Today is a day where I pull back the covers a little bit and share a story that makes me feel a little vulnerable......a little intimated.......but I want to put it out there because when I realized what had happened it was so incredibly impactful for me.
If any of you read my first ever post, then you know the general story of how I started the Mama Fit Life blog. What I didn't share there, that I want to share today, are the words that I got so many years ago that I didn't even know at the time would lead me to this place.
Have any of you ever been sitting in church....or even just listening to someone tell a story and they said something to the effect of "And God just told me......fill in the blank?"
I have heard stories like that a million times I feel like. Whether it is a preacher, a friend, someone on TV, whatever....more times than I can count I have heard people talk about hearing God and him telling them something about their life...something they needed to do....or maybe something they needed to hear or understand.....or someone they needed to reach out to. Could be anything.
Now...if you have heard any of those kind of stories, then let me ask you this. When you heard it, did you think to yourself..."But HOW did you know it was God telling you to do that? I mean like you didn't literally his voice I'm guessing so how did you know? How did you know it was God speaking to you and not just you thinking of something?"
Those are the thoughts that run through my mind almost every time I hear stories like that. How? How did you know? Because I don't know about you, but I would love for God to speak to me. 🙋🏼 To tell me something important about my life or what I should be doing or what my greater purpose is.
So, I want to take you back in time a few years to a moment that I now know when he did in fact speak to me and what that was like. It was about 6 years ago and I was at a women's conference at my church, Gateway Church. They have a women's conference every year called Pink Impact that is absolutely amazing...the most incredible one I have ever been to. Now, at this time, my family and I were relatively new to the Dallas area. We had moved from Houston to Dallas about a year and half prior and had finally found a home church at Gateway. I had been loving it so far so I decided, with the invitation from a close friend, to attend the women's conference.
Now I grew up in a very small town in South Texas and a very typical small town Baptist church. Gateway was very different from that. It was a HUGE non-denominational church with multiple campuses and a lot of new things for me to experience. One of those things is something they call "prophetic ministry"....also called Presbytery. I had never heard of or experienced this before. I'm going to first explain to you what it is and here is my ask....if the thought of "this is sounding a little cooky" pops into your head...just stay with me. That's EXACTLY what I thought too 😂 but just hear me out and finish the story.
So first, what is Presbytery aka prophetic ministry? This is just my layman's summary definition of what it is...but essentially it is where people within the church who are focused on the gift of prophecy and ministry hear words from God that are to be directed towards a certain person and they share that with them. They are essentially like a middle man. They frequent the presence of the Lord and are open to hearing his voice, thus he gives them words to share with people...always positive words of encouragement, and many times meant to reaffirm something he has called that person to do or a gift he has given them.
Now - if any of you are like me, I like to really research things that I don't know or understand. And if that's you too, then that above description might not be enough for you . So if you want to better understand it, click this link. This is my pastor talking about the meaning of Presbytery (prophetic ministry). He does a much better job than me of explaining it 😆 plus he's hilarious (one of my favorite things about him) and he also talks about his own skepticism too.
Now back to the story. So if I remember correctly we were on day 2 of the 3 day conference. It was early afternoon and they announced just before a break that we would be doing a prophetic ministry session after we came back from the break. At the time, I really had no idea what to expect. Just the description I read and my internal skepticism. It sounded really weird. 🤔
So we got back from the break, and essentially what happened was Debbie Morris, our pastor's wife, got up and talked a bit about what prophetic ministry was and introduced several people that were going to just walk around the auditorium. When they felt like they had a word to share with someone they would find that person, call them to stand, and then give them the word. Good to note, just so you can picture it in your mind....this is a LARGE church.....want you to get a good visual of how this went down.
"What in the world is going on??" That's all I could think at the time 😏
I think there was some soft music playing in the background and the women that had been introduced began walking around the auditorium. Then one of them would raise their hand and begin speaking into the mic. They would point to a person near them in the audience and have them stand, and give them the word. It was things like "you have been given the gift of leadership" or "you have been called to the mission field." Then there were some that were pretty specific like "you have been struggling with a personal issue that has you questioning yourself and God but he wants to remind you of the strength you have and your ability to overcome this."
Now remember, the people that were going around giving out the words have never met any of these women before and they don't know anything about them. These are just the words they feel like God is wanting them to share with them. Now the reactions of people were interesting. Some women you could tell might have been skeptical or just didn't really understand or know the reason for the word or how it really applied to them. Some of them would burst into tears immediately and you could easily see that they knew exactly what it meant. It was pretty incredible to watch. I was still pretty weirded out though 😬
So this went on in total for about 20-30 minutes I think....but here's where it gets good for me.
