THRIVE ND speakers share vision for effective, healthy church

THRIVE 2010 thumbMore than 400 people descended on Hope Covenant Church in Grand Forks, ND, Oct. 15-16, for two days of inspiration, teaching, worship and workshops designed to spread encouragement. THRIVE ND, which was hosted by Hope and co-sponsored by the Northwest Conference, was facilitated by a team from Bayside Church in Granite Bay, CA.

Ray Johnston, founding pastor of Bayside and keynote speaker on Friday evening, opened THRIVE ND by challenging pastors and lay people to embrace vision, compassion and hope.

The early Church had a “vision that was greater than their fear,” Johnston said. “A lot of churches today, their only vision for the future is to bring back the past.”

Asking churches to choose compassion over apathy, Johnston explained that “good deeds” can lead to “good will,” which can eventually lead to openness to the “good news” of the gospel. As he closed the session, Johnston said that churches must also be a place of hope and encouragement for those who already attend, and those who are new to the church.

On Saturday, attendees—who came from almost 30 different churches—had the opportunity to choose from breakout sessions designed to equip them for various aspects of ministry. Breakout workshops covered a range of topics, including: Preaching and Communication Dynamics, God-Size Your Church, Worship Leading and Leading Worship from the Heart, and What is a Thriving College Ministry?

Bayside, which hosts an annual version of THRIVE at its campus in California, hopes to continue to replicate the event on smaller scales at venues across the country.

Visit our photos page to see a collection of images from the weekend.