Philadelphia may be the “City of Brotherly Love,” but we were definitely in the city of sisterly love this past weekend. Such gracious and loving women with servant’s hearts—that’s how I would describe the volunteers at Fresh Grounded Faith Philadelphia.
Yet, those volunteers were just a sampling of the generous women who attended. I received so much encouragement, snacks, gifts, and over-the-top love from these women. Wow!
At every turn, they were doing their best to bless all of us and make our time there memorable.
And they certainly did! From my favorite patchouli fragrance filling my quiet room to the charcuterie boards for me and Terrie, our National Conference Director, it was sisterly love all around.
My charcuterie board had a carved tree with the word “Rooted” and one of my favorite verses, Philippians 4:13, crafted into it. Terrie’s charcuterie board displayed Isaiah 41:10, which is one of her favorite verses. How did they even know that?
Again, these women went above and beyond to make all of us feel special.
Under the amazing leadership of our Local Conference Coordinator, Lori Mason, everything ran smoothly. And I was especially pumped to spend time with Lori’s husband as our driver because he’s a huge C.S. Lewis fan as well. He showed such hospitality as he drove me and Phil back and forth to the conference making sure I had a Starbucks and great conversation about C.S. Lewis on the way!
I loved listening to Joseph O’Brien lead worship with his dad, Michael O’Brien! It’s obvious why that young man was on America’s Got Talent. His voice and musicianship were top-notch! But truly, his heart was what stood out to me. It really was a delight to be led by such a superb father-son team.
Laura Story also brought her son with her—seven-year-old Griffin. That little boy sang along with his mom as he sat in the front row, and it was the sweetest thing ever! Well, maybe what was even sweeter was when he presented me with a plastic bead bracelet that he made with my name on it! It was precious, and it’s a treasure to me just like his mom is.
But Laura isn’t just special to me. She’s a blessing to so many others who hear her speak and sing her song “Blessings.”
Speaking of blessings, those dear women in Philadelphia even had a sign made out of wood in Laura’s quiet room with the lyrics of “Blessings” on it. So generous, right?
And Karen Abercrombie was so inspiring. She has a way with words that lights a fire in your Spirit and reminds you of the incomparable strength and power of God almighty!
I taught about how to live an unshakeable life by guarding your heart, glorifying God with your body, and dwelling well while using the Philippians 4:8 filter. We were reminded that God alone is our rock and our salvation! He is our fortress, and we will not be shaken! (Psalm 62:6)
The altar of the church was flooded with women on Saturday morning, and there was a genuine outpouring of God’s Spirit in that place. After a year of preparations for this conference, to see some of the fruit of that labor is humbling. God moved, and we got to witness Him working in that place.
We rejoiced at 8 new sisters in Christ, 39 women who chose to renew their commitment to the Lord, and 65 children sponsored through Compassion International. Thank you, Jesus!
We also had 15 encouragers receiving women during the altar time, but there were so many who came forward to pray that Terrie had to pull women from the first two rows to help receive and join them in prayer.
Another thing that was especially moving during the conference was that the pastors of our host church, Calvary Fellowship Church, joined us.
The lead pastor, Pastor Lee, was at the conference the entire weekend, sitting in the front row, joining us in worship, and even taking notes. What a kind gesture that encouraged me and esteemed Lori and all the women who volunteered and attended. May God bless him and his staff for their generosity to us.
There was certainly some brotherly love among all the sisters who were there!
I’m grateful for the time I got to spend with the gracious and loving church body in Philadelphia. Without a doubt, the Lord is using Calvary Fellowship and all of our co-host churches to reach women in their community, and I pray He would bless the work of their hands.
May their sisterly love be a light that shines bright in this city for His glory!
Jennifer and the FGF Team!
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