Leading through “What If”

What if all my years in advertising agency management don’t belong in a box that I put on a shelf as I embark on this new journey of writing+God+women+growing?

All those years of training in how people from myriad starting points can travel toward a beautiful new destination…    Shouldn’t I assume that those skills are exactly the tools I need to confidently assume the next role that God has in store?

What if it’s not about starting over, but rather creating a new layer that starts here?
From this unique vantage point?

I talk about my 25+ years in big-budget branding, marketing, communications strategies, retail bridging, (blah blah blah) as if they are that other part of my life that is now transformed by a gracious and inviting God.  I refer to my LEAPS as if I have left the past for an astonishing new course.

That’s true, but in fact, I’m bringing with me … all of me.

Some days it’s difficult because as I dip my toes into these new conversations about ministry, and women’s issues, I am reserved.  “You’re too new, you couldn’t know enough yet to speak up.”

But in fact I am designed to lead, and to champion the great thinkers and creative people around me and bring more to the conversation.

I don’t have a theology degree or an MDIV.   Instead I’ve walked a life of many pathways through a wild  agency career, family growing, marriage broken, control surrendered, awe and wonder,  and wildly blessed true love.

This is where I start.  Knowing there’s a giant world of women way outside THE CHURCH who have never had a helpful thought about the beauty of God in their life, or getting Vertical before we look toward our spouse. The church, I’ve come to learn, talks often to people already involved in the conversation. And I suppose that makes sense.

What if I’m meant to go out and have new conversations?

I think yes.


What is your “What if” for today?




  1. Ray Sammos
    Dec 14, 2011

    My BIG what-if is, WHAT IF SHE DOES NOT DO IT? That would be a tragedy, a waste, a waste of God’s training and a waste for those that need to hear.

    Just DO IT!

  2. Hannah Whalen
    Dec 14, 2011

    Wow. This is so relevant! I blogged about a different side of this same coin just this morning! 🙂 I love that you’re challenging yourself to include the things you’ve learned and the strengths you’ve fostered in other areas toward your leadership arena. Beautiful writing!

    • Suzy
      Dec 14, 2011

      Thanks Hannah. Great to hear from you.

  3. michaeldanner
    Dec 15, 2011

    To me, the saddest part of the advertising world that you come out of is that they DO start with useful insights about the human condition, what motivates us, what we need deep down, and so on. Then they often use it to sell us stuff that doesn’t meet those needs. You are in a fantastic position to be able to take all that you have learned in that world, and NOT sell people another product, but point them to a God that has wanted to walk with them all along. You have skills that they don’t teach in seminary, but that are needed for leaders in today’s world. Grace and peace to you as you follow God’s calling in your life.

    • Suzy
      Dec 15, 2011

      Michael, Thank you for your encouragement. Indeed, I had reached a point in my agency career when I could no longer devote my energies to luxury car persuasion. But the industry is full of creative, genuine people who care about truth. Certainly there are plenty who are less-than-honest, but my career was largely based on authentic connections. After all, anything we do to build a business, an audience, a church, …. is all marketing. I appreciate your comment very much. I am newly focused on a certain calling! Merry Christmas!

  4. Joii C.
    Dec 15, 2011

    I think my “what if” stands by yours. God is calling those who haven’t heard. We’ve got to go out and be the light. God is concerned with what concerns us. His desire is that we lead full and abundant lives in him.

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