Hanging with the “Buzzards”

Bob FranquizChurch

Well, the Buzz conference is over. I have a bunch of thoughts that I’m going to post, but the biggest highlight for me was getting to connect with some guys that are in the trenches in their area. I think if the conference was on the subject of starting a Taco Bell franchise, I still would have gone just to hang out with these great leaders.

So here are my impressions of some of the guys I got to spend time with:

Gary Lamb said 3 of the funniest things I think I’ve ever heard. Unfortunately, I can’t repeat them on this blog! But what a great guy. He and I see a lot things the same way. He even told me that he’s thinking about endeavoring a 3 1/2 year study of Romans!

Tony McCullum is absolutely hilarious! I’m also glad he got his Godiva Chocolate Elixir shake-thing or I think he was going to turn violent. By the way, thanks again for lunch. I’m coughing 3 times…

Scott Hodge is the man! I love hanging with him. We had a great time talking about church and a Christian Clown blogger conspiracy that he uncovered.

Tadd Grandstaff has more experience at 25 than most men at 50. He’s going to plant a great church! He Gary is going to get along without him is another story all together.

Tally Wilgis is such a great guy. By the way, today I started reading the Driscoll book we traded for.

Ben Arment was a very encouraging guy. I had talked with him for about 20 seconds when we complimented me on my book and my writing. He asked about my next book and my future writing plans. He’s just a loving Pastor to everyone he comes into contact with.
Tony Morgan was a cool guy and was really interested in what we were doing in Miami. I kept asking him questions and he’d say, “Thanks a great question. How would you answer that?”

Michael was a really cool guy. He’s another one that’s going to plant a great church due to his passion, heart for God, and experience in student ministry. Many of the best Lead Pastors were once Youth Pastors.

Ed Young was a really nice guy. He seemed very genuine and sincere. He introduced me to his team who were also very encouraging and interested in our church.

Bruce Chant was all the way from Australia (Who also does an amazing American accent). Since he was the first Australian Mark and I had met, we asked him 2 important questions:

#1 – Does water drain the other way in Australia? He answer: I’ve never noticed!

#2 – “Is Fosters really Australian for beer?” His answer: Fosters isn’t even sold in Australia! Shock of the night!

Bonus question: Do you guys have Outback steakhouse? His answer: “No, that’s an American restaurant.” I have fallen victim to false advertising! Wait until I go to Outback next time and call them bluff!

Mark Batterson is just the man! He was so kind to me and went out of his way to talk. He was nice enough to invite to his house for dinner on Friday. Really cool pad. It was great to meet a few new folks there as well.

The NCC staff was amazing! Totally helpful, informative, honest, real, and really smart. Mark has hired some really intelligent people. It shows why NCC is such a great place to call home!

Speaking of home, I can’t wait to get home tomorrow, see my wife, and be at church on Sunday!