The Seminar

I’m usually preparing and planning but this time I procrastinated and pouted finding myself traveling alone to a Christian Women’s Seminar in Phoenix, entitled “Getting the Victory.”    I arrived early and asked a friendly gal how to find the registration desk.  That’s how I met Billie.

Billie and I became friends quickly.  She gave me a tour of the facility so I could navigate the workshops that would be featured after lunch.

I liked the cafe where you could hang out and I bought Billie a cup of coffee. We chatted about our personal lives, house pets, and our late mothers!   We laughed at our similar upbringing!  Billie kindly shared her notes with me since I missed the first night’s teaching.  I liked how she articulated scripture.

I tore into my registration packet like a wee child at Christmas, grabbing at all the workshop choices.  The one about Possessing Your Promise has my name on it, Billie,” I said.  What are you choosing?” She replied:  I wish these conferences offered something for the recovering homosexual.”  

My mind left in a fog at that point.  How should I address this?   I wondered if Women’s Ministries are missing a need here.   What should I say next?

I focused again and now I hear Billie continuing to talk about not believing she was born that way and quoting scripture to back her stand.  She told me that The Word of God is her benchmark, but, oh, the temptation is a colossal conflict. 

I observed my new friend.  Billie wore baggy, over-sized sweatpants and T-shirt, athletic shoes and cap.  I wore my signature color, pink.  My toes and nails were freshly polished with Boom Boom Hot Pink from Sinful Colors.  And I was able to get into my jeans with the sequin design on the back hip pockets.

It doesn’t matter that we’re different.   She was as comfortable with me as I was with her.  It’s ok to be mismatched when it’s God’s appointment.  Billie and I may have different styles and issues, but the truth is we are both flawed women.  Our battles, though diverse, cry out for God’s grace.

A while back, my prayer sister, my confidant---the one I tell my secrets to, raised her left eyebrow asking me if I know the ______commandment and can I say it out loud.  You know you’re in trouble when they ask you to recite a commandment.  I am in no position to judge anyone. 

Billie and I hung out that day.  We worshiped God in the assembly along with a few hundred other flawed women lifting up our voices and hands to a holy God.  The precious blood of Jesus Christ covered us like a safety net as we praised the One we love.

We said goodbye and exchanged emails.  Let’s go to next year’s seminar together! Don’t forget me, okay?”  

How could I ever forget you, Billie?

I get it that Billie tensed when I hugged her goodbye.  She barely answers my wordy emails.

I can’t imagine the loneliness of this trucker’s life, going home to an empty house with no one to share dinner with, or touch.  I pray for her often.  The Lord trusted me with this friendship and I won’t let Him down.


I learned from my weekend: 

  • People long to be accepted
  • Human Beings are flawed
  • We all need God’s grace in our faith journeys
  • Victory comes through Jesus Christ, not us



  1. What generous, unflinching blessings you shared with Billie! I don't know that I might have been so forthcoming.

    Regardless of her (seeming) reluctance to answer your emails, I've a hunch your words are a balm to her soul.

    Hope you and those "boom-boom" nails and sequined derriere have a fabulous week! :)


  2. As you know, there is no coincidence when it comes to things like this. God for whatever reason wanted you and Billie to have met and spent the time together that you did. Billie probably sensed a kind spirit in you to be so forthcoming; she must have known you would friend and not judge; I would imagine over time the friendship will grow as she continues to feel more comfortable talking with you, etc.


  3. People long for acceptance, and you gave that to Billie as you worshipped and attended the workshops. Keep up the e-mails, and encourage her to keep in the Word. Thank you for sharing with us here at Tell me a Story.

  4. Mary,

    Believing in the divine appointments of God that He carefully orchestrates all things. While you might not be there at the harvest, the time you spent with her and sharing the love of Christ transcends what words can't say.

