Ryan is the Senior Pastor of Harvest Bible Chapel in Hickory, NC. He is the host of the "In The Room" podcast, and the author of 8 Hours, Or Less: Writing Faithful Sermons Faster.  

3 Reasons I Attend Harvest U

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For the past two years I've had the great privilege of attending Harvest Bible Chapel's annual ministry conference called Harvest University. The stated purpose of Harvest U is:

"To train up pastors and ministry leaders who are ignited by their radical love for the Lord, who lead by example, who preach with conviction and who motivate other to spend themselves the glory of Jesus Christ."

Each year the conference has lived up to this simple promise. Here are the three reasons I'm excited to attend again this year and take a few members of our team as well:

1. It Will Grow Our Friendships

I've built great relationships with many Harvest staff members over the years and they are the hardest working and most gracious people I've ever met - People like Marc Abbatacola, Jason Acres, Jeff Donaldson, Luke MacDonald, Dustin Slezak, and an up and coming Bible teacher named James MacDonald.

2. It Will Grow Our Systems

One of Harvest's many strengths is the intentionality they bring to their systems and structures. As a result of our time at Harvest U last year we overhauled our entire assimilation strategy which turned out to be one of the ways Jesus has more than doubled the size of our own church in the past 12 months.

3. It Will Grow Our Team

Most ministry conferences are for lead pastors and maybe for worship pastors. The great thing about Harvest U is that it's for your entire ministry team. With 14 teaching tracks, nearly every ministry area in your church is covered.

The conference starts Sunday night so if you're in the Chicago area, or it's possible for you to get here, I highly recommend this conference to you. It will stir your affection for Christ, reignite your passion for the local church, and further equip you for God's call on your life.

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