Friday, May 3, 2013

Women's Conference

What is it that makes Women's Conference so special?

Is it the camaraderie I feel from being with my best friends and thousands of other women?

Is it the knowledge I gain from the fabulous classes?

Is it the delicious food we eat?

Is it sitting til our bums are numb in the uncomfortable Marriott Center seats, and then making a wild dash for the next class on lower campus?


And it is so much more.  

I love Women's Conference for all of these things, and especially for the spirit I feel.

I am so grateful that Greg is as committed to my attendance as I am.  He loves to take the days off of work and play with the girls so I can play.  I love knowing they get that special time.  And I especially love the picture updates he sends me.

 Just some sweet snuggles during milk.  And I love that you can see all of the pictures on the cabinets that Ellie put up as decorations for Lambie's birthday party.
 Jumping on Grandma's trampoline is always fun!

 Lunch out with Grandpa and Grandma is a treat.  Even if it's only Burger King.
Go to sleep, baby!

We have found that even when our first choice class is full, there is always something else that is excellent.  We tried to go to a class on not losing our temper with our kids (or being angry or something like that) and it was full.

It was very ironic that a lot of the ladies around us were pretty vociferous in their disappointment that they could not get in that class.

Heather, Kelly, Kandice, and Ilene

 Since it was the first Thursday of the month, it was book club night.  Tiff, Erin, and Steph came and met us all for dinner at Red Lobster (a Women's Conference tradition!).  We also ran into Rachel during the closing session and convinced her to come along with us.  After dinner we headed back to the concert.  Kandice and I convinced Kelly and Ilene to try it for the first time, and I think that overall they enjoyed it.

 Friday found us back at the conference, finishing up our make and take projects.  I crocheted a scarf, and Kandice did a burp cloth and a headband.  I find that I can concentrate better on the classes when my hands are busy.  Plus I like doing the service.

But then I don't take any notes.

 Our final picture to commemorate the event.
 Greg sent me 2 pictures of Lulu on Friday.  When he got out of the shower, Lu was snuggled up on the bed, fast asleep. 

 Driving home, we took a detour past the house where Ilene grew up in American Fork.  I have heard many stories about her family of 8 children and 1 bathroom, so it was exciting for me to see her house.

Some of things I learned that stick out the most:

1.  Faith is a choice.
2.  Elder Holland (paraphrase):  asking every member to be a missionary is not nearly as important as asking every member to be a member.
3. Kevin Worthen (paraphrase):  Charity is the pure love of Christ, the love He has for us.  But maybe also it is the pure love of which we have for the Savior.
4.  Be calmed and soothed by the word of God.  Don't give up.  Continue in patience.
5.  A good lighthouse doesn't seek out boats in trouble.  It shines and lets boats find it.
6.  Regarding teaching children:  It is not our job to convince them of the truth.  It is our job to give them instances where the Spirit can testify of the truth.
7.  Regarding making dinner for our families:  Nourish and feed them.  It is worth it!
8.  President Eyring (paraphrase):  The Lord protects His friends and that protection is real.  He will protect them from many things, including the temptation to be discouraged or afraid.

The two strongest witnesses of the Spirit to me bookended my experience.  The first came as Kandice and I were singing with the instant choir during the opening session.  We were singing the hymn "If the Way be Full of Trial, Weary Not" and I was touched and buoyed up when singing these words:

If misfortune overtake us, Weary not!
Jesus never will forsake us, Weary not!
He will leave us never, never;
From his love there's naught can sever;
Glory to the Lamb forever!  Weary not!

Do not weary by the way, 
Whatever be thy lot;
There awaits a brighter day
To all, to all who weary not!

The second witness came as President Eyring entered the Marriott Center.  He was a little late (caught in traffic, they announced), and it gave us the opportunity to sing hymns as we waited for him.  When he walked in, I felt the Spirit whisper to my soul that I was in the presence of an apostle of Jesus Christ.

A wonderful conference, and just what I needed.  I am eternally grateful to Kelly for starting the tradition and inviting me to join in all of those years ago.


HappyCamper said...

So glad you have these wonderful and marvelous experiences. My heart has been touched deeply as you have shared your sweet testimony and talked of the joy your feel as you participate in worthwhile things to help you as you continue on in the "upward reach" of Eternal Life.

I love you Heather. Thanks for being such a wonderful daughter!

Rachelle said...

It was amazing! As always, and so fun that I got to see you too! I too was touched as we sat and sang (while waiting for Elder Eyring) it prepared me to receive an answer I had been seeking. Wonderful Conference as always!


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