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Christy Catherine Marshall

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June 26, 2006

I know. I know. I said I was going to take a few weeks off to focus on my family this summer. And I AM. But I’ve got one child at summer camp and four asleep right now — so I think it’s be OK for me to sneak over to the computer and tell you:


You’ve got to go … just got to. If there is ever a conference in your city, I hope you can get there. Here’s the link that lists all the upcoming conferences left in 2006. Next month, they’ll be in Chicago, Cleveland, Washington D.C., and Calgary, Alberta. In August, they’ll be in St. Louis, Hartford, Ft. Wayne, and Dallas. (To my blogger friend in Phoenix, they’ll be coming to Glendale Arena Nov. 17-18!)

The theme for this year’s conference is “Contagious Joy.” Oh, how God knew I needed to hear the music and great speakers at this time in my life. This whole conference was a gift from my mom. She invited me and my sister several months ago — before I knew we’d go through a sad family time and have two of our extended family members pass away within a few days of each other.

So this! This conference gave us something to look forward to! I really had no idea — there were 15,000 women packed into Philips Arena in downtown Atlanta, right across from the CNN Center. Most people came in groups, and lots of these ladies wore matching colorful T-shirts. They came from all over besides Georgia: North and South Carolina, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana, Florida, and more. The youngest attendee was a newborn swaddled in her new mom’s arms; the oldest was in her 90s.

The hostess of the conference informed us we had a surprise — Sandi Patty was there! She sang for us!! I’ve never heard Sandi Patty in person, but I’ve listened to her CDs for years. Anyway, you ain’t heard nothin’ until you experience Sandi Patty singing “How Great Thou Art.” Her voice echoed all over the arena — I’m sure you could hear her for miles around — it was incredible.

I was so overwhelmed, it was all I could do to keep from crying in front of my mom and sister — I did NOT have on waterproof mascara and I didn’t want to look like too much of a raccoon.

We also heard music from talented Nichole Nordeman, who has the most beautiful voice — she played several songs that I’ve heard on the radio but didn’t know who she was. What’s really interesting to me about Nichole is that a few weeks ago on our trip to the beach I was reading Madeleine L’Engle’s book, Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art, and Nichole wrote the introduction to this book. She described how L’Engle impacted her life and writing, so it was pure joy to hear Nichole sing.

The other group was Avalon. Wow! They sounded amazing as well — and had the whole place rocking. And there was also a Women of Faith Praise Band that played all of my favorite praise songs. I brought their CD home with me and have discovered that my 3-year-old enjoys singing and jumping around the kitchen with me while this music is on.

I’ll tell you about the speakers in a different post — because I hope you’ll have time to follow the links here.

We did find out one piece of amazing news — the speaker for next year’s Women of Faith pre-conference in Atlanta will be:


December 17, 2005

I went to see the Nutcracker last week — and it was truly magical. Have you seen it before? The older I get, the more I love it. My favorite performance this time was “The Chinese Dance.” The bright red costumes, music and choreography were simply divine. You can listen to Tchaikovsky’s music here.

We gave our daughters their own Nutcrackers last Christmas, and we like to turn on a CD of the Nutcracker music and let them dance. (Makes all those hours of ballet lessons worth it.) If you’ve never seen it, I hope you’ll be able to experience it in a live performance.

By: Heather Ivester in: Music | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (2)

December 14, 2005

Today is the Carnival of Beauty posted over at Two Talent Living. Be sure to click on over when you have a few minutes and read through the submissions on this week’s topic: “The Beauty of Giving.” Next week will be “The Beauty of Tradition,” so here’s something for you to be thinking about. You can email me your thoughts if you don’t have a blog and would still like to be included. I’d love to post other people’s ideas on tradition besides just mine.

I wanted to share with you today the words of one of my favorite songs — I haven’t heard it much lately because of all the Christmas music. It’s called “Here I Am to Worship.” Have you heard this song? It’s by Tim Hughes, an artist from the UK.

I didn’t even know who wrote it until the other day when I looked it up — I guess I’ve been too busy changing diapers and driving my taxi around to know this: “Tim Hughes has become one of the most well-known lead worshippers of his generation in the space of just a few years. Tim’s first solo project…won the Inspirational Song of the Year category at the Dove Awards in Nashville 2003. Tim was also nominated for Songwriter of the Year” (from Christianbits).

If you play guitar, I found a great site, Just Worship, that has chords to dozens of songs. Here are the words for Here I Am To Worship:

Light of the world, You stepped down into darkness.
Opened my eyes, let me see.
Beauty that made this heart adore you
Hope of a life spent with You.

So, here I am to worship,
Here I am to bow down,
Here I am to say that You’re my God,
And You’re altogether lovely,
Altogether worthy,
Altogether wonderful to me.

King of all days, oh so highly exalted
Glorious in heaven above.
Humbly You came to the earth You created.
All for love’s sake became poor.

Here I am to worship,
Here I am to bow down,
Here I am to say that You’re my God.
You’re altogether lovely,
Altogether worthy,
Altogether wonderful to me.

I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross.
I’ll never know how much it cost to see my sin upon that cross.


P.S. If anyone in my family has drawn my name for a Christmas present and gives me this CD, I’ll be so happy, I’ll probably knock over the Christmas tree doing a cartwheel (and put my back out in the process — but that’s OK because I’ll just lie around listening to this song over and over!). Plus, then I’ll know you care about me because you’re reading my blog!

Edit: Yes, I did get a praise music CD with this song on it! But no, I didn’t do a cartwheel because nobody asked, thank goodness.

By: Heather Ivester in: Music | Permalink | Comments & Trackbacks (3)