Remember clear back HERE when I used to speak at Time Out for Women? That was a fun time. It was so stretching for me and I learned so much! This year a friend had the idea to go with a group of us and it was such a good little get-away, fun to be in the audience and just be able to take it all in. Nothing like times to be still and listen. The theme is HEAR this year and I think that is a pretty cool theme. How important it is to train ourselves to prepare to hear and really listen to hear the guidance we can get from above.
To get out the door I felt like I was just running from one thing to the next. Trying to soak up the girls in the morning, a quick workout, pictures sorted for volleyball and a blog post (gosh that takes a long time!), folding piles of laundry, taking down Halloween stuff and doing a video tutorial on our Thanksgiving Tree as I put it up. (…for “Seasons of Renewal”, I must love them to do that because I’m really not so hot at videos of myself!) Packing up me and Lucy since I wouldn’t see her before she, Dave and Claire left to meet me in Wisconsin the next day (we were heading to doctor appointments and to see Hamilton), and forgetting to pick her up from school in the midst of the hoopla. Oh gosh.
But I got picked up by my friends and loved being able to tuck all that hoopla away for a little bit and getting washed over by all those words of wisdom shared.
I loved getting to visit with my friends Emily Freeman and Brooke Romney, and meeting the Ortons who sailed the world for a year with their five kids and who know several people in our family. They were all speakers and had such good messages to share, along with everyone else.
Oh I love Brad Wilcox too…still one of my favorite talks from him is HERE.
Loved all that we learned, but perhaps the best things were tucked in our little hotel room talking and talking until 2:00 in the morning, all seven of us, talking through the world of religion and mothering and life in general.
Then the next day, more good speakers spurring things to think about and a lunch out on the porch of the best restaurant sitting around a round table eating kale and beet salads.
I figure I may as well share some of my favorite take-aways:
–keep track of personal revelation. Get a notebook and list the things God has directed you and nudged you to do, say, work on.
–make the scriptures an integral part of your day. They will give you that revelation if you let them. Try having your children “interpret” scriptures in their own special notebooks to make them “theirs.” (Anthony Sweat)
–Emily Freeman – “God doesn’t take away the wilderness, but He provides a way to get through it.”
–Steps to “Draw near unto me” (from Emily)
- All you need is “need.” Sometimes it takes that NEED (sorrow, heartbreak, confusion, any kind of stumbling block) to create a bridge to God.
- Doesn’t matter where the request comes from (driving in the car, cooking in the kitchen, kneeling on our knees), the important part is that we ask.
- Recognize that the Lord will speak to us in our own way, and in our own language. We just have to listen
- For every revelation a response is required…we have to ACT on those promptings
–vertical wall analogy. Those stone walls that are built with only rock and no mortar are strong because they have broken “heartings” on the inside. That’s what gives them strength. Our broken hearts can lead us to be so much stronger.
–Brooke Romney: 1) wake up and pray, 2) write down every prompting for a week, 3) Act. Do it., 4) Find a few minutes of quiet each day where you can feel the spirit, 5) Say thanks—to God and to others, 6) share. When you hear, share. When you act on it, share. With your journal, or your family…solidifies it in your heart.
–Jane Clayson Johnson talked about depression. Which I think is so important in today’s day and age where so many are affected by it. I have her book Silent Souls Weeping on my nightstand to pick up as soon as I finish Alexander Hamilton (which is taking forever!) Here are some notes from her:
–the brain can fall ill the same way a heart or kidney can
–there’s a stigma associated with depression that we need to get away from, those who suffer from it feel like they did something wrong, and it’s their fault
–blocks off all feelings, can’t feel God’s love, they wonder if they even have a testimony, can’t feel God’s love, feel abandoned
–depression is a disease, not a spiritual deficit
–depression thrives in secrecy but dies in empathy
–The Ortons (“Seven at Sea”):
–oh boy, they inspired me so much. I don’t think sailing the world is in the cards for us, but oh how I’d love to make another semester abroad happen like we did in China. I’m thankful for that every single day for shifting out our perspectives on life in such a beautiful way.
–confidence comes from competence. Study and learn, be ready for those nudges
–‘I will follow God’s plan for ME” (the song)…there really is a plan for each of us, and we have to learn as we go. We have to help create that plan.
–little breadcrumbs along the way
–post-it notes on our heart.
–Take one little step at a time, you don’t have to have the whole picture.
Brooke Romney challenges (love her!):
- wake up and pray
- write down any promptings
- act. do it
- find a few minutes of quiet where you can feel the spirit
- say thank you to God and to others
- share when you hear. When you act on it, share. Let others feel the light you have found.
My friends dropped me off at the airport and I flew, flew, flew to arrive in icy Wisconsin past midnight, uber to hotel to find my little family sound asleep, dreaming of Hamilton the next day. As I crawled into bed next to Dave I was just so overcome with gratitude for him and those little girls and that we got to be there, then.