Welcome to the Cultivate Speaker Series! At the conference, we'll have a variety of workshops that offer tools to equip and empower your faith journey. Speaker Series is an interview-style editorial about each speaker at Cultivate.
Let's meet Sharon Cesena, learn more about her breakout session (The Art of Journaling - Discovering Jesus at work in you!) and, how God has been working journaling in her life.
For Sharon, journaling has always been a valuable avenue to process her feelings, see growth in her relationship with Christ and her prayer life, and as a creative outlet in Art Journaling. God has put it on her heart to speak about journaling, on the heels of her hardest season in life.
Tell us about you and your family.
I work full time as a Planning/Sourcing manager for a small manufacturing company in El Dorado Hills. In my spare time I love to hike/backpack, read and dabble in art. I have a heart for kids with special needs, so it was an answered prayer when God brought Joy Ministry to Rolling Hills Christian Church (RHCC). I have been a volunteer since its inception 7 years ago.
I have two grown daughters, Kristi and Lindsey, who are also my best friends. I have two very active grandsons, Collin (8) and Jacob (5) whom I love spending time with any chance I can get. I grew up in a very loving family, where my three sisters and I were always encouraged to share our feelings and reach for our dreams.
Tell us about your faith journey.
I became a Christian nine years ago at the age of 50. I was raised Catholic but hadn't attended church regularly for over 20 years. A seed was planted in me at my daughter's freshman orientation dinner at William Jessup University, and I suddenly wanted more in my life - the spiritual aspect was missing. I attended Christmas service at RHCC December of 2008, and was baptized the following April. Its been the best decision of my life.
When you were asked to speak at Cultivate, what was your first reaction? Why?
My first answer was NO, because I am NOT a public speaker, and what would I even speak about? Women come to conferences to hear speakers like Lisa Harper, not plain old me.
When you heard what you would speak about, were you surprised by the topic that was asked of you? Why or why not?
When I was given the topic of Journaling, I eased a little and said - "Ok, that's something I could talk about because I'm passionate about it and have experienced the value of it in my life. But let me pray on this because I have no experience talking to large audiences. It takes everything in me to volunteer to lead prayer on occasion in small group."
Looking back up to this point, how has God worked out this topic in your own life?