The Power of Personal Retreats

Welcome! This week begins a 7-part series on Personal Retreats that Brenda wrote for Everyone a Missionary in 2007. We also ran this series in 2016.


“You want me to do what?”

I had just been asked to go on a personal retreat.

My hungry heart eyed the potential of a few quiet hours. The idea of a personal get-away with God intrigued the adventurous side of my soul. I was acutely aware of the gaps forming in my own spiritual growth, but I was strangely anxious, fearful of my inability to attend to the quiet things of God for that length of time.

Pastor Ficken, the one who initially extended the invitation, shared six words of encouragement with me on the morning of my departure.
Rest well.
Listen closely.
Produce nothing.

Twelve years later I cannot recall what specifically happened that day except that I wanted to return. And I did, again and again. Regularly nourished from these face-to-face encounters with the Almighty, I have responded to His voice and reaped the rewards of walking with Him into places He prepared in advance for my gifts, my love and my service, to people and places I might otherwise have missed.

Embracing the call of an everyday missionary places God’s people on the cutting edge of adventure, joy and challenge. Cultivating a life rooted in God establishes a discerning ear, a responsive heart and a vision for utilizing gifts and talents that may otherwise be neglected.

Personal retreats offer an ideal arena for spiritual formation. Many faulty assumptions, however, create roadblocks keeping believers from experiencing this avenue of refreshment and transformation.

Our prayer through this series is, “Lord Jesus, lead the way.”

Have you ever been on a personal retreat? What’s the #1 roadblock?

First time here?

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