Awkward and out of place

Orange Conference 2014

As I write this post, I am attending a conference for children, youth, young adult and family ministers. It’s called Orange (where church – red – and family – yellow – come together).

The sheer size and scope is pretty amazing. There are over 6000 people in attendance from 48 states and multiple countries. All different denominations are represented (something like 35).

It’s a little overwhelming.


In fact, I feel a little small and insignificant. I don’t write that to make you feel sorry for me. I’m not alone. The entire staff of the church is here with me. That alone is really cool. We all are seeing and hearing the same vision. We are getting on the same page about ministry to family.

What do I mean then? Let me explain.

Just a couple of years ago, I was in a completely different industry. I attended conferences like this all the time. Some were really small (less than 100), but others were really large (10,000 or larger).

What was cool was I always knew someone. Most of the time I knew lots of people. Some of the time people knew me when I had no idea who they were.

That makes you feel good. You feel like a celebrity…even if it’s a super small niche celebrity.


Yesterday afternoon I attended a breakout class led by Jon Acuff. Jon is one of my online heroes. He does what I would like to do – write and speak. He’s much more clever than I am, but I’m taller (I think).

Recently, Jon parted ways with the Dave Ramsey group. I’m not sure the circumstances, but it seems to have been a hard transition. Jon describes it as a reset.

In his class, Jon talked about 4 different types of reset – voluntary and involuntary in either positive or negative versions. He terms them as the Doldrums, The Break, The Make and Hope.

I’m walking through a reset in my life. What’s great is I am somewhere between a positive voluntary and involuntary reset.

It’s not always easy though.

I’m where I’m supposed to be, but it’s not always where I want to be. I’ve gone from an audience if 10,000-15,000 a month with The Collective to a few hundred.

I walk through conference halls where no one knows my name (yes, that’s a Cheers reference). It’s a small but noticeable change in my life.


It means I gotta hustle. I have to work hard and consistently.

I’m taking everything I learned over the last 10 years and applying it to a new (but old) world.

I need to take every opportunity I get to write and speak even if it feels ‘below’ me. This is want reset means…starting over.

So many people I encounter now are in the same place – reset. If you are in the midst of reset whether voluntarily or involuntarily. Whether it’s positive or negative…keep working.


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