Let’s Go To #SheSpeaks16

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Headed to Proverbs 31 Ministries’ She Speaks Conference this summer? My AMAZING friend Christa Hutchins of Do A New Thing has started a monthly series called “Let’s Go To She Speaks”. Be sure to check it out as this month’s post is JAM PACKED with great resources!

This year will be my 3rd year and I’m so excited as every year has been an incredible experience in God’s presence! For those that are new, I thought I’d repost my experience from 2014. Let me know if you are coming – I can’t wait to meet you!


She Speaks 2014 Wrap-up {originally posted July 2014}

A week later and my mind is still blown!  The Proverbs 31 Ministries’ She Speaks was the most amazing conference.

I was so nervous and intimidated as I boarded the plane alone for my first writing conference.  Luckily, as a member of Compel, I had already made some connections online and couldn’t wait to meet these gals in real life.  They did not disappoint!


Within a short amount of time, several of us became great friends.  God knew what He was doing bringing us together.  We look forward to championing each other in our callings as we move forward from this conference.  Miles and states may separate us, but our strong bond formed this weekend will keep us together.

I could never cover ALL the awesomeness that was She Speaks, but here are some tidbits to share:

She Speaks collage1

The P31 staff was so organized and everything was beautiful!

Lynn Cowell presented the opening session for the Pre-Conference on Thursday.  LOVED HER!  She was reading our minds as we asked ourselves “maybe we heard God wrong?” as we embarked on our first writing conference.  But she quickly put all of us newbies’ minds at ease and calmed our nerves.


Thursday sessions I attended included:  Where do I start? by Glynnis Whitwer; and Turning Ideas into Writing by Glynnis and Suzie Eller. Seriously, if you are interested in sessions like these, I highly recommend you join Compel and learn from these experts monthly!  I was also excited to attend From Blog to Book Deal by Andrea Doering and Emily Freeman.  Emily has some great writing resources on her website.

Lysa’s opening message on Friday morning was “Unrush Me” based on the teaching from her new book The Best Yes.  It releases August 12, but how lucky were we to buy copies on site at the conference?  I finished mine on the plane home.  Ready to now go back and absorb all those highlights…okay so I’ll read it all again of course!  Be sure and check out that link as there is a ton of fun stuff going on with this book.  Did you know that Lysa is giving away every penny earned from The Best Yes, and her next to-be-determined book?  Wow as if I couldn’t love her more!

Friday sessions I attended included:  Not Just My Opinion: Instant Credibility Through Simple Research by Shaunti Feldhahn; and Writing Bible Studies by Wendy Blight.  She has such a heart for God’s Word.  Her presentation inspired me so much to continue with my goal to write bible studies that make studying God’s Word fun!

Friday’s lunch included a meeting especially for Compel members.  We were introduced to the P31 Compel Leadership Team and received this sweet gift:


Christine Caine was our Keynote Speaker on Friday night.  Preach it girlfriend!  She was awesome (in her Australian accent).  So many takeaways from her inspirational message.  Bottom line:  “God is preparing you for what He has already prepared for you”.

On Saturday morning, we Compel members received another treat:  an intimate Q&A with Lysa!  She’s so generous with her time and sharing her tips for us newbies. Great takeaway for me was “Don’t try to copy, but learn tricks of the trade from your favorite authors.”

Renee Swope presented the devotional Saturday morning encouraging us to “Bring It“:  our fears, faith, strengths, weaknesses.  Bring it all, He will use it.

Saturday sessions I attended included:  Finding Your Niche by Lynn Cowell;  Taking the Mystery out of Marketing with Lysa and Karen Ehman; and I’m ok, but You’re a Little Peculiar (Ministering to different personalities) by Lisa Allen.

Lysa’s message on Saturday night was so powerful and she just put her heart out there for all to see.  God is using her for bigger things than any of us can imagine!  Her challenge for us is to “Go and Make Jesus Known”.  I can’t begin to describe her sessions.  If you missed them, hopefully you can see her soon at a Women of Faith conference.

shespeakscollage3After traveling all that way, I had some folks I was dying to meet.  The top left picture are my Compel ‘partners in crime’ (Angela, Sue, and Kelly) meeting up with some of our Leadership team:  Lisa Allen, Suzie Eller, and Janette Albury.  Then below that we caught up with our Compel Leader Glynnis Whitwer.  Then of course I got to meet Lysa TerKeurst (along with my Compel pal Abby).  And I couldn’t come without saying a huge Texas howdy to Melissa and Nicki, who lead all of us in the incredible P31 online bible studies.  And last but not least, I was so happy to find Jennifer, aka The Unveiled Wife.  I knew she would be there and that we’d be seeing each other again at Declare in Dallas next week, so I had to meet her.  She is just the cutest YOUNGEST thing ever!!!!

So, now to process all that God taught me last week.  Time to pray that He shows me what specifically He wants me to write about so I can put all this knowledge to good use!

Put You in a Song

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Do you ever hear a song on the radio and it just takes you right back to a happy place in time? For me that’s 80’s music. High School days.

“Don’t Stop Believin”….
“Livin’ On A Prayer”…
“Don’t You…Forget About Me” …

I can remember every word to those songs. They instantly put a smile on my face as memories come rushing back.

Songs. Easily learned and remembered.

No wonder Moses chose a song to share his final message to the children of Israel so many years ago about the character of God…

(Read the rest of my guest post at Sweet to the Soul Ministries.)

Sweet to the Soul Ministries

Reclaiming Home

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Reclaiming Home by Krista Gilbert

I can’t think of anyone that doesn’t need to read Reclaiming Home, Krista Gilbert’s Family Guide for Life, Love & Legacy.

I love that Krista has taken on the challenge of empowering us to reclaim our homes. She encourages us to:

“…create a rooted lifestyle where we trade fancy toys that burn out
for simple wooden blocks that last for generations.”

I especially love that she inspires us to focus on our marriages first:

“We don’t want to wake up in the empty nest
and see a stranger sharing our home.”

Isn’t that the truth? I’ll be revisiting that chapter often!

Krista encourages us to reclaim imperfection:

“We struggle with the gap between what we imagined life would be,
what we desperately hoped or hope for,
and what actually is our present reality.”

That chapter really hit home for me as Krista shares about her friends who have a daughter with down syndrome. As a mom to a son with autism, our life is certainly not what we imagined. But it is what God imagined for us. Even knowing that doesn’t stop me from comparing my life to others around me and how “perfect” they appear.

“The two best practices I have learned when fighting comparison
are prayer and gratitude.”

Reading Krista’s encouragement to journal both of those habits has inspired me to do just that.

As a wife and mom, Krista gets that we are all running ourselves ragged and struggling to keep quality time as top priority:

“Reclaiming our homes begins with taking inventory of how we spend our minutes.
The sum of those minutes is, after all, how we spend our lives.”


“Through years of trial and error, I’ve come to the realization that
putting small routines and habits into practice make a huge difference.”

My all-time favorite parts of the book are the practical tips and “Love Dares” that Krista includes at the end of each chapter. You can implement these immediately. Seriously!

I have no doubt Krista’s book is one I will turn to again and again. The struggle to reclaim our homes is real. If you are looking for practical ideas from a passionate author, I highly recommend this book. And what a beautiful Christmas gift it would be to all the families in your life!

Visit Krista on her beautiful blog here and order your own copy of Reclaiming Home here.

Linking up with:

Monday Musings

(more to come this week)