Time Out for Women, inspirational events targeted at women and sponsored by Deseret Book, came to Arlington, Texas, the weekend of Oct. 12-13. The theme this year is “Think higher, believe higher, live higher" (see Isaiah 55:9).
I spent my three-hour drive to the event contemplating this theme. I looked forward to the spiritual messages that would be shared by the presenters both through music and word.
Friday evening, speaker and author John Bytheway taught that whether something is a curse or a blessing depends on how you look at it. Sheri Dew, Deseret Book CEO, concluded the evening and reminded us that our Heavenly Father is strong and his power is available to us if we call upon him.
Saturday morning, Chris Williams, author of "Let It Go," shared his story of forgiveness and healing and said that the light at the end of the “dark night of our trials” is the light of Jesus Christ. Singer Sandra Turley followed, enveloping the room with her beautiful voice and a message of our divine power to create. John Hilton III finished the morning by telling us to lift up our eyes toward heaven to see the bigger picture.
The first speaker of the afternoon was author Merrilee Boyack. Her message and the power with which she delivered it had a profound impact upon me. She said that we are all enlisted as women warriors in the army of God. As warriors, we must bravely stand up and speak up for righteousness. She quoted President Gordon B. Hinckley’s September 2004 First Presidency message, in which he stated, “I believe the challenge to oppose this evil is one from which members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, as citizens, cannot shrink.” She said that we must catch a glimpse of who we really are and the power that we have.
I was so impressed and inspired by this message. At the same time, it troubled me a little. I worried that I lacked the courage necessary to “stand up and speak up.” I had faith that my Heavenly Father would be there for me, but was it enough? I worried that my fear would be stronger than my faith.
As I thought through this, Laurel Christensen Day took the stage and brought with her the answer to my questions. She spoke about fear. She said that our lives can be consumed by fears. These fears can keep us from opportunities and blessings of a lifetime. She said that we can fight these fears with the power of the Holy Ghost.
As she spoke, I knew that the Holy Ghost would give me the power to conquer my fear. I knew that I would have the power to stand up and speak up for righteousness. I knew that with my Heavenly Father’s help, I could do anything that he required of me.
As the closing prayer brought the event to a close, I left the venue feeling a little lighter, a little stronger, a little closer to the spirit.
Sandra Nazar lives, writes and blogs in Oklahoma with her husband and five children. She blogs at www.sincerelysandra.net