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by: Amanda Lenhardt
Socality was something I just stumbled upon like most people do. I couldn't tell you exactly where I found it, or who I found it from but all I know is that it came into my life and captivated me in a way that other things haven't. The conference there was always this lingering feeling that I should go, but I kept making excuses on why I wouldn't be able to or that I couldn't justify spending the money at the time, but the feeling never went away. Between a few texts from a friend I had met in Nashville actually through the hashtag I finally said yes and two weeks before the conference I booked my ticket from Florida to Oregon and said Yes to what ever God had in store for me.
From there I trusted and just said whatever happens, happens and God blessed that. From the moment I arrived in Portland things happened that made me realize that God had a very specific plan for me on this trip. It was more about trusting in him and less about trusting me, and as the super planner I usually am I found a lot of freedom in letting go. Things fell into place that I couldn't have controlled, I met people that inspired me and encouraged me and carried a fire that I realized I had been lacking from my life.
See what I thought I was going to Socality for was to create connections and be inspired from other Creatives which I was, but God's plan was much deeper then that. It was Friday morning during worship and I just felt overwhelmed by this feeling of Christ. It wasn't an audible voice, but just that God was saying "how can you be so close, yet be so far." I was hit with such conviction. How could I be so involved in the church and on the outside look like I was such a "great" Christian, but distant myself so much on the inside. I had spent so much time this year trying to fill my life with everything but God. Whether it was control, or drinking, or attention and really had removed any closest I had with God. I had hardened my heart toward grace and was trying to pursue life on my own. Things that I would normally have strong conviction on I pushed as far back as I could, and was living a life that dishonored God. I was struggling with depression and anxiety and honestly just pushed Christ as far away as I possibly could. So in that moment, being surrounded by people that were filled with the Holy Spirit, that held that fire I had blown out in my own life I realized my sin. I realized the grace I had been running from this last year and I wanted my fire back. See God's plan for me wasn't to Network or grow my business, but was to grow my heart. I became soft again to the things I had been running from for so long.
So what did I learn from Socality? I learned what It means to trust in the Lord. I learned what it means to take leaps of faith, and to listen to what God is telling you. I learned what is means to let go. I learned what it means to get your feet dirty. And I learned what it means to be okay with being uncomfortable.
The first night something was said that stuck out to me. "Don't settle for an easy life." Through Socality I am pursuing a life honoring to God and that, I am thankful for.
Thank you for everything you guys are doing, you really are changing lives.