With a Little Help From My Friends

Twenty-four hours ago, I was huddled back stage waiting to step up on the platform and deliver a message God had laid heavy on my heart.

I usually love to talk.

A lot.

Just ask my family who instead loves it when I take a breath. You know, so they can actually get in a word or two.

But yesterday, although I had pages of notes all typed out and color-coded, I felt like running away.

Now perhaps it had something to do with stepping up and speaking at a weekend conference as “clean-up batter” following Lysa TerKeurst, Beth Moore and Angela Thomas. (I am totally not kidding.)

Perhaps it had something to do with still not being back down to my goal weight and wondering “Does this outfit make me look 10 pounds thinner?” and “If so, the camera on the wide screen will just put it all back on!”

Maybe it was because just before the conference in our P31 speaker team time, we heard an awesome presentation from professional speaker trainer Tom Davis of Children’s Hope Chest. Maybe I was afraid I’d fall short and not remember all the powerful yet practical tips he gave our team for what to do on the platform to make sure our message connects with the audience.

Whatever the reason, I wanted to feign the flu, go back up to my hotel room and pull the covers way up over my head to escape.

Enter my friends.

Like heat-seeking missiles, one by one, my sweet Proverbs 31 sisters found me. Prompted by God’s spirit, they’d been awakened early with little-ole’ me on their mind. So they stormed the Throne on my behalf.

Others joined.

Old friends who were there.

My prayer team at home and around the country.

My new-found friends in my speaker evaluation group.

My sweet Kenna who was to sign a song at the end of my talk with the beautiful, worshipful woman of God, Cheri Keaggy.

My behind-the-scenes, patient, seeks-no-spotlight, college-sweetheart-turned-husband, Todd.

Yes, one-by-one they found me.

Texted me.

Hugged me and prayed over me.

Just like the New Testament folks who carried their friend to Jesus, my friends carried me too.

So dear, sweet sisters who were there, please know that when I stepped up on that stage, it was not me you were seeing.

It was the body of Christ.

My sisterhood of “sistahs”, taking a sometimes broken, formerly-battered, talks-on-organization-but-has-no-groceries-in-the-house-and-a-sinkful-of-dirty-dishes-as-we-speak woman and lifting her up so she could stand.

To all of you everywhere who felt compelled to pray:

I thank you.

I love you.

I’d never dare to do ministry without you.

I only get by with a little help from my friends.

________________________________________________

NOTE: Due to the number of new readers popping over from the conference, I’m gonna leave up the last post from fashion-queen and God’s girl Miss Shari Braendel to give you just a little longer to comment and enter to win the fabulous giveaway. Winner will be announced Wednesday. Hugs to you all!!!!

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  • I am still processing the amazing weekend at the She Speaks conference. I say that to explain why I have not stopped by sooner. But I absolutely HAD to come by your blog to thank you.

    I was so proud of you Sunday. Crazy since I don’t even KNOW you!!! :) But I just was. My heart was so moved by your transparency. So moved and so thankful. You were totally vulnerable before us…and I know, know, know you were not the only woman in that room who needed to be challenged to memorize the Word.

    I needed that challenge, too. And I thought of you this morning and smiled. I love God’s Word. I love digging into it. I love how He speaks to me through it. But I do not put forth the effort it takes to memorize it. And I, too, have a theatre background! I can memorize a script or monologue in no time!!!

    So thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you for your transparently beautiful heart for the Lord. I have been feeling the nudge to get intentional about memorizing the Word for some time…your talk was the “alright, girl…it’s TIME! Get to memorizin’!!!” :)
    Blessings,
    K

  • Karen,

    You hit it out of the ballpark, girlfriend!!!! Thanks for the honor of being abe to pray for you, then sit back and watch God work. Truly, you were amazing. I’ve been thinking about your powerful message since Sunday – especially about the importance of keeping our first love, our first love. Your talk was straight from the heart of God. Thanks for using your gift to bless us all!

  • Karen;

    Your passion, humility and transparency moved me deeply at She Speaks. Never worry about how you will do, because God has chosen you and you have been obedient.
    I am looking forward to attending She Speaks next year because I truly want to hear you recite the Book of James to Hotel California!
    You go girl!

    Monica

  • Karen – I LOVED this weekend. Every part of it. I am so thankful for your devoted heart, your transparency from the stage, and for your friendship. I’m still feelin’ the blessings! Thanks again for doing your part.

