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For 13 years I worked as a photojournalist telling compelling stories. I knew I wanted to be journalist, more so a storyteller, when I read this William J. Durant quote:

Civilization is a stream with banks. The stream is sometimes filled with blood from people killing, stealing, shouting and doing the things historians usually record, while on the banks, unnoticed, people build homes, make love, raise children, sing songs, write poetry and even whittle statues. The story of civilization is the story of what happened on the banks. Historians are pessimists because they ignore the banks for the river.

To often we get caught up in the mayhem of our current culture and overlook all the good that is really happening in our world and even more so how to effectively communicate the greatest story ever told.

On a daily basis we communicate in words which make up sentences which form stories. And each Sunday many try to reach a changing culture by going reaching ones heart by going through the head. In other words, it makes you think, and therefore you feel. But there seems to be more and more of a disconnect.

Maybe we need to change how we communicate? We now live in a more visual day and age than written. Maybe we need to look into reverse communication by reaching the head by going through the heart and make one feel in order to think.

Several months ago, Ben Arment asked me to take part in STORY; I’m humbled to have been asked to be a part of it. Together my friend Tim Schraeder ( Director of Communications at ParkChurch in Chicago, Twitter and Coffee addict ) and I will be tag-teaming a workshop together for the 2nd day of Story. More details on that soon.

STORY is a first-of-its-kind experience for communicators of the Gospel – the greatest story ever told. Can you imagine the conversation? I can and believe it will be unbelievable. You will not want to miss this event Wednesday, October 28 at the Paramount Theater in Aurora, Illinois. Speakers include Donald Miller, Nancy Beach, Dave Gibbons, Ed Young, Stacy Spencer, Chris Seay and Mike Foster. A day of workshops will follow on October 29 at nearby Orchard Valley Community Church, featuring illustrators, designers, scholars, authors and communications experts.

If your the type that needs a little incentive, when you register for the conference you will be entered to win 2 free trips to the Kilns – CS Lewis’ home in Oxford, England. I’ve been there and it’s awesome.

I would also like to extend and invite to you to come a day early and check out Cultivate. Cultivate is going to be a conversation. It’s going to be less presentations, more engagement. No talking heads or dog & pony shows. The details are still being shaped, but I’ll just say this: take Idea Camp, Q, and TED, throw in lots of brilliant leaders in ministry communications and from the marketplace with time to connect and collaborate and thats Cultivate. Together with Story it will be a one of a kind experience.

Matt Knisely

Matt Knisely is an Emmy Award–winning visual storyteller, creative director, and author who loves telling stories of the extraordinary. Make sure you check out his book Framing Faith, it helps connect the seemingly unconnected, see the beauty right in front of us, and revealing how to be present in the moment.

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  1. […] Something which at first mention resonated with me in a powerful way. He invited me to take part in STORY. STORY is a first-of-its-kind experience for communicators of the Gospel – the greatest story […]