Full Circle Weekend
This past weekend I had a full circle moment. Although I had intended to blog about it later, I’ve decided to capture it on video because my emotions are very strong and raw, and I want to capture all of that and share it with you.
The story began about eight years ago. I was in a women’s Bible study at my local church. I was doing a Beth Moore Bible study with some of my dearest friends. It was not the first Beth Moore study I had done. She was already a favorite of mine. But we were about halfway through the study, and I felt like the Lord impressed on me that I would do something like she was doing someday, but I couldn’t really put my finger on what it was.
Later that afternoon I had the privilege of sitting with my pastor for a little while and sharing with her what I felt like the Lord was speaking to me. She very clearly and simply said, “He’s probably calling you to be a Bible teacher.”
I thought, “What is a Bible teacher?” I’d never heard it called that before. I didn’t know exactly what she meant by that. But I stored that away in my heart. Thank goodness the Lord doesn’t tell me how long I have to wait for things, right? Can anybody relate to that? Because if he had said, “I’m going to work this in you, but it’s going to take eight years to even begin,” I probably would have quit and given up right then.
But here we are, eight years later. Actually if we go back about three years, I started writing, which was something I had never expected to do. The Lord downloaded a book idea into my mind, and over the last three years I have been working on that and developing that, and just taking one step at a time. In the meantime, the Lord has grown me in amazing ways of my faith and my worship and my knowledge of the Bible, which I know I will continue to do. I have loads of room for growth in all of those areas.
But in the last year I’ve really felt like the Lord has been saying, “It’s time. It’s time.” I’ve been trying to figure out what it’s time for. I thought maybe it was finishing and publishing the book. I started the blog, and I thought definitely that would be a part of it. I’ve recognized that one of my spiritual gifts is encouragement, and I look forward to the opportunity to use that gift.
But all of that brought me to November of this past year, and I was given an invitation to attend a conference put on by Beth Moore. She would be inviting some of her favorite Bible teachers and worship leaders and colleagues to be pouring into the future Bible teachers, writers, and ministers of our country, or even internationally, honestly.
I was beside myself with excitement, feeling like it could be a full circle moment after I had that inspiration eight years ago. I remember watching the Beth Moore videos and thinking, “Will I be doing something like her someday?” I’ve admired the work that she’s done and the truth of her heart and her passion for the word. So to have the opportunity to be in her presence and be taught by her live, specifically encouraging us in our ministry, was kind of beyond my wildest dreams.
My friends and I got online the minute registration started, knowing that it would be popular, and she was having a very limited number of people in attendance. Within eight minutes there was a wait list. Now, I don’t know how all of that worked out. It got kind of confusing, and I’m sure that they were inundated with interest. But I was put on a wait list. That was the day after Thanksgiving. The first week of January, I finally received an email that said there was a spot available for me. I very quickly registered, and it was still a bit surreal that I was going to have this experience.
Now catching up to the present, this past weekend was the event. Myself and approximately 700 other women were in attendance for a full day of teaching and encouragement. They gave us reality checks. They gave us warnings. They poured into us. It was an honor. I still sit and revel in the experience that I had and the encouragement and the love that I felt. I feel like the Lord is meeting me right where I am, encouraging me and giving me exactly what I need to take the next step. I am still a bit in shock with how good God is with His timing, His support, and His encouragement.
Then, today, we got a followup email from Beth herself. She encouraged us again and told us how much they’re still praying for us, and believing in each of our ministries, no matter how big or how small. They are praying for us and not forgetting us. They’re keeping all of our names right there in the office. She even asked permission to keep our email list and encourage us, by sending messages every now and then. I’m so excited to have this connection and have this encouragement as I continue to step into what God is calling me to.
My encouragement for you today is, if God is calling you to something, no matter how terrifying it is, pray hard, and step into it. Take one step in that direction, because the blessings will blow your mind. There is no better plan than the plan that God has for you. So if you know what he’s calling you to, and you’re just sitting in a place of fear, or a place of denial, I encourage you to step out of that. If you want to reach out to me personally, I would be more than happy to visit with you and encourage you one on one.
If you’re sitting there and maybe wondering, “I have no idea what God’s calling me to. I wish He would call me to something.” Then begin to really pray into that. Pray the scriptures. But more than anything, you’re going to have to lay down your doubts and lay down your fears to be sure that your ears are open, because He will answer you, if you’re listening.
I’m excited for whatever God has in store for you. I am excited and terrified of where God is taking me. But we can all go in that direction together, and receive the blessings of saying yes to God. Be blessed!