Charity Berkey: The Woman's Guide to the Idea Summit

“I’m more exhausted than I’ve ever been in my entire life!” These were the exact words of my groom as we left the church on our wedding day. I jokingly responded, “Welcome to the ministry!”

We all have such unique personalities, don’t we? You may be someone who thrives in large group settings. When you arrive home after a conference, you’re exhausted, but it’s a good kind of exhaustion. You’re energized and ready to rule the world, or at least tackle the next project at church. Then there are those who secretly hope to get Covid symptoms so that they could have a legitimate excuse to miss a big get together.

Well, today is the day! Hundreds of ministry leaders across the country are meeting together for one primary purpose, gleaning ideas that will help grow the Kingdom of God…and maybe, you’re super excited. Or maybe, you’re a bit intimidated.

Did you wear the right clothes? Will you actually like these people? I mean some of the things these people post on the Idea Networks media pages makes me think they’re a bit strange (I’m looking at you Josh Teis).

As a lady who attends Idea Summit and absolutely loves it, I’ve brought to the table some ideas I personally put into play while I’m attending. It is my desire that these ideas will help every lady get the most out of Idea Summit, no matter which end of the spectrum you find yourself.

I. Purposefully connect with at least one friend that you only know through social media.

I can’t tell you how many kindred spirits I’ve connected with “live and in-person” at Idea Summit that previously I only knew online. I’m excited to experience fellowship with some of my life long friends, but I truly can’t wait to meet my Facebook friend Jenn McGee! Jen already feels like a close friend, but because of Idea Summit we get to finally see each other in real-time, in real life!

II. Wear comfortable clothes.

When I say wear comfortable clothes, what I mean is, wear what is comfortable to you. My forever fashion following friend, Alana is going to come dressed like she just walked off a fashion runway in Paris. That’s how she’s most comfortable. Girls like me will come wearing shiny black stilettos, take a few photos and then whip out my flats from my purse to wear the rest of the day. Why? Because there’s no way high heeled anything feels comfortable on me. Then there will be those who will have a nice pair of jeans and a nice blouse. The key is to be comfortable. We’re not here to impress each other with how well our ministry life salary can dress us from the thrift shop. We are here to present some good ideas, get some good ideas and then go back home and utilize those ideas to grow the kingdom of God.

III. Get at least one significant idea to implement in life and ministry.

Last year, the one idea that stood out the most to me was when my brother Josh shared the diagram of the mentorship table and chairs. Wow! That was so helpful. I’ve shared that with so many ladies of our church. I’ve used it when taking others through discipleship and even wrote a devotional using the key ideas.

IV. Attend with a teachable heart.

As a young college student, I was talking to a new church planter’s wife many years ago. She was rolling her eyes at the fact that her husband made her attend a “stupid conference,” and she didn’t get anything out of the conference. Moments later I was conversing with my new sister-in-law, Breanna, and she was singing the praises of the same conference.

Today, Breanna’s family loves serving in ministry and is thriving in her walk with the Lord. I’m not sure if the other lady is even attending church.

Why such different outcomes? Can I suggest that it has to do with a teachable heart? When we think we know all the ideas, there is little to no room for personal growth. When I’m open to learning, open to conversing, open to hearing another’s point of view, only then can I see tremendous growth.

V. Be a producer, not just a consumer.

Join in on the discussion at the round table. Before you join a class or a round table, and if you’re not already a “talker,” can I suggest that you look up some facts about the subject of the session or round table you’re attending. In doing so, you’ll have some incite to share that others may not have thought about; you could end up bringing to the table the one big idea that someone goes home with, without even being one of the Idea Network speakers.

Along with that, I’d like to challenge you to consider submitting an idea for hosting your own Round Table at the next summit. If the Lord is tugging at your heart about sharing something, or leading a round table, pray about it, write it out and submit it to the Idea Network. The worst they can say is “Love the idea, but I don’t think it will work this year.” But who knows, they may ask to use your submission in the next edition of the Idea Journal, use it on the Idea blog or have you lead a round table at next year’s summit. It’s definitely worth putting out the effort.

VI. Take loads of photos, share them on social media and make sure you include the #IdeaSummit hashtag.

When I share what I’ve been learning at Idea Summit, it does two things:

One, it shows my church family what I’ve gleaned, and it gets them excited about what we will be implementing in the future, which ultimately gets them excited about building Christ’s kingdom.

Secondly, by simply posting about what you gleaned from idea Summit, you will encourage others who may have never heard of this ministry before. You might get asked about Idea Summit (this happens to me often), and then, in a roundabout way, you will be aiding ministries far outside your close circle of influence. And why would you want to do this? It brings it all back to one great idea, growing the kingdom of God.

I’m looking forward to seeing/meeting/catching up with you this week! I can’t wait to see all that the Lord will accomplish through this incredible ministry, for His kingdom, and for His glory!

See you soon!

Charity Berkey

Liberty Baptist Church of Las Vegas

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