Preparing our Hearts for Speak Up

It’s easy, right? Think again.

Recently I read a devotional that put a spin on envy. The author used the word LUST. It was an interesting word choice and one that hooked my attention. I tend to think of lust as only sexual desire. So, I looked the word up in Merriam Webster online Dictionary and sure enough, lust can refer to an intense longing or a craving to succeed and/or a personal inclination. 

As Christian communicators, what do we do when we want to succeed with writing and/or speaking? Don’t we want those speaking events and or writing contracts that are a part of our learning and personal goals with the Speak Up Conference? Yes, but at the same time we want to have a pure heart—one of peace that leaves a lovely fragrance wherever we represent our King of Kings.  

Here’s a biblical principle I learned during my coach training under the teaching of Dr. Katie Brazelton:  Whenever you sense a whiff of jealousy or envy, pray for that friend, that sister, that acquaintance, as that will cut the envy cord. In other words, to win over the lust to succeed that squelches our heart to love—pray blessings for that person. Try it; it works.  

Tanya Glanzman, Kim Erickson, and Kim de Blecourt were in my first speaking group more than ten years ago at Speak Up. Each came with her talk prepared—and they wowed me. Today, all three women are leaders and published authors. I continue to pray for each of them, which helps me to ward off any jealousy and envy, since my own manuscript that was completed several years ago isn’t published yet. 

As we step through the doorway of the Speak Up Conference, we may be dressed to the nines for our appointments with industry professionals.  That’s not all bad. But if we camouflage our heart issues, we’ll have challenges.  Remember—God sees into our hearts and He’s aware of our motives. 

 And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind” (Ecclesiastes 4:4 NIV).

So how can you prepare your heart for the Speak Up Conference or any Christian equipping conference you attend in the future? 

  1. Pray ahead of time for the women and men attending.  Ask God to connect you with the leaders He wants you to meet. 
  2. Set three goals for your conference experience.
  3. Surrender your expectations to the Lord before the conference. 
  4. Anticipate what God will do as you enter the doors of the conference center. You are being prayed for by name by the prayer team right now.
  5. Step in with an open heart and mind; smile as you greet others. We’re all friends that have not yet met. 
  6. Expect God to reveal your next steps and to lead you to a tribe of encouragers.
  7. Listen to the Lord throughout the conference as He directs you to a workshop, a dining room table, a woman who needs a hello, or to a virtual chat room.
  8. Embrace flexibility.
  9. Select one highlight of a breakout session when you feel overwhelmed.
  10. Avoid lust, envy, jealousy, or comparison. Instead, pray for the person who walks by you or lands in your zoom breakout session. 

Lastly, just breathe as you enter the doors of the conference center or click on your ZOOM link. You’ll quickly learn—everything that happens at Speak Up is covered under the umbrella of grace. I look forward to meeting you at the conference or in a coffee chat room on-line! 

“ Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;… “(Hebrews 12:2a KJV).  

Question:  What is one thing you’re looking forward to at the Speak Up Conference this year?

2022 Speak Up Conference

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  1. PAMela G Mutz on 2022-06-23 at 12:29 AM

    Glory to God! Choose our focus!
    Question: “What is one thing you’re looking forward to at the Speak Up Conference this year?”
    To hug my friend, Darlene in person!
    Excellent reminders in your #10 list. My 3 goals are:
    1. Clarify: God, clarify my direction with writing and speaking: publisher or self-publish. Be attentive to Holy Spirit’s voice.
    2. Connet: Encourage and be encouraged by like-minded & hearted women. Look for God-connections that further HIS kingdom’s purposes.
    3. Grow: Deeper in my relationship with God.

    • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-28 at 2:10 PM

      Pam, thank you and I look forward to a hug too!
      Love your goals. GOOD JOB! Excited to see what GOD will do with your heart and passion. Many blessings! SOON.

  2. Shirley Mozena on 2022-06-11 at 9:57 PM

    Thank you Darlene. I needed that.

    • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-14 at 8:45 AM

      You are welcome and thank you, Shirley!

  3. Lori Vober on 2022-06-07 at 12:59 PM

    Thank you for sharing Darlene. I will be attending virtually and this will be my second Speak Up. We have corresponded on Facebook and you are always so encouraging.

    • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-08 at 1:25 PM

      Thank you, Lori. So glad we have chatted. I will be popping online too and perhaps we’ll connect in a Coffee Chat,
      and I can hear what is blessing you this year at SpeakUp!
      FUN! Prayers!

  4. Patti Reed on 2022-06-07 at 10:12 AM

    Thank you Darlene! Great words of wisdom and encouragement. I am looking forward to meeting my Lean On Mastermind group in person.

    • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-07 at 11:09 AM

      Thank you, Patti. I also am looking forward to hugging on some of the women I met in one of my growth groups! What fun it will be! And I hope to meet you as well!

    • Gloria V Davies on 2022-06-07 at 7:28 PM

      Darlene, Wonderful words of wisdom and truth. Thank you for the encouragement!

      • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-08 at 1:27 PM

        Gloria, you are welcome! And thanks much!
        Keep on stepping with writing and/or speaking.

  5. Donna Fagerstrom on 2022-06-07 at 7:41 AM


    • Darlene Larson on 2022-06-07 at 11:07 AM

      Thank you, Donna. I look forward to seeing you soon and I recall one specific SPEAKUP God used your hug and words in a powerful way! Blessings!

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