I left The Influence Conference feeling broken wide open, raw, exhausted and so, so healed, inspired, and FREE.  I’m still processing–which is what I’ve heard from many other girls, too–and probably will be for quite awhile.  Y’all, it was A LOT.  A lot of people, a lot of bam-in-your-face truth, a lot of wisdom, a lot of ugly crying, a lot of stepping out in new things.  I was completely spent when I boarded my plane back to Texas, yet I felt more deep-down, warm and cozy in the depths of my heart, content than I have in a long time.

Influence Team

The Influence Network’s leadership team

I’m so in awe of God.  A couple of years ago I had a few words from the Lord, given to me by friends at church, that God was gifting me creatively.  I even went to a women’s conference in Dallas where, one evening, we were supposed to ask the Lord for one word for the girl standing next to us, and the girl to my left turned to me, looked me in the eyes and said CREATIVITY.  When I was getting all of these words I just thought, “oh, that’s so nice! I do enjoy making yarn wreathes.”

I had no idea that the creativity pertained to words, to my writing (which I’ve been doing since I was a child writing borderline-disturbing short stories), and that the Lord had a community ready for me, full of like-minded, supportive women.  I am so, so thankful for The Influence Network, and that I took the plunge to attend the conference in Indianapolis on my own.

Lara Casey

During my flight to Indy I wrote the following wish list for my time at the conference:

authenticity, heart connections, strategic vision for the future, vulnerability, lifelong friendship, equipping, unquenchable passion.

Yes, yes, yes!  All of these things were received and walked into.

Shauna Niequist

Jessi and Haley interviewing Shauna Niequist

I will do at least one additional post about the conference–possibly more.  I received SUCH TRUTH, and I want to pass it on.  For now, here are a few of the nuggets of truth I received:

From Haley Morgan, blogger & cofounder of The Influence Network: “God doesn’t want you to fear the influence He’s given you.”

From Lara Casey, Editor-in-Chief of Southern Weddings: “Set good goals.  Set God goals, born from your core.”

From Shauna Niequist, blogger, author, and the woman I want to be when I grow up: “The more I cram in right now, the less I experience; I lose the ability to feel and taste.”

From Jessi Connolly, artist, blogger, and cofounder of The Influence Network: “God doesn’t want to heal you so He can better use you, but because He loves you.

From Jeff Goins, blogger and author: “Have you been holding back? It’s time to be all in… Your dream is a gift that’s been given to you by God, and it’s meant to be given away.”

Jessi and Haley

Jessi and Haley

God is so, so good, y’all.  Like, ridiculous, crazy good.

This post is a link up with The Influence Network.

  • kerrie williams

    I have many more posts coming as well! If only there were a place we could link them all up! I don’t want to miss a single one. I’m reliving the conference through reading these!

    • completelycaroline

      It’s so cool to see the conference through other girls’ eyes. We received sooo much good truth, it’s hard to not share it all. :)

  • Katie @ A Place to Dwell

    Aw, I love this post! I’m really glad we’re going to be accountability partners, too! I look forward to getting to know you more in the coming months and working toward our goals together! Also looking forward to helping each other destroy fears and live in TRUTH! xo

  • Andrea Corbin

    Makes me SO wish I had been there too….

  • Leslie Lee

    Yes, yes, yes. Same here – the things I was praying for and looking for going into the conference, God totally over-delivered. Excited for you, friend!

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