Yesterday was a long day. Our flight on Wednesday night was cancelled, so our best option was to leave Wilmore at 4am (that’s real early) to catch another flight.
The delay was worth it. The first day at Willow featured Bill Hybels, Gary Haugen, Bill George, Wendy Kopp, and Efrem Smith.
Bill Hybels is the founding pastor of Willow Creek Community Church. He spoke on the importance of decision making in leadership. It was a helpful talk that led through important steps in decision-making.
Gary Haugen is the president of the International Justice Mission. IJM fights for rights of the poor and oppressed around the world. Stories of freeing children from labor slavery, sex slavery, and supporting adult victims of governmental abuse were scattered through an inspiring talk. It’s an incredible organization.
Bill George is a professor at Harvard Business School. He ran MedTech for years. He gave good leadership advice with an incredibly humble spirit. He was experienced and knowing without being patronizing. One of his main points was that many leaders go through a personal crucible.
Wendy Kopp is the founder of Teach for America, which sends the best young teachers into the lowest performing schools around the country to make a difference. Kopp was interviewed by Hybels. It was a great conversation that underscored the desire of people to make a difference with their lives.
Efrem Smith preached. And he brought it. His primary focus was ministry in this multi-cultural world. His primary point was that urban areas are getting comfortable being diverse, yet the Church in North America still believes it’s best to gather a homogenous group. Smith is the pastor of Sanctuary Covenant Church in Minneapolis.
It was a great day! Now, on to Day Two.