Wednesday, May 30, 2007


I returned home yesterday afternoon from the Na Conference, tired but refreshed, overwhelmed but grateful. I would like to post in the coming days what I learned from each session, but I kind of just want to give you my overall impressions from the conference first.

When we first arrived in Louisville, we saw groups of kids (umm, sorry, young adults) who were obviously there for the conference. I instantly felt old and unhip and started to question why on earth I would come to a conference for singles and young married people. Because let's be honest, after almost 8 years of marriage and 2 children, you don't feel young married anymore. But anyway, Laura encouraged me that it wouldn't matter how old I was once we were there and the conference started, and I must admit that for the most part it didn't.

The first session was Saturday evening with Joshua Harris as the main speaker. They did a lot to introduce the conference and said silly things like "make sure you get enough sleep." Like you have to tell me that! I was just excited to have 3 nights without a toddler waking me!

The music was a bit overwhelming at first. Very upbeat and exciting, and while I have no problems with it, I felt like all the songs were new and everyone was raising their hands and I'm not used to doing that. But my attitude soon changed when I saw the genuineness of everyone's worship and I quit having the judgemental attitude and started to truly worship myself. I did tell Laura that first night that I couldn't have a song service like that every Sunday and then by Tuesday I wished we did!

The speakers were phenomenal. This is what caused me to go to the conference in the first place. And it wasn't about being single or young married. It was solid, Biblical teaching about our culture and how to interact, when to separate, what obedience pleases God, etc. It was outstanding and each session left me overwhelmed with what I had heard. Thankfully the Na website will spend the next couple of months dissecting what we heard and making it manageable for us to apply it to our lives. I will visit there often, and you should check it out too! All the sermons will be available to download for free, so it can be like you were there, too!

Well, like I mentioned earlier, I would like to post in-depth about each session, so check back in the coming days to read my thoughts. I know my chicken-scratch notes won't do each sermon justice, so if you want in-depth analysis, you can check out 3 blogs that live-blogged each session. The best is Tim Challies (which, by the way, had I known he was there I would have tried to meet him) but you can also read Alex and Brett Harris at Rebelution or the staff at Boundless' take on the weekend.


Tim Challies said...

"Because let's be honest, after almost 8 years of marriage and 2 children, you don't feel young married anymore."

Aileen and I are just about at the 9 year mark and we felt old. But we still enjoyed it! There were enough people there in their late 20's or early 30's that we didn't feel too badly out of place!


Donette said...

You're right, Tim, there were plenty of "older" people there, and besides, I look 20ish ;), so I'm sure I didn't attract too much negative attention!!!

Thanks for your comment and all you do on your blog. I have benefitted from it on many occasions. Keep up the great work and I'll look for you at the next conference. Except I don't know what you look like . . .

Gretchen said...

Nett -- wow, comments from Tim Challies!

Thanks for posting about the conference. I'm eager to hear further posts on what you learned. Feel free to summarize and give the essence of what you learned. That's what I try to do when I know I can't possibly remember all the details. I'm sure it will be very encouraging.

Seriously, it was like college again talking to you. Remember that I noticed your cool "Freak" shirt and I asked if it was DC Talk? That made us instant friends -- no-one else knew who they were! (Just kidding)

Hope it's good to be back with the kiddos. I'll be praying that your everyday walk will be enhanced because of your refreshed spirit.


Name: Karen said...

I am so eager to hear what you learned. I am very familiar w/TG4 b/c our men attended that in droves in 2006. I think it's almost doubling (the # of men for the 2008 conference) But I had never heard of NA.

Can't wait to read your posts! (Thats code for: Hurry up and post would ya, Im eager to hear what amazing Truth you gleaned!) Ha Ha

Morning Rose said...

Just curious, what does Na mean? :)

Donette said...

Na, which stands for New Attitude, has been a conference for singles since '99, I think. It was opened up for newly married couples this year. I had never heard of it, either, probably because it isn't as attended at T4G and other conferences. But it was a great experience and I felt younger by the end of it, so I would like to go again next year with Dan!

hartgirlies said...

When I first started attending our church, people did worship in a different way than I was used to. Some people would just sing, then you have the clappers and just a step above that you have the hand raisers and prayers! It did take some getting used to, but I found that when I stopped looking around at what everyone else was doing and just focused on worshiping God, it really did not matter. Slowly my hands would raise and after a while, it became natural. I often close my eyes while I sing and I really feel like it is just me and God. I have truly found the meaning of the word "worship". Everyone has their own way to worship God and the important thing, however you choose to worship, is that it comes from your heart.

Filipe Niel said...

Hello, my name is Filipe and I'm a pastor in Brazil, you are blessed, I wish I could have been there, I've already downloaded the messages and hopefully I'll listen it all this week. I really wish I could be in one Na one day, and I have a dream of one day having a ministry like Na in Brazil, my people need it as much as the Americans. I'm glad that God has blessed you that much there, keep looking up.
Filipe Niel