Memorable Extras

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In conferences it’s easy to be in a state where it’s a lot of input whether in theology (teaching) or methodology (training) – it’s a breath of fresh air when Dan asked us to write down names of people whom we know who are not yet followers of Christ on these post-it notes and then one by one stick them on the stage area. For many of us coming out more than 3 names (especially as paid-staff in churches) is a challenge … then we need to ask what are we actually doing. This act was so so necessary to keep all we’re discussing in perspective and priority.

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I really liked the idea of using the clay and forming our own mini-sculpture based on one of the beatitudes (Matthew 5) – during the session while listening to the talk. At the end, one by one we brought our “expressions” to the stage. Lots of creativity … not just creativity .. but creativity connecting with a truth expressed in the texts.

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I liked Marko’s games with 5000 points even for each victory 🙂 and his energizers are really workable after lunch to wake us up! He teached me some “fist” greeting thing … which is actually pretty alien to me but it was fun! I’m growing to accept (even in the midst of my cheekiness) I’m actually VERY serious!

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One thing that struck me is when Tony said how they are increasingly growing uncomfortable as being seen as the ones with the answers & authority (especially as the ones holding the mic) – this Q & A session was meant to model “conversation” and “interaction” – in short mutuality in learning along this journey in our respective contexts and together. It was nice to see how each of them responded to the questions – seeing how they embody and express what they are wrestling with …

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In my limited experience I’ve learnt to “engage” those who present talks or ideas at two levels … the more formal presentation level and my prefered personal conversational level – I thoroughly enjoyed both with these guys and of course, I found the “conversations” at a personal level tremendously stimulating (even more than the formal sessions). Understanding the personal narratives of each person behind the words and ideas presented allows me to “understand” better and re-look at what’s “generating” those words and thoughts from my newly connected friends …

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Though this was a primarily meant for Singapore conference … we Malaysians took the chance to come and see what’s going on … and I guess, some of us are surprised as well as not so suprised who turned up. I also was delighted to meet a Malaysian teaching in Singapore and will be doing more research work on South East Asian cultural & thought forms historical development – sounds great hope to see more Malaysians rising up to help us understand our socio-political-cultural-religous climate … as for the rest of us mere mortals trying to serve Jesus with our own gifts … I hope we Malaysians will seriously work constructively – beyond individually but also together. One of Tony’s insights stuck with me … and it’s about immersing ourselves in the Gospel in community to discover the answers for each concerns that we face.

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