Sunday, June 10, 2012

Hearing God's Voice

I got a text from Laura a few weeks ago asking if I wanted to go to the ladies retreat. By retreat, I immediately thought "a weekend away from the guys! Just a weekend for me, how wonderful!" Little did I really know, it would be a forever life-changing weekend where I would connect with God in no way that I had ever before.
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012
It was a retreat away for women only at a bible camp at a lake that our church supports. This was the 45th ladies retreat and I'm so glad that I was called to be a part of it. The theme for the weekend was "Hearing God's Voice". I had often wondered in my journey with God if I had ever really "heard" Him. Part of me just assumed that hearing Him, was literally so. Like one of my mental health patients hearing voices! I know many people do literally hear God's voice, but the wonderful speaker of the weekend - Carrie - who will be a lifelong friend (and hopefully mentor), opened up my eyes, ears, and all my senses really. She taught me that God speaks to us in many ways, and He had been speaking to me my whole life. I always assumed that "everything happens for a reason" and I do believe that, but now I know it's because it's God's plan for me and that is the reason why I make the decisions that I do and why things happen to me the way they do in my life.
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012
That was our verse of the weekend. We kept going back to it in our exercises during sermon. I will never forget it, and it was so true for me that weekend. God spoke to me through Carrie, our speaker, in so many ways. I was doing a new thing. This was SO new for me. I stepped way out of my comfort zone and truly was a Christian in front of women who had been Christians...worshiping and praising their whole lives! Carrie asked Jesus into her heart when she was 3.5 years old. So young! I can't even remember being that young!  My journey with God has been wonderful, but very unique. Perhaps I will share more on that later, but for now I just want to share a bit about this weekend.
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012
I learned that He speaks to us through songs, prayers of others, His creation - the sky, bird songs, flowers, trees, through books, through our partners, our friends...our children. Wow, does God even speak to me through Braden. Every time I look at him I never take for granted what a true blessing and a miracle he is to me.
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012
I am a forever changed for the better woman. I truly heard his voice that weekend and want to learn his word. Another verse that really hit me, that I really needed to see was this:
Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes?
Matthew 6:25

It was a verse we were to read as part of our exercises, but it spoke to me so much and I needed to read that. I have been struggling so much with body image and nutrition this pregnancy and it has really bothered me. I don't want to feel this way, but I do. Dreading potential stretch marks, dreading the number that the scale reads as it is happening so much faster this time, feeling guilty about not eating as healthy as I could be, not exercising as much. That verse hit me, and it hit me hard. It doesn't mean I get a free pass and that I can stuff my face full of Laura's delicious cinnamon buns, but I just needed it.
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012

Isn't this camp so peaceful and serene. It was perfect. I was surrounded by amazing women, including my amazingly wonderful sister-in-law Laura and my beautiful friend Sam. These two know more about me now on my journey with God that I knew before this weekend. I'm not going to share everything that happened, but I encourage you to step out of your comfort zone if He calls you to!
Coventant Women's Retreat 2012
Sarah

15 comments:

  1. I am SO glad you had a great experience on your retreat and was able to open up your mind & senses! And I love those moments when it hits you like "whoa! That was meant for me! There is no other explanation because that speaks directly to the situation I'm living!"
    :)

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  2. Looks like you had a great, much needed getaway. I'm glad you were able to get that! (and get a free pass at eating more!)
    I too am trying to listen to God. And I feel like I'm missing his message. With all this house search business. I'm starting to think we aren't supposed to live where we think we want to live. Just trying to grasp where exactly He is pointing us.

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    1. It's so easy to get wrapped up in our day to day worries and not listen - believe me - I was and know I still will. It was nice to have a weekend to just focus on Him!

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  3. I have to tell you, Matthew 6:28 is my absolute favorite verse, just after your quoted 6:25: "Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin..." yet the Father provides for them. When things are really rough for me, I repeat this to myself as a mantra. Consider the lilies of the field. It gives me goosebumps to this day and I have been saying it for well over 10 years.

    How wonderful for you, to have this opportunity to refocus and recognize what is true in your heart. We should all be so lucky to have a similar experience!

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    1. Thanks for sharing! I need to study more on His word and learn more scripture. It was so wonderful, and a much needed experience.

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  4. That's awesome! I wish there was something around here (and people that would want to go with me). Can't wait to hear about your journey some day...and you're right, God speaks to us in all sorts of ways!

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    1. Thanks, Libby! I would go with you if you lived here or vice versa!

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  5. I love when God touches our hearts and when we actually notice it! So happy for you that you had such a great weekend! I love hearing these stories and you blogging about it inspires me to share my faith more on my blog!!

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    1. I get a bit shy to share my faith too, but at the end of the day I blog for me. I'm so overwhelmed with the response I got from you ladies, thanks for your kind words!

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  6. I am so so so happy that you came with me! I too was thinking "a weekend away, woohoo"! But it was ever so much more than that.

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  7. This was a beautiful post, Sarah. Thanks for sharing!

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