For the past three years I have had the privilege of attending the CM Connect Conference. Each year I have found it to be a great atmosphere to grow as a leader, learn new ideas in children’s ministry, and to be encouraged by the capital C Church. I have already filled up many pages in my notebook with thoughts, ideas, and people to follow up with. I have a handful of thoughts that need to be delved into more before sharing them. However, here are some of my biggest take aways so far:
- Love one another. Michael Chanley the director of CM Connect opened up the main session the first night sharing his heart for the church. John 13:34-35 says; “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” While this is not a new principle to me, Michael’s heart behind wanting the church to show that love to each other is a thought that has been on my mind all-conference.
- Communication feels like care. This is a quote from Nick Blevins’ session I attended Tuesday morning. Nick was talking about how to develop and grow your volunteer teams. Communication is one of those things that can become tiring, however, there is almost always a need for more of it. My hope is that I can set up systems that the volunteers, parents, and kids I work with can feel like they are cared for.
- Say hi & bye– Heidi Hensley did a session on 20 things she learned in her 20 years of ministry. One of these principles was to say hi and goodbye (or see you next week) to your families as they come in. Personally, I am a doer, so typically I have 30 things I want to do during check-in times, but being there and being available for families is important. This is definitely something I am going to be working towards doing more of.
- You need to be obedient to your audience of one– Lori Bethran spoke at the Tuesday night session and in a few breakouts sessions I attended. While I have many notes from her different talks, this principle about the audience of one is language that I hope to make part of my everyday life. As a believer, I hope my life exists to serve God. Even if he is my audience of one.
Okay, these are all my thoughts for now. There are still two more days (8 breakouts and 4 keynote speakers) for me to hear, so expect more to be posted soon.