Staff Development Day

I am coming out of a particularly busy season here at Keynote. I coordinated our annual fall training for new staff and interns, and also helped the rest of the Staff Development Team prepare for our November 16th Staff Development Day. Keynote is a group of missionaries committed to communicating the message of God’s love. But how do they keep pressing on? As our team was planning this day long event for our staff, we could think of no better way to spend our time than to saturate the day with God’s incredible love for us.

We had a few speakers talk about different aspects of God’s love, and set up a few interactive rooms to give people a picture of how much God loves them in a variety of ways. We had an extravagant room set up to represent “God’s lavish love” (complete with chocolate fountain, luscious fruits and thought provoking artwork); a dark room with thunder sounds to set the stage for “God’s love in the storm;” and a room decorated with kids’ pictures and stories from Keynote dads to portray “God’s fatherly love.” Guided through the day by talks and activities, our staff heard repeatedly that God loves them completely, unconditionally, passionately, and personally.

Here’s what one person said about the day:

I wanted to begin a note to tell you how incredible this day is. Quiet stillness, solitude all seem elusive to me in this season and storm of life. Today is a sweet refuge, a balm to my pain, tangible arms wrapped around me so tight that I cannot wiggle free even if I wanted to.

The “storm” room — well, it was an expression of my journey — with the full range of emotions. Thank you for the content AND the dark, thunderous setting which made me feel a sense of solitude despite being in a room full of people.

Thank you for all the work you guys put into creating this experience and day of living and drinking of the love of our Father. Thank you for sharing your journeys through your creativity as well.

May the Lord keep these truths burning ever deeper in our hearts.

I am convinced that continuing to build into the lives of our staff is critical to the mission of Keynote. It’s hard to quantify with statistics: “20% of our staff are 33% more encouraged to continue on in the mission as a result of our training” doesn’t really work. But as I hear feedback from individuals in Keynote about how our training and development opportunities have helped them, I know we’re making a considerable difference to the kingdom. Here are a few recent comments from staff members:

“I was hit by the fact that God is crazy about me — I had a good cry, needless to say, being blindsided by grace.”

“I was reminded of the way God speaks His love to me. It definitely reawakened my intimacy with him by renewing our ‘language’.”

“Realizing how much I operate out of a root of performance. God used that day in a major way in my life…I so want it to go from my head to my heart — that is my prayer.”

“It was cool to think of God’s loving me in the little things of day-to-day life. Sometimes I forget that He truly cares for me throughout all my days.

It’s so encouraging to me to know we’re making a difference in the lives of our staff. Thanks so much for what you do to support my work with Keynote and help me pour into those who are taking the gospel to the ends of the earth!

(Thanks to John & Andorra Pescio for allowing me to “borrow” much of the text from their Christmas newsletter.)

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