This past weekend I had the absolute honor of attending the Raising Generations Today conference, a place for moms to come and join together in all the ordinary, glorious, challenging, hilarious parts of motherhood and find hope. I got to spend time with my sister and was so tickled to watch her meet people in real life that she’d only known online. There is something so special about the opportunity to hug friends in real life, to cheer for them as they watch their God-sized dreams come true, and lift hands high in worshipping God together.
And for those of you who prayed for me over the weekend? There aren’t enough words to tell you how much that meant to me. I spent most of Friday night wondering how I could get out of my talk. Maybe the day would run behind schedule and they’d have to cut my part. Or maybe September would realize she didn’t really need me to share and I’d be able to skip it. And I sat Friday night surrounded by friends who were talking about all the ways God was working in their lives in big ways and felt small and let the enemy put lies in my head that those women should be on stage, not me. That my story wasn’t important, and that someone else who knew more scripture or had more experience or was a better writer or … or … or …
But God had other plans.
And I shared the message He put on my heart, even though I was terrified and 100 kinds of insecure. But God was kind and gave me the strength to speak clearly, to share my heart, to not shake like a leaf the entire time, and then? In a moment that only God could have organized, we walked off the stage and immediately into worship led by Shaun Groves. There is something about that moment I will never forget – a combination of sweet relief, gratitude, and worship led by a friend that made me step straight out of my shoes to praise God on hotel carpet that felt like holy ground.
September had a vision to create a weekend getaway where mamas could come, just as they are, whatever their season of motherhood, regardless of generation, and leave filled with hope. Hope that God will redeem all of the mess. Hope that God will fill in where we lack. Hope that motherhood doesn’t need to be lonely and that our generation – and the one before us – can choose to do something to make a difference in the lives of the next generation.
And those amazing women? They started to make a difference right there at the conference as they sponsored more than 40 Compassion children and completely amazed me with their love.
I don’t know if my words had an impact on anyone, and I can only trust my friends who said it went well (because talking into a microphone is like an out of body experience for me), but I know this. I did what God asked – and I did it afraid. But God’s promise to be my strength was never dependent on my own courage or my own abilities. He showed up, He showed off, and He gets the glory.
Maybe I’ll find courage this week to watch the video of my talk … or not 😉
Don’t forget to come back next Tuesday to link up for Behind the Scenes!