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

  5. You are a gift that God sent to her and she is to you.
    I would love to attend an event like that.
    Have a nice day my friend:)

  6. You are even more awesome than I thought of you before. Your time with Billie sounds precious. She is seeking her heart and I will be praying for her as she finds God's word in her life.

  7. What a blessing to read this today! What a blessing you truly was to Billie and I am sure you feel you got the bigger blessing. It amazes me how God goes before us and takes care of every single detail. My first thought....had you NOT GONE ALONE....the encounter might not have taken place! I got the Holy Bumps now! I love your words....
    People long to be accepted
    Human Beings are flawed
    We all need God’s grace in our faith journeys
    Victory comes through Jesus Christ, not us

    Hugs and blessings sweet lady! Cindy

  8. Hello Mary, I love the last part of your encounter with Billie. You reached out to hug her! Do you know how far that warm gesture had gone?
    Perhaps no one ever thought her worthy of their friendship!
    But God's love embraces us just the way you showed her love and compassion.
    Many Blessings to you and thanks for sharing your story.

  9. Hi Mary! I am really speechless. God is SO good! He knew you were just the right person for Billie, and she for you. Maybe she doesn't respond to your emails because she expresses herself better in person. Not everyone is comfy with computers.

    But imagine her being able to just come out and tell you her story? God wanted you to go alone to that conference to hear it. I am so in awe of you, and of Our Lord. Thank you for sharing!!

  10. This was a heart-grabber, a heart-breaker for me, re: our present-day world way of living. I can love the people, which is true, but we can't agree on everything. All I can do is turn to and serve the Lord, day by day. Blessings...

  11. Amen, sister. Not one of us other than the One who died for us can point an finger of flaws… as you said, we all got em'.

    I'm praying for your friend, Mary. Bless your kind heart of our Savior.

  12. Amen, sister. Not one of us other than the One who died for us can point an finger of flaws… as you said, we all got em'.

    I'm praying for your friend, Mary. Bless your kind heart of our Savior.

  13. Oh my, dear said a mouthful when you said that we are all flawed women...for truly we are. And the victory is in Jesus NOT is us...true true words. Sometimes I tend to forget that and become more flawed when I try to "fix" my own flaws.

    Thank you so much for sharing your heart here, Mary.

  14. Thank you for sharing your heart in this matter.

    What a beautiful example of Christ's love you showed Billie.

    Indeed, we are all flawed and in need of the Savior's forgiveness, mercy and love and to show that same forgiveness, mercy and love to others.

  15. this is so beautiful and shows the gentleness of your heart. The truth is...we are all alike...all human....all wanting love and acceptance. And I agree with what Terri said, you are more awesome than I thought before. Tons of hugs.

  16. I don't think that "Boom Boom Hot Pink" nail polish and the sequins on your pants' back pockets can outshine the light you reflect from the Source! Especially to Billie! That was awesome the Lord put you there for her. For someone who wouldn't judge Billie. He knew the right woman to be there and represent His love. I think your magnetic personality and Christian ways were what were offered by Him to Billie in that seminar and I pray she realized that offer of friendship. You always bless me...And I love your humor. Always. Makes me leave with a big smile on my face. Shine on sister! Love and blessings.

  17. I love it when we make new friends that add a different dimension to our lives and make us think. Sounds like an awesome seminar!! Thanks for linking up to Testimony Tuesday, friend!

  18. When I feel mismatched in the situation or the people I'm with, I just take it that God is trying to teach me something. Maybe to be more patient or flexible. Or to always bloom where I'm planted.

    His plans are still far better than mine. :)

    Thanks for this beautiful take away message for the weekend.

    Have a blessed one! :)

  19. I'm so glad you met Billie and became fast friends. Often we are too scared to meet people who are different than us, but they are often the very ones who can unveil to us a new side of God. Nothing to fear from different! Even though I'm late to this post, I'm so glad I'm getting to read it today. Thanks for sharing, Mary.

  20. What a beautiful post! I know God is pleased with your heart reaching out to Billie. I will be praying for her. Thank you for sharing your heart here!


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