Thursday, May 28, 2009

Banner of Truth 2009 -- Reflections on the Conference Thus Far

Once again the Banner conference has been a great challenge and a great blessing to me. This conference I have struggled with discomfort and fatigue.

I pulled a muscle in my back the Monday previous to the week of the conference as I put as new window lift motor in my van. It seemed to heal fairly well, but I kept re-injuring it so when we left for the Banner it was fairly uncomfortable. That discomfort has been increased by both the hotel bed, and the beds here at Messiah College neither of which provide the kind of support needed. That has led to less than sufficient sleep and the accompanying fatigue.

Thankfully, but for the presentation by Jonathan Watson on Wednesday afternoon, God kept me alert enough to not only take notes, but to hear the speakers clearly. Today, however, has been a struggle to keep up with my notes, and if tomorrow is any indication I will not be able to get too much note taking done for the closing sermon.

In spite of all of this, I have still found the conference to be excellent, humbling, discouraging, and encouraging. It has shown me once again how far from the pattern of what a pastor should be I am, yet has given the encouragement that in union with Christ I can be transformed to be more like the great shepherd of the sheep, Jesus Christ.

The fellowship has been good, and I have met several other people including a contingent of men from the PCUSA. Yes, you read that correctly, the PCUSA. I know as an RCA pastor my presence could be seen as surprising by some as well, but even I am not the only RCA pastor at the conference. It heartens me to see these men present here. It heartens me to know that even in these mainline denominations, God has called men to faithfully minister, and is working to form Christ in them. My hope is to see many more at future conferences of these men who have held the line, that they may be strengthened and built up to the building of the Church and glory of Christ.

Now to the next session.


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