  • Karen,
    Your message Sunday morning moved me to tears. It was the message I needed to hear all weekend. I could so relate. I could so feel the same conviction. (I could so also hang right there with you knowing Trivial Pursuit answers and 80s music – I call it stored up useless knowledge.) But the sweet redeeming undercurrent of your talk and my personal takeway was forgiveness. I left that message feeling encouraged, energized and surrounded by the love that was overwhelmingly evident at She Speaks. I’m planning to be there with you to study and memorize the book of James. Thank you for your vulnerability and heartfelt honesty. Thank you for being real.
    Much love!
    Patti

  • Karen,
    You have no idea what God has done through you. The night before in our group, I truly felt unloved because of all the things I was going through (and STILL going through). Not only did you guys pour genuine love upon me and lifted my spirits, but your message confirmed to me things I’ve bee seeking for several months. Thank YOU for your transparency and the willingness to share through your brokenness. I so needed that. You reminded me that God’s love is the everlasting glue that can fix my brokenness.

    (((HUGS)))
    I can never say I LOVE YOU enough…

    RNButler

  • Karen,
    I was touched, encouraged and inspired by your message Sunday morning. I wanted so badly to speak to you after but was just too emotionaly from the entire weekend. Something became clear to me while listening to you. Throughout the weekend everytime I tried to speak with someone I became emotional and afterward I would beat myself up because I wasn’t able to form a complete sentence with anyone because of my emotions. I felt silly about it. Then when you spoke and you didn’t hide your emotions, it made me feel better. I felt like it was ok, that I was overcome with emotion, because there you were up on stage, overcome with emotion. Although I was too overwhelmed to speak with you, (That time of prayer afterward, really opened the floodgates) a wanted to let you know that God spoke to me through your message, not just about my emotions, but about other things to.
    Thank you for your vulnerability
    Josey Bozzo
    jbozzoblog.blogspot.com

  • Karen, Without a doubt, my life will never be the same as a result of your talk on Sunday morning. Through your vulnerability and transparency, the Lord solidified a question I’ve been asking Him for MONTHS. My prayer team has even been praying for a break-through for me. It started on Saturday afternoon in our eval group when, because of your leading, we all surrounded a sister and prayed for her in her brokenness. We watched the Lord be strength in weakness through her anointed gift. Then that night Angela said, “Lead from your brokenness.” It kept echoing in my mind throughout the night and the next morning. Then YOU got up and led us from your brokenness. I will never approach a talk in the same way again, and I will lead in my family and church differently too. The Lord took your beautiful brokenness and fixed something flawed in me. Thank you, my dear mentor and sister. I praise the Lord for shoving you on stage and filling your mouth with His inspired Truth.

    LauraLee

  • You got some powerful pray-ers on your team! God was revealed in you in a BIG WAY. You rocked the house with the strength of the Solid Rock of Ages. Wow! Love you BIG!

  • Karen,

    That line up of speakers was in JUST the right order. :) You and God brought it and all 600+ of us were ready, so ready, to receive it.

    Thank you for your obedience.

  • Sweet Karen!
    I am still “OVERFLOWING WITH JOY” from our awesome “SHE SPEAKS” conference;and I keep praising God for allowing me to meet YOU! Our evaluation team….EACH one of us…..was so blessed by you—in our group time AND on Sunday morning when GOD really showed up through YOU!
    WOW! What a message you delivered from our Father. May my heart never forget what HE SPOKE to me at SHE SPEAKS! Thank you for being a willing, obedient servant!

  • Great Job getting out there and doing what God wants you to do! My personal Applause {clap clap clap}.
    Welcome back to the site, we missed you!

  • Girl, God had that batting line up in His hand and planned out way before the game even started! He knew who would hit the Grand slam for him this go around! Your message was so raw and real which drew me in ways you will never know! It was exactly what I needed to hear and God used it to sooth my heart and draw me to him! Prior to the conference I had watched the movie “The Book of Eli” yes there was some language and as my boys say “major blood squirts” but the message convicted me. Then yours simply wrapped it up to a reality. Thank you for not running back to your room! Thank you for being obedient as The Coach put you in the lineup!

  • I was at my brother’s home in PA, attending my 25th college reunion this weekend, but knowing you were in NC at the conference, I was praying for you. What a blessing you are!

  • Karen – Thank you so much for allowing God to speak through you yesterday. It was amazing! Our God is amazing and knows what we need at exactly the right time. – Mary