6 Tips For A Spiritual Solo Retreat…

He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters.

Psalm 23:2

Retreat means to withdraw. To take a step back. Jesus did this many times. He would disappear to spend time in the presence of his Father. He wanted to quiet his heart to gain the strength needed for the next steps on his earthly sojourn. If he needed strength, how much more we? Shouldn’t we follow the example that He set?

Larissa Marks, HuffPost contributor provided 6 practical steps to do a spiritual retreat. Here I share while giving a few of my own commentary.

  1. Create the time and find a place. Any place quiet will do. It may be in your home. It may be away. It may be at a monastery or in nature. For me I skipped home to get away from the distractions. After two decades of receiving a prod to go, I finally gave in. Just me. Solo.
  2. Set your intentions. What is the purpose? What is it you would like to achieve from this time with him? Is it a calling? Is it a life decision that you need to make? For me it was discernment and to follow his leading for the next phase of my life
  3. Settle into God’s presence. Do something that quiets your heart and eases you into his presence. For me it’s walking in nature or sitting quietly breathing–welcoming and experiencing his presence. Ask him what he wants you to receive at this time. Listen and follow his lead.
  4. Reflect. Do some quiet reflection. What have you experienced in the last few weeks, months or even years? What has been draining you? What has brought you satisfaction?
  5. Connect with God. Read scripture. Notice any desire(s) that emerge. For me in his presence there’s always fullness of joy. Even in the midst of life’s storms I find that I can experience his quiet peace.
  6. Receive and return. Think about what you received during this time away. What do you want to stop doing or start doing? Remember, it’s not about you, it’s about the Lord and accomplishing his will and purpose for your life.

Hope these tips will help provide guidance as you make important life decisions or seek discernment for the next phase of your life. If you have done solo retreats, what did you walk away with? What stood out most about this experience? Do share. We would love to hear.

Encouragement Quotes…

God never does anything accidentally, and he never makes mistakes.

Rick Warren

 Trust the past to God’s mercy, the present to God’s love and the future to God’s providence


God is more interested in your future and your relationships than you are.

Billy Graham

One often sees a call only in retrospect. This too is God’s design. God often reinforces our faith after we trust him, not before.

Ravi Zacharias

The Desires Of Your Heart…

Thank you for being a friend. Lots of struggles but God made you special. I pray God will provide the desires of your heart. That you will always continue to give the gift of love that he has provided to you.

I pray today will be special day for you, you and yes… you too.

Blessings overflow

In The Peace And Quiet Of Solace…

Goals are created in the peace and quiet of solace. I was reflecting on the different types of animals. Birds, insects, fish and those that soar. All creatures were created by our great big awesome God. When he did it, it was done in serenity when the earth was without form and void.

Yessss…And when it was done, he created man. The purpose? To enjoy his creations as told in Genesis.

As you go about making your own plans for today, tomorrow or the future, do it with God for only what’s done for the Lord will last. Find that place of solace for your goal. Spend time with the Lord as you dream and create in silence . Then come out and share with others the great things you have done.

What’s done in Quiet will be revealed

Let your light shine bright.

Blessings overflow

Blackout’s Impact On The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year…

At 6am I awoke startled wondering who had turned on the light. Sleep disturbed. Weeks later a repeat after a night of power outage. A Blackout fired the most beautifully decorated Christmas lights. But joy came in the morning as sunrise burst through.

Hmm cause to reflect….

Jesus is the light of the world. There’s no light that shines brighter than his. We too are encouraged to let our light (life) shine. Surprise someone with your light of love today. There’s no better time than during the most wonderful time of the year.

Blessings overflow.

A Prayer For The Sick And Hurting…

In all things we give thanks

When we don’t know what to do, Father you do.
When we don’t know what to Say, speak through us.
If silence is all we have, help us not to fear it but receive it.
Grant us comfort and strengthen hearts while we wait.

When we are far away from our ailing loved ones, you’re there. You’re near.
When we feel helpless, grant wisdom
When we are perplexed, grant clarity

Father, please intervene as only you can.
Please Quiet all hearts right now.
Grant comfort, quiet peace to the entire family’s anxious soul.
Intervene now Lord as only you can.
Please intervene.

Take care of the Ailing’s body and spirit
Take care of the family.
Take care of caregiver’s anxious mind.
We pray these things in your name.
Intervene Lord, intervene.
Intervene as only you can.

What’s Going On In Your Life That Feels Like A Giant?

Life’s Tragedies, disappointments and finding strength during difficult times

My Safe Place book synopsis created by 11-year-old RJ. He captured the essence of the contents through his animated video. The book promises:

  • Inspirational short stories and exhortations to uplift you
  • Prayers and encouragement for difficult journeys
  • Guidance to identify God’s purpose and leading when you are confused
  • What to do when Enemies strike
  • What to do when waiting on God

Discouraged and feel like giving up? Sneak away to your safe place and curl up as you bask in his presence while you read.

The Bible In The Age Of Technology…

Sitting next to me in church, 10 year old RJ whispered (bible in hand)… “nobody brings their Bible to church anymore”. Then he told me to look around. He was right. I did not even have my Bible in hand as Pastor Darryl read the displayed verses on the screen. Mine was in my bag. RJ proceeded to draw the cartoon comic discussion.

No excuses but the Tech era we are living in, most of us use the #bibleapp as our bible reading resource. Convenience at its core, It’s easy to carry around because we always have it on our phones. It’s also easy to share a verse or two to encourage others who cross our mind while reading.

But at times if there’s no WiFi we can experience connection issues if we didn’t download the App.

The risk though… we may end up scrolling to alerts that pop up… Unless we are very disciplined to avoid distractions. Nevertheless I love the convenience of the App.

But yep! I agree with RJ. Very few actually carry the Bible anymore. But let’s not be quick to judge as we rejoice in the convenience it brings while at work, on the move anytime, anyplace.

Join me in this simple challenge to take the physical book with us to church. Even more-so, let’s read our bible and pray everyday.

Blessings overflow to you as you listen while he speaks through the word. It ignites.

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