From Fear to Freedom: My IF Story

You’re invited to join Chets Women in homes across our community for the 2016 IF:Gathering on March 11 and 12. Watch challenging speakers, listen to inspiring testimonies and have deep conversations, as we ask, “What IF we lived like Jesus?” Contact Kelley Hastings to participate or host a group.

I came to the IF:Gathering last winter weary from my life’s struggles. We had recently sold our house in Pennsylvania after 3 very long and frustrating years. I was tired and stressed. I was tired from praying with no results. I was fearful we would lose our house to the bank. I was weary from trying to both run my business and take care of my handicapped mother who lived with us. I was scared that I would not be able to continue to run a profitable business. I was frustrated with constantly preparing my house for showings in the middle of everything else. I was heartbroken to learn we had a neighbor who later confessed that he had been sabotaging the sale of our house. I was struggling to hang on to my faith that God had a bigger plan in all of this.

I remember my daughter-in-law telling me, “I am going to watch your life and see how God brings you through this.” She was anxious to see how that difficult chapter of my life was going to end and where God was going to bring us next.  

thumb_10390156_10203536702569238_3689784443392573688_n_1024Shortly after we moved to Florida in December 2014, I signed up to attend the IF:Gathering. I knew no one who was attending, so I was assigned to a group. As I said earlier, I came weary. I felt like I “crawled” to Kelley Hasting’s house just to attend! Jennie Allen’s passion for changing women’s lives was powerfully infectious. The Lord used her, and all her guest speakers, to touch my heart and turn my mind from the fear-filled path it was on. You see, I struggled with the fear of the future.  I had “endured a real beat down” over the years and maybe I was afraid to believe again. I was afraid to dream again. I learned to give my heart permission to trust Him; to place my future in His hands and be secure in whatever came to pass. It is for freedom that He has set us free! I was finally feeling free. I was sleeping better and my stress level was beginning to calm. I began serving Him and dreaming again!

thumb_10644520_10205482987289469_1660604023856886865_o_1024I learned that at the threshold of any transition there is fear. I learned from the IF:Gathering that I needed to take action and walk, with intentionality, toward the next chapter of my life. God has truly blessed me and brought me through some very rough years-but it has built character in me and made me stronger. I would encourage you to make time to attend the next IF:Gathering and see how God will use Jennie Allen and her team to change your heart and reignite a passion in your life! There is a place for everyone- whether you are single or married, whether you are in your twenties or a grandmother like me, God has something to say to you through the IF:Gathering. Don’t miss it! 

11403083_10206150238748321_1652275814492663775_n{This post was written by Linda Speed. Linda married her high school sweetheart and has 3 children and 8 grandchildren. She and her husband, Jim, work together with her brother and his wife tastefully reconditioning homes on Amelia Island and reselling them. She has a strong administrative and business background. When Linda is not with pen or hammer in hand, she enjoys decorating with things she and her husband find at local antique shops or home décor stores. She enjoys walks on the beach hunting for shark’s teeth and also encouraging women in their spiritual journey of marriage and motherhood.}

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