Tuesday, January 6, 2015


My "accidental" trip to Atlanta was a success! There was a conference (Passion, 268 generation) ((Or you can Google it, or look it up on FB, or even YouTube) the first weekend of January 2015 in Atlanta....there is also one the last weekend of January 2015 in Houston, which is the one my friend and I planned on going to. Like, figured out PTO, looked at flights, etc. And then when I was registering for the conference, I clicked on the wrong registration date and registered for Atlanta 1! My friend was super cool about it and helped me to be more of a..."go with the flow" type of person.

Anyways! I was in Atlanta recently (downtown area) and loved it. I didn't get to explore, only saw like 3 buildings, but the three I saw I loved. Fo' realz. Way more to Atlanta than I had ever realized. My jaw dropped several times when we first arrived. The weather sucked, but other than that, super cool. So if you've never been, you should go. I also realized I'm super unfamiliar with everything east of the Mississippi.

So, the conference was in a stadium filled with over 20,000 young adults talking about Jesus. I love people, I love learning, I love Jesus, I love college students, I love worshiping. We broke into community groups...mine had 4,582 people in it. Which then broke into family groups, which is a bit more manageable!

For those of you who have been keeping up with the past "blogs" (I think I will always hate that word)/you know me, you know that I'm not a "feeler". I'm not a big "experiencer" and I rarely exaggerate things to say something is "the best ever". So, at first, I thought I was missing out. Because those were the types of words people often used to describe their weekend.
This was the best weekend ever. This was the greatest experience. What a great feeling. 

None of those came from my mouth. It was cool, it was neat, but I wasn't getting what it seemed like other people were getting out of it. And then I realized, I was. 

I'm not a feeler, and that's okay. I'm a thinker. And my thoughts have started to shift and change, particularly since the conference. I have realized it did impact me, just in a different way from others. It wasn't a huge, emotional event for me. And that's okay, because I'm not an emotional person. (I can feel, for the record!) It wasn't a place where I felt like I "experienced God" any more there than what I'm doing right now. It wasn't a place where I felt like "everything clicked". 

But it was a place where I got to dialogue with people in my family group about Jesus. It was a place where I got to be reminded that the Church isn't dead, God isn't dead, and college students aren't lame, and young adults have huge hearts, minds, passions, and goals. It was a place where I got to worship with over 20,000 other people. It was a place where I got to pray and be prayed for. It was a place where I could worship with the people who wrote the songs we sing in church. It was a place where I was reminded of the scandal of grace, the beauty of Christ, and His relentlessness towards us. 

And since the weekend. My focus has been reshifted on Jesus. My thoughts are all consumed with Him. All I want to do is go home and worship Him, study the Bible, review my notes. I want my relationships to exude Christ's love. I've been more reflective of these things that have come into my head since 2015:
  • Jesus changed everything. 
  • The beauty of Christ. 
  • The scandal of grace. 
  • Holy, holy, holy. 
  • Relentless.

So, yeah. This weekend did impact me. Not because God was "super present". Not because something super profound was said (although when you have people like Louie Giglio, John Piper, Francis Chan, Ben Stuart, and Carl Lentz speaking, profoundness was constant). Not because some super cool songs were sung by super cool worship leaders (Passion; David Crowder Band, Christy Nockels, Chris Tomlin, Kristian Stanfill, Kari Jobe, Matt Redman..). Not because 20,000 people were there (but how cool is that). 

I wasn't awestruck by the experience or the music. I didn't get swept away, because I'm not even sure I can get swept away! But my mind was reeling, and I responded the best way I knew how--by taking notes, processing, and talking to Jesus. It impacted me because I'm reminded of those 5 bullet points. 

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