Three years ago I had a ticket to attend my first ever Women of Faith conference. Sadly, my great-grandfather passed away and instead of a weekend of encouragement and refreshment, we travelled to Canada for a funeral.
I've been wanting to go ever since but in 2009 we moved and were very busy.
In 2010, I had a nursing baby and didn't want to take him so didn't go.
And then this year, 2011, ironically my other grandfather is in the hospital, sick with cancer. I didn't want to see a deja vu so refused to buy a ticket.
Then I got a call from a friend last week to say that she knew someone who had extra tickets. It's a two-day conference and two ladies in the group could only go Friday leaving Saturday open. I called one of my BFFs and miracle of all miracles, she had a free Saturday. (If you knew this girl, you'd know how rare this is!) So she and I scooped up the tickets which ended up being FREE! FREE FREE FREE!
Did I mention my husband was also available so he watched our three kids for the first time all.day.long? I left before 7am and returned 12 hours later. I have NEVER been away from all my kids this long. I missed all three meals. But Daddy handled that and 3 poopies just fine - his biggest nightmare - haha!
Here is the first photo I took... they had a countdown to start time and they were prompt! I loved how organized it was and that they stuck to the schedule. It was awesome to see so many Christian women together. That alone was really encouraging, nevermind the amazing speakers and music.
Angie Smith started a blog years ago and she was one of the first I started reading. She is married to Todd Smith who sings with the band Selah. I have all but one of their CDs and LOVE their music. Def my fav Christian band. I bought my first CD in 2003 when my husband was deploying to Kuwait. Their hymns are uplifting. And I love the few they do with an African vibe/language. Todd Smith's parents were missionaries. In 2007, a friend of mine posted on Facebook to pray for the Smith's because the baby Angie was carrying was sick. I read her blog and thru tears read all the back dated posts to catch up on their story. I won't even try to explain it here, but what an amazing testimony to how God can carry you thru all things. She has since published a book called "I will carry you" about the short life of Audrey Caroline. What a legacy!!
Soooooo wouldn't you know, Angie Smith toured with Women of Faith for the first time this year. I was giddy with the chance of seeing her speak and prayed she'd share on Saturday, not Friday. Prayer answered. Then a friend of mine, Darcie, held a spot in line for ME TO MEET HER! Oh my goodness I just about died when she called me on my cell and told me to walk to where she was waiting! I was so star struck I was a blubbering mess. I didn't have time to think about what I'd say to her. And I just got emotional and tongue-tied. She is so beautiful. I didn't know how much time I had so just rushed thru - I was the 2nd last person!!! But I got a pic and she signed my program. I know, I'm a dork. I'm not going to embarrass myself again and repeat what I said to her but I just wanted her to know I knew her story and mourned along with her during her time of loss. But how do you say all that in 2 minutes. Do you like my stalker fan face?
Other women shared who were really great, and I loved hearing them but Angie was def my fav. She had me laughing the hardest and crying the hardest. She is being used in a mighty way FOR SURE. I hold my kids tighter and love them more because she shared her story.
Mary Mary sang for us! Oh my goodness I was groovin to their music. I heard their music on Pandora but to see them live gives me a new appreciation. My BFF said that she needed to download their music to run to! haha! It really gets you moving! The one is the silver shirt is expecting a baby. :o)
When I got home, I was so.tired. I have a cold and had a headache all afternoon. I went to bed at 8:30pm! But I had a great day and definitely recommend Women of Faith. Just to spend a FULL day with this girl, who blesses me with her friendship:
So to recap.... blessed with free tickets, available friend and husband, carpooling with a different friend, seeing a fav blogger, meeting fav blogger bcs of thoughtfulness of a friend... God loves me that much to work out so many details. :o) So so so thankful. :o)