Thursday, April 17, 2008

So long T4G

It's always fairly sad when a conference ends. You look forward to something for so long, and then in a few short days, it's over! We had a great time! The speakers were excellent. It's almost too much to take in at one time. A fellow conference goer said that it was kind of like trying to get a drink of water from a fire hydrant. I am in agreement with that!

You can head on over to Tim Challies, since he live blogged the conference.

You can also download the audio from the conference here. It would be so hard for me to choose one of two sermons to listen just listen to them all. Although Sproul's is a must.

We took some pictures, met up with some old friends, met up with some new friends, got lots of free books, and didn't get much sleep!

Here are just a few highlights from the last few days:

*Hymns, hymns, and more hymns. Bob Kauflin led 5500 men and women (mostly men) in singing with only a piano. There was something so simple, yet so moving about hearing that many people sing out praise to our God.

*The books, oh the books! We only bought one book and one cd...yet we drive home with about 70 books between the two of us. So much reading to accomplish, and so little time.

*Shaking the hands and speaking with John Piper, CJ Mahaney, Ligon Duncan, Al Mohler, Thabiti Anyabwile, Bob Kauflin, Tim Challies, Phil Johnson, Frank Turk, Tom Ascol, and Carolyn McCulley. It was nice to see RC Sproul, Mark Dever, and John MacArthur...though I wasn't able to get close enough to them. Lord knows I tried, lol.

*Meeting in a room with 150 bloggers from across the US/Canada. I'm thinking there wasn't anyone from overseas. The panel was great and gave much insight to what the focus of a blogger should be about.

*Seeing grown men in their 40s, 50s, and 60s sprinting to get a good seat. It was like I was going shopping the day after Thanksgiving...except it was mainly men. I actually had a man apologize to me for the way his gender was acting, lol.

*Teaching good friends about the game of Quelf. Enough said.

*This morning, there was a man seated behind me that could not carry a tune...yet hearing him sing to his Redeemer was so pure and glorious.

*Seeing so many theological heroes of mine was almost overwhelming. To see RC Sproul really PREACH it, brought tears to our eyes. He was so profound and convicting, you could feel the deep love he has for Christ in the way he speaks. John and I were discussing how he is one of the Great Theologians of our time, and when our children are older, we can share that we were able to see one of the most influential teachers of our time.

*Meeting up with some friends that up to this point, we had only conversed with online. We met up several times, had some great discussion, ate a few meals and will definitely keep in touch with. (Hi Melissa and Rob) Thank you Mike Huckabee.

*Following Tom Ascol around the Convention Center...who was more lost than we were. Note to self: Never follow Tom Ascol...chances are, he's not too sure where he's going.

*The intimidation of Al Mohler. His intelligence is almost scary. I kept waiting for his head to explode.

*Ligon Duncan is the most down to earth PCA guy I've ever seen or met. When I asked him to do me a favor, he was more than happy to oblige!

*I love me some John Piper. I love his sense of humor and can't wait to see him two more times this year!! He's getting so culturally relevant too....CJ Mahaney got him an iPhone...who would have thought that Piper (who only owns maybe two or three suits) would have an iPhone? The man doesn't even own a tv, lol.

*Having some friends think they had an 'RC Sproul jr' sighting...sorry guys.

*We ate the most elegant dinner the first night....standing in line for an hour at Wendy's.

*Knowing that my boys were in good hands at Jim and Cindy's house(John's brother and our SIL). There is nothing more comforting to a mom to know that her children are in good hands. It has made this trip stress-free and relaxing.

*Meeting Carolyn McCulley. I saw her, recognized her, and then said hello. She has a new book coming out named Radical Womanhood: Feminine Faith in a Feminist World. It's available for preorder, and I really can't wait to get it.

*As people filled the auditorium, saving seats for those that had not yet arrived, I overheard a conversation of a man trying to find the rest of his group: "I don't see anyone waving around a banana!"

*Meeting a pastor's wife from New Mexico...I'm going to guess at her name..Stephanie? (I hope I got that right!) We were in pursuit of free books, and we ended up walking around the bookstore for awhile...until we found them! We are so like-minded, we immediately clicked. If we lived in the same town, we would surely be close friends. She has four boys, just like me....but still needs to work on that girl!

*The only missing piece of T4G was Reggie and Teana. Without them there, it definitely felt like something was missing. There will still be Desiring God this fall though....Melting Pot here we come!

I can't say enough about the way this conference refreshed us, and gave us a renewed yearning to spread the Gospel. In all of our differences, our centrality is the Gospel. It was definitely felt over the past few days by all who attended.

For all those who couldn't make it this've got two years to plan for the next Together for the Gospel!


Teana said...

Your post brought tears to my eyes. You made me feel like I was there...I'm so glad you had such an enriching time, Shannon. How wonderful. And God bless your sweet sister in law and brother in law. What a gift!

Reggie said...

Undoubtedly some portion of those 70 books are gifts for me bought by two sweet, dear friends who will withold no good thing from a brother!!!

Dana said...

Wow, what an amazing experience. Maybe next year we will have the opportunity to go. I have downloaded and listened to Al Mohler's and RC Sprouls already. I have some other in itunes but haven't gotten them on my ipod yet to listen to - but soon!!

Qtpies7 said...

Sounds like a wonderful retreat! I haven't even heard of it before.

I'd love to see some blogging on Quelf! Did you take pictures?