Saturday, April 25, 2015

spring retreat

Last weekend I was hanging out with this fine looking group of ladies from my church at our church conference's spring retreat. This picture was actually taken Sunday afternoon after we'd left Newport and we stopped for lunch together at Mo's in Lincoln City. We've gone there a few times, I guess so Linda can buy us all a couple warm peach and marionberry cobblers to share. It's tradition.

In case you were wondering, I skipped the fish and chips this time, but I couldn't say no to the clam chowder.
I think there were about 175 of us all together, from churches in Oregon and Washington. The weather was beautiful and we all pretty much had ocean view rooms. The theme this year was Resting in the Journey with the theme verses coming from Matthew. "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28-29

We were blessed by four amazing ladies who spoke at the main sessions. They shared how they found rest during heartbreaking seasons of infant loss, sexual abuse, losing a spouse to cancer, and while being forced to leave a foreign country as a missionary. This was a different format for us, as we usually have one speaker that covers all the main sessions. Different was good, though. So, so good.

Our church ended up leading the worship music and providing special music a couple of times. I got to play the keyboard and listen to a whole room full of ladies harmonizing and lifting up the name of Jesus. Good stuff. 

On Saturday night, we had a little game where everyone who brought a mug got to pick one from the table. The sheets inside were kind of get-to-know-you forms, so the person who got your mug will know who to pray for. I found out whose mug I got, but I wasn't able to discover who ended up with mine. However, whoever it is has already sent me an anonymous note in the mail. How cool is that? The whole premise of this mug exchange that when you use that particular mug, it's supposed to remind you to pray for that person. 
On Saturday afternoon, after the breakout sessions (I did card-making, journaling, and women's ministry ideas) my friend Barbara and I hopped in her car and headed south. We stopped at Seal Rock and at a couple of state parks. Have I ever mentioned how much I love the Oregon coast???

My sister-in-law, Cindy, was the chairman of retreat this year. She did a fantastic job. Then she went home and fell and broke her femur on Monday. If you think about her, say a prayer. She's had quite a bit of pain.
I'm so thankful that I had the opportunity again to go to retreat and be a part of a pretty amazing weekend. Being a part of the conference women's ministry team, I know a lot of prayer and planning went into this event and it was so neat to see that God answered our prayers and blessed a lot of ladies. I'm now praying real hard (and crossing my fingers and toes and perhaps my eyeballs) that my dear friend, Kerry Messer, will be able to join us as our speaker next year. Ghetto Girls reunion at spring retreat? Oh. Ya.
photo circa October 2013 in Vegas.

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