the biggest lesson i learned from planning a conference

song: alps by novo amor

read time: 5.5 mintues

i’m back. okay, truth be told — i’ve been back for a week or two from new york. but, gahh — ineeded a second or two to catch my breath. wild hearts conference was everything and more. i am blown away by how beautiful the event was — p.s. about to get all teary-eyed in starbucks thinking about it.

i am still processing everything that i learned throughout this past season — it was so much. i can tell you, i’m not the same person as i was at the beginning of this year — changed happened, good change. heart change, soul change.

one of the biggest lessons that i learned throughout this seasons was the importance of RESTING within chasing the dream.

okay, i’m just gonna break it down as simply as a i can.

so bare with me.

i think for so many of us, my self included, we chase a dream and the whole time we are striving. our pursuit of the dream kinda looks like a kid wearing floaties and trying to tread water. but, the kid, God bless his soul, can’t shake the fear of drowning. so, in the process of treading water — he’s kicking and screaming and flailing around. we all know we’ve seen that kid at the pool. but, we all know, if the kid would calm down and rest — he’d realize that all he needs to do is tread water to stay afloat and that his floaties will keep him above water if he gets tired. but, instead, he’s wasting energy and stamina by his fear of drowning.

sometimes, we are a lot like this kid.

we’re so fearful of failing, not meeting our goals, or not making an impact— that we find ourselves striving as we chase our dreams.

don’t get me wrong— i’m not saying that we shouldn’t work hard for our dreams. but, i do think there is a difference between working hard and striving. in fact, in the dictionary, strive is defined as “struggle or fight vigorously”.

i don’t believe that we were meant to struggle or to experience the copious amounts of worry, stress, fear, and self-doubt that we do sometimes as we chase our dreams. i believe that while challenges and chaos arise within the pursuit of our dreams — that our souls were meant to be at rest throughout the process.

i know — that sounds like a contradiction. but, here’s the thing — when we worry / stress / and entertain feelings of fear and self-doubt, we don’t leave room for faith. and, faith — it’s a big part of how we see our dreams come true. faith that we have what it take. faith that everything is going to work out for our good. faith that our idea matters. faith that people will gravitate to what we are building. faith that our work isn’t in vain. faith that opportunities are coming. faith that what we do will flourish.

faith cannot co-exist with worry / doubt / fear.
it’s one or the other.

but, where faith exists — rest exists, too.
faith takes your soul to a state of rest. 

faith takes you to a place where you believe that anything can happen, where you see possibility instead of impossibility, where vision is greater than reality, where seasons change, and miracles happen.

if we’re going to be the dream chasers that see our dreams pierce through the atmosphere and become reality, then we need to be the people who have faith against all odds. we need to be the people that when problems arise, we know there is a solution that compliments it. when we experience roadblocks, we see new paths being carved. when we experience chaos, we head to the center of the storm and find peace. when we experience challenges, we look for possibility.

you see —

i think one of the reasons that conference was so beautiful for me was due to discovering the importance of this shift— from striving to resting. at the beginning of the year, i found myself burned out / tired / and striving to make things happen. during spring, i realized— “this is no way to live or dream!” while nothing was going as planned in life, business, or dreaming — i chose to allow faith be the center of conversation in my mind. when problems came up, iconsciously decided to take on the attitude “everything will work out.” i started waking up every morning saying “let my work be produced by faith, my labor be prompted by love, and my endurance be inspired by the hope of Christ.” like anything, at first, it took so much mental strength to let faith be the main conversation. but, eventually, it became so natural. and when it did, i found my soul in a state of rest in the midst of dream chasing.

i can tell you — with complete honesty and confidence — i’ve never felt the kind of peace that i did the final months + days leading up to conference. behind the scenes — there was definitely room for stress and panic mode — i mean, hello! we were throwing an event in brooklyn — miles away from our homes, without cars to run errands, and without an official volunteer staff. but, in the midst of the chaos, there was a center of peace that was restful and cultivated by faith.

these months, and this truth, has changed how i work and dream.

fear / doubt / worry no longer have a place. there’s no room for them when faith is the center of conversation

so, here’s my challenge—

let’s be dreamers who don’t get caught up in stress / worry / doubt / and fear. but, intentionally focus on having faith that everything will work out on our behalf. let’s stop striving and start resting as we dream chase.

i am confident— that if we do, we’ll ENJOY the process so much more and when we get to our finish lines — it will be more beautiful and breathtaking than we ever anticipated.

may your work be produced by faith.
may your soul be at rest throughout the process.
an may gracecarry  you through.




“we received the same promises as those in the wilderness, but the promises didn’t do them any good because they didn’t RECEIVE THE PROMISES WITH FAITH. if we believe, though, we will experience a state of RESTING.” [hebrews 4:1-3]

photography by: nick livingston, max kutz, and cody jensen