I still haven't fully digested everything from the Colour Conference last week. In actual fact, I'm not exactly sure how to go about sitting with it all and working out what to do next. There was just so much that was amazing and pure gold from some incredible women.
So let's start with the things that surprised me and had to be overcome:
- Moving 13,500 women in a small area. I chose to stay in with a lunch I had made in my room beforehand rather than head out to find something. Us introverts need a little bit of head space to stay sane. It was better to wait 10 minutes or go 5 minutes early than endure the crush!
- Hand-waving, head-banging worship. This is NOT my jam. I am not a happy-clappy type but I'm quite comfortable about other people worshipping how they will...as long as they let me be. And that was fine for the most part. One of the young women who was worship leading did a little bit of head-banging. I just stood there wondering "how is she doing that? and how is she staying upright?" I am certain I would tip over on my head and hurt myself if I tried it. And in truth all the women in our group felt the same. But it was entertaining I guess.
- Hillsong-specific sessions. There was one or two sessions that were really all about the Hillsong church. And that's just fine, but I wish I'd known. I would have skipped the Friday afternoon session.
- Taking up offerings. As a conference delegate who is not a member or attender of the Hillsong church I found this a little odd. I had paid to be there. Also, we support our own church with our tithes and offerings, which include a local and international missions. I chose not to contribute over the weekend, and I caught up our giving this morning, after a couple of weeks away.
- Sheila Walsh. This woman is an incredible, faithful woman with a powerful story. And a witty sense of humour that was absolutely my jam! Her Scottish accent made her just that little bit funnier. So she made me laugh and she made me cry. She reminded me that Satan seeks to erode and destroy our trust in God by twisting his words and promises and skewing things with a little truth and a lot of lies. My big take away from her was that we do not have to clean ourselves up to come to the Father and that living in this days takes vulnerability and connectedness. We need to be truth-tellers with nothing hidden, and we need to be in community with others who help us to live according to the truth instead of how we feel.
- DawnCherie Wilkerson. I wasn't sure about DC in the first session. She is young; too young to know much about life, I thought. But the second session blew me away. She talked about faith being like dynamite. While the fuse is burning it looks like nothing much is happening and it can be frustrating. But faithfulness happens in that time of 'slow burn'. Once the slow burn is over though, things will explode and everything changes.
God's delays are not God's denials. So profound for this season in our lives!
- Fellowship. I got to spend the weekend with some beautiful women from my church. I got to know some women, and I got to know others better. This morning was very special as I caught up with a few of them. The shared journey and experience has bonded us in ways that are very precious.
I am aiming to go again next year. I am willing to take four days off work (hopefully!!!) to go and be completely blessed again.