Touting a sold-out show is probably a wee bit misleading. Multiple dress rehearsals and clever choreography didn’t guarantee the hit production. No, I’m pretty sure it was the fact that the number of construction paper tickets I cut with my grandmother’s “good” scissors exactly matched the number of family members present in the house. And besides, it’s not like they had a choice whether or not to attend my debut performance between the apple tree and swing set. Looking for a Christian speaker? Seeking the spotlight…. well it looks like I’ve been doing it for a few decades.
Look at me
I’m just going to go ahead and say this, I like the stage. While most people practice deep breathing techniques and wipe sweaty palms on their clothes before speaking in public, I calmly fork food into my mouth and socialize. It energizes me. Nearly twenty years ago after studying and seeking to know my spiritual gift, I felt God calling me to speak. After one of my early engagements, I wrote what God laid on my heart in my journal.
Isaiah 42:8, “I am Yahweh, that is My name; I will not give My glory to another…” HCSB
He won’t share
That was 2001 I think and sadly not much changed afterwards. I spoke some then it fizzled out and it’s just as well because I was busy being a mom, wife and doctor. When the kids grew up and I lost my career and found myself home alone, I pulled those old journals out and starting sharing my struggles right out here in public. Now that makes my palms sweat.
2 Corinthians 1:6b, “For when we ourselves are comforted, we will certainly comfort you. Then you can patiently endure the same things we suffer.” NLT
Naturally people wanted to know more of my story so I started speaking again. Did I mention I love the stage? I do, I can’t help it. I joke; you laugh. I share; you clap. I know it shouldn’t but the applause just encourages me to get back up there. Preparing to launch into speaking last year I returned to the “She Speaks” conference but I never returned to a whole home. You know, the spotlight just didn’t matter anymore. No one really knew what I was going through and I didn’t share but invitations kept coming to get up on the stage. Instead of energizing, it drained me – physically, emotionally and spiritually. If anyone applauded, I didn’t care, I was just trying to be obedient. One night after an event where more prayers were spent than dollars, I left the stage and hid behind a partition while musicians led worship.The spotlight aimed upward where it belongs and hot tears flowed down my cheeks. I told God, “This is what I want to do,” and He spoke gently to my soul, “Don’t you understand, this is what I want you to do?”God had to get the me out of me before He could use me Click To Tweet
The breaking of my heart squeezed the me out of me. Finally I felt Him nudging me to pursue a speaking ministry. I partnered with a wonderful assistant, Jasa, had a one-sheet graphically designed and hired a video producer.
Then I lost my voice
Please don’t feel sorry for me when I say this, but loss is a way of life for me these days and I’m really okay.
Job 13:15, “Though he slay me, I will hope in him…” ESV
Because I believe God called me to speak at this particular season I am launching my speaking ministry – without a voice. When I say my voice is gone, I mean I can’t speak at all. Either God will restore my voice or we can sit and look at each other. Maybe I could even lip sync. If all else fails, I’ll cut some construction paper tickets and meet you out between the swing set and apple tree.
Acts 18:9, “Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision, ‘Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent, for I am with you.'” NKJV
I know I’m not Paul and I didn’t have a vision, but literally a friend texted me this verse as I was writing this paragraph. Anyway, if you are planning an event, I hope you click here and visit my Speaker Page. I would like for you to meet Jasa too.
This is risky business in more ways than one. But my heart is right and part of Jasa’s job is to make sure it stays that way. God won’t share His glory, if needed, He will shut my mouth. He scares me sometimes.
Luke 1:22b, “for he kept making signs to them but remained unable to speak.” NIV
Remember Zechariah? When his miracle happened his voice returned and he praised God. Sounds like a pretty appropriate response, don’t you think?
Luke 1:64, “Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue set free and he began to speak, praising God.” NIV
Can you hear me now?
For details on speaking email Jasa@vickiepetzhenderson.com