Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Legacy Conference

It's been a while since my last blog. Sorry for the delay. The past few weeks have been particularly busy as I've been doing alot of recording and some travelling. This past weekend, I had the privilege of participating in the Legacy Conference in Chicago. It was a discipleship conference that featured teaching and music from Christian hip-hop artists such as Lecrae, Trip Lee, Tedashii and Flame. The main session featured an address by Paul Washer. If you are not familiar with this brother, he is probably most known for a shocking sermon that he preached at a youth rally some time back. It's one of the most powerful messages I've ever heard. Check it out when you get a chance.

As far as the conference, it was a blessing to meet and fellowship with Christians from around the country. I also appreciated the opportunity to teach a session on the doctrine of salvation. It's great to be in a room with urban youth discussing the implications of justification and redemption. However, for me, the highlight of the conference came on Friday night after the breakout session. At around 10:30 p.m., I was about to leave and join some friends for a late dinner. I walked back into the room where I had been teaching to grab some things, and who did I see sitting there but Paul Washer! He wasn't scheduled to speak until the following day. However, he had flew in a day early and had some time to kill. Needless to say, my dinner plans were cancelled! Not wanting to waste this opportunity, myself and a few other brothers sat down and fired away questions. Brother Paul shared his experiences on the foreign mission field, the story behind the "shocking youth sermon", as well as fatherly counsel on life in general. He was very generous with his time. We talked about doctrine, missions, holiness and the glory of God until 3 a. m. ! It was glorious.

It was particularly encouraging to see Brother Paul's response to what God is doing in the Christ-centered Hip-hop movement. He was taken aback to see young brothers dressed in baggy jeans with fitted caps and other hip-hop externals who were, at the same time, passionate about the glory of God, sound theology and magnifying the worth of Christ in their raps and lives. For me, it was yet another one of those "Lord, what am I doing here?" moments. I had another one of those a few weeks back when I had an opportunity to meet with John Piper at an Acts 29 Network- sponsored lunch. At both meetings, I was struck by the desperate need our generation has for spiritual fathers. Just prior to meeting with Paul Washer, me and some of my brothers had been talking and praying about the need for older men in our lives who could teach us things that we can't learn from our peers. In many ways, we are a fatherless generation. And we are suffering because of it. We rejoiced as Paul Washer, without being aware of our conversation, addressed the exact same issues that we had been crying out to God about, almost verbatim.

I'll save the issue of fatherlessness (spiritual and natural) and its impact on the Hip-hop generation for another post. But I praise God that He has raised up men who are willing to help teach, guide and direct our generation. May He be pleased to continue stirring up older men who will teach the younger how to be godly men, husbands and fathers. A quiet, impromptu, late-night meeting in inner-city Chicago this past weekend was a great step in that direction.

grace and peace,


Anonymous said...

Hey shai,

I just wanted to say that I enjoyed your class on the doctrine of salvation. I am also glad that you and the fellas were able to talk with Paul Washer. When I heard that you all had talked for that amount of time, I was like, "wow!" lol

I do agree with you that there are a lack of spiritual fathers (as well as natural ones) in our generation. I see that there is a need and I will be in prayer about it.

God Bless you,


Andrew Travis Pantazi said...

shai, I listened to Paul Washer's sermon just now and it helped me with some things that I have been struggling with. Things about my personal life struggles against sin and my friends who claim to be Christian. Especially one friend who knows theology better than anyone else I know, he has read everything written by Piper, MacArthur, and Mahaney but his life is a life that doesn't ever serve and is a life that will watch any movie no matter what. That sermon has helped to make me realize that I need to be praying and weeping for him. Your post has also helped me to realize that not only do I need fellowship from my peers but also I need to be mentored from those who are older. As always I praise God for what He is doing through sinful men like you, LampMode, Cross Movement, Reach Records, and even a sinful person like me.
God bless,
andrew travis pantazi

Khristi Lauren said...

Fatherlessness. Blog on brotha. It'll be interesting to read on when the time comes. I have a great deal to say on the topic myself. but i digress...

chaka said...

Hey shai,

I too had a great time and was very encouraged to pursue the heart of God. Just as the cry of your heart is for godly fathers I believe that I am (we are) crying out just as much for godly mothers who can guide us as well. Prayerfully God will send both..but while we wait u know what we'll be doing..lift'n Him up!