“But we need a new refrigerator,” I argued.
“The fridge has lasted this long. It can last another year,” he reasoned.
“You can’t know that for sure. What if it stops working altogether? Before next year’s Christmas bonus?”
“We’ll worry about the fridge breaking down when it breaks down. You should go.”
Last year, it was the fridge. The year before that, it was the transmission in our mini-van. Before that, I can’t remember. But I’m sure it was something.
The truth is, I can count on one hand the number of times I have actually been away from my family overnight. It’s just not that easy to get away. Whenever an opportunity arises, I find myself rehearsing the same lines:
It costs too much money.
And who will care for the kids while Jeff is at work?
So with each passing year, I read about a conference online, and I contemplate which writing sample to submit for critiquing. But in the end, the same excuses win out.
And another year goes by.
I finally attended Mt. Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference with my dear friend (and favorite librarian) Liz. And I’m so glad I did. What a privilege it was to spend nearly a week together. We shared a cabin and meals — and we talked late into the night about the things we learned at the various workshops that day.
After returning home, I spent the next several weeks reflecting on everything I experienced. And I knew from then on, I would make every effort to attend more conferences.
So this year I’m attending She Speaks, which focuses on ministering to women through the local church and through speaking and writing. I signed up for the speaker track.
I’m also attending Allume, which focuses on blogging and ministering through social media.
Conferences are not only great learning opportunities, (and Learner is one of my strengths), but conferences are also wonderful opportunities for building memories with old friends and meeting new ones.
If you’re ever looking for a writer’s retreat, I highly recommend the Mt. Hermon Christian Writer’s Conference. It’s more than just a conference. It’s a writer’s retreat and spiritual retreat all in one.
The grounds are beautiful, with paths that crisscross the landscape, inviting attendees to explore the mountainside. My favorite part of the whole week was the afternoon I slipped away for a long quiet walk, taking in the beauty of God’s creation.
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Do you have a favorite conference you love to attend?