I had the incredible privilege of attending the She Speaks Conference last weekend. It was life changing and overwhelming, in the very best way possible. It has taken me a week to really reflect on what I experienced and attempt to put it in to words. To be honest…I still have a great deal more, upon which I need to ruminate but I needed to share the most important thing that I took away.

On Friday morning, minutes after the commencement of the conference, I glanced around the grandiose ballroom.

Initially, I saw a room that had been impeccably decorated with an inviting color palette, simple-elegant floral arrangements and classically beautiful decor. I was excited to see what this weekend was going to unleash. I was nervous at the thought of claiming this call God had placed on my heart. I was freaked out to admit…”I am a writer”. Being in that room, simultaneously made me feel like a fraud and substantiated the feelings I had been pushing down into the depths of my soul for far too long.

Then my gaze settled over the crowd and I began to see the other 800 women.

Eight. Hundred. Women.

I saw all the perfectly curled tresses, the beautifully manicured nails, the expertly applied makeup and the fashion that could walk with the likes of Beyonce.

Then my eyes meander their way down to my own body.

Insecurities began to swell in my soul.

My hair is too short. My stomach is too large. My fashion is too simple. My makeup is inexistent.

I felt the overwhelming feeling that somehow I was far too different than these women; that somehow I didn’t measure up to them. Lies that I thought I had left far in the past, began to consume my brain.

But then we worship.

As the harmonies and lyrics began to fill the space around me, I shifted my gaze back to the other women. Then it happened. I saw hands uplifted. I saw tears. I heard voices singing, praising, and crying out to Jesus.

And then suddenly….we were ONE.

We all love Jesus and because of His love, we all loved each other. I no longer saw the glare of my own insecurities. I no longer saw the other 800 women as perfectly curled hair or impeccable fashion. I saw only an army of women.

Women of valor.

We walked in to the room as strangers and left as champions for each other.

Thank you Lysa TerKeurst and Proverbs 31 Ministries for this weekend. Thank you for She Speaks Conference and the freedom it provides. Thank you for taking a room of 800 women who all battle insecurities and lies and allowing them the freedom to see themselves and those around them as women of valor.

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