My new creed for life, “Believing against the grain”, includes “I believe God has work for me to do”. Even believing the tenants of that creed can be impossible some days but something amazing happened this week and I’ve experienced a tiny glimpse of what that may look like and I’m so excited about it! Just typing those words “I’m so excited” seems strange. Wonderful strange, when I never dreamed I would be able to feel anything remotely resembling excitement at this point.
Mary told me a couple months ago about the “She Speaks” conference happening in July. It is a conference for writers and speakers run by a Christian leader I love and respect, Lysa Terkeurst. At that time, however, I was struggling to get to the next minute, could not string a comprehensive sentence together and could not be out of the same room as my husband, so I dismissed it.
Fast forward to 2 weeks ago, after my “Believing Against The Grain” post came out, and I had so much positive feedback about my blog, it caused a spark of purpose and excitement to well up in my soul and got my wheels turning. That feeling of purpose was such a fresh and healing feeling it got me thinking about the conference again. I procrastinated because of cost and because that’s what I do these days. Action is not easy. So Dave called. He was told the conference was not only full, but had a waiting list of 400 women! Well, that took care of that until next year. And who am I to go to some big Lysa Terkeurst writers conference anyway? Me and my 3 week old blog. What a joke. Another disappointment, what.ever.
Unbeknownst to me, my friend Jill, (have I mentioned I have the most amazing friends on the planet?) had been working behind the scenes because she so badly wanted me to go. She emailed them and told them a little about my “story”, asked them about scholarships or any type of assistance and shared my blog with them. She received a response similar to the one Dave got, “Im sorry, we have a 700 woman waiting list now (what??) and we offer no financial assistance.” Jill never mentioned it to me.
Fast forward to 2 days ago. Jill received an e-mail from the conference registrar. In essence, ever since Jill emailed her my story, she could not get my name out of her head. She kept thinking of me and my story and was so touched by it. Then she received notice that one of the attendees could not make the conference and wanted one of the 700 women on the waiting list to enjoy her spot at the conference FREE OF CHARGE. Guess whose name came to mind for her to take that spot? Yes, ME! I am attending “She Speaks” this weekend!!!!! She felt I was “meant to be there”. Me and my 3 week old blog.
When Jill told me that I was going and how it all transpired, we just sat there and cried, Dave and I both. Tears of joy. I have to say it again… we cried tears of joy. Tears of joy that something good happened to one of us. Tears of joy that I have friends that see something in me and want me get where I need to be and do what I need to do to heal and develop. Friends that care so much they gift me a Macbook so I can write whenever I want and have the tools to blog and friends that get me where they know I need to be (She Speaks!). Tears because I felt something other than despair and sadness and like nothing good could ever happen again. Tears because maybe, yes maybe, God does have work for me to do.
When you have been living in such a dark place, feeling devoid of the security and comforting anchor of God, the smallest realization that He is there is beyond description. It’s everything. I do believe God’s hand is in this. For Mary to mention it to me so long ago, for me to remember her mentioning it, for Jill to reach out on my behalf and for me to receive that gift when 699 other women could’ve gotten that e-mail…that’s a God thing. For this I am grateful.