March 10, 2011

A Weekend Away!

This past weekend, I attended my first Mom Heart Conference in beautiful North Carolina.  (Northern people, could we drum up support to have a conference somewhere in PA or NY in the near future?!  Let me know if you're interested.)

Mom Heart is a ministry of the Clarkson family, calling women back to Biblical motherhood.  While in NC, I realized just how much their books and influence have been changing our home since encountering their ministry less than two years ago!  God has been at work in my heart, helping me die a little more to self on this earthly walk, serving Him more in the service of my family.  Believe me, there's a lot that still needs to be put to death; it's only just begun, but it's a GOOD path.  I'm so thankful for Sally's commitment to give us encouragement on the journey.

Sally sharing her heart in one of the sessions.
During the conference Sally talked about how "Your Mom Heart Matters" through these three talks: Your Marvelous Calling Matters, Your Optimistic Spirit Matters, Your Meaningful Passion Matters.  In addition to those, we heard from moms who have mom groups around the country, training our kids' characters, training opportunities provided by MomHeart ministries, etc.  They had a WONDERFUL book table.  The hotel was lovely.  Everything about the conference was touched with beauty and love: young ladies with baskets of chocolate to nibble as we registered, young men helping with luggage from the front desk, women praying together, friends laughing together.

We left encouraged.

We also left challenged.

Now, I'm sure the specifics of what each woman will endeavor to put into our out of practice are different.  I'd like to share a few things that stuck with me:

  • Sally said several times, "Tell God, 'I'm your girl.'"  I love the simplicity and profundity of this statement.  In it is surrender to His call, whatever it is, and trust that He will guide and provide.  I want to be a woman and mother who easily and confidently says to her God, "I'm your girl!"
  • Moms, you are not qualified, but you are called.  Kind of a zinger, but also a call to action!  If God's given us this work of raising children - on purpose chosen us for our kids - then we need to take it seriously and grow in the calling, not give up simply because we don't feel qualified.  And, um, if you are a real person, you likely feel unqualified about a million times a day!  How can we allow God to give us a vision for our homes and families, shine as a light in the dark corners of our domain, lead our kids into "thoroughly alive" lives?  I'm certain God will do amazing work as we respond in faith.

A little photo collage of Sally, Jenny and me.
I sure loved the conference, but being with a dear friend was the highlight for me!

  • You determine what you become.  Yes, there are many things that we cannot control, but we can move toward the direction we want our life to go.  Do we want a home full of joy?  How can I start today to cultivate a joyful heart?  Do I want to lead a group to encourage other moms?  What steps can I take, in prayer and action, to make that happen?  Makes me think of that verse, draw near to God and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8)  I could tell stories about how I've seen this truth in my life!
  • Book clubs are a great way for moms to get together, maybe discuss one of Sally's books.  The genius idea that was shared by several women was to get together and read the chapter aloud together and discuss things as someone has a question or really likes something the author said.  Then no one has to worry about not having read and anyone can jump in at any time!  What a great idea for busy moms.

If you ever get a chance to attend a conference, don't pass it up!  We need someone championing us along in this motherhood journey, a voice of grace and encouragement in the midst of the cacophony of condemnation that surrounds us.  Thank you, Sally, for being that voice.

Blessings to you today, mom friends!

It was "dahn Sahth," as they'd say in Pittsburgh,
so we saw MANY of these babies.

Jeanna Young, Princess Parables author
Saturday afternoon luncheon


  1. I'm not allowed to envy, am I ;) !!

    But I can say that i'm glad you had a wonderful time, and I can only dream of such a thing taking place in Scotland.... x

  2. Thank you for sharing this Heather!

    I was so disappointed not to be able to go with you this year, but it was a big work event week and there was no possible way to get away for the weekend.

    I have been really encouraged by this post and would definitely be interested in trying to go next year. :)

    I started crying when you wrote about some of the things that stuck with you. I think so many of these are resonating with me right now, especially feeling very unqualified. Thank God that we have a great savior, because I'm seriously a mess.

    So thank you muchly!!

  3. Cat, so glad this encouraged you! Keep up the good work; I will pray for you in your "messy" state. God often does His best work in us when we're most aware of our need for Him. Hugs!

  4. Love these pictures and the quotes. Thanks for sharing.