At this point you're probably thinking that what I am about to write is that one of the ladies came over to me and gave me a word right?? 🙌🏼 😁 Um, nope. Not what happened.
As this was all going on I was just taking it in, watching what was happening, having thoughts run through my mind about experiencing this for the first time......do I really believe what's happening?......that these people really have words for God?......etc. Then BAM. Almost like someone was standing in front of me with a bull horn 📣 I "heard" this as clearly as possible. It came in 2 waves. First...."You have been given the gift of influence and one day you will have a platform to speak to thousands of people."
WHAT?? Um....no. I don't think so. I must have heard you wrong God....was that you?? I'm not sure if you're aware but I sell HR Software for a living. Don't get me wrong, I actually 🖤 public speaking (went to school for it as a matter of fact) but I'm also just a regular mama working a full time job and living a regular life with no line of sight to any sort of "platform" to speak to people through. I mean what does "platform" even mean??? 🤷🏼♀️
Then came the second part........just as clear as the first part. "One day you will speak here at Pink Impact." 😮 😳
So after that one I knew this definitely must not be God talking to me. There is no way in this world that I......a regular girl.......trying to be a decent Christian......failing more than succeeding....would ever be a person that would have something valuable enough to share with other women at Pink Impact....no way...right?
I sat there completely confused. 🤷🏼♀️ This was like every other time before when I talked about hearing other people tell stories about "hearing" God speak to them. I ran through all of the thoughts and excuses.....Was that really God? How am I supposed to know for sure? I probably just had that thought pop into my head and it has nothing to do with God.
Stop there for a second and think about that. 🤔
That thought just randomly popped into my head??? Prompted by nothing, I just all of sudden had a thought that I would one day have some sort of platform to reach people and I would share something one day at Pink Impact? That's a pretty specific random thought don't you think? Just saying.
So the day ended, conference was amazing of course. I went home that night still thinking about what had happened. What was so weird is that when I thought about telling anyone else about it I felt embarrassed about it. I felt silly....and foolish. I naturally assumed they would think exactly what I thought which was "why in the world would you ever speak or have a role In Pink Impact? Or why would people ever want to listen to you about something?"
Nonetheless, what had happened did excite me so I decided to tell my husband about it. He didn't laugh at me or make me feel silly. Just listened, said that was really cool of course (probably thinking I was crazy in his mind 😜 but if he did he kept it to himself.) . I never told anyone else.
As time went on after that experience, the memory of it began to fade a bit, as do all memories and experiences. I never forgot about it completely, it would pop up in my mind from time to time, but I just never really could grasp how it would or could ever come to fruition so while I didn't just dismiss it completely and say, No God, that must not have been you, I also didn't put all my focus on it either. I still battled internally with whether or not I had made it up or if it was really God talking, but with time, it all began to fade.
Now fast forward to January 7, 2018. I remember it perfectly. I had just gotten out of the shower and was in my bathroom doing my nightly routine. It was a normal night with normal things on my mind.. I had just finished putting the kids to bed. I was running through the standard Sunday night checklist of things I needed to make sure I had done....pack lunches, check kids school binders, layout clothes for kids for the next day, etc. Then, as if God literally reached down and smacked me across the head to get my attention, he said "Your Mama Fit Life blog and instagram are the platform that I once told you that you would have to reach people through."
WHHHHHAAAAATTTTTTTTT?!??!?! 😮 It immediately made SOOOOO much sense.
Let me back up a bit to give some clarity on just why that made so much sense to me. If you know me personally, then you know I was never really a social media kind of girl. I literally didn't get on Facebook until about 3 years ago and instagram maybe 8 months ago. And even then, I really only used them to post the occasional picture of my kiddos. I just wasn't all that into it. And my husband is like anti-social media guy. So when I got the idea to start the blog, i knew I would also have to do something to promote it and get the word out about it, and Instagram was a natural way to do that. But it was just such a weird thought because I was never really into it. And I never thought I would see the day where I was posting religiously to social media on a regular basis, checking feeds and comments, and writing blog posts. BUT when I did start it, it felt so natural. So normal. Like it was just meant to be. Why in the world would that be??
When I "heard" this in the bathroom it's hard for me to explain the feeling I got. I mean, it had been 6 years ago since I THOUGHT that I had gotten that word from God, and now....6 years later....was clear confirmation of it. There was no longer a single doubt in my mind that that had been God speaking to me that day so many years ago and that this....what I am doing here today....writing this story for you...posting on Instagram and trying my best to be a positive light in the world....using my passion to be a motivation for people looking to better themselves...to be fit and active and healthy and happy....this is exactly what I was meant to do. This is what God meant and it was coming true.
