So like I mentioned yesterday, Kenny and I had the chance to attend The Orange Tour in Tampa last week…

And I loved it.

Some cool things to note about The Orange Tour:

  • If you’re looking to attend a conference (The Orange Conference, perhaps), but budget is a concern, the Orange Tour is a super affordable option.
  • They’ve recently added some special training sessions specifically for volunteers. 
  • This year, the content of the Tour is based on the newest book from the folks at Orange, Playing for Keeps.

While I’d love to share every last bit of my notes with you, that would make for a pretty long blog post. So, instead, I’m thinking I’ll start with my favorite thoughts, quotes, and little tweetable gems. So let’s get to it.

A BRIEF RECAP OF THE ORANGE TOUR 2013

My favorite moments from Reggie Joiner…

For Small Group Leaders: “Your ‘few’ are not problems to be solved. They’re people to be loved.”

Never minimize what Jesus maximizedLove matters.

“When you care about someone, it changes the way you talk to them.”

“The only way you can really convince someone you love them is with time.”

“When you love kids over time, you give them a sense of worth.”

“It’s harder, not easier, to create a small group culture. It will always be messy. Someone will probably get mad. It will take longer than you think. You will never be done. But it will be worth it.”

“Fun over time makes a friendship go deeper.”

“It’s not only ‘ok’ to have fun with kids. It’s a theological issue.”

“Having fun with kids communicates that you like them. You can’t convince a child you like them if you’re not willing to have fun with them.”

“Fun authenticates forgiveness. Have you ever tried to have fun with someone you haven’t forgiven?”

“If you start imagining the future of a child, you’ll start investing more in them now.

My favorite moments from Carey Nieuwhof…

“Your words carry power.”

“There are some things every child needs to hear from their parents: I love you. I believe in you. I understand. God loves you. I’m sorry. I didn’t know that. I made a mistake.”

“Think about what you say. Say it so it matters. Say it so someone knows they matter.”

And my favorite moment of the entire Tour…

“You are not God. You cannot change anyone. But you can love a few.”

If you can make it to any of the stops on The Orange Tour this fall, I definitely recommend it. There was so much great content, like Kristen Ivy’s breakout session for Small Group Leaders – which, by the way, Kenny and I agreed was one of the best sessions we’ve ever sat through at any Orange event. Like. Wow.

And, hey, if you happen to be attending the Lancaster, PA Tour stop in a few weeks… let me know! Because we’ll be there, too.

And one more thing… don’t forget that I’m giving away a copy of Reggie’s new book, Playing for KeepsI’ll announce the winner tomorrow morning, which means you’ve got to get your entries in today! Here’s how to play.

Are you heading to The Orange Tour at all this fall? If you’ve already been, what was one of your favorite moments?