Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Women's Retreat

I dangle my feet in the pool; although the water is fairly warm, the feel of liquid on my feet brings some relief to the humidity and heat. After weeks of meeting and planning with a handful of other ladies, the women's retreat is finally a reality!

The morning began with a delicious breakfast of pancakes, breads, and fruit. 

Then we opened with our first session of the day. Together with the help of our speaker, Inga Lil Guzik, a pastor's wife from the United States all forty of us dug deep into God's Word. 

When the first session was finished, we stopped for a break and to give ourselves time to study God's Word on our own as well. 

Now, opening my folder I pull out the devotional provided, and read the two Bible passages written there. The first one is from Psalm 91:1-6: 
1 He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. 
2 I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. 
3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from the noisome pestilence. 
4 He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler. 
5 Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the arrow that flieth by day; 
6 Nor for the pestilence that walketh in darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. 

The second passage is from Psalm 121: 1-8:
1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 
2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. 
3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. 
4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. 
5 The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. 
6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 
7 The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. 
8 The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore. 

Reading the two passages, I'm once again reminded of the words I recently read in Hosea 4:6a: "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge:" And Hosea 6:3: "Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the Lord: his going forth is prepared as the morning; and he shall come unto us as the rain, as the latter and former rain unto the earth." 

Reading the two passages on the devotional again I study what it tells me of God. There's so much there; He is Almighty, my Refuge, my Fortress, my Deliverer and my Keeper. As I continue to dig deeper, I am reminded of the words in Matthew 22:37-38: "Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment."  

In order to love God, we need to know Him. 

It's not about all the wonderful things we can do for him, as Matthew 7:22-23 tells us: "Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Jesus also said in John 5:39 "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.

As the sun continues to beat overhead,

I squint and lift the Bible verses closer to my face. God's Word is so rich and through it God speaks to us. We CAN get to know Him, and the more we know Him, the more we will love Him.

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