i never go to conferences. like ever.
so this past weekend was different. different in a really good way.
for a few years now, i’ve followed along on the influence network journey. i find it very interesting & inspiring that women want to help other women be influential. it’s like speaker and co-founder hayley morgan reminded us at the end of the conference – we are all on the same team anyway!
so here i sit, after a long seven hour road trip back to maryland – recapping the weekend. recapping the conference. wondering how i can sit in a room full of complete strangers and feel so inspired. a room full of women who don’t know my story – and i don’t know theirs. we were blessed to hear the vulnerable stories of each speaker – helping us to connect to them in new ways which i love. bc we seriously connect at our wounds. i believe it’s the way god intended it.
i sit here, remembering jess connolly opening up about how there are areas in our lives that have influence, if we only stop feeling shame and start sharing. that hit hard. it’s the balance of “hey look at me and all that i’ve been through” and “hey look what god has done in my messy messy life.” i love the second perspective. it’s the true perspective. it’s the “to give him more glory” perspective.
things don’t happen to us. they happen through us. god works through us. through our terrible messy situations. i pray for the bravery to slowly unpack what that looks like in my life. what areas in my life could i share so that god gets the victory. i know, right off the bat, that i feel fear because i’m not 100% sure there is victory in these areas. i want there to be – i’m just not sure there is.
so here i sit, remembering that it’s good to slow down and listen to wise people. wise people who truly want to encourage a new perspective in our lives.
i’m pretty big on the idea of “grow where you’re planted.” i’m born and raised in the same town (took a four year break for college) and my husband and i dream of growing deep deep family roots right where we are in our biblical community. so i love the idea that we have influence, right where we are.
two other points about #influenceconf and then i’ll let you go.
sweet ashlee proffitt reminded us that “worship prepares our heart for battle.” a simple truth. a solid truth. i’m going through some battles right now and i expect i will for the rest of my earthly life. worship prepares us for the battle. the current battle. the future battle. the past battle. worship. (2 chronicles 20:18)
and finally, brilliant renee swope – well god used her to convict me through her battle. the challenge is this: Alicia, be the person you say I am. -Jesus. I think that pretty much sums up a life with Christ. Be the person you say I am.
overall, my heart is encouraged and my mind is open. i went to charlotte for this one-day conference with literally no expectations. just a desire to learn. and that i did. thankful there are women being influential so ultimately i will be influential. it’s gonna spread like fire. i think that’s the point!