Saturday, December 01, 2007


Memorial is deep into workshop mode. This week our crew worked on '08, '09, and '10 plans. We work year round simultaneously on at least the next two workshops. It's a trip putting titles and speakers and facilities and calendars into hopefully effective coordination.

Give me your opinion. I have worked on 30+ venues....splitting every other year mostly with Marvin and later Wade. Let's talk speakers. We have the favorites in Randy Harris, Jeff Walling, Don McLaughlin, Marvin Phillips, Mike Cope....and on the list goes. I really like to bring in the not-so-famous in name because they, too, are doing terrific work in their various fields.

For '09 I am considering having day and evening keynotes be delivered by the 'blue collar" guys out there hammering away in kingdom effectiveness? Does this discourage attendance or enhance it? Would you rather travel to Tulsa to hear the Buddy Bells and Jeff Wallings....or to hear the not-as-famous who also do fabulous work? The more popular guys would be doing classes, but not keynotes that particular year.

What's your take?


Anonymous said...


In my opinion, the evening keynotes should be the best of the best. I think the night services are what drive the workshop mostly, not that all the other is insignificant. But the evening worship times are special. Having guys that consistently hit homeruns is essential, IMHO. The afternoon keynotes could be the proving ground for new guys, then let us (oops! them) move into the night services if they prove capable.

Where is Joe Beam? I miss him speaking.

Kyler Erwin said...

I think it's a great idea. Give the new up and coming speakers the chance to get their feet wet in a large setting. Giving them the opportunity to speak on what they are acomplishing might bring new life to those in the seats. I particularly remember the year the Witmire spoke about the work going on at the Cross and Crown ministry at a keynote. I think it was the best one that year. Maybe not very dynamic or a "home run" but inspiring and gut hitting. I think we need more unknowns who are making the Gospel more well known and balance them with the fab 5 of the Church of Christ. Just some thoughts.

Jason Harris said...

I'll volunteer to be a nobody speaker... hahaha...

Here are my suggestions...

David Kinnaman - Author of "unChristian" It would be good for our fellowship to hear what those outside of our walls think of "Christians."

Reggie McNeal - Author of "The Present Future." Again, it would be a good challenge for our faith heritage to listen to some of the things he has to say about our church culture and the resultant effectiveness in our current society.

I love you because I love your son Tim.


drjimwhite said...

What about having team speakers like you have been with one well-known and one not so well-known? Thanks, Terry, for your positive entries. This is one of my must-read blogs every morning. JW

Anonymous said...

Hi Terry,

You don’t know me, but I am grateful you’re pioneering this effort. I am going to be brutally honest, but I hope I don’t come across as cynical or rude in the process.

I think the various lectures and conferences in the c of C have somewhat of a “good ole boy club” feel. It’s the same names wherever you go. I think it is dangerous that our fellowship has become so dependant on a few core teachers and communicators.

No offense, but a lot of the guys you listed, “ain’t getting’ any younger” if you know what I mean. We need to hear fresh voices and raise up new leaders. I am so thankful for you recognizing this and being willing to blaze the trail.

Just a few thoughts…I know you mentioned going to Catalyst. I’ve gone for the last 3 years. Think of their format. Rather than having the “blue collar” guys go it alone, for maybe their first time, have the experienced guys intro them and interview them, being sure to HIGHLIGHT the blue collar guy and not just use them as a brief illustration in their own message. It would be more appropriate to put the spotlight on the guy in the trenches, rather than the familiar voice.

I also encourage you to contact Christian colleges and major state school campus ministers. Find out who they look to for their retreats. Find out who their leaders are.

For specific names I suggest John Alan Turner as a keynote.
Eddie White, South Baton Rouge Church
Paul Evans, Landmark Church (Montgomery, AL)
Travis Stanley, Plymouth Park Church (Irving, TX)
Jody Vickery, Campus Church (Norcross, GA)
Keith Hall, Director of Multicultural Affairs at Lipscomb
David Skidmore, Youth Minister in Murfreesboro, TN

The new voices are out there. Thanks again for looking for them

Stoogelover said...

