Speaking Engagements

Report Back: Rooted in Christ Conference

What a pleasure it was to share with the wonderful ladies of Ekalaka Bible Church in beautiful Ekalaka, Montana, for the Rooted In Christ Conference.

I flew into Rapid City, South Dakota, which is just down the road from Mt. Rushmore. Since I had never been there before, Pastor Jon, his lovely wife Kati, and their super sweet kiddos, Liam and Evangeline, were kind enough to take me there for a quick tourist stop before we headed north for Ekalaka.

As if taking me to Mt. Rushmore weren’t gracious enough, they also drove me up into Black Hills National Forest where we saw Spearfish Canyon and Bridal Veil Falls. I was there a little too early in the year for the full fall color “leaf peeping” experience, but one species of tree (no idea which one) had already turned an eye-popping yellow, and those were absolutely exquisite.

As we headed up toward Ekalaka, we passed through Belle Fourche, South Dakota, where the geographic center of the United States is located, as well as Sturgis, South Dakota, home of the annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally. Along the way, it was fun to see small herds of deer and antelope roaming the open fields. And have you ever seen such a beautiful sunset?

The natural beauty of Montana is stunning. Kati has quite a way with flowers. Look at these beauties at her house:

Saturday afternoon was day one of the conference, and the ladies of EBC had things looking spiffy. Check out these charming decorations:

Session one was Walking in Biblical Womanhood. We took a look – mostly from Genesis – at God’s perfect creative design for womanhood. After a delicious homemade lasagna supper, it was time for session two: Walking In Biblical Womanhood. God wants us to fill out Creation with godly womanhood, not buy into the feminist narrative that we have to be exactly like men to have any value.

Do I laugh at my own jokes? It’s a dirty job,
but somebody’s got to do it! :0)
Chatting after the conference

After a warm time of worship with the EBC branch of the family Sunday morning, it was time for day two of the conference that afternoon. Our first session was a stimulating Q&A with lots of insightful questions. Following another hearty supper of homemade soups and sandwiches, our final session was Discernment 101: Learn to Discern. How can we tell the difference between the biblical and the cheap, unbiblical knock off? We looked at some scriptural and practical ways.

Door prizes
My lovely hostess gifts from the ladies of EBC. The pendants each have a line from a hymn in them. Kati picked out this water bottle before she even knew I was going to be speaking on the Armor of God passage! Providence!

Bright and early (well, actually, it was really early so it wasn’t bright yet) Monday morning, I had to say goodbye to the delightful town of Ekalaka and wing my way back home. On my first flight I had the pleasure of sitting next to a very nice lady named Jodie. She and her husband were flying home from visiting some of the same sites I had seen in South Dakota, and she was kind enough to show me her pictures. Some of the pictures were of the crafts she creates and sells in her Etsy shop, and they were just so adorable and well crafted that I had to share them with you. Head on over and do some early Christmas shopping at Jodieshappyhill. (And I believe she might add some more items, so you may want to check back every now and then.)

Many thanks to Pastor Jon, Kati, the kind ladies I had lunch with on Saturday and Sunday, and all of the conference attendees and members of EBC for your warm hospitality and for making my trip so memorable. If you ever find yourself in rural southeastern Montana, I highly recommend you make it a point to visit with the fine brothers and sisters of Ekalaka Bible Church.

If your church or organization is ever in need of a speaker for a women’s event, I’d love to come share with your ladies as well. Click here for more information.

Photo Credits

Photos of Michelle speaking / chatting, conference dinner by Kati Champlin.

Sunset photo by Tina Brady.

All other photos by Michelle Lesley.