Many people have asked how my first event went, and I wanted a place where I could not only document my experience but also document God’s faithfulness. When I first started planning T-Time, I originally wanted it to be a local bloggers networking event, but God turned it into something completely different. Initially, I was excited, but when I realized that He wanted me to plan a women’s empowerment workshop, I was like, “Wait, me?” I legit felt like Moses when God told him to help set the Israelites free. “Like do you have the right person or nah?”
Questions kept coming to mind like, Who’s going to come when my audience is pretty much virtual? What am I supposed to say? How the heck am I supposed to afford this? I don’t even make money from blogging. As I started to plan the event, I was overwhelmed. But I just kept planning. I kept making the marketing materials. I kept studying the Word. I set the budget. I reached out to sponsors. I got a ton of no’s, and God was completely faithful through it all.
This idea completely came from the Holy Spirit. Every single detail and idea was birthed out of what I felt like God was saying and then everything else was produced by His provision and through faith. A lot of prayers went into this event – with many prayers involving me crying out to God for help and encouragement. Since I felt led to planning this event, I wanted to be absolutely sure that this is what God wanted me to do. Right from the beginning, I asked Him questions like, how many people was I supposed to host, where should the event be held, and how much should I charge for the tickets?
I also sought a lot of advice and counsel from mentors and friends who’ve hosted these same types of events before, and the best advice I received was, “Be obedient to what you hear the Lord tell you to do first.” Something I’m learning is that God is always speaking if we’re willing to listen, and the very first thing we usually hear is Him. I’ve learned through my prayer life that the gentle nudge, the Word, or the outcome that sounds slightly crazy is often times God whispering to us that He will be with us and guide us. That’s what faith is: the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen (Hebrews 11:1).
So I chose 50 women. I chose the Embassy Suites (they happened to be one of the few and only venues that were available that could host that many people at a reasonable price), and I chose $29 for the registration ticket.
I even wrote a list of confessions based on God’s Word that were specific to the event. You can see them below:
God, thank you for supplying all of my needs according to riches in glory in Christ Jesus! Thank you for providing in ways that will exceed my expectations for the T-Time event! Thank you that women will be willing to give to her ministry.
God, you are not a God of disorder, but a God of peace. Thank you that the days leading up to the event and the day of the event will run smoothly. There will be no stress, only joy because you fill us with joy in your presence!
Father, you said that when two or three are gathered in your name, you are with us! Thank you that Your spirit will fall heavy in the place. Thank you that women will feel secure in their identity in Christ.
God, you said that we triumph by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony. And you said that when we confess our sins and pray for one another, we are healed. Thank you that conversations will be deep and that woman won’t be afraid to open up. Thank you that they will be strong and of good courage!
Jesus, you are the way, the truth, and the life. You said that these women will know truth, and that the truth will set them free. And whom the Son sets free is free indeed. Thank you for giving these women breakthrough. Thank you that they will find clarity and purpose.
God, you said to be your image bearers, to be like Christ. Thank you that these women will be committed to your call even after the event is over.
God, your Word is right and true. You are faithful in all that you do! Thank you for providing the 50+ women that you spoke would attend. Thank you for selling out the event!
Thank you for the sound teaching that will be given, God. You said that your words are life to those who find it and health to one’s whole body. Thank you for the success of this event because with you, all things are possible!
Once I decided on those details, I remember sitting calculating how much money I would need to actually host the event for that amount of people at the specific venue. I also wanted to make some type of profit from the event because I wanted to use the money to sow another seed for future projects, donate some of the money to the Dean Thomas Moinet Foundation, and publish #TheConfessionsProject devotional book.
After calculating the cost, I calculated how many sponsors I would need to reach that amount. It totaled to about 9 sponsors. I created the sponsorship levels, I created the online form so that they could submit payment, and then I started to contact potential sponsors. And by God’s faithfulness and His grace, He brought 8 out of 9 sponsors within the first 2 weeks.
