It was a long day, and I'll process more (and write more) later. Here's a brief overview:
First of all, we're all safe and we all seem to still like one another. Today, everybody split up and attended different break out sessions according to what interested them or where they were currently serving. We came back together and have debriefed a bit, but I'm sure our dinner conversation will be rich.
Best parts for me were connecting with a couple other women who are in leadership at churches in Michigan and New Jersey. Obvious God-connections, and they led to conversations that truly fed my soul, personally, spiritually and 'ministerally' (is that a word?)
Also connected with a guy from home - serving a church not too far from us. Hopefully we can continue to network and support one another; he was a great blessing, and I found out later that Seth (who is traveling with us) knew him well. I passed on telephone numbers and they were able to reconnect.
Last night we processed a bit, and I asked my team what had surprised them the most about the first day. One reply was interesting; she said that she hadn't expected it to be such a personal experience. Emotionally and spiritually, she was quite moved.
Another person said simply that she looked around and realized that God was "big". The church was "big". This is a "big" thing....looks silly in print, but I understand exactly what she was saying. They have such a huge vision at Willow, and they work hard to execute it with such excellence - and it is big. And when you experience it, you get it.
We're off for some Chicago-land pizza and hopefully an early night. My brain is fried and I need some sleep.