My younger co-workers had been after me for years to go with them to their favorite conference, Catalyst. I always had a good excuse, including being on vacation last year and significant commitments at other times. But I think they knew the real reason.
I didn't want to go.
Let me count the reasons:
- The time away just puts me behind, like I am right now on this Friday night. Sunday is coming and this preacher is not ready.
- The conference will not encourage me. It will simply remind me where I and my church are falling short.
- I am not a conference guy. I am a read a book guy.
- I am already gone from home more than I care to be.
- All conferences are the same. All hype and no substance.
I am glad my co-workers wore me down. The conference was great! My wife went with me, and we were blessed indeed. Man it was good. I have not come home on fire, ready to change the world. The terrible traffic on the drive home beat the "walking on a cloud" feeling out of me. (BTW, the older you get, the more you gripe about traffic.)
But I did come home more determined to be a better minister and man.
Are you investing in yourself? What have you done to sharpen your skills in the past three months. One day retreat, online course, challenging read, special certification, conference, class at a community college, intentional learning from key lay leaders--the opportunities are endless.
If you do not invest in yourself, no one else will.
I am glad I went.