Ok, maybe not exactly, but here’s the story.
I am a huge Andy Stanley fan.
HUGE FAN. I resonate with his writing and teaching probably more than any other pastor or leader. Well, it’s close. But, Stanley is my number one and Bill Hybels is my number two!
Those closest to me know this. I often quote Stanley and I’m always sending his messages to our Thrive team.
Ok, that being said, Andy Stanley sat down in our team’s row yesterday at Exponential.
Earlier that day I was joking about how we need to have a point system for seeing some of our favorite speakers and pastors and leaders and then bam, here’s Stanley in our row.
Well, I wasn’t there.
I was in a meeting and my whole team is blowing up my phone, sending pictures and texts! It was awesome!
Later in the day, the main session was pretty thin with attendance and we were sitting pretty far back and out of the way. Again, here comes Stanley and he sits right in front of our team!
So, I sit behind him and yes, I do a little stalking. I know, weird! And YES I know, I am fueling to the debate of creating Christian celebrities! But, I don’t care. I admire the heck out of him and feel ridiculously thankful for all he does for the church and for leaders.
Well, our friends Jim & Sarah sit next to us and they start to engage with him. Little jokes here and there. Sarah, my assistant (who is a GIFT from GOD and barely gets paid a tenth of what’s she worth) jokes with him about hoping he’s not late for the Orange Conference. Orange had already started in Atlanta and Andy is a main session speaker for that as well.
Jim then jokes about something else. Yes, the session was going on but it was a blast and we were really far back!
I’m just sitting there taking it all in.
At one point, Sarah is working on putting our Thrive connect cards in our database and he asks her what she’s doing. She tells him and then says something about how her boss should let her enjoy the conference. She then jokes that her boss really works her a lot and he asks who is her boss.
She points to me and he gives me this look. It was awesome.
He then says…Maybe I should hire you! I would be a good boss! Hah.
We all laugh like crazy. The session ends and Andy stands up and says, you might want to sit closer for my session so you can pay attention and not be distracted for my talk.
Jim then tells him he hope he doesn’t screw it up! We all laugh! It was hilarious.
Thanks Andy Stanley for being real, for being approachable and caring!
Oh yeah, thank you for all you do for the Kingdom. Your heart and vision help shape a church in Central MI who is desperately focused on reaching people who have given up on church!