I hope you were able to catch Part I of my Blissdom recap last week. If not, you can read it here.
The sessions were informative and left me with tips, tools, and things to think about.
For me, the best part of the conference was Alli’s closing message. She talked about how we feel called to something, but we think it’s going to be easy. She likened it to farming: we get really excited to have our plot of land. We expect that we can throw out some seeds and a harvest will grow. But the reality is that we have to till the ground, we have to set a plow to it. It takes time. It’s really hard work.
We might be tempted to think that because our ground is too hard, we must have settled in the wrong field, so we give up and go to another one. We stopped plowing and didn’t realize that our harvest wasn’t that far away.
I left so encouraged because I understood exactly what she was talking about. In my journey to publish my book and other endeavors, I’ve been discouraged by the amount of time it takes for the harvest to come to fruition. But I’m going to keep plowing and working the soil.
The next morning, my roommates left on the early flight to Phoenix. I booked a late afternoon flight, so I locked the door behind them and went back to sleep. I slept in, such a gift, and decided to go to church at The Belonging Co. I listen to Alli’s podcast and Alex Seely has been a guest several times. She and her husband pastor the church. It was only half a mile from my hotel.
I used my phone for directions and walked through downtown Nashville to their church. The worship was amazing. But the message literally took my breath away.
Alex gave the message that morning and she talked about plowing. She talked about how it took seven years from when they started their church in their basement to grow it to the size it is today, to the point where they just recently broke ground on a building of their own.
She talked about how plowing the land is a toil and sometimes there are thistles and briars. But we cannot give up.
She referenced a documentary called “The Biggest Little Farm.” It’s about a family who wanted to start an organic farm. It shows how it wasn’t easy, they faced many difficulties with the land, the insects, and the process. But they persevered seven years and their farm is thriving.
I could not stop the tears. I knew God was speaking this message to me.
I walked out of church so encouraged. I left with new energy and passion to continue the work God has called me to. I’m going to keep plowing the land and wait on Him for the harvest.
I went back to my hotel, packed up my suitcases, and checked out. I had a few minutes to wait in the lobby before I needed to order a Lyft. As I pulled out my phone, I had the idea to buy a picture of a plow to put in my office as a reminder of this encouragement God gave to me. When I am feeling discouraged or weary of the work, I will look at it and remember to keep going.
I found the picture above on Etsy. How perfect that it’s of a woman on the plow!
The icing on the cake was that I looked up from my phone and saw Alli eating in the restaurant! I debated whether or not to interrupt her conversation with a friend, but I passed by quickly and told her about how her message had impacted me and about how Alex Seely gave the same message that morning at church. I told her I planned to buy a picture of the plow to put in my office. That’s what you see above.
Friend, what has God called you to plow? If you’re feeling discouraged because it’s harder than you thought or it’s taking longer than you expected, know you are not alone. Be encouraged that God is with you in the toil. He knows that hard work you do when no one else is looking. Trust that your harvest is coming.