The Hillsong Experience
As most of you know, Brian, Bobby and I traveled to Australia last week for the Hillsong Conference and some Bible Society meetings. The trip was full of activities, meetings, and events, so I was not able to unpack the trip in much detail. I don’t plan on a play by play storyline - however, I want to share about the Hillsong experience. The Hillsong experience is the best language I can use to describe the culture and atmosphere around the church and the conference. Over the years we have developed solid relationships with many of the lead pastors and ministry leaders. I have personally visited Hillsong London, but I had never visited Hillsong’s home base in Australia, and never attended “conference.” Yes, they refer to the Hillsong Conference simply as “conference”, and with the quality level, I think it deserves to own the brand of “conference.”
When I think about Hillsong, here are the words that come to mind: worship, global, hospitality, warm, excitement, excellence, anticipation, faith, creative, audacious.
I am sure if I continue to think, more words will come to mind, but I believe that you get the gist. During Pastor Brian Houston's talk, he told a little of his story and the birth of Hillsong. Nearly 40 years ago, a vision was birthed inside him and his wife, Bobbie, for Hillsong. A small group gathered to start the church, and they crafted this vision statement four decades ago. The vision and mission statement existed when there were just a handful of people.
Hillsong Mission Statement
To reach and influence the world by building a large Christ-centered, Bible-based church, changing mindsets and empowering people to lead and impact in every sphere of life.
This alone encapsulates Hillsong - the audacious faith and belief that God was going to do something big in and through the church, and leading and living in expectation of the vision to come to life. Well, as we know, the vision has become a reality. However, that doesn't translate to any feeling of complacency or the stance that "we have arrived." The mission is still alive and driving the ministry forward at a rapid, blessed pace.
My Hillsong experience leaves me believing for more, reminding me that we live in a large, diverse, and interconnected world that needs Jesus desperately. It encourages me to keep praying, pushing, driving, creating and believing God can and will do infinitely more that I can hope, dream or imagine. I am left beyond thankful for Life.Church, and the blessing it is to serve and lead at this incredible church. Finally, the Hillsong experience reminds me how beautiful and diverse “The Church” really is, and reminds me again that we are stronger together! I am so thankful for Hillsong, Life.Church, and so many other churches who unite on common Kingdom values to reach people for Jesus.
So how about you? What, or who, is your Hillsong experience? What or who in your life pushes and stretches you to see differently? To think bigger and bolder? We all need it for our growth and development. #GetStretched