Powerful gospel rhythms and rich choir harmonies transported the audience heavenward in a Gospel theme morning worship on day three of Hillsong Conference 2018, and that was just the start.
Pastor Steven Furtick brought an engaging, visceralenactment from Mark Chapter 1 in his message, DANGER IN THE DISTANCE– emphasising the importance of getting ‘up close and personal’ with God and those we are trying to reach. “The greater the distance, the greater the opportunity to be misunderstood,” Steve proclaimed. “It’s hard to have compassion for someone if you’re not close to them.”
In his power-packed sermon, Steve Furtick debunked the myth of an unapproachable God, replacing this perception with the truth that God is a compassionate, loving and intimate Father.
“Refuse to let people identify you by your issues,” he challenged. “Everything I AM NOT is consumed by everything that HE IS!” he added, leaving no doubt about the prophetic impact this conference will have on the thousands of delegates who have travelled from around the world.
Midway through the morning, crowds were captivated by a spontaneous moment as an unsuspecting John Gray, Senior Pastor of Relentless Church, Greenville SC, was asked to lead the Y&F song “ALIVE” in a gospel-style. Absolute GOLD!
Speaking with Pastor Brian Houston in “LET’S TALK CHURCH” John Gray was animated and open. Belly laughs and witty humour were interspersed through storytelling as John unpacked his incredible journey. “Life is too short – get your joy back!” he broadcast to the room. He closed with a profound statement: “Hillsong is an opportunity for the global body to come together to get revived and restored!” A resounding “AMEN” could be heard across the arena.
The “local legends” session featured much loved Australian preacher, Wayne Alcorn who gave an authentic, strong “Aussie flavoured” message.
LEADERSHIP HOUR followed as Pastor Chris Hodges from Church of the Highlands, AL, served up a creatively comprehensive lesson in leadership advancement. Hillsong New York lead pastor, Carl Lentz called down the heavens, stirring hearts to Love one another as I have loved you from John 13.“What are you known for?” Carl challenged the room. “If there’s one market the church should be known for… it is love! Jesus didn’t have to – He wanted to.”
Y&F fronted evening worship with a dazzling, multi-coloured light show, with big songs and musing ballads from their recently released and profoundly mature album, III (three).
Pastor John Gray introduced his message “Shrinking for Expansion”, with heaven-shaking worship leading, “Oh Praise the Name”. John’s message centred around the life of Jacob and his struggles with duality. “Is your life a sermon that I could read and see Jesus?” John opened up with disarming candidness, speaking from his personal struggles and journey to wholeness. “God does not use human qualification, He uses His Spirit.”
The night ended with a live worship recording with Y&F. In a word… glorious.
Final Day just around the corner… from glory to glory.