Wednesday, July 25, 2012

She Speaks 2012 - Seriously God?!? and a GIVE-AWAY!!!

In my previous post, I shared how my journey to She Speaks began and now I'll pick up where that left off...I had listened to my husband and registered for She Speaks. Part of me was excited; I'd been there before and knew I'd be blessed, but part of me still wasn't sure.

Honestly it was a big financial investment and leaving my husband and 5 children at home for 3 days was a hard concept to think about (well except in those moments where I'm tempted to come UNGLUED! Yes, that's a plug for Lysa's new book).

God knew I was uneasy about all of this and brought peace and confirmation in a way only He can; really it still leaves me shaking my head. On March 26, I received this message via email, "Congratulations! You entered Zondervan's Facebook contest and your name was randomly chosen today to be the grand prize winner! You're going to get $1000 Visa voucher."

I'll be honest I read the email and initially thought what is this? Then I wondered is this real? Then I noticed who the message was from - Sheila Gregoire, an author I was introduced to on the Moms Together Facebook page. It was all coming back to me...her publisher ran a Second Honeymoon Contest to help with the launch of her new book. This email was for real...I'd won $1000!! Unbelievable, so I called my husband to share the news!!

He was surprised as well and then asked, "How did you win this?" I gave him the quick answer, "It was a give-away to help launch a book." And then he asked the question, the one some of you may be thinking, "What book?" That day as I answered him on the phone I began to blush and even today as I type my face is as red as my shirt, but I'll say it anyway, "The title of the book is The Good Girl's Guide to Great Sex."

So I'm back to the title of this post, Seriously God? I mean really me the girl who never wins, wins $1000, but more than that - Seriously God, I win because of a book about sex? Job, my husband, simply said, "God has a sense of humor!!" He's right because I'm the girl who doesn't hold hands in public and the mom who about crawled under the pew when her son sounded out the three letter word the pastor had spelled in the pulpit. (Yeah, the one that starts with s and rhymes with Chex!)

Eventually I got past all of this and realized I'd won for a reason...the publisher may have selected my name at random, but God knew. He knew the money would bless me and He knew the book was one I needed to read. Since I'm still blushing I'll spare you all the details, but I do want to say the book is worth your time...this is a topic we often avoid, but it's one we need to address. Not just for ourselves, but for our spouse, our family and really society in general. I would encourage you to visit Sheila Gregoire's site and learn more about her message and improve your marriage!! Follow this link - Shelia Gregoire or to purchase this book click here.

So how does this connect with She Speaks...shortly following my husband's words about God's sense of humor, he says, "I guess you don't need to worry about the money for She Speaks." I responded, "Well, me going to North Carolina by myself really isn't much of a second honeymoon." To my surprise he says, "Oh that does more for our marriage than you know!"

That might appear to be a crazy statement that makes no sense, but please hear what he is saying...being who God made us to be and doing what He calls us to is what we need to do, it's what we're created for and as husband and wife it's what we need to support and encourage in one another. Don't worry we are going to get away and be blessed, but Job's words again left me thinking, "Seriously God?" I am so blessed with a husband who believes in me!

Now I come to end of this post, a story it's taken me nearly 4 months to share because really I fear the thought of letting people know I read a book about sex...I mean seriously God! But the conference this money helped pay for is changing my heart; I'm becoming less concerned about what others think and more focused on doing what God says.

So friend, today I used a word I never have on my blog! I bought a book I never thought I would, I read it too and today I'm going to give one away! Not because I have to but because I want to...if you are a wife or will be some day this book is for you. If you're a mom and fear those conversations this topic will create this book is for you! Sheila shares from God's Word and her own experience a message we all need during a time when 50 Shades of Gray and Magic Mike are making too big of an impact.

Honestly I'm again saying Seriously God? as He leads me to do something I've never done, but friend obedience is what it's all about!!

So how have you found yourself shaking your head and echoing those same words? Share your thoughts in the comments and be entered to win a copy of the book for yourself! Post a link to the give-away on Facebook and be entered to win again! (Just let me know you did and leave a way for me to contact you - your blog link or email address.) Stop by on Friday and I'll announce the winners...looking forward to hearing how her husband responds!!


