Monday, March 7, 2011

do two halves really make a whole?

Are you thinking that the answer is most definitely yes?

Well in a mathematical equation:  1/2 + 1/2 = 1 {whole}

But what if both halves represent women oppressed in the world and silenced in the church?  Then, really, these two halves are not added at all.  To use a play on words, they actually form one black hole of existence. voice. image.  His existence.  His voice.  His image.

Take a couple of minutes to watch this video:

In what will be {I hope and pray} a life-long living out and processing of this one weekend at Synergy’s 2011 Conference: ‘the Rest of the Story’, I am going to be sharing much more.

The two “halves” that I talk about are from the titles of two MUST-READ books.  It’s quite possible that you have read the first as it is oh…a NYT Bestseller written by Pulitzer Prize winners.

Have you read Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide? I had the privilege of hearing Sheryl WuDunn, the co-author of this book {co-authored with her husband, Nicholas Kristof} speak this weekend. 

I take the ‘mom card’ and ‘moving overseas’ card for why I have been out-of-the-loop on this oneSmile…for two years!  And am so thankful that my husband freed me up to be in a place to listen this weekend, say, ‘this is important. I must read this now and figure out how to respond.’ And, while I wish everyone reading this were with me at Synergy, THIS BLOG is your place to stop and say that you must read this {if you haven’t}.Click to see a larger image of Half the Church by Carolyn Custis James

And the other ‘half’?  Carolyn Custis James, founder of Synergy, released her book this weekend, Half the Church: Recapturing God’s Global Vision for Women’.  I have a copy of this too—eager to dive in, but I’m not going to wait until I have my own full review BEFORE I GIVE AWAY A COPY LATER THIS WEEK!




Here’s the trailer:

Here’s what’s being said:

“[A] compelling book…mixing the dramatic changes in today’s world and thoughtful interpretations of the Scriptures.” ~Sheryl WuDunn, coauthor, Half the Sky

“Calls the whole church to see the opportunity at hand.” ~Bethany H. Hoang, International Justice Mission

“[An] insightful, integrated and unapologetic plea.” ~Elisa Morgan, author, speaker, and publisher of Fullfill

Hearing directly from Carolyn this morning, I teared up often and my hand didn’t stop from taking notes.  Passionate about God’s daughters becoming all that they truly are as God’s image-bearers—hearts cultivated and SENT through their spheres of influences to help their sisters suffering horrors at the hands of their oppressors around the world. 

These are the days and the incredible ways we are being called to rise up and live in this world.  You. Me. All. of US!  Do you believe with me, at the start of this new week, that YOU, YOU READING, can make an impact on the things that are breaking His heart?  Can your voice be heard?  Let’s be a chorus together in these days…

*Can’t wait to share more about how we all can do this and to hear from you!*

Thank You Lord, who is seeking those who will seek hard after Your Heart:

  • For Synergy 2011 Conference
  • For the depth of encouragement I received as a woman seeking first Your Kingdom
  • For the husband who loved so well on our kids so that I could be freed up to go
  • For the things that break Your heart being handed to me/us as a gift
  • For these days when even those who don’t know You are rising up
  • for women who are our heroes around the world—resilient and tenaciously courageous
  • for the stories I will never forget of what their freedom cost them
  • for how they are my sisters
  • for how I pray that they are freed forever through the Gospel
  • for the incredible opportunity to make a difference, right here, in this blog
  • for how You hold my heart
  • for how You are giving me grace to surrender timing to You
  • for how global perspective changes our moments
  • for being able to inquire about finishing a seminary degree
  • for writing friends!
  • for a very special sister who is an inspiration
  • for another special sister who I knew but not really until this weekend
  • for a marriage where this all is growing us
  • for our support-raising process
    • for those who are already creating opportunities
    • for a faithful husband ‘going hard, so hard’ at this
    • for how I see his Superman cape as he walks humbly this way
    • for how that’s really You and the embrace of Your promises
    • for remembering that you have all of the support raised—we just have to find it
    • for all of the people you will bring along our path that we don’t know
  • for the small things:
    • a baby girl walking wobbly and getting QUICK!
    • a little friend’s party at a horse farm
    • long hugs with my husband
    • how baby girls only animal sound is a ‘roar!’
    • for how I never tire of hearing her do it
    • for picking up trash during my walks
    • for how the way is cleaner since I started doing it
    • for how I think of my PopPop as I do it
    • for how I practice not caring what others think as they watch me
  • for all that is ahead and the excitement to walk it
  • for the BEST ever YET TO COME!





  1. Hey Abby! I haven't forgotten you. Life has just been insane. I did read your first 7 (?) posts on your story.

  2. oh! wow, super...i haven't forgotten you either...thanks for coming and being a blessing:)

  3. I came over from Ann’s linky today.

    I’m with you on what you wrote. Women have so much to give to the church – our church – God’s church and they need to be unleashed. I attended Blissdom and know firsthand what a powerful and grace filled community “Christian mom bloggers” are – that’s why I write in this community. The heart – all about the heart, and courage of this community.

    And my favorite from the list: long hugs with my husband (when I think of the things that can make a marriage last – this is high on the list )

    This was so good. Good for the heart. Thank you.

    God Bless and Keep you and yours

    And P.S. Sharon writes some awesome stuff does she not?

  4. This:
    "for how I practice not caring what others think as they watch me"

    sums up so much, doesn't it?

    I love your heart Abby. What a beautifully complicated girl you are, and I say that with sincere admiration.

    Keep it up girl, by God's grace, keep it up.


  5. Thank you, Craig. You are wonderfully progressive {and brave} entering this mom/woman's world and offering your words and encouragement. It was my first time at Synergy--a women's conference--but there were actually 20 men who attended because they love what's being discussed and want to be challenged by women following hard after God. What a blessing...praying more like you (and them) come along!

  6. thank you Kara, you are such an encouragement! and I mean that with sincere admiration.

  7. We are complicated sisters are we not?:) Oh..I wish I could have been there with you!..yes and yes is all I can say about your post. It stirs me so! we have not met by accident you know? I too love your heart and all you stand for...Him. always always I value your time and words you leave me..always!
    praying for you all...xoxo

  8. thank you friend. I know, it is so apparent that we have not met by accident...I am slowly beginning to trust God's hand working in this blogosphere...not for a lack of knowing how special you are, but for a general mistrust of the thing itself...well, I am being won over:)

  9. Sex trafficking truly breaks my heart. Every time I think about it, my heart cries out for those women and children.

    I'm really curious to hear what you think about this book. I'll be waiting for your review later this week. :)

  10. yes Rach...i'll confess how i've been hearing about it but didn't really KNOW and the book (such a MUST-READ) is about other atrocities as well...gripping and you just don't leave the stories the same...I WILL share more...thanks for your heart and interest!

  11. So glad you got to go to this conference! How wonderful for you, before you move overseas. And those two books look like they would be very eye-opening ... I made a note about each of them in my planner ...


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