More than 360 individuals gathered at the Green Lake Conference Center in Wisconsin from September 5–9 for this year’s fourth Family Conference. The wonderful weather, scenic surroundings, comfortable lodging, like-minded fellowship, and solid Biblical teaching were among the contributing factors that made the final Family Conference of the year a highlight for so many attendees. These conferences offer families a time of spiritual encouragement, Biblical instruction, and uplifting fellowship. It is not uncommon for folks to travel from near and far; for this specific conference attendees came from several states and three different countries. One family from Houston first heard about the Family Conference while looking at the IBLP website. They traveled to Wisconsin to attend, bringing another family with them. There were many interesting stories of how God brought others to this particular conference, also.
With special sessions for dads and moms, a pastors’ fellowship, and programs for children, the conference offered something for everyone. The ALERT Cadets, young men ages 8-17, enjoyed an afternoon of activities with their fathers, and a mother/daughter session was held for the COMMIT ladies on Friday. The Children’s Institute and Pre-Embassy groups each enjoyed a special visit from “Fanny Crosby” and were delighted to hear her share some of her life story. From young children to grandparents, all ages were able to hear in some way Biblical truths that have the power to transform their lives.
Several speakers were able to be present at the Green Lake conference. Conference attendees were privileged to hear messages from Keith and Jenny Daniel, Jerry Benjamin, Jobe Martin, and Peter Magnuson throughout the week. S.M. Davis’ video session about kindness touched many, as did Scott Pauley’s video session entitled Acres of Diamonds, which was about contentment. Throughout the week families were encouraged with messages, sessions, and fellowship to keep Christ at the center of their lives and trust Him in all things.
Friday of the conference marked ATI director David Waller’s birthday. Following a piano and violin arrangement of one of David’s favorite classical pieces, the conference attendees joined together in singing “Happy Birthday” to him. David works throughout the year planning and organizing the Family Conferences—an effort that is appreciated by hundreds of families. Many individuals have been blessed by David’s ministry of prayer and encouragement over the past several years.
Unique to the Green Lake Family Conference was an impromptu hymn sing that took place Friday evening following the closing session. Interested families gathered in an old railroad “Gospel Car” at the conference center for a time of singing. Designed to be a sort of traveling church, Gospel Car “Grace” has a working pump organ. One person reported it was a great time of praise and fellowship and the car was filled to capacity. What a privilege to have a time of singing hymns in an old missionary train car! The place and activity combined to complete the uniqueness of this specific conference and the spiritual rejuvenation of the participants.
This year’s conference season has come to an end, and plans are already forming for next year’s conferences. Visit familyconferences.org for the latest information and updates on the 2018 Family Conferences.
Miss this year’s conferences? Check out Embassy Media! Go to embassymedia.com and watch for the 2017 Family Conference messages as they become available.