Tuesday, July 26, 2011

A Process Begins and Continues

(She Speaks - Part 2)

Messages from this weekend continue to burn in my heart. The sound of 650+ women worshipping together, hands lifted high. The sound of silence and tears shed in the prayer room. Hearts open, fears exposed, spirits connected.

Dreams remembered, vision restored, hope renewed, love rekindled, hearts repaired. So many stories, each unique, found in a chair, head bowed...on a pillow, hands clasped...standing, arms open wide...all for an audience of One.

I hear whispers in this place, softly spoken confessions and requests, that echo my own.
  • I'm too old to be starting.
  • Is this really what God wants me to do?
  • I just don't know.
  • I can't.
  • How do I juggle everything without neglecting something?
  • I don't want to do it without His blessing.
  • It's so hard.
  • I feel like if I were better....
A process begins and continues. God chiseling away at the very things that might keep us from Him, from the plans and purposes He has for us. Fears, insecurities, strongholds, doubts. Let. God. Chisel.

Home now, I'm having a hard time finding words to describe my few stolen moments away. I ramble on when asked, because no single word seems adequate.

Hard, exciting, overwhelming, fun, emotional, anointed, challenging, scary, life-changing, exhausting, inspiring, motivating, hard (did I say that already?).

I'm sure I will be downloading for quite some time in various posts once I have processed what actually transpired over these few days. I am looking forward to re-experiencing the workshops and sessions through my notes and CDs.

What a blessing to have met such incredible women, sharing their hearts and loving each other and God. I was weepy the whole weekend, overcome with emotion when all 650 of us sat together, eyes on the One Who brought us there. Kindred spirits, like minds...sisters. I. Am. Grateful.

Two of my blogging friends and new sisters,
 Jen and Amy

Another sister friend, Robin, my roomie. Thankful that God allowed us to share this time together.

I am beginning the counting of my blessings, starting with the ones from the conference Saturday night when Ann Voskamp spoke and I was forever changed.

Counting blessings with Ann V.
  1. Growing, stretching.
  2. Hard moments, tears shed.
  3. New places, new opportunities.
  4. Sisters.
  5. Emptying, filling, emptying.
  6. Airport train rides to the right terminal.
  7. Grace. Grace. Grace.
Today I am linking with Ann and Jen.

13 friends had this to say:

Shona Neff said...

Great thoughts as we all settle back into real life :)

Eileen said...

Beautiful, Shelly. My heart is echoing many of the same feelings. Thank you for sharing this. :)

Stacie said...

Sounds AH-mazing. I'm so glad for your experience and I hope to see you there next year. :)

Anita. Harris said...

Shelly, happy to hear about the blessed time you had with other women of faith. It is a true privilege when we can come together and worship and grow as women. I pray God favors you with many more opportunities to enjoys times like this one. Blessings! Anita


I have been praying for the conference and it is really good to hear about your time. Great picture, too.


Laura@OutnumberedMom said...

Ah, Amy and Jen! What fun that must have been. Sounds like an amazing conference; I'm feeling pulled there for next year.

I remember my first writers conference, trying to download in my mind all that I'd heard. Enjoy the coming days as you sort out His call for you!

Jen said...

I think I have said the same thing -- I have processed only like 25% of what I have learned and put inside my heart. I'm just trusting that God will bring to mind what I need when I need it.

Such a blessing to know you -- in person and in this space of writing.

Kristin Bridgman said...

I blog with Amy and Jen too:)
Sounds like a wonderful conference, maybe some day I can join everyone. . .would love that!

Glad you were able to go and be blessed:)

visiting from Jen's place

Jenn said...

beautiful post and expression of the weekend!
Jenn Hand

Amy Sullivan said...

So fun to meet you, and thrilled to get your email and hear about interest from a publisher! Woo-hoo! That's amazing, Shelly. Keep me posted.

Deidra said...

So glad you had a great experience - you captured it so beautifully here, and many of those sentiments are mirrored in my own life. Thanks for sharing!

starla said...

It looks like you had an AWESOME TIME!! and I am so glad that you did. Lots of excitement building in you for months about that conference. I am glad you were blessed...and you be so LUCKY to see ANN VOSKAMP..I watched her on a youtube vid and was so amazed! God is good!!

Anonymous said...

Grace. Grace. Grace. :-) It really sticks, doesn't it? I find myself saying it over and over in my head. It was a pleasure visiting your blog space and reading your thoughts from She Speaks. I'm still "downloading" myself, and I'm guessing it will take a while. I'm in no hurry. I enjoy every small morsel as it falls fresh.