The Gospel Coalition for Women: A Conference You Want to Attend
Ten ladies from EFCCL ventured to the convention center in Indianapolis last week for TGCW18, a gospel centered conference for women. Of the 8,000 women there, 11% were over age 50, and many women were in high school or pushing strollers with nursing babies. We enjoyed rich teaching on God’s faithfulness from the book of Deuteronomy from Don Carson, John Piper, and several women. This blog post gives a look into my notes from the conference.
The pre-conference sneak peek focused on loving the sojourner, the orphan, and the widow.
Loving the Sojourner:
Why should we love the outcast? What is the foundation for showing love to the least of these? The speaker for Loving the Sojourner was an Iranian immigrant who found Christ through reading a Bible that he had received during ESL classes offered at his school.
Loving the Orphan (James 1:16-27):
Value the Word, receive the Word, do the Word. The rhythm of the Christian is quick slow slow. The speaker, who has adopted 4 children, offered 21 ways to care for orphans.
Loving the Widow (James 1:27):
The widow and the orphan are the twins of the margins; with the sojourner, you have a trinity of oppression. Justices comes from God, in this life and the next. Pure and undefiled religion leads to restoration where as impure and defiled religion leads to desolation. Live for today with your eyes fixed on tomorrow, our future hopes shapes now. Beauty exists in stealth and Kingdom creativity; Political power is fleeting. Making a mark in the Lamb’s Book of Life is most important.
The remainder of the conference consisted of 7 main sessions on Deuteronomy and 3 subject specific break out sessions.
From Deuteronomy 1, we see a faithful God and His unfaithful people. Skepticism, defiance, and false repentance are the three defense mechanisms we use to avoid repentance. From Deuteronomy 5, we learned that obedience to the Law of the Lord does not create the relationship, but God wants us to always have a heart of fear. Moses as the mediator points to the ultimate mediator, Jesus Christ. Deuteronomy 6 challenges us to leave a godly generation for every generation. Our legacy should be to love God exclusively, obey God entirely, and testify explicitly. Don Carson discussed in Deuteronomy 12 and 5 the entailments of loving God. Jen Wilkin broadened our understanding of Deuteronomy 15 in Open Wide Your Hand, the thrust of this passage. She explored the concepts of neighborliness and generosity in contrast to exploitation and self protection; open handed stewards in contrast to tight fisted owners. Deuteronomy 15 can be interpreted as an extension and command to observe the Sabbath. Observing the Sabbath rightly orients us to God. Holding still shows us that the world is not ours and it does not revolve around us. Final sessions explored Deuteronomy 18 and the closing section of Deuteronomy 29-30. God, the one who gives the love. God is sovereign and initiates His love. God makes another covenant besides the one at Mount Sinai. We were left pondering the question: How hard is it to enjoy what is supremely enjoyable?
by Heather Soukup, Children’s Discipleship Director