Over this last weekend Jess and I travelled over to the Sunshine Coast, Queensland for the first Mum Heart Conference in Australia. It was exciting to see how it all came together – one of the things that Barb, Anne and myself (the speakers) were believing God would do is just dove-tail everything together – and that we didn’t need to orchestrate that. And God is faithful. Different speaking styles and different topics all blended in together – it was beautiful to see.
First of all I’d like to thank all those ladies who came and who made Jess and I so welcome. You were so open about the desires of your heart, and how you called to God and how God was answering you. It was amazing to be a part of that. Thank you.
The conference wasn’t a ‘how to homeschool’ conference – it was planned to encourage the heart. The theme was wrapped up in so many “R” words: relationship, renew, refresh, revive, restore, realighn….My prayer is that every mum went home with her heart ‘revved up’ and ‘ready to go’. May God continue to encourage your hearts.
Anne Tattersall shared her story with breast cancer. I knew Anne over 20 years ago…. We have not kept in touch and our lives have changed (she had a few kids back then – I was single). It was great reconnecting.
Barb Somervaille shared about keeping romance in our marriage – to find a new song to and keep dancing around the kitchen! (I can’t dance but maybe I need to learn to!) Barb also shared for the last session about what makes a home – some may have flowers, some may have cushions, some clutter of photo frames, but the real thing that makes a home is the people. A home is lived in – she encouraged us to keep our home, but find time for relationships – for the people.
I shared three sessions
- When we get anxious, worried, overwhelmed our heart is out of whack with Jesus and we need to be ‘realigned’. Our heart is our thinking, our will, our character, our emotions and passions and each one of these aspects needs to be in tune with God’s thinking, will, character, emotions and passions. When we get out of whack we need to ‘turn our eyes upon Jesus’. We also need to help our children align their hearts with God.
- Jesus commanded us to go out into all the world and preach, make disciples, baptise and teach – our children are our first disciples. They are the people with need (physical and spiritual that God has put right there in our homes) and we need to follow Jesus’ example and have them as our disciples. The key idea here was that it is relationship that will shape our kids hearts – not a programme.
- We need to tell our God stories – tell our kids the things that God has done in our life and in our kids’ lives. I want my kids to know my God – the God that doesn’t change. I want them to know that he will be faithful to them, as he has been to their parents, and their grandparents but they will only know that if I tell them!
During each of my sessions I paused and asked the ladies to notebook what they wanted to remember. They could copy write a quote or scripture verse, they could draw/sketch an illustration that would help them remember the key point, they could write their key point notes. Whatever would help them remember. A thought just came to me, that this would actually be a good exercise for a family to do after church… notebook the sermons you hear.
Saturday night we had a Q&A session with a panel of experienced homeschool mums – but each one I’m sure used different methods and curriculum. I will be answering some of these same questions over the next little while here on my blog.
What am I bringing home:
- I was encouraged by three specific conversations that I believe were God arranged. I met and spoke to so many ladies – but I take home these three conversations knowing that these were a part of God’s plan for me for this weekend.
- I was blessed by my daughter Jessica, her serving heart, her availability to me and to the rest of the team. She gave herself to the weekend, to help make the conference a success.
- I was challenged to continue to find fun things to do with Peter (date nights) instead of just having dinner and talking (though that is important too)
- I was challenged to think about the atmosphere that our home ‘feels’ like to my kids friends. I know my kids like the atmosphere of our home, but how do we invite other kids into that, so that they enjoy being there too.
As always with these types of experiences the enthusiasm is high for the next conference – who knows… it may just happen!
It was a great weekend! And a big well done to the team who pulled it together.