What a wonderful time we ladies had on the sound by sea with pastors’ wives who needed to escape the demands of life and retreat! These ladies serve a unique role as they faithfully support their spouses in ministry to their church bodies. They serve behind the scenes in prayer for their congregations, always with an available listening ear, helping in childcare, or the worship team, providing meals for the bereaved or a new mom… where ever there’s a need, you can find them!
Pastors’ wives like so many of us, need to be reminded of God’s abundant love and that He carries our burdens with us! Our theme for the weekend was… “Like the sands of the sea…” remembering God’s eternal covenant of Abraham… given to us, God’s care as our burden bearer, and HIS thoughts toward us… all “as numerous as the sands on the sea” (Psalm 139:13-14) God demonstrated HIS love and care by providing a place of prayer, uninterrupted worship, a place for these women to seek God and find refreshment, renewal and much needed REST!
Once again God blessed us with an encouraging time sharing His Word as we focused on Luke 13:10-17, when Jesus sees the “crippled, weary woman on the Sabbath and sets her free from the religious mindset to find true rest, healing her physically and spiritually. He renews her mind speaking to her with a term of endearment, proclaiming her true identity as a “woman, daughter of Abraham” (v. 16).
The Bible gives us faith pictures, and just as Jesus sees, calls and sets free the weary woman, God sees each pastors’ wife’s weariness, calls her forward and gives her a true identity apart from their role in the church. I reminded the ladies that God’s thoughts toward them of a covenant of love is forever, His thoughts toward them are “as numerous as the sands on the sea”.
Beyond the Bible teaching, which these ladies were thirsty for, we also sang sweet songs in worship from a playlist my husband generously made. (He’s so good at pulling together songs that meet a focus point!) songs like “He Waits for Me” by Consumed by Fire, and “Take Courage” by Bethel Music, to name a few. But the R & R, prayer by the water, and a close up view of a pod of dolphins while we were on our boat ride… gave us a glimpse that Jesus truly waits to meet us “down by the water”!
Special thanks to Lynn Dixon for sharing her home and her heart serving these precious pastors’ wives. Remember to pray for your pastor’s wife, let them be themselves without expectation, and invite them to attend next spring’s pastors’ wives retreat with me!