I try to meet with anyone who wants to talk to me. There are certain boundaries of course (my family always comes first), but usually I can work something out. I learned this from my brother Greg Surratt. In my ten years at Seacoast, I have never seen him turn down an offer to buy his lunch and quiz him on anything. It didn't matter if it was the governor of South Carolina, or a brand new pastor at the smallest church in town--he made time. I think that's an essential value for church and business leaders to have.
When I first moved to Greenville to plant Seacoast Greenville, I tried to meet with a major leader in our area and was turned down. It was conveyed that he didn't see the point of meeting with me. I wasn't on his radar yet. It just reinforced the thought that I never want to get to that place. We have to be willing to pass along the wisdom and knowledge that only comes from experience. Like Rick Warren says, "if my bullet fits your gun - shoot it!" Blogs are great for doing that as well. I learn so much from guys like Perry Noble and Mark Batterson. I can't always buy their lunch, but they give it out for free every week!
Anyways, that's my Saturday rant - anyone want to buy my lunch on Monday?