But waiting for that last one was a huge test of faith. Nothing came for a few weeks. I was confused because so many came (almost all came) within a short span of time, and then there was nothing. I remember reaching out to one potential sponsor thinking that they would commit for sure, but I’ll never forget the look on their face when they told me no. It’s as though they gave me the look, “Why are you bothering us?”
And immediately afterward, I cried in my car for a good 15 minutes. I sat there and told God that He would have to bring the last sponsor in His own timing if He really wanted it to happen because I was just done. At that point, I thought that God didn’t want to bring the last sponsor and that He would provide the money in a different way.
But it’s amazing how when we surrender, God always shows up with the promise. Because 3 days later, I randomly and surprisingly got an email from a woman asking if there were spots available and that she was happy to sign on as a sponsor. Another sign of God’s faithfulness!
When I created the budget, I also budgeted money for donations. Again, I operated in faith for this entire event, and I originally budgeted $200 for donations. But God brought that money and then some so quickly that I realized that I should have stretched my faith much more.
So I increased my faith and believed God for $500 in donations. I already had about $285 in donations, and I remember waking up one morning to an email notifying me that someone had donated an additional $200. I was in complete awe because I didn’t even know the woman. I didn’t recognize her name, and I noticed that she was living in Korea. So like any young millennial, I looked her up on Instagram and when I found her, I decided to send her a private message thanking her for her generosity.
In response, she said,
Oh thank you Hanha. You are really sweet. Even if I wanted to, I can’t take credit for giving to your ministry. It was something that God had been placing in my heart this whole week and He spoke to me about sacrificial giving from the heart and what would be a sacrifice to me to sow into your ministry.
Honestly, I struggled giving for many different reasons, but ultimately God spoke to me through a minister and because of his words, I knew that God was saying if I would take that step of faith, God would not only use it to bless someone else, but He would also multiply it for them and for me. So I just trusted in Him so He gets all the glory.
I will continuously pray over you and your ministry, and your platform and that God’s hand may be upon all the work that you do and reaching all those women and your T-Time event that is coming up soon. God really loves you, Hanha, and it’s amazing how He uses someone like me who doesn’t even live in your country to be part of what He is doing in your ministry. Stay strong and encouraged.
But the crazy part is that I have no idea how she found the giving link on my blog. There is a small link to give on the sidebar, but I had never advertised it before. It’s just something I placed on the sidebar in case anyone felt led to give, and if you’re on your mobile device, you have to scroll all the way to the bottom to even see it.
But God didn’t stop there. I believed Him for $500, and He ended up providing an additional $300 for a total amount of $800 in donations. As He started to provide in ways like this, I started to slowly realize that this event was not mine, but His. I was just the vessel He had chosen to use.
For example, I have another story. I had a friend who was going to take pictures of the event. But about 3 or 4 weeks into the planning process, she told me that she wouldn’t be able to do it because she had a lot of personal problems going on.
I completely understood, but then I realized that I did not have any money in the budget for a photographer. First of all, photographers cost a pretty penny and to make matters worse, this event occurred in the middle of prime wedding season.
So I reached out to about 20 photographers… And that’s the actual number, because yes, I counted… Most were unavailable and many were entirely too expensive. So what did I do? I turned to Instagram and told the masses. Thankfully, I had a friend reach out asking if I had heard back from anyone and if I was still looking.
I said yes and told her what I needed, and she reached out to her photographer friend and by God’s grace, the girl was available. I asked if she would consider an in-kind donation because did you read the fine print? I did not have money in the budget for this! And the girl said her price was $400…
YES. YOU READ THAT RIGHT. $400!!
But here’s the kicker. My friend just casually said, “Don’t even worry about it girl, I really want to help you out so I’ll pay for it.” When I tell you that my mouth about hit the floor. LIKE WHO IS GOD AND WHY IS HE SO GOOD?
What’s even more was the response from the photographer after the event was over. I’m pulling her words from her Facebook post:
This morning I shot a Women’s Christian Creatives event in Raleigh. I haven’t taken an event (aside from weddings, such as a baby shower, party, etc.) ALL YEAR. Portraits are just my flavor of choice so I normally choose to stick to what I love. Something (the Spirit) told me to TAKE this job and I got so much from it. Totally boohooed behind the camera a couple of times. God orchestrates it ALL.
