Buzzing with excitement, the halls of the Grand Theatre Center for the Arts in downtown Tracy were filled with hundreds of women who traveled from far and near to attend the fourth annual Share the Scoop this past Saturday, Aug. 20.
Share the Scoop Ministries strives to serve as a connective force, helping keep the women in the body of Christ connected across cultural, age, educational and denomination lines.
As said Becki Brown, who spoke at the event, “God will move this ministry forward to help women connect to the lifeline of the truth, the light and the way — Jesus Christ, and to help women to be triumphant with the trials that may come their way.”
It was an amazing, incredible day for many Tracy residents and others who were transformed by inspiring testimonies shared and proclaimed by four amazing speakers.
First up, I encouraged the crowd to make positive choices, live life on purpose, choose to forgive and know you can rise above the test.
Next was Courtney Dawn, who shared her struggle in losing her leg, but not her zest for life. She alluded to the waves of the ocean crashing over her life, ending with a praise dance that brought tears to many.
She was followed by Jackie Bush, who motivated everyone to let go of the past and share secrets that can hurt the soul.
We were anchored by the keynote speaker, Wendy Andres, who awed the audience with her gregarious humor and heart-tugging stories that inspired everyone to “build your faith; tell your story; help someone else; and worship God.”
The day was filled with varied emotions, from bursts of tears to laughter, and was jam-packed with speakers sharing their good news and messages of strength.
As a speaker, my first thoughts were of nervousness: After working behind the scenes for more than eight months, I was torn as to the message I wanted to convey as a speaker representing the “middle-aged ladies.”
Incredibly, when I walked on stage, the electricity in the room just invigorated me as I spoke from my heart, leaving my notes in my pocket the entire time. The many comments and personal questions that followed let me know that I delivered the right message.
It’s amazing how the women from all denominations were really unified — from those of us who worked on the program to all the women who attended. There was such love in the room and a unity with the stage crew that, even behind stage, there were constant words of encouragement to those going on and coming off the stage.
The atmosphere was serene, and as I stood in the hall, I could hear echoes of laughter among the chatter as people exchanged hugs and shook hands for the first time.
When Courtney Dawn spoke, it was so silent throughout the room. But when she began dancing with her prosthetic leg, you could hear the sobs of emotion.
I absolutely loved the event, because I believe many women left encouraged to face whatever challenge they had in front of them. Even as people commented to me, just knowing someone else experienced life-altering events, such as the rape I shared, they too could be open about what had happened to them and be free to forgive.
Sharing the real scoop — being transparent — is how real help is accomplished, and I believe the event did just that.
• First Person is an occasional column in Our Town written by members of the Tracy and Mountain House communities.