On Friday, July 17, U.S. Secretary of State Michael R. Pompeo joined a stellar lineup of speakers for the 2020 FAMiLY Leadership Summit at the Ron Pearson Center in West Des Moines, Iowa.
Pompeo began with the kind words, “The FAMiLY Leader is making a real difference all across the country.”
He also shared why his work at the State Department is making a difference to Iowans: “I know American families are busy; the first thing on their minds isn’t the work of the State Department every day. But it matters. It matters what we do. We have a responsibility to keep you all safe. We advocate, too, for American businesses abroad, helping create jobs in every state in the union. And we represent your principles.”
Among those principles, the Secretary of State highlighted how the State Department advocates a foreign policy that is pro-national security, pro-religious freedom, and pro-life.
“We’ve executed a foreign policy that American families in Des Moines and Dubuque and Davenport can believe in,” he said.
Attendance at the Summit was limited by COVID-19 capacity restrictions, so available tickets for the event sold out weeks beforehand. Nonetheless, The FAMiLY Leader also made livestream access available so hundreds more from across the country could join the Summit online.
“It was so encouraging to see the passion and the enthusiasm of so many at the Summit and so many watching online,” said Bob Vander Plaats, president and CEO of The FAMiLY Leader. “TFL is blessed to bring together everyday Americans committed to seeing meaningful and positive change in America. Together our heart beats for a revived America that honors God and blesses people, and on Friday, we all left the Summit with new life and a new spring in our step to see that revival come.”
At the Summit, Vander Plaats also spoke of God’s hand of abundant blessing over TFL’s last 10 years; shared updates on how TFL’s model of Church engagement is spreading across the country; and offered an inspiring vision of God’s hand at work in America, with the power to overshadow even national elections in terms of impact and cultural transformation.
Watch the inspiring video of God’s favor on TFL over the last 10 years and His direction for tomorrow:
Vander Plaats and Sec. Pompeo shared the stage with over a dozen other speakers, including Mike Lindell of My Pillow, Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds, U.S. Sens. Joni Ernst and Rick Santorum, former NFL player Jack Brewer, New York Times bestselling author Joel C. Rosenberg, and more.
Dr. Del Tackett of The Truth Project and, now, The Engagement Project, kicked off the Summit with an acknowledgement of America’s social unrest and pandemic fears.
“From looking at the trends of what is going on, the Body of Christ is going to go through a refining fire,” Tackett said. “But you and I are not to be surprised by that, and we are not to be taken with fear, with hopelessness, but to recognize this is our day.”
The opportunity, Tackett explained, is not in a public square that is increasingly shunning biblical voices, but in the power of being salt and light, one-on-one to our neighbor.
“How is this going to change?” Tackett asked. “This is going to change through one person engaging with another person in a meaningful relationship.”
Mike Lindell of My Pillow echoed the tone of hope. In an interview with Vander Plaats, Lindell described how the Lindell Recovery Network – scheduled for launch this September – is being designed to provide addiction sufferers across the country with videos, testimonies, and resources that they can relate to and that can make a real difference in their lives. What’s more, the Network is designed to point them toward the truest source of hope: Jesus Christ and His Church.
“Everybody’s looking for hope,” Lindell said. “I see this COVID as an opportunity for hope. This is the time for the biggest revival in history.”
The Summit also spotlighted the executive and Church Ambassador Network directors from nearly a dozen state organizations similar to TFL. These directors are partnering with TFL in “The Daniel Impact,” an effort to export TFL’s model of inspiring the Church to engage government – not for political ends, but to advance the kingdom of God.
Shannon McGinley serves as executive director of New Hampshire Cornerstone, one of the The Daniel Impact states spotlighted on stage.
“So many people around the country have written off New England as a lost cause,” McGinley told the Summit, “but New Hampshire is so critically important, because we are the first-in-the-nation primary and we set the agenda for the nation, along with Iowa.”
The challenge, she explained, is that the voice of the Church in New England has been marginalized, even “neglected.”
“There are so many faith-filled individuals who are hungering for a way to engage in the political sphere, but they don’t know how to go about it,” she said. “But [through the work of The Daniel Impact], I feel confident there really is the possibility to have great success in New Hampshire.”
“It brings chills to me when I think of what we’ve seen in Des Moines,” testified Greg Baker, vice president and Church Ambassador Network director for The FAMiLY Leader in Iowa. “I can’t imagine how God’s going to go bigger than He has, but He will. To hear New Hampshire, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and the other states – it’s remarkable.”
What’s more, Baker said, “God’s institution of the Church is an international institution. … Every single place God is moving, and we get to be a part of that.”
The annual FAMiLY Leadership Summit brings national leaders to the Midwest to address Christian audiences with the theme of “Principle over Politics.” Since its inception in 2012, the FAMiLY Leadership Summit remains one of the most encouraging and inspiring events of the summer, challenging and equipping attendees toward Christ-like leadership in the home, Church, and government.