  1. Jill,

    IT was so great seeing you at She Speaks 2012. I wish we could have had time to sit in the Zondervan Cafe with a cup of Starbucks and chat for hours!!

    I love the way God confirmed your assignment by giving you $1000 for the conference - that's incredible!!

    You are a great writer! So, just like the rest of us, keep plugging along in perseverance, loving God will all you've got, and He will make sure you win the grand prize that awaits you, sweet friend!

    I'm happy to promote your giveaway this morning and will be sure to send a shout-out on my facebook wall.

    Love & continued prayers,

  2. Girl! You have me laughing out loud! I had no idea that was the book that led to you winning the money. :) I just love God! And I LOVE how He used your husband to send you to She Speaks, how He had Job see the importance of you being who God created you to be.

    I am proud of you for sharing this, even if it did make your face turn fifty shades of red! You are so right! We need a GOD perspective on sex. It has been so perverted by the enemy, by this world, by media. He created it. It is good. And we need to let Him be at the center of even that. For sure need to check this book out.

    I love, love, love you, sweet friend! :) Tell Job thank you from me for sending you to the conference. Just cannot imagine there being a better roommate! :)

  3. Way to go Jill! First, you shared at this! ;)

    As Kimberly said above we def need a Godly perspective on sex. Our past experiences can sure shape the way we look at this thing that was meant to be a beautiful gift (in marriage), given to us by God.

    I didn't know you had used the money you won to go to She Speaks. LOVED reading this story and I could just hear Job saying that! Funny because at the Pow Wow on Saturday I commented to someone who had mentioned something Job had said about your trip, that I don't think you would do half the things you do if Job didn't spur you on! You are blessed to have a husband who believes in you, and in all God can do through you!! He has a great way of saying just the right thing to point you in the right direction and keep things in proper perspective. Sure glad each of us married a Beran boy!! :)

    Love ya, friend! AND I'm soooo proud of you for being Brave, in so many ways!

  4. Teehee!! I just love our Daddy. What a way He has of blessing His children... And in turn we get to bless others!

    You have such a sweet way about you, Jill. And as brash and abrasive as I can be, the "S" word is still one of those hard ones for me too!lol

    Thank you for your obedience! I love Sheila's web site and have been following for some time, but I don't have her book yet. As soon as I can get on the laptop, I'll be posting about this on Facebook as well.


  5. I've seen several messages lately that say the "magic" happens outside of our comfort zones. I think God is telling me something, b/c it really takes trust in him to move to a new level. (BTW, "magic" isn't nec. referring to sex, although I suppose it could be.)

  6. Hi Jill,

    Clearly you only told me PART of this story while we were at She Speaks! *grin* I love, the title of this post and love the whole crazy story! And I certainly appreciate your transparency and willingness to share the whole truth.

    God certainly provides in ways we'd never consider, doesn't He? And it's awesome that Job pointed you toward She Speaks, because ultimately that meant WE got to meet! I loved spending time with you!

    Oh, and I've visited Sheila's blog and really like it. She's got an amazing ministry going on there.


  7. Jill, what an amazing story of the way that God provides for us in the most unexpected ways. I am so happy that your husband encouraged you to go to She Speaks & that this book and giveaway were such a part of it. I will have to check out her website & message! I had never heard of this book before! :)

    Have a wonderful day!

  8. O MY STARS!!! I sat right next to you on that plane and had NO idea! HA! O , I am kidding! Isn't it amazing how God will take the least of OUR expectations and the least of methods we would choose to lead us! She Speaks 2012 has done just that, for me! I will be sure to link your blog to mine.... FOR LIFE!! This book needs to be SOLD OUT!!!
    Love you! Robbin Coleman

  9. Haha, I am leaving a comment, not to be entered into a contest, but to thank you for this post--I love your honesty. Your spirit is definitely showing : ) I hope you are really blessed for your obedience in ways you couldn't even begin to imagine. It was great meeting you, too, and I will check back for more updates...great job! PS Do you know there is a book, Seriously God? by a She Speaks grad I met last year--Jenny Smith? Check it out on Amazon and her website at Jenny is my guest blogger next Thursday!

