Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Catalyst 2010

Early Tuesday morning, my good buddy Derek Roberts and I hopped into Nuru’s van, and began our journey south.  Our final destination, Catalyst 2010.

What is Catalyst?  It is one of the largest conferences in the country for Christian leaders, and each fall approximately 13,000 leaders converge on the Gwinnett Arena in Atlanta, to participate in the Catalyst experience.  Among the people who have shared at Catalyst are Malcolm Gladwell, Andy Stanley, Scott Harrison, and Seth Godin (PS I randomly shook hands with Seth Godin).  The people who share at Catalyst invite the event’s participants into both their successes and failures.  And as a whole, the conference seeks to launch leaders to be better and better at their work of leading.

Catalyst also hosts a bi-weekly podcast on iTunes which features updates and interviews from some incredibly sharp minds in the world of leadership.  At the beginning of each episode, a recording from Andy Stanley reminds the Catalyst faithful, “Leadership is a stewardship; it is temporary, and you’re accountable.”  Personally, I love that quote, and it is one aspect of what I love about the conference.  The conference exists to both equip and remind leaders of their responsibility to lead.  It reminds me that whatever positions any of us hold in this world, they will not last, and that we must operate with a sense of urgency and excellence in all that we do.

The above photo was taken of a number of volunteers who were enjoying a lunch break.  It served as a reminder to me of just how many people it takes to accomplish something monumental like this conference. 

So Derek and I drove down to  share Nuru’s story with the attendees.  We did this in a space called the “Social Causes Tent” and we shared this space with about a dozen other nonprofits who work in a variety of arenas.  It was wonderful to see hundreds and hundreds of people pass through this space and to hear questions from many about who Nuru is and what Nuru does.  One of the best moments happened when two young women came up to our display and picked up information, and Derek said, “Have you heard much about Nuru?”  The woman looked at him and said, “This organization is the reason why I’m changing my major—I love Nuru!”

As I think back on the Catalyst experience, the opportunity to share Nuru, and the great friendships made and developed during the time, I’m filled with gratitude.  To think that Derek and I had an opportunity to share Nuru’s message with so many, and to think that these people are current and future leaders, it’s utterly amazing.  There are so many people out there who are dedicating their time, their talents, and their resources to serving others, and we were able to share a brief moment with a few of them. 

While it was great being at the event, I can’t wait to see how the event catalyzes even greater acts of service and disciplined leadership around this world.
Whether you were able to attend the conference or not, will you consider ways you might be able to pour your life into others, and make service a way of life for the good of the whole world?

1 comment:

Alise said...

I had severe #Cat10 envy last week (and this week as all of my bloggy friends are sharing their pics & stories!). I'm so glad that Nuru was able to be a part of it.