“We would like you to come back next year and lead our women’s conference.” Pastor Go Pau said as we wrapped up the visit to our Myanmar orphanage in 2016. I chuckled at the thought but nodded politely so not to offend our host. I promised to think about it. The idea soon replaced with activities like catching our flights home. Public speaking never appealed to me, so I ultimately dismissed the idea.
Psalm 138:3 When I called, You answered me; You greatly emboldened me.
Back home, the thought of the women’s conference tickled the back of mind for weeks. I crowded out the idea with busyness again and again. One day, I took up my hesitation with God. I pleaded my case before Him. “I followed Your call into mission work, reluctantly” I began. “I wrote a book after listening to another calling,” I added. “I know nothing about leading a women’s conference; please call someone more qualified for the job.” But I knew the answer already. I was the one He called, and I let out a heavy sigh of resignation to the idea.
Philippians 3:14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
I did not even know how to begin to plan a three-day women’s conference. “Lord, help me.” I prayed. Pastor Go Pau had mentioned Grace as a possible subject. I researched verses on Grace and came across Ephesians 2:8. I notated it along with many other Bible verses. Soon, an outline began to take shape. Each talk, each story and each idea lead to a draft for each of the three days of talks. I felt prepared, but that did nothing to ease the fear and trembling of my heart as the day approached.
As I stood to begin, I felt all the nervousness fall away. Emanuel, God with us, showed up to speak to these ladies. This conference was God’s, and I was along for the ride. The Bible verse from Ephesians I had jotted down haphazardly soon took center stage. Jesus gave breath to the text and changed lives. The women shared stories of changing their ways. Excitement filled the air within the tent as the days wore on. God was moving mightily in the lives of these women.
Psalms 91:11 For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways;
God called, and God provided. My husband got sick during the conference. God provided a team of U.S. doctors staying at the hotel for a medical mission. They checked on Bill, offered advice and prayed with us several times. God healed Bill. God gave me His words to speak. God reached the hearts of many women. Miraculous is the word to best describe what God did during the conference.
I felt humbled by the experience. I felt blessed to be a part of His work in Myanmar. I felt thankful for following an unwanted call to speak. God is now laying down the foundation for another conference in 2018. He is even opening doors for a women’s event in another country. Sometimes, the calling feels like a burden that I don’t want to carry. But saying yes to God always provides a front row seat to the work of the Savior. When God calls, God provides. And I never want to miss out on a Godly adventure.
Matthew 1:23 “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).
Yvonne, Blogger, speaker and author
Matthew 28:19 “Therefore, GO and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”