Did that get your attention? I’m all, retweeting and advertising and trying to sell my stuff so I can get to this conference. Why the title?
Because my flesh hates this stuff.
|my stick-in-the-mud face seems to come out a lot.|
I grew up in the Church. I went to Christian school. I did the summer camps and retreats and the ministry school overseas during college. I’ve been there and done that. My husband’s on staff at a church, for crying out loud! I’m constantly bombarded with opportunities to spread my influence as a believer.
I’ve done my best to stay honest on this blog without forcing my beliefs onto anyone else. This is my sacred space. People know where I stand. I’ve answered some tough questions publicly and privately, and I have no regrets. But I’m so resistant to taking it there – making my online influence a missionary endeavor. Can’t my lifestyle be enough? Can’t I just include a few bits here? Can’t it be natural and organic?
Yes and no. I have no plans on changing the way I do things on here, but I do feel like there’s more for me to learn when it comes the Internet. I originally planned to round up a few gals and go to Blogher in August, where I could remain anonymous in a non-threatening environment. But Jessi caught my attention when she approached me about the Influence conference. She’s both a real-life friend and a role model of mine, and I wanted to hear her heart for the event. But a Christian women’s conference? This felt like the opposite of a non-threatening environment. My first instinct was to hear her piece and politely decline.
Then the Lord spoke. He told me to go. He told me that the money would come; the schedule would fall into place. He told me that my butt would be on a plane to Indianapolis and that I would endure whatever meet-and-greets came my way. That He wants me to learn something about grace and the gospel, about leverage and relationships and the world outside my city. That He wants me to meet women who crave the same things I do and struggle with finding balance, just like I do. That He’ll use me just as I am, and that I don’t have to change my online identity or the way I write.
I also learned very quickly that this conference was made for women (and by women) just like me – women with baggage, who aren’t even sure if they want to come to begin with. Women who want to belong without working for it. Women who love good food. Women who want to learn, but don’t want to be told what to do every minute of the day while we’re there.
This conference isn’t about the Internet or blogging, although I hope to learn a few things while I’m there. This even is about empowering a new generation of women. This is about learning to use new resources to tell the same story our grandmothers told. The women behind Influence caught sight of something much bigger than they. They grabbed hold of it and pulled it down earthside to share with us.
So I’m going. I hope you join me.