Recently, a group of friends and I from Barbados attended the Karen Hinds Phenomenal Woman’s Conference in St. Vincent. In a nutshell, I use these three little words: “It was amazing!”
It was a day filled with motivational speakers who touched and taught and made us dig deep into inner selves to move past the old stuff which was holding us back from experiencing the new stuff.
One of the speakers who touched me the most was a ‘young’ lady of 95 years old by the name of Lessie Williams. Miss Lessie as she is called spoke to us from stage, reading from her notes in a strong clear voice, with NO glasses. Like seriously? At half of her age I am wearing tri-focals (well, not really but it seems that way) and cannot see past blurred images without my glasses – no matter how close you are standing to me. She was truly impressive.
So who is Miss Lessie?
Here is a little about Miss Lessie as summarised from the bio provided in the conference flyer. Born on April 9 in the year 1918, she was one of 9 children for her parents and one of 24 for her father. At 17 she lost her mother and at 22 became pregnant with her first child which led her to being kicked out of the house by her father. In 1959 she married her love Arthur Williams and welcomed twins later that same year. Unfortunately her husband died in 1961 leaving her to raise 6 children as a single parent. The pamphlet with Miss Lessie’s bio also notes that “she is a strong Christian woman who believes that with God all things are possible”. Like duh! How else could she have ever made it through the bad times and smile through the good times? Well, we at least knew the answer to that rhetorical question for sure but think about it: did it sound as though Miss Lessie’s life was an easy one? No! Do you think her faith in God made the trials and tribulations worth while? Yes!
And a special note to parents …
Don’t give up on your children even when they hit rock bottom.
Push your children through their passions, not yours.
I believe the most challenging role anyone can play in this life is that of being a parent. It is hard people, hard! In the beginning you are looking after this little person 24/7 with little if any sleep. You keep trying to mold and shape them as they get older, persevering through power struggles and temper tantrums, breaking of curfews and the emotionally-torn (that would be your emotions and not theirs) implementation of strategic but important ‘lock-downs’ – on cellphone usage, play station game interaction, never ending telephone conversations and even negative relationships.
In the end, faith wins
I was never put out from home while pregnant; neither have I faced most of the struggles Miss Lessie would probably have encountered in her life. I do want to say however that I believe it’s the faith in God during the journey that matters most of all. 2 Chronicles 20:16-17 says: “You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the LORD will be with you”.
I am blessed!
It was a blessing to listen to Miss Lessie share her story. I want to publicly thank her for encouraging me to take up my position, to stand firm and to see the deliverance of the Lord, to not be afraid/discouraged to go out and face tomorrow because the Lord is indeed with me – and with you also!