What Would You Do?…..(and a chance to win a She Speaks Scholarship!)
Welcome Weight Loss Wednesday gals. Please leave a comment today, even if you are new, letting us know how your week went. I love to see your progress and watch how you encourage each other.
And I love to see you chime in on the topic at hand. Today’s one is near and dear to my heart and goes right along with a giveaway you have a chance to win.
I know many of you get geeked when I give away a $5 Starbucks card. (I love me a skinny latte as much as the next gal) However, this prize is worth over $500!!! (Hang with me….details below.)
But first, our topic…..
What would you have the confidence to do if you weren’t ashamed of your weight?
If you weren’t embarrassed by your “muffin top” (the fluff that spills out over the top of your jeans)? Or if you weren’t so self-conscious about the way you looked in clothes or guilt-ridden about vowing for years to lose weight and then actually gaining instead?
What would you do?
Would you wear jeans with a belt and with your shirt tucked in? Volunteer at your child’s school? Play tennis with your teen? Take a ballroom dancing class with your hubby? Sing in church? Jog down the street like you used to when you were younger?
What would you do?
Nearly 5 years ago when I weighed over 250 pounds, I had a dream. It was something I had wanted to do for a few years, but lacked the confidence to actually follow through on.
I’d been speaking and writing for years, but had never had any formal training, nor been to a writers or speakers conference. I’d written several articles for the Proverbs 31 magazine and was aware that they had a national speaking team.
Several women had expressed to me what a perfect fit that team would be for me since I so believed in P31 and its mission.
However, there was one slight little problem. To be a part of the team, I had to attend the P31 She Speaks Conference in Charlotte, NC. And, as part of the conference, I had to be critiqued on my speaking. By a peer group.
Oh yeah…and since I’d already been speaking for over a decade by then and would fall into the ‘professional’ speaker category, my group leader, who would also evaluate me, was none other than P31’s president and speaker extraordinaire Lysa TerKeurst.
Couple those requirements with the fact that I felt like a failure with my weight, well…..it just sent me to the nearest grocery store to buy and down an entire bag of Coconut Chips Ahoy cookies and chase it down with a pint of some fattening gourmet full-fat ice cream.
I felt fat.
For a few years I stayed fat.
However, once I obeyed God in my eating and made some progress in my weight loss, my confidence level rose.
The next time the conference came around, I signed up. I had no idea how I was going to pay for it, but I signed up anyway.
God saw fit that my flight was covered. I received a voucher for a free airline ticket when I was bumped on a return flight from a speaking engagement. Then, 75% of my conference fee was covered in an unexpected way. It was clear that it was my year to go.
And actually, turns out it was surprisingly relaxed and fun and not threatening at all. My fears had been unfounded!
The rest has been nothing but a huge blessing. P31 is a perfect fit for me and I thank God every day for my connection with my sisters in ministry.
Now—-I ask you again….What would you have the confidence to do if you weren’t ashamed of your weight?
Please tell us (and let us know how your week went)….
Note: The She Speaks conference is not just for current and want-to-be writers and speakers, but also for any woman in ministry. If you would like a chance to win a scholarship to attend the She Speaks conference……read the short post below.
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I wouldn’t be too ashamed to go to the gym. My husband doesn’t understand why I won’t go work out when we have a family membership…I don’t want all the skinny women in their spandex looking at me and laughing. I would also take swimming lessons and swim for exercise and enjoyment.
I wouldn’t hate buying clothes. And I’d never wear overblouses again. And not fear my arms showing. I’d swim without being embarrassed. And go for walks without my knees hurting. And never fear ‘less than’ because of my weight. And never think about being overweight, how to lose weight, etc. again.
On a scale from 1-10, this week was an 8 regarding weight loss. I lost 1 lb and have been trying to readjust my eating habits since I recently stopped nursing baby #3. I have a long way to go, but I’m doing it- one step at a time.
What I would do if I wasn’t ashamed of my weight…
I am a children’s minister and for the past 3 years, a girlfriend of mine and I have mentored a small group of preteen girls from church. We are passionate about the power of what can happen when the church and parents partner together. We have found that, as mentors, we play a very special role in the lives of these young girls that are becoming more independent. At every meeting we delve into “hot topics” (beauty, friendship, popularity etc) in fun, non-threatening engaging ways (for example-through a discussion at Panera- or at a special events like “beauty night”). Then we creatively help the girls to discover what God has to say about each “hot topic” and leave them with a key verse and a dare/ application. This has been so powerful for girls (introduces Girls to a relationship with Christ, helps them to form close friendships, helps with the transition from Children’s Ministry to youthgroup, builds confidence and community, and helps them to develop a biblical worldview). Parents love our group because we are their biggest cheerleaders and we are another voice in their child’s life that is pointing them to Christ.
