Bright Lights Conference at Creation Museum

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The Bright Lights conference at the Creation Museum was a climax to our recent Bright Lights conference trip.

IMG_5159_2 Our team of leaders, taking advantage of the beautiful picturesque grounds.

Below are a few examples of ways we saw God working and answering prayer at this conference.

-Just a week and a half previously, a man designed and donated a Bright Lights registration sign (as seen in the registration pictures on the slide show) and delivered it to us at our conferences in Virginia. It was a wonderful addition to our registration booth outside the museum. God provided at just the right time. My dad says you might call it a “sign from God.” 🙂

-A family from Wisconsin planned a week long family trip many months ago to Ohio, intending to spend several days of that week at the Creation Museum. The mother had also wanted to come to a Bright Lights Conference sometime but had not been able to work it out to come to any previous conferences. This mother told us that she began praying that a Bright Lights Conference would be planned somewhere within driving distance of the museum during that same week since they had that time available. A few days before they left, she checked our website and found that there would be a Bright Lights Conference right at the museum itself the first day they were there!

-The weather was beautiful, allowing us to do the small groups in the outside gardens and pavilions.

-Our whole team of leaders stayed at a guest house on the museum grounds. A few museum volunteers who were staying in the same location decided to get up at 5 AM to make a pancake breakfast for our entire staff. This was completely unexpected and very much appreciated!

-Although unexpected complications could have developed from running a conference at a location where there’s already so much going on, the whole day went smoothly. From registration, to the main sessions, to the small groups outside, everything stayed on schedule, and there was an enthusiastic spirit among everyone.

-One mother gave four extra planetarium tickets to Nickie, asking her to pass them on to anyone who could use them. Praying that God would direct her to the right family, Nickie approached a mom with two daughters in the main hall and offered them the free tickets. They joyfully thanked her, and as they were walking away the mom said to the smiling little girl, “See? God gave you the desire of your heart!”

-Many girls indicated on their response forms that they made commitments to spend time in God’s Word every day, to honor their parents, to keep a clear conscience, to minister to their brothers and sisters, to keep themselves pure from polluting influences, and to be strong for the Lord in their youth.

“Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.” Psalm 145:3-4

Ohio Conferences!

116I1839 In Ohio we did the same schedule conference as Virginia. Strong in the Lord Conference, free day, Radiant Purity Conference. It was a great week! Everyone had their “tired moments” but the Lord’s grace is always sufficient and we were all excited to see how open and responsive the girls were to the lessons we were teaching.

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IMG_5041_3Attendees

301W0857Leaders

God brought together an incredible group of leaders who persevered though all the early mornings, new pressures and responsibilities, long hours on the road, and being with people day-in and day-out. They kept serving sacrificially and cheerfully, and were a great example to me of Christ’s character. Our times of sharing from the Word and praying together were a highlight for everyone. Even though many hadn’t known each other previously, there was a special fellowship and unity in the group. True fellowship takes place when you are serving the Lord, side-by-side, and encouraging each other even when the going gets rough.

IMG_4974My brother Stephen is a very alert person. Always aware of his surroundings, he notices details other people don’t notice. He stays on top of all the “behind the scenes” technical elements of running the conferences. Projectors, lapel mics, speakers, sound mixer, lights, video equipment, computers, printers, scanners, you name it… Stephen seems to instinctively know how everything works and goes the extra mile to pursue excellence.

8-23-01_2 copy Daniel and Stephen can fix just about anything, and they had lots of opportunities to put their mechanical skills into practice (i.e. we are good at breaking things).

And by the way, thank you to those of you who were praying for the video! We haven’t viewed it yet, but we think we were able to get some good footage.

IMG_4824 Singing with our staff on our free day

IMG_5020 We also had a great game of Ultimate Frisbee game on our free day

Pray for the Video!

I’m sorry I’m a little behind in posting! After our free day in the woods, we did a Radiant Purity Conference in the same church in Virginia, and then drove to the Columbus, OH area where we will be doing our next two conferences. The Strong in the Lord Conference is beginning in about a half hour.

IMG_4855Adjusting cameras

We’d appreciate prayer that we’d be able to capture the conference on video. Please pray that the Lord would bless the project and cause the everything to run smoothly.

