Abundance: Troubles in Paradise – 2 minute read

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Bermuda is beautiful.

We had planned, prepared, and prayed for the Weekend to Remember marriage conference in Bermuda. As Drew began, I thought about his challenge earlier. “Kit, this could be our last opportunity to present a Weekend to Remember. Let’s trust God to make it our finest hour.”

I didn’t feel my best from a sore throat caught on a previous trip. But each of us had persevered in difficult conditions previously. Drew looked at me, our signal for me to begin. I opened my mouth and couldn’t believe what came out . . . nothing. I had no voice. Actually, I had a very scratchy voice barely audible with my microphone. The audience cringed thinking I was in pain. No voice? The beginning of a full conference? How could this happen?

Drew and I have a contingency plan for almost any situation. You wouldn’t believe all the hurdles we’ve jumped over speaking internationally. But losing my voice had never occurred to us. Watching the reaction of the audience when I did manage to get a squeak out convinced me that I was a distraction. They seemed to be suffering as much as me. I told my first story, but then motioned to Drew to read the text in the manual. After the first talk, we did a little regrouping–more for Drew–less for me. We managed to get through the first night.

Back in our room, I had a heart to heart with the Lord. In truth, my prayers came out like a one way conversation. “I mean really? Lose my voice at a conference? What are we going to do?” I just couldn’t get over the challenge we faced.

Before I fell asleep Drew gently reminded me about the verses we had chosen for the year.“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed: perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed.” (2 Corinthians 4:7-10) He tried to encourage me that despite some troubles, we were not beaten. I mumbled something like, “Seems like we’re beaten to me.”

Morning came and miraculously my voice came back. Don’t I wish? But that was not the case. We spent the next hour rearranging our notes so that I would share my personal stores and Drew would do everything else. Once we began, my voice did seem a bit stronger, but as the day went on my voice weakened.

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Drew carrying on.

The audience was so gracious. They brought me cups of hot water, lemon, and honey to drink. Unfortunately, I only felt worse not being able to deliver the materials in the best possible way. I was crushed. Drew rose to the crisis with what I think was his best, most entertaining presentation ever. And he assured me that the audience appreciated me for my obvious struggle to serve them well.

After the conference one of the organizers said to me, “Kit, I know that losing your voice was hard for you. But I have to say that I think the audience benefitted by seeing a husband and wife working together as a team under difficult circumstances.” She went on to praise the conference as better than one she had attended in the US.

When we returned home, I wrote one phrase about our trip in my journal, “perplexed, but not in despair.” I still can’t believe I lost my voice. Surely that conference was not our finest hour. Or was it?

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Headed home

 

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24 Responses to Abundance: Troubles in Paradise – 2 minute read

  1. Margaret L. West says:

    Great story – and I love your friend’s comment. I bet she was right. 🙂

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  2. Peter says:

    You are real role model at our Lord battle 🙏🏻❤️👏

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

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  3. Ginger says:

    What an awesome story and trip. You will never forget Bermuda.

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  4. Ellen Vermilya says:

    Always learning! Love you two, God is glorified they your faithfulness to many!

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  5. Avni Menalla says:

    Thanks for sharing Friends. You are a great example of walking in faith and trusting Jesus.

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  6. Kay says:

    Wow! What a perplexing and disappointing situation. I know that God showed up in you and Drew and for the conferees too. Love to you both.

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  7. Mary Potuznik says:

    Great story so sorry about your voice but God was in charge and always is so I guess that is what He wanted the attendees to see and hear. XO

    ________________________________

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  8. Michelle Bartkoske says:

    Thank you for sharing and your openness about the struggle. I remember you telling Tom and I, one important thing is for people to see a couple working together. And I hope you still had fun. Love you guys.

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    • Still had fun ? Good question. I guess we usually convey a lot more fun from the front but this audience needed something different. They needed to see us living, at the time, what we were telling them. Who knew ? Not me, but of course God did. Love U

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  9. Toncho Tonchev says:

    Thanks for the story!
    I have a similar experience, but it was only for a day. I was asked to give a short message on giving and offering in my church in Russia. about 10 min before we left home, I just lost my voice. Never happen before or after this day. Anyway, I stand up in front to the church and somehow suffering to bring a voice out tell them the story, explaining that maybe God just encourages me this morning to look in myself and to be sure I want to share about giving in front of them. I think this was the strongest message to me and church. Are you live what you speak!

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    • Thanks, Toncho. What a wonderful example from your own life. Yes, I guess God does on occasion give us the opportunity (in front of others) to do what we encourage them to do. I had never lost my voice before either and hope to never loose it again. Well, at a conference anyway. 🙂 Please give our love to your family.

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  10. Darren Hamm, MD says:

    “Just stand over there honey, I got this”! I think I remember a story from your history!

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  11. Ralph says:

    Drew and Kit, What a wonderful thought your friend shared about the impact of seeing God’s work His treasure out thru jars of clay. You may never know this side of heaven just how wide and deep that impact will continue in the lives of the guests.

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  12. Curt Elliott says:

    Hi Kit, beautiful story of the “other side” of doing God’s work! I love the little phrase from the hymn Breath on me, Breath of God that says “to do or to endure.” I like the “doing” part a lot better than the “enduring” part! Or another little phrase from our church covenant that teaches me to pray, “Let me be employed for You or laid aside for You…” Anyway, thanks for sharing; you and Drew’s words are always an encouragement. BTW, Edina is loving your new book series 🙂

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  13. Thanks, Curt for your gracious words of encouragement. That Bermuda trip will long we remembered by both of us. We just returned from Shanghai, our first visit there. So glad to hear that Edina is enjoying the Challenge series novels. Drew has ideas for new ones coming soon. Love, Kit

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