Monday, April 20, 2009

Reflections of A Christian Women's Retreat

If I had to pick one word for what I got out of this past weekend's retreat that I attended with my Mom and about 30 other Jesus loving, God serving women, I'd have to go with:


One of my carpool buddies offered that word, and I quickly grabbed on, because it is so very true.

I am rejuvenated spiritually.

What's so amazing, is that I never really felt that I needed any rejuvenating in the spiritual area of my life. I mean, seriously, daily I immerse myself in the Word, Spiritual devotions, Prayers that too often turn into long conversations with God (I'm sure He's created an on/off switch just for me--He'd have to, or He'd never hear anyone else's offerings), and with respect to my writing, I depend on God to guide it wholly and I'm working on my writing about five to eight hours a day on average. Wow, you'd think I would be a better Christian with this schedule, but trust me, I'm a very slow learner...but I'm trusting God to work on that, too!

So how do I feel rejuvenated?

I believe it comes from the change of how I worshiped and praised and served this weekend.

  • Daily, I don't sing praise songs out loud with a group of amazingly gifted musicians, or vocally at all, really.
  • Daily, I worship and praise, and even mostly serve, in solitude. This weekend I did so with a group of more than 30 women, and I was learning audibly through the leaders speaking, not through reading.

There is truly power in company, and getting out of routine, I believe.

I am truly blessed to have attended this Christian Women's Retreat, and I believe that everyone involved in organizing it deserve Angel status. For they were Angels of love and grace, and stewardship, to all who attended. Praises of thanks are lifted for each and every one of them!

Now, it's back to routine, but with wonderful memories and a few more things to think about, too.

If you care to share, what makes you feel rejuvenated spiritually?

Surrendering to Him,



Katie said...

Rejuvination... it's such a wonderful word. You post rejuvinated me! It reminded me about the importance of taking a break from our daily routines to seek God. All to often I talk at God and very rarely do I make myself shut up and listen. I'd love to have a day where I just be still before God (whether that's taking a hike, or watching the sunset, or just sitting in the dark) and listen to whatever He might want to be telling me. Thanks for the post!

sherrinda said...

Isn't there something special about lifting your voice along along with others to praise Him? There is something so special about The Body of Christ and the corporate worship.
Thanks for a beautiful post!

Terri Tiffany said...

First off, your post:)) I love to hear how people worship and grow closer to God. I am so glad your weekend was awesome!!

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Katie, it's so true, we don't take near enough time to just listen. Since I had my mother with me, I didn't really feel comfortable leaving her alone too often when it wasn't for scheduled activities, so I didn't get a lot of alone time. But despite that, God still worked through this weekend to give me something special. Though hearing His voice would have been awesomen, that wasn't in His plans for me this weekend, obviously. Maybe next time.

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Sherrinda, each session began in musical worship. For many of us the songs translated into prayers and moistened our eyes. Me included. It was just beautiful!

I'm not musical in the least and have been known to downplay the need for it, but this weekend really opened my eyes to the fact that if sung from the heart, music can be a deep, personal worshipping tool. It's value is definitely greater than I gave it credit for before.

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Terri, I'm glad this post rejuvenated you spiritually, too. There is definitely power in numbers and more than just an hour together on a Sunday morning. Retreats are a deeper, more meaningful way to worship and praise, and even share in the body of Christ. I hope your weekend was great as well!

Jody Hedlund said...

I was thinking about you and wondering how your retreat went! I've always loved retreats for that very reason: an intense weekend to just focus on the Lord!

At this stage in my life, I use an extended time on Sunday mornings to pray and try to still my heart before the Lord. I love the quietness and solitude and wish I had more. But I'm grateful for the small amount I do have!

Jessica said...

I love praise and worship at church. It just connects me in a way to others and helps me "feel" closer to God.
I'm so glad you had an awesome time. :-)

Cindy said...

I love that feeling of rejuvenation. I think it's so beneficial because it helps us put the rest of life in perspective and it helps us grow just a little (or sometimes a lot) in our spiritual journey. Two weeks until I get to go to my church's women's retreat. I am soooo excited!

Jeannie Campbell said...

i feel rejuvenated after reading a good book, spending time outside with my little girl and husband, listening to stellar music (including your snow in salzburg - sp? - on your website. i'm a piano player...and i LOVE it!) or playing on the piano for a release, going for a jog/walk...all of these things can be rejuvenating for me!

Susan said...

Who organized the retreat? Maybe I could go next year...

Eileen Astels Watson said...

Hi, Susan!

My pastor and few members of our church, Shantz Mennonite, organized the retreat at Circle Square Ranch in Brampton or Brantford (can never remember which it is, even though I drove there). They opened it up in the last month or so to others outside of our church membership when they needed a few more attendees. If we do it again next year and they open it up to visitors again I'll be sure to pass the info along, if you're interested.

This year's retreat was all on friendships.