We believe that the Lord is going to raise up more solid, female Christian preteen girl mentors all across the US. For the past year, we have been developing a curriculum and have been co-writing a book designed to equip women to serve as a small group mentor.
If I was not ashamed of my weight, I would be launching into this ministry with gusto. I would 1) finish the tools we’re developing 2) do video blog posts to help spread the idea (and I wouldn’t think “does the webcam add 10 lbs?”) 3. offer workshops and training events for women that are interested. 4. put together the coolest conference ever for preteen girls and their moms/ female role model
*5. I would not be worried that women would would just tune me out thinking sub-consciously, “She’s overweight. No offense, but I don’t know if there’s much she can teach me about being an example for the next generation of girls.”
My struggle with weight is my biggest barrier to fully accepting who I am in Christ. I know what God says about me. I just want it to sink deep into my heart in a way that sets me free to enjoy my relationship with Him and his calling to equip women for ministry to young girls.
I would be honored to be chosen for the “She Speaks” scholarship. I know that this is just the beginning of what God has in store.
Karen .. I am currently battling my weight and need to step up and do what God has told me to do. Honor God by respecting the temple He gave me. (Step away from the nana pudding Jai, step away!)
I have wanted to attend SheSpeaks for several years now, but have talked myself out of the opportunity every single year. This year, God provided a major healing of a brain tumor for my son (7yr journey) and I told the Lord when this whole ordeal started that I would shout from the rooftops at everything He allowed and did. I have done that within our “comfort zone” circle, but after he completely HEALED my son 2 months ago, I have felt the Holy Spirit telling me I should share Jordan’s journey with woman across the country. He did NOT heal Jordan just for me and my family, but also for others. He provided a modern miracle for my son and demonstrated that He is still in the healing business, but most of all that we should trust Him with our lives, our decisions, our thoughts, our husband and our families. Throughout this ordeal, I have learned to TRUST HIM, just as he says in Proverbs 3:5,6 – – Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not to thine own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and will direct your paths.
Honestly, (would you want it any other way?) I haven’t had a problem with my weight. Actually, I went the other way. I’m a breast cancer survivor who went on a chemo diet plan. Being a stay at home mom of 2 little ones, I had to feed the family but even in doing so was becoming anorexic to some degree. Without being too wordy, I think weight should not be an issue. I wouldn’t let weight get in the way of anything. Of course, I try to live by treating our bodies as a holy temple of the Lord. I better stop…you hit a button.
Thank you for the opportunity for a scholarship.
Words matter because people matter more. God called me to the ministry of writing long ago. But as I’ve grown in Him, He’s helped me to view my words as a vehicle to connect people with the One who loves them more than they can imagine. And I believe He intends to use both my written and my spoken words to accomplish His purposes.
As He’s grown my writing, He’s expanded my speaking opportunities. That’s why I began to pray about attending She Speaks. My husband, like many others, has faced the heartbreak of job loss this year. As important as the conference is, family obligations come first. A scholarship would allow me to attend.
I know the One who calls me to speak and to write is faithful. I’ll trust Him to meet the needs of all who enter. Thanks for offering She Speaks along with the scholarship opportunities. And because both words and people matter, I’m grateful.
First of all thanks to all of the servant hearts at P31 Ministries. You are honest and encouraging and I hope to have the opportunity to meet you soon.
God has placed a strong desire in me to share His love, hope and faithfulness with others. Though I’ve faced, wrestled, and walked through many trials, I have this uncontainable JOY in my heart!! I’m ready to share if God’s ready to use me!!!
Pregnant Kimberlee; I am with you on the swimming thing. I have taken lessons in the past and failed miserably. I do not like the way I look in a swimsuit, and I am also very, very white! However, since my husband’s college friend just died of melanoma, and he was not a sunscreen user, I think I will stick with my “healthy” white. My youngest is five, and she would like to take swim lessons. We talked about it last night, and decided to do the parent-child lessons this summer. It will not teach me anything, but it is purely to help her feel comfortable in the water; and it is required in our town to pass parent-child lessons before you can go on your own as a child. I think I have lost a total of about 7 pounds since I started working at it, and although that number does not seem very large, it is big to me.
