The Retreat I was waiting for..FINALLY came! I loved every moment of it. Anticipation was built from the first day of September. Granted I had to go because of my roles…but my spirit wanted and needed to go.
We always renew our contract with Koinonia Conference Grounds which is located in the lush forest of Watsonville. I must’ve sounded like a broken record when it came to praising this location and the last leg of the drive up there.
All planning and prayer was finally coming alive on Friday the 26th.
Retreat Team 1 was schedule to leave church no later than 2pm. But, you can’t drive to the forest on an empty stomach right? Of course not! =)
That is a large Pho Tai. No shame. I am a big girl ^__^
I started emptying my trunk out and found leftover sparklers from our wedding in 2011. WOW I kept those 36″ sparklers under all my junk for 3 + years.
Our team goal was to arrive at the conference site and set up the check in table which included the retreat booklets and the tshirts…both of which were accidentally loaded into a locked uhaul van. Curious as to what we packed in our Uhaul pre-praise equipment?
BUT thank God it all got worked out and we were able to leave around 2:07pm. WHEW!
The drive down the 152 to Watsonville was therapeutic.
The one biggest thing I wanted all these ladies to experience the cold, crisp piney forest air. With multiple attempts, April could NOT smell this gorgeous oxygen unfortunately. She even sniffed her coconut water to sober up her nasal senses…no luck. =(
We stopped by Cafe Ella to grab an early dinner. This is a must try place IMO (humble non-foodie opinion) Ella caters but also has a cafe filled with delicious menu items.
Totally thankful for Ivan & Gideon who arrived early to help set up. We worked out the remaining details on the registration, ate dinner and set out to pray. We were determined to serve the family of Pathway. IE:
We broke off into prayer groups to spread out on the conference grounds. The desire was to sow prayers into the cabins, the sanctuary, and the dining hall. We were asking God to show us His glory, to lead us to divine conversations in our small group/W2W M2M sessions and in our cabins. For grace, humility and love to flow among cabin mates -as we know that can be difficult at times. For hearts to be a good and ready soil for the word of God to speak in each session. As we made our way towards the dining hall, a thick fog settled onto the field of the conference site. I wondered, “Is this what we would have seen in the Old Testament God? The presence of God ..”
And so it began…registrants rolled through and our 1st worship session began. Usually the 1st night people are kinda not all there. They’re tired from work and not able to focus fully on them and God at the retreat but this evening, it was different. There were hearts that were praying the weeks before and even the morning of..Hearts were ready to worship and seek God out together.
The biggest ways God had convicted my heart regarding the authority of Christ was in my marriage. Perhaps it’s one of the hardest areas to submit to the authority and the authority of your husband. God had been nudging every night about my responses, my attitude, my thoughts and overall the condition of my heart. I was resolved to make some changes and surrender as much as I could to God.. (More to come on Thankful Thursday blog)
Some of my favorite highlights of taking photos with my phone at the retreat. I’m hoping to create a simple video from all the clips I got during the game portion of the retreat. =)
I really enjoyed the time to heard the Word of God be taught, pray with our church family and just get away from the world’s influence and busyness. Sad that this may be our last retreat but thankful for the time we got to spend together. God is good. He is worthy.