Wednesday 19 November 2014

Girls' Retreat

In the autumn our youth group usually do a girls' retreat (and a separate guys' retreat). I remember last year's - it was in October and I really felt like I was just starting to learn names. So this year it was really good to know almost all the girls there! There were twenty or so of us gathered from Friday dinner until mid-afternoon on Saturday.

We started off with a fun icebreaker and name game to help everyone know who everyone is! 

Martina led our time together really well. Our teaching sessions were on the women named in the genealogy of Christ found in Matthew and what we can learn from their stories as we seek to live as godly women. 

Martina talked about Mary and shepherded our time together really well. Jenny spoke on Tamar and Bathsheba and the beauty of the Gospel. I spoke on Rahab and Ruth and their faith and faithfulness.

We stayed at a church building thirty minutes away (erm.. it may have taken me more like an hour to get there because although I put the address in my GPS it took us to a very wrong place and then when I phoned someone for directions they gave me directions from a bridge and we found the wrong bridge. This is my general experience with church retreats. I did count.less. u-turns on Friday night in middle of nowhere Czech.)

The church renovated or built a beautiful new building - I wish I knew more of the story! It's six stories and has their main church gathering place, meeting rooms, kitchens, guest accommodation as well as several self contained flats where the pastor lives and others. It is not unusual in Czech for pastors to have a flat contained within the church building.

I slept in a bed nestled under a sloping roof with skylights built into it. So, when I say this is the view I woke up to I do literally mean I opened my eyes and saw this. Beautiful.

We are so thankful for a girl from our church who comes along to these retreats and carefully plans and prepares good food for us! 

Of course one of the best things about being away for a night retreat together is the community and down time that happens. Retreats allow you to have conversation/game/hang out time - and so much of it! It would take months to have this much time with the girls normally.

It was such an encouragement to me to be with these women as they seek to pursue their Heavenly Father and live out the identity He has given them. This is not an easy thing to do in today's society, wherever you live, but maybe especially not here. I'm praying that, like so many women in the Bible, they would do this with faith and faithfulness.

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