The day I hugged Beth Moore...
It was my birthday and Beth Moore announced she was going to host a very exclusive event. The qualifications required a woman to be in her 20 - 30's, have a passionate desire to teach, write or speak for God, and having completed her recent Bible Study, Entrusted. Check, check and check. She released the event with limited seating at 10:00 on Black Friday, and as I logged in at 10:02 to hit "submit", it was sold out. An hour later, I received an email that a ticket was waiting for me. In February I boarded the plane for Houston, Texas without knowing anyone who would be at the event.
If you don't know Beth Moore, she is a Christian writer, and teacher. She's touched many lives, and I am no exception. 9 years ago I was living in sin up to my eyelids, struggling with depression, and completely unhappy. My mom asked me to do Beth's study, A Woman's Heart God's Dwelling place. By week 4, I made a decision that completely altered the trajectory of my life. I'll save that story for a different day. Only Jesus can truly know how He used her study to radically change my life. She means the world to me.
The doors opened at 8:00 and I sat at 6:00 a.m. just waiting to be the first in the doors and get a front row seat. We're now in June and I'm only just sharing this with you. Why? This was a huge event in my life. I suppose because its taken this long to process what it meant, and before I could share it with you I needed to fully let it sink into my heart.
I've sat down to summarize what she said and it's impossible. I've hit delete so many times and I can't do justice in a short blog post the depth of what she said. I'm afraid I'm going to be limited to share what I took away from it.
She very much impressed on us that she loves the local church, and that she passionately believes in the value of being under a pastor who values your calling.
She also shared how her Bible studies are planted in her heart and mind from her quiet moments in the morning with Jesus. She also repeatedly impressed on us the need for humility if we want to do anything at all for Jesus.
At the end of the day, the thing I heard most clearly was "move forward". Sometimes we're doing all the right things in the private moments of life, but until we move forward without fear holding us back, we are just sowing seeds that are never watered or harvested. After I returned home, I spoke with my pastor who (very thankfully) does believe in my calling, and he asked me to be on the sermon prep team at the church. I'm enjoying it immensely and learning so much. My Bible study is being wrapped up along with the book proposal, which will be sent to Lifeway in the coming months.
I think the biggest moment of the day came when Beth had just a moment inbetween sessions, and I, sitting at the front row, stood just a few feet from her. I went up to her, whispered to her, and she knelt down, took my face in her hands and let me tearfully thank her. I swear it was like looking into the face of Jesus. I know that sounds awfully dramatic, and I may delete that line before I publish this post, but truly that woman has the Spirit of God so thick on her. She pulled me close, held me in her arms and to all the things I shared she just whispered "me too darling".
For 9 years I've wanted to thank her. I never dreamed it would happen, but Jesus heard that tiny wish in the deepest corners of my heart and He let it be so. That study and the Word she received from God brought me out of a dark closet of depression into this place I sit right now.
If you and I could sit over coffee I would share so much more. There would no doubt be tears, but right now this is all I can manage.
So from here forward, I'm going to take all these very small things I have, put them forward, fake bravery until it sinks in, and take one step at a time. It's easy to steward things that are never seen. Sharing the words and creativity with the world is quite another.