Making Life Beautiful…A Bella Conference

The Bella “Making Life Beautiful” Conference was an absolute success!  Family Harvest Church reported that the conference attendees almost doubled from last year’s Reality Conference…and I’m so glad they did!  A few highlights…

Thursday was a rare Indian Summer October night. Forever friends sat on hay bales watching I Love Lucy around fire pits, roasting marshmallows.  

Friday morning we were treated to the concise teaching of the conference hostess, Linda Thompson.

Notable Quotables:

On the fact that God called creation good, but He called mankind very good…”There’s nothing more beautiful than a human being.”

Linda also defined masterpiece as “an artist’s best work.”  We are His masterpiece!  His best work!!

Holly Wagner taught the next morning session.

Notable Quotables:

On Ha. 3:19….”He is my personal bravery.”

She asked…”Do you want your tombstone to read:  She arrived here safely?”

“Life requires courage.”

“God has trusted us with this moment.”

“There isn’t armor for our backside, because we’re supposed to be running toward our problems, not away from them.”

The last morning session was given to the lovely Hayley DiMarco.

1.  Love is not what you think.  It’s not what Hollywood or Romance novels report.

2.  Love is not what you feel.  Love can not be a feeling, because God commands it.  You can’t command a feeling.

3.  Love is not true without Christ.  I John 4:7-11.  Love proves our inheritance.

When we reconvened in the evening, Hayley DiMarco was once again the speaker.

Notable Quotables?

“Humility is the foundation of all righteousness.”

“Pride is the foundation of all sin.”

“The teachable soul is beautiful.”

Following this lovely teaching, we had a rocking afterparty!  The fashion show opened with the beautiful Esther Sullivan singing a soulful and Christianized version of K T Tunstall’s “Suddenly I See.”  The fashion show featured beautiful girls of all ages; girls who had just been reminded of the beauty that can only begin from the inside out; ladies who were not self-conscious, but confident that the Audience of One was pleased to call them “very good.”

Finally, Saturday started with a beautiful continental breakfast of berries and yogurt, granola and assorted breads.

Hayley DiMarco opened with a teaching on guilt and pain.

Notable Quotables?

“We can never believe that our guilt is too much for God’s grace.”

“Failure is foundational.  It is the foundation of our faith.”

Our final speaker was the energy packed Holly Wagner.  She taught on the power of being you.

Notable Quotables?

“Have the courage to be who you are.”

“Courage only becomes courage in the middle of adversity.”

“Courage grows when we focus on the cause.”

Excited to count graces with Ann Voskamp:

#18 – Grateful for pumpkin flavored anything.

#19 – Thankful my son’s first day of college went so well.

#20 – Walks with my dog on perfect Indian Summer days.

#21 – Women like Ann Voskamp, Linda Thompson, Holly Wagner and Hayley DiMarco who are honest enough to share their weaknesses so we can become stronger.

#22 – The smell of wood burning to the glow of a harvest moon.

#23 – Long shadows of light stretching across my living room floor

#24 – That I have ears to hear the lonely train whistle at 5 AM.

#25 – Thankful, thankful, thankful for my wonderful family at FHC, for making the Bella Conference such a success!!



Bella Conference

The opening night of the Bella Conference was incrediBella!!  (I couldn’t resist!)  Attendees were greeted by gentlemen with posters stating, “You’re Beautiful!” making us feel, well…beautiful.  The venue was decorated with bright colors and huge balloons.  Dancers floated on stage for the opener, as the band played “Beautiful Things” by Gungor.  Chrysta Joy Daidone sang her heart out and sparked hoped in the listener that perhaps God could make something beautiful out of each lump of clay present.  Worship was hushed and sober one moment, and then full of energy and excitement a few minutes later.

The ladies at FHC unveiled a beautiful cookbook, the proceeds of which will be going to help demolish human trafficking.  The book is very impressive and I will be devoting an entire post to it soon…

Finally, the lovely Holly Wagner took the spotlight.  She spoke so many words of wisdom, but here a few of my personal favorites…

God never asked us to do something hard….only impossible.

Maturity doesn’t come from what I know, but what I persevere through.

We don’t always know what’s ahead; but we never will until we persevere through what’s in our “now”.

It’s always safer to stay on the shore, but God has called us to get in the boat.

A strong marriage doesn’t just grow over time, but by doing things intentionally over time.

When my joy is gone so is my strength.

Happiness is a reaction to circumstances, joy is a decision.

Choose joy.

When you put the Word in you while you’re strong, it will come out of you when you are weak.

Have the strength to finish.

Can I remain faithful in the post of Believer?

Stay at your post.

You Are Invited!

I am personally inviting YOU! October 6-8, 2011, I will be attending The Bella Conference at Family Harvest Church. The conference will be for females. I say females, because it is for every age of girl.

The conference features my very own sweet precious pastor’s wife Linda Thompson. She is the founder of and writes a blog called Together Spreading Kindness. She is so very transparent and doesn’t mind telling on herself if it will bring you closer to the Father. Plus, she is so fun!

We also have two wonderful guest speakers! Holly Wagner, author of several books including God Chicks, and Hayley DiMarco, author of over 30 books. Holly co-pastors with her husband in California. She is a cancer survivor and a dynamic speaker. Hayley has a heart for teens and young ladies.

We will be having a fashion show, a movie and s’mores, prizes, lunch and so much more.
You can watch the promo video (made by Middle Son) below and click onto the icon to find out more about this fun, fun, fun event!!

So my blogging buddies, please tell me you’ll come. It would be such a fun way to meet some of you!!

Pure Religion

In a cynical world, the words pure and religion seem almost at odds with one another. But the truth is that Scripture speaks of a religion that is pure and undefiled in James 1:27.

The local church I attend, Family Harvest Church, has started a widow’s ministry called True Religion. It is a wonderful extension of the hand of God to widows in our congregation and community. In an effort to be a blessing to this worthy cause, my other blog, The Proverbial Shopper has created a program to help supply these lovely ladies with products they need. Please take a moment to check it out by clicking onto the following link. The Proverbial Shopper