All I knew was that Lord had called me to become a speaker. An undeniable desire within my heart was to speak truth from God’s Word into the lives of women and to allow my own testimony of healing, redemption and restoration to be used to bring God glory. Unfortunately, I didn’t know anything more than that! I didn’t know how to become a speaker. I didn’t know any speakers personally and honestly, I had no idea even the first step to take upon the journey of fulfilling that which I felt I had been called to.
After contacting three different Christian women speakers from different parts of the country, I received the same encouragement from each of them….” You should go to Speak Up!” They each shared of the positive impact this conference had made within their own lives. Seeing this as leading from the Lord I stepped forward in faith upon the footprints He had laid out for me and made plans to attend.
Uncertain of what to expect I approached the first day as a stranger in an unfamiliar place. At the conclusion of that same day however I found that I walked out with an entire group of new friends who had similar heart’s desires as my own. It was refreshing to meet others who seemed to “get” the driving passion in my heart to serve the Lord through writing and speaking. It was wonderful to now have traveling partners on the same faith led journey as I was walking.
The staff was professional, humble, kind and overflowing with applicable wisdom and encouragement. Each workshop offered a plethora of practical and creative tools to assist me in knowing how to move forward. The “hands-on” experience of speaking and critiquing in small groups offered not only encouragement, but immediate technique suggestions that helped me better present the messages the Lord had laid upon my heart.
Thankful for all that I learned, I must admit that the relationships and networking opportunities made available to me through attending the Speak Up Conference are what I am most thankful for. There is nothing like being surrounded by so many others with similar gifts and callings. The atmosphere is charged with the love of God and you can’t help but be inspired! Some of my closest and dearest friends are those who I originally met at Speak Up. As well, I have been overwhelmed by the ministry opportunities that I have been blessed with as a result of connections that were made through this conference to include writing weekly devotionals for Circle of Friends ministries, writing devotionals for Logos Bible Software, and most recently, the opportunity to write a book on prayer for Barbour Publishing.
This year I am looking forward to attending Speak Up for the third time. I have great expectations as to how the Lord will use it to positively impact my life as He has each time before. Anyone who has a heart to impact others for Christ will benefit from this opportunity. I hope to see you there!