Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Let Me Hear You ROAR

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So this weekend, I had the privilege of attending the ROAR women's conference in Fayetteville.  Don't be fooled by the logo or the title- this was not a self-help conference to the theme of "I am woman, hear me roar."  Instead, this conference was a worship event, and if when the women left the conference feeling empowered, it was through the Holy Spirit's power inside of them that they did so.  And yes, there may have been some roaring going on, and hopefully still is some roaring going on, because we want to make sure the devil knows we are God's girls!

And let me tell you, despite how much the devil tried to stop us by causing problems with our bus (alternator not working the entire hour drive, plus stop in Benson for supper) we still made it to the conference.  Yes, barely as the bus died at the door, literally, at the door.  But God had a purpose for us 20 or so women to be there and though the "devil may be in the details" of engines and doors not closing, God is ultimately in control! (We did make it home with the help of two wonderful men, who drove two smaller buses down to get us-Thanks guys!)
Thank you to the nice men of Epicenter Church for pushing our bus to a towing site!
So, Friday night (after safely arriving- Praise God) Kerrie Roberts was in concert.  Let me tell y'all, she is phenomenal! Such a great woman of faith with a true heart for God.  I love attending concerts of Christian artists- because we aren't worshiping at the alter of the performer, we are worshiping at the alter of God! I would say the goal of a Christian singer would be to point others to Christ more than to themselves- giving him the sole glory! And Kerrie Roberts did just that!




After our concert worship through song, Kim Knight (Pastor's wife and woman responsible for this event) spoke.  She shared the definition of ROAR with us:


R- Radically Changed
Christ changes us completely, we are a new creation, set apart to be the light of Christ in the darkness. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here." 2 Corinthians 5:17
O- Original
"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made." Psalm 139:13-14a
"We are His creation, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them." Ephesians 2:10
A- Authentic Love
God loves us with an authentic love.  He comes to love us lavishly. "But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8 
R-Renew
God knows we get weary and worn out "But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:31


We have no power in which to save ourselves- we are dead with out Christ. But as Kerrie Roberts said so tweetably (as in I shared her quote on Twitter)- "The same Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead, is here with us and can raise us from the dead."  And should we need a reminder from time to time of just how awesome God is then we can ROAR- because we are a new creation in Christ, originally made with works designed for us by God, who loves us with an authentic love demonstrated by the fact that He sent his son to die for us, and He will renew our strength when we hope in him!  Hallelujah- that right there was enough to end the conference!


BUT that wasn't all God had in store for us.  So even though I thought more sleep would have been better, I was back at our church after 5 hours of sleep to go to breakfast with my sisters-- and I was completely wrong about sleep being better than that.  It was such a joy to spend time getting to know three of my fellow sisters in Christ.  Seeing each other here and there and sharing in surface hi's and hello there's at church once (twice or even 3 times a week) is no comparison to sharing a meal with someone for an hour or so and having actual get to know you conversation. So as a plug- I highly recommend that you plug into a women's group or small group and/or make a plan to spend an afternoon just having coffee or chatting with women you may not know as well. God did create us to be relational... Okay end of that tangent. ;-)

When we arrived Saturday morning we were led in worship by Epicenter's praise band (who were so great) and Angela Thomas. If you haven't had the opportunity to hear her speak you have been missing out!  She is a homegrown NC girl, which of course makes her sweeter and easier to understand- haha ;-) and she has such a powerful testimony.  Plus she is hilarious and loves the Lord completely. She has many Bible studies, and though I personally haven't done one, they have been highly recommended by those that have.  She had many wonderful things to say, but I will share just one with you that stuck out to me, from Hebrews 12:1-2:
"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."

We need to throw off the sins that can so quickly become traps and entanglers that keep us from living the Christian life fully and completely as God has called us to do.  That probably definitely will be an every day occurrence. We can't allow distractions to keep us from focusing our full attention on Christ.  In every part of our lives, we should be looking to glorify Christ.  EVERY part.  Not just at church. Another tangent- I find it interesting when people place an "extra good behavior" clause on church. "I can't wear that to church." or "Don't you be lying, you're at church"- Well if you can't wear it to church, you probably shouldn't be wearing it and how about don't lie anywhere?? Most of those comments I hear are said in jest... most... okay tangent over.  Seriously though, God has specific works that he has created for us to do (Ephesians 2:10) he even gave us gifts that aid in accomplishing the missions he calls us to (1 Corinthians 12). But if we let sin, however, small it may seem at first, grow and grow in our hearts, minds, bodies, it will become a hindrance that keeps us from fully accomplishing what God has set before us to accomplish, thereby withholding the glory God so richly deserves. 

So, even though you may have missed the ROAR conference, you don't have to miss out on the opportunity to be a sold out, child of God, who fixes your eyes on Christ and runs full throttle towards him with every fiber of your being- removing any obstacle that tries to keep you from Him- your Savior.  Your Redeemer.  The Lover of your soul.  Your Lord.  Your Bridegroom.  Your Friend.


Love in Christ,

Alyson

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