Thursday, April 9, 2015

Jennifer's Story; My Story; God's Story

It was Saturday morning just 7 days before our Sabbath-Living Retreat. As I sat with my friends (those making up the retreat committee) in our living room, I shared Ephesians 2:10 …

 "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

I desired to affirm them. God created each with gifts and abilities that they were living out as together we brought this retreat to reality. The retreat that was God's idea. And our pace was walking as each did their part.

Then I skipped to Colossians 3:15, “And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.”
Amy S.
So many importants in those few words, let peace rule … one body … be thankful.

Committee and community both originate from the same Latin word, communis. Some definitions include a social unit that share common values and are assembled for a specific purpose. That’s who we were—one body, a small community who came together for a specific time with a specific purpose. Over the course of 8 months this committee became a community of friends.

What did that look like for me?

1. Ministry is prayer; ministry is partnership; ministry is stewardship.
2. Affirming my friends with their contributions.
3. Trusting them with their responsibilities.

Jennifer shared this story with me:

Several years ago she headed up a committee to work on a similar women’s event. As with our Sabbath-Living retreat there were lots of details that needed to be attended to. Jennifer cast the vision and the committee went to work. The day of the event, one of the committee members came up to her and said, “Jennifer, step back and watch God work.” As she let go and watched the event unfold more beautifully than she could imagine, tears formed in her eyes and excitement in her heart as she observed God’s blessing.

Jennifer’s story foreshadowed my story. I am so thankful for each
of these dear friends; and I stand amazed at the goodness of God smiling on the retreat.

But there were others too, faithful ladies who prayed. Thank you so much to Janine, Susan, Mary, Mary, Joyce, Lynea, Jenny, Trisha, Jean, and Barb.

Deb and Kathleen, along with Dana shared their passions in afternoon workshops complimenting the theme of the retreat.

Nan, Lisa, Joyce, and Rachel all shared personal words of testimony about
their learning Sabbath-living.

Amy K. and her friends who led each session with their worshipful music.

Pam and Shelia and others who generously donated gifts for the women attending.

And Sally Breedlove, our speaker who made the Word come alive to all of us. Her depth in the scriptures and her down-to-earth stories were the perfect introduction to our personal reflection times. 

Like Jennifer, I was stunned by how God orchestrated the entire weekend.

“that together you may with one voice glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.”                                                                                                                                           Romans 15:6

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