In 2008 I attended the Together for the Gospel conference and this morning kicks off the 2012 version. It was a great time in 2008, loved the singing and the teaching and especially the fellowship with some brothers I travelled with and others I met there. Looking back I have no interest in spending the time and money to go back. I am more than a little troubled by the frenzy to buy thousands upon thousands of books in the cavernous book hall. Plus I can listen to or watch the talks later for free. So it was nice to go once but once was enough for me.
Today? It seems to have taken on a life of its own. There are more speakers, a bigger venue and seemingly unlimited hype. Far more than just a conference to encourage, it has become an event where all of the cool kids go. It has even generated a blog post about how to cope if you can't go this year and another post on how to prepare yourself if you are going.
Brothers, can we get a grip here? It is a couple of days of listening to speakers, many that we have listened to dozens or hundreds of times before. If you go, that is fine and dandy but when you come back don't hide away in your office and read the dozens of books you brought back. Go out and preach the Gospel to the lost, serve the least of these in your community, visit the widow and the orphan. Together for the Gospel is not the pinnacle of the life of a disciple.