Memorable Extras

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.

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.

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!

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 …

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 …

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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