“God knows the depth and potential He has put in the feminine heart.” - Bobbie Houston
Whew - if you don’t know Bobbie Houston, please do yourself a favor and read her quintessential book on women and women’s ministry - “The Sisterhood - How the Power of the Feminine Heart Can Become a Catalyst for Change and Make the World a Better Place” about her 20-year plus journey with Hillsong Sisterhood and the Colour Conference. Yes, it’s color with a “u” because she’s from the land down under, Australia.
Equally, if you are unfamiliar with Hillsong, head over to YouTube to listen to some of the worship gems they have dropped over the last 30 years of ministry, including Oceans (Where Feet May Fail), What A Beautiful Name and, an oldie but goodie, Shout to the Lord.
On the heels of Hillsong’s widely popular worship and music ministry, Bobbie launched what is widely considered the largest women’s conference in the world, which kicks off in Sydney, and then travels to London, Kiev, Cape Town, Los Angeles, and New York City.
“The Sisterhood has just put new language and parameters around [women’s ministry],” says Bobbie. “It’s crossed some lines that I think were generational, where young women would perhaps not see themselves as part of traditional ‘women’s ministry’. I think all those barriers have been beautifully broken down. The Sisterhood represents a really wide, gorgeous demographic of girls.”
So, last weekend, I found myself among this wide and gorgeous demographic of girls. There were girls who came from every corner of the globe and the beauty and diversity of God’s kingdom was on full display. To kickoff the conference, Bobbie hosts a “high tea party” with senior pastors and guests who are a part of the Hillsong Leadership Network, a collective of churches and leaders who share resources to help build healthy local churches.
Then, it’s time for the main event: an all-out-high-octane-mega-overdose of worship and womanhood, fueled by inspiring words from Bobbie, Dawn Chere Wilkerson, and others. Dawn Chere spoke about her eight-year battle with infertility, while Bobbie led discussions on gender and racial justice.
Here are some of our favorite moments:
“I was overwhelmed, I felt really insecure. I didn’t want to be known as the infertility girl, I didn’t want that label on me. I just wanted to figure it out before people were able to attach that name to my life. I had my eyes looking to doctors, other friendships, and other support. But you when the moment that changed my life came? It’s when I came eye-to-eye with the one who loves me the most. It took years for me to be really transparent with God and say God, ‘I’m really not happy with this season, I resent it. I don’t know what to do with it or how to move forward … and as I looked eye-to-eye- with Jesus, my Jesus, my Yeshua, my Strength, my Song, my Salvation, an amazing thing happened. I didn’t hold a baby in my arms but Jesus became my treasure.
And Jesus satisfied my soul. He satisfied my soul in a way that a baby never could, he satisfied my soul in a way that my marriage never could or any achievements never could. It was a deep rooted establishment of peace. Something that was a revelation in my spirit that God would never leave me, never forsake me and even if I never held a baby on this side of eternity, that my life had purpose and that I have work to do. There is a mission before me and there is no time to waste.”
- Dawn Chere Wilkerson’s message on Day 2.