We met together for (in)RL 2013. Friends from birth, friends for decades, new friends. Mamas with toddlers, mamas with newborns, and those not-yet in the motherhood stage of life. We broke bread and drank coffee. We shared about community and how God is changing lives & hearts online and through technology. We laughed, shopped, did our nails, and stole moments to catch up, snuggled on comfy sofas and seated at kitchen tables.
We stepped away from the screens and out of our comfort zones to love one another in real life. God met us there over fake mustaches and massages, over sweet hugs and beautiful giveaways. We chose to show up. My sisters were brave and chose to meet me. They were gracious as I stumbled through telling them why I love community so much. And we chose to stay. To pursue one another, encourage one another. To live life together.
This motherhood journey? Oh, girl. It can be hard and beautiful and gloriously messy. And when you wonder if you’ll ever sleep again, if you’re really any good at this motherhood thing…it can be lonely. The enemy likes to use those hard moments to make us doubt what God has called us to do, and he makes us feel ashamed to share the mess because everyone else seems to have it all together. Can I let you in on a secret?
No one has it all together.
My story is one of slow, sweet redemption, of being broken by community so my heart would be broken for community. It’s a story of the power of a cup of coffee and the grace of another mama who looks into my weary eyes and says, “You’re doing a good job.” This year we’ll gather together again for (in)RL to share our stories, each personal testimony and tale of community uniquely written for each of us by a God who makes all things new. Because our stories? Your story? They’re important.
And in the telling of them, we give God glory for His work in our lives and the enemy is silenced. Weary hearts find courage in sisters who understand. Shame fades and souls are strengthened.
Will you join us this year? Registration for the (in)courage (in)RL Conference opens on January 15th – and it’s FREE! It’s the conference that comes to you through an online webcast on April 25 & 26, and this year you’ll hear community stories from more than 30 beautiful women. Stock up on chocolate, invite your girlfriends, and save the date – you won’t want to miss it!