Monday, November 14, 2011

What the Lord Has Done in Me (Women of Faith Reflections Part I)

Let the weak say I am strong/ Let the poor say I am rich/
Let the blind say I can see/ It's what the Lord has done in me

As we sang these words this past Sunday morning, my mind still processing the Women of Faith conference from which I had just returned, I realized this is exactly what the speakers are doing as they travel across the country sharing their stories. The common denominator of every speaker was suffering, and being walked and carried and held through that suffering by God. None of them pretended she (or he) had it all together. None pretended they had figured out life and wrapped God in a nice shiny box to present to the ignorant masses. They were real and broken and grateful for His grace in their lives and they wanted to share this with as many people as would listen. And I've been listening.

For several years I attended the Women of Faith conference in Hartford, and then a couple of years when they moved to Boston. After being away from it for 2 years, I found myself moved to be sitting once again in that arena in Hartford. I couldn't help but remember the years I had come and the places I had walked during those years. I brought my first group to Women of Faith, all shiny and new at the pastor's wife stuff and eager to please. A year or two later I sat and tried to hold in the tears as Sheila Walsh described the many years she wore a mask and pretended everything was fine when it was not anywhere close to fine. Oh, could I relate as I struggled to wear the mask of Christianity too many expected. Then there was the year I sat without a group and with only a friend and my newest baby, weeping tears of sorrow and joy over a nightmare from which we had only begun to awake. There were years of joy as I shared the conference with friends and church family and the mountain tops were in sight and the skies were blue. And then there was that last year, where friends had turned away and the mask seemed appealing once again. And then, my time away from Women of Faith.

Until this past weekend. As I sat and laughed and cried and listened once again to some of my old favorites and discovered some who may very well become new, I realized these were my "older women", my mentors. I became a Christian as an adult and always wanted a mentor but had never found one and so turned my attention to learning to be one instead (I'm still learning!). But I realized this past weekend that these women, although they do not know me personally, have been my mentors over the years. They have encouraged me, they have strengthened me, they have kept me from losing my sanity at times. And they have done this by being real and being transparent and letting me (and others) know that God loves us right we are and He will walk us all the way home until He has tranformed us into who we are meant to be.

We can't do it, our well meaning friend can't do it, the not so well meaning pain in the arse can't do it.  It is only through His grace and His love that we are anything at all. He takes the trash of our lives and turns it into treasure.

This is what I have learned over the years at Women of Faith. I'm glad I had the chance to be a part again and I plan to be there next year and hopefully for years to come. This is an important part of my Christian walk and I thank these women (and men) who are not afraid to be real and share their pain and walk this journey with the rest of us. You are my mentors and I'm so glad you have allowed God to use you in this way.


