"Arigatou." That's how you say "thank you" in Japanese. It's another word I said (or attempted to say) quite often during my stay in Okinawa, Japan.

And that is indeed the sentiment of my heart.

Arigatou. Thank you.

"I thank the Lord for my every remembrance of you."

Thank you for opening your home to Kim and me. We loved getting to know you!

Thank you for taking more pictures than the British paparazzi
and better photos than I could ever manage on my own.

 Thank you for making us laugh, for letting us into your world, and driving us all over the island.

Thank you for planning an amazing Amazing Race, for running us all over Okuma, and for making us laugh.

Thank you, thank you, thank you for inviting me to Okinawa, 
for planning a splendid retreat, and
for showing us the time of our life!

Thank you for your encouragement, your transparency, your friendship.

 Thank you for sharing your energy, your passion, and yourself.

Thank you for coming to the retreat, for listening attentively,
for searching the scriptures with me, and for receiving God's Word.

Thank you for sushi and homemade lattes and lemon curd on toast
and sea glass and phone calls home.

Thank you for sharing your world with two non-military women,
for  laughing and crying and singing and talking with us.

Thank you for your kind words, your sweet smiles,
your loving praises.

Thank you for being transparent, honest, open, teachable,
humble, and plain delightful.

 Thank you for proving that the younger generation also seeks
to know their God, to live according to His ways, and
to serve Him well.

Thank you for broadening our horizons, giving us a glimpse of
just how big our God is and how much He loves His people.

These pictures of these beautiful faces are only a small representation of the many lovely, godly women who attended the PWOC retreat that memorable weekend. Don't you just see the radiance of the Lord all over them? They are truly some of the most gracious and genuinely warm women I've ever encountered.

And my thanksgivings are spread among them; they do not belong to only those in the photos. I could actually say a word of appreciation to each and every woman for what she brought to the retreat and to my life that special week.

Praise the Lord for what He hath done!


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