“I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will shew forth all thy marvellous works. I will be glad and rejoice in thee: I will sing praise to thy name, O thou most High.” Psalm 9:1-2
This is simply a humble attempt of showing my gratitude to God for the amazing time I had at the British Reformed Fellowship (BRF) Conference this year. The conference took place in Hebron Hall, Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, on the super-hot days of July 21 to 28, 2018.
Upon knowing that I would be given the opportunity of going, my heart was filled with joy and expectation, both for the excellent preaching that I would hear and for all the godly friends, old and new, whom I knew I would meet. Despite loving the Reformed faith for about ten years now, it was my first BRF Conference, so naturally there was some anxiety involved. At no point, however, was I let down. Everything was incredibly above my expectations. God is always good and He has been gracious towards me, from beginning to end.
In every lecture and personal exchange, I was being constantly reminded of God’s sovereignty and of His calling for us to be holy in each and every situation. The glory of the gospel was shining through.
Even though I enjoyed all the speeches, my favorite ones were “The God-Fearing Man and His Virtuous Wife” by Rev. A. Lanning, an excellent preacher I did not know beforehand, and “The Reformed Family: Parents and Children” by Prof. David Engelsma, whose books have proved to be immensely fruitful and have left a long-lasting mark on me. Meeting him in person was a great honor. My soul was once again blessed by the wonderful truth that we belong to God and His covenant, and that it is indeed a very precious thing to obey Him in our roles as women and men according to the Holy Scriptures. I was also encouraged to keep praying for a godly husband, while living for God’s glory and content being single, as we are taught by the apostle Paul in his letters.
Not only did the speeches prove to be spiritually uplifting, but so also was meeting saints from several countries: America, Northern Ireland, England, Singapore, Wales, Italy, Canada, Germany, the Republic of Ireland, Hungary, and Australia. The apostle John reminds us that with His blood Christ purchased persons from every tribe, language, people, and nation. It is always great to witness God’s gathering of people from every corner of the world—as He promised! All these believers, despite coming from completely different backgrounds and cultures, were unanimously drawn to this one thing—our precious Savior Jesus Christ. I was also strengthened to hear from some young people like me, having the same fears and struggles I have, all the while talking about the enormous comfort we have in our Almighty God. We can trust Him with everything we are because He holds us firmly, and we can live our whole lives—including our singleness—for His glory.
The morning and evening devotionals were wonderfully rewarding! What a precious time we had to listen to the Word of God, and then sing and pray together!
It was beautiful to see all those people from different places, young and old, singing the Psalms in one voice in God’s presence.
I appreciated the presentation on Christian education by Mr. Pete Adams. It is such an important topic in the days we live in, especially for someone like me, who lives in a country that has a heavy socialist influence with a Marxist educational system and virtually no schools that are in accordance with the Reformed confessions. I was encouraged to keep helping families in my church and country to seek and fight to give their children a Reformed education that glorifies the Lord, as did those who came before us.
Since I love history and by implication museums, the trips to Raglan Castle, the city of Gloucester and St. Fagan’s National Museum of History were really special. The castle was fabulous, with a very interesting history and an amazing view! At the museum we learned a lot about the history of the Welsh people. Beyond that, we had the opportunity to spend some extra time with the saints.
The Hebron Hall Conference Centre was a lovely place and I really enjoyed the view. I was pleased with the godly girls that were in my room. They were great companions and we had a very good time. They were very kind and friendly. I soon felt as though I had known them all my life!
Something that really stood out to me was the hospitality and kindness of my brothers and sisters in the faith. There was this strong sense of belonging all to Christ, even though most of us came from very different backgrounds. I was overwhelmed by the care and sympathy people showed to each other every single day.
Summing up my experience, I have been extremely blessed! God’s providence is indeed beautiful. He takes care of His people. He gathers them in order to bless them and glorify His name. It is such a joy to be among His people, to be able to express together our gratitude to Him, who has preserved us in these dark days when the biblical view on the family is attacked. His Word is truly precious and we must hold on to it. We must keep our minds filled with Scripture so that we can answer the outrageous questions of this wicked generation.
The godly people I met will, God willing, be good friends from now on, and I do hope to see them again in two years’ time. I will hold these memories dear to my heart and pray that God’s truths will be written on my heart so that He may be glorified.
— Lidi Cecilio from Brazil