Posts Tagged ‘public speaking’

The Best is Yet to Come!

Angie Austin doing what she does best!

Angie Austin doing what she does best! (January 2013)

Yesterday was a blast. As most of you know, especially if you read my last post (“On the Air”), I was invited to be on “The Good News” radio show with Angie Austin on 810AM KLVZ. I can happily report, that while I was fairly nervous beforehand, once Matt and I entered the studio, my nerves slipped away. Angie is an amazing, friendly, and talented woman who helps usher you into fearlessness and allows you to feel extremely comfortable. I felt entirely in my element and had a wonderful time sharing my journey with her and all of you loyal listeners. Thank you to those who tuned in live; I hope you could hear and sense my hope and joy throughout our conversation. For those who were unable to be near the radio or computer and for those of you who are out of town, don’t fret! Below I will include the link to the podcast of our lovely chat, so you can hear it as well.

Enjoying the show! (January 2013)

Enjoying the show! (January 2013)

As I’ve mentioned before, I truly feel one of God’s purposes for my life is to publicly share my testimony through my diagnosis. He has given me this adventurous tale for a reason, and I know that He has called me to read it like an open book. It has begun through the words here in this blog, and is spreading to many other media outlets. I’ve got to be honest, I never pictured this for my life. (But who does?!) Frankly, I never pictured my life to be anything like it has been since January of 2012. Yet, while my husband’s and my dreams were vastly different than our current story, we are thankful. God has opened our eyes to so many opportunities we never imagined would exist. He has harvested wisdom, strength, passion, peace, vision, and purpose in our lives. I am thankful He is the gardener of our souls.

Stephanie live on air! (January 2013)

Stephanie live on air! (January 2013)

Once the interview wrapped up, pictures were taken, and we began our walk out of the broadcasting building, I had a deep sense of knowing that this is where I am supposed to be. A few months ago, when I felt God calling me to rise up and share my story more publicly, I would be lying to say I wasn’t afraid. I would be lying to say I didn’t doubt His plan. I would be lying to say I trusted that He knew what He was doing. After all, I never pictured being a public speaker in all my life. Yet, as Matt, our dear friend Audra, and I walked out of the building yesterday, I had another moment where it was as if God himself was telling me, “See?! This is why. Trust me.”

Stephanie and Angie in front of the infamous "Crawford Broadcasting" sign. (January 2013)

Stephanie and Angie in front of the infamous “Crawford Broadcasting” sign.       (January 2013)

Some have never experienced a moment in time where they knew what they were doing was inherently right. But those who have, know exactly what I’m talking about. In that very moment, I knew I was walking directly on the path God has paved for me. Everything clicked and a new confident passion arose in my spirit. I am now, more than ever, excited for whatever and however many interviews and media outlets He brings my way, as I know it’s His intention to receive glory through my testimony. God is BIG, and it’s exciting to see Him putting all of my life’s puzzle pieces together. I look forward to the many opportunities that will arise in these next few weeks, months, and many years to come. This is only the beginning… The best is yet to come!

Feel free to listen to Angie and my conversation by clicking HERE! If you have trouble, feel free to go to Angie’s PODCAST list, and click on “The Good News” recording for Tuesday, January 22nd.

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10 (MSG Version)

“Because of the extravagance of those revelations, and so I wouldn’t get a big head, I was given the gift of a handicap to keep me in constant touch with my limitations. Satan’s angel did his best to get me down; what he in fact did was push me to my knees. No danger then of walking around high and mighty! At first I didn’t think of it as a gift, and begged God to remove it. Three times I did that, and then he told me,

My grace is enough; it’s all you need.
My strength comes into its own in your weakness.

Once I heard that, I was glad to let it happen. I quit focusing on the handicap and began appreciating the gift. It was a case of Christ’s strength moving in on my weakness. Now I take limitations in stride, and with good cheer, these limitations that cut me down to size—abuse, accidents, opposition, bad breaks. I just let Christ take over! And so the weaker I get, the stronger I become.”

Making a Difference

It’s official. I’m in a magazine. And it’s exciting, weird, mind-blowing, and purely awesome.

With every blog I post, and every email I receive from readers who have been touched by my story, the more I want to share it. Thanks to a great friend of mine who works at the hospital I frequent, my story has been publicized. I can’t help but feel proud and happy that my battle has not gone unnoticed. That may sound boastful, but I truly mean it without any ego. It touches my heart to know that God didn’t just get bored one day and think, “I think I’ll spice up their lives by allowing her to get cancer!” (although, sometimes it does feel like the divine version of Emeril Legasse just went “BAM” with my life’s recipe). On the contrary, He allowed this diagnosis as a way of not only helping me grow and learn new perspectives, but to help others through their life’s diagnosis’. For those who have written me with similar stories of cancer, inability to carry your own child, and the many other struggles, I want you to know that I deeply appreciate it. It encourages me to know that through my story, you are receiving hope as well. If that’s all I gain through this adventure, I am satisfied.

I want to share my journey. I know I already have and will continue to through this blog, however, I feel called to something bigger than this. The fire is burning inside of me and my passion for helping others find hope and strength in their journeys is reaching new heights. I’ve mentioned it to a few close friends and family recently, and now seems like the right time to share it with the rest of you. Truth is, I feel called to speak. At small and/or big events and one on one settings- regardless, I feel like God has given me this story for a reason. I have said that since the beginning, and I still strongly believe it. God has given me this story to share, and my job is to read the pages.

Little tid-bit: I’m frightened of public speaking. I speak in public daily and I definitely can talk a lot (my husband will nod his head in agreement while reading this). Yet, standing alone in front of a group of people with all eyes on me is slightly intimidating. Granted, I haven’t spoken in front of a large group of people since high school. And, it’s not as if I’m sharing a story I know nothing about. This speech I know. This journey I’ve walked. This book I’ve read. There is no memorizing the dates and events that happened. It’s written in my brain permanently. And lately, when I think I can’t possibly do something, I always remind myself, “Chick, you freakin’ beat cancer. Of course you can do ____!” When it comes down to it, yes I CAN share the good news with people. Yes I CAN spread hope and shine light in the darkness. Yes I CAN tell people that no matter how shitty (no better word, folks) things get, you WILL fight your hardest and you are stronger and braver than you think. At the end of the day, it’s not about public speaking. It’s about sharing hope, spreading strength, and inspiring courage. Now, that I can do.

When everything is stripped away, it’s not about me, it’s about Him.

John 15:16-17 (ESV)

“‘You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. These things I command you, so that you will love one another.'”