The countdown is on! In less than a week I’ll be flying my way toward a little place called Haiti. Perhaps you’ve heard about it? I’m in the midst of all the school and all the (in)RL prep and all the packing lists, but I couldn’t miss Five Minute Friday – partly because I’ll miss the next two weeks (out of the country, you see), but mainly because these are my people, this is my tribe.
It’s pretty great when worlds collide in the hashtags of #HaitiBoundSB2014 and #fmfparty, but it’s even better to come to a place with a few carved out minutes, find the words, and simply write.
IMPORTANT! ALERT! KEEP READING! DON’T STOP! I’m giving away a ticket to the Raising Generations Today Conference at the end of this post so keep.on.reading.people.
They all stand firm but the walls close in tight until I can barely breathe.
Day after day we walk the halls, the faces smile, and life goes on as normal except nothing seems normal anymore.
Broken hearts and stories woven together turned into a tattered tapestry as we face the music while blending into the crowd.
Time had its way and kept rolling right along but somewhere inside the loneliness crept in and took root. I stopped believing in love and decided that community was a threat, not a friend.
I’ve never felt more alone than in the crowd.
But in the mess He started writing my message. All these tests turned into my testimony and the chapters of sorrow are now a story of His healing hand of grace.
It was always my story, I just hadn’t read this part yet.
There was no foretelling of the mystery of redemption, the healing power of reconciliation, or the love of community’s hand stretched back out again and again until I believed.
Time was having its way but God was having His and somewhere along that way a broken heart became whole. The tattered tapestry has been re-woven and sometimes my life feels like one big quilt with a whole lot of patches and sewn up stitches.
I’m running this race bound for the finish line with that quilt tied around me like a cape, and all I want is to hear “well done my good and faithful servant.”
But now it’s different because I’m not running silently through the crowd or running away from the crowd, I’m running my own race with a crowd of witnesses cheering me on. I have found community and love again. Like a phoenix He has brought me out of the ashes and made me new.
He has done a work and I could have missed it. He is doing a work and I want to tell it.
If you’re ever felt alone in a crowd, I want to especially encourage you to consider attending the Raising Generations Today Conference! If you haven’t heard of it, here’s a little blurb:
Raising Generations Today is an annual conference designed to equip and inspire moms to reach the hearts of their children for the glory of God. Through providing valuable resources, inspirational speakers, practical teaching materials, and the connection of moms in every season of parenting, Raising Generations Today will offer the hope to women so that they may embrace and thrive in their roles as moms.
Some of my favorite people will be there speaking, including the fabulous Lisa-Jo Baker, Stacey Thacker, Lisa Leonard, Elisa Pulliam, and many others!
Please keep in mind that the conference is NEXT week, but if you’re in the area or know a friend who lives close by and needs encouragement – or maybe you have some airline miles you’re ready to cash in? – please enter and then head to New York to be inspired, encouraged, lifted up, and reminded that that you don’t need to run from the crowd. You are welcome here.
[Winner has been contacted. Thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway!]