Tags

#imabzzagent (4) 12 Pearls of Christmas Series (13) 2011 Book Blogger Recommendation Challenge (1) 2011 E-Book Challenge (1) 2011 Fantasy Challenge (1) 2011/2012 home education plan (1) 52 Books in 52 Weeks (25) 9/11 (3) ABC's (1) abc's of homeschooling meme (13) abc's of homeschooling meme homeschool (1) about me (2) accounting (1) Adult Fiction (16) Adult/Teen Fiction (29) all natural products (4) ambelside (1) Angels (1) anti-bullying (1) AP Prep (1) apologia (1) Art (5) audio (1) Audiobook (5) awards (3) B90Days (2) bakeoff (1) BB Media (1) beautiful tuesday (1) Bible (24) biography (3) Birds and Bees (3) blessings (1) Blog Cruise (19) Blog Vision (1) bloggers (1) blogging (1) Bloggy Boot Camp (2) bloggybootcamp (1) Book Challenge (2) Book Sneeze (1) books (2) boots (1) bullies (1) bullying (1) Burn Out (2) burn-out (1) buttons (1) buyer beware (1) Bzz Agent (2) challenges (1) Character Training (4) Charlotte Mason (3) children's fiction (12) Christian (80) Christian Encouragement (2) Christian Living (21) Christmas (7) christmasgift (1) church history (1) Classical (3) co-op (1) co-ops (1) coffee (1) coffee cup key (1) computer (7) computer skills (6) contest (1) contests (3) convention updates (4) cooking (1) copywork (1) craziness (1) Creation (1) Crossway (5) current events (1) devotions (1) Drafting (1) dreams (1) dresses (1) DVD (9) e-books (10) Easter (1) elementary school (4) Encouragement (4) English (11) Exercise (2) failures (1) farming (1) Favorites (22) feet (1) Fiction (1) finances (2) FIRST (12) five question friday (2) fluffiness (1) food (3) for mom (23) for sale (1) foreign language (1) fort (2) fractions (1) Free (3) freedom (1) full curricula (1) fun (24) games (13) gaming (3) geek (5) geography (5) Getting Started Homeschooling (6) gettingold (1) gift ideas (2) girls (1) giveaway (38) Giveaway Winners (15) giveaways (1) grace (1) graduates (1) grammar (1) graphics (1) gratitude (1) guitar (1) handmade (1) handsonlearning (1) handwriting (3) health (5) High School (45) history (21) holidays (4) homeschool (27) homeschool helps (18) homeschool misfit awards (8) homeschooling (24) homeschooling posts (4) hope (1) hormones (1) household (10) how to (1) hscrew (9) humor (2) imagination (1) insecurity (1) junior high (2) kindergarten (1) language arts (25) lapbooking (5) learning styles (1) lesson planning (2) library (1) life (1) life in my house (1) literature (6) LitFuse (8) love (5) magazines (6) makeup (1) Mama Kat's Prompts (6) mamakatsprompts (1) maps (1) marketing (1) marraige (2) math (24) media collective (1) memes (7) misc. (11) Miscellany Monday (2) money management (3) movies (2) music (22) mustread (1) my crazy life (2) my fiction (7) MyBlogSpark (19) NaNoWriMo (7) nature (1) nature's workshop plus (1) NetGalley (2) non-fiction (11) Nook (1) Not Me Monday (2) not perfect (5) notebooking (1) novels (16) online book (2) online learning (16) organization (1) Our Curricula (2) Our Family Homeschool (32) parenting (1) Parrish (1) personal stories (4) personal updates (33) perspective (1) phonics (2) photos (6) physical education (1) piano (1) picture books (3) pillsbury (1) pin curls (1) pinterest (1) pirates (1) Planner modules (1) planners (3) poetry (2) pop culture (1) pre-teen (1) preschool (12) programming (1) projects (1) promotions (8) prompts (1) puppets (1) QandA (1) question of the week (15) questions (1) Quotes (2) rambling (5) ratings (1) read alouds (3) reading (13) reading challenges (2) red dress club (5) Red Writing Hood (2) reflections (15) reluctant readers (2) retro (1) revell (2) reviewing (1) Reviews by Subject (1) romance (1) Sample Posts (1) sarcasm (1) SAT Prep (4) saving $ (2) scavenger hunt (1) scheduling (1) science (20) Scripture memory (1) search engine (1) selfhelp (1) she speaks (1) shiny stuff (1) Simple Woman's Daybook (1) Snacks (7) SOAP (2) soapbox (2) socialization (3) software (12) song (1) speakgeek (1) special needs (4) speech therapy (1) spelling (5) spiritual (9) steampunk (2) storytelling (1) strenght in homeschooling (1) strength in homeschooling (1) suicide awareness (1) teachergeek (1) teen (6) teen fiction (1) teenagers (2) temple con (1) thanksgiving (1) the curriculum choice (2) The Homeschool Misfits Awards (5) Thomas Nelson (5) thrillers (1) Thursday Thirteen (4) THV Link Up (1) timberdoodle (1) timeline (1) timer (1) top ten Tuesday (4) toptentues (3) TOS Crew (143) toscrew (1) tough topics (1) toydle (1) toys (5) Trdc (3) tutor (1) Tyndale (18) typing (2) Ultimate Blog Party 2011 (1) Unit Studies (5) unity (1) upcoming products (2) updates (1) used books (1) video (4) videos (1) virtual world (2) vocabulary (3) vote (1) Voyagers (1) walmart (1) Waterbrook (12) websites (6) wedding (1) Weekly Wrap Up (2) weight loss (1) welcome (2) Who Am I? (1) whowoulddonatethistothesalvationarmyinthefirstplace (1) wofimage (3) Wordless Wednesday (15) worksheets (2) worldview studies (1) Write on Edge (1) writing (16) writing prompts (3) yafiction (2) young adult fiction (1)

LinkWithin

Blog Widget by LinkWithin
 
Blog Design by A Mommy's Blog Design Studio (© Copyright 2011)
voyeur porn porn movies sex videos hd porno video