Welcome my sister-friend, Lynn who is Guest Blogging for me today about the weekend at Women of Faith... its not the experience I thought would happen, but just read along... you'll love Lynn's writing & love to see God's plan at work....
Hi, my name is Lynn, and today I am stepping in for my dear sister-friend Rebecca. Sorry if you were looking forward to hearing from her today, hope I don't disappoint!
A few weeks ago Rebecca received a wonderful opportunity from Book Sneeze, one of the sites she does books reviews for. She would be sent TWO tickets to see Women of Faith (WofF) in Indianapolis in exchange for writing a review on the event. Not one to turn down a great time, she eagerly accepted, and knew just who she wanted to take. She had a cousin in Indianapolis who she just knew would love the opportunity to attend this event with her. The wheels were in motion, she was PUMPED as only Rebecca can be pumped.
I was also going to be attending Women of Faith that weekend with two of my daughters and a group of women that one of them knew. We had ordered tickets earlier in the year and were also excited to be going. This would be my 4th Women of Faith conference and I was excited about the prospect of getting to spend some time with God AND my girls! Not to mention that I was hoping to hook up with Rebecca and her cousin for lunch!
Right before the event Rebecca found out that her cousin would be unable to attend, and that as it turned out, it was not a good time for her to go either. Despite the fact that I already had a ticket, she called and asked if I would like to take her two tickets. They were FLOOR tickets, third row. And if you've ever been to WofF you know that those seats are the BOMB! So without much hesitation (okay NO hesitation) I gladly accepted her gracious offer. I even told my younger daughter that she and one of her friends could use the tickets on Friday night so that they would have a great view of the concert that evening. I could hardly wait to leave the "nosebleed" section on Saturday morning, getting "up close and personal" with Lucy Swindol was top on my list. But, I just have to say, that my plans and God's plan for those tickets did NOT mesh... at all!
On Friday evening, as our group made its way up to the 19th row of the balcony section (literally five rows from the very TOP of the arena!) I found myself telling God how thankful I was that the next day I would NOT have to be climbing those stairs! I got myself settled into my seat, praying that I would not topple down that steep incline, and I began to focus my attention on the task at hand... worshiping God along with 10,000 other women. That is when my daughter, Chandra, pointed out to me that one of the young ladies in our group was having a meltdown in the row behind us.
As I looked back, this young lady whom I had just met, was having a panic attack. Complete with sobbing, crying, and hyperventilating, she was a wreck! I watched as her friends began to console her, and I watched as their efforts failed. So, being the oldest in the group, and a person determined to mother all those who cross her path, I got myself up and made my way to her side. I asked her what was wrong and she sobbed that she was terribly afraid of heights. Oh my, that was NOT good considering how high up in the arena we were! So I told her that we could move down lower as I had noticed several empty seats in the area and she just looked at me in disbelieve and sobbed, "I can't get down from here! I don't think that I can even get down when this is over."
I begin to talk to her, telling her that I knew how terrible heights were, and that I totally understood how she might feel that way, but that she was there for a reason and that she just needed to forget where she was, and focus on God and what He had in store for her that night. Then I laid my hands on her head and said a prayer for her right then and there. I asked God to calm her nerves, to help her to focus on what he had in store for her, and to just place his hand on her and fill her with a sense of peace. After our prayer, I patted her back and returned to my seat. A bit later she sent word down that row that the prayer had worked. Thank You Jesus!
As I settled in again I felt God urging me to give up my Saturday tickets to this young lady. And after a little battle between the "good Lynn" and the "bad Lynn" I knew exactly what I had to do. At the end of the night I told this young lady that I was giving the two tickets to her for the floor seats, because I knew that if she had to climb those stairs the next day that she would not return. I fully believed that God had something amazing in store for her and that these tickets were truly meant for her, not me, and not for Rebecca and her cousin. She was hesitant to accept them, but I told her that God had placed this on my heart and who was she to argue with God!
On Saturday I met her in the lobby and handed over the tickets. And at lunch, she was beaming from ear to ear. Not only was she excited about the conference, but when she and her friend went to their new seats, she was actually among women who had been on an Emmaus walk with her recently. She was having a wonderful time and God was speaking to her in amazing ways.
I had to laugh as I walked away from her, because I found myself amazed at how God's ways are not our ways. You see, I know that this post should be about the speakers (who were totally amazing! I LOVE them all!). I know that it should be about the singers, who can bring you to tears one minute and have you dancing in the aisles the next. I know that I should be telling you about all of the wonderful books that were available. I know that it is what the Book Sneeze people would like to see. But GOD is bigger than BOOK SNEEZE. I am amazed that path that was taken to make this young lady comfortable enough to hear His word.
From Book Sneeze to Rebecca, from Rebecca to me, from me to a young lady who was desperate to leave and not return to hear the words God wanted her to hear. A winding path that to many seems disjointed, but to God... it made perfect sense. God is the author of ALL things, and He leaves out no detail, no matter how small!
So thanks Rebecca for allowing me the opportunity to see God at work! I was truly blessed!
For His glory....
Be sure to stop & visit Lynn at her blog: http://www.nealatthecross.blogspot.com/