I’m home form my six day kidmin road trip with fellow blogger and children’s pastor Sam Luce. First of all, it was a total blast. Shooting around Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio with the mission of connecting with as many children’s pastors as possible was a total blast. Over the 6 days, we connected with over a dozen children’s pastors, one kidmin band from New Zealand and the infamous Jim Wideman.
Our tour connected us with a virtual mosaic of personalities and ministry styles that both humbled and impressed me. On multiple occasions, reality defied my expectations in an unexpected, but pleasant way.
The biggest thing I’ve learned from this whole kidmin road trip is that ministry in isolation is stupid. I can’t even tell you how much I learned in the past six days, but I would never have learned so much if I hadn’t left my church behind for a week and charged out to meet some new people (and visited some I hadn’t seen in a while). Going to a conference is good, but too often conference attenders don’t really venture out to meet new people, exchange ideas, challenge processes and dream of the future ministry ahead. How does that happen? You sit in a coffee shop for several hours with someone in ministry you respect. You take a look at someone’s facilities and ask question after question after question. You connect with someone you want to learn from and go to their house, eat their food and play with their kids.
So, this week (maybe a little of next week as well) I’ll share with you some of the experiences Sam and I had. Don’t rely on mine though. Reading this is just touching the tip of the iceberg. I’ll continue to have conversations, chats and meet-ups with the people I mention that you won’t know about. You need to make your own “kidmin road trip.” Maybe it won’t take you hundreds of miles away crossing state lines. It could start with the church on the other side of town. How are you going to make this happen in 2010? You’ll be glad you did, I promise!
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Kenny, it was great meeting up with you. I love connecting with other leaders no matter what type of church, size of ministry, or job title they hold. I’ve learned more from other people than I ever did in college, a conference, or book. I look forward to reading what you learned as well as continuing to learn from you.
In my current job (moving towards fulltime CM, but the church is not there yet), I have found the value of this kind of networking. The importance of knowing people that the same kind of job that you do are can not be described. I also agree that if you are going to go to a conference, you must be intentional about networking. It is the relationships that start at a conference that will last long after you have forgotten the sessions you attended.