Thursday, October 24, 2013


I just got back from a Women's Retreat our church had this past weekend. I am so fortunate that Tad really pushed me to go; not that I didn't want to go, but the thought of spending the money and finding someone to watch the kids is a little stressful. But he really thought I should go, and his sister came from out of town to watch the kids while Tad was at work. The Lord has been doing such amazing things in my life. Which is so comforting because it reminds me that He hasn't given up on me, despite all my faults. Things have been tough lately, I'm not gonna lie, but God has a way of reminding us of Himself, reminding us that it's not all about us, and directing us back to Him.
The retreat was such a time of refreshment, relaxation, a time to get away from the normal distractions of 3 little ones that always need my attention, and a house and a slew of other things that need my attention, and to just breath. And think. And pray. And to be with other like-minded Christian women to laugh with and talk about spiritual things with. It's not like retreat can happen all the time, but when the Lord blesses us with it, we can appreciate it all the more.
The theme of the retreat was "You are His Treasure" and the messages were powerful. The speaker was this amazing missionary who spends most of the year living in Sudan, where there is no electricity or running water. Her messages were vibrant with her passion for the Lord spilling over. I wanted to catch her passion! She talked about so many amazing things. She said that we are so resistant to change that we settle for less, and we are getting jipped. She said the more broken we are, the more eligible we are for service, and the more love can leak out. I was pretty broken on retreat, and I think that I needed to hear that so that I didn't go away thinking I was a failure, or ineligible. That is what Satan wants us to think. But when we feel like we are nothing, when we have nothing left to give, when we feel like we couldn't possibly do anything for Jesus, that's when we are in the perfect place for Him to use us because it needs to be Him working His amazing power in us. When we are prideful, and feel like "we got this" and that we have "arrived" in our spiritual walks, then we have all kinds of walls built up around us, and it is hard for God to use that. I have to keep remembering this. How often do we think that we have to just try harder, do better, memorize some more Scripture, get up a little earlier, attend one more church service, and then God will be more pleased with me? That's the way the world works, so that's how our mind assumes that God works. But God is bigger. He is bigger than our stuff, and our best efforts. And He is here to radically change our lives. Now!! Not just in heaven, not just for eternity, but He is offering us new life, that we would be a new creation, and I am begging you all to take hold of what He has for you! Even if you are already a believer, He has more for you! More of His power, more of His Spirit, more opportunities, and each day is a new day of grace, opportunities, forgiveness, growth, evangelism, and surrender. We must surrender our all to Him, so He can work with all of us. Don't hold anything back. And you will not be disappointed.
She also talked about our sword, the Word of God, and knowing it well. And how the stronger the Spirit gets, the weaker our flesh gets. And one big thing that stuck in my mind is that, "our life's hurts are temporal-they will pass away." Such perspective. What are we going through right now that is menial compared to the greatness of our God and the things that matter for eternity? And how many of those things are we letting into our hearts to sabotage the work of the Lord? Are we quenching the Spirit in our lives by roots of bitterness? She also said, "The more I realize that I am the Lord's treasure, the more He will become my treasure." It reminds me of 1 John 4:19 which says, "We love because he first loved us."
The speaker also said, "we don't have to be able, we just have to be willing." Are we really able to do anything without the Lord? "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness." 2 Peter 1:3
"Each time we die to ourselves, a little bit of us dies and a little more of Jesus takes over." Humility. Such a tough thing for us prideful human beings who always want to be right, have the last word, not let anyone speak out against us. We can be ruthless. But what does God want us to do? What did Jesus model for us? To be servants. To be humble. To not return evil for evil, but to overcome evil with good. To love our enemies. To do good to those who hurt us. Easier said than done, but when we let go of ourselves, and let God work in and through us, we will start to see more of Him, and less of us.
So, really, I could go on and on, but those were just some of the highlights from retreat. And if you are a momma who just can't get away on a retreat, then see if you can go on a mini-retreat! One blogger goes on a prayer/planning retreat every week! On Sundays, she gets away for a couple of hours while her husband keeps the kids, and she gets her week planned out and spends time alone with God, getting refreshed and renewed. I think we need to be recharged and rest every once in awhile so we can be the best mommies we can be to our kids. We need that daily time with God, our daily bread, but we also need some extended time every now and then, however we can get it, to rest and reflect, and to really hear what God would have for us at that time. I hope all of you are encouraged and excited about what God has for your life. Don't get stagnant! Ask for God to fill you to overflowing with love, passion, surrender, willingness, and humility! Don't waste your life on anything less than Him!!

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