An interview with the beautiful Patsy Clairmont, Part 1...

Patsy Clairmont

The first time I heard author and speaker Patsy Clairmont, I was in the car - the only place I could pick up a strong enough signal to listen to the radio those many years ago. With my two rambunctious little boys strapped into their seats, I backed out of the garage and tuned the radio onto a Focus on the Family broadcast just as James Dobson was introducing Patsy and her "God Uses Cracked Pots" message.  

We had very little discretionary money back in those early living-on-a-farmer's-income years - long before the internet and access to online resources, but after hearing Patsy's message, I had to order a copy. I was obviously not alone. Almost twenty years later, that message by Patsy remains on Focus on the Family's list of top 10 broadcasts ever. (A downloadable copy of a rebroadcast can be purchased for less than $2 here.)

Several years later, my mother heard that Patsy would be speaking at a Christian conference for women (what turned out to be one of the first Women of Faith conferences) that was coming to a large church near her home. Mother bought me a ticket, and since that conference in Lakeland, if Patsy Clairmont was part of the team, I’ve attended every Women of Faith event that my circumstances in life would allow.

Patsy's wit and wisdom inspired and encouraged me through years of raising those little boys (and eventually a daughter) into adulthood - inspiration I apparently passed on to them. A few years ago, one of my adult sons was in a difficult situation and as we talked about it over the phone, he said, "But I remember what Patsy Clairmont said...."  

Patsy's wisdom continues to inspire me, and when she began speaking words of encouragement into my life a few years ago (like that comment in the sidebar), I was both humbled and thrilled. When she graciously agreed to an interview, I was over the moon with delight. Throughout the week here on Pollywog Creek, I will be sharing portions of that interview. 
Patsy, how long have you been with Women of Faith (WOF), and what have you enjoyed most about your years of ministry as part of the team?
I joined Women of Faith at its inception. It began with four of us on the speaking team (nicknamed The Porch) and now sixteen years later it has grown to two teams of up to eight of us per team. 
What I have learned from my years with WOF would fill a book. Perhaps a series of books. It has been a heart and life-expanding journey. The travel alone has taught me a great deal about myself and others. And you can't work with a team and not delve into your own character. People reveal who we are...and aren't. Let me say my years with WOF has helped hone my independence, given me years of stage experience, taught me travel disciplines, and expanded my understanding of the frailty and yet tenacity of the human heart. 
With the WOF team I have traveled to places I would have never gone to, forged friendships with folks I would have never met, and experienced life up close and personal in ways I would have never dreamed.
I’ve always appreciated the openness and vulnerability of everyone on the WOF team to share deep personal hurts and struggles along with fresh insights that testify to an ongoing faith and devotional life. How would you describe your devotional life, Patsy, and how are you able to maintain spiritual disciplines with a very full traveling and speaking schedule?
Really being a part of WOF fosters spiritual discipline. We pray together, worship, encourage, confront, and counsel one another. We are all readers and that alone increases what we bring to each other. We all love to laugh, which helps us survive road life, travel disruptions, and at times each other. We are an odd lot with varying backgrounds and scads of opinions. Our common denominator is Jesus who enables us to maintain peace and civility in the midst of a topsy-turvy lifestyle. 
I travel with an IPad which gives me access to great books and videos which helps to feed my spirit. I love at the press of a few keys I can listen to great preachers, outstanding teachers, and music that heals the soul. How fortunate we are to instantly have so much available.
{Photo} from Patsy's website here.