IMG_4844Samuel, Nathan and Daniel unloading another box of cables

Stephen and Daniel have been working very hard the past two days laying down cables and setting up speakers and the sound systems, lighting, cameras, back drops, etc. We’re also very grateful to David, Nathan and Samuel for the sacrifices they made to be here to run the cameras.

IMG_4865Setting up the lights

We’ve already seen the Lord fit many details together and we’re so grateful for our team of skilled young men who are willing to help in this way. A good video of the conference would enable us to be able to reach so many more girls with the message of Bright Lights. But there are always many things that could go wrong, so we’d appreciate prayer that God would cause it to be a success. Thank you so much. The conference starts tonight and runs through tomorrow at 5pm.

Strong in the Lord Conference in Bristol, Virginia

IMG_4292 Praying with our group of leaders before the conference starts.

IMG_4325 Girls and mothers arriving

IMG_4319 …picking up their name tags…

301W0386 …and gathering for the main session.

IMG_4341Throughout the conference we go back and forth between the main sessions and small group times. The groups have names such as “Stars”, “Fireflies”, “Flashlights”, etc.

116I9513 “What was your favorite part of the conference?” I often ask the girls. “The skits!” they often reply with a little grin and twinkle in their eye.

116I9580 We use the skits to reinforce what we’re teaching. This skit is called “The Conscience Skit” and teaches the importance of confessing your sin and keeping a clear conscience.

116I9607 The “CBN Broadcast Skit”

116I9623 We concluded the conference with candles and encouraging the girls to “…Let Your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and praise your father in Heaven…!” (Matthew 5:16)

One of the highlights after the a conference is talking with the girls and moms as they are leaving. Many moms and explain with emotion how much the Lord used the conference in their lives and their daughters’ lives. We are reminded that even though we can’t see all of the fruit right now, we must “look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 1 Cor 4:18

The Beginning of a Great Trip!

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After about 17 hours on the road, our “Bright Lights Team” is still looking cheerful as we arrive in Bristol, Virginia. We were very encouraged about how God put this team together. We’ve already had a lot of good talks and good times together.

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The first two conferences will be held at this church here in Virginia.

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Today was spent unloading, setting up, practicing music, practicing skits, entering last minute registrations into our database, and organizing countless details… Everyone has a different area that they are in charge of. For example, Abigail and Tia put up signs all over the church indicating where each “small group” will be held. They did a terrific job. Here’s a little glimpse of their afternoon….
IMG_4261 “How should we arrange these signs so the girls can find their small group rooms easily?” “Should we put it there?”

IMG_4260 “Or should we put it here?”

IMG_4259 “Oh, this is so confusing!”

Omaha Bright Lights Conferences

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Last week we “moved in” (literally!) to Kingsway Christian Church and spent the week running two Bright Lights Conferences…

We followed our typical conference schedule:
Monday: Set up
Tuesday Evening and Wednesday: “Strong in the Lord Conference”
Thursday: Rest day
Friday Evening and Saturday: “Radiant Purity Conference”

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Before each conference we spent a few hours in “teacher’s training”, discussion, and prayer. We were excited to see the Lord provide the leaders we needed for the small groups. Many of the leaders who had helped at past conferences were not able to make it this time, but the Lord raised up an awesome new team. About 20 godly older young ladies–outstanding leaders–joined us from over 9 different states. We agreed that this was definately something God brought about.

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Hannah’s small group

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The age range for the Strong in the Lord conference is 8-14.

One of the topics we stress at the “Strong in the Lord Conference” is the importance of reading your Bible daily. The morning after the conference while I was at the home of one of the ladies who hosted the conference for a shower, (all of us leaders sleep at the church and shuttle to homes for showers), I began chatting with Hannah (10 yrs. old), who had attended the conference.
“Did you sleep in this morning?” I asked.
“No, I got up at six,” she said sweetly, “because I was so excited to start my Bible reading plan.”
She went on to tell me what she read and what she had learned. Way to go, Hannah! Keep it up! 🙂

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The skits always keep us laughing, and no matter how much we prepare and organize… it’s still crazy backstage, right girls?!

