You know what, we should really just call a spade a spade around here and say that when my life gets crazy, my blog gets quiet. I’m a writer (wow…feels weird to say that) but before that I’m a liver (and not the kind in your abdomen.) I want to LIVE and hopefully lately, I’ll get around to writing about all that life happening around me.
So….alot of life has been happening around me. Like this….
These are some of the crazy peeps I call my friends. Not a one of them lives in my town, but I tell you what….my heart is knit to theirs. These are some of the world changers that I had the chance to spend 4 days with at Allume in Harrisburg, PA last week.
In case you missed it, I had a load of stuff to do for Allume. I was in charge of hospitality for the conference of 400+ people, mostly women, who all love Jesus first, and mostly all blog as well.
This photo was taken by my sweet new friend, Mandy, from Biblical Homemaking. Oh my words…this girl, aside from having a heart of gold, has the most incredible hair I’ve EVER EVER EVER seen. I could have hair like that maybe…for like $700 worth of extensions….but then they’d fall out, and I’d be worse off. Nevermind.
The table decorations were pretty awesome too….but you know what…I don’t have a picture of those either. I’ll find one though….
Ya’ll….I didn’t have time to take a single picture beyond a bunch of silly ones in the Smilebooth. I had too much to do….too many little details to take care of, too many tiny fires to make sure never got fanned to flame, and then honestly….I just had too much real life connection that needed to happen. One day I’ll take more pictures in the midst of too much fun….one day! To make matters worse, my phone isn’t an iphone, so I don’t have instagram! I know….and really, if you want to know what a tekkie fossil I am….I still have a hotmail account too. Will you all still be my friends?
So let me tell you what happened at Allume that kinda knocked my socks off.
The first night I was set to give all of the announcements. The boring kind though. Stuff like….”please don’t take the table decor”, “if you need a special meal and didn’t sign up for one…sorry about that, but too bad”, “if your baby cries…it’d be awesome if they could do it outside of the room where there’s a speaker”, “some sessions are switching around a bit”….stuff like that. None of it exciting, but all of it important.
Well, a funny thing happened while I was at the farm (what is that quote from?) Somewhere in the announcements, I suddenly realized people were laughing at me. Literally laughing. My mind kinda jumped around to places like….is there broccoli in my teeth, is there toilet paper on my shoe?! And then I had this strange moment where I realized that people thought I was funny…apparently really pretty funny because they kept giggling. Let me just say that you don’t NOT notice when a room of like 450 people are laughing at you. I think I even exclaimed my surprise out loud at how funny I thought it was that they thought I was funny. More laughing….
I have absolutely no idea….no earthly idea what I did or said that was so funny, so I just kept on doing the announcements. When I came back to the table, Sarah Mae (my friend and one of the conference hosts) said that she thought that I was funny and that I just HAD to do the announcements the rest of the conference. So I did.
And ya’ll, it was so stinking fun! I had absolutely no idea that I’d enjoy speaking like that in public. And somewhere in there, I found my “element.”
My friend Tsh said last year at the conference during her keynote that, “when we’re in our element, we feel the Lord’s pleasure on us.” Another friend after the conference said how much he enjoyed watching me “do my thing” on the stage. Ya’ll….I had absolutely NO IDEA until this past weekend that I even had a “thing.” But there it was….
I never once felt stressed about the decorations, about the food, about any of the details that go into making an event beautiful, because I knew I could do that part. And the best thing about all of that was that people noticed. Not noticed in a “give me accolades” sort of way….but people noticed and felt loved. Good food and pretty spaces make women feel special, and my heart felt full that I was able to do that for this group of amazing women.
I spoke in a session on Saturday, and I nearly threw up before I did. I was SO nervous. I’ve never spoken before, and now suddenly I was funny to all of these people for the past 2 days. God had given me a real word to share though…one that was serious, and I was suddenly afraid that funny might not be able to do “for real.” So I prayed with my friend Laura (who was speaking at the same time,) and I cried because I was so nervous, and then I went in and led a session.
And I think it went pretty well.
It’s not up yet, but once the audio file is uploaded, I’ll post here to let you know, so that if you want, you can hear what I had to say.
God didn’t stop there though….because He’s just bigger than all that we dare to hope for. He’s given me the opportunity to pour into Allume even more next year and to be more involved in all that goes into this amazing thing. So this coming year, I have more work to do for this conference that has taken residence in a place in my heart…and I couldn’t be more excited!
So if you’re an Allume attendee, if you hope to be, or if you’re a reader here in this space, I’d sure love your prayers as I take on more responsibility to be a part of making this conference happen. It’s a space where writers come together and get filled up so that they can pour out. And I love every single thing about that.
Here I am, with Darren Rowse, aka ProBlogger on the final night. He’d shared a really amazing story that morning about a mudcake that turned out to be one of those profound moments in life (my friend Elizabeth Esther shares really eloquently about the story HERE.) We had a mudcake made for Darren and presenting it to him may have been one of the highlights for me of the conference….I do love a funny moment! Darren got to have his cake….and eat it in front of everyone too….forkless!
I’m rambling now. I woke up at 2:30 and won’t go back to bed until tonight. My mind is racing and my heart still feel so so full. God is so much fun, and as my friend Wendy says, sometimes he just shows up as “Jehovah Sneaky” and surprises us with something we’d never have thought of ourselves. I found my element friends….and now I sure do wonder how the Lord will use it!