There was a time when working as a teenager wasn't just normal—it was expected. Whether you were flipping patties at the local restaurant or sacking groceries on weekday afternoons, most teens had a
This weekend I took part in a historic event - the filming of Dr. James Dobson’s Legacy Series - in front of an audience of 5,000 people in San Antonio, Texas.
In 1978, Dr. Dobson filmed the original series in a packed auditorium not too far away from where we were on Saturday. A lauded child psychologist and best-selling author even then, Dr. Dobson taught from both a clinical and biblically-based perspective, providing practical advice on how to raise boys and girls, how to strengthen one’s marriage, and how to apply your faith in a family setting. Dobson’s spirit came from a place of deep concern for the state of the family and his perspective on the direction things seemed to be going culturally (even back in the 70's).
The film series was seen by tens of millions of families and helped launch Dr.’s first ministry, Focus on the Family. With Dr. Dobson's leadership, for 30 years plus Focus built upon that foundation as Dr. went on to publish more than 80 books and reach hundreds of millions of people through his nationally syndicated radio program. When Dr. Dobson was asked why he started and now heads a new ministry, Family Talk, his answer was simple, yet profound. “The job is not finished, and there’s much more that I have to share.” This was proven true once again this weekend.
• Still the voice of the Christian family in America…
• Still passionate about parenting, marriage and faith…
• Still uncompromising about biblical family principles and righteousness in the culture…
(even when it is unpopular and brings criticism – and persecution!)
And now with 35 more years of additional experience and personal perspective, Dr. Dobson hit the road in early 2012 and has been working with an award-winning major film production company to put together an amazing multimedia series, called Building A Family Legacy. He considers this new film series the “bookend” to the original teaching videos first produced in the late 1970’s.
While Dr. Dobson is all about impact – helping as many people and using his gifts to come alongside as many families as possible - he’s equally concerned (nearly obsessed) with really reaching, teaching and connecting with the individual in each and every audience - the husband, the wife, the grandparent, young adults and even children.
As much as any of the individual topics and terrific advice that was provided impacted me, (and there was a ton,) that is what I witnessed at the filming – someone who is wholly committed to the lifelong call God has put on his life.
It was simply awesome.
Finally, I’d be remiss not to mention something else that was really significant. Professionally, I’ve been working in media and marketing for more than 20 years. As a radio producer and musician, I’ve visited tons of studios, been on television and movie sets, and participated in large live events of all types. Senior Pastor John Hagee and Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, TX, hosted the filming event this weekend. Far more than that, he and his son, Pastor Matt Hagee, opened their home – and indeed their extended family – to the Dobson's, to our Family Talk staff, and thousands who came to be challenged and inspired to strengthen their family.
I’m not exaggerating. These folks rolled out a red carpet of welcome in ways that I’ve never seen – ever – with any group or organization. With a spirit of friendship and collaboration they made available to Dr. Dobson and this film series effort some of the kindest, most collaborative, and professional staff that I’ve ever encountered – not to mention impressive facilities and media technology. From the greeters and volunteers, to the production team, to the planners and managers, to the audio and television producers, to the Hagee family themselves – every single person I met was simply off-the-charts cool. They also coordinated with 12 local Chick-fil-A restaurants to feed the 5,000 attendees - absolutely FREE. That too was a Texas-sized blessing.
It's one thing for the big boss to extend an invitation. It's another thing altogether to have the whole body live out that invitation with heart and class. When you see a team like that work with such unity, there’s no question why God has blessed them so richly over the years. They don’t keep it – they pass it along.
I hope someday we’ll have the opportunity to do for some other group what the folks at Cornerstone Church, John Hagee Ministries, and GETV did for Family Talk. It was the definition of hospitality. It WAS Church. It WAS family.