Yep, it's a great, cheerful color, one of Jim's favorites and it can speak volumes for your ministry! Last year our youth and childrens ministry team went ORANGE and tried to share that vision with the church. I thought I had the vision, I understood it enough to explain it, but it was not in my heart. It was not my passion, it was not transforming me or the way I want to do ministry. If you're reading and thinking, oh, I'm not in ministry, this doesn't apply to me, you're wrong. If you have children and you want to grow in teaching them to have a relationship with Christ, then you may want to read a bit more, I have a great tool for you. After attending the ORANGE conference last month I now have the vision, I am transformed, I cannot wait to make it a contagious force within my church. I want my entire church (and yours) to capture this ORANGE vision and create a change that will strengthen families.
The ORANGE Conference is about bringing children and youth leaders together to guide and direct them on leading our children to Christ and a relationship with Him. I just had a typo where I had REALationship. Hmmm, not quite a typo is it? Sorry, got distracted there. I don't know about you, but there's nothing I want more in this world than for Nathan and Brady to have a real personal relationship with Him. When they were first born I struggled with singing classic children's songs or Christian songs or reading Christian stories over secular stories. I know, it shouldn't be that big of a deal, but I'm weird like that. I realized two things. 1. If I make sure God always has first place in their lives He's going to take care of everything else in their lives (from the alphabet to their future finances). 2. He's going to take care of everything so we'll do a good mix of both! So far, I think it's working. :)
I experienced an amazing time of worship (love Steve Fee, Kristian Stanfill and Phil Wickham) and Francis Chan totally knocked my socks off! I had breakout sessions with some people who are doing church in ways that made me say, I want us to do that, how can we do that??? My brain started going on overdrive and it's not slowing down!! SMC watch out! I heard some great speakers and bought a book that I'm slowly devouring. I bet if I enjoyed my food as much as I enjoy this book I would lose some weight! It talks about what ORANGE is all about. I'm only on page 91, yes if you know me I normally read a book a day. The entire Twilight series in 4 days anyone? I'm taking this one piece by piece because it's meaningful for not just our ministry, but for my family. My prayer while at ORANGE was that I would be a better parent. I came home and felt like my prayer had been immediately answered. There was so much peace in my home. That peace has slowly dissolved and I need to get at the heart of what created that peace and how it can be a constant. I feel like that can be found in this book because this book is about families and making sure our connection to God is our top priority. Or maybe I just need to get away again... It will be available for purchase soon, it's called Think Orange: Imagine the Impact When Church and Family Collide. It's "about two entities partnering to make a greater impact or to create a better solution." It's good, well, the first 91 pages are and if you only get something out of those pages, you've spent good money. I think my highlighter is spent from those 91 pages!
If you ever have the chance to attend an ORANGE Conference or a Catalyst Conference, GO! I was hesitant because that means leaving my family, but this was beyond worth it! I'm so thankful my church thinks enough of me to send me. I'm hopeful I can give back a little something of what I gained there. We're off to a great ORANGE summer. If you have any ideas of any ORANGE things, anything no matter how whacky or outrageous they may seem, send them my way. ORANGE foods, ORANGE games, ORANGE skits, you name it, if it's ORANGE, I want to know about it! Also looking for some ORANGE clothes, my one ORANGE t-shirt from last summer may not make it. If you see something that looks nice on sale in the area, let me know so I can grab it!
Oh, and what does ORANGE mean? Here you go, if you haven't heard it, I hope you love it as much as I do! We all know that red and yellow together make ORANGE. Imagine the church being yellow (the light of Christ) and families being red (the heart). Put it together and you get ORANGE. You get the heart/love and the light of Christ in one as it should be. They weren't meant to be separated. Be ORANGE.