I could hardly wait to get there. My bag was packed with my Bible, journal, and pen. I placed it in the trunk of my car along with a lawn chair and a water bottle.
I drove to a park near my home. After setting up my chair in a spot under a shady tree with a view of the lake, I opened my Bible to read and opened my heart to receive God’s Word.
It was my morning for a personal spiritual retreat.
When my soul is worn thin and my spirit feels overwhelmed, I know it’s time to take a break with God. To sit quietly in His presence. To sink deep into His Word. To pour out my soul and receive His peace and rest.
Too often I ignore my heart’s cries for rest. I push through soul weariness, meeting my obligations, accomplishing necessary tasks. Taking time for a spiritual retreat seems to go against our culture’s value of accomplishment and achievement. Sitting quietly with the Savior doesn’t produce anything I can write on a resume.
But a personal retreat opens my heart to the Father’s care. The Spirit renews my soul. I come away refreshed. I can come back to my real world with its schedules and obligations with renewed strength and peace.
Jesus told His disciples, “Come away by yourselves to a desolate place and rest a while” (Mark 6:31). He knew they needed to get away from the crowds, the noise, the responsibilities.
Jesus offers us the same invitation to us, “Come away by yourself. Get away from the busyness, the hurry, the pressing obligations. Spend time in My presence. Rest in my care.”Jesus says: Come away by yourself. Get away from the busyness. Spend time in My presence and rest in my care. Click To Tweet
You might be wondering: What do you do during a personal spiritual retreat?
Here’s my process. I read God’s Word and journal what I hear God speaking to me. I pour out my struggles, asking God to make sense out of everything. I get out my schedule and to-do list and pray for God to give me His perspective, His priorities. I spend time resting in God’s love for me.
Here are a couple more ideas for your spiritual retreat:
- Meditate on the Bible story in John 8:1–11. Imagine yourself in the story. Hear the sounds, smell the smells. Look at Jesus. What does your heart experience in meeting Jesus in this story?
- Dream. Write down your most extravagant dreams for your life. Ask God to show you if they are in line with His will.
- Create a photo journal. Take a walk in nature and snap photos of things that remind you of God. Later, create a slide show or photo book of the photos with captions of prayers of thanksgiving.
If you would like more ideas like these, sign up to receive my Soul Spa Kit. Just enter your email address and name in the form in the upper right-hand corner.
May God bless you as You seek Him and rest in His love.
Next step: Look at your calendar and pick a three-hour block of time (or more) for a spiritual retreat. Pack up your Bible and journal and enjoy an extended time with the Savior.