Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life—in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.
Philippians 2:12-18 (New International Version)
On Friday, (January 29, 2010) I had the opportunity to travel to Willits, California with my BFF Starla and three other women from my church family. Melodee, the pastor's wife, Michelle, Pastor and Melodee's daughter, and Sandy, the church secretary.
We hit the road about noon and arrived at our motel a couple of hours later. Then we headed about 30 minutes further south so we could stop by Mendocino Barkery, the pet shop of Starla's uncle and then Walmart. We exchanged cell numbers and then went our separate ways. Starla and I headed off to look for dice for Bunco Night, (can you believe there was not one set of dice in this store?!?) and the fabric department. Starla was looking for some very specific fabric for one of her book purses. We finally got someone to help us ( a very nice gentleman) and then we were on our way.
We were all starving by this time and had a couple of hours before we needed to back to Willits for the start of the Women's Advance Ministries conference. We drove across the parking lot to Applebee's and headed in for some really good food. I won't bore you with the details of what we had, but it was delicious.
Left to right are Starla, Melodee, Michelle, Sandy, and yours truly.
(Seriously...why do people let me go out in public looking this way?) I see a diet and lots of exercise in the future. Ha!
After dinner we headed back to Willits and Agape Bible Church. After checking in we found our seats and settled in. The first real treat of the evening was The Beaudettes. These ladies are just too funny as they use the tunes of popular songs with changed words. We loved them and were laughing till we cried. Next up was the sweet Peggy Roloff.
She is an amazing woman and I feel blessed that I was able to hear her share her story. She told us that the conference would be focusing on hope. She shared a small portion of her history of getting married, having expectations of what family life would be like, and those expectations almost always are not what God deems is best for us. The conference ended for the night with a yummy dessert of snicker-doodle stars with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, and a cherry on top.
Back at the motel, Michelle decided that she was going to use her flat iron on the bush that grows on top of my head...some people call it hair. So while that heated up, we all got into our pj's and made the calls home to talk to hubbies. Since the next day was Melodee's birthday, Starla gave her the gift she had been working on. Melodee's favorite book is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers so Starla made her a book purse using that book.
Starla's and see for yourself. Let me say...Flat Irons Are a Gift From God! All I could say was "Wow" and "Oh my goodness." Yeah, my life has changed. Anyway...
The next morning I touched up my hair, we all got dressed and ready to go and headed to Starbuck's...yum. Breakfast was being served at the conference, free of charge. Then into the conference for three more sessions of worship songs, special music, and Peggy. I wish I could tell you all I learned, but I'm still processing it and I think it will come out in other posts as that process takes place.
After the lunch break, and before the sessions started up again, we headed over to another part of the church where the Ministry Faire was taking place. This was an area set up where various churches could display/inform others how their church ministers to others. We did a display about Ruth's Room which Starla took down before I could snap a picture.
As the day ended, we headed out to the car to see this.