Well, Retreat 2009 has come and gone, but the transformed women that left that place are many!!
Beloved entertained us, shared their stories, and led us in worship.
We learned truths about our value and that God "saved the best for last" as we studied the creation story (Genesis 1).
We also were introduced to a Christian classic, "Hinds Feet On High Places" by Hannah Hurnard. We discussed and reflected on the detours that come in life, the yieldedness and surrender that must result in our relationship with the Lord, and the JOY that results as we walk with Him.
Saturday afternoon was spent taking a "Trust Walk with Jesus" where we spent time in His Word, looking deeply at our own hearts and allowing the Holy Spirit to transform us one altar at a time.
As we closed in Chapel on Sunday, we were reminded that we were not made for the mountain tops, but for the valleys. We need to learn to appreciate the valley as much as the mountain top as we walk with Jesus one day at a time.
I praise God for His provision, presence and faithfulness in arranging this glorious weekend as 60 women set the time apart to meet with Him.
Praise you Father for transforming each woman, as not one left that place unchanged!!"
In Him, Joanne
P.S. I can't imagine what He has in store for 2010!!! Be sure to save the dates....January 8-10, 2010.
Retreat 2009 - IN YOUR WORDS
from Christine Knipp (email to Joanne)
As I retreat to the Valley, I have to say I have done it with so much more peace than I have in the past...of course it didn't take long for the mist to form in front of my eyes....but I felt "His" hand in mine...and it's stayed there...
I wanted to thank you once again,for your willingness to be His servant, and because of that, the hearts you helped to opened up to recieve what God had for them...
I was driving to work today (had to drive to Hudson so I had a long time to think) and I was listening to my first Beloved Cd (why did I wait so long to buy it????) and my mind went to this thought....Every one of us came away from that Mountain Top and took our separate Journeyinto the Valley....our own personal Valley that God set before us....and right now there are 50 or so women out there on the streets, in Pinellas County, Pasco county, going to work, dropping kids off at school, changing a diaper, smiling at a grocery store clerk, each reaching out and touching lives in her own "God given" way....and it's all because God was able to work in each of us "right where we were" taking us"right where He needed us to be" and giving us the Joy for Journey that we were about to go on through 2009.
You know how it seems like sometimes there is one key thing that keeps coming up over and over and you just know that you have to "claim it" because you feel like each time you hear it, it's like God was putting it there for you ...?(I know I could have shared this...but I honestly didn't realize how big this was until the very last hour in Chapel).....
I came away with Peace this weekend, and a new understanding of my worth, and one thing that I never expected.....5 simple words that hit me in a way I never thought..."one day at a time"..............
take it one day at a time, God will get you through it "one day at a time"have peace and live it one day at a time, Trust in God and take it one day at a time....don't look at the big picture...take it one day at a time...you miss the joy if you don't take it "one day at a time"....
That's my "New Years Resolution" I will trust in God and take it .... ONE DAY AT A TIME!
from Joanne (and Tina)
My precious sister, Tina, shared something with me as she left on Sunday. She handed me a piece of paper and said that the Lord had given her this message before she ever came to Retreat and I wanted to share it with you....
"Passion JOY = destiny
get happy love God
Serve the Lord with gladness.
Love people. The JOY of the Lord is your strength.
Too much rudeness, bitterness, resentment.
Your "ministry" is to love and to serve GOD.
To worship HIM and to love on HIS people.
You must have PURPOSE PASSION DIRECTION.
Don't waste time! Time is precious.
Invest it into goodness. into JOY.
When you invest in doing for others you will find joy.
Be grateful for the things, people that God has placed in your life.
Your Children, your Husband, your Friends.
Invest excellent time with these special people.
Joy will seep into your "bones" and you will find healing, well being, and peace."