  10. Thats how I got to She speaks when I went a few years ago. Someone nominated me for a community scholarship and I used that $1000 to go to this conference. Renee Swope was the key note with her message "In the Shadow of the Cross". I bought it on CD and watch it yearly. It was a transforming time in my life!!

    You know, one of our Christian sisters Jenny Smith wrote a book "Seriously God" which I am currently in. It has been a blessing-check it out! I'm sure all the husbands out there hope you pick their wife's name for the book give-a-way...just saying (wink!wink!)

    Blessings!! Pamela

  11. Awesome, Jill!!! :) Thank you for sharing your story...God just always boggles my mind! :) Loved connecting with you at She Speaks...but since we really only live a few hours apart, we really shouldn't have to go to North Carolina to see each other! :)

    Blessings, Sister!

  12. When you kept saying "Seriously God", I thought you were going to give away a copy of Jenny Smith's book of that title. However, I haven't read it myself but do follow Sheila on FB and she is doing a great service as you said in this age of "50 Shades" and "Magic Mike."

  13. What a great story! You have an awesome husband and an even greater Daddy in heaven! So glad you were blessed by the winnings and stretched at the same time.

  14. Jill, I did not know any of this story, and I absolutely love it. Hearing stories of how God ordains our appointments with Him and seeing how uniquely He chooses to speak into our lives build my faith so much. This is a GREAT story!

    It was truly a blessing to be with you in person last weekend. You are a gifted writer, and I pray God will use your giftedness to draw many women closer to His heart and His Word.

    Love you,

  15. What a funny story! I think there should be more books like this out there. So cool that you are giving one away!

  16. I think the whole story is soooo inspiring and faith-building, Jill! To see how God reaches down into our lives and to be able to recognize His hand in everything is just such a priveledge. You gotta love God's timing... and His sense of humor! And you have to admit that it IS pretty funny, Jill!!! ;-) I can just hear Job's response to that also!

    It was great to chat tonight and hear how everything went last weekend! God is doing soooo much through you! Praying God's blessings on you for your obedience to go and to share, for God "desires obedience rather than sacrifice." Even when it's hard. ESPECIALLY when it's hard. I feel very blessed to have such an awesome role model as you for a sister-in-law! Will definitely post to my facebook!

    Love you, Jill!

  17. Jill, I just arrived home last night after being away for two weeks, and I'm catching up here. LOVE the God-story you have shared. His touches over your life and His gracious gifts to you in the way of provision have reminded me of His love for me as well. Thank you for letting me see Jesus in you...always.

    Blessings to you and your family....and a special hug for Joy :-)

  18. This is written by Stacy Eldridge from Ransomed Heart Ministries...She and John are all about Godly marriages. This reaches deep inside...

    "One of the deepest ways a woman bears the image of God is in her mystery. By mystery we don't mean "forever beyond your knowing," but "something to be explored." "It is the glory of God to conceal a matter," says the book of Proverbs, "to search out a matter is the glory of kings" (25:2). God yearns to be known. But he wants to be sought after by those who would know him. He says, "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" (Jer. 29:13). There is dignity here; God does not throw himself at any passerby. He is no harlot. If you would know him you must love him; you must seek him with your whole heart. This is crucial to any woman's soul, not to mention her sexuality. "You cannot simply have me. You must seek me, pursue me. I won't let you in unless I know you love me."

    Is not the Trinity a great mystery? Not something to be solved, but to be known with ever-deepening pleasure and awe, something to be enjoyed. Just like God, a woman is not a problem to be solved, but a vast wonder to be enjoyed. This is so true of her sexuality. Few women can or even want to "just do it." Foreplay is crucial to her heart, the whispering and loving and exploring of each other that culminates in intercourse. That is a picture of what it means to love her soul. She yearns to be known, and that takes time and intimacy. It requires an unveiling. As she is sought after, she reveals more of her beauty. As she unveils her beauty, she draws us to know her more deeply.

    Whatever else it means to be feminine, it is depth and mystery
    and complexity, with beauty as the very essence.

    Every woman has a beauty to unveil.
    Every woman."