so encouraged

Love this bracelet Well, I’m sitting here in an airport again today.  My first flight was canceled and I was rebooked on one that departs Atlanta just after 5 PM and is scheduled to arrive home in Boise rather late tonight.  I’m hoping for no more delays or cancellations, because I am more than ready to get home to my precious clan.  But wow, it was a good weekend.

I was so blessed by Created for Care this year.  The gals who put on this retreat truly think of so many ways to care for the mommas who come. Yummy food, fun sessions, a movie, music, and just tons and tons of faith-filled encouragement. The schedule allows lots of down time for visiting, and the keynote speaker was really inspirational. It was just very obvious that she walks with the Lord in the big and little moments of each day.  It was amazing to me to see how SO many messages from different speakers came together with a continuity that could only be God-breathed.

One personal example. A few days before I left for the weekend, I prayerfully pulled together what felt like 2/3 of my second breakout session of the weekend.  Wednesday morning came, the day before I was to leave. I knew I didn’t have that talk done, but felt peaceful about it and instead spent the day playing with my younger girls.  On the plane Thursday I pulled that unfinished talk out again and scribbled a few edits, but soon set it aside again, still feeling peaceful, like it was done enough for now.  Then Friday evening I sat in the main session at Created for Care, first hearing worship music, and then Beth Guckenberger, and was suddenly scribbling frantic notes about my talk, which I realized dovetailed beautifully with what she spoke about.  Oh, that woman knows her Bible.

The Bible verses and story that she shared were like yellow highlighters in my brain, showing me the bits of my talk that I needed to expand and flesh out.  Saturday morning it was more of the same.  Listening, scribbling, and seeing this beautiful connection between the worship, Beth’s stories, and mine. After that morning session I went back to my room, teary-eyed, on fire to finish writing.  (Good thing, because I was going to give it in 2 hours.) I finally saw clearly that my whole talk had BEEN there all along– it just needed God to come in with His highlighter and show me what parts of my story were supposed to be in bold.  And yeah, a few bits that were bunny-trails.. Turns out that particular talk didn’t need any ‘how I….’  bits, because the real message was how GOD has been at work.

There’s no doubt in my mind that He had a divine theme for that weekend, a message that He wanted mommas to hear session after session after session.  I’m sure I didn’t say everything perfectly in my own message.  But I was incredibly touched to see the Holy Spirit so actively at work in each gathering, in each message, and in each heart, including my own. What a good God we serve.

Just a few verses Beth highlighted this weekend in hope that you also will experience some of the encouragement we heard this weekend:

  • Josh 1:8 reminds us to keep the word of God always in our hearts and minds.
  • Matt 11:28-30 is a reminder to release our burdens and lean on Jesus.
  • Ex 8 tells how Pharaoh waited a DAY before he got rid of those darned frogs. (Kinda like us, holding onto our own ‘pet’ sins and worries).
  • Ex 15  tells us that Miriam and the Israelite women brought tambourines into the wilderness.  They came PREPARED to celebrate victory from God. What a neat reminder that the battle– and its victory– belongs to the Lord. (A friend’s take on that story.)
  • Ezekiel 36:26-27 He will give us a new heart, remove our heart of stone and give us a new spirit.
  • Lamentations 3:21-24  The Lord is our portion. His compassion never fails. His mercies are new every morning.

Hope you all have a wonderful week!!

PS- The bracelet is by MudLove.

{ 4 Comments }

  1. I love it when we look back and can see the hand of the Lord guiding us. It isn’t always that obvious but times like that renew our faith. Thanks for sharing your experience.

  2. I was in your first session and enjoyed it! I bought your cookbook at C4C and made the Chicken Pot Pie with Cheesy Biscuit Topping, and then last night, the Mexican Tortilla Skillet–my whole family loved both (which never happens!). Thanks for that! :)

    I loved the weekend too. Beth was so encouraging, all the breakouts were great. But my favorite thing? How God met me there. He is faithful!

  3. love it!! I didn’t even see your cookbook, but loved meeting you!!

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