Allume - the Best Year Yet

I have had the incredible privilege of being able to attend Allume every year it has run (which began as The Relevant Conference). Last year I set out to the {then} Relevant conference ready to be all about myself. Let me tell you, I left that conference feeling terrible. I left empty and completely unfulfilled. The conference was fine. It was beautiful! But my soul was screaming at me for being so selfish.

But this year was different.

This year I was part of the Allume team--and at first glance you might think that something spectacular because of the title. You may think of me as some "big wig" superstar.

I'm not.

I'm just me.

What made this year so unique and so rewarding for me was the awesome privilege of being able to serve you.

Allume is a fantastic avenue to connect Christian women bloggers and I am so passionate about it's vision, that being a part of it is  more than exciting for me.

God used Relevant last year to speak to me about my own gifts. I'm a writer, yes. I love to string words together and organize my thoughts and ideas. But I also enjoy {in a strange kind of way} organizing details and working administrative projects. It's something I discovered of myself in high school.

Through a series of emails, God made a working connection between Sarah Mae and I and the next thing I know, I'm an administrative assistant (er, crackerjack) on the Allume team.

I am not in this position because I wanted to be part of a "big name". I'm in it because I wanted to be part of a "big God" and I don't believe it was an accident that He placed me here.

So, working behind the scenes and answering, literally, thousands of emails throughout the course of the year, and then seeing it all come alive as each team member did their part was nothing short of amazing.

The best part? Serving you. I have never had a more rewarding year, and being able to put faces to the email addresses I've conversed with was just wonderful. To hug the beautiful necks of ladies I had worked with on blog consults and have conversed with on Twitter and in Facebook groups was such a gift to me, that sometimes I'd grab women in passing whom I'd already hugged to hug them again! I just wanted to soak up everyone!

Furthermore, I got to meet and work with the amazing sponsors throughout the months and see their hearts behind their ministries. Each company represented at Allume is much more than a company alone. They have great vision for serving others, too. That's what makes them such a great fit for Allume. Our goal is one in the same; to serve.

Thank you to those of you who stepped out and came up to me to say "Hello". I really appreciate it and am sometimes really bad at recognizing people from their photos!! Apparently that's not the case for me since people recognized me even when I didn't have my name tag on! In fact, Sheila Gregoire shocked me by knowing me and my blog name!

So what is my take away from Allume this year?

Serving others is much more rewarding then serving myself.

That may be an obvious truth to some, but for me, it took real experience and regret for me to learn that.

Ann Voskamp is not wrong when she says you need to stoop lower to get the reward. That's where it's not in reaching for a platform of people who will serve you (by making your numbers climb)--instead it's reaching out to the people right in front of you to serve them. I reached out to help Sarah Mae and she accepted.

Many people throughout the weekend spoke the same truth in different ways. Trina Holden talked about fully serving the people already on your blog rather than going out to find more.

This space is meant to serve you.

My vessel, my life is meant to serve others so that I might worship Him.