I was approached about putting together the music for the retreat almost a year ago, and have been diligently planning and furiously downloading all sorts of music over the last few months to get ready. I invited my sister to sing on the team, and was so excited and blessed that she did! I don't know how, with both of us being singers, we haven't had an opportunity to really sing together in the last 30 years, but it was so great to be able to not only sing with her, but worship with her, too! My dear friend, Livonia, also sang with us. My friends, Lana, Kristi and Tammy also served on our team running the sound board and powerpoint, and I can't thank them enough for all of their hard work! In the planning stages, Satan definitely tried to creep in and get a hold of me, trying to plant the idea in my mind that I didn't have the chops to pull off such a huge task, and also tried to throw some last minute obsticles my way, but in the end, God certainly prevailed, giving us everything we needed to be able to effectively lead these women in worshiping Jesus.
The theme of the retreat was "No Regrets." Our speaker, Julie Gariss, was incredible! She shared with us her studies on the life of the old testament Joseph, and what an amazing example he is of overcoming family issues and of our own forgiveness for others. At the end of the weekend, we all nailed a regret, sealed in an envelope, to a cross. We give those to Jesus and we leave them there! It was incredible (and incredibly difficult to sing through watching so many women crying and being so emotionally touched by the experience!).
The time outside of the sessions was so much fun! On Saturday we had 4-5 hours of down time to just play around. A bunch of us decided to try our hand at climbing a 30 foot rock wall, and riding down a zip line. Sign me up for that one! I was surpised at how easy it was, and the ride down was so much fun!
It was a 4 bedroom cabin, and were lucky enough to all be in the same cabin together. The nights were pretty chilly, as our cabin was only heated by a wood burning stove in the common area (the first night I slept in my coat!). We got fed SO WELL by the camp staff, with 3 square meals a day, including desert at dinner. It seemed like everywhere we looked there was food! Everyone came with their own munchies to share, so it seemed like we had a whole grocery store in our cabin!
Of course we had to get a picture of our outstanding group of women before we left. Here we are!
Top row - Left to Right: Lori, Lana, Brandy, Livonia, Kristi, Tammy & Brenda.
Bottom Row: Ronna and Kathryn.
I feel so blessed to have been a part of this retreat, and am so glad I went!