Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Influence Conference: Sharing Who I Am

My brain and heart have been so full that it has literally taken me 10 days to process it all.
I first heard about Influence through Casey's blog, and felt a tug on my heart. A faith-based conference about blogging?
Then, when it was announced that it would be here in Indy, I thought wow, Lord - I get it.
 I'll go. I really, really felt that. A reason I should be there.
I didn't know anyone before I went. I had a lot of people tell me at Influence that that was brave?!?!
I'm not a major introvert, but heading to that first meet-up, it felt a little like my freshman year in college. Sorority rush to be exact. I remember thinking, geesh - this is a group of adult women, surely we can befriend each other right?!?!
The weekend was amazing. I met women from all corners of the United States, and I was blessed by them.
By their stories, their everyday lives. Their faith, and their willingness to share it.
I have grown a lot just by reading blogs. And when you connect with people on the internet, sometimes it can seem, well - weird. And silly, and not real.
But these women are FOR REAL. :)
I was able to share our sweet Christian with so many women.
And my heart hurt hearing, "me too" - and different stories of baby loss.
When we lost Christian, I felt ALONE in it.
I felt alone as I carried a baby I knew I would never get to take home.
Yet through so many blogs, including Rachael's and Casey's, both who I was able to meet, I knew that life would carry on again.
I knew that He would redeem himself through our loss and bless others through it.
There, in all of that mess and heartache, is my influence.
In all the pain, He fills me up and I know there's life ahead. A beautiful future.
By sharing who I am, I can bless others.
That is pretty powerful stuff.
My loss doesn't define me. But it has definitely shaped who I am as a wife, a mother, a friend, and as a Christian. And I know that no matter how many blog followers I may have - my story is my influence.


Annie said...

Amen, Erin! Your story IS your influence. I'm so sorry about your sweet Christian.

I definitely think going to Influence without knowing anyone was brave! I don't think I could have done it. I went with a few close friends I met through blogging. I wish we would've met at the conference!

Anonymous said...

I'm so glad you followed through when God tugged on your heart to go! I hope to go next year. It's so powerful to explore your purpose and calling with other women to support you!

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