My blog is very new but I am not new to blogging. As I said yesterday, I've tried before and failed. My first post on this blog flowed through my fingers with an ease I have never experienced in writing. When it was finished, a sense of calm filled my body letting me know I had just done what He wanted me to. After that post was completed, I started visiting other blogs, trying to see what other Christian bloggers writer about. Not only what others write but how they write.
My starting point was Proverbs 31 Ministries. The daily devotions have become a part of my daily routine and I was already familiar with many of the writing styles on the site. On the front page of P31 is a link to SheSpeaks, a conference for Christian women who are called to serve him through writing, speaking or leading others. The more I read, the more I wanted to be a part of SheSpeaks... until I saw the price tag. With me not working right now, there is just no way to afford a trip, especially one for a hobby. As much as I feel the Lord calling me to continue writing, the truth is that's what this is for the time being.
As I made my way through the blogosphere last night, I stumbled upon Glynnis Whitwer's blog that said to come back today for a big announcement regarding a scholarship to SheSpeaks. And come back, I did. That led me to the big announcement on Lysa TerKeurst's blog that she will be working with a panel of judges to give away two full scholarships (less travel expenses) to SheSpeaks. And that led to this post, where I explain why I would like a scholarship.
As I've said before, I truly believe everything in life leads to the next step. Even the things that seem negative in the moment seem to have a way of leading to something positive. And I'm learning that sometimes too many things line up to call it coincidence. As recently as a month ago, that wasn't the case.
You see, I've struggled with my faith for a long time. I felt that I couldn't be a good Christian because I've made too many mistakes. God obviously didn't love me as much as He loved some others because some not so great things happened. Just over a month ago, I was at a point where I had thought about turning my back completely on my faith. We're talking turning my back and building a wall to keep it out. And then a switch was flipped in my head one Sunday at church. I can't tell you what our pastor was speaking about, all I know is that I went from tuning out and struggling to hear what she was saying to sitting up and fully tuned in. The next week, I had the opportunity to attend The Rock and Worship Roadshow with two of my best friends in Christ. Those two events were a turning point for me. I started to feel confident that Christ is the only path to my salvation and I got back into a routine of daily devotion and prayer rather than the obligatory Sunday appearance.
Two things "hit me" during church yesterday and have been heavily on my mind since then. First, I am to use my writing as my personal ministry for Him. Beginning on Wednesday, I will be launching a 40 Days of Prayer feature for the 40 days of lent. That was what I felt Him telling me to do. Beyond that, I'm hoping to grow in my Christian centered writing and explore avenues to become published with meaningful pieces.
The other, and I'm still waiting for guidance from Him on this one, is to minister to and help those living in poverty. Specifically, children in my state (and possibly further) who are living in dire conditions and need help. While I completely support organizations such as Compassion International, I can't help but feel drawn to begin with my focus locally.
Having the opportunity to attend SheSpeaks would help both of these callings by giving me tools to become published, a group I can trust to honestly critique my work and tools to use once I get back to Wisconsin to spread the Word to others.
To everyone else who is entering the contest, I am looking forward to reading your entries and wish you luck! God will lead the judges panel to choose the women He feels need this for His calling!