As a musician and speaker, I'm currently on the line-up of a two day conference called The Revolve Tour. This year's theme is "Dream On" and it's wonderful how it worked out as it's always been one of my dreams to be on Revolve. I have the wonderful opportunity to use my story as a way to encourage young people to trust God to give you big dreams even when stuff happens in our lives that we can't control. Particularly with having a condition called Tourette Syndrome that is ironically a disorder causing uncontrollable movements and sounds.
Anyway... this weekend was Phoenix, AZ. I was pretty excited (I really just love my job haha) for Saturday when I would share my story. So, I got on stage... and I started. But then... I stopped.
About halfway through my story I started to say "uh uh" which is one of my twitches. It sounds something like a sneeze or like I'm trying to get someone's attention but is much more annoying than those because I literally can't stop it. I kept doing this which triggered my hands clenching and before I knew it I completely stopped, stared at the ground and said, "I'm sorry."
This happened a few more times throughout my message and while I know it didn't last too long it felt like a lifetime. I was humiliated, frustrated and confused. This had never happened on stage at Revolve before but the cat was out of the bag now and I had to sit through the rest of the weekend knowing my condition had showed up while I had a story to share.
Long story short... I believe this weekend was the best so far at Revolve for my story. It took me late Saturday night to realize it, but I heard it throughout the day... people shared with me that it isn't how I hold myself together or whatever when I speak that speaks to the girls. It was when they actually saw who I am that made a large impact on their lives. It was when they saw that yes, I had this thing in my life that I couldn't control but I still persevered, that proved that it's a daily exercise toward trusting God. (Did I phrase that sentence right? ...Probably not.)
I wanted to take this little blog post to just send some encouragement your way... Whether with school, family, illness, life, death... we've all got that stuff that shows up in our lives that we have no control over. Sometimes it even shows up/happens when we're doing the right thing! It's painful, it's frustrating it's annoying and random, but there's is a constant: and that's God. The things I had to say this weekend had nothing to do with me but everything to do with a God who had a message for me: No matter what He's got my back and isn't gonna let me go. Ironically, that's exactly what I share on Saturdays.
So in the long run, don't stray from God when the mess in our lives seems like to much. You never know when He's using that to build, mold and develop your testimony...
Even though I didn't understand it at first, in the end of it all God did a work in me that reminded me of the very thing I share with my peers. He taught me that I will have to go through things that I cannot stop but it's all about my recovery and the trust that I put Him in. Ultimately, I'm grateful for this weekend. Partially because it technically felt better physically to not hold back my tics but ultimately because God's word was the most important thing and I'm OK with the fact that my stutter made His point.