2016 Dubai Retreat | Arrival & Fellowship
Our guests have arrived and our anxious anticipation for their arrival has now been replaced with pure joy and love.
It was such a fun time greeting them as they walked through the doors of the hotel. They seemed so joyful and thankful to be here. I had the privilege of witnessing a mother and daughter, who work cross-culturally in different countries, embrace each other as they met in the hotel lobby. We as volunteers were already seeing how this retreat was going to impact, refresh, and allow them a time of rest.
The available slots for self-care options were filling up quickly, and one global worker wept in the lobby when she heard that she could sign up for a massage. Lydia, a volunteer, shared that one of the guests said, “When I walked in, it was so wonderful to see smiling faces because where I am coming from, although the people are good, it is also very somber.”
Our guests are arriving in so many different seasons. Some are in winter: exhausted, broken, and grieving. Some are in the joy of summer, excited to share how the Lord provided for them to get here and excited to share what God is doing in their lives and the lives of those they serve around the world. For some, their feet are tired and their souls are weary. I love how Thrive creates a safe haven for them. They can gather around other women who share similar experiences. We hear them say, “It feels so good to sleep in a warm, comfortable bed.” and “It feels good to take hot showers.” Another was just “so thankful for green vegetables.”
As we gathered in a room of over 115 women, we had an amazing time of sweet worship. The sound of beautiful, angelic voices lifted high unto the Lord. We saw them laugh and we saw their tears. I sensed the Lord saying to them, “Come to me, my weary Daughter, and I will give you rest.”
I believe through God’s good grace, the staff and volunteers of this retreat will be the hands and feet of Jesus for these women.
Will you consider joining us in prayer? Pray for ears to be open, hearts to love on them, hands to embrace with a warm and healing touch, and for our humility as we wash their beautiful feet, as Christ so lovingly modeled to us.
About the author
Melissa Periera currently resides in Bakersfield, California with her husband Jason. They have three kids, Collin (16) Alexa (13) and Hayden (7). She works full time at a construction & architecture company and enjoys spending time with her family, reading, working out, and serving at her home church. This is her first trip of this kind.View all articles by: Melissa Pereira
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