I'm not trying to blow hot air up your proverbial skirt, but I remember years ago when I first heard a "nobody" by the name of Terry Rush. I think it was some workshop in north Alabama and I was blown away by this guy. I love the "big" voices in our brotherhood (am I still "in" now that we worship with the Christian Church?) and have been greatly encouraged by them. But honestly (and with all due respect to Brad, whom I don't know), hearing them again and again over the years, I feel that I've pretty much heard them and I would love to hear the new voices. I think what you're considering is very gutsy, so for what it's worth, you have my vote to go for it.

john alan turner said...

Thanks for this vote of confidence. I will not let you down.

See you in March.

Anonymous said...

Good points, Greg. No offense taken.

Anonymous said...


I believe a mix of both would be great. I love a lot of the Jeff Wallings and Marvin's But as a young person I think it would be great to hear some of the newer up and coming speakers too. They have such a fresh eye on things and especially for the missionaries out there in the field they see and experience things that sometimes we as Sunday church goers sometimes don't get to experience. I don't think we should get rid of the regulars at all either because they to bring things to mind that I had never thought of. Laugh Out Loud I don't know if this helps. I just feel you could have your cake and eat it too. Best thing out of this is no matter what is decided God will bless us with messages that will stir our hearts and will motivate us to keep the light in the world alive and burning bright and hopefully to continue to sweep the globe with hope, truth and love of the Lord Jesus. You and all of the workshop team are doing a great job! Thanks for your hard work.

Aaron P.

Lee Keele said...


I trust that the spirit is leading you in this. I think it's good to go where God is leading you. Consequences, schmonsequences!


Anonymous said...

Fresh faces are good. I would suggest one or at most two of the keynotes by newbies and/or also use the team approach that has already been suggested. I would NOT make it the last keynote of the workshop, since (I believe) many people leave early and it would thus not be the best forum for a new guy to gain exposure.

Anonymous said...

don't forget about the Christian Church guys...let's continue to use them.

Anonymous said...

Speakers and scheduling, there is a can of worms. You guys have brought on several great speakers. Part of the issue is (I hate to use this word) promoting all the speakers.

you brought up the 'big name' speakers. Some of them are not all that great a speaker IMHO. The comment about the 'club is true from my experience as well. The best 'known' speaker in recent years was Bob Russell, again IMHO.

On the other hand there have been some great speakers in both smaller venues and larger alike. I hate to see a good speaker in the expo with a nominal group in the seats. I know not every speaker is going to have a large following. Angie did a great job last year but people are not ready to step up and hear the topic. Still, pushing, promoting, what ever word sound correct is the point.

If you're looking for a new name, have you considered God's servant Trey Morgan? He would do a great job. Jay Jarboe and Chris Swinford both from SIBI are great speakers as well.yv

Anonymous said...


Wow! I think that is a great idea....As a long time PK, I always remembered thinking "My dad blows all those guys away...why doesn't HE get invited to keynote?" Used to irritate me until I realized Dad was being used exactly as he needed to be. Those that do get the chance to hear him speak know that God gave him a great talent. But of course if you ever need Church of Christ "royalty" (hehehehe) you can invite him to speak. Bill Goodpasture, Ft. Lauderdale, FL! He is the best......(And No I am not prejudice!)

Another name I think is worth a consider is Josh Ross in Houston. Incredible young man!

I also know of an incredible man that is a talented speaker, clinician and would be good for a class on dealing with mental health issues, dealing with people with disabilities(he has a disabled child), or especially teen can email me for his info.

Thanks for such a willingness to see what God is doing through those in the wings.


Anonymous said...

why isn't Joe Beam invited back?

Unknown said...

We met very briefly at Monroe, LA and I was in school at Harding with Dusty. I too have started reading your blog and enjoy it very much.

Although I've never been to the Tulsa Workshop (something I hope to remedy this coming year,) I have always wished that we could hear more from the "not so famous" men out there who are as yet undiscovered great speakers! I've felt that way when I take my youth group to youth rallies and we end up hearing the same guy three times in a year and hear the same lesson all three times.

I love to hear from Don, Jeff and others but I think it's easy to focus on them sometimes instead of the message. How about some "normal" guys.

Matt said...

Kerry Cox who does campus ministry in Illinois is really, really good. Not only does he speak well and energetically but lives it out as well.