I heard Shelley tell about a time in her days at Asbury College when she went through rebellion and deep depression. She had been molested as a child, and the hurt and anger from that had surfaced. After encouraging others to commit suicide with her, she was placed in a psychiatric ward.
They placed her in what they called a "quiet room" which was actually a padded cell. For one hour she yelled obscenities, hit the walls, and totally wore herself out venting her rage. When she was utterly spent, she fell exhausted on the floor.
"God," Shelley cried, "if You are real, let me know it.
Then she added a second request. "And show me that You can do something about this pain inside of me."
As she lay there, she felt nothing. But although she was unaware of it, God did respond.
On her campus, a group of students was praying for revival. They read that they should pick out the one considered the least likely to come to Jesus and pray until that one became a Christian. After that, revival would come. So on that day that Shelley had called out to God, she said, "That group notched up their prayers for me." They chose Shelley as the one they would pray for until she came to Christ.
Shelley was released and some days later, she found herself in the group of students who had been earnestly praying for her. She wanted to escape, but before she could, they gathered around her and began praying.
Shelley said, "Suddenly I felt I was alone with God. I knew there was a God. He had answered my first question, but could He take away my pain?"
A girl came to her and said, "It's just that..." but she was crying so hard she couldn't finish. Again she said, "It's just that..." Finally she was able to finish. "It's just that God loves you so much."
Shelley said, "I looked into her eyes, and saw something supernatural. I had said mean things to her in the past, but she loved me! If God could give her love for me, I knew God could take away my pain." And God did.
The answer to Shelley's call to God was for God to call others to pray more earnestly for her.
"Lord, help us to respond every time You want us to pray so you can answer the heart cry of others.
"God has surely listened and heard my voice in prayer" (Psalm 66:19).
I have attended many conferences in my lifetime, and retreats, and such like! I have spoken for workshops, have spoken at women's ministries events, retreats, churches----but I have NEVER attended a conference that was such a blessing because the focus was totally on our Lord Jesus Christ---NOT the workers!!! How refreshing---how blessed I was by that!!!!
Let me just say the fire ignited and next year we are already planning on chartering a bus for more of our women to attend.
It was very refreshing to attend a women's conference that proclaimed the message of holiness and applied it to my life as a woman. There is such hope in this message. While other conferences may be helpful, they don't leave one with the same confidence in God's ability to change.