The GLS and Me – Chris Lane
Chris Lane is the Senior Pastor of The Vineyard Church, St Albans. He is Host Pastor and Facilitator of the Global Leadership Summit in St Albans.
“My wife Fliss and I first came across the Global Leadership Summit in 2000. We were at the end of a sabbatical. I was ready to come home but my wife really wanted to visit Chicago and do the Leadership Summit, and I’m so glad we did—it was a life changing experience.
I don’t think we realised quite how tired we were and how we had actually run out of steam and vision for the future. But the Global Leadership Summit really impacted us; we rediscovered the joy of learning, being together, and it was just a fabulous thing. We thought then that if ever there was an opportunity to serve and to provide a place where the GLS could take place in the UK, we wanted in.
I have to say it’s been an extraordinary experience. It has changed the way we do church but also it has been a wonderful experience for our volunteers, because they have come to realise that not only is this an opportunity to serve the wider church but also actually there are those wonderful God moments where you meet someone who perhaps is just about to give up, and sometimes just a smile as they serve a coffee can be the big takeaway for someone.
So at every level, in terms of information, in terms of inspiration, in terms of actually an encounter with the Lord God, the GLS has been an absolutely fabulous experience for us here at St Albans.
For us personally, as we began to address some of the issues and challenges of leadership, we have realised that actually up until this point we had not really been as serious as perhaps we thought we were.
The GLS gives us an opportunity and a language and a framework to explore difficult issues, like how do you deal with conflict? And when casting vision, have we really grasped the fact that it is not just that we are going TO somewhere but actually we are coming FROM somewhere? All of that has been extremely helpful as we have sought to drive things along here as a local church in St Albans and Hertfordshire.
The local church, as Bill is fond of saying, is the hope of the world when it is working right. But the wonderful thing about the Global Leadership Summit is that it gives us that global perspective. It is not presumption to talk about the GLS as a global phenomenon. And the fact of the matter is that it reminds us in whatever situation we are in, be it some small church or a large church, that we are part of something bigger than ourselves—and that is the cause, the Kingdom of God in Jesus Christ.”