I am so excited to have gotten the opportunity to speak to about a hundred church planting women at the Stadia/Bloom Breakfast in Orlando during the Exponential Conference!

It was an opportunity to share about my new book, Bloom Where You Are Planted, and to encourage other women in the church planting journey. Church planting is hard, but the blessings are beyond beautiful.

We are all tempted to quit the race when the going gets tough, and it can get really tough sometimes. But I encouraged our Bloom ladies, and I want to encourage you, from Hebrews 12: 1.

A huge cloud of witnesses is all around us. So let us throw off everything that stands in our way. Let us throw off any sin that holds on to us so tightly. Let us keep on running the race marked out for us. Hebrews 12:1

I’ll tell you what I told the ladies that morning. Don’t let anything derail you in your race for Christ. I spoke a little about the bombing during the Boston Marathon just last week. Sometimes the obstacles we meet feel like a bomb just went off in our lives, but don’t let it derail you permanently. Don’t let it keep you from finishing well.

Be aware that you are not the first women to go through these types of hardships! You are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses! Women who have gone before you in ministry and through hardships we can’t even imagine.

I think of Sarah, Ruth, Bathsheba, Rahab, Jael, Esther, Mary, Martha, Mary Magdeline, Lydia, Dorcas, Amy Carmichael, Susanna Wesley, Ruth Bell Graham, Corrie and Betsey Ten Boom, Imogene Carlson (my missionary grandmother) and many others; our great grandmothers and grandmothers in the faith.

They are surrounding us, in that great cloud of witnesses. And what are they saying to us? What do they whisper across the generations?

Keep going!

Finish well!

It is worth it!

Just you wait till you see this place!

Let me close and encourage you with this scripture from 2 Corinthians 4:17:

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.

 

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