Thank you, God, for an amazing weekend. I heard You. I felt You. I saw You work. You made me smile. And cry. You made me a little giddy. And filled me with awe.
You allowed me to be humbled. And humbled again. And then a few more times after that. (I’m still recovering.) You showed me a lot of things about myself that I didn’t really care to know. And some things that I was delighted to discover.
Mostly, You showed me a lot of things about YOU. How awesome You are. How glorious and worthy of worship. And about what it means to serve You. And about how beautiful it is to meet so many other women who desire nothing more than to serve You. And about how many people there are who need You.
You showed me that I don’t have to feel guilty for having books with my name on them when so many women want to write a book so badly (er, want so badly to write a book, I should say). You told me that I don’t have to shrink so that others won’t be jealous. It’s not about me anyway. It’s about your glory, and I’m going to bring you as much of it as I possibly can.
I’ve never met so many women in one place who were so genuinely thrilled for each other’s “success.” There is a greater need than all of us together can ever fill.
You showed me that while I am a gifted talker, I have a looooong way to go before I can be called a talented speaker. You showed me that while rabbit trails and being funny have their place, I need to work on communicating a clear and helpful message that women can take away and apply to their lives.
You allowed me to meet sweet, delightful Sophie and hug her neck and share some laughs. You brought me wonderful Joanie from Joysey (a city in NY ) when I prayed that I’d find at least one friend at the conference. You made me run into Angie, who I haven’t seen since I graduated from college 11 years ago. You plopped some sweet new friends into my life, and what a blessing.
You whispered in some speakers’ ears, “There’s a gal named Marla out there who needs you to speak this exact sentence right now, please. Thanks.”
You provided me with amazing in-laws who watched our girlies for 72 hours, so this weekend could be a reality for me. And I never had to worry for a second if they were being loved, protected, cared for, or having a blast. I knew they were. What a blessing.
You also showed me how much I love my babies and miss them when I’m away from them. Every time I saw a little girl in the hotel, tears sprung (sprang?) into my eyes.
You helped Gabe and me talk through some important things.
You protected us on the drive home through the mountains with zero-visibility-flash-storms-complete-with-hailstones.
You showed me that if I ever hope to be truly funny, I have to move to the South, wait 20 years to develop an accent, learn to tolerate (and then love) grits, and wear funky, wedgy heels. Oh, there’s just no hope!
You answered some specific, direct, really direct prayers. Like, “Lord, I have to leave in 30 seconds, and I have no idea if Fran is even still here (I haven’t seen her in 24 hours), but on my way out the door, could you make me run into her so I can give her this book?” I turned around, and there she was.
And some other stuff that just dropped my jaw.
God, like Lindsey sang, will You move me aside? Will You move in me? I want to follow, obey, love, and glorify You. To rest in You. To be used by You.
In Jesus’ Name,