I have returned with real thanks for the Keswick Convention in Halifax, when I preached on some of the questions Jesus asked: The Confrontational Jesus. In spite of deluging rain and the sheer busyness for many leading up to Easter, I particularly give thanks for:
The quality of preparation for the whole event - every practical angle was covered.
The prayer support - I sensed the organizers' prayerfulness in all their planning. Best of all - half-an-hour before every event there was an open prayer meeting. I cannot overstate the importance of these occasions for bathing each session in prayer.
The feedback - so many people commented on the questions of Jesus:
"I never thought of Jesus asking questions - I have always seen him an an authority who teaches us, but now I also see him as a Lord who invites us to answer."
"I see these questions as opening up a relationship. For anyone enquiring about Christian faith they show us how Jesus opens up to seekers. Amazingly, he makes himself vulnerable because people can answer or turn away."
"The question 'What do you want?' (John 1:38) stays with me - I just cannot get it out of my mind. It seems as though Jesus is asking it whenever I come into worship!"
"These questions have given me a completely new way of looking at the gospels. After the first evening, I couldn't wait to get home to open my Bible and find out some more questions, and to realize that Jesus was speaking to me."
"These questions really probed. That one "Who are my mother and brothers?' (Mark 3:33) challenged us about belonging together as brothers and sisters. I just wish everyone in my church had heard this."
I felt re-affirmed about the need to write these questions up for a wider audience...let's hope for some breathing (writing) time soon. However, CDs of the event are available from the convention at www.keswickconvention.ca. My thanks to the Council and all who prayed for this convention. May God go on speaking to us.