Everything was falling into place to the point that just a few weeks leading up to the event, I naturally and unsurprisingly got nervous about the teaching that God wanted me to share with the women. A few weeks out, I still didn’t necessarily know what I was supposed to say. I knew that I wanted to talk about the topic of identity, but in case you’ve missed it, I have never done something like this before. I barely do teachings on Instagram.
But as I was writing and working on the #TheConfessionsProject devotional book coming out this fall one morning, it’s like Holy Spirit just downloaded the teaching into my spirit. It was 6:30 in the morning, and once I realized what was happening, I opened another tab on my computer and immediately started typing. I knew what the topics were, I knew what stories I wanted to share, and God even provided the scriptural references that I was supposed to teach.
Still, a few days before the event, I felt the enemy creep his way in with his lies. The lie that kept replaying over and over in my head was that the content was boring. I started to feel myself getting anxious, so I had to practice the whole teaching twice. The first time I practiced it, I did a brief overview, but the day before the event, I did a complete run-through of the teaching.
Still, I was anxious that the teaching was boring, but I had to keep repeating the Word over and over that I was anxious for nothing (Philippians 4:6-7). I had to believe that God had given me this teaching to share with the women who attended, and He wouldn’t have given me that teaching if that’s not the Word He wanted me to share.
THE NUMBERS & THE DAY OF
Speaking of other things that made me anxious, actually selling tickets to the event was an emotional roller coaster. When I originally prayed, I believed God for 50 women, but as the event drew closer, about 15 people were signed up including the sponsors. I did not know what to do. I was sending the emails, I was inviting people through text, and I was marketing it on Instagram.
But God ended up providing and bringing 35 women, and I believe that the women He wanted there, were the ones that came. It was another example of His faithfulness because even though He didn’t bring 50 women, the profit made from the event was still more than expected. Not to mention that God’s peace completely guarded my heart and mind the day of. It felt like supernatural peace, and I felt so comfortable leading the workshop. Every single thing that I had confessed through God’s Word is exactly what happened – give or take a few statements. But God supplied, His truth was shared, women showed up and opened up, and He was intentional with every detail.
I say all of this because God is SO faithful. I can’t think of a better word to describe Him other than that. And I don’t know what it is in your life that feels overwhelming, or if there’s something that requires a crazy amount of faith, but I hope that this is a small glimpse of how God will provide when you’re ready to give Him control. He wants you to trust Him with your whole heart, even in the times that make no sense. And if you have the courage to do it, He will never fail you.
Be encouraged today! God’s got you. He always has and He always will.
All photos were taken by Ashley Bagamary Photography
T-Time was Sponsored by:
- Embassy Suites
- DTM Foundation
- Clean Juice
- Megan Morales Photography
- The Inspiring Investment
- A Woman’s Place in Fayetteville, PLLC
- Pinup Studio
- Oh Lord Help Us
- Lemongrass Spa
- Arielle White Realty
Giveaways Sponsored By:
People/Businesses Providing Resources and In-Kind Donations for the Gift Bags:
- T-Time Sponsors (See Above)
- Grey Ministries
- Oh So You Coaching
- Break Free Be Unstoppable
- Val Marie Paper
- Brynn Fowler Designs
- Safari Calligraphy
- Living Joy
- Spoons, Bowls, & Baking Pans
- The Country Bakeress
- J. Anthony Designs
Hanha is the writer behind Transparency Blog, and she is super passionate about encouraging women to find their identity and belonging in Christ! She graduated from the University of National Champions—Go Heels!—and she is currently pursuing plans to become a physician in the near future. A few fun facts? She’s addicted to Grey’s Anatomy, has a special place in her heart for tacos, and podcasts are her present obsession. In her spare time, she daydreams about places she can travel and loves connecting with friends on Instagram. Come say hi!