This is a fun little story of how I ended up going to the Exodus Conference this past July. I wasn't planning on going, in fact I wasn't even considering it. I was aware of the conference coming up but saw no need to go. I had been chatting with some of the Exodus staff on some other unrelated things. Somehow word of my going into the high schools got to Scott Davies. He contacted me and asked me if I would be willing to be a small group leader for the Xscape program. That was definitely something I was very interested in. It speaks to my hearts desire to minister into the lives of those that are desirous of coming out of the life style. I chatted with my husband about it, he was good with it, so I booked my ticket and made my reservations.
As time was approaching I was getting emails from Julie Carter. She was coordinating all the the volunteers for the conference. Thus I didn't think anything of it. About five days prior to leaving for the conference I felt that I needed to connect with Julie to make sure that all the things that she was having me signed up to do would not interfere with my main purpose for going. So, I emailed her.
About a day later I got an email from Scott. He had written me an email that I never received asking me if I minded not being used as a small group leader and being a volunteer instead. Since he thought I was good with this he gave my name to Julie and all she knew was that I was a willing volunteer.
Had I found this out sooner I would have not gone to the conference and would have cancelled my tickets and reservations. I could have gotten a full refund. Since I did find out just a few days prior to leaving I was all committed to going and could not see cancelling. So I went.
One hurdle that I had to overcome was that fact that I was arriving so late. The conference started at 7pm on Tuesday and I didn't even get into O’Hare until 9 pm. Then I had to find my way to some kind of transportation to make my way to Wheaten College. Upon arriving I did manage to get a taxi who had already been to the campus a few other times that day. We had a nice chat while driving and in short order found the college.
We pulled up to one area but it didn't look quite right so I had the driver go back a block and up the previous street. As soon as we turned around we began to see Exodus signs. We followed the signs and at the next corner I told the drive that he could stop and let me out. Rather than stopping he turned the corner and again I said to please stop and let me out. Again he continued on and pulled forward another 100 feet or so and finally let me out. I paid him and thanked him and turned around to get my bearings.
Well I wasn't sure where to go so I immediately went to the side walk and saw a few people walking so I walked up to a woman and asked. She was headed in the same direction as the check in table and was glad to show me the way. So I casually asked her how she came to find herself at the conference. That began a new friendship that continued the fullness of the week. My new friend had come alone and had been struggling alone for many years. She is married and only recently shared her struggle with her husband. Her husband was supportive and she came with great hope and expectation but also with many reservations. She had asked the Lord to help her and He did.
I find it amazing that my taxi driver had to drive forward two more times before letting me out of the taxi. If he had not, then I would have been behind my new friend and would not have walked to her for directions, I would have gone to another. God is so good. Meeting my new friend was apart of many divine appointments that I had during the course of that week. God is so faithful and loving. I was so blessed to be a part of that conference experience.