My God has great plans for me and my family, it has been a desert walk for about 10 years but He has been so faithful taking me step by step in the direction He desires for my life. It was just impressed upon my heart in the last weeks about public speaking and been confirmed by God through someone else. I truly desire to share more of Him and less of me. Thank you for this awesome opportunity.
Weight wise, my week has been pretty good since I’ve been sick. :S
In truth, I enjoy my food and I’ve partly given up on that concept of skinny. Health is paramount in the battle of my bulge. I’m still overweight and I have my goals but I don’t have to shop the plus size section anymore!!!
I see God working through my life. I have a great job as a lecturer (3 years now). I have a desire to speak about GOD though. And while I squeeze God into my lessons as much as possible, it’s not the same. If there were no limitations no boundaries, I would (I like to think) be out there, kids in tow, running a mission with interaction and worship and bible learning.
To quote one of my son’s favorite movies, “The impossible can become possible, if you’re awesome!” (Rhino, from the movie Bolt) Good thing God is!
I think it is the coolest thing that God in His wisdom chooses to speak through His creations. As women we have a special place in God’s heart and a unique opportunity to reach the hearts of others. I’d love to learn to speak the gospel message more powerfully at the SheSpeaks conference this year.
How would winning the “She Speaks” entry be an answer to my prays?? It would show me how gracious our blessed Lord and Savior is to me as I have been seeking His direction intently for almost a year. Knowing that only God could orchestrate such a perfect plan for my life and trusting to follow where He leads. I have never attended a conference and would be humbled to be chosen for this scholarship!
As a young, teenage girl I stumbled across God’s timeless wisdom for women as wives and mothers found in Proverbs 31:10-31. That “awakening” became the desire of my heart from my youth onward…although I would bump and tumble to a fantastic fall to my face before the Lord before I would realize it.
The summer of 1998 I found myself pregnant, but unwed. Pride shattered and prostrate before the Lord, my Redeemer cleansed me, forgave me, clothed me, and began restoring me (Psalm 51). He granted me a willing spirit to sustain me and garbed me in everlasting joy (Psalm 30).
God’s blessings for obedience began to overflow. A month and 18 days later I married my best friend, soul mate, and the daddy of my first son, “Gift from God.” The Lord reassured me that he could STILL use me and I prayed as King David did, “Lord, let me teach transgressors your ways.” He initially confirmed His word with an instant ministry to a young mom with a story just like mine.
In 2003 the Lord placed the call on my heart to write for Him. He has confirmed His call in more ways and encounters than I can count or name. He has shown me who I am and who I am not. Not one step or season I have lived in has returned void. Rather, God has grown and groomed me for greater things He has set for me ever since He called me. Like Abraham who believed God’s promise, the Lord has asked me, “Do I believe Him that the Almighty WILL accomplish this?”
I remember my Lord, the Promise-keeper. Not ONE of His good promises has ever failed. He knows what I need before I ask. Before a word is even on my tongue, He is there. He KNOWS me completely. Hearkening back, I can trace His hand in my life, connecting the dots He has set for me. My Lord has never left me. His presence, promises, and protection are mine. He is FAITHFUL.
I answer, “Yes, Lord. I BELIEVE you.” I ask and pray. I wait. I study His word. I connect with the Lord as His Holy Spirit guides, convicts, and teaches me. He shows me my “next step”. I cling to the word He spoke to my heart, “The one who calls you IS FAITHFUL, and HE WILL DO IT.” 1 Thessalonians 5:24
Just today I asked the Lord to clarify my “next step” for ministry. As if the “green light” from my amazing husband and dual support of my Little Mama and mother-in-love (“My Naomi”), discovering this scholarship opportunity tonight was nothing short of God’s impeccable timing. A gift trip to my first She Speaks conference would be yet another confirmation from my Lord that I am keeping in step with His Spirit. While I make plans in my heart, the Lord directs my steps. Praise Him!
Shannon Lee Cochran
It is so refreshing to see God using all of His women to work together and spread His truth!
God is leading me on an incredible journey. It is this journey, seeking out a writing/speaking conference that I found this scholarship give-away! Is it a “God coincidence” that it was the first place I looked? God only knows! :) If I do win, this will be a God given answer to prayers and leading me into my dreams!