Fierce-2019

Ellen Redman

Fierce 2019 was vibrant and stunning

As 500 women gathered for Aspire’s Fierce conference, many were refreshed in the stillness of God’s presence, writes Ellen Redman

It’s Monday morning and I’m crammed in the heat of a busy train carriage. Five more minutes until my stop. As I check my e-mails, my stomach forms a knot at the anticipation of my ever-lengthening to-do list and the non-stop hour, day, week that inevitably waits for me. 

With a crowded mind, full hands and a calendar running wild, my relentless rush to keep up begins. In a heartbeat, my Sunday sensation of peace all too effortlessly escapes through the grasp of my fingers, disappearing into the fog of the city. 

In a day caught up in chaos, cultivating stillness is no easy thing. As the world around us continues to unfold in uncertainty and unrest, there’s arguably never been a time when we’ve needed peace more – in our world, our nation, our lives and our minds. 

When worry and distraction become the housekeepers of our imagination, we can find ourselves earnestly seeking and searching for just a breath of serenity, a second of stillness. 

Lately, I’ve frequently found myself standing at the intersection of the age-old question: “How can I access peace? Can I capture it? If so, how do I keep hold of it?” Perhaps peace is only for my mountaintop moments, found within the stillness of a quiet weekend, a wide-open space, a candle burning, a bubble-bath running, an empty diary or an errand completed from my todo list. But what if it’s more than that? 

On March 9, we gathered together from near and far for Aspire’s regional women’s conference, Fierce, which took place at City Church Cardiff. 

As a collection of 500 women, young and old, we came together with one common heart of celebration. This year’s conference was wrapped in stillness, drawing on verses “The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still,” (Exodus 14:14) and “Be still, and know that I am God,” (Psalm 46:10). 

Fierce Conference 2019 was vibrant and stunning. We sang, danced and came together around God’s Word for inspiring messages and stories shared by Jen Baker, Laura Hancock and Zoe Clarke-Coates, who pointed our attention heavenward, teaching us more about how we can access tangible peace in the wild rush of our everyday lives. 

The organisers and volunteers of the event inspired us with their heart and soul behind-the-scenes devotion, creativity and wisdom, bringing us together under one roof for a richly joy-filled day. 

As I left the doors of Fierce Conference (with my cute new ‘Be Still’ mug in hand), I was reminded of something important. All along, the peace that I once believed the world could rob me of is, in fact, not capable of being stolen from me. 

Peace himself has always been pursuing us, making his way to us, waging a war for us, fighting for us and embracing us. Peace himself always was and always will be with us. Peace himself is our inheritance to have and to hold, and peace himself is ours to love, to possess, to pass on – for God himself is our peace. 

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