Going to Cincinnati

On Monday morning, our family leaves for Cincinnati Ohio. The reason: the North American Christian Convention–the largest annual gathering of independent Christian Churches annually. I serve on the Continuation Committee, and have thus pledged my support to it. I did so for a number of reasons. The largest is that it’s an event that feeds people spiritually in a unique way. And, I am 100% for unity efforts between Churches of Christ and Christian Churches. Over the last few years, I have come to cherish my growing friendships with many Christian Church pastors, and have been honored to work with College Press/Heartspring (a Christian Church publisher) on several writing projects.

There has been some talk in Churches of Christ about the lectureship format…whether it’s day has passed. My personal feeling is that the days of the bad lectureship have passed. It’s true that now many of the best preachers can be downloaded for free, and that .

Programs like the North American, as well as Pepperdine, Tulsa, and ACU do several things. Here are three:

1. Fellowship. There is nothing like being around that many Christians at one time, and seeing people you haven’t seen in far too long…singing together…mmm…mmm…good.

2. Vision/Hope. Especially for those from smaller or discouraged churches, hearing what other churches are doing and getting new ideas reminds them that God is still moving in the churches. It’s something we all know, but it’s something we feel more at lectureship events.

3. Spiritual Feeding. Some of the best preachers/teachers of the Word live, and incredible singing leaves a spiritual watermark on people. Permanently? I don’t know, maybe. For a while? Certainly.

This week, it’s Cincinnati. September…Abilene. March… Tulsa. May…Pepperdine. July…Louisville…and it starts over again. It’s good food. Not everything is terrific about any of them. But, that’s not as important as providing fellowship, hope, and spiritual food. That’s good stuff…and helpful

So, to Cam Huxford, Jerry Rushford, Terry Rush, Brady Bryce, and others who help provide these spiritual feasts…may God bless you.

Dr. Tim Spivey is Pastor of New Vintage Church in Escondido, California. He is the author of numerous articles and one book, "Jesus: The Powerful Servant." A sought after speaker for events, Tim also serves as Adjunct Professor of Religion at Pepperdine University. Tim serves as a church consultant, and his writings are featured on numerous websites, including: ChurchLeaders.com, Church Executive magazine, Faith Village, Sermon Central, and Giving Rocket.

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