Today begins the Basics Conference for pastors. It is hosted by Parkside Church, where Alistair Begg is the Senior Pastor. This will be the fourth Basics Conference I have attended (2002, 2003, 2011). In each of the previous conferences, I have been blessed many times over. There are many reasons why I like this pastors conference.
First, it is close to me. I only live about 30 minutes from Parkside Church, so I can attend without leaving my home. I can sleep in my own bed at night. I can get some work done in the office this morning before heading over to the conference. There is something to be said about attending a conference that doesn't disrupt my entire schedule.
Second, the schedule is relaxed. They have done a good job of packing in enough sessions to make an impact, but not overburdening the pastors and church leaders that come. It begins on Monday afternoon and ends Wednesday afternoon. In reality, there are only about two days out of the office. Everything takes place on their campus. All of the meals are there. There is no formality about the conference, as I have experienced in some others.
Third, the speakers are exciting. I have wondered in the past whether at least one of the general session speakers had to have an accent in order to speak at Basics. That hypothesis was debunked this year as Mark Dever and Voddie Baucham are the main speakers in addition to Alistair Begg. I have grown to love the ministry of Mark Dever, so I am really excited to once again sit under his teaching. Baucham is a bit of a wild card for me. I have never heard him speak, but he seems to be invited to some of the larger well-known conferences. All I have known about him is a limited view of his concept of youth ministry vs. family ministry. But his bio says that he is more than qualified to be a conference like this:
Voddie Baucham wears many hats. He is a husband, father, pastor, author, professor, conference speaker, and church planter. He currently serves as Pastor of Preaching at Grace Family Baptist Church in Spring, TX. He has served as an adjunct professor at the College of Biblical Studies in Houston, TX, and Union University in Jackson, TN. He has also lectured at Southern Seminary. Voddie's area of emphasis is Cultural Apologetics. Whether teaching on classical apologetic issues like the validity and historicity of the Bible, or the resurrection of Christ; or teaching on biblical manhood/womanhood, marriage and family, he helps ordinary people understand the significance of thinking and living biblically in every area of life."
I look forward to learning and hearing from each of these men of God.
Fourth, the friendships I have established. I have many friends on staff at Parkside. In addition, many other pastors who will be there. I look forward to some times of good conversation and encouragement around meals and free times.
If you cannot attend, there is an option for you. The main sessions will be streamed each day. You can find that by going HERE. Today's schedule for the main sessions will be:
4:15 pm - Welcome & Main Session - Alistair Begg
7:00 pm - Main Session - Voddie Baucham
I will be blogging each day about what I am learning. So stay tuned each day as I recap what I learned the previous day.