices strong, singing praises to God, united of heart and purpose, which was to see God glorified?
It’s just in my heart. Whatever reactions I have are being knit to other tendrils of the faith that the Spirit in me will eventually grow into a redeemed, future glorified tapestry of good works done in His name. He will cultivate knowledge that is the fragrance of Him and flow from me to the aroma of life to life. I don’t know what the Spirit is doing in my heart with this gush of Gospel preaching nor with the sterling truths swirling in my brain. I just know that after 16 sermons, three days of fellowship, music, and intimacy with Christ, of gazing upon Him with intent love, my heart is full.