Our Light Up the City team had the unique pleasure to travel to Denver last week to attend the Q Conference in Denver. Q was packed with great presentations, mostly on hot-button topics ranging from racial tensions inside and outside the Church to assisted suicide. To say the topics were heavy is an understatement, but topics that should be discussed. The over-arching theme was: regardless of issues- human dignity is God given and deserves to be served and protected, especially by Christ's followers.
One of our favorite presentations was from Jim Daly, president of Focus on the Family and Ted Trimpa, advocate and president of Trimpa group. While their backgrounds and philosophies differ greatly, they discussed a common ground of understanding and struck up an unlikely friendship after Jim reached out to team up with Ted on fighting human trafficking in Denver. Unfortunately, common ground wasn't found between the presenters on the topics of gun use and assisted suicide. It was a little confounding to see two sets of believers base emotional pleas against each other, especially when contrasted against Ted and Jim. Another highlight was professional snowboarder Kelly Clark, who had an inspiring message about using your talents to glorify God, rather than ourselves.
Denver was a wonderful town- we had the opportunity to explore downtown, Coors Field and Lookout Mountain and Red Rocks Amphitheater. We also had the pleasure to sit down and share a meal with Dave Runyon author of "The Art of Neighboring" and the co-founder and director of CityUnite, which according to their website:
CityUnite helps church leaders work together to partner with business and government leaders to address the major issues facing their cities. We believe that cross sector collaboration is the key to changing our communities for the better. CityUnite is made up of a network of networks spanning across the Denver metro area. We identify City Connectors and empower them to build strategic partnerships that serve the common good.
CityUnite also helps businesses invest in the communities that they are a part of. Find out more here.
It was a pleasure to sit down with Dave and hear his heart for Denver and to encourage each other in the similar work we are doing in our cities.
We will be hosting a Q Commons again in October- we'd love to have you come out and be part of these engaging topics and issues. Stay tuned!
Nathan A. Ryan