I was so happy to receive a story from Jennifer for you to read. As Jennifer shared the story of losing her "beautiful, red-haired boy" on Friday night, it was all I could do not to break down and sob. My thoughts were filled with Anson, my beautiful brown-haired 14 year old, but I just couldn't distract Jennifer as she told her sad but hopefilled story with composed grief. She inspired me beyond words. While my heart ached, my spirit soared. Please read on for Jennifer's She Speaks story.
Girls and their hair!! If it’s curly, we straighten it. If it’s straight, we perm it. Naturally dark, we highlight it. And too light, then we color it that perfect shade of auburn. In pursuit of just the perfect style that we can wash and wear in ten minutes or less, and that will make us look ten years younger and fifteen pounds lighter…it really is unbelievable what we will do to our hair. However, no matter what we do to it or what we do with it, God has told us He knows the exact number of hairs on our head!! I love knowing that my God knows me so intimately but this verse also reminds me that my God is a God of the details.
I was reminded of this more than once this weekend as I attended the She Speaks conference. When I first read about the conference, I asked God to help make it possible for me to attend. And He answered in a marvelous way. He provided the registration fee, allowed me to find a room at a great rate and even reconnected me with a college friend I had not seen in years so I could stop over at her house while traveling back and forth! I was excited and arrived at the conference praising the Lord.
Little did I realize just how much He had yet in store for me. I immediately met up with a friend I had only known previously through her blog. There was an instant friendship and I was so happy to have someone to start the conference with me. We chose a table for the opening meeting and one by one, God began to fill that table – one we thought we had chosen by chance – with amazing women. Amazing, not just because of their love for the Lord but also because they were hand-picked by God to walk beside me during this conference and meet my spiritual needs.
As a grieving mother feeling very vulnerable and definitely out of my comfort zone, it still awes me to know that God placed at my table three other mothers who had lost children and one who has a child right now fighting brain cancer – just like my son. These women knew what I was feeling. In the very same way, when I went to my evaluation group later that night, my “randomly chosen” group included a mother who not only lives mere miles from me but also has a son who has battled cancer and was treated at the exact same hospital as my son. We had an instant connection.
These details are not at all random but, instead, evidence of God’s involvement in the details of my life. Yes, He allowed me to be at the conference. But once I was there, He blessed me beyond measure with women who didn’t even know they were there to be a blessing! As the hymn writer once said, I stand amazed!! I was humbled. I was encouraged. I laughed. I cried. And I was inspired. Going to the conference simply to make myself more available, I am now even more excited to see what His plans might be for me in the future.