Friday during the day most of the dies headed down to the beach. I had planned to spend the day o the balcony with good book! But..... I ended up going to the tanger outlets with some ladies who struggle with their health as well.We had the best afternoon together ! Two of us were in wheelchairs and the other two pushed us! We were a sight to see! I had a decked out wheelchair a big hat with a cute ow and some super cute sunglasses! Yet I still never took pictures! We were busy creating memories and friendships! I spent the day with ladies who needed to know it was okay to be broken! Even though we had been broken and put back together we were just as whole as a healthy person! Just our lights shine through a different way but just as bright.
That night was the first night of Women Of Joy! Everyone was super excited! We all got dressed up and were getting ready to go! Some of us were hanging out in the living room and all of the sudden I am not sure what happened but I was sick as a dog and my chest hurt like never before. I was praying it woold pass! 10 minutes passed and I was no better if anything it was worse tham ever before! So needless to say ! I missed the first night! One of the ladies offered to stay wit me so my daughter could go! Tha touched my heart in so many ways! She was one of the ladies I had spent the afternoon. She watched me sleep and updated my sweet girl through the evening. I learned that night that this women of joy was going to be diffrent from any other I had ever attended! In a wonderful way,God was using my weekness to bring me closer to some of the ladies in our church! I was able to pour into my sweet new daughter from another mom! Help her to begin healing deep wounds!
The next day was amazing!!!!We opend with worship! There is somethong about worshiping with thousands of women! No one cares what their neighbor thinks and just lets down their guard and truly worships!
The first session had a new speaker named Alli and she was amazing and on point about accepting our flaws and deeply roor ourselves so we ccan be used! Then O my goodness she hit home on my heart !
We all enjoyed every second of worship and our first speaker! While we waited on our next speaker. We took some pictures with each other as we waited!
If you haven't heard of her I urge you to google her! Check out her book hope heals! Kathrine suffered a brain stem stroke when she was 26! She had a six month old son! Kathrine travels around telling of all of Gods goodness! After she told her testimony. I am positive there was not a dry eye in the auditorium! She ended her talk with this no matter if your in a wheelchair or walk on legs God wants to use you and your story are you willing to let Him use you? Let that sink in for a minute!
I had the pleasure of meeting Kathrine ! When my journey 3 years ago began. I had actually heard her speak the year before at her very first women of joy! She had touched my heart so much then! I didn't realize the impact her story would have on me a year later! I reached out to her through social media. I was struggling with the changes and the giants I was facing at time! She reached back out and her message was read over and over. It was a inspiration to a broken heart and woman who's world had been torn upside down. Who new 3 years alter I would need that same inspiration again as I sat in my wheelchair to meet someone who had faced greater challenges than me! Spoke words of inspiration to this girls heart and told her it didn't matter if I had legs or used a wheelchair God was still using me! Those words would forever speak to my heart!
Our hearts were so very full when we left the morning session! God is incredibly good! We headed back to the villa for some lunch and fun in the sun! After all you can not visit the beach and not see the ocean! So I put on my uv protectent shirt, my ball cap(because the wind always steals my floppy one), and sun glasses and made my way to the beach with the help of my daughters. We pushed me in my wheelchair till it would not push any further ! Then they held on to me so I could walk to the ocean ans admire Gods beautifil handiwork! It was a beautiful perfect day! The sun was out and though it was warm t wasn't to hot! It was just right!
That night there was a cncert with Danny Gokey! Because I had already pushed my body past the point of no return I stayed behind! I also knew we had to pack up! We had a early morning the next day. The villa would need to be left in good order ! The ones who attended the concert had a wonderful time and said he did a fantastic job!
The next morning we woke up got dressed and headed to conference! We were all excited to see what God had for us next Angela Thomas Phar was our last speaker! I was super excited to hear what God had laid on her heart! However after worship I became deafly sick! I wheeled out into the entrance hallway and took some medicine and stayed out there! I could hear her from where I was and again she drilled home that no matter what stage of life you are in God wants to use us! Quit using your wheelchair or walker to as an excuse not to be used by God! Instead use it as a platform for Him and tell your story of His grace!
I went to women of joy to be filled and fed spiritually!
I was disappointed to have missed so much of it! I learned though He will use you and other people to fill us! Because for eache session I missed He placed someone who needed me or someone I needed in my life for that moment! God is simply amazing! Whether or not I will return to go back next year or not..... I know of about 15 ladies from our group returning for women of joy 2020!
I couldn't wait to get home to see my husband and oldest daughter! I had missed them both so very ! All though I missed them I would't change a thing about going! I slept the whole drive home! When I finally made it in the door and took my flip flops off this is what I was greeted by!
Yep that is my foot and no it does not normally look quite like that!
So yep the next few days has been another wild ride I will
share with you later !
I cannot thankyou enough for stopping by and spending sometime with me! I am praying you have a blessed day!
Praerfully Yours, ~Shellie~