That my friends, is one incredible experience.✨ An absolutely amazing feeling.
So I ran out of the bathroom all excited, my hubby is laying in bed and I'm like "BABE!!! Guess what just happened!" And I proceed to tell him the story. After I tell him, you want to know what his response was???
"Of course. Ever since you told me that you wanted to start the blog I thought this was what you told me after Pink several years ago about having a platform."
Ughhhhhhhhhh....why did it take me so long to figure that out?? 🤦🏼♀️ And also...please share that sooner next time sir. 😉
But it was just so much confirmation. Exactly what I needed. Ever since I started the blog, now 2 months ago, I battle almost daily with thoughts like "what exactly am I doing here?" "Why did I start this thing?" "Does it matter?" "Is there a point or an end game?" "What is this supposed to turn into?"
People ask me what I want to come from the blog....like do I want it to turn into a full time job, or to sell products, etc. I never have an answer for them. I still don't really, but what I do know is that this is absolutely without a doubt a part of God's plan for my life. How exactly will it all unfold....i have no idea 🤷🏼♀️ But gosh I am excited to find out!!
Now...remember that the words I got all those years ago were in 2 parts. First was that I would have a platform to reach people. ✔️ That one I have figured out. The second...not so much. The second was just as clear but I was even more resistant to this one. Felt even more foolish about this one. The second was that one day I would speak at Pink Impact.
Remember when I told you that after I had this experience that when I got home and was thinking about sharing it with people and telling them what had happened, that it made me feel silly and foolish? Embarrassed. I did share it with my husband, but never anyone else. I never told another soul. The reason was the embarrassment. The fear. The fear of people thinking I was nuts. Thinking to themselves "what would you ever have to share with people or why would anyone want you to speak at Pink Impact? What would you talk about?"
I've since learned something that is so important for all of you to know. Those thoughts....those negative feelings of fear, embarrassment, and unworthiness....those were thoughts put into my head by Satan. He was there all along the way to convince me that it wasn't really God speaking to me...that I didn't have anything important enough to share with anyone...that I wasn't special enough for people to be influenced by me. Because that's what he does....he tries to get in the way of us fulfilling God's purpose for our lives. He's a real jerk like that 😒 🙄
So that brings me to today....to why I am sharing this with you. Why now?
Well, this past Sunday, January 28, 2018...me and the fam went to the Sunday morning church service at our church., and it was like Pastor Robert wrote the sermon just for me. To sum it up...He talked about sharing your story. About how we as Christians are meant to witness to others. To tell them about Jesus and everything he has done for us. But he said we need to do it in our own way. To tell OUR STORY about how we encountered God. As I was sitting in that service, again, it was like God was sitting right next to me in the chair, gently nudging me with his elbow and smirking at me. Sitting there saying, "you know that you have a story right? You know you should share it. I've already given you the place to do it, now it's on you to share it."
So here I am......sharing 😁 😬 . I've been able to shake all the feelings of fear and anxiety around telling people this story....well MOST of the feelings..... if I'm being completely honest, there is still a little bit of that fear and uncertainty hiding in the back of my mind, but I am powering on. I am going to step out in faith and do what I feel that God is telling me to do. I've seen him work in my life before and I know what he is capable of, so why not trust him with this?
Am I still completely intimated and confused by that second part of his word about speaking at Pink Impact? Of course. But I am not going to let that hold me back from sharing it. Who knows how that will come to be. It could mean so many different things. I don't know what it means for me, but I'm putting it out there now for the world to see, that I am confident that someday, I will know exactly what it means.
Until then, I hope you enjoyed this story. To date, definitely my LONGEST post......hopefully you hung in there with me. 😁 Hopefully it spoke to you. What I hope that at least 1 person takes away from this story, is that God does speak to us. If you feel like you have heard him and are spending your time fighting and resisting it and making excuses, just let go. Just open your heart and mind. It doesn't mean you have to immediately jump into action or that whatever it is will come to be right away. It took 6 years for PART of what I heard to come to life. The point is to just be open and listen. And to trust. Trust your gut when you feel like God is speaking to you. Trust that he has a plan and a purpose for your life and that it may be something completely unexpected or out of your comfort zone, but it is his plan.......and trust me. His plan for your life is ALWAYS better than your own plan 😜 🖤
If you liked this story....if it spoke to you or impacted you in some way.......if you know someone else that might be impacted by it......then please share it for me 🙏🏼 Help me share my story so that maybe it can help someone else one day.
Love you girls 😘 💕 🖤