This blog post is to share my heart with you about a contest I am entering as well as to request you to pray for God’s leading in this matter. There is a ministry that I have followed for several years, called Proverbs 31 Ministries, led by Lysa Terkeurst. Proverbs 31 ministers through many different ways including conferences, the Proverbs 31 magazine, website, blogs, etc. When I first saw the Proverbs 31 magazine, my heart was stirred and challenged by not only the content of the articles but by the doctrinal themes and Biblical philosophies woven throughout the magazine. Right away I thought, “this would be a great magazine to submit some of writings to.” But, as often happens, fear of rejection kept me from doing so.
Then, I heard about Lysa Terkeurst and her husband adopting children and again my heart was stirred as I watched Lysa and her friends appear on Oprah and talk about the way the Lord brought the children into their lives. Those of you who know our family know how deeply we love children and how we have wrestled with Heaven to keep Emma and Spencer here on the earth with us. Heaven’s nursery is dotted with the smiling faces of four of our other children…which is why we are so passionate about providing safety and care to children neglected and brought into our home through foster care. The rearing and training of children is so important and doing so with a Biblical basis is our heartbeat and is so reflected in the pages of Proverbs 31 magazine and in other venues of the Proverbs 31 ministry.
About 9 years ago, Proverbs 31 Ministries began holding an annual conference for writers, speakers, and women’s ministry leaders. She Speaks Conferences are designed to provide speakers, writers, and ministry leaders with tools to help them improve their skills as well as to provide opportunities to network with other like-minded people. For several years, I have wanted to attend the conference, but have been unable to do so. This year, I am determined to go…one way or the other. There is a scholarship opportunity available based on blog postings and that is one of the reasons for this post. Let me share my heart with you about why I feel so impressed to attend the conference this year.
For the past two years, the Lord and I have wrestled with His calling on my life to reach others through written word. I was 8 years old when I wrote my first poem. It was about Faith, and I wrote if after coming home from a Wednesday night service at church. From that moment, there has been a burning in my soul to write. I have written poems, songs, articles, journals, musings, letters, etc. Most of those writings have never been shared. The devil is so clever at keeping us from achieving those things God designed for us to accomplish. Fear has been the constant companion to my writing. Fear of being rejected, misunderstood, not agreed with, etc. Two years ago, the Lord made it very clear to me that I can no longer hide behind the fear. I’ve no doubt that to do so grieves the Holy Spirit. God has been SO incredibly good and gracious to me…it is sinful for me not to share that with the world. The miracles God has performed in my own personal life, in the restoration of our marriage, in the physical lives of our children, in the healing of our souls after so many losses, and in other areas too personal to share….those miracles are too many and too great to keep to myself. Seeing the Holy Spirit work is an awesome thing…sharing that working with others is my duty and calling. I love the Lord so deeply and want to see other women grow in closeness and sweetness to the Lord in their daily lives.
My calling is to encourage, challenge, inspire, and exhort others to live a life of beauty and excellence: through a daily and deep walk with God, to love their homes and truly be keepers of their homes, to cherish their husbands as God’s physical presence in their lives, to train and disciple their children to become leaders in God’s ministry of reaching the world for Heaven, and to enjoy and live to the fullest every day God gives us here on this earth.
I believe, with all my heart, that attending the “She Speaks Conference” is part of God’s plan for me in the here and now. There are conferences for writers literally all over the world. The reason I want to attend this conference is because I believe it is led by people who love the Lord as I love Him and want to accomplish, through ministry, many of the same things I want to accomplish. To find like-minded people to serve beside of and learn from is a treasure. This world is filled with well-meaning but misinformed and misguided people. Lysa Terkeurst has a God-given calling on her life that is evident to anyone who crosses her path, hears her speak, or reads her books and writings. To have the opportunity to learn from her and those in the Proverbs 31 ministry and to not do so would be a shame. Much like an athlete practices and conditions for the game, I believe writers need to always be honing their skills and learning more about the art of writing. Attending this conference will give me opportunity to learn more about writing, to network with people in the industry and to have my heart and soul stirred and challenged, and yes, reaffirmed, in the calling I know is from the Lord for my life.
So, please pray with me about this opportunity. Winners for the scholarship will be announced next Friday, April 2. My heart will be anxious to hear but my spirit knows that all things rest in the very capable hands of my Heavenly Father.
With all my heart,