It seemed too good to be true. This past January I received an email from SHOR Ministries about a free retreat that they offer to ministers and their spouses. I wasn't sure what to think or if it was even real. Most people, ministries or whatever want something or what you to buy something from them. They assured that their ministry was different. I put the event on the calendar after sharing with my wife.
Julie and I spent last week in a lodge up in the mountains near Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. We still didn't know what to expect, but we were excited to be able to get away. Turns out that we spent time with 6 other couples in ministry. They provided us with a private room in a nice lodge (check it out here) and all of our meals.
One words sums up what we experienced yesterday: refreshing. We made new friends. We laughed at stories and shared painful truth of the things we go through in ministry. We talked about family and life and so much more. It was awesome. The stories that were told around the table will not soon be forgotten.
Two pieces stick out to myself and to Julie as the best take aways. First, we met some new friends who are in similar situations we are and that we will be praying for each week. Second, we spent some time sharing with Charlie and Suzanne Grigsby who lead SHOR Ministry. This time was so valuable as we shared, they shared and we prayed together. Their call to serve ministers and their needs is incredible and so very needed.
Charlie and Suzanne are gifted encouragers. They know how to be great host, to put people at ease and to help you take time to rest. Their ministry is simply supported by "people who love pastors". I can not say enough about what this retreat meant to Julie and to me. We have been refreshed which will lead us to refresh others.
If you are in full-time ministry, checkout www.shorministries.com and even fill out an application for the next retreat near you. You will be glad that you did. Pass this along to others.
If you are a Jesus follower, take some time today to sit back and let God refresh you. Then pick at least one person and refresh them today. That refreshing can be in buying them a cup of coffee, or having a conversation, or writing them a card, or a number of ways.
I simply want you to meet Charlie and Suzanne and people like them. We need each other, and each of us need to be refreshed. How awesome to be able to help someone else find peace in Jesus and strength and to keep on their journey with Jesus!