Have you ever gone to an international food festival? The smells are amazing, and the tastes are so diverse. Maybe you found out you liked Thai for the first time. Maybe you walked away appreciating God’s love of creativity and diversity in such a melting pot of people and culinary options. Imagine for a moment if you were able to sample something better than just the food. What if you got a taste of what it was like to know more about the culture, the people, and their lifestyle? What if you grew in compassion for their burdens and were encouraged by their passions and strengths? Let’s go one step further: What if you found yourself among very diverse people who shared your passion for Christ and His word? What if you could learn from each other, could be encouraged by God’s heart for one another, and could pray together? Wouldn’t it be amazing to find a gathering of likeminded believers from around the world who love biblical counseling, who want to make a difference in their communities, and who desire to move hearts and equip hands to work for the glory of God?
This year the BCC has made that vision possible. We are calling leaders from every corner of the planet to come to Chicago for the first biblical counseling global summit of its kind. Why gather BC leaders from around the world? Because we have an opportunity to increase our commitment and collaboration in equipping, encouraging, and empowering biblical counselors worldwide. Why now? BC organizations around the world see a need for increased cooperation, unity, and awareness of what God is doing globally through the private ministry of His word. Why a summit? To give leaders a forum for influential dialogue and to provide you access to the wonderful conversations and cutting edge training they can provide. For the last 6 years the BCC counsel board has been enjoying this type of interaction at our annual retreats, and it seems selfish if we have groundbreaking conversations, celebrate the unity of the movement, and plan and pray for our future without you. That is why we invite you to come to Chicago in June or to tune in via the web to participate in this watershed event.
We are inviting you to join a compelling conversation based on core convictions about the Scriptures and help us set a clear course to address crucial cross-cultural issues. You will be able to ask questions, personally speak with international leaders, and pray with others about things that really matter for God’s Kingdom. We live in a world that is experiencing a global meltdown tied to terrorism, violence, economic unrest, the sexual revolution, rampant addictions, and other all-too-common issues; there has never been a better time to be a biblical counselor armed with the hope of the gospel. The challenges before us are significant, but working together we will not lose heart.
I fear that in the past we may have missed equipping and encouraging opportunities locally and globally. As a movement we have often functioned inefficiently, like an airline sending two half-full planes to the same destination. We have functioned independently which tended to undermine unity and effectiveness. Some of us are guilty of standing at the borders of our own interests guarding information or stylistic differences, while others had no such luxury and just wanted our help with massive challenges in their churches. The movement is shedding a silo mentality to adopt a synergistic mindset. We chose to hold this Global Summit so we could collectively put a stake in the ground. The message is that we are “better together,” and we need each other to face tremendous challenges both internationally and locally. Why would you want to miss this amazing opportunity?
We will have 8 keynote sessions that build on each other and define the core convictions of biblical counseling that transcend culture and are foundational for gospel-based change. They are:
- Dr. James MacDonald- Better Together: Biblical Counseling’s Place in the Great Commission
- Dr. David Powlison – Grace Brings Transformation Wherever We Live
- Dr. Heath Lambert –The Relevance of the Word of God in a Diverse World
- Dr. Charles Ware – One Spirit, Many Voices Bringing Conviction and Hope
- Dr. Steve Midgley – The Heart Overflows into All of Life
- Dr. Garrett Higbee – One Church, Many Members Growing Up Together in Christ
- Dr. Steve Viars – Equipping the Church to Counsel in Every Tribe and Tongue
- Dr. Deepak Reju – Reaching Out in the Spirit of the Great Commandment
Most of those speakers are from the United States, but we will also have panels with representative leaders from around the world who will discuss what standing on these foundational truths look like in places like Africa, Australia, Europe, and South America. Some of our international leaders will be asked to share testimonies about what God is doing in their ministries and lives through a personal interview. We could have done this in a closed room but the BCC believes in partnership. We believe you will make it better, and you will be changed as a result of being here in person or watching over the Internet. I hope many of you will consider coming to Chicago where we will have exclusive times to interact, pray, network, and enjoy evening activities together. I hope those who cannot come will sign up to watch online in an interactive virtual community with live chats and opportunities to text questions. For more information and to sign up now while prices are still at the early bird rate, please visit our Global Summit website at bccglobalsummit.org.