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“Cowgirl Bekah”, (along with Alexandra), cooked several meals for our staff throughout the week. And as you can see, she doesn’t stop acting when she is offstage. Thanks again, Bekah and Alexandra, for all your patient work in the kitchen — even when the potatoes wouldn’t cook!!

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Having the Wissmann girls join us at the conference was definitely a special treat! Each of their songs and testimonies added a beautiful dimension to the conference. We’re grateful to God for arranging their schedule so that they could come join us.

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The Bright Lights group in Omaha sang a song for us that was written by the mother of one of the girls in their group. We really liked the song, and now we are excited to teach the song to our own Bright Lights group in Cedar Rapids.

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The cool down after the “Strong in the Lord Conference” was refreshing. After a non-stop day, it was wonderful to relax on a beautiful evening and listen to stories and reports from the conference.

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Happy Birthday, Stephen! Stephen has a pretty high-pressure job all week as he keeps the technical side of everything running smoothly. We are also very grateful for the other guys who came along to help with video.
We’ve been trying to get the conferences recorded for years, but there have been countless obstacles. We decided to try–yet again—to tape the conference, but we needed sufficient lighting and good camera men.
A couple weeks ago some good friends, Daniel and Samuel Roberts, contacted us and volunteered to help with video at the conference if we needed it. Of course, we said “yes”, and they drove all the way from Alabama to Nebraska to help. They are experienced camera men and did an excellent job. Combined with the three other young men from our town, Andrew, Issac, and John, we had just the video team we needed.
In addition, the church had great lighting because they used to broadcast their services. Coupled with our own lights we brought, we were able to produce sufficient lighting for the video. The sessions and skits went well, and we think that we actually may have gotten the video footage we need this time!

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On our free day, our team enjoyed some much-needed rest and recuperation which included extra sleep, an afternoon at the park, ultimate Frisbee, a relaxed dinner, birthday dessert for Stephen, and a nice time of singing with instruments in the evening. Yes, it felt wonderful.

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Here is my small group from the Radiant Purity conference! I appreciated their honesty and good insights!

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Sarah is affectionately nicknamed our “fearless leader”… Sarah, what can I say about you?! You definitely have a way of communicating truth to young ladies in a practical, understandable way. Thank you for the difference you’ve made in all of our lives.

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What you don’t see in this picture is the tears in many eyes. As I took this picture, Tami, our wonderful hostess, (in pink) was sharing through tears how clearly she saw the Lord bringing this conference together and how excited she is for what HE is still going to do. Thoughout our whole pizza and sharing time we heard report after report of encouraging ways the Lord worked throughout the week.

In Joshua 24:2-13 we see the Lord reminding Israel of how HE was the One who had really done the work in bringing them into the promised land. Joshua 24:12 says, “And I sent the hornet before you, which drave them out from before you, even the two kings of the Amorites; but not with thy sword, nor with thy bow.”As we reflected over the conference, it was so obvious to us that the LORD fought the battle last week – not us. May HE continually receive all the glory and all the praise from our hearts!

Upcoming Bright Lights Conferences in Omaha!

We are excited to announce our next Strong in the Lord and Radiant Purity Conferences scheduled for April 14-18th — only 3 weeks away!

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Click here to view flyer / registration form.

See our schedule page for more info.

To see pictures and reports from previous conferences, click here or here! If you can’t make it to the conference, we’d so appreciate it if you would keep us–and the attendees–in your prayers!

Singapore Strong in the Lord Conference


The Strong in the Lord Conference last Saturday was an encouraging time. We pray that the seeds planted in the hearts of the girls will produce much fruit for God’s kingdom.


For lunch we had Chicken-Rice, Ar Char (pickled vegetables salad), and various exotic fruits. 🙂


After the conference was over we ate dinner at a local food area near where we are staying. It started to rain really hard so we stayed there for a while eating and listening to stories. My dad shared about a talk he had with some Jewish buisness men in the Tokyo airport. (He share with them some thoughts about Jesus and salvation from Romans 4 and they responded with great interest.) Dani also shared about a good talk she had about the Lord with a man from California on the airplane.