Written by Tawni Miller
The past few days have been nothing short of beautiful! All one has to do is look out the window and see God’s painted masterpiece that makes you want to drop to your knees and praise Him! He created us for that. And in that creation, He formed people who would become His ministers. He uses us to speak into each other’s lives for one purpose…to bring Him glory!
As we wrapped up our time at the Thrive retreat, we shared the highlights—the joys and the challenges—we observed and experienced over the past eight days. It’s not taken lightly. We needed 2 1/2 days to do this. What did we learn about the women serving overseas? What did we learn about ourselves? What do we, as volunteers, do with what happened this week? We walked in one way and are leaving another.
It always takes time to unpack my suitcase after a trip. Likewise, it takes time to unpack emotional suitcases as well. Probably longer. This wasn’t a normal trip. We didn’t just book a trip to a resort in the Colorado Rockies to enjoy life as we know it. What we signed up for was God’s holy work. We were walking on sacred ground. We were charged with ministering to a group of women who are doing Kingdom-focused, spirit-led, faith-filled, surrendered lives for the purpose of sharing the Gospel—either directly or indirectly—in their fields of services. This was not a small task! The volunteers poured into 41 women on the field, who came from all walks of life, from 27 countries of service, and 639 combined years of service. They needed encouragement, nurturing, connection and to be seen and heard. We met them where they were at – some weary, burned out, confused, lonely, full of shame, grieving, doubting… We gave them comfort through meeting physical, emotional, and spiritual needs. We poured out our “alabaster jars” onto them and blessed their souls. They came to us one way and left filled with hope and a renewed outlook on their roles as Global Women and the calling on their lives. We were one snapshot in their bigger picture that God is continuing to paint for their lives.
Thrive retreats create a safe place for women to be themselves. To share their souls. But whether you are an attendee or a volunteer, you leave with a renewed hunger for the Lord—affirmation for who you are and Who’s you are in Christ and direction on your calling.
For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. Ephesians 2:10