After having heard so many people say so many positive things about Francis Chan, I was looking forward to his presentation this morning. He seems like a great guy, committed to his family and well-grounded. His stories were fun and even repeatable (great illustration on asking his daughter to clean her room), but on the whole, I have to admit, the message was a little less than I expected.
Fred Craddock always says listeners are looking for insight. He is right. I am listening to sermons for inspiration, for sure, but mostly I am seeking new insight. Didn’t get much this morning. I guess my overall opinion was that he aimed a bit low for his audience. I’ve done that. I understand.
I am not sure he knew who we were. I don’t mind when people refer to us as a denomination, but I prefer when they preface it by saying, “I know you guys don’t see yourselves this way, so let’s say denomination with a small ‘d’ and go with that.”
I was sitting next to Don Wilson and he said, “We know the importance of discipleship, we just haven’t figured out how to measure it.” Yep. So let’s talk about that. How do we measure discipleship? Why should we measure discipleship? Or maybe let’s get a bit more specific about discipleship.
What I did enjoy was his Chan’s ease with the audience, and the authenticity of his faith. I always like the phrase, “You can’t preach beyond who you are.” Who Francis Chan is seems beyond doubt. I get why he and Todd Clark are friends – cut of the same cloth – genuine and sold-out committed.
Whether Francis Chan or any other “big league speaker” of this current age, I am fascinated by our fixation with the current celebrities. I imagine Peter would have been a faith celebrity – maybe even Paul – at least in theological circles. Jesus – I’m not so sure.
And so it goes.