I left the snow in Canada to find more in northern Arizona. The weekend of February 22-24, I headed to Prescott, AZ, to present the Satisfied...at Last! messages at the annual Tapestry Women's Ministry Retreat, a ministry of the Royal Palm Baptist Church in Phoenix, AZ.
Something happened at this retreat that I've never had happen in 20 years of speaking at events.
I got sick.
Terribly, terribly sick. Let's just say I was violently sick. Is that a sufficient clue as to the brand of sick I'm talking about? I hate to be too graphic while you're drinking your coffee and munching on your biscotti and perusing the Internet. So I'll leave it at that. But I felt terrible.
Still, the Lord was gracious enough (and more gracious to boot!) to see me through. You see I didn't get sick until I had completed the new 2nd session of the conference, one I inserted during this retreat for the first time. In this session we looked together at a couple of evaluation tools that help you diagnose whether or not you are involved in either an addiction or codependent relationship. This is a pretty convicting and sobering session. It's not the kind of session you want to end on. It could even be a bit of a downer.
So when I got ill Saturday afternoon, I just knew I couldn't leave the ladies there. It's important to recognize, confess and repent from our sinful ways. But, folks, it's equally important to know there is hope! There's redemption! There's healing and recovery and victory in the balance!
So I prayed. And others prayed. We prayed that God would heal me and sustain me so I could deliver the final two hope-infused messages of Satisfied...at Last!
And He did. In my weakness, He was mighty, mighty strong! He enabled me to deliver the third message with more clarity and strength than I ever have before, I do believe.
And then I got sick again. Violently sick, mind you.
And I prayed. We prayed.
God was good. I stood up one final time to share with the ladies how their lives would undoubtedly be changed if they would indeed "Taste, and see that the Lord is good!" We ended on a powerful note...and God got all the glory!!
|Me with some of the younger chicks at the retreat.|
I always LOVE to see young women at the
Satisfied...at Last! conference.
I just have such hope that perhaps God used
these messages to somehow
spare them a little grief along the way
as they seek for that which satisfies.
The women of Royal Palms were such a delight. They hung in there with me through my illness and my limitations. And they listened with such sweet hunger, and told me their stories, and did my heart good. Their praise and worship teams (Notice I said "teamS." I have never heard so many talented vocalists in one place!) led us in the sweetest worship of our Lord. And He was good to show up and work in our lives.
Thank you, ladies of Royal Palms, for inviting me to your annual getaway, and thank you for blessing me with your friendship. You were a treat!
|Shirley Barker (their women's ministry leader), me, |
Mary Ann Collins and Myla Newcomb(retreat coordinator)
If you're interested in booking a 2-4 session Satisfied...at Last!
retreat or conference, please e-mail me through the "Contact"
button on the menu bar. I absolutely LOVE
doing these, and would be thrilled to discuss the possibilities with you. Or if you'd like to hear the Satisfied...at Last!
messages for yourself, click here
to discover how you can purchase the 3-CD set.
Labels: Satisfied at Last, Speaking Engagement, The Ministry Map