Archives For The Digital Sanctuary

Sunday, I was working on Church 2.0 book stuff with co-writers Tony Steward and Cynthia Ware. Yes, in case you missed the announcement on Facebook yesterday: Tony and Cynthia are co-writing the technology section of the Church 2.0 book!

While we were sitting outside of Starbucks and brainstorming, we saw the Cowboys’ new tight end Martellus Bennett. Here’s the crazy thing: he saw me notice him and walked over to me, stuck out his hand and said, “Hello.” He was as nice as could be and we chatted for a bit. He was funny and warm and way nicer than someone with his fame would normally be.

I asked if I could take a picture with him. He said, “Sure” – so I did. That’s Tony sitting on the left (my right). Martellus represented the Cowboys in a great way. He was down-to-earth, friendly and a super ambassador for the team. We all remarked how well he represented the Cowboys. He even mentioned his faith when Cynthia told him I was a pastor.

I was truly impressed with his humility, humor and accessibility. My hat is off to him and the entire team, which, by the way, I’m picking to go to the Super Bowl. SO… who do YOU have going to the Super Bowl?

If you’re not at ECHO, you’re going to wish you were and you need to plan for it next year. It’s always a good thing to come to Dallas! I had a great time for my first day of the ECHO Conference.

I got to catch the pre-lab class on “Design” – which rocked. It was so refreshing to watch a talented artist, Barton Damer, peel back the layers (literally in PhotoShop) and show how he created the conference logo (seen above).

I then hung out with Cynthia Ware and talked with several friends that were in town from around the country. Then Cynthia and I attended a special lunch and got to hear what’s coming down the road for WorshipHouse Media.

The rest of the day was a blur of conversations, meetings, classes, talking with my friends that are exhibitors, BBQ for dinner, more deep discussions and meeting people in person that knew me from online (Facebook, Twitter or my blog).

I was most impressed with how the ECHO team and the host church, Watermark, handled the night main session with my friend, Mark Batterson. Hats off to my local tech buddies Ryan Howell (Watermark) and Jason Cole (Lake Pointe) who were making it happen, along with Les and the rest of their team. My intern, Jonathan, even jumped in on camera. So Bent Tree, Watermark, Lake Pointe and the ECHO team came together as one – it was beautiful. We have a great local group of tech directors. I saw most of them today, including my friend, Brian Davis, from Fellowship Dallas.

The worship last night was great (led by my friend, Will Pavone, from McLean Bible in Washington DC. I moved from serving in the Washington DC area to Dallas). The visuals and lighting were notable. They truly led artistically and tastefully. I was very impressed and want to get the backgrounds that they used for the songs – they were awesome.

They had created a nice countdown, made great use of a left, center and right video screen and had a cool brief conference starter video. Good stuff. Batterson brought it and was encouraging and appreciative to technical artists. It was good to see him and his digital/tech team (Dave Clark, David Russell and Jeremy Sexton).

I ended the night chatting briefly with some local friends, including new Dallas resident: Rhett Smith, and got some brief time with my college friend, Shawn Wood, who will be speaking today. I also talked with Tim Stevens and his associate from Granger. I’ll spend some more time later today with Tim.

I picked up Tony Steward last night from the airport and am looking forward to spending some time with him these next few days. I teach today and tomorrow and am looking forward to meeting more of you.

More later, including my new resource of the month: Unifyer – which is one of the sponsors for the Church 2.0 Local Forum in Atlanta next week and is a new partner with my ministry. I can’t wait to tell you more about what they’re up to!

DAY ONE: Great. Well done ECHO team. Looking forward to the rest of the conference.

This past Sunday I had a good friend of mine (Chris Kim), who is a worship leader in Washington DC, come visit and attend Bent Tree. 2 weeks ago, Cynthia Ware was in town and got to come out and visit Bent Tree. As I’ve mentioned before, I love to show guests around, give them a behind-the-scenes tour and allow them to attend and listen in to our pre-service, in-between services and post-service meetings.

My hope is that if you’re in Dallas, you’ll give me a shout and come by for a visit. The reverse is true as well. If you see on my blog that I am coming to your town, please invite me out